1. 1 Tuesday, 30 June 1998

    2 (Open session)

    3 (The witness entered court)

    4 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.

    5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning, ladies and

    6 gentlemen. We are back again to continue our case.

    7 THE REGISTRAR: The case is IT-95-14/1-T,

    8 Tribunal versus Zlatko Aleksovski.

    9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you very much. Will

    10 the Prosecution make their appearances.

    11 MR. NIEMANN: Your Honours, my name is

    12 Niemann, and I appear with my colleague, Mr. Meddegoda,

    13 for the Prosecution.

    14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you very much,

    15 Mr. Niemann. And for the defence, Mr. Mikulicic,

    16 please.

    17 MR. MIKULICIC: Good morning, Your Honours.

    18 I am Goran Mikulicic and I appear with my colleague

    19 Mr. Joka for the Defence.

    20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning to the

    21 interpreters and our sound engineers, Mr. Mikulicic,

    22 you have called another witness for today, haven't

    23 you?

    24 MR. MIKULICIC: Yes, Your Honours. The

    25 Defence will invite witness Mr. Darko Kristo, who is

  2. 1 sitting here now, and we will start with questioning of

    2 witnesses for the Defence.

    3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning, Mr. Kristo.

    4 Will you please stand up? You will now read the solemn

    5 declaration.

    6 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will

    7 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the

    8 truth.

    9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: You may be seated, and you

    10 will now answer the questions which Mr. Mikulicic will

    11 ask you.

    12 Mr. Mikulicic, you may proceed.

    13 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honours.


    15 Examined by Mr. Mikulicic

    16 Q. Mr. Kristo, my name is Mikulicic, and I

    17 represent the accused Zlatko Aleksovski. On behalf of

    18 the Defence, I will pose you the questions and I appeal

    19 for you to answer them to the best of your memory. I

    20 also kindly ask you to speak slowly so that we can

    21 allow the interpreters to translate what you will be

    22 saying.

    23 Mr. Kristo, tell us when and where were you

    24 born?

    25 A. On the 3rd of August, 1965, in Busovaca.

  3. 1 Q. Where did you go to school?

    2 A. In Zenica, at the elementary school in

    3 Busovaca and secondary school in Zenica.

    4 Q. Mr. Kristo, what kind of secondary school did

    5 you attend in Zenica?

    6 A. A school for catering personnel.

    7 Q. Do you remember, when did you complete

    8 schooling?

    9 A. Yes. In 1983.

    10 Q. Did you, after completing secondary school,

    11 find a job, or did you continue your schooling? What

    12 did you do after graduation?

    13 A. I immediately found a job.

    14 Q. Do you remember where was that?

    15 A. In a company called Tisa Tourist, a catering

    16 company in Busovaca.

    17 Q. So you found a job in the catering industry?

    18 A. Yes.

    19 Q. Mr. Kristo, in what capacity did you work

    20 there?

    21 A. As a waiter.

    22 Q. Until when did you work as a waiter in Tisa

    23 Tourist?

    24 A. Until 1991, the end of 1991.

    25 Q. When did you stop working? You stopped

  4. 1 working then?

    2 A. Yes.

    3 Q. Tell us why.

    4 A. Because I volunteered for the HVO.

    5 Q. So it was in 1991, the end of that year, when

    6 a war broke out in Bosnia-Herzegovina; is that correct?

    7 A. Yes.

    8 Q. And then you volunteered for the HVO; is that

    9 correct?

    10 A. Yes.

    11 Q. Tell us, Mr. Kristo, when you joined HVO, did

    12 you take part in some armed actions or did you work

    13 somewhere else?

    14 A. I worked as a cook.

    15 Q. Where did you work as a cook in 1991?

    16 A. At the Tisa Hotel.

    17 Q. But as a military personnel?

    18 A. Yes.

    19 Q. Do you remember, Mr. Kristo, in which

    20 military unit you then served as a cook?

    21 A. It was the Nikola Srbinski (phoen) unit.

    22 Q. And until when did you serve as a cook at the

    23 Tisa Hotel?

    24 A. It was just for a short period after which we

    25 left for the Draga barracks and then to the Kaonik

  5. 1 barracks.

    2 Q. When did you arrive in Kaonik?

    3 A. In 1992, in October 1992.

    4 Q. Mr. Kristo, you told us that you grew up and

    5 went to school in Busovaca, so I suppose then that you

    6 know the area around Busovaca; is that correct?

    7 A. Yes.

    8 Q. Do you know what was the purpose of the

    9 Kaonik facility before the war broke out in

    10 Bosnia-Herzegovina?

    11 A. A military police unit was deployed there,

    12 and I personally know, as a cook, that we were deployed

    13 there because of military police to put the kitchen

    14 into operation.

    15 Q. You did not understand me, Mr. Kristo, so I

    16 will have to repeat the question. Before the war broke

    17 out in Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1990 and in 1980, what was

    18 the purpose of the Kaonik barracks? Who was there?

    19 A. The Yugoslav People's Army.

    20 Q. Is it then correct that Kaonik was a barracks

    21 of the Yugoslav People's Army?

    22 A. Yes, yes.

    23 Q. Did you at that time, when the Yugoslav

    24 People's Army was at Kaonik, did you have a chance to

    25 visit that facility?

  6. 1 A. No.

    2 Q. So you came there for the first time only

    3 after you had joined the HVO and served there as a

    4 cook; is that correct?

    5 A. Yes.

    6 Q. So that was in October 1992?

    7 A. Yes.

    8 Q. Tell us, Mr. Kristo, when you arrived in the

    9 Kaonik area, where was the kitchen situated?

    10 A. At the very entrance to the barracks. The

    11 first building some 10 metres away from the gate.

    12 Q. Do you remember who was there in that

    13 building?

    14 A. Yes. Military police.

    15 Q. So the kitchen was situated or located in the

    16 first building near the gate where military police were

    17 also deployed; is that correct?

    18 A. Yes.

    19 Q. Is that correct, that it was your duty to

    20 prepare food for military police?

    21 A. Yes.

    22 Q. Do you know, Mr. Kristo, when or whether,

    23 within the Kaonik facility, a district military

    24 tribunal was formed; do you know that?

    25 A. It was set up but only after the new year or

  7. 1 around the new year. I can't remember exactly the

    2 date.

    3 Q. Was that in the building in which you were

    4 located as a cook or where the military police was

    5 located or in another building?

    6 A. In another building up there in the barracks.

    7 Q. When this district military prison was set up

    8 at the end of 1992 and 1993, did you prepare food for

    9 the prisoners as well?

    10 A. Yes.

    11 Q. Tell us, Mr. Kristo, where did you get the

    12 raw materials for cooking?

    13 A. From Draga.

    14 Q. Can you tell us what Draga is?

    15 A. It is the barracks where the commanders were

    16 located, the regiment commanders.

    17 Q. From the barracks, the raw materials were

    18 brought to you and you prepared food and meals from

    19 those raw materials; is that correct?

    20 A. Yes.

    21 Q. Do you remember approximately what kind of

    22 food was that?

    23 A. Well, just like for any other kitchen. In

    24 the beginning, there was everything that we needed

    25 until regular supplies were possible, potato, macaroni,

  8. 1 meat, lentils, peas, and things like that.

    2 Q. Can you describe, Mr. Kristo, what kind of a

    3 kitchen was that, what kind of equipment was there in

    4 the kitchen?

    5 A. Well, it was not a proper kitchen as far as I

    6 know what kitchens should be like, but from the Tisa

    7 Hotel, we took some of the inventory and then we made a

    8 kitchen there for military police in order to prepare

    9 food, like stoves, utensils, and similar things.

    10 Q. If I understand you correctly, Mr. Kristo,

    11 when you arrived there in the building where the

    12 military police were also located, there was not a

    13 kitchen before in that building, but you had set it up;

    14 is that correct?

    15 A. Yes.

    16 Q. So you had to take care to bring the

    17 necessary equipment for the kitchen in order to prepare

    18 food?

    19 A. Yes.

    20 Q. You said that you had a stove on which you

    21 cooked food. What kind of a stove was that?

    22 A. Electricity stove.

    23 Q. How many plates were there; do you remember?

    24 A. Four.

    25 Q. So you prepared food on those four plates?

  9. 1 A. Yes.

    2 Q. Was that sufficient capacity-wise to prepare

    3 food for military police, I mean the period before

    4 armed conflicts broke out in Busovaca?

    5 A. Yes, as far as military police is concerned,

    6 yes, it was sufficient.

    7 Q. How many meals a day did you prepare?

    8 A. Well, I can't remember now. It was a long

    9 time ago. I can't remember.

    10 Q. I'm asking you because we want to hear

    11 whether you prepared just lunch or breakfast and lunch

    12 and maybe dinner. Do you remember that?

    13 A. We prepared breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and

    14 sometimes we served canned food for breakfast,

    15 like pate, like fish, or ...

    16 Q. Is that true that you had prepared three

    17 meals out of which sometimes not all of them were

    18 cooked meals and breakfast was canned food?

    19 A. Yes.

    20 Q. Mr. Kristo, do you remember when armed

    21 conflicts broke out in the Busovaca territory area

    22 between Muslims and Croats?

    23 A. I think it was in January. I can't remember

    24 the exact date.

    25 Q. So in that period, you were working in the

  10. 1 kitchen; is that correct?

    2 A. Yes.

    3 Q. Did you, while working in the kitchen, feel

    4 that there was an increased need for food or the

    5 quantity of food that you had to prepare? Did you,

    6 after armed conflicts broke out in Busovaca, did you

    7 have to prepare more food than before?

    8 A. Yes.

    9 Q. Can you tell us why?

    10 A. Because the district prison was set up there.

    11 Q. So simply there were more people for whom you

    12 had to prepare food?

    13 A. Yes.

    14 Q. Do you know, Mr. Kristo, that at the end of

    15 January 1993 in the Kaonik facility that a group of

    16 civilians was brought from Busovaca and they were

    17 temporarily accommodated there; do you know that?

    18 A. Yes.

    19 Q. Did you prepare food for those people as

    20 well?

    21 A. Yes.

    22 Q. Did you have, Mr. Kristo, because of an

    23 increased number of people, did you have to bring some

    24 more kitchen equipment, or was the equipment there

    25 sufficient for that purpose?

  11. 1 A. No, it was not sufficient, especially as far

    2 as utensils were concerned, so we asked the regiment to

    3 bring us a kitchen in which we could prepare food

    4 outside. We used an open heat stove outside.

    5 Q. And did they bring you this equipment?

    6 A. To the best of their potential, the basic

    7 equipment that we asked for was there, the trailer was

    8 brought, which we used as a kitchen, but other

    9 equipment was not sufficient.

    10 Q. When you speak about the inventory and

    11 utensils, what do you mean?

    12 A. Well, I mean like plates and forks and things

    13 like that.

    14 Q. The small inventory, as you call it, or as

    15 far as I remember, you said that you brought it from

    16 the Tisa Hotel?

    17 A. Yes.

    18 Q. Mr. Kristo, you said that a trailer was

    19 brought. Can you tell us what kind of a trailer was

    20 that? Was that sort of a kitchen mess?

    21 A. Yes, yes, it was a kitchen mess with three

    22 big cauldrons inside, I don't know how many auxiliary

    23 pieces were there, and we used timber and wood.

    24 Q. So it is an auxiliary kitchen which the army

    25 usually uses when they are in the field; is that

  12. 1 correct?

    2 A. Yes.

    3 Q. So it was brought near to where you had been

    4 accommodated. Where was it exactly?

    5 A. Behind our building, behind our kitchen.

    6 Q. Mr. Kristo, did somebody help you in the

    7 preparation of the food or did you do it alone?

    8 A. I was a cook together with another one, and

    9 when the number of people increased, when the Muslim

    10 civilians arrived, then we sought help from Zlatko as

    11 far as the prisoners up there were concerned, and these

    12 were the people from the HVO.

    13 Q. So if I understood you correctly, when the

    14 number of people was increased for which you had to

    15 prepare food, then you asked help or you asked to be

    16 given more people in order to prepare more food?

    17 A. Yes.

    18 Q. So the people that were given to you as help,

    19 they were Croatian soldiers who were disciplined at the

    20 district military prison; is that correct?

