Case No IT-95-14/1
1 Thursday, 8th January 1998
2 (10.00 am)
3 MR. NIEMANN: We are ready to continue, your Honour. Perhaps
4 the witness might be brought in.
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning.
6 (Witness entered court)
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning. We are going to continue
8 now. You may be seated.
9 A. Thank you.
10 BAHTIJA SIVRO (continued)
11 Examined by MR. MARCHESIELLO (continued)
12 Q. Good morning, your Honours. Good morning, colleagues of
13 the Defence and good morning, Mr. Sivro. Do you feel
14 comfortable this morning?
15 I left you yesterday on the morning of April
16 19th. What happened, can you tell the court what
17 happened on that morning? You had been within your
18 apartment practically in confinement. What did you
19 expect about yourself, your information about where most
20 main Muslims were arrested, some of them even killed.
21 What were your thoughts at that moment?
22 A. Good morning, I am ready to continue. As I said
23 yesterday, I was woken up by explosions about 5.00 in
24 the morning on 16th April 1993. My wife and children
25 were already awake, looking through the window I could
1 see in the distance shooting around the town and in the
2 position of the village of Ahmici, some houses were
3 already burning and the shooting continued, there was a
4 lot of smoke and fire. Firing could be heard around
5 town. I realised that the war in Vitez had started
6 between the Croatian Defence Council and the Army of
8 Q. May I stop you for a moment? Now we are referring to a
9 subsequent day, the 19th, some days after the beginning
10 on the 16th. We already know that on the 16th a
11 conflict had started. Let us go to 19th April.
12 A. Very well, on the 19th in the evening about 7.00 pm,
13 I saw through the window that Muslims were being taken
14 into custody from the surrounding buildings and so it
15 was the turn of my building. All able-bodied Muslims
16 were taken into detention, together with myself, I was
17 among them. At first, we were detained in the building
18 of the cultural centre at the time, in the basement of
19 that building.
20 Q. May I stop you for a moment? So if I understand, you
21 were not arrested individually, but you were arrested
22 within a general action, aiming at arresting all male
23 Muslims in that area; is that not correct?
24 A. Yes, that is correct.
25 Q. In your estimation, how many Muslim men were there in
1 that area at that time?
2 A. In the town of Vitez itself, there were about 5,000
4 Q. Where were you taken?
5 A. As I said, I was taken to the basement of the cultural
6 centre, where I spent two days and two nights. There
7 were 80 to 100 men there already when I arrived, and the
8 number kept increasing. The area was too small for so
9 many people. It was adequate for maybe 40 to 50
10 people. Anything over 50 made it cramped, so that in
11 agreement with the people who were watching over us
12 there, who made sure that we would not leave the
13 building, we were moved to the cinema hall and the
14 offices upstairs, so that according to my estimate, in
15 three or four days time, the number increased to 250 to
16 300 people in all these three areas within the cultural
17 centre in Vitez.
18 Q. Thank you. Was there some form of registration on your
19 arriving there, or just were you put into the basement
20 and left there? Were there official lists of those who
21 were taken into the basement or in the cinema?
22 A. All the people who were taken to the basement were first
23 thoroughly searched to make sure that they had no
24 firearms or any other weapons and they were all
25 registered. Upon arrest, at least I was told to take my
1 ID card and a blanket, so all the people who came there
2 had their ID cards and on the basis of that they were
4 Q. Were you allowed during these first days to receive
5 visits from your relatives?
6 A. During the first few days no, but two or three days
7 later, these visits were half allowed, or rather from
8 time to time a member of the family could come and visit
9 us, our wives or relatives, to bring some food.
10 Q. During detention, were prisoners, some of them, or
11 groups of them, taken out of the theatre, the movie
12 theatre, and for what purposes?
13 A. While I was detained in the cultural centre, quite a
14 number of people were taken to dig trenches,
15 fortifications, dugouts and the like.
16 Q. Were you personally taken to do such work, or what else?
17 A. I personally did not do that work, but I did clean the
18 building itself and in front of the building, it means
19 that I was engaged to do some work unwillingly.
20 Q. The people who were chosen for work, trench digging,
21 were they chosen according to lists of their names or
22 randomly? I make an example. Did some officer, some
23 HVO come and ask for a certain number of persons, "we
24 need 20 people, we need 50 people", was it like that or
1 A. Groups were selected by random, usually younger men who
2 were capable of doing that kind of work. Fifteen to 20
3 people were regularly taken and were taken for digging,
4 for a day and a night, or two days and two nights.
5 Unfortunately some people never returned from that
7 Q. Those who returned, in which conditions did they appear
8 physically and psychologically?
9 A. They were visibly tired, dirty, frightened and
11 Q. You said you remained in the basement for a couple of
12 days. Then did you move to some other areas in the same
14 A. Yes, I said I spent two days and two nights in the
15 basement and then I was moved to the cinema hall. Some
16 people remained in the basement, because I said, because
17 it was too cramped in the basement, some were taken to
18 the cinema hall and some to the offices. I was taken to
19 the cinema hall.
20 Q. During this period, were you interrogated?
21 A. Not in this period.
22 Q. But in this period, did you have any other meeting with
23 Croat representatives, and if so, for what reasons, for
24 what purpose?
25 A. The first night after my arrest, Dr Mujezinovic came to
1 the building, Mr. Zvonimir Cilic and Boro Jozic. Jozic
2 and Cilic and Zvono proposed a brief meeting with us who
3 were already in detention. Dr Mujezinovic was to take a
4 couple of people for these talks on the possibility of
5 halting hostilities and the destruction of the town and
6 its environs.
7 Q. I understand Dr Mujezinovic was not at that time
9 A. No, he came from the improvised military infirmary which
10 was under the supervision of the HVO.
11 Q. So he was there as a physician, he was there
12 occasionally as a physician; is that what you mean?
13 A. Yes, he was working there occasionally as a doctor.
14 I do not know whether it was of his own free will or
15 under coercion.
16 Q. During this meeting, what did they ask you to do?
17 A. We talked for about two to three hours. We were
18 requested to halt the offensive operations of the army,
19 or rather to suggest to army members, members of the
20 BiH army to surrender or something to that effect. To be
21 quite frank, this was not stated explicitly in the way
22 I have put it, but the meaning could be interpreted in
23 that sense.
24 Q. In this perspective, can you tell us and tell the court
25 whether you were there as Muslim representatives which
1 were occasionally detained or explicitly as prisoners?
2 Did they consider you and tell you you were prisoners
3 which were being involved in that negotiation?
4 A. At the time, I was a prisoner, and all the others were
5 virtually prisoners. This was stated by the words, "you
6 are down there, we are here, here are the telephones,
7 call whoever you think you should call".
8 Q. Did you pick up the telephone?
9 A. Yes, I spoke that evening three times by phone with a
10 member of the command of the local battalion housed in
11 Kruscica, he has the same surname as I, his name is
12 Sifret Sivro. I explained to him where we were and what
13 we were doing and I asked him that no offensive
14 operations should be launched from that side. The other
15 conversation I had was with my brother in Zenica,
16 I asked him to deny the report that Dr Mujezinovic had
17 been killed, because he was alive and my brother did
18 that through the media of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
19 My third call was to Colonel Ramiz Dugalic, who
20 was then already working in the command of the III
21 Corps. This was very late, after 2.00 am. This was
22 already 20th April. We also explained to him our
23 position and we also recommended that no further
24 movements of the troops should be made and that attempts
25 should be invested to calm down the situation.
1 Q. Thank you, Mr. Sivro. What happened after that? Did you
2 receive other visits by Croat officials and military
3 people subsequently?
4 A. Allow me just to say what the outcome of that meeting
5 was. About an hour or an hour and a half later, Ivica
6 Santic and Pero Skopljak arrived and again we had the
7 same points made and we asked that the situation in
8 Vitez should be brought under control, and so we
9 prepared a joint proclamation that was read out on local
10 television. Unfortunately it bore no fruit.
11 Q. Who did sign that statement? Did you particularly sign?
12 A. I did not sign it, it was signed by Dr Mujezinovic and
13 on the other side by Mr. Ivica Santic.
14 Q. Let us go to a subsequent period of time. Did you after
15 that receive other -- were met by Croat officials and/or
16 military representatives, and what did they ask you, if
18 A. After that, there were no official contacts. Our only
19 communication was with the local people, that is our
20 guards. But to answer your previous question, the
21 situation did not calm down, nor were any of the
22 prisoners released. Visits were not prohibited; that is
23 our closest relatives could visit us for a brief period
24 and bring some food. They could not stay for more than
25 five or ten minutes.
1 Q. Did the number of prisoners in the cinema significantly
2 increase or diminish during that period?
3 A. During that period, that is we are talking about April
4 20th, more prisoners were coming in and as I said, the
5 figure increased to 250 to 300 people in the building in
6 which I was put up.
7 Q. How did it happen that you leave the building and in
8 which circumstances?
9 A. Let me just add that in the period before leaving this
10 building, the International Red Cross registered all the
11 prisoners and already at the end of April, a senior
12 military delegation of the HVO and the BiH army, both
13 chiefs of staff, Sefer Halilovic and Milivoj Petkovic,
14 who was the commander of the HVO command, they visited
15 us and told us orally that agreement had been reached
16 for all of us to be released home. However, this did
17 not happen. Some people were released, but the rest of
18 the people stayed where they were.
19 Q. What about you at that moment?
20 A. On 29th April, a considerable number of the detainees
21 were released home, and on 4th May, very early in the
22 morning, a few from the group that were still detained
23 in the cinema hall were transferred to a chess club in
24 another part of the city.
25 Q. How many of you were on that occasion?
1 A. On that occasion, there were 12 men, then another man
2 was brought in an hour or two after us, which makes a
3 total of 13.
4 Q. Do you remember the name of some of your fellows?
5 A. Yes, I can remember. For example, engineer Suad Salkic,
6 Cazim Ahmic, engineer Alija Basic, Professor Enes
7 Surkovic, Fuad Kaknjo, Subasic, the late Causevic Serif,
8 Dervis Subasic, Cazim Sahman and so on.
9 Q. Were you transferred to the chess club in secrecy? Did
10 you get at that time the impression that they were
11 hiding you, did you imagine that you were about to
12 receive any particular treatment?
13 A. Yes, that is what we believed, our transfer was carried
14 out in strict secrecy.
15 Q. What did the members of this group have in common? You
16 mentioned engineers, doctors; can you explain to the
17 court what link possibly these people -- these 12 and
18 later on 13 people, were they all Muslims?
19 A. All these people were Muslims, the majority were
20 prominent figures in the economy, in business. In a
21 word, they were prominent figures in the life of the
23 Q. Were some of them members of the SDA?
24 A. Yes, some were members of the SDA, I remember well that
25 Mr. Kadir Didic, Fuad Kaknjo, I am not sure about the
1 others, whether they belonged to the SDA party.
2 Q. To your knowledge, were the ICRC aware of your
3 situation, of the place where you were being taken?
4 A. The International Red Cross did not know that we had
5 been transferred from the cinema to the chess club.
6 Q. Where were you taken then from the chess club?
7 A. We stayed in the chess club for one night and one day, a
8 day and a half actually, and then we were summarily and
9 very expeditiously evacuated to Kaonik, a locality close
10 to Busovaca.
11 Q. Had you already visited that place, that camp, or did
12 you know it?
13 A. I knew the locality, but it was -- as it was a military
14 facility of the former Yugoslav People's Army, access
15 was not allowed for civilians, but I was familiar with
16 it, I knew where it was.
17 Q. Where did the HVO detain you in Kaonik?
18 A. The 13 of us were detained in a building that used to be
19 a military warehouse which I assume was rapidly adapted
20 into a military prison. Cells were built from building
21 material, even concrete elements with doors being placed
22 in front.
23 Q. Which were the general aspect of the cell you were put
25 A. The 13 of us were put up in a cell which in my estimate
1 was adequate for four people on the outside, so there
2 were 13 of us in this same room at the same time for two
3 or three days we stayed there.
4 Q. How was the situation as to food and hygiene and general
5 protection of your physical health?
6 A. We were in the cell all the time, the hygiene was below
7 the minimum, the food was barely adequate for survival.
8 Let me refer to a detail; as there were many of us in
9 this cell, of course, we were all very tense and we
10 often needed to use the toilet. In order to go there,
11 one had to knock on the door, the guard would open the
12 door and let one to two of us out. As I said, this
13 happened frequently, we needed it frequently, so we were
14 given a metal box of five litres, so that we could use
15 it to urinate in the cell itself.
16 Q. On your first entering the cell, do you remember having
17 found something unusual, some unusual object, and what
18 did you do, if so?
19 A. Yes, I remember. Since we were in the cell for the
20 first time, we wanted to put it in order a little, and
21 to clean it, if possible, to make it hygienic, so we
22 lifted these mattresses and beneath one of them we found
23 a big knife, and we immediately reported it to the guard
24 who was in front of the door and told him that we had
25 found it.
1 Q. What happened? How did the guard react?
2 A. The guard asked us exactly where we had found it and
3 then the commander of the guards joined him and he told
4 us all off for how come there was a knife there. This
5 was a brief incident and after that life continued, if
6 one may call it, normally. This case was never referred
7 to again.
8 Q. Were you during your stay in Kaonik interrogated, and
9 how many times, if so?
10 A. Yes, I was interrogated. The first interrogation was
11 outside of the building where I was kept prisoner. This
12 was in the town of Busovaca on the premises of the
13 accounting services, the SDK as it was called in those
15 Q. What did they ask you about?
16 A. I was interrogated with respect to the Vitez trade
17 company, which at that time traded in the explosives;
18 who was in this company, what was the goal of this
19 company and who works for this company.
20 Q. Were you asked to sign a statement, or to write a
21 statement and sign it?
22 A. As I said, the first interrogation took place in the
23 town of Busovaca. The second interrogation consisted of
24 writing down of a statement. I wrote it down in the
25 hallway in the prison, in the presence of a guard, and
1 I wrote down my short curriculum vitae and my actions up
2 until the time when I was imprisoned, the contacts that
3 I had et cetera and I signed that statement.
4 Q. Who actually asked you to write down your statement?
5 A. I said that the first interrogation took place in the
6 town of Busovaca; there were three interrogators, one of
7 these interrogators came to the detention and asked me
8 to write this statement and to sign it.
9 Q. During your stay at Kaonik, were you physically
10 mistreated during interrogation or after interrogation,
11 and in which circumstances?
12 A. I was not physically mistreated throughout my stay in
14 Q. Were some of your fellow prisoners mistreated or
15 beaten? Is that to your knowledge?
16 A. Yes, they were. I think that Mr. Fuad Kaknjo was
17 physically mistreated the most.
18 Q. Why do you think so? Have you seen him and in which
20 A. I personally saw him because as I said, we were all in a
21 single cell, the 13 of us. These people who were taken
22 out to be interrogated would not be brought back to the
23 same cell, they would be taken to another cell, so I too
24 was taken from cell number 6 to cell number 5, 16 to 5,
25 and when Fuad Kaknjo came into number 5 I saw that he
1 had visible bruises and he had traces of beatings on his
2 legs and his shoulders and cheeks.
3 Q. During your stay in Kaonik, were you visited by ECMM or
4 ICRC officials?
5 A. There were two visits. The first visit was by the
6 International Red Cross and they were checking on us,
7 since we had already been registered in Vitez. Now they
8 re-registered us in Kaonik. Immediately following this
9 visit, the ECMM mission representatives also came to
10 visit. Both visits were short ones and there were no
11 special talks that were conducted at that time.
12 I remember that the Red Cross brought us some cigarettes
13 and they re-registered us. The UN monitors also talked
14 to us briefly, they were escorted by the prison
16 Q. Who did escort them on that particular occasion? You
17 said prison officials.
18 A. I cannot say precisely who it was, because I was in a
19 cell, they entered the cell. It is possible that
20 Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski was also with them, but I cannot
21 say that.
22 Q. Had you already seen him before, Mr. Aleksovski?
23 A. I did not know Mr. Aleksovski before my detention, but
24 I had an opportunity to meet him and talk to him
25 personally in his office.
1 Q. We will go to this later on, but will you give us some
2 more details as to the meeting with the European
3 Community Monitoring Mission? How many of them were at
4 that meeting? How were they dressing?
