2010/03/31 | ABNA news - The Serbian parliament voted on Wednesday to apologize for the 1995 massacre of thousands of Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica, but stopped short of labeling the killings as "genocide."
The landmark resolution condemned the massacre of some 8,000 Bosnian Muslims and expressed regret for not doing enough to prevent the tragedy.
The endorsement of the declaration, with a majority of 127 from among some 173 lawmakers present, ends years of denial by Serbian politicians about the scope of the massacre at the end of the Balkan Wars.
"The parliament of Serbia strongly condemns the crime committed against the Bosnian Muslim population of Srebrenica in July 1995, as determined by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruling," the text of the declaration said.
The UN has accepted responsibility for its failure in protecting the enclave when Serbian troops overran the UN-protected Srebrenica. However, no UN official has so far been held responsible.
In its newly-endorsed declaration, the parliament also vowed to help with international efforts for the arrest of Ratko Mladic — the general in charge of Serb forces in Srebrenica and the UN war crimes court's most wanted fugitive — so that he can be tried at the International Criminal Court.
Mladic is believed to be hiding in Serbia.
The apology comes at a time when Serbia continues its bid to become a member of the European Union and attract business investors.
Belgrade is expected to capture Mladic and send him to the war crimes tribunal before starting talks on its bid for EU membership.
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