Letter: Allegations of Muslim 'self-slaughter' in Bosnia

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The Independent Online
Sir: Your front-page article by Leonard Doyle ('Muslims 'slaughter their own people' ', 22 August) falls short of your usual exacting standards of journalism.

To claim that the Bosnians are shelling themselves to increase the world's revulsion at the Serb militia bombardment is surely reminiscent of the Nazi apologist claim, repeated endlessly in the Thirties, that Jewish people were surreptitiously burning their own synagogues to bring the German people into disrepute.

Your correspondent speaks only of unnamed sources, 'leaked reports' and 'classified briefings', and fails even to hint from whom and why these cruel allegations are emanating.

The fact that the shots which killed the Ukrainian UN soldier came from small-arms fire does not logically implicate the Bosnians. Surely even your least attentive readers will have realised that the Serb militiamen have at least as many small arms as the defenders.

The people of Sarajevo, their elected and internationally recognised government and their defence forces, which, despite every excuse for frustration and intolerance, continue to include 10 per cent Serbs and 23 per cent Croats among their ranks, deserve sympathy, not cruel and unsupported suspicion.

Yours faithfully,

MEBRURA TOPOLOVAC

Bosnia-Herzegovina

Information Centre

London, NW5

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