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  • One of the photographs in the collection of the “Association of Mothers of Srebrenica”.

  • Bosnian muslim villagers deported from the safe-haven of Zepa, arrive at the border area between Serbian and Bosnian Muslim forces in July 1995

  • Tuzla, July 1995 Bosnian soldier reads off names of survivors of the Srebrenica massacre to refugees in a camp in Tuzla.

  • Exhumation of mass Grave 2006 - A multi-national forensic team lead by canadian Forensic Anthropologist Renee Kosalka exhumes a mass grave holding the bodies of men from the town of Srebrenica executed in July 1995. Snagovo, Republika Srpska October 2006. NOTE: this panoramic image was created using 2 frames shot in sequence and joined with standard software. No elements or information have been added from any other photograph or manipulated in any way. In this case, the join between the two images has not been masked or altered.

  • Lukovac Re-association Center 2006 - The skeletal remains exhumed from mass graves containing the bodies of men from Srebrenica killed in July 1995 are laid out at the Lukovac Re-association Center in Lukovac, Bosnia, October 2006 Forensic experts slowly attempt reconstruct the skeletons of bodies smashed when the were moved from primary to secondary graves in late 1995. The goal is to allow the body to be buried as a complete and identified human.

  • A collection of objects carefully cleaned and tabulated sit on a shelf in the "Podrinja Indentification Project" morgue where evidence is kept as well as the hundreds of bodies exhumed in the Srebrenica case that remain unburied. Tuzla, Bosnia , October 2006.

  • Clothing recovered from a mass grave is photographed by a criminologist at the the "Podrinja Indentification Project" morgue where evidence is kept as well as the hundreds of bodies exhumed in the Srebrenica case that remain unburied. Tuzla, Bosnia. October 2003.

  • Lukovac Re-association Center - Incomplete skeletal remains of one individual are kept together in a ziploc bag. They were exhumed from mass graves containing the bodies of men from Srebrenica killed in July. Lukovac, Bosnia, October 2006

  • Site of Mass execution in Srebernica 2006 - In July 1995 shortly after the town of Srebrenica was overrun by Serb forces, approximately six hundred men and boys from Srebrenica were executed in the Kamenica warehouse in the nearby town of Kamenica, Republica Srpska, about 20 minutes drive from Srebrenica. October 2006.

  • The "Dom Kultura" or "house of culture" in the nearby town of Branjevo Pilica is one of the sites where the executions took place. Bullet holes and the blast from an explosive could still be seen in 2008.

  • The “Association of Mothers of Srebrenica” hold a vigil or prostest in Tuzla and other cities on the 11th of every month to commemorate the events of the 11th of July 1995.

  • Mother of Srebernica Collate Photos 2006 - A group of women known as the "Mothers of Srebrenica" collect, file and copy photographs of many of the 8,000 men who were murdered after the fall of Srebrenica in 1995. Comprised of women of Srebrenica who lost family memebrs, the group has been one of the most tenacious in pursuing justice and remembrance for the men of Srebrenica. Photography plays a crucial role in their work. Tuzla, Bosnia, October 2006

  • POTOCARI, REPUBLIKA SRBSKA: Sept. 20th 2003. The family of a victim of the Srebrenica massacre mourns at the site where his remains will be buried in a few hours during the opening of the Potocari memorial site that is dedicated to the aprroximately 8,000 victims of the massacre. The site was officially opened on sept 20th 2003. Bill Clinton was present. 107 victims were buried during the ceremony.

  • POTOCARI, REPUBLIKA SRBSKA: Sept. 20th 2003. The family of a victim of the Srebrenica massacre mourns at the site where his remains will be buried in a few hours during the opening of the Potocari memorial site that is dedicated to the aprroximately 8,000 victims of the massacre. The site was officially opened on sept 20th 2003. Bill Clinton was present. 107 victims were buried during the ceremony.

