Balkans | The Vukovar-Srebrenica Marathon has started in Croatia

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Balkans |  The Vukovar-Srebrenica Marathon has started in Croatia

The “Vukovar-Srebrenica Marathon”, which was organized for the twelfth time in commemoration of the genocide in Srebrenica in July 1995 during the Bosnia-Herzegovina war, started in Zagreb, the capital of Croatia.

The marathon, organized by the Bosnian Minority Council in Zagreb (VBNMGZ), is being held under the auspices of the President of the Republic of Croatia, Zoran Milanović, the Presidential Council of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Croatian member of the council, Željko Komšić, and the Municipality of Zagreb.

The marathon participants are expected to complete the 227-kilometre route from the monument in Ovkara near Vukovar to Potocari within 5 days.

Mirsad Softik, who joined from Zenica, said he would stand for all the innocent victims of the war.

Expressing their desire to show their suffering to the world, Softik said: “This is a race for peace. We want to send a message of peace so that what happened is not forgotten and not repeated. It is necessary to abandon things that can lead to genocide and other crimes.” He said.

What happened in Srebrenica and Vukovar?

After the occupation of Srebrenica, located in eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina, by Serb forces led by Ratko Mladić on July 11, 1995, Bosniak civilians who had taken refuge were among the ranks of Dutch soldiers inside the United Nations (UN). handed over to the Serbs.

Allowing women and children into the area controlled by Bosnian soldiers, the Serbs massacred no fewer than 8,372 Bosniak men in forest areas, factories, and warehouses, burying them in mass graves.

After the war, the victims whose bodies were found were buried in mass graves in an effort to find the missing in a ceremony held at the Potocari Memorial Cemetery on 11 July each year after their identification.

This year, 30 genocide victims, whose identities have been identified, will be buried.

In the war that began after Croatia announced its secession from the former Yugoslavia in 1991, clashes continued in Vukovar from August to November of the same year.

The events of Vukovar, which was besieged by Yugoslav soldiers and Serbian paramilitary units for three months, ended with the occupation of the city. After the occupation of Vukovar, whose population was mostly Croats, civilians in the city were tortured, killed, and exiled.

According to unofficial data, more than 3,000 people were killed in Vukovar and thousands were held in concentration camps.


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