Fourth US official quits

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WASHINGTON - There was further evidence of conflict within the US State Department yesterday over the handling of the Bosnian crisis when another official resigned, accusing the Americans of supporting genocide and aggression, writes Phil Reeves.

Stephen Walker, a specialist in Eastern Europe, is the fourth officer to leave in protest at the Clinton administration's handling of the crisis in former Yugoslavia in the past year. In a letter to Warren Christopher, the US Secretary of State, Mr Walker states that he is leaving because he 'can no longer countenance US support for a diplomatic process that legitimises genocide and aggression' - a reference to the conduct of the Serbs.

Mr Walker was with the office of East European affairs, the desk officer for Croatia, and also a member of the department's Balkans Conflict group, assigned to the Bosnian crisis.