Despite the collapse of 14 negotiated truces over the past six months, the peacemakers have not given up. U.N. special envoy and former U.S. Secretary of State Cyrus Vance last week put together the most detailed agreement yet and won approval from the warring Presidents, Slobodan Milosevic of Serbia and Franjo Tudjman of Croatia.
Vance's plan calls for the Serb-led Yugoslav federal army to pull out of the parts of Croatia it controls as a result of the fighting. A 10,000-strong contingent of U.N. troops would be deployed for at least six months in the contested areas. Serbs and Croats would then press ahead on a political solution.
First, of course, a lasting cease-fire must take effect. The two sides agreed to end hostilities on Friday. As so often before, they promised not to shoot first, but this time they also pledged not to retaliate even if they are fired upon. U.N. officials were hopeful that a real truce would take hold. But fighting broke out after the deadline and by some reports continued into the weekend.