O God of truth and justice,
we remember today the consequences of hatred
in lives brutally extinguished
in hearts torn apart
in memories scarred with pain.
As we remember and honour the victims of hatred,
lead us to sorrow over the sins of humanity.
Draw close, we pray,
to mothers and sisters,
wives and grandmothers
and all relatives and loved ones left behind,
and heal the pain in their souls.
And teach us, O Lord,
to learn how to live for a world
where differences are respected and valued,
and where fear and mistrust
can never overwhelm us
nor vengeance be stirred in our hearts.
Give peace we pray, to the people of Srebrenica;
that their lives may be restored
through your grace.
25 years ago, on 11 July 1995, Bosnian Serb forces, led by General Ratko Mladić overran and captured the town of Srebrenica in Eastern Bosnia which had been declared a UN Safe Area. In the days following, more than 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were systematically murdered and buried in mass graves. Thousands of women, children and the elderly were forcibly deported.
On the 11th July, we honour the victims and survivors of genocide, and pledge to creating a better, stronger, and more cohesive society in the United Kingdom. By doing this we give ourselves hope of illuminating the darkness and creating a safer community for all.