The Serbian member of the BiH Presidency, Nebojsa Radmanovic, Republika Srpska President Milorad Dodik and the Head of Istocno Sarajevo Municipality, Ljubisa Cosic, today solemnly unveiled a monument to Gavrilo Princip in the newly-built City Park in Spasovdanska Street as part of the St. Vitus’ Day Festivities and the marking of the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the Great War.
“The shot by Gavrilo Princip was a shot for freedom. His shot was an introduction to that which some Europeans were preparing for years, and the Serbs were victorious at the end of this war,” Radmanovic said, addressing a great number of citizens and government representatives.
He said that St. Vitus’ Day is not only a religious holiday, but a day of remembrance of the sacrifices and battles for freedom.
“Today, we have Gavrilo in Istocno Sarajevo, a revolutionary, a man who for us represents a century of hopes. We remember Young Bosnia and Gavrilo Princip with pride,” Radmanovic said, warning of attempts to re-tailor the historical facts.
He said that supporters of Adolf Hitler removed a memorial plaque to Gavrilo Princip in Sarajevo in 1941 and took it to Hitler, and it was again removed in the past war.
“They are marking today the 100th anniversary of the Sarajevo assassination without us. Whom do they remember?” Radmanovic asked.
The Serbian member of the BiH Presidency said that Princip, born at the end of the 19th century, was named after the archangel Gavrilo [Gabriel]. “I hope that future generations will see him as an angel,” Radmanovic said.
The Head of the Istocno Novo Sarajevo Municipality, Ljubisa Cosic, said that Gavrilo Princip is a Serbian hero and that the monument in Istocno Sarajevo bears a certain symbolism as it merges the heroic past of the Serbian people with their future, which will be built by future generations.
Cosic added that the City Park is a reflection of the needs of the population of all generations of Istocno Sarajevo, who have been given a “corner for rest.” “This will be one of the most beautiful parks with the most beautiful monument in Istocno Sarajevo, and also in Republika Srpska,” Cosic said.
350,000 KM was invested in building the City Park, said Cosic.
The author of the bronze monument to Gavrilo Princip, which is 2 metres high, is the sculptor and professor at the Belgrade Academy of Arts, Zoran Kuzmanovic.
The ceremony was covered by numerous journalists’ crews from the region and the world.