Explore the heart-wrenching history of the Bosnian Genocide in the 1990s with our unique and sustainable Srebrenica Genocide study tour. This insightful journey through Eastern Bosnia isn’t just a trip – it’s an opportunity to connect deeply with the region’s tumultuous past, especially the events of the Srebrenica Genocide.
Discover the complex causes behind Yugoslavia’s breakup and gain a deeper understanding of Europe’s devastating genocide, the biggest one since World War II. By choosing this experience, you’re engaging in responsible tourism that directly benefits local communities. Our highlight is a heart-to-heart lunch with a local Srebrenica family, where personal, firsthand narratives transform history into a tangible reality.
Your journey through Eastern Bosnia includes visiting significant historical sites like the Potočari Memorial Centre and the town of Srebrenica. Each site visit enriches your understanding, offering perspectives on the region’s past, its present-day reality, and the potential for its future. More than a historical tour, Understanding Srebrenica Genocide fosters a profound connection with the land and its people, bridging the gap between past events and present-day experiences.
Please Note On every 11th of July, Funky Tours commemorates Srebrenica Genocide by offering a free-of-charge departure to the Srebrenica Genocide commemoration. With the aim of raising awareness of the Srebrenica Genocide, we invite everyone to attend the Srebrenica funeral. Please note that the number of available seats is limited. Due to the complexity of the date itself (July 11), this tour has a different itinerary and does not include a home-hosted lunch (like our standard tour on any other date during the year).
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Departure Times Daily at 8 AM.
Pickup Locations If you are staying in the old town of Sarajevo, meet us at our office. If you are staying a bit away from our office, please let us know, and we can organize advance pickup.
Activity Note: The tour is adapted to all ages and is not physically demanding. Due to the distance of the locations, we use comfortable vehicles during the tour.
Meet our team at the office or at your preferred pickup location. Your guide will give you a personal, firsthand experience of sorrowful past events and introduce you to the local people of Srebrenica to complete the whole picture. They will make sure no questions remain unanswered, even of a personal nature, so don’t refrain from sharing your thoughts and opinions at any moment in time.
After the morning pickup around 8 am, you’ll spend two and a half hours on the road towards Srebrenica, where you’ll enjoy the beautiful scenery of Eastern Bosnian mountain regions, spiced up with detailed stories and important explanations behind the reasons of “Death of Yugoslavia”.
Understanding the role of Bosnia in the storm of the 90s is crucial for a better understanding of Genocide in Srebrenica.
Genocide in Srebrenica is not an event that just took place in one narrow region or one town; in fact, it is an overall story of aggression on Bosnia and Herzegovina, meaning Genocide events took place in broader areas of Bosnia and Herzegovina, especially in the region of East Bosnia, famously called Podrinje.
During your ride, you will pass through several small towns and villages where similar events have occurred. So, chronological introduction and context are very important to fully understand the story you’ll explore together that day.
The most important towns we are passing by and which are related to the story of the Srebrenica Genocide and 1990s ethnic cleansing:
As soon you arrive at the Memorial Centre at Potočari, you will have a chance to participate in a locally guided tour and history class at the Memorial Centre with an official guide. The local guide in charge is a survivor of those events and a person whose experiences and stories are an extremely important part of the tour. Memorial Cemetery, where over 6500+ people in past years have been buried before being exhumed and identified, while some over 1500 victims are still missing, will be the most striking and mind-blowing part of the visit.
Other important elements of the visit will take place at the former Dutchbat UN base, where you’ll get a chance to see the newly open (Feb 2017) Museum of “Srebrenica Genocide – failure of the international community,” understand the importance of Memorial Room, see number of documentary movies, study chronological photo exhibitions, get stunned by graffiti remains, learn personal stories and stories of in-base mass grave and other elements of importance related to overall story of Srebrenica Genocide.
After three hours of visiting Potočari Memorial Centre, it’s time for a 6 km ride to Srebrenica town. Visiting this small, historically rich, ‘silver town’ (Bosnian for silver is ‘Srebro’) will give better insight into the meaning of the “World’s largest concentration camp during the 90’s”. Short walking tour for interesting photography and understanding what Srebrenica as a small town really is.
The day’s highlight is full-course home-hosted lunch with the local family in Srebrenica.
As the unemployment rate, Genocide denial, and severe discrimination of predominantly Bosniak people in Srebrenica are frequent, Funky Tours has dedicated its work to empowering local communities to participate actively in sustainable tourism.
The home-hosted full-course lunch you will be served is always made from scratch with organically grown ingredients from local farms of resilient Srebrenica Genocide survivors. Joining us for this lunch means you are treating your taste buds with once-in-a-lifetime flavors and helping us support the small local community in striving towards a better and sustainable future.
