1918 - 1928

The Founding of the Kingdom of SCS

During the first decade after the founding of the kingdom, parliamentary democracy in the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes was marked by uncompromising political struggles between nationally oriented parties which, despite the economic progress, discredited the given political model.

The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes was established in Belgrade, on December 1. The prince regent, Aleksandar Karađorđević, declared the unification of the Kingdom of Serbia, founded in 1882, with the State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs, acting in the name of his father, King Petar I Karađorđević. The country was based on full equality between the Kingdom of Serbia and the State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs. Question of the state system was left to the Constituent Assembly, as an expression of free will of all citizens of the new state.

Telegram from Woodrow Wilson which announces the recognition of the Kingdom of SHS, from the archives of the Museum of Yugoslavia

Norway was the first country to recognize the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes in January. In February came the recognition from the United States, and other countries followed their examples after the signing of the Versailles Peace Treaty.

Filip Filipović, one of the founders of the Socialist Workers' Party of Yugoslavia

Temporary National Representation started to work as the first Yugoslav Assembly. The first Yugoslav parties were formed, the Democratic Party and the Socialist Workers’ Party of Yugoslavia (from 1920, it was the Communist Party of Yugoslavia).

Ljubomir Davidović, leader of the Democratic Party

In the elections for the Constituent Assembly, centrist Democratic Party and the Radical Party won the majority, but the substantial support was expressed to the Communist Party of Yugoslavia and the Croatian Republican Peasant Party, which strongly opposed centralism, and even the monarchical state organization.

Front page of the Constitution, from the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

The first Constitution of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (Vidovdan Constitution) was adopted on June 28, and it remained in force until 1929. Adopted by the narrow majority, without the participation of members of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia and the Croatian Republican Peasant Party, it has established a unitary arrangement, with great powers of the monarch, but also a significant number of socio-economic rights. Slovenian and Croatian political parties boycotted the Constitution’s adoption so that the act deepened the existing crisis and further sharpened the so-called Croatian question.

Notification from the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

After the assassination of the communist minister of police, Milorad Drašković, and failed assassination attempt on the Regent, the Law on the Protection of the Country was passed, which banned the Communist Party of Yugoslavia, whose actions then continued underground.

British Pathé

King Aleksandar married the Romanian princess, Mary, the daughter of King Ferdinand and great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria. Three sons were born in this marriage, and they were named after three characteristic names for the three Yugoslav nations: Petar II (Serbian), Tomislav (Croatian) and Andrej (Slovene).

Stjepan Radić, leader of the Croatian Peasant Party

The deputies of the Croatian Peasant Party came to Belgrade and took an oath on Vidovdan Constitution. Thus, they in fact recognized the monarchy and rejected republicanism from their party program.

Pjer Križanić's caricature

Parliamentary elections were held in which the Radical Party and the Croatian Peasant Party received the highest number of votes. There was a big turnaround in the political scene when the Radical Party and the Croatian Peasant Party formed government together.

1928 - 1934

The King's Personal Dictatorship

The personal dictatorship of King Alexander was born from the collapse of parliamentarism. The ideology of integral Yugoslavism was an attempt, denying nations that had already been formed, to build Yugoslav national consciousness and state.

Stjepan Radić's funeral

A member of the Radical Party, Puniša Račić killed two deputies of the Croatian Peasant Party, in the National Assembly, on June 20, but the party leader, Stjepan Radić, soon succumbed to wounds. This was the reason for the abolition of parliamentarism and the introduction of dictatorship.

Front page of the newspaper "Borba"

King Aleksandar introduced dictatorship on January 6. Vidovdan constitution was repealed, the National Assembly was dissolved and the executive power was transferred to the king, all political parties and trade unions were banned. Members of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia, the Croatian Peasant Party and the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization were subjected to a special prosecution. The 6 January Dictatorship was aimed at eliminating the national question, through the concept of an integrated Yugoslavia, which would erase all national and regional disparities in the country.

