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17 February 2015
News

Witness Testifies on Rape of Minor by Bosnian Serb Fighters

Albina Sorguc BIRN BiH Sarajevo
At the ongoing trial of former Bosnian Serb fighters Bosiljko and Ostoja Markovic, a defense witness said that he witnessed the rape of a minor at the Dabovci bus station on June 28, 1992.
The witness, Ilija Raljic, said that he was a member of the Kotor-Varos unit of the Bosnian Serb Army and that he was standing guard when a van stopped at the Dabovci station on June 28, 1992.
 
“The van stopped and Ostoja and Bosiljko came out. Pedja stayed inside with a girl. Pedja told me to come and said, ‘Ilija, do you want to rape as well?’” said Raljic.
 
According to the defense team, Pedja was another Bosnian Serb fighter named Predrag Cicmanovic. Raljic said he didn’t respond to Cicmanovic’s question, but turned around and left.
 
Raljic said that the girl and Cicmanovic sat naked in the van. He said the girl was crying.
 
Raljic confirmed he saw the rape took place.
 
“He raped her there and then,” he said. At the time, Raljic did not report the rape to anyone.
 
He added that Mirko Bozovic, a driver, sat by the wheel the entire time.
 
According to Raljic, Ostoja and Bosiljko Markovic eventually returned to the van and they all left towards Vrbanjci.
 
The state prosecutor has charged Bosiljko and Ostoja Markovic, both former members of the Kotor-Varos Brigade of the Army of Republika Srpska, with the rape of a minor in Kotor-Varos.

The indictment alleges that the defendants and another person raped the minor in a moving minivan several times.
 
Niko Novakovic, the second defense witness, also said he saw a van stop at the Dobavci bus station on June 28, 1992. He said he saw Bosiljko and Ostoja Markovic exiting the can and Cicmanovic calling to Raljic to come inside.
 
Novakovic said that Raljic was shaking after stepping away from the van.
 
He also said that the girl inside the van was talking, in tears.
 
The trial will continue on March 3.

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