Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Hercegovina, is a city of contrasts. Its diverse history tied what was separated for centuries, different nations, religions and traditions. But not for long.
The explosive nature of opposing elements firstly led to the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria in 1914, which initiated the I. World War. The city survived both world wars and became the capital of newly established Socialist Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, a federal unit of the more prominent Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Thriving on progress, citizens lived in peace, Sarajevo being the only capital city in Europe with mosque, synagogue, Catholic and Orthodox church all built in the proximity.
During the disintegration of Yugoslavia, the Socialist Republic of Bosnia and Hercegovina declared independence, but since there was a significant number of disagreeing Bosnian Serbs living in the country, the war erupted. The siege of Sarajevo lasted for 1,425 days, from April 1992 to February 1996, becoming the most protracted siege of capital in the history of modern world. Nearly 14.000 people were killed during the siege, one-seventh of 100.000 souls lost in the entire Bosnian war. The trauma is still written in every pore of the city, with citizens regardless continuing to revive Sarajevo’s rich legacy.