Bosnia - Serb-Controlled territory, Republika Srpska

This article looks at a single stamp, issued in 1992 in Bosnia & Herzegovina during the civil war which broke out in that country upon the break-up of Yugoslavia.

Three different ethnic groups took military control in the country, the Croats from the spring of 1993, based around Mostar, the Serbs largely provisioned by the Yugoslav army from October 1992, with their eventual administrative centre being established in the town of Pale, and the largely Muslim remainder of the country which retained some degree of control in the country's capital, Sarajevo. There was bitter fighting and much murderous 'ethnic cleansing'.

This is the background to the first regional issue resulting from that war, a set of Yugoslav stamps overprinted by the Serbs and issued in late 1992, one value of which shows an electric train.

We have had the opportunity to study a number of these stamps and have identified several varieties. The stamp overprinted was the 1990 issue of the Yugoslav stamp in Perf 12½, rather than the later Perf 13½ issue and it is listed in all main catalogues.

The stamp consists of a 100d surcharge (with bars obliterating the original 1d on the Yugoslavia stamp) and, in Cyrillic, the words Republika Srpska (Serb Republic). The stamps were printed in sheets/100 (10x10) with no marginal inscriptions. The surcharge is machine-overprinted, although not to the highest standards for such a type of printing, but it was wartime.

There are numerous constant varieties in the sheet and we have chosen to highlight six of them. Additional varieties include smudging between letters and different alignments between the two lines of text.

Bosnia War Stamps 1992 Republika Srpska.

Bosnia War Stamps 1992 Republika Srpska. Bosnia War Stamps 1992 Republika Srpska. Bosnia War Stamps 1992 Republika Srpska. Bosnia War Stamps 1992 Republika Srpska. Bosnia War Stamps 1992 Republika Srpska. Bosnia War Stamps 1992 Republika Srpska.

Bosnia : Republika Srpska (Serb Republic) Surcharge in Black (SG S.6)
1992 (Oct) : 100 Dinars / 1 Dinar : Normal [ . ]
- ditto - Text only 1.5 mms (instead of 4 mms) from obliterating bars (Row 9,1 / Position 81) [ . ]
- ditto - Shorter top bar [ . ]
- ditto - Shorter bottom bar (Row 4,9 / Position 39 & possibly others) [ . ]
- ditto - Top Bar thinner than Bottom Bar (Row 7,1 / Position 61) [ . ]
- ditto - Damaged bottom bar (Row 7,8 / Position 68) [ . ]
- ditto - Figure '1' with only a tiny top serif (Row 1,7 / Position 7 & others)

1992 (Oct) : 100 Dinars / 1 Dinar : SURCHARGE INVERTED (no other variety) [ . ]
- ditto - Text only 1.5 mms (instead of 4 mms) from obliterating bars [ . ]
- ditto - Shorter top bar [ . ]
- ditto - Shorter bottom bar [ . ]
- ditto - Top Bar thinner than Bottom Bar [ . ]
- ditto - Damaged bottom bar [ . ]
- ditto - Figure '1' with only a tiny top serif

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Bosnia War Stamps 1992 Republika Srpska.

A registered local cover from Banja Luka dated April 24th, 1993, bearing a block/8 500d of the January 1993, this from the first bespoke issue for Republika Srpska, accompanied by six of the 1992 surcharges on Yugoslavia, including the electric train.

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