Bosnian: German pull-out positive sign

1st November 2006, Comments 0 comments

1 November 2006, Sarajevo (dpa) - Bosnian officials on Tuesday said the German announcement of a possible pull-out of peacekeeping troops from Bosnia-Herzegovina was a positive sign of the country's development. "The fact that the German government considers withdrawal of part of its troops from Bosnia shows that it tends to recognize that the situation in the country has significantly improved," Bosnian Premier Adnan Terzic told DPA. "I hope German investors will replace German soldiers soon," said Terzic

1 November 2006

Sarajevo (dpa) - Bosnian officials on Tuesday said the German announcement of a possible pull-out of peacekeeping troops from Bosnia-Herzegovina was a positive sign of the country's development.

"The fact that the German government considers withdrawal of part of its troops from Bosnia shows that it tends to recognize that the situation in the country has significantly improved," Bosnian Premier Adnan Terzic told DPA.

"I hope German investors will replace German soldiers soon," said Terzic.

He added however that the presence of the international troops serving with the European Union Force (EUFOR) in Bosnia was still needed as some of the most wanted war crimes suspects continued to be at large 11 years after the 1992-1995 war in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Bosnia-Herzegovinan Defence Minister Nikola Radovanovic also agreed that the planned withdrawal of German EUFOR troops was proof that the situation in Bosnia was improved, and that EUFOR would probably be the last international military force in the country.

Radovanovic however said he hoped the German partial pull-out from Bosnia would be coordinated with the institutions of the EU and NATO and would not harm the country's overall stability.

Some analysts in Bosnia believe that the country's current situation was far from good, but that the problem had shifted from a military to a political problem, reflected by the fact that the international troops in Bosnia have not seen combat in five years.

Military analyst Antonio Prlenda said it was to be expected that Germany, which supplied 1,000 of the 6,000-man EUFOR force in Bosnia, would extract some soldiers to send to areas such as Afghanistan more in need of them.

He added "that other European countries would follow the German example and reduce their troops in Bosnia," he said. "But the political centres in Europe should at the same time increase the pressure on Bosnian politicians who are obstructing the country's progress."

DPA

Subject: German news

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