5 A. I think that there were two monitors, they were dressed
6 in the standard white outfits, which was the regulation
7 outfit for the European Monitors at that time. I think
8 it was the chief of the mission for Bosnia-Herzegovina,
9 I do not know what his name was, but I know that he was
10 a high ranking official among the EU monitors. He asked
11 us the usual things, how we were, how we were treated.
12 We could not really tell him much, so we moved on to
13 some more serene topics, like our liberation and the
14 circumstances under which we would be set free and that
15 indeed happened shortly thereafter.
16 Q. Thank you. You said, just a while ago, that you met the
17 camp commander during your stay at Kaonik. Can you
18 state the name of the camp commander?
19 A. The camp commander or the camp director or warden was
20 Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski.
21 Q. Can you see him in this courtroom?
22 A. Yes, I can see him to my left.
23 Q. In which circumstances did you meet him and how many
25 A. As I said, we met twice in the office. My family asked
1 about me, specifically my brother, so a member of the
2 HVO, I think at that time he was the HVO police
3 commander, he passed on the message and he came to see
4 how I was and brought some cigarettes, and so this was
5 the reason why I was in the office at the warden's.
6 Q. Where was the office in relation to your cell? Was it
7 in the same building?
8 A. The office was in the same building not far from the
9 cell in which I was detained at that time, maybe five or
10 six metres away from my cell.
11 Q. How was Mr. Aleksovski dressing?
12 A. I think he had the so-called camouflage uniform, and
13 that that is what he was wearing. They were all wearing
14 that and in final analysis, it was the war.
15 Q. How long did this first encounter last?
16 A. Maybe 15 minutes.
17 Q. Did Mr. Aleksovski tell something to you? Did you have
18 some conversation?
19 A. Yes, he told me that his mother-in-law and his wife were
20 in Zenica and he was concerned about their fate. At
21 that time, Zenica was under the control of the BiH army.
22 Q. Could you tell the court now about the second occasion
23 which you met Mr. Aleksovski?
24 A. The second meeting came shortly after the first one,
25 maybe two or three days later. Again a guard came to my
1 cell and took me to the warden's office, and again my
2 brother had intervened through another friend, who came
3 there and asked to see me, which the warden allowed, and
4 then again we chatted a little bit and we talked.
5 Q. How long did the second meeting last?
6 A. About 15 minutes.
7 Q. In which circumstances were you then -- could you leave
9 A. I could not leave the cell, I could not even leave the
10 cell, let alone the building where I was.
11 Q. I was asking you when and how did it happen that you
12 were exchanged or anyway you came back to your -- to a
13 free state, personal state?
14 A. I left the Kaonik prison on 14th May, the whole group
15 with the addition of two persons who were detained in
16 another cell in another building, we were all taken back
17 to the cinema building in Vitez, we spent two days and
18 two nights there and on 16th May 1993, in a regular
19 exchange which was conducted in the presence of the EC
20 monitors and the Red Cross and other relevant persons,
21 I was released and (redacted)
23 Q. Those with whom you had been exchanged, were they
24 military or civilians? I mean the Croats.
25 A. Yes, I understand the question. They were dressed as
1 civilians, just as we all were civilians. Some of the
2 Croats did not even want to leave the territory
3 controlled by the BiH army, that is they remained in
4 their homes, they went back there.
5 Q. Did you ever return to your apartment, your house in
6 Vitez, after that?
7 A. My wife has two or three times. I had a single
8 opportunity, just a couple of minutes, just to take a
9 couple of personal belongings for myself and my family.
10 That was my only stay in my apartment in Vitez.
11 MR. MARCHESIELLO: Thank you, Mr. Sivro. I am finished.
12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you very much, Mr. Prosecutor and
13 Mr. Sivro. I think it is now time for a break before the
14 Defence starts the cross-examination, so we shall resume
15 at 11.05. Is that all right?
16 MR. NIEMANN: Just before your Honours do that, can we seek a
17 redaction? I will just hand this up on a note from the
18 transcript. Perhaps it could be shown to Mr. Mikulicic
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic?
21 MR. MIKULICIC: Okay.
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Are you agreeable, Mr. Mikulicic? Fine,
23 then we are going to have a break now.
24 (10.50 am)
25 (A short break)
1 (11.10 am)
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, the witness is now at your
4 Cross-examined by MR. MIKULICIC
5 Q. Thank you, your Honours. Good morning everybody. My
6 name is Goran Mikulicic and I represent Mr. Zlatko
8 Good morning, Mr. Sivro. I have a few questions
9 for you, so will you please answer them to the best of
10 your recollection.
11 A. I shall do my best.
12 Q. Thank you. Mr. Sivro, in your statement yesterday and
13 today, you said that in the events that you related you
14 had contacts with the prominent persons in the political
15 and economic life in the community where you lived, is
16 that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Mr. Sivro, when the region became destabilised, did you
19 continue to maintain these contacts?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. You said that you took part in many meetings in which
22 the situation was discussed and efforts were made to
23 find a solution to the situation, and I here mean the
24 conflict between the two communities.
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Mr. Sivro, in these meetings, did you ever see present
2 the accused, Mr. Aleksovski?
3 A. No.
4 Q. If I remember correctly, you said that you first saw him
5 when you came to Kaonik for the first time.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Did you hear at any time when present at the above
8 mentioned meetings that Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski had any
9 role that he played in it?
10 A. No.
11 Q. Thank you. Mr. Sivro, could you tell us in more detail
12 something that you talked about, which was the
13 interrogation by the persons when you were taken from
14 the Kaonik facility to the town. Who was interrogating
16 A. I was interrogated by three persons. I think one
17 person's name was Vlado Jurisic, I knew him from before
18 the conflict and in some way, I worked with him, because
19 he was an inspector for anti-explosives activities. At
20 that time, I was the director of engineering and
21 development, so I took part in his inspections of both
22 the facilities and technology that was present in the
23 Vitezit company.
24 Q. Can you tell us what was the main product of the Vitezit
1 A. In principle, Vitezit produced explosives for the
2 civilian purposes, which means for mining and
3 construction industries.
4 Q. As you said, Mr. Vlado Jurisic was an inspector and he
5 was in public service. What was it called?
6 A. It was the centre of the public security and it was also
7 centre of security services in Zenica.
8 Q. Do you know within which ministry, in other words what
9 ministry was in charge of this sector?
10 A. It was the Republican Ministry of the Interior of
12 Q. So we could say that this was a police service?
13 A. Yes, you could say so.
14 Q. You said, and correct me if I am wrong, that at that
15 time, you were also interrogated with respect to the
16 explosives and the production of the Vitezit company?
17 A. In fact about the traffic with explosives in this
18 company, Vitezit.
19 Q. How did you experience this interrogation? Was this
20 like a police interrogation?
21 A. This could not be described as purely a police
22 interrogation. I could not figure out during this
23 interrogation, in fact I did not understand these
24 questions, why I was being connected to the Vitez trade
25 company when I was not part of that.
1 Q. However, the questions asked of you were in regard of
2 the explosives trade.
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Let us go back to your stay in Kaonik. You said that
5 you had two visits.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Your brother came, if I remember correctly, escorted by
8 an HVO soldier?
9 A. That is not correct.
10 Q. What is correct then?
11 A. My brother -- Busovaca was already under HVO control,
12 and my brother lived and still lives in Zenica. He
13 talked on the phone with some friends in Busovaca,
14 because my brother worked for 15 years or more in Vatro
15 Stelna company in Busovaca. He also had an important
16 position there, he was an engineer, specialising in
17 metals, so he wanted one of our acquaintances to come
18 and visit me and see what conditions there were there.
19 Q. Do you know who gave your brother a permit to come and
21 A. I do not know that. I said that -- I think that Nikica
22 Petrovic was his name. At that time he was a commander,
23 I think, of the civilian police and then he became the
24 commander of the military police.
25 Q. Thank you. If I remember correctly, you said that
1 Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski whom you saw there that time in
2 Kaonik wore camouflage uniforms?
3 A. I think he wore a camouflage military uniform.
4 Q. Did you notice any rank insignia?
5 A. I did not notice it.
6 Q. You said that on 16th May 1993, you were exchanged, is
7 that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Do you know what role in this exchange played the
10 accused Zlatko Aleksovski?
11 A. He had played no role in this exchange, he was not
12 present there and it is possible that he did not know
13 about it.
14 MR. MIKULICIC: I thank you very much, the Defence has no
15 further questions.
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Prosecutor?
17 MR. MARCHESIELLO: No questions.
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you, Mr. Sivro, for your testimony.
19 It is finished now, we have no further questions for
21 A. Thank you too, your Honours.
22 (The witness withdrew)
23 MR. NIEMANN: My colleague Mr. Meddegoda will take the next
24 witness, if your Honours please.
25 MR. MEDDEGODA: Your Honours, the Prosecution intends to call
1 Hamdo Dautovic as its next witness.
2 HAMDO DAUTOVIC (sworn)
3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning, Mr. Dautovic.
4 A. Good morning.
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: I bid you welcome.
6 A. Thank you.
7 MR. MEDDEGODA: May I proceed, your Honour?
8 A. Yes.
9 Examined by MR. MEDDEGODA
10 Q. Could you state your full name please?
11 A. Hamdo Dautovic.
12 Q. And your date of birth?
13 A. 10th June 1959.
14 Q. Where were you born?
15 A. In the village of Maline near Travnik.
16 Q. What is your ethnicity, Mr. Dautovic?
17 A. Muslim.
18 Q. And your religion?
19 A. Muslim, Islam.
20 Q. Prior to April 1993, you were the owner of a restaurant?
21 A. A coffee bar.
22 Q. Thank you. You were owning the coffee bar even in the
23 month of May 1993?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Do you remember 18th May 1993?
1 A. I do remember.
2 Q. Why do you remember that date?
3 A. 18th May 1993 I was arrested, I was detained.
4 Q. Could you tell this court where you were arrested on
5 18th May 1993?
6 A. In Guca Gora near the church.
7 Q. How far is Guca Gora from your restaurant, from your
8 coffee bar?
9 A. Two or three kilometres, I do not know exactly. Maybe
10 even more, I do not know exactly.
11 Q. Why did you go to Guca Gora?
12 A. To buy cigarettes for the coffee bar.
13 Q. How did you go to Guca Gora that day?
14 A. In my private car, of Golf make.
15 Q. Did you go alone, when you went to Guca Gora?
16 A. Mujo Beganovic came with me.
17 Q. Did you buy the cigarettes in Guca Gora?
18 A. I did buy cigarettes in Guca Gora.
19 Q. Having bought the cigarettes, what did you do?
20 A. I put the cigarettes in the car, and me and my friend
21 went back home.
22 Q. When you were returning home, what happened to you?
23 A. On the way back, Ivica Bobas stopped me, who told me --
24 he cursed my balija mother and told me to get out of the
1 Q. Who was Ivica Bobas?
2 A. Ivica Bobas was a guy who lived close to me. He often
3 came and patronised my coffee bar.
4 Q. On that occasion when he stopped your car, was he alone?
5 A. He was alone.
6 Q. Was he dressed in any particular uniform at the time?
7 A. He had camouflage uniform on.
8 Q. What did that uniform signify to you?
9 A. It meant that he was an HVO soldier.
10 Q. You said Mujo Beganovic was also with you at that time?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Was he also stopped together with you?
13 A. Yes. We were together in the same car, I drove it.
14 Q. What happened after you were stopped by Ivica Bobas?
15 A. Three other soldiers came, three other men. They told
16 Mujo that he was free to go and Ivica Bobas ordered me
17 to pull everything out of my pockets and put it on the
19 Q. What were the three other soldiers attired in?
20 A. Camouflage uniforms, camouflage suits.
21 Q. So in all at that time there were four including Ivica
22 Bobas, at the time after you were stopped?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Were any of them armed at the time?
25 A. Yes, they were.
1 Q. What did they carry with them?
2 A. Ivica Bobas had an automatic rifle Kalasnjikov, two
3 others had automatic rifles and the last one had a
5 Q. You said that Mujo Beganovic was ordered to go, is that
7 A. Yes, that is correct, and he left.
8 Q. What happened to you at that point in time?
9 A. Bad things happened with me. I was taken to the police
10 station which used to be the old Yugoslav militia
11 station, and I waited in front, Ivica Bobas and another
12 soldier with the rifle kept me there, I do not know how
13 long it took, but it seemed very long to me, maybe half
14 an hour or an hour, I do not know how long it took. But
15 they did not take me into the room. Then the other two
16 came, they took me into a car, a Ritmo make, and I was
17 in this car and I knew that vehicle.
18 Q. How were you -- from the point you were arrested, how
19 were you brought to the police station?
20 A. On foot, we just crossed the soccer field from the
21 arrest to the police station, so it was on foot, I was
22 between them.
23 Q. What happened to the cigarettes that you had bought in
24 Guca Gora?
25 A. The cigarettes that I bought in Guca Gora remained in
1 the car and the car was driven away before my very eyes.
2 Q. You said that at the police station in Guca Gora, you
3 were put into another car, a Fiat Ritmo car?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. After being put into the police station, what happened
6 to you?
7 A. In front of the police station, I waited and nothing
8 happened. Those two soldiers guarded me, Ivica Bobas
9 and another one. The other two went into the police
10 station, I do not know why, probably to ask some things
11 or to tell them about me. Then they took me into the
12 Ritmo car.
13 Q. Sorry. After being put into the Ritmo car, what
14 happened to you? That was my question.
15 A. Then I was placed between the two soldiers in the back
16 seat and they started driving towards Radojcici, towards
17 Nova Bila, down the road. I had to bend my head so
18 I could not see where we were going. I had to keep my
19 head between my knees. Some of them hit me with the
20 knife handle in the neck area and the other one with a
21 rifle butt over my back. This was in the car.
22 Q. You said the car was driven through Radojcici in the
23 direction of Nova Bila?
24 A. We passed by Radojcici, outside Radojcici, towards Nova
1 Q. Did anything happen before you came to Nova Bila?
2 A. At a bend to the right in the road, since I already saw
3 that there would be no life for me I tried to jump out
4 of the car. I hit the soldier next to me, it was not
5 Bobas Ivica, but somebody else I did not know. The door
6 was opened, we fell out. The car swerved from the road
7 but Ivica Bobas ran up to me, he was very close to me
8 and he ordered me to open my mouth, he pushed the barrel
9 into my mouth and then they beat me as much as they
10 wanted until I lost consciousness. All the time the
11 barrel was in my mouth.
12 Q. Approximately for how long were you kept there?
13 A. It seemed to me to be an eternity and I did not have a
14 watch, but I think it was about one hour. I do not know
15 exactly, but it seemed a very long time, because I was
16 beaten all that time.
17 Q. What happened thereafter?
18 A. After that, another car, an Opel Rekord came, another
19 vehicle and there was not enough room inside because
20 another driver had come, so they put me in the boot of
21 the car, in the luggage compartment.
22 Q. Thereafter, they drove along in that car?
23 A. I was driven in the Rekord, shut up in the trunk. There
24 was a lot of dust. I do not know where they were taking
1 Q. On the way was the car stopped at any point?
2 A. The car was stopped, in front of a building. There was
3 light. The lights were on. I heard a voice, "here we
4 have a balija extremist for you", somebody said and
5 somebody else said, "he is not for us, that is Hamdo.
6 Take him away".
7 Q. You were in the boot of the car. How did you know that
8 there were lights?
9 A. I knew because they opened the boot and I saw the
10 light. That is when I saw the light, from the boot of
11 the car.
12 Q. Thereafter, did the car proceed further?
13 A. We continued the ride.
14 Q. For about how long did the journey continue?
15 A. I do not know, I was in the boot and I was expecting to
16 be killed. I was trying to hear what they were talking
17 about in the car and I heard them saying that they would
18 open the boot as if to let me go, and that they would
19 kill me then as if I had tried to escape, so I got even
20 more frightened.
21 Q. Did the car finally come to a halt?
22 A. The car stopped somewhere in the woods. The boot was
23 opened and I was called out by an unknown voice, there
24 were now five of them in the car, not four, "you have a
25 child, you are a good man, you are not a bad man. We
1 will let you go. Be careful, you must go home". I knew
2 what was in wait for me, and I pretended to be even more
3 badly hurt than I really was, so that I could not get
4 up. We saw the lights of another car coming from the
5 other direction, I do not know which make it was, and
6 when that car reached this car that I was in, I heard a
7 voice saying, "what is that?"; he said, "we have a
8 balija extremist that we need to get rid of", and then
9 I realised everything.
10 Q. You did not leave the car when you were asked to go?
11 A. No, I did not get out because I know what they wanted to
12 do. I was badly beaten, but I pretended to be even
13 worse so that I could not get out, because I knew that a
14 bullet was waiting for me if I did get out.
