The Croatian Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs on Tuesday strongly condemned the destruction of a memorial commemorating Croatian soldiers killed at Ravno, southern Bosnia and Herzegovina, during the war in the 1990s, and called on the country's authorities to condemn the act and bring the perpetrators to justice.
The ministry said in a statement that this was the second time that unidentified perpetrators had devastated the memorial commemorating Croatian defenders killed in the village of Slivnica in the southeast of Ravno municipality.
“By breaking the crosses erected in 2014 in tribute to the fallen Croatian defenders, members of the Kobac special unit of the 156th Croatian Army Makarska-Vrgorac Brigade, unidentified perpetrators and their sympathisers have shown that they are still not ready to truly face the past. Incidents like this one and attacks on monuments commemorating the Homeland War stir up hatred, intolerance and exclusion and must not be ignored,” the statement said.
The Croatian ministry called on the authorities of Bosnia and Herzegovina to condemn this escalation of hatred and identify and punish the perpetrators.
The memorial in Slivnica was first desecrated a year and a half ago when the four large marble crosses and the memorial plaque were destroyed. The crosses were re-erected in 2019 and were destroyed again last weekend.
The memorial commemorates four Croatian Army soldiers killed in battle against Serb forces in July 1992.