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Balthasar Staehelin, Internat Red Cross, Sarajevo
"A world-wide effort of Red Cross and Red Crescent societies"
 real 28k

Tuesday, 21 November, 2000, 05:39 GMT
Red Cross updates Book of the Missing
A Sarajevo butchers called
A Sarajevo butchers called "Dayton"
By Alix Kroeger in Sarajevo

Five years after the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina was ended by the US-sponsored Dayton peace accord, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is publishing an update of its book of people still missing.

There are already 20,000 names in the book. Now, to mark the fifth anniversary of the Dayton peace accords, the ICRC is adding another 1,000 names.

So far The Book of the Missing has helped more than 2,000 families in Bosnia and abroad identify their missing relatives.

But this is more than a personal quest: it is also part of the process of encouraging minority refugee returns.

Answers needed

Sarajevans repair their war-damaged building
Sarajevans repair their war-damaged building
Dragoslav Blazevic from the Red Cross says families need to know what happened to their relatives before they can think about returning.

"Until they receive their answers it is difficult to believe there will be peace in this country and people will be able to return to their previous lives," he said.

But only family members can add names to the book. Whole families which were killed, and people without any relatives to report them missing, will remain uncounted.

Missing soldiers

The Red Cross is planning another book to help trace missing Bosnian Serb soldiers.

Because most of them were last seen in uniform, their bodies are especially difficult to identify.

But name-tags, photos and personal effects may help their families get some answers.

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See also:

21 Nov 00 | Europe
Sarajevo revisited
21 Nov 00 | Europe
Dayton five years on
21 Nov 00 | Europe
Ghosts of Bosnia's war live on
15 Nov 00 | Europe
UN regrets at Bosnia poll result
20 Oct 00 | Europe
Row over Kostunica's Bosnia visit
14 Oct 00 | Europe
Bosnia war: Main players
09 Oct 00 | Europe
Serbs shown war crimes film
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