International Conference of Genocide Scholars

Sarajevo, 9th to 15th of July 2007

Basic information on the Conference

The Institute for Research of Crimes Against Humanity and International Law of the Sarajevo University and International Association of Genocide Scholars - IAGS from Washington organized in Sarajevo on 9 - 15 July 2007, the 7th Biennial International Conference of Genocide Scholars with the topic “Timely reaction to genocide: genocide study and prevention“. The Conference gathered a record number of most eminent scholars of holocaust, genocide, and other forms of crimes against humanity and international law and offered them a unique opportunity to face the reality and the place of genocide on the site of the worst crime committed in Europe. About 800 participants and guests from USA, Israel, Rwanda, Korea, Armenia, Indonesia, Cambodia, Ghana, Canada, France, Italy, Denmark, Croatia, Greece, Poland, United Kingdom, Turkey, India, Uganda, Porto Rico, Argentina, Guatemala, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and other countries, who study the phenomenon of genocide from the position of various sciences and scientific disciplines, presented the results of their work.

This was for the first time that the Conference of this kind included students of undergraduate and postgraduate studies and doctoral candidates from 26 European countries, and different continents. The students of the Sarajevo University were particularly noted being very active during the Conference who presented their papers, which attracted the full attention of experienced world authorities.

The Conference worked for five days, late in the evening, in plenary and panel sessions.

The first and the only plenary session was devoted to the genocide against Bosniacs at the end of XX century. There were 85 panel discussions, with 6-8 papers presented per panel. In addition to the plenary and panel sessions, the Conference guests attended the opening of the mass grave in Budak (Potočari) and the funeral at the cemetery of the exhumed and identified victims of genocide of the “UN safe heaven“ in Srebrenica, inside the Memorial Center in Potočari. The Conference participants and guests visited the historic and cultural monuments: Sarajevo, Mostar, Počitelj, Međugorje, The Buna tekke and monastery Žitomislići. The receptions, working luncheons, promotions of books were organized on a daily basis (our Institute promoted 8 new issues), as well as theater (“Lemkin house” and the plays of Roberta Sklot) and film presentation (the films “Grbavica“, “Can’t Do it in Europe”, Indonesia 1965, and “New Year Baby”, Cambodia were shown), the poet evening (Academic Abdulah Sidran, Petar Balakian and Choman Hardi), documentary exhibitions (“Aegist Trust/UN Exhibition”; “Beyond Genocide”; “Cultivating Compassion”; “Srebrenica Photo Exhibition” and “Genocide in the UN Safe Area of Srebrenica, July 1995”.), and meetings with BiH politicians. There were three monetary rewards given during the Conference to the secondary school students – the authors of best papers on the topic of genocide. The announcement of the competition and selection of best papers were carried out by the Educational and Teaching Institute of the Canton Sarajevo.

The subjects of Conference were different aspects and approaches to study of holocaust, genocide, and other forms of crimes against humanity and international law, as well as rich and versatile knowledge obtained through studies performed throughout the world: ICTY Judgments; Genocidal process: Early warning, expectations and prevention; Genocide, remembrance, and narration; Genocide, intergeneration changes and reconciliation; Siege of Sarajevo 1992 – 1995 – elements of genocide; Building sympathies: First steps towards preventions; Genocide and modernity; Anti-Semitism and culture of genocide; Detecting genocide: Lessons from IAGS meeting from 2005; Chronicles of genocide; Mass graves in Bosnia – proof of genocide; UN Safe heavens in Bosnia – purpose and abuse; Principle of precaution and genocide prevention; Comparative study of genocide; Teaching about genocide in Northern Europe; Obstacles to reconciliation in Bosnia; Concentration camps and other places of incarceration in Bosnia; Is there an alternative to the concept of genocide?; Dayton territorial and political organization of Bosnia and Herzegovina after the ICJ Judgment; Genocide, presentation and tourism; Round table on arts and genocide; Liking of evil; Genocide and social activism; Genocide in Darfur; Media and propaganda aspects of genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina; ICJ Judgment in case of Bosnia and Herzegovina against Serbia and Montenegro; Genocide and motivation by the perpetrators; Delaying of justice does not mean the justice denial: Cambodia; New voices from Latin America; New directions in genocide study; Consequences of violence among groups; Mass rapes and genocide in Bosnia; Delivering of genocide to the dumpsites of history (Round table); Multidisciplinary approaching in treating the disappearance and massive violations of human rights; Genocide and terrorism; Workshop: “What is Genocide?”; The great state projects and genocide against Bosniacs; Genocide against Armenians and other Christians in the Ottoman Empire; Sexual violence as a genocide strategy; Impact of notion ‘Ethnic cleansing’ on intervention; Genocide and third parties; Holocaust and remembrance; Genocidal mind; Aggression and genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina; Approach to Helenocide; “Reconciliation” in Rwanda after genocide; Crimes in Kosovo in the context of genocide; Reconciliation after genocide; The attitude of international community towards genocide in Bosnia; Interdisciplinary perspectives towards nature and presentation of genocide; Religion and genocide in Bosnia; Genocide prevention; Genocide, arts and visual presentation; Genocide and sexual violence; Genocide and international law; Genocide and intervention; Genocide and UN Convention: new approach; Psychological aspects of genocide in Bosnia; Can the genocide prevention be taught? Education on genocide (Workshop); Bearing the modern genocide; Genocide and testimonies; Students for protection: Empowering student for actions, Building hope for the future (Round table discussion); Genocide and collective memory; Multidisciplinary student panel I; Consequences of genocide; Local Justice I; Genocide, trauma and bearing with it; Genocide and third party activism; Geography of genocide against Bosniacs I; Multidisciplinary student panel II; Teaching genocide at universities within European context; Genocide, arts, and literature; Local Justice II; Forgiveness: Transformation of trauma in healing; The issue of reimbursement of the genocide victims; Geography of genocide against Bosniacs II; Multidisciplinary student panel III, and Genocide denial.

