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Prosecutor Refutes Expert’s Claims on Accountability of Stanisic and Milosevic

18. November 2015.00:00
Na suđenju za genocid u Srebrenici, tužilac Predrag Tomić je osporavao zaključak vojnog vještaka da optuženi Ostoja Stanišić i Marko Milošević nisu dobili zadatke u vezi sa Srebreničanima koji su u julu 1995. dovedeni u Petkovce (općina Zvornik).

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At today’s hearing of the Ostoja Stanisic and Marko Milosevic trial, prosecutor Predrag Tomic challenged claims made by a military expert who had previously testified on behalf of the defense. The expert had claimed that the defendants had received no orders related to captured Srebrenica civilians who were brought to Petkovci in the municipality of Zvornik in July 1995.

Stanisic and Milosevic are on trial for the murder of approximately 1000 Srebrenica civilians on a dam near Petkovci in mid-July 1995. Stanisic was the commander of the Sixth Battalion of the Zvornicka Brigade of the Bosnian Serb Army, which was based in Petkovci, while Milosevic was his deputy.

Addressing the trial chamber, prosecutor Predrag Tomic disputed claims made by Bozidar Forca, a military expert who had testified on behalf of the defense at the last hearing. Forca presented his findings on the alleged involvement of the defendants in the killings, primarily on the basis of documentation provided by the defense.

“I haven’t come across any evidence indicating that the Sixth Battalion was tasked with accommodating and guarding the [Petkovci] prisoners,” Forca said while presenting his findings last Wednesday.

Forca said the captured civilians were brought to Petkovci and were held in the school building, but he didn’t know who had ordered their detention. Forca said the detention of the civilians and their execution on the dam could not be associated with the Sixth Battalion.

Testimony by state prosecution witnesses were also made available to Forca. He said those witnesses had said unknown soldiers and police officers had brought the prisoners to Petkovci.

Refuting these claims at today’s hearing, prosecutor Predrag Tomic described testimony given by Radenko Basic, a former member of the Sixth Battalion. During the investigation phase of the case, Basic said he’d sent a few soldiers to guard prisoners in the Petkovci school building. The defense objected to this statement.

“The witness’ statement was very disputable. He explained at the trial that this wasn’t true,” said defense attorney Milos Peric. Peric said Forca shouldn’t have necessarily taken his words into consideration.

Tomic also said a member of the Sixth Battalion was seen on the dam.

“If he didn’t receive an order to do so, he could have been there for various reasons. It could be due to a lack of discipline,” Forca said.

“As you can see, he [Forca] didn’t even use some pieces of evidence,” Tomic said.

The trial will continue on December 2.

Amer Jahić

This post is also available in: Bosnian