Bijedic family's tragedies: Dzemal died after he saw off Tito, his great-granddaughter was murdered
Bijedic died tragically on January 18, 1977 in a plane crash on a flight to Sarajevo, after seeing off Josip Broz Tito, who had departed from Belgrade on his way to Libya
Media in Bosnia and Herzegovina have revealed that the girl who was murdered near Ljubusko is Lana Bijedic (19) - a great-granddaughter of Dzemal Bijedic, a lawyer and a participant in the National Liberation War. Bijedic was a social and political worker of the SFR Yugoslavia and the Socialist Federal Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina and a hero of socialist labor. From 1971 to 1977 he served as President of the Federal Executive Council.
Bijedic was born on April 22, 1917 in Mostar. He comes from a prominent merchant family of Bajramaga Bijedic, who moved from Gacko to Mostar in 1915. He was just over a year old when his father Adem died of Spanish flu in 1919. At that time, his mother Zafira and Uncle Becir took over the care of the family.
He graduated from elementary school in his hometown, and then from the Law School in Belgrade.
As a high school student, he was a member of the Muslim society of Gajret and became a supporter of the revolutionary youth movement, which he joined during his studies in Belgrade. In October 1938, in Belgrade, he was admitted to the Alliance of the Communist Youth of Yugoslavia (SKOJ), and in December 1939 in Mostar to the Communist Party of Yugoslavia (KPJ). From 1940 to 1941 he was the secretary of the Regional Committee of the SKOJ for Herzegovina. He was arrested four times as a member of the KPJ in Mostar.
After the Second World War, Bijedic served as assistant minister of the interior in the government of the People's Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, then in 1948 as head of the Propaganda Directorate of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Bosnia and Herzegovina. He was also secretary of the Regional Committee of the KPJ for Herzegovina, a member of the Executive Council of the Federal Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, president of the Republic Council, president of the Assembly of the the Socialst Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and President of the Federal Executive Council (SIV) in 1971.
He died tragically on January 18, 1977 in a plane crash on a flight to Sarajevo, after seeing off Josip Broz Tito, who had departed from Belgrade on his way to Libya. His wife Razija died along him, and they were survived by three children: Dragana, Azra and Milenko.
Immediately upon learning of the tragedy, President Tito returned to the country and attended his funeral in Sarajevo. He was succeeded at the helm of the Federal Executive Council by Veselin Djuranovic (from Montenegro). The same year that he died, a university was founded in Mostar that was named after him.
Dzemal Bijedic's uncle always believed he had been murdered
He says he met Dzemal the last time three months before he died, on October 23, 1977, in a weekend home in Trnovo, near Sarajevo.
"He spoke in my ear: 'Bahrica, I know a lot, they will kill me'. He said that Tito was isolated, blocked by his wife Jovanka, that he could not be reached. He was telling me about the top leadership of the JNA (Yugoslav Army). No doubt, he anticipated his death," said Bahrudin Bijedic, a former consul of the SFRY.
He says such cases don't fall under the statute of limitations and that there should be a renewed investigation and reconstruction in a similar manner to what was done around the deaths of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and Turkish Prime Minister Turkgut Ozal.