Saving Sarajevo: 'Croats are the main victims'
In an interview with the Independent in London, where he briefed British officials on the conflicts in Bosnia and Croatia, he criticised Western countries for concentrating on the plight of the Muslims while ignoring the increasingly grim conditions facing Bosnia's Croats.
'The situation for the Croats in central Bosnia is really very difficult because for the last month they have had no help,' he said. 'I'm speaking about medicine and other humanitarian aid from Croatian-controlled parts of Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Muslim forces are now engaged in a very strong offensive and have surrounded 190,000 Croats in four enclaves in central Bosnia.
'They have expelled 120,000 Croats from central Bosnia and have killed about 3,500 civilians. The Croats are actually the main victims of the war in Bosnia, and that is why we have the strongest interest in stopping the war.'
Croatian officials said the Muslim offensive had started in April and had led to the expulsion of 40,000 Croats from the Travnik area, 30,000 from Zenica, 16,000 from Kakanj, 12,000 from Konjic, 8,000 from Fojnica, 6,000 from parts of Mostar, 6,000 from parts of Novi Travnik and 2,000 from Jablanica. They said that the HVO, the Bosnian Croat armed forces, controlled only 9 per cent of Bosnian territory, compared with about 20 per cent before the Muslim offensive.
Although Muslim-led Bosnian government forces are fighting a rearguard action against the Serbs in Sarajevo and other parts of Bosnia, they have recently inflicted a string of defeats on the Croats, their former allies. In the past month they have captured Bugojno and Gornji Vakuf, two important towns in central Bosnia. Croatian officials said the Muslims had conquered about half of the territory that had been assigned to the Croats under the now abandoned Vance-Owen peace plan for Bosnia.
Mr Granic said the Muslim forces had achieved their successes because they were more numerous than the Croats and were able to manufacture weapons. He also accused the Muslims of enlisting the support of more than 6,000 volunteers from Islamic countries. He said Croats were trapped in four areas in central Bosnia: 70,000 in the Novi Travnik-Vitez-Busovaca region, 60,000 in Zepce and Usora, 30,000 in Vares, and 30,000 in Kiseljak and Kresevo.
Mr Granic said Croatia had no desire to annex south-western Bosnia-Herzegovina, where local Croats have set up a mini-state called Herzeg-Bosnia and use the Croatian flag and currency. He said Croatia had a strong interest in preserving Bosnia's external borders, not least because this strengthened its case for regaining control of those parts of Croatia that fell to Serbian forces in the war of 1991.
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food
£35000 - £38000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a rare opportunity for ...
£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An experienced Fee Earner/Techn...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This law firm is seeking a happy, helpful and ...
£26000 - £29000 per annum + Holidays & Pension: The Jenrick Group: Production ...