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Igor ÄŒoko

TRAPPED Hell is round the corner




Since 2014. over a million of refugees from Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan passed through Belgrade, trying to reach new life in some of EU countries. They passed so called “Balkan route”, including Greece, Macedonia and Serbia. In the summer of 2015. Hungarian border police put the iron fence over the border in attend to stop refugees. They succeeded in that. But, couple of thousands stayed in Serbia. Among them, over a thousand tried to cross the border on their own. They refuse to stay in the camps, already overbooked by the refugees. Most of them squatted three abandoned warehouses in the central area of Belgrade, place once upon a time called Savamala, nowdays place of future Belgrade Waterfont. They organized their life in ruined facilities, in a very poor and dehumanized conditions. During the past winter, after the first snow, hell of the place shows its real face. This is the story about them, about three months of suffering and struggle to help them and spreading the word worldwide, showing conditions they live in. I took first photos in November of 2016. Since I uploaded them on my Facebook profile, photos became viral and shared as an album over a 1800 times. Reactions were emotional. In a short period of time, a large number of activists, lead by those photos, came from all over the Europe to help refugees in Belgrade. Photographs were published in various printed and online media all over the Europe and social media groups, showed at various group and solo exhibitions in Belgrade, Thessaloniki, Athens, London, Berlin, Milano, Brussels, Lisbon, Valladolid and European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, as a great finale. And still waiting to be shown in future. This story is reminder on how life can be hard and how freedom may became legendary. And how individuals with empathy from all over the Europe can be united in humanity. Igor Čoko, autor


BELGRADE, SERBIA... SUMMER OF 2017 During April of 2017., warehouses are demolished because of Belgrade Waterfront expansion. Refugees are warned, but demolishing started, so they didnt even had a chace to take their stuff. Most of them are taken to refugee camps all over Serbia. Some of refugees from the warehouses sucessfuly, but paying the hughe price, crossed the border. I m happy to see they have new life or trying to fight for it, far away from the hell around the corner they spent last winter. For those who stayed in Serbia at the refugee camps, being trapped is a still feeling. Refugee story is neverending. This e book is reminder on the last and biggest european refugee urban jungle, after Calais and Idomeni. A document and warning at the same, on how life can be unpredictible and brutal. Thanks to all of good people who participate in helping refugees, and may the Force be with the runaways. Belgrade, December 2017. One year after. Igor ÄŒoko

Igor Čoko was born at Knin, Croatia in 1975. He now lives and works in Belgrade where he obtained a degree in ethnology and anthropology. In his role of a visual anthropologist, he uses his camera to capture and explore the sensibility of the street life, its people and lifer of stigmatized social groups. He s an author of photography books “Scenes from sumptuous reality” and “Living behind bars in the Belgrade County Jail".

Igor Čoko “Trapped: Hell is round the corner”

This is his third release.

Digital release

Grain photo e books, digital edition 001 Number of pages: 60 Photographs: 55 Belgrade, 2017. copyright: Igor Čoko

Trapped - Hell is round the corner  

Story about refugees from Afghanistan living in three abandoned warehouses in the central area of Belgrade. During the winter of 206/17, aft...

Trapped - Hell is round the corner  

Story about refugees from Afghanistan living in three abandoned warehouses in the central area of Belgrade. During the winter of 206/17, aft...