Bosnia elections chronology

By United Press International  |  Sept. 14, 1996
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Saturday's election in Bosnia-Herzegovina is a potential turning point in the former Yugoslav republic's ethnic conflict. Here is a look at major developments leading up to the national election:

1992 April -- United States recognizes independence of former Yugoslav republics of Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina. Rump Yugoslavia now includes Serbia and Montenegro. May -- United Nations imposes sanctions on Serbia for attacks in the independent republics. July -- International effort launched to provide food to besieged Sarajevo, the Bosnian capital and headquarters of Muslim-led government. September -- Serbian-dominated Yugoslavia expelled from United Nations. October -- United Nations imposes 'no-fly zone' over Bosnia, threatening to shoot down hostile aircraft.

1993 February -- United States air drops food, medicine and supplies to Muslim areas in Bosnia-Herzegovina. April -- Cooperation between ethnic Croats, Bosnian government collapses; clashes break out between Croat, Bosnian forces. August -- NATO threatens airstrikes against Serb forces interfering with U.N. humanitarian missions in Bosnia.

1994 February -- In first combat action in NATO history, alliance warplanes attack, down four Bosnian Serb warplanes. March -- Bosnia's Muslims and ethnic Croats end conflict, forge alliance. September -- U.N. Security Council eases sanctions on Serbia as Belgrade distances itself from Bosnian Serbs. December -- Warring factions agree to cease-fire brokered by former U. S. President Jimmy Carter; truce doesn't last.

1995 May -- Bosnian Serbs abduct dozens of U.N. observers, say they will kill one for every bomb dropped over their stronghold near Sarajevo; hostages later freed. June -- Bosnian army launches major offensive, heightening conflict and temporarily severing Serb supply lines. Offensive bogs down two days later. July -- Serb forces press offensive in eastern Bosnia, overrun U.N.- declared safe areas of Srebrenica, Zepa; mass killings of Muslim men, other atrocities reported. August -- Major Croatian military offensive crushes Serb resistance in the eastern Croatian region of Krajina, sending tens of thousands Serb refugees fleeing into Bosnia. September -- NATO launches raids on Bosnian Serb positions, ultimately forcing withdrawal of Serb tanks, artillery and mortars from 12.5-mile (20-km) zone around Sarajevo. November -- Peace talks involving leaders of Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia take place at U.S. Air Force base near Dayton, Ohio. December -- Leaders of Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia sign peace agreement in Paris, clearing way for deployment of 60,000-strong NATO-led peacekeeping force in Bosnia and eventual elections in Bosnia- Herzegovina. NEWLN:1996

May -- Hard-line Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic fires moderate Prime Minister Rajko Kasagic. Europe, United States turn up pressure on Karadzic -- who is wanted on war crimes charges -- to step down. June -- Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe sets Sept. 14 as date for national elections in Bosnia; municipal elections held in city of Mostar, where bitter divisions exist between Muslims and Croats. July -- Karadzic steps down as Bosnian Serb leader, agrees not to run for office in September election. August -- Bosnian Muslims, Croats reach agreement on unified administration in Mostar after more than three years of divided rule. European monitors say agreement helps pave the way for potential success in national elections. Sept. 14 -- Bosnian Muslims, Croats and Serbs head to polls in first national election since 43-month ethnic war ended. Potential 3 million voters will cast ballots for joint presidency, national legislature.

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