15 Q. What did your captors do to you thereafter?
16 A. I do not know, the man who came up said, "do not kill
17 him, you should get everything he knows out of him.
18 There is always time to kill him". When he said that,
19 he must have been some kind of a commander, somebody
20 that they listened to, so the boot was shut again, and
21 then they continued the journey. I did not know where
22 we were going.
23 Q. Did the car come to a halt thereafter?
24 A. Afterwards, yes, the car stopped in front of a building
25 which I did not know at the time. Afterwards I realised
1 where I was, it was Kaonik, in front of the prison, the
2 camp, the hangar, whatever you like to call it.
3 I learnt everything afterwards. At the time I did not
4 know anything. I was dragged out of the boot of the
5 car, all beaten up. I was dragged out and I heard this
6 man who did not have a rifle, he only had a pistol, and
7 he said, "we are going to prepare a farewell party for
8 you". Again I was terrified, because I thought he meant
9 a bullet, he wanted to kill me. Fortunately they did
10 not kill me, they beat me. They put me in the middle
11 among four of them, like a movie, and they beat me.
12 I was in the centre.
13 Q. Do you remember what time of the day it was when you
14 came to Kaonik?
15 A. It was night-time. I do not know, but it was dark,
16 because when I left my home to go to Guca Gora, it was
17 the afternoon.
18 Q. Then at Kaonik, you were put into a cell in the Kaonik
19 camp, was it?
20 A. After they had beaten me up very badly, somebody helped
21 me to get to the cell, there was a long corridor. For
22 me it was very long because I could not walk.
23 Q. Did you realise in which cell you had been detained?
24 A. After a few days, I learnt that I was in cell number 3,
25 it was cell number 3, but at first I did not know which
1 cell it was, because they did not ask me where I was
2 going, they just shoved me in.
3 Q. When did you find out that it was cell number 3?
4 A. When Dragan Micic was on duty. They called him Arkan.
5 Q. Dragan Micic was also a guard at the camp?
6 A. Yes, I think he was one of the guards. He gave me water
7 several times, he also gave me a couple of cigarettes,
8 or at least I think it was him, because it was passed
9 through the keyhole and I know that he did not beat me.
10 Q. Could you give us a description of cell number 3 in
11 which you were detained?
12 A. Cell number 3 in which I was detained could be described
13 as being 2.5 by 3 or 2.75 by 3.20, something like that,
14 roughly that was the area of the cell.
15 Q. Were there any windows in the cell?
16 A. There was a window, but facing the corridor inside.
17 There was no window facing out. It was not a window
18 really, but it had rails on top.
19 Q. You said there were no windows facing the outside.
20 A. No, there were no windows.
21 Q. This one window with bars, where was that?
22 A. It was above the door, facing the corridor, facing the
23 inside of the building.
24 Q. Were there any electric lights inside the cell?
25 A. There was no electric light in the cell, but there was
1 an electric bulb outside in the corridor, so that the
2 light came through the bars, through the opening.
3 Q. What were the other facilities you had inside the cell?
4 A. I had a blanket, a small pillow. There was a wooden
5 bench, maybe it was 80 centimetres in concrete and then
6 on top of it there was a wooden plank. I cannot tell
7 you exactly. It was intended for sleeping. There was a
8 tin can which was a toilet, the toilet for me.
9 Q. You had to use this tin can as your toilet, is that
11 A. Yes, I did. I used it. Only when Dragan Micic was on
12 duty, he would let me spill it out and fill a plastic
13 bottle with water. He gave me this bottle so I had some
14 water, because I did not dare have any contact with any
15 other guards. Every time they opened the cell, they
16 beat me, so I preferred them not to open it at all.
17 Q. During your period of detention, were you taken out of
18 the cell at any point in time?
19 A. I was taken out of the cell.
20 Q. On how many occasions were you taken out of the cell, do
21 you recall?
22 A. I do. I was taken out twice when Darko Kraljevic, Mirko
23 Selak and Brane came, I think his surname is Jukic, he
24 is now living in Travnik. On that occasion I was badly
25 beaten up.
1 Q. Where were you beaten on that occasion?
2 A. I was taken into a room with no chairs, no table. I do
3 not know what it was, it was in the building.
4 Q. How far was it from your cell?
5 A. I could not really tell you exactly.
6 Q. Was it in the same building as your cell?
7 A. Yes, it was in the same building.
8 Q. On that occasion, what happened to you?
9 A. On that occasion, I was interrogated by Darko Kraljevic,
10 who asked me how many Mujahedin there were, what they
11 were supplied with, how many arms the BiH army had and
12 all the other things they had, whether I had a rifle,
13 how many women I had killed, how many women I had raped,
14 how many children I had killed, how many houses I had
15 torched. Since I was beaten badly, I would say whatever
16 they wanted to hear, but they beat me very much. There
17 were another six boys in uniform. I assumed that they
18 were the bodyguards of the three, that was my conclusion
20 Q. In what position were you when you were interrogated by
21 these three people?
22 A. In every possible position. I was standing for as long
23 as I could stand while they beat me, then I sat down
24 when they beat me. At the end, Brane sat on my back and
25 beat me. I was lying down on my stomach. There was a
1 microphone of some sort, something like a microphone in
2 front of my mouth, and then they went on beating me and
3 I was told to repeat whatever they said, so that I did,
4 I repeated what they told me. This was accompanied by
5 blows, because he was sitting on my back.
6 Q. You said you were interrogated on this occasion by Darko
7 Kraljevic, Mirko Selak and Brane Jukic.
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Who were they?
10 A. I knew Mirko Selak, because he is a native of Guca Gora
11 and that is where I completed elementary school, so that
12 I knew him well. He did not beat me, but these other
13 six did who were in uniform, Darko Kraljevic beat me,
14 but Brane beat me most.
15 Q. Did you know Darko Kraljevic from before?
16 A. I did, I knew him, but only by sight. I was not in
17 touch with him.
18 Q. And Brane Jukic? Did you know him also from before?
19 A. I did not know Brane Jukic at all, I just -- his face
20 seemed familiar, but I did not know him, I did not know
21 where he came from or who or what he was. But Darko
22 Kraljevic, I saw him in my cafe bar and in others that
23 I used to frequent, so that Darko was familiar to me by
24 sight, but Brane was neither known or unknown. I may
25 have seen his face a couple of times, but I did not know
1 him at all.
2 Q. What particular dress were they attired in at the time
3 they interrogated you?
4 A. Darko Kraljevic, Mirko Selak and Brane were in civilian
5 clothes. I cannot remember what exactly they were
6 wearing, but they were not in uniform.
7 Q. And the other six?
8 A. The other six were in uniform.
9 Q. What uniform was that?
10 A. In the camouflage uniform, military uniform, the
11 multi-coloured uniform.
12 Q. That uniform, did it signify anything to you?
13 A. It did indicate that they were HVO soldiers, and they
14 could be their bodyguards, two for each one of the three
15 of them, that was my opinion as soon as I saw them.
16 Q. So that was one occasion on which you were taken out of
17 the cell. What was the second occasion on which you
18 were taken out of the cell?
19 A. Yes, the other occasion was when I was badly beaten up.
20 I had blood in my faeces and my urine. I was afraid
21 I would die, I did not expect to live through it. Then
22 I complained to Dragan Micic, whom I did not know from
23 before, but he proved to be a kind man in that camp, and
24 then he told me that I should address myself to the
25 warden and ask him to see a doctor, and in two days
1 time, that happened. The warden, the director, took me
2 to the doctor.
3 Q. Who was the warden of the camp who took you to the
5 A. Zlatko.
6 Q. Could you give a description of the physical appearance of
7 Zlatko Aleksovski?
8 A. He was bald with a round face, between 35 and 40, 45
9 years of age, not more than that, somewhere in that
10 range, medium height.
11 Q. Could you recognise him if you see him again?
12 A. I could.
13 Q. Could you say to this court whether he is present here
15 A. He is.
16 Q. Where is he?
17 A. I think he is over there, up there.
18 Q. Thank you. You said the accused took you to the doctor?
19 A. He drove me to the doctor in his own car, but without
20 the lights on. I sat in the back. He was alone in the
21 car with me.
22 Q. What time of the day was it when he drove you to the
24 A. It was night-time or evening, I do not know what time it
25 was. I know it was dark.
1 Q. Where were you taken to?
2 A. I was taken to Busovaca.
3 Q. What happened when you were taken to see the doctor?
4 A. When I got into the car and sat down, he closed the door
5 and when he sat in the driver's seat, he said, "do not
6 try anything because you will not succeed", and I was
7 beaten up and incapacitated, so I did not even have any
8 intention to try anything. I needed a doctor because
9 I thought I would not pull out. He drove the car,
10 I tried to ask something, but I did not get any answers,
11 until we reached the hospital, or rather the health
12 centre. The car stopped in front of the health centre,
13 he told me to get out.
14 Q. Did you get out of the car?
15 A. As I came out of the car, I felt very weak, because
16 I was so badly beaten, much more than is normal, and
17 I crawled on all fours, I saw two nurses who wanted to
18 help me, but he did not let them. The director said,
19 "he is strong, he is able-bodied, he can walk alone",
20 so I entered the corridor and I sat on a wooden bench in
21 the waiting room.
22 Q. What did the accused do at this stage?
23 A. He entered the doctor's office, it was a lady doctor
24 that time. I do not know what he did over there.
25 Q. For how long was he inside the doctor's office?
1 A. Ten or fifteen minutes, not long. I was outside in the
3 Q. Did the accused come out of the doctor's office?
4 A. They called me in, inside the office. Together with the
5 lady doctor was the director in the doctor's surgery.
6 She asked me what was wrong with me, I said I was very
7 sick, because I knew I did not dare tell her I had been
9 Q. You said together with the lady doctor there was the
10 director; who was this director you are referring to?
11 A. Zlatko, the prison warden, the one who brought me there.
12 Q. You are referring to the accused in this case?
13 A. To Aleksovski.
14 Q. When you went into the doctor's office, what happened
16 A. In the examination room, the lady doctor asked me what
17 was wrong with me, and I sort of tried to find the
18 warden's eyes to see what I should say and he said that
19 I had a cold, that I needed an injection, nothing else
20 was wrong with me. I said to the doctor that I had
21 blood in my stool and my urine. She told me to strip to
22 the waist, and I did and I was completely black and
23 blue. The doctor then told the warden, "this is animal
24 behaviour". She took the stethoscope and she checked me
25 out. She said, "you need treatment, treatment is needed
1 for the patient, for Dautovic", that was me. Zlatko
2 responded, "we have" --
3 Q. What was Zlatko's response?
4 A. Zlatko's response was that I could not stay in the
5 hospital, that they had a separate room in the prison
6 for medical -- I do not know how he called it, how he
7 called that room where they kept the sick, I do not know
8 if he called it the infirmary or what, but he said he
9 had a room where the sick were being treated in the
11 Q. Were you treated at the health centre by the doctor?
12 A. I received an injection, I do not know what it was, that
13 is all I received.
14 Q. Then what happened thereafter?
15 A. After that, I again got into the warden's car, and the
16 warden turned on the ignition and started. It was night
17 and he went towards the camp. Then through tears
18 I requested, "please cut down on the beating and cut
19 down on my portions of food, because I cannot eat from
20 all the beating", and then he said, "nobody will beat
21 you any more". He promised me that nobody would beat me
23 Q. When you came back to the camp, were you treated at the
24 medical facility in the camp as promised by the accused?
25 A. I was returned to the same cell, same place.
1 Q. Did the beatings stop in accordance with your pleadings
2 to the accused?
3 A. From then on, I was beaten more. I received more
4 beatings, because the cell was open and the three came
5 in and beat me, they said, "he is the one who complained
6 about the beating". Then I regretted for having
7 complained to the warden, because I was receiving more
9 Q. I go back to my earlier question. When you came back to
10 the camp, were you treated at the medical facility as
11 promised by the accused. Did you receive any medication
12 at all in the camp?
13 A. I received an injection in the infirmary, but this was
14 where I was examined by the doctor, and for me, that
15 infirmary in the prison was really the cell where I was
17 Q. What were the other occasions on which you were taken
18 out of the cell during the period of your detention?
19 A. There was an occasion when four of us were brought out
20 of the cell, when Zlatko and a group of his guards, his
21 soldiers, I do not know who they were, they created a
22 sort of little play with us. It was me, Muhamed from
23 Syria, Ivica Marus from the Dorci area and some Zlajo,
24 I do not know him.
25 Q. Could you tell this Trial Chamber what this play was all
2 A. They called it a monodrama, a play. We had to lie down
3 on our backs and create a cross. I will describe it,
4 also I will try to show it. My legs were here and my
5 head was there and then Kun's legs were next to mine,
6 Ivica's legs were here and head there and Zlajo's head
7 was here and legs here (indicates). Then we were told
8 to sing and to sing it very loud so it could be heard
9 well. I was ordered to say, "for King and country".
10 Muhamed Kun was to say, "Comrade Tito, we give you an
11 oath". For Ivica it was to be "Allah Akbah". It was
12 all to be said in unison. Since I was beaten up badly
13 and did not have any voice left, I was beaten a lot
14 because I was not able to say, "for King and country".
15 They thought that I would not say these things. I was
16 going to say anything just not to be beaten, but I could
17 not, so I was beaten a lot. There was a lot of laughter
18 on that occasion and Zlatko was among them. They
19 talked, they chatted, they beat us, we were there at
20 their mercy lying down and this went on.
21 Q. Mr. Dautovic, I would want you to go back to this
22 incident. I know the pain of mind and the pain of body
23 that was inflicted on you, but I want to take you back
24 to this particular incident. You said you were asked to
25 lie down with three others on the floor, is that it?
1 A. Yes, on our backs and the head pointing up.
2 Q. Then you described how your feet were touching each
3 other together, is it?
4 A. Yes, that is correct, our feet touched.
5 Q. You were lying in the form of a cross?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. So when you were lying in this position, it is when you
8 were lying in this position you had to say the words
9 that you were ordered to?
10 A. Yes, but very loud, altogether in unison. Not
11 individually, but altogether.
12 Q. What happened if you did not say it loud?
13 A. Beatings, blows. I received the most beating at that
15 Q. Who beat you on that occasion?
16 A. Unknown persons, persons who were there unknown to me.
17 Zlatko did not beat me but he watched, he was present
19 Q. The accused was also present on this occasion?
20 A. He was present to this monodrama or play.
21 Q. These persons who beat you on this occasion, were they
22 officials of the prison?
23 A. I do not know. There were two or three in jeans and the
24 rest of them were in camouflage uniform.
25 Q. Obviously that uniform signified the HVO to you?
1 A. I could not ascribe it any other meaning but that they
2 were the HVO, because they could not have been anything
4 Q. Were there other occasions on which you were taken out
5 of the cell?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. What was that occasion?
8 A. I was brought out when the International Red Cross came
9 to take down our information, that was brief.
10 Q. About how long after you were taken into detention did
11 the International Red Cross come over to the camp?
12 A. I did not count the days very much, I was always beaten
13 up and sick, so I could barely say when it was day and
14 when it was night. I only knew that it was night
15 because I was beaten less at night. I guess they were
16 sleeping. When they would beat me -- when they would
17 cease to beat me, I would assume it was night. So I do
18 not know, about 18 to 20 days may have passed from the
19 time I was detained until the Red Cross arrived, but
20 I do not know exactly.
21 Q. What did the International Red Cross do with you?
22 A. They gave me, and I have this with me from the
23 International Red Cross, I have an ID card with a name
24 and last name, date of birth, residence, and that meant
25 something to me. I was glad because Dragan Micic said,
1 "you should feel lucky the International Red Cross
2 registered you, because then you would not be killed",
3 so I was glad.
4 Q. So in short you were registered by the International Red
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Going back to the conditions -- Mr. Dautovic, if I can
8 take you back to the conditions at the camp, did you
9 have adequate drinking water in the camp?
10 A. I had even too much drinking water. Whenever Dragan
11 Micic was on duty, he would give me water, but I could
12 not drink much of it, because I think I did not eat more
13 than two or three meals throughout this period, because
14 I was always beaten up. I always had water in this
15 plastic bottle which contained one or two litres.
