A STOURBRIDGE church will hold a special service tomorrow (Wednesday, July 11) to mark the Srebrenica genocide.

The service at St Michael and All Angels Church, in Norton, is one of hundreds of events that are taking place across the country as part of Srebrenica Memorial Week – a nationwide commemoration that remembers the victims of Europe’s worst atrocity since the Second World War.

At the service a prayer written by one of the mothers of the 8,000 men and boys who were murdered at Srebrenica will be read.

Attendees at the service will pay respects to the victims of the genocide and to pray for peace in the western Balkan region. Leaders from the Western Balkans region, which includes Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia and Croatia will be meeting in London on 10th July.

Rev Nick Kaleniuk, of St Michaels, said: “The lessons from Srebrenica are clear: bigotry and intolerance can lead to terrible consequences.

“It is everyone's responsibility to stand up to hatred and I am proud that St Michael and All Angels will be commemorating the 23rd anniversary of the Srebrenica genocide.”

On July 11, 1995, more than 8,000 men were murdered because of their Islamic faith and were buried in mass graves which are still being uncovered. Over a thousand families are still waiting to give their loved ones a proper burial.

The annual Memorial Week, which takes place around Srebrenica Memorial Day on July 11, is organised by the charity Remembering Srebrenica. Many of the events in Britain are interfaith events designed to build stronger, more cohesive communities.

Andrew Tromans, a Stourbridge resident and communications manager for Remembering Srebrenica, said: “We must learn from the past and honour the victims of Srebrenica by challenging prejudice and hate in our local communities. I am delighted that my hometown will be taking part in Srebrenica Memorial Week.”

Anyone interested in learning more about the Srebrenica genocide can visit Stourbridge Library where a display with more information will be held until Sunday (July 15).