Make maximum effort to complete the search for missing persons

Make maximum effort to complete the search for missing persons

SARAJEVO, February 25 (FENA) – The Advisory Board of the Institute for Missing Persons of Bosnia and Herzegovina, with the help of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in BiH, organized a meeting with associations of families of missing persons in Sarajevo today.

At the press conference after the meeting, the participants pointed out that all actors in the process of searching for missing persons in BiH must make maximum effort in order to complete the search for missing persons.

They also said that the authorities must find the political will and ensure that all agencies are involved in the process and that all necessary resources are made available to them, Institute for Missing Persons of Bosnia and Herzegovina (MPI BIH) said.

Member of the MPI BIH Advisory Board Amir Kulaglić pointed out that Bosnia and Herzegovina needs a clear strategy for resolving the fate of missing persons, which will include a vision, mission, time frame, as well as strategic goals and activities.

“We have proposed such a strategy, i.e. its creation, to the Ministry of Human Rights and Refugees of BiH, and the bearers of that strategy should be the Institute for Missing Persons of BiH and the Ministry,” said Kulaglić.

Head of the Delegation of the International Committee of the Red Cross in BiH, Elmir Camić, said that the pandemic increased the uncertainty with which the families of the missing live anyway.

“A member of an association said that she attended the funeral of nine members of her association last year, and that no victims were identified in that municipality for the same period. The fear of families that they will not find their loved ones for life is even greater now,” Camić pointed out, adding that the ICRC continues its support to the families of the missing, but also to the Institute for Missing Persons of BiH.

Matthew Holliday, Head of ICMP Western Balkans Program, praised the work of the Advisory Board, whose mandate is nearing its end, and pointed out that ICMP continues to work on identifying the remains of missing persons.

“Recently, we used the DNA method to identify the victims who were exhumed in the area of Bugojno, 25 years after their disappearance. I think this is exactly the reason why families should not lose hope,” said Holliday.