Former liaison officer in the UN British Battalion in Central Bosnia testifies about the functioning of the BH Army 3rd Corps at the time when the accused Enver Hadzihasanovic was in command

Enver Hadzihasanovic in the courtroomEnver Hadzihasanovic in the courtroom

Enver Hadzihasanovic ran the HQ of the BH Army 3rd Corps efficiently, but his command capability was limited, stated former liaison officer in the British Battalion of UNPROFOR in Central Bosnia. He was called by the defense to testify about the functioning of the 3rd Corps at Hadzihasanovic’s trial.

Hadzihasanovic has been indicted on the basis of command responsibility for his failure to prevent and punish the crimes against the non-Bosniak population in his area of responsibility in 1993.

In the opinion of the British officer, whose identity is protected, Hadzihasanovic was “in a difficult situation” because the BH Army was not well-equipped, his subordinate officers were military professionals and the communications were bad. The troops on the ground would carry out the orders and actions if they felt like it, the witness noted. “We [in the British Battalion] did not know everything that was going on the ground, but I don’t think that they [in the 3rd Corps] did either,” he said.

The British officer also notes that his battalion “did not have any proof that the mujahedin were subordinate in combat to the 3rd Corps.” The witness stayed in central Bosnia until May 1993. He adds that he does “not remember that anyone from BritBat actually saw foreign fighters in the BH Army ranks.”

Several British officers that were deployed in that area in mid and late 1993 testified last year for the prosecution who is trying to prove that Hadzihasanovic bears command responsibility for the crimes committed by foreign nationals. Those British officers were of opinion that the 3rd Corps had provided logistics support to the mujahedin and some believed that the foreigners had been subordinate to the 7th Muslim Brigade.