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    Srebrenica Memorial Events Aimed at Forcing Serbia Into Admitting Genocide

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    A member of the Serbian parliament with the Progressive Party said that memorial events that take place every July 11 to commemorate the Srebrenica mass killings are a tool to force Serbia into admitting the killings were a genocide.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) The memorial events that take place every July 11 to commemorate the Srebrenica mass killings are a tool to force Serbia into admitting the killings were a genocide, a member of the Serbian parliament with the Progressive Party told Sputnik on Monday.

    "Everything that happens every July 11th in Potocari is a show for the public," Vladimir Djukanovic said. "The essence of all this performance is to impose on Serbs genocide to politically justify the criminal policy."

    Monday marks the 21st anniversary of the killing of 8,000 Muslim men and boys in the Bosnian town of Srebrenica in 1995 after it was occupied by the army of Republika Srpska. This year the commemorative events’ organizational committee declared the Serbian officials as personas non grata and Srebrenica Municipal President Camil Durakovic explained the decision was "due to genocide denial and disrespect of the victims and their families."

    Djukanovic said that Serbia wanted to have good ties with Bosnia and Herzegovina but that was a challenging task, while Sarajevo sought to force Belgrade to admit the 1995 events as genocide.

    "I know that the government in Sarajevo is under big pressure of the Americans and British, and they talk to us in a way what the US and the UK want to tell to Serbia, and they do what the Americans and the Britons want to do in the Balkans," Djukanovic said.

    The killings have been defined as genocide by the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. In 2010, the Serbian parliament condemned the Srebrenica events but did not describe the killings as genocide.

    In July 2015, Russia vetoed a draft resolution in the UN Security Council submitted by the United Kingdom that would condemn the killings in the Bosnian town of Srebrenica as a crime of genocide. According to Russia's UN envoy Vitaly Churkin, the adoption of the resolution with such a classification of the 1995 events would have aggravated the situation in the region, as the there is no consensus on this classification either in the region, or in Bosnia and Herzegovina itself.

    In June 2015, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that the resolution incorrectly interpreted what happened in Srebrenica from a legal point of view.

    Ten of the Security Council's 15 members voted in favor of the resolution, while four abstained.

    Related:

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    ICTY Finds Karadzic Guilty of Srebrenica Genocide
    Radovan Karadzic Found Guilty of Ordering Srebrenica Takeover
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    Srebrenica massacre, Vladimir Djukanovic, Serbia
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