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Among the Serbs

The Milosevic regime in Belgrade is faltering but the spirit of Serbian nationalism burns as strong as ever in Republika Srpska, the Bosnian Serb mini-state. William Tribe, who taught English for more than 25 years at Sarajevo University, visited Srpska as an observer in last year's Bosnian elections

By William Tribe   February 1997

When I applied last year to be an election observer in Bosnia for the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), I fully expected to be rejected-as others had been-on the grounds of political bias. One foreign office underling, with whom I had a chance conversation in 1992, knew that I had done some translation for Alija Izetbegovic, the Muslim Bosnian president, in the early months of the war. And then there was my Channel Four film Sarajevo Diary. These people cast their net wide-how could they possibly have overlooked my activities?

Once I realised that this hurdle had…

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