Yearly Archives: 2006

Urgent need for implementation of the Law on Missing Persons

The families of the missing seek prompt implementation of the Law on missing persons of Bosnia and Herzegovina by all levels of authority and the realization of their legally prescribed rights, including the establishment of the Fund for support to families. The Law on Missing Persons was adopted at the BiH Parliament in November 2004 and defines, apart from the rights of families of missing persons, the responsibilities of the authorities of all levels in BiH on resolving the fate at the missing.

Victims Request State Strategy for Prosecuting War Crimes

Associations of victims from all over Bosnia and Herzegovina and representatives of state judicial bodies are united in their call for the development of a strategy for Bosnia and Herzegovina in prosecuting war crimes. This is just one of the conclusions of a two-day gathering organized by the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP). Round-table discussions under the title: „Pursuing justice and human rights in BiH: Mechanisms and problems” were held with 60 representatives of associations of families of missing persons and guest speakers from various judicial institutions.

Enforcement of the Law on Missing Persons in BiH

The Ministry for Human Rights and Refugees, in cooperation with the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), is organizing a series of meetings with associations of families of the missing persons from all over Bosnia and Herzegovina. The main issue to be discussed is the Law on Missing Persons.

The Netherlands Continues Support for Identification of War Victims in BiH

The Royal Netherlands Embassy made the first installment last week of a two million Euro contribution to the work of the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) for the year 2006. The Netherlands Embassy has also committed to continued funding for the identification of victims of the conflicts in the former Yugoslavia over the next three years.As in previous years, the Netherlands Embassy has requested that the funding be used to assist in the identification of victims of the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and in particular of the 1995 fall of Srebrenica.

US Congresswoman Visits ICMP

During a brief trip to Bosnia-Herzegovina, Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez of California visited an International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) mortuary and examination facility in Tuzla, eastern Bosnia on Sunday, 19 March. The ICMP facility houses thousands of body bags containing the remains of victims of the 1995 fall of Srebrenica.Dr. Rifat Kesetovic, Chief Forensic Pathologist at the facility, which is called the Podrinje Identification Project, explained to Congresswoman Sanchez that many of the body bags in the morgue contain only parts of individuals, or parts of several different individuals. The problem of separation and mixing of body parts occurred because several months after the Srebrenica victims were buried in mass graves, the perpetrators dug up the remains and reburied them in smaller mass graves in an attempt to hide the evidence. Heavy machinery was used and the bodies broke apart and became commingled during the process. This makes the…

ICMP Names New Director of Forensic Sciences

The International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) has hired Thomas J. Parsons, formerly Chief Scientist at the U.S. Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory, as Director of its Forensic Sciences Department. Dr. Parsons took up his post at ICMP's Sarajevo headquarters on March 1, 2006. He replaces Dr. Mark Skinner, who has returned to his post as professor at the Archaeology Department of Simon Fraser University in Canada.

Missing Persons Institute Directors Officially Appointed

The first Directors of the Missing Persons Institute (MPI) of Bosnia-Herzegovina officially took up their posts today, marking a major step forward in the search for persons missing from the country's 1992-95 conflict.The MPI is a State-level organization co-founded by the BiH Council of Ministers and the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP), which is taking over the responsibilities of the entity-level missing persons organizations – the Office of the Republika Srpska on Tracing Detained and Missing Persons and the Federation Commission on Tracing Missing Persons. There are three Directors of the MPI: Marko Jurisic and Amor Masovic, Chairmen of the Federation commission, and Milan Bogdanic, Director of the RS office on missing persons. Marko Jurisic took over today as the first MPI Chairman, a position that will rotate every eight months between the current three MPI Directors.

Canada Joins ICMP Donors

The Government of Canada today joins the donor nations of the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP), making a contribution of 350,000 Canadian Dollars from Canada's Global Peace and Security Fund for ICMP's identification of missing individuals from the conflicts in the regions of the former Yugoslavia.Today, in recognition of Canada's contribution, Canadian Ambassador Shelley Whiting toured the ICMP facilities in Tuzla. Given the regional focus of ICMP activities, and the relevance of their work in the neighboring countries of Croatia and Serbia-Montenegro, she was joined by her colleagues, Mr. Yvan Jobin, Deputy Head of Mission at the Canadian Embassy in Belgrade, and Mr. Sven Jurschewsky, Deputy Head of Mission at the Canadian Embassy in Zagreb.

In Tuzla, Ambassador Whiting stated, “Canada is pleased to support financially the work of the ICMP, which facilitates their ongoing efforts to identify victims of the conflicts in the region, and provides closure to…

DNA Matches for Missing from Conflicts in the Former Yugoslavia

The International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) has achieved the first results from a campaign in the United States to help identify missing victims of the conflicts in the former Yugoslavia. The first 33 DNA matches between bone samples of missing individuals found in grave sites in the former Yugoslavia and blood samples taken from relatives of the missing who are now living in North America have been made by ICMP in Bosnia-Herzegovina.