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Former Yugoslavia: sensitive issue of missing persons

03-08-1995 News Release 31

Following the fall of the Muslim enclaves of Srebrenica and Zepa, some 6,000 people were reported missing and the ICRC was approached by many anxious families seeking news. At the end of July ICRC delegates were allowed to visit two places of detention run by the Bosnian Serbs, registering the names of 164 detainees from Srebrenica in the Batkovic camp and 44 detainees from Zepa in a camp in Rogatica.

The ICRC has learned that several hundred or even thousand men from Srebrenica have managed to reach the Tuzla area, but since the Bosnian government has not granted access to them it is not possible to determine their number or whether they have been able to contact their families.

ICRC delegates on the spot are stepping up their efforts to gain access to all those being held and to visit all places of detention in eastern Bosnia.

In another development, about a thousand men from Zepa have crossed the border into the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and are now in Bajina Basta. The ICRC has sent in two delegates and four local employees from Belgrade to collect Red Cross messages from the men for forwarding to their displaced families in central Bosnia.