- Published: 29.09.2023.
Wreaths laid to mark 32 years since establishment of POW camp Morinj
This is the third year that marking the anniversary has been organised by the Croatian National Council of Montenegro, and the memorial plaque was put up last year, which was Montenegro's contribution thanks to its then-ministers Ranko Krivokapić and Raško Konević, Croatian Foreign Minister Gordan Grlić Radman said.
"Today we laid wreaths and lit candles, and this date coincides with the suicide of Admiral Vladimir Barović, a Montenegrin admiral who preferred to take his own life than shoot at Croatian cities. We are here today to show our respect to the victims and to nurture remembrance of what happened over 30 years ago so that it does not happen ever again," he said.
Croatia appreciates Montenegro's efforts to face the past, he added. "It's important that we all remember that, that we raise new generations in love, tolerance, peace, in good-neighbourly relations. As an EU and NATO member, Croatia wants a stable and secure Montenegro, pro-European."
The joint wreath laying is an appropriate way for Montenegro to face its dark past," said Robert Markić, state secretary at the Montenegrin Foreign Ministry.
"A mark must exist at this place, just as at all places where killings and war crimes were committed, in order to warn us and never to happen again. We should build a culture of remembrance by honouring the victims while at the same time building a future in which something like this won't keep happening."
Between 3 October 1991 and 18 August 1992, the then Yugoslav army (JNA) operated in the village of Morinj a centre for POWs from Croatia known as the Morinj camp in which 292 persons from the Dubrovnik area were held in inhumane conditions.
In a trial which began 2007 and ended in 2013, four JNA members were found guilty of war crimes against the POWs detained at the camp. Montenegrin courts have also delivered 154 decisions awarding non-material compensation to the victims.