    21 A. Yes.

    22 Q. Tell us, Mr. Kristo, now we are speaking

    23 about the period when the Muslim civilians were brought

    24 to Kaonik and when you had to prepare food for them as

    25 well, so we are referring to this period. Mr. Kristo,

  13. 1 did you, under those conditions, prepare three meals a

    2 day or not?

    3 A. Yes.

    4 Q. So three meals a day?

    5 A. Until regular supplies were possible, three

    6 meals a day.

    7 Q. Tell us, was it sufficient?

    8 A. What can I tell you? When supplies were

    9 regular, we had enough food for all of us because it

    10 was not only the civilians, Muslims, but the army as

    11 well, and ourselves.

    12 Q. So you prepared food which was also served to

    13 the prisoners in the district prison and the Muslims

    14 which were brought, the civilians which were brought,

    15 and who else?

    16 A. Military police and the guards, of course,

    17 and we also prepared food for outside the barracks, for

    18 the frontline, and for some other outlets in the city,

    19 in the town.

    20 Q. Is it then correct, Mr. Kristo, that at the

    21 place where you prepared food, from there it was

    22 distributed to the prison, to the fighters who were on

    23 the defence lines, and to some facilities in the town,

    24 and that it was the same food?

    25 A. Yes.

  14. 1 Q. Is that correct then, that the guards and

    2 prisoners had the same food?

    3 A. The same. Everybody ate the same food

    4 because there was no possibility to prepare different

    5 types of food and kinds of food because there were too

    6 many people for the capacity of our kitchen.

    7 Q. I see. So the food was the same, and the

    8 meals, quantity-wise, were the same, or did you have

    9 different quantities of food or meals for guards and

    10 for prisoners or ...

    11 A. It was the same for all.

    12 Q. Tell us, Mr. Kristo, in the situation where

    13 supplies were more or less regular, did the prisoners

    14 have the possibility to ask for more helpings if it was

    15 possible?

    16 A. Yes, yes, in all circumstances, yes.

    17 Q. Mr. Kristo, do you remember that, in the

    18 kitchen or as a consequence of the intake of food that

    19 you had prepared, that some people would have some

    20 stomach problems, that people would feel sick because

    21 of that?

    22 A. Nothing like that had happened.

    23 Q. Mr. Kristo, in which way was the food from

    24 the kitchen where it was prepared taken to the prison

    25 where the prisoners were located?

  15. 1 A. The Muslims, accompanied by guards, would

    2 come to the kitchen and then take up the food to the

    3 prison.

    4 Q. Did you have any opportunity to go to that

    5 prison or did you stay in the lower building all the

    6 time?

    7 A. Because of my job, I had to remain down there

    8 all the time, and I just -- I think I might have gone

    9 there, up once or twice, but under extraordinary

    10 circumstances.

    11 Q. So it was under extraordinary circumstances.

    12 It was not a regular occurrence?

    13 A. Yes.

    14 Q. Mr. Kristo, you also said that the prisoners

    15 or the Muslim civilians who were brought to Kaonik,

    16 that they would come to take the food. Then you would

    17 have had the opportunity to see them?

    18 A. Yes.

    19 Q. How did they look to you? Were they

    20 underfed, were they in a terrible state as far as

    21 hygiene was concerned?

    22 A. To me, normally. I didn't see anything

    23 unusual.

    24 Q. Mr. Kristo, I'm aware of the fact that you

    25 stayed in the lower building and that you were

  16. 1 preoccupied with your job, but let me ask you,

    2 nevertheless, the following: Do you know perhaps when

    3 the Muslim civilians from the Busovaca area were

    4 brought to Kaonik? Do you remember, when was that?

    5 A. Well, it might have been in January. I can't

    6 remember the exact date. At the end of January.

    7 Q. Maybe the beginning of February.

    8 A. I'm not sure.

    9 Q. Well, it has been six years since then and

    10 it's only normal.

    11 Do you remember then, Mr. Kristo, how long

    12 they stayed in Kaonik? How long did you have to

    13 prepare more food? Do you remember how long was that?

    14 A. I can't remember exactly the date, it was

    15 such a long time ago. Well, perhaps until Easter time

    16 when the exchange took place. I can't remember on

    17 which date the Easter holidays were at the time.

    18 Q. Mr. Kristo, you said that you belonged to the

    19 regiment so you were not a member of the military

    20 police in whose building you actually stayed.

    21 A. Yes.

    22 Q. But do you know what unit did the guards at

    23 the district prison belong to? Did they belong to your

    24 regiment or were they members of the military police;

    25 do you know that?

  17. 1 A. Military police.

    2 Q. Did you meet Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski at that

    3 time when you were at Kaonik?

    4 A. Yes.

    5 Q. Did you meet him once or several times?

    6 A. Several times.

    7 Q. Would you recognise him if you saw him today?

    8 A. Yes, of course. I see him over there.

    9 MR. MIKULICIC: Please, may I state for the

    10 record that the witness is pointing at the accused,

    11 Zlatko Aleksovski.

    12 Q. Mr. Kristo, do you remember when it was the

    13 first time you saw Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski, under what

    14 circumstances? I'm not asking you about the date?

    15 A. Well, it could have been towards the end of

    16 January, perhaps in the beginning of February.

    17 Q. Do you remember perhaps what Mr. Zlatko

    18 Aleksovski wore at the time? How was he dressed?

    19 Military or civilian?

    20 A. Well, anyhow, I mean, sometimes he wore

    21 civilian clothes, sometimes a uniform, sometimes it was

    22 a combination of civilian trousers and an army upper

    23 part.

    24 Q. Mr. Kristo, how were you dressed? Were you

    25 in civilian clothes or were you in a uniform? I

  18. 1 understand, of course, that when you cooked, you

    2 wouldn't be wearing it, but will you tell me?

    3 A. I wore jeans, and, of course, I had a white

    4 coat.

    5 Q. The cook's --

    6 A. Yes.

    7 Q. And the guards in Kaonik, were they dressed?

    8 A. They wore uniforms.

    9 Q. Did they have any insignia? Did they have

    10 patches? Did they have MP indicated on their sleeves

    11 or something, the guards?

    12 A. No.

    13 Q. You do not remember or what?

    14 A. I do not remember.

    15 Q. Mr. Kristo, do you remember Mr. Zlatko

    16 Aleksovski having any insignia on those occasions when

    17 he had a uniform on?

    18 A. No, no, none.

    19 Q. He did not have any insignia. And rank, what

    20 about rank indication?

    21 A. No.

    22 Q. Mr. Kristo, do you remember perhaps if you

    23 provided adequate quantities of tea for people

    24 accommodated in the prison for their daily

    25 consumption? Did you issue some excessive quantities

  19. 1 of tea or normal?

    2 A. No, just normal with breakfast, one usually

    3 got either tea or coffee with milk.

    4 Q. I see. And tea and coffee brought along with

    5 other food from the Draga barracks or did you have

    6 another source of supply?

    7 A. From the Draga barracks.

    8 Q. A little while ago, you mentioned that at a

    9 certain point in time, it was very difficult to get

    10 supplies. What does that mean? What does it mean?

    11 Why were the supplies any more difficult?

    12 A. Well, probably because we were surrounded and

    13 there was not enough food.

    14 Q. I guess the lines of communication were cut

    15 off?

    16 A. Yes, yes.

    17 Q. And how did you manage then?

    18 A. Well, I think for a certain period of time, I

    19 think for about a month, we kept it to two meals a day,

    20 that is, because there was a shortage of food, so we

    21 simply eliminated one meal a day.

    22 Q. Did it apply to all or only to some?

    23 A. To all.

    24 Q. And how did you get meat or was there some

    25 livestock around, were there some cattle around or

  20. 1 what?

    2 A. Yes, if there was no meat at the regiment --

    3 I mean, if there was not fresh meat, if there was not

    4 fresh meat, there was some tinned meal and the like,

    5 some goulash tins and things.

    6 Q. Did it ever happened that the local

    7 population brought their live stock to be slaughtered

    8 for the needs of the canteen?

    9 A. I did not understand the question.

    10 Q. Do you remember seeing that the soldiers

    11 brought their livestock from their own farms to provide

    12 meat for the kitchen; did these things happen?

    13 A. Yes, they did.

    14 Q. Mr. Kristo, you repeatedly mentioned --

    15 repeated that food was brought over from the Draga

    16 barracks. Does it mean that their driver brought it?

    17 A. Yes. The driver from Draga brought the food

    18 and he also distributed that food that we cooked there,

    19 that we prepared, took it to the frontline and to the

    20 outposts in the town.

    21 Q. Do you know perhaps which were those outposts

    22 in the town?

    23 A. The post office, the medical centre, and a

    24 couple of policemen at some checkpoints, and I guess

    25 there was some other places but I don't remember.

  21. 1 Q. Do you know, Mr. Kristo, if the prisoners

    2 could prepare the tea for themselves in the -- on the

    3 premises of the prison or perhaps in the canteen?

    4 A. I do not know because I was in a different

    5 part of the building.

    6 Q. Mr. Kristo, will you please try to jog your

    7 memory and remember under what circumstances did you

    8 have contact with Mr. Aleksovski, what were these

    9 contacts about?

    10 A. Well, man to man. There was no business

    11 talks because there was no need to.

    12 Q. So if I understood you properly, those were

    13 the common kind of contacts, not any kind of military

    14 contacts or official contacts?

    15 A. No, they were not.

    16 Q. Are you aware that Mr. Aleksovski -- if

    17 Mr. Aleksovski was a member of the military police in

    18 that building in which you were?

    19 A. I don't think so.

    20 Q. Do you know how Mr. Aleksovski treated the

    21 prisoners or those interned Muslim civilians who were

    22 accommodated there; do you know that?

    23 A. I never went upstairs, and I think that

    24 Zlatko always treated everyone correctly.

    25 Q. But you have no personal knowledge of that?

  22. 1 A. No.

    2 Q. Mr. Kristo, you mentioned that you were

    3 surrounded and that the lines of communication were cut

    4 off and that supplies were rendered very difficult; is

    5 that true?

    6 A. It is.

    7 Q. So at that time what was the security

    8 situation at Kaonik itself? Did it ever happen that

    9 Kaonik would be fired at?

    10 A. Yes.

    11 Q. Do you remember any of such incidents when

    12 Kaonik was exposed to fire? Do you remember something

    13 happening?

    14 A. I remember Ivica Bazaric (phoen), a Domobran

    15 who was wounded there. I don't remember the date,

    16 because I was the one who gave the first aid, who

    17 bandaged him.

    18 Q. You mentioned Ivica Bazaric, a Domobran.

    19 What was he doing in Kaonik?

    20 A. I think he was there at the entrance.

    21 Q. As a visitor or a guard?

    22 A. Guard.

    23 Q. Did I understand you properly? He was a

    24 guard at the entrance door?

    25 A. Yes, of the prison.

  23. 1 Q. So that door is right next to the door to

    2 the canteen; is that correct?

    3 A. Well, about 10 metres.

    4 Q. And Mr. Bazaric was wounded at that place as

    5 a guard?

    6 A. Yes.

    7 Q. Do you know what he was -- how was he

    8 wounded, a shell or a bullet or what?

    9 A. A shell hit the place.

    10 Q. And what were his injuries?

    11 A. Well, I wouldn't know. Doctors would know

    12 it. But I know where the wound was and I had to

    13 bandage it and that was over the kidneys, somewhere in

    14 the kidney area.

    15 Q. And you extended first aid to him?

    16 A. Yes.

    17 Q. Do you remember if somebody else was wounded

    18 during such incidents?

    19 A. With him, there was another one, he was Saro

    20 (phoen), I can't remember his first name, but he was

    21 wounded too. He was also a guard, another Domobran,

    22 and he was with Ivica Bazaric at the gate.

    23 Q. And do you recall if any of the prisoners

    24 were wounded; did that happen?

    25 A. No.

  24. 1 Q. I assume, but please correct me if I am

    2 wrong, Mr. Kristo, that in those days, the defence

    3 lines were very near the Kaonik facility since the

    4 shells were falling around it; is that correct?

    5 A. It is.

    6 Q. Would you know how close the defence line was

    7 to the frontline, to Kaonik, I mean?

    8 A. You mean the distance.

    9 Q. Yes, as the crow flies.

    10 A. I don't know exactly, but perhaps a kilometre

    11 or two, I wouldn't know exactly.

