"The Bosnian Serb separatist leader on Sunday awarded Russian President Vladimir Putin with the highest medal of honor for his “patriotic concern and love” for the Serb-controlled half of Bosnia.
“Putin is responsible for developing and strengthening cooperation and political and friendly relations between RS (Republika Srpska) and Russia,” the Bosnian Serb president, Milorad Dodik, said at the awards ceremony in the Bosnian Serb stronghold of Banja Luka.
Dodik, who visited Putin in September in Moscow, has maintained close ties with the Russian president despite Russia’s war in Ukraine. The medal will be presented to Putin during the next meeting between the two, Russian Ambassador Igor Kalbukhov said.
“We believe that this award is an affirmation of the strategic determination of our relations aimed at strengthening the friendship of our brotherly people,” he said at the ceremony.
1. The Associated Press News (January 08, 2023) https://apnews.com/article/russia-ukraine-putin-politics-government-milorad-dodik-7edc18d0133bbde4c5b84879c0dbe724