16 I occasionally used it to take a drink of water.
17 Q. So it was only when Dragan Micic was there that you got
18 drinking water?
19 A. At that time, I could empty the tin can that I used to
20 relieve myself and to get the fresh water. I did not
21 want contact with others, because I was beaten up
22 constantly, there were times when I would shiver with
23 fear when somebody would say -- ask for keys to open the
24 door, and sometimes he said that he did not have the
25 keys, so several times he protected me from being
2 Q. Did you have water to wash yourself during the period of
3 your detention?
4 A. I did not even wash my hands throughout my period of
5 detention. I did not wash anything.
6 Q. Did you have toilet facilities in the camp?
7 A. I had a can. To me that was the toilet facility for me,
8 it was this tin can.
9 Q. As you said before, that was the can which you emptied
10 when Dragan was on duty?
11 A. I did not.
12 Q. In the camp, did you have facilities for religious
14 A. Yes, in my thoughts and in my wishes, but without
15 success. I did not even dare ask about it, I probably
16 would have had my throat slit or something, so in my
17 thoughts and inside, I did have that, but not outwardly,
18 I did not dare ask for any such thing.
19 Q. During the period of detention, were you deployed on
20 work outside the camp?
21 A. I did not. I wanted to go, because Dragan Micic told me
22 that those who went out to dig dugouts and trenches,
23 that they are not beaten, they would come back and spend
24 the night and go out again, so I wanted to do that, but
25 I was not in the shape to dig because I was considered a
1 balija extremist, a Mujahedin. I was called "mungus" in
2 the camp. I even learned some songs in the camp which
3 I had to sing.
4 Q. What were the songs you had to sing in the camp?
5 A. "From here to Fruska Gora, they are all Draza's guards
6 and Nikola Pavelic's patrols." This I had to learn by
7 heart and this happened several times a day, 50, 20, 10
8 times, 100 times, whichever, whatever people wanted, and
9 other people sang too. If there were two knocks it was
10 not me, so I had to listen whether he would knock two or
11 three times to see who was going to have to sing, and so
12 I could not go to sleep, because if they knocked and
13 I was asleep and did not hear the knocking then I would
14 be beaten, so I had to be very alert to hear when they
15 would knock. Several times when the door opened, they
16 would say, "see how the balija sings" and they would
17 knock three times, they would say, "Fruska Gora", and
18 that was my song, I had to sing that. This was the
19 house order, you had to do whatever they tell you to do
20 and I did whatever I could. Not everything that I was
21 ordered to do, I said and I did everything so that
22 I would be beaten less. But I would always get beaten.
23 However, thank to God I survived. They I think did not
24 expect me to survive.
25 JUDGE VOHRAH: Mr. Prosecutor, could you ask the witness what
1 he meant by the word "mungus"?
2 MR. MEDDEGODA: Mr. Dautovic, you said you were called in the
3 camp, you were called a balija extremist and you were
4 also called a mungus. Could you tell this court what is
5 meant by the term "mungus"?
6 A. That was an abbreviation for Mujahedin, mungus. Balija
7 extremist means Muslim extremist, which I was neither,
8 because I too had problems with Mujahedin, because they
9 do not drink alcohol, so I never had any contact with
10 these people. Because of my business, I never had any
11 dealings with them, I did not have an opportunity to
12 communicate with them, because I was ignored by them,
13 but for Zlatko I was a mungus.
14 JUDGE VOHRAH: Thank you.
15 MR. MEDDEGODA: You told this court that you had to sing upon
16 three knocks and two knocks.
17 A. Not twice or three times, but exactly three times. If
18 they would knock twice and I would sing, then I would be
19 beaten, because it was not my cue to sing. For me it
20 was not two or three times, it was exactly three knocks
21 for me.
22 Q. So it would be three knocks for you to sing?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Who gave you such instructions?
25 A. I received these instructions when I first came to the
1 camp, I cannot remember exactly whether it was the
2 warden or someone else, I do not know, that I do not
3 know who gave them, because at that time, I was scared
4 and I was not sure whether I would be alive or I would
5 die, so I do not know who gave them to me, but I knew
6 that I had to stick to them, because on several
7 occasions, I was beaten because of the singing. They
8 had a knife in their hand and they said, "balija, listen
9 good to this song. If you memorise it, you will be
10 fine; if not, you will have your throat slit". So I had
11 to remember it, I had to memorise it, and I do not think
12 I will ever forget it.
13 Q. Apart from Dragan Micic, do you remember any other
14 guards who were in the camp?
15 A. I remember well.
16 Q. Do you remember anybody by name?
17 A. I do remember.
18 Q. Who would that be?
19 A. Goran Medugorac, who beat me the most and who told me
20 that I would not come out alive from them. He beat me
21 the most and for me it was like a death sentence when he
22 would be there, because there would always be beatings
23 there, and if anybody wanted to beat any of the balijas,
24 I was the one. They would say, "we had some drinks but
25 we did not have any snacks, so we need some snacks, what
1 do we do?". Then I would be beaten, that would be the
2 snacks. The worst moments would be as the cell was
3 being unlocked and the expectation to be beaten, then it
4 was the beatings themselves, 10, 20 blows, kicks.
5 I became immune to the beatings in the end.
6 Q. These guards who beat you, were they at any point in
7 time punished by the camp commander?
8 A. I think they were rewarded by the warden, because when
9 the warden told me that nobody would beat me again,
10 I really made a big mistake for having complained,
11 because immediately I was beaten by three men with the
12 comment, "so you are the one who complained about being
13 beaten", so that I believed that the warden actually
14 rewarded the ones who beat, because had they been
15 punished, they would not have beaten people. In my
16 view, the warden could not give the keys to those who
17 came to beat balijas, the cells need not have been
18 opened, but it was -- anybody could beat me, except when
19 Dragan Micic was on duty. On several occasions he saved
20 me from being beaten.
21 Q. You were detained -- until when were you detained in
22 Kaonik, Mr. Dautovic?
23 A. Until 19th June when I left.
24 Q. That was the year 1993?
25 A. 1993, yes. I learned that in Zenica in the hospital, it
1 was there that I learned the date. I do not know what
2 day it was to this day. I know the date, because I did
3 not go home, I went to the hospital.
4 Q. Before you went to the hospital -- how did the release
5 from the camp take place?
6 A. The release took place one morning, they said there
7 would be an exchange today.
8 Q. Who said that to you?
9 A. Someone, one of the guards said that there would be an
10 exchange. I do not know who it was.
11 Q. Then what happened thereafter?
12 A. I was told, "but don't you expect to get out alive",
13 this was through the keyhole, so I did not expect at all
14 to get out of the camp. When they started reading out
15 the names and I saw my wife, my child, my house, my
16 family in my imagination, I thought what they looked
17 like, because I considered myself dead. I was very
18 envious of the people who were leaving, I thought they
19 were the happiest people on earth. They read out those
20 names and I heard my name and I banged on the door,
21 I said, "I am Hamdo Dautovic, it is me, I am Dautovic",
22 and then the cell was opened and the first thing that
23 happened was a blow, "what are you shouting for?". Then
24 I was taken in front of this woman from the
25 International Red Cross, I said, "I am Dautovic Hamdo",
1 so I stayed there in the corridor, among these people
2 who were being released. I did not dare say hello to
3 any one of them, because I did not believe it was
4 possible that I would leave the place alive.
5 Q. You said you were brought to the lady who was -- a lady
6 from the International Red Cross?
7 A. I was not brought to her, I went there alone. From the
8 cell to where she was, it was maybe five, six metres,
9 I do not know exactly. It was in the corridor.
10 Q. Were there others present with the lady on this
12 A. There were others, yes. I was the last.
13 Q. How many -- when I meant others, were there other
14 officials of the camp who were present on this occasion?
15 A. Yes, they were.
16 Q. Do you recall who they were?
17 A. I recall seeing the warden and a couple of others, but
18 I do not know their names, because for me, whoever was
19 in uniform and who was there was a camp official, or
20 whether they came to visit or on purpose to beat
21 balijas, because everyone had the right to do that, so
22 they were all the same to me, because I was the one who
23 suffered their blows.
24 Q. By warden you mean Zlatko Aleksovski the accused?
25 A. I mean Zlatko, yes, because there was no other warden.
1 I knew of no other guard except Zlatko while I was
2 there, because I could not kiss his feet and if that
3 would have helped, I would have done that, but
4 I probably would have been kicked.
5 Q. Together with you, how many others were released on that
7 A. I think that I was the 39th, because when I was getting
8 into the bus, I looked at a woman who was reading out
9 the name and my name was written differently from the
10 others. The other names were typed by typewriter, my
11 name was written by hand.
12 Q. Were you able to observe the reaction of the guards when
13 you were released?
14 A. Terrible, terrible. Goran Medugorac was coming in from
15 some place, he was carrying some bags and when I saw him
16 and when he saw me, I thought he would kill me, because
17 he was the one who said I would not leave alive. The
18 window was open, and I heard him enter the warden's
19 office and say to him, "did you not promise me that
20 Dautovic would not leave alive?". I then acted being
21 even more sick than I was, but I heard Zlatko say to
22 him, "you see he is going to die anyway, so it is better
23 that he die in their custody than in ours".
24 Q. Then you said together with the other 38 you got into a
1 A. No, we did not.
2 Q. You said you got into -- you were released from custody,
3 your name was the 39th on the list?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. You overheard this conversation between the guard
6 Medugorac and Zlatko the accused?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Where were you when you heard this conversation?
9 A. I was close by, the window was open, I was right in
10 front, because there is a narrow path in front of the
11 entrance and the office was left of the entrance, it was
12 the first office to the left, that was the office of the
13 warden. Because that was when I was so frightened,
14 because I had some hopes of surviving and then I saw
15 Goran Medugorac.
16 Q. So despite the conversation, you were released from
18 A. I was already outside among the others, among the other
19 38 who were released.
20 Q. Where were you taken to from there?
21 A. We were told that we should go to the gate, to the bus.
22 I gained some strength, but as I tried to walk, I fell.
23 Then two men who had also been released from the prison
24 almost carried me to the bus between them.
25 Q. So in the bus, where were you transported to?
1 A. To Zenica.
2 Q. Then you spent a day in the Zenica hospital?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Were you treated at the Zenica hospital?
5 A. I spent the night there, I was examined by a doctor, she
6 said that I had been beaten badly, "your kidneys are
7 probably badly damaged". The neuropsychiatrist also
8 examined me and I had to see the neuropsychiatrist for
9 two years and she helped me a lot, she gave me a lot of
10 advice, telling me how to behave, to walk along the
11 river, how to regain some sort of normality, so that
12 I went to see a neuropsychiatrist for two years. Then
13 I had an ultrasound examination of all my internal
14 organs and I have the findings on me, they said that the
15 kidneys were damaged, but not my other internal organs
16 so much.
17 Q. Do you still suffer as a result of the consequences of
18 your stay in the camp?
19 A. Yes, I have bad consequences. I feel very tired, and
20 I feel sleepy, but I cannot fall asleep. Then I cannot
21 memorise things, sometimes I talk to myself, I feel I am
22 forgetful, because I remember well what happened to me
23 ten years ago, but what happened to me now, a couple of
24 days back, I cannot remember. A face of a person I met
25 before the war I still remember that person, if I meet
1 him, but I am somehow ashamed, I sometimes am introduced
2 to the same persons in five days twice. I feel a
3 certain amount of mental disorder. I am not an idiot,
4 far from that.
5 If I have a small glass of alcohol, every two
6 minutes I have to go to the toilet, so I avoid alcohol
7 for that reason, mostly, not that I would not like a
8 drink, but that is the consequence that I have. Then
9 I get angry all of a sudden, I have become terribly
10 tense so that I can explode briefly, but there is no
11 cure for that, so I am trying to be alone and trying to
12 be patient about it, but it is very difficult. A couple
13 of times I went by car to Zenica, I left the car, went
14 to a cafe bar, had a drink, found some friends, talked
15 to them for a while; after that I do not know where
16 I left the car, and I did not know what to do. If
17 I went to the police and told them that they had stolen
18 my car, I knew it was not true and I was ashamed to tell
19 my friends of the same thing and then after about an
20 hour and a half I found my car.
21 Q. Do you still take medication for your illnesses?
22 A. I do. It is a sad thing to say, but I go to the doctors
23 often. A change of weather and I fall sick, a bit of
24 strain or something unpleasant happens to me, I get
25 insomnia and very dark thoughts, so I find it difficult
1 to orientate myself.
2 Q. Before going into detention, before you were arrested
3 and detained in the camp, what was your physical
5 A. I was not as heavy as I am now, I was more of a sporty
6 type, I was very healthy, very fit, very, very fit, so
7 I thought nobody could do anything to me, that I could
8 never fall ill.
9 Q. Did you suffer from insomnia before being detained?
10 A. No, never.
11 Q. As far as you know, did you have any bad or damaged
12 kidneys before you were detained?
13 A. Before my detention, I was never ill, I worked in a mine
14 for eight years. I was working in the pit and I never
15 went to see a doctor. Then for several years I was a
16 caterer and again I never went to see a doctor. In fact
17 I found it strange when somebody asked me about doctors,
18 because I did not know any doctors. It was only my late
19 mother that would go to see a doctor and that is how
20 I came to know of some doctors, through her, but
21 otherwise I never went.
22 MR. MEDDEGODA: That is all, your Honours.
23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you very much. Mr. Mikulicic, can we
24 start with a cross-examination before lunch or not?
25 MR. MIKULICIC: In view of the time, the Defence would
1 suggest that we have a lunch break and then that we have
2 the cross-examination without interruption after the
3 lunch break.
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Very well. Are you agreeable?
5 MR. MEDDEGODA: Very well.
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: In that case, we are going to have a lunch
7 break and we will resume work at 2.30.
8 (12.45 pm)
9 (Adjourned until 2.30 pm)
1 (2.30 pm)
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. We
3 are going to resume the hearing by giving the floor to
4 Mr. Mikulicic for the cross-examination.
5 Cross-examined by MR. MIKULICIC
6 Q. Thank you, your Honours. Good afternoon, Mr. Dautovic,
7 I am attorney Mr. Goran Mikulicic, Defence counsel for
8 Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski in this Trial Chamber. I have a
9 few questions for you and will you please answer them to
10 the best of your recollection, so that we may establish
11 the factual truth.
12 Mr. Dautovic, you said you were born in Han Bila,
13 or rather that you lived in Han Bila?
14 A. I was born in Maline, but I am living close to Han
15 Bila. These are all villages close to one another.
16 Q. Where did you go to elementary school?
17 A. Guca Gora.
18 Q. You completed eight years of elementary school?
19 A. Six years.
20 Q. Did you have any further education, will you tell us
21 what school you attended?
22 A. I passed my seventh and eighth grade through evening
23 classes, I passed an examination for a qualified driver,
24 and then through evening classes, I went through
25 commercial school and mining school, so that I am a
1 skilled miner as well.
2 Q. These commercial and mining schools, how long did they
4 A. I attended those schools part-time.
5 Q. Could you explain that? Is it a kind of course or
6 regular education, or does it involve just passing
8 A. Just examinations.
9 Q. And what qualifications did you acquire after completing
10 those schools?
11 A. In the area of commerce I became a qualified trader, and
12 as a miner, I was employed in a mine and for a driver,
13 I passed that test in Dito Verbas.
14 Q. What were the jobs that you held after your education?
15 A. I worked as a miner, I worked near Kruscica as a
16 salesman, I never worked as a driver, though I do have a
17 licence, and now I have a private cafe.
18 Q. You told us that you had a cafe bar.
19 A. I still do.
20 Q. For how long have you had that coffee bar?
21 A. Since 1991.
22 Q. Will you tell me, does it have a name, this coffee bar?
23 A. It does, it is called "Sreca", or "Luck".
24 Q. And this coffee bar is in Han Bila?
25 A. Nearby.
1 Q. Tell us, Mr. Dautovic, working in catering, did you have
2 any unpleasantness, any disorders in your coffee bar?
3 A. That happens in any catering institutions.
4 Q. Did you have any dealings with the local police in that
6 A. Any caterer, if there is any disturbance, is obliged to
7 report it to the police.
8 Q. Will you tell us, Mr. Dautovic, who were the people who
9 frequented your bar?
10 A. That is a difficult question.
11 Q. I did not mean you to name them. If you could just
12 describe them as to where they came from.
