Sarajevo, 25 and 26 July 2012
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's visit to Bosnia and Herzegovina
As a part of the regional tour, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and his wife Madam Ban Soon-taek paid a visit to Bosnia and Herzegovina on 25 and 26 July 2012.
His first appointment was a meeting with the Members of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina. After meeting at the Presidency of BiH, the Secretary-General addressed the Members of the Collegiums of House of Representatives and the House of Peoples of the Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Secretary-General also met with Vjekoslav Bevanda, Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina and with Zlatko Lagumdžija, Vice-Chairman of the Council of Ministers and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Secretary-General and his wife attended a dinner and a tour of the Old City of Sarajevo hosted by Mr. and Mrs. Izetbegovic. On 26 July, the Secretary-General took a symbolic run at the Asim Ferhatovic Hase Stadium, which was used for the 1984 Olympic Games.
The Secretary-General and the Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina then flew by helicopter to Srebrenica, where they visited the Potocari Memorial Center, commemorating the victims of the 1995 genocide. While there, Mr. Ban Ki-moon and Mr. Bakir Izetbegovic, together with their wives, laid a wreath at the Memorial Stone and observed a minute of silence. They toured the Memorial Centre, including walking around the Memory Wall, where the names of the victims of Srebrenica are engraved. They also visited the Museum of Genocide, where the Secretary-General met with representatives of the Srebrenica Women’s Association - a group of victims’ mothers and stated that "the international community failed in preventing the genocide that unfolded. But we have learned from the horror and we are learning still". “There is perhaps nowhere in the world more difficult, more painful, than here for the United Nations Secretary-General to visit,” he told reporters. “We must learn from the lessons of Srebrenica,” the Secretary-General said. “The United Nations is doing, will continue to do all that we can to prevent this [so that] Srebrenica will not happen anytime, anywhere, to anyone.”