THE PALE-FOCA CONNECTION
A witness at the Momcilo Krajisnik trial says that he had heard the orders for the take-over of power in Foca came from local SDS leaders and from Pale. The defense suggests the witness added "Pale" himself
Momcilo Krajisnik in the courtroom
SDS officials in Foca and the party leadership in Pale were in charge of the take-over of power in Foca in April 1992, a protected witness testified at the trial of Momcilo Krajisnik, former Bosnian Serb political leader charged with genocide and other crimes in BH.
Witness 068 gave a deposition to the Chamber, describing the attack on Foca, his escape, arrest and detention in KP Dom penitentiary facility. According to him, 36 detainees were beaten to death there and 178 disappeared in what were purportedly prisoner exchanges. Krajisnik is charged with the crimes in Foca because, as the indictment alleges, they were part of a systematic campaign of persecution against Bosniaks and Croats in the spring and summer of 1992 in the municipalities the SDS declared "Serbian".
At the time of the attack on the town, which began on 8 April, witness 068 was in the apartment belonging to a Serb neighbor. There he heard the voice of Velibor Ostojic over the radio communications equipment, "Shoot at everyone that moves, slaughter everyone…” According to the witness, Ostojic and Vojislav Maksimovic were in the SDS leadership and they "had been sent to their hometown to do the job." The witness was told by the president of the municipality at the time that those SDS members had been "responsible for all the orders issued in the town."
Krajisnik's defense counsel Nicholas Stewart noted that in his 1995 statement the witness mentioned only the four SDS representatives in Foca as the persons issuing orders there whereas today he added to them the "leadership at Pale." The witness claims that his source definitely told him that the orders were coming from Pale.
Momcilo Krajisnik then asked the witness if he knew that "until 8 April 1992 and thereafter the SDS leadership was in Sarajevo, not in Pale." The witness says that as far as he knew, "the leadership was in Pale at the time because the war had already broken out in Sarajevo."
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