13 A. Yes, I understand what you are asking. All kinds of
14 people came to my coffee bar, not just people of one
15 particular circle, with various educations, of all
16 ethnic backgrounds, Serbs, Croats, Muslims, so there
17 was -- I am a hospitable person and everyone is welcome
18 who is a good guest.
19 Q. Mr. Dautovic, were you prominent in any political
20 activities in your environment?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Are you a member of the SDA party?
23 A. I am.
24 Q. Since when?
25 A. There were three parties, who else would I be for?
1 Q. I am not asking you why, I am asking you from when.
2 A. From when it was formed.
3 Q. Did you have any position in the party, or were you just
4 a member?
5 A. I had no function.
6 Q. Tell me, Mr. Dautovic, did you personally have any
7 conflicts with the law? Were you ever charged or
9 A. I personally was punished.
10 Q. Can you tell us why?
11 A. Because of fights, disturbance of the public law and
13 Q. How many times?
14 A. I do not know, a couple of times.
15 Q. Could you tell us when that happened?
16 A. That was before the war.
17 Q. Can you tell us who were the people you had any
18 conflicts with?
19 A. It was usually under the influence of alcohol with my
21 Q. We will go back to 18th May 1993, the date you said you
22 remembered well.
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. You have told us in outline what happened on that day.
25 What we are interested in, in addition to what you have
1 said, is what was the reason for your journey that day?
2 A. To buy cigarettes in Guca Gora.
3 Q. Did you buy the cigarettes?
4 A. I did.
5 Q. How many?
6 A. Two and a half boxes, that is 100 and something boxes.
7 Q. How many boxes are there in one carton?
8 A. 50.
9 Q. And how many packs in one box?
10 A. 10.
11 Q. Where, in what shop did you buy those cigarettes?
12 A. I did not buy them in a shop.
13 Q. Who did you buy the cigarettes from if you did not buy
14 them in a shop?
15 A. I bought them from a guy in Guca Gora, I do not know his
16 name. I know him well, we went to school together, but
17 he is much younger than me. It is in the direction of
18 the school, from the church, a house south of the road.
19 Q. How come that man had cigarettes when he did not have a
21 A. At the time the difference in prices was considerable.
22 Q. That is not clear to me.
23 A. I do not know, he did not tell me how he got the
25 Q. I am asking you for the differences in prices.
1 A. The profits were considerable and I wanted to make a
2 profit so I wanted to get them as cheaply as possible.
3 Q. Will you please correct me if I am wrong: can it be said
4 that the cigarettes that you bought were not bought
6 A. Yes, I bought them illegally. I did not buy them
8 Q. You said that you were in a car with Mr. Mujo Beganovic?
9 A. Yes, with Mujo Beganovic.
10 Q. You said that you were stopped by Ivica Bobas.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. What uniform did he have on that occasion? You said he
13 was in an uniform.
14 A. Camouflage uniform.
15 Q. Did you perhaps notice the colour of his belt?
16 A. White belt.
17 Q. What did that mean, if somebody was wearing a uniform
18 with a white belt?
19 A. That he was a military policeman.
20 Q. Mr. Dautovic, when you said that you were stopped by
21 Ivica Bobas, is it correct for me to assume that you
22 knew him well from before?
23 A. I knew him very well.
24 Q. Was he a person who came to your coffee bar as a
1 A. On many occasions.
2 Q. Do you know that Ivica Bobas has a brother?
3 A. I do.
4 Q. What is his name?
5 A. His name -- one brother's name was Kazimir, who worked
6 with me in the mine. I think the oldest one is called
7 Pero, because he is ill, and then he has another
8 brother, and I do not know all their names.
9 Q. Of course it is only normal that you cannot remember
10 them all.
11 Mr. Dautovic, did you ever have any conflicts with
12 the brother of Ivica Bobas, Pero Bobas?
13 A. No, I did not.
14 Q. Mr. Dautovic, do you know somebody called Kasimovic,
15 known as Koro?
16 A. I do, he was my neighbour -- he is now my neighbour. He
17 was not before.
18 Q. If I remember well, you said that Ivica Bobas, on that
19 occasion, was soon joined by three other persons in
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Did they have white belts as well?
23 A. Two of them did, but the one who had a pistol -- two of
24 them had rifles, but as for the one who had a pistol,
25 I do not remember whether he had a white belt or not.
1 Q. Who ordered you to get out of the car?
2 A. Ivica Bobas.
3 Q. You said regarding Mujo, Mujo Beganovic who was with
4 you, that he was allowed to go home.
5 A. He did, he went home straight away.
6 Q. Was he explicitly told that he could go?
7 A. Yes, he was clearly told, "you are free and you may go",
8 and he went.
9 Q. Mr. Dautovic, how did you interpret this behaviour? They
10 stopped you, however they let the person who was with
11 you in the car go?
12 A. I never managed to find any explanation for that. I do
13 not know why.
14 Q. Did these military police men ask you who owned the car?
15 A. They did.
16 Q. What did you answer?
17 A. I told them it was mine.
18 Q. Did they search your car on that occasion?
19 A. No, they did not, but Ivica Bobas ordered me to empty my
20 pockets and put what I had on the car. I had another
21 17,000 German marks and some change, I do not remember
22 how much, and I had the keys of the car. I put all that
23 on the hood. My car was turned on and driven away.
24 I never saw it again.
25 Q. Mr. Dautovic, how much did you pay for those two and
1 a half cartons of cigarettes?
2 A. I do not remember, they were expensive.
3 Q. Not even roughly?
4 A. Possibly about 2,000 or 2,500, but I do not know
6 Q. You are talking about German marks?
7 A. Yes, everything was in German marks.
8 Q. Mr. Dautovic, can you remember in those days, that is in
9 May 1993, what was roughly the average salary in
10 Travnik, Han Bila and Central Bosnia in those days?
11 A. I do not know.
12 Q. Could you tell us roughly at all?
13 A. I was not employed, so I do not know.
14 Q. What were your daily or monthly earnings in your coffee
16 A. That depended.
17 Q. Can you tell us with some more precision?
18 THE INTERPRETER: I am sorry, we did not hear the witness.
19 Could the witness repeat the answer, please?
20 Q. (Not interpreted).
21 A. One needed to have 400 to 500 Deutschmarks. If I had
22 found enough cigarettes, I would have spent all my money
23 on cigarettes and that is why I took everything with me
24 that I have.
25 MR. MEDDEGODA: Your Honour, if I may interrupt, I think some
1 questions and answers did not go down on the record.
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: There was an answer that was not
3 translated. Could you please repeat the question,
4 Mr. Mikulicic, and the witness's answer, please.
5 MR. MIKULICIC: The question addressed to Mr. Dautovic was
6 whether he could tell us with greater precision how much
7 he paid for the cigarettes, or how much roughly was the
8 monthly earnings of his coffee bar. That was the
10 MR. MEDDEGODA: I think that was the question that was asked
11 but was not translated, and then the question which
12 followed that was also not translated.
13 MR. MIKULICIC: I shall try in the future to slow down a
14 little bit so as to give enough time to the
16 So Mr. Dautovic, because the interpreters did not
17 manage to interpret our conversation as we are speaking
18 in languages that are very close to one another. I am
19 going to repeat my question.
20 Can you specify how much your coffee bar earned in
21 1993, in that period?
22 A. I cannot.
23 Q. I think that you said sometimes you covered costs and
24 sometimes you did not.
25 A. Yes, that is what I said.
1 Q. What were your monthly expenditures?
2 A. I do not know.
3 Q. Mr. Dautovic, is it not rather strange for a businessman
4 not to know his earnings or his expenditures?
5 A. It is.
6 Q. Let us go back to this event, this incident. If
7 I understood you well, you set off with about 20,000
8 German marks. You think you will facilitate the
9 interpreter's job? My question was, why did you take so
10 much money with you?
11 A. Because that was how much I had. It was a short trip,
12 it was only a couple of kilometres that I traversed.
13 Q. So you put your money and other personal belongings on
14 the hood of the car?
15 A. No, on the roof of the car, I apologise.
16 Q. And after that the money was taken away from you?
17 A. It was not taken away, I left it on the roof of the car.
18 Q. What happened with that money later? Was it returned to
20 A. It was divided up among the four people in my presence.
21 I do not know whether it was shared out equally, but
22 I know that each one of them took some money from the
24 Q. After that, you headed towards the police station in
25 Guca Gora?
1 A. With them, because I was ordered to go.
2 Q. After that, you boarded a car, make Fiat Ritmo.
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. How many doors does that car have, that model?
5 A. I do not remember.
6 Q. What colour was it?
7 A. I cannot recollect.
8 Q. Did you notice the licence plates on the car?
9 A. I knew the car, because it belonged to Edhem Lukovic,
10 from Han Bila, which was confiscated a couple of days
11 before that in Guca Gora too.
12 Q. You said, Mr. Dautovic, that you sat in the back, in the
13 middle, between two soldiers.
14 A. Yes, two soldiers. I was just going to correct myself
15 and to say that the car had four doors, two in front,
16 two in the back, and that I think it was a grey colour
17 or something like that, but I do not really know
19 Q. Can you recollect how much you weighed at the time?
20 A. I do not know exactly, but over 90, between 90 and 100
22 Q. Along what road did you go from Guca Gora?
23 A. Towards Radojcici.
24 Q. At Radojcici was there a BiH army checkpoints?
25 A. Just above Radojcici, yes.
1 Q. Was the car stopped at the checkpoint?
2 A. No, it was not. I had to bend my head down between my
3 knees so there were two people sitting behind, not
4 three, because people could see me.
5 Q. What time of day was it?
6 A. It was dusk.
7 Q. If I understood you well, the car passed through the
8 BiH army checkpoint without stopping. Was that natural?
9 A. I had the courage at the time to go to the Croatian
10 sections, because I had nothing to fear, I had not done
11 anything, so nobody feared the Croats if they had not
12 done anything.
13 Q. But that is not my question. Was it normal for cars not
14 to be stopped at checkpoints?
15 A. If it was not suspicious, there was no need for cars to
16 be stopped. I crossed all the checkpoints, both
17 Croatian and Muslim and rarely was I stopped in those
19 Q. Did you not say a moment ago that the car was stolen?
20 A. It was.
21 Q. Does that fact not show that it was a suspicious car?
22 A. It was not suspicious, because Edhem Lukovic was the
23 real owner, an elderly man, he had died and they
24 confiscated the car from him. He was a tax collector.
25 Q. Very well. As you drove on, you said that you tried to
1 escape from the car.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. You said that you pushed the person sitting on your
4 left, so that he fell out the door, together with you,
5 from the car. Mr. Dautovic, you are a qualified driver.
6 Could you assess the speed at which the car was going
7 when this happened?
8 A. Twenty, thirty, it was very slow, because it is
9 not -- it was not an asphalt road but a macadam road, it
10 was going very slowly.
11 Q. Could you explain and describe how you fell out of the
12 car, on to what kind of ground?
13 A. When I hit the person, the driver skidded off the road
14 and so did the car, so it was into a meadow that we
15 fell, because the car went right off the road then.
16 Q. Excuse me, Mr. Dautovic, but I cannot understand that.
17 Did the car go off the road after you fell out, or did
18 you fall out after the car had driven off the road?
19 A. It happened at the same time.
20 Q. With what part of the body did you hit the ground?
21 A. It was a field.
22 Q. What part of the body?
23 A. This side here (indicates).
24 Q. Please tell us for the record.
25 A. The left-hand side.
1 Q. Were you hurt on that occasion?
2 A. No, I was not.
3 Q. Mr. Dautovic, you said that at that time you wanted to
4 grab the rifle. Of whom?
5 A. Of the soldier who was to the left of me, that is why
6 I tried to do it.
7 Q. Why did you want to take the rifle?
8 A. In order to kill them all.
9 Q. Why would you want to kill them?
10 A. Where were they taking me? They were taking me to kill
12 Q. Did they tell you that they would kill you?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. At what point?
15 A. Several times, because several times I was hit by the
16 knife handle in the neck area and with the rifle butt.
17 Q. In other words during the ride?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Can you describe to us how you wanted to take the rifle
20 away from them?
21 A. With my hands.
22 Q. Let us try to clarify the question. This is the
23 situation. You are tumbling out of the car which is
24 moving, together with another car. Three persons remain
25 in the car which is veering off the road.
1 A. The three of them came out right away.
2 Q. From whom are you trying to grab the rifle?
3 A. From the man with whom I tumbled out, but I immediately
4 got a barrel into my mouth and I surrendered.
5 Q. Mr. Dautovic, in the events that you just described, can
6 you specify, with respect to the point where you tumbled
7 out of the car, where did the vehicle out of which you
8 tumbled out stop?
9 A. Right there, there was just a shoulder a metre away off
10 the road and that is where it stopped.
11 Q. After that, you said that another car arrived.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. At that time, they did not put you in the vehicle but in
14 the boot.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. After that, how long did you ride in this car?
17 A. I do not know, it was too long.
18 Q. Then you came where?
19 A. In front of a building where there was light, and the
20 boot was opened and they said, "we have a balija
21 extremist for you", and an unknown voice said, "he is
22 not for us, it is Hamdo, take him away somewhere else".
23 Q. After that, you arrived where?
24 A. After that, I was driven and I heard from the boot that
25 they were going to kill me, that they would let me go
1 and then they would kill me while trying to escape, but
2 I did not know where. I did not know where I was.
3 Q. When did you finally get an opportunity to get out of
4 the vehicle? Where were you then?
5 A. I do not know, somewhere in some woods, it was a small
7 Q. After that?
8 A. They said, "you have a child, you are a good man", then
9 I knew they would shoot at me when I came out, so
10 I pretended to be even more hurt than I was so that
11 I would not have to come out.
12 Q. Mr. Dautovic, what I am trying to ask of you, and I do
13 not seem to be succeeding, at least I am not succeeding
14 in getting the answer of you, is when you ultimately --
15 when was it that you ultimately arrived to a facility
16 that you arrived at? Did you know what facility it was?
17 A. No, I did not.
18 Q. Did anybody tell you where you were?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Who?
21 A. Micic Dragan.
22 Q. Did you know Dragan Micic from before?
23 A. I did not.
24 Q. Who was Dragan Micic?
25 A. A soldier, a guard in the prison, I do not know. I know
1 that he was there in the prison and that he did not
3 Q. How did you conclude that he was a guard?
4 A. Because he unlocked my cell a couple of times, he gave
5 me water a couple of times, he let me go to the bathroom
6 a couple of times.
7 Q. You said you were put in cell number 3, if I remember
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Was anybody else in that cell with you?
11 A. No.
12 Q. So you were there by yourself?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Regarding the toilet, where was the cell in relation to
15 the toilet?
16 A. The toilet was, looking from the entrance to the left,
17 and the cell was off to the left from there.
18 Q. How far away from the toilet was your cell?
19 A. I do not know, four, five, six metres, I do not know.
20 Several metres.
21 Q. Mr. Dautovic, according to your statement, it seems as if
22 in this facility, you spent the time between 18th May
23 through 19th June 1993. Was it always in the same cell?
24 A. Yes, it was all in the same cell, with the exception of
25 two or three days when Ivica Marus -- he was a Croat who
1 was taken prisoner as he was a member of the BiH army, so
2 we were put together in a cell. For a short period of
3 time there was Muhamed and there were two people from
5 Q. So the entire time, with the exception of those two or
6 three days, you were alone in the cell?
7 A. I was alone in the cell.
8 Q. How many cells, approximately, were there in this
10 A. I do not know.
11 Q. How many prisoners, approximately?
12 A. I do not know, I was by myself.
13 Q. How often did you receive meals daily?
14 A. Three times, but I did not eat them.
15 Q. During your stay in this facility, when was the first
16 time you saw the accused, Zlatko Aleksovski?
17 A. When was it the first time that I saw him? When
18 I arrived, when I came there and when I was told that
19 the door was -- the door was open then and I was told to
20 sing, "All the way to Fruska Gora". That is when I saw
21 him first. I do not know if he was there with two or
22 three other men to see me or not, but the first time
23 officially I saw him when I asked to be taken to the
24 doctors and when he took me there in his own car.
25 Q. How long after you were brought there was this?
1 A. What?
2 Q. We are talking about your being taken to the doctors.
3 A. I do not know how many days, to me the days were very
4 long, so to me, it seemed very long. I do not recall.
