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(1992–95) Ethnically rooted war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, then a republic of Yugoslavia with a multiethnic population44% Bosniac (Muslim), 33% Serb, and 17% Croat. Unrest began with Yugoslavia's breakup in 1990; after a 1992 referendum, the European Community (now European Union) recognized Bosnia's independence. Bosnia's Serbs responded violently, seized 70% of Bosnian territory, besieged Sarajevo, and terrorized Bosniacs and Croats in what came to be known as ethnic cleansing. After bitter fighting between the Bosnian Croats and the Bosnian government, international pressure forced the two factions to sign a cease-fire and an agreement for a federation. Both then concentrated on their common enemy, the Serbs. After rejected peace plans and continued warring, Western nations, with NATO backing, imposed a final cease-fire negotiated at Dayton, Ohio, in 1995. Bosnia and Herzegovina became a single state composed of two distinct entities: the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (a Croat-Bosniac federation) and the Republika Srpska (Bosnian Serb Republic). A tripartite presidency, rotating every eight months between one Bosniac, one Serb, and one Croat member, also was established. See alsoRadovan Karadzic; Franjo Tudjman.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Bosnian conflict, visit Britannica.com.
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