Jezik / Language:
6 November 2014

Female Bosnian Croat Denies Abusing Prisoners

Denis Dzidic BIRN BiH Sarajevo
Indira Kameric denied ever being a member of the Croatian Defence Council or abusing prisoners held at the Bosanski Brod police station and football stadium in 1992.
Testifying in her own defence at the Sarajevo-based court on Thursday, Kameric said she knew nothing about the wartime crimes committed at the Bosanski Brod police station or the FK Polet stadium.

She said that before the war she worked in the local municipality, and in April 1992, she was ordered to lead a committee documenting abandoned homes.

“There were three of us in the committee and we went to those apartments – because there were a lot of empty homes, since a lot of the population left Bosanski Brod because of the war – and our task was to seal them and protect them from burglary and robbery,” said Kameric.

“There were no working hours. I came to work at seven in the morning and left in five or six in the afternoon. Sometimes we ended up staying all night just to finish lists of apartments. The workload was immense,” she testified.

Because of her workload and the shootings around the city, she did not move around the town much and never went to the police station or the football stadium.

“I have no idea what happened there between April and October 1992,” she said.

Kameric is accused of being a member of the 101st Bosanski Brod Brigade of the Croatian Defence Council and participating in the physical and mental abuse of Serb and Bosniak civilians and prisoners of war who were unlawfully detained at the police station and the stadium from April to October 1992.

But Kameric told the court that she never belonged to Bosnian Croat forces and that had never even tried on a uniform in her life.

Asked why her name was listed on Bosnian Croat forces’ payroll document in August and September 1992, she explained that the military had paid her once for her municipality work.

“We didn’t get paid at the start of the war, because the municipality didn’t have a budget, but the army had it all. Sometime in 1992, I don’t remember when, the army gave out some funds from a list they had, I got maybe 50 Deutschmarks,” she said.

At the end of her testimony, Kameric said that she only learned that prisoners  were being held at the Polet stadium after the war, when she was summoned by the district prosecution in Doboj in relation to a war crimes investigation.

“I was shocked and went into hospital. I saw nothing for 72 hours and I got diabetes. My suffering has lasted eight years and my family has been under heavy scrutiny, by both the media and the public. I am suffering for my sons,” she said.

Her trial will continue on November 20.
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