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Medienhilfe Ex-Jugoslawien

Professionelle Solidarität gegen Nationalismus und Chauvinismus
Professional solidarity against nationalism and chauvinism


Newspaper Oslobodjenje was founded in 1943. On the eve of the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Oslobodjenje, with its around 3.000 employees, was among the biggest media houses in former Yugoslavia, the biggest one in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Beside daily Oslobodjenje, it was issuing 21 various publications. Oslobodjenje’s building was among the most shelled form the first days and constantly during the whole war. The building is completely destroyed. But, people working for Oslobodjenje - editors, journalists, workers in print and distribution - have never surrended. They invested incredible energy to keep on the daily under unbelievably difficult conditions. There was not any single day during the wartime that Oslobodjenje did not reach its readers. Editors and journalists of all nationalities were working in a basement, on typewriters, in a cold room, often with candle light in order to keep on informing the people on what was happening in their besieged and shelled town and outside of it. During all that time, Oslobodjenje has been keeping high level of professional informing and got many international journalist awards for that. With the peace time, the daily was faced with another kinds of problems, not so hard as the ones from the wartime, but not less serious.
1. One of the most important problems is the property status of Oslobodjenje. The process of the property transformation was started on eve of the war and was stopped by it. Presently, Oslobodjenje is neither state, nor private-owned media. The process to become shared company will be a long lasting and hard one.
2. Working circumstance of the employees are still completely inadequate. The print and distribution department are in the seller and ground floor of the old, destroyed building, Editorial staff is in a rented apartment, not enough big for working of all journalists and editors in a proper conditions. The old building can not be rebuilt, and for providing at least similar conditions that were existing before the war needs a lot of finances and investments.
3. Oslobodjenje is the only serious political daily in Bosnia-Herzegovina. It’s completely independent editorial policy, often openly critical towards the political establishment is causing quite some problems in relation to the authorities and the ruling party. Besides, the new daily - Dnevni Avaz - pro-regime oriented and largely supported by the ruling SDA is making a big competition to Oslobodjenje.
4. Oslobodjenje has its European edition aimed to inform the great number of refugees in West European countries about the events in their country. However, this project brings considerable depths and represents a significant burden for the paper’s budget.
5. Such a big media, with lot of employees, can not economically survive only from sales of its editions. However, as the economy is far from being completely restored, some incomes from the advertisements will not come soon.

Daily Oslobodjenje has a special symbolic meaning for struggle of journalist profession against madness of the war. After it had survived the enormous horror , the peace times did not bring the possibilities to have a stable development and the paper is still dependent on financial support from abroad.

Address: Dzemala Bijedica 185, 71 000 Sarajevo
Tel: +387 71 442 404; Fax: + 387 71 442 403
Contact person: Mr. Mehmed Halilovic, Editor-in-chief

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