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Russian Airborne Command Begins to Replace Forces in Bosnia

Moscow, July 12 (RFE/RL) -- Russia's airborne command is beginning to replace its peacekeepers in Bosnia.

Our correspondent quotes command officials as saying that about 200 Russian paratroopers left today from the Severny airbase near the city of Ivanovo, some 300 km North-East of Moscow. The Russian paratroopers are heading for the Tuzla airbase in Bosnia.

The Russian peacekeepers will serve with IFOR soldiers in the Posavina corridor in northern Bosnia.

There are about 1,600 Russian peacekeepers in former Yougoslavia, and some 900 of them are due to be replaced by the end of this month. The Russian airborne troops commander, Col-Gen Yevgeny Podkolzin, visited Bosnia earlier this week.