Željko Kopanja, Bosnian newspaper editor, Died at 61


Željko Kopanja was born on October 21, 1954, and died on August 8, 2016.

He was a Bosnian Serb newspaper editor and director of the newspaper Nezavisne Novine.

The Christian Science Monitor described him as an equal critic of all parties without regard to ethnicity and “probably the most feared journalist in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

During 1995, shortly after the Dayton Agreement which ended the Bosnian War, Kopanja co-founded Nezavisne Novine, a weekly independent newspaper, in order to “foster improved relationships among Serbs, Muslims and Croats in Bosnia”.

During August 1999, Nezavisne Novine broke new ground by reporting on the murder of 200 Muslim civilians by Serbian police officers in 1992.

Because of that, the paper became the first Bosnian Serb paper to report on war crimes by Bosnian Serbs during the Yugoslav Wars.

He died due to a cardiac arrest.

He had lost both legs in a car bomb attack in apparent retaliation for his reporting on war crimes by Bosnian Serb, in October 1999.

His wife was Croatian.

Željko Kopanja passed away at 61 years old.