Since it is defined by ethnicity and religion, term Serb Muslims should not be confused with term Serbian Muslims which refers generally to all adherents of Islam in Serbia, regardless of their ethnicity.
The term has several particular uses:
Since Serbs were, and still are, predominantly Eastern Orthodox Christians, their first significant historical encounter with Islam occurred in the second half of 14th century, and was marked by Turkish invasion and conquest of Serbian lands (starting in 1371 and ending by the beginning of 16th century). That interval was marked by first wave of Islamization among Serbs: in some regions, substantial minority left Christianity and converted into Islam, willingly or by necessity, under the influence of Ottoman authorities. The most notable Muslim of Serb ethnicity was Mehmed-pa?a Sokolovi? (1506-1579), Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire (1565-1579), who was ethnic Serb by birth, and so was Omar Pasha Latas.
Gajret (known as Serbian Muslim Cultural Society after 1929) was a cultural society established in 1903 that promoted Serbian identity among the Slavic Muslims of Austria-Hungary (today's Bosnia and Herzegovina). The organization viewed that the Muslims were Serbs lacking ethnic consciousness. The view that Muslims were Serbs is probably the oldest of three ethnic theories among the Bosnian Muslims themselves. It was dismantled by the Independent State of Croatia during World War II. Some members, non-Communists, joined or collaborated with the Yugoslav Partisans, while others joined the Chetniks.
Muslims joined the Serbian army in World War I. The majority were Muslims who had a Serb identity, declaring as Serbs. Among notable soldiers were Avdo Hasanbegovi?, ?ukrija Kurtovi?, Ibrahim Had?imerovi?, Fehim Musakadi?, Hamid Kuki?, Re?id Kurtagi?, who all fought as Serbian volunteer officers at the Salonica Front. Among the most active in the group of Muslims who were engaged in Yugoslav propaganda on Austro-Hungarian Muslim POWs were A. Hasanbegovi?, Azis Sari?, F. Musakadi?, Alija D?emid?i?, R. Kurtagi?, Asim ?eremeta, Hamid Kuki? and Ibrahim Had?iomerovi?.
During World War II in Yugoslavia, few Muslims joined the Chetniks. These espoused a Serb ethnic identity. The most notable of these was Ismet Popovac, who commanded the Muslim National Military Organization (Muslimanska narodna vojna organizacija, MNVO). The resolution of MNVO states that "Muslims are an integral part of Serbdom". World War I veteran Fehim Musakadi? also joined the Chetniks.
During early talks of the partition of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ejup Gani? remarked that the Bosniaks "are Islamized Serbs", and should thus join the Serb side, at a time when the SDA shifted in favour of siding with the Serbs and continuing struggling against the Croats. Political analyst Jochen Hippler noted in 1994 that "Muslims are mostly ethnically Serb, a minority Croat, but this did not save them from being slaughtered by their fellow ethnic groups for being different."
Serb nationalists usually insisted that Bosnian Muslims were Serbs that had abandoned their faith.Serbian historiography emphasizes an Orthodox Serbian origin for the Bosniaks who are interpreted as relinquishing ties to that ethno-religious heritage after converting to Islam and later denying it by refusing to accept a Serbian identity. Bosnian Muslims within the bulk of Serbian nationalist historiography are presented as the descendants of the mentally ill, lazy, slaves, greedy landlords, prisoners, thieves, outcasts or as Serbs who confused and defeated chose to follow their enemies religion.
In the 2014 census in Serbia, of those who declared as ethnic Serbs, 0.04% (2,816) declared Islam as their religion.
and it is mainly frequented by Serb Muslims from Sandjak.
Promoting that policy, in the 1948 census the Bosnian Muslims were permitted to declare themselves as Serb- Muslims, Croat- Muslims, or nationally "undetermined" Muslims, revealing the stance of Communist leaders that held that Muslims ...