ICTY: Tolimir Asks the Court to Stop “Depriving Him of Sleep”

21. July 2009.00:00
Zdravko Tolimir files a motion with the Tribunal, asking for the guards to stop supervising his detention cell, also objecting to the placing of micro-chips in his body.

Zdravko Tolimir, who is awaiting trial at The Hague for crimes committed in the Srebrenica and Zepa area, has filed a motion with the Tribunal, complaining about the constant surveillance of his detention cell and objecting to the injection of micro-chips in his body, which would replace the surveillance measures.

In the introductory part of his handwritten motion, Tolimir said that a detention unit physician had informed him, “in the course of an official conversation”, that the Tribunal had decided to check his cell every 30 minutes, thus enabling the guard to visually check his state of health. He alleged that, alternatively, a micro-chip device could be placed in his body and arm. This device would send data on his state of health to the guards 24 hours per day.

“I explained to the detention unit physician that, being a Christian, I cannot let them place micro chip-devices in my body, as the Holy Scripture, John’s Revelation, chapter 13, verses 16 and 17, and chapter 14, verses 9 and 10, says so. The detention unit physician told me that I was ‘paranoid’, as there were no micro-chips at the time when the Holy Scripture was written,” Tolimir said.

Tolimir said he told the physician that “Jesus Christ was not paranoid”, adding that he knew and “announced” that they would “eventually start injecting chips in people’s hands and foreheads”.

“I am warning the Tribunal that, in this case, an attempt is being made to include the term ‘paranoid’ in our communication,” the indictee said, “observing” that, in US court practice, micro-chips are not injected in prisoners’ bodies without their “voluntary consent”, which is in line with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Hague Prosecution considers that Tolimir, former Deputy Commander for intelligence and security affairs with the General Headquarters of the Republika Srpska Army, VRS, is responsible for genocide, extermination, murder, persecution, and the forcible resettlement and deportation of Bosniaks from the Srebrenica and Zepa areas.

Tolimir was arrested in Bratunac Municipality on May 31, 2007. He was transferred to the Detention Unit of the Hague Tribunal on June 1, 2007. He is still waiting for his trial to begin.

In his motion, the indictee said that he has not had any health problems since his arrival in the Detention Unit.

“I am asking the Trial Chamber to inform me why it introduced a measure depriving me of sleep on the basis of a GP’s opinion, given the fact that medical specialists indicated in their reports, filed with the Tribunal, that I did not have any serious problems and that I was capable of attending the trial,” Tolimir said.

The indictee considers that “measures of deprivation of sleep and capability to defend himself” were introduced against him, considering the fact that his cell has been under visual surveillance for 18 months already.

“I ask the Trial Chamber to inform me to what extent it can supervise the detention conditions and to suspend the decision pertaining to sleep deprivation and the injection of micro-chips and placing other devices in my body. In God I trust,” the indictee wrote at the end of his motion.