The Serbian Radical Party and its president, sentenced to imprisonment of 10 years for persecuting and instigating deportation of Croats from Vojvodina during the wars of the 1990s, are continuing their policy of denying the genocide. We believe that the denial of Srebrenica’s victims is a direct result of the politics crime, denial and disrespect for victims pursued for the last 30 years.
In the year that marks the 25th anniversary of genocide in Srebrenica, such promotions should not be allowed in public institutions such as the Stari grad municipality.
Extreme nationalism, both open and prettified, and attitude towards the war crime policy of the Milošević regime represent the greatest challenges of the Serbian society today. As long as both the government and opposition are competing in nationalism and denial of war crimes, we can’t talk about any change in Serbia, about the reforms or country’s EU accession path, but only about a fight for the successor of Milošević’s throne.
If a convicted war criminal unlawfully performs the duty of a member of parliament and if all government authorities and an overwhelming majority of political leaders deny the Srebrenica genocide established by two international courts – than there is no doubt that we have the state policy of denial which leads to self-isolation, extremization and moral degradation of the whole of society.
The Youth Initiative for Human Rights, the Humanitarian Law Centre and Women in Black believe that the greatest responsibility for these processes rests with current government, in this case local government led by Marko Bastać.
This is not the first time that local leaders, represented as the only alternative to current government, are actually even more extreme nationalists than those in power. Numerous cases confirm this – from the appointment of Svetozar Andrić Vice President of the Novi Beograd Municipality (the War Crimes Prosecutor’s Office is conducting pre-investigation proceedings against him on the basis of criminal report filed by the Humanitarian Law Centre) through paramilitary children’s camps organised by Milan Stamatović in Zlatibor.
Declared goals of democratisation, modernisation and EU integration of Serbia could be achieved only providing a radical shift from the policy of war crimes, public condemnation of all individuals who committed crimes and the marginalisation of convicted war criminals in public life.
- Youth Initiative for Human Rights
- Humanitarian Law Centre
- Women in Black