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Ed Vuliamy - ‘I don’t want to be neutral’ in cases involving racist violence

Ed Vuliamy - ‘I don’t want to be neutral’ in cases involving racist violence

RADOVAN KARADZIC MEETS ED VULLIAMY FOR THE SECOND TIME

Ed Vulliamy testified at the trial of Radovan Karadzic. In early August 1992 Vulliamy was in a group of British journalist who visited the Omarska and Trnopolje prison camps at the invitation of the Republika Srpska president, now in the Tribunal’s dock. When Karadzic claimed Vuillamy was ‘anti-Serb’, the witness replied ‘I don’t want to be neutral’ in cases involving racist violence

Ed Vulliamy, British journalist who writes for the Guardian, was in a group of foreign journalists who were the first to enter the Omarska and Trnopolje prison camps in the Prijedor region in early August 1992. Their video recordings and reports about the abominable treatment of the prisoners there triggered the international response that resulted in the establishment of the Tribunal in The Hague in May 1993.

Interestingly, it was Radovan Karadzic who personally opened the gates of Omarska and Trnopolje to the foreign journalist. In the summer of 1992 when the first articles about the prison camps under the Serb control were first published in the world press, Karadzic openly invited the British journalists to come and see that it was all a ‘fabrication of the Muslim propaganda’.

Now, 19 years later, Vulliamy faced Karadzic for the second time, in a Tribunal’s courtroom where the former Republika Srpska president is on trial for double genocide and other crimes in BH. Murder and inhumane treatment of prisoners in the prison camps in the Prijedor region are among those crimes. The transcript of Vulliamy’s evidence from the trial of former president of the Prijedor Crisis Staff Milomir Stakic was admitted into evidence, together with a series of video recordings the British journalists made on 5 August 1992 in Omarska and Trnopolje.

Vulliamy recounted that the British journalists were only allowed to enter the camp mess, and not the rooms where prisoners were held. Later he learned that about 80 prisoners ‘who were in better shape’ were selected to be paraded before the guests from Great Britain, the witness said. The prisoners were starved and scared to death. ‘I don’t want to lie to you, but I can’t tell you the truth’, a prisoner told the British journalists.

After Omarska, journalists were taken to the Trnopolje prison camp. According to the witness, the prison camp was surrounded by barbed wire on three sides and prisoners were held inside. A prisoner told Vulliamy that he had been brought in from Keraterm where about 200 persons had been killed in a single night. The prisoner said that even more people were killed in Omarska. The British journalists visited the make-shift prison infirmary. There they asked Dr Idriz Merdzanic if prisoners were beaten up. Merdzanic replied by nodding almost imperceptibly.

In the cross-examination, Karadzic brought up excerpts from Vulliamy’s book Seasons in Hell. According to Karadzic, the book shows the witness is not ‘neutral’ but ‘anti-Serb’. ‘I don’t want to be neutral if I have to make judgments about prisoners and their guards, or victims of rape and their rapists’ Vulliamy said, adding that this didn’t mean he was not objective. ‘If you enter a house and see six bodies there, you can’t say there are 12 bodies because they are Muslims or three because they are Serbs. Six remains six’, Vulliamy said, illustrating his standpoint.

Karadzic put it to the witness that the mass murders that the prisoners in Trnopolje described to the British journalists never took place in the camps. As Karadzic said, the prosecution witnesses have all claimed they saw only one murder in Omarska. Karadzic criticized Vulliamy, saying he put far too much trust in the stories ‘that blamed the Serbs’ about the mass murders in Keraterm and Omarska. ‘With all due respect, I don’t believe you’, the witness replied. As Vulliamy explained, the information about the murders he got from the prisoners in Trnopolje was corroborated by what he learned as he talked to dozens of other prisoners. These were the adjudicated facts, established in a number of trials before the Tribunal, Vulliamy noted.

Karadzic also claimed that Omarska was an investigation center and that the witness himself used the term in his book. The witness reminded Karadzic that the term was used in his text in quotation marks. This means that he only quoted what the Serb officials in Prijedor who ‘hosted’ the British journalists claimed. The witness agreed with the accused that Trnopolje couldn’t be considered a ‘concentration camp’ because it was not apposite to draw parallels with the Holocaust. However, the witness insisted that it was a prison camp where a large group of civilians was concentrated before they were deported in convoys from the Bosnian Serb-controlled territory.

Sense agency: http://www.sense-agency.com/icty/radovan-karadzic-meets-ed-vulliamy-for-the-second-time.29.html?news_id=13357&cat_id=1

 

 

Edi Vulijami ne želi da bude neutralan kada se radi o rasističkom nasilju

DRUGI SUSRET RADOVANA KARADŽIĆA I EDA VULIJAMIJA

Na suđenju Radovanu Karadžiću svjedočio Ed Vulijami koji je početkom avgusta 1992. godine bio u grupi britanskih novinara koji su, na poziv optuženog predsjednika Republike Srpske, obišli logore Omarska i Trnopolje. Na Karadžićevu sugestiju da je "pristrasan protiv Srba", Vulijami kaže da "ne želi da bude neutralan" kada se radi o rasističkom nasilju

Novinar britanskog Gardijana/The Guardian Ed Vulijami/Vulliamy je bio u prvoj grupi stranih novinara koji su početkom avgusta 1992. godine uspjeli da uđu u prijedorske logore Omarska i Trnopolje. Njihovi snimci i informacije o užasnom tretmanu logoraša pokrenuli su lavinu međunarodnih reakcija koje su dovele do formiranja Haškog tribunala u maju 1993. godine.

