In response to the direct attack on the UN observation post, the Dutch Commander made a verbal request for air support to his immediate superior, the acting Commander of the Sector North-East headquarters in Tuzla. Sector North-East approved the request and forwarded it to UNPROFOR headquarters in Sarajevo, the next level within the chain of command. At the time the UNPROFOR commander was absent on leave during these events; in his absence he'd been replaced by the Deputy Commander and Chief of Sector Sarajevo. However, most of the communication during the crisis was handled by the UNPROFOR Commander's Chief of Staff, who denied the request on the grounds that, as it was later explained, he did not believe that the Force Commander's criteria for air strikes, which were restrictive and to be used only as a last resort, had been met. His superiors in Zagreb, the Chief of Land operations and the Force Commander Chief of Staff, apparently agreed with his assessment at that stage of the attack. The position of UNPROFOR soldiers in the enclave worsened by the day.
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