Chronological Order: 1992-2004 (Bosnia-Serb War, Asian Financial Crisis and The Aftermath)

This is ‘The Chronological of Events’ from 1992 to 2001 (and extended). This is a classic case of “From Hero to Zero“, but who knows, it can turn out to be “From Zero to Hero” again very soon (if you know what I mean?) *sigh*

So, please go figure and connect the dots.

These facts were painstakingly collected and researched from various reputable news sites around the globe (see references at the bottom of this article):

ENJOY!

Feb 29, 1992: Bosnia Muslims voted for independence, while the Serbs boycotted the referendum.[1] 

March 27, 1992: Radovan Karadzic became the president of Serbia’s National Security Council. 

Apr 6, 1992: EU recognized Bosnia as an independent nation, but not the Serbs. A civil war erupted, which Serbs occupied 70 percent of the country, killing and persecuting Muslims and Croats to carve out a “Serb Republic”. [1] 

April, 1992: Bosnian students in International Islamic University of Malaysia (IIUM), Malaysia had established Bosnian Information Center (BIC) with the assistance of Malaysian Islamic Youth Movement, better known by its Malay acronym ABIM (Angkatan Belia Islam Malaysia). Former student activists recall that they had access to top Malaysian politicians, including Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad. [10] 

September, 1992: Malaysia severed its relationship with Belgrade, Serbia. Bosnian Foreign Minister Haris Silajdzˇic´urged other Muslim majority states to follow the ‘politically wise and ethically sound’ footsteps of Malaysia, which had severed relations with Belgrade. [9]

September 7, 1992: Malaysia opened its doors to Bosnian refugees until peace was established in their home country (News Strait Times, 1992).

December, 1992: Malaysian Prime Minister, Dr. Mahathir Mohamad said that Malaysia has to move quickly to assist the Bosnians. [10]

Bosnia and Herzegovina
The map of Bosnia and Herzegovina after the 4 years war ended in 1996.

January, 1993: War erupted between Bosnian Muslims and the Croats (previously allied with each other against the Serbs). The situation went from bad to worse for Bosnian Muslims. [1] 

April, 1993: The United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR) deployed troops and Bosnian Serb Army (VRS) attacks stopped. Humanitarian aids arrived at Bosnia with the help of United Nations peace efforts groups. [1] 

April, 1993: Dr. Mahathir wrote to world leaders urging them to take immediate steps in helping the Bosnians (civilians, women, and children) from being slaughtered by the Serbian armies. Among others, the world leaders who received the letters were the British Prime Minister John Major, French Prime Minister Edouard Balladur, and US President Bill Clinton. [10]

Mahathir
In late April 1993, he urged Clinton ‘to make a decisive and positive step and to implement immediate action to save Bosnia and its people’ (Abdullah 2008: 169–70). [10]
July, 1993: The Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) offered to send its member states’ troops to Bosnia to serve in the UN mission. Malaysia, Indonesia, Turkey, and Pakistan were committed to contributing troops to the mission (Izetbegovic 2001: 182). [10]

September, 1993: At a dinner hosted in honor of British Prime Minister John Major, Mahathir expressed Malaysia’s ‘anguish and distress at the continued genocide and ethnic cleansing conducted by the Serbs against the Bosnian Muslims’. [10]

October, 1993: Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, Malaysia’s Prime Minister expressed concern over the violation of human rights in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Thus, Malaysia sent a group of special forces to participate in the United Nations (UN) Peacekeeping Operations. [3]

February, 1994: Mahathir administration proposed to the UN for increasing its troops’ strength in Sarajevo (in accordance with the OIC’s proposal towards the defense of Muslims in Bosnia) following the escalation of war between the Serbs and Bosnian Muslims. However, the proposal was rejected by the UN. [6]

March, 1994: The United States (US) brokered agreement ends Muslim-Croat war and creates a Muslim-Croat Federation. [1] 

May, 1994: The Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia, Anwar Ibrahim, in a massive national rally for the Bosnian cause, addressed that the Malaysian government was committed to the cause of Muslims everywhere. Then, a number of local non-governmental organizations established the “Barisan Bertindak Bosnia” (Bosnia Action Front) to push for a solution to the Bosnian Conflict. [6]

July, 1994: In early July 1994, Mahathir visited Bosnia and met with Malaysian troops deployed in Konjic as part of the UN force (Chan 1994). [10]

August, 1994: The Malaysian troops were accused of “knowingly” destroyed a cross in Croat territory and Croat forces claimed that unless it was replaced, the security of Malaysian troops could not be guaranteed. [6]

Malaysia Indonesia Bosnia
Indonesian President, Soeharto went to visit Bosnia during the Serb-Bosnia war 1992-1995 supporting the efforts by OIC countries, spearheaded by the Malaysian premier, Dr. Mahathir Mohamad.

