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Twenty Years Later: Exhibit Honors Survivors, Tells Story of Cooperation in Bosnian War

ST. LOUIS – Twenty years after the start of the genocidal war in Bosnia-Herzegovina, a photographic exhibition and events at Fontbonne University will commemorate the survivors. The exhibition, “Survival in Sarajevo: How a Jewish Community Came to the Aid of Its City,” is traveling to St. Louis from Vienna for display, April 1 – April 24.

The opening reception for the exhibit will be at 2 p.m., Sunday, April 1. At 3 p.m., Sukrija and Ertana Dzidzovic will join Ibro Tucakovic in a moderated discussion about their wartime experiences in Sarajevo. Dzidzovic is the founder and editor of SabaH, a St. Louis-based Bosnian newspaper that is distributed throughout the United States.

Also speaking will be Joshua Fogelson of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee.

The exhibit tells the story of La Benevolencija, a Jewish humanitarian aid agency that provided aid to the besieged city of Sarajevo, without regard to religious or ethnic background of the Serbs, Croats and Muslims it served.

The exhibition was developed by Centropa (www.centropa.org) and is collaboratively sponsored by Fontbonne University’s Bosnia Memory Project, The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, the Holocaust Museum and Learning Center, the University of Missouri-St. Louis, the St. Louis Rabbinical Association, the Congregation Neve Shalom, the Bosnian Chamber of Commerce, Sabah Newspaper, and KETC Channel 9.

“Twenty years later, the best way to grapple with the legacy of the war and genocide in Bosnia is to listen to as many voices as possible,” said Ben Moore, professor of English at Fontbonne and director of the Bosnia Memory Project, which is dedicated to establishing an enduring record of Bosnian genocide survivors.

St. Louis is home to approximately 60,000 refugees from the war and genocide in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The focus of the exhibit is on multi-ethnic cooperation during the siege of Sarajevo, the longest siege of a capital city in modern history. As part of the programming supporting the exhibit, local Jewish leaders will give presentations about their experiences offering wartime assistance.

Learn more, or view a schedule of events.