Zanimljivo je da je vrata Omarske i Trnopolja stranim novinarima otvorio lično Radovan Karadžić koji je u ljeto 1992. godine, nakon što su u zapadnim medijima objavljeni prvi članci o logorima na području pod srpskom kontrolom, uputio javni poziv britanskim novinarima da dođu i uvjere se da se radi o "izmišljotinama muslimanske propagande".

Devetnaest godina kasnije Vulijami se ponovo našao licem u lice sa Karadžićem, ovog puta u tribunalovoj sudnici u kojoj se bivšem predsjedniku Republike Srpske sudi za dvostruki genocid i druge zločine počinjene u BiH, uključujući i ubistva i nehuman tretman logoraša u prijedorskim logorima. U dokaze je uveden transkript Vulijamijevog svjedočenja sa suđenja bivšem predsjedniku Kriznog štaba Prijedora Milomiru Stakiću, kao i niz snimaka od 5. avgusta 1992. godine, koje su britanski novinari snimili u Omarskoj i Trnopolju.

Vulijami je, između ostalog, naveo da je britanskim novinarima u Omarskoj dozvoljen pristup samo logorskoj trpezariji, ali ne i prostorijama u kojima su držani zatočenici. Naknadno je, kaže, saznao da je dan uoči njihovog dolaska odabrano osamdesetak zatočenika u "boljoj formi" koje će prikazati gostima iz Britanije. Zatočenici su bili izgladnjeli i prestravljeni, a jedan od njih im je rekao: "Ne želim da vas lažem, a ne mogu da vam kažem istinu".

Nakon Omarske novinari su odvedeni u logor Trnopolje koji je, prema riječima svjedoka, sa tri strane bio okružen bodljikavom žicom unutar koje su se nalazili zatočenici. Jedan od njih je Vulijamiju rekao da je doveden iz Keraterma gdje je u jednoj noći ubijeno oko 200 ljudi, a da je broj ubijenih u Omarskoj još veći. Britanski novinari posjetili su i improvizovanu logorsku ambulantu u kojoj im je doktor Idriz Merdžanić, na pitanje da li je u logoru ima slučajeva prebijanja zatvorenika, odgovorio jedva vidljivim klimanjem glavom.

Karadžić je u unakrsnom ispitivanju ukazivao na dijelove Vulijamijeve knjige "Sezone u paklu" koji, po njemu, pokazuju da svjedok nije bio "neutralan" već "anti-srpski" orijentisan. "Ja i ne želim da budem neutralan ako treba da sudim o zatočenicima i njihovim stražarima, ili žrtvama silovanja i silovateljima". Dodao je da to, međutim, ne znači da nije objektivan, ilustrujući to sljedećim primjerom: "Ako uđete u neku kuću i vidite šest leševa, nije ih dvanaest zato što su Muslimani ili tri jer su Srbi. Šest je šest."

Karadžić je dalje tvrdio da u logorima nije bilo masovnih ubistava o kojima su britanskim novinarima govorili zatočenici u Trnopolju, tvrdeći da su svjedoci koje je do sada izvela optužba vidjeli u Omarskoj samo jedno ubistvo. On je prebacio Vulijamiju da je isuviše lako povjerovao u priče "na štetu Srba" o masovnim ubistvima u Keratermu i Omarskoj. "Uz svo dužno poštovanje ja vam ne vjerujem", rekao je svjedok navodeći da je, osim onoga što mu je u Trnopolju rečeno o ubistvima u logoru, u međuvremenu razgovarao sa desetinama drugih logoraša koji su to potkrijepili, kao i da su to utvrđene i presuđene činjenice sa mnogih suđenja pred Tribunalom.

Karadžić je, također, tvrdio da je Omarska bila istražni centar, te da se i sam svjedok poslužio tim izrazom u svom tekstu. Svjedok je, međutim, podsjetio Karadžića da je taj izraz u njegovom tekstu napisan pod znacima navoda, što je značilo da je samo citirao ono što su tvrdili srpski zvaničnici u Prijedoru koji su bili "domaćini" britanskim novinarima. On se složio sa optuženim da se Trnopolje ne može smatrati "koncentracionim logorom" iz prostog razloga jer smatra da su paralele sa holokaustom nepotrebne, ali je naglasio da se po njegovom uvjerenju radilo o logoru u kojem je bila koncentrisana velika grupa civila prije nego što su u konvojima deportovani sa teritorije pod kontrolom bosanskih Srba.

Sense Agency: http://www.sense-agency.com/tribunal_%28mksj%29/drugi-susret-radovana-karadzica-i-eda-vulijamija.25.html?cat_id=1&news_id=13355

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