93/08/09 Remarks regarding the North Atlantic Council action on Sarajevo  Return to: Index of 1993 Secretary of State's Speeches/Testimonies || Electronic Research Collections Index || ERC Homepage

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U.S. Department of State
93/08/09 Remarks regarding the North Atlantic Council action on Sarajevo
Office of the Spokesman

August 9, 1993

The United States is pleased by the important actions taken today by the 
North Atlantic Council.  These steps significantly further the United 
States initiative to make air power available to lift the strangulation 
of Sarajevo and other areas, stop interference with humanitarian relief 
operations, and promote a viable political settlement in the 
negotiations at Geneva.  At the North Atlantic Council meeting last 
Monday, NATO unanimously made the policy decision to prepare for air 
strikes, and laid down a clear warning to those responsible for the 
strangulation of Sarajevo and other civilian areas.  Today, the Alliance 
unanimously approved a thorough and detailed operational plan for air 
strikes prepared by the NATO military committee over the last week in 
conjunction with UNPROFOR.  The plan is sound and comprehensive.  It 
sets forth the targeting identification process and the command and 
control arrangements for air strikes.

With today's decision, the Alliance now has in place all the means 
necessary to take forceful action against the Serbs should they not 
cease their intolerable behavior.  The unanimous decision today signals 
that the international community will not accept the laying siege of 
cities and the continued bombardment of civilians, the denial of 
humanitarian assistance to people in need, or empty promises as a cover 
for aggression.  The Serbs are on notice, and whether air power is used 
depends on their deeds.


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