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Haris Silajdzic is Most Popular Politician in Bosnia
Haris Silajdzic (SARAJEVO, April 5—Reuters) Former prime minister Haris Silajdzic and not President Alija Izetbegovic is the most popular politician in Bosnia, a poll by Sarajevo's leading monthly magazine showed on Friday. More than 40 percent of people in the main towns controlled by the mainly Muslim Bosnian government said they preferred Silajdzic. Izetbegovic won favor with some 26 percent of the more than 5,000 people polled by BH Days magazine. Silajdzic resigned in January after a dispute with Izetbegovic's ruling Muslim SDA party over the extent to which the Bosnian central government should be guided by Muslim nationalism. But the two men moved closer together politically this week, proposing a joint declaration to bolster Bosnia's unity.

The surprise rapprochement disappointed some opposition parties that hoped Silajdzic would lead them against the SDA in elections due to take place by September, said analysts in Sarajevo's leading daily Oslobodenje. The poll indicated that Silajdzic's nascent "Party for Bosnia" would win most votes if an election were held today. The former premier has said he will stand on a liberal, non-ethnic platform.

Polling did not take place in the two-thirds of Bosnia controlled by separatist Serbs and Croats, who support politicians from their own ethnic groups.

Additional resources
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Former Bosnian Prime Minister Forms New Party

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