The discussions were full of criticism directed to those who make political decisions, which tolerate genocide and other mass crimes. Not even the international criminal law was spared, and the scholars blamed it for defining a very high threshold required for proving genocide. The appeals were sent on several occasions to redefine crime of genocide. A number of participants presented their gloomy predictions on a possibility to prevent future genocide. There were many who agreed that the prevention depends on the will of powerful states to stop genocide even before it takes place.

A number of scholars presented their critical review of the ICJ Judgment, by which Serbia was acquitted of charges for genocide against Bosniacs, pointing also to the fact that the notion “genocidal intention“ used by ICJ is “contradictory and reducing to the point of absurd “ (Dr. Marko Attila Hoare), then that the Court refused to treat the systematic destruction of Bosniac cultural heritage as a proof of genocide, and other matters.

It was also presented at the Conference that the issue of holocaust and genocide is a complex issue which requires interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approach in studies, which was confirmed by the fact that a large number of scholars, of various disciplines, participated. The presented results have a huge scientific, professional, and social impact.

The Conference was an opportunity to remind the participants of professor Eric Markusen, one of the founders and active members of International association of Genocide Scholars, who insisted that this Conference be held in Bosnia and Herzegovina and in Sarajevo.

During the Conference, the Institute signed an Agreement on cooperation with the State University Rutgers in Newark – New Jersey (USA) and began the talks about the cooperation with 17 institutions on all continents, from Canada to Korea, Argentina to Australia.

All the participants (specially international) and guests at the Conference had one single conclusion that this was world summit of scholars – scientists of holocaust, genocide and other forms of crimes against humanity and international law of a significant historic relevance, marked with a meticulous planning, and extraordinary program, along with a commendation for the efforts invested by the organization team during the preparation of the Conference. The first, both for our state and the Institute, and definitely the most important effect of the Conference was the fact that the genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina became a matter of interest for a large number of prominent experts, and many of those who restricted genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina to the extent of ”civil war of one against another”, now undoubtedly and clearly see that this was a standard aggression against Bosnia and Herzegovina and genocide against Bosniacs. Even the media echo of the Conference abroad – from Argentina to Israel and Cambodia – speaks in favor of this conclusion. Yet, it is a surprise that this did not echo appropriately among the local public.

Institute for Research of Crimes Against Humanity and International Law of the Sarajevo University took this opportunity to join the circle of leading and relevant institutions in the field of genocide study. Numerous invitation for a cooperation with the Institute speak in favor of this conclusion: from USA, Canada, Brazil, Argentina, Ghana, Rwanda, Uganda, Kuwait, Israel and Palestine, Armenia, Georgia, Poland, Cambodia, Korea, Thailand, and Australia. Some forms of cooperation were already specified, like the Panel on genocide against Bosnian Muslims, which will be organized this November by the Holocaust Center of the Federal University in Buenos Aires.

On one hand, this would not be possible without support form various people and structures in and out of Institute, who had a vision for the preparation and realization of the Conference; on the other hand, this success imposes onto the Institute an additional duty to persist in coming days in this fight for scientific justice, truths and lessons-learned about the genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina and all other crimes of genocide. This requires a systematic work, ensuring the infrastructural conditions, and the Institute will strive to keep working on this objective. This high ranking position on the world academic scene is owed not only to its work performed by now, but also to numerous victims of genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina, whose voice from the Conference we passed on to the entire world.

The Conference contributed to the fact that the world academic community finally stood on the side of the truth and justice in understanding and interpretation of the events in Bosnia at the end of XX century. After the intensive five-day Conference and everything the scholars presented and established, especially the authorities form the IAGS Board of Directors, true paramount of contemporary victimology, the deniers of genocide in Bosnia and other countries remained without any foundation and counterarguments.

