Foča (Serbian Cyrillic: Фоча, pronounced [fôtʃa]) is a town and a municipality located in eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina. It is situated on the banks of Drina river. As of 2013, the town has a population of 12,234 inhabitants, while the municipality has 18,288 inhabitants.


Foča – Panorama.jpg
Foca Sveta Sava IMG 0701.JPG
Амбијентална цјелина Ћерезлук, Фоча 023.JPG
Coat of arms of Foča
Coat of arms
Location of Foča within Bosnia and Herzegovina
Location of Foča within Bosnia and Herzegovina
Foča is located in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Location of Foča within Bosnia and Herzegovina
Coordinates: 43°30′23″N 18°46′29″E / 43.50639°N 18.77472°E / 43.50639; 18.77472Coordinates: 43°30′23″N 18°46′29″E / 43.50639°N 18.77472°E / 43.50639; 18.77472
Country Bosnia and Herzegovina
Entity Republika Srpska
 • MayorRadislav Mašić (SDS)
 • Municipality1,134.58 km2 (438.06 sq mi)
 (2013 census)
 • Town
 • Municipality
 • Municipality density16/km2 (42/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Area code(s)58


The old clock tower of Foča

Early historyEdit

The town was known as Hotča during medieval times. It was then known as a trading centre on route between Ragusa (now Dubrovnik) and Constantinople (now Istanbul, Turkey). Alongside the rest of Gornje Podrinje, Foča was part of the Serbian Empire until 1376, when it was attached to the Kingdom of Bosnia under King Tvrtko. After Tvrtko's death, the town was ruled by the dukes of Hum, most notably was Herzog Stjepan. Foča was the seat of the Ottoman Sanjak of Herzegovina established in 1470, and served as such until 1572, when the seat was moved to Pljevlja.

World War IIEdit

In 1941, the Ustaše killed the leading Serbs in Foča.[1] Between December 1941 and January 1942 over two thousand Bosnian Muslims were killed in Foča by the Chetniks as act of vengeance for repression over Serbs by Muslims in ranks of Ustaše.[2] Additionally Chetniks attacked Ustaše and in Foča in August 1942.[2]

On 13 February 1943, Pavle Đurišić reported to Draža Mihailović the actions undertaken by the Chetniks in the Foča, Pljevlja, and Čajniče districts: "All Muslim villages in the three mentioned districts were totally burned so that not a single home remained in one piece. All property was destroyed except cattle, corn, and senna."[3]

In the operation Chetnik losses "were 22 dead, of which 2 through accidents, and 32 wounded. Among the Muslims, around 1,200 fighters and up to couple of thousands of civilian victims of both nationalitys."[3] Đurišić said what remained of the Muslim population fled and that actions were taken to prevent their return.[3] The municipality is also the site of the legendary Battle of Sutjeska between the Tito's Yugoslav Partisans and the German army. A monument to the Partisans killed in the battle was erected in the village of Tjentište.

Bosnian War and afterEdit

Mehmed Pasha Kukavica Mosque was blown up on 28 May 1992. During the war, all of the mosques of Foča were destroyed.

In 1992, the city came under the control of Army of Republika Srpska. Most of the Bosniaks fled from the area.[4][5] Thirteen mosques including the Aladža Mosque were destroyed and the 22,500 Muslims who made up the majority of inhabitants fled.[6] Only about 10 Muslims remained at the end of the conflict.[7] The Tribunal Judges determined beyond a reasonable doubt that the purpose of the Serb campaign in Foča was, among others, "to cleanse the Foča area of Muslims" and concluded that "to that end the campaign was successful.[7]

In 1995 the Dayton Agreement created a territorial corridor linking the once-besieged Bosnian city of Goražde to the Muslim-Croat Federation; as a consequence, the northern part of Foča was separated to create the city of Foča-Ustikolina.[citation needed] The city was renamed Srbinje (Serbian Cyrillic: Србиње), "place of the Serbs" (from Srbi Serbs and -nje which is a Slavic locative suffix). In 2004, the Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina declared the name change unconstitutional, and reverted it to Foča, until the National Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina passes an appropriate law.[citation needed]

