Russian Embassy Accuses West of ‘NATOisation’ of Bosnia

The Russian embassy in Sarajevo alleged on Tuesday that the impending arrival of German troops in Bosnia and Herzegovina to bolster the European Union's EUFOR peacekeeping force, also known as Operation Althea, was part of Western attempts to militarily dominate the Balkan country.

"It seems that certain Western states, primarily the United States and Great Britain, are preparing the ground for creeping NATOisation," the embassy said in a statement.

The statement said that, based on the EU force's latest report to the UN, whose mission is to ensure continued compliance with the 1995 Dayton peace agreement that ended the Bosnian war, the security situation in the country is stable and so additional troops are unnecessary.

"This is in no way being done to strengthen internal security in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which, as the Westerners themselves note, is not threatened, but for geopolitical domination and the desire to maintain their hegemony at all costs," the Russian embassy added.

On Monday the first group of German troops - out of planned 50 - was deployed to Bosnia, raising the number of EUFOR participating countries to 20.

EUFOR's mandate expires in November and must be renewed at the UN Security Council. Western countries are concerned that Russia might block this.

The Russian embassy's statement also comes after US senators on August 5 proposed new legislation called the Western Balkans Democracy and Prosperity Act which says that the US should support maintaining EUFOR's mandate in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

If Russia blocks reauthorisation of the mission at the UN Security Council, the proposed legislation says that the United States should use its influence within NATO to encourage alliance to support an...

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