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Witness Describes Surrender of Bosniak Civilians to Bosnian Serb Forces in Sandici

15. December 2015.00:00
Testifying at the trial of five former members of Bosnian Serb police forces charged with genocide in Srebrenica, a state prosecution witness said he guarded the road to Sandici where Bosniak civilians surrendered to Bosnian Serb forces on July 13, 1995.

This post is also available in: Bosnian

Miodrag Josipovic, Branimir Tesic, Dragomir Vasic, Danilo Zoljic and Radomir Pantic have been charged with genocide in Srebrenica. According to the indictment, they forcibly resettled civilians and also captured and executed men and boys.

According to the charges, Josipovic was the chief of the public safety station in the area. Tesic was the deputy commander of the police station in Bratunac. Vasic was the commander of the police headquarters in Zvornik. Zoljic was the commander of special units at a public safety center. Pantic was the commander of the First Company of the special units.

Predrag Krstic, a former member of the First Company of the special units at the public safety center in Zvornik, testified at today’s hearing. Krstic said after the First Company searched an area spanning a yellow bridge up to Potocari, the company returned to Bratunac and then went to Sandici.

Krstic said he believed the company commander, Rasa Pantic, was in Sandici as well, and that his first name was Radomir.

Krstic said the First Company encountered soldiers and civilians next to a factory in Potocari on July 12, 1995.

“Muslim civilians had gathered at there,” Krstic said. He said the First Company “had nothing to do with the civilians.”

According to Krstic, the First Company was in Sandici from the afternoon of July 12 until the evening on July 13, 1995, where he and others were ordered to guard a road.

“We were told to guard the road in order to ensure the free flow of traffic and to guard against the possibility of an attack by enemy forces,” Krstic said.

He said Bosniak civilians began emerging from a nearby forest and surrendered to Bosnian Serb forces on July 13, 1995. He said they were taken to a field where army personnel and members of the Special Police Brigade of Sekovici were present.

“There was no shooting from the forest. We didn’t open fire either. There was no need at all,” Krstic said.

A video recording depicting the surrender of a group of Bosniak men in Sandici was played in the courtroom. Krstic identified himself and two of his colleagues in the recording, and added that the group of men who surrendered went towards Bratunac.

Dragomir Vasic’s defense attorney, Aleksander Lazevic, asked Krstic where he pointed his rifle when the Bosniak civilians emerged from the forest.

“I have never pointed my gun at a civilian. There was no need. They passed by us and went to that field,” Krstic said.

The trial will continue on December 22.

Albina Sorguč

This post is also available in: Bosnian