Bosnian Serbs defy ruling on independence day
Residents of the Bosnian Serb Republic voted in a referendum Sept. 25 to maintain Jan. 9 as a national holiday in defiance of a court ruling. The date remembers Jan. 9, 1992, when ethnic Serbs declared their own state within Bosnia and triggered a brutal conflict in which it is estimated 100,000 people lost their lives. The Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina had banned the referendum, and had originally ruled that the date should be changed because it discriminated against Muslim Bosniaks and Catholic Croats. Republika Srpska President Milorad Dodik, who had set the date for the vote, said he was proud of the peaceful manner in which the referendum passed.
From Jurist, Sept. 26. Used with permission.
Note: Many Bosniaks deride the Serb Republic, which controls some half of the territory of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as a "genocide creation," as it was established through the "ethnic cleansing" of Muslims from the territory.