Srebenica – The town that gave up. (Bosnia)

This is a town with very bleak history.

.The main reason to visit Srebrenica is certainly  not for any attractions the town itself may offer but to visit the nearby village of Potočari,which is where many of the atrocities which ended in the genocide of over 8000 Bosniak Serbs took place on July 11, 1995 If you want further details click here 

Potočari is about 4-5 kms from the town of Srebrenica and this is where you will find the cemetery and museum.. Ask the driver to drop you outside otherwise it is a long walk back.. The cemetery has about 6000 graves and more are being found and buried here all the time. Each grave has a white marble stone with the persons name and its not unusual to find 3 generations of the same family, some as young as their early teens.

To the right of the main entrance there is a small museum set in a subterranean exhibition room. The pictures are as you would expect somewhat haunting.

If you cross the street to what was once a car factory you will come to the memorial hall and museum..

One of the buildings houses coffins of new arrivals prior to burial. Behind some poignant glass displays you will come across some biographies of the victims usually with an item that once belonged to them.

If you continue further down from the car factory you will find what is now the derelict blocks of the Dutch UN troops which was just another sad part to the tragedy that unfolded here.. You can still find some signs on the wall. The mostly derelict buildings are quite eerie and the day I was there I was the only person in the vicinity.

From here I walked back to the town of Srebrenica and on a warm sunny day it’s  a nice walk.  It was once a lively town but today it is basically a dump and the general impression is that it has simply given up on itself. I later learnt that very little funding is given and much of the once vibrant population simply did not return. Many of the buildings still wear the scars of war and you cant help feeling a sense of hopelessness.  

Other than a church and a fairly well stocked grocery store there is very little to see in the town itself  but if you are interested in the history and you went to the Gallery museum in Sarajevo then a visit here is well worth the effort. One should only heed the sign.

The town is about 3 hours from the capital Sarajevo and the bus leaves at least when i was there just after 7am. Do check the return time as there are not many buses coming back.

Only registered users can comment.