Bosnia and Herzegovina History Timeline

Bosnia and Herzegovina, a former republic of Yugoslavia, is a country in Eastern Europe, surrounded by land on all sides except in the south, where the country has access to the Adriatic Sea. The border countries are Croatia in the west, Montenegro and Serbia in the east. The Dinaric Alps, up to 4,265 m, cover most of the country’s territory, making internal connections difficult.

According to computergees, Bosnia-Herzegovina is divided into two entities: the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which is dominated by Bosniaks (Bosnian Muslims) and Croats, and Republika Srpska (RS), which is dominated by Serbs. Brčko (BD) in northern Bosnia is an independent administrative unit of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which is neither part of the Federation nor the RS.

In ancient times, the area was part of Illyria, since then Bosnia belonged alternately to the Slavic medieval empires and Austria-Hungary.


1180-1204 – Ban Kulin (1163-1204), founded an independent Bosnian state, and unique Bosnian church also known as the Bogomils. His rule is often remembered as Bosnia’s golden age, and he is therefore a Bosnian national folk adventurer.

1878 – Bosnia and Herzegovina is annexed by Austria-Hungary, although the country is still formally part of the Ottoman Empire, but the agreement gives Austria-Hungary the right to occupy and manage the territory. Before the papers were signed in Paris, the Austro-Hungarian army marched into Bosnia and defeated Bosniaks (Muslims) after a short war. One third of the population were Serbs, opposed to the Austro-Hungarian power later, due to resentment in Serbia, where it had been imagined that the area would be Serbian when the Turkish rule in the Balkans finally collapsed.

1914 – The Serbian student Gavrilo Principle assassination of the Austro-Hungarian heir to the throne, Franz Ferdinand and his pregnant wife when he was on an official visit to Sarajevo d. June 28, triggered the diplomatic crisis that led to the outbreak of the first World War. World War II led to the defeat and dissolution of Austria-Hungary and to the disappearance of Bosnia as an administrative unit.

World War II – Bosnia and Herzegovina became the most abused part of Yugoslavia. It was here that the communist-led partisans under Tito built up their power base.

1992-1995 – During the war in Bosnia, it becomes a Bosnian enclave surrounded by Bosnian Serbs. It was declared a “safe area” protected by Dutch UN forces: UNPROFOR. In July 1995, in response to Naser Oric’s actions against Serbian villages around Srebrenica, the city was occupied by the Bosnian Serb army, which deported large sections of the population. Outside the city, the same army carried out a massacre of thousands of Bosnian boys and men, the like of which has not been seen since World War II. The responsible political and military leaders have not yet been held accountable. Read in-depth article here.

2004 – In June, the next 70 government officials, including two political leaders, are removed from office due to the failure to arrest Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic, who is accused of a series of war crimes. Parliamentary Spokesman Dragan Kalinic and Interior Minister Zoran Djeric were removed from office. High Commissioner Ashdown said he wanted to punish a ” small clique of corrupt politicians ” that made it difficult for Bosnia to join NATO and the EU at some point in the future.

In August, several hundred bodies were exhumed from a mass grave at a coal mine in Miljevina, near Foca, approx. 70 km southeast of Sarajevo. Shortly before, 100 other bodies had been found in the same area. Foca was one of the first cities to be occupied by Bosnian Serbs in 1992. It was therefore believed that the bodies belonged to people who had been killed during the clashes.

2006 – In February, the Council of Europe publishes a list of 5 European countries that had not published information on the CIA’s secret flights of prisoners of war. Bosnia and Herzegovina was one of these five countries. The CIA uses the secret flights to fly prisoners around between secret torture centers around the world.

2011 – War criminal Ratko Mladić is arrested in a village in northern Serbia on May 26 and brought to justice in The Hague.

Bosnia and Herzegovina History Timeline

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