Protected Witnesses Says He Didn’t See Civilians Fleeing Gorazde

29. September 2015.00:00
A protected state prosecution witness testifying at the trial of Muhamed Sisic, Tarik Sisic, Emir Drakovac and Aziz Susa said he didn’t see a convoy of vehicles and people in the municipality of Gorazde on August 27, 1992. He said he heard about the murder of civilians in the area a couple of years ago.

Defendants Muhamed Sisic, Tarik Sisic, Emir Drakovac and Aziz Susa have been charged with participating in an attack on a civilian convoy in Kukavice in Rogatica on August 27, 1992. At least 20 Serbs were killed and several more were wounded as a result of the attack. Muhamed Sisic was the commander of the Commando Squad of the Kukavicka Company of the Bosnian Army, while the other defendants were members of that unit.

A protected witness known as ST-3 testified at today’s hearing. ST-3 said he was in the area of Jabucko Sedlo from August 15-29, 1992, as part of the Krug operation. Bosnian Army units started the operation with the aim of liberating Gorazde from siege by Bosnian Serb Army forces.

According to ST-3, a convoy of military vehicles belonging to the Bosnian Serb Army arrived in the area of Jabucko Sedlo on August 20, 1992. He said they clashed with the Bosnian Army.

“We managed to stop their breakthrough near the end of that road. Using bombs and who knows what else, we stopped their tank. Their convoy stopped there, because they couldn’t move any further. The battle lasted one day. After that they withdrew, but the burned tank stayed there,” ST-3 said.

ST-3 said after that day the remaining Serb soldiers and civilians began withdrawing towards Rogatica. ST-3 said this lasted until August 29, 1992, when the Bosnian Army took over the entire area surrounding Jabucko Sedlo.

ST-3 was asked whether he saw a convoy of vehicles and people on the road leading from Jabucko Sedlo to Mesici on August 27, 1992. ST-3 said he didn’t. He said the destroyed tank prevented the passage of vehicles on that road.

“I didn’t have any information on the happenings of that day for many years. I heard that a monument was built, but I thought until a couple of years ago that the monument was erected in honour of soldiers who were killed on August 20. It was only a couple of years ago that I heard that they were allegedly civilians,” ST-3 said.

Judge Darko Samardzic asked ST-3 how he explained the fact that a number of witnesses said they were in a convoy of vehicles and buses moving away from the area on August 27. ST-3 said it made no sense to him.

Defendant Aziz Susa was removed from the courtroom at this hearing, because he was drunk.

The trial will continue on Tuesday, October 6.

Denis Džidić