Accessibility links

Bosnia: OSCE Condemns Weekend Violence As 'Ethnic Re-Cleansing'

Sarajevo, 4 August 1997 (RFE/RL) - The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) has condemned the latest violence between Bosnian Muslims and Croats. Bosnia's Interior Ministry confirmed today that a Muslim refugee was killed in weekend clashes in the village of Psenika, near the Croat-run town of Jajce. More than 500 Bosnian Muslims have fled villages around Jajce after being chased out by Bosnian Croats. OSCE spokesman David Foley today called the incident "ethnic re-cleansing."

Foley said municipal authorities in Jajce will be held accountable for what he called their outrageous actions. Under the Dayton accords, those expelled from their homes during the war have the right to return home. The U.N. has begun an investigation.

Meanwhile, there is no word yet on possible sanctions against Bosnia for its failure to agree on provisions for joint citizenship and passports. The international high representative in Bosnia, Carlos Wstendorp, gave the country's leaders until today to agree on those points or face unspecified retaliation.

France, Britain and Sweden today suspended contacts with the envoys of the Sarajevo government, following a similar move by Germany yesterday.

Today's deadline comes after feuding Bosnian leaders missed an original Friday deadline for agreeing to integration issues. Westendorp recommended on Saturday that foreign governments cut ties with Bosnia's embassies because Bosnian leaders had not yet appointed joint ambassadors.

The measures relate to provisions for joint Bosnian citizenship and passports, and also the appointment of common ambassadors.