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Bosnia Serb leader slams UN's Srebrenica resolution before vote

By AFP

May 22, 2024 11:19 PM


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Bosnian Serb leader Milorad Dodik remained defiant Wednesday hours ahead of a UN vote on a resolution to create an international day of commemoration of the Srebrenica genocide, saying the move would cause irrepairable damage.

For weeks, the longtime leader of Bosnia's Serbs has been openly hostile to the UN resolution to mark the 1995 killings of thousands of Bosnian Muslims.

Dodik frequently rails against the issue in speeches and held a rally to protest the resolution in April.

On Wednesday, he took to social media for his latest salvo against the measure.

"There will be no possibility of repairing the damage that this resolution will create," he wrote on X. "Bosnia and Herzegovina has come to an end."

Hours later, Dodik told reporters in the capital Sarajevo that Bosnia's involvement with the United Nations was both "unconstitutional and illegal".

Ahead of the vote, signs in Serb areas of Bosnia and in neighbouring Serbia have been hung reading: "We are not a genocidal nation."

Serbia's President Aleksandar Vucic vowed this week to fly to New York for the vote, where he promised to push back against the resolution.

"I am going to New York to fight with all my strength and heart for the future of our country," Vucic wrote on social media, saying he had also sought the "blessing" of the Serbian Orthodox Church's leader, Patriarch Porfirije.

Bosnian Serb forces captured the eastern town of Srebrenica, a UN-protected enclave at the time, on July 11, 1995, a few months before the end of Bosnia's inter-ethnic war.

In the following days they summarily killed around 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys from the town.

The remains of most of the victims were found in mass graves in eastern Bosnia, where soldiers moved them from the original burial sites to try to cover up the crime.

The attack, Europe's worst single atrocity since World War II, was deemed genocide by international courts.

Under a settlement to end the war, Bosnia was divided into two semi-autonomous zones, one run by Bosnians and Croats, the other by Serbs.

Politicians in Serbia and ethnic Serbs in Bosnia have largely tried to play down the Srebrenica killings, with many refusing to call them a genocide.

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AFP


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