UN General Assembly asked to condemn denial of genocide in Bosnia

Generalna skupština UN-a (Shutterstock)

A group of Bosnians and Americans from Bosnia and Herzegovina united in the 'Working Group for Bosnia and Herzegovina' has asked the UN General Assembly to pass a resolution that would condemn the denial of genocide and other war crimes committed in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

A letter addressed to the UN General Assembly President Abdulla Shahid reads that the resolution could be modelled after the UN Resolution from January 2022, which condemned the denial of the Holocaust and commended the countries that preserve the Nazi camps for the purpose of education.

In that context, the group asked the resolution to be passed on the 30th anniversary of the start of the war and war crimes in Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as the opening of many war camps, and to ban the denial of genocide and other war crimes that were confirmed at the international courts.

David Pettigrew, the professor of Holocaust and genocide studies at the University of Southern Connecticut, told Fena news agency that the resolution should also support the building of memorials and museums at the sites of former war camps and where the severe crimes were committed such as Omarska, Barutni Magacin, Kostana bolnica and Vilina Vlas.

The letter sent to the UN General Assembly President also reads that Bosnia's Serb-majority entity, Republika Srpska, denies the crimes that were determined in trials at the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia and the International Court of Justice, and does not allow the memorials to be built at the sites of former war camps and where the crimes were committed, “as a part of a comprehensive strategy of denial which includes the glorification of war criminals.”

The signatories called on the international peace envoy in Bosnia and Herzegovina, High Representative Christian Schmidt, to use the Bonn powers, special competencies he was assigned with through the Dayton Peace Agreement, to start the process of work with victim associations on building the memorials.

UN's Shahid was also delivered the details and documents concerning genocide and other war crimes, and was asked to support the human right to truth and memory in Bosnia and Herzegovina.