Belfast City Hall was lit up in green and white on the evening of Tuesday 5th July to commemorate the 1995 Srebrenica genocide. Green and white are the colours of the Srebrenica flower, designed as a symbol of remembrance by the main victims’ organisation, the Mothers of Srebrenica. White represents the innocence of those who were killed and green represents hope.
In addition, Council supported a special screening of the award-winning movie Quo Vadis, Aida? at the Queen’s Film Theatre at 6pm on 5th July, with the permission of Director Jasmila Žbanić.
The Srebrenica genocide happened in the heart of Europe in July 1995, just a generation ago. The 8,372 victims are remembered each year in Bosnia and around the world.
The Lord Mayor of Belfast, Councillor Christina Black said: “Through our Good Relations Programme, made possible with funding from the Executive Office, and in association with Remembering Srebrenica, Belfast City Council is proud to be supporting this event once again.
“It’s so important that we remember the terrible events that took place in Srebrenica in July 1995, and more widely in Bosnia-Herzegovina during those years. It serves as an important reminder about what can happen if we don’t challenge hatred and prejudice within our society. No matter where, and no matter the cause, we must challenge prejudice.
“I hope people will watch the film to learn more about this tragedy, and will remember the victims of Srebrenica when they see City Hall lit up on the evening of 5th July.”
Attending the film screening will be the Bosnia-Herzegovina Ambassador to the UK and Ireland, Vanja Filipovic. He said:
“I am very much looking forward to my visit to Belfast to meet the Lord Mayor and Council, meet with local people, visit community projects, and visit the commemorative tree planted at Stormont in 2020 with the support of all parties, across the community, in the Northern Ireland Executive. I feel we have so much in common.
“It is wonderful that Belfast City Council is supporting this special screening of Quo Vadis, Aida? and lighting up City Hall to remember the victims of Srebrenica. Support such as this by Belfast City Council is acknowledged and recognised in Bosnia and Herzegovina by people still working to build peace and reconciliation, and by the victims of Srebrenica who every day struggle for acknowledgement and to build relations.
“Thank you to the city of Belfast for your support.”
Peter Osborne, Chair of Remembering Srebrenica in Northern Ireland, said:
“We are delighted that Belfast City Council is once again supporting the victims of Srebrenica so well, and helping us to share our message of hope and belonging for everyone. We have known pain through conflict in Belfast. We understand better than most the importance of sowing seeds of friendship so as not to reap the consequence of old hatreds and violence.
”This is a unique opportunity to watch an incredibly powerful film, one of President Obama’s favourites, and afterwards reflect on the tragedy of Srebrenica.”