Map of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia

The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, changed its name to the Kingdom of Yugoslavia in October 3. The ideology of integral Yugoslav nation was introduced and new administrative division was carried out – the country was divided to nine banovinas, which was supposed to break the historical provinces.

Alexander I Karađorđević

King Aleksandar brought the Constitution, which formally ended the period of the 6 January dictatorship. By this Constitution, known as the September or Octroyed Constitution, the king remained the most important factor in the state, while Yugoslavia was proclaimed a constitutional and hereditary, but no more parliamentary monarchy. September’s constitution was formally implemented until the end of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.

Filmske novosti

Members of the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization in cooperation with members of the Ustaša – Croatian Revolutionary Movement, assassinated King Alexander in Marseille (France). Since the heir to the throne was a minor, the management of the country was taken over by the regency headed by Prince Pavle Karađorđević, the cousin of the late king.

1935 - 1940

Regency

Semi-parliamentary regime of regency, first based on the isolation of Croats, still brought reorganization of the state and the Croatian autonomy, and on external levels, replacement of the French alliance with German and Italian.

From the united opposition rally

Parliamentary elections were held, the last in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, which were also the freest until then. Unlike previous elections, held under the strong pressure from the government, these were marked by pressure from “below”, carried out by supporters of the Croatian Peasant Party.

A postage stamp from 1939

Agreement Cvetković-Maček was signed on August 26, and Vlatko Maček, the chairman of the Croatian Peasant Party, became deputy prime minister. Banovina Croatia (Croatia, Dalmatia, Srem, parts of Bosnia) was formed, with powers close to the federal unit.

1941 - 1945

War and Revolution

The Second World War in Yugoslavia began with the axial occupation and dismemberment of the country, and it was completed with the liberation and revolution carried out by the Communist Party of Yugoslavia. Conflicts of different fractions gave it the character of a civil war.

Prince Paul Karađorđević and Adolf Hitler

After Bulgaria joined the Tripartite Pact, on March 4, Prince Pavle met Hitler at the Berghof, on his invitation. Since Hitler was adamant that he would not allow the creation of the front against Germans in Balkan, he gave the prince an ultimatum asking him to sign the accession to the Tripartite Pact. Protocol on the Accession of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia to the Tripartite Pact was signed on March 25, in Vienna, by which the country joined Germany, Italy and their allies, although it was not obliged to participate in the war that began in 1939.

Antifascist demonstrations in Belgrade, March 27, 1941. Thanks to the archive of the Yugoslav Cinematheque

The military coup, which deposed Cvetković’s government and forced Prince Pavle to abdicate was carried out on March 27. This act was followed by anti-fascist demonstrations in the streets of Belgrade as well as of other Serbian cities by anti-German and pro-Serbian public, while Croatian and Slovenian part of the public remained calm. Juvenile Petar II was proclaimed king and the government of General Dušan Simović was formed.

"Liona head"- part of the facade from the building of the National Library of Serbia, destroyed during the Nazi bombing. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

Germany attacked Yugoslavia on April 6, 1941. The Yugoslav army soon capitulated and King Petar II with the government left the country and moved to London. The country was divided into occupation zones, annexed territories and so-called Independent State of Croatia. Archive photo of the bombing.

The warrant for the arrest of Josip Broz Tito and Dragoljub Draža Mihajlović, Belgrade, July 20th, 1943. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

In the summer of 1941, armed resistance against the occupiers began in Yugoslavia. A part of the royal army, which didn’t surrender to the occupying forces, formed the Yugoslav Army in the fatherland – Chetnik Detachments of the Yugoslav Army under the command of Dragoljub Draža Mihailović. The Communist Party of Yugoslavia, under the leadership of Josip Broz Tito, organized its forces (National Liberation Movement – Partisans) and invited all the peoples of Yugoslavia to an armed struggle against the occupiers and their collaborators. Over time, conflicts escalated between Chetniks movement, later compromised by the cooperation with the occupiers, and the national liberation movements under the control of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia.

From the archives of the Museum of Yugoslavia

Užice Partisan Squad liberated Užice and thus created the first free territory in occupied Europe, the so-called Republic of Užice.

