Radovan Karadzic cross-examined witness KDZ-477. Again, as in his cross-examinations of previous witnesses who investigated artillery and sniper incidents in Sarajevo, Radovan Karadzic claimed that the investigations were ‘conducted using sticks and pieces of string’ and were driven by the desire to blame the Serbs

Radovan Karadzic in the courtroomRadovan Karadzic in the courtroom

Continuing his cross-examination of the crime technician who gave evidence under the pseudonym KDZ-477, Radovan Karadzic tried to contest the findings of the investigation teams from the Sarajevo Security Services Center. The investigators concluded that the shells and sniper bullets that killed civilians during the war were fired from the territory controlled by the Bosnian Serb army. According to Karadzic, the investigations in Sarajevo were ‘conducted using sticks and pieces of string’, they lacked professionalism and were driven by the desire to blame the Serbs.

The witness participated in the investigations of two incidents listed in the indictment against Karadzic: the shelling of Alipasino polje on 22 January 1994 when six children were killed and the impact of a modified air bomb in the Pavle Goranin estate on 26 May 1995, in which two persons were seriously injured and fifteen persons sustained minor injuries.

In the cross-examination, Karadzic appeared to be least interested in the two incidents, but again tried to find support for his case that the investigations were ‘sloppy’ by using two other incidents. The first happened in Dobrinja on 14 May 1995, when Jasmina Tabakovic was killed by a sniper, and the second at the crossroads between Alipasino polje and Mojmilo, when fire was opened on a bus full of passengers on 18 August 1995.

In the investigation of the first incident, in which Jasmina Tabakovic was killed in her apartment, the investigation team from the Sarajevo Security Services Center concluded that the bullet had penetrated the protective foil on the window and hit the victim. The bullet passed through the closet and ended up in the wall. Based on the traces on the window and the wall it was determined that the bullet could only have been fired from Dobrinja 1, an area controlled by the Serb forces. When Karadzic put it to the witness that in that case the direction was established using ‘a stick and a piece of string’, the witness confirmed that a piece of string had indeed been used. The investigation was carried out in ‘abnormal circumstances’, with the investigation team members themselves at risk of being shot at by snipers, the witness added.

With the second incident, Karadzic again tried to challenge the conclusion of the investigation team from the Sarajevo Security Services Center, which determined that the shots that hit the Elektroprenos bus came from Nedzarici, an area controlled by the Serb troops. Karadzic insisted that the crossroads where the bus was hit was located slightly higher than Nedzarici. The photos taken at the crime scene show that the bus was hit from above. The witness disagreed with Karadzic, saying that the photos he took prove the exact opposite.

These two incidents are not listed in the annex to the indictment against Karadzic; however they are mentioned in the witness’s written statement that was admitted into evidence. The prosecution is using it to show a pattern of the sniper and artillery terror campaign against Sarajevo and its citizens.