    12 Q. Mr. Kristo, where do you work now?

    13 A. Privately, Busovaca, in a private restaurant,

    14 Europa.

    15 Q. So you are not with HVO anymore?

    16 A. No.

    17 Q. When did you leave HVO?

    18 A. In '95.

    19 Q. In '95?

    20 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you very much. The

    21 Defence has no further questions, Your Honours.

    22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you, Mr. Mikulicic.

    23 Mr. Niemann or Mr. Meddegoda, do you have any questions

    24 for this witness?

    25 Cross-examined by Mr. Meddegoda

  25. 1 MR. MEDDEGODA: Just a few questions, Your

    2 Honour.

    3 Q. Mr. Kristo, you said that there were

    4 civilians who were brought to the kitchen, escorted by

    5 the guards to take the food?

    6 A. Yes.

    7 Q. And did you know any of those Muslim

    8 civilians who came to the kitchen to take the food?

    9 A. Of course, I did, because they were friends

    10 of long standing.

    11 Q. And they were from Busovaca, as far as you

    12 remember?

    13 A. Yes.

    14 Q. And they were all law-abiding, good citizens

    15 of the community, as yourself?

    16 A. Well, how law been abiding they were, I

    17 wouldn't know, but before the war, yes, we led the same

    18 life.

    19 Q. But as far as you know, they were good

    20 citizens of the community, as far as you are aware?

    21 A. Yes.

    22 Q. Do you know why they were being detained at

    23 the Kaonik barracks, at the Kaonik prison?

    24 A. I don't know about that.

    25 Q. You also said that there were times when the

  26. 1 equipment you had was not sufficient to cope with the

    2 cooking -- with the cooking demand, for the cooking

    3 needs?

    4 A. I didn't understand you, excuse me.

    5 Q. There was a time when you sought help from

    6 the -- from Mr. Aleksovski with regard to obtaining

    7 more cooking facilities?

    8 A. From Mr. Aleksovski? No, I asked for men, I

    9 asked for some assistance.

    10 Q. And who did you ask for assistance?

    11 A. Well, those prisoners, those who were there

    12 because of some disciplinary transgressions.

    13 Q. I know. They were the prisoners. Whom did

    14 you ask for that assistance, from whom did you obtain

    15 permission to get that assistance?

    16 A. You mean down there, from the personnel?

    17 Q. Yes.

    18 A. Well, I said, yes, from Zlatko or the shift

    19 leader if Zlatko was not there.

    20 Q. Do you know who the shift leader was? Do you

    21 recall who the shift leader was? Do you recall the

    22 names of the shift leaders?

    23 A. I don't. It was a long time ago.

    24 MR. MEDDEGODA: No further questions, Your

    25 Honour.

  27. 1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, have you any

    2 more questions?

    3 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honours, we

    4 have no further questions.

    5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Kristo, you have just

    6 finished giving your testimony here. We have no

    7 further questions for you, and therefore thank you for

    8 coming and we wish you a nice return home. Thank you

    9 very much.

    10 THE WITNESS: Thank you.

    11 (The witness withdrew)

    12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic?

    13 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honours, the Defence

    14 would like to call its next witness, Mr. Janko Batinic.

    15 (The witness entered)

    16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning, sir. It is

    17 me who is talking to you. Can you hear me? You will

    18 now read the declaration.

    19 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I

    20 will speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but

    21 the truth.

    22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you. You may be

    23 seated.


    25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Are you all right? Are you

  28. 1 comfortable?

    2 THE WITNESS: Yes.

    3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: You will now answer the

    4 questions which Mr. Mikulicic will pose to you.

    5 Examined by Mr. Mikulicic

    6 Q. Good morning, Mr. Batinic. I am Goran

    7 Mikulicic, and here I am representing the interests of

    8 Mr. Aleksovski, my client. I have some questions

    9 relating to the indictment, and I should like you to

    10 answer them to the best of your recollection.

    11 Mr. Batinic, will you tell us where and when

    12 were you born?

    13 A. I was born in the municipality of Busovaca in

    14 the village of Carica, on the 29th of June, 1944.

    15 Q. Mr. Batinic, have you always lived in the

    16 area or not?

    17 A. Yes, I have.

    18 Q. So this is the area of the municipality of

    19 Busovaca?

    20 A. It is.

    21 Q. What is your ethnic origin?

    22 A. I am a Croat by origin.

    23 Q. And your religion?

    24 A. A Catholic.

    25 Q. Where and when did you attend school,

  29. 1 Mr. Batinic?

    2 A. In 1963, I graduated from the teachers'

    3 school in Travnik.

    4 Q. And elementary school?

    5 A. In Busovaca.

    6 Q. And did you get a job after completing the

    7 teachers' school?

    8 A. Yes.

    9 Q. Do you remember your first job?

    10 A. Yes. My first job was in a village in the

    11 territory of Busovaca which was 100 per cent Muslim.

    12 Q. And what kind of a job did you have there?

    13 A. I was headmaster.

    14 Q. And after that ...

    15 A. I then moved into the municipal government.

    16 Q. Until when were you a teacher, a headmaster?

    17 A. Until 1965.

    18 Q. You said that after 1965, you moved and you

    19 went to work for the municipal authorities. Could you

    20 please describe it?

    21 A. I became the head of the Territorial Defence

    22 command at the time.

    23 Q. You mentioned that it was back in 1965; is

    24 that correct?

    25 A. Yes.

  30. 1 Q. Mr. Batinic, do you remember that it was

    2 during the former Yugoslavia. So, Mr. Batinic, do you

    3 remember what was the task of the Territorial Defence?

    4 A. The task of the Territorial Defence was the

    5 reserve formation which would perhaps take part in case

    6 of a war.

    7 Q. Mr. Batinic, did you serve the army?

    8 A. Yes, I did. I served the JNA in the reserve

    9 officers school at Bilica.

    10 Q. Do you remember when that was?

    11 A. 1965.

    12 Q. Did you reach a rank?

    13 A. Yes, a Major, I became a Major, but that was

    14 later.

    15 Q. Mr. Batinic, do you recall the beginning of

    16 armed conflicts in the territory of the Municipality of

    17 Busovaca?

    18 A. Of course I do.

    19 Q. Could you tell us what it is that you

    20 remember about that? When did it happen?

    21 A. Well, it was in '92, the second conflict.

    22 Q. What were you doing? Where were you at that

    23 time?

    24 A. I was an officer in the Croatian Defence

    25 Council, in the HVO.

  31. 1 Q. But were you still an active officer or were

    2 you retired at that time?

    3 A. I was retired.

    4 Q. Mr. Batinic, were you a retired military

    5 person or were you a civilian pensioner?

    6 A. I was pensioned off as a civil servant, as a

    7 municipal civil servant.

    8 Q. In other words, as a civil servant; is that

    9 so?

    10 A. Yes.

    11 Q. However, despite the fact that in 1993, you

    12 were retired, that you were a civilian at that time,

    13 you nevertheless volunteered for the Croatian Defence

    14 Council?

    15 A. Yes.

    16 Q. And where were you deployed? Where were you

    17 posted?

    18 A. The defence line facing Zenica.

    19 Q. Mr. Batinic, were you throughout the first

    20 semester of 1993 on the same positions, or were you

    21 moved somewhere?

    22 A. I was there until the end of February '93 and

    23 then I was sent elsewhere.

    24 Q. And that other post, where was that that you

    25 went at the end of February '93?

  32. 1 A. I became the commander of the company, of the

    2 company which was formed in the area and which was

    3 autonomous in the territory of Busovaca.

    4 MR. MIKULICIC: I'm sorry, I think there was

    5 a slight error in translation.

    6 Q. Would you tell us what you were?

    7 A. I was deputy commander of the company.

    8 Q. So you said that this company was a Domobran

    9 company?

    10 A. Yes.

    11 Q. For clarification sake, will you please tell

    12 us what kind of an army unit is it and who was it made

    13 of?

    14 A. The basic purpose of this Domobran company

    15 was because we felt that Busovaca would be blocked off

    16 shortly because there were no young men there as they

    17 were all on the defence line and we decided that we had

    18 to do something to help defend Busovaca, and so we

    19 agreed to form that company.

    20 Its principal task was to secure all

    21 facilities in the territory of Busovaca which were of

    22 any relevance to the defence of Busovaca, such as

    23 bridges, then other important objects, such as the

    24 medical centre, the post office, the security of the

    25 hospital, the health centre, night patrols, because

  33. 1 there were not enough military police around the town,

    2 so we organised night patrols around the town to

    3 prevent plunder and subversive activities, and we also

    4 secured some plots of land where we sowed potatoes and

    5 wheat so as to feed the population during the blockade,

    6 because we knew that famine could easily set in, that

    7 our children might starve, and so we tried to secure

    8 these things so as to survive through the war.

    9 Q. Mr. Batinic, what was the composition of this

    10 Domobran company?

    11 A. This Domobran company was made of young men

    12 who could carry arms under law and all those people of

    13 elderly age who could go to the defence line, so we

    14 even had those who were 75 years old included in our

    15 company.

    16 Q. Did you have any uniforms or ...

    17 A. No. They mostly wore civilian clothes.

    18 Q. Did you have any weapons?

    19 A. Yes, we did, but those were ordinary hunting

    20 rifles, shotguns and such, a few pistols, and perhaps

    21 some old automatics, Russian ones.

    22 Q. In other words, if I have understood you

    23 properly, Mr. Batinic, the principal task of this new

    24 military unit was security?

    25 A. Yes, but we also secured the prison, that is,

  34. 1 the entrance to the prison.

    2 Q. What prison do you have in mind?

    3 A. The district prison, Kaonik.

    4 Q. And so, Mr. Batinic, at that time, those

    5 young men, able-bodied men, were on the defence lines;

    6 is that so?

    7 A. Yes.

    8 Q. And other young men who could not do the army

    9 duty became members of the Domobran company; is that

    10 true?

    11 A. Yes, but not all of them.

    12 Q. How strong was that company; do you remember?

    13 A. Yes, I remember. It had some 80 to 100 men.

    14 Q. How many objects did that company, that is

    15 its men, secure?

    16 A. About 20 objects.

    17 Q. What did you do? Did you take shifts or

    18 what?

    19 A. In shifts.

    20 Q. How long was one shift and how many men?

    21 A. Every shift was two men strong, and they were

    22 four-hour shifts.

    23 Q. What does that mean? Four hours on guard and

    24 then a rest?

    25 A. Yes, then the second shift would come, but

  35. 1 that was only at night-time.

    2 Q. Mr. Batinic, apart from those elderly persons

    3 and those young men who were not deemed as capable of

    4 carrying weapons and who yet made up this Domobran

    5 company, were there some other people in the territory

    6 of Busovaca who did not join the company and yet were

    7 not on the defence lines? Were there any such men?

    8 A. Yes, there were.

    9 Q. Mr. Batinic, do you know what those people

    10 did during the armed conflicts? What was their duty?

    11 I mean, those who were neither involved with the HVO

    12 nor with the HVO company.

    13 A. Well, at times they helped those who were at

    14 the defence line, that is, took food to them.

    15 Q. Were there also some instances where those

    16 people were under labour obligations?

    17 A. Yes, there were.

    18 Q. What were those labour obligations?

    19 A. Digging out trenches.

    20 Q. Who were those people who were thus obligated

    21 from the territory of the Municipality of Busovaca?

    22 Were they the citizens of the Croat ethnic origin, of

    23 Serb ethnic origin, or Muslim, or all of them?

    24 A. All of them.

    25 Q. Do you know, Mr. Batinic, how were they

  36. 1 called up for this labour obligation? How did they go

    2 there?

    3 A. They were called up by the defence office,

    4 and that was their labour obligation.

    5 Q. Mr. Batinic, you mentioned that the company

    6 that you were the deputy commander of also secured --

    7 guarded the prison at Kaonik; is that correct?

    8 A. It is.

    9 Q. How many sentries, how many guards were there

    10 on a shift at Kaonik?

    11 A. There were eight guards at the entrance, at

    12 the gate, to the object, to that facility where the

    13 prison was.

    14 Q. Do you remember perhaps when it was that your

    15 company began to secure that facility where Kaonik

    16 was? When was it?

    17 A. As far as I can -- as far as I remember, it

    18 was sometime from February onward.

    19 Q. What year are you talking about?

    20 A. '93.

    21 Q. You personally, were you also at Kaonik?

    22 A. Yes.

    23 Q. In what capacity?

    24 A. Deputy commander of the company.

    25 Q. What did you do there? Also for security

  37. 1 reasons or something else?