Branko Kovačević, And Defeated 1945.

J. B. Tito decided to engage partisans in a “long march” (about 4,000 soldiers), which headed from the eastern parts to the western regions of Bosnia. During that march, according to German estimates, partisan forces increased ten times and amounted into a serious military force.

From the first session of the Anti-Fascist Council for the National Liberation of Yugoslavia (AVNOJ). From the archives of the Museum of Yugoslavia

At the first session in Bihać, the Anti-Fascist Council for the National Liberation of Yugoslavia (AVNOJ) was formed, and it took over the function of the first partisan government.

Internees in the concentration camp Jasenovac, 1942. From the archive of the Museum of Yugoslavia

Ustasha's government in the Independent State of Croatia established a system of concentration camps in Jasenovac for the purpose of mass destruction of Serbs, Jews and all those who were declared enemies of the Ustasha regime. Crimes committed in Jasenovac, certainly the most monstrous by their scale and sadism on the territory of Yugoslavia and this part of Europe, during Second World War lasted until May 2, 1945. The number of casualties was evaluated differently, from 40,000 in 1990 and after Croatian independence to 700,000, which was the official data at the time of Yugoslavia – and it has remained the subject of controversy. According to current data, 81,998 people were listed individually.

Đurđe Teodorović, Sutjeska, 1953.

Units of the People’s Liberation Army of Yugoslavia went through the biggest temptations in the battles of Neretva and Sutjeska. Despite heavy losses, the majority of the unit, together with the supreme headquarter, was preserved. During the Battle of Sutjeska, Tito was wounded in the arm and thus became the only supreme commander, during the Second World War, who suffered an injury in direct armed combat.

From the Teheran Conference, Stalin, Roosevelt , Churchill. From the archive of the Museum of Yugoslavia

At the Teheran Conference between Stalin, Roosevelt and Churchill, it was decided to provide assistance to the partisans in Yugoslavia. Thus Tito’s movement was recognized as a part of the anti-fascist coalition.

From the second session of the AVNOJ

The second session of the AVNOJ was held in Jajce, Bosnia, where some key decisions for defining the future of post-war communist Yugoslavia were made. AVNOJ was named the supreme legislative body, National Committee for the Liberation of Yugoslavia, that represented the government, was formed; it was decided that Yugoslavia should be reorganized according to a federal principle and King Petar II was banned from the country until the final decision on the method of rule.

Bomb fall plot, Belgrade

Allied forces bombed Belgrade eleven times between April and September. In this time, Belgrade suffered the greatest destruction during the Second World War.

Photo of Josip Broz Tito worn by German soldiers during the action

German action, the Raid on Drvar, was executed under code name the Operation Knight’s Move, with the aim was to capture and liquidate Josip Broz Tito, as the leader of the partisan movement in Yugoslavia. The air raid took place on May 25, 1944.

Vlado Bakarić, Edvard Kardelj and Josip Broz Tito in Vis

The new Royal Government was formed in London and Ivan Šubašić became its prime minister. General Mihailović was dismissed from duty of the military minister. An agreement between partisan National Committee of Liberation of Yugoslavia and the Royal Government was concluded in Vis, the so-called Tito-Šubašić agreement. The Royal Government recognized the achievements of the National Liberation Struggle and refused further support to the movement of Draža Mihailović.

Aleksandar Deroko, Fighting for Liberation of Belgrade, 1944. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

With the help of the Red Army, units of the National Liberation Army liberated the eastern parts of Yugoslavia, as well as Belgrade, on October 20. By the liberation of Belgrade and Serbia, in the fall of 1944, the struggle for the final liberation of the country began. The organized resistance of the enemy ceased only on May 15, 1945.

Tito and Šubašić

Provisional Government of the Democratic Federal Yugoslavia was formed on March 7, 1945. The Government was formed by representatives of the National Committee for the Liberation of Yugoslavia and the Royal Government. In this way, the agreement Tito-Šubašić was embodied and Yugoslav revolution was recognized before the end of the war.

