SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina — The detention of a UNICEF delegation by Bosnian Croat police last week during filming at a historic cave was "completely unacceptable," international police said Saturday.
The UNICEF officials were taken into custody Thursday as they shot footage for a fund-raising campaign in front of the cave where Marshal Josip Broz Tito had his headquarters for his anti-Nazi partisans during World War II. The cave in the Bosnian Croat-held town of Drvar is now a historic site.
As the Japanese ambassador leading the United Nations Children's Fund delegation started talking into the camera in front of the cave, two Bosnian Croat policemen detained the group, said Patrick Svensson, a spokesman for the international police force.
Bosnian Croat police held the delegation for several hours, accusing them of photographing military installations.
"The only surrounding scenery at this particular time was the mountain with Tito's cave and a huge garbage pile," Svensson said. International police did not learn of the incident until Friday.
The delegation was held for several hours in the police station in Drvar and released only after handing over their cameras. The Bosnian Croat police kept a bus rented by UNICEF for the trip.
Svensson said the incident was "definitively an infringement" of freedom of movement, one of the guarantees of the Dayton, Ohio, peace agreement and a condition for postwar elections in Bosnia.
"The behavior of the local police, of course, seems completely unacceptable," Svensson said, demanding that Bosnian Croats immediately return the bus.