  • POTOCARI, REPUBLIKA SRBSKA: Sept. 20th 2003. The family of a victim of the Srebrenica massacre mourns at the site where his remains will be buried in a few hours during the opening of the Potocari memorial site that is dedicated to the aprroximately 8,000 victims of the massacre. The site was officially opened on sept 20th 2003. Bill Clinton was present. 107 victims were buried during the ceremony.

  • Theatre - The old movie house in Srebrenica is abandoned, but Serb refugees live upstairs from it. The village of Srebrenica today: mostly inhabited by Serb refugees, but with a slow increase in Muslims returning to their homes. The towns' previous industrial economy is no longer viable and will likely never be revived. The town is peppered with abandoned homes and buildings, while the huge communist-era hotel is still populated by Serb refugees that have been there since 1995.

  • Empty home in Srebrenica, October 2006

  • Srebrenica on A Foggy Morning - 2003: The village of Srebrenica: Mostly inhabited by Serb refuges, but with a slow increases in the Muslim population as they return to their homes.

  • Fresh laundry hangs in the abandoned wing of the gigantic spa Hotel in Srebrenica. It is still inhabited by displaced Serbs. October 2006

  • A widow of Srebrenica who has returned to the town of Srebrenica. Her house was rebuilt by the NGO CARE. She spends her days smoking cigarettes and drinking coffee. 2003.

  • The town of Srebrenica with the mosque and Orthodox church visible. 2003

  • Mist and spider's webs on a small dirt road on the outskirts of Srebrenica.

  • One of the photographs in the collection of the “Association of Mothers of Srebrenica”.

  • Bosnian muslim villagers deported from the safe-haven of Zepa, arrive at the border area between Serbian and Bosnian Muslim forces in July 1995

  • Tuzla, July 1995 Bosnian soldier reads off names of survivors of the Srebrenica massacre to refugees in a camp in Tuzla.

  • Exhumation of mass Grave 2006 - A multi-national forensic team lead by canadian Forensic Anthropologist Renee Kosalka exhumes a mass grave holding the bodies of men from the town of Srebrenica executed in July 1995. Snagovo, Republika Srpska October 2006. NOTE: this panoramic image was created using 2 frames shot in sequence and joined with standard software. No elements or information have been added from any other photograph or manipulated in any way. In this case, the join between the two images has not been masked or altered.

  • Lukovac Re-association Center 2006 - The skeletal remains exhumed from mass graves containing the bodies of men from Srebrenica killed in July 1995 are laid out at the Lukovac Re-association Center in Lukovac, Bosnia, October 2006 Forensic experts slowly attempt reconstruct the skeletons of bodies smashed when the were moved from primary to secondary graves in late 1995. The goal is to allow the body to be buried as a complete and identified human.

  • A collection of objects carefully cleaned and tabulated sit on a shelf in the "Podrinja Indentification Project" morgue where evidence is kept as well as the hundreds of bodies exhumed in the Srebrenica case that remain unburied. Tuzla, Bosnia , October 2006.

  • Clothing recovered from a mass grave is photographed by a criminologist at the the "Podrinja Indentification Project" morgue where evidence is kept as well as the hundreds of bodies exhumed in the Srebrenica case that remain unburied. Tuzla, Bosnia. October 2003.

  • Lukovac Re-association Center - Incomplete skeletal remains of one individual are kept together in a ziploc bag. They were exhumed from mass graves containing the bodies of men from Srebrenica killed in July. Lukovac, Bosnia, October 2006

  • Site of Mass execution in Srebernica 2006 - In July 1995 shortly after the town of Srebrenica was overrun by Serb forces, approximately six hundred men and boys from Srebrenica were executed in the Kamenica warehouse in the nearby town of Kamenica, Republica Srpska, about 20 minutes drive from Srebrenica. October 2006.

  • The "Dom Kultura" or "house of culture" in the nearby town of Branjevo Pilica is one of the sites where the executions took place. Bullet holes and the blast from an explosive could still be seen in 2008.

  • The “Association of Mothers of Srebrenica” hold a vigil or prostest in Tuzla and other cities on the 11th of every month to commemorate the events of the 11th of July 1995.