Soldiers in position, The Syrmian Front, March 5, 1945. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

The Syrmian Front was broken through on April 12, after which units of the Yugoslav army fought until the final liberation of the country. The final battle was followed by punishment of units’ members who fought on the side of the occupators.

Germans, Ustashas, Chetniks and Home Guards gathered in Maribor from where they were dispatched to the internment camps. 1945.

Liquidation of captured members of the collaborationist and anti-communist formations, who were retreating along with the German army, began in Slovenia.

The Blue Book, in which 15,000 signatures of Kragujevac youth were collected and handed over to Josip Broz Tito on May 25, 1945

At the suggestion of the young of Kragujevac, “Tito’s Relay” was established and thus began mass celebration of the birthday of Josip Broz Tito, on every May 25.

Courtesy of Filmske novosti

The list of the National Front, led by the Communists, won a landslide victory in the elections held on November 11. Already on November 29, the Constituent Assembly proclaimed the abolition of the monarchy, after which Yugoslavia became a republic.

1946-1953

With Stalin and against Him

Post-war Yugoslavia was being built on a direct Soviet model until the historic conflict between Tito and Stalin, which led to approaching the West, but also to the start of construction of Yugoslavia’s own socialist model.

Front page of the Constitution, from the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

The first Constitution of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was adopted on January 31. The state became a federation of six republics and two autonomous regions, but the arrangement was based on the so-called democratic centralism, modeled on the Constitution of the USSR from 1936.

Krsto Hegedusic, "Brcko-Banovici Railway", 1956

The first youth work action was organized. Over 60,000 young people from the country and 1,000 from abroad built the railway Brčko-Banovići, 92 km long, in seven months.

Dragoljub Mihailović during the trial, from the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

General Mihailović was sent to trial that ended on July 5 by passing a death sentence.

Edvard Kardelj speech in Trieste

Yugoslavia signed a peace treaty with Italy in Paris. The City of Trieste and the northwestern part of Istria, which were the subject of dispute between the two sides, were named the Free Territory of Trieste. The Yugoslav side said that it did not renounce the rights to this territory.

Front page of the newspaper "Politika"

The US, Britain and France proposed the USSR to revise the peace agreement with Italy, regarding the Free Territory of Trieste, which would belong to Italy. Yugoslavia submitted an official protest

Cartoon of Josip Broz Tito while cleaning shoes of US President Dwight Eisenhower. From the collection of Museum of Yugoslavia

At the second session of the Cominform in Bucharest, resolution which condemned the work of the Yugoslav Communist Party was passed because of deviations from a uniform and international socialist front. This caused a months-long conflict between Stalin and Tito public.

Josip Broz Tito reads a paper at the Fifth Congress of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia

The Fifth Congress of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia was held, the first one after the war. The Congress rejected the Cominform resolution and gave support to the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia in defense of the independence of Yugoslavia. The settling accounts with the internal opposition, the so-called “ibeovci”, began soon.

Excerpts from Goli otok documentary, directed by Darko Bavoljak, production: Art De Facto, Croatia, 2012, and from the talks recorded in the project Personal memories of wars and other forms of political violence, from 1941 to date, produced by Documenta - Centre for Dealing with the Past, Croatia, 2010.

After the conflict between Tito and Stalin in 1948, there was a rift within the Party and those who pleaded for Cominform were punished. Convicted as Stalin’s supporters, they were prosecuted and imprisoned in the camp on the island in the northern Adriatic (Croatia) known as Goli otok. From 1949 to 1958, according to data stored in the Croatian State Archives, 16,731 persons were “administratively directed to community work”, of which 450 did not survive.

Desk lamp with a scale model of a smelter and an image of a moulder, a gift from the railway men of Yugoslavia, who have met the objectives of the five-year economic plan in just four years. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia.

The Basic Law on State Enterprises and Higher Economic Associations was adopted by work collectives, legalizing the workers’ self-management. Workers councils, in theory, became the main bodies in management of production and income distribution, although the country, i.e. the Party still had a decisive influence on the organization and operation of a company. The idea of workers’ councils and self-management was a political and social alternative to the Stalinist centralism and state-ownership, which also revived the revolutionary-democratic self-government from the period of war.