    2 A. I was the deputy commander, so it was my duty

    3 to do rounds of my men by day and by night.

    4 Q. Mr. Batinic, does that mean that you visited

    5 Kaonik relatively frequently?

    6 A. Yes, it does.

    7 Q. Could you tell us if the members of the

    8 Domobran company guarded only the entrance to Kaonik or

    9 did they also guard objects within Kaonik?

    10 A. For a while, they also guarded the prison

    11 within the facility, but only in the surroundings, not

    12 inside, and subsequently they withdrew to the entrance.

    13 Q. I'm not sure I really understood you. Did

    14 they guard the facility, outside the facility, or were

    15 they outside?

    16 A. They were on the outside.

    17 Q. During your rounds in Kaonik, have you had

    18 the opportunity of meeting Mr. Aleksovski?

    19 A. Yes.

    20 Q. Did you meet him once or several times?

    21 A. Several times. We cooperated.

    22 Q. Would you recognise Mr. Aleksovski if you saw

    23 him today?

    24 A. Of course, I would.

    25 MR. MIKULICIC: For the record, the witness

  38. 1 is indicating in the direction of the accused,

    2 identifies him as Zlatko Aleksovski.

    3 Q. Mr. Batinic, you mention that you cooperated

    4 with Mr. Batinic (sic). What kind of cooperation was

    5 that?

    6 A. Well, we discussed various business things

    7 and agreement with him. I sent him an electrician who

    8 worked with him all the time, that is, he looked after

    9 electrical installations and everything else, and we

    10 also discussed the repair of water supply to ensure the

    11 supply of water to the prison and things like that.

    12 Q. You mentioned electric supply and water

    13 supply. Was it all right or --

    14 A. No, it was irregular because pipes broke down

    15 often, but they were also repaired in time.

    16 Q. What about power supply?

    17 A. Difficult at first.

    18 Q. Mr. Batinic, on those occasions you met

    19 Mr. Aleksovski, did you ever notice, that is, can you

    20 remember today what kind of clothes he wore? Did he

    21 wear a uniform or civilian clothes?

    22 A. I often met with Mr. Zlatko, both in the

    23 office and outside, and at times he truly would wear

    24 the upper part of a uniform which was very old, very

    25 shabby, ragged. I had a new uniform, for instance, and

  39. 1 he would wear civilian trousers, and also, on a number

    2 of occasions, he was in civilian clothes.

    3 Q. Do you remember if the uniform he wore had

    4 some markings there of the army he belonged to or

    5 ranks?

    6 A. Oh, no.

    7 Q. Do you know if Mr. Aleksovski belonged to a

    8 military unit?

    9 A. No.

    10 Q. Would you please explain what is it? That

    11 you don't know or whether he wasn't?

    12 A. He was not.

    13 Q. Mr. Batinic, did you know the guards who

    14 worked inside the prison at Kaonik?

    15 A. At one point in time, there were more

    16 guards -- no, no, no, but not in the inside. I knew

    17 the guards who worked outside but not who worked

    18 inside.

    19 Q. What was the basic duty of your guards, if we

    20 may call them so, people from the Domobran company who

    21 secured the facility from the outside? What was their

    22 basic duty?

    23 A. The basic duty of people who secured the gate

    24 was to prevent people from entering the prison in an

    25 unauthorised way. They were armed.

  40. 1 Q. What kind of arms did they have?

    2 A. The usual arms, rifles, M-49s.

    3 Q. And you said a Tandzara rifle?

    4 A. It's the M-49 rifle. It's an old army rifle,

    5 M-49.

    6 Q. From World War II?

    7 A. Yes.

    8 Q. But they also had hunting rifles?

    9 A. Yes, who already had them, yes.

    10 Q. These were their private rifles?

    11 A. Yes, legally-owned private rifles.

    12 Q. You said that you had two of your guards at

    13 the gate.

    14 A. Yes, but there were more of them because they

    15 worked in shifts.

    16 Q. But there were two in one shift?

    17 A. Yes, two in one shift.

    18 Q. Mr. Batinic, as for the guards, your guards

    19 who secured the entry to the Kaonik facility, did you

    20 hear from them that some people would like to force

    21 their entry, some soldiers, somebody else?

    22 A. No.

    23 Q. Do you remember, Mr. Batinic, what facility

    24 was in the immediate vicinity of the gate inside the

    25 facility and who was located there to the left of the

  41. 1 gate?

    2 A. It was a facility of the military police.

    3 Q. Mr. Batinic, at the time of the armed

    4 conflicts, what was the supply situation as far as

    5 food, clothes, electricity, water as concerned in the

    6 Busovaca area? Was it regular? Was it interrupted?

    7 What can you say about it?

    8 A. It was a very difficult time, especially

    9 during the blockade from the 21st of March, 1993,

    10 because the food supplies were cut. We had to

    11 eat lentils, we all know what it is, and everybody had

    12 to eat that. Supplies of food and humanitarian aid

    13 were very poor. 14.000 refugees were then situated in

    14 the Busovaca area, the (inaudible) area of Busovaca,

    15 because the majority of the area was controlled by the

    16 Muslim forces, and so the 14.000 refugees were there

    17 and food supplies were scarce and we had to prepare our

    18 own food and take care of our own food.

    19 Q. How did you personally -- what did you eat

    20 personally?

    21 A. At home. Everybody ate at home. All members

    22 of my company ate at home.

    23 Q. Do you know when they were on duty, where did

    24 they eat?

    25 A. Where they were at the time and where the

  42. 1 food was.

    2 Q. Do you know where members of the company, of

    3 the Domobran company, ate when they secured the Kaonik

    4 facility?

    5 A. At Kaonik.

    6 Q. Did you personally have meals at Kaonik?

    7 A. Yes.

    8 Q. What was the food like, in your opinion?

    9 A. It was good. There was meat too.

    10 Q. Do you know whether the food was prepared --

    11 there was special food for prisoners and special food

    12 for guards, or did they eat the same food?

    13 A. They ate the same food.

    14 Q. Mr. Batinic, during your rounds at Kaonik,

    15 did you go into the prison itself?

    16 A. Yes.

    17 Q. What, in your opinion, were the conditions in

    18 those parts of the prison that you personally saw, and

    19 I imply hygiene conditions and how did the prisoners

    20 look like? Can you tell us something about that?

    21 A. Yes, yes. I, on several occasions, visited

    22 the prison, even during the night, together with

    23 Mr. Zlatko, and I visited my people even during the

    24 night to see how they were, and Zlatko was there

    25 frequently during the night, and on the first such

  43. 1 occasion, when we visited the prison, there was no

    2 electricity supply in Busovaca, so Zlatko had his own

    3 lamp and we went to the prison. Zlatko said that we

    4 should visit the first cell that was next to us. I

    5 accepted that proposal. We opened the gate. There was

    6 no light and there was just a candle in the corridor,

    7 and in the cell number 1, the Mujahedin in civilian

    8 clothes were located, there were about seven or eight

    9 of them.

    10 When we entered the cell, we did not address

    11 each other by our personal name; it was the usual way

    12 of -- at the times of war. They addressed Zlatko by

    13 Asam Allah (phoen) and he asked them whether they felt

    14 well and they stood up out of respect. They looked

    15 fine to me. They were not exhausted.

    16 Q. Tell me, Mr. Batinic, you said that they were

    17 Mujahedins. Which ethnic background? They were

    18 Bosnians?

    19 A. No, they were foreigners.

    20 Q. Do you remember, when was that?

    21 A. I don't remember the date.

    22 Q. But it was in the prison?

    23 A. Yes.

    24 Q. Tell us, Mr. Batinic, did you have the

    25 opportunity to see people, civilians, who were brought

  44. 1 from Busovaca to Kaonik? Did you meet them?

    2 A. Yes, because during the same night, we

    3 visited a cell where the Muslims, all the young people

    4 were located.

    5 Q. Tell us, Mr. Batinic, did you have the

    6 opportunity to see the hangar which was situated above

    7 the prison?

    8 A. No.

    9 Q. Mr. Batinic, did you, by any chance, see the

    10 hygiene conditions in the prison? Was it dirty there?

    11 A. No, no, it wasn't. Because the lamp was very

    12 powerful and I could see well.

    13 Q. Did you see whether they had toilets there,

    14 WCs?

    15 A. Not in the cell but outside.

    16 Q. Do you remember, Mr. Batinic, whether there

    17 was heating in that building?

    18 A. There was a huge furnace in the corner that

    19 heated the entire area.

    20 Q. What kind of a furnace?

    21 A. The big kind.

    22 Q. What was it fed on?

    23 A. Timber, wood.

    24 Q. When you were doing the rounds and when you

    25 visited the prison, did you see or hear that some of

  45. 1 the prisoners were beaten, maltreated, or something of

    2 the sort?

    3 A. Judging by the information from my people who

    4 secured the prison, they praised the situation, they

    5 reported to me as their commander, because they had to

    6 report to me.

    7 Q. Mr. Batinic, you said that Busovaca was

    8 surrounded by Muslim forces and that the supply

    9 situation was difficult as far as food and clothing

    10 were concerned. Tell us about the security situation

    11 in the area of Busovaca at the time. Was there any

    12 shelling, shooting?

    13 A. The situation was very difficult. There was

    14 much shelling, and the shells hit the prison too. One

    15 shell hit near or in the prison and wounded two of my

    16 members, and the second hit the very entrance of the

    17 prison, and two were wounded seriously.

    18 Q. You mean four of them?

    19 A. Yes, four. So they were shelling, shelling

    20 the prison, and the Muslims were inside, and they knew

    21 that -- the Muslims who were shelling -- knew that

    22 their people were in the prison.

    23 Q. Tell us, Mr. Batinic, do you remember whether

    24 some of the prisoners were hurt during the shelling?

    25 A. No, no.

  46. 1 Q. Does it mean actually that the prisoners were

    2 in a better position than the guards?

    3 A. Yes. It is always secure for the people --

    4 more secure for the people who are inside.

    5 Q. What kind of wounds did they sustain?

    6 Serious or slight?

    7 A. The two of them who were up there in the

    8 prison sustained lighter injuries and the people who

    9 were down there had been seriously wounded.

    10 Q. But they survived?

    11 A. Yes.

    12 Q. Did your people tell you, Mr. Batinic, how

    13 the guards from your company, how did they treat

    14 Muslims who were detained at Kaonik? How did they

    15 treat them?

    16 A. According to what they told me, they treated

    17 them quite well. They even gave them cigarettes. They

    18 brought them water, they gave them cigarettes, they

    19 brought them timber and wood because there was

    20 another furnace later, in a cell, so they brought them

    21 wood there. There were examples that some of them

    22 played cards because they used to be neighbours.

    23 Q. You said cigarettes first. Was it

    24 accidentally?

    25 A. No, because they were neighbours, they knew

  47. 1 each other, and it was a custom then to offer

    2 cigarettes to your neighbours.

    3 Q. At that time were cigarettes in short supply?

    4 A. At that time, you paid cigarettes in gold. A

    5 box of cigarettes was 90 Deutschemarks.

    6 Q. During the blockade?

    7 A. Yes.

    8 Q. They nevertheless shared cigarettes with

    9 them?

    10 A. Yes, yes.

    11 Q. Do you know whether they also brought food

    12 from their homes?

    13 A. Yes, I knew about that because some of them

    14 took their neighbours home to dinner, the guards who

    15 lived near the prison.

    16 Q. Did somebody complain about maltreatment,

    17 about being beaten, somebody of the prisoners?

    18 A. No.

    19 Q. Tell us, Mr. Batinic, until when were you

    20 deputy commander of the Domobran company?

    21 A. Until June 1994.

    22 Q. And you are now retired?

    23 A. Yes, I'm retired, but I have a job in the

    24 educational sector.

    25 Q. But you had (sic) no connection with the

  48. 1 Domobran company?

    2 A. No, I am demobilised.

    3 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Mr. Batinic. No

    4 further questions for the Defence.

    5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you, Mr. Mikulicic.

    6 We shall now have a 20-minute break and resume

    7 afterwards.

    8 --- Recess taken at 10.24 a.m.

    9 --- On resuming at 10.49 a.m.

    10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Niemann, Mr. Meddegoda.

    11 MR. NIEMANN: Yes, Your Honour.

    12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Niemann, excuse me. We

    13 have to wait a moment because Mr. Aleksovski has not

    14 arrived yet.

