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Jajce

From Academic Kids

Jajce is a town in central Bosnia and Herzegovina, located in the Central Bosnia Canton of the Federation.

Jajce is a town that was first built in the 14th century and which served as the capital of the independent Bosnian kingdom during its time. The town has gates as fortifications, as well as a castle which has walls which lead to the various gates around the town, to protect the castle. When the Bosnian kingdom fell to the Ottoman Empire in 1463, Jajce was taken by the Ottomans but was retaken the same year.

During this period, the last Bosnian queen Katarina Velika (Catherine the Great) restored the Church of Saint Luke in Jajce, today the oldest church in town. Eventually, in 1525, Jajce became the last Bosnian town to fall to the Ottoman rule. There are several churches and mosques built in different times during different rules, making Jajce a rather diverse town in this aspect.

Jajce gained prominence during the Second World War because it hosted the second convention of the Anti-Fascist Council of National Liberation of Yugoslavia on November 29 1943, a meeting that set the foundation for the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia after WWII.

The town is also famous for its beautiful waterfall where the lake Pliva meets the river Vrbas. It was 30 meters high, but after an earthquake during the Bosnian war and attacks on the power plant further up the river, the area was flooded and the waterfall is now 20 meters high.

At the beginning of the Bosnian war, Jajce was inhabited by people from all ethnic groups, and was situated at a junction between areas of Serb majority to the north, Bosnian Muslim majority areas to the south-east and Croatian majority areas to the south-west. After having heavily bombarded it, Serb forces occupied Jajce in October 1992, apparently due to lack of cooperation between Bosnian Muslim and Croatian forces. In the Croat counteroffensives of August-September 1995, the town was taken by Croatian forces, and became part of the Muslim-Croat Federation according to the Dayton convention.

The roads and other infrastructure that connect Jajce to the villages surrounding it (part of the Jajce municipality) are in bad shape due the wartime devastation.

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