26 years have passed since the genocide in Srebrenica. The city is now part of the Republika Srpska, the entity of the Bosnian Serbs born out of the Dayton Agreements.


The scars of the genocide and its memory still permeate the entire landscape today. However, over time, some muslim families decided to return to live in the municipality of Srebrenica. They face genocide denial and, at times, episodes of discrimination and provocation.


I spent a lot of time with some of these families, including that of Ahmed Hrustanovic, the second imam of the Srebrenica mosque. Ahmed Hrustanovic survived the genocide, but lost his father, grandfathers and uncles. He is haunted by the memory of the genocide.


Within the muslim community, Ahmed is one of the few to directly confront the Serbian authorities. He is an activist. With his support, I had the opportunity to document the life of the Srebrenica's returnees.

Ahmed Nuhanovic brings his children to his destroyed native village of Miholjevine
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Twice a year, Ahmed brings his children to his destroyed native village of Miholjevine, lost in the mountains. A sad and joyful moment at the same time. July 2020.

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Twice a year, Ahmed brings his children to his destroyed native village of Miholjevine, lost in the mountains. A sad and joyful moment at the same time. July 2020.

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Ahmed's son, Fatih, loves exploring the ruins of Miholjevine. His father, meanwhile, seems lost in his thoughts. Ahmed once told me that his life oscillates between fears and hope. July 2020.

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Ahmed's son, Fatih, loves exploring the ruins of Miholjevine. His father, meanwhile, seems lost in his thoughts. Ahmed once told me that his life oscillates between fears and hope. July 2020.

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​Ahmed Nuhanovic is praying at Nova Kasaba Mosq
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Religion and faith are essential for Ahmed to help him overcoming his traumas. March 2021.

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Religion and faith are essential for Ahmed to help him overcoming his traumas. March 2021.

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​Nova Kasaba football field were approximately 1000 prisoners were kept and some executed
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A few weeks after the genocide, the Serbian authorities decided to exhume the corpses of the victims and to disperse the remains of the bodies in more than 38 secondary graves. The objective of this macabre process was to conceal the evidence of the crimes, and thus make it impossible to identify the bodies. One of the first mass graves was located on the hills overlooking the Nova Kasaba football field. July 2020.

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A few weeks after the genocide, the Serbian authorities decided to exhume the corpses of the victims and to disperse the remains of the bodies in more than 38 secondary graves. The objective of this macabre process was to conceal the evidence of the crimes, and thus make it impossible to identify the bodies. One of the first mass graves was located on the hills overlooking the Nova Kasaba football field. July 2020.

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​Ahmed Nuhanovic is looking at the photograph of the jacket his father was wearing the moment of his execution in Srebrenica in 1995
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Ahmed has just been informed that new bones of his father have been formally identified by DNA. He meets the forensic expert from the Institute for Missing Persons (ICMP) in Tuzla. Throughout the meeting, Ahmed cannot take his eyes off the photo of the jacket his father was wearing when he was executed. March 2021.

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Ahmed has just been informed that new bones of his father have been formally identified by DNA. He meets the forensic expert from the Institute for Missing Persons (ICMP) in Tuzla. Throughout the meeting, Ahmed cannot take his eyes off the photo of the jacket his father was wearing when he was executed. March 2021.

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​Ahmed’s young brother Enis looking at the ICMP documentation
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Ahmed's younger brother, Enis, looks at the ICMP documentation. He never knew his father as he was born right after women and children were evacuated by UN convoys in 1993, when his father Rifet, like all other men, had to stay in the besieged city. March 2021.

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Ahmed's younger brother, Enis, looks at the ICMP documentation. He never knew his father as he was born right after women and children were evacuated by UN convoys in 1993, when his father Rifet, like all other men, had to stay in the besieged city. March 2021.

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In the presence of the whole family, the remains of Ahmed's father are exhumed so that the judicial authorities can proceed with the partial reconstruction of the body, before he is buried again. A moment of violence for the families of the victims, whose mourn can span over decades. July 2021.

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In the presence of the whole family, the remains of Ahmed's father are exhumed so that the judicial authorities can proceed with the partial reconstruction of the body, before he is buried again. A moment of violence for the families of the victims, whose mourn can span over decades. July 2021.

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The re-opening of the grave and the reburial is a tragedy for the whole family. Three generations of victims still suffering today from the Genocide. July 2021.

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The re-opening of the grave and the reburial is a tragedy for the whole family. Three generations of victims still suffering today from the Genocide. July 2021.