This Conference was unique because it gathered the scholars from all the continents, who applied all kinds of perspectives to observe the evil – crime of genocide, which hit the modern mankind. Numerous scholars faced that evil looking into the mass grave Budak near Srebrenica. There is a consensus, shown at this Conference as well, that the world academic community criticizes the negating attitude of the international political and legal public towards genocide against Bosniacs in Bosnia and Herzegovina, holocaust, crime of genocide elsewhere. The scholars are the one who call upon responsibility of all the perpetrators. All of this was corroborated at this Conference with numerous papers.

Conference participants

The participants at the Conference were: Israel Charny, Institute on Holocaust & Genocide Jerusalem, Israel; Ragip Zarakoglu, Istanbul, Turkey; Gregory Stanton, Genocide Watch, Washington, DC.; Smail Čekić, Institute for Research of Crimes Against Humanity and International Law Sarajevo; Muhamed Mešić, Institute for Research of Crimes Against Humanity and International Law Sarajevo; Sonja Biserko, Director of Helsinki Commission for Human Rights in Serbia, Belgrade; Edina Bećirović, Sarajevo University; Zarije Seizović, Zenica University; Richard G. Hovannisian, History, University of California, Los Angeles; Ugur Umit Ungor, History, University of Amsterdam, Rubina Peroomian, University of California, Los Angeles; Muhamed Mujakić, Sarajevo University; Artemis Pipinelli, Walden University; Anie Kalayjian, Fordham University, New York; Eric D. Weitz, History, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Marc Drouin, History, University of Montreal Canada; Selmo Cikotić, Minister of Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina; Rebecca Parson, University of Mary Washington, Fredricksburg, Virginia; Deborah Mayersen, History, University of Melbourne, Australia; Florence Hartman, writer; Anna Sheftel, History, Oxford University; Jacob R. Boersema, Development Studies, University of Amsterdam; Ramajana Hidić Demirović, History, Indiana University, Bloomington; Selma Leydesdorff, Oral History and Culture, University of Amsterdam; Pam Maclean, History, Deakin University, Victoria, Australia; Ann Weiss, Education, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Deborah Staines, Critical and Cultural Studies, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia; Stephanie Mc Kinney, History, Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, California; Elizabeth J. Sausele, Education, Trinity International University, Deerfield, Illinois; Amy C. Hudnall, Peace Studie, Appalachian State University, Boone, North Carolina; Louise L. Lambrichs, Independent Scholar/Writer, France; Henry Maitles, Faculty of Education, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland; Armen T. Marsoobian, Philosophy, Southern Connecticut state University, New Haven; Faruk Čaklovica, Sarajevo University; Dževad Termiz, Sarajevo University; Ante Milanović, Sarajevo University; Eli Tauber, editor-in-chief, ”Jewish Voice” Sarajevo; Suzanne Bardgett, Imperial War Museum, London; Amor Mašović and Jasmin Odobašić, Federation Commission for Missing Persons, Sarajevo; Amra Begić, Visitor Services, Srebrenica Potočari Memorial and Cemetery Service; Lee Lee, Independent Artist, Denver; Jill Thurman, Rocky Mountain Survivors Center, Denver, Colorado; Izabela Lundborg, Rocky Mountain Survivors Center, Denver, Colorado; Tomas Borovinsky, University of Buenos Aires, Ergentina; Emmanuel Taub, Social Sciences, University of Buenos Aires, Argentina; Akio Kimura, International Business and Management, Kanagawa University, Yokahama, Japan; Thomas Hochmann, Law, University Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne, France; Spencer Institute, West Newton, Massachusetts; Steven K. Baum, Psychology, College of Santa Fe, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Andrew Holcom, Anthropology, Western Washington University, Bellington, Washington; Simone Gigliotti, History, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand; Donna-Lee Frieze, Deakan University, Victoria, Australia; Hilary Earl, History, Nipissing University, North Bay, Ontario, Canada; Eva Klonowski, Rifat Kešetović and Nermin Sarajlić, ICMP; Haris Silajdžić, Member of Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina; Omer Ibrahimagić, Sarajevo University; Enis Omerović, International school of Bosnia and Herzegovina; Elihu D Richter and Rony Blum, Medical Center, Jerusalem, Israel; Jutta Lindert, Public Health, University of Ludwigsburg, Germany; Robert Melson, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Clark University, Worcester, Massachusetts; Edward Kissi, African Studies, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida; Vijaya Thakur, International Relations, Bryn Mawr College, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania; Anton Weiss-Wendt, Norwegian Holocaust Centre, Oslo, Norway; Gitte Almer Nielsen and Stine Thuge, Danish Institute for International Studies, Copenhagen, Denmark; Joyce Apsel, Humanities, New York University; Tone Bringa, Anthropology, University of Bergen, Norway; Jasmina Beširević – Regan, Sociology, Yale University, New Haven; Kirsten Juhl, Social Sciences, University of Stavanger, Norway; Miodrag