At the trial for crimes committed at Koricanske stijene, the first indictee signs a guilt admission agreement with the Prosecution of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Damir Ivankovic, one of the eight men charged with shooting about 200 civilians at Koricanske stijene, has signed a guilt admission agreement with the State Prosecution and agreed to testify against the other indictees at this trial.
“Under article 10 of this agreement, the indictee stated that he wanted to testify about this event and all other wartime events in that area,” said Prosecutor Slavica Terzic, adding that, after the Court had considered the agreement, she would ask for separation of this indictee’s case from the larger case.
The Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina is due to consider the agreement on June 29. This will be the eighth such agreement concluded before the Court.
Ivankovic, Zoran Babic, Gordan Djuric, Milorad Radakovic, Milorad Skrbic, Ljubisa Cetic, Dusan Jankovic and Zeljko Stojnic, former members of the Public Safety Station in Prijedor and Emergency Interventions Police Squad, are charged with having participated in the shooting of about 200 civilians from Prijedor at Koricanske stijene on August 21, 1992.
Protected Prosecution witness KO12 testified at this hearing. In mid June 1992 the witness was taken to Keraterm detention camp, from which he was transferred to Trnopolje in early August of the same year.
“Keraterm was a detention camp for non-Serbs in Prijedor. It was a notorious detention camp in which we were abused,” the witness said, adding that, while they were in Trnopolje, they were told that they could leave Prijedor if they “unregistered themselves” at the Ministry of Internal Affairs and signed “a statement, leaving all our property behind”. This was what they did.
“On August 21 we joined a convoy heading towards Travnik. We suffered a lot while we were held in the detention camp. We were unsafe. Anyone could come and take us away for no reason. For us, going anywhere from Prijedor was a good option. Anything was better than staying there. We heard that this convoy was led by our neighbour Bosko Stupar, who was the Commander of the Emergency Interventions Squad. For this reason we felt safe as members of the convoy,” the witness recalled.
He said he met Stupar on August 21 and that Stupar told him that “Dado Mrdja was to escort the convoy this time”, but everything would be all right.
Darko Mrdja, a former member of the Emergency Interventions Police Squad from Prijedor, was sentenced by the Hague Tribunal to 17 years’ imprisonment for crimes committed at Koricanske stijene.
“There were many civilians, carrying bags and taking their children with them. There were members of civil and military police, as well as a number of uniformed and fully armed people. There were buses and trucks, covered with tarps. I got on the last truck, together with my wife and three and seven-year old kids. Dado Mrdja was in the same truck,” the witness said.
He then told the Court that on their way towards Vlasic they stopped several times. Every time Mrdja gave them a bag which they were supposed to fill with jewelry and money. He recalled that, towards the end of their journey, his truck passed two parked buses.
“Upon our arrival at Vlasic, the truck stopped and a soldier told us to get out and take our things with us. There were many unknown soldiers there. Dado Mrdja and the other escorts from Prijedor were no longer present. We moved down the hill, as we wanted to leave those soldiers behind as soon as possible. We walked through the woods for a long time before coming across some members of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina. They escorted us to Turbe,” witness KO12 said, concluding his testimony.