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  • Originally published 07/11/2013

    Bosnians rebury Srebrenica victims

    Tens of thousands have gathered in Bosnia to rebury 409 newly identified victims of the 1995 Srebrenica massacre on the 18th anniversary of the atrocity in which about 8,000 Muslims were slaughtered.Among the victims are 43 teenage boys and a baby that was born during the ordeal. They are being laid to rest at a special cemetery near Srebrenica where victims are buried as their remains are gradually found in mass graves."This year we are going to bury the youngest victim of the genocide, the Muhic family's baby," Kenan Karavdic, the official in charge of the burial ceremony, said on Thursday....

  • Originally published 06/13/2013

    Crown Prince Alexander II: the man who would be king of Serbia

    Four wooden coffins lie in a row, each draped in a subtly different red and blue standard. Behind them, an ornate iconostasis rises 20 feet to the cupola of the royal chapel. In front of them, crucifixes in Cyrillic script record the names of the coffins’ inhabitants. “This is my father, my mother, my grandmother, and my uncle,” says the crown prince, gesturing at each in turn.Republics do not often throw state funerals for royals, still less for four at once. Nor do they have princes, princesses and palaces. But Crown Prince Alexander II, heir to the throne of what for a short time before World War II was the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, and is now a mosaic of republics in sometimes unhappy coexistence, is untroubled by such apparent contradictions. After a decade of lobbying, he succeeded last month in burying four members of the Karadjordevic dynasty in what was once their kingdom.On an overcast May morning in Oplenac, an hour’s drive west of Belgrade, thousands of Serbs queued for hours to get a glimpse of the prince as he arrived for the service. He stood to kiss a crucifix held aloft by Patriarch Irinej, the head of the Serbian Orthodox Church, before watching men in national costume bear the coffins to the royal mausoleum, where one day he, too, will be buried....

  • Originally published 05/28/2013

    Serbia holds funeral for last Yugoslav king

    BELGRADE, Serbia — Serbia held a funeral on Sunday for Yugoslavia’s last king, Peter II Karadjordjevic, who had fled the country at the start of World War II and died in the U.S. in 1970.The former king’s remains, and those of his wife, mother and brother, were interred in the family tomb at St. George church in Oplenac, central Serbia, in a ceremony aired live on the state television.The funeral was attended by top state officials, who described it as an act of reconciliation and unity....

  • Originally published 05/06/2013

    The Historic Agreement to End the Conflict in Kosovo

    Photo credit: Flickr/_Matt_T_After protracted, months-long negotiations, Kosovo and Serbia recently agreed to a compromise on sovereignty and autonomy that would end two decades of conflict. In extinguishing the last embers of war in what was Yugoslavia -- the volatile, ethnically divided nation where the assassination of an Austrian archduke launched World War I, and where civil war throughout the nineties led to ethnic cleansing and other atrocities -- Europe is nearing the end of its long journey to overcome its tribal enmities and build a cohesive, peaceful civilization.

  • Originally published 02/13/2013

    Serbian cave produces oldest human ancestor in this part of Europe

    A fragment of lower jaw recovered from a Serbian cave has now been dated as the oldest hominin ancestor found in this part of Europe. The fossil was dated to between 397,000 and 525,000 years old, a time when distinctly Neanderthal traits began to appear in Europe. The evolution of these traits was strongly influenced by periodic isolation of groups of individuals, caused by glacial episodes. According to research published in February 2012 in the open access journal PLoS ONE, the individual probably evolved under different conditions than populations who inhabited more western parts of the continent during the same time frame....

  • Originally published 01/24/2013

    Body of Yugoslav king long buried in America heads home

    The remains of Yugoslavia's last king — Peter II Karadjordjevic, who died in the U.S. in 1970 — were flown back to Serbia in a solemn ceremony on Tuesday, despite protests by some Serb royalists in America.The former king fled the Nazi occupation of Yugoslavia at the start of World War II and never returned because Communists took over at the end of the war. He died in exile at the age of 47 and was buried at a Serbian Orthodox Church monastery in Libertyville, Illinois — the only European monarch laid to rest on U.S. soil.His son — Crown Prince Alexander, who lives in Belgrade — wanted the remains returned to Serbia. That reportedly upset some Serbian-American groups, who claimed the remains were being secretly exhumed and that before the king had died he asked to remain buried in the United States....

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