Bosnia to mark 24th anniversary of Srebrenica genocide

Bosnia to mark 24th anniversary of Srebrenica genocide
Date: 11.7.2019 16:00

Bosnia will mark the 24th anniversary of the 1995 Srebrenica genocide on Thursday by burying 33 newly identified victims of the genocide in a collective funeral.

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Every year on July 11, newly identified victims of the genocide -- which claimed the lives of over 8,000 people -- are buried in a memorial cemetery in Potocari, eastern Bosnia. Thousands of visitors from various countries will attend the funeral service and burials.
After this year’s funeral, the number of burials in the cemetery will rise to 6,643.
Osman Cvrk, only 16 when he was killed, will be the youngest victim to be buried this year. Saha Cvrk, the oldest, was 82. She is the only woman to be buried at this year's ceremony.
The remains of the 33 genocide victims were being transported by a truck from the Bosnian city of Visoko to Potocari.
Elsewhere, hundreds of motorcyclists from across Europe held a procession from the country's capital Sarajevo to Srebrenica to commemorate the victims.
The procession -- with the slogan "Should not be forgotten, should not be" -- passed through Sarajevo’s streets, attracting interest from locals.
More than 300 bicyclists from across the country also gathered in the northern city of Bihac to honor the victims. Also, a group of 10 bicyclists on Monday took off from Austria's capital Vienna.
On Sunday, thousands of people from all over the world set off on a three-day commemorative peace march in the town of Nezuk near the Bosnian city of Tuzla.
More than 6,000 participants traveled about 35 kilometers (22 miles) each day to reach Potocari, spending the nights at designated wooded areas.
During the long walk, they heard details of the genocide and the memories of survivors who took the so-called "Death Road" in their attempt to flee Bosnian Serb forces during the war.
More than 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were killed after Bosnian Serb forces attacked the UN "safe area" of Srebrenica in July 1995, despite the presence of Dutch troops tasked with acting as international peacekeepers.
Srebrenica was besieged by Serb forces who were trying to wrest territory from Bosnian Muslims and Croats to form their own state.
The UN Security Council had declared Srebrenica a "safe area" in the spring of 1993. However, Serb troops led by Gen. Ratko Mladic -- who later found guilty of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide -- overran the UN zone.
The Dutch troops failed to act as Serb forces occupied the area, killing about 2,000 men and boys on July 11 alone. Some 15,000 Srebrenica people fled into the surrounding mountains, but Serb troops hunted down and killed 6,000 of them in the forests.


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