The Dutch courts have held the state responsible, for the first time,  for death of 300 Bosnian Muslim men on July 13, 1995 during the fall of Srebrenica. Dutch peacekeepers stationed in the city of Bosniak majority collaborated in the deportation of the group of Muslims by Bosnian Serb troops under General Ratko Mladic, who murdered them. The judgment states that the prominent forces in UN peacekeeping ” should have anticipated the danger to civilians perished in genocide and not cooperating in their deportation.” “It can be said with sufficient certainty which, if left with the Dutch soldiers would be alive,” it says. The Dutch peacekeepers failed to protect them adequately.

The ruling, however, adds that Holland “is not responsible for the murder of all Bosnian Muslims” in Srebrenica. About 8,000, mostly men and children (13 to 80 years), were shot by the Bosnian Serbs in a genocide that is now being tried in the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in the Hague. Judicial Dutch court decision has not been satisfied the organization Mothers of Srebrenica, who filed the lawsuit last April, and they would appeal in behalf of the rest of the fallen.

Judges spin very fine in its decision, because the murders were committed, and there is footage of it, by the soldiers of Mladic over several days in July 1995. “At the moment that the men were sent away, Dutchbat knew or should have known that the genocide was taking place and therefore there was a serious risk that those men would be killed,” said judge Peter Blok.

The Mothers of Srebrenica sued the Dutch state considered that it was more important for the soldiers to defend the civilian refugee population. Although the State Bar representing the state against the Mothers of Srebrenica have always said that the peacekeepers ” had no choice but to assist in the evacuation imposed by General [ Mladic ]”. 

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