By 1Lt. Kristoffer Egeberg
First published in
SFOR Informer#106, February 7, 2001
There are few other areas where SFOR, along with
the Entity Armed Forces (EAF), stand as united as in the field
They are specially united in the clearance of mines, utilising
their combined strength to do so. Plans are made, side by side
in joint meetings. The first SFOR/EAF de-mining conference, with
participants from all parties involved, brought them several steps
closer toward the goal of a de-mined BiH.
The engineer chiefs of the EAF, representatives from the Republika
Srpska (RS) and Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina Mine Action
Centre (MAC), SFOR HQ and each Multinational Division (MND) gathered.
Also, a representative from the civilian company providing heavy
flail assistant was present.
far as we know this is the first meeting with everyone. There
is no one else involved in the EAF de-mining program that was
not there," said Chief SFOR Counter mine/EOD Lt. Col. James
The main purpose of the conference was to plan the EAF summer
"The key point is to ensure that we make the best use of
mechanical preparation (Flails), manual de-mining teams, and de-mining
dog teams. This will be the first year we have all three assets,"
Previously the EAF de-mining effort has consisted of manual teams
and some support from "Bozena" mini-flails. Now, Wood
said he feels there are many more options available.
"It's well known that SFOR monitors the EAF de-mining, but
our involvement goes much beyond that. We are supplying the program
itself and finding donors. The support includes equipment, ambulances
and de-mining dogs. The most supportive donor countries are Norway,
Canada, and USA," he said.
"These meetings are not completely new, as we have had meetings
with SFOR regularly since 1996. But this is the first time we
all sit together, speaking about the de-mining work during the
summer campaign and defining the locations for the mine-flails
to work," said Chief Engineers Federation Army Col. Asim
"We have definitively common topics which are in the interest
of the people. These meetings are very useful and build confidence
and balance. And I think we are making progress," he said.
Spahic gives SFOR much of the credit for bringing the parties
together, and giving support to speed up the process.
"SFOR is of huge importance in this co-operation. It is the
body that provides all materials and resources, and we must work
with SFOR in the future to develop the de-mining capacity of the
Entity Armed Forces. As of the co-operation between the Entity
Armed Forces, I'm confident it will continue in the future,"
Engineering - Mines
SFOR at Work