Thursday, October 4, 2007


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (October 4,2007) - The defence teams of 11 Serbian war criminals charged with genocide continue presenting their evidence before the War Crimes Chamber of the Bosnian State Court.

Serbian war criminal Miladin Stevanovic, one of 11 indictees charged with murdering around a thousand captured Bosnian civilians in the village of Kravica near the eastern Bosnian town of Srebrenica, has ended his 22-day long hunger strike and appeared in Court. His fellow Serbian war criminals Petar Mitrovic and Branislav Medan are still on hunger strike and have now refused to appear at six hearings before the Bosnian State Court.

The detainees in Kula Correctional Facility who are tried before the War Crimes Chamber of the Bosnian State Court started the hunger strike on 10 September. .

The Bosnian State Court decided recently to transfer the detainees from Kula to other detention units throughout Bosnia. So far, six detainees have halted their hunger strike.

The Trial Chamber of the Bosnian State Court has once again rejected the request by Serbian war criminal Petar Mitrovic's defence team to consider if the indictee is capable of following the trial in view of his alleged starvation.

"He can decide if he wants to stop taking food, but he is aware that he can face the consequences," Trial Chamber Chairman Hilmo Vucinic has said, adding that the indictee "is not going to achieve anything but the prolongation of the process by being on strike".

The Prosecution considers that the ten former Serbian aggressor's soldiers took part in genocide against Bosnians in Srebrenica in July 1995,during the Serbian aggression against Bosnia. The indictment alleges that the 11 Serbian war criminals participated in the murdering of around a thousand Bosnian civilians detained by the genocidal Serbian aggressor in a hangar in Kravica village on 13 July,1995.

Three more Defence witnesses, invited by seven Defence teams, have been examined. All three have provided an alibi in their testimonies.

Witness Lazo Djuric has said that he met Miladin Stevanovic and Milenko Trifunovic in Skelani at "about 2300hrs" on 13 July 1995. He has further said that, "on one of those days", Dragisa Zivanovic invited him to a farewell party for his brother. However, although the Bosnian State Prosecutor insisted on having an answer, he has not been able to remember the exact date when the alleged party was organized.

The Bosnian State Prosecutor Ibro Bulic has filed an objection against this testimony.

Radenko Mijatovic has said that, on 13 July, "in the evening hours", he saw Miladin Stevanovic "and two more soldiers" in Skelani.

Ivan Savic claims to have lived "in a house by the road leading from Bratunac to Skelani" in 1995. He has recalled that, on 13 July, around 2300hrs, a military truck belonging to the special police forces passed by his house and "drove towards Skelani".

At the next hearing before the Bosnian State Court, scheduled for today, the Defence teams are due to examine four more witnesses.

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