Twenty-seven years on from the worst human massacre on European soil after World War II, the currents of political conflict rage on in the east of our region. The crime against humanity committed in Bosnia in 1995 was solely driven by a hatred for Bosnian Muslims and enabled by the blatant institutional failure of UN Peacekeeping forces.
These institutional failures remain present in the complete dereliction of duty that numerous governments and multilateral institutions have shown in the lack response to recent actions taken by Republika Srpska. Recent sanctions by the Unites States and United Kingdom against Srebrenica genocide denier and ethno-nationalistic leader Milorad Dodik are encouraging, but more must be done.
On this day FEMYSO has chosen to launch #WeRemember95, a campaign focused on peace and on advocating for Bosnians committed to peace who find themselves in the midst of an environment which could lead to another horrific conclusion if leaders continue to be silent on this issue.
FEMYSO President Hande Taner said ‘The Srebrenica genocide saw the brutal murder of more than 8000 Muslim men and boys, rampant sexual violence, and the displacement of over 1.1 million people over the course of the conflict. As a pan European network organisation of Muslim youth organisations, we are mandated by our membership to commemorate this anniversary, and this is why we are launching this campaign as we believe more must be done in this crucial moment.
As the voice of Muslim youth in Europe this campaign calls for:
- Take all necessary actions to prevent a conflict that would inevitably spill over to other countries in the Balkans and in the wider region;
- Mandatory education of the Srebrenica genocide in history classes;
- National and EU wide commemoration events by national and EU authorities.
The Srebrenica genocide, alongside the Prijedor (Bosnia) massacre that saw the killing of over 3000 Muslim civilians in 1992, portray unforgettable bloody stains in European history concerning ethnic cleansing. Therefore, solid and firm action must be taken to avoid what could be another extermination of innocent individuals on European soil.
As for FEMYSO, we will continue our fight against any form of racism and our work for a more diverse, cohesive and vibrant Europe.
- FEMYSO (est. 1996) is a network organisation for 33 Muslim youth and student organisations across 21 European countries, and is the leading voice for European Muslim youth, developing and empowering them, and working to build a more diverse, cohesive and vibrant Europe.
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