Online event to explore shared experiences of conflict
10 November 2021
Local groups are being invited to take part in a special online event this month exploring the parallels between N. Ireland and the Balkans, as two societies still grappling with the challenges of emerging from conflict.
The event will take place on November 17th, and is being organised by Derry City and Strabane District Council in conjunction with Remembering Srebrenica N. Ireland. It follows on from a notice of motion successfully carried in July, recommending that Council pledge its support to the Remembering Srebrenica organisation and look at ways to understand and commemorate the Srebrenica genocide and the Balkan conflict of the early 1990's. Remembering Srebrenica UK is committed to using the lessons from the Srebrenica atrocity to tackle hatred and intolerance to help to build a better, safer and more cohesive society for everyone.
A follow on report brought before Members of Council's Health and Community Committee set out a range of initiatives to raise awareness and improve learnings. A member of Council's Good Relations Team has been working with the Remembering Srebrenica's Regional Board NI to design and develop events to coincide this month with a regional visit by a survivor of the Srebrenica genocide.
Encouraging local community organisations to attend the event, Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District, Alderman Graham Warke, said it was an opportunity to share learnings about moving forwards. "This month we look back at the worst atrocity to take place on European soil since the Second World War, when thousands lost their lives in Srebrenica in a chilling echo of the horror of the Holocaust. Since then much has been achieved on the path to peace in the Balkans, but it is a long and difficult road to building a stable post-conflict society as we know all too well here.
"Working with the Remembering Srebrenica organisation this online event offers the chance to share experiences and learnings that could be mutually beneficial to both societies. I would really encourage local community organisations to engage with this event and learn more about trust building and encouraging dialogue on a local level."
The online discussion will be chaired by Peter Osborne from Remembering Srebrenica Northern Ireland and former chair of the Community Relations Council. Guests will have the opportunity to hear more about the background to the Bosnian War, the Troubles in Northern Ireland and explore issues common to both regions such as acknowledgement, justice and peace building. Later in the month the City will welcome a survivor of the Srebrenica atrocity for a series of engagements, including another online session with elected members and community groups.