Project Description

Romeo and Juliet of Sarajevo

One great love tragically ended in May 1993 and became a sad metaphor of the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina; the great love of Admira Ismić and Boško Brkić – “Romeo and Juliet of Sarajevo”. Admira was a Bosniak and Boško was a Serb but that did not keep their love from blooming for 9 years. In the gist of war, at the peak of Serbian stranglehold over Sarajevo, two lovers decided to escape from the awful terrors of life in a torn city. The couple made a decision to flee Sarajevo together, encouraged by a friend from the Bosnian army who made a promise of safe passage for both, regardless of tensions and dangerous division of the city. Despite their families beseeching them to stay, Admira and Boško walked from Bosnian front lines towards the bridge which led out of Sarajevo – into the territory held by the Serbian army. The plan was to go through Grbavica to Belgrade and into a new life. As they crossed from Vrbanja bridge over the Miljacka river around 5 PM, Boško was shot dead by a sniper. The next shot wounded Admira who screamed in pain, but even though she was fatally injured, she found the strength to crawl to her dead lover, wrapping herself into his arms. Admira didn’t even try to save herself but decided to die next to her beloved Boško. Who is responsible for the deaths of two young people? It is unknown to this day, but their tragic story became well known worldwide over the next week as Serbs and Bosniaks denied their responsibilities. The couple’s bodies laid embraced on the bridge for eight days, reminding the people of Sarajevo about the sad ruthlessness of war. In 1996, after the war ended, the bodies of Admira and Boško were brought to Sarajevo, where they were buried next to each other in the Lion cemetery.