Wintering in Sarajevo

Reeling from a recent war, Bosnia was wrought with both danger and surprises at the turn of the millennium, as former CSS BN trainer Craig Allen recalls

Typical war damage to buildings on the main street in Gornji Vakuf, which looked like Stalingrad after the fighting

Back in 1999, I was posted to Bosnia as a trainer with the British Combat Service Support Battalion (CSS BN). Initially based at DJ Barracks in Croatia, my role was to provide weapons instruction and supervise visits to the local firing ranges. To broaden my range of teaching skills, I travelled to Bosnia to take a course on landmine awareness at the Banja Luka metal factory. This had been taken over by the military during the war and was a familiar location for British troops posted to the country. The course itself covered all types of mines, aerial bombs and improvised explosives that littered the countryside in the wake of the bitter civil conflict.

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