Prosecution witness at the trial for crimes in Prozor says that the defendant, Zeljko Jukic, beat him in the Dretelj camp in 1993.
Almin Dautbegovic said that on July 6, 1993 he was arrested in the village of Duge near Prozor and taken to the High School.
Several days later, the witness recalled, he was taken to the Dretelj camp, where he was beaten by Jukic.
“In Dretelj they put us in lines and beat whoever they could. My father and I were beaten by Zeljko Jukic. When he hit me unexpectedly I saw a blur and then he hit me again,” the witness said, explaining that he only learned the defendant’s name later on.
Asked by the Prosecution and Defence why he had not said before that it was Jukic that hit him in Dretelj, the witness replied that he had been unsure.
''When I first gave a statement in 2011 to the State Prosecution I did not give Jukic’s name. Now I see him and I'm sure he hit me. Before there was circumstantial evidence that he was the one that hit me, but I could not be sure until I saw him,” Dautbegovic said.
Jukic is charged with having participated, along with other members of the Croatian Defence Council, HVO and Croatian Army, HV, in the persecution of Bosniak civilians, murders and forcible disappearances in Prozor from July to September 1993.
The indictment alleges that on July 6, 1993 Jukic, accompanied by a group of HVO members, participated in an attack on the Bosniak population in Duge village and killed a 73-year-old man in front of his family home.
Dautbegovic said Jukic was also inside the bus that took him from Duge village to Dretelj.
According to the witness, he was taken to the High School in Prozor with other men from Duga “only because they were Muslim.
“We were unarmed; there was no objection on our side. The only reason we were forced to leave was because we are Muslim,” the witness said.
The next hearing will take place on August 23.