5 Q. Can you tell at least approximately how long?
6 A. I cannot, because I was being beaten every day, too
8 Q. You said that when you first arrived you were told that
9 you had to sing that song.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Do you know what kind of a song it is?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. I am sure that the Trial Chamber does not know that, so
14 could you please explain it to them.
15 A. "All the way to Fruska Gora, there are Draza's guards
16 and Pavelic's patrols." Pavelic was an Ustasha and
17 Draza was a Chetnik, so that was the song.
18 Q. Who sang these songs?
19 A. I sang them.
20 Q. But they were not composed for you?
21 A. I do not know, I had never heard it until I got there.
22 I had never heard it.
23 Q. But from your schooling, you probably know who Draza
24 Mihajlovic was?
25 A. I know, I heard of him. He was a Chetnik, he was a
1 Chetnik leader.
2 Q. Who was Nikola Pavelic, do you know that?
3 A. I heard he was some kind of an Ustasha leader.
4 Q. Do you know what were the relations between Chetniks and
6 A. I do not know.
7 Q. Were they allies?
8 A. I do not know.
9 Q. You did not learn about that in school?
10 A. I did not.
11 Q. Do you know what ethnic group the guards in the prison
12 were of?
13 A. To me it is a bit of a funny question.
14 Q. The Croats would be in a Muslim prison -- it may be
15 funny to you, but not for the Trial Chamber, they need
16 to know?
17 A. There were Croats, one person from Zenica, he had thrown
18 a hand grenade among the children and had to leave
19 Zenica. Dragan Micic told me he was a Serb and wanted
20 to go to America, but he was captured and he was trying
21 to be good with them so that he would be let go, and for
22 the rest I do not know.
23 Q. If I understood you correctly, Dragan Micic was taken
25 A. That is what he told me, he said, "I was captured and
1 I was in a cell for a month, I went through that
3 Q. I understand. You said that the warden Zlatko
4 Aleksovski took you in his private car to the health
5 centre in Busovaca to see the doctor.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. You said, if I remember correctly, that you were alone,
8 together with Aleksovski in the car, and that you sat in
9 the back?
10 A. Yes, and that Aleksovski told me, "do not try anything
11 stupid, because if you try you will not succeed".
12 Q. After that, you came to the health centre?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. You entered a building?
15 A. No, when I came out of the car, I was not able to get
16 into the building and two nurses wanted to help me.
17 Q. But the building did not come to you.
18 A. But we did not go into the car.
19 Q. Did you find yourself in the building at some point?
20 A. I did.
21 Q. Where did you find yourself?
22 A. We found ourselves in front of the building.
23 Q. Mr. Dautovic, I am going to remind you that you said that
24 you entered the building and you sat down in the waiting
25 room; is that correct?
1 A. It is correct that we came in front of the building,
2 that I could not get in, I fell down, the two nurses
3 tried to help me and the gentleman -- I am not going to
4 call him a gentleman, Aleksovski told them that they
5 could not help me, I crawled in on all fours and came to
6 the bench to sit down where the patients come and sit
7 down to see a doctor. Then Aleksovski went in. I do
8 not know what he said to them, but then at the next
9 moment I was called into the doctor's office.
10 Q. You said that you were in the waiting room between ten
11 and fifteen minutes?
12 A. I do not know exactly, I did not have a watch. Had
13 I had a watch, they would have taken it away from me,
14 but I did not have a watch.
15 Q. Did somebody guard you?
16 A. Nobody did, I think -- it was only one car that came
17 here, I did not see anybody else. I do not know if they
18 thought I would try something, but I did not see anyone.
19 Q. Mr. Dautovic, can you tell us, how come that you did not
20 try to escape in such circumstances where nobody was
21 watching you, and on the other hand you are jumping out
22 of a moving car with four other persons there?
23 A. When I tried to jump, I was fit, I was able to do that,
24 but when Aleksovski was taking me to the doctor's,
25 I could not even take care of myself, let alone settle
1 scores with anyone.
2 Q. I am not talking about settling scores, I am talking
3 about you.
4 A. I could not, I could not move.
5 Q. After the visit to the doctor's, when you were coming
6 back in the car, you said that you addressed
7 Mr. Aleksovski, asking of him to arrange so that you
8 would not be beaten any more.
9 A. Yes, I pleaded with him not to beat me and to even cut
10 my meals.
11 Q. But you did not ask what happened at the doctors?
12 A. I thought we had settled that.
13 Q. No, we did not.
14 A. When the doctor asked me what was wrong with me, I said
15 that I urinated -- that I had blood in urine and stool
16 and Aleksovski interrupted me and said, "he only has a
17 cold and he needs an injection". The doctor said
18 I should strip to the waist so that she could check me
19 and I was all black and blue and she said, "this is
20 animal behaviour, he needs treatment". Aleksovski said,
21 "we have it in prison, we have an infirmary, a special
22 room for the sick". That was the same cell where I was
24 Q. Mr. Dautovic, do you not remember that you said this in
25 these same words earlier this morning.
1 A. I remember.
2 Q. Mr. Dautovic, who is Darko Kraljevic?
3 A. Darko Kraljevic?
4 Q. Do you know what position he held at that time?
5 A. I do not know at all. I knew later when I came out of
6 the prison that he was a leader, that he had his own
7 police force. Until then, I did not know anything.
8 Q. You did not know him from before?
9 A. I knew him as a guest in coffee bars, not my own but
10 other coffee bars, so we nodded to each other, but we
11 did not talk.
12 Q. What experiences did you have with Darko Kraljevic?
13 A. Terrible.
14 Q. In what sense?
15 A. Because when Darko Kraljevic arrived, Mirko Selak and
16 Brane Jukic, who wanted to take a statement of me, I was
17 very badly beaten, together with six others.
18 Q. Do you know somebody called Goran Medugorac?
19 A. I know him from prison.
20 Q. What does that mean, "from prison"?
21 A. From the camp, that is where I met him.
22 Q. In what capacity?
23 A. In the capacity of somebody who beat, because he beat me
24 the worst.
25 Q. What kind of position did he hold?
1 A. I do not know.
2 Q. How do you know his first and last name?
3 A. On several occasions, some people would say "Medugorac,
4 you will kill him from beating", so several people
5 called by that name.
6 Q. The first name Goran, how did you know his name was
8 A. Because that is how they called him. He even had it
9 tattooed on his forearm.
10 Q. Do you know that at that time there was another person
11 by the same last name in the camp?
12 A. No, it was not.
13 Q. Mr. Dautovic, can you describe to us what kind of lock
14 was on the door to your cell?
15 A. It was on the outside and inside.
16 Q. Was the door locked with a key?
17 A. Yes, with a key.
18 Q. How do you know that?
19 A. Because they asked of Dragan Micic to give them the key
20 and he did not give them the key, so that is how I know
21 it was locked with a key.
22 Q. How do you know that he did not give it to them?
23 A. I could hear it, you could hear it through this window,
24 the barred window that we had there, so I could hear
25 well if somebody knocked three times, I had to sing or
1 if somebody in the corridor said, "for whom", I had to
2 say, "for king and country".
3 Q. Do you know whose slogan it is, "for king and country"?
4 A. I do not.
5 Q. Do you know who was the king in the former Yugoslavia?
6 A. I heard from my father when I was very small there was a
7 king, that is all I know.
8 Q. Maybe from the school programme?
9 A. No. Me and school, I was a poor student.
10 Q. Could you hear when they would open the door to your
11 cell that the door was actually unlocked?
12 A. I did.
13 Q. I am perfectly aware of the fact that you cannot
14 remember all the dates, but from the moment when you
15 were arrested, how long were you imprisoned before the
16 Red Cross arrived, or some other official organisation
17 of that kind?
18 A. The International Red Cross only came once and that was
19 18 to 20 days later. I do not know exactly.
20 Q. Did you have an opportunity to talk alone with the
21 Red Cross representatives?
22 A. No, I did not.
23 Q. Did you have an opportunity to talk to the Red Cross
24 official at all?
25 A. No, I did not.
1 Q. Did they identify you as a prisoner?
2 A. I received a paper, this is what I received from them,
3 this is what I got (indicates).
4 Q. This is the card you got from them. What is written in
6 A. My name and last name, my date of birth and residence.
7 Q. How did they have this information if you did not tell
9 A. I described that.
10 Q. Did anyone else apart from the Red Cross representatives
11 come to the prison?
12 A. How do you mean?
13 Q. I mean specifically the European Monitors.
14 A. At that time, I was all beaten up, I could not see,
15 I could not look around. I was not able to look at
16 people and see who they were, what they were.
17 Q. How many days after the Red Cross visit were you set
19 A. Twelve, ten, twelve, thirteen, I do not know exactly.
20 For me it looked like 100 years.
21 Q. That I believe you. Mr. Dautovic, you told us this
22 morning that when the prisoners were released, their
23 names were read out.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. At that time, you were in the cell, were you not?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And you heard your name read out?
3 A. Yes, at the end.
4 Q. After that?
5 A. I banged the door with my fists, I screamed out as
6 loudly as I could.
7 Q. And the door was opened?
8 A. Yes, two men opened the door. One of them hit me
9 immediately, but I had the greatest courage and strength
10 to reach the Red Cross representative.
11 Q. If I understood you well, you were beaten when a woman
12 from the Red Cross was standing about five or six metres
14 A. She was behind and I was in the cell. She was in the
15 corridor and I was in the cell. The corridor is in the
16 middle and the cells are on the left-hand side and
17 right-hand side. I was on the left-hand side.
18 Q. Did you complain to that woman that you were hit?
19 A. I did not. I felt as if I had been born again, going
20 from death to life.
21 Q. Was anyone else present, apart from that woman from the
22 Red Cross?
23 A. There were others, but I did not dare look. I just
24 looked in front of myself.
25 Q. When were you released, that is what time of day?
1 A. I think around midday. I think it was around midday.
2 Q. I see.
3 A. I do not know exactly whether it was 11.00 or 12.00.
4 Q. I think you said that you saw your name on the list
5 written by hand, added by hand.
6 A. Yes, that was when I was entering the bus.
7 Q. Did you try to explain that to yourself in some way?
8 A. No, I did not. For me, all I cared about was to get
10 Q. So you got on to the bus and you were driven to Zenica?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. When did you reach Zenica?
13 A. In about an hour, I do not know exactly how long it
14 takes for the bus to get there.
15 Q. And what happened when you arrived in Zenica, what did
16 you do?
17 A. We entered a building, they interrogated us, took
18 pictures, recorded that I was beaten up, then we left that
19 place, some people went home, I went to the hospital,
20 I was driven to the hospital. I do not know who by,
21 because when I realised that I could complain, that
22 I could say how ill I was, then I was taken and put up
23 in the hospital for treatment. I was the only one.
24 Q. You were the only one out of all the 38?
25 A. Out of all the 39.
1 Q. You were the 39th?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. When did you reach the hospital?
4 A. I do not know. I was half conscious, I had kept my
5 courage somehow up to then, but by then I had given up
7 Q. When did you leave the hospital?
8 A. In the morning, because the hospital was overcrowded.
9 In the morning, I do not know whether it was 10.00 or
11 Q. Tell us, Mr. Dautovic, were you able to walk then?
12 A. Half able.
13 Q. What does that mean?
14 A. That means that I was not sure of myself, I could walk
15 for about five metres and then I would stop.
16 Q. What did you do after you left hospital?
17 A. A man, a taxi driver had brought somebody to the
18 hospital, I approached him, I introduced myself, I sat
19 in his car and I told him immediately, "I have no money,
20 can you take me home?". He said, "I cannot take you
21 home because I do not have enough fuel. If you need
22 money, here is some money, take another taxi. If you
23 want me to take you up to some way" -- I said, "take me
24 to the Gold restaurant in Zenica", because I was a good
25 friend of the owner, so I went to that restaurant.
1 I was filthy with a long beard, unwashed, smelly.
2 Everybody was shocked, they thought I had gone mad.
3 They bought me some coffee, they asked me what had
4 happened. When I explained everything, they found a car
5 and they drove me home.
6 When I got home, they slaughtered a lamb, they put
7 poultice with fresh meat on me and this went on for
8 about two months, I was taken to the doctors regularly.
9 Q. What kind of treatment were you given?
10 A. My family slaughtered a lamb and then the fresh skin of
11 the lamb was bandaged round me to help heal the wounds.
12 Q. If I am not mistaken, you said you ate very little in
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. You said that when you went into prison, you were over
16 90 kilograms in weight.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. How much did you weigh when you left?
19 A. I lost between 25 and 30 kilograms, I think, because
20 maybe throughout that period I ate twice on the
21 outside. I was given food but I could not eat, because
22 I was beaten all the time.
23 Q. Mr. Dautovic, on 18th May 1993 when you were arrested,
24 were hostilities still going on?
25 A. No, they had not started. A day before that, I went to
1 Novi Travnik, I had the courage to go wherever I wanted
2 to. Before that I went to Novi Travnik, and I was
3 captured by the HVO. They shut me up, they kept me
4 there for three days and afterwards they let me go.
5 When they had questioned me, when they saw that I was
6 not in politics, they let me go and nobody touched me
7 until Aleksovski got hold of me.
8 Q. But it was not Aleksovski who arrested you?
9 A. No, it was not, but I was brought to him.
10 Q. You said this morning, Mr. Dautovic, that you still have
11 problems as a consequence of this to this day.
12 A. Yes, I do, considerable problems.
13 Q. If I understood properly, these are problems mostly of a
14 psychiatric nature.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. What kind of medication are you taking? You said you
17 were taking something, so I am asking you what?
18 A. I am talking maurines and some other medicines. Then
19 they give me sleeping pills because I suffer terribly
20 from insomnia and forgetfulness also, loss of memory.
21 Q. Mr. Dautovic, what you have described that happened to
22 you happened more than four years ago.
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. During that four-year period, did you talk about what
25 happened to you with someone?
1 A. When I started talking to some people, I did, but
2 I avoided it, because this was very painful, so
3 I avoided it.
4 Q. Did you make any official statements?
5 A. I did.
6 Q. Will you tell us when and to whom?
7 A. I made a statement in Zenica, in the security service
8 centre in the district court, and last year also in the
9 security service.
10 Q. Will you please tell the Trial Chamber what CSB is?
11 A. I do not know what kind of police that is.
12 Q. But the Trial Chamber does not know what a MUP is.
13 A. It is the police.
14 Q. Did you ever make a statement for the radio?
15 A. No, I did not.
16 Q. Are you sure of that?
17 A. I am, but only when we left they were recording. When
18 we came out of the camp, they taped us.
19 Q. In Zenica?
20 A. In Zenica. I do not know where it was, but I did not
21 specially go to make a statement.
22 Q. So in Zenica you were recorded, when you reached Zenica?
23 A. Yes, there was a microphone going round. I do not even
24 know what it was about, I heard from other people that
25 there were reports in the press of what I said, but
1 I did not see it.
2 Q. Do you remember the statement that you made on that
3 occasion in Zenica now?
4 A. I do not.
5 Q. Mr. Dautovic, you said that you have the same coffee bar
6 today, fortunately.
7 A. I have a coffee bar in my own house, but it is in
8 another house, because I have two houses now.
9 Q. How much are you making today, roughly, per month.
10 A. I have just closed the bar.
11 Q. How much did you make last month?
12 A. I have not been working for some time, the whole past
13 year maybe for two months only, because there is no
14 business left.
15 Q. What are you living off? Are you employed, are you
16 working anywhere?
17 A. No.
18 Q. Do you have some savings?
19 A. I had some savings and my sister's son is in Germany so
20 he sends me some money. I have a sister in Zagreb and
21 she sends me some money too.
22 Q. So you are not making any money yourself?
23 A. No.
24 Q. Your car I think you said you never saw it again?
25 A. That one no, but I have another one.
1 Q. Mr. Dautovic, thank you for your testimony, and I hope
2 you will recover well.
3 A. I can hardly expect that to happen.
4 Q. I beg your pardon, a couple of questions more.
5 A. No problems, as many as you like.
6 Q. Do you know a person called Dragica Viskovic?
7 A. I do not.
8 Q. Do you know a person called Ante Puselj?
9 A. Yes, I do. I know Ante Puselj.
10 Q. Can you tell us who he is? Is he a friend of yours?
11 A. He was my neighbour and friend and he is a dear friend
12 of mine.
