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International Information Centre for Balkan Studies



Position of the Netherlands remains unchanged: Genocide took place in Srebrenica

October 14, 2021

The Netherlands recognizes that genocide took place in Srebrenica in 1995 and this position will not change, Chair of the Netherlands Compensation Commission Potocari, Sylvia Wortmann, told N1.

In 2019, the Supreme Court of the Netherlands ruled that the country is partially responsible for the deaths of 350 Srebrenica genocide victims, which led to the formation of the Netherlands Compensation Commission Potocari, an independent executor of the ruling.

Relatives of the victims of the genocide in Srebrenica, the men who died at the base of the Dutch battalion in Potocari in the afternoon of July 13, 1995, are entitled to compensation of 15,000 and 10,000 euros.

The former High Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina, tasked with overseeing the civilian implementation of the 1995 Dayton Peace Agreement, imposed a law making war crimes and genocide denial illegal in July.

When asked what the significance of this law could be for BiH, as well as for international law, Wortmann said that she sees this as mainly an “internal issue.”

“It is difficult for me to express a personal position on this issue, but the Netherlands recognizes genocide and the Netherlands is very aware of the outcome of the genocide and there will be no change of position on this issue,” she stressed.

Wortmann then explained how relatives of the victims can exercise the right to compensation.

A contract must be signed by the Netherlands and the person seeking the compensation.

“Of course we want to know who the victim is, we also want to know how the victim died, or how he lost his life. An identity document of the applicant is required. It is a simple copy of the ID card, with both sides of the document, which should be stamped,” she said.

If the documentation is sent together with the completed and signed form, a certified ID card, a certified birth certificate in the case of the applicant being the child of the victim, or a certified marriage certificate if the applicant is the spouse, that is all that is needed, she explained.

So far, the commission has processed 200 claims and paid compensation in 70 cases. The commission's office will close in 2023.

Source:  https://ba.n1info.com/english/news/position-of-the-netherlands-remains-unchanged-genocide-took-place-in-srebrenica/

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