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Kos et al: “Those Fools” Killed People

4. February 2011.00:00
Testifying at the trial of four indictees charged with genocide committed in Srebrenica, a Prosecution witness speaks about the events in the town in July 1995.

This post is also available in: Bosnian

Prosecution witness Zoran Bojic, a former member of the Military Police with the Zvornik Brigade of the Republika Srpska Army, VRS, said he saw civilians and local soldiers in front of the Kula school building in Pilica, adding that he also saw two unknown officers and about ten younger soldiers in the school yard.
“They were talking to Slavko Peric and yelled at him. The older officer, a colonel or lieutenant colonel, yelled: ‘Who is the man who wants the prisoners to be relocated? If that’s what I need to do, I will kill all of you,” Bojic said.
Bojic testified at the trial of former members of the Tenth Reconnaissance Squad with the VRS Main Headquarters.

Franc Kos, who was Commander of a unit with that Squad, along with Stanko Kojic, Vlastimir Golijan and Zoran Goronja, are charged with having participated, on July 16, in the execution of at least 800 prisoners on Branjevo farm. The prisoners were first held in the school building.

Peric is on trial before the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina, under a separate indictment, which charges him, as Assistant Commander for Security with the First Battalion of Zvornik Brigade, with genocide committed in Srebrenica.
The witness said that, as he was going to the school bathrooms, he saw men from the Srebrenica area who had been brought to the building. He explained that he heard that the men would be exchanged.
When he came back to the school building on the following day, he saw the men getting on buses and the officer whom he had seen the day before was telling people to bring the men back.
“People started going back on their own. The officer told them: You see, not even your people want you’,” Bojic said, adding he concluded that the exchange attempt was unsuccessful.
Bojic went to the First Battalion Command in the early evening. He said that Peric told him: “It seems that those fools have killed those men”.
The witness said he did not know to which unit the soldiers and the officer he had seen in front of the school building belonged, but, on the basis of information he obtained later on, he thought the older officer was Colonel Vujadin Popovic.
Popovic, former Chief of Security with the Drina Corps Headquarters of VRS, was sentenced under a first instance verdict pronounced by the Hague Tribunal to life imprisonment for genocide committed in Srebrenica.
The trial is due to continue on Tuesday, February 8.


This post is also available in: Bosnian