Kapor, Economics, Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey; David Pettigrew, Philosophy, Southern Connecticut State University, New Haven; Murat Tahirović, Association of camp inmates of Bosnia and Herzegovina; Senadin Ljubović, University Clinical Center Sarajevo; Elizabeth Batha, Christian Solidarity Worldwide, London; Dominik Schaller, Mathias Gsponer and Herve Georgelin, Humanities, University of Berne, Switzerland; Jacques Semelin, Center for International Research and Studies – Paris, France; Alaga Dervišević, Sarajevo; Phon van den Biesen, Advocate, The Hague, Netherlands; Benita Sumita, journalist, India; Stephanie Mc Kinney, History, Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, California; Anna Sheftel, History, Oxford University; Anna Weitz, regisor, Sweden; Stephen Feinstein, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Fay Grajower, Arts studio, Boston, Massachusetts; Karen Frostig, Lesley University, Camridge, Massachusetts; Paul Miller, History, International University of Sarajevo and Mc Daniel College, Westminster, Maryland; Hilary Earl, History, Nipissing University, North Bay, Ontario, Canada; Harald Welzer, Center for Interdisciplinary Memory Research, Essen, Germany; Alex Hinton, Antropolgy, Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey; Jemes Waller, Psychology, Witworth University, Spokane, Washington; Charli Carpenter, Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, University of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania; Edward S. Majian, Philosophy, Saint Peter's College, Jersey City, New Jersey; Hasmig Tatiossian, Global Affairs, New York University; Tigran Sarukhanyan, Visiting Research Fellow at the Public Record Office, London; Stiven Leonard Jacobs, Religion Studies, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama; Joyce Apsel, Humanities, New York University; Martha Heinemann Bixby, Government, Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.; Kathryn V. Johnson, Religious Studies, University of North Carolina, Charlotte, North Carolina; Šemso Tucaković, Sarajevo University; Sakib Softić, Sarajevo University; Kasim Trnka, Tuzla University; Keith Doubt, James E. Waller, Psychology, Whitworth University, Spokane,Washington; Rowan Savage, Sociology, University of Sydney, Australia; Ravi Bhavnani, Political Science, Michigan State University; Aleksandra Sasha Miličević, Sociology and Anthropology, University of North Florida, Jacksonville, Florida; Alette Smeulers, PhD, Criminal Law and Criminology, VU University Amsterdam; Helen Jarvis, Chief of Public Affairs, Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia, Phnom Penh, Cambodia; Meng Try EA, Global Affairs, Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey; Judge Agnieszka Klonowiecka-Milart, International Judge, UN Mission in Kosovo; Daniel Ferstein, Center of Genocide Studies, Universidad Nacional Tres de Febrero, Argentina; Marcia Esperaza, Criminal Justice, John Jay College, New York; Marc Drouin, History, University of Montreal, Canada; Rachel McCullough, History, Scripps College, Claremont, California; Jackson Sherrat, Wilfrid Laurirer University, waterloo, Ontario, Canada; Pamela de Condapppa, Archaeology, Cambridge University; Erin Jesse, History, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada; Adam Jones, Political Science, University of British Columbia, Canada; Scott Straus, Political Science, University of Wisconsin, Madison; Emanuela Castano, Psychology, New School for Social Research, New York; Sabina Ćehajić, Psychology University of Sussex, Brighton; Rupert Brown, Psychology, University of Sussex, Brighton; Ernesto Verdeja, Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut; Izet Pajević, University of Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina; Marijana Senjak, Women's therapy Center Medica Zenica; Hazel Cameron, University of Stirling, Scotland; Shivon Byamukama, Glasgow Caledonian University, Scotland; Mutangana Jean Bosco, Prosecutor with National Jurisdiction, Rwanda; Jacob R. Boersema, Development Studies, University of Amsterdam; Bert Ingelaere, Anthropology, University of Leuven; Ron Adams, Residential Services, La Trobe University, Victoria, Australia; Kathryne Bomberger, Thomas J. Parsons and Asta Maria Zinbo, International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP), Sarajevo; Elizabeth R. Midlarsky, Teachers college, Colimbia University, New York; Manus I. Midlarsky, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey; Shimon T. Samuels, International Relations, Simon Wisentahl Centre, Jerusalim, Israel; Martin Shaw, University of Sussex, Brighton; Martin Mennecke, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Danish Institute for International Studies, Copenhagen, Denmark; Carole Hodge, University of Glasgow; Adam Jones, Genocide Studies, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut; Myrna Goldenberg, Holocaust Studies Program, Montgomery College, Maryland; Ruby Reid, Social Welfare, University of California, Berkeley; Sandesh Sivakumaran, School of Law, University of Nottingham; Rony Blum and Elihu D. Richter, Visiting Scholar, Hebrew University-Hadassah School of Public Health and Community Medicine, Jerusalem, Israel; Shira Sagi, Faculty of Law, Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Israel;Steven Leonard Jacobs, Religious Studies, University