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26 April 2007

Jankovic: Witnesses Recall Execution

Prosecution witnesses have recognised Snagovo murder accused in the courtroom.

The Zoran Jankovic trial has heard Prosecution witnesses testify about the involvement of the indictee in the execution of civilians in the village of Snagovo during 1992.

Former Serbian army member Jankovic – who was recognised in the courtroom by the witnesses - is charged with involvement in attacks on Snagovo village and the forced movement of civilians from the villages of Seher and Like in 1992.

Witness Abdulah Mujanovic claims that, on 29 April 1992, he was in a group of civilians arrested and later mostly executed in the village of Snagovo by Jankovic, together with other soldiers, as claimed in the indictment.

"We were hiding in the Njeverice forest when three soldiers in uniforms and with guns appeared. They told us to move towards the school, where they would protect us from the attacks by Muslim fundamentalists. One of the soldiers introduced himself as Major Zoran and he said they were veterans from Croatia," Mujanovic told the Court.

According to the indictment and statements of this witness, the civilians were taken to the Rasidov Han, where the accused and some other soldiers shot them. The indictment states that 36 civilians were killed and their bodies were subsequently burned in order to hide the evidence of the crime.

"I saw that Zoran was the first one to shoot. After the soldiers had left I was found by Zlatija and Mersija Mujanovic who took me to a hen house and helped me hide in there. I heard afterwards that the bodies of the killed people were burned together with dead sheep and tyres," Abdulah Mujanovic remembered.

During cross-examination, the Defence pointed out that the witness Mujanovic had not recognised the accused among four men during the investigation in Tuzla on 16 May 2006.

"I recognised his brother then, but now I see that he has refined himself a bit. I know for sure it is he. Those blue eyes and the look in his eyes is something you can never forget," the witness said.

Marhiza Krupinac, the second Prosecution witness, claims that she was in the group of civilians who were arrested on 29 April 1992 in the forest where they were hiding. She saw the indictee on this occasion.

"He said he was Zoran from Belgrade and he showed me a knife and said he had killed people in Vukovar with that knife" the witness said.

This witness also did not recognise the accused during the investigation, but today in the courtroom she pointed in his direction with certainty.

"At that time I pointed at another man, although I recognised the indictee. I was scared that he would kill me if I said it was he. When I saw his penetrating eyes, I knew immediately it was him," said Krupinac, her eyes filled with tears.

The trial will continue on 17 April 2007.
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