Valentin Inzko

Valentin Inzko (born 22 May 1949) is an Austrian diplomat currently serving as the High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina, a role which he assumed on 26 March 2009.[1][2] Between 2009 and 2011 he served also as the European Union Special Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina. He is a member of the Slovene minority.

Valentin Inzko
High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina
Assumed office
26 March 2009
Preceded byMiroslav Lajčák
European Union Special Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina
In office
11 March 2009  1 September 2011
Preceded byMiroslav Lajčák
Succeeded byPeter Sørensen
Personal details
Born (1949-05-22) 22 May 1949
Klagenfurt, Austria
Spouse(s)Bernarda Fink
Alma materUniversity of Graz
Diplomatic Academy of Vienna


Inzko was born into a Carinthian Slovene family in Klagenfurt, Carinthia. His father, Valentin Inzko Sr., was a renowned cultural and political activist of the local Slovene minority. Valentin Jr. attended a Slovene-German bilingual school in Suetschach (Slovene: Sveče) in the municipality of Feistritz im Rosental (Slovene: Bistrica v Rožu). After finishing the Slovene language high school in Klagenfurt in 1967, he enrolled in the University of Graz, where he studied law and Slavic philology. Between 1972 and 1974, he attended the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna.

In 1974, he entered the Austrian diplomatic service. Between 1982 and 1986, he worked as press attache at the Austrian embassy in Belgrade. After that, he worked at the Austrian mission to the United Nations. Between 1990 and 1996, he worked as the cultural attache at the Austrian embassy in the Czech Republic, and between 1996 and 1999, he was the Austrian ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina. Between October and December 1992, he was a member of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe mission to the Sandžak region in Serbia. In 2005, he was named as the Austrian ambassador to Slovenia. In March 2009, he became the seventh High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina, replacing the Slovak diplomat Miroslav Lajčák. Inzko thus became the second Carinthian Slovene to occupy that position, after Wolfgang Petritsch who served as the High Representative between 1999-2002. In June 2010 he was elected to be chairman of the National Council of Carinthian Slovenes.[3]

Besides Slovene and German, Inzko is fluent in English, Serbo-Croatian, Russian and Czech.[4] Among other works, he has translated the essays of Václav Havel Living in Truth and The Power of the Powerless into Slovene.[5]

He is married to Argentine Slovene opera singer Bernarda Fink Inzko.


High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina

On 9 June 2009, Inzko used his powers for the first time and sacked two police officials. The two officials were Bosniak Himzo Đonko, a police commissioner in the Herzegovina-Neretva canton, blamed for threatening Bosnian international officials in a bid to obstruct an investigation in his abuse of power accusations, and Bosnian Serb Radislav Jovičić, an official in the Bosnian state agency for investigation and protection, alleged to have used his subordinates to illegally follow and observe Inzko's staff.[6]



  1. "Ambassador Valentin Inzko Appointed As The Next High Representative". Office of the High Representative and the EU Special Representative. 2009-03-13. Archived from the original on 2009-03-29. Retrieved 2009-03-13.
  2. "Rat der Kärntner Slowenen: Inzko zu Obmann gewählt" (in German). Kleine Zeitung. 2010-06-20. Retrieved 2010-06-20.
  3. "Latest news from around Great Britain". Retrieved 31 May 2019.
  4. "COBISS/OPAC - sl". Retrieved 31 May 2019.
  5. "Bosnia peace envoy sacks 2 police officers". Retrieved 31 May 2019.
  6. "Reply to a parliamentary question about the Decoration of Honour" (pdf). (in German). p. 1923. Retrieved 2013-01-13.
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Miroslav Lajčák
High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina
European Union Special Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina
Succeeded by
Peter Sørensen
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