News and views of Bangladeshi community in Sydney

Peace Keeping in Europe
Md. Masudul Huq

I was a Peace keeper in former Yugoslavia in 1994 where 50 police officers were with me from Bangladesh .I was posted in sector south Knin from where I used to visit different sectors on CTO to see them as I was Contingent commander. Knin was a nice place not very far away from Adriatic Sea. Police officers of different Continents were with me. I worked with Canadians, Scandinavians, Africans and Asians. It was a very good experience to work in such multicultural environments. I was accommodated in the 1st floor of Maria’s house which was a 4 story building where other monitors also stayed. My office was only 1 km away from my residence.

Before my posting to Knin I was at Daruvar in sector west for a month. In day time we used to visit different areas to see the law and order of the area along with other monitors, sometimes with polish or sometimes with Scandinavians. It was very interesting to me to see a different topography and different people. Every morning we used to sit in a meeting to discuss different issues and distribution of areas for visiting, patrolling etc. One day I was asked for an enquiry into a death threat Complain which was submitted by a local man from Daruvar. I along with Captain Tadius of Poland visited the house of complainant but could not ascertain the person who threatened the complainant. No evidence collection was possible at that time as it was conflicting time and war zone. Just after a few days I was transferred to Knin as Chief of Administration, sector south.

Here all monitors were from Canada, Scandinavia, Russia, Portugal, Egypt and Bangladesh who were very friendly and cooperative to each other. Knin was a small town having a railway station with a big compound. But the rail line was out of order due to war, so no rail communication was possible at that time. One night there was a serious firing over the area . All monitors left the house and took shelter in our Head Quarters. In the mean time there were negotiations to stop firing and subsequently when firing stopped we came back to our residence.

One morning I found Maria was crying, I went to her room and asked why she was crying. Maria told me last night her brother’s house was looted and everything was taken away. I told her, “if you like you can record this information in police station but she said, I would not record this to police station”. Later on I came to know she has ethnic problems. She is from one community and her husband is from another community. So she does not like to get involved in it. It is a good decision due to prevailing situation at that time.

Everybody in the mission is for one year. One day sector chief asked me if I was willing to serve in Macedonian sector. Since I have almost completed ten months of my tenure and rotation time was very near I was hesitant although I was a bit thrilled to go to Macedonia. Alexander the Great was born in Macedon in 356 B.C.E. who conquered almost half of the known world at that time. His Father Philip also conquered vast areas of Greece and adjoining areas. Alexander was trained by his father and he was very courageous. He defeated Persian king and reached up to today’s India-Pakistan areas. He fell ill in Babylon and died at the age of 32. Alexander could not select his next commander and because of that there were clash of opinion amongst his generals who returned to Macedonia.

At the end of the mission all monitors remain very eager to go back home and busy in different works, visiting friends, shopping and arranging farewell. I participated a farewell party in North sector which was organized by Bangladeshi monitors. All sector officers participated including Europeans and Asians. Irish officers and Bangladeshi officers spoke in the function. It was a very successful get-together and farewell function. One lady interpreter was in the function who interpreted my speech from English to Yugoslavian language. After a few days we returned to our country. It was a very successful mission.

Md. Masudul Huq, Sydney

Share on Facebook                         Home Page

                            Published on: 20-Feb-2016