of Alabama; Yair Auron, Political Science and International Relations, Open University, Israel; Hazel Cameron, Sociology/Criminology, University of Sterling, Scotland; Barry Dackombe, History, The Open University; Fred Gunfeld, International Relations and Human Rights, Maastricht University and Utrecht University; Herb Hirsch, Government and Public Affairs, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, Virginia; Ruth Linn, Faculty of Education, University of Haifa, Israel; Ulla Strange-Hansen, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Danish Institute for International Studies, Copenhagen, Denmark; Marla Stone, History, Occidental College, Los Angeles, California; Edward Carpenter, United States Marine Corps; Putri Astrid Kartika, Institute for Policy Research and Advocacy, Jakarta, Indonesia; Jack Nusan Porter, Spencer Institute, West Newton, Massachusetts; Shakhawan Shorash, Political Science, University of Copenhagen, Denmark; Nikola Kovač, Sarajevo University; Norman Cigar, Marine Corps University, Quantico, Virginia; Mirsad Abazović, Sarajevo University; Senija Milišić, Institute for History, Sarajevo; Nicolas Uzunoglu, National Technical University of Athens, Greece; Aktsoglou Z. Iakovos, History, Hellenic Police Academy, Athens, Greece; Thea Halo, Sano Themia Halo Pontian Heritage Foundation, Greece; Theofanis Malkidis, Languages, University of Thrace, Greece; Vassilios Kyratzopoulos, Associations of Constantinopolitans, Helleas, Greece; Nigel Eltringham, Anthropology, University of Sussex, Brighton; Sussane Buckley-Zistel, Peace Research Institute, Frankfurt, Germany; Eugenia Zorbas, Development Studies, London School of Economics and Political Science; Lyndsay McLean Hilker, Development Studies/Social Antropology, University of Sussex, Brighton; Kasaija Phillip Apuuli, Political Science, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda; Kissi, Edward, African Studies, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida; Daniel Feierstein, Center for Genocide Studies, Universidad Nacional Tres de Febrero, Argentina; Benita Sumita, journalist, India; Hayk Demoyan, Armenia Genocide Memorial Museum and Institute, Armenia; Kok-Thay Eng, Documentation Center of Cambodia, Phnom Penh, Cambodia and Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey; Scott Straus, University of Wisconsin, Madison; Jutta Lindert, University of Ludwigsburg, Germany; Azem Vlasi, attorney-at-law, Priština, Kosovo; Haki Kasumi, Priština, Kosovo; Albin Maloku and Haris Vejo, Sarajevo University; Erik Ehn, John Kern, Julia Paskin, Catherine Strecker Theater, California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, California; Shivon Byamukama, Glasgow Caledonia University, Scotland; Nicole Bryan, Global Affairs, Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey; Paul Conway, Sunny College at Oneonta, New York; Nejra Nuna Čengić, Sarajevo University; Tilman Zülch, President of the German and the International Association for Endangered Peoples; Ivo Komšić, Mirko Pejanović and Jusuf Žiga, Sarajevo University; Lyndsay McLean-Hilker, Martin Shaw, Nigel, Eltringham International Relations, University of Sussex, Brighton; Kemal Aydin, International University of Sarajevo; Muharem Omerdić, Islamic Community in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo; Andrew Woolford, Sociology, University of Manitoba, Winnepeg, Canada; Paul R. Bartrop, History Bialik College, Hawthorn East, Australia; Isabelle Macgregor, Sociology, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia; Wibeke Kristin Timmermann, Human Rights, University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland; Stephen Feinstein, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota; Lee Lee, Independent Artist, Denver; Rob Lemelson, Anthropology, University of California, Los Angeles; Anna Weitz, Independent Scholar/Filmmaker, Sweden; Lisa DiCaprio, Amy Fagin, History, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts; Karen Frostig, Social Sciences, Lesley University, Cambridge, Massachusetts; Sarah Staveteig, Sociology and Demography, University of California, Berkeley; Meena Chary, Public Administration, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida; Angela Debnath, Hebrew and Jewish Studies, University College, London; Maggie Eastvood, Kas Wachala Law, Edge Hill University, Ormskrirk, Lancashire; Elisa von Joeden-Forgey, History, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Ana Stahov, University of Vienna; Selma Mezetović, Ehlimana Memišević, Zijad Aljović, Senada Maličević, Sarajevo University; Martin Mennecke, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Danish Institute for International Studies, Copenhagen, Denmark; Sevane Gariban, Intl Criminal Law, University of Paris, France; Susana SaCouto, War Crimes Research Office, American University, Washington, D.C.; Melanie Klinkner, Bournemouth University, Bournemouth; Jens Meirhenrich, Government and Social Studies, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts; Richard M. O'Meara, Global Affairs, Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey; Marla Stone, History, Occidental College, Los Angeles, California; Roselyn Kwamboka Akombe, Political UN, New York; Mariana Carpanezzi, International Relations, University of Brasilia, Brazil; Alan J. Kuperman, LBJ School