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Witness Describes Abduction of Son in Potocari

10. September 2015.00:00
A state prosecution witness testifying at the trial of five former Bosnian Serb fighters said her teenage son was taken from her in Potocari in July 1995. She identified his remains in 2009.

This post is also available in: Bosnian

The Bosnian state prosecution has charged Dragomir Vasic, Miodrag Josipovic, Branimir Tesic, Danilo Zoljic and Radomir Pantic with genocide committed in Srebrenica in July 1995. They are charged with participating or assisting in the forcible resettlement of the local population from Srebrenica, separating men from their families, as well as capturing and executing men and boys in Bratunac, Srebrenica and Zvornik.

According to the charges, at the time Vasic was the commander of the Zvornik police headquarters, Josipovic was the chief of the public safety station and Tesic was the deputy commander of the police station in Bratunac. Zoljic was the commander of special forces of the public safety center in Zvornik and Pantic was the commander of the First Company of the Special Units of Zvornik’s public safety center.

State prosecution witness Sabaheta Fejzic said she went to Potocari with her 17 year old son Rijad on July 11, 1995, while her husband Saban fled through the woods.

“There were many women and children. It was awful and horrible. Some went to the main UN compound, while others stayed around the factories. We were surrounded by Serb soldiers right away. Some were dressed in black uniforms. They trod heavily on everyone, including women and children,” Fejzic said.

Fejzic said she decided to leave Potocari with her son by bus on July 13.

“We had to walk through a human shield of Dutch soldiers. We walked in pairs to get to the bus, before being deported. Then we walked between two lines of policemen and soldiers with rifles. When it was my turn, they told my child to go right. I continued walking, but they said he should go right…All of them attacked me in order to seize my child,” Fejzic said.

She said she begged them to let her son go, but they pushed her onto a truck.

“I tried to jump out, because I felt it was the end for my child. My child was killed,” Fejzic said.

Fejzic said her child was found in a grave. She said she was still searching for her husband.

She said the night of July 12 or 13, 1995, was the most horrible night for Bosniak civilians in Potocari.

“They took men and boys away and raped little girls. Our screams were so loud, you could hear them in the middle of Serbia,” Fejzic said.

Responding to questions from the defense, Fejzic said her husband didn’t have any military engagements in Srebrenica. She said she was a board member of the Association of Mothers of the Enclaves of Srebrenica and Zepa.

The trial will continue on September 15.

Albina Sorguč

This post is also available in: Bosnian