July, 1995: Malaysia declared that it would no longer respect the UN-imposed arms embargo on Bosnia. [10]

July 23, 1995: Malaysia’s Premier, Dr. Mahathir Mohamad said Malaysia will send arms to Muslim Bosnians because “while the UN and NATO forbade the supply of arms to all parties in the former Yugoslavia, separatist Serbs in Bosnia were getting weapons and oil to attack and seize territory held by the Bosnian government.” [2]

August, 1995: King Fahd of Saudi Arabia called on Muslim World to supply Bosnian Muslims with arms. Western Intelligence reported that among other countries (such as Pakistan, Indonesia, and Turkey), Malaysia too had provided the Bosnian Muslims some weapon supplies. [4]

November, 1995: Dayton Peace Accords was signed at Ohio, the United States of America.

November 30, 1995: 44-months siege by the Serbian armies of Bosnian capital city, Sarajevo ended. An estimated of 100,000 Bosnians were killed during the genocide. [12] [13]

December, 1995: Dr Mahathir reiterated his concern that even with the long awaited decision by the West (through the Dayton Peace Accords, November 1995) to engage itself with greater commitment and risk through the dispatch of NATO and US forces on a massive scale (after almost 4 years of wavering), the ending of conflict in Bosnia would have little hope of being realized without real commitment to what he called a “peace enforcement”. [6]

April 20, 1996: Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir Mohamad met members of the Malaysian contingent (Malcon) of the NATO-led Peace Implementation Force, here, about 200 km from Sarajevo. Dr Mahathir reminded the Malaysian soldiers in Bosnia to be
conscious of the need to help the Bosnians and ensure that they are not captured by the Serbs. Dr Mahathir said Malaysia would continue sending its troops to Bosnia as long as they are needed by the Bosnian government, despite having to bear the expenses. He
 has expressed regret over the attitude of certain Western powers towards peace efforts in Bosnia-Herzegovina. [5]

July, 1996: The West forced Karadzic to quit as Bosnian Serb president. [1]

-unknown, 1996: Karadzic mysteriously vanished from the public eyes. [12]

August, 1996: Malaysia sent an official to assist the UN in the handling of all claims against the UN in Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina. This was done after the 4 years civil war, in accordance with the peace treaty signed by all parties in November 1995 through the Dayton Peace Accords, at Ohio, The United States of America. [8]

September, 1996: Nationalist parties won the first post-war election in Bosnia, confirming Bosnia’s ethnic division. [1]

February, 1997: Malaysia invited Bosnia & Herzegovina’s national football team to a Dunhill Cup friendly football event in Kuala Lumpur. During the semi-final match between Malaysia and Bosnia & Herzegovina national teams, spectators saw the match ended with a 0-1 result favoring the Bosnians. Later in the final match, Bosnia lost 0-3 to China (Wikipedia – see Dunhill Cup 1997).

Princess Diana 1997
August 8, 1997 – Prior to her tragic death on 31st August 1997, Princess Diana was in Bosnia for three days visit (image from fanpop.com) to take the anti-land mine crusade there. [7]
April, 1997: Malaysian ringgit started to fall from an average of MYR2.42 against USD1. Malaysia’s neighboring countries started to see the same changes in their currencies against the US dollar. Malaysia’s economy remained stable as its stock exchange is linked to Singapore’s stock exchange, and the Malaysian economic fundamentals were solid. [15]

May, 1997: Thailand, with the intervention of Singapore, spends billions of dollars of its foreign reserves to defend the Thai baht against speculative attacks. [14]

July 2, 1997: Thailand devalued the baht. News of the devaluation dropped the value of the baht by as much as 20%–a record low. The Thai government requested “technical assistance” from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). [14]

July 8, 1997: Malaysia’s central bank intervened to defend its currency, the ringgit. Bank Negara had lost close to US$1.5 billion in the effort to prop up the ringgit. The ringgit became stable despite the loss. [14] [15]

July 11, 1997: The Philippine peso was devalued. Indonesia widened its trading band for the rupiah in a move to discourage speculators. Malaysia’s ringgit became more vulnerable and weakened again. [14]

July 24, 1997: The strongest economy in Asia, Singapore was finally hit. The Singapore dollar started a gradual decline, creating an economic tension in Malaysia. Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad accused “rogue speculators” for Southeast Asia’s economic upheaval. He later singles out billionaire financier George Soros. [14]

Malaysia Singapore
The “attack” on Singapore’s currency and indexes had made Malaysia’s economy weakened tremendously as it had a strong connection with it’s Strait’s neighboring country (Singapore) in currencies and commodities trading.

