World, Europe

Coffins of 19 Srebrenica genocide victims carried to Potocari cemetery

Number of burials at cemetery will rise to 6,671 after funerals

Vesna Besic, Lejla Biogradlija and Sanela Crnovrsanin   | 11.07.2021
Coffins of 19 Srebrenica genocide victims carried to Potocari cemetery

SREBRENICA / POTOCARI, Bosnia and Herzegovina

The coffins of 19 victims killed in a genocide in Srebrenica were moved to the Potocari Memorial Cemetery, where they will be buried Sunday.

26th anniversary of the Srebrenica Genocide

SREBRENICA, BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA - JULY 10: Relatives pray next to the coffins of 19 victims of Srebrenica Genocide ahead of buried at Potocari Memorial Cemetery, on the 26th anniversary of the 1995 genocide in Srebrenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina on July 10, 2021. ( Samır Jordamovıc - Anadolu Agency )

The victims, who will be buried on the 26th anniversary of the genocide in 1995, in which at least 8,372 Bosniak civilians were brutally killed by Serbian forces, were brought to the cemetery on shoulders from the old battery factory used as a base by UN soldiers during the war

Azmir Osmanovic, who was only 16 when he was killed, is the youngest victim to be buried this year. Husein Kurbasic, the oldest, was 63.

Other victims to be buried include Vejsil Hamzabegovic, Muhidin Mehmedovic, Ramiz Selimovic, Esnaf Halilovic, Muamer Mujic, Mehmed Beganovic, Hajro Aljic, Jusuf Aljic, Zajim Hasanovic, Asim Nukic, Nezir Dautovic, Ibrahim Avdagic, Jusuf Halilovic, Salih Dzananovic, Meho Karahodzic, Fikret Kiveric and Zilha Delic.

After the funerals, the number of burials at the cemetery will rise to 6,671.

A three-day peace march organized annually on the forest path that was used by civilians fleeing the genocide that started in Srebrenica in eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina on July 11, 1995, trying to reach Tuzla, ended with the participants reaching the Potocari Memorial Cemetery.

Participants of the march, which was held for the seventeenth time this year, prayed for victims at the cemetery.

Srebrenica genocide

More than 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were killed when Bosnian Serb forces attacked Srebrenica in July 1995, despite the presence of Dutch peacekeeping troops.

Serb forces were trying to wrest territory from Bosnian Muslims and Croats to form a state.

The UN Security Council declared Srebrenica a “safe area” in the spring of 1993. But troops led by Gen. Mladic overran the UN zone. Mladic was later found guilty of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide,

Dutch troops failed to act as Serb forces occupied the area, killing 2,000 men and boys on July 11, 1995 alone.

About 15,000 residents of Srebrenica fled to the surrounding mountains but Serb troops hunted down and killed 6,000 more people.

Bodies of victims have been found in 570 different areas across the country.

In 2007, the International Court of Justice at The Hague ruled that genocide had been committed in Srebrenica.

On June 8, UN tribunal judges upheld in a second-instance trial, a verdict sentencing Mladic to life in prison for the genocide, persecution, crimes against humanity, extermination, and other war crimes in Bosnia and Herzegovina.


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