Resolution honours over 8,000 Muslim Bosniaks who were killed by Serbian forces in the Bosnian town and condemns public denial of genocide.

The adoption of the resolution came after Austrian Justice Minister Alma Zadic's official visit to Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The adoption of the resolution came after Austrian Justice Minister Alma Zadic's official visit to Bosnia and Herzegovina. (Reuters)

Austria's parliament has unanimously adopted a resolution on the genocide in Srebrenica which honours more than 8,000 Bosniaks who were killed in the European town on July 11, 1995.

Wednesday's resolution asked Austrian authorities to continue actively supporting the commemoration of the Srebrenica genocide together with other members of the European Union and declared July 11 a day of mourning while condemning public denial of the mass killings. 

The adoption of the resolution came after Austrian Justice Minister Alma Zadic's official visit to Bosnia and Herzegovina this week.

The resolution was adopted on the occasion of the 27th commemoration of the ethnic cleansing and genocide in Srebrenica, which was declared a protected zone by the UN Security Council Resolution of April 16, 1993.

''Bosnian Serb forces led by General Ratko Mladic and based on the order of the then president of (the Bosnia and Herzegovina entity) Republika Srpska occupied and subdued this city. During the next few days, massacres were carried out under the command of General Mladic in which Bosnian Serb soldiers, paramilitary units and irregular police units took part," it said.

The resolution recalled that thousands of Bosniak men and boys who sought protection from the United Nations Protection Force were killed.

"At the same time, approximately 30,000 women, children and elderly were forcibly expelled in a major ethnic cleansing operation. Thus, this event became the most serious war crime in Europe since the end of the Second World War,'' the resolution said.

"Commemorating the genocide in Srebrenica and solidarity with the victims is key for a better future for all citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as for strengthening historical awareness that such terrible crimes must never be repeated," the resolution concluded.

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Srebrenica genocide

In July 1995, Srebrenica was besieged by Serb forces who were trying to wrest territory from Bosnian Muslims and Croats to form a state.

The UN Security Council declared Srebrenica a "safe area" in the spring of 1993. However, Serb troops led by General Mladic — who was later found guilty of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide — overran the UN zone.

Dutch troops failed to act as Serb forces occupied the area, killing 2,000 men and boys in a single day on July 11.

About 15,000 Srebrenica residents fled to the surrounding mountains, but Serb troops hunted down and killed 6,000 more people.

In 2007, the International Court of Justice at The Hague ruled that genocide had been committed in Srebrenica.

On June 8, 2021, UN tribunal judges upheld in a second-instance trial a verdict sentencing Mladic to life in prison for the genocide, persecution, crimes against humanity, extermination and other war crimes in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

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Source: AA