A Bosnian girl whose diary of civil war is being published worldwide is spending her first peaceful holiday in two years after a tense ordeal to flee Sarajevo.

Zlata Filipovic, 13, is worn out and trying to rest before beginning a media blitz next week for "Zlata's Diary," said Suzannah Lea, a spokeswoman for the publisher, Fixot."She's in shock about being able to turn the electricity on, turn the tap on, the basic amenities of life," Lea said.

Zlata was to begin interviews next week in France and tour Europe for four months before heading for Japan and the United States, Lea said.

Zlata rode an emotional roller coaster trying to leave Sarajevo during December, frustrated by Serbs besieging the Bosnian capital.

After French negotiations with Serb leaders, she and her parents were allowed to leave last Thursday. A French U.N. armored car took them to Sarajevo airport, where they boarded a plane for France.

On her 11th birthday, Zlata began what at first was a diary like countless others. Several months later, war between the Serbs and the Muslim-led government broke out.

View Comments

"Boredom! Shootings!!! Shells!!! People being killed!!! Desperation!! Starving!! Misery!! Terror!!! That is my life. The life of an innocent 11-year-old schoolgirl," read the entry for June 29, 1992.

Fighting began in April 1992 when Serbs rebelled against a Muslim-Croat decision to secede from Yugoslavia. About 200,000 people have been killed.

Zlata has applied for refugee status in France but plans to return to the former Yugoslavia, probably Slovenia, after her media tour, Lea said. She declined to give an exact date.

"Her ultimate dream is to return to Sarajevo," Lea said.

Join the Conversation
Looking for comments?
Find comments in their new home! Click the buttons at the top or within the article to view them — or use the button below for quick access.