CNN Balkan Conflict News

Bosnians honor victims
of a war they hope to end


November 1, 1995
Web posted at: 8:40 p.m. EST (0140 GMT)

From International Correspondent Christiane Amanpour

SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina (CNN) -- Peace talks began Wednesday on the day they remember the dead in Bosnia.

In Sarajevo, the young came to pay their respects to the thousands of Bosnian children who've been killed during the war. They brought flowers and toys, books, pencils, drawings -- whatever they had. Their wish is for peace.

In the cemetery, adults tend the graves of their relatives and friends killed by snipers and shells and the men killed on the front.

Sarajevan mother

"After the death of my son, it's difficult to think we can live with the Serbs, but someday we must."

- mother in Sarajevo

"I expect peace to come," said a father. "I don't think it'll be quick, but this will be a beginning." A mother said, "After the death of my son, it's difficult to think we can live with the Serbs, but someday we must."


A road blocked by barriers is a symbol of how the war has divided Sarajevo and Bosnia. A few civilians are allowed to trickle across the lines. Those who make the trek are the ones who believe Bosnia can be put back together again

"I'm an optimist," said one Serb. "We are all tired of this."

In northwest Bosnia, which has seen most of the recent fighting, United Nations soldiers mediate between the warring sides and monitor the cease-fire. They meet around a table under a tent in the middle of no-man's land.

A mother whose two children were killed by shrapnel in Sarajevo warned the negotiators in Ohio, "Do not partition Bosnia. Don't try to divide the graves of our children."

But even as the rival leaders talk peace, the U.N. reports Serbs in northern Bosnia are still expelling Croat and Muslim minorities.

Ethnic division is what the Serbs want. Reintegration is what the Bosnian government wants. It says it's best hope lies with a U.S.-led NATO implementation force to eventually create conditions that will put Bosnia back together again.

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