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BOSNEWS digest 425 -- 08/10/95

Bosnia-Herzegovina News Directory

From: Nermin Zukic <>

BOSNEWS Digest 425

Topics covered in this issue include:

1) BosNet NEWS - Oct. 5-7/95 (TWRA: Krajisnik Threatens; 2) Bosnet ARTICLE - Judge Goldstone: Justice With Resources Turned On/Off? by Nermin Zukic <>


Sarajevo, Tuzla, Oct 7, 1995 (Press TWRA) - Close associate of R. Karadzic who was together with Karadzic imprisoned due to defraud and stealing money, now president of self-styled assembly of the so-called Republika Srpska, M. Krajisnik has announced continuation of military operations in Bosnia so that his Serbs utill next Tuesday, when cease-fire comes into force in Bosnia, again the best possible position. Serbs' plan is to grab some more areas in western Bosnia, first, the town of Kljuc which after three-year-occupation, was liberated by B-H army. From direction of Mrkonjic Grad and Sanski Most Serb try to reach that town. Croatian TV reports that they have recently taken the village of Krasulje from the former and villages of Sitnica and Cadjavica from the latter direction. Violent Serb offensive on western Bosnia being directly and largely supported in military equipment and manpower by Serbia's government in the past few days was followed by a counter attack of Bosnian army 5th Corps, specially around Bosanska Otoka, 1O km northeastern from Bos. Krupa. In recent assaults, Karadzic's Serbs came 2 km close to Bos. Otoka so B-H army is trying to push them back towards Bosanski Novi.

After three days long fierce Serb assaults, B-H army retook the initiative on Mt. Ozren. All attacks of Serb local paramilitary from that area, from nearby Doboj and newly arrived units from Serb strongholds around Sarajevo and the so-called FR Yugoslavia have been repelled. In the most recent assault, another 5O sq km of the territory around the peak Kraljica have been liberated. Four more villages are liberated, too. Fighting around main Serb stronghold on still Serb held part of Ozren Bosansko Petrovo Selo is renewed. Should Karadzic's Serbs lose that area, their position on Mt. Ozren would be vitally jeopardized as none significant Serb stronghold is on the way to Doboj. In order to prevent that, Karadzic's Serbs several times last night sent reinforcement on Mt. Ozren and Trebavac. Due to hard situation on that area, Serb long range artillery target Gracanica and nearby Klokotnica. In the morning shelling there were no casualties but material damage is great.

Serb artillery positioned in the village of Tramosnica targeted Gradacac in northern Bosnia. Before the war, Tramosnica was predominantly Croat and in 1992, HVO withdrew almost without fighting what strengthened the position of Serb occupiers in Bosanska posavina. /end/ A.S.


Osijek Oct 7, 1995 (Press TWRA) - Croatian media report on Serb provocations in eastern Croatia. In Belisce, Stjepan K. 71, was killed in sniper fire from Baranja while riding his bicycle and then Franjo V. 3O, from Valpovo who tried to help him. Several buildings and cars were damaged in Osijek when several shells were fired from Baranja on that town. Either incident occurred on Thursday and released today. /end/ A.S.

IZETBEGOVIC ON INTERNATIONAL STANDING OF BOSNIA Sarajevo, Oct 7, 1995 (Press TWRA) - Asked by "Dnevni avaz" daily if Bosnia, which demanded admittance to "Partnership for Peace", will one day be a NATO member, Bosnian president Izetbegovic said: "To be frank, we are not pushing ourselves a lot in it. We are the state "between the East and West". We are a rare state which regards both the USA and Iran as its friends and which has support of both Arabic and Jewish world. I think it is a great achievement of our policy." /end/ A.S.


Moscow, Oct, 7, 1995 (Press TWRA) - Delegates of Duma, lower house of Russian Parliament, tried to outvote the veto of Russian president Yeltsin on their decision for unilateral lifting sanctions on Serbia and Montenegro, i.e. "FR Yugoslavia". Yet, two-third majority of 3OO needed votes was not achieved as only 248 delegates voted. /end/ A.S.


