In June last year, the consortium of interested parties overseeing the international peace mission in Bosnia, the Peace Implementation Council (PIC), decided that the Office of the High Representative should close in June 2007. It was entirely clear back then that the OHR under Christian Schwarz-Schilling would spend most of the remaining time dealing with its own phase-out rather than with the pressing issues confronting Bosnia (including police and public broadcasting reform, constitutional amendments, and the blocked process of inching closer to the EU).
Now, even the PIC seems to have recognized that its decision was premature; when its Steering Board meets in Brussels at the end of February, it is very likely to extend the OHR's mandate. (The decision had always been subject to review in February.) Another piece of news: according to today's Dnevni avaz, Schwarz-Schilling will be replaced, presumably by someone who's actually interested in using his office to achieve concrete results. For this situation, however, the PIC deserves as much blame as Schwarz-Schilling, whose views on the extensive powers of the OHR were after all well-known even before his appointment. (Avaz is not known for meticulous fact-checking, but I've now heard the same from more credible sources.)
Rumor has it that Schwarz-Schilling is about to make a statement to the effect that he would not serve beyond June.
The whole episode is embarrassing because it suggests that the PIC hadn't done its homework before appointing Schwarz-Schilling, or before taking the decision to phase out in June. It is also a blow to the idea, already rather thin intellectually, that the pull of European integration would on its own be strong enough for Bosnia's elites to bring their irreconcilable visions for the future closer together. Thanks to the PIC, Schwarz-Schilling's term in office has been a complete waste of time.