The Fall of Srebrenica

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<ul><li><p>7/28/2019 The Fall of Srebrenica</p><p> 1/118</p><p>99-34876 (E) 271199</p><p>United Nations A/54/549</p><p>General Assembly Distr.: General15 November 1999</p><p>Original: English</p><p>Fifty-fourth session</p><p>Agenda item 42The situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina</p><p>Report of the Secretary-General pursuant to General</p><p>Assembly resolution 53/35</p><p>The fall of Srebrenica</p><p>ContentsParagraphs Page</p><p>I. Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 6</p><p>II. Background . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1040 8</p><p>A. Break-up of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and theestablishment of the United Nations Protection Force . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1014 8</p><p>B. Independence of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the outbreak of war . . . . . 1519 9</p><p>C. Humanitarian activities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2023 9</p><p>D. Proposals for a peacekeeping mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina . . . . . . 2428 10</p><p>E. The peace process . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2932 11</p><p>F. Srebrenica prior to the safe area resolutions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3340 13</p><p>III. Adoption of Security Council resolutions 819 (1993), 824 (1993) and 836(1993) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .</p><p>41102 16</p><p>A. Minimal consensus within the Security Council . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4144 16</p><p>B. The concept of safe areas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4551 16C. Security Council resolution 819 (1993) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5258 18</p><p>D. Srebrenica demilitarization agreement of 18 April 1993 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5962 19</p><p>E. Security Council mission to Srebrenica and further demilitarizationagreement of 8 May 1993 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6365 19</p></li><li><p>7/28/2019 The Fall of Srebrenica</p><p> 2/118</p><p>A/54/549</p><p>2</p><p>F. Security Council resolution 824 (1993) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6669 20</p><p>G. End of the Vance-Owen Peace Plan; moves to strengthen the safe arearegime . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7077 21</p><p>H. Security Council resolution 836 (1993) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7879 22</p><p>I. Positions of Security Council members on resolution 836 (1993) . . . . . . 8092 23</p><p>J. Reluctance to use force to deter attacks on safe areas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9395 25</p><p>K. Report of the Secretary-General pursuant to resolution 836 (1993)(S/25939) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9698 26</p><p>L. Efforts to lift the arms embargo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 99102 26</p><p>IV. Evolution of the safe area policy: June 1993-December 1994 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103174 29</p><p>A. Initial implementation of the safe area policy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103105 29</p><p>B. Mount Igman crisis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106113 29</p><p>C. Proposals to exchange Srebrenica and epa for Serb-held territory around</p><p>Sarajevo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 114116 30</p><p>D. Markale massacre and disagreements on the use of air power . . . . . . . . . 117123 31</p><p>E. United Nations assessment of the safe area policy as of March 1994 . . . 124130 32</p><p>F. Attack on Gora de: March-April 1994 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 131145 34</p><p>G. Report of the Secretary-General of 9 May 1994 (S/1994/555) . . . . . . . . . 146152 36</p><p>H. Contact Group peace plan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 153156 37</p><p>I. Serb assault on the safe area of Biha A : October-December 1994 . . . . . . . 157163 38</p><p>J. Repor t of the Secretary-General of 1 December 1994 (S/1994/1389) . . . 164174 39</p><p>V. Events of January-June 1995 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 175225 44</p><p>A. Cessation of hostilities agreement and its collapse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 175184 44</p><p>B. Air strikes around Sarajevo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 185189 45</p><p>C. United Nations Protection Force hostage crisis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 190200 46</p><p>D. Report of the Secretary-General of 30 May 1995 (S/1995/444) . . . . . . . . 201209 48</p><p>E. Bosniac attempt to break the siege of Sarajevo and its consequences forthe United Nations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 210212 49</p><p>F. Rapid reaction force . