Survivors are today commemorating the 25th anniversary of the 1993 slaughter of 116 civillians in Ahmici, a village near the central Bosnian town of Vitez, that was attacked by Bosnian Croat forces at the beginning of the Bosniak-Croat conflict.
Forces of the Croatian Defense Council attacked the village on April 16, 1993, as part of an ethnic cleansing operation.
Some of the bodies of the 116 Bosniak victims have, according to the local war victims association “April 16”, not been found yet.
“Each anniverary brings back memories of every minute of what was happening in Ahmici 25 years ago,” the associations’ President, Hazrudin Bilic, told the local Fena news agency. “After this war crime, the biggest tragedy is that the whereabouts of 29 bodies are still unknown.”
Six people were convicted for their involvement in the Ahmici massacre, five of them in the Hague-based International Court for Former Yugoslavia. Among them is Dario Kordic, who was sentenced to 25 years in prison but was released four years ago after serving two thirds of his sentence. A court in Bosnia also sent Pasko Ljubicic behind bars for 10 years prison for his part in the massacre.
Members of the “April 16” association are, however, not satisfied by the prosecution of those who committed the murders. They said that sentences were mainly only handed down to those who had command responsibility, while most of those who actually committed the crimes have not been prosecuted.
The commemoration will take place in the premises of the Islamic Community in Vitez and a with a religious ceremony in Old Vitez and the local mosque in Ahmici. Bosniak member of the country’s tripartite Presidency, Bakir Izetbegovic, will also visit the site.