Jezik / Language:
27 February 2015

Frimel Not At Pero Kosoric Square, Says Witness

Albina Sorguc BIRN BiH Sarajevo

Former Bosnian Army member Sead Agovic testified today at the trial of Bosnian Army commander Mario Frimel.

The cantonal prosecution of Sarajevo has charged Mario Frimel, the former commander of the Ivan Krndelj Squad of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina, with the unlawful arrest and physical and mental abuse of Bosnian Serbs in the Hrasno neighbourhood of Sarajevo. According to the charges, civilian Mladen Blagovcanin was one of the persons mistreated by Frimel.

The indictment alleges that after a skyscraper at 10 Pero Kosoric Square had been set on fire in October 1992, soldiers from the Ivan Krndelj Squad led Bosnian Serbs out of the building. They also led Serbs out of the Ivan Goran Kovacic school basement, where some had fled after the building caught on fire. The soldiers led them to a shopping center, where they were beaten. They were then led to the Ina premises (a local business) , which were used by members of the Ivan Krndelj Squad.

Sead Agovic was a member of a Bosnian Army unit commanded by Mustafa Hajrulahovic Talijan, which was based at the Pero Kosoric Square in Sarajevo.

Agovic said he knew Frimel before the war, but that Frimel was not based at the Pero Kosoric Square and was unable to issue orders to that unit.

Agovic was asked whether Mladen Blagovcanin was among the Serbs who had been led away from 10 Pero Kosoric Square. He said that he’d never heard his full name before, but that he’d known Blagovcanin by the nickname of Kiki for fifty years. He then pointed to Blagovcanin, who was sitting in the audience in the courtroom.

Agovic said he’d heard that Blagovcanin was upset with him, because he didn’t protect him in 1992.

“I didn’t see who hit him [Blagovcanin] and I wasn’t present at that location. This is the main reason why I’ve come here today to testify,” he said.

Defense witness Fahrudin Sehovic said he was a member of the Interventions Squad, and his commander in chief was Mustafa Hajrulahovic Talijan.

Sehovic said when the skyscraper at 10 Pero Kosoric Square was set on fire, he saw a military policeman hit Visnja Krstajic in the Ivan Goran Kovacic school building.

Sehovic said Frimel could not have issued orders to soldiers when the skyscraper was set on fire.

Sehovic said Blagovcanin had once told him in a cafe that Mario Frimel had hit him. Sehovic responded by saying that it couldn’t be true.

“Had I known that someone had attacked Kiki [Blagovcanin], I would have defended him...I guarantee that he [Frimel] did not beat Kiki. Had he done it, we would have seen it,” Sehovic said.

The trial will continue on March 27.

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