Wednesday marks 28 years since the death of Srdjan Aleksic, a young Bosnian Serb man who lost his life defending his Bosniak neighbour from Bosnian Serb soldiers in the southern town of Trebinje.
Aleksic became a member of the Army of Republika Srpska when the Bosnian war started.
In 1993, he saw a group of his fellow soldiers harassing his friend, Alen Glavovic, and decided to intervene. The soldiers turned against him and beat him into a coma.
Aleksic passed away in the local hospital six days later, on January 27, 1993.
The young man was posthumously awarded a Charter of Bosnia’s Helsinki Committee for Human Rights. He also has a street in Sarajevo named after him, as well as a passage in the Serbian cities of Pancevo and Novi Sad, where there is also a plaque commemorating him. A sports tournament in the Bosnian city of Tuzla also carries his name.
Serbia’s former President Boris Tadic awarded Aleksic with the ‘Milos Obilic’ medal for courage and heroism in 2012, while Milorad Dodik, the former President of Republika Srpska, Bosnia’s Serb-majority region, awarded him with the ‘Order of honour of Republika Srpska’ in 2013.
Alen Glavovic today lives in Sweden and is married with two children. He comes to Trebinje every year to visit Aleksic’s the grave.