"British draft resolution mentions word 'genocide' 35 times"

Belgrade newspapers Politika and Vecernje Novosti have published the draft British resolution that "condemns any denial of genocide in Srebrenica."

Source: Tanjug

According to these reports, UN member states are urged to include lessons "about such crimes" in school textbooks.

The draft "should be adopted by the UN Security Council on July 7, four days before the 20th anniversary of the crime in Srebrenica," said the reports.

Politika writes that the 4-page draft "mentions the word 'genocide' 35 times, and the world 'reconciliation' only three times."

The introductory part recalls that the Hague Tribunal, in the judgment of General Radislav Krtstiću on April 19, 2004, concluded that genocide occurred in Srebrenica, and that the same qualification of the crime was given by the International Court of Justice in 2007.

It also states that "tens of thousands of women, girls, men and boys were victims of sexual violence during the conflict in Bosnia-Herzegovina, including in Srebrenica."

In its report about the draft resolution, Vecernje Novosti also counted the word "genocide" 35 times, and mentions the reference to "tens of thousands of sexually abused persons," as well as that there is no mention at all of Serb victims - "only sympathy for all the victims in general."

The final part contains the following 13-points, as printed by the two Belgrade-based newspapers, stating that the resolution

- Condemns in the strongest terms genocide and all violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law.

Condemns in the strongest terms the genocide in Srebrenica.

- Condemns any denial of this genocide.

- Expresses its sympathy for the victims on all sides of the conflict in Bosnia-Herzegovina, as well as for their families, and invites Member States to continue to provide justice and long-term support to survivors, including survivors of sexual violence, as appropriate.

- Calls upon Members States to prevent and fight against genocide and other serious crimes under international law, reaffirms paragraphs 138 and 139 of the 2005 World Summit Outcome Document on the responsibility to protect populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity.

- Calls upon States that have not yet ratified or acceeded to th Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide to consider doing so as a matter of high priority and where necessary enact national legislation in order to meet their obligations under the Convention.

- Welcomes efforts to investigate and prosecute those accused of the genocide at Srebrenica, calls upon all States to cooperate with the ICTY, the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals and the Court of Bosnia-Herzegovina, requests the ICTY to complete its work as expediously as possible.

- Stresses the crucial importance of reconciliation that is based on dialogue, acceptance of deeds from the past of all sides to the conflict and commitment to justice and support for victims, as the basis for strengthening security, stability and prosperity, in Bosnia-Herzegovina and in the wider region. To this end it welcomes the recent agreement of parliaments and political leaders of Bosnia-Herzegovina on an ambitious reform program, which includes commitment to measures to accelerate the process of reconciliation.

- Calls upon Member States to develop educational programs that will instill future generations with the lessons that have been learned from past genocides, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity in order to prevent repeating them.

- Encourages Member States to consider appointing contact persons to deal with crime prevention and response to crimes, regularly meet and coordinated steps, sharing with other Member States and relevant regional and subregional mechanisms best practices of rapid response and prevention of mass crimes.

- Confirms the importance of the lesson of the failure to prevent the genocide in Srebrenica, as stated in the report of the Secretary-General in accordance with General Assembly resolution 53/35, and decides to act early and effectively to prevent a repetition of such tragedies and for this purpose use all available resources.

- Acknowledges that human rights violations or abuses of international humanitarian law, including those relating to sexual and gender-based violence, can be an early indicator of the potential for genocide and in that sense, welcomes the efforts of the UN to improve its collective response to future human rights violations and abuses of international humanitarian law.

- Requests from the Secretary-General to ensure greater cooperation between existing mechanisms to prevent genocide and other serious international crimes through early warning, in order to assist in revealing, assessing and responding to sources of tension and points of risk or identification of vulnerable populations, and encourages the Secretary-General to present to the Security Council information and analyses believed to contribute to the prevention of genocide.

Bosnian Minister of Foreign Affairs Igor Crnadak confirmed that he received the draft resolution, and said it was not possible to make a balanced version from it, one that would satisfy everyone.

Crnadak also said that the resolution "arrived at a risky time," and that it was "time for everyone in Bosnia-Herzegovina to finally to the future."

Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic commented on the draft resolution to say that "Serbia will carefully consider it, and will be guided by national and state interests, without bringing into doubt its commitment to punishing war crimes."

With this resolution, the West "wants to signal that it can trigger mechanisms that might deal a blow to Serbia's authority and image because it did not join sanctions against Russia," chair of the Russia Duma's Foreign Affairs Committee, Alexei Pushkov, said in Belgrade on Monday.

Pushkov added that this was also an attempt to drive a wedge between Serbia and Muslim nations, and pointed out that "it is not necessary to adopt the document," as passing it at the UN "would bring more harm than good."

Russia to be asked to use veto

Serb Republic (RS) President Milorad Dodik will ask Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov for Russia to veto a draft British resolution on Srebrenica.

Dodik announced he would do this during a meeting planned for June 18 in St. Petersburg.

The endorsement of this resolution would bring about a further escalation of tensions in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Dodik told the daily Vecernje Novosti.

"It is clear there will never be a unified position on the document in Bosnia, since this document aims at politicizing the tragedy and imposing a quasi-truth about the sufferings in Srebrenica," he said.

"If we really seek reconciliation, why not mentioning (in the draft resolution) the 3,500 Serbs slain by (former commander of Muslim forces) Naser Oric and his people near Srebrenica," he said.

Dodik also raised questions about the provision of the resolution on "denouncing the denial of genocide", which he said "pursued the goal of forcing the incumbent and future Serb politicians to offer apologies again."


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