SENSE Transitional Justice Center is the successor to SENSE News Agency, the only media organization which regularly and continuously covered all trials at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague. SENSE News Agency transformed into a center in 2017 with the aim of documenting, preserving, and making visible and permanently accessible the most important facts about events in the former Yugoslavia during the wars of the 1990s, reconstructed and established beyond reasonable doubt at the ICTY war crimes trials.
Images and stories of countless victims, captured by SENSE Agency at the ICTY’s trials are human stories that transcend ethnic barriers and can serve as a basis to educate the public about war and, its effects on individuals and communities in the former Yugoslavia and beyond. The victims, regardless of their ethnicity, were and remain the common denominator in the conflict and it was on the basis of their victimization that the ICTY constructed its foundations. The foundations of SENSE Transitional Justice Center are the SENSE Agency’s past achievements, unequalled expertise, extensive archive of the court proceedings, and unprecedented institutional memory of the work of the ICTY.
Building on these foundations SENSE Center designs its activities to promote and support the principles of transitional justice, offer historical reflection on the wars, encourage a process of dealing with the past, accountability and individualization of guilt and promote the processes that need to happen in order to reckon with the legacy of war.
The video archive inherited from the news agency provide a springboard not only for SENSE Center’s innovative audio-visual productions, presentations and exhibitions, but also for public debates, international and regional conferences, workshop and seminars, aiming at advancing regional cooperation to address the legacy of the wars of the 1990s and to initiate the process of dealing with the past and establishing the factual truth about the conflicts.
SENSE Center brings together a unique group of experts and expertise. Journalists, judges, prosecutors, lawyers, academics and other interested parties, all with significant experience in the field of international criminal justice, contribute to a multi-dimensional and multi-disciplinary approach to meeting some of the challenges of international justice.
The city of Pula in Istria has not been selected by chance to be the site of the SENSE Center. Because of its history of ethnic, cultural and religious tolerance Istria is one of the few – if not the only - regions of the former Yugoslavia that was not contaminated by aggressive nationalism in the 1990s and is equally acceptable to all former warring parties.