Bosnia opens memorial center in honor of 1995 victims

By Talha Ozturk

BELGRADE, Serbia (AA) – Bosnia and Herzegovina's northern city of Tuzla on Friday opened a memorial center called Kapija (the Gate) in honor of all victims killed on the site in May 1995.

The Kapija Memorial Center from Saturday will be expecting its visitors to see an exhibition about the massacre of civilians committed by Serb forces on May 25, 1995.

Bosnian Serb forces fired a missile at the Kapija neighborhood on May 25, 1995. The attack killed 71 and wounded more than 200 civilians.

Tuzla Mayor Jasmin Imamovic said that regardless of all relevant facts and evidence, and despite the court decisions convicting those charged with this crime to 20 years in prison, some still deny it ever happened.

“That's why we want to use the truth to defend from lies, to keep the eternal memory of the war crime victims and not allow the criminals to lie. Truth is stronger than lies provided that it is contained in a memorial and monumental culture. This center is the keeper of the evidence about the crime at the gate. The evidence will be available not only to visitors but also online,” said Imamovic.

A commemorative commemoration for the victims of the 25th anniversary of the Kapija massacre will be held in Tuzla on Monday.

On May 25, 1995, Novak Djukic, a commander of the Ozren Tactical Group of the Army of the Republika Srpska, ordered an artillery platoon to shell the city of Tuzla with cannons.

The Bosnian state court in 2010 sentenced Djukic to 25 years in prison for ordering the shelling which, according to the indictment, killed 71 and injured at least 140 civilians.

The sentence was reduced in February 2014 to 20 years in prison after Bosnia's Constitutional Court established a wrong application of the law in Djukic's case.

Djukic then departed to Serbia for, as his attorney said, medical treatment and has been unavailable to Bosnia's judicial institutions since then.

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By Handan Kazanci

ANKARA (AA) - Anadolu Agency is here with a rundown of the latest developments on the coronavirus pandemic and other news in Turkey and around the world.

- Coronavirus in Turkey

Turkey on Thursday confirmed 926 additional recoveries as the country began easing measures against the novel coronavirus, according to the country’s health minister.

The total number of recoveries from the disease hit 131,778 as 926 more patients were discharged from hospitals over the past day, Fahrettin Koca said on Twitter, citing Health Ministry data.

The country's death toll from the outbreak rose to 4,630 as Turkey reported 21 new fatalities over the last 24 hours.

Turkey conducted over 54,000 COVID-19 tests in the past 24 hours, bringing the total tally to more than 2.2 million, said Koca.

Meanwhile, Turkey plans to resume international flights to 40 countries gradually as of June 10, Transport and Infrastructure Minister Adil Karaismailoglu said Thursday.

International flights from Turkey will carry passengers first to the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Bahrain, Bulgaria, Qatar and Greece, Karaismailoglu said in a statement.

Turkey suspended all international flights on March 28 amid COVID-19-related travel restrictions worldwide.

- Global coronavirus developments

A low death toll was once again recorded Thursday as France recovers from the coronavirus pandemic which plagued the country over the last three months, according to the latest statistics reported by the Health Ministry.

The country registered a total of 46 deaths in hospitals Thursday, a drop of 39 cases over those reported Wednesday.

Italy on Thursday reported 88 more fatalities from the pandemic, bringing the death toll to 33,689 as authorities unveiled new guidelines to prevent crowded summer spots like beach resorts from becoming new virus hotbeds.

The slowing trend in the number of deaths registered in May continued in early June, confirming that the peak of the crisis has been passed.

Face masks on English public transport will be mandatory from June 15, the British government announced Thursday, as a further 176 people died from the coronavirus over the past 24 hours.

British authorities announced that the UK-wide death toll from COVID-19 is now 39,904.

As Spain prepares for its state of emergency over COVID-19 to last until June 21, the Health Ministry reported Thursday that 195 more people were infected with the coronavirus and five more had died.

The number of infections diagnosed Wednesday was down slightly from the 219 people who tested positive Tuesday but up from Monday and Sunday. In total, 240,660 infections have been confirmed in the country.

Health officials in the Palestinian enclave of Gaza announced Thursday the arrival of medical supplies sent by Turkey to help fight the novel coronavirus outbreak.

In a statement, Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra confirmed that two polymerase chain reaction (PCR) machines had been delivered for detecting the virus.

- George Floyd Memorial service

Hundreds of mourners on Thursday attended the first of several memorials for George Floyd – an unarmed black man who was killed in police custody on May 25.

The service at North Central University in Minneapolis, Minnesota was attended by Floyd's family and Ben Crump, the civil rights attorney representing the family, as well as celebrity guests.

Meanwhile, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on Thursday urged demonstrators joining protests over the death of George Floyd to get tested for the novel coronavirus.

Speaking at his daily press briefing, Cuomo said around 30,000 people have taken part in the statewide protests demanding justice for the killing of the unarmed black man in police custody.

Of them, 20,000 were involved in rallies in New York City.

In Europe, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has urged citizens not to overlook the racism problem in Germany while intensely discussing racism and police brutality in the US after the death of George Floyd.

"This murder of George Floyd is very, very terrible. Racism is something terrible,” Merkel said Thursday evening in an exclusive interview with public broadcaster ZDF.

“Racism has always been present, but sadly we also have this [problem]. We should first sweep in front of our own door,” she stressed.

- Other developments

Turkey and Libya plan to advance cooperation in the Eastern Mediterranean, including exploration and drilling activities, to further benefit from natural resources, Turkey’s president said in a meeting with Libya’s prime minister Thursday.

The meeting between Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Fayez al-Sarraj took place at the presidential palace in the Turkish capital Ankara.

Erdogan said Turkey and Libya have reached a consensus on expanding their cooperation areas on the territory of Libya.

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