  • Mother of Srebernica Collate Photos 2006 - A group of women known as the "Mothers of Srebrenica" collect, file and copy photographs of many of the 8,000 men who were murdered after the fall of Srebrenica in 1995. Comprised of women of Srebrenica who lost family memebrs, the group has been one of the most tenacious in pursuing justice and remembrance for the men of Srebrenica. Photography plays a crucial role in their work. Tuzla, Bosnia, October 2006

  • POTOCARI, REPUBLIKA SRBSKA: Sept. 20th 2003. The family of a victim of the Srebrenica massacre mourns at the site where his remains will be buried in a few hours during the opening of the Potocari memorial site that is dedicated to the aprroximately 8,000 victims of the massacre. The site was officially opened on sept 20th 2003. Bill Clinton was present. 107 victims were buried during the ceremony.

  • POTOCARI, REPUBLIKA SRBSKA: Sept. 20th 2003. The family of a victim of the Srebrenica massacre mourns at the site where his remains will be buried in a few hours during the opening of the Potocari memorial site that is dedicated to the aprroximately 8,000 victims of the massacre. The site was officially opened on sept 20th 2003. Bill Clinton was present. 107 victims were buried during the ceremony.

  • POTOCARI, REPUBLIKA SRBSKA: Sept. 20th 2003. The family of a victim of the Srebrenica massacre mourns at the site where his remains will be buried in a few hours during the opening of the Potocari memorial site that is dedicated to the aprroximately 8,000 victims of the massacre. The site was officially opened on sept 20th 2003. Bill Clinton was present. 107 victims were buried during the ceremony.

  • Theatre - The old movie house in Srebrenica is abandoned, but Serb refugees live upstairs from it. The village of Srebrenica today: mostly inhabited by Serb refugees, but with a slow increase in Muslims returning to their homes. The towns' previous industrial economy is no longer viable and will likely never be revived. The town is peppered with abandoned homes and buildings, while the huge communist-era hotel is still populated by Serb refugees that have been there since 1995.

  • Empty home in Srebrenica, October 2006

  • Srebrenica on A Foggy Morning - 2003: The village of Srebrenica: Mostly inhabited by Serb refuges, but with a slow increases in the Muslim population as they return to their homes.

  • Fresh laundry hangs in the abandoned wing of the gigantic spa Hotel in Srebrenica. It is still inhabited by displaced Serbs. October 2006

  • A widow of Srebrenica who has returned to the town of Srebrenica. Her house was rebuilt by the NGO CARE. She spends her days smoking cigarettes and drinking coffee. 2003.

  • The town of Srebrenica with the mosque and Orthodox church visible. 2003

  • Mist and spider's webs on a small dirt road on the outskirts of Srebrenica.

SREBRENICA: the absence

In July 1995, the Bosnian Serb army overran the Muslim safe-haven of Srebrenica. Over a period of five days, the Bosnian Serb soldiers murdered over 7,000 men and boys in fields, schools, and warehouses near the town. The Srebrenica massacre was the worst atrocity of the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina and Europe's only legally established case of genocide since World War II. In the years since, a bitter struggle has ensued between remembering and forgetting, crime and punishement, truth and lies. Though the Srebrenica massacre did lead to the creation of the International Criminal Tribunal for Yugoslavia in The Hague. I began covering the ebb and flow of conflict in the Balkans in the winter of 1994. I was there in the summer of 1995, a few days after the Srebrenica massacre, and in the spring of 1996 as the war ended. In 2002 I returned to document the exhumation and identification of the men of Srebrenica. Later I photographed the opening of the Potocari Commemorative Centre and the town of Srebrenica as it continues to evolve. Within this series there is a transition from current event to history, and the transition of the photography from news document to its antithesis— a photography of the internal, of absence, of memory and the process of remembering. As the events fade from news to history and experience to memories, the photographs in the series move from records of events to allusions. The passage of time, the absence of loved ones, the need for justice, the importance of remembering, are all things I tried to translate into photographs. However, the task remains one of the most difficult in photography: how do you photograph an absence? RL, June 2008