16.09.2007 Hr Speech

Remarks by the High Representative and EU Special Representative, Miroslav Lajčák, at the Ceremony Marking the Tenth Anniversary of the Helicopter Crash

Members of the families, Vice-President, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Ten years have gone by since the men and women we have gathered to honour were killed in this place.

Their families are with us here today, and on behalf of the friends and colleagues of the deceased – who will not forget them – let me express my sincerest condolences.

Those who set out to do good can pay a heavy price; our twelve friends and colleagues paid the ultimate price.

Their courage lies in the fact that they knew that their work here entailed risk, but still they came – because they wanted to help this country.

They believed that what they were doing was worth the effort and the pain.

They came from other countries to be of service to the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

It is for exactly those reasons that we honour them and we will always honour them.

A decade on from the fatal crash that took place here, Bosnia and Herzegovina is changed.

It is not yet a country where living conditions are good, but it is on the way to becoming the sort of country that these men and women wanted to build, and for which they gave their lives for.

We, all of us, have a clear and single objective – it is to help the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina build a safe and prosperous and democratic society.

That is an honourable objective.

Continuing to work to make that objective a reality is the best way to pay tribute to and honour the sacrifice made by Peter Backes, Livio Beccaccio, Andrzej Buler, David Kriskovich, Leah Melnick, Charles Morpeth, William Nesbitt, Marvin Padgett, Thomas Reinhardt, Jurgen Schauf, Georg Stiebler and Gerd Wagner each day.