Montenegro – persons missing within armed conflict during the 1990s

About publication

Author: Tamara Milaš, Miloš Vukanović, Vasilije Radulović, Petar Đukanović

Publishing year: 2021

The wars of the 1990s in the former Yugoslavia have had severe and longterm consequences, which Montenegro too still faces today and only to a limited degree. Also, almost all states of the former Yugoslavia face the challenge of addressing systemic violations of human rights, which is reflected in the process of building functional democratic institutions that should establish a responsible attitude towards the recent violent past. Such a relationship is inconceivable without establishing the truth about the fate of persons who are still listed as missing due to the armed conflicts of the 1990s.

The states of the region continue to owe the families of 9,969 missing persons a full and impartial investigation into the circumstances under which their loved ones were killed or went missing, and they fail to carry out responsible sentences in accordance with the gravity of the crime committed.

In Montenegro, the legislative framework does not recognize the families of persons considered missing as civilian victims of war, whereas the system of reparations is flawed and discriminatory. Given the recorded activities of Montenegro in the armed conflicts during the 1990s, as well as the court-established facts indicating the role of Montenegrin citizens in these events, a proactive approach by Montenegrin institutions is crucial in determining the fate of missing persons. Victims’ communities have high expectations from these institutions, which is proportional to the participation of the armed forces under the direct or indirect control of the state of Montenegro in the waged wars. Unfortunately, the disproportionate commitment of Montenegrin decision-makers and institutions to this issue remains.

The project “Forced Disappearance - From Truth to Justice” is implemented by the CCE, in cooperation with the Association of Families of the Kidnapped, Missing and Killed in Kosovo and Metohija “Božur”, with the support of the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP), from donor’s contribution of European Union for ICMP Western Balkans Programme.