The representatives of the Chinese embassy and Serbia's Minister of Employment Zoran Djordjevic laid wreaths to commemorate 20 years since Chinese journalists were killed in NATO air strike which mistakenly hit the then Beijing embassy building during the bombing of former Yugoslavia in 1999, the Beta news agency reported on Tuesday.
Djordjevic called the bombing of the embassy a “monstrous act” adding NATO hit not only military but also the civilian targets in 78 days of the air campaign to stop, as the Alliance said, Belgrade’s oppression of ethnic Albanians in Kosovo, which at the time was still Serbia’s province.
A memorial service was held and wreaths laid in the southern city of Nis to commemorate the Remembrance Day of 16 people killed, including a pregnant woman, and 18 wounded in the city’s streets during NATO bombing in 1999.
NATO denied deliberately hitting civilian targets, including the Chinese embassy, describing them as accidents, and apologised for that.
In military vocabulary, such accidents are referred to as collateral damage.
The Chinese ambassador to Belgrade Chen Bo said the bombing of Yugoslavia and “the barbaric act against Chinese embassy” should be condemned.”Many in Serbia and China still believe NATO deliberately targeted the embassy.