High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina Christian Schmidt, speaking at the commemoration of the 27th anniversary of the genocide against Bosniaks in the "UN Safe Area" Srebrenica, said that every time he comes to this holy place he feels a heavy burden, a burden of fatal aggression, against the youth who had so many hopes for the future, against men in the midst of their lives, in the midst of caring for their families, against the old who gathered all their life's achievements for future generations, against all of us, against the human race.
Schmidt said that he also feels the burden of the failure of the international community, the failure to protect those who were exposed to the threat of being killed.
- Nothing that I can say here today will ease the pain of those who lost their husbands, their fathers, their sons, their brothers and members of their families. But we can pay tribute to those who will be buried here today. It is our sacred duty. What we can all do is to help prevent such pain from happening again - said Schmidt.
He added that they gathered in Potočari to honor the victims of the genocide.
- Whoever tries to deny that what happened here in Srebrenica, exactly in this place and its surroundings, whoever tries to say that this was not genocide, whoever tries to decrease the number of victims in an attempt to downplay the guilt, the scale of the crime, whoever does such things, lives cocooned in consciously chosen ignorance - Schmidt pointed out.
High Representative added that the behavior of all those who glorify war criminals "represents an insult to all the mourners and to all of us", and that "their behavior must be despised".
Christian Schmidt pointed out that the lessons we learned in Srebrenica must never be forgotten.
- We must all work in an effort to prevent this from happening again. This is something that we have to pass on to future generations, generations that deserve to know what happened here. Today is a day of mourning, today is a day of commemoration, but it is also a day of hope. The peaceful and prosperous future of people in this country is our greatest obligation - said High Representative Christian Schmidt.