Twenty-three years to the day since it was demolished by Serbian nationalists as part of an ethnic cleansing campaign, Banja Luka’s grand mosque, Ferhadija, was reopened on 7 May. Despite continuing tensions between the Serbian and Bosniak population of Banja Luka, the ceremony passed off without incident and marked an important date in the city’s troubled history.
This paper analyzes the importance of the return process and sustainable integration of returnees for reconciliation in post-war Bosnia-Herzegovina. With Annex VII of General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia (Dayton Peace Agreement, or DPA), refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) were ensured they could return to their pre-war homes. One obstacle for returnee families is in education – ethnically biased curricula increase divisions between groups.
The Bosnian war ended 20 years ago, but the eastern town of Višegrad still struggles over its collective history. Local authorities wanted to demolish a house on Pionirska Street, where 70 Muslim civilians were burned alive. Protests put the decision on hold, but a permanent solution has yet to be found.
Chloé Gaillard speaks with Jasenko, organizer and activist of the 2015 international movie festival Merlinka, about the situation of the Lesbian-Gay-Bi-Trans (LGBT) community in Bosnia-Herzegovina (BiH).