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Three NATO Troops Killed in 'Accidental' Explosion

Sarajevo, Jan. 24 - (RFE/RL) Two Portuguese soldiers and one Italian were killed in what is being called an "accidental" explosion in Sarajevo last night. Their deaths were the first among NATO troops in Bosnia since they deployed last month to enforce the Dayton peace agreement.

Six Italians and one Portuguese soldier also were wounded in the blast, which was caused by "some form of unexploded ordnance," according to Italian spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Iacono Salvatore.

The blast occurred in a former maternity hospital used by the logistics battalion of the Italian brigade near Sarajevo's Zetra stadium, site of the 1984 Winter Olympics figure-skating competition.

It was the most serious military incident since troops began to arrive after the Bosnian peace plan was signed in Paris last month.

In a separate incident yesterday, three soldiers of the French Foreign Legion were injured, one of them seriously, in what is being called a "premature explosion" that occurred during an instruction session on explosives.