Remembering Branko Mikulic: A Man who refused all Calls to leave besieged Sarajevo

24 years passed since Branko Mikulic, the famous president of the SR of BiH and a member of the Presidency of the SFR Yugoslavia, died in besieged Sarajevo in April 1994.

Although he had the opportunity, Mikulic, who was born in Pogradje near Gornji Vakuf-Uskoplje in 1928, refused to leave the capital city that was under the siege for 44 months. He never felt the freedom again.

“He was making the state of BiH in difficult moments, he fought for its equality in the former federation, for its material progress and the national identity of the Muslims, for the equality of the nations, for organizing the Olympic Games. He rejected all calls and invitations to leave Sarajevo, he was optimistic, he knew everything about a serious illness that he was suffering from, and that he might die and he still wanted to be here, among his people,” wrote Hrvoje Istuk, former editor of RTV Sarajevo in the Sarajevo “Days”.

Not only that, but Mikulic, thanks to his connections, told the truth about the aggression on BiH to the whole world.

Aggression, as Mikulic wrote, was brutal.

“Innocent men, women and children are getting wounded and killed. Over 250,000 people, mostly old people, women and children, have left their homes and fled. Private, social and state property are destroyed as well as our monuments, cultural goods, schools, hospitals, religious buildings, business premises and infrastructure. Even institutions for retarded and blind children are blocked and exposed to danger… BiH and its capital city of Sarajevo are completely blocked. Hunger and epidemics are threatening the entire city,” wrote Mikulic.

Among others, he wrote that “only citizens and peoples of BiH can find the solution to the crisis”.

Mikulic did not show the greatness of his personality only during the aggression. He was a great man when he was at the peak of his strength and power as well.

During the World War II, Branko Mikulic, together with his father Juro, went to the partisans. He was an economist and a political worker. He performed a number of high positions in BiH and Yugoslavia after 1945, and he was also a prominent member of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia.

(Source: Faruk Vele/Radiosarajevo.ba)

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