The MSF Speaking Out podcasts are a new series adapted from the original Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) Speaking Out Case Studies (SOCS). Like the case studies, the podcast series examines the challenges and dilemmas surrounding speaking out. The series offers an in-depth look into these humanitarian dilemmas through the narration of extracts from MSF documents and press archives to help establish the facts. Interviews with the main MSF protagonists at the time of the events also provide insight into, and analysis of, the positions adopted, including personal reflections which offer fresh perspectives.
Even after the United Nations (UN) declared Srebrenica a ‘safe area’ in March 1993, the Muslim community trapped inside the city was living under constant shelling. MSF provided medical care while starting to question how much protection the UN could actually provide.Listen to Episode 1
MSF was the only provider of medical care in Srebrenica as the violence intensified. MSF wondered if our role had become more like de facto prison doctors in the besieged city. Was MSF inadvertently contributing to the Bosnian Serbs' strategy of ethnic cleansing? Would calling for the evacuation of Bosnian Muslims actually result in aiding the Bosnian Serb’s ethnic cleansing policy of driving the people out and claiming the land? And what if Bosnian Muslims wanted to leave? What should the position of MSF have been?Listen to Episode 2
Srebrenica fell to the Bosnian Serbs in July 1995 and approximately 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were massacred. How could this happen in the presence of United Nations (UN) peacekeepers in this so-called ‘safe zone’? What mechanisms did MSF put in place to speak out over the UN’s inability to protect the people of Srebrenica? Listen to Episode 3
Many nations were not taking responsibility for their (in)actions in the enclave. MSF France decided to put pressure on the French parliament to investigate France’s role in the fall of Srebrenica, by issuing an appeal for an investigative parliamentary commission. Should a humanitarian organisation speak out and advocate for official government inquiries in order to place responsibility, document events, seek justice and defend human rights?Listen to Episode 5