Kana and Nevres Mesic lost sons and brothers Ismet and Isak in Prhovo village in 1992. They speak about this at the trial for crimes committed in the Kljuc area.
In June 1992 Prosecution witness Kana Mesic lost her two sons – 19-year old Isak and 15-year old Ismet. She spoke about her loss during the course of her startling testimony. Her third son, Nevres, who was nine years old at the time, survived the shooting. He too spoke about this as a Prosecution witness before the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
“When Serb soldiers came to Prhovo for the second time, they carried out a massacre. Marko Adamovic led those people. When I saw him, I thought they would do us no harm, because we had known him from before. He was my brother’s teacher in the school in Hripavci. I thought he would protect us. As far as I can remember this is Adamovic,” Kana Mesic said, pointing to the third indictee.
Marko Adamovic, Vinko Kondic and Bosko Lukic are charged with helping to oganise a group of people and abetting them to commit genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in the Kljuc area during the course of 1991 and 1992.
The indictment alleges that Adamovic was Deputy Commander of the Kljuc Territorial Defence Battalion and Commander of the Town Defence Command for a certain period of time. In line with these two functions, he was also a member of the Crisis Committee in Kljuc. The Prosecution charges him with participation in a joint criminal enterprise.
Kana Mesic told the Court that “the Serb Army” came to Prhovo village twice, when they mistreated and physically abused the village residents, including her son Ismet. This witness blamed Marko Adamovic for the murder of her son Isak.
“The second time they came they took us to a store and started mistreating and beating the men. They singled out my Isak from the rest of the people. I felt sorry for every child, but I felt most sorry for my own children. I do not know the man who singled him out and beat him, but I covered my ears in order not to hear him screaming. Marko then ordered the soldiers to take five boys and kill them, because members of the Green Berets allegedly had not surrendered. They took my Isak with those boys. They killed all of them in front of our eyes,” Kana Mesic recalled.
The witness said that Adamovic then said “May they rest in peace”. She said that Ismet was among other men who were taken to Peci village. She found out later that he was killed as well.
The indictment alleges that, on June 1, 1992 “Serb soldiers” came to Prhovo village. They forced the village residents to leave their houses, killing at least seven people. It is further alleged that they then took 27 men to Peci village, killing some of them. On the same day they forced the remaining men, women and children to gather in a garden in front of a house in Prhovo village, where they killed at least 30 civilians.
“Later on we heard an explosion and we fell down. When I got up some time later, I saw some wounded and dead women and children. I saw a scene of horror,” Kana Mesic said, adding that she ran away to Humici village, together with other surviving village residents.
The second Prosecution witness, Nevres Mesic, survived the shooting of civilians in Prhovo village. He was nine years old at the time. He recalled the shooting during the course of his testimony.
“I remember that soldiers came to the village and beat up my brother Isak on June 1, 1992. There were many old people, as well as women and children. I hardly remember my brother, but, at some stage, I heard someone saying ‘May they rest in peace’. Later on I heard an explosion. We all fell to the ground. They were shooting at the people,” Nevres Mesic said.
Nevres Mesic was among other village residents who left Prhovo. Later he found out that he had lost both brothers, whose remains were found in the village and the “Ciganska dolina” mass grave.
The trial is due to continue on Wednesday, July 8.