At his further appearance before a Tribunal judge, Gojko Jankovic pleaded not guilty on all 14 counts of the indictment charging him with rape and torture of Bosniak girls and women in Foca 1992

Gojko Jankovic in the courtroomGojko Jankovic in the courtroom

After Gojko Jankovic exercised his right to postpone entering his plea at his initial appearance before an ICTY judge 30 days ago, because as he said, the indictment was "not clear to him", today he had the first of the 14 counts charging him with rape and murder of Bosniak girls and women in Foca 1992 read out to him. He then said, "Your Honour, I am not guilty. I never had anything in common with the person I have been indicted with, not before, not during, not after the war. We were never a single unit, they were never my army and they never were under my command."

When the judge explained to him that this was an issue to be discussed in the course of the trial, and that on this occasion all he was required to do was to enter a plea on the charges, Jankovic pleaded innocent on all counts of the indictment.

According to the indictment, in 1992 Gojko Jankovic owned a café in Trnovci near Foca and commanded a paramilitary formation. He is charged both on the basis of individual responsibility and command responsibility for his personal participation in the rapes and torture of Bosniak women at several locations in Foca and for failing to prevent the soldiers under his command from committing those crimes or to punish them.

The initial indictment for the rape and sexual enslavement of the Bosniak girls and women in Foca, issued in 1996, contained a total of eight accused. Three have already been convicted: Dragoljub Kunarac to 28, Radomir Kovac to 20, Zoran Vukovic to 12 years in prison. Dragan Gagovic and Janko Janjic were killed resisting arrest by SFOR forces. Gojko Jankovic is in the UN Detention Unit, and so is Radovan Stankovic. Only Dragan Zelenovic is still at large. The prosecution has already filed an application for the referral of the case to the Bosnia and Herzegovina courts.