Danish Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod said in his message on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Srebrenica genocide that young boys and men were killed, women lost their husbands, fathers, brothers and sons in this city on July 11, 1995. He said the Srebrenica genocide was the biggest crime against humanity in Europe since World War 2.
"Today, we commemorate the thousands who lost their lives in the genocide of Srebrenica 25 years ago.
To man,y it has become something they read about in history books – a cruel reminder of the capacity of man to inflict untold suffering on fellow human beings.
To the families of the victims, it is not history. They live with the loss every day.
Young boys and men were slaughtered, women lost their husbands, fathers, brothers and sons. Women were themselves subject to brutal attacks and abuse.
Children were left orphans, families torn apart. Srebrenica was more than a massacre. It was a genocide. It was the gravest crime against humanity in Europe since the Second World War.
Today as we remember Srebrenica, our thoughts must go first and foremost to the victims and to their loved ones.
Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Western Balkans have seen a lot of positive changes in the past 25 years. European integration and cooperation have intensified. Two of the republics of the former Yugoslavia have become members of the EU. Three have become members of NATO.
The Euroatlantic integration of the region is moving forward, but important challenges remain. The spirit of reconciliation still struggles to take root. In Bosnia and Herzegovina and elsewhere nationalism and chauvinism is sadly not a thing of the past.
And those 16 years have passed since the massacre in Srebrenica was recognized as a genocide. Many continue to deny it or minimize it. That is no way to build a future.
On this day, I urge leaders of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Western Balkans to show that they are determined to do their part to promote reconciliation, to work together, to give their inhabitants a better future.
Nothing can bring back those who died 25 years ago. For the families, the wounds will remain. Whatever will be done tomorrow will not undo the evil of the past, but only by learning from the past by confronting it, how painful it is, we can build a better future," Danish Foreign Minister said in his video address.