Republika Srpska President Milorad Dodik has said that May 22, the day when the first newborn baby died in Banjaluka in 1992 due to the lack of oxygen because the world’s powerful people banned the delivery of humanitarian aid to Republika Srpska, is one of the saddest days in the recent history of Srpska.
“On that day, the agony began for those innocent, newly-born beings, for their parents, the hospital staff, but also the entire Serbian people who sympathized with their pain. Until June 19, 1992, 12 newborns died in the Banjaluka maternity hospital due to the lack of oxygen, needed for adequate treatment, caused by the arbitrariness and inhumanity of the international community,” Dodik said.
He told Srna that every year, during these May days, there is no one who does not remember those shocking and gruesome scenes when babies died day after day, and parents, instead of birth certificates, got death certificates for their newborn children.
“Even though we are Christians and we should forgive, we cannot and will not forgive children. Today, they would be mature, adult people, fathers, mothers, doctors, teachers, carpenters, car mechanics, lawyers… Unfortunately, the evil hand of the world powers denied them the right to breathe and live, and they were sentenced to death by their arbitrariness. This is unforgivable,” Dodik emphasized.
He has added that even 31 years after this crime against innocent babies, pain and sorrow did not subside and that he sympathizes with the grief and pain of their parents, brothers, and sisters.
“A youth was extinguished in its infancy by the will of the villains who have never been held accountable for this unprecedented crime. The sadness remains forever, as does our duty to ensure that the sacrifice of newly born babies and the truth about their deliberate killing day after day are never forgotten,” the Republika Srpska president pointed out.
On this day in 1992, the first baby died in the Banjaluka Hospital due to the lack of oxygen because the USA and other Western countries did not allow humanitarian aid to be delivered by air to Republika Srpska during the BiH civil war.
The shortage was a consequence of the blockade of the Serbian territory by Croatian and Muslim military forces in the Semberija region.
By June 19, 1992, 12 babies died.
Slađana Kobas, born on June 18, 1992, was the only baby who survived the period from May 22 to June 19, 1992. Due to the lack of oxygen, her health was seriously damaged, so she had permanent damage to her eyesight, brain, and lungs, and later battled bone cancer unsuccessfully. She died on February 9, 2006, at the age of 13.
The fourteenth baby, Marko Medaković, was left to suffer the consequences of the lack of oxygen for his whole life.
The death of babies, as well as the growing shortage of basic necessities of life, were the reasons for the major military operation “Corridor” in which the forces of the Republika Srpska Army clashed with Croatian and Muslim military forces.
The military operation lasted from June 14 to 26, 1992, and ended with the breakthrough of the blockade.
This historic military victory was called the “Corridor of Life” because it enabled new lives, as the General of the Republika Srpska Army Momir Talić himself said: “I don’t want children to die anymore.”