Russia Vetoes Srebrenica 'Genocide' Resolution

Southeast Europe | July 8, 2015, Wednesday // 19:34|  views

Shovels are stacked beside graves in Potocari near Srebrenica, 150 kms north east of Sarajevo, Bosnia, on Wednesday, July 8,2015. Photo by Bulgarian News Agency/AP

The United Nations Security Council has failed to pass a resolution which would have called the 1995 massacre in Srebrenica as "genocide".

Russia, a permanent UNSC member, has blocked the resolution which would have coincided with the 20th anniversary since as many as 8000 men and boys were killed by Bosnian Serb troops in 1995.

The exact wording envisaged "acceptance of the tragic events at Srebrenica as genocide is a prerequisite for reconciliation".

Vitaly Churkin, Russia's Ambassador to the UN, was quoted by TASS as calling the text "politically motivated" and "non-constructive".

The move is widely seen as a gesture of support for Serbia, with Belgrade denying there was any genocide and urging Moscow, a permanent UNSC member, to block the motion.

Wednesday's resolution was put forward by the UK and supported by a total of ten countries, with four (including China and Nigeria) choosing to abstain.

Churkin also said there was "lack of consensus" on the issue "in Bosnia-Herzegovina itself, and as it is well-known, the Parliament of this country is unable to adopt a unified opinion".

He stressed Moscow was convinced that the UNSC's role was to strengthen international security, and not to "destabilize" it.

The vote is not a surprise, since Russia had repeatedly warned it would not back the document, calling its current wording "unacceptable".

Moscow had introduced its own document on June 30 which however was not subject to a vote.

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Tags: Srebrenica, Russia, UNSC, United Nations Security Council, Vitaly Churkin, Serbia


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