Only So Far but No Further: Safe Areas in Bosnia

  • Carol McQueen
Part of the Rethinking Peace and Conflict Studies book series (RCS)


With Srebrenica on the verge of capitulation after weeks of attack and siege by the Bosnian Serbs, the Security Council adopted resolution 819 on 16 April 1993, demanding that ‘all parties and others concerned treat Srebrenica and its surroundings as a safe area which should be free from any armed attack or any other hostile act’. Originally introduced by the non-aligned and intended as a temporary measure designed to protect one of the eastern enclaves assigned to the Bosnian government under the Vance Owen Peace Plan (VOPP), then still on the table as a comprehensive settlement to the conflict in Bosnia, the safe area idea was extended at the insistence of France to five other areas through Security Council Resolution 824 on 6 May. It also became a key component of the Joint Action Programme agreed to on 22 May by Britain, France, Spain, Russia and the United States as their common approach to the war in Bosnia following the demise of the VOPP.3 Clarification as to how the existing peacekeeping force on the ground in Bosnia, United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR), would implement the safe area policy occurred during the following weeks, in relation both to the number of troops required for the task and to the changes needed in UNPROFOR’s mandate to accommodate the new policy.


Security Council Safety Zone State Interest Safe Area Community Interest 
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Copyright information

© Carol McQueen 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Carol McQueen
    • 1
  1. 1.United Nations Peacekeeping MissionDemocratic Republic of Congo

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