The House of Representatives of Bosnia and Herzegovina yesterday rejected a resolution condemning the crimes committed in Srebrenica in July 1995.
The resolution was proposed by Representative Denis Becirovic of the Social Democratic Union, SDP, who argued that the adoption of the declaration would contribute to permanent peace building in the country.
After the members of the House of Representatives refused to accept the proposition by the SDP, the party's representatives left the room, saying that they considered the move an “insult to victims of Serb, Bosniak or Croat nationality”.
The resolution was refused by representatives of parties from Republika Srpska.
Under the Dayton peace agreement which ended Bosnia’s 1992-95 war, the country was divided into two highly independent entities – the Serb dominated Republika Srpska and the Croat-Bosniak federation.
The two entities are united by weak central institutions, but each has its own government, parliament and presidency.
Srebrenica, the city where the Bosnian Serb Army committed genocide in July 1995, killing more than 8,000 Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim) men and boys and expelling more than 25,000 people, is located in Republika Srpska (RS).
A resolution condemning the genocide in Srebrenica was adopted by the European Parliament last year. The EP asked other European countries to adopt a similar resolution, and so far all the countries of the former Yugoslavia have done so, with the exception of Bosnia.
The Serbian parliament adopted a resolution earlier this month condemning the massacre. Like Montenegro, Serbia did not explicitly call the crimes committed in Srebrenica acts of genocide.
The same day that the House of Representatives rejected the proposed resolution on Srebrenica, the ruling party in RS, the Alliance of Independent Social Democrats, SNSD, announced its request for a declaration labeling the World War One massacres of Armenians in Turkey as genocide.
They also proposed a declaration forbidding the “hiding of the face” in public places, alluding to the niqab, the piece of cloth worn by some Muslim women which covers the face.
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In July 1995 Srebrenica was shelled and occupied by the Army of Republic of Srpska,VRS, despite being declared a protected area by the United Nations. More than 7,000 people were killed, the victims of genocide.
The Bosnian Serb commander’s role in the genocide committed in Srebrenica is described in detail in many indictments and verdicts pronounced before local and international judicial institutions.
Indictments in 1995 and 2000, further amended in 2002 and 2010, charge the former commander of the Republika Srpska Army with genocide and other crimes.
When Mladic ordered his army to bomb the people of Sarajevo until they ‘go insane’, he revealed the murderous intentions that would culminate in the Srebrenica massacre.