First shipment of airplanes from USA in airport Pula. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

The US government agreed with Yugoslavia on providing urgent aid, according to the law of the previous year. American assistance was the result of Yugoslavia’s breakup with Stalin and the assessment of the US government that it is in its interest to help Tito to maintain his leadership.

Alojzije Stepinac during the trial

Yugoslavia broke up diplomatic relations with Vatican because of the nomination of Cardinal Alojzije Stepinac, whose cooperation with the Ustasha regime provoked controversy in post-war Yugoslavia, as well as because of the campaign related to Trieste, that was formally annexed to Italy in this year. In the background of these individual incidents, there was a lasting refusal of the Roman Catholic Church to come to terms with the denial of the special status of Vatican by the Yugoslav authorities, because such status was not in accordance with the principle of church and state separation.

The Sixth Congress of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

The Sixth Congress of the Communist Party was held. The Congress adopted new measures of liberalization, reflected in the new name of the party – the League of Communists of Yugoslavia.

Jovanka Broz on the election day, 22.11.1953.

The Constitution Act, which amended the Constitution from 1946, was adopted. Self-management was declared as the basic model of social and economic regulation, and the function of the President of the Republic, who was also the president of the federal government, was introduced. Josip Broz Tito was elected to this position.

Newspaper Borba

The Party newspaper Borba published a series of articles by the biggest party ideologists, Milovan Đilas, who criticized Yugoslav leadership and its ethics.

1954 - 1963

Global Policy

Choosing the “third way” and Yugoslavia’s role in establishing the Non-Aligned Movement put the country on the global diplomatic map, while at the same time the industry and the economy reached unprecedented growth rates.

Milovan Đilas and Josip Broz Tito, Bled 1949

At the Third extraordinary plenum of the Central Committee there was a showdown with Đilas, the most famous dissident of Tito’s era. His writings were condemned, and the author was dismissed as a promoter of anti socialist operations. Đilas was relieved of all functions in the League of Communists, and was later arrested. He served a prison sentence in Sremska Mitrovica.

Newspaper Politika

The Novi Sad Agreement, which was signed by prominent Serbian and Croatian linguists and writers, emphasized the equality of Serbian and Croatian languages, alphabets, Cyrillic and Latin, as well as two ways of pronunciation – ekavian and ijekavian.

Josip Broz Tito and Nikita Khrushchev

The Soviet delegation, headed by Nikita Khrushchev, arrived in an official visit to Belgrade. This event, known as the “Soviet Kanose”, referred reconciliation between the two countries, but not the return of Yugoslavia to the Soviet model of socialism.
This was followed by recognition of the existence of various ways in the construction of socialism and the principle that the Workers’ Party, as well as the country, should cooperate on an equal basis was emphasized.

Relay baton from 1957. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

Tito’s Relay became the Relay of Youth, and Tito’s birthday, May 25, was declared the Day of Youth.

Courtesy of Filmske novosti, Filmske novosti No. 22

The main event of the manifestation were the mass games (“slet”) on the stadium of the Yugoslav National Army (JNA) in Belgrade, which ended with the handing of the federal relay baton over to Tito.

Šefovi delegacija na Prvoj Konferenciji nesvrstanih u Beogradu.

The first conference of state leaders and governments of non-aligned countries was held in Belgrade. The declaration, which emphasized the need for exclusion of war as a means of solving international disputes, affirmed policy of peaceful coexistence and promoted the importance of non-alignment as an alternative bloc division of the world that threatened the world peace, was adopted. Yugoslavia positioned itself as a leader and founder of the Non-aligned Movement, which would remain a permanent determinant of Yugoslav foreign policy.

Coat of arms of Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY)

The new Federal Constitution was adopted and the state was defined as the Socialist Democratic Union, as an expression of tendency to Marxist withering away of the state. The function of the president of the Federal Executive Council and name of the state was changed into Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY).