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The bones identified by the ICMP are lined up next to those that have just been exhumed. Police officers and forensic experts ensure compliance with legal procedures. July 2021.

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The bones identified by the ICMP are lined up next to those that have just been exhumed. Police officers and forensic experts ensure compliance with legal procedures. July 2021.

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Ahmed is devastated. He looks at the identification plate which accompanied his father's remains during the first burial. He told me it was the worst day of his whole life. July 2021.

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Ahmed is devastated. He looks at the identification plate which accompanied his father's remains during the first burial. He told me it was the worst day of his whole life. July 2021.

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Ahmed has 4 children, soon to be 5. Little by little, with precaution, he reveals to his children the cruel reality of the genocide which destroyed his family. October 2020.

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Ahmed has 4 children, soon to be 5. Little by little, with precaution, he reveals to his children the cruel reality of the genocide which destroyed his family. October 2020.

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Advertising billboard  installed in July by the Serbian authorities at the entrance to Srebrenica, just before the city was honored on the occasion of the commemoration of the genocide. The figures presented are fanciful. As for the Srebrenica region, only two Muslims were found guilty of war crimes by the courts in Sarajevo and were imprisoned. No Muslim has ever been convicted of war crimes in the Srebrenica region by the International Criminal Court in The Hague (ICTY), the main accused, Naser Orić, having been released after his trial. July 2021.

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Advertising billboard  installed in July by the Serbian authorities at the entrance to Srebrenica, just before the city was honored on the occasion of the commemoration of the genocide. The figures presented are fanciful. As for the Srebrenica region, only two Muslims were found guilty of war crimes by the courts in Sarajevo and were imprisoned. No Muslim has ever been convicted of war crimes in the Srebrenica region by the International Criminal Court in The Hague (ICTY), the main accused, Naser Orić, having been released after his trial. July 2021.

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​About 500 muslim men and boys were executed by hand grenades and heavy machine guns at the cultural center of Pilica
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On July 16th 1995, about 500 muslim men and boys were executed by hand grenades and heavy machine guns in the cultural center of Pilica. Today, the building is left abandoned and falls into ruin. The families of the victims are denied the right to take care of this memory place. October 2020.

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On July 16th 1995, about 500 muslim men and boys were executed by hand grenades and heavy machine guns in the cultural center of Pilica. Today, the building is left abandoned and falls into ruin. The families of the victims are denied the right to take care of this memory place. October 2020.

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​Nedžad Avdic recalls peaceful times before the war in Nova Kasaba high-school
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Nedžad Avdic is one of only two survivors of the Petkovci massacre. Seriously injured, he manages to reach the free zone with the help of the other survivor. Nedžad remembers the Tito's peaceful times before the war, when all the children were going to school regardless of their ethnicity. July 2020.

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Nedžad Avdic is one of only two survivors of the Petkovci massacre. Seriously injured, he manages to reach the free zone with the help of the other survivor. Nedžad remembers the Tito's peaceful times before the war, when all the children were going to school regardless of their ethnicity. July 2020.

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At the Petkovci school where Nedzad was kept prisoner before being shot down at the nearby dam
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The school in Petkovci, where Nedžad was held prisoner before being taken to the execution site, in the field under the dam. Today, the school is still in operation. No commemorative monument allows students to learn about the events that took place there on the night of July 14 to 15, 1995. Silence hangs over all the sites of the Genocide. October 2020.

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The school in Petkovci, where Nedžad was held prisoner before being taken to the execution site, in the field under the dam. Today, the school is still in operation. No commemorative monument allows students to learn about the events that took place there on the night of July 14 to 15, 1995. Silence hangs over all the sites of the Genocide. October 2020.

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The Petkovci dam, below which the executions were carried out during the night of the 14th of July, 1995.

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The Petkovci dam, below which the executions were carried out during the night of the 14th of July, 1995.

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Fahrudin Muminovic was 7 years old during the 1995 genocide. He was machine-gunned at close range with his father, but him was only seriously injured. A Serb doctor saved his life, driving him to Zvornik hospital where he was then handed over to the Red Cross. Today, Fahrudin is 33 years old. He suffers from severe post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD) which prevents him from living a normal life. He divides his time between meals cooked by his relatives, and video games. October 2020.

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Fahrudin Muminovic was 7 years old during the 1995 genocide. He was machine-gunned at close range with his father, but him was only seriously injured. A Serb doctor saved his life, driving him to Zvornik hospital where he was then handed over to the Red Cross. Today, Fahrudin is 33 years old. He suffers from severe post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD) which prevents him from living a normal life. He divides his time between meals cooked by his relatives, and video games. October 2020.

