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November 6, 1996

Military Medicine's Role Continues in Bosnia

JAMA. 1996;276(17):1370. doi:10.1001/jama.1996.03540170014006

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IT APPEARS that US military medicine will be at work in Bosnia-Herzegovina beyond the 1-year stay, originally expected to end December 20,1996, that had been announced for American troops participating in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) peace-enforcement effort.

Some 5000 US soldiers moved into the former Yugoslavia last month from bases in Germany. This, the Pentagon says, is the covering force for withdrawal of 15 800 US military people, many of whom were in place December 20,1995, when the 52000-troop NATO force assumed the peace-enforcement duties from the United Nations (JAMA. 1996;275:24).

The new arrivals are expected to stay until mid-March 1997, although some diplomats contend that NATO forces will have to remain in the region for at least 2 more years if the civil war is not to resume. Military physicians are watching the newcomers closely until they acclimatize, because the tick season does not end until later