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Bosnia and Herzegovina, Poland, Srebrenica
Resignation of Tadeusz Mazowiecki
In 1991, the former Polish Prime Minister Tadeusz Mazowiecki accepted an appointment as the UN’s Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in the Territory of the Former Yugoslavia. His reports on mass crimes and other human rights violations became one of the main triggers for creating the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in 1993. In July 1995, after the fall of Srebrenica and Žepa, he resigned from his position, protesting against “the lack of consistency and courage displayed by the international community and its leaders”. His resignation letter was widely circulated among solidarity networks with BiH.
After leaving his UN position, Tadeusz Mazowiecki continued his commitment in support of Bosnia and Herzegovina. He participated for example at the gathering of the Helsinki Citizens Assembly organized in Tuzla in October 1995 in cooperation with the Citizens Forum Tuzla. In view of the looming end of the war, Mazowiecki emphasised in his speech the necessary international commitment to the reconstruction of the country: “Europe and the world have failed to defend Bosnia-Herzegovina in the war. It cannot fail now when there is an opportunity and possibility to rebuild Bosnia-Herzegovina and its civil society.”