20 October 16

BIRN’s Kosovo War Film Screened at Sarajevo University

Sarajevo University’s law and political sciences faculties screened BIRN’s documentary ‘The Unidentified’, about the Serbian fighters responsible for some of the worst atrocities of the Kosovo war in 1999.

‘The Unidentified’, which investigates attacks on Kosovo villages in 1999 and names those involved in an attempted cover-up operation to conceal the crimes, was screened for students of communications, security, journalism and law at Sarajevo University on Tuesday and Wednesday.

“My idea was to make sure that, when people hear and watch this film, be it in Belgrade, Novi Sad or Kragujevac, they will not be able to say that no crimes happened in Kosovo,” the film’s director Marija Ristic said in a video message to the students.

‘The Unidentified’ was made as a result of two years of research, and takes viewers back to the villages of Ljubenic, Cuska, Pavljan and Zahac, near Pec/Peja in Kosovo, in the spring of 1999, when Serbian forces killed more than 118 Albanian civilians.

The victims’ bodies were burned or removed, and some of them were subsequently found in a mass grave at a police raining centre in Batajnica, near Belgrade, in 2001. Eleven former members of Serbian forces are on trial in Belgrade for committing those crimes. In February 2014, nine men were sentenced to a total of 106 years in prison, but the appeals court quashed the verdict in March last year, saying it was “incomprehensible and contradictory”, and ordered a retrial.

Midhat Izmirlija, a professor at the Faculty of Law, said after the screening that ‘The Unidentified’ was a great example of socially-engaged journalism.

“This is an excellent way for the media to work with the aim of determining the truth about certain events and presenting the truth to the victims and the public,” Izmirlija said.

Lejla Turcilo, a professor at the Faculty of Political Sciences, said it was very important for young journalists to be exposed to such works of research works during their studies.

“Our students do not come across these type of stories while studying theory. Our goal is to offer them practical experiences, which they lack during their education, but it is important not to always engage in daily journalism, but in investigative journalism, which is scarce,” she added. She said such projects could motivate students by “showing them there is a possibility for making changes in society”.

Following the screening of the documentary, the Law Faculty students had a lecture and held a discussion on the legal challenges involved in monitoring war crime trials, while the students at the Faculty of Political Sciences had a discussion on journalism and transitional justice with BIRN Bosnia and Herzegovina editor Denis Dzidic.

Fill out my online form.

Latest News and Events

birn-macedonia-s-vlado-apostolov-awarded-for-investigative-reporting

BIRN Macedonia’s Vlado Apostolov Awarded for Investigative Reporting

The Association of Journalists of Macedonia gave its annual investigative reporting award for 2016 to BIRN journalist Vlado Apostolov on February 22 for his series of articles on properties connected to a Macedonian official, Vladimir Zdravev.

birn-albania-seeks-investigations-on-financial-industry

BIRN Albania Seeks Investigations on Financial Industry

Grants offered for three journalists to uncover corruption and abuse of power stories in the financial industry as well as mentoring by experienced editors.

birn-kosovo-wins-anti-corruption-reporting-award

BIRN Staff Trained in Project Cycle Management

Twenty BIRN Programme and Project Managers have been trained to build their capacities in the field of project cycle management.

birn-macedonia-launches-foreign-investments-database

BIRN Macedonia Launches Foreign Investments Database

BIRN Macedonia has launched a new database called ‘Foreign Investments Uncovered’ which indicates that the amount of these investments is seven times lower than announced by government.

new-investigative-journalism-project-launched

New investigative journalism project launched

The Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN, is carrying out a three-year investigative journalism programme thanks to support from the Austrian Development Agency, ADA. BIRN Kosovo director Jeta Xharra and Gunther Zimmer, ADA’s Kosovo director, signed an agreement in Pristina this week, marking the start of the project.

birn-journalists-won-13-awards-in-2016

BIRN Journalists Won 13 Awards in 2016

Journalists from the BIRN Network won prestigious national awards in their respective countries and a number of international awards in 2016. 

birn-s-social-media-pages-grow-in-popularity

BIRN’s Social Media Pages Grow in Popularity

BIRN’s social media pages have increased their numbers of followers significantly, boosting the reach of the stories that BIRN is publishing and heightening public engagement.

birn-albania-holds-roundtable-on-financial-industry

BIRN Albania Holds Roundtable on Financial Industry

The Balkan Investigative Reporting Network in Albania held a roundtable on the financial industry, bringing together journalists, civil society organizations and experts. 

birn-film-shows-problems-between-media-and-police

BIRN Film Shows Problems Between Media and Police

The difficult relationships between journalists and the police forces in various countries in the Western Balkans are highlighted in the BIRN Serbia documentary ‘Police and Media’.

internet-offers-income-perspectives-birn-serbia-debate-hears

Internet Offers Income Perspectives, BIRN Serbia Debate Hears

People in Serbia are willing to pay for good content on the Internet but there are major issues with clickbait articles, badly-produced news and commercially-led content, a BIRN Serbia debate heard.

In This Article