Press release

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Srebrenica Commemoration/Bosnia and Herzegovina

MEPs call for more support for justice, reconciliation and towards EU accession

The European Parliament today adopted a resolution on the Srebrenica genocide. Commenting on the vote, Igor Šoltes, Greens/EFA MEP and Vice-Chair of the European Parliament's Delegation to the EU-Serbia Stabilisation and Association Parliamentary Committee, said:

"Twenty years after the massacre, it is extremely important to remember the victims and express deep condolences to their families. Sadly, after all this time, victims' families still face denial and political games including at the highest level at the UN Security Council. We therefore very much welcome the European Parliament's adoption today, by a very large majority, of clear and strong wording referring to what happened 20 years ago as genocide. With the bodies of 1200 men and boys still missing, there is urgent need for further efforts to recover them. It is also high time to prosecute all those who facilitated or committed acts of genocide. 

We are also at a point where we should look forward and it is important to recognise that there is still a lot to be done in order to overcome the extreme forms of nationalism and hatred which made the genocide and other cruel acts possible. The EU should support inter-ethnic and multicultural cooperation initiatives, especially in Bosnia's educational system which is still characterized by ethnic segregation.

Today we also honour civil society organisations like the Association of Mothers of Srebrenica and Zepa enclaves for their pivotal role in raising awareness, building a broader basis for reconciliation among all citizens of the country and also for exerting pressure on politicians, including MEPs, to keep the memory alive and draw the right lessons from the past."

Greens/EFA MEP Ulrike Lunacek and Vice-Chair of the Delegation for relations with Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Kosovo stated: 

"Remembering Srebrenica means remembering the single greatest atrocity committed on European soil since the Second World War. Therefore Srebrenica should be a brutal reminder for everybody of man’s inhumanity to man. I strongly welcome that the Council of Ministers of Bosnia-Herzegovina unanimously proclaimed the 11th of July as a Day of Mourning. On the other hand it is completely unacceptable that Russia has vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution that would have condemned the Srebrenica massacre as genocide."

The official commemoration will take place in Srebrenica on Saturday 11 July, with European Parliament Vice-President and Greens/EFA MEP Ulrike Lunacek taking part on behalf of the European Parliament, representing President Schulz.