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Ramo, uncle of Fahrudin. October 2020.

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Ramo, uncle of Fahrudin. October 2020.

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​Ghost houses overlooking the Srebrenica football field
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Ghost houses overlooking the Srebrenica football pitch. Almost one in three houses in Srebrenica today is still in ruins. March 2021.

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Ghost houses overlooking the Srebrenica football pitch. Almost one in three houses in Srebrenica today is still in ruins. March 2021.

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​Ramiz Cardakovic lives in Stoborani
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During the war, Ramiz Cardakovic, nicknamed "Zoran", was part of a special squad. A group of foresters from the village of Stoborani who escorted refugees inside the Serbian lines from Žepa to Tuzla. A 120 km ride in the mountains, full of risks. Together, they saved the lives of nearly 400 refugees. March 2021.

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During the war, Ramiz Cardakovic, nicknamed "Zoran", was part of a special squad. A group of foresters from the village of Stoborani who escorted refugees inside the Serbian lines from Žepa to Tuzla. A 120 km ride in the mountains, full of risks. Together, they saved the lives of nearly 400 refugees. March 2021.

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​Ethnical cleansing landscape along the Drina River
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Ethnical cleansing landscape along the Drina River, the natural frontier between Serbia and Bosnia. March 2021.

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Ethnical cleansing landscape along the Drina River, the natural frontier between Serbia and Bosnia. March 2021.

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"Mothers of Srebrenica" leave the "White House", a house where many Muslims were detained and executed on July 11, 1995. The house is now inhabited by a Serb family. Only once a year on July 13, do the families of the victims have access to the site and can lay a wreath, under the strict surveillance of the Serbian police. July 2020.

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"Mothers of Srebrenica" leave the "White House", a house where many Muslims were detained and executed on July 11, 1995. The house is now inhabited by a Serb family. Only once a year on July 13, do the families of the victims have access to the site and can lay a wreath, under the strict surveillance of the Serbian police. July 2020.

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​Almasa Salihovic on the ruins of her destroyed home in the village of Skelani
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Almasa Salihovic was 8 years old when Srebrenica fell. She had to stay 2 days in front of the gate of the UN base with her mother and younger brother, in the midst of chaos. Her older brother and sister had managed to enter the base, convinced that the 15-year-old would be protected by the UN soldiers. This does not happen. Abdhulah was separated from his sister and handed over to the Serbian soldiers, with the consent of the Dutch soldiers. Recently, earthworks have uncovered some remains of Almasa's destroyed house in the village of Skelani. March 2021.

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Almasa Salihovic was 8 years old when Srebrenica fell. She had to stay 2 days in front of the gate of the UN base with her mother and younger brother, in the midst of chaos. Her older brother and sister had managed to enter the base, convinced that the 15-year-old would be protected by the UN soldiers. This does not happen. Abdhulah was separated from his sister and handed over to the Serbian soldiers, with the consent of the Dutch soldiers. Recently, earthworks have uncovered some remains of Almasa's destroyed house in the village of Skelani. March 2021.

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Srebrenica's UN base where hundreds of refugees were seeking for protection in July 1995. July 2020.

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Srebrenica's UN base where hundreds of refugees were seeking for protection in July 1995. July 2020.

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Drawings painted by the Dutch soldiers inside the Srebrenica's UN base. October 2020.

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Drawings painted by the Dutch soldiers inside the Srebrenica's UN base. October 2020.

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1374 Muslim men and boys were killed at the Kravica Warehouse near Srebrenica
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1,374 people were killed in this agricultural warehouse on July 13, 1995, with grenades, heavy machine guns and bazookas. Among them, Rifet, Ahmed's dad. Only two managed to escape through a window at the rear of the building. July 2020.

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1,374 people were killed in this agricultural warehouse on July 13, 1995, with grenades, heavy machine guns and bazookas. Among them, Rifet, Ahmed's dad. Only two managed to escape through a window at the rear of the building. July 2020.

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Annual commemoration of the Mothers of Srebrenica at the agricultural warehouse in Kravica, where Mrs Gurdic's son Mehrudin was murdered. July 2020.

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Annual commemoration of the Mothers of Srebrenica at the agricultural warehouse in Kravica, where Mrs Gurdic's son Mehrudin was murdered. July 2020.

