The official opening of the exhibition ‘Srebrenica Genocide – the Failure of the International Community´ in the Potocari Memorial Centre in the former headquarters of Dutch Battalion UNPROFOR (1994-1995) close to Srebrenica, Bosnia takes place on thursday the 9th of February.
The exhibition is designed by Dutch Memorial Centre Kamp Westerbork, in cooperation with the Dutch peace organization PAX at the request of the Potocari Memorial Centre in Bosnia and in dialogue with survivors and bereaved of the genocide and with members of former Dutchbat.
The history is well known: In 1993 the enclave Srebrenica was designed by the UN as a ‘safe area’ for civilians. Canadian and later Dutch blue helmets had to provide for that safety. Despite the presence of Dutchbat, on the 11th of July Srebrenica was overrun by the Bosnian-Serb army. After, more than 8 000 muslim men and boys were murdered.
The exhibition displays the story of the Srebrenica genocide, the events prior to it, and the aftermath. Particular attention is payed to the topic of the reaction of the international community. Pictures, videos, documents, infographics and personal memories are exhibited in a contemporary fashion. They clearly demonstrate the tragedy that unfolded. In a number of rooms in the former Dutchbat headquarters their use at the time of the genocide is indicated.
The exhibition is part of a broader program of remembrance. One of the surveillance towers in the compound of the headquarters is reconstructed, an information sign is provided for at one of the surveillance foxholes in the mountains (OP Foxtrot), staff of the Potocari Memorial Centre and survivors and bereaved of the genocide have visited the Netherlands several times, and the guides at the centre have been instructed. Funds have been available by the Dutch embassy in Sarajevo. The program was coordinated by peace organization PAX.