Aug 14, 1997: Indonesia abandoned the rupiah’s trading band and allowed the currency to float freely, triggering a plunge in the currency. [14]

Aug 27, 1997: Malaysia designated the 100 index linked counters and banned short selling. [16]

Aug 31, 1997: Princess Diana had a tragic accident in Paris, France (Wikipedia).

Sept 4, 1997: Malaysia’s ringgit continued to plunge. [16]

Sept 20, 1997: Mahathir accused the trading of currencies immoral and asked it to be banned in Hong Kong. [16]

Oct 2, 1997: Mahathir and Nor Yaakob were finalizing the ‘Capital Control Strategy’ in Argentina. [16]

Oct 8, 1997: Indonesia asked the IMF and World Bank for help after the rupiah fell more than 30% in two months, despite interventions by the country’s central bank to prop up the currency. [14]

Oct 31, 1997: The IMF agrees to a loan package for Indonesia that eventually swells to $40 billion. In return, the government closes 16 financially insolvent banks and promises other wide-ranging reforms. [14]

Dec 5, 1997: Malaysia’s Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim imposed tough market measures. [16]

Jan 8, 1998: The Indonesian rupiah nose-dives to an all-time low after Indonesian President Suharto unveils his state budget plan. Critics say that the unrealistic budget does not comply with the IMF’s reform program. [14]

January, 1998: Malaysia’s ringgit fell to a record low at MYR4.88 against US$1. [15]

Anwar Ibrahim
Anwar Ibrahim tabled a budget at the Malaysian parliament in 1997, a year before his sacking from all posts in the government and ruling party UMNO.

March, 1998: Newsweek Magazine selected Anwar Ibrahim as the “Asian of The Year”. This has resulted with a wider discontent amongst the Malaysian economists and political players due to the unsolved financial crisis (Wikipedia).

May 20, 1998: Asian currencies continued to plunge. [16]

May 21, 1998: Indonesian President Soeharto resigned after 30 years of power following a riot. [17]

Suharto_resigns
Suharto announced his resignation in 1998.

Aug 16, 1998: Malaysia’s KLCI plunged to its lowest ever recorded at 260 points. [16]

Aug 20, 1998: Malaysia’s Bank Negara’s governor and his deputy resigned after their differences with the Prime Minister on the direction of the country’s monetary policy. [17]

Sept 1, 1998: Malaysia imposed currency controls. [17]

Sept 2, 1998: Malaysia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Anwar Ibrahim was sacked after months of economic policy difference with Prime Minister Mahathir. He was charged with corruption and sexual impropriety (and the conviction was later overturned in 2004). [17]

Sept 14, 1998: Clinton calls it “worst financial crisis in half century.” [17]

Sept 20, 1998: Anwar was arrested at his house. His supporters marched to demand
the Prime Minister’s resignation. Anwar asked his supporters not to make any unnecessary actions that can tarnish Malaysia’s image internationally. [17]

October, 1998: Anwar said that the charges against him were made by the conspirators at the highest level (Wikipedia).

Nov 2, 1998: Anwar Ibrahim’s trial began. [17]

Jan 13, 1999: Anwar’s charges were amended to mainly corruption, leaving sodomy and sexual impropriety out. [17]

Feb 5, 1999: Malaysian government further relaxed some of the capital controls it imposed five months ago to restrict money flowing out of the country and destabilizing
the economy. [17]

March 29, 1999: The Dow Jones Industrial Average closes above the 10,000 level for the first time in its history. [14]

May 12, 1999: The Dow Jones Industrial tops 11,000! [14]

In 2001, the exit levy was abolished altogether. Residents were gradually allowed to operate foreign currency accounts and to invest abroad. As the economy recovered, capital began to flow back into the country. [18]

Mahathir resigns
Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad being consoled by UMNO members after he announced the resignation in October, 2003.

Oct 31, 2003: After resignation, Dr. Mahathir was named a “Grand Commander of the Order of the Defender of the Realm”, allowing him to adopt the title of “Tun”.

March 21, 2004: The 12th Malaysian General Election – The National Front (Barisan Nasional) gained a popular vote of 63.9% won 198/222 parliamentary seats (Wikipedia).

September, 2004: Anwar’s conviction was overturned in 2004 (Wikipedia).

June, 2005: Tun Dr. Mahathir visited Sarajevo to open a bridge near Bosmal City Center signifying friendship between Malaysians and Bosnians (Wikipedia).

Malaysia Bosnia
Tun Dr. Mahathir officiated a mosque in Bosnia and named it after Allahyarham Ibrahim Bukvic, a former ambassador of Bosnia & Herzegovina to Malaysia.

February, 2007: Tun Dr. Mahathir was nominated by the Bosnian groups for the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for helping the country after its bloody civil war (Malaysiakini, Feb 4, 2007).

July 10, 2008: Malaysia’s Premier Abdullah Ahmad Badawi announced that he would step down as UMNO President and Prime Minister by June 2009 (Wikipedia).