    15 (The accused entered court)

    16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Yes, Mr. Niemann. Now you

    17 can begin.

    18 Cross-examined by Mr. Niemann

    19 Q. Good morning, Mr. Batinic.

    20 A. Good morning.

    21 Q. You said that you were in charge of the

    22 guards, the home guards at Kaonik, between February and

    23 April. What time in February did you first take up

    24 that post; can you remember the date?

    25 A. On the 28th of February, '93.

  49. 1 Q. And through to what date in April? Are you

    2 able to help us with that?

    3 A. I was the deputy commander until the end of

    4 April '94.

    5 Q. Now, as deputy commander, I take it it was

    6 your duty to travel around the municipality of Busovaca

    7 to the various locations where your soldiers were

    8 guarding, doing their guard duty; is that right?

    9 A. Yes.

    10 Q. I take it that you would spend a little while

    11 at each of one of these places during the course of a

    12 day; is that how you functioned?

    13 A. Yes.

    14 Q. Did you have a sort of central headquarters

    15 location where you would start off from, like an office

    16 or a barracks somewhere?

    17 A. An office. Yes, I did have an office.

    18 Q. And where was that located?

    19 A. In the building of forest management in

    20 Busovaca.

    21 Q. I take it that if you would think back now, I

    22 know it's very difficult because it's some time ago,

    23 but if you were to think back now and divide up your

    24 day, would you spend most of the time in the office and

    25 then the balance of the time visiting your various

  50. 1 locations? Can you help me with that, the sort of time

    2 that you allocate in a day --

    3 A. In the field.

    4 Q. So you spent most of the time in the field.

    5 A. At times my working hours took 24 hours.

    6 Q. Did you spend about equal time at each place,

    7 did you?

    8 A. Well, at some places more, at some places

    9 less.

    10 Q. Now, how was it that you came to find

    11 yourself drafted into the reservists? Is that

    12 something which you're given an official notification

    13 of, is it?

    14 A. I did not understand the question.

    15 Q. Sorry. As I understood your evidence, I

    16 think you said that in 1992, you were drafted into the

    17 reservists. I think that's what you said. If that was

    18 so, how did that come about? Did you receive a notice

    19 from somebody?

    20 A. I said that I was a volunteer in the Croatian

    21 Defence Council before I was appointed the deputy

    22 commander of a company.

    23 Q. Oh. So you didn't start off as a reservist

    24 of the TO in 1992, you went straight into the HVO, is

    25 that right, as a volunteer?

  51. 1 A. Yes, that's right.

    2 Q. So is it right for me to say that at no stage

    3 with you a reservist during 1992-93, at no stage were

    4 you a reservist with the TO?

    5 A. '94, there was no Territorial Defence, there

    6 was the Croat Defence Council and the Muslim forces.

    7 Q. That's right. And I think I'm right in

    8 saying, aren't I, that the remnants of the TO basically

    9 went over to the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina?

    10 A. Correct.

    11 Q. Now the rank of Major that you had, was that

    12 a rank that you carried on into the HVO, the

    13 Domobrans? I might have that wrong, the pronunciation

    14 wrong.

    15 A. Yes, but I carried out the duties of a

    16 lieutenant, the company lieutenant. That was my

    17 formation duty.

    18 Q. I see. Did you wear any insignia to indicate

    19 your rank?

    20 A. There were no insignia at the time.

    21 Q. Tell us about how it was the decision was

    22 made to establish the Domobran company. Was that

    23 something that was participated in by a number of the

    24 leaders in the district?

    25 A. The decision was taken on the basis of the

  52. 1 order of the Ministry of Defence of Herceg-Bosna and

    2 then the next decision was made by the mayor of the

    3 municipality.

    4 Q. This is the mayor of the Municipality of

    5 Busovaca, is it?

    6 A. Yes.

    7 Q. And who was that at the time?

    8 A. I don't remember.

    9 Q. You don't know who it was in the Department

    10 of Defence that decided that this would be established,

    11 this Domobran company?

    12 A. No.

    13 Q. Do you have any idea who equipped it? Where

    14 did the equipment come from, what little equipment that

    15 you had in terms of military and --

    16 A. It was personal equipment and some of it came

    17 from the regiment, from the HVO regiment.

    18 Q. I see. But what HVO regiment would that be?

    19 A. I don't remember which one. I don't know the

    20 number.

    21 Q. You, as you said, were a lieutenant, you were

    22 a deputy commander. What was the name of your

    23 commander? What was his name?

    24 A. The commander was Florijan Glavocevic, but he

    25 was more of a political leader, political function, and

  53. 1 I was the operative man.

    2 Q. Do you know the sort of chain of command of

    3 the Domobran after the commander and yourself? Who did

    4 they then report to? Was it directly to someone in the

    5 Department of Defence, or can you assist us by telling

    6 us a little bit about the structure of it?

    7 A. We were autonomous and subordinated to the

    8 municipal mayor.

    9 Q. I see. So if you look to the ultimate

    10 leader, it would be the local mayor of Busovaca who

    11 would be your ultimate commander in chief; is that a

    12 fair statement?

    13 A. Yes.

    14 Q. I think you've mentioned this question, but I

    15 just want to make sure that I do have it right. So are

    16 you saying that during 1992 at least, at no stage did

    17 you sort of take up duties as part of the TO, either in

    18 a reserve capacity or otherwise?

    19 A. No.

    20 Q. Thank you. Now, did the Domobrans have any

    21 form of barracks anywhere, or was it just work on the

    22 basis that they would come from home and go back home

    23 each day?

    24 A. They came from their homes and went back home

    25 every day.

  54. 1 Q. Can you give us what recollections you have

    2 of your first contacts with Mr. Aleksovski when it was

    3 that the Domobrans took up the responsibility of

    4 guarding the Kaonik facility? First of all, how did

    5 the decision come about that you would assume this

    6 responsibility? Can you remember that?

    7 A. Yes, I do remember it. As the defence lines

    8 were a very dangerous area, we were afraid that they

    9 would be broken through by Muslim forces, all people of

    10 a younger age went to the defence line, and we agreed

    11 to help in that sense to prevent, that is, to prevent

    12 the entrance -- to prevent any subversive activities or

    13 anyone entering the prison and harassing prisoners and

    14 that was why we decided to set up guards at the

    15 entrance so that is when I met Zlatko.

    16 Q. Who was it that decided this? Was this

    17 something decided in conjunction with Mr. Aleksovski?

    18 Is that something that you and he discussed and is that

    19 why it came about?

    20 A. Yes.

    21 Q. When you first met him, did he say that he

    22 was concerned about the proximity of the prison to the

    23 frontline and the prospect of it possibly being broken

    24 into by the enemy forces?

    25 A. Absolutely.

  55. 1 Q. And when presented with this issue by

    2 Mr. Aleksovski, did you feel, obviously you must have

    3 done, that you had the capability of providing

    4 protection for the facility?

    5 A. Yes. We called a meeting of the company

    6 command and took that decision.

    7 Q. Did Mr. Aleksovski attend this meeting at

    8 all?

    9 A. No.

    10 Q. Did Mr. Aleksovski explain to you precisely

    11 what it is that he wanted achieved by utilising the

    12 Domobran?

    13 A. Yes.

    14 Q. Was this before the decision was taken, or

    15 after?

    16 A. Before.

    17 Q. Obviously, once he had explained what it is

    18 that he wanted, that's when you came to assess it to

    19 see whether you had the capability, no doubt?

    20 A. No, no. One explained to us what the task

    21 would be, the command then met and decided to do it

    22 this way.

    23 Q. Did you then have any further discussions

    24 with Mr. Aleksovski when you actually took up your post

    25 at the camp?

  56. 1 A. Yes.

    2 Q. What was the nature of the discussions? Can

    3 you help us with that? I know it's a long time ago,

    4 but if you could just sort of give us the general

    5 background of the discussion that you had with him, I

    6 would be grateful.

    7 A. I don't remember the details.

    8 Q. Did he, for example, say to you where it is

    9 he would like the protection provided; location and

    10 things of that nature?

    11 A. Yes.

    12 Q. Did he discuss with you any question of

    13 limitations in terms of your soldiers coming inside the

    14 facility or anything of that nature? Did he specify

    15 anything in relation to those sorts of things?

    16 A. Yes.

    17 Q. Did he also talk to you about what sort of

    18 procedures would be put in place in relation to who

    19 would be permitted to enter Kaonik and who would be

    20 forbidden entry?

    21 A. Yes.

    22 Q. And these are all matters that you settled

    23 with him and immediately implemented, I take it, after

    24 your men took up their position?

    25 A. Yes.

  57. 1 Q. You spoke in your evidence about people being

    2 utilised for the purposes of labour obligations. Are

    3 you talking about --

    4 A. Yes.

    5 Q. Are you talking about citizens who were still

    6 in their houses as such, if I can put it that way,

    7 during 1993, or are you talking about citizens who were

    8 being detained in the Kaonik facility?

    9 A. I referred to citizens who were not deployed

    10 as members of the Croat Defence Council.

    11 Q. I see. So these were people who were still

    12 at home, I take it. They weren't in the prison.

    13 A. Yes.

    14 Q. You may not know this, but if you do, you

    15 might help me. When it came to these people being

    16 gathered up and taken for labour duties, how was that

    17 achieved? Were they sent a written notice or did

    18 somebody go out and see them or were they told to

    19 report to the centre of the town? Do you remember how

    20 that happened?

    21 A. The Defence office of the municipality kept

    22 the records and they mobilised those people.

    23 Q. Yes. I imagine that's how it happened. But

    24 what I'm really looking for is the process that was

    25 involved more than the official position. So how were

  58. 1 the people notified that they would be required to

    2 assist with labour obligations? How would someone find

    3 out about that during that period, 1993, in the early

    4 part?

    5 A. By summons, or by courier and the person.

    6 Q. I see. So someone would actually receive a

    7 written document and then that would direct them to go

    8 to a certain place at a certain time and then they

    9 would follow that?

    10 A. Yes.

    11 Q. Thank you. And I take it that if someone was

    12 too ill or there was some other disability which

    13 affected their ability to do that, then they would

    14 have -- the obligation would be on them to provide

    15 notice to the Department of Defence that they couldn't

    16 attend?

    17 A. Or to go to see a doctor.

    18 Q. Yes. And I take it that you know of no

    19 instances at least where members of the community who

    20 were ill or injured or couldn't participate in these

    21 labour obligations, you know of no instances where they

    22 were forced to do that, notwithstanding their medical

    23 condition?

    24 A. I don't know that.

    25 Q. I may have had heard your evidence wrong, but

  59. 1 I thought you said something to the effect that the

    2 Domobran were initially guarding inside the prison

    3 complex itself, not inside the cells but inside the

    4 complex of Kaonik for a while, and then that stopped.

    5 Was that your evidence?

    6 A. Yes.

    7 Q. Why did you stop? What reason did the

    8 Domobran stop guarding inside the complex itself; do

    9 you know?

    10 A. A shell fell and wounded two of my members,

    11 and ever since, we did not guard up there.

    12 Q. So when they were injured, the decision was

    13 then taken that it was too dangerous for them?

    14 A. Quite.

    15 Q. Did that mean that the Domobran stopped

    16 guarding the facility altogether at that stage or just

    17 inside the complex?

    18 A. They stopped guarding around the facility and

    19 they were not inside, but after that, they guarded only

    20 the entrance to the complex which included the prison.

    21 Q. I see. So they continued -- after your men

    22 were injured, they continued guarding the entrance to

    23 the facility but they stopped guarding inside?

    24 A. Not entrance into the facilities but the

    25 entrance to the whole complex which included the

  60. 1 prison, that is, the entrance gate.

    2 Q. So it was considered safe enough for them to

    3 stay there at the entrance gate but not safe enough for

    4 them to continue their duties guarding inside the

    5 complex itself, inside the entrance gate?

    6 A. But again a shell hit that gate too and

    7 wounded two men there also, so it was dangerous there,

    8 and yet we continued.

    9 Q. Yes. But notwithstanding that, the men

    10 continued their duty there.

    11 The prison complex at Kaonik was very close

    12 to the frontline, wasn't it?