Rome, Warsaw, Oct 7, 1995 (Press TWRA) - The prospects for ending the war in B-H and the forms of the international assistance for its post-war reconstruction were discussed yesterday at the Contact group's consultations (USA, Russia, Germany, France, Britain) in Rome where along with the hosts (Italy and European Union) were present the delegates from Canada, Japan, Muslim states, Croatia, B-H, Serbia who also attended the meeting of the Middle Europe's initiative being held in Polish capital. /end/ A.S.


Washington, Oct 7, 1995 (Press TWRA) - Leader of the Republican majority in the US Senate Robert Dole said president Clinton had not given convincing enough arguments for sending US troops to keep or enforce the peace agreement in Bosnia-Herzegovina. More adequate and better measure is to lift the arms embargo against Bosnian government, repeated Bob Dole. Dole's statement is a reaction to president Clinton's claim that the USA cannot neglect their role of the leading NATO power being the only force that can bring peace to B-H.

US defence secretary W. Perry, in the interview released in "International Herald Tribune", said that UN troops would make between one third and on half of NATO forces in B-H. We consider sending one US division, says Perry (it includes about 2O,OOO soldiers). French defence minister Ch. Millon said that USA, with respect to NATO's tasks, could send 15 to 35 thousand soldiers in B-H. France agreed not to give UN any considerable role in NATO operations in Bosnia. /end/ A.S.



New York, October 6,1995 (Press TWRA) - The UN representative Joe Sills announced that UN will reduce the number of soldiers in B-H for about 9 OOO soldiers. Out of 3O OOO active soldiers at present 21 OOO are members of regular forces while around 85OO=20 British, French, and Dutch soldiers are members of RRF. Soldiers from Bangladesh, Canada, Netherlands Pakistan and Britain would leave B-H. The number of soldiers in the battalions which have more soldiers than the standard number of 965 to 971 will also be reduced. That is the case with the Malayan, Pakistani, Spanish, Turkish and Scandinavian units. The reason for this withdrawal, as Joe Sills explained, is the need to organize peace forces more efficiently after the recent B-H Army and HV offensives, emphasizing that the members of UN at large withdraw from the territories under Serbian control and from many points along the demarcation lines. UN will leave around 8 OOO soldiers in reserves which will be stationed in Europe. (end) S.K.


Sarajevo,October 6,1995 (Press TWRA) - The US Asst. Secy. of State R. Holbrooke issued on the explicit demand from the Bosnian side the written statement on Sarajevo which says: "The cease fire Agreement neither changes nor it can be interpreted in a way to change the obligations of UN and NATO in case of the attack on B-H safe zones. As President Clinton said, US will demand the resume of air strikes if the safe zones in B-H are threatened. US will also consider as the violation of the Agreement intentional interruption of the distribution of the electricity, gas and water for Sarajevo and such acts will have serious consequences. This is very important for Sarajevo where freedom of access to roads over Kiseljak and Igman must be guaranteed". (end) S.K.


Williamsburg, October 6,1995 (Press TWRA) - The defence ministers of countries members of NATO during two days meeting reconsidered the plans of the deployment of joint Peace forces in B-H, relations with Russia and plans for expansion of NATO to East. In order to get the Russian consent for expansion to Middle and East Europe the NATO postponed that issue by the end of presidential elections in Russia and US. The greatest discussions were over the U.S. proposal explained in the U.S. Defence Minister Perry's statement who before the meeting said that the best solution for conflict would be disarmament of sides in conflict but if that is not possible, than it would be necessary to professionalize B-H Federation forces in order to establish military balance". This was confirmed by the statements of some US Government's officials who claim that "only training of B-H Governments forces to confront the Serbian aggression would guarantee the political agreement after the NATO forces are withdrawn from Bosnia.Britain and France fiercely opposed US proposal on training and armament of B-H Federation soldiers which is expressed in statements of Defence Ministers Portillo and Millon. "NATO would loose the neutral role, antagonized Serbs, and even threaten B-HFederation, said Portillo while Millon do not agree with"armament of sides in conflict and eventual horrors which could come after".(end) S.K.


