Wahed Dedik, who survived the genocide in which more than 8,000 Bosnian civilians were brutally murdered at Srebrenica in eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina in July 1995, stated that he was “born again” when he reached the safe zone.
He was 16 years old when the war began in 1992, Didic told Anadolu Agency (AA) how he got to the safe area from the forest road.
He stayed in Srebrenica until July 11, 1995, said Dedić, “We had to flee. I came to the house where my mother and sister were staying. Later, my father and brother also came. We had no choice but to go down the forest path.” He said.
Separated from his mother and sister, Dedic said, “I got to the safe zone on July 16th. I’m proud to be able to help civilians get here. I spent 5 days in the woods.” He said.
Killed 54 of my relatives.
Diditch stated that they encountered many traps, attacks, and poisons on the forest path, as follows:
“We were trapped somewhere. It was the hardest moment for me because I knew what they were going through. I saw how many of them were coming towards us. That’s when I panicked. We didn’t have much of a choice. We were either going to die or we were going to survive. It started raining so hard that That we all used this opposition of the weather to our advantage. They threw poison along the way. We were too tired, hungry, and thirsty to tell.”
Dedic said he was “reborn” when he reached the safe zone, “I congratulate July 16, when I reached the safe zone, my birthday. Fortunately, my father and brother also completed the death road on the forest road, but 54 of my relatives were killed.” He said.
Recalling that he returned home in 2000 after the war, Dedić said, “It was a difficult process. There were many attacks and provocations against Bosnians at that time. The situation is much better today.” He said.
Twenty-eighth anniversary of the genocide
Srebrenica, declared a “safe zone” by the United Nations during the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, was occupied on July 11, 1995 by the Serbian forces of the Serbian commander Ratko Mladic.
As for the Bosnian civilians who took refuge with the Dutch soldiers inside the United Nations after the occupation, they were handed over to the Serbs.
8,372 Bosniaks who were put on buses and trucks were brutally murdered in the forest areas, factories and warehouses where they were transported. The bodies of the dead were buried in various mass graves across the country.
The victims, whose bodies were found in mass graves after the war, to find the missing, were buried in a ceremony at the Potocari Memorial Cemetery on 11 July each year after their identification.
Every year, the “Death Road Peace Walk” event is held on the road used by Bosnian civilians to reach the safe zone.
Within the scope of this year’s commemoration festivities, 30 identified genocide victims will be buried at the Potocari Memorial Cemetery.
Potocari Memorial Cemetery contains the graves of 6,721 genocide victims.
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