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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Bosnia War's Focus Shifts to Brcko Corridor

SARAJEVO -- The United Nations prepared Wednesday to dispatch military observers into the volatile Brcko area of northern Bosnia to head off an impending major battle for a vital Serb supply corridor. The area, which has seen a major military buildup by rival Moslem and Serb forces over the past week, was reported calm Wednesday, the UN Protection Force said. The Serb-held Sava River port lies in a narrow strip that links Serb-held territories in Bosnia and Croatia to Serbia. Moslem forces are to the south and Croatia lies to the north on the opposite bank of the Sava. With Serbs and the Bosnian government accusing each other of strengthening forces in the north, the Brcko corridor is shaping up as the next potential battleground despite the present calm. UN spokesman Commander Eric Chaperon said military observers would be sent into the region after the Serbs agreed to their deployment Tuesday. Radovan Karadzic, the Bosnian Serb leader, also offered a cease-fire around Brcko that he said his troops would observe even if Moslem-led Bosnian government forces did not. Bosnian Prime Minister Haris Silajdzic insisted after meeting Akashi in Sarajevo the Serbs must completely withdraw from the eastern Moslem enclave of Gorazde before peace talks to end the war could resume. He said representatives of the UN, the United States, the EU and Russia -- members of the "international contact group" formed last month -- were due in Sarajevo on Thursday to try to restart talks.