Zagreb, October 1O,2995 (Press TWRA) - "After seven weeks of work we made important progress, but I must say this is not peace, this is a cease fire", said the U.S. Asst. Secy. of State R. Holbrooke on the press conference after signing the cease fire agreement on B-H. The Agreement contains 8 points which read: 1 the cease fire and the end of hostilities relates to the whole territory inside B-H's borders; 2 the cease fire starts on October 1O, at OO:O1 a.m. by which time the distribution of gas and electricity for Sarajevo has to be established in full. If this does not happened by that time the cease fire starts in the midnight of the day the distribution will be established; 3 the cease fire will last for 6O days or by the end of direct peace talks or Peace Conference; 4 on the day of cease fire military commanders must give the clear commands which will prevent: a) all offensive actions, b) offensive reconnaissance c) all kinds of fire, including sniper d) implanting of additional mines; e) establishing additional barriers; 5 the sides have to secure humane treatment of civilians or prisoners and exchange of prisoners with UNPROFOR as mediator; 6 sides are obliged to cooperate with UNPROFOR which will monitor implementation of cease fire; 7 all sides are obliged to secure free movement and traffic between Sarajevo and Gorazde along two basic directions (Sarajevo-Rogatica and Beograd-Gorazde) for all non military traffic and UNPROFOR's vehicles; 8 sides made commitment to respect in full responsibilities agreed in Geneva and New York.=20

Sarajevo - "Although we had many similar agreements by now I think that this is the most serious one and that the Serbian side will also respect it", said the President of B-H Presidency A. Izetbegovic after signing the agreement. Izetbegovic warned that the positions of B-H Government and Serbian side are still very far away specially regarding the constitution or maps, but he emphasized that Holbrooke's optimism encourages" and that he supposes "that Holbrooke's believe in success is based on the fact that he knows more about Serbs intentions than we do". Izetbegovic stressed that B-H Government does not give up on establishing the civilian authorities in Banja Luka. This condition did not became the part of this agreement, but it will be a part of the coming peace negotiations.

Belgrade - Immediately after the signing of cease fire Agreement the Government of so called "FRY" demanded the "complete lifting of all international sanctions as soon as possible" with the explanation that sanctions are "in contradiction with peace process".

Washington - "This is an important moment in the painful history of B-H, because today all sides agreed that they will put down the arms and start working on peace. However we must watch closely what is going on. It is important what the sides in conflict do and not only what they say. Deep divisions they have to overcome still exist. We are now on the right track, but we still did not achieve our goal and that is - serious and permanent peace in B-H, said U.S.President Clinton after signing the agreement. (end) S.K.

FIGHTING INTENSIFY ON OZREN Tuzla, October 5,1995 (Press TWRA) - As B-H Radio reported, municipalities Gracanica, Zavidovici and Maglaj are under Serbian heavy cannons attack. Serbs fire on the civilian aims in these municipalities and specially town of Maglaj, on which Serbs fire from multi-rocket launchers. In the triangle Doboj-hill Kraljica-Bosansko Petrovo Selo the heavy fighting take place which is result of the recent arrival of new Serbian forces on this territory. The intention of these forces is to get back the part of the territory that members of B-H Army recently liberated. The positions of 2nd and 3rd B-H Army's Corpses are stable. (end) S.K.

"AS A MAN FALLEN FROM THE MOON" Geneva, October 5,1995 (Press TWRA) - "I feel like a man fallen from the moon into serious troubles with the task to try and solve them, said a new UN Rapporteuress for Human Rights E.Rhen, adding that "you can not expect me to say 'these are angels, and those are gangsters' because that would be a very bad start for the mission I have undertook. My intention is to investigate the crimes on all sides". Rhen announced that she has 'certain signals' that the access to Serbia and Monte Negro would be possible for her something that T. Mazowiecki and his team were never allowed to. (end) S.K.

