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22 October 2014
News

Transporting Bodies in Blankets

Dzana Brkanic BIRN BiH Sarajevo

During the trial for crimes in Kalinovik in 1992 a witness’ statement is read, in which the witness said that he transported bodies of three Muslims, who were detained in a school building.

In his statement witness Mirko Askraba, who died more than a year ago, said that, as per an order issued by his superior Radojica Djakovic “most probably in August 1992”, he transported three bodies from the “Miladin Radojevic” school building in Kalinovik by a “TAM 150” military truck.
 
“Between seven and ten soldiers told me to drive the truck, which was covered with awning, as close to the school building as possible. I did not get off the truck, but I looked at the rear view mirror and saw them bringing three loads wrapped in blankets. Later on I found out that those were dead bodies,” Askraba said in his statement, which was read in the courtroom.  
 
He mentioned that he did not know whose bodies those were, but he only knew that those were Muslims, who were held in that building. He said that he did not know who buried the bodies and that he knew nothing about the arrests of Muslims in Kalinovik.
 
Zoran and Marinko Bjelica, as well as Novica Tripkovic are on trial for crimes committed in Kalinovik.  
 
The former members of the Republika Srpska Army, VRS, are charged with having participated in the murder and torture of Bosniak civilians, who were detained in the “Miladin Radojevic” school premises in Kalinovik in August 1992.
 
At this hearing the Prosecution of Bosnia and Herzegovina, BiH, began presenting its material evidence, but the hearing was interrupted because indictee Marinko Bjelica got sick and the emergency medical unit had to intervene.
 
The trial is due to continue on October 29. 
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