The Bosnian American Genocide Institute and Education Center (BAGI) is a not-for profit charitable and educational organization. BAGI is dedicated to scientific research pertaining to the genocide that occurred in Bosnia and Herzegovina from 1992-1995 and to educate others about the holocaust, genocide and other forms of crimes against humanity.
The purpose of the mission is reconciliation by teaching universal lessons that combat hatred, prejudice and indifference.
Share your story of resistance and survival!
The Bosnian American Genocide Institute and Education Center (BAGI) is seeking interested individuals who are willing to share their story about their experiences during the war in Bosnia. BAGI is working on publishing a children's book, and your story may be chosen to be published in the book! Due to the nature of the book, stories will be written through the eyes of a child. Thus, the potential participant must meet the requirement to be of child's age during the war period (1992-1995). There is no cut-off age, however, participants will be selected based on their narrative, and the willingness to work with our writers for the next several months.
Appeal to High Representative Valentin Inzko
The Office of the High Representative
Emerika Bluma 1
Bosnia and Herzegovina
August 8, 2018
We are writing to urge you to advocate for a memorial for the 3,167 victims of the aggression perpetrated by the Bosnian Serbs against non-Serbs in Prijedor Municipality, which began in 1992.
The atrocities that were committed have been extensively documented in the proceedings of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, and in published books and other reports. There have been numerous convictions of the perpetrators, including on appeal, for the crimes that were committed in Prijedor Municipality. However, while the perpetrators have been glorified, for example, in a memorial adjacent to Trnopolje concentration camp, family members of the victims have not been permitted to erect a memorial either in Trnopolje, or in the location of Omarska concentration camp, or in the center of Prijedor. Repeated efforts to erect a memorial have been frustrated by the Prijedor Municipal Assembly.
With the public glorification of the perpetrators, the prohibition of a memorial for the victims is clearly discriminatory. This prohibition constitutes a human rights violation, as well as a violation of Annex 7 of the Dayton Peace Accords. Annex 7 guaranteed the right of refugee return "without risk of intimidation, persecution, or discrimination." The parties agreed to create "social conditions conducive to the voluntary return and harmonious reintegration of refugees and displaced persons, without preference for any particular group."[i] The discriminatory prohibition of a memorial for the victims is a form of humiliation and psychological intimidation that discourages refugee return, impeding the original intention of Annex 7, and preventing the possibility of local reconciliation that such a memorial could facilitate.
In villages in the Prijedor area, such as Bišcani, Hambarine, and Kozarac, civilian homes, along with mosques, were shelled and burned.[ii] In this process, civilians were wounded and murdered. Witnesses reported houses being burned with civilians still inside.[iii] Groups of civilians were seized and transferred to concentration camps, including Omarska, Keraterm, and Trnopolje.[iv] In the camps, detainees suffered interrogations, inhumane conditions, food deprivation, humiliation, beatings, and murder.[v] Women faced rape.[vi] Detainees held in the "white house" at Omarska, faced heinous treatment: "many detainees died as a result of these repeated assaults on them in the white house."
In his recent book, Death in the White House, Mirsad Causevic, who was tortured in Omarska, writes, "I watched my friend's skull cave in from a heavy blow, as his blood spattered everywhere. ...I felt a sharp blow to my left kidney...I looked around and saw my attacker wearing the uniform of a policeman... He hit me again. And again, until I could not take it anymore and collapsed to my knees with a cry of pain...he moved on to my head. I felt warmth as blood spurted from my face...I passed out."[viii] This was the first of endless beatings he experienced in Omarska: "Everyday brought new indignities, new cruelties, as dozens would perish to satisfy their bloodlust." Mirsad witnessed others being beaten to death.
Read more...(English) (Bosnian)
March 23, 2016 – Nearly eight years have passed since the arrest of Radovan Karadzic, the first acting president of the small entity known as Republika Srpska located in Bosnia and Herzegovina. According to the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY), Karadzic has been indicted on: two counts of genocide, five counts of crimes against humanity and four counts of violating the laws or customs of war for the genocide and aggression that occurred from April of 1992 to November of 1995. He has been accused of orchestrating a genocidal campaign of ethnic expulsion by forcing Bosnian Muslim and Bosnian Croat civilians to flee their homes through terror tactics that included: sexual assault, relocation, torture, imprisonment and murder among many other criminal acts.
On March 24, 2016, the ICTY will release a judgement in Radovan Karadzic’s case after interviewing over 500 witnesses and spending more than 400 days at trial. The Bosnian-American Genocide Institute and Education Center places a great deal of responsibility on the ICTY to deliver a ruling that will provide justice for the victims, survivors and their families. It is crucial for the communities and individuals who have been affected by ethnic expulsion, sexual assault, torture, detention and murder that they see justice in their lifetimes. We expect a guilty verdict on all counts of Radovan Karadzic’s indictment as well as the longest possible sentence considering the gravity of his crimes.
It is no secret that the increase in nationalistic rhetoric and idolization of war criminals like Radovan Karadzic in Bosnia and Herzegovina is growing and we are very concerned. We would like for this ruling to be a seed of hope for the multi-ethnic Bosnia and Herzegovina that we all believe in. However, in order for that to happen we need more action from citizens, the local police and court system to prosecute perpetrators who have lived the last two decades consequence-free. We are here to hold the perpetrators accountable and combat genocide denial.
As the world awaits the ruling for Radovan Karadzic’s trial, we want to honor and remember the lives that have been lost, destroyed or displaced by the aggression on Bosnia and Herzegovina. We see this ruling as an opportunity to advance the process of reconciliation. The pillars of reconciliation are grounded in truth and justice. We believe that the ICTY ruling will be that step towards the truth about the genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina and towards the justice that is needed for the victims and survivors of the genocide. We believe reconciliation is possible and we are certain that a guilty ruling will be a step forward towards a just and multi-ethnic Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Ida SeferRoche, M.S.W., M.A.
David Pettigrew, Ph.D.
Refik Sadikovic, M.Ed.
Djenita Svinjar, J.D.
Azra Smailkadic-Brkic, M.A.
Danica Anderson, Ph.D.
Belma Sadikovic, M.Ed.
The Forgotten Genocide - April 3rd, 2016
Memory in the Face of Denial: