1 --- Monday, June 15th, 1998
2 --- Upon commencing at 9.32 a.m.
3 (In open session)
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning, ladies and
5 gentlemen. Are the technicians and the interpreters
6 ready? Very well.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, the case is
8 IT-95-14/1-T, The Prosecutor versus Zlatko Aleksovski.
9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you, Mr. Dubuisson.
10 Today we have before us for the Prosecution
11 Mr. Niemann.
12 MR. NIEMANN: If Your Honours please, my name
13 is Niemann and I appear with my colleagues,
14 Mr. Meddegoda and Ms. Erasmus, for the Prosecution.
15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: And for the Defence,
16 Mr. Mikulicic?
17 MR. MIKULICIC: Good morning, Your Honours.
18 I am Goran Mikulicic, and myself and Srdan Joka shall
19 be for the Defence -- appear for the Defence.
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Very well. We'll resume
21 with this matter. I think we have today before us a
22 witness for the Defence. Is that not right,
23 Mr. Mikulicic?
24 MR. MIKULICIC: Your lordships, we shall
25 begin to bring in witnesses. And our first witness is
1 Dr. Vesna Bilic.
2 (The witness entered court)
3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning, Ms. Vesna
4 Bilic. Do you hear me?
5 THE WITNESS: Yes.
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: I ask that you read the
7 solemn declaration, which the court usher will now show
8 to you.
9 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will
10 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you very much. Madam
13 Bilic, you may now be seated. You will now respond to
14 the questions put to you by Mr. Mikulicic. Thank you.
15 WITNESS: VESNA BILIC
16 Examined by Mr. Mikulicic
17 Q. Good morning, Dr. Bilic.
18 A. Good morning.
19 Q. I am with my colleague, Mr. Joka. I am the
20 lawyer for the accused Zlatko Aleksovski. You will be
21 the witness before this Honourable Court, and we shall
22 ask you some questions, and we should like to ask you
23 to answer them to the best of your knowledge and
25 Dr. Bilic, will you please state for the
1 court the date and place of your birth?
2 A. I was born on the 24th of November, 1957 in
4 Q. What is your ethnic origin?
5 A. I am a Croat.
6 Q. Are you a practicing believer?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. What is your faith?
9 A. I am a Roman Catholic.
10 Q. Will you tell us something about your
12 A. I graduated from the pharmaceutical faculty.
13 Q. Where?
14 A. In Sarajevo.
15 Q. Do you remember when that was?
16 A. In 1982.
17 Q. And after the graduation you got a job where?
18 A. Immediately at the health centre in Busovaca
19 as a biochemist.
20 Q. And throughout the time to this day you are
21 still with the health centre in Busovaca?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Dr. Bilic, in what capacity did you work at
24 the Busovaca Health Centre and something about your
1 A. In the beginning I worked as a biochemist in
2 the diagnostic laboratory of the health centre in
3 Busovaca, and as of 1991 I'm the director of the health
5 Q. We are making the short breaks because of the
6 interpreters, so would you please slow down so the
7 interpreters can keep up with you.
8 So, as of 1991 you had the health centre at
9 Busovaca. Will you tell us, briefly, what does the --
10 what are the duties and responsibilities of the
11 director of the health centre?
12 A. Well, the director of the health centre is
13 responsible for the complete -- for the whole activity
14 of the health centre.
15 Q. Do you -- can you remember how -- what was
16 the staff, how large was the staff in the former half
17 of 1993, roughly?
18 A. Well, roughly -- when did you say?
19 Q. 1993, during the conflicts.
20 A. '93. About 30. I think that was the staff
22 Q. And who were the personnel?
23 A. Well, roughly, I think six physicians; of
24 them two specialists, one stomatologist, biochemist,
25 that is myself as a director, and some 15 other people
1 of paramedics of different profiles. That includes
2 nurses, the midwives, x-ray technicians, and some
3 auxiliary personnel, drivers, ambulance car and
5 Q. Was it the only medical care institution in
6 Busovaca municipality?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Could you tell us what is the size of the
9 population who used the services of the health centre,
10 roughly, how many patients?
11 A. Before the war, some 18.000 individuals used
12 the services of this health centre. Afterwards, I just
13 don't know. I cannot give you any figure.
14 Q. Could you tell us what kind of health
15 services did the health centre in Busovaca extend?
16 A. The health centre in Busovaca provided
17 primary health care.
18 Q. Can you tell us what that means?
19 A. Primary health care involves the population
20 health care without hospital beds, so we do not -- we
21 only had outpatients. We did not have any hospitalised
22 patients there. It was organised as a gynaecological
23 service, an obstetrical service. We had paediatrician,
24 paediatrician care, general health care, then the
25 emergency aid with all the accompanying services, that
1 is laboratories for diagnostics, x-ray diagnostics and
2 dentistry surgery.
3 Q. Dr. Bilic, you said that you had no hospital
4 beds there, you could not admit anyone for
5 hospitalisation. So if you came across such a case,
6 what did you do?
7 A. The health care centre in Busovaca then did
8 whatever it could, and in specific conditions then
9 referred those such cases to other hospitals.
10 Q. Dr. Bilic, which were the hospitals that the
11 health centre at Busovaca referred patients needing
12 hospital treatment?
13 A. At that time, that is in early 1993, it was
14 only the hospital at Nova Bila.
15 Q. And the Zenica Hospital, did you keep any
16 contact with the Zenica Hospital before the war and in
17 early 1993?
18 A. Before the war and in early 1993. Before the
19 war the health centre was part of the regional medical
20 centre in Zenica. However, in early January, when the
21 conflict broke out, we could not get there because the
22 roads were closed.
23 Q. Dr. Bilic, what equipment did the health
24 centre have there for the primary health care? Do you
25 think, as an expert, was this equipment adequate, were
1 there some shortcomings, or did you have enough of what
2 you needed?
3 A. In my personal opinion, before the war the
4 equipment was very poor. And in early war, or in the
5 beginning of the conflict in '93, and in'92, the health
6 centre was shelled straight away, so the whole wing of
7 the whole centre was destroyed. The power and water
8 supply were also cut off, were destroyed. The working
9 conditions were very difficult.
10 Q. You say that in 1992 the health centre was
11 shelled. Could you please explain to the Court what it
13 A. It was bombed, that is the Municipality of
14 Busovaca was bombed and two shells or missiles hit the
15 health centre. It was the JNA.
16 Q. So the building was bombed by the former JNA
17 Air Force?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. When did it happen?
20 A. It happened in April '92.
21 Q. You say that at that time a part of the
22 building, of the health centre, was practically
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Did some equipment perish?
1 A. Yes, the gynaecological surgery was destroyed
2 and the dentistry surgery was destroyed. But we had
3 trouble with water supply, because missiles fell right
4 in front of the building of the health centre and hit
5 the water pipe, so that we were left without water for
6 quite a long time.
7 Q. But otherwise, could you tell us how many
8 ambulance cars did the health centre have?
9 A. At the time the health centre had only two
11 Q. Were they properly equipped? Was there
12 enough fuel, spare parts and everything else?
13 A. These were very old vehicles. I think they
14 were not less than about ten years old. And as for the
15 fuel for ambulance cars, we had difficult time in
16 getting it.
17 Q. Could you please describe the situation with
18 the fuel? Could you readily go out into the field, in
19 view of the state of the vehicles and fuel, or was it
20 more -- rendered more difficult?
21 A. It was really difficult and we used them only
22 in particularly severe cases to transport them to the
23 hospital at Nova Bila.
24 Q. Am I correct in saying that in this first
25 half of 1993, when -- therefore in the Municipality of
1 Busovaca, the army conflict broke out, is it then
2 correct to say the health centre could not then go out
3 with the ambulance cars into the field and work there?
4 A. We could, but we had a very hard time.
5 Q. Dr. Bilic, at that time -- I am all the time
6 referring to this former half of '93, so at the time
7 what were the supplies? Did you have enough medicines,
8 food, electricity, water?
9 A. At the time all forms of supplies were very
10 bad, medicines and medical supplies came from all
11 pre-war reserves, all pre-war stocks, because we had
12 some stocks and a little -- and we were donated also a
13 little bit, that is, these were donations from our
14 people working abroad.
15 But it was very difficult. All the supplies
16 -- the delivery was very difficult because we were
17 locked in, closed in. Food deliveries were also very
18 difficult. What there was in the Municipality of
19 Busovaca, we distribute among themselves and consumed
20 among themselves.
21 Q. You say it was very difficult to come by all
22 that you needed. You said you were locked in. What
23 does that mean? Would you please explain it?
24 A. Well, it means that we could not get out from
25 the territory of the Municipality of Busovaca.
1 Q. Why couldn't you get out of the territory of
2 the Municipality of Busovaca?
3 A. Because they were firing at us.
4 Q. Dr. Bilic, you mentioned that as regards food
5 supplies you ate the same kind of food in the
6 Municipality of Busovaca. Where was that prepared?
7 A. Well, that food was prepared in the barracks
8 for all the people, for all people who were under
9 labour directives, under labour obligation.
10 Q. Could you tell us who does it refer -- whom
11 do you mean? You said all people who were under labour
12 obligation. You mean the health institution? Who
13 else? What other services or institutions?
14 A. Were all the services that had to do work,
15 that is civil defence, prison, the municipal services.
16 Q. So this food was prepared in the barracks?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And then it was distributed from there to
19 various points?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Dr. Bilic, you mentioned that the -- as a
22 result of the bombing by JNA in April 1992, you had
23 difficulties with water supply. Could you tell us
24 something about electricity. How about the power
1 A. Likewise, I mean, the same situation. It was
2 very difficult. However, the health centre was
3 fortunate enough that nearby the Dutch battalion was
4 quartered and we were switched onto their generators so
5 that the health centre in Busovaca had electricity
7 Q. You said the Dutch battalion. You mean
8 UNPROFOR forces?
9 A. Yes. Yes.
10 Q. Did you cooperate with UNPROFOR units there,
11 apart from being switched onto their power generator?
12 A. Well, yes, if we needed some medicine
13 urgently, or if there was a doctor, a physician in the
14 Dutch battalion, or a nurse, we could always get the
15 particular medicine without any problem.
16 Q. But they had their own medical service,
17 didn't they?
18 A. Yes, they did.
19 Q. Dr. Bilic, when the armed conflicts started
20 in '93, could you tell us when was it, roughly, when
21 the first conflict -- when did the first conflict take
23 A. The first conflict took place on the 21st of
24 January '93, in the morning.
25 Q. And what was it? Why do you remember that
2 A. Why? Well, it was a kind of a conflict
3 between two sides.
4 Q. What two sides and what kind of conflict? Of
5 course you know that.
6 A. Well, it was a conflict between the Muslim
7 and the Croat side. It was in the morning -- it began
8 at six o'clock in the morning. I knew nothing about
9 it. I was at home. And only around eight o'clock
10 could I make my way to the health centre, because fire
11 came from all sides. And only the emergency service
12 was at the health centre working. People stayed there
13 and worked for 48 hours and they needed another shift,
14 they needed to be replaced, but it was very difficult
15 to get to the building because of the fire. But
16 somehow we managed.
17 Q. Tell us where did the fire come from? What
19 A. The health centre was fired at from above the
20 health centre. That is where the fire came from, from
21 the village, from Busovaca.
22 Q. What is the name of the village?
23 A. Hodzica.
24 Q. Do you know who lived in that village, what
25 was the ethnic origin of the population?
1 A. They were different. There were Muslims and
2 there were Croats too.
3 Q. Dr. Bilic, what was the ethnic structure of
4 the employed or the personnel at the health centre at
5 the time, before the conflict, on the eve of the
7 A. The health centre, the ethnic structured
8 varied. About 45 percent were Muslims, and Croats also
9 accounted for about 45 percent and the rest were Serbs.
10 Q. Do you remember if you noticed some strange
11 phenomenon and unusual situation prior to the conflict,
12 in view of the personnel of the health centre?
13 A. I noticed it only after the conflict broke
14 out, because the majority of the personnel who were of
15 Muslim origin went on holidays at the time, and I had
16 signed their leaves. That is, I allowed them to go and
17 leave. And after the conflict broke out, I noticed
18 that a majority of employed of the Muslim -- of Muslim
19 origin were on holidays or had asked for days off or
20 something. But, at any rate, they were not in the
21 health centre, available at the health centre when the
22 conflict broke out.
23 Q. Did you try to interpret this afterwards?
24 A. Yes. Yes, I did.
25 Q. How did you interpret that?
1 A. Well, evidently something was about to happen
2 that I knew -- had nothing about.
3 Q. And do you think that they knew about it when
4 they were leaving on holidays?
5 A. Well, that was my personal impression.
6 Q. Tell us, during those -- during the fighting,
7 during the conflict, how was the service organised?
8 How did the health centre function?
9 A. It was very difficult because there were very
10 few physicians, so we had only the emergency service
11 working. We had two physicians working per day around
12 the clock. And since there were few -- I mean, we took
13 shifts every second day.
14 Q. And what about the nurses?
15 A. There were slightly more in number. They
16 worked in teams of three or possibly four and they also
17 took shifts.
18 Q. Dr. Bilic, at that time what kind of health
19 services did you offer to your patients, and what kind
20 of patients would come to seek medical help to your
22 A. The patients who came to our health centre
23 came from the territory of the Municipality of
24 Busovaca. They were the people who at the time needed
25 some kind of medical help.
1 Q. Did you differentiate between categories of
2 patients according to the degree of emergency or some
3 other criteria?
4 A. The only criteria that can be applied is the
5 degree of emergency. We couldn't apply any other
7 Q. Dr. Bilic, since the health centre in
8 Busovaca was the only medical institution in the area
9 at the time, what kind of obligations did you have in
10 terms of epidemiological protection? Could you explain
11 the role of the medical centre in that sense?
12 A. There has to be a department for
13 epidemiological in each health centre, because
14 everything that is happening at the municipality should
15 be actually the work of that particular department.
16 If, in case of diseases, the health centre is
17 immediately advised of the situation, and they send out
18 their team into the field to check out the situation.
19 Q. Of course you had such type of service
20 organised in your health centre even prior to the
21 breakout of the conflict. Do you remember whether in
22 your area of responsibility were any particular
23 phenomena that were developing at that time, any
24 particular cases that you had to intervene?
25 A. Well, before the conflict there were no
1 epidemics. We had cases of hepatitis or jaundice, but
2 it was only occasionally. It was not something that we
3 had to worry about at the time. And in the area
4 between Busovaca and Vitez there is a village where we
5 had very often, perhaps maybe every four or five years,
6 we would have a case of typhoid fever. But at that
7 time we didn't have any such concerns.
8 Q. Could you tell us whether in -- during the
9 relevant times, that is the first half of 1993, was the
10 situation different in any way? Did you have any cases
11 of infectious diseases, something that would involve
12 epidemiological prevention?
13 A. No, no not before the conflict or at the
14 beginning of conflict. The situation did not get worse
15 in that respect because the health institution, the
16 health centre in Busovaca was very active in that
17 regard and we had numerous missions in that sense.
18 Q. Dr. Bilic, you told us that communication was
19 very difficult at that time, and that the supplies were
20 not very good. Does that include clothes and footwear
21 as well, and how did the population cope with that
23 A. Well, they managed to cope with the
24 situation, but sometimes the civilian population also
25 had to put on military clothes, military footwear,
1 uniforms and so on.
2 Q. Does that mean that it was normal for the
3 civilian population to wear parts of military clothing
4 at that time?
5 A. Yes, it was.
6 Q. How did they obtain that military clothes?
7 A. I don't know.
8 Q. Dr. Bilic, do you know anything about medical
9 services that were offered to the detainees of the
10 Kaonik facility at the time?
11 A. Yes, I was aware of that.
12 Q. Do you know what the Kaonik facility was,
13 what kind of facility was it? What was there?
14 A. The Kaonik facility was a kind of prison.
15 Q. Do you know what it was before?
16 A. It was a JNA facility, the Yugoslav Peoples
17 Army facility.
18 Q. When did you, you personally and the health
19 centre in Busovaca in general, when did you first come
20 across patients who needed medical help and who were
21 from the Kaonik facility?
22 A. I believe that it happened in the second half
23 of 1992.
24 Q. The second half of 1992, what kind of
25 patients were these people, people coming from the
1 Kaonik facility? Do you know anything about them?
2 A. Well, the majority of them were Serbs and
3 Croats of Serbian and Croatian ethnic background.
4 Q. Let me clarify my question, do you know what
5 statutes they had at the Kaonik facility, who were
6 these people?
7 A. I don't know.
8 Q. Were they guards, detainees, or maybe
9 civilians that happened to be there, do you know
10 anything about that?
11 A. No, I don't know anything about that.
12 Q. Dr. Bilic, after the conflict broke out you
13 said it was on the 25th of January, 1993. So after
14 that time, when did you first come across people who
15 needed medical help and who were from the Kaonik
16 facility? Did you come across such people?
17 A. Yes, I, did it was the end of January and the
18 beginning of February, 1993.
19 Q. And who were these people, could you tell us
20 about that?
21 A. What exactly do you mean?
22 Q. Who were the persons that came to your
23 facility -- no, I withdraw that question. Let me ask
24 you the following. Who brought persons from the Kaonik
25 facility to your health centre?
1 A. Well, these people were brought by guards and
2 sometimes by the chief of the prison, by the warden of
3 the prison.
4 Q. You mentioned the warden, do you know who
5 that person was?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. What's his name?
8 A. Zlatko Aleksovski.
9 Q. Do you know him personally?
10 A. Yes, I do.
11 Q. Could you recognise him in this room?
12 A. Yes, I could.
13 Q. Could you please, for the record, point to
14 the person that you recognise as Zlatko Aleksovski?
15 Could the record please reflect that the witness has
16 pointed to the accused. Dr. Bilic, when did you first
17 meet Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski, did you know him before
18 these events that took place at the beginning of 1993?
19 A. No, I didn't know him before that, and I met
20 him, I don't remember the exact date, but it was in
21 late January, early February, 1993.
22 Q. Can you remember the circumstances in which
23 this meeting took place?
24 A. Well, Mr. Aleksovski, as the warden of the
25 prison, came to a meeting, to my office. We were
1 supposed to agree on the ways and types of medical
2 protection for the persons who were detained in the
3 prison facility. We wanted to establish whether we can
4 admit these people, on what conditions and so on.
5 Q. Of course you cannot remember the exact date,
6 you told us it was in late January, beginning of
7 February. But could you tell us whether this was
8 before the break out of conflict or after the conflict?
9 A. It was immediately after the conflict broke
11 Q. Dr. Bilic, do you remember how Mr. Aleksovski
12 was dressed on that occasion?
13 A. I couldn't exactly tell you how he was
14 dressed. Sometimes he would wear military shirts and
15 military trousers and sometimes he also worry civilian
16 jacket or shirt.
17 Q. Do you remember if he, when he worry parts of
18 military uniform, if he had any insignia on that
19 clothes, any military insignia?
20 A. As far as I can remember, he did not.
21 Q. You said that he came to a meeting with you
22 so that you can agree on types of medical services to
23 be offered to these people, what exactly did you agree
25 A. I can't remember exactly, but I know we were
1 discussing conditions, general conditions at that time
2 and I remember that we agree that people could be
3 brought as patients at any time from the Kaonik
4 facility to the health centre in Busovaca around the
6 Q. That was the type of organisation you have in
7 general all the time?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Who would bring patients from Kaonik to the
10 medical centre?
11 A. Well, I was not directly involved with
12 patients, but very often I saw guards bringing people
13 in and a few times I saw Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski. He
14 also brought patients from the prison to the health
16 Q. Were you ever present when a vehicle would
17 come to the health centre and when these patients were
18 brought into the building, did you see something like
20 A. Yes, I did.
21 Q. What kind of vehicle was that? A vehicle
22 that brought patients from Kaonik to the medical
23 centre, do you remember that?
24 A. Yes, I do. I remembered that that vehicle
25 was always in better condition than our emergency
1 vehicles. As for the specific type and model of the
2 vehicle, I can't remember that.
3 Q. Was it a car or a lorry?
4 A. There used to be a car on several occasions,
5 but sometimes they would also bring people in a van.
6 Q. Dr. Bilic, these people who were brought to
7 the health centre for treatment, were they handcuffed,
8 were they tied up, was their freedom of movement was
9 restricted in any way?
10 A. As I already told you, I was not working
11 directly with the patients, so I couldn't observe
12 that. But sometimes in passing as much as I could see,
13 I don't think that they were tied.
14 Q. Did you ever see what kind of procedure was
15 followed when they were brought to the health centre?
16 Would they also wait in the waiting room as other
17 patients or was it organised in some other way? Do you
18 know anything about that?
19 A. No, I don't know what kind of procedure it
20 was, but I believe that if the physician was available,
21 if we didn't have, if he didn't have another patient, I
22 think that these persons could be immediately admitted
23 to the physician's office. If the physician was busy
24 with some other patient, then I presume they would have
25 to wait in the waiting room.
1 Q. This means that they would be in the waiting
2 room waiting alongside other patients?
3 A. Yes, yes that's correct.
4 Q. Dr. Bilic, what was the general condition of
5 health of these people who were brought from Kaonik to
6 the health centre, what was your impression when you
7 saw them as patients? Judging by the way they looked
8 were they in any way different from other patients who
9 sought medical health at your institution and I refer
10 to their physical appearance, the way they looked and
11 so on.
12 A. Well, I never noticed any particular,
13 anything particular that would draw my attention, I
14 mean these people were dressed normally as all of us.
15 They appear to me normal. I didn't notice anything
16 particular, any deviations from what was normal at the
18 Q. Do you know what kind of complaints they
19 had? What kind of medical problems they had and what
20 kind of help and treatment was offered to them?
21 A. Well, since I am not a physician, I cannot be
22 very specific. I just know that they suffered from
23 some chronic diseases and complained of such diseases
24 as far as I know. Things like high pressure, ulcer,
25 some kind of chronic diseases.
1 Q. Dr. Bilic, did you recognise amongst these
2 people any one to whom your medical centre had offered
3 services prior to the conflict?
4 A. Yes, I would recognise from time to time a
5 number of such people.
6 Q. Can we therefore say that they were your
7 regular patients?
8 A. Yes, yes.
9 Q. And that they suffered from some chronic
11 A. Yes, they were just regular patients and most
12 of them were known to me.
13 Q. Dr. Bilic, you mentioned that your medical
14 centre, as the only medical institution in the area,
15 was also responsible for the epidemiological and
16 sanitary situation in the area?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Did you have any such interventions at Kaonik
19 as a medical institution?
20 A. Yes, we did. Mr. Aleksovski came to see us
21 on one occasion and he asked us to send epidemiological
22 disease control team to the facility at Kaonik so that
23 they would carry out a disinfection of the premises.
24 Q. Was that carried out?
25 A. Yes, and I remember that that was conducted
1 on two occasions and I was present on -- at one
2 particular occasion.
3 Q. Dr. Bilic, you said on two occasions. What
4 period of time do you have in mind?
5 A. Well, I don't remember exactly, I think it
6 was in February, and maybe two or three months later.
7 Q. In which year?
8 A. In 1993.
9 Q. Therefore we are talking about the year 1993
10 all the time. As the head of the medical centre and
11 the person responsible for the epidemiological
12 situation in the field, were you aware at the time that
13 at the Kaonik facility there were cases of skin disease
14 and something similar that you would have to react to?
15 A. I was not aware of that. In case that there
16 were such cases at the time, of course, we would have
17 been advised of that. They would have -- they should
18 have informed of us that. But I was never informed of
19 such problems, therefore, I presume that there weren't
20 any in that sense.
21 Q. When you say you were not informed, who do
22 you have in mind?
23 A. Well, I am referring to all the medical
24 personnel from the epidemiological service, people who
25 went there, to carry, to conduct the disinfection.
1 They didn't notice anything improper.
2 Q. Dr. Bilic, you said that you once went to
4 A. Yes, I did go to Kaonik myself.
5 Q. Do you remember when it was?
6 A. I cannot give you the exact date, but I
7 believe it was on the first occasion when we went
9 Q. I think you mentioned February, 1993?
10 A. Yes, I did.
11 Q. Could you describe that visit to Kaonik, was
12 it the first time that you went to Kaonik or had you
13 been there before?
14 A. No, it was the first time. For me the
15 situation was normal bearing in mind the conditions in
16 the territory of the Municipality of Busovaca at that
18 Q. Dr. Bilic, could you tell us more about that
19 visit, why did you go there, who invited you, who took
20 you there and where exactly did you go and what was the
21 kind of situation that you found there?
22 A. When Mr. Aleksovski came to the health centre
23 and when we asked for our help, when he asked the
24 medical service to check the epidemiological situation
25 at the prison facility, we went there, there was a team
1 of people who went there and I was with them. We went
2 there by car. It was our vehicle belonging to the
3 medical centre. We went to that facility, we had a
4 tour of all premises of the facility and we carried out
6 Q. Do you remember which particular building you
8 A. We saw every building of the facility,
9 including premises where people were detained.
10 Q. In your opinion, as an expert, what was the
11 epidemiological situation in these premises?
12 A. I believe that the situation was normal. If
13 you have in mind the prevailing conditions in
14 Busovaca. I don't think it was any different from what
15 was normal at the time.
16 Q. During that visit, did you come across any
17 medical phenomena that would point out the cases of
18 some skin disease, for example lice and other types of
19 infectious diseases?
20 A. No, we didn't find any such cases.
21 Q. Can I therefore say it was some kind of
22 preventative action?
23 A. Yes, yes.
24 Q. Dr. Bilic, did you have an opportunity to
25 inspect toilets?
1 A. Yes. And the toilets were normal. I mean
2 they were just like other rooms, other premises of that
4 Q. Could you be more specific, what do you mean
5 by that?
6 A. Well, I mean that it was not dirty. That it
7 was -- I don't know what else to say.
8 Q. Was there anything particular, anything that
9 would be alarming to you as an employee of the health
11 A. No, no. There was no need for us to react in
12 such sense. We just had this simple action that we had
13 to conduct in order to prevent the spreading of skin
15 Q. Am I correct, therefore, in thinking that
16 such type of preventative actions were always conducted
17 by your institution on places where a number of people
18 were accommodated together?
19 A. Yes, it was the normal type of action.
20 Q. Could you tell whether there were any other
21 such facilities in the territory of your municipality
22 where similar actions were conducted?
23 A. Well, we did the same everywhere, in all
24 places where a number of people were put together. For
25 example, in refugee centres, in kitchens where food was
1 prepared for a large number of people and so on.
2 Q. Dr. Bilic, when you were at Kaonik at the
3 time did you have opportunity to see people who were
4 detained there? Did you see any of them?
5 A. Yes, I did.
6 Q. Did you speak with them?
7 A. No, I didn't.
8 Q. You said you saw them, could you describe the
9 condition they were in to the best of your
10 recollection? It was a long time ago, I know.
11 A. Well, I think that their condition was normal
12 for the type of facility they were in.
13 Q. Did you notice any cases of malnutrition?
14 A. No, I didn't.
15 Q. Did you notice, perhaps, cases of neglect of
16 physical appearance?
17 A. No, I didn't.
18 Q. What about their clothes and footwear, were
19 they in any worse condition than the general condition
20 in the area?
21 A. No, I didn't notice that.
22 Q. Can I, therefore, conclude that these people
23 appeared to you as everybody else in that particular
24 area, that particular time?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Did you see any visible injuries? Any
2 wounded people?
3 A. No, I didn't notice any such cases.
4 Q. Dr. Bilic, did you at any later point, I mean
5 after February 1993, did you visit Kaonik or was it, or
6 was that the only occasion that you went there?
7 A. That was the only occasion I went there.
8 Q. What about your personnel, your staff?
9 A. Yes, they went there once again to conduct
10 fumigation and very often people would be treated at
11 home. I mean, doctors, physicians, would go to the
12 Kaonik facility with a nurse to conduct medical
13 examination if it was necessary.
14 Q. Was it something extraordinary or was it
15 normal, usual practice?
16 A. It was usual if the physician was available.
17 Q. Dr. Bilic at the beginning of your testimony
18 you mentioned that your medical facility was in charge
19 of primary health care and whenever you would come
20 across a patient whose condition required specialist
21 approach, you would refer such patients to hospitals in
22 Zenica and then afterwards in Nova Bila when the roads
23 were closed. Do you remember an occasion when you
24 transported or sent patients to Zenica in your
25 ambulance car? Do you remember any such event?
1 A. I remember that on the day when the conflict
2 broke out, that is the 25th of January, 1993, I
3 remember that we drove, I mean the driver of the
4 medical centre, he took a couple of patients to Zenica
5 to hospital. After that, he would return from the
6 Zenica hospital without patients. But on one occasion
7 he was stopped, he was harassed and the ambulance was
8 taken away from him. He was stopped at a checkpoint, I
9 believe it was a Muslim checkpoint, so it was the
10 Muslims then who stopped him.
11 Q. And what happened to the driver?
12 A. They harassed him for about two or three
13 hours. He was with those men and then they released
14 him and he walked for awhile and then found somebody to
15 give him a lift to Busovaca.
16 Q. And what about the ambulance car?
17 A. They seised it and we never learned about its
19 Q. After that event, did you ever transport your
20 patients to Zenica? Was it possible?
21 A. No, it was not and we did not dare because we
22 were left with only one ambulance car, so if even if we
23 did send it and passed all those checkpoints we could
24 then lose that one car. So we stopped sending them
25 there, we continued to refer them to the hospital at
1 Nova Bila.
2 Q. Could you tell us what kind of patients did
3 you refer to hospitals, what were their complaints?
4 A. I don't really remember what were the health
5 problems, but I think it was a mere cardiac infraction
6 or hypertension or something, I can't remember.
7 Q. Dr. Bilic, at the time, did your health care
8 centre also treat HVO soldiers? Did they come to the
9 health centre?
10 A. Yes, they did, because it was the only
11 medical institution which could treat patients.
12 Q. Did you notice anything amongst HVO soldiers
13 which had to be treated?
14 A. Yes, I did.
15 Q. So what did you do?
16 A. Well, whatever we could do. And we could not
17 treat them further, then we referred them to the Nova
18 Bila Hospital.
19 Q. If we are talking about HVO men. Did you
20 have any instances of extending treatment or helping or
21 seeing a soldier with the markings HV, not HVO?
22 A. No, I did not.
23 Q. During all these events did you ever see some
24 soldiers with the markings HV?
25 A. No, I did not. Personally, I did not.
1 Q. Dr. Bilic, during all the while that we are
2 referring to, and that is the first half of '93, did
3 you have any contact with Zlatko Aleksovski?
4 A. Yes, I did. Quite often when Mr. Aleksovski
5 would come along, then we would greet one another.
6 Q. But apart from the first understanding about
7 services rendered, did you have any more of such
9 A. Yes. But I can't remember all the details
10 and all the time he visited us.
11 Q. Could you describe -- could you tell us
12 something about the frequency of these?
13 A. Well, perhaps once a week or once a fortnight
14 or once in ten days. I don't know.
15 Q. Apart from these personal contacts, could you
16 also communicate by telephone?
17 A. Yes, we could.
18 Q. Did you then communicate by telephone?
19 A. We did, when necessary.
20 Q. Dr. Bilic, did the health services extended
21 by your health centre vary between, shall I call them
22 civilian patients and those who came from the Kaonik
23 facility, did these standards vary as to the treatment?
24 A. No. There was no difference because it is
25 simply inadmissible in health services.
1 Q. Dr. Bilic, those patients who came from
2 Kaonik, you said they had some chronic, they suffered
3 from some chronic ailments mostly. You must have been
4 prescribing some treatment for them and medicines.
5 Now, how was that organised?
6 A. How the health centre organised it. Well, if
7 a patient came to us with -- complaining of a chronic
8 disease, then we, that is the physicians, would
9 prescribe their treatment, and it was provided to a
10 patient at the health centre if it concerned some
11 injections or something else, or if not, there was also
12 a pharmacy at the health centre, so that we would issue
13 them pills or whatever for these patients. Or for
14 those people from Kaonik, we gave them to the guards so
15 they would administer those medicines to them at
16 prescribed times.
17 Q. Dr. Bilic, you mentioned that at that time
18 there were how many physicians did you say?
19 A. At that time there were six physicians.
20 Q. Do you remember who that was?
21 A. Dr. Nada Petrovic, Dr. Dragica Akrap-Raos,
22 Dr. Srdjana Markovic, Dr. Bernardica Mioc, Dr. Zvonimir
24 Q. Many of these colleagues, are they still with
25 the health centre or not?
1 A. Yes, they are. Dr. Petrovic is there. She
2 is a gynaecologist.
3 Q. Dr. Raos Akrap and Dr. Stipec Zvonimir and
4 Dr. Bernardica Mioc and Srdjana Markovic are not there
5 any longer?
6 A. No, they are not.
7 Q. Do you know when a particular service
8 rendered to patients either from Kaonik or other cases,
9 did those -- did the physicians provide some
10 documentation, I mean prescriptions or some case
11 history, a paper where they would write out the
13 A. Yes, it was -- I mean, it was on record, but
14 we had so many problems that we did not have the proper
15 forms. But somehow we did find time to put a record,
16 all the patients who came to see us. And since we had
17 our pharmacy for oral medicines, then naturally, of
18 course, we had to justify these prescriptions. So
19 physicians had to issue prescriptions which they --
20 with which the patients that went to the pharmacy and
21 that those prescriptions were kind of a certificate
22 that a particular medicine had been issued.
23 Q. Dr. Bilic, I shall show you now some of the
24 documents, doctoral documents, the documents issued by
25 doctors, and I shall ask you to comment on them; that
1 is, tell me if they were issued by people who worked at
2 the health centre at the time, and what kind of
3 complaints are referred to in these documents.
4 Dr. Bilic, I shall ask you now that you try
5 to read each one of these documents. They are written
6 in -- you know, in the notorious doctors handwriting
7 which nobody can read apart from their authors. But
8 can you please try to do that and tell us what it is
10 A. Ilijas Krivosija, 1942. That must be the
11 year of his birth. Yes. Diagnosis, herniated disk.
12 Spared from work and flat cot, flat bed.
13 Q. Can you tell us who issued it?
14 A. It was Dr. Mioc who issued it.
15 Q. She was in the employ of the health centre?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Thank you. We can proceed to the second
18 document. So this is a document D18.
19 MR. NIEMANN: Your Honours, this is the first
20 time we've seen these documents and there is no
21 indication of what period they relate to, from what I
22 can see. Some of them may do, but certainly the
23 document we just looked at doesn't. What relevance it
24 is -- I mean, if it's not relating to anyone from
25 Kaonik, I fail to see the relevance of it.
1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic.
2 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, your Lordships. I
3 shall ask the witness if she could tell us what
4 timeframe do they pertain to.
5 Q. Dr. Bilic, looking at this first document,
6 could you identify the patient; that is, do you know
7 where he came from and what time period does it refer
9 A. Yes, I can, because I know that particular
10 patient personally, and this was this time, the first
11 or the second day of the conflict, since the outbreak
12 of the conflict. So this could have been the 25th of
13 January or the 26th of January 1993, because
14 Dr. Bernardica Mioc was on duty at the time.
15 Q. I see. And will you please try to do the
16 same with every other document that you go through. If
17 you can, of course.
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: I'm sorry to interrupt
19 you. Are you now satisfied with the response,
20 Mr. Niemann?
21 MR. NIEMANN: Well, no, Your Honour, because
22 I have no idea if it has any connection whatsoever to
23 Kaonik. Your Honours, there may be a reason outside of
24 giving treatment to people who weren't in Kaonik, if
25 Mr. Mikulicic would care to develop that, then I
1 probably would be able to remove my objection. But at
2 the moment it looks as though it's just a medical form
3 in relation to somebody in the area, it would seem, at
4 that time.
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic and
6 Mr. Niemann, I believe we arrived at a time where we
7 might take a recess. I believe that Mr. Mikulicic
8 could, before presenting these documents, state and
9 inform us, because as the Prosecution has just stated,
10 it is seeing this document for the first time. So
11 perhaps it would be appropriate to state that with this
12 document I wish to prove such and such thing. And then
13 at that point say that, for all of us, that the
14 document be presented on the ELMO so that all of us can
15 be able to follow the reading then by Dr. Bilic.
16 Having made that proposal, I think we might then take a
17 20 minute recess and then resume with that proposal.
18 If you are in agreement with that.
19 Very well, 20 minutes.
20 --- Proceedings recessed at 10.45 a.m.
21 (The witness entered court)
22 --- On resuming at 11.12 a.m.
23 (The accused entered court)
24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Very well, now let us
25 resume. Before doing so, I would like to tell you that
1 next Wednesday the Tribunal will be sitting in the
2 afternoon. So we're going to be keeping the same
3 time. It will be from 13.30 until 17.30.
4 Mr. Mikulicic and Mr. Niemann, if it is appropriate or
5 convenient for you rather.
6 MR. NIEMANN: Yes.
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Very well, Mr. Mikulicic,
8 regarding our last proposal, will it be possible to
9 resume on that note? I think in that way, Mr. Niemann
10 then will withdraw his objection.
11 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honours, let me first
12 thank you for the kind suggestion to the Defence in
13 connection with the documents we proposed. I will
14 gladly accept it. Let me first state the purpose as to
15 why we wanted to introduce these documents.
16 Our objective was for the witness, on the
17 basis of her recollection and her knowledge of certain
18 patients. We must bear in mind that it was a small
19 town where people knew each other very well, so that
20 she can therefore confirm whether these people were
21 patients who had been brought to Kaonik for purposes of
22 medical treatment or not. This is one thing.
23 The other thing is that the Defence wants to
24 show with these documents that medical services were
25 also offered to Muslims, because all these people are
1 of Muslim ethnic origin. We want to show that no other
2 standards were applied. And also on the basis again of
3 the recollection of the witness, we would like to show
4 that these documents were issued at that particular
5 time in cases where the document does not bear a
6 specific date. If the witness can remember, of
7 course. If she doesn't, she will say so. I don't know
8 whether my explanation is satisfactory.
9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Niemann. Do you have
10 anything you would like to add generally speaking?
11 MR. NIEMANN: On the basis of their merely to
12 demonstrate that they were Muslim patients who were
13 treated along with other patients, we don't have any
14 objection to that, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you for your
16 understanding and cooperation. You may now resume, Mr.
17 Mikulicic, thank you.
18 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
19 Q. If I can ask the assistance of the usher in
20 accordance with the suggestion of the Chamber, can the
21 document 18-A be placed on the ELMO, please.
22 We can all see what document we are referring
23 to. Dr. Bilic, can we come back to this document and
24 could you tell us if you personally know the patient by
25 the name of Ilijas Krivosija?
1 A. Yes, I know him, he was my neighbour.
2 Q. On the basis of this particular document, do
3 you know when this document was issued and do you know
4 where Mr. Krivosija was at the time this document was
6 A. I know that this document was issued at the
7 health centre in Busovaca. There is no date on the
8 document, but I believe it was on the 25th or 26th of
9 January, 1993, when Dr. Bernardica Mioc was on duty,
10 together with Dr. Nada Petrovic.
11 Q. Do you know whether this patient was brought
12 to the health centre from Kaonik?
13 A. As far as I remember he was brought from the
14 Kaonik prison.
15 Q. The therapy that was recommended for this
16 particular patient, does that remind you of anything?
17 What does it tell you?
18 A. This means that this patient was supposed to
19 be taken back by the people who have brought him to the
20 health centre and that this therapy should be provided
21 to him at the prison facility. Because this was
22 necessary in view of his diagnosis.
23 Q. Could you tell us once again what diagnosis
24 it was?
25 A. Herniated disk.
1 Q. Could you explain to the Chamber whether this
2 a chronic disease or not?
3 A. I'm sorry, I am not a physician, but I think
4 it was a chronic disease.
5 Q. Thank you. Can we now move on to the next
6 document, please. Again, Dr. Bilic, could you give us
7 some information about this document. How would you
8 comment this particular document?
9 A. I don't know this patient. But I can say
10 that because of the therapy that was recommended here,
11 house treatment, I think that he was a prison
12 detainee. Because why else would the physician put
13 here house treatment if the patient was at home?
14 Q. Thank you. Could we move on to the next
15 document, please, Mr. Usher.
16 THE REGISTRAR: This is document D-18/B.
17 MR. MIKULICIC: Document 18 or 19?
18 THE REGISTRAR: No, no, with regard to all of
19 these, we're referring to document D-18/A, B, C and so
21 MR. MIKULICIC:
22 Q. Dr. Bilic, this document was issued for the
23 patient by the name Smet Medjuseljac, do you know that
25 A. Yes, I know him not personally, but I knew
1 him. He used to be a high school teacher in Busovaca
2 before the war.
3 Q. What kind of disorders or illnesses did he
4 suffer from?
5 A. Again, I am not a physician, but judging from
6 the diagnosis that's mentioned here, I think he
7 suffered from ulcer, duodenal ulcer. Therapy is
8 indicated here. Again, the patient should be seated or
9 should lie on a flat surface. And I think that this
10 particular patient was also one of the Kaonik
12 Q. Who issued this particular document?
13 A. Dr. Petrovic Nada who was together on duty
14 with Dr. Mioc during these days.
15 Q. What time period are we talking about here?
16 A. It must have been on the 25th or 26th of
17 January, 1993.
18 Q. Thank you, can we move on to the next
19 document, please. Dr. Bilic, the same question as
21 A. This is Ejub Buljina, diagnosis is a 4 to 5,
22 I don't know exactly which type of classification this
23 is. I believe this is the old international
24 classification of diseases. And, again, the therapy
25 that is indicated here, house treatment for the
1 duration of five days at least. This means that the
2 doctor recommended that the patient should go home and
3 spend five days at home for treatment. That is that he
4 should be released from prison for the duration of five
6 Q. Do you remember when this was issued and who
7 issued this document?
8 A. It was Dr. Markovic Srdjana, surgeon, but I
9 cannot remember the exact date. However, I believe
10 that it was at the beginning of the conflict, the 27th
11 or the 28th of January, when this particular doctor was
12 on duty.
13 Q. Thank you. The next document, please.
14 THE REGISTRAR: With regards to this
15 documents on Indictments 425, that will be D-18.
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: No, no, D.
17 THE REGISTRAR: This will be D.
18 MR. MIKULICIC:
19 Q. Dr. Bilic, could you please have a look at
20 this document and make some comments. We have a date
22 A. As far as I can read it this is 25th of
23 January, 1993.
24 Q. Do you know the patient?
25 A. The patient is Suad Halilovic. I know him by
1 sight. And the diagnosis, as far as I can read it,
2 thoracical contusions or something like that, a blow in
3 the chest without fracture. So if doctor has put here
4 "without fracture," it means that there should be an
5 x-ray as well, x-ray of the chest, patient's chest,
6 because she indicated "without fracture." She must
7 have seen somehow that there was no fracture and the
8 therapy indicated is house treatment as well. So once
9 again, I can conclude that he was in prison and that he
10 was sent by the doctor for house treatment.
11 Q. Thank you very much. Next document, please,
12 Mr. Usher.
13 THE REGISTRAR: Be document D-18/E.
14 MR. MIKULICIC:
15 Q. Hasim Pezic, do you know him?
16 A. No, I don't know him.
17 Q. Could you comment on this document, please,
18 and tell us about the time it was issued?
19 A. Well, the document is 4, 5, 4, the old
20 international classification of diseases again. And I
21 don't know which particular disease this is. Therapy
22 recommended is cold compresses and home treatment
23 again. So once again, I think we can conclude that
24 this patient was sent for home treatment from Kaonik.
25 The doctor who wrote this, because of the time when she
1 was on duty, I believe that the exact date would be
2 either 25th or 26th of January.
3 Q. Next document, please.
4 THE REGISTRAR: Will be given the number
6 MR. MIKULICIC:
7 Q. Nasib Silajdzic, do you know him?
8 A. No, I don't know him.
9 Q. Please, can we have your comment as to the
10 medical treatment that is indicated in this document,
11 time when the document was issued and where was the
12 person when he required medical help?
13 A. We have here swelling, left ear. The left
14 ear, I can't read this. Ortho H is prescribed, ear
15 drops and we have a note here, the patient should avoid
16 draught, should be sent home for treatment and,
17 therefore, I can conclude that the patient was from
18 Kaonik and it was sent to home treatment by the person
19 who issued a document, who signed the document, Dr.
20 Bernardica Mioc who was on duty on the 25th or 26th of
22 Q. Can we move on to the next document please.
23 THE REGISTRAR: This will be Document D-18/G.
24 MR. MIKULICIC:
25 Q. We have a document on the 26th of January,
1 '93, signed by Dr. Bernardica Mioc and this person is
2 Senad Dervic, do you know this individual?
3 A. Yes, I know this individual personally
4 because we were colleagues. This patient worked at the
5 health care administration so that we cooperated very
7 Q. In Busovaca you mean?
8 A. Yes, in Busovaca. I know him personally.
9 And according to this diagnosis, 5-P 3, 2, I don't know
10 what it means because I am not a doctor, but at any
11 rate it is a genital ulcer evidently. And the
12 treatment is Eglonyl ampule so that the patient could
13 be administered it at the health centre. And then
14 Belamet tablets (check medication name). The patient
15 should be trussed and treatment at home.
16 Dr. Bernardica Mioc issued this prescription
17 and she was on duty on the 26th of January. I remember
18 this patient exactly because I knew him well and
19 because we were associates. We cooperated and I know
20 that he was brought from Kaonik there. That I took him
21 into my office and that I gave him a package of
22 cigarettes and that he was sent home for treatment.
23 Q. Thank you. Next document, please.
24 THE REGISTRAR: The document concerning Senad
25 Dervic will be given D-19/H.
1 MR. MIKULICIC:
2 Q. Ethem Lusija, do you know this individual?
3 A. Yes, by sight.
4 Q. Where is he from?
5 A. From Busovaca.
6 Q. Could you comment on this document the same
7 as before. So it was signed by Dr. Nada Petrovic. Can
8 you tell us when this was and whether this person was
9 in Kaonik at that time as far as you know?
10 A. At that time, Dr. Nada Petrovic, as I said,
11 was on duty together with Dr. Mioc, so this document
12 could have been issued on the 25th or 26th of January,
13 1993. She measured his pressure, blood pressure twice,
14 220 through to 200 and 200 through 125. So it must be
15 a heart case, a cardiac patient. Because evidently,
16 she did EEG, that is, ECG and see how the heart
17 functioned because she could see that the heart beat
18 was fastened but there was no noise either in systaltic
19 pressure or anywhere. And the other thing she could do
20 only after the electrocardiogram.
21 And she prescribed this treatment Lasix
22 ampule which is a sedative pills, Aldomet pills -- oh,
23 it says tablets. Two times one. When this patient was
24 brought in, she measured his pressure, did the
25 electrocardiography, prescribed the medicines, waited
1 for the patient to have his pressure measured once
2 again and it was 200 through 125. After that she
3 prescribed pills and she must have asked people who had
4 brought in this patient to enable him to be assigned
5 treatment at home. That's it.
6 Q. And you conclude from that that this person
7 was brought from Kaonik?
8 A. Yes, yes, I do.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 THE REGISTRAR: This will be document
12 MR. NIEMANN: Your Honours, concerning the
13 objection I originally raised. The date on this
14 document appears to me to be 1991. If it is 1991, I
15 then I don't see the relevance of it.
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, it is true
17 that the date on here is 27 January 1991 and so this is
18 outside the indictment.
19 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honours, this is a
20 document which in the translation date of issue 27
21 January '91. The prescription is in handwriting. And
22 if you look at the original of the prescription, you
23 will see that a figure after figure 9 could be 3 just
24 as well as it can be 1. So that I should like to ask
25 the doctor to use the same methodology she used to
1 interpret the other document to try to interpret this
2 one. And to see whether this document was indeed
3 issued in '91 as it said in translation into English
4 and French. Or is it the date which transpires from
5 the original document. Sir, could the witness
6 comment. And if this is indeed a document of '91, then
7 I will not propose it as evidence.
8 MR. NIEMANN: I certainly have no objection
9 of the witness being questioned on it, Your Honours,
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Okay. Very well, Mr.
12 Mikulicic excuse me. Thank you, Mr. Niemann. Please
14 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you very much, Your
16 Q. Dr. Bilic, we have a document, could you
17 please describe to the Court what document is this?
18 A. It's different from others. This document,
19 this is the original prescription which the physicians
20 issued for the pharmacy so that patients could get this
21 medicine. The only difference is that if this
22 prescription were of '91 as this figure down there
23 looks like, then I think they should have filled in all
24 the columns in this prescription. And one does not see
25 it here. Because we have the name Hasan Pezic,
1 addressed Busovaca.
2 That the document was -- had this document
3 been issued in '91, they would have had to also add the
4 personal number in full. Because in '91 all patients
5 had to come to the health centre, to be covered by the
6 health care, they had to bring in their health
7 certificates. And these health certificates included
8 all the data, that is, the number, the register number,
9 the personal number of the patient in question with the
10 diagnosis and everything else. And such a prescription
11 in '91 would not be recognised by any pharmacy, by any
12 chemist because it was not filled out properly. So it
13 could have been issued at the time. Perhaps it was
14 written by hand and a mistake was made, 27th of
15 January. I think the doctor, surgeon, Srdjana Markovic
16 was employed by the health centre at the time and
17 perhaps the patient did not have his health card,
18 health certificate with him.
19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Yes, there is one element
20 in regards to the number in this document, and also in
21 the following document there is a number series
22 indicated on this document, and from this series you
23 can see that it is the same. My colleague, Judge
24 Vohrah, drew my attention to this fact. Therefore, we
25 have a document before us which has the date '91
1 indicated, but the following document is also there
2 now. But in the following document, nonetheless, there
3 is a number series which is the same.
4 Am I understood? So with regards to the
5 date, I believe that that is no longer a question. Do
6 you understand my question, Dr. Bilic?
7 A. Yes, I did.
8 MR. NIEMANN: I did notice that, Your Honour,
9 but I also noticed that the signature that appears
10 above the date in both documents to which Your Honour
11 is referring appears to be the same signature, and yet
12 for the date -- for the last document that hasn't been
13 dealt with yet, the person who wrote it doesn't seem to
14 have had any difficulty writing the "3". And the "3"
15 that appears there seems to be quite different to the
16 one that appears on the document in contention. It
17 might be just that it's in error, but it certainly
18 seems to me, looking at both documents, if one assumes
19 that the signatures are the same, I don't profess to be
20 a handwriting expert, but I do notice the stamp there.
21 It would seem to me that one couldn't confuse a '91
22 with a '93.
23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Very well. I would like
24 for Dr. Bilic to say something with regards to the
25 sequence of these numbered documents. Does this mean,
1 then, that we have the document which is at present on
2 the ELMO, and the following document, and perhaps we
3 might even see things more clearly if we were to see
4 the following document.
5 If we were to look at the actual number
6 series that are on the upper part of that page there,
7 you can see there is indeed a series, a number series,
8 and there is only a difference of 21.
9 Dr. Bilic, I think perhaps you might make a
10 statement on this after these documents have been
12 Mr. Mikulicic, do you agree that we perhaps
13 might deal with this issue after they have been dealt
15 MR. NIEMANN: No objection.
16 MR. MIKULICIC: Okay.
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Very well.
18 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honour. We
20 MR. MIKULICIC:
21 Q. So, Dr. Bilic, by looking at the document
22 which follows for Salih Hodzic and comparing the serial
23 numbers of the two documents, the Court has observed
24 that these could be the documents from the same
25 series. Could you comment on this? Could it be that
1 documents from the same series be issued one in '91 and
2 the second in '93?
3 A. No, it is impossible. The serial number
4 could have been on the 27th of January '93, so that
5 this document for Salih Hodzic with this serial number
6 16 1994 04 preceded the document issued to Hasan Pezic
7 with the serial number 16 1994 25. In other words,
8 that Dr. Markovic, Srdjana Markovic, could see first
9 Salih Hodzic and then the 21st patient after him was
10 Hasan Pezic. And I do not think that there should be
11 any doubt that in the year it is evident that it is '93
12 if one looks at the serial number.
13 Q. Perhaps another question. Do you remember if
14 Dr. Markovic was in the staff of the health centre in
16 A. Dr. Markovic, yes. Yes, she was
17 MR. MIKULICIC: I should like to ask my
18 distinguished colleague Niemann if he is satisfied with
19 this answer of the witness, or does he still insist on
20 the irrelevance of the document referring to Hasan
22 MR. NIEMANN: We have no objection.
23 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you. Mr. Niemann, if I
24 may, I should like to proceed.
25 Q. So, Dr. Bilic, we are now referring to
1 documents, that is the order in which we produced
2 them. Hasan Pezic, do you know this individual?
3 A. No, I don't.
4 Q. Can you tell us something from this -- about
5 this document? It's not particularly legible, I know.
6 A. All I can read is that this ought to be the
7 prescription for Amilofilin. These were tablets,
8 .25, 3 times 2, but below it I simply cannot read it.
9 So evidently he had some respiration complaints. The
10 diagnosis says 4 5 4 . I don't know this code.
11 Q. Thank you. So can you proceed then to the
12 next document and the last one issued in the name of --
13 to the name of Salih Hodzic.
14 THE REGISTRAR: The document regarding Hasan
15 Pezic, which has a number 25 at the end of the series,
16 shall be given a number D18J.
17 MR. MIKULICIC:
18 Q. Dr. Bilic, before I ask you to comment on
19 this document, there was something that you answered
20 which reminded me of a situation which I should like
21 you to explain to the Honourable Court. You said, when
22 you looked and commented on the previous documents,
23 since the whole form had not been filled out, that it
24 reminded you of 1993, that is the time of the conflict,
25 and when aid, when services were extended to patients
1 and they were not asked to submit any proof or their
2 health insurance, that is, they did not have to produce
3 their health insurance number. Could you explain this?
4 A. Well, in the normal times, and when the work
5 is normal, then every patient, at least in our case, at
6 the Busovaca Health Centre, had to have his health
7 insurance card before he saw a doctor. And we needed
8 to have all the data referring to a particular -- that
9 particular patient, because the health centre keeps
10 cards, keeps patient cards.
11 When the first -- when a patient comes for
12 the first time, then everything is put in there, that
13 is the date, the name, the date, personal particulars,
14 the diagnosis and so on, so forth. And for this -- and
15 his health certificate also had to feature the number
16 of his card.
17 And the prescription could not be issued
18 without it. So this prescription could be issued only
19 at the time of the conflict in Busovaca because, in
20 view of the situation, who would ask for the card? I
21 mean, we had to help all patients and not ask for their
22 papers or serial numbers or whatever. It was absurd
23 under the circumstances.
24 Q. Dr. Bilic, by presenting his health insurance
25 card, the patient offers proof of his health insurance,
1 that somebody is covered by insurance?
2 A. Yes, that is precisely what it means.
3 Q. That it means that in this first half of '93
4 you simply paid no attention to the fact whether
5 somebody was or was not covered by health insurance?
6 A. No, indeed we did not. It would have been
7 absurd under the circumstances, which were
9 Q. Thank you very much. Now, can we go to this
10 document, the document issued to the name of Salih
11 Hodzic. Do you know this individual?
12 A. Yes, I do.
13 Q. Where does he come from?
14 A. From Busovaca.
15 Q. Could you comment on this document?
16 A. We see that it was issued on the 25th of
17 January, 1993, that Dr. Srdjana Markovic was the one
18 who issued this document.
19 Q. What is it?
20 A. The diagnosis 4 2 5, I do not know this code,
21 since I am not a physician. And she prescribed Isoptin
22 tablets, 25 milligrams, two times one; Andol tablets,
23 one times one; Apaurin pills one time once; and the
24 doctor emphatically stated that the patient needs
25 treatment at home because he had a heart complaint.
1 So he could have been brought from Kaonik and
2 the doctor emphatically requested that be sent home for
3 further treatment.
4 Q. Thank you. Dr. Bilic, do you know of your
5 own knowledge whether these recommendations issued by
6 physicians about sending one for treatment, whether
7 this was absurd, that is, whether these patients were
8 indeed being released and sent home for treatment?
9 A. As far as I know, they were. That is, those
10 who were given these prescriptions, those who brought
11 those people from Kaonik, I believe they observed them.
12 Q. How do you know that?
13 A. I know it because of my colleague, the
14 previous patient, Senad Dervic, I know that he was sent
15 home for treatment.
16 Q. I understand. Dr. Bilic, with this I should
17 conclude with examination. Thank you very much for
18 your answers. Thank you very much, your Lordships.
19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Niemann, do you have
20 any questions?
21 MR. NIEMANN: Thank you, Your Honour.
22 Cross-examined by Mr. Niemann
23 Q. Now, you were at the medical centre, but you
24 didn't practice medicine; is that what -- do I
25 understand that to be your position?
1 A. No, I did not. I worked at a medical
2 facility, but I am not a physician. I am a pharmacist
3 and I worked as a biochemical engineer, which was part
4 of the diagnostic service at the health centre in
6 Q. Now, did you just mainly involve yourself
7 with administrative duties, or did you also become
8 involved with the pharmacy attached to the medical
10 A. I worked at the health centre in Busovaca as
11 a biochemist, which means that I was involved in
12 laboratory diagnosis, laboratory analysis at the
13 laboratory, which was part of the Busovaca Medical
15 Q. I see. And this was in addition to your
16 administrative duties?
17 A. Yes. Yes.
18 Q. Did you -- did your either administrative
19 duties or your professional duties at the medical
20 centre require you to be there at the night-time, or
21 did you work mostly during the day?
22 A. Most of the time I worked during the day, but
23 sometimes I would also work at night.
24 Q. Now, when patients were brought to the
25 hospital, I think you've testified that you saw them on
1 a couple of occasions. Did you always see them, or was
2 it just by chance that you happened to see patients
3 coming to the medical centre from Kaonik?
4 A. I wouldn't see them every time, but sometimes
5 when I would be passing from one office to another I
6 would see -- I would see a patient that had just been
7 brought in.
8 Q. I think you said in your evidence, you spoke
9 of food being prepared and distributed from barracks.
10 I was just wondering if you could tell me what barracks
11 were you referring to when you said that?
12 A. I was referring to the barracks of the former
13 JNA in Busovaca, in the place called Draga.
14 Q. Were these barracks occupied by the Dutch
15 battalion, were they, or were they someone else?
16 A. No, the Dutch battalion was accommodated in
17 hotel in Busovaca, one part of the Dutch battalion, and
18 the other part of the Dutch battalion was quartered in
19 the high school building in Busovaca.
20 Q. Did you -- were you in a position at any
21 stage to seek assistance, medical assistance that is,
22 from the Dutch battalion?
23 A. Yes, I was. I believe I already mentioned
24 that sometimes if we needed some specific medication,
25 which we didn't have at the health centre in Busovaca,
1 I would ask the Dutch battalion for help. In case they
2 had that particular medication, they would always give
3 it to us.
4 Q. And you spoke of there being a medical
5 facility that you could refer patients to at Nova
6 Bila. What sort of premises or what sort of facilities
7 were available at Nova Bila?
8 A. This was just one part of the newly
9 established hospital in Nova Bila, which wasn't really
10 a hospital. It was a church where only two surgeons
11 were working. So you couldn't really call it a
12 hospital. It didn't have all necessary departments.
13 It was a war hospital, a makeshift hospital where
14 patients from this particular area could be admitted,
15 if necessary.
16 Q. Now, I think -- were you in Busovaca just
17 prior to the outbreak of hostilities in January of
18 1993? Were you still living there then or at that time
19 were you living there?
20 A. Yes. Yes, I was there.
21 Q. Now, as the sort of tensions built up, did
22 you see troops come into the town at all, into the town
23 of Busovaca?
24 A. No, I didn't.
25 Q. You didn't observe any build-up of troops in
1 the town at all?
2 A. No, I didn't observe any.
3 Q. You spoke of going to the Kaonik camp, the
4 Kaonik facility, yourself on one occasion and that you
5 are aware of the fact that your staff went there on
6 another occasion. Was there any arrangement whereby
7 regular visits would be paid to the camp, that you knew
9 A. There were no such arrangements. We would go
10 there upon the request of the warden of the Kaonik
11 facility, whenever it was necessary. When we had to
12 see a particular patient, the physicians would go
13 there. And two occasions that I mentioned, it was just
14 an occasion for us to see what the situation was, the
15 epidemiological situation, not only at the prison
16 facility but also on the territory of the Municipality
17 of Busovaca in general.
18 Q. If I understand your evidence, did you say
19 that in 1992, as opposed to 1993, that Serb patients
20 were being brought to you from the Kaonik camp? Did
21 you say that, or was that something I misunderstood?
22 A. I don't think it was a camp. In my opinion,
23 Kaonik was not a camp, as far as could I see. As to
24 people who were brought in, these were just people from
25 the Kaonik facility, people who had committed some kind
1 of criminal offence, because we had both Croats and
3 Q. Yes. But in 1992, and we won't call it a
4 camp, if that's not your understanding of it, but in
5 1992, when it was used as a prison, the people that
6 were brought to you were mainly Serb; is that the
7 effect of your testimony?
8 A. Not mainly Serbs. There were also Croats
9 amongst them. There were both Croats and Serbs.
10 Q. And you understood these people in 1992 to be
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And did you know why, particularly the Serbs
14 I am interested in, do you know why the Serbs were in
15 Kaonik as prisoners in 1992?
16 A. I don't know.
17 Q. Now, you spoke of people wearing military
18 clothing during the period of the war. Did you wear
19 military clothing yourself?
20 A. No, I didn't.
21 Q. And what about members of your staff, did any
22 of the doctors that worked with you, or nurses, wear
23 military clothing?
24 A. No. Not at the Busovaca Health Centre. We
25 had white coats, and these white coats were our
2 Q. I see. When did you first understand that
3 the Kaonik facility was being used to house prisoners?
4 When did you first understand that to occur?
5 A. In late 1992, when they started bringing in
6 people from Kaonik.
7 Q. And in late 1992 most of the conflict was
8 between the Croatian people; Muslim people and the
9 Serbs being on the other side. Am I right?
10 A. No. In late 1992 there was no conflict
11 between Croats and Muslims. At that time we had no
12 such conflict in our area.
13 Q. Yes. I think you misunderstood what I said.
14 You are absolutely right, the point is the conflict at
15 that time, in '92, was between the Croats and Serbs,
16 and also the Muslims and Serbs?
17 A. In Busovaca there was no such conflict
18 between Croats and Serbs and Muslims and Serbs. There
19 was just one occasion, there was one shelling incident
20 when Busovaca was shelled with missiles in April 1992,
21 when the health centre was hit.
22 Q. Yes. Now, when you went to the Kaonik
23 facility, you saw the prisoners that were being
24 detained there? That's right, isn't it?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And you knew some of the people?
2 A. By sight, yes.
3 Q. And the people that you saw there, they were,
4 by this stage in 1993, Muslims?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And were they women and children and men, or
7 just men that you can remember seeing?
8 A. Only men were there. There were no women and
10 Q. And do you know why there was only men
11 there? You may not know this.
12 A. No, I don't know.
13 Q. And were they of any particular age group,
14 the men, or were they all a full range of age groups
15 that you could see?
16 A. I believe full range of age groups. Only
18 Q. Do you know why they were there?
19 A. I don't know.
20 Q. Did you see any infirmary or medical sort of
21 hospital or anything of that nature at the Kaonik
22 facility when you went there?
23 A. No, I didn't.
24 Q. You didn't see any particular rooms which had
25 been set aside for providing medical care?
1 A. No, I didn't see any such thing.
2 Q. Now, I think it's obvious, because you've
3 told us what your duties are, but just for the record,
4 your evidence is that you'd never yourself actually
5 carried out an examination of any of the people that
6 had come from Kaonik?
7 A. No, because I am not a physician.
8 Q. Now, I think you also gave evidence of the
9 fact that the Kaonik prisoners that were brought to the
10 medical facility, they didn't appear to be constrained
11 or tied up in any way with handcuffs or any means; is
12 that your evidence?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Did the guards or Mr. Aleksovski, when you
15 saw him there with prisoners, did he appear to be armed
16 with weapons of any sort?
17 A. No, they were not.
18 Q. So I take it from that, then, that these
19 people were not considered dangerous criminals or
20 anything of that nature?
21 A. Well, I guess not. It was not my duty to
22 judge what they were, whether they were criminals,
23 whether they were dangerous or not.
24 Q. But in charge of the facility, as you were,
25 if they were bringing in notoriously dangerous
1 criminals, I take it you would be concerned about your
2 other patients, if that was the case?
3 A. Well, of course I would be concerned if
4 someone is a dangerous criminal, and if he's brought to
5 my institution without handcuffs. Of course I would be
6 concerned for the safety of other patients and other
7 staff who were there at the medical centre.
8 Q. I think your evidence is that you knew some
9 of the people, some of the Muslim people that were
10 brought there from Kaonik. That's true, isn't it?
11 A. Yes, that's true.
12 Q. And certainly, other than them being
13 unfortunately involved in the conflict, there was no
14 fear or thought in your mind of them being dangerous or
15 notorious or anything of that nature?
16 A. No.
17 Q. Now, you say that if people had developed
18 skin disorders at the camp, you should have been
19 informed about that. Do you remember saying something
20 to that effect in your evidence?
21 A. Yes, I would have been. I should have been
23 Q. Who would have informed you of that?
24 A. I would have been informed by the physician
25 who established the existence of such a skin disorder.
1 Q. What about the camp? What sort of reporting
2 facility was put in place so that if someone became ill
3 at the camp, how did you then get to know that that
4 patient was ill?
5 A. Well, again, in my opinion, it was not a
6 camp. For us, in order to get there, it was enough for
7 someone from Kaonik to come and see us and to tell us
8 that there was need for the physician to visit the
9 facility, or we could have also been informed by phone.
10 Q. So, I take it, that the process by which you
11 would be informed was entirely dependent upon those
12 persons who were in charge of the camp, such as
13 Mr. Aleksovski or the guards?
14 A. Most probably so, yes. Because we, at the
15 medical centre, couldn't be aware of such things at the
16 prison facility. Someone had to inform us. Someone
17 had to tell us that there was a patient in need of
18 care, or maybe the patient could come to the centre
20 Q. Did you ever have any visits from the
21 International Committee of the Red Cross about patients
22 in the Kaonik facility?
23 A. No. Not at that time.
24 Q. Now, in your evidence you described the
25 situation at Kaonik, so far as you were concerned, as
1 being normal for that type of facility. And you've
2 also corrected me for using the word "camp." What did
3 you mean by the term "normal for that type of facility"
4 when you said that? What did you mean by that?
5 A. I meant that it was a facility where a large
6 number of people were accommodated. And as for the
7 prevailing conditions during that conflict, the
8 situation was not good. I mean, the general situation
9 couldn't be good at any facility.
10 Q. You spoke of the fact that it would be
11 contrary to medical ethics for doctors or medical staff
12 at the Busovaca Medical Centre to discriminate on the
13 basis of nationality. I take it, that you can't
14 positively rule out that some members of your staff may
15 have discriminated on the basis of nationality, but
16 it's something that you simply didn't know about at the
18 A. I didn't know about such cases, but I believe
19 that there was no discrimination in respect of
20 patients. Every patient who would come to our
21 institution, he was simply a patient for all of us. We
22 didn't pay attention to his ethnic background, to his
23 name, surname, and so on.
24 Q. And I am quite sure that you never did, but I
25 am just saying that if others on your staff did, it's
1 possible it may have happened and you didn't know?
2 A. It may have happened, but I'm sure that there
3 were no such cases, that nobody discriminated in that
4 sense at the health centre in Busovaca.
5 Q. You spoke of conditions during the war, and I
6 am quite sure they must have been very hard for
7 everybody. But were the basic facilities available to
8 you personally during the war? When I say basic
9 facilities, were you able to gather enough food and to
10 wash and tend to your personal needs like that?
11 A. Well, I was in the same situation as other
12 people, and I probably ate the same food at the health
13 centre as the people at the Kaonik facility. I had
14 soap to wash myself, and I believe the people at the
15 Kaonik facility also had soap.
16 Q. What about heating?
17 A. As far as heating is concerned, at the health
18 centre in Busovaca we had the central heating system
19 from before the war. We had a boiler room and we had
20 some coal left. So we did have heating for a period of
21 time at the health centre.
22 Q. Now, when you went to Kaonik, what was the
23 heating facilities there like? Did you make any
24 observations about that?
25 A. No, I didn't.
1 Q. What about -- did people appear to have
2 sufficient blankets and bedding that you could see?
3 A. I don't remember. I wasn't -- I didn't see
4 whether they had blankets or not.
5 Q. It's a long time back, but did you notice the
6 beds, the type of beds people were sleeping in?
7 A. I don't remember. Sorry, I don't remember.
8 It was a long time ago.
9 Q. Did you go into -- I think you said that you
10 went into all parts of the prison. Did you go into --
11 do you remember going into a large hangar type building
12 with a lot of people in it?
13 A. I don't remember.
14 Q. What do you remember seeing, in terms of the
15 buildings that you went into?
16 A. I saw a big building, there was an entrance
17 to that building, several rooms. There was a toilet
18 facility next to the rooms. I can remember this much.
19 Q. And these rooms appeared to be divided into
20 cells; is that correct?
21 A. Yes, they looked that way, but I -- they
22 didn't look like real cells, in my opinion.
23 Q. Did you go into -- inside of any of these
24 cells, or did you just look at them from the outside?
25 A. I didn't go inside. I saw them from the
2 Q. And you don't remember a big, open hangar
3 building with a lot of people in it at all at that
5 A. No, I don't remember.
6 Q. Did you see a place where people could wash
7 their clothes and dry them?
8 A. No, I didn't see it.
9 Q. And you spoke of the toilet facilities. What
10 was it that enabled you to differentiate between staff
11 toilet facilities and toilet facilities of the
12 prisoners? What enabled you to do that?
13 A. No, they were the same.
14 Q. But there was nothing that permitted you to
15 say that this was definitely a toilet for prisoners as
16 opposed to staff; to you all the toilets looked the
17 same? Is that what you are saying?
18 A. No, they looked the same.
19 Q. And did you sit down and speak to any of the
20 prisoners there at the time and ask them about their
22 A. No, I didn't.
23 Q. During this particular period in time did you
24 -- bear with me a moment. Did you know of a
25 Dr. Mujezinovic?
1 A. No, I didn't.
2 Q. Mohamed Mujezinovic?
3 A. No. No. I only heard that this physician
4 used to work in Vitez.
5 Q. And did you know that he was brought down to
6 your medical facility during April and May of 1993?
7 A. As a doctor or as a patient?
8 Q. As a doctor. Did you know that?
9 A. I don't remember.
10 Q. You don't recall him being brought down each
11 -- just about every day for a two-week period? It's a
12 long time back now, but he was collected from Vitez and
13 brought down.
14 A. He was not brought to the health centre. I'm
15 sure about that. You mean to work -- that
16 Dr. Mujezinovic would work at the health centre in
17 Busovaca? No.
18 Q. You don't remember?
19 A. I remember that he didn't work -- he wasn't
20 working there, because I was there during that period.
21 Dr. Mujezinovic from Vitez was not coming to work at
22 the health centre in Busovaca.
23 Q. And he's Muslim, isn't he?
24 A. Well, by his name and surname, yes.
25 Q. You spoke of the Busovaca medical facility
1 being the only facility in Busovaca, but wasn't there
2 also a facility at the kindergarten?
3 A. At the kindergarten, yes. There was one
4 facility which was a branch of the Nova Bila Hospital
5 which only had a few beds for patients who were able to
6 leave the Nova Bila Hospital. There were no doctors
8 Q. And this facility at the kindergarten was for
9 HVO soldiers?
10 A. I believe so, but I am not sure. I don't
11 know. I am not aware of that because I was working at
12 the health centre, which is a separate institution. I
13 was not working with the Nova Bila Hospital.
14 Q. Now, you're still the director of the medical
15 centre in Busovaca?
16 A. Yes, I am.
17 Q. And so you would have access to all the
18 medical records that are being kept there, is that
20 A. Yes, I do.
21 Q. So if representatives from the office of the
22 Prosecutor were to come and see you, you'd be able to
23 show us those records that you keep there for this
24 particular period?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And with these medical records, the sample
2 group that you've brought to court with you here, what
3 has been brought here, did you get permission from the
4 patients to bring these documents to court?
5 A. Could you please repeat your question, I am
6 not sure I understood?
7 Q. The series of the documents from the hospital
8 that we went through and have been marked as exhibits
9 and were placed on the overhead projector, I was just
10 asking you, did you obtain the permission of the
11 patients to bring those records here to court?
12 A. No. I didn't obtain permission from patients
13 because these documents, the documents they received,
14 remained at the medical centre in Busovaca. They were
15 not in their possession. So there was no need for me
16 to ask them to give this documentation. Because if I
17 issue one particular prescription or document, I keep
18 it, we keep it at the medical centre. It is never
19 given to the patient. He gets a copy for the
20 prescription and this other document stays here.
21 Q. So the information that's contained in these
22 documents is not considered by you to be privileged
23 medical information in other words?
24 A. No, I don't consider it as such.
25 Q. Now just going through these documents, and I
1 think it might help you if you were to have access to
2 them and to assist their Honours if we put a copy on
3 the projector. I would like to ask you some questions
4 about them, if I may?
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Excuse me, but I believe
6 we're going to be working until 1.30, perhaps we might
7 divide that time up appropriately. Perhaps we might
8 take a break now, unless you have a question you would
9 like to put to the witness now. Otherwise, I think it
10 be best see when we continue. Should we take a recess
11 now? Very well. Let's take a fifteen minute break.
12 --- Recess taken at 12:25 p.m.
13 --- On resuming at 12.45 p.m.
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Niemann, please resume.
15 Wait a moment, please.
16 (The accused entered court).
17 MR. NIEMANN:
18 Q. Dr. Bilic, I was about to ask you some
19 questions about the documents that have been tendered
20 into evidence. And perhaps if I can do them one by
21 one, that would help. The first one, D-18/A A. If
22 that can be placed on the overhead projector, please.
23 Doctor, this person, Ilijaz Krivosija, did you know
24 this person at all?
25 A. I did, yes, he was a neighbour.
1 Q. And what was his employment, what did he do
2 in Busovaca?
3 A. I hope you'll believe me that I don't know.
4 I think he worked for the steel works in Zenica, but I
5 only think so, I am not sure.
6 Q. And I take it you didn't understand him to be
7 in any way connected with the military, the JNA or the
8 Territorial Defence?
9 A. I don't know.
10 Q. Do you know how or why it was that he ended
11 up in the Kaonik camp by any chance if he was a
13 A. -- to camp in my view, but I just don't
15 Q. Okay. And just looking at the document
16 itself, Exhibit D-18/A, and perhaps it could be
17 displayed on the overhead projector. It probably
18 already is. The English version of it, perhaps, we
19 might see. Do you notice there you it says "exemption
20 from work," presumably that means work at the Kaonik
21 prison -- yes, by the Kaonik prison?
22 A. I don't know, I didn't write this
23 prescription. It was the doctor who did it.
24 Q. You're aware, I take it, that prisoners were
25 used for the purposes of digging trenches during that
1 period of 1993, people who were detained at the Kaonik
3 A. I don't know that.
4 Q. Do you know the sort of work people were
5 doing there?
6 A. I don't know it, I wasn't a doctor and I
7 really don't know what she meant or what she told the
8 patient. The patient never came to from me to a prison
9 to be examined by me.
10 Q. And you'd agree with me if it were for no
11 other reason but for general knowledge, that digging
12 trenches would not be the sort of appropriate activity
13 for someone with a discus hernia?
14 A. Yes, I would.
15 Q. Where is Dr. Mioc now?
16 A. I don't know, believe me, I think she's in
17 Australia. She was from Zenica, otherwise.
18 Q. Now, you'll notice that it says "sleeping on
19 a flat bed recommended." I take it you don't know
20 whether those sorts of facilities were available in the
21 prison at Kaonik?
22 A. About these facilities, I don't know, but I
23 think it could be made available.
24 Q. Would sleeping on one of those packing racks,
25 the racks that they use to pack boxes and things on,
1 would that be suitable or do you think the doctor may
2 have had in mind something a bit more elaborate than
4 A. I don't know what the doctor had in mind, but
5 I guess a board, a wooden board would have been
7 Q. Okay. Now, going to the next document,
8 Document 18/B. You'll notice that in this one it
9 prescribes the treatment at home recommended. What is
10 it about being treated at home that would have been
11 better for this person than being in the Kaonik
13 A. I don't know, believe me.
14 Q. And do you know this person, Avdo Husbasic?
15 A. I do not.
16 Q. You notice that the tablets that have been
17 prescribed there, are you familiar with those
18 particular tablets?
19 A. Amilofilin tablets, two times one tablet,
20 yes, I know that one. Ramital, I don't know, I don't
21 know what it would be in Croatian.
22 Q. What --
23 A. Ramital, R-a-m-i-t-a-l.
24 Q. What is that normally prescribed for?
25 A. Ramital is normally prescribed, as far as I
1 know, for the stomach or duodenal ulcer.
2 Q. And I notice that Dr. Petrovic is an
3 obstetrician and gynaecologist. I take it that doctors
4 were in somewhat short supply then, so you had to use
5 whatever doctors that were available?
6 A. She tried, yes, she did.
7 Q. Where is Dr. Petrovic now?
8 A. Health centre at Busovaca. She is there
9 right this minute, she is working there.
10 Q. Now, if we look at the next document, 18/C.
11 Did you know this person, Ismet Medjuseljac?
12 A. Yes, I did, by sight.
13 Q. And do you know where he came from?
14 A. No, I don't.
15 Q. And do you remember him as being a patient
16 previously at the medical centre?
17 A. I do.
18 Q. And do you know whether or not he had any
19 particular complaints prior to this?
20 A. I don't know, I am not a doctor. And I
21 didn't see his card.
22 Q. If you look at the next one, 18/D. Again, we
23 have this recommendation for home treatment, did you
24 know this person, Ejub Buljina?
25 A. No.
1 Q. And I think it's your evidence that these
2 recommendations were accepted and acted upon by the
3 prison officials at Kaonik, is that right?
4 A. I said that, yes they did, they accepted
5 them. And they know it about one patient for sure, but
6 as for the others, I did not ask.
7 Q. And obviously on this occasion only five days
8 at home was considered the appropriate period of time
9 for recovery?
10 A. I guess so. The doctor who treated him must
11 have thought that that would be enough.
12 Q. And after five days, they would be taken back
13 to the Kaonik prison?
14 A. I wouldn't know.
15 Q. Now, when they went home, I don't suppose you
16 know whether or not they were guarded or in any way
17 prevented from leaving the area?
18 A. I wouldn't know.
19 Q. And Dr. Markovic, where is Dr. Markovic now,
20 do you know?
21 A. Dr. Markovic is in the Netherlands now.
22 Q. Looking at the next one, 18/E. Do you know
23 Suad Halilovic?
24 A. By sight, yes.
25 Q. And do you know where he lived prior to the
2 A. Busovaca.
3 Q. Do you know the premises that he was required
4 were to live in -- I'm sorry, I withdraw that. Do you
5 know the place where he lived, was it an apartment
6 block or an ordinary house or maybe you don't know?
7 A. I think he lived there in a house, in a
8 private house.
9 Q. And do you know happened to him during the
11 A. I do not.
12 Q. And the diagnosis there, that would be
13 consistent, I think you said in your evidence, with a
14 blow to the chest without fracture?
15 A. Yes, yes.
16 Q. And I know you've said numerous times that
17 you're not a doctor, but it could also be consistent
18 with being beaten?
19 A. No. I don't know, it's possible, it's
20 possible. It may be yes, it may be no.
21 Q. Now looking at the next one 18/F, do you know
22 of the drug Andol, A-n-d-o-l? Yes, do you know about
23 the drug Andol?
24 A. I do.
25 Q. What is it normally used for?
1 A. It can be prescribed as a pain killer or to
2 combat fever, analgesic or for some heart complaints,
3 better circulation, bring the fever down.
4 Q. And you may not know what cold compresses are
5 commonly used for?
6 A. Presumably for some inflammations or perhaps
7 endyma or perhaps sprained joints.
8 Q. Or bruising, damage to the body like that?
9 A. That too, yes, possible.
10 Q. Looking at the next one, 18/G. I notice this
11 one says swelling in front of the left ear and has an
12 earache. The recommended therapy and prescriptions
13 there suggest that there may have been an infection in
14 the ear, is that right?
15 A. I don't think there was an infection. I say
16 I am not a doctor, but I think this is diagnosis for an
17 inflammation of the middle ear.
18 Q. And obviously the doctor didn't consider
19 draughts, that the patient would be able to kept out of
20 the draft or be kept warm at Kaonik because they're
21 prescribed different at home?
22 A. I wouldn't know. She must have decided that
23 that was the best thing for him.
24 Q. And I suppose again it might be -- and if you
25 don't know, just say you don't know because I know you
1 have said that you're not a medical practitioner, but I
2 am just seeing how much you can assist me. The
3 swelling to the left ear, could be the result of being
4 hit or struck on the head? You don't rule out that
6 A. No, one can't rule it out. But it could be
7 the result of inflammation that it swells because it is
9 Q. Which inflammation could well follow being
10 struck on the head?
11 A. Yes. It could be, but not necessarily.
12 Q. Now going to D-18/H. This patient -- do you
13 know this person at all?
14 A. I do.
15 Q. And how well do you know the person?
16 A. As well as one can know one's associates,
17 one's business associates.
18 Q. And have you known this person to be
19 generally in good health when you knew him prior to the
21 A. No, he's always had problems. He had an
23 Q. And I take it that if one did have a very
24 serious ulcer and were placed in adverse conditions and
25 in a prison, that that could exacerbate the problem?
1 A. It could, it could exacerbate it if there
2 really was a disease of some kind.
3 Q. Yes, just looking at Exhibit D-18/I for a
4 moment. Do you notice the signature of the treating
5 doctor here?
6 A. Yes, I do.
7 Q. And who is he, what's his or her name?
8 A. Dr. Nada Petrovic.
9 Q. And I think we asked you where Dr. Petrovic
10 was, did you say the Netherlands?
11 A. She's at Busovaca in the health centre,
13 Q. Now, just looking at -- just moving on to the
14 last one, 18/K, the very last one.
15 Now, again you can only tell us so much, I know,
16 because you are not the doctor that wrote this, but it
17 talks about treatment at home absolutely necessary,
18 because this patient has a bad heart condition. So,
19 again, I think you'd agree with me that, obviously, the
20 prescribing physician didn't consider that the
21 conditions at the Kaonik Prison were in any way
22 suitable for this person.
23 A. Well, yes, the doctor must have thought that.
24 Q. That would have included the requirement of
25 people to do physical labour, such as dig trenches?
1 A. I guess so.
2 Q. And the doctor is very clearly saying here
3 that there is no choice in the matter, that it's
4 absolutely necessary that the patient go home? We
5 didn't get your answer, I don't think.
6 A. Yes. Yes, the doctor thought that the
7 patient should be at home.
8 Q. And the person, Salih Hodzic, do you know
9 Salih Hodzic?
10 A. I do by sight.
11 Q. Do you know this person to have a heart
13 A. Yes, I do.
14 Q. And is it well-known in Busovaca that he has
15 a heart condition?
16 A. Well, it wasn't common knowledge. I mean,
17 not everybody knew what everybody else suffered from,
18 but the majority of patients, because Busovaca is
19 small, of course we all knew them. We knew most of the
20 patients and the patient himself would say, if I met an
21 acquaintance, he would say, "Oh, yes, this one has this
22 and that disorder and the diagnosis was such and such."
23 So it may not be general knowledge, but --
24 Q. How old was Salih Hodzic, approximately? I
25 know you wouldn't know his precise date of birth, but
2 A. Well, approximately, I don't know. I really
3 don't. But I think he could be around 50 something, 55
5 Q. And you didn't understand him to be part of
6 the military of Busovaca with his heart condition?
7 A. No.
8 MR. NIEMANN: I have no further questions,
9 Your Honour.
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you, Mr. Niemann.
11 Mr. Mikulicic, do you have any questions, any
12 additional questions?
13 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honour. We
14 have no additional questions.
15 JUDGE NIETO NAVIA: Doctor, had the
16 ambulances, I mean the health centre ambulances,
17 identification as medical vehicles, such as Red Cross
18 signs or something like that?
19 A. Yes. Yes, they did have signs, Red Cross
20 signs, and it was written on each of them "Busovaca
21 Health Centre."
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Dr. Bilic, this is the end
23 of your testimony here before the International
24 Criminal Tribunal. The Chamber has no further
25 questions to put to you, so we like to thank you for
1 coming and appearing, and we wish you a pleasant trip
2 back to your country. Thank you.
3 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
4 (The witness withdrew)
5 JUDGE VOHRAH: For the record, the question
6 that was put by the Trial Chamber was not by Judge
7 Vohrah, but Judge Nieto Navia. Thank you.
8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: For the French translation,
9 it was indeed Judge Nieto Navia.
10 Mr. Mikulicic, it is now 1.00, 1.15. Is it
11 worth it for us all now to proceed with the next
12 testimony or should we leave this for tomorrow, because
13 we only have 15 minutes?
14 JUDGE NIETO NAVIA: For the record, the
15 clarification was made by Judge Vohrah and not by the
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: We always try to arrive at
18 the truth.
19 Mr. Mikulicic, you have the floor.
20 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honours, the Defence
21 also believes that the next witness should not be
22 interrupted in his testimony. Therefore, we would like
23 to put him tomorrow morning. We should, therefore,
24 from our point of view, finish today, and let the
25 witness begin his testimony tomorrow morning. But
1 before we rise, we would like the documents identified
2 as 18A to 18K be admitted into evidence.
3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Niemann, no objection,
4 I see. Therefore, it should be admitted.
5 Now, following the proposal that has been
6 made, I believe we are all in agreement that we can end
7 today's session now and that we will meet tomorrow at 9
8 a.m. Have a pleasant afternoon to you all.
9 --- Whereupon hearing adjourned at 1.20 p.m.
10 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 16th day of
11 June, 1998.