13 Q. And a person called Ivica Marus?
14 A. I met him in the camp, when that monodrama took place.
15 Q. You mean what you described to us this morning?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Mr. Dautovic, my last question, I will not bother you any
18 more. I want to show you a list, so could you please
19 tell us whether you know some people from that list.
20 Could the usher please show the witness a list of
21 persons detained in Kaonik that has been admitted into
22 evidence as Prosecution Exhibit, I think P7.
23 A. I read rather slowly. (Pause). I cannot see anything
24 like that. I cannot see.
25 Q. Mr. Dautovic, will you look at the paper? It will be
1 easier for you than to read it from the screen.
2 A. I do not know anyone.
3 Q. You do not know a single person on this list?
4 A. I do not know anyone.
5 MR.. MIKULICIC: The Defence has no further questions. Thank
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Prosecutor?
8 Re-examined by MR.. MEDDEGODA
9 Q. Your Honour, just two questions to clarify one matter in
11 Mr. Dautovic, you said to this court in
12 cross-examination, as well as in the
13 examination-in-chief, that you went to Guca Gora to buy
15 A. I did.
16 Q. Those cigarettes were to be sold in your restaurant in
17 Guca Gora?
18 A. In the restaurant or outside the restaurant.
19 Q. You wanted to make as much profit as possible from the
20 sale of those cigarettes?
21 A. Yes, if I had managed to sell them, I might have gone
22 back to Guca Gora again the next day, because he told me
23 he would have more cigarettes the next day.
24 MR.. MEDDEGODA: Thank you.
25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Dautovic, you have completed your
1 testimony. We wish to thank you for coming. Thank you
2 very much.
3 A. Thank you too, your Honours.
4 (The witness withdrew)
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: I think you would like to take the floor,
6 Mr. Prosecutor? I was about to suggest that we have the
7 break before bringing in the next witness.
8 MR.. MEDDEGODA: Very good, your Honour.
9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: If you wish.
10 MR.. MEDDEGODA: As it please your Honours, we will take the
11 break at this stage and call the witness afterwards.
12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Very well. Then we can have a break until
14 (3.45 pm)
15 (A short break)
16 (4.10 pm)
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Prosecutor?
18 MR.. MEDDEGODA: Your Honours, the Prosecution would call
19 witness Vahid Hajdarevic.
20 VAHID HAJDAREVIC (sworn)
21 Examined by MR.. MEDDEGODA
22 Q. Could you please give your full name?
23 A. Vahid Hajdarevic.
24 Q. And your date of birth?
25 A. 3rd December 1965.
1 Q. Please tell this court where you were born?
2 A. I was born in Busovaca, in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
3 Q. What is your ethnicity, Mr. Hajdarevic?
4 A. I am a Muslim, a Bosniak.
5 Q. And your religion?
6 A. I do not understand, I am a Muslim.
7 Q. Your religion would be Islam?
8 A. Yes, Islam.
9 Q. Prior to 1993, you lived in Busovaca?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Were you employed at the time?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Where were you employed?
14 A. In a building construction enterprise called Nisko
15 Gradna Busovaca.
16 Q. For how long were you employed in that company?
17 A. I think for about three years, because before that,
18 I worked in Medjapan and Vatro Stelna, also in Busovaca,
19 but the last company I worked for was Nisko Gradna.
20 Q. Until when were you employed in Nisko Gradna?
21 A. Until the outbreak of the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and
22 my work booklet is still in that same enterprise, so
23 that my labour relationship has not been broken off.
24 Q. At any point in time were you mobilised into the
25 Territorial Defence?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. When was that?
3 A. On 16th April 1992, when the aggression was carried out
4 against Bosnia-Herzegovina by Serbia.
5 Q. After you were mobilised, did you at any point in time
6 have to serve in any part of Busovaca?
7 A. Not in Busovaca. At that time, because the Serbian
8 Chetnik aggressor was attacking certain parts of the
9 municipalities of Iljos and Visoko. As a member of the
10 Territorial Defence, I was deployed on the front-line for
11 some 15 days in June, then in September and then again
12 in December 1992.
13 Q. What was the situation like in Busovaca by about
14 December 1992?
15 A. It is rather difficult to explain that situation in
16 brief, but I shall try and be as concise as possible.
17 Members of the Territorial Defence wanted to defend the
18 integrity of Bosnia-Herzegovina, whereas the HVO members
19 at that time were always within certain armed forces,
20 but they focused more on obstructing the work of the
21 government in Busovaca itself and were trying to place
22 the town in a blockade. I do not know whether that is
24 Q. When they tried to place the town in a blockade, what
25 happened thereafter?
1 A. Various incidents occurred, starting from mistreatment
2 and harassment, disarming of members of the TO, and even
3 plundering and looting of some resources. For instance,
4 I know that some vehicles from us that were going for
5 Slovenia were confiscated by the HVO, so all kinds of
6 looting and plunder occurred.
7 Q. Could you tell this court when the incidents began?
8 A. Somewhere around October, I think. Even before that,
9 there were some minor incidents, but these were resolved
10 by negotiation. But as from October, as far as I can
11 recall, they took over a number of institutions in the
12 municipality, the police.
13 Q. Could you tell us who took over -- you said "a number of
14 institutions in the municipality", and the police were
15 taken over; who took over those institutions?
16 A. The political leadership of the HDZ and, of course, with
17 the armed units of the HVO.
18 Q. You said there were incidents of harassment and
20 A. Yes, Muslim intellectuals were taken into custody by the
21 HVO for some sort of interrogations. The Muslim coffee
22 shops, shops and property were blown up. Just before
23 the outbreak of the conflict, there was a murder.
24 Mirsad Delija was murdered. All this heightened
25 tension, caused fear among the Muslim population living
1 in Busovaca.
2 Q. Do you recall when Mirsad Delija was killed? Do you
3 remember the date?
4 A. Not exactly, but I think it was on 21st January.
5 I think it was 21st January.
6 Q. Of which year was that?
7 A. 1993, just before the conflict.
8 Q. As far as you were concerned, when the situation in
9 Busovaca was getting out of hand, what steps did you
10 take with regard to the safety and security of your
12 A. Somewhere around 15th January, I simply moved my family
13 from Busovaca to stay with another family that is
14 related to us, in the interests of their safety, because
15 there were increasingly frequent explosions and blowing
16 up of establishments.
17 Q. When you were mobilised into the TO, were you in
18 possession of a firearm?
19 A. Not at first, however later --
20 Q. When were you given a firearm?
21 A. After the first time I went to the front in Visoko,
22 I had a pistol of 7.62 calibre, issued by the
23 Territorial Defence, and I had a licence to carry it.
24 Q. Was that pistol at any point in time confiscated from
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Do you recall when it was confiscated? If you do not,
3 it is all right. If you remember approximately.
4 A. I cannot remember the exact date. I have a certificate
5 somewhere, which I have shown to the Tribunal, and on
6 that certificate is the exact date, but I cannot
7 remember it now.
8 Q. Was it before the killing of Mirsad Delija, or was it
9 after? The confiscation of your weapon was before the
10 killing of Mirsad Delija or after?
11 A. Before.
12 Q. Do you remember who confiscated your pistol?
13 A. Yes, members of the regional HVO police, a man called
14 Dusko Prusac and Darko Marusic.
15 Q. You said to this Chamber a while ago that Mirsad Delija
16 was killed on 21st January 1993, is that right?
17 A. I think it was then.
18 Q. Did you attend his funeral?
19 A. Yes, I did.
20 Q. When was that?
21 A. The 22nd, I think, or the 23rd, maybe.
22 Q. Do you remember the day after Mirsad Delija's funeral?
23 A. Yes, I do.
24 Q. Was that the day on which you were arrested?
25 A. On the 24th, yes.
1 Q. Where were you arrested on the 24th?
2 A. I was arrested at the railway station opposite the bus
3 station in Busovaca, in front of the UNPROFOR base.
4 I think that the UNPROFOR policemen were accommodated in
5 that base at the time.
6 Q. Together with you, was anybody else also arrested?
7 A. Yes, my father.
8 Q. What was his name?
9 A. Sead Hajdarevic.
10 Q. Who arrested you on 24th January?
11 A. Members of the HVO.
12 Q. How did you know that they were members of the HVO?
13 A. Because they had the insignia. I do not remember which
14 side, on their sleeves they had the HVO insignia.
15 I knew some of them personally.
16 Q. Do you recall the names of those persons who arrested
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Who are they?
20 A. Zeljo Sakic and the other one's name was also Zeljo, but
21 I do not know his surname. He was nicknamed "Bubreg",
22 or "Kidney".
23 Q. What time of the day was it that you were arrested?
24 A. At 6.15 in the afternoon.
25 Q. After you were arrested, where were you taken to?
1 A. When I was arrested, we were taken to the bus station
2 where they had a military police outpost and since we
3 knew the commander of that police, his name was Vlado
4 Cosic, we insisted that he receive us to tell us why we
5 were being arrested. However, they did not allow this
6 and after that, they locked us up in the anteroom to the
7 toilet at the same bus station.
8 Q. You and your father Sead were both taken together?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. When you were taken to this anteroom in the bus station,
11 did you see others whom you knew who had been arrested?
12 A. Yes, there were already four or five men there who were
13 brought there before us, and in the meantime, Mirsad
14 Dizdarevic was brought there too, while we were asking
15 to be received by the commander.
16 Q. You said when you went there there were about four or
17 five others. Did you know any of them who were already
18 there, who were already arrested and kept in the bus
19 station room?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Do you recall any names?
22 A. Yes, there was Remsija Kutic and Mirsad Dizdarevic.
23 Q. You said you wanted to see Vlado Cosic?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Why did you want to see him?
1 A. We wanted an explanation as to why we were arrested, the
2 reasons for it, because it was not clear to us why we
3 were being detained.
4 Q. Did you ever have the opportunity to see Vlado Cosic?
5 A. Not at that time.
6 Q. At that time, were you given the reasons for your
8 A. No, but before the arrest, this Zeljo, whose nickname
9 was Bubreg, he first saw us at the bus station and when
10 he realised who -- recognised myself and my father, he
11 told my father and me to go home, because there was some
12 kind of a conflict near Kacuni and not to leave the
13 house. However, Zeljo Sakic, who was also there, said
14 we should be detained at their police station there at
15 the bus station.
16 Q. So for how long were you detained at the bus station,
17 Mr. Hajdarevic?
18 A. I think about four hours, so that around 10.00 we were
19 transferred to the Kaonik camp, which was the former
20 barracks of the JNA.
21 Q. I will come to that. Before you were transferred, you
22 said you were kept there for about four hours. About
23 how many others were there at the time before you were
24 transported, about how many people altogether were
25 arrested and detained?
1 A. Up to ten people.
2 Q. So after about four hours at this bus station room, you
3 were transported to Kaonik, you said.
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. How were you transported by Kaonik? By what means of
6 transport were you taken to Kaonik?
7 A. By bus.
8 Q. Where in Kaonik were you taken to?
9 A. We were taken to the hangars. There was a hangar which
10 had already been reconstructed as a prison, with cells.
11 At the entrance to Kaonik, which was the former
12 barracks, this is where the former JNA was, that is
13 where they took us and then they put us in one of the
14 hangars where I assumed they used to keep some
16 Q. Had you been to this Kaonik barracks before?
17 A. No.
18 Q. You said you were taken to Kaonik and the bus took you
19 to Kaonik, and how were you taken to the hangar?
20 A. When we entered the compound of this former barracks,
21 the bus came to a stop in front of the first building,
22 the first structure that is there in this compound.
23 Then we were taken out of the bus and, under escort,
24 taken to this prison.
25 MR. MEDDEGODA: Could you please show to this court where you
1 had alighted at Kaonik and which building you were taken
2 to in Kaonik?
3 Your Honours, may I be permitted to show this map
4 of Kaonik, which I move to mark as Exhibit P8.
5 Mr. Hajdarevic, could you please show us the place
6 at which you and the others had to alight when you were
7 brought to Kaonik that evening?
8 A. The evening when we were brought in, the bus entered the
9 compound and we had to alight the bus at this place and
10 then we went down this road to this hangar here.
11 Q. Could you please mark the building at the place at which
12 you alighted with a marker, please?
13 A. (Witness marks map).
14 Q. You alighted the bus at that point and then you and
15 others had to walk along that road and you walked under
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. You came walking along that road until you got to
19 another building which you just showed us?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Could you please mark that building as well with the
23 A. (Witness marks map).
24 MR. MEDDEGODA: Your Honours, on Exhibit P8, if the first
25 building may be marked as A and the second building may
1 be marked as B. Could the witness be asked to mark,
2 usher, as A the first building on P8 and the second
3 building as B.
4 You were brought, you said, to building B, which
5 you just marked on the document P8.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. After you were brought to that building, where were you
8 kept inside that building?
9 A. After we arrived in this building, we were put in the
10 cell number 1, myself, my father, Mirsad Dizdarevic and
11 Remsija Kutic.
12 Q. Do you recall how many cells were there in total in that
14 A. I think there were 12, 11 or 12.
15 Q. Could you describe this cell in which you were detained,
16 the size of the cell in which you were detained?
17 A. Yes, the cell in which I was, cell number 1, was maybe 3
18 by 2, maybe even smaller. Inside the cell, there were
19 wooden cots so to speak, I do not know if that is the
20 right expression, like beds.
21 Q. Was that the place that you were expected to sleep
22 inside the cell?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. How long were you detained in cell number -- in the
25 first cell in which you were detained?
1 A. I think up to ten days.
2 Q. So that was cell number 1?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. In that hangar building, which side was cell number 1
6 A. It was to the left immediately next to the entrance to
7 the door, so immediately to the left -- it was the first
8 cell to the left.
9 Q. Were there cells constructed on either side and was
10 there a corridor in the middle? How were the cells
12 A. Yes, along the hangar there was a hallway, and on either
13 side there were cells along the hallway, and the
14 entrance to the building was approximately in the middle
15 of it, of the building.
16 Q. For how long was your father detained in cell number 1?
17 A. Two or three days, because they constantly kept bringing
18 in Muslims, Salih Dizdarevic.
19 Q. Who is Salih Dizdarevic?
20 A. He is the father of Mirsad Dizdarevic. Otherwise, he
21 was a man of religion, he was the President of the
22 Islamic community in Busovaca.
23 Q. He was also brought in. How many days after you were
24 detained was Salih Dizdarevic brought into detention?
25 A. He was detained the next day and many other people whom
1 I did not see immediately. However, he and -- I cannot
2 remember the first name but last name is Krivosija, the
3 two of them were also brought to our cell. Many other
4 people were brought to other cells, but I could not see
5 them, nor did I know of them immediately.
6 Q. For how long was your father detained in the cell, Sead
8 A. Three to four days and then since the cells were
9 overcrowded, there were many people crammed in there,
10 the older ones were released from the camp to go home,
11 so it was almost some kind of house arrest, they did not
12 have freedom of movement.
13 Q. For how long were the older ones detained in the camp?
14 A. I think three to four days, depending on who was brought
15 in when, because every day they were bringing in more
17 Q. Do you know for how long Salih Dizdarevic was detained
18 in the camp?
19 A. I think three days, because my father was there from the
20 first day, so that it was four days and then Salih would
21 have been there three days.
22 Q. Was there any office in the building in which you were
24 A. Yes, there was a small office to the right of the
25 entrance to the building where there were the guards,
1 the camp commander, his deputies and so on.
2 Q. Did you see the camp commander when you were detained in
3 cell number 1?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. How many days after you were detained did you see the
6 camp commander?
7 A. I think on the second day, when Salih Dizdarevic was
8 brought in, because he protested with the commander, the
9 camp commander, so that we could see him in the hallway
10 as Salih came out and that is when I saw him for the
11 first time, because the cells were closed and we could
12 not see much.
13 Q. Did you learn who the camp commander was?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Who was he?
16 A. Aleksovski, the gentleman that is sitting over there to
17 my left.
18 Q. How did you know that he was the camp commander?
19 A. I found out from the guards whom I personally knew, and
20 I spoke to some of them, and also the gentleman issued
21 certain orders to the guards, so it was not difficult to
22 conclude this.
23 Q. In cell number 1, when you were detained in cell number
24 1, did you have any toilet facilities in that cell?
25 A. Not in the cell.
1 Q. Did you have any toilet facilities in the building in
2 which you were detained?
3 A. Yes, there was a toilet in the building, but a makeshift
4 one without any hygienic conditions. It was on the
5 left-hand side of the hallway in the building.
