Women in Defence System – Bosnia and Herzegovina – 2023

National Action Plan 1325:

The third local action plan of Bosnia and Herzegovina on the women, peace and security agenda expired in 2022. In 2021, the BiH Agency for Gender Equality published the final evaluation report on the implementation of UNSCR 1325 “Women, Peace and Security” in Bosnia and Herzegovina for the period 2018–2022.

Participation of women in the MoDs and the Armed Forces:

The number of members of the Armed Forces and the Ministry of Defence is limited by the Law on the Budget of BiH Institutions and by international obligations of BiH to have 10,000 professional military personnel (generals,
officers, non-commissioned officers and soldiers) and 1,000 civilians employed in the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina.¹ The total number of employees in the defence system is currently 8,482, and women make up 8.2% of professional military personnel (674). According to data from 2023, the number of women among the civil servants and employees in the MoD is currently 100, which is 43.1% of total number of civil servants (232). When it comes to the share of uniformed women among officers, non-commissioned officers (NCOs) and soldiers, Bosnia and Herzegovina has 6.7% female officers (120), 4.9% NCOs (127) and 11.1% soldiers (427). Compared to 2019, there is a decrease in the representation of women in the total number of professional military personnel and civil servants, but there is also a slight increase in female officers and soldiers.

Representation of women in command and leadership positions:

There are currently 106 women in leadership and commanding positions, i.e. 4.2% of the total number of employees in the MoD and AF. The highest rank held by women in the Armed Forces of BiH is still that of Colonel, while a woman headed the Ministry of Defence from 2015 to 2019.

Participation of women in peacekeeping operations:

There are currently no members of the Ministry of Security and the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina engaged in peacekeeping missions.

      1. Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, O oružanim snagama Bosne i Hercegovine [On the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina], 2022,

2023 – Balkan Defence Monitor
Women In Defence System –
Bosnia and Herzegovina

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