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President Clinton Visits Sarajevo and Tells Bosnians ’The Future Is Up to You’By SANDRA

December 22, 1997

President Clinton Visits Sarajevo and Tells Bosnians ’The Future Is Up to You’By SANDRA SOBIERAJ

TUZLA, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP) _ In a swift, tightly-guarded visit to this war-crippled land, President Clinton told the Bosnian people today that the shape of their future was up to them _ ``not the Americans, not the Europeans, not to anyone else″ _ and he thanked American peacekeepers for doing something ``profoundly important.″

``Without you the warring parties would never have disengaged,″ he said.

In high spirits, the president said he had told the leaders of the former Balkan nations that American would do ``our dead-level best″ to carry out the accords shaped in Dayton, Ohio, in 1995 to end 3 1/2 years of ethnic warfare.

Clinton wore a leather jacket bearing the insignia of the NATO-led peace force. He spoke inside a shed at Eagle Base, one of a number of US. camps here and the home to about 2,000 U.S. soldiers.

``I believe it is worthwhile and I hope you believe the effort in Bosnia is worthwhile,″ Clinton told the troops.

He joked about the chow and the mud, then yielded the microphone to Bob Dole, his defeated Republican opponent in the 1996 presidential election and a firm supporter of Clinton’s decision to send troops here to keep the peace and his recent decision to extend that mission beyond its earlier mid-1998 deadline.

``We don’t like to keep anyone away from their families and hopefully one of these days very soon there will be a successful conclusion and these three countries can govern themselves and you can go home,″ Dole told the troops.

The soldiers cheered both men.

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