In the cross-examination of Dutch expert for snipers Van der Weijden, Karadzic claimed that the prosecution ‘misled’ the witness by giving him incomplete or inaccurate information about the incidents in Sarajevo. Karadzic contends that tram tracks were not in the same place when the witness made his analysis and during the war

Patrick Van der Weijden, witness at the Radovan Karadzic trialPatrick Van der Weijden, witness at the Radovan Karadzic trial

Radovan Karadzic today put it to the Dutch sniper expert Patrick Van der Weijden that he did not have adequate information at his disposal when he was writing his analysis of sniper incidents in Sarajevo, and was thus unable to establish ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ the locations from which shots that injured or killed civilians were fired.

In 2006 and 2009, the Dutch expert visited 17 locations of sniper incidents listed in the indictment against Karadzic. Van der Weijden explained that his task was to establish the positions from which shots could have been fired. The witness explained that the OTP investigators took him to the locations of the incidents and gave him all the available information including possible direction of fire. However, as the witness said, the conclusions he reached were not based on the data he received from the OTP.

In Karadzic’s view, the prosecution ‘misled’ the witness because he was given incomplete or inaccurate information about the locations of incidents. The accused wanted to prove that the witness was wrong in his analysis of the sniper fire on trams. The witness took into account the fact that trams were more liable to be hit by sniper fire from Grbavica as they passed by the Holiday Inn hotel: the tram tracks make a sharp double bend and the trams have to slow down.

Karadzic insisted that he had lived in Sarajevo for years and that the tram tracks there were straight. The trams were laid differently only in 2004, Karadzic argued, corroborating his claim with an ‘American map’ from 1993 and noting there are ‘no other map’ that would show a different picture. In Karadzic’s view, this ‘mistake’ also ‘misled’ the judges who convicted former SRK commander Dragomir Milosevic. Now these adjudicated facts have come back to incriminate him, Karadzic complained.

The witness at first agreed that the trams would be less exposed to sniper fire from Serb positions in the Metalka building if Karadzic were right. But then Karadzic showed footage filmed during the war by Sarajevo TV, showing some civilians who were injured in front of the Holiday Inn hotel. ‘By the way, here we can clearly see that double bend in the tram tracks’, the witness noted.

Karadzic asked the witness about other incidents listed in the indictment: a bus that was hit on Dobrinja on 25 May 1994, the injury of 13-year old Seid Solak in Cengic Vila on 22 July 1994 and the incident in which Dzenana Sokolovic was wounded and her son Nermin killed, with a single shot, on 18 November 1994 in Hrasno.

Yesterday and today, Karadzic took six and a half hours to examine the witness although he had initially been granted only four. The judges nevertheless granted Karadzic another half an hour for the cross-examination tomorrow. The prosecution will then call its next witness.