Unpunished Concealment of more than 900 Bodies in Mass Graves in Serbia

Unpunished Concealment of more than 900 Bodies in Mass Graves in Serbia

Predstavljanje_dosijea_skrivanje_telaOn Tuesday, January 31st, 2017, the HLC presented its eighth dossier in a row about unprosecuted crimes and possiblel perpetrators. The Dossier “The cover-up of evidence of crimes during the war in Kosovo: Concealment of Bodies Operation” shows how the operation of concealing the bodies of Albanians killed during the war in Kosovo in 1999 was planned and executed, and which civilian, military and police institutions were involved in it. The objective of the Dossier is to point to the perpetrators of the concealment of one of the most serious crimes in Kosovo, to enable the citizens of Serbia to hear about the crimes committed in their name, and to encourage witnesses to come out with their knowledge about these events and help the search for the more than a thousand bodies of Albanian civilians who were killed during the conflict in Kosovo and who are still reported as missing.



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Dossier: “The cover-up of evidence of crimes during the war in Kosovo: THE CONCEALMENT OF BODIES OPERATION”

Dossier: “The cover-up of evidence of crimes during the war in Kosovo: THE CONCEALMENT OF BODIES OPERATION”

UklanjanjeDokaza-enSince 2001, mass graves containing the bodies of 941 Kosovo Albanians, mainly civilians killed outside combat situations in Kosovo during 1999, have been found on four locations in Serbia. 744 bodies of Kosovo Albanians have been discovered in Batajnica, on the outskirts of Belgrade, at least 61 in Petrovo Selo, and 84 at Lake Perućac. At least 52 bodies have been subsequently found in the mass grave at Rudnica.

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ELECTION CAMPAIGN IN SERBIA GREATEST THREAT TO PEACE IN REGION

ELECTION CAMPAIGN IN SERBIA GREATEST THREAT TO PEACE IN REGION

YIHRWith regard to the announced appearance of a war criminal, Veselin Šljivančanin, at a Serbian Progressive Party rally, civil society organizations demand that the ruling political parties stop putting the match to nationalism as electoral fuel, and establish responsibility for preserving and improving peace in the region as their first priority.

These organizations demand that the rally scheduled for Tuesday, January 17th in Beška be cancelled. Republic of Serbia officials are also expected to take a distance from all individuals convicted of war crimes; otherwise, they would be showing clear support for criminal policies and utter disrespect for victims of war crimes.

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Torture in Camps in Serbia Still Unpunished

Torture in Camps in Serbia Still Unpunished

Tortura_u_logorima_u_SrbijiOn December 22nd, 2016, the Humanitarian Law Center (HLC) presented its sixth dossier in a row on possible perpetrators of war crimes committed during the armed conflicts in the former Yugoslavia. The “Šljivovica and Mitrovo Polje” Dossier presents evidence on the treatment of Bosniaks, who sought shelter in Serbia following the fall of Žepa in late July 1995, and on the responsibility of members of the Yugoslav Army (VJ) and the Serbian Ministry of the Interior (MUP) for the crimes committed against the arrested and detained Bosniaks during their stay in Serbia. The Dossier is founded on statements given by surviving detainees, authentic documents of the Republic of Srpska Army, and military and police documents, which were admitted as evidence in a number of cases conducted before the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY), as well as on statements given by representatives of Serbian army and police and members of the international community, before the ICTY, the International Court of Justice and the First Basic Court in Belgrade.

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Dossier „Šljivovica and Mitrovo Polje“

Dossier „Šljivovica and Mitrovo Polje“

Dosije-SljivovicaIMitrovoPolje-enAfter capturing Žepa in late July 1995 approximately 800 Bosniaks from Žepa crossed the River Drina and entered the territory of the Republic of Serbia, frightened for their lives after rumours had spread of the crimes committed by the Army of Republika Srpska in Srebrenica. Most of them were members of the Army of BiH, but there were also civilians, including dozens of underage boys. Almost immediately after crossing, the men were taken captive by border guards of the Yugoslav Army and members of Special Police Units.

After registration and interrogation, accompanied by ill-treatment, all detainees were taken to the Šljivovica camp in Braneško Polje, near Čajetina. As there was no room in Šljivovica for such a large number of people, a group of detainees was transferred to another camp, located in Mitrovo Polje (Aleksandrovac municipality). In both camps, detainees were subjected to torture, sexual violence, inhumane treatment, humiliation and starvation, and were robbed of their possessions. Three detainees died as a result of the torture.

The Mitrovo Polje camp was closed in February 1996. The camp in Šljivovica was closed in April 1996, when the last remaining detainees were freed.

