Renewal and remembrance in Bosanska Krajina

Monday, 05 September, 2005: Ed Vulliamy, with Kemal Pervanic, Sebina Sivac and Isabelle Wesselingh
One of the best attended of recent B.I. forums, with many refugees from the region round Prijedor, Kozarac and Banja Luka in the audience, featured a wide-ranging discussion introduced by a distinguished panel of speakers. Ed Vulliamy, Guardian journalist and author of Seasons in Hell, was one of the first Western reporters (with Roy Gutman of Newsday and ITN’s Penny Marshall) to reveal in August 1992 the existence of murderous concentration camps - Keraterm, Manjaca, Omarska, Trnopolje - run by the Serb extremist forces of Radovan Karadžic and Ratko Mladic. Kemal Pervanic’s The Killing Days is a classic account of Omarska by a survivor. Sebina Sivac, likewise from the area, is writing a Ph.D. on memory and memorials in relation to Kozarac. Isabelle Wesselingh, who as AFP correspondent in Holland since 1999 has covered the relevant trials at the Hague tribunal, is the co-author (with Arnaud Vaulerin, also present) of Raw Memory: Prijedor, laboratory of ethnic cleansing, published this summer by Saqi Books in association with The Bosnian Institute. The purchase by Mittal Steel of the Omarska mine complex, and the campaign by camp survivors to ensure continued exhumation of possible mass grave sites and the establishment of an appropriate memorial to the victims, had given the theme of this forum new and particular urgency.
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