Thunder on the Horizon

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SARAJEVO: Chief U.S. mediator Richard Holbrooke headed back to the Balkans as Bosnia slid closer to war, the furious Bosnian Serb Army cutting contact with NATO forces and forbidding civilians to move about freely. These actions frustrate the most important achievements of the peace processes: open lines of communication with NATO and free travel. The Bosnian Serbs are protesting the arrest of two Serb soldiers, Gen. Djordje Djukic and Col. Aleksa Krsmanovic, who are now being held by the Bosnian Muslims pending their possible indictment by the International War Crimes Tribunal. In a rare press conference, Serb Lt. General Milan Gvero accused the Muslims of "jeopardizing peace," and accused NATO of pro-Muslim bias, "supporting the option of war". Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic, one of the area's chief power brokers, backs the Bosnian decision. If his support for the peace plan is wavering, it could collapse. According to Time's Mark Thompson: "The Serbs and Muslims are backing away from the peace accord, and the situation is looking increasingly dire. The opposing sides are hardening, and belligerence is building."