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​Saliha Osmanovic
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Saliha Osmanovic lost her two sons and her husband in Kravica. She has attended many court hearings, and notably remembers her confrontation with Ratko Mladic. She never took her eyes off him, until he put his head in his hands, avoiding her gaze. October 2020.

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Saliha Osmanovic lost her two sons and her husband in Kravica. She has attended many court hearings, and notably remembers her confrontation with Ratko Mladic. She never took her eyes off him, until he put his head in his hands, avoiding her gaze. October 2020.

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Muhamed Avdic was 12 when he was evacuated from Srebrenica. When the city fell, his father tried to escape by crossing the Drina River towards nearby Serbia. He was taken prisoner, and then handed over to a Serb police officer on the Bratunac bridge. Muhamed recently managed to identify and meet this man, now retired. He would finally find out what had happened to his father, and maybe he could find his father's body. But Muhamed will get no answer to his questions, the old man refusing to communicate the slightest information about his father's fate. October 2020.

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Muhamed Avdic was 12 when he was evacuated from Srebrenica. When the city fell, his father tried to escape by crossing the Drina River towards nearby Serbia. He was taken prisoner, and then handed over to a Serb police officer on the Bratunac bridge. Muhamed recently managed to identify and meet this man, now retired. He would finally find out what had happened to his father, and maybe he could find his father's body. But Muhamed will get no answer to his questions, the old man refusing to communicate the slightest information about his father's fate. October 2020.

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Mujo Pasic was seriously injured by a mortar shell in 1993 in Srebrenica. He was evacuated by helicopter, leaving his family behind. He wanted to come back but was never allowed to do so. When Srebrenica fell, his two sons of 17 and 15 tried to escape by joining the column of about 15,000 people who tried to break through in the mountains. They didn't make it. They were captured and immediately taken to the infamous Kravica warehouse where they were killed. October 2020.

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Mujo Pasic was seriously injured by a mortar shell in 1993 in Srebrenica. He was evacuated by helicopter, leaving his family behind. He wanted to come back but was never allowed to do so. When Srebrenica fell, his two sons of 17 and 15 tried to escape by joining the column of about 15,000 people who tried to break through in the mountains. They didn't make it. They were captured and immediately taken to the infamous Kravica warehouse where they were killed. October 2020.

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Drago, Petkovci
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Drago is a Bosnian Serb. He is 84 years old. During the war he was a truck driver. He has always lived in the village of Petkovci, where one of the executions of Bosniaks took place after July 11. We talked for a while, gradually entering the war period. I had the impression that he was going to speak openly about the tragic events that took place in the village. Unfortunately, our conversation had caught the attention of other people. As soon as Draco started to speak, someone came and sat down on the bench next to him. From that moment on, Draco remained silent, and even distant. March 2021.

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Drago is a Bosnian Serb. He is 84 years old. During the war he was a truck driver. He has always lived in the village of Petkovci, where one of the executions of Bosniaks took place after July 11. We talked for a while, gradually entering the war period. I had the impression that he was going to speak openly about the tragic events that took place in the village. Unfortunately, our conversation had caught the attention of other people. As soon as Draco started to speak, someone came and sat down on the bench next to him. From that moment on, Draco remained silent, and even distant. March 2021.

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Refugees wooden shack in Luka mountains
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Šakir was 21 years old in 1993. He lived in the peaceful mountain village of Luka, overlooking the Drina River. Due to the constant shelling, the inhabitants of the village had to flee. They took refuge in the woods, surviving in log cabins, sometimes in caves on the cliffs leading to the river. Most of these shelters were destroyed by Serbian soldiers, only a few remain today. October 2020.

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Šakir was 21 years old in 1993. He lived in the peaceful mountain village of Luka, overlooking the Drina River. Due to the constant shelling, the inhabitants of the village had to flee. They took refuge in the woods, surviving in log cabins, sometimes in caves on the cliffs leading to the river. Most of these shelters were destroyed by Serbian soldiers, only a few remain today. October 2020.

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“Where are you?” ... Hajra Catic lost her son Nino during the genocide. He was the only journalist to broadcast from the besieged city. His last radio message on July 10: "Will anyone in the world come to see the tragedy that befalls Srebrenica and its inhabitants ?". His remains have never been found. October 2020.

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“Where are you?” ... Hajra Catic lost her son Nino during the genocide. He was the only journalist to broadcast from the besieged city. His last radio message on July 10: "Will anyone in the world come to see the tragedy that befalls Srebrenica and its inhabitants ?". His remains have never been found. October 2020.

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