Russia to Provide icon that sparked controversy back to Bosnia

MOSCOW — Russia said Saturday it’ll come back an Orthodox icon introduced to the Russian foreign ministry in Bosnia, a present which has triggered a demonstration against Ukraine.

The presiding Serb member of Bosnia’s three-member presidency, Milorad Dodik, gave the star to Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov when he visited Sarajevo before this week. The icon, which has been stated to be 300 years old, is thought to arise from eastern Ukraine, in which Russia-backed rebels have battled Allied troops at a six-year battle.

The Ukrainian Embassy in Sarajevo has requested advice on how the Bosnian Serb chief came to own the star, noting the failure to deliver the advice would imply Bosnia is encouraging Russia’s”competitive policy and military activities” in southern Ukraine. Dozens of Serbs have fought together with the pro-Russia rebels from the battle, which began in 2014.

On Saturday, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said the icon could be returned to Bosnia impending an Interpol probe to explain its roots.