INCIDENT BETWEEN B-H ARMY AND HVO INVENTED?! Zagreb, October 5,1995 (Press TWRA) - UNPROFOR spokesman Chris Guness said that according to E.C. Monitors report the incident occurred between HVO and 5th Corps on the territory of Bihac, in which three soldiers of B-H Army and four soldiers of HVO were killed. According to E.C. Monitors report B-H Army Gen. Dudakovic himself was wounded. The B-H Army and HVO spokesmen, Amir Sulic and Ivica Peric, in telephone interview for AFP, rejected these information as a false and complete nonsense, confirming once again that the relations between B-H Army and HVO are good. (end) S.K.


WARSAW, Poland - The work of international tribunals established to prosecute charges of genocide and war crimes in Rwanda and in the Balkans is being seriously impaired by U.N. spending restrictions, the chief prosecutor of the tribunals and Washington's senior human rights officer said Tuesday.

In interviews in Warsaw, where they are attending a human rights conference organized by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Justice Richard Goldstone, the chief prosecutor for both tribunals, and John Shattuck, assistant secretary of state for human rights, discussed their fears about the fate of the tribunals.

The tribunals are prevented from spending the money to send investigators into the field, recruit lawyers and other personnel or renew contracts of current personnel as a result of restrictions on U.N. agencies imposed by Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali last month in the face of a fiscal crisis.

If these restrictions continued, they ``would shut down the Rwanda tribunal and render unconscious the Yugoslav tribunal,'' said Goldstone, a South African jurist.

As a result of the cuts, the Yugoslav tribunal will have to curtail its investigation into reports that Serbian forces killed up to 8,000 men after they seized the U.N.-designated ``safe haven'' of Srebrenica in July, and another report that Croatian forces committed war crimes when they invaded the Serbian-held region of Croatia in August.

So far, the Yugoslav tribunal has indicted 43 people, including Radovan Karadzic, leader of the Bosnian Serbs, and Gen. Ratko Mladic, their military commander. More indictments are expected next week, said Goldstone.

``It is unacceptable, if not immoral,'' for these charges to have been made, and so publicly, if there will be no money for trials at which the accused have an opportunity to defend themselves, he said. He added that it would also be a violation of judicial fairness to take defendants into custody if a lack of resources will deny them a speedy trial.

``The criminal justice system cannot conduct itself if resources are turned on and off,'' said Goldstone.

Similar fears about the fate of the tribunals in light of the fiscal crunch were expressed by Shattuck.

``This is the moment of truth for the tribunals,'' said Shattuck. ``They must not be stopped by a lack of funding.''

Shattuck said that one reason the Clinton administration put $3 million into separate funds for each tribunal was to insulate them from the vagaries of U.N. financing. But those funds have also been effectively frozen by the U.N. measures.

At the same time, however, a major reason that the United Nations is facing an economic crunch is because the United States is at least $1.2 billion in arrears in its dues to the organization.

Asked whether the current negotiations among the warring parties in the Balkans might result in some of the accused leaders being spared prosecution in exchange for signing a peace plan, Shattuck replied, ``The war crimes tribunal is non-negotiable.''

The first trial, concerning war crimes charges in the Balkans, is scheduled to begin in November, and there are no plans to postpone or cancel it because of the U.N. spending restrictions.

Fears about future financing of the tribunals come at a time when a major legal obstacle to the proceeding has been cleared. On Monday, the appeals chamber of the tribunal, which sits in The Hague, unanimously rejected an appeal from one of the Balkan defendants, thus upholding the tribunal's jurisdiction.

The appeals court described its decision as ``an important and historic moment in development of international law,'' noting that it was the first time since the trials at Nuremberg and Tokyo after World War II that an international appellate court had ruled on the status of international criminal and humanitarian law.

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