© Dragan Iljkic
Kemal Kurspahić is one of the best journalists in the history of BiH journalism.
"Kemal Kurspahić (born December 1, 1946 in Mrkonjić Grad) is a Bosnian Managing Editor of The Connection Newspapers in Alexandria, Va., USA and Chairman/Founder of the Media in Democracy Institute, dedicated to promoting higher standards in journalism in post-conflict societies and countries in transition to democracy. He won broad international recognition as the Editor-in-Chief of the Bosnian daily Oslobođenje in Sarajevo, 1989-1994(....)
For five and a half years, 2001–2006, Kurspahić worked for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, first as the Spokesman in Vienna, Austria and then as the Caribbean Regional Representative in Barbados, covering 29 states and territories. He was a Spokesman for the United Nations Signing Conference for the Convention against Corruption in Mérida, Mexico in December 2003. While serving in the Caribbean he worked with the regional governments, mostly on ministerial level, to promote regional cooperation against drug trafficking and organized crime(...)
He has published four books:
The White House in 1984 on the presidential elections in the United States (Oslobodjenje, Sarajevo, 1994)
Letters from the War, the first book published in the besieged city of Sarajevo (Ideje, Sarajevo, 1992)
As Long As Sarajevo Exists (Pamphleteer's Press, 1997)
Prime Time Crime: Balkan Media in War and Peace (US Institute of Peace Press, 2003).
This book was also published in Bosnia and Serbia, under the title: Zlocin u 19:30 – Balkanski mediji u ratu i miru
(Media Center, Sarajevo, 2003, and Dan graf, Belgrade, 2004). He also contributed to some other books, including Why Bosnia? (...)
Awards and recognition
Kurspahić has received a number of prestigious international awards, including:
South Eastern Europe Media Organization’s Dr. Erhard Busek Award for Better Understanding in the Region (SEEMO – Vienna, Austria, 2003);
World Press Freedom Hero (International Press Institute - Vienna, Austria, 2000);
1993 International Editor of the Year (World Press Review - New York);
1992 Courage in Journalism Award in 1992 (International Women’s Media Foundation - Washington, D.C.);
1993 Bruno Kreisky Award for Human Rights (Dr Bruno Kreisky Foundation - Vienna, Austria).
Oslobođenje, under his editorial leadership, won many awards including The Paper of the Year Award in 1992 (BBC and Granada TV - Great Britain), Freedom Award in 1993 (Dagens nyheter, Stockholm and Politiken, Copenhagen), Oscar Romero Award 1993 (The Rothko Chapel - Houston, Texas), Nieman Foundation’s Louis M. Lyons Award for Conscience and Integrity in Journalism in 1993 (Harvard University - USA), Achievements in Journalism Award in 1993 (Inter Press Service - Rome), Andrei Sakharov Award for Human Rights 1993 (European Parliament - Strasbourg, France) and others."