The end of an era – Bosnia’s National Museum, a cultural symbol of the divided nation’s centuries-old heritage, has closed its doors due to lack of funding.
Activists symbolically chained themselves inside the building vowing to remain until it re-opens.
The museum has been surviving on handouts since the 1992-95 Balkan war ended. But the subsequent creation of two autonomous rival regions failed to provide for its financing.
“You can only imagine how I feel,” said the museum’s director, Adnan Busuladzic. “This institution, after 124 years of work, is being closed, and it’s not our fault.”
He then sealed the museum’s doors vowing to sue the state for negligence. The cultural treasure house which has fallen victim to internal ethnic quarrels has outlived the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian empire, two world wars and the break-up of Yugoslavia.