NATIONS officials and senior Western military officers believe some of
the worst recent killings in Sarajevo, including the massacre of at least
16 people in a bread queue, were the work of the city's mainly Muslim defenders
- not Serb besiegers - as a propaganda ploy to win world sympathy and trigger
military intervention. The view has been expressed in confidential reports
circulating at UN headquarters in New York, and in classified briefings
to US policymakers in Washington.
UN officials believe the bullet
which killed US TV producer David Kaplan near Sarajevo airport on 13 August
was unlikely to have been fired by a sniper from distant Serbian positions.
'That would have been impossible',
one UN military officer said. 'That shot came in horizontal to the ground.
Somebody was down at ground level'.
attack came shortly before a meeting of European Community ambassadors
to consider imposing sanctions on Serbia. The world's press
concluded that the atrocity was caused by mortar shells fired from Serbian
held position and the attack was widely interpreted as a cynical display
of defience by the Serbs.
then said they were suspicious about the circumstances but could not go
public with their thoughts without jeopardasing the UN mission and possibly
endagering the lives of UN peace-keepers. Classified reports to the UN
force commander, general Satish Nambiar, however, concluded that Bosnian
forces loyal to President Alija Izetbegovic may have detonated a bomb in
the area. 'We believe it was a command-detonated explosion, probably in
a can', a UN official said. ...