Turkey becomes new donor to ICMP

22 February 2010: The Government of the Republic of Turkey has further demonstrated its commitment to the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina and to reinforcing stability, justice and the rule of law in the country by making a grant to the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) of US$200,000.

The funds were granted following a meeting in Sarajevo between the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs H.E. Professor Dr. Ahmet Davutoglu, and ICMP’s Director-General Ms. Kathryne Bomberger. The grant shall be used for ICMP’s work throughout Bosnia-Herzegovina.

“ICMP’s expertise in assisting the Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina to address the issue of missing persons regardless of ethnicity and its considerable and effective commitment to strengthening civil society through support to associations of relatives of missing persons throughout the country has created something that the Republic of Turkey is proud to support,” said H.E Vefahan Ocak, Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey to Bosnia and Herzegovina.

“Without the vital support of countries such as Turkey, ICMP would simply not be able to carry out its operations in Bosnia and Herzegovina. We are delighted and honored by this donation to ICMP and look forward to continuing cooperation,” said ICMP’s Director-General, Ms. Kathryne Bomberger.

ICMP’s DNA-assisted identification programs are at the heart of its ongoing success in assisting Bosnia and Herzegovina to deal with the problem of 30,000 missing persons. Since November 2001, ICMP has led the way in using DNA as the first step in the process of identification, and to-date has made 12,900 positive DNA identifications of persons missing. Together with those persons identified before the introduction of DNA almost two thirds of the total number missing at the end of the war have been identified and buried with dignity.

Techniques developed by ICMP in the Western Balkans have revolutionized the search for the missing in other countries and ICMP experts are now assisting the Governments of Iraq, Colombia, the Philippines and Chile.

ICMP is the co-founder, with the Council of Ministers, of the Missing Persons Institute of BiH, contributes to rule of law activities and supports the development of networks of civil society organizations which advocate for truth, justice, and the rights of family members of missing persons. ICMP’s work is also supported by the Governments of Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, the Holy See, Iceland, Ireland, Poland, Italy, The Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the United States and the European Union.