Braving below-zero temperatures, some of the 1,000 migrants accommodated at the Usivak camp near Sarajevo stepped outside to enjoy the sunny January Tuesday and daydream about a new life in Europe.
More than 7,000 migrants are currently staying in Bosnia, waiting for an opportunity to cross into the European Union or to pursue their dreams elsewhere.
One of them is Adil, a Pakistani who is trying to master the Bosnian language and hoping to find a job.
Being a Christian, he said he left his city, Multan, because of the deep religious divisions there.
“I am a sociologist,” Adil introduced himself. “I obtained my master's degree in 2012."
Adil studied in his home country so he could have a better future, but that never happened, he said.
“There is a lot of nepotism there, some are privileged, one’s religious affiliation and political connections are important,” he explained.
Nearby, a cheerful group of Moroccans was juggling a football. Among them is Ilijas, who said he said he left his home because the state did not help him realize his dream of becoming a football player.
“I want to achieve my goals. To have a better life, which I never had in my country. My dream is to play football. To play in Europe, with God’s help!” he said.
“I went to Turkey via plane from Morocco. I walked from Turkey to Bosnia,” he added.
Another migrant in the group, Nadir, dreams of becoming the best K1 fighter in the world. He is training daily, even now. He uses the containers, as it is too cold to do it outside.
“My dream is to be the best fighter in the world, like Badr Hari. I want to reach the Netherlands and fulfil my dream there,” he said.
One of the cooks in the Hadzici camp, Azra Ibrahimovic Srebrenica, prepares three meals for nearly 1,000 migrants daily.
“They are accommodated in living containers and they are provided with everything they need, including heating. All the rooms they are staying in have heating,” she said.