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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

The UN Commission of Experts – Report on Mass Graves in Bosnia and Herzegovina

 Because of the large scale of victimization in the Yugoslav confict, many persons are buried in individual and mass graves. The mass graves report attempts to identify and provide relevant information concerning any and all alleged mass graves in the territory of the former Yugoslavia. This study is not designed to classify sites based on their prosecutorial potential, but to provide a factual description, and whenever possible, some analysis of the mass graves reported to be in existence as of 30 April 1994.

It should be noted that the reporting or existence of a mass grave does not necessarily imply that a war crime has been committed. It is signifcant to note that further study of mass graves should be made for three reasons:

 a. A mass gravesite is a potential repository of evidence of mass killings of 2 civilians and POWs. Such sites can yield forensic information which can provide evidence or insight into the circumstances surrounding the deaths of those buried there.

 b. The manner and method by which a mass grave is created may itself be a breach of the Geneva Conventions, *1 as well as a violation of the customary regulations of armed confict. *2 The Geneva Conventions *3 require parties to a confict to search for the dead and to prevent their bodies and remains from being despoiled. *4 For every deceased person who falls into the hands of the adverse party, the adverse party must record, prepare, and forward all identifcation information, death certifcates and personal effects to the appropriate parties. *5 Parties to a confict must also ensure that deceased persons are autopsied and buried in individual graves, as far apart as circumstances permit. Bodies should not be cremated except for hygiene reasons or for the religious reasons of the deceased. *6 Interment should be carried out in an honourable fashion, according to the religious rites of the deceased. Victims should be grouped by nationality and their graves maintained and marked so that they can be easily found. *7

c. The identifcation of mass graves can serve a reconciliatory purpose between the «warring factions», so that the families of those killed during the confict can learn the whereabouts of their loved ones. This report is divided into two sections. The frst section is the summary analysis and the second section consists of factual descriptions of all reported gravesites and analysis by geographic location. The Summary Analysis, in Section II below, discusses the methodology of the report, defnes relevant terms, and tracks the following information: total number of graves; number of graves in each geographic region; number of graves by ethnicity of victim and of perpetrator; number of graves containing a given range of bodies; number of graves where information suggests the bodies were victims of mass killings; number of graves near detention facilities, and so forth. In addition, this section will discuss patterns, trends, and commonalities which have manifested themselves in the various reports of mass grave sites.

 The Analysis By Geographic Location, in Section II(B) below, describes gravesites by county and is organized alphabetically. The 1991 population and ethnic distribution information is provided for each county, as well as a brief summary of military activity in the region, if available. Many of the counties reported multiple mass graves. The section also contains the following: a. All identifed gravesites in that county are then discussed in detail. A full description of the location of the grave is given, along with all known relevant events leading up to the creation of the gravesite. Ethnicities of victims and perpetrators are identifed; however, names of victims have been redacted to protect their identities as well as those of their families. The names of some perpetrators reportedly involved in the events surrounding the mass grave are known, but not disclosed. b. Other information includes the number of bodies buried in the grave, how the grave was created, and any investigations, visual sightings or forensic 3 explorations of the grave and data gained therefrom.


Isječak iz knjige "Torture" Saveza logoraša BiH - prvi dio

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