16th anniversary of Srebrenica massacre marked in Bosnia

13:47, July 12, 2011      

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An estimated 40,000 people on Monday marked the 16th anniversary of the fall of the Bosnian safe haven of Srebrenica, with the internment of an additional 613 bodies of victims in the Memorial Center in nearby Potocari, reported the Radio Television Serbia (RTS).

The event was attended by Croatian President Ivo Josipovic, the European Union High Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) Valentin Inzko, Deputy Turkish Prime Minister Bulent Arinc, and the U.S. Ambassador in BiH, Patrick Moon.

In 1995, Srebrenica was seized by the Bosnian Serb forces. In the aftermath, an estimated 7,000 to 8,000 men and boys were killed.

Bakir Izetbegovic, the Bosnian Muslim (Bosniak) member of the BiH Presidency called Srebrenica "the deepest wound on the body of the Bosniak people, a dark stain on the face of the international community and a black hole on the conscience of commanders and perpetrators of crimes from which they will never be free."

High Representative Inzko, referring to the recent capture of Ratko Mladic, the Bosnian Serb commander at the time of the massacre, said his upcoming trial at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) would shed light into the truth behind the events in Srebrenica.

"There are those who insist that killers are not killers, that victims are not victims and that the dead are not dead. But this will disappear, the truth will prevail, even among those who stubbornly hide from it," said Inzko.

"Mladic is in The Hague. Justice is slow but it comes in the end."

Croatian President Josipovic expressed hope that such atrocities would never occur again.

"We must teach children to love and respect others regardless of their religion and nationality, to be smarter and stronger," said Josipovic. "We need to create an environment where people measure through humanity and virtues, and not with labels."

The International Commission for Missing Persons, using DNA profiling, has established the identity of the remains of a total of 6481 persons in BiH.

Source: Xinhua
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