July 21, 2008: Karadzic was arrested on a Belgrade bus while posing as New Age healer Dr. Dragan Dabic and disguised by a thick beard and shaggy hair. [12]

July 30, 2008: Karadzic was flown to International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia’s detention block. [12]

April 3, 2009: Abdullah stepped down as the Prime Minister of Malaysia and transferred the position to Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak (Wikipedia).

September, 2009: Prime Minister Najib Razak signed an order to rename the Terengganu Investment Authority fund to 1Malaysia Development Bhd. or 1MDB. The fund invested $1 billion in joint-venture with a Saudi Arabian company called PetroSaudi to develop energy projects. [19]

Sept-Dec, 2009: Anwar Ibrahim warned 1MDB could potentially destroy the Malaysian economy. [20]

March, 2013: Anwar’s led opposition parties failed to win the 13th General Election of Malaysia (Wikipedia).

Aug 30, 2015: Tun Dr. Mahathir and his wife, Tun Dr. Siti Hasmah, attended the Bersih 4 rally, which saw tens of thousands demonstrating for Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib’s resignation (Wikipedia).

March 24, 2016: Judges deliver verdicts for Karadzic to be jailed for 40 years. [12]

Sept 5, 2016: Tun Dr. Mahathir and Anwar Ibrahim shakes hand after 18 years (Wikipedia).

Sept 7, 2016: Tun Dr. Mahathir founded The Malaysian United Indigenous Party or Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) with the slogan of “Forward, Justice, and Prosperous” (Wikipedia).

 

(To be updated…)

REFERENCES:

[1] “Timeline: What happened during the war in Bosnia?” – Reuters, World News; (published on July 22, 2008, at http://www.reuters.com/article/us-warcrimes-karadzic-bosnia-idUSL2164446420080721)

[2] “Malaysia Says It Will Send Arms to Bosnians” – New York Times, US Edition – News; (published on July 24, 1995, at http://www.nytimes.com/1995/07/24/news/24iht-malay_0.html)

[3] “Bosnia and Herzegovina – Malaysia relations” – Wikipedia; (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bosnia_and_Herzegovina%E2%80%93Malaysia_relations)

[4] “Bosnia War Shakes Muslim World” – The Christian Science Monitor; (published on August 9, 1995, at https://www.csmonitor.com/1995/0809/09013.html)

[5] “Mahathir Says West’s Recognition of Bosnia Not Sincere” – BERNAMA; (published on April 21, 1996, see http://library.perdana.org.my/Digital_Content/Prominent_Leaders/Mahathir/News_1968-2004/1996-1998/1996ko/mahathir%20says%20wests%20recognition.pdf)

[6] “Islam in Malaysian Foreign Policy” by Shanti Nair.

[7] “Diana takes anti-land mine crusade to Bosnia” – CNN World News; (published on August 8, 1997, at http://edition.cnn.com/WORLD/9708/08/diana/)

[8] “Remembering our role in Bosnia” – The Star; (can be found at http://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2015/09/20/remembering-our-role-in-bosnia/)

[9] (Published at News Straits Times, 1 September 1992) – “One-Way Ticket to Kuala Lumpur” by Hamza Karčić, August 2014.

[10] “One-Way Ticket to Kuala Lumpur” by Hamza Karčić, August 2014.

[11] “Timeline in the life of President Radovan Karadzic” – San Diego Union Tribute; (published at http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/sdut-timeline-in-the-life-of-president-radovan-karadzic-2016mar24-story.html)

[12] “Timeline of President Radovan Karadzic” – The Hindu; (published at http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/timeline-of-radovan-karadzic/article8393365.ece)

[13] “Bosnia-Herzegovina” – United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; (can be found at https://www.ushmm.org/confront-genocide/cases/bosnia-herzegovina).

[14] “Timeline of the Crash” – PBS; (see more at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/crash/etc/cron.html)

[15] “The Malaysian Financial Crisis: Economic Impact and Recovery Prospects” – by Mohamed Ariff, Syarisa Yanti Abu Bakar.

[16] “Asian Financial Crisis Lessons” – The Market Oracle.

[17] “Financial and Political Crisis of Malaysia” – by Hadley Leavell, Leroy Ashorn, Balasundram Maniam, Sam Houston State University.

[18] “How Malaysia Weathered the Financial Crisis: Policies and Possible Lessons.” By Mah-Hui Lim and Soo-Khoon Goh. 

[19] “Malaysia’s 1MDB Decoded – How Millions Went Missing” – WSJ; (see: http://graphics.wsj.com/1mdb-decoded/)

[20] “PKR: Anwar First to Warn About 1MDB” – Free Malaysia Today; (see: http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/nation/2017/07/29/pkr-anwar-first-to-warn-about-1mdb-in-2009/)

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