of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin, U.N.; Lorna Waddington, International History, University of Leeds; Robert Karl Hitchcock, Anthropology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan; Yehonatan Alsheh, Sociology, The Open University, Israel; Kok-Thay Eng, Global Affairs, Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey; Simona Novinec, Shakhawan Shorash, Social Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Denmark; Jackson Sherratt, Wilfred Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada; Ismet Dizdarević, Slobodan Loga, Slobodan Pavlović, Muhamed Šestanović, Mujo Slatina, Sarajevo University; Stevan Weine, University of Illinois, Chicago; Matthew Levinger, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington, D.C.; Morgan Blum, Holocaust Center of Northern California, San Francisco, California; Gregory Weeks, International Relations, Webster University, Vienna, Austria; Petar Popović, University College London; Nicole Frechette, International Relations, Webster University, Vienna, Austria; Catherine Filloux, Independent Playwright, New York City; Sharon Marquart, Romance Languages, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan; David Petrigrew, Philosophy, Southern Connecticut State University, New Haven; Sam Boarer, Chairperson, Aegis Students & University of Derby, Richard Nevell, Campaigns Officer, Aegis Students & Kingston University, London; Jonathan Bower, National Coordinator, Aegis Students & Oxford University; Ron Adams, Residential Service, La Trobe University, Victoria, Australia; Hariz Halilović, Anthropology University of Melbourne, Australia; Carlos Antamarian, University of Mexico; Richard Marcano, Political Science, University of North Carolina, Charlotte; Velma Šarić, Adnan Bajrić, Merisa Karović, Semira Nuhanović, Meldijana Arnaut, Rasim Muratović, Velid Šabić, Jasna Balorda, Muharem Kreso, Bakir Alispahić, Fikret Bećirović, Zijad Rujanac, Zilha Mastalić, Faid Hećo, Hajriz Bećirević, Osman Selak, Institute for Research of Crimes Against Humanity and International Law, Sarajevo University; Almir Hasanović, Sarajevo University; Rob Lemelson, Doug Hollan Anthropology, University of California, Los Angeles; Leslie Dwyer, Anthropology, Haverford, Pennsylvania; Puri Astrid Kartika, Institute for Policy Research and Advocacy, Jakarta, Indonesia; Armen Marsoobian, Philosophy, Southern Connecticut state University, New Haven; Karen Kovach, Family Medicine, Mercer University, Atlanta, Georgia; Ernesto Verdeja, Government, Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut; Trine Eide, Anthropology, University of Bergen, Norway; Helen Jarvis, Chief of Public Affairs, Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia, Phnom Penh, Cambodia; Lisabeth Meyers, History, London School of Economics, London; Hanna Kinzler, Anthropology, McGill University, Montreal, Canada; Lorrie L. King, Just Cause, Inc., Atlanta, Georgia; Alan Kilpatrick, Theatre in the Square, Marietta, Georgia; Jutta Lindert, Public Health, University of Ludwigsburg, Germany; Choman Hardi, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Uppsala University, Sweden; Keith Pomakoy, History, Adirondack Community College, Queensbury, New York; Bekah A. Stolhandske, London School of Economics, London; Slobodan Lang, Social Medicine, Croatian National Institute of Public Health, Zagreb; Hasan Balić, Judge Human Rights Chamber; Lecturer, University of Sarajevo; Avdo Hebib, Sarajevo; Nora Esmat, International Studies, San Francisco state University, San Francisco; Students of the Sarajevo University: Amir Avdagić, Mirnes Dervišević, Sedžad Muhić and Hidajeta Hasanbegović; Philip Spencer, Brian Brivati, Kingston University, London; Brian Philips, Oxford Brookes University, Oxford; Jacques Semelin, Center for International Research and Studies Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique Paris, France; Peter Balakian, English, Colgate University, Hamilton, New York; Choman Hardi, Uppsala Program for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Sweden; Andrew Woolford, Sociology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada; Sarah Wagner, Anthropology, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts; Anie Kalayjian, Fordham University, New York; Artemis Pipinelli, Walden University; Edward S. Majian, Philosophy, Saint Peter's College, Jersey City, New Jersey; Ani Degirmencioglu, Political Science, University of Vienna, Austria; Sam Garkawe, Law and Justice, Southern Cross University, Lismore, New South Wales, Australia; Fikret Karčić, Hakija Đozić and Duljko Hasić, Sarajevo University; Mesud Hero, Historical Museum of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo; Andrew Holcom, Anthropology, Western Washington University; Aleksandar Saša Klobučarić, University of Vienna, Austria; Damir Arnaut, BiH Presidency; John Evans, Former U.S.A. Ambassador to the Republic of Armenia, witnesses of genocide: Munira Subašić, Srebrenica; Hasan Nuhanović, Srebrenica; Kada Hotić, Srebrenica; Esma Palić, Žepa; Ibrahim Karović, Foča; Mehmed Dizdar, Stolac and Bakira Hasečić, Višegrad; students – witnesses of genocide in Bosnia (they were children at the time of aggression and genocide): Amer Hrustić, Admir Sejdinović, Azmir Alić, Nermina Sejdinović, Džemal Džananović, Elvisa Haskić, Nermina Dautbašić and Sadmir Nukić.

