Film director accused of demolishing century-old fortress

Serbian film director Emir Kusturica has started demolishing the famous Petrinja Fortress in Trebinje because he needs stone blocks for his Andrićgrad.

Source: Radio Free Europe, index.hr

This is according to local media.

Kusturica is building Andrićgrad in the Bosnian town of Višegrad to honor Nobel-winning author Ivo Andrić.

The demolition of the fortress from the time of the Austro-Hungarian Empire has sparked revolt of the citizens of Trebinje who gathered near the fortress on Thursday and prevented workers from taking stone blocks off the more than a century old fortress, Banja Luka-based website 6yka.com has reported.

According to the website, Kusturica’s dredges have already demolished the front wall of the fortress.

Trebinje Mayor Dobroslav Ćuk told the citizens that he was aware of the project and added that he was convinced that “the fortress is in a bad condition”.

“I have on several occasions rejected proposals of Emir Kustirica who asked for permission to demolish the bridge on the Goričko Lake, some train stations and other things. I was in Belgrade recently and Kusturica called me again and asked if he could take stone blocks from some rundown fortress he claimed was in a very bad condition and that it had already been demolished. I said he could if other competent institutions allowed it,” Ćuk explained.

Kusturica got a permission to demolish several old structures in Trebinje and Herzegovina in order to use the stone for the construction of Andrićgrad that will also be used as a film set, but they mostly included old and abandoned houses and barns.

The citizens have announced that they will gather near the fortress in Trebinje on Friday in order to prevent it from being torn down.

The Austrian Embassy in Bosnia-Herzegovina has also been informed about the case, according to the website.

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