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The lessons of Bosnia

Pauline Neville-Jones, Britain's chief negotiator at Dayton, on why the Bosnian intervention provides so many examples of what not to do

Survival the IISS quarterly

Winter 1996-97

Two questions arise from the Bosnian experience: how much responsibility does the international community have for reconstructing a society after a war; and is the option (confirmed at Dayton) of a single Bosnia sensible? Would we do Dayton again? For me, the broad direction was absolutely right, but the agreement is too complex and prescriptive. That said, there is a potential paradox. Many commentators-among them those who have taken the strongest line on human rights-have argued that it would have been more honest simply to have partitioned the country on ethnic lines. Other commentators…

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