    13 A. Yes, it was.

    14 Q. And I take it that there were other places in

    15 Busovaca, at least, municipality, which were much safer

    16 and much more distant from the frontline than the

    17 Kaonik facility?

    18 A. I didn't understand the question.

    19 Q. I'm sorry. Yes. My question was that you

    20 agreed with me that the Kaonik facility was very close

    21 in proximity to the frontline, and my next question

    22 was --

    23 A. Yes.

    24 Q. -- I take it that there were other places,

    25 locations inside the whole of the Municipality of

  61. 1 Busovaca which were further distant from the frontline

    2 and therefore much safer; am I right in saying that?

    3 A. That was not within my jurisdiction at the

    4 time.

    5 Q. No, it was not a question of jurisdiction, it

    6 was just a matter of your general knowledge. I think

    7 you would agree with me, wouldn't you?

    8 A. I have no knowledge of that. I have no

    9 knowledge of that.

    10 Q. What you're saying is other than at Kaonik,

    11 you don't really know where the frontline was; is that

    12 what you're telling us?

    13 A. The frontline was close to Busovaca as a

    14 whole.

    15 Q. Yes. Do you know why the Muslim civilians

    16 were imprisoned in Kaonik?

    17 A. I have no knowledge of that, but I assume it

    18 was for reasons of investigation or for security, I

    19 think, but largely because of security.

    20 Q. I think you've already told us that Kaonik

    21 wasn't exactly a very secure place. Even your own men

    22 suffered as a result of a shelling?

    23 A. But by the Muslim forces themselves.

    24 Q. Yes, of course. Tell me, we discussed a

    25 moment ago conditions regarding authorisation into the

  62. 1 Kaonik facility. Do you remember what were the

    2 criteria, the conditions, how could somebody be

    3 permitted to enter? Can you remember what sort of

    4 conditions were imposed if somebody fronted at the gate

    5 of Kaonik and wanted to get in and met your men in the

    6 Domobran, what did they need to do to convince them

    7 that they should be given entry into the Kaonik prison?

    8 A. Call the men on duty and then verify.

    9 Q. I see. So they would ring Mr. Aleksovski,

    10 would they, and say we have a gentleman here who has

    11 turned up and --

    12 A. No, no, no. No. While on duty, I mean, the

    13 one that was on the duty of the facility.

    14 Q. I see. So whoever that was, they would ring

    15 that person and say, "Someone's arrived here," would

    16 they?

    17 A. Yes, yes.

    18 Q. Did the system work fairly successfully from

    19 your memory in terms of whether they were successful --

    20 A. I don't remember it, really.

    21 Q. I think you did say, though, that they were

    22 successful in guarding the facility. It wasn't a

    23 failure or anything of that nature?

    24 A. Yes.

    25 Q. And I take it that if they were able to keep

  63. 1 out or had the capacity to keep out members of the army

    2 of Bosnia-Herzegovina, they would likewise be able to

    3 keep out HVO soldiers or other unwanted people, if

    4 necessary?

    5 A. I don't understand.

    6 Q. Well, all I'm saying is that if you had the

    7 capacity to keep out members of the army of

    8 Bosnia-Herzegovina from entering the Kaonik facility,

    9 then I take it that it would be an easier task to keep

    10 out your own soldiers or soldiers of the HVO, should it

    11 be necessary to do that?

    12 A. Presumably.

    13 Q. Did Mr. Aleksovski ever say to you anything

    14 about wanting to keep out members of the HVO? Did he

    15 ever say to you, "I don't want these people to enter

    16 and would you please take steps to prevent it?" Did he

    17 ever have a discussion with you like that?

    18 A. I did not.

    19 Q. Now, the guards that worked inside the prison

    20 itself, and I'm not talking about your Domobran that

    21 worked inside the overall facility, but those prisoners

    22 who worked right inside the prison itself and the

    23 cells, do you know where they came from?

    24 A. No.

    25 Q. You don't know what organisation they

  64. 1 belonged to, organisationally, you don't know that?

    2 A. They weren't part of my unit.

    3 Q. No, no, no. Tell me: When you went and had

    4 an inspection of the gaol or you went over the gaol or

    5 prison with Mr. Aleksovski and you saw the people who

    6 you described as Mujahedins there, why did you do

    7 that? What was the purpose? Do you remember?

    8 A. Well, we cooperated, we worked together, and

    9 it was natural to make a visit.

    10 Q. Would you look at Exhibit 67 for me, please,

    11 and tell me whether or not you recognise any of these

    12 people? And it may be difficult for you to do that, so

    13 please don't be embarrassed because it's been a long

    14 time.

    15 Just looking at that for me for a moment, do

    16 you recognise any of those? You can pick it up and

    17 have a look at it if it's easier for you?

    18 A. It's very dark and it was a long time ago.

    19 Q. That's fine. On this visit when you saw the

    20 Mujahedin, you said that you also had an opportunity to

    21 inspect the hygiene facilities, and I speak

    22 specifically of the toilet facilities. How did you

    23 differentiate the toilets that we use for the prisoners

    24 as oppose to the guards' toilets?

    25 A. I said that we did a round of cells and the

  65. 1 toilets were not inside the cells but outside, and I

    2 did not go to the toilets.

    3 Q. So you didn't have the opportunity to

    4 actually inspect them for hygiene to see what their

    5 hygiene was like?

    6 A. No. I was not inspecting anything, I was

    7 simply paying a visit.

    8 Q. You spoke in your evidence about your guards,

    9 that's guards of the Domobran, helping the prisoners,

    10 and I take it you're specifically referring to the

    11 Muslim civilian prisoners at the camp. Where did they

    12 get this --

    13 A. Yes.

    14 Q. Where did they get their supply of cigarettes

    15 from, do you know, that they gave to the prisoners?

    16 A. Who?

    17 Q. Your guards, the Domobran guards, that gave

    18 them to the Muslims, do you know where they got them

    19 from?

    20 A. From our unit.

    21 Q. But they didn't come in as part of

    22 humanitarian aid convoys that you know of, I take it?

    23 A. No, no.

    24 Q. You also mentioned the fact that sometimes

    25 your guards even extended such hospitality to the

  66. 1 Muslim prisoners as to take them home; do you remember

    2 saying that?

    3 A. Yes.

    4 Q. Now, I take it that if a guard, if one of

    5 your Domobran -- one of your guards wanted to take a

    6 prisoner home, they'd have to ask Mr. Aleksovski for

    7 permission to do that, wouldn't they? They wouldn't

    8 just take them out of the prison and walk away with the

    9 prisoner, they'd see Mr. Aleksovski first?

    10 A. I wouldn't know.

    11 Q. Well, perhaps I might ask the question

    12 another way: You don't know of any instances where

    13 your guards were just permitted to walk in there, take

    14 a prisoner, and walk off with them, I take it, they had

    15 to get permission to do something like that, wouldn't

    16 they?

    17 A. I know they took them, but when, I don't

    18 know.

    19 Q. Likewise, if it came to sort of meeting with

    20 the Muslim civilian prisoners that were kept inside the

    21 cells, your guards would have to get permission to go

    22 into the cells to see them, wouldn't they? They

    23 couldn't sort of walk in there; it wasn't part of their

    24 territory or jurisdiction?

    25 A. I do not know in what way.

  67. 1 Q. Now, when you saw Mr. Aleksovski at the

    2 Kaonik facility, tell me, where was his office located,

    3 offices located -- it may be more than one?

    4 A. At the entrance to the left, the first

    5 building to the left. Subsequently it was transferred

    6 to the upper part, but it was only temporarily

    7 downstairs or down there.

    8 Q. So was this the entrance to the whole Kaonik

    9 facility, was it, that you understood his office to be?

    10 A. Yes, the whole Kaonik complex.

    11 Q. Would you look for me, please, at Exhibit

    12 P46, and tell me whether this is the building you're

    13 talking about?

    14 A. Yes, yes.

    15 Q. I'm wondering if you could help me for a

    16 moment. Could you put that on the overhead projector

    17 so their Honours can see it more easily, if you move

    18 it, their Honours can't see. As best you can recall --

    19 I know it's been a while -- but as best you're able,

    20 are you able to point with your finger at the location

    21 of the office that Mr. Aleksovski had and then the

    22 location of the office upstairs that he had by

    23 reference to the windows there? Can you do that, as

    24 best you can?

    25 A. No, I couldn't.

  68. 1 Q. You couldn't?

    2 A. It was a long time ago.

    3 Q. So as best you can remember, he had an office

    4 downstairs at one stage and then, at a later stage, he

    5 had an office upstairs? That's the best --

    6 A. Downstairs for a very short while and very

    7 quickly he moved upstairs.

    8 Q. Thank you for that. You mentioned the fact

    9 that you assisted Mr. Aleksovski by supplying him with

    10 an electrician at one stage. What was his name; do you

    11 remember?

    12 A. Yes.

    13 Q. Could you tell us what the electrician's name

    14 was?

    15 A. Franjo Bagaric.

    16 Q. When you saw the prisoners in the cell, it's

    17 your evidence, isn't it, that you actually only visited

    18 the one cell, that's the one occupied by the Mujahedin?

    19 A. Yes.

    20 Q. Did you know anyone who was working at the

    21 camp by the name of Zarko Petrovic?

    22 A. No.

    23 Q. A person by the name of Miro Maric?

    24 A. As far as I know, there was a Miro Maric, but

    25 the man died.

  69. 1 Q. Do you know what his position was in the

    2 camp, what he did in the camp at Kaonik or --

    3 A. No, I don't. I don't know.

    4 Q. What about a person by the name of Marko

    5 Krilic? Did you ever hear of anyone by the name of

    6 Marko Krilic?

    7 A. No.

    8 MR. NIEMANN: No further questions, Your

    9 Honour. Thank you.

    10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, have you

    11 additional questions?

    12 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honours.

    13 Maybe a couple of questions to clarify one part of the

    14 evidence during the cross-examination of my learned

    15 friend, if I may?

    16 Re-examined by Mr. Mikulicic

    17 Q. Mr. Batinic, when you spoke about where

    18 Mr. Aleksovski's office was, you used the terms "up"

    19 and "down." And in the record, we have here "upstairs"

    20 and "downstairs," that is a ground floor and an upper

    21 floor. Shall we try to clarify those.

    22 Could you tell us if it is true that behind

    23 the entrance, behind the iron gate, was the building,

    24 the photograph of which you recognise here on the ELMO?

    25 A. Yes, it is.

  70. 1 Q. Is it true that you said that in that

    2 building Mr. Aleksovski's office was for a very short

    3 while?

    4 A. Yes, for a very short while, on the ground

    5 floor.

    6 Q. On the ground floor or on the first floor?

    7 A. On the ground floor.

    8 Q. Do you know after Mr. Aleksovski's office was

    9 on the ground floor, where did it move after that?

    10 A. To the prison facility -- next to the prison

    11 facility.

    12 Q. Is it true that you identified that facility

    13 by saying "up?"

    14 A. Yes, yes, up.

    15 Q. Why do you say "up?"

    16 A. Because it's up the hill.

    17 Q. Does that mean that a building which housed a

    18 prison and where there were cells, was at a higher

    19 elevation, at a higher altitude than the first building

    20 you've been referring to?

    21 A. Yes, yes.

    22 Q. Does it mean, when you said up and down, did

    23 you mean the position of the building in the area

    24 rather than parts of the building?

    25 A. The former.

  71. 1 Q. Do you know, Mr. Batinic, how long was

    2 Mr. Aleksovski's office in that building below?

    3 A. For a very, very short while, but I did not

    4 really -- I know that I went to see him in this

    5 building which was uphill a very short while

    6 afterwards.

    7 Q. Mr. Batinic, do you know perhaps why did

    8 Mr. Aleksovski have the office in the first one?

    9 A. Because there were no conditions for that

    10 office in that building so it was agreed that it would

    11 be there only temporarily. That is as far as I know.

    12 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you. No further

    13 questions.

    14 JUDGE VOHRAH: Witness, I have a question.

    15 It doesn't relate to the substance of the evidence.

    16 You mentioned that you are a member of the

    17 Domobran company. Is there a special meaning attached

    18 to the word "Domobran?"

    19 A. Domobran, in World War II, were regular

    20 troops, like today -- because in the meantime, the

    21 Croatian army was formed by the Croatian Defence

    22 Council, the name we used was the Croatian Defence

    23 Council, then the people who were older took up the

    24 position in Domobran as remembering still that these

    25 were regular troops in World War II, and you know that

  72. 1 the regiment later on became the Domobran regiment.