To date, no one has been called to account for the torture, abuse and deaths of Žepa male detainees in the camps in Serbia. Although the names are known of the inspectors and guards who were in the camps, no proceedings have ever been brought before any domestic court to establish the criminal responsibility of these individuals for acting contrary to domestic and international law. Neither the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia nor the International Court of Justice has addressed the torture of the Bosniaks in Serbian camps, although both courts were presented with evidence concerning these crimes.

The dossier „Šljivovica and Mitrovo Polje“ is available here.

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EVENT: Presentation of the “Šljivovica and Mitrovo Polje” Dossier

EVENT: Presentation of the “Šljivovica and Mitrovo Polje” Dossier

Dosije-SljivovicaIMitrovoPolje-enOn Thursday, 22 December 2016, the Humanitarian Law Center will present its Dossier “Šljivovica and Mitrovo Polje”. The event will take place at the Belgrade Media Center’s Main Hall (Terazije 3, 2nd Floor) at 11:00 a.m.

After the fall of the protected enclave of Žepa in late July 1995, around 800 Bosniaks sought refuge in the territory of Serbia.  However, immediately after crossing into Serbia they were captured and then taken to two detention camps – Šljivovica near Čajetina and Mitrovo Polje near Aleksandrovac. Until the closure of the camps in April 1996, the detained Bosniaks were subjected to torture, sexual violence, inhumane and degrading treatment, and starvation, and robbed of their belongings.

The “Šljivovica and Mitrovo Polje” Dossier is based on the statements of camp survivors, authentic documents of the Army of Republika Srpska, military and police documents and documents that have been admitted as evidence in several cases conducted at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), as well as on the testimonies of members of the Serbian Army and Serbian Police, and representatives of the international community before the ICTY, the International Court of Justice and the First Basic Court in Belgrade.

The Dossier presents evidence implicating current members of the Army of Yugoslavia and the Serbian Ministry of the Interior in criminal acts committed against the Bosniaks from Žepa during their captivity in Serbia.

Speakers:

  • Milica Kostić, Legal Programme Director, HLC
  • Ivana Žanić, Legal Analyst, HLC
  • Senad Jusufbegović, former detainee of the Mitrovo Polje camp

Simultaneous translation into English will be provided.  

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Human Losses in Wars in Former Yugoslavia: Victims Should Be Remembered By Names Not By Numbers

Human Losses in Wars in Former Yugoslavia: Victims Should Be Remembered By Names Not By Numbers

RecomFollowing the presentations in Zagreb and Sarajevo, the results from the list of human losses during the armed conflicts in Croatia, Kosovo, and partially in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), as well as the list of detention sites in the armed conflict in BiH, were presented in Belgrade on December 15th, 2016. According to the research in progress, 13,535 persons were either killed or disappeared during the war in Kosovo, and 2,057 citizens of Serbia and Montenegro were killed or disappeared during the wars in Croatia and BiH, whereas approximately 160,000 citizens of BiH were detained in camps set up throughout the territory of that country.

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Presentation of the research of human losses and detention sites during the wars in the former Yugoslavia

Presentation of the research of human losses and detention sites during the wars in the former Yugoslavia

RecomOn the occasion of the International Human Rights Day, the Coalition for RECOM will present its research into the human losses and detention sites during the wars in the former Yugoslavia on December 15th, 2016. The event will take place at the Belgrade Media Center at 11 a.m., and will include the participation of Nataša Kandić, the RECOM Project Coordinator, Slaven Rašković from Center for Dealing with the Past-Documenta (Croatia), Dženana Karup Druško, from the association “Transitional Justice, Accountability and Remembrance” (Bosnia and Herzegovina), and Bekim Blakaj, from the Humanitarian Law Center Kosovo.

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Serbian Documentary “Depth Two” Awarded Prize for Best Film at Festival dei Popoli in Florence

Serbian Documentary “Depth Two” Awarded Prize for Best Film at Festival dei Popoli in Florence

Dubina dva

The Serbian Documentary film “Depth Two” by Director Ognjen Glavonić won the Award for Best Documentary Film at the 57th Documentary Film Festival dei Popoli in Florence.

Festival dei Popoli is the oldest and most important documentary film festival in Italy. It was held this year from November 25th until December 2nd in Florence, and “Depth Two” won the Award for the Best feature-length Documentary in the official international competition, which is the greatest prize this Festival offers.

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Destruction of Cultural Heritage Works to Destroy the Unity between Peoples

Destruction of Cultural Heritage Works to Destroy the Unity between Peoples

Zatiranje istorijeA multi-media narrative titled “Targeting History and Memory” was presented in Belgrade on Tuesday, November 29th, 2016. The Narrative was created by SENSE – Center for Transitional Justice from Pula in Croatia (SENSE), and the Humanitarian Law Center (HLC) organized the Presentation in Belgrade. Approximately 50 representatives of non-governmental organizations, experts for the preservation of cultural legacy, researchers, scientists, journalists and various other experts attended the Presentation.

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