UK commits more troops to Balkans peacekeeping mission

Up to 120 UK troops are to be made avail­able to the EU-led peace­keep­ing mis­sion in Bosnia and Herze­gov­ina, it has been announced today.

EUFOR per­son­nel based at the Ban­ja Luka Met­al Fac­to­ry in Bosnia take part in a train­ing exer­cise on the Man­ja­ca Ranges (stock image) [Pic­ture: Cor­po­ral Neil Condie RAF, Crown Copyright/MOD 2007]
Source: Min­istry of Defence, UK
Click to enlarge

The com­pa­ny of sol­diers will be based in the UK, ready to deploy at short notice to the region if required as part of EUFOR (Euro­pean Union Force) Oper­a­tion ALTHEA.

Oper­a­tion ALTHEA has the back­ing of a UN man­date and pro­vides a mil­i­tary pres­ence in Bosnia and Herze­gov­ina to help main­tain a safe and secure envi­ron­ment in the coun­try.

Mak­ing the announce­ment, Min­is­ter for Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Strat­e­gy, Ger­ald Howarth, said:

“This con­tri­bu­tion reflects the UK’s strong polit­i­cal sup­port for EUFOR Oper­a­tion ALTHEA and our deter­mi­na­tion to help main­tain a safe and secure envi­ron­ment in Bosnia and Herze­gov­ina.

“While the secu­ri­ty sit­u­a­tion in the region remains calm and sta­ble, it is essen­tial that we pro­vide EUFOR with the nec­es­sary resources to per­form the mission’s man­date in full.

EUFOR pro­vides an impor­tant safe­guard under­pin­ning sta­bil­i­ty and ensur­ing that Bosnia and Herze­gov­ina can con­tin­ue to make progress on its path towards EU and NATO acces­sion.”

The pledge of more troops in sup­port of Oper­a­tion ALTHEA will not take place until Decem­ber in order not to impact on the Armed Forces’ com­mit­ment to the 2012 Olympic and Par­a­lympic Games.

EUFOR Oper­a­tion ALTHEA became the legal suc­ces­sor in Decem­ber 2004 to NATO’s SFOR (Sta­bil­i­sa­tion Force) mis­sion in Bosnia and Herze­gov­ina.

EUFOR has the back­ing of a UN Chap­ter VII Man­date and its aim is to ensure con­tin­ued com­pli­ance with the Day­ton Peace Agree­ment and the con­tin­u­ance of a safe and secure envi­ron­ment.

Press release

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