Bildt Seeks Payment of Pledges to Rebuild Bosnia's Infrastructure
Kaplan, Refet, The Washington Times (Washington, DC)
The "spectacular" gains achieved in implementing the first phase of the Dayton accords will be wasted unless the world community delivers on its promise to rebuild Bosnia.
That's the view of Carl Bildt, who oversees the implementation of the civilian aspects of the Bosnian accord and was in Washington yesterday to build support for the "reconstruction, reintegration and reconciliation" plan for the former Yugoslav republic.
Despite the "spectacular progress" the NATO-led Implementation Force (Ifor) has had in separating the military forces of the once-warring Bosnians, Serbs and Croats, Mr. Bildt called the coming effort to rebuild the country's infrastructure and key institutions "critical" to the success of the peace plan.
"If you fail in one end of the operation, then you fail in another," Mr. Bildt said in response to a question about the willingness of NATO countries to absorb the military but perhaps not the longer-term costs of the peace-implementation plan.
"I recognize that the military costs are quite high . . . but I could not say the reconstruction efforts come cheap either," said Mr. Bildt.
He said he hoped the recent action by the U.S. Congress to free up $200 million for reconstruction in Bosnia-Herzegovina would serve as an example to other countries that have yet to contribute. …