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Mothers of Srebrenica victims band for justice

Latest update : 2008-07-24

More than a decade after the massacre in Srebrenica, a group of women have organised to seek justice in memory of the victims. The recent arrest of Radovan Karadzic has brought relief to the group, but the struggle is far from over.

 

They all lost a father, a husband or a son in the course of the Srebrenica massacre in July 1995 - because they were Muslim - in the worst massacre perpetuated in Europe since the Second World War.

 

For 13 years, an organization called the Mothers of Srebrenica has been fighting for the arrest of Ratko Mladic and Radovan Karadzic, two of the main players in the ethnic cleansing that claimed 8,372 lives.

 

War criminal Karadzic, on the run since 1996, was arrested in Belgrade, Serbia, on Monday. A relief for these women, but not an end in itself.

 

“It gives us comfort, We must continue to carry the burden of the children we lost,” insisted one mother. Far from reaching an end to their battle, they now await action from the international justice community to shed light on all those responsible.

 

While they wait for Radovan Karadzic to be transferred to the international criminal court in the Hague, the Mothers of Srebrenica continue to fight for justice and the truth. Their lawyers are taking the United Nations to court for not acting when Serbian paramilitaries in Bosnia selected their victims in Srebrenica.

 

The organization has made a formal complaint against the Netherlands. A Dutch contingent, under a UN mandate, was stationed in the town to protect civilians fleeing the Serbian troops during the Bosnian War between 1992 and 1995. A former soldier denies all claims of “sifting” out victims, callling it “bad history”. On July 10 of last year, a Dutch court declared itself incompetent to sue the United Nations, which benefits from legal immunity. The organization has appealed, and the battle continues.

 

 

Date created : 2008-07-23

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