People of Srebrenica love to share their personal stories, those beautiful ones, equally as the terrible ones. Don’t be afraid to listen, understand, and actively support the sustainability of life in Srebrenica today.
Experience the region’s rich cultural heritage as you savor traditional recipes passed down through generations. This extraordinary meal not only offers a taste of Bosnia and Herzegovina but also serves as a testament to the resilience and strength of the survivors.
Join us and participate in their remarkable journey of healing and hope.
Finally, facts are known today, as what exactly happened in Srebrenica is beyond any reasonable doubt. Numerous trials at ICTY have proven it, but the true reasons and role of the Dutchbat UN forces at Srebrenica, and overall UN role, is still very hard to fully uncover.
Denial, as the last phase of Genocide and ethnic cleansing in Eastern Bosnia, still continues.
The Srebrenica massacre, also known as the Srebrenica genocide, refers to the July 1995 killing of more than 8,000 Bosniak men and boys, as well as the ethnic cleansing of another 25,000–30,000 refugees in and around the town of Srebrenica in Bosnia and Herzegovina, by units of the Army of Republika Srpska (VRS) under the command of General Ratko Mladić during the Bosnian War. A paramilitary unit from Serbia known as the Scorpions, officially part of the Serbian Interior Ministry until 1991, participated in the massacre. It is alleged that foreign volunteers, including the Greek Volunteer Guard, participated.
In April 1993, the United Nations declared the besieged enclave of Srebrenica in the Drina Valley of north-eastern Bosnia a “safe area” under UN protection. However, in July 1995, the United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR), represented on the ground by a 400-strong contingent of armed Dutch peacekeepers, failed to prevent the town’s capture by the VRS and the subsequent massacre by the Bosnian Serbs of more than 8,000 civilians and prisoners, mostly men and boys.
The Srebrenica massacre is the largest mass murder in Europe since World War II. In 2004, in a unanimous ruling on the “Prosecutor v. Krstić” case, the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), located in The Hague, ruled that the massacre of the enclave’s male inhabitants, accompanied by the forcible transfer of all of the women, children and elderly, constituted a crime of genocide. Theodor Meron, the presiding judge, stated:
By seeking to eliminate a part of the Bosnian Muslims, the Bosnian Serb forces committed genocide. They targeted the extinction of the 40,000 Bosnian Muslims living in Srebrenica, a group that was emblematic of the Bosnian Muslims in general. They stripped all the male Muslim prisoners, military and civilian, elderly and young, of their personal belongings and identification and deliberately and methodically killed them solely on the basis of their identity.
In February 2007, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) concurred with the ICTY judgment that the atrocities committed at Srebrenica constituted genocide, stating:
The Court concludes that the acts committed at Srebrenica falling within Article II (a) and (b) of the Convention were committed with the specific intent to destroy in part the group of the Muslims of Bosnia and Herzegovina as such and accordingly that these were acts of genocide, committed by members of the VRS in and around Srebrenica from about 13 July 1995.
The ICJ also ruled that Serbia “has violated the obligation to prevent genocide” and that Serbia was to cooperate fully with the ICTY, including the transfer of individuals accused of genocide to the ICTY. Ratko Mladić has been accused by the ICTY but still remains at large and is suspected of hiding in Serbia or in the entity within Bosnia and Herzegovina called the Republic of Srpska.
The majority of those killed were adult men and teenage boys, but the victims included boys aged under 15, men over the age of 65, and even reportedly babies. The Preliminary List of People Missing or Killed in Srebrenica compiled by the Bosnian Federal Commission of Missing Persons contains 8,373 names, some 500 of them under 18, and includes several dozen women and girls. As of March 2010, 6414 genocide victims have been identified through DNA analysis of body parts recovered from mass graves and 3,647 victims have been buried at the Memorial Centre of Potočari.
In 2005, in a message to the tenth-anniversary commemoration of the genocide, the Secretary-General of the United Nations described Srebrenica as the worst crime on European soil since the Second World War, and while noting that great nations had failed to respond and that blame lay first and foremost with those who planned and carried out the massacre and those who assisted and harbored them, acknowledged that the UN itself had made serious errors of judgment and the tragedy of Srebrenica would haunt the UN’s history forever.
Serbia and Montenegro were cleared of direct responsibility for or complicity in the massacre. Still, they were found responsible for not doing enough to prevent the massacre and not prosecuting the responsible, in breach of the Genocide Convention. The Preliminary List of People Missing or Killed in Srebrenica, compiled by the Bosnian Federal Commission of Missing Persons, contains 8,373 names. As of July 2012, 6,838 genocide victims have been identified through DNA analysis of body parts recovered from mass graves; as of July 2013, 6,066 victims have been buried at the Memorial Centre of Potočari. Serbian President Tomislav Nikolić officially apologized for the massacre, although he stopped short of calling it genocide.
