Regional NGOs: Today is the 30th anniversary of the tragic death of Srđan Aleksić, a real war hero

The founders of the “Srđan Aleksić” Regional Journalist Award remind the public that today, January 27, 2023, marks the 30th anniversary of the tragic death of Srđan Aleksić, a young man from Trebinje who was killed by members of Republic of Srpska Army (ARS) for saving the life of fellow citizen Alen Glavović.

On January 21, 1993, four members of the ARS started harassing and beating Alen Glavovć. Srđan Aleksić approached them and told them to leave the man alone, whereupon they turned towards him and began to beat him brutally and hit him with rifle butts. Srđan fell into a coma and died six days later in the hospital. Alen Glavović managed to escape and today he lives in Sweden with his family. Every year he visits Srđan’s grave and leaves flowers on it.

Srđan’s father, Rade Aleksić, then wrote an obituary in which he stated: “He died doing his human duty.” “He protected a man, and I am proud of him,” said Rade Aleksić in an interview.

Srđan’s murder happened in the center of Trebinje, near the police station and the city market, in full view of everyone. A conspiracy of silence reigned in Trebinje until 2007, when journalists from the region began to actively write about the fate of Srđan Aleksić. After that, Srđan became a symbol and a real hero of the wars of the 1990s. Cities in the post-Yugoslav area began to name streets, boulevards, passages… after Srđan Aleksić.

Few people from Trebinje told that Srđan Aleksić was the first and only soldier who openly, in front of the municipality, disgusted by what was happening on the Dubrovnik battlefield, protested and threw his rifle. They also said that even before the tragic day, he defended his Bosniak neighbors from thugs and villains on several occasions. His fellow citizen Ljubiša Gluščević said that Srđan deserved a monument “bigger than Njegoš and Dučić”, because he defended the honor and image of Trebinje in bad times.

Srđan Aleksić was 26 years old when he was killed. He was a junior record holder in swimming and engaged in amateur theater.

“The death of Srđan has a message, a message for the future, a message of man for man. We who live should see that message, cultivate it and use it, as something that will help it that good prevails”, said his father Rade in the documentary film “Srđo” produced by Radio and Television of Serbia from 2007.

In the words of Srđan’s father: “Srđan is gone, we are alive. And by giving recognition to a certain act, we in fact determine ourselves and our life”.

It is precisely for these reasons that the Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly Banja Luka, the Network for Peace Building, the Independent Journalists’ Association of Vojvodina, the Montenegro Media Institute and the Association for the Promotion of Media Culture, Art and Tolerance “Lupiga – the World through Ordinary Eyes” from Croatia established last year “Srđan Aleksić” Regional Journalist Award. His act and name symbolize the values that this regional journalism award also seeks to affirm, namely civic courage and responsibility, solidarity, humanity, the right to freedom of opinion, the right to be different.

The award is given to journalists and media from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Croatia and Montenegro in three categories: for journalistic courage and excellence, for contribution to the community and for the media.

The awards were presented at a ceremony in Banja Luka, on December 10, 2022, on International Human Rights Day, and the winners are Viktor Ivančić, Tamara Skrozza and the KRIK portal.

The founders of the award undertake to maintain this tradition in the coming years.

Banja Luka/Novi Sad/Zagreb/Podgorica, January 27, 2023.


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