Facebook Twitter

SERBS SOLDIERS ATTACK PEACEKEEPERS IN GORAZDE

SHARE SERBS SOLDIERS ATTACK PEACEKEEPERS IN GORAZDE

Bosnian Serb soldiers attacked U.N. peacekeepers in Gorazde, and U.N. military observers warned Saturday the Muslim enclave was tense.

Highlighting the fragility of an agreement that averted NATO air strikes, U.N. officials said British soldiers fought a gunbattle with Serb troops Friday southeast of the town, a quarter-mile inside Gorazde's 1.9-mile exclusion zone.As many as three Serbs were killed. There were no British casualties.

A Danish tank squadron also reported a 90-minute exchange of shellfire with Serb artillery near Tuzla, another Muslim enclave. No casualties were reported.

NATO gave the Serbs two deadlines for withdrawing from Gorazde. One that expired last Sunday required all Serb forces and their weapons to withdraw 3 kilometers, or 1.9 miles, from the town center. By Wednesday, they were to have removed heavy weapons from a 20-kilometer, or 12.4-mile, radius.

The United Nations later said it was satisfied with Serb compliance.

But a report from local U.N. aid workers, obtained by The Associated Press on Saturday, said military observers were continuing to find military equipment "in violation of the NATO ultimatum."

It also said military observers reported "burning of houses continuing" outside the 1.9-mile zone.

An eight-man British U.N. patrol came under fire Friday afternoon while patrolling inside the smaller zone, said Cmdr. Eric Chaperon, a U.N. spokesman in Sarajevo. They returned fire and tried to withdraw.

Chaperon said Serbs followed the patrol and fired on it again before the British peacekeepers successfully withdrew while returning fire.

A British spokesman at the U.N. base in Vitez said it was being treated as an isolated incident. He said there was no request for air support.

British officials said three Serbs were believed to have been killed in the shooting. Chaperon referred only to three casualties. The local U.N. report said one Serb was killed and two wounded, and an Egyptian peacekeeper was wounded.