CNN Balkan Conflict News


International leaders condemn Sarajevo attack

August 28, 1995

UNITED NATIONS, New York (CNN) -- Monday's brutal attack on the Sarajevo marketplace prompted outrage in the international community. United Nations Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali called for an immediate investigation, while a Clinton administration official said the shelling was probably conducted by Bosnian Serbs.

In a statement read by a spokesman, Boutros-Ghali expressed "outrage that such an attack has occurred in an area where there is no military target." At least 35 people were killed and 80 others wounded Monday when shells rained down on the crowded marketplace in Sarajevo.

The U.N. spokesman said a decision on a response would be made after the investigation had been completed, but emphasized that "no options are being ruled out." The U.N. is calling this the worst attack since February 1994 when a shell struck a nearby area of the same Sarajevo marketplace, killing 68.

The United States was quick to denounce Monday's attack. "This is an attack the U.S. condemns in no uncertain terms," said White House press secretary Michael McCurry. "The U.N. is looking at craters created by this artillery shell to see who is ultimately responsible. There is no doubt in our mind that it is most likely the Bosnian Serbs, but they are assessing the damage now."

The U.N. was more cautious in laying blame. "General [Rupert] Smith has to come up with a decision: What will be the United Nations' response to this barbaric act," said U.N. spokesman Alexander Ivanko. "We have to be really sure about all the facts."

There was no doubt amongst the victims. The Bosnian Serbs have shelled Sarajevo too many times before, flouting international agreements that are supposed to protect the Bosnian capital. A U.S. peace initiative now under discussion may be the next casualty.


"I don't think we can continue with the peace process, with our people being butchered and killed in Sarajevo and other safe areas," Bosnian Prime Minister Haris Silajdzic told CNN. "So we had an urgent meeting of our cabinet and we decided to propose to the presidency and our delegation in Paris to suspend or consider suspending further peace proposals."

U.N. Special Envoy Yasushi Akashi called the attack brutal and unacceptable. He promised a strong response.

Related stories


Copyright © 1995 Cable News Network, Inc.