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 213220 49</p><p>G. Fighting around Srebrenica . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 221225 51</p><p>VI. Overview of deployment in Srebrenica: February-July 1995 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 226238 53VII. Fall of Srebrenica: 6-11 July 1995 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 239317 57</p><p>A. 6 July: attack on observation post Foxtrot; request for close air suppor t . 239245 57</p><p>B. 7 July: pause in Serb attack . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 246249 58</p><p>C. 8 July: request for close air support discouraged; Bosnian Serb Armyoverruns observation post Foxtrot; ARBiH kill Dutchbat soldier . . . . . . . 250261 59</p></li><li><p>7/28/2019 The Fall of Srebrenica</p><p> 3/118</p><p>A/54/549</p><p>3</p><p>D. 9 July: events leading to blocking position and warning to Serbs . . . . . . 262276 61</p><p>E. 10 July: Bosnian Serb Army violates warning; use of close air supportdeferred . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 277296 63</p><p>F. 11 July: initial confusion over air support; Srebrenica falls . . . . . . . . . . 297317 67</p><p>VIII. Aftermath of the fall of Srebrenica: 12-20 July 1995 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 318393 72</p><p>A. 12 July: meetings with Mladi A ; deportation commences . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 318328 72</p><p>B. 12 July: Security Council resolution 1004 (1995) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 329339 75</p><p>C. Night of 12 July: sporadic killing begins . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 340345 76</p><p>D. 13 July: killing of hundreds of unarmed men and boys begins . . . . . . . . 346360 77</p><p>E. 14 July: mass executions commence; European Union negotiator meetsMiloeviA and Mladi A . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 361374 80</p><p>F. 15 July: massacres continue; agreement reached between Mladi A and theUnited Nations Protection Force . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 375382 82</p><p>G. 16-18 July: reports of atrocities begin to surface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 383390 83</p><p>H. 19 July: Mladi A and United Nations Protection Force Commander meetagain and conclude agreement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 391393 85</p><p>IX. Fall of epa and the new safe area policy: July-October 1995 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 394464 87</p><p>A. Preparations for the attack on epa: 11-14 July 1995 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 394396 87</p><p>B. Attack, resistance and negotiations in epa: 14-20 July 1995 . . . . . . . . 397402 87</p><p>C. First formal reports of atrocities from Srebrenica . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 403404 88</p><p>D. London meeting and changes in the approach to the use of air strikes . . 405410 89</p><p>E. Operational arrangements resulting from the London meeting . . . . . . . . . 411414 90</p><p>F. Fall of epa and the flight to Serbia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 415431 90</p><p>G. Operation Storm and the United States-led peace initiative . . . . . . . . . . . 432437 93</p><p>H. Attack on Markale marketplace in Sarajevo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 438441 94</p><p>I. Operation Deliberate Force . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 442445 95</p><p>J. Serb assessment of Operation Deliberate Force . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 446447 95</p><p>K. Pause; a new peace map; opening a road into Sarajevo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 448450 96</p><p>L. Resumption of air and ground attacks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 451455 97</p><p>M. United States-led peace initiative; concerns about the mandate . . . . . . . . 456459 98</p><p>N. Croatian offensive and the end of hostilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 460464 99X. Peacekeeping and the Peace Agreement: October-December 1995 . . . . . . . . . . 465466 100</p><p>XI. The fall of Srebrenica: an assessment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 467506 102</p><p>A. Role of the United Nations Protection Force in Srebrenica . . . . . . . . . . . . 470474 102</p><p>B. Role of Bosniac forces on the ground . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 475479 103</p></li><li><p>7/28/2019 The Fall of Srebrenica</p><p> 4/118</p><p>A/54/549</p><p>4</p><p>C. Role of air power . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 480483 104</p><p>D. Unanswered questions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 484487 104</p><p>E. Role of the Security Council and Member States . