War Chronology


June 25:
Croatia and Slovenia declare independence from Yugoslavia.

June 27:
Yugoslav army tries to crush Slovenian independence and fails. Fighting begins in Croatia between Croats and local Serbs.

December 19:
Rebel Serbs declare independence in the Krajina region, almost one third of Croatia.

December 21:
Serb minority in Bosnia-Herzegovina holds unofficial referendum opposing seperation from Yugoslavia, while local Serbs declare a new republic separate from Bosnia.


January 3:
The UN brokers a cease-fire agreement between the Croatian government and rebel Serbs. After it's breached several times, the UN Protection Force (UNPROFOR) puts 14,000 peace keeping troops in Croatia.

March 3:
Muslims and Croats in Bosnia vote for independence in a referendum that is boycotted by the Bosnian Serbs.

April 6:
War breaks out between Bosnian government and local Serbs who lay siege around the capital, Sarajevo.

UN sanctions are handed down on Serbia for its backing of rebel Serbs in Croatia and Bosnia.

First photographs of starving Muslim captives in Serb prison camps in Bosnia are shown by television network news agencies worldwide.


Heavy fighting continues because of the siege in Sarajevo. UN and European Nations peace efforts fail. War breaks out between Muslims and Croats in Bosnia.

April 13:
NATO starts combat patrols over Bosnia to enforce a UN ban on flights.

NATO offers close air support to UN troops.


February 6:
Sixty-eight people are killed by a shell in a Sarajevo marketplace. NATO threatens air strikes if Serbs fail to pull weapons back away from city, they do so therefore bringing a temporary stop to violence.

War between Muslims and Croats is ended by a US brokered agreement.

April 10:
NATO's first air strike against Serbs is launched around Gorazde, which is already under heavy attack.


January 1:
Four month truce is signed between Bosnian Serbs and Bosnian government, it's mediated by former president Jimmy Carter.

The Bosnian army launches a huge offensive in the northeast of the country.

May 1:
Croatian army captures a Serb part of Western Slavonia, in its first attempt to retake its occupied territories. Krajina Serbs launch an attack on Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, in response.

May 26:
Serbs bomb Sarajevo. NATO replies with air strikes in which 350 UN peacekeepers are taken hostage by Bosnian Serbs. Serbia arranges their release, thereby improving its relations with the West.

July 11:
Bosnian Serbs invade Srebrenica, a Muslim area the UN declared a "safe area." A similar area, Zepa, is invaded weeks later.

August 1:
NATO threatens major air strikes if other "safe areas" are attacked.

August 4:
Croatia attacks Krajina, capturing the entire region the Serb rebels held for four years in just a few days.

August 11:
US President Bill Clinton vetoes a move by Congress to end the arms embargo to Bosnia and sends Richard Holbrooke to try to broker a new peace deal.

August 28:
Sarajevo's main market is shelled by Serb forces, 37 people killed and 85 injured.

August 30:
NATO planes and UN artillery attack Serb targets in Bosnia in response to market attack. Bosnian Serbs give Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic authority to negotiate for them.

September 14:
Bosnian Serbs move tanks away from Sarajevo and NATO stops strikes.

September 15:
A Muslim-Croat attack captures 1500 square miles of land, causing some 150,000 Serbs to flee, mostly to Eastern Slavonia.

October 5:
President Clinton announces a cease-fire agreement and says parties will attend talks in the US.

October 12:
Cease-fire goes into effect but fighting continues over contested towns in northwest Bosnia.

October 16-18:
Holbrooke and other international mediators meet in Moscow and travel together to the main capitals of Yugoslavia. Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, named for site for peace talks.

November 1:
Peace talks begin.

November 21:
Comprehensive peace agreement is reached in Dayton.

December 14:
Peace agreement is signed in Paris by presidents Franjo Tudjman (Croatia), Alija Izetbegovic (Bosnia), and Slobodan Milosevic (Serbia, for Bosnian Serbs). Compliance to the agreement is to be assured by 60,000 NATO peace-keeping troops, which begin arriving in the area in weeks.