‘A Deadly Warning: Srebrenica Revisited’ follows the group of 20-year-old students as they travel to Bosnia and Herzegovina with Remembering Srebrenica.
The 30-minute documentary will be broadcast on BBC1 at 10.35 on Monday 6 July. It features journalist Myriam François-Cerrah travelling to Bosnia to mark the 20th anniversary of the worst atrocity in Europe since World War II.
Myriam, a British Muslim, visits Srebrenica with the young people in an often emotional trip. The group follows the itinerary experienced by all delegates on the ‘Lessons from Srebrenica’ educational visits programme.
The students – Julie Podbielski-Stewart, Abdul Farooq, Jonas Adrian, Izzie Shaw and Hannah Gerson – learn at first-hand how easily prejudice can take hold and why this story has important lessons for us all in multi-cultural Britain today. Izzie, Julie and Hannah are pictured above.
Julie is the daughter of Colonel Bob Stewart DSO MP, who was United Nations Commander of the British forces in Bosnia in the early 90s. Now studying music at Southampton Solent University, she said:
My father showed me videos of what happened when I was about seven. It was traumatic, but it meant Bosnia has always been there. My generation doesn’t know what happened. People don’t know there was a war in Bosnia. They don’t even know where Bosnia is.”
The group had the opportunity to find out about the darkest moment in post-war European history, cause of one fact – that they were born in the year of the genocide. Their births coincided with the systematic murder of 8,372 Bosnian Muslim men and boys – some as young as 12.
“My family were rejoicing my birth, but the Mothers of Srebrenica were bereft, their daughters raped, their husbands and sons killed,” said Hannah, a student at Nottingham Trent University. “One mother told me ‘I died the day my five children died; I am just waiting for death to come.”
On the visit, Myriam observes the British students discovering what the story of Srebrenica means for us in Britain today and why it’s so important to remember.
Jonas Adrian, an International Relations student from London, said: “Srebrenica shows us it is a moral duty to educate the wider world on the importance of rooting out hate in society. As a melting pot of different walks of life, the UK’s acceptance of diversity is what makes us strong as a nation and being able to travel to Bosnia reaffirmed just how proud I am to be a British citizen.
“Our society may not be wholly perfect and has much that needs to be improved but our strong culture of acceptance and cultural diversity is world renowned. Srebrenica must be ingrained and educated as the extreme we must never surrender to.”