Bosnia: 30 detained over alleged weapons smuggling


Police ‘acting excessively’ following attack in Zvornik, says Bosniak member of Presidency.

SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina – Police in Bosnia and Herzegovina have taken into custody 30 people suspected of smuggling weapons, officials said Thursday.

The arrests came as part of police operation codenamed “Ruben” held in the Republika Srpska, one of two entities of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

According to the Interior Ministry spokesman Milan Salamandija, police carried out raids in 32 different locations on Wednesday and Thursday.

“We found arms and ammunition,” said Salamandija.

Salamandija added that those who were apprehended may have fought in Syria.

Eleven of the 30 detained people were handed to prosecutor’s office Thursday.

Bosniak member of Bosnia and Herzegovina Tripartite Presidency of the Council, Bakir Izetbegovic, heavily criticized the Republika Srpska police after a recent attack against officers.

A gunman had shot dead a police officer and wounded two other officers on April 27 at a police station in the northwestern border city of Zvornik in Bosnia. The gunman too was killed in the incident.

Izetbegovic claimed that the Republika Srpska police was proceeding to “unnecessary” detentions in his statement to Anadolu Agency.

“There was some intelligence for the Zvornik case, but they did not act on time,” said Izetbegovic. “Now they are acting excessively. Police have seriously crossed the line.”