The long delays in the judiciary’s handling of cases in Bosnia and Herzegovina are unacceptable for a country seeking the membership in the European Union, Neighbourhood and Enlargement Commissioner Johannes Hahn tweeted on Sunday.
Hahn’s statement on social networks comes a day after hundreds of citizens staged a peaceful protest in Sarajevo’s central square, in support of the parents seeking for justice for their sons who tragically died under still unresolved circumstances.
“Three months ago, I met with the parents of David Dragicevic and Dzenan Memic. Yesterday they and many other frustrated parents and citizens demonstrated peacefully in Sarajevo against the lack of justice in Bosnia and Herzegovina,” said Hahn, who paid a visit to Sarajevo in late March where he discussed the country’s EU path with senior officials, political and NGO representatives.
During the visit, Hahn also met the parents of David Dragicevic and Dzenan Memic, who said following the meeting that they were promised EU experts would help to solve the two cases.
Dzenan’s father, Muriz Memic, told the crowd in Saturday’s protest that he and his lawyer know the name of the person who, as he said, murdered his son. Memic also said he delivered the evidence to the State Prosecutor’s Office and asked them to implement the law.
Arijana Memic, the sister, stressed this was not only their battle but the battle for all innocently killed.
“This is not the Memic case as you can hear or read, this is the tragedy of this country and a stain on the ruling structures,” she said.
Suzana Radanovic, the mother of David Dragicevic, directly accused the authorities in Bosnia’s Republika Srpska region of being responsible for the death of her child.
The lifeless body of 21-year-old David Dragicevic was found in a local river in March 2018. Police initially said the death was a result of drowning but his family claims Dragicevic was brutally murdered and that authorities in the Serb-majority part of the country are covering it up to protect the perpetrators.
Tens of thousands have joined the ‘Justice for David’ group which has been frequently gathering in Banja Luka since March 2018 in what has grown into the biggest anti-government protest Republika Srpska (RS), the semi-autonomous Bosnian region, has ever seen.
At some point, the group connected with protesters from Sarajevo who have been demanding justice for Dzenan Memic, a 21-year-old man whose controversial death from 2016 remains unresolved.
Dzenan’s father believes his son was murdered and that the judiciary in Sarajevo is covering it up.