The Cancari Road 8 mass grave lies in a valley in the village of Kamenica, some ten kilometres north of the town of Zvornik in eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina. It is one of 13 secondary mass graves found along the village road, all linked with the killings of Bosniaks following the fall of Srebrenica in 1995.
The gravesite lies unmarked, next to the village road and a small creek.
Cancari Road 8 was initially discovered in 1998 by investigators and anthropologists from the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, but was only exhumed ten years later by the Bosnian Institute for Missing Persons.
The exhumation was carried out in October and November 2008 and the remains of 51 people were identified.
DNA analysis of the remains revealed that some body parts belonged to Esad Bektic, whose partial remains were also found in a mass grave in Branjevo. It is believed that many Srebrenica victims were initially killed in Branjevo in July 1995, buried there and then dug up again in the autumn and reburied along the Cancari Road.
After the fall of Srebrenica to Bosnian Serb forces, captured Bosniaks were brought by buses to Branjevo Military Farm for execution. Survivors described being led in groups to a meadow littered with corpses and told to turn their backs. On July 16, 1995, soldiers at Branjevo Military Farm were ordered to go some five kilometres east to the Pilica Cultural Centre to kill around 500 Bosniaks who were being detained there. Firing and explosions could also be heard that afternoon in Pilica itself, coming from the direction of the Cultural Centre. No one survived the execution. The inside of the Pilica Cultural Centre was described as having corpses “piled up on each other, just lying there scattered all over the place”. The bodies – two of which were female – were then buried at Branjevo Military Farm. All the victims were dressed in civilian clothes.
So far, the ICTY and domestic courts in the Balkans have sentenced a total of 47 people to more than 700 years in prison, plus five life sentences, for Srebrenica crimes.