1964 - 1972

The Scope of Socialist Liberalism

The 1960s brought on the economic reform that led Yugoslavia somewhat closer to the market economy, to the reopening of national issues, but also to undemocratic settling with inter-party opposition.

The share of emigrants in the total population of the municipality

An economic reform was initiated and it brought changes in the market economy, which, with certain improvements, led to the increase of social inequalities and unemployment rate as well as to the increasing number of people going to work abroad

Aleksandar Leka Ranković. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

The Fourth Plenum of the Central Committee met in Brioni to discuss a situation in the State Security and the charges of wiretapping Tito’s own rooms, as well as of wiretapping other officials without control of the Party, which led to abuse of power. Brioni plenum, in fact, was a showdown with Aleksandar Ranković, the chief officer of the Service and the vice president of the Republic who, having outlined the charges, resigned from all his functions. His fall was wholeheartedly accepted by the forces that tended towards decentralization.

Newspaper Politika

The Managing Board of Matica Hrvatska published a declaration of the name and position of the Croatian language. The reply was given at the annual meeting of the Association of Writers of Serbia, when a group of members submitted a proposal for reflection. Serbian authors assessed the declaration as a political, not a linguistic act. The Party then equally condemned the Declaration and the Proposal as nationalist acts.

Courtesy of the TV Belgrade, Programme Archive

Large student protests held at the University of Belgrade. Students demanded reduction of social inequalities, solving the unemployment problem, stopping the bureaucratization of society and reforms of the University. The most radical slogan was “Down with the red bourgeoisie” and clashes erupted between protesters and the police.

Courtesy of the TV Belgrade, Programme Archive

In Croatia, there was a strengthening of nationalist movements (mass movement – MASPOK) that, led by the party leadership, tended to legitimize the Croatian national identity and sought to improve the position of Croatia in the Federation.

The twenty-first session of the Presidency of the LCY. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

The twenty-first session of the Presidency of the LCY was held in Karađorđevo, where Tito condemned nationalist politics of Croatian leadership. A large number of resignations and shifts in the Croatian League of Communists ensued, and the leaders of MASPOK (mass movement – Croatian Spring) were sentenced to prison.

Latinka Perović and Marko Nikezić

There was a clash with supporters of liberal economic and political reforms, first in the Serbian Party leadership, and then in other republics.

1973 - 1980

Preservation of the Socialist Reality

Tito's last years brought a shift towards dogmatic socialism and transformed the country into a confederation, but also led to further rise of the consumer society, despite growing economic problems of the country.

Josip Broz Tito during the proclamation of the Constitution. From the collection of the Museum of Yugoslavia

The new Federal (SFRY) Constitution was ratified. The Federation was reformed by establishing the principle of the statehood of republics through which “voluntarily united nations and nationalities” enjoyed their rights and expressed their will. The right to “self-determination up to secession” was established. Federal State approached the confederal arrangement because all decisions, including the amendment of the Constitution, could be made only by consensus of the republics and provinces. The provinces became directly represented in the Federation, as its constituent elements. Social ownership figured as the main characteristic of the social system, so SFRY, among other things, was defined as a community based on self-government and the working class, i.e. as a socialist, democratic community of working people and citizens. Tito was elected a life-long president of SFRY and the League of Communists of Yugoslavia. The institution of collective Presidency of Yugoslavia was founded, composed of nine members – a representative from each of the republics and provinces and a representative of the League of Communists.

Josip Broz Tito and Fidel Castro

At the VI Conference of Non-Aligned Countries in Havana, J. B. Tito had his last significant diplomatic performance. He managed to dissuade Fidel Castro, the President of Cuba, from his intention to closely tie the Non-Aligned Movement to the Soviet Union.

Courtesy of the TV Belgrade, Programme Archive

Josip Broz Tito died on May 4. In accordance with the Constitution, the function of the collective head of state was taken over by the Presidency of the SFRY and Lazar Koliševski as the first chairman. The seven-day national mourning was declared. Tito’s funeral in the House of Flowers, on May 8, was attended by 80 state and 60 parties’ delegation of the highest level, making it one of the most visited leaders’ funerals of the 20th century.

