By Cpl. Sébastien Pisani
First published in
SFOR Informer#110, April 4, 2001
Gornji Smrtici - A sweet farm in a snowy countryside?
Under that smiling exterior an explosive surprise waited for SFOR.
on advice received by the International Police Task Force (IPTF)
station in Prijedor, a British unit based in Banja Luka, C Squadron
Queens Dragoon Guards, recovered a M53-59 anti-aircraft gun from
private property in the Gornji Smrtici region Feb. 27. The weapon
was hidden in a cowshed. Soldiers first had to take down a part
of a wooden wall, before getting the vehicle out of the building
with a winch, a tricky operation because of the 10-ton weight
of that anti-aircraft gun. But Brits worked contentedly under
the eyes of the neighbourhood.
relation to the recovery of the gun, deputy commander for Multinational
Division - Southwest (MND-SW), Brig. Robert Aitken, stated, "There
is no reason for anyone to hold on to weapons like this any more.
BiH is not at war. Anyone who still has weapons should hand them
is how the people of the country can make a real contribution
to a safe and secure environment."
The weapons collection continues in MND-SW.
More recently, a British unit seized a Russian-built T-55 tank
hidden in a stable in Smrtici village near Prnjavor. The farmer
said a group of Bosnian Serb soldiers asked him to hide the tank
for them near the end of the war but never came back for it.
was not the first time SFOR has made this kind of discovery in
this village. Soldiers also seized a T-55 tank last year that
had been kept in a garden belonging to a Bosnian-Serb since 1995.
Nations of SFOR: UK
SFOR at Work