THE HAGUE | 06.10.2010.

KARADZIC: NO RECONCILIATION IF WE SHELLED THE MARKALE TOWN MARKET

Former Republika Srpska president Radovan Karadzic continued his cross-examination of British general Michael Rose. As Karadzic said, that there can be ‘no reconciliation’ in BH if the general view was that the Serb troops were responsible for the Markale town market massacre in February 1994. Karadzic contends that he has evidence showing that Serbs didn’t do it

Radovan Karadzic went on with his cross-examination of the former UNPROFOR commander quoting from Michael Rose’s book. According to Karadzic, Rose’s book confirmed the argument that the Western governments pursued ‘a confused strategy’ about how to deal with the war. They ‘were misguided’ and their representatives came to BH ‘with their own prejudices and missions’ and their ‘own agendas’, not taking into consideration the actual situation in the field.

General Rose agreed that the Western countries’ policy in the period when he served in BH was confused. In Rose’s view, the confusion was caused by different views regarding the priority tasks in BH. ‘Western countries wanted to achieve a just peace while the first priority of the UN was to secure the flow of the humanitarian aid’, Rose said.

Karadzic then claimed that the ‘Muslim side opened fire on the UN staff, NATO aircraft and their own people in order to make the Serbs respond and generate the appearance of constant suffering’ in an effort to bring about a military intervention. As Karadzic put it, it was a ‘pattern of conduct of the Muslim side’ and Serbs ‘had to deal with it’.

‘There can be no reconciliation if we fired on the Markale Town Market’, Karadzic said, claiming he would prove that the Serb army was not responsible for the first massacre at the Markale town market on 5 February 1994. According to Karadzic, the other side – the BH Army – is responsible for that crime. Karadzic noted that the first investigation of the incident, done by the French Battalion showed that this was the case. The UN however tried to cover it up and prevented the Serb side from taking part in the investigation. Karadzic thus suggested that the UN was not an independent agency, but a side in the conflict.

Rose didn’t agree with Karadzic’s theory on who was responsible for the Markale market incident. As Rose said, the second, more thorough investigation done by the UN showed that the fatal shell had ‘most likely been fired from the territory under the Bosnian Serb control’. Karadzic nevertheless argued that the results of another investigation showed that it was impossible to determine with 100 percent certainty which side was responsible. Rose explained his opinions were based on other findings from that period, including the fact that two days before the Markale town market massacre, the Serb forces fired shells on the Sarajevo citizens queuing for bread in Dobrinja. ‘I still hold this view and I have nothing else to add to it’, Rose concluded.

Karadzic will continue his cross-examination of the former commander of the UNPROFOR in Sarajevo tomorrow.