    2 JUDGE VOHRAH: Thank you.

    3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Batinic, the Chamber

    4 has no other questions for you, so it means that you

    5 have finished your testimony, giving your evidence

    6 before the Tribunal. Thank you very much, and we wish

    7 you a pleasant journey home.

    8 THE WITNESS: Thank you.

    9 (The witness withdrew)

    10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, you have the

    11 floor.

    12 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honours. We

    13 now call Stipo Juric as the witness for the Defence.

    14 (The witness entered)

    15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good afternoon, sir. Can

    16 you hear me?

    17 THE WITNESS: I do.

    18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: You will now read the

    19 solemn declaration, please.

    20 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will

    21 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the

    22 truth.

    23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you. You may be

    24 seated.

    25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: You will now answer the

  73. 1 questions which Mr. Mikulicic will put to you.

    2 Mr. Mikulicic, you have the floor.

    3 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honours.


    5 Examined by Mr. Mikulicic

    6 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Juric.

    7 A. Good afternoon.

    8 Q. Are you comfortable?

    9 A. Yes.

    10 Q. My name is Mikulicic and I am counsel for the

    11 Defence of Mr. Aleksovski, and I will now pose you some

    12 questions related to the events of 1993, so I kindly

    13 ask you to answer to the best of your memory.

    14 Mr. Juric, tell us, when were you born?

    15 A. I was born on 7th of May, 1932.

    16 Q. Where?

    17 A. In Arias Krasno (phoen) near Busovaca.

    18 Q. Is it part of the municipality of Busovaca?

    19 A. Yes.

    20 Q. Mr. Batinic (sic), tell us how far is the

    21 village of Krasno from Busovaca?

    22 A. About seven kilometres.

    23 Q. What is your ethnic origin, Mr. Juric?

    24 A. I'm a Croat.

    25 Q. Are you a believer? Are you religious?

  74. 1 A. Yes.

    2 Q. What religion?

    3 A. Roman Catholic.

    4 Q. Mr. Juric, have you lived for your whole life

    5 in the Busovaca area?

    6 A. Yes.

    7 Q. Have you lived always at the same village or

    8 did you go somewhere else after you were born?

    9 A. I went to Zenica and then I returned to

    10 Kaonik where I live at present.

    11 Q. So you live at present in Kaonik?

    12 A. Yes.

    13 Q. Mr. Juric, did you go to school?

    14 A. Yes.

    15 Q. Which school?

    16 A. Elementary and secondary school.

    17 Q. Where did you go to elementary school?

    18 A. In Busovaca.

    19 Q. After that, you attended secondary school

    20 where?

    21 A. In Zenica.

    22 Q. What kind of school was that?

    23 A. That was a mining industrial school.

    24 Q. After completing the secondary school, did

    25 you find a job?

  75. 1 A. I first went to the army to do my service at

    2 the Yugoslav People's Army. After that, I found a job

    3 in Zenica where I worked until I was retired.

    4 Q. So you served, you were recruited to the

    5 former Yugoslav People's Army as a conscript?

    6 A. Yes.

    7 Q. Did you have any rank there?

    8 A. Yes, private first class.

    9 Q. After doing your military service, you found

    10 the job in Zenica?

    11 A. Yes.

    12 Q. What kind of a job?

    13 A. I was a locksmith.

    14 Q. And you worked there until you were retired?

    15 A. I was promoted. I was a foreman for diesel

    16 locomotives and I was retired in such capacity.

    17 Q. Do you remember when did you -- when you

    18 retired?

    19 A. On 25th December, 1990.

    20 Q. After retirement, you went to Kaonik, you

    21 lived in Kaonik?

    22 A. Yes.

    23 Q. Since you lived in Kaonik, Mr. Juric, do you

    24 know of the facility that was situated there, the

    25 facility that housed -- that was used formerly by the

  76. 1 Yugoslav People's Army?

    2 A. Yes.

    3 Q. What kind of a facility was that?

    4 A. It was a military facility used in the former

    5 Yugoslavia where army troops were located to have

    6 their -- I don't know what was housed in this facility

    7 besides the troops.

    8 Q. Did you have any opportunity of entering that

    9 facility at that time?

    10 A. No.

    11 Q. Mr. Batinic -- correction, Juric, I

    12 apologise, Mr. Juric, do you remember what happened at

    13 the start of 1993 when armed conflicts broke out in the

    14 Busovaca area between Croats and Muslims?

    15 A. I do remember that.

    16 Q. Where were you at the time?

    17 A. At home.

    18 Q. In Kaonik?

    19 A. In Kaonik.

    20 Q. Do you know, when was that exactly and what

    21 do you remember about this event?

    22 A. I don't know the exact date, but I remember

    23 that up there in Kacuni a man was killed, and the

    24 conflicts intensified since that time onwards and

    25 became full-scale conflicts between Muslims and Croats.

  77. 1 Q. You mentioned the village of Kacuni where a

    2 man was killed. What was the population of Kacuni?

    3 A. Predominantly Muslims.

    4 Q. Do you remember who was the man that was

    5 killed?

    6 A. A person by the name of Ivica Petrovic.

    7 Q. Was he a Muslim or a Croat?

    8 A. A Croat.

    9 Q. What happened after that?

    10 A. After that, in Busovaca itself, we saw the

    11 separation and preparation of, I don't know, the

    12 digging of trenches, and the Muslims separated

    13 themselves in the surroundings and there was an attempt

    14 at conquering Busovaca and expelling Croats, and that's

    15 how the conflict began, and this is how it was.

    16 Q. Mr. Juric, did you participate in these

    17 events? Did you take part in the defence?

    18 A. No, no, I was not involved in anything at

    19 that time.

    20 Q. Were you later involved in any way?

    21 A. Later, the Defence Council in Busovaca formed

    22 a Domobran unit that secured some facilities, and that

    23 is how I was involved and engaged too.

    24 Q. Mr. Juric, who were members of that Domobran

    25 unit?

  78. 1 A. For the most part, these were elderly people

    2 who were not able to go to the frontlines, and most of

    3 them were civilians and some of them had their uniforms

    4 but most of them had not.

    5 Q. This is how you got involved too?

    6 A. Yes.

    7 Q. Do you remember when it was?

    8 A. On the 1st of March in 1993.

    9 Q. Did you have some orders, some position?

    10 A. Well, I was ordered to secure some

    11 facilities. That was my duty.

    12 Q. Mr. Juric, did you have a uniform?

    13 A. No.

    14 Q. Did other members of the Domobran units have

    15 uniforms?

    16 A. Most of them wore civilian clothes.

    17 Q. Did you have any arms?

    18 A. I had an old Russian automatic weapon without

    19 any bullets, just, you know, to brandish arms.

    20 Q. Who gave it to you?

    21 A. The commander. We had no ammunition for that

    22 type of weapon. Later I received a few bullets just to

    23 have them in case I need them.

    24 Q. You said it was an old Russian automatic

    25 weapon. Where did it come from?

  79. 1 A. I don't know. It might have come even from

    2 World War I.

    3 Q. And this automatic weapon from World War I

    4 was the arm that you carried with no ammunition; is

    5 that correct?

    6 A. Yes.

    7 Q. Mr. Juric, you said that it was your duty to

    8 secure some facilities in Busovaca; is that correct?

    9 A. Yes.

    10 Q. Do you remember which facilities they were --

    11 in which you personally were involved?

    12 A. I personally was in charge of securing the

    13 bridges, then the post building, and then I was

    14 transferred up there to secure the facility in which

    15 the people from the surrounding villages were

    16 detained. So it was my duty then.

    17 Q. Do you refer to the Kaonik facility?

    18 A. Yes.

    19 Q. How far is it from your home?

    20 A. About 1.000 metres, roughly.

    21 Q. Mr. Juric, you also said that people from the

    22 surrounding villages were interned there. What

    23 villages?

    24 A. Skradno, Loncari, Strane, Jelinac, these were

    25 the villages from which people were brought from and

  80. 1 most were known to me.

    2 Q. Do you know any of those people?

    3 A. I knew many of them because we worked

    4 together.

    5 Q. Since you knew the situation at the time of

    6 armed conflict, do you know whether, in the vicinity of

    7 these villages, there was any fighting? Was it near

    8 the frontline?

    9 A. It was precisely because of the struggles and

    10 the vicinity of the frontline that the people were

    11 brought there for their own security, and that's how

    12 they were accommodated there, because they had no where

    13 else to go on the other side, and because the fighting

    14 took place in the vicinity and that's how they were

    15 accommodated, for their own security.

    16 Q. I see. Do you know who brought them there,

    17 to Kaonik?

    18 A. Well, I guess the army. Who else?

    19 Q. Do you remember that people would come there

    20 of their own volition?

    21 A. Yes, some people came there of their own free

    22 will to seek protection.

    23 Q. From the village of Skradno?

    24 A. Yes.

    25 Q. Did they stay for a long time at Kaonik or

  81. 1 was it temporarily?

    2 A. It was a temporary solution, not for a long

    3 time, because people were leaving whenever they wanted

    4 and wherever they could.

    5 Q. And when they came to Kaonik, whether they

    6 were brought there or whether they came there of their

    7 own free will, where were they accommodated?

    8 A. In one of the buildings up there, they had a

    9 furnace there, they had food there, they were

    10 accommodated there, and this is how it was.

    11 Q. And do you know that, Mr. Juric, because you

    12 secured the facility?

    13 A. Yes. I was securing the facility.

    14 Q. Was your duty to secure the facility from the

    15 outside or were you doing that on the inside?

    16 A. No, just from the outside.

    17 Q. How many people worked in one shift from your

    18 unit, from your Domobran company?

    19 A. Two per shift.

    20 Q. And how were you deployed?

    21 A. We worked two hour shifts and then the other

    22 two people came and we were deployed at one part of the

    23 building and the other person was on the other side,

    24 and we would allow people to go out for toilet reasons,

    25 to bring out wood, water, especially overnight to put

  82. 1 the heat on when it was colder, we would allow them to

    2 bring the wood, we talked to them.

    3 We even gave them cigarettes, if we had to,

    4 we gave them some food, because most of the people were

    5 known to us and at least, speaking for myself, I had

    6 the same attitude towards them as towards my

    7 neighbours.

    8 Q. And they were actually your neighbours; is

    9 that correct?

    10 A. Yes, of course.

    11 Q. Tell us, Mr. Juric, when you worked shifts

    12 and they lasted for two hours, what would you do after

    13 your turn? Where did you rest? Did you go home or did

    14 you stay in Kaonik?

    15 A. Some people who lived nearby went home

    16 because after a four-hour rest, they took up their

    17 duties again, and those who lived further away, they

    18 would stay and sleep in Kaonik or take some rest in

    19 Kaonik.

    20 Q. Mr. Juric, you also said that people who were

    21 accommodated in the hangar which you secured, that you

    22 took them out for toilet reasons, to pick up wood,

    23 et cetera. Where was this WC situated?

    24 A. Just across the building, opposite the

    25 building, nearby.

  83. 1 Q. Tell us whether, inside the building, there

    2 was electricity and whether water supply existed in the

    3 building; do you know anything about it?

    4 A. No, I wouldn't know exactly whether this

    5 existed.

    6 Q. Do you know anything about how these people

    7 ate, what kind of food they had?

    8 A. Just like anybody else. What we ate, they

    9 ate too, depending how the situation was because nobody

    10 had enough or sufficient food.

    11 Q. Why do you say that nobody had sufficient

    12 food?

    13 A. Because we didn't have enough food because we

    14 were surrounded for months and supplies were irregular

    15 and what we had we ate.

    16 Q. Did you personally eat in Kaonik or did you

    17 go home for your meals and rest?

    18 A. I ate there, down there, when I was on duty,

    19 because the situation at home was no better.

    20 Q. Tell me, Mr. Juric, the people who were

    21 accommodated there from the surrounding villages, what

    22 was the treatment of the guards towards them? Did you

    23 see anybody maltreat them, beat them, or in any other

    24 way harass them?

    25 A. No, I have never seen that and I personally

  84. 1 didn't do that and I never saw anyone doing it because

    2 any of the guards who could help those people in any

    3 way, they did so.

    4 Q. Did you help them in any way?

    5 A. Yes, I did, and I can even give you the exact

    6 names of the people and how I helped them.

    7 Q. Well, give us the names. Please.

    8 A. I helped Ismet Mekic from Skradno to take his

    9 things to the houses when he wanted to move to Zenica.

