Jezik / Language:
28 October 2015

Witnesses Describe Detention and Abuse of Civilians in Mostar

Albina Sorguc BIRN BiH Sarajevo
A state prosecution witness testifying at the trial of five former members of the Bosnian Army said she was wounded in 1993 when a mortar fell on Meke, near Mostar.
Enes Curic, Ibrahim Demirovic, Samir Kreso, Habib Copelj and Mehmed Kaminic have been charged with participating in the unlawful arrest and detention of Croat civilians in the municipality of Mostar from June to December 1993.
The Bosnian state prosecution alleges that at the time Curic was a member of the 49th Mountain Brigade of the Bosnian Army and the manager of a detention facility in a school and other buildings in Potoci, Demirovic was the commander of the 47th Mountain Brigade of the Bosnian Army, Kreso was the head of the medical service with the military unit of the Mountain Brigade (active in the Bijelo Polje area), while Copelj and Kaminic were members of the Bosnian Army.
Demirovic, who was also a member of the 449th Eastern Herzegovina Mountain Brigade of the Bosnian Army, has also been charged with the rape of a woman in Potoci in 1993.
State prosecution witness Daliborka Buntic testified at today’s hearing. She was 11 years old at the time of her testimony.

“Several Bosnian Army soldiers came and said we needed to go to Meke. I was placed in a devastated house with my mom, dad, brother and uncle. More and more Croats were brought in. There were 50 of us in that house, of all ages, from a year-and-a-half old child to 80 and 90 year olds,” Buntic said.
She said during her detention Enes Curic said he was in charge. She also said she was wounded during her detention.
“I was seriously wounded on July 2, 1993, in the same house,” Buntic said. She said there were still pieces of shrapnel in her body.
She said a Bosnian Army soldier took her over his shoulder and carried her to a clinic where she was helped by Samir Kreso.
She said Kreso told her the wound was deep and gave her a painkiller. She said she then she spent some time in a makeshift clinic.

State prosecution witness Drazen Ivankovic said he was held in a collection center in Meke when he was 17. He said the collection center was near a mosque, which held women, children and elderly men.
“Bosnian Croats targeted the mosque. The mortar fell through the window and door. Many were injured,” Ivankovic said.
Ivankovic said the civilians detained in the house were then transferred to the school in Potoci, where Enes Curic was the warden. Ivankovic said Curic helped prisoners.
“He protected us when soldiers came,” Ivankovic said.  

The trial continues on November 4.
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