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Latest Interviews from the Balkans


Serbian Musician Takes Peace Message to Srebrenica

Serbian star Marcelo says that music can’t heal the divisions of war but it can promote ethnic reconciliation - as he wants to do at his concert with Bosnian rappers in Srebrenica this week.


Balkan States Don’t Protect Journalists, HRW Says

Instead of securing safety for journalists to work freely, politicians in Bosnia, Kosovo, Montenegro and Serbia are creating a hostile environment for media freedom, a new report says.


New Ombudsman Vows to Get Closer to People

Hilmi Jashi says political influence, deficient legislation - and a general lack of faith in justice - are among the many challenges he faces in his new post.


End War Crimes Impunity, Council of Europe Tells Serbia

Serbia must do more to deal with its wartime legacy as well as acknowledging what happened in Srebrenica in 1995, Council of Europe human rights commissioner Nils Muiznieks told BIRN.


Fear on the Run: A Srebrenica Survivor’s Tale

Fatima Ahmic spent 13 days fleeing through woodlands, almost entirely without food and water, dodging ambushes and shellfire as she escaped the Srebrenica massacres 20 years ago.


Croatian Politicians ‘Fuelling Hatred of Serbs’

Tamara Opacic, the author of a new survey of violence and intolerance against Croatia’s Serb minority last year, blamed politicians for using ethnic intolerance to attract votes.


Cascade of Power Dams Threatens Balkan Rivers

The head of the environmental NGO Riverwatch, Ulrich Eichelmann, says a mass of new power plants, supported by the World Bank and EBRD, could seal the fate of Balkan rivers.


Mehmeti: Macedonia Needs New Prime Minister

Macedonian Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski must stand down and further cooperation with his party, the VMRO DPMNE, should be ended, says Ermira Mehmeti MP and member of the junior coalition party the Democratic Union for Integration, DUI.


Shepherd of Bosnia’s Vanishing Catholics Looks to Pope

Franjo Komarica, the bishop of Banja Luka bishopric and a veteran champion of human rights hopes the papal visit will give new heart to Bosnian Catholics and stop their exodus.


The Three Trials of Momcilo Krajisnik

Former Bosnian Serb parliament speaker and Hague convict Momcilo Krajisnik told BIRN that he has struggled to live with being labelled a war criminal, and wants to clear his name.


Graffiti Artists Mark 20th Anniversary of Bosnia War

American street artist Caleb Neelon worked with young Bosnians of various ethnicities to create a graffiti project called ‘Peace Murals’ to mark 20 years since the end of the conflict.


Serbian Artist Puts ‘Dead Nations’ on Show

Artist Ivan Grubanov, whose first major work was drawings of Slobodan Milosevic on trial, examines the idea of countries that no longer exist in a show at this year’s prestigious Venice Biennale.


Mass Demo For Srebrenica Victims Planned in Belgrade

The journalist behind an action to honour the victims of Srebrenica in Belgrade hopes his initiative will send a different picture of Serbia to the world.


New ‘Balkan Monaco’ Claims Rush on Citizenship

The boss of a new self-proclaimed Balkan statelet maintains that his tax haven on the Danube has received a quarter-of-a-million requests for citizenship.


Basketball Heroine is Back on Court

Losing part of her leg in a crash has not forced young Serbian basketball player Natasa Kovacevic to part with her dreams. A year-and-a-half later, she is playing once again.