The highest representatives of the legislative and executive authorities gave their special contribution to the work of the Conference, as well as the executive authorities of the City of Sarajevo, Canton Sarajevo, and the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina: Semiha Borovac, Mayor of Sarajevo; Dr. Denis Zvizdić, Chair of the Canton Sarajevo Assembly; Samir Silajdžić, Canton Sarajevo Prime Minister; Safet Kešo M.A., Canton Sarajevo Minister of Education and Science; Federation of Bosnian and Herzegovina ministers, Edin Mušić and Zahid Crnkić, and Amer Ćenanović, Head of Municipality Ilidža.

Echo of the Conference and reactions

Prof. Dr. Gregory Stanton,[4] newly elected President of the International Association of Genocide Scholars says “...The conference was nevertheless the best one the IAGS has ever had, I think. The Institute team has been absolutely perfect and the Institute as host, as well as Sarajevo as the site, has made it tough on all future hosts as it is hardly possible that someone organizes a Conference at this level“. Prof. Dr. Israel Charny[5] praised the Conference, and he told “I am grateful to the organizers of the Conference, the War Crimes Institute in Sarajevo and Professor Čekić and his team, for the greatest present I could have received at the and of my presidency – an ingenious Conference!“.

At the beginning of the trial to the Came Rouge in the capital of Cambodia, Phnom pen, the Presiding Judge of the Main War Crimes Bench in Cambodia, Australian Prof. Dr. Helen Jarvis,[6] said in her introductory remark at the beginning of trial: “...I had been to Bosnia and Herzegovina and explained that this was a country, like Cambodia, that had been involved into a horrendous fate of terror and genocide. These were my words: ‘In Bosnia I listened to the words of professors that explore the country’s genocide; Professors Čekić, Mešić, Mašović, and reconstructed with Bosnian words the Cambodian reality’. I really felt that the bones spread in Bosnian hills are the fruit of the very same evil that had engulfed Cambodia the day before yesterday, Bosnia yesterday, Darfur today, and could come across any other part of humanity much sooner than tomorrow “.

The Director of the Institute for War Crimes of the regime by Idi Amin in Uganda, Prof. Dr. Phillip Kasaija,[7] said that “he had an exchange of knowledge and experience with the Organizing institution and other scholars from around the world”, and announced that the National University Makarere will include as of the next academic year the subject “Genocide outside Africa”, and the key literature for the syllabus will be the works by Prof. Smail Čekić in English language.

The daily newspapers in Israel Jediot Ahronot[8](“Latest news”) published an article under the title of “Unwanted bones”, and depicted in it the Conference and their correspondent Maayan Blum, who attended the conference, talked about her impressions. Blum referred to the Conference “…as an opportunity to meet the stoic suffering of Bosnian Muslims, mutilated as ‘children of Israel’ (Jews) in the Hitler Germany, who bled on the hands of Milošević’s vultures.” The article was unique, given that it was the first article on genocide outside the context of holocaust in traditionally right-winged newspapers, and the first one that openly compared the Milošević’s regime with the Hitler one, which is a rather sensitive topic in Israel nowadays.

