Former fighter Osman Osmanovic, suspected of assaulting and abusing captured Serb civilians and prisoners of war in the summer of 1992 in Bosnia and Herzegovina, was remanded in custody by a Belgrade court.
Belgrade Higher Court on Monday remanded ex-fighter Osman Osmanovic in custody for up to 30 days because he is under investigation for war crimes against civilians and prisoners of war at the Rasadnik prison camp in Gornji Rahic in Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Brcko area during the summer of 1992.
The Serbian prosecutor’s office said in a statement that Osmanovic, “as a member of the Croatian Defence Council (HVO), and later of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina, along with several members of his unit, inflicted bodily injuries, tortured, abused and intimidated civilians and captured members of the Army of Republika Srpska [Bosnian Serb Army]”.
Osmanovic was arrested on Saturday evening.
The prosecutor’s office told BIRN that it called for him to be remanded because of fears that he might abscond.
After media reported on Osmanovic’s arrest, the Bosniak member of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s tripartite presidency, Sefik Dzaferovic, argued that it was not acceptable for Serbia to judge Bosnian citizens.
“It is up to our institutions – the Foreign Affairs Ministry, the Ministry of Justice and state judiciary institutions – to get involved immediately, in order to bring this matter into line with the principles of international law,” Dzaferovic said.
The Appeals Court in the Brcko district sentenced ex-fighters Galib Hadzic and Nijaz Hodzic to two years and ten months and one year in prison respectively in 2015 for torturing prisoners at the Rasadnik jail camp. Osmanovic was a witness at the trial.