DID YOU KNOW?  -- Three years before the 1995 Srebrenica Genocide, Serbs torched Bosniak villages and killed at least 3,166 Bosniaks around Srebrenica. In 1993, the UN described the besieged situation in Srebrenica as a "slow-motion process of genocide." In July 1995, Serbs forcibly expelled 25,000 Bosniaks, brutally raped many women and girls, and systematically killed 8,000+ men and boys (DNA confirmed).

18 April, 2010


" You can see the cross carved on my chest."

Manjaca Concentration Camp near Prijedor, Bosnia-Herzegovina (1992). Photo courtesy: The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY).

A Bosniak man disabled from savage beatings wore gloves to hide his broken limbs as he testified at the trial of Radovan Karadzic on Tuesday. Ahmet Zulic witnessed how Serbs forced the Bosnian Muslim civilians to dig their own graves before slashing their throats with the help of a local Serb butcher Simo Simetic. The victims died in agonising deaths. He witnessed other prisoners with him suffocating due to lack of air as they were viciously beaten, kept in a small concrete garage with up to 90 other Bosniak civilians, or transported in trucks crammed with prisoners to other concentration camps.

Ahmet Zulic showed judges the scars of a cross that Serb Christian terrorists carved into his chest while savagely torturing him.

During cross-examination Karadzic accused Zulic of lying and said that a local war criminal Simo Simetic was prepared to sue him for "libel and perjury". Ahmet Zulic responded by pulling open his shirt on the witness stand, pointing to his chest and telling the bench:

"Right here I have a cross carved in my skin. You can see the cross carved on my chest."

He also pointed to a scar on his throat the butcher Simo Simetic left when he started to cut him. Zulic told the court he had suffered permanent disabilities from having had seven vertebrae damaged, all his ribs fractured, fingers broken, and his teeth knocked out when Serb soldiers put a gun in his mouth at a prisoner execution scene. His elderly father-in-law had been burned alive by Serb forces near Sanski Most in 1992.

Manjaca Concentration Camp near Prijedor, Bosnia-Herzegovina (1992). Photo courtesy: The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY).

A second prosecution witness, Sulejman Crncalo, told the court how his wife was killed in the Markale market shelling. Despite overhelming evidence against the Serb side, their propaganda has for a long time claimed that Sarajevo citizens bombed themselves to gain world sympathy and get the Bosnian-Serb army 'in trouble'; Serbs even claimed that the markale market massacre in Sarajevo was "staged". However, in two judgements issued against Stanislav Galic and Dragomir Milosevic, Serb forces were found to be fully and directly responsible for both Markale massacres in Sarajevo.

"There was blood al over the place, flowing in the streets, bits of human flesh scattered around, bits of clothing torn and scattered all over" and the fence around the market "looked like it was painted red from the blood."

The witness found his wife in a local Sarajevo morque, "There was a woman lying next to my wife and her arm was thrown across my wife's body. I just cried."

Crncalo also testified that Karadzic called for Bosnian Muslim homes in the town of Pale to be attacked as "the way to defend Serb houses" in a speech in June 1992.

"He was saying to those present that every Muslim house had to be attacked because that's the way to defend Serb houses.," Crncalo told the UN court. "Those were terrible words to our ears."

In a ridiculous argument, Karadzic claimed that Serbs did not force anyone to move from their territories. Rather, as Karadzic alleged, Serbs simply allowed people to move out 'temporarily from their own homes by signing a statement which gave all their property to Serb authorities.

Sulejman Crncalo responded: “It is a pity that the meeting was not filmed, then you would be able to see what happened. There were many of us there and all of them would say the same thing to you... You cannot persuade me that we left voluntarily. What did we take with us? We took only what we could carry in our two hands. We were barehanded, homeless, penniless.”

Karadzic then pointed to the statement from the Serb family that took Crncalo’s home, saying that the deal was a temporary exchange with a property in Sarajevo. “This is a relocation, an exchange and not evacuation.”

Crncalo then replied: “To us it meant deportation, expulsion.”

Karadzic said: “If you make statements like this I will ask you to stay another week.”

Crncalo replied: “Let it be a year if need be . . . I am not disputing I signed. I signed under duress.”

Next week, Karadzic will be confronted with the survivors of the 1995 Srebrenica genocide. In a shortened indictment, aimed at speeding up the process, Karadzic faces 11 counts of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide charges stemming from Bosnia's 1992-95 war in which at least 100,000 people were killed and 2.2 million left homeless. He is acting as his own defence lawyer.

Related story (external link):
The victims of Sarajevo are made to suffer all over again