In 2013 and 2014, the Netherlands was found liable in its own supreme court and the Hague district court for failing in its duty to prevent more than 300 deaths.
On 8 July 2015, Russia, at the request of the Republika Srpska and Serbia, vetoed a UN resolution condemning the Srebrenica massacre as genocide. Serbia called the resolution “anti-Serb”, while European and U.S. governments affirmed that the crimes were genocide. On 9 July 2015, both the European Parliament (EP) and the U.S. Congress adopted resolutions reaffirming the description of the crime as genocide.
On 22 November 2017, Ratko Mladić was convicted of various crimes at the United Nations tribunal, including genocide, for his role at Srebrenica. He was sentenced to life imprisonment, and as well for Radovan Karadžić in 2019.
6 – 10 July 1995The Bosnian Serb Army attacked Srebrenica – within a UN-safe area previously held by the Army of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Civilians taking refuge there are under the protection of Dutch forces.
11 JulyThousands of refugees and Srebrenica residents – mostly women, children, and the infirm – flee to the Dutch UN peacekeeping base in Potocari. Bosnian Serb commanders demanded Bosniak Muslims hand over their weapons.
12 JulyBosnian Muslim men of military age began to move north after gathering in Susnjari. They are shelled as they flee through the mountains. Some are also gunned down en route, while others are killed after surrendering.
12 JulyMale and female refugees are separated by the Bosnian Serb Army. Thousands of women, children, and the elderly are deported by bus to Bosniak Muslim territory. The men are held in trucks and warehouses.
13 – 17 JulyUp to 8,000 Bosniak men and boys are killed at a number of execution sites around Srebrenica. Reports of the atrocities began to surface on 16 July. Source: UN, ICTY.
What Do I Need to Bring?
As part of the vision of raising awareness about the Genocide, Funky Tours offers a Srebrenica tour on the 11th of July symbolically for 1 EUR.
Book your place in advance because the number of free places is limited. Due to the commemoration day and the special nature of the tour, on July 11th the tour has a modified program and does not include a home-hosted lunch.
Informative tour of a very sad part of history
This was taken as part of a 16 Day Balkans Tour with Funky Tours. The day in Srebrenica was intense and extremely informative giving us a window into a significant time in history of this beautiful country. What capped it off (after viewing people’s stories in the museum) was having lunch at the home of a lovely lady who lost relatives at this massacre and to hear her story first hand.
Her cooking was exceptional and the food was a sideline to hearing her experiences in this little part of earth.
This is probably the most significant historical and documentary tour my wife and I have ever done. It should be done by everyone to be informed of the atrocities that happened in history so things like this are never repeated again. We went away from this day changed with informative reflection of what evil man can do to another.
It was a wonderful experience! Our guide was Almir and he was the best. He told us all about the war, both history and personal stories. Srebrenica is a key moment in this regions history and Im so glad I got to go, have an amazing lunch with a local family and see the memorial. I would 10000% recommend!!!
Understanding Srebrenica and lunch with family
What an experience. It was emotional, enlightening and something I will never forget. It was emotional to see the devastating scars and sights when seeing and learning about what happened in Srebrenica.
Our guide was amazing and we can sense his passion when telling his own story along with horrific things in Srebrenica.
We were initially a bit nervous when going to a locals home for lunch, but they immediately made us feel at home as their guests and had offered more food than I could ever imagine.
The lunch itself was one of the most memorable things we did while visiting Bosnia and will be something we will always remember. I highly recommend this tour, it will be an experience that you will always remember but difficult to describe in words.
An impressive tour with a great guide
I really enjoyed the tour and would like to higly recommend it to everyone who wants to learn more about the Genocide in Srebrenica. Visiting the memorial and the cemetery with Funky Tours was impressive, harrowing and touching.
On top of that, our amazing guide Almir shared his knowledge as well as his personal story with us. Thank you for that!
In the same time he gave all his great energy to make us feel comfortable and at ease during this intense day. He is just an amazing person!
A Profound Journey of Remembrance
The Understanding Srebrenica Genocide tour offers a moving and thought-provoking experience that delves into the tragic history of Srebrenica. Led by a knowledgeable guide who fought in and survived the war, this tour provides a comprehensive understanding of the events that unfolded.
Throughout the tour, we were deeply moved by the stories shared and the personal accounts of survivors. Their resilience and determination to ensure that the world never forgets the atrocities committed is inspiring.
The tour strikes a delicate balance between education and reflection, allowing participants to absorb the gravity of the events while paying their respects at memorial sites. The sense of collective grief and solidarity among the group creates a powerful atmosphere.
If you’re looking for an experience that will leave a lasting impact and encourage reflection on the power of remembrance, I highly recommend the Understanding Srebrenica Genocide tour. It is a journey that will inspire a commitment to honoring the lives lost.