Genocide survivors protest against the Hague Tribunal

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SARAJEVO, 16 September (FENA) – Associations that bring together victims of the last war in Bosnia and Herzegovina and their families have announced today they will call on their members not to testify in the process against Radovan Karadzic if the Hague Tribunal continues shortening the indictment against the accused.

This announcement came today in Sarajevo during the protests organized by three major victims’ rights NGOs: the Association of Detainees of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Association “Mothers of Srebrenica and Zepa enclaves” and the Association “Women – Victims of War.”

Many members of these associations came today from all over Bosnia to join protests held in front of the United Nations building in Sarajevo.

Their representatives met with Refik Hodzic – spokesperson for the Sarajevo’s office of the Hague tribunal – and with other representatives of the ICTY Prosecutor’s Office.

After the meeting, Hodzic told reporters that he would immediately send a very serious warning to the Hague Tribunal about a possible boycott of victims to testify in the upcoming trial against Radovan Karadzic. Hodzic will also request urgent meeting to be held between representatives of victims’ NGOs, President of the ICTY and the Chief Prosecutor of the Hague Tribunal.

Murat Tahirovic, president of the Association of Detainees and one of the participants in the talks, along with Bakira Hasecic, president of the Association “Women – Victims of War” and Munira Subasic, president of the Association “Mothers of Srebrenica and Zepa enclaves” supported the demands of their respected associations.

Hasecic said if the injustice continues, the victims will ask the European Parliament to adopt a special resolution which would protect muslims as threatened peoples in Europe.

Members of the three victims’ rights NGOs are outraged at the decision of the Hague tribunal which seeks to shorten Radovan Karadzic’s indictment – the same indictment that has already been shortened – and to reduce the scope of the trial because of alleged lack of space, time and money.

Shorteninig of the indictment that has already been shortened, coupled with yesterday’s news about the Hague Tribunal’s decision to grant early release from prison for a convicted war criminal Biljana Plavsic, is seen by the victims as a serious injustice to them and their families.

They expressed outrage that the justice for victims will never be attainable if the Hague Tribunal continues to treat their tragedy lightly. They also said that the Hague Tribunal punishments often look like a slap on the wrist and that many war criminals can, with a peaceful soul, say that it pays to commit a crime and it pays to be a criminal.

During today’s protest, the victims also expressed their bitterness at the current RS Prime Minister Milorad Dodik who is on record for denying the Bosnian Serb responsibility for massacres of young people in Tuzla gate during the last war in BiH.

* Taken from Srebrenica Genocide Blog.

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