6 Q. Did you have free use of the toilet facility?
7 A. No, if somebody needed to use the toilet, we had to
8 knock on the door of the cell and if the guard who was
9 there, if he saw it fit, he would then allow us to go to
10 the toilet.
11 Q. For how long were you in cell number 1?
12 A. I think up to ten days, and then I was transferred to
13 cell number 5 and then later to cell number 4. They
14 were transferring us because many of the cells were
15 overcrowded and so wherever there would be a little
16 opening, a little space, that is where we would be put.
17 Q. So you were first transferred to cell number 5, you
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. How many others were detained in cell number 5 on that
22 A. It is hard to remember right now, about 15, 12 to 15,
23 somewhere around there.
24 Q. For how long were you detained in cell number 5?
25 A. I think I only stayed there for two days, and then I was
1 moved to cell number 4.
2 Q. Do you remember how many people were detained in cell
3 number 4?
4 A. In cell number 4 we were ten.
5 Q. Were you ever transferred from cell number 4?
6 A. No, I stayed there until the day when I was exchanged,
7 when the Red Cross organised our exchange. I remained
8 in that cell until that day.
9 Q. In January when you were arrested it was the winter
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Was it cold at that time?
13 A. We have cold weather during that season; that particular
14 year there were not terrible colds.
15 Q. Did you have sufficient heating facilities in your
17 A. No, we did not.
18 Q. During the period of your detention, did you have
19 facilities for religious observances in the place of
21 A. At first when Salih Dizdarevic arrived, and he has a
22 strong personality, and he insisted with the warden to
23 set up conditions for those who wanted to observe
24 religious rites and after the conversation with the
25 warden, we found out these rites could be performed in
1 the cell, but that it should not be done aloud.
2 However, after the release of Salih Dizdarevic
3 from the camp, these activities were interrupted and the
4 people who were in this camp did not have hygienic
5 conditions in which they could perform these rites.
6 Q. Why do you say they did not have hygienic conditions to
7 perform the rites?
8 A. Because we could not wash our hands, we could not drink
9 water when we wanted to do it and as far as I recall, at
10 the door to the toilet in the camp, there was a barrel
11 filled with water and a small mug and that is how we
12 could drink water from there, but we had no conditions
13 to wash -- to have ablutions, because this is what needs
14 to be done before the rite.
15 Q. At the time you were detained in the camp at Kaonik,
16 were you taken out for deployment or work?
17 A. Yes, I was taken to dig three times to the front-lines
18 and naturally I was escorted by armed guards, members of
19 the HVO.
20 Q. You said you were taken three times to dig trenches?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Were you taken alone when you were taken for trench
24 A. No, we were taken there as a group.
25 Q. How many of you were taken for trench digging on these
1 three separate occasions?
2 A. It depended on the demands of their commanders. However
3 many people they needed, that is how many went. They
4 would simply come to the camp, they would come into the
5 hallway, they would call people out by their names and
6 we would have to respond wherever we were, in whatever
7 cell, and then the guards would take us to dig trenches
8 on the front-lines.
9 Q. What was the first occasion on which you were taken for
10 trench digging?
11 A. I cannot remember the exact date, because I preferred
12 not to remember many things.
13 Q. Where were you taken to the first time for trench
15 A. The first time I was taken to Presage.
16 Q. When you were taken to Presage, were you taken alone or
17 were others taken with you?
18 A. No, there were other people too.
19 Q. On that occasion, how did they select you for trench
21 A. They simply had an order, they made a list and they came
22 into the hallway and they started calling people out and
23 you simply had to answer, and then the guard would open
24 the door, the guard would turn you over to the person
25 who came to get these people and they would take you up
1 to those places and you would do whatever you were told
2 to do.
3 Q. Who would bring the list?
4 A. Mostly the guards read those lists out, the prison
5 guards, they were reading them.
6 Q. When you came out upon hearing your name, who would take
7 you out of the camp?
8 A. Then we would be taken over by the HVO members, either
9 the commanders or regular soldiers, whoever came.
10 Q. So when you were taken to Presage for trench digging,
11 that was the procedure adopted for selection for trench
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Were you taken elsewhere for trench digging?
15 A. Yes, I was taken to Poodle and Kuala. This is an area
16 of Kuala, Kuala is a more general term, it is a larger
17 area but I am referring to the area known as Donje Kula,
18 lower Kula.
19 MR. MEDDEGODA: Your Honours, may I be permitted to show to
20 the witness a map of the area which I intend to mark as
21 Prosecution Exhibit 9.
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Can you please show it to the Defence
24 MR. MEDDEGODA: Mr. Hajdarevic, could you please show us on
25 the map that you have before you, Exhibit P9, Prosje
1 where you were first taken for trench digging?
2 A. The first time I was taken here, but it cannot be seen
3 very well. It would be Prosje, it is somewhere round
4 here. It is shown here as a village on this map, but we
5 were above the village, here somewhere (indicates).
6 Q. You were above the village of Prosje?
7 A. Yes.
8 JUDGE VOHRAH: I think we have been given the wrong map.
9 MR. MEDDEGODA: When you were taken to Prosje for trench
10 digging, how long did you have to dig trenches for?
11 A. Until we finished a certain part of the task that was
12 assigned to us, so we had to stay as long as it took.
13 That time we finished it quickly, so we did not stay
14 long, about eight hours.
15 Q. Could you please mark the area of Prosje on that map
16 with a coloured marker? Please place a letter A on that
18 A. (Witness marks map).
19 Q. On the second occasion when you were taken for trench
20 digging, where were you taken to?
21 A. The second time I was taken to Podjele.
22 Q. Could you please mark Podjele on the map? Could you
23 mark it as B, Mr. Hajdarevic?
24 A. (Witness marks map).
25 Q. How long after the first trench digging, how many days
1 after the first trench digging were you taken to Podjele
2 for trench digging?
3 A. I think it was three or four days afterwards.
4 Q. So after trench digging in Prosje you were brought back
5 to the camp?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. What was the procedure adopted for selection for trench
8 digging in Podjele about three or four days later?
9 A. The same principle, the same method was applied,
10 everything was the same. They would simply come, call
11 out, call you out, you had to answer and then they would
12 take you wherever they thought it to be necessary.
13 Q. Who would call out the names?
14 A. The guards in the camp.
15 Q. Who would take you for trench digging?
16 A. HVO members.
17 Q. On the second occasion, for how long were you digging
18 trenches in Podjele?
19 A. Four to five hours. We did not even work there, because
20 their commander -- Podjele before the war was inhabited
21 by Serbs and then after Croats from Kotovaros settled
22 there and then their commander probably wanted to act as
23 a gentleman and he would not let us dig, he talked to us
24 just like that.
25 Q. You said you were also taken to Kula for trench digging?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Even on that occasion, the guards would come and read
3 out the list of names?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. How many of you were taken to Kula for trench digging?
6 A. On that occasion, about 20 of us were taken.
7 Q. When you came out of your cells, the HVO would take you
8 to Kula?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Could you please mark with the letter C the place Kula
11 where you were taken for trench digging?
12 A. Kula is a wider area, the name applies to this whole
13 area, but I will indicate the exact spot where we were
14 put up in a house and it was in the surroundings of that
15 house that we did the digging. Shall I put a letter C?
16 Q. Mark it with C, yes.
17 A. (Witness marks map).
18 Q. For how long did you dig trenches at Kula?
19 A. We were kept there for 36 hours.
20 Q. How many of you were taken to Kula for trench digging?
21 A. Twenty or so, I cannot remember the exact number, but
22 there was quite a large group of us, because upon our
23 arrival here in this area, the HVO combatants first
24 lined us up, then they robbed us. They took away our
25 money, any valuables, gold, even some clothing, they
1 took my shoes and my jacket. One of the soldiers said
2 he needed it more for his operations than I did in the
3 camp. They gave me an old pair of boots.
4 Having robbed us there, they divided us up into
5 two groups. One group stayed here near these houses to
6 dig, whereas the rest of us were taken somewhere around
7 here, right to these buildings, to dig trenches
8 (indicates). This other group that stayed behind did
9 the same.
10 Q. Where did they dig trenches, the other group that you
11 are referring to?
12 A. They stayed near the houses that I have marked; that is
13 the place where we were taken, whereas we were taken
14 about 700 or 800 metres beyond those buildings, through
15 a wood and some meadows to dig trenches for their
17 Q. How many of you were in your group?
18 A. Ten.
19 Q. Did you know any others who were in your group?
20 A. Yes, I knew some of them.
21 Q. Who are they, by name?
22 A. There was Alija Beslic, then Lulo, I cannot recall his
23 surname, then Meho Beslic, Alija Beslic, Adnan Malkic
24 and some others whose names I cannot recall just now.
25 Q. In Kula when your group was engaged in trench digging,
1 you said you had to dig for about 36 hours.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Did you dig for 36 hours continuously without a break?
4 A. We had a break of about 45 minutes, the time needed to
5 take us from this spot to these houses. Probably they
6 were changing shifts, so they brought us back and then
7 they took us back during the night to do some more
9 During the digging, we were not allowed to stand
10 upright, we had to keep working, because if you did
11 stretch your back then the soldier who saw you would hit
12 you either with his rifle butt or would kick you or
13 would hit you with anything else. Before that, as soon
14 as we had been brought there to this location where we
15 were digging the trenches, one of their soldiers
16 systematically mistreated and beat people to find out
17 whether people had any valuables concealed.
18 He beat me personally, I had two broken ribs on
19 the right-hand side, I had to kneel before him for him
20 to ask me questions, all kinds of questions, whether
21 I had any gold, where I kept my money, my car, weapons
22 and so on. If he was dissatisfied with the answer, he
23 would kick us like a football. I know that his nickname
24 was "Chetnik". So he would take us out systematically
25 one by one from the trench to question us, and then he
1 would send us back into the canal, where we had to keep
2 on working without any rest, without food, without water
3 and then the next day in the morning, they would
4 humiliate us further. They brought us that morning for
5 breakfast something, but when they emptied this package,
6 we thought it was a meal, but when they emptied the box,
7 we saw that they were just empty tins and they said,
8 "here you are balijas, eat, this is your breakfast".
9 Q. Do you remember the names of others who were beaten like
10 you whilst you were digging trenches?
11 A. All of us were beaten. I cannot remember exactly
12 whether anyone was spared, but one of the people who was
13 most badly hurt was Dzafic Zehrudin, who was in this
14 other group, and Meho Beslic. They even cracked his
15 skull and Zehrudin Dzafic had several teeth broken.
16 I think the Red Cross has a record of this, because the
17 injuries were visible. Meho's head was bandaged.
18 I think they took him to a doctor upon his return to the
20 Q. Do you know whether any detainees were killed whilst
21 trench digging in Kula?
22 A. I personally did not see any, but after the end --
23 Q. Do you know whether anybody was killed in Kula?
24 A. Yes. The next day when the shift arrived, there were 12
25 people who had arrived, among whom there were two I knew
1 and unfortunately both of them were killed, Jasmin
2 Sehovic and Nermin Elezovic. They were brought to take
3 our place and they stayed that night and they were
4 killed that night there. There was another killing, but
5 again I was not an eyewitness, this was in Prosje, a man
6 was killed, his nickname was "Cakara". I do not know
7 his exact first name and last name, but his nickname was
9 Q. After the deployment in Kula, you and the others were
10 brought back to the camp.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Mr. Hajdarevic, when you were detained in the camp, do
13 you recall any visits to the camp by members of
14 international humanitarian organisations?
15 A. Yes, the International Red Cross visited us and they
16 registered us as prisoners. Afterwards, I think there
17 were two visits, on this occasion and once again when
18 they allowed anyone who wanted to write a letter for
19 Zenica, or something like that. We sent letters but we
20 never got any replies.
21 Q. When the ICRC visited you, you were registered as a
22 prisoner in Kaonik?
23 A. Yes.
24 MR. MEDDEGODA: Your Honours, I am moving to tender two
25 documents, his certificate of registration issued by the
1 ICRC as a detainee and a copy of an identification card
2 that was issued by the ICRC. The Defence may have a
3 look at it and if I may be permitted to mark these
4 exhibits as Prosecution Exhibits P10 and P11,
5 your Honours.
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Before continuing, M Dubuisson, what is
7 the number of this map that was looked at?
8 THE REGISTRAR: The one we have now on the screen, on the
9 monitor, is exhibit number 9. It was submitted as
10 exhibit number 9.
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Could you please show these documents to
12 Mr. Mikulicic, please?
13 MR. MEDDEGODA: Your Honours, I have copies of the same
14 document for the court.
15 JUDGE VOHRAH: Do you have a copy of P9 for the court?
16 MR. MEDDEGODA: I thought I gave a copy of P9 for the court.
17 I am sorry if I did not tender them.
18 THE REGISTRAR: If I may be allowed to comment regarding
19 Exhibit P9, a copy is going to be made in a minute by
20 the usher.
21 MR. MEDDEGODA: May I tender copies of P10 and P11 to the
22 court? There is a copy for the Defence as well.
23 Your Honours, P10 would be the letter and P11 would be
24 the copy of the identification card. May I proceed,
25 your Honour?
1 You have before you the document marked P10 which
2 was issued by the International Committee of the Red
3 Cross, and P11, the document marked P11 is a copy of the
4 identification card that was also issued to you by the
5 International Committee of the Red Cross.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. According to the document P10, do you know when you were
8 registered by the ICRC?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. When was that?
11 A. On 2nd February 1993.
12 Q. When the ICRC visited the camp -- how many times did the
13 ICRC visit the Kaonik camp?
14 A. I think apart from the time when they registered us,
15 I think they came two more times, but I am not sure of
16 that. Once or twice.
17 Q. The day you were registered, were all the prisoners
18 shown to the ICRC?
19 A. I cannot tell you that, because we had no insight into
20 the number of people that were there. We just knew that
21 apart from us in those cells, locked up in the cells,
22 there was another hangar behind this building and that
23 there were other people brought there. But we did not
24 know how many, whether they had been registered or not,
25 but I assume that all of them were not registered.
1 Q. Do you know whether attempts were made to hide prisoners
2 from the ICRC?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. How do you know that?
5 A. I know because on the day of the exchange, when we were
6 to be released from the prison, some 20 men, among whom
7 were some relatives and friends of mine, they were
8 hidden and taken to a building that I think I already
9 marked with the letter A, that is building number 1 at
10 the entry to the camp, and they tried to conceal them.
11 However, upon our insistence with the International Red
12 Cross representatives that they too be released,
13 representatives of the Red Cross insisted and they
14 refused to leave the camp and complete the exchange
15 until those people were brought over and released
16 together with us.
17 Q. That was on the day you were released from custody.
18 A. Yes, when the exchange was to take place.
19 Q. How long after the first visit of the ICRC were you
20 released -- were you exchanged?
21 A. Six days later, on 8th February the exchange took place
22 and I was exchanged then.
23 Q. On the day of the exchange, do you know who was present
24 in the camp?
25 A. Yes, the warden, the commander of the camp was there
1 then, Zlatko Aleksovski, his deputy Marko Krilic, some
2 guards and representatives of the Red Cross, as well as
3 their interpreter.
4 Q. How many detainees were exchanged on that day?
5 A. Believe me, I do not know the exact number, but at least
6 100 or 150 of us.
7 Q. What time of the day were you exchanged on 8th February?
8 A. That morning, I tried to go to the toilet and one of
9 their employees, an investigator, Zeljo Katava, saw me
10 in the corridor and when I came out of the toilet he
11 told me to come to be interrogated. This was about
12 9.00. When I entered this office that they had at the
13 entrance to the building, he asked me where I was, that
14 they had been looking for me for five or six days, that
15 they wanted to interrogate me, that they could not trace
16 me and at that moment Red Cross representatives
17 appeared, so the exchange took place at 10.00 or 11.00.
18 As we waited for this other group of people to be
19 released, the group that had been concealed, I think
20 that it took a little longer, it may have been noon.
21 Q. After you were exchanged, where were you taken to?
22 A. After the exchange, I went to Zenica.
23 MR. MEDDEGODA: Your Honours, I have no further questions in
25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you, Mr. Prosecutor. I think it is
1 5.30 now, it is time for us to complete today's hearing,
2 so we will resume work tomorrow at 10.00.
3 Thank you very much for your testimony for today
4 and we will see you again tomorrow. Thank you.
5 (5.30 pm)
6 (Hearing adjourned until 10.00 am the following day)