“El Jornal”[9]from Argentina talks about the experience of Argentinean guests from the Conference, the continued fascism, and the host: “it was so difficult to imagine the Institute that was our host. The time did not permit, but I really wanted to see the house that gathered all that suffering. I talked to the associates of the Institute and they are all in a way connected with a recent painful reality. The experience of genocide in Bosnia is even fresher for that reason, thus more important for the contemporary world, because the survivors talk about it, and we can ask questions and listen to them (...) The pain is something that we, by the rule, become aware of when it is too late. One of the hosts told us that the Institute just recently got the premises, and still even though the sanitary installations are not fixed and the building is quite worn out, they have to fight those who deny crime of genocide in the name of war, and those who in the name of peace do not want to talk about genocide. This confirms the assertion: of all the human weapons, the truth is the most painful.” Institute for Research of Crimes Against Humanity and International Law is invited, after this text, to organize a plenary presentation about Genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the study results within the South American Conference on Genocide and War Crimes. This will be the first time that the genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina is discussed on the soil of South America.

Deborah Lipstadt[10], one of the most renowned and recognized holocaust experts says that the Conference helped her live and understand the tragedy of Sarajevo, Srebrenica, and other parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina, “the tragedy of what happened there into vivid focus”. Lipstadt told journalists on 28 July in Atlanta that “In each case – certainly in the case of Bosnia and Rwanda – it knew precisely what was coming and did nothing. These were carefully if not meticulously planned genocides”. “With this”, Lipstadt continued, “A rich European Muslim culture what could have forged a new relationship between Islam and the West vanished forever under a rain of Serb artillery shells”, reflecting upon the words by Adam Lebor. “The Conference message – clearer than ever – is that the maxima never again turned into again and again and again.

Hayk Demoyan,[11] the Director of the Museum of Armenian Genocide in Yerevan, Armenia, stated “that he was delighted with the Conference and its effects”, and he invited the Institute to start the cooperation, and as a first step he proposed the exhibition and series of lectures to be held in Yerevan on genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Armenia media talked about the Demoyan’s impressions from the Conference.

Assyrian International News Agency (AINA),[12] that serves the Assyrian-Armenian Diaspora, of about 10 million people worldwide, talks in its web page about the positive reactions by the Assyrian media on the Panel discussion relative to the Genocide in Middle East at the beginning of XX century. The Assyrian genocide is a controversial topic, and is often denied, and the organizers were thanked for impeccable organization. Moreover, AINA, along with this article, published the photographs taken from the mass grave at Budak and the text about Srebrenica in Assyrian-Armenian language.

The web page of the European Commission[1]( also published the report from Conference, which says that “this was the first Conference organized on the site of crime, carrying such an important sign of solidarity with victims, but was also a key source of information for international participants.” The interview with the Srebrenica students Azmir Alić, Elvis Haskić, and Nermin Sejdinović is also on the page.

Prof. Marien Levy writes on the web page of the Haverford University that “the most remarkable for her was the number of scholars and witnesses from the whole world and Bosnia and Herzegovina. That encouraged the scholars from the entire world to continue working on the things they are doing, but it also showed that the work in Bosnia and Herzegovina is of the utmost importance for the genocide studies”.

Jean-Bosca Mutangane,[2] the State Prosecutor of the Republic of Rwanda says that “this Conference confirmed his conviction that the only thing which separates Bosnia from Rwanda is a distance. This distance cannot be an obstacle that our small nations and the small number of our scholars, from Bosnia and Rwanda, have a gigantic work in front of them, which is important for the entire mankind (…), and I would very much like that Rwanda has an Institute which can at least try to be close to your one, by its organization, efforts, results. Well done”!

The Conference in view of Prof. Dr. Keith Doubt, “was indeed excellent... I learned a lot. Thank you“.[3] For Prof. Dr. James E. Waller, the Conference was “very good“.[4] Prof. Dr Alex Hinton, from the State University Rutgers (New York-New Jersey), left the Conference “with such a positive feeling. It was really appropriate and wonderful last memory to see you (Prof. Čekić) receive the long standing overvation for the amazing work that you and your staff did to make the conference such a success. So thank you once again!“[5]

For the IAGS Executive Board (Prof. Dr. Gregory Stanton, Prof. Dr. Steven Leonard Jocobs, Prof. Dr. Alex Hinton and Prof. Dr. Marc I. Sheriman) and the Advisory Board (Prof. Dr. Joyce Apsel, Peter Balokian, Prof. Dr. Daniel Feirstein, Prof. Dr. Stephen Feinstein, Prof. Dr. Israel Charny, Prof. Dr. Herbert Hirsh, Prof. Dr. Sam Totten and others) this Conference was “the best organized Conference of the IAGS history“. This assessment was also presented during the official closing ceremony of the Conference.

[1] Youth Week, Sarajevo!, European Commission, (Anna Weitz)

[2] Jean-Bosco Mutangana, e-mail, „...qu'il y avait en institut tel comme le votre ici en Rwanda – au moins un qu'il lui pouvait être jusqu'au génoux par son travail énorme, par son organisation, par ses éfforts!“

[3] Keith Doubt, e-mail, 17. July 2007

[4] James e. Waller, e-mail, 17 July 2007

[5] Alex Hinton, e-mail, 15 July 2007