In October 2004 members of the Association of Women Victims of War (Udruzenje Žene-Žrtve Rata) attempted to lay a plaque in front of the Partizan sports hall to commemorate the terrible crimes that occurred there. Since the war around 4,000 Muslims have returned to their homes and several mosques have been re-built.[6] This has taken place largely due to the administration of Zdravko Krsmanović, who was mayor from 2004 to 2012. In the 2012 elections, however, Krsmanović was defeated and a new mayor, Radisav Mašić, was elected with support of parties SDS and SNSD.[citation needed]


interior of the Aladža Mosque in Foča by Hugo Charlemont. In: The Austro-Hungarian Monarchy in Word and Picture (Die österreichisch-ungarische Monarchie in Wort und Bild - "Kronprinzenwerk"), Vol. 22: Bosnia and Herzegovina. Vienna 1901, p. 421.

Aside from the town of Foča, the municipality includes the following settlements:


YearPop.±% p.a.

According to the 2013 census results, the municipality of Foča has 18,288 inhabitants.

Ethnic groupsEdit

The ethnic composition of the municipality:

Ethnic group Population
Serbs 16,867 16,739
Bosniaks/Muslims 17,183 1,270
Croats 93 55
Others 1,246 224
Total 35,389 18,288


The following table gives a preview of total number of registered people employed in legal entities per their core activity (as of 2018):[9]

Activity Total
Agriculture, forestry and fishing 280
Mining and quarrying 40
Manufacturing 188
Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply 70
Water supply; sewerage, waste management and remediation activities 84
Construction 124
Wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles 375
Transportation and storage 158
Accommodation and food services 184
Information and communication 53
Financial and insurance activities 58
Real estate activities -
Professional, scientific and technical activities 48
Administrative and support service activities 9
Public administration and defense; compulsory social security 647
Education 467
Human health and social work activities 619
Arts, entertainment and recreation 138
Other service activities 46
Total 3,588


Foča houses some faculties (including the Medical and Orthodox Theological Faculty of Saint Basil of Ostrog.) from the Istočno Sarajevo University.

It is also home to one of seven seminaries in the Serbian Orthodox Church, the Seminary of Saint Peter of Sarajevo and Dabar-Bosna. Foča was also, until 1992, the home of one of Bosnia's most important Islamic high schools, the Madrassa of Mehmed-paša.

Sutjeska which is the oldest National Park in Bosnia and Herzegovina is located in the municipality.

Twin towns - sister citiesEdit

Foča is twinned with:

Notable peopleEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Stenton, Michael (2000). Radio London and Resistance in Occupied Europe: British Political Warfare 1939-1943. Oxford University Press. p. 327. ISBN 0-19-820843-X.
  2. ^ a b Tomasevich, Jozo (1975). War and Revolution in Yugoslavia, 1941-1945: The. Stanford University Press. p. 258. ISBN 0-8047-0857-6.
  3. ^ a b c Hoare, Marko Attila (2006). Genocide and Resistance in Hitler's Bosnia: The Partisans and the Chetniks. Oxford University Press. pp. 331–32. ISBN 0-19-726380-1.
  4. ^ "Bosnian Serbs reject rape plaque". BBC News. 1 October 2004.
  5. ^ "Rape as a Crime Against Humanity". Archived from the original on January 14, 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-14.
  6. ^ a b Charter, David (28 May 2009). "World Agenda: US hopes for Bosnia rest on town mayor's shoulders". London, UK: The Times.
  7. ^ a b "Facts about Foča" (PDF). International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.
  8. ^ a b "Popis 2013 u BiH – Foča". (in Bosnian). Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  9. ^ "Cities and Municipalities of Republika Srpska" (PDF). Republika Srspka Institute of Statistics. 25 December 2019. Retrieved 31 December 2019.

External linksEdit