Jezik / Language:
9 October 2007

Rasevic and Todovic: Shocking Moments

A protected Prosecution witness has described how detainees in the Foca Correctional Facility were taken away and beaten.
A former Foca detainee, who spent two and a half years in the correctional facility, has testified as a protected Prosecution witness at the trial of Mitar Rasevic and Savo Todovic.

"It was shocking for all of us when we saw the guards coming in with some papers in their hands," witness FWS 83 has described how the detainees felt when the guards would take other detainees away.

The indictment charges Mitar Rasevic, former commander of guards in the facility, and Savo Todovic, its former deputy manager, with having participated in a "joint criminal enterprise" against non-Serb civilians held in the building, "which had all characteristics of a detention camp".

FWS 83 claims to have been brought to the camp on 18 April 1992 and released, through an exchange, on 5 October 1994.

Answering the Prosecution's questions, the witness has recalled one night when about ten people were taken away. He has said that he heard screams after the guards had taken those people out of the room. None came back.

"The guards could not do it by themselves. There must have been a superior officer in the detention camp, prison, whatever," FWS 83 concluded, adding that he thinks that the facility's "management team" consisted of Milorad Krnojelac, Savo Todovic and Mitar Rasevic.

The ICTY sentenced Milorad Krnojelac, former manager of Foca detention camp, to 15 years imprisonment for crimes committed there.

Speaking about the happenings in Foca detention camp, FWS83 has also recalled working groups composed of detainees.

"Todovic established the working group and we had to perform various tasks prescribed by the management," witness FWS 83 said, adding that his participation in the group was a privilege, although the group members performed hard and exhausting work.

"When we went out to perform some work, we would sometimes get some extra food," said FWS83, who lost 40 kilogrammes in the first two months he spent in the detention camp.

The indictment alleges that Todovic and Rasevic participated in the establishment of a forced labour system. The detainees had to perform works in the furniture factory, metal and mechanical workshops, agricultural works, in mills and the Miljevina mine, clear debris from damaged buildings in Foca etc.

The trial is due to continue on 16 October 2007.
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