James Kimsey and HM Queen Noor Visit Bosnia and Herzegovina

Mr James Kimsey, Chairman of ICMP, accompanied by Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan, who is an ICMP commissioner, are visiting Bosnia and Herzegovina to see the work of the ICMP in action and to discuss future strategy.On Wednesday June 11 they met with the members of the BiH Joint Presidency, following a meeting with Mr Adnan Terzic, Chairman of the Council of Ministers and Mr Mirsad Kebo, Minister for Human Rights and Refugees. The theme of these meetings was the implementation of the Missing Persons Institute (MPI) which will carry on the work addressing the missing persons’ issue in BiH for the long term. Mr Kimsey thanked the members of the BiH Presidency for their support for the MPI, and asked them for a commitment that they will continue this support through the creation of a protocol for MPI so that it is adopted by Parliament and ready for signature no later than mid-July 2003. Mr Kimsey and the Commissioners and Board of ICMP hope that MPI can become operational in January 2004.

The decision to implement MPI on the level of the State was agreed upon at the June 4, 2003 of the session of the Members of the Presidency. This decision calls for ICMP (the original founder of MPI) and the Council of Ministers to become Co-founders of the MPI. It is anticipated that the MPI will assume the operational functions of the Entity Commissions on Missing Persons in 2004.

During their time in BIH, Mr Kimsey and Queen Noor will also meet representatives of associations of families of missing persons, from across BiH, and will be visiting the exhumation site at Vlasenica, where they will view the work of ICMP anthropologists (who assist at the site), the Federation Commission for Missing Persons and the courts. They will go to the Srebrenica-Potocari memorial site on June 12th, where they will lay a wreath in memory of those who lie there.

Mr Gordon Bacon, Chief of Staff for ICMP, welcomed the visit: “It is my hope that Protocol regarding the implementation of MPI on the level of the State will move forward the historic creation of a sustainable process to address the issue of the missing for the thousands of families affected by the conflicts. I urge the BiH the Council of Ministers and the BiH Parliament to move swiftly in this regard. We also welcome the opportunity for Mr Kimsey and Queen Noor to see the work of the ICMP, the entity- Commissions and the Families of the missing and to visit the new Potocari site which has become a reality since their last visit here.”