1981 - 1990

“Even after Tito - Tito"

The last decade of Yugoslavia was marked by visible economic crisis, and then by intensified national problems. Wars that came later contributed to the fact that this period looked like a “golden age”.

Courtesy of the artist Imre Szaba

The mass students’ demonstrations erupted in Kosovo when protesters clashed with the police. From the initial request for the improvement of student standards protesters quickly expressed demand “Kosovo –Republic.”

Gasoline voucher

Due to the economic situation and the indebtedness of the country, austerity measures were introduced, including the purchase of gasoline vouchers.

Vučko, the Olympic mascot of the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo

From February 8 to 19, the fourteenth Winter Olympic Games were held in Sarajevo and it was the biggest sporting event in the former Yugoslavia.

Article from Novosti

The mass students’ demonstrations erupted in Kosovo when protesters clashed with the police. From the initial request for the improvement of student standards protesters quickly expressed demand “Kosovo –Republic.”

Емисија SFRY for beginners, 2012, Author: Radovan Kupres

Agrokomerc affair emerged, the biggest financial scandal in Yugoslavia, that led to political destabilization in Bosnia and increased inflation in Yugoslavia.

Ivan Stambolić

At the VIII session of the Central Committee of the League of Communists of Serbia, the current led by Slobodan Milošević, the president of the League, won over the current led by Ivan Stambolić, the president of the Presidency of Serbia.

New Collectivism, Youth Day poster, design concept. League of Socialist Youth of Yugoslavia, Courtesy of the artists.

There was a scandal regarding the conceptual design posters for the Day of Youth celebration. The official winner of the competition was Novi kolektivizam, a designers’ branch of the Slovenian art group Neue Slowenische Kunst. The winning poster was designed on the model of advertising images of the German-artist, Richard Klein, from 1936, wherein the substrate Nazi symbols (German eagle and Nazi flag with swastika) were replaced by the socialist symbols (dove of peace and five-pointed star with tricolor). Poster and relay baton were not made by this design because the original template was discovered after the winning. That was the last time the Relay of Youth was carried.

Amendments to the Constitution of the Republic of Serbia were announced in Belgrade, by which veto rights were taken away from the provinces and narrowed the legislative, administrative and judicial power they had under the Constitution of 1974. The proclamation provoked clashes on the streets of Kosovo and Metohija.

Sequence from the Gazimestan speech

To mark 600 years since the Battle of Kosovo, a massive rally was organized at Gazimestan. With the speech he gave on June 28, in front of hundreds of thousands of people, Milošević strengthened his leading position on the Serbian political scene.

Poster for the XIV Extraordinary Congress

The XIV Extraordinary Congress of the LCY, which was the last one, was held in Belgrade. The Slovenian delegation proposed confederalisation of LCY and termination of political trials in Kosovo, but it remained in minority. The proposal of the Serbian delegation was to rearrange Yugoslavia as a country with full legal and state subjectivity, through the adoption of a new constitution, and it received the most votes. Slovenians refused to accept marginalization on the basis of democratic centralism and left the Congress. Croatian delegations followed their footsteps, after which the Congress stopped working. Thus, the Congress marked de facto disintegration of LCY.

Poster "The League of Communists of Montenegro"

During the year, multiparty elections were held in the republics in which the opposition won, except in Montenegro and Serbia, where the reformed communists retained power.

1991 - 2008

The Wars and the Breakup of Yugoslavia

The 1990s marked the unification of Europe, but for the citizens of Yugoslavia those were unhappy years because the country was falling apart in bloody civil wars. The life cycle of South Slavic integration was completed with the split of Montenegro and Serbia.

