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news 03 Sep 13

Bosnians Warned Against Joining Syrian War

Mirsad Kebo, the Federation entity's Vice-President, has sponsored a parliamentary resolution reminding Bosnians that they risk breaking the law by taking part in the Syrian conflict.

Elvira M. Jukic
BIRN
Sarajevo

The Federation entity Vice-President on September 2 asked parliament to adopt a resolution urging individuals not to participate in foreign military units or wars, warning them that they face sanctions under Bosnian law.

“The authorities of Bosnia and Herzegovina are obliged to santion those who in accordance with Article 12 of the criminal code commit this criminal act outside the [national] territory,” the initiative said.

Media reports claim a number of people from Bosnia, mainly hard-line Wahabbis, have gone to fight in war-torn Syria.

Bosnian security agencies recently identified several members of an armed militant group in Syria with alleged links to Al-Qaida as Bosnian citizens.

An investigation further concluded that a group of Bosnian Muslims went to fight with the radical Islamist group Al-Nusra in Syria after a release of a video in May which showed heavily-armed militants preparing to attack the Syrian city of Homs.

The security services identified one of the fighters as 22-year-old Armen Dzelko from Hadzici near Sarajevo, a follower of the radical Wahhabi movement.

Some of those identified from the video were reported dead in subsequent fighting but it has not been established who organised or financed their expeditions to Syria.

The conflict in Syria began in March 2011, following anti-government protests that spread all over the country. It has since developed into a full-scale sectarian conflict pitting Sunni militants against Shiites, Kurds, Christians and Alawites.

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