Croatian President Ivo Josipovic has made the first ever visit by to a Croatian head of state to Republika Srpska (RS). On Sunday (May 30th), he visited three sites of mass killings of Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks during the 1992-1995 Bosnian conflict, paying tribute to innocent victims in Sijekovac, Brisevo and Kozarac, and opening a new chapter of reconciliation and regional co-operation.
Accompanying Josipovic were RS President Rajko Kuzmanovic, Prime Minister Milorad Dodik and Party of Democratic Action leader Sulejman Tihic. “We are here to pay respects … and it is important that representatives of all three ethnic groups are here to do so,” Josipovic told reporters in Sijekovac. Dodik stressed the need for co-existence, and called on Croats expelled from their homes to return. On behalf of the RS government, he expressed condolences to families of victims, regardless of their nationality, and voiced confidence that perpetrators of crimes will face justice. Tihic rejected the notion of collective guilt and insisted those responsible for crimes must face trial.