The second largest city in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Banja Luka has had a tragic recent history.
Ryanair has announced a new route to Stockholm Skavsta from Banja Luka, the second largest city in Bosnia and Herzegovina – one of three new routes from the Bosnian city.
The three routes are the airline’s first from Banja Luka and, for now, the only ones from Bosnia. They will each operate twice weekly as part of the low-cost carrier’s winter 2018 schedule, and tickets are now on sale.
Besides Skavsta, the other two routes are to Brussels Charleroi and Memmingen in Bavaria, Germany. Bosnia is Ryanair’s 37th country of operation and it expects 100,000 customers a year on the three routes.
Banja Luka is the de facto capital of Republika Srpska, an entity established during the Bosnian War of the 1990s.
The city went through considerable changes as Republika Srpska was established at the time of the declaration of Bosnia-Herzegovinian independence.
Almost all of Banja Luka’s Croats and Bosniak Muslims were expelled during the war and all of the city’s 16 mosques were destroyed. Meanwhile, Serbs from Croat- and Bosniak-dominated parts of Bosnia settled in Banja Luka. Today the city is 90% Serb.
The Ferhat Pasha Mosque, which was built in 1579 and destroyed in 1993, was reopened in 2016 after extensive reconstruction.
Today, around 80,000 of an estimated total of three million Bosniaks live in Sweden, 21,000 in Denmark and 17,000 in Norway.