August 6th was special for me because I had never visited the Omarska camp before. I did not know if this event would awaken my emotions and change my life. Entering the camp, I noticed a lot of crying faces because the event reminds them of the times of killing and genocide.

The feeling was very sad when I visited the buildings in Omarksa that were used as a prison. For the first time, I felt a dam open that ran through my entire body. The security guards made me very nervous because I felt trapped—like it was in during the war in 1992.

Coming out of the camp, I had a new understanding of ​​the genocide in my country and for the first time put myself in the position of the person who lost his closest family members. I understand why this day is one of the most difficult days of the year.

From that day on, I realize the importance of a project aimed at promoting peace and security in the world.

Author: Jusuf Topić

Source: Project on Peacebuilding – Bosnia 2019

* This article in form of an personal reflection was published on the program Youth and Democracy 2019 which is supported by forumZFD in BiH.  On a weeklong course youth had the opportunity to engage in the historical and political context of the processes of change in Bosnia and Herzegovina since the Dayton Peace Accords in 1995. Students have participated in workshops designed to expand their understanding and knowledge of peacebuilding and its challenges, in addition to guided site visits in the Prijedor region.