UN halts 1,000 Croats as they challenge Serbs

Click to follow
The Independent Online
OSIJEK - More than 1,000 Croatian refugees marched into Serb-occupied territory yesterday, forcing UN peace-keepers to raise an armed cordon to prevent a bloodbath, writes Marcus Tanner.

The march on the village of Antunovac, under Serb control, is only the latest in a series of moves by Croatia that have raised tension between Croatia and the UN to crisis point. Many UN officials privately blame the peace envoy Cyrus Vance for drawing up a plan which proved unworkable. The plan calls for refugees to return to homes in the UN zone, but leaves local government to Serb militants who refuse to allow any Croats back.

Meanwhile in Geneva negotiations are to start immediately on the demilitarisation of Sarajevo and an end to fighting in Bosnia, Lord Owen, co-chairman of the Geneva conference on Yugoslavia that includes the presidents of Croatia and the rump Yugoslavia, announced yesterday.