UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. official focusing on preventing genocide on Thursday sharply criticized the Bosnian Serb legislature’s decision to revoke support for a government report acknowledging the massacre of thousands of Bosnian Muslim men and boys in Srebrenica.
Special Adviser Adama Dieng called the National Assembly’s decision on Tuesday “a step backwards for Bosnia and Herzegovina.”
The legislature’s vote “undermines the rule of law and national and international efforts to achieve justice for victims of crimes committed against people of all ethnicities during the 1992-1995 Bosnian War,” he said in a statement.
The war killed an estimated 100,000 people and the Dayton Agreement that ended it split the country into two semi-autonomous mini-states along ethnic lines, one shared by Bosnian Muslims and Croats and the other for Bosnian Serbs.
The Srebrenica Commission, set up by the Bosnian Serb government, reported in 2004 that between 7,000 and 8,000 Bosnian Muslims disappeared from Srebrenica in July 1995 after Bosnian Serbs overran the enclave and more than 1,000 were killed, constituting a serious violation of international law.
All of the missing are presumed to have been killed, and more than two decades later, experts are still excavating victims’ bodies from hidden mass graves throughout Bosnia.