Author Tony Hnojčik. Courtesy of the artist

The clashes between the Croatian police and local Serbs broke out in Pakrac in which Yugoslav People's Army intervened for the first time, positioning itself between the warring parties. The first armed clashes erupted, growing into large-scale war,

Interview with the soldier

In Croatia and Slovenia, the referendums were held and the majority of citizens voted for independence. The Federal Executive Council overturned the decision of the Slovenian and Croatian Parliament on secession and issued the order to take control of the border crossings. The next day, armed clashes erupted between the Yugoslav People’s Army and Slovenia. The secession of Slovenia was followed by the so-called Ten-day War.

Damaged buildings, Sarajevo

The majority of citizens voted for independent and comprehensive Bosnia on referendum. The Serbs did not accept the result of the referendum and declared Republika Srpska. In April, the war in Bosnia started, the bloodiest war in the former Yugoslavia.

Dobrica Ćosić and Milan Panić

Serbia and Montenegro remained in the community – the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, which was declared on April 27, and the first president was Dobrica Ćosić, a writer. Due to interference in the conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina, UN imposed sanctions to Yugoslavia.

The highest denomination banknote was 500 billion dinars

Hyperinflation in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, which began in April 1992, reached its peak and one of the highest rates in the world economic history. In 1993, the daily rate of inflation was 65%, which meant that prices were doubled every 34 hours.

The front lines in 1994, at the end of the Bosniak-Croat war and after the signing of the Washington Agreement. HVO blue, BiH green, Serbs red

The Washington Agreement, that interrupted Croatian-Muslim conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina and formed the Muslim-Croatian Federation, was signed on March 18.

Courtesy of the artist Srđan Veljović

After entering Srebrenica, the Army of Republic of Serbia committed the greatest crime of the war when the paramilitary units killed several thousands of captured Bosnian soldiers.

F16

In the period from August 30 to September 20, NATO conducted air strikes against positions of the Army of Republic of Serbia, which resulted in the completion of nearly four-year siege of Sarajevo.

Refugees, Banja Luka at the time of the “Storm”. 05. 08. 1993. Author Tomislav Peternek

Croatian military actions “Bljesak” (Flash) and “Oluja” (Storm) exterminated Serbian Autonomous District in Slavonia and Croatia, and over 200,000 Serbs were forced to leave their homes.

Signing of agreement in Paris.

The agreement that ended the war in Bosnia was signed in the US air base “Wright Patterson” in Dayton, on November 21. Bosnia and Herzegovina survived as an independent state, divided into the Muslim-Croat Federation and Republika Srpska.

After the local elections, the opposition parties in Serbia organized several months of protests until the regime of Slobodan Milošević recognized that the opposition won the elections in several major cities. They were followed by students’ protest that lasted 117 days.

Front page of "Vreme" weekly

The Kosovo Liberation Army began an open rebellion against Serbian rule in Kosovo and Metohija.

“Ušće” buissenes centar, Belgrade 21. 04. 1999. Courtesy of the author Tomislava Peterneka

After Milošević’s abandonment of peace negotiations with Kosovo Albanians in Rambouillet, NATO began bombing Yugoslavia. The war was ended by the Agreement in Kumanovo, which initiated the international presence in Kosovo.

Symbol of the People's Movement Otpor!, which played a significant role in the fall of Milosević

In the elections held on September 24, the opposition candidate for President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Vojislav Koštunica, defeated Slobodan Milošević, who admitted his defeat only after people took to the streets en masse and occupied the Assembly on October 5.

Front page of "Vreme" weekly

Constitutional Charter, that turned the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia into the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro, was adopted on February 4. Sv etozar Marović was elected for the president of the common state, being also the last president of that country.

Front page of the newspaper "Vijesti"

A referendum on independence in Montenegro was held on May 21, 2006. After 55.5% of citizens voted for independence, Community of Serbia and Montenegro ceased to exist.

Breakup of Yugoslavia

The Assembly of Kosovo and Metohija unanimously declared Kosovo’s independence from Serbia on February 17. Serbia has not recognized this act.

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Museum of Yugoslavia keeps a significant archive of recorded exhibitions, conferences, seminars, educational programs, from which one can learn about the views and opinions of our curators and educators, as well as of our guest experts on important topics from the history of Yugoslavia and their reflections on the present.

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