The United States stands with the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina as the country is marking the 23rd anniversary of the Srebrenica genocide, US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, said in a statement published on the US Department of State website.
"The horrific Srebrenica genocide reminds us that we must strive for a stable and prosperous future for the benefit of all citizens, regardless of race or religion, in Bosnia and Herzegovina and everywhere else," it reads.
On July 11, 1995, Bosnian Serb forces overran the eastern Bosnian enclave and rounded up the town’s Muslim Bosniaks, separated men from women and little children and systematically executed some 8,000 men and boys.
The bodies of the victims were dumped into numerous mass graves in the area. Forensic experts excavated them and identified the bones through DNA analysis before returning the bodies to the families. Those rebury them every year on July 11 at the Memorial Centre’s cemetery.
Two international courts, The International Criminal Tribunal (ICTY) for the Former Yugoslavia and the International Court of Justice (ICJ) later ruled that the massacre was an act of genocide.
"Every day, we are charged with remembering the past as we build a better future," Pompeo said.
He stressed that it is necessary to work toward overcoming "past grievances" and strengthening democratic institutions "so that our path never again leads back to the dark days of the past".
"We must work for the day when the remains of all of those slain in Srebrenica are finally recovered and may lie in their lasting resting places, and when justice reaches all of the perpetrators still at large," he said.
"The United States stands with the people Bosnia and Herzegovina on this day. We will not forget your fallen. We honor the victims of genocide and remain steadfast in our partnership to bring enduring stability and prosperity to your country," the statement concluded.