Jezik / Language:
25 March 2015

Witness Describes Abuse by Former Bosnian Serb Army Soldier in Hadzici

Emina Dizdarevic BIRN BiH Sarajevo

While testifying at the Momir Tomas trial, prosecution witness Asim Korjenic told the cantonal court of Sarajevo that Tomas had beaten and mistreated him in the Hadzici area in November 1992.

According to the indictment, Tomas, a former member of the Bosnian Serb Army, came to the village of Breza in the municipality of Hadzici on November 29, 1992. He allegedly physically abused Bosniak civilians and treated them inhumanely.

Asim Korjenic described his alleged abuse at the hands of Tomas.

“During the night of November 28 or 29, 1992, I was hiding in Nihad Becirovic’s house...Someone banged on the front door...the defendant appeared. I was shocked. I told Nihad, ‘It’s over,” said Korjenic.

He said Tomas was accompanied by Predrag Matic, and that they were armed and in uniform. Korjenic said Tomas then proceeded to beat him.

“He hit me with his legs, hands, boots...he found a detergent box and told me to cover myself with detergent. He then told me to pour stiffener on my body,” Korjenic said.

Tomas then knocked Korjenic down and put a Swiss army knife to his throat, but Korjenic managed to defend himself.

“He hit me violently on my back and head again...he stole some golden jewelry and ordered me to accompany him to Ibrahim Becirovic’s place. He searched for an air rifle. He took some food and an old TV. He then ordered me to bring two more people to him,” Korjenic said.

Korjenic said before he left the home of Ibrahim Becirovic, Tomas forbid him from talking about the events of that evening.

Korjenic said he was hiding until December 2, 1992, when he was exchanged.

“The exchanged happened near Kobiljaca. On that occasion I said that Momir Tomas had beaten me up,” said Korjenic, who was upset and crying.

Responding to a question by the defense, Korjenic said he took on a military engagement with the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina after the incident. He said Tomas was the only defendant who beat him, and that Predrag Matic stood by as a guard.

The trial will continue on April 23.

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