Bosnian Situation Is Worse Than Expected, Envoy Says

From Associated Press

U.N. envoy Cyrus R. Vance said the situation is "worse than expected" in the Bosnian Serb stronghold of Banja Luka, where there have been reports of Serbs driving Croats and Muslims from their homes.

Vance and Lord Owen toured the city Friday to investigate the reports of "ethnic cleansing" in the northwestern Bosnian town. They were welcomed by thousands of Serbs who applauded them and flashed three fingers in a Serbian victory sign.

But Muslim leaders said they told Vance and Owen that all was not well in Bosnia's second-largest city and that they feared for their people.

Although all sides in Bosnia's devastating civil war are accused of "ethnic cleansing," foreign officials especially blame Serbian forces for evicting thousands of Muslims from the two-thirds of the republic the Serbs now control.

Meanwhile, in the capital, shelling wounded at least six people. A U.N. relief spokeswoman said fighting around the airport meant there was little immediate hope of restarting a desperately needed airlift to rush supplies in before winter.

"We are racing against time," said Sylvana Foa of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees.

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