This year is the 20th anniversary of a little-known genocide. In 2005, the United States Congress passed a resolution declaring the massacres at Srebrenica and “the Serbian policies of aggression and ethnic cleansing meet the terms defining genocide.” The U.N, however, has been soft on the leaders responsible for it.
Most people have never heard of Srebrenica nor do they know that over 8,000 people were killed there in 1995. Shockingly, those are the conservative estimates, which are hard to calculate due to so many mass graves. Not only are most people in the world unaware of the killings, they don’t know that 25,000–30,000 citizens in and around Srebrenica were expelled from their homes at that time as well.
Most people have heard of Bosnia and Serbia, however, but they don’t realize that the Bosnian Genocide includes the genocide in Srebrenica and another region called Zepa. Well, the ethnic cleansing campaign that took place in Srebrenica from 1992-1995 in the areas was controlled by Bosnian Serbs of the Orthodox religion. Perhaps people turn a blind eye to this awful genocide in history because most of victims were Muslims, but there were large numbers of Catholics killed in the massacre too, just as there were during the Jewish Holocaust in the 1940s.
The ethnic cleansing campaign carried out by Bosnian Serbs included illegal confinement, murder, the brutal rape of women and children, torture, beating, robbery, assassination of political leaders, intellectuals and professionals, the unlawful shelling of civilians, the theft of personal property; the destruction of homes and businesses, and the destruction of churches and mosques. Again, the victims were largely Muslims and Catholics.
According to the International Criminal Tribunal located in the Hague:
“By seeking to eliminate a part of the Bosnian Muslims, the Bosnian Serb forces committed genocide. They targeted for extinction the forty thousand Bosnian Muslims living in Srebrenica, a group which was emblematic of the Bosnian Muslims in general. They stripped all the male Muslim prisoners, military and civilian, elderly and young, of their personal belongings and identification, and deliberately and methodically killed them solely on the basis of their identity.”
Despite these findings, the leaders of the former Serbian president Slobodan Milosevic and Bosnian Serb leader Momcilo Krajišnik have not been punished to the fullest extent of international law. They are accused of crimes against humanity, but not the intent to commit genocide. They are merely blamed by the U.N for not “doing enough to prevent acts of genocide from occurring in Srebrenica.”
We want to hear how you think the leaders responsible for the large-scale massacre should be held accountable. The U.S calls the massacres at Srebrenica a genocide but the U.N. says there isn’t enough proof that the leaders were intentionally creating a genocide. How confusing is that!
Watch the video below to see how the people of Srebrenica attacked the visiting Serbian Prime Minister this year: