hr en


The Authorities of Croatia and Serbia Should Contribute to Reconciliation by Recognizing the Civilian War Victims

Large medari1

Medari/Zagreb, May 4, 2022

On the occasion of the 27th anniversary of the deaths of civilians in the area of ​​Western Slavonia and Zagreb, the Youth Initiative for Human Rights - Croatia and the Youth Initiative for Human Rights - Serbia jointly commemorated the victims by going to Medari and Zagreb. We did this in order to contribute to the process of reconciliation in our society and to change the dominant narrative that focuses on military exploits, while not even mentioning the victims.

Operation "Flash"

On the first day of operation "Bljesak"- which was carried out by the Croatian armed forces - civilians, including women and children, were killed in the village of Medari, near Nova Gradiška. Among the 22 victims of that crime were eleven women and two girls aged 7 and 8, as well as an 11-year-old boy. Also, after "Bljesak", members of the army of Republika Srpska Krajina were tortured, after handing over their weapons to representatives of the UN peacekeeping forces. For this reason, in 2012, the Youth Initiative for Human Rights – Croatia filed a criminal complaint against the perpetrators of war crimes against prisoners of war.

At the commemoration of Operation "Bljesak" held on May 1, 2022, neither President Milanović nor Prime Minister Plenković showed respect for all civilian victims.

Shelling of Zagreb

The forces of the Republika Srpska Krajina retaliated by shelling Zagreb and surrounding towns, during which 7 civilians were killed in Zagreb and 214 were wounded in attacks on Zagreb's main square and the wider city center area.

Milan Martić was held responsible for the shelling of Zagreb before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. In October 2008, he was sentenced to 35 years in prison for crimes against humanity and violations of the laws and customs of war.

Recommendations for both countries

Knowing that massive violations of human rights were committed in the past, we demand that the highest officials of Croatia and Serbia, publicly and in the presence of the victims, in accordance with Resolution No. 60/147 of the UN General Assembly from 2005, apologize for what the members of the armed forces commanded by their predecessors did;

That the victims be paid material reparations, all in accordance with the mentioned UN resolution from 2005, as well as with valid positive national regulations;

That the number of indictments for war crimes be increased, bearing in mind that many of them remained unpunished;

That a law on civilian war victims in Serbia, which would enable and facilitate the exercise of their rights, guaranteed by the constitution and international acts valid in Serbia, be enacted in Serbia, and that the Law on Civilian Victims of the Homeland War in Croatia be applied to all civilian victims of the war, without discriminating against the victims on any basis;

To contribute to the establishment of the Regional Commission for the Establishment of Facts about War Crimes and Other Serious Violations of Human Rights committed on the territory of the former SFRY from January 1, 1991 to December 31, 2001 (RECOM);

That May 2 be declared a day of remembrance for all civilian victims of the war in Croatia and that it be possible to mark it in a suitable place;

That it be confirmed beyond doubt that the crimes took place and that there is a clear desire of the states and their institutions to correct the mistakes where possible and decisively contribute to the non-repetition of the same or similar in the future.


 Activity Campaign 2: Commemoration of civilian victims of the wars of the nineties at marked and unmarked places of suffering is part of the project 4O: Discovery, awareness, empowerment and organization for human rights, the total value of which is €170,147, of which €149,922.00 is provided through the financial support of Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway within the EEA grants.



Kolačići (cookies) pomažu u korištenju ove stranice. Korištenjem pristajete na korištenje kolačića.