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Bosnia: Islamic Cleric Leads Srebrenica Memorial

Srebrenica, Bosnia-Herzegovina; 11 July 2002 (RFE/RL) -- Bosnia's highest Islamic cleric today led a memorial ceremony marking the anniversary of the Srebrenica massacre of thousands of Muslim men and boys. Mustafa Ceric said that Bosnian Muslims will never call for revenge for the 1995 massacre, and called instead for justice to be served. He compared the atrocity to the deaths of thousands of Americans in the 11 September terrorist attacks, saying neither event can ever be forgotten.

"We pray for sorrow to become hope, for revenge to become justice and for mothers' tears to become a reminder so that Srebrenica and New York will never happen again to anyone, anywhere."

Near the end of Bosnia's 1992-1995 war, Bosnian Serb forces executed more than 7,000 Bosnian Muslim males in Potocari, the village near Srebrenica where today's memorial was held.

Some 6,000 Bosnians, including survivors of the massacre, gathered in Potocari amid heightened security. The ceremony included the unveiling of a gravestone that will be part of the village's planned memorial center.