UN commander to quit because of death threats

Click to follow
GENERAL Lewis MacKenzie, Canadian commander of the UN force in Sarajevo, has asked to be relieved of his duties as soon as possible because of death threats, writes Annika Savill.

A Canadian diplomat said it was feared that 'the threats were a transmittable danger to his troops', especially given the unusual situation of having peace-keeping troops of the same nationality as their commander.

General MacKenzie's policy of keeping in touch with all sides has earned him enemies: after one of his officers approved the use of a UN armoured vehicle to transport a Serbian leader, the force was derided as a 'terrorist taxi service'. A letter in a Croatian newspaper called him a 'war criminal'.

The general, who has served in in Gaza, Cyprus, Egypt, Vietnam and Central America in a 31-year career, has called Sarajevo 'the most complex situation I've ever encountered by a factor of 10'.