Press Release

Statement by the UN Resident Coordinator on the occasion of the shooting in Gradačac

11 August 2023

Sarajevo, 11 August 2023 – On behalf of the United Nations in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ingrid Macdonald, United Nations Resident Coordinator, expresses her deep sorrow and extends condolences to the families of the victims after the tragic shooting that took place in Gradačac today. 

“This senseless and gruesome act of violence left us all in shock. No one has the right to use violence and there is no justification for taking a life – whether of a woman, man or child. Our thoughts are with the families of the victims and with the injured,” says Macdonald.

The United Nations stands horrified by the fact that the murder of a female victim was livestreamed via a social network, which is one of the latest in a streak of femicide and severe cases of gender-based violence in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Femicide, the intentional killing of women and girls based on their gender, represents a glaring and grave violation of human rights. To address this pressing issue and protect the lives and dignity of women and girls, the United Nations in Bosnia and Herzegovina urges immediate collective action and unequivocal condemnation of all forms of gender-based violence, including femicide.

“The United Nations in Bosnia and Herzegovina advocates zero tolerance towards all types of violence. Femicide represents a severe threat to the attainment of gender equality, human rights, and peace. Hence, we firmly stand against this violence, and we call on the authorities to resolutely commit to eradicating this heinous crime, and urge the international community, governments, civil society, and individuals to join forces to prioritize the eradication of femicide,” said Macdonald.

As a human rights violation, addressing root causes is critical to put an end to gender-based violence and discrimination. The United Nations reiterates its unwavering commitment to the authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina to eliminate all forms of violence, including violence against women and girls, through putting in place and strengthening legal frameworks, policies, and comprehensive action plans. The United Nations reiterates its willingness to support Bosnia and Herzegovina in the effective implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), as well as the Istanbul Convention, that the country has ratified, and obliges the state to provide protection from all kinds of gender-based violence. The UN calls upon authorities to strengthen legislation and to ensure its enforcement, punishment, and prevention. “Today’s violence could have been prevented. We must urgently do more to uphold the values of mutual respect, peace, non-violence, and justice, in all circumstances,” adds Macdonald.


Ajla Becirspahic

Ajla Bećirspahić

Communications and Advocacy Officer

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