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Last Updated: Sunday, 5 November 2006, 00:42 GMT
Lottery plan for Bosnian weapons
By Nicholas Walton
BBC News, Sarajevo

Bosnia Croatian soldier in 1994
Many weapons are still left over from the Bosnian War
A new month-long initiative to encourage Bosnians to hand in illegal weapons comes in to force on Sunday.

Those handing over their small arms will be entered into a lottery, with prizes including motor scooters and kitchen appliances.

Bosnia-Hercegovina is still awash with weapons left over from the Bosnian War of the early 1990s.

Crime and gangland violence is often fuelled by shootings or hand-grenade attacks.

Phone bill

The UN Development Programme says hundreds of thousands of illegal weapons are still in the country.

Despite this illegality, it is still possible to find machine guns such as AK47s openly advertised for sale in newspapers.

News bulletins also throw up more unusual uses for arsenals left over from wartime.

In October, a mosque near the city of Mostar was attacked by a man using an old rocket-propelled-grenade launcher.

And there was also a recent story involving a teenager who threatened her father with a hand grenade in an argument over paying for a mobile phone bill.

The father expressed surprise that his daughter had managed to get hold of a grenade from her friends, rather than simply use one of his own collection.




SEE ALSO
Country profile: Bosnia-Hercegovina
18 Jun 06 |  Country profiles
Timeline: Bosnia-Hercegovina
15 Mar 06 |  Country profiles

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