26 May 1993: Serbs Continue Attacking Srebrenica After Demilitarisation Agreement
Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina
Srebrenica, 26 May 1993.
R BH OS
Supreme Command Staff
26 May 1993.
- to the Presidency of Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina
- the Government
- UNPROFOR - Sarajevo
- UNHCR - in Sarajevo
- Main Staff
Srebrenica has become a large camp where there are so many problems every day that it is impossible to resolve them.
There are no free premises in Srebrenica; even the garages are full; up to 30 people live in one small flat.
There is no water, electricity or other living conditions in Srebrenica. In the beginning, when Srebrenica was declared a protected zone, three convoys arrived every week; now there is one convoy with meagre quantities of food.
There is no food, footwear, clothes, necessities for personal and general hygiene, medicines or medical supplies.
We are in a grave danger of various epidemics - there is a five-hour queue for one litre of drinking water.
There are no ovens of firewood. Food is cooked and baked in the street. We need around 250m3 of firewood daily. Trees around the town are disappearing and there is a danger of land-slides.
It is practically impossible to provide and ensure an organised supply of firewood for so many people when there is no fuel and the forests are occupied by the Chetniks [Serbian soldiers, former World War II Nazi collaborationists].
We need at least 320 tonnes of flour a week to sustain life, not to mention other foodstuffs. Weekly convoys of several half-empty trucks do not bring in enough food for one day.
Chetniks first plunder the road convoys at their check points, then tear the sacks and scatter the remaining goods around the trucks. Why do you allow this?
The Serbian side is not permitting passage to convoys with tents, sleeping-bags and other supplies which would enable the people to survive. There are around 3,000 people in Srebrenica without a roof over their head, practically living out in the open during the day and night. Because of this, we again urgently ask for tents and sleeping-bags.
The Chetniks stop convoys under the pretext that Srebrenica has not turned over its weapons.
It is practically impossible to organise public law and order during the night in an area with over 15,000 people looking for air-dropped packages.
The hospital is overcrowded with sick civilians and children. Five doctors cannot meet the needs of so many people. There are more than 1,000 seriously ill civilians without any medicines (malignant diseases, epilepsy, diabetes and so on).
There are very many mentally retarded patients without any specialists, medicines or adequate accommodation.
It is impossible to organise life in the town until it is relieved of the burden of so many displaced persons. This is why we ask General Philippe Morillon to keep his promise and urgently ensure the return of displaced persons to their homes.
People will soon be unable to bear such difficult living conditions in the town and they will be forced to set off to their villages, unarmed, and their fate will be determined by the international community, headed by the UN.
Since the free territory of Srebrenica has been demilitarised and the weapons handed over, we ask that the Chetniks also fulfil the provision of the Agreement and Resolution 824.
Since the day Srebrenica was declared a protected area and demilitarised, the Chetniks have been opening PAM (anti-aircraft machine-gun) and sniper fire on unarmed civilians every day. So far, 17 civilians have been wounded and two killed in the fields and gardens while they were tiling their land.
In order to organise life in Srebrenica, we ask that UNPROFOR organise the sending of doctors, lawyers and teachers to Srebrenica. We cannot agree on a demilitarisation if it sole meaning is that minimum quantities of food are delivered to the town while there is no water, electricity, telephone lines and when schools, hospitals, courts and other organs of civilian authority are not working. In order to make life bearable, we need cadres.
Received by radio communications.