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 488493 105</p><p>F. Failure to fully comprehend the Serb war aims . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 494497 106</p><p>G. Lessons for the future . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 498506 107</p><p>Annexes</p><p>I. Senior United Nations personnel in the former Yugoslavia referred to in the report by theirtitles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110</p><p>II. Individuals interviewed in the preparation of the report . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111</p><p>Maps</p><p>The former Yugoslavia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5</p><p>Vance-Owen Peace Plan (January 1993) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15</p><p>Safe areas designated under Secur ity Council resolution 824 (1993) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28</p><p>Union of three republics plan (August 1993) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42</p><p>Contact Group peace plan (July 1994) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43</p><p>Dutchbat deployment around Srebrenica (June 1995) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56</p><p>Bosnian Serb Army attack on Srebrenica (July 1995) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71</p><p>Execution sites and mass graves . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 86</p><p>Inter-enti ty boundary l ine established by the Dayton Peace Agreement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 101</p></li><li><p>7/28/2019 The Fall of Srebrenica</p><p> 5/118</p><p>A/54/549</p><p>5</p></li><li><p>7/28/2019 The Fall of Srebrenica</p><p> 6/118</p><p>A/54/549</p><p>6</p><p>I. Introduction</p><p>1. This report is submitted pursuant to paragraph 18 ofGeneral Assembly resolution 53/35 of 30 November 1998.In that paragraph, the General Assembly requested:</p><p>a comprehensive report, including an assessment,on the events dating from the establishment of thesafe area of Srebrenica on 16 April 1993 underSecurity Council resolution 819 (1993) of 16 April1993, which was followed by the establishment ofother safe areas, until the endorsement of the PeaceAgreement by the Security Council under resolution1031 (1995) of 15 December 1995, bearing in mindthe relevant decisions of the Security Council and theproceedings of the International Tribunal in thisrespect,</p><p>and encourages Member States and others concerned toprovide relevant information.</p><p>* * *</p><p>2. On 16 November 1995, the International Tribunal forthe Former Yugoslavia indicted Radovan Karad i A(President of the Republika Srpska) and Ratko Mladi A(Commander of the Bosnian Serb Army) for their allegeddirect responsibility for the atrocities committed in July1995 against the Bosnian Muslim population of the UnitedNations-designated safe area of Srebrenica. After a reviewof the evidence submitted by the Prosecutor, Judge Riadconfirmed the indictment, stating that:</p><p>After Srebrenica fell to besieging Serbian forces inJuly 1995, a truly terrible massacre of the Muslimpopulation appears to have taken place. The evidencetendered by the Prosecutor describes scenes ofunimaginable savagery: thousands of men executedand buried in mass grave s, hundreds of men buriedalive, men and women mutilated and slaughtered,children killed before their mothers eyes, agrandfather forced to eat the liver of his owngrandson. These are truly scenes from hell, writtenon the darkest pages of human history.1</p><p>3. The United Nations had a mandate to deter attackson Srebrenica and five other safe areas in Bosnia andHerzegovina. Despite that mandate, up to 20,000 people,overwhelmingly from the Bosnian Muslim community,were killed in and around the safe areas. In addition, amajority of the 117 members of the United NationsProtection Force (UNPROFOR) who lost their lives inBosnia and Herzegovina died in or around the safe areas.In requesting the submission of the present report, the</p><p>General Assembly has afforded me the opportunity toexplain why the United Nations failed to deter the Serbattack on Srebrenica and the appalling events that</p><p>followed.</p><p>4. In my effort to get closer to the truth, I have returnedto the origins of the safe area policy, discussing theevolution of that policy over a period of several years. Ihave drawn the attention of the reader to the resolutionsof the Security Council and to the resources made availableto implement those resolutions; I have reviewed how thepolicy was implemented on the ground, as well as theattacks that took place on other safe areas: Sarajevo,Gora de, Biha A . I have reviewed the debate that took placewithin the international community on the use of force and,in part icular, on the use of air power by the North Atlantic</p><p>Treaty Organization (NATO). I have also reviewed the roleof UNPROFOR in the...</p></li></ul>