A prosecution witness told the court how he managed to survive the execution of 14 Bosniaks near the village of Pandurica in eastern Bosnia in May 1992.
The protected witness A, who lived in the village of Potocani, near Zvornik, said that on May 10, 1992, he was taken prisoner, together with his father and another person, by the Bosnian Serb army soldiers.
They were taken, with another 13 people, to a location close to the village of Pandurica. Among the soldiers escorting them was the defendant Slobodan Grujic, said the witness.
“Around 500 meters from Pandurica a soldier approached us and said: ‘Do not take them any further’. And the soldier stood behind us and opened fire on us. I threw myself away from the road and I know that others stated running. I heard someone say: ‘Spread out, do not let them get away,” said witness A.
The witness said that he heard soldiers count the dead, after which someone asked about him.
“I laid face down on the ground, tied up. I closed my eyes and stopped breathing, playing dead. One of them approached me and put fingers on my neck to feel my pulse. He went to the road and said: ’He is still alive, go and kill him’. I rolled down the slope. I heard shots,” said the witness, adding that he managed to reach a canal.
Slobodan Grujic, former member of the Army of Republic of Srpska is charged with taking part, together with several other persons, in capture and murder of ten Bosniak civilians in Zvornik on May 10, 1992.
The protected witness A said that wading through the canal he heard soldiers looking for him and shooting, but he hid in a bush, and from there he managed to reach the Kalesija settlement the next day.
The witness said that prior to the shooting, he was first taken to a house, where he saw more imprisoned people he knew, as well as soldiers and, among them, defendant Grujic.
“An unknown soldier put a rifle to my temple and questioned me. At one point I saw them bring another group of people, they were tied. Among them was a ten years old boy. They threatened they would kill his father,” said the witness.
The witness said that he was the only one who survived the execution at Pandurica.
Asked by the Trial Chamber whether he saw the defendant Grujic taking part in the shooting, the witness said that he did not.
The trial will continue on July 11.