Press Release

Together We Shape the Future We Want and Need

24 October 2020

The United Nations marks its 75th anniversary with a series of events in Bosnia and Herzegovina, joining the “Europe Turns UN Blue” initiative with Sarajevo City Hall, Mostar’s Old Bridge and Banja Luka’s Banski Dvor

Caption: Mostar Old Bridge in UN Blue for "Europe Turns UN Blue"/ 24 October 2020


Sarajevo’s City Hall, the Old Bridge in Mostar and Banski Dvor in Banja Luka are shining blue this evening, as Bosnia and Herzegovina joins the “Europe Turns UN Blue” initiative. More than 200 iconic buildings and landmarks across Europe are turning UN Blue to mark United Nations Day and commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Organisation.

Caption: Sarajevo City Hall in UN Blue for "Europe Turns UN Blue"/ 24 October 2020

For the United Nations in Bosnia and Herzegovina, illuminating these sites is the culmination of months of conversations in which 1,400 people from BiH added their voice, and set out their priorities to the “Future We Want.” People from across the country shared their stories on adapting to the “new normal” and champions from all spheres of life told us how they persevere and what their hopes for a better and more sustainable future are.

“Despite the challenges of 2020, the UN remains committed to a vision of our future that will be defined by those who work together and who reach out across lines of division. Our 75th anniversary conversation has reconfirmed that this is the 'The Future We Want' across the globe and in BiH. Together, we have the blueprints to achieve success by building forward greener, fairer, more transparently and more inclusively as 'We the Peoples' of our, your and my, United Nations”, said Dr. Ingrid Macdonald, the United Nations Resident Coordinator in BiH on this occasion.

Caption: Banja Luka Cultural Center Banski dvor in UN Blue for "Europe Turns UN Blue"/ 24 October 2020

An interactive event organized on 23 October and streamed online, showed how young BiH entrepreneurs, artists and agri-business owners are translating the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into action. Through their inspiring stories, Saldina Nurak, Faris Zacina, Sanja Ceremidzic and Alen Jusupovic, together with Maya Sar, shared their views on how to achieve the SDGs and create a better future for all. Joining the event via online message, the Chairman of the BiH Presidency, H.E. Mr. Šefik Džaferović, spoke of the UN and BiH shared goals and values, while the BiH Minister of Foreign Affairs and Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers, H.E. Bisera Turkovic highlighted the country’s many contributions to the UN system across the world. These messages resonated with the messages of the people from Bosnia and Herzegovina who work for the United Nations agencies and offices in all the corners of the world.

Adding to the interactive discussion, H.E. Ji Ping, Ambassador of People’s Republic of China to BiH, touched upon the importance of the multilateral system today in global affairs. Italian Ambassador to BIH, H.E. Nicola Minasi, pointed out that the country’s talented youth and tourism potential could open-up many economic opportunities with a focus on Via Dinarica. Linking the SDG 16 – to build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions - with BiH’s efforts to strengthen the rule of law on its way towards the EU is the way forward, said Ekaterina Dorodnova, Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to BiH.

Caption: UN75 Interactive event livestreamed from Sarajevo on 23 October 2020

In these uncertain times when the COVID19 pandemic continues to wreck havoc on public health systems, destabilising economies, undermining livelihoods and increasing inequalities, voices such as those heard from Bosnia and Herzegovina are more important than ever. BiH knows the value of peace, solidarity and cooperation. BiH also has talented young people, expertise and capacities whose work can contribute to more sustainable and prosperous societies.

Caption: UN Resident Coordinator, dr. Ingrid Macdonald and BiH Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ms. Bisera Turkovic listening to the video message of BiH Presidency Chairman H.E. Sefik Dzaferovic / UN75 Interactive Event on 23 October 2020

“As the UN Resident Coordinator in BiH, I reconfirm the commitment of the UN to redouble our efforts to work in partnership with the people of BiH to achieve this vision with sustainable development, human rights, peace, dignity and mutual respect at the core.”, concluded Dr. Ingrid Macdonald, the UN Resident Coordinator in BiH.

Caption: Ms. Saldina Nurak/CodeBeauty and Mr. Faris Zacina/Ministry of Programming during the UN75 Interactive event/ 23 October 2020
Caption: Ms. Maya Sar, singer-songwriter and UN75 BiH Champion during the UN75 Interactive Event/ 23 October 2020
Caption: Mr. Alen Jusupovic/ owner of "Little Farmer" and Ms. Sanja Ceremidzic/Olympic Centre Jahorina during the UN75 Interactive event/ 23 October 2020

The United Nations in BiH includes FAO, ILO, IOM, UNDP, UNEP, UNESCO, UNFPA, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNODC, UNV, UN Women and WHO. These agencies, funds and programms and their staff work in all parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina on delivering vital support for the progress towards achieving Sustainable Development Goals, peace, prosperity and protection of human rights.


To view the full list of “Europe Turns UN Blue” participating buildings as well as photos of the illuminations, please visit: 

Follow the conversation on social media using the hashtags #EuropeTurnsUNBlue and #UN75.

To view the UN75 Interactive Event for Bosnia and Herzegovina, visit:

UN entities involved in this initiative

United Nations

Goals we are supporting through this initiative