    10 He offered me a cow in return. I took it but then I

    11 returned it to him when -- after the liberation, and

    12 the same applied to another of my neighbours and he

    13 called me by telephone, he said he had nothing to eat

    14 because we could not sow because of the war conditions

    15 and his name was Safet (phoen), and we had some potato

    16 and we shared potatoes, he asked us whether we had some

    17 food, and this also applied to cigarettes and some food

    18 that I had in my pocket and I would give them when I

    19 was on duty, especially to the people that I knew

    20 because they would approach me and ask me if I had

    21 something to give to them.

    22 Q. Tell us, Mr. Juric, whether these people had

    23 some health problems.

    24 A. As far as I remember, no, and those who had

    25 problems had the right to medical assistance.

  85. 1 Q. Do you personally know or do you remember

    2 whether some of those people who were up there

    3 temporarily, whether they had been seriously ill?

    4 A. I can't remember anything of the sort because

    5 I was there until 25th of April, 1993, when I was

    6 wounded, and I took a sick leave because I was wounded

    7 while on duty.

    8 Q. Do you know perhaps something, whether these

    9 people who were accommodated in this building, that the

    10 army would come and take them out for labour duty; do

    11 you know anything about that?

    12 A. Yes, I know. When it was necessary, the army

    13 would come and take them, they would take a certain

    14 number of people according to a list, and when they

    15 completed their labour obligation, they would return

    16 them to the same building.

    17 Q. Do you know, since you lived in the area,

    18 whether other people from the Busovaca area had labour

    19 duties?

    20 A. Yes. All the people, including Croats who

    21 could not fight, had to go trench-digging on the

    22 frontline as part of the civilian defence. It was

    23 their labour duty, and they had to go. There was no

    24 way out of it.

    25 Q. Tell us, Mr. Juric, why was it necessary at

  86. 1 the time?

    2 A. It was necessary to defend the area. It was

    3 necessary.

    4 Q. To consolidate the frontline?

    5 A. Yes, of course.

    6 Q. Do you remember whether, when they were

    7 returned, the people, when they were returned from

    8 labour duty, whether some of them would be injured or

    9 that some of them would be missing?

    10 A. I wouldn't -- I did not see anything of the

    11 sort, that somebody would be injured, and I don't know

    12 whether somebody was missing because I had no records.

    13 Q. I understand that you were not connected with

    14 that, but did you hear something of the sort?

    15 A. No, I haven't.

    16 Q. Tell us, Mr. Juric, did you hear that

    17 somebody would escape from labour duty or that somebody

    18 escaped from the Kaonik facility?

    19 A. They were instances, I heard, that some

    20 people fled, but as for the facility that we secured,

    21 nobody had escaped.

    22 Q. You also mentioned that the civilians from

    23 the surrounding villages who were brought to Kaonik or

    24 who arrived there themselves sometimes sought medical

    25 help; is that correct?

  87. 1 A. Most probably, yes.

    2 Q. Did you personally take them for such

    3 purposes?

    4 A. No, I haven't.

    5 Q. Did you see that somebody from the medical

    6 centre would arrive at Kaonik; do you know what it is?

    7 A. No, I can't tell you precisely because I was

    8 on duty mostly during the night, so I had no contacts

    9 with such people.

    10 Q. You also said, Mr. Juric, that in Kaonik,

    11 that you stayed there until the 25th of April, 1993.

    12 Did I remember correctly?

    13 A. Yes.

    14 Q. Why do you remember that date?

    15 A. Because I was wounded on that day.

    16 Q. How did it happen?

    17 A. I was on duty, fighting was in progress, and

    18 a shell hit the area outside the building, and I was

    19 hit by a piece of a shell and another person who was

    20 with me was also hit.

    21 Q. What happened after that?

    22 A. After that, Mr. Zlatko came up there, he saw

    23 us, he took us in his car to Busovaca, to the

    24 ambulance, I was taken to Bila, and the other person,

    25 after seeking medical attention, went home, and I

  88. 1 stayed at Bila after which point I went home.

    2 Q. Are you referring to the Nova Bila hospital,

    3 aren't you?

    4 A. Yes.

    5 Q. You then did not return to Kaonik?

    6 A. No.

    7 Q. Did, on that occasion, some of the Muslim

    8 civilians, were they injured?

    9 A. No.

    10 Q. Do you know that any one of them was injured

    11 during the first half of 1993 in Kaonik?

    12 A. No, not that I know of.

    13 Q. Mr. Juric, you mentioned Zlatko Aleksovski.

    14 When did you meet him first?

    15 A. I met him when I arrived there on 1st of

    16 March, and I knew that he arrived there at the end of

    17 January or beginning of February.

    18 Q. Would you recognise Mr. Aleksovski if you saw

    19 him again?

    20 A. Certainly. He is sitting -- the gentleman

    21 down there, Mr. Zlatko.

    22 MR. MIKULICIC: For the record, the witness

    23 was pointing to the Defendant as the person he knew by

    24 the name of Zlatko Aleksovski.

    25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, I'm

  89. 1 interrupting you, and I'm sorry for that, but I think

    2 it is important that we now take a recess.

    3 Twenty-minute break.

    4 --- Recess taken at 12.00 noon

    5 --- On resuming at 12.24 p.m.

    6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, you may

    7 resume.

    8 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Lordships.

    9 Q. Mr. Juric, let us continue our conversation.

    10 I asked you, let me just remind you, that you met

    11 Mr. Aleksovski the first time and you said it was

    12 roughly about the time that you came to Kaonik sometime

    13 in March 1993; is that correct?

    14 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter remarks

    15 that the witness said nothing.


    17 Q. Mr. Juric, could you tell us, how did this

    18 meeting with Mr. Aleksovski come about?

    19 A. Well, it came about because I was posted

    20 there, as I was on duty, and he was also there as the

    21 prison warden, and we were down there, we were on duty,

    22 so there was contact between us, and that is how we

    23 met.

    24 Q. When you met him, I mean Mr. Aleksovski, and

    25 later, do you remember how he was dressed?

  90. 1 A. Well, sometimes he wore a uniform, sometimes

    2 civilian clothes.

    3 Q. He had no insignia of any kind, no ranks of

    4 any kind. What uniform was that? Was it camouflage or

    5 some other uniform?

    6 A. Well, no, that ordinary, the plain army

    7 uniform.

    8 Q. Do you remember if, at that time, some other

    9 inhabitants in the municipality of Busovaca wore at

    10 times parts of the military uniform?

    11 A. Yes. Those who were committed, those --

    12 they'd wear uniforms. The majority of them did not

    13 have uniforms.

    14 Q. Do you know if Mr. Aleksovski was a member of

    15 your military unit?

    16 A. No.

    17 Q. Do you know if he was a member of any

    18 military unit at all?

    19 A. No, I don't know that.

    20 Q. What was Mr. Aleksovski's attitude to you? I

    21 mean, how did he treat you, the guards?

    22 A. He treated us in a very correct manner, very

    23 correct.

    24 Q. Did you notice how he treated prisoners, the

    25 interned Muslims there?

  91. 1 A. Correctly, likewise.

    2 Q. Could you please clarify, what do you mean

    3 when you say "Correctly?"

    4 A. Well, I can clarify it and I would even

    5 recommend it to -- if they asked for anything to be of

    6 help, if we had a cigarette or something to offer to

    7 them, if they asked for some firewood, to allow them to

    8 bring it in; if, after a while, they would ask to go to

    9 the toilet, to let them do it, in that sense, and that

    10 is what I consider correct attitude.

    11 Q. Do you know, Mr. Juric, if Mr. Aleksovski

    12 forbade those persons who were accommodated there be

    13 extended whatever kind of services, of course, within

    14 the framework of possibilities?

    15 A. No, he never prohibited anything, at least as

    16 far as I know.

    17 Q. But did it seem to you -- what was the

    18 impression you had? Did Mr. Aleksovski want to help

    19 those people and make it easier for them insofar as it

    20 was possible for him?

    21 A. Yes, he did, within, of course, his powers.

    22 Q. You mentioned that you had been wounded

    23 because within that facility that you guarded, not far

    24 from you, a shell fell?

    25 A. Yes.

  92. 1 Q. Do you know where this shell was fired from?

    2 A. Well, from the positions of the B and H army,

    3 Miladini, Jelinak, somewhere from those sides.

    4 Q. Did it happen only once or several times?

    5 A. Several times, many times.

    6 Q. Was anyone else wounded apart from you?

    7 A. Yes, yes. Three, three more were wounded.

    8 Q. Who were they? Were they prisoners or ...

    9 A. Those were the guards, those who were

    10 guarding the prison, and I know the names of all of

    11 them. There were Lukin Niko, Ivo Begovic, a certain

    12 Ivica Skaro, and all three of them were wounded.

    13 Q. Do you know if any one of them, of the

    14 prisoners, of those interned civilians, were any

    15 wounded?

    16 A. Not that I know of.

    17 Q. How far from Kaonik was that position that

    18 you assumed that the shell came from, the Muslim side,

    19 how far would it be?

    20 A. Well, as the crow flies, perhaps 1.000, 1.500

    21 metres, perhaps.

    22 Q. So would it be correct to say that the

    23 position of the Kaonik facility at different intervals

    24 of time could be hit, that is, it was within the range

    25 of the Muslim fire?

  93. 1 A. Yes, of course.

    2 Q. Mr. Juric, you grew up in that area and lived

    3 in the area. Was there a part of Busovaca, was there a

    4 locality in the municipality of Busovaca, which at that

    5 time was not within the range of the Muslim fire?

    6 A. No, there was not a single locality, a single

    7 place, which was outside the range. They were all

    8 within the range and they were all shelled.

    9 Q. Do you also mean the town of Busovaca?

    10 A. The town itself, yes, shells hit the town

    11 itself and there were people killed.

    12 Q. Does it also mean villages around the town of

    13 Busovaca?

    14 A. The villages around it, yes, the adjoining

    15 villages, certainly.

    16 Q. Mr. Juric, you said that the Kaonik facility

    17 was formerly a JNA barracks. In the territory of the

    18 municipality of Busovaca, was there some other facility

    19 where a district military prison could be organised or

    20 where a large number of people could be accommodated?

    21 Was there any facility of sufficiently large size?

    22 A. No, no. There wasn't.

    23 Q. Does that mean that the Kaonik facility was

    24 the only such facility in the municipality of Busovaca?

    25 A. The only one where those people could be

  94. 1 accommodated. There was another army facility in a

    2 place called Draga, but only the army, the army of the

    3 former Yugoslavia, was -- and they were there.

    4 Q. When the army of the former Yugoslavia left,

    5 who was in the Draga barracks?

    6 A. The HVO army.

    7 Q. So Draga facility was the barracks of the HVO

    8 army?

    9 A. Correct.

    10 Q. Mr. Juric, you have lived a long time in the

    11 area and you were also there throughout the armed

    12 conflict; is that correct?

    13 A. It is.

    14 Q. Did you ever meet a soldier with HV insignia?

    15 A. No, I did not.

    16 Q. Did you ever see a soldier with some other

    17 insignia apart from HVO insignia?

    18 A. I only saw the military police and soldiers

    19 in the army with the HVO insignia.

    20 Q. You mentioned that your house was in the

    21 village of Kaonik, about a thousand metres away from

    22 the Kaonik facility. Did a shell hit the front of your

    23 house?

    24 A. Yes, among the houses there, there was a

    25 shell which hit the ground there.

  95. 1 Q. Was anyone wounded on that occasion?

    2 A. No. No, because we were all in shelters.

    3 Q. Mr. Juric, you said that you were a metal

    4 worker by profession, but you also can -- you are a

    5 handyman too; you can do some small repairs.

    6 A. Yes. Well, yes, I can.

    7 Q. Did you use those skills in the Kaonik

    8 facility?

    9 A. Well, if need arose, yes, I maintained the

    10 water supply, and there were some instances when the

    11 water supply system, that is, supplying water to the

    12 prison, to the barracks, to our village, that pipeline

    13 is quite old, so pipes would burst.

    14 Q. And then you would mend them.

    15 A. And then I went, yes, to mend them.

    16 Q. So if I understood you well, Mr. Juric, you

    17 tried in whatever way possible to help that supplies be

    18 normalised?

    19 A. Yes, in every way possible, and even during

    20 the conflict, if it was possible to mend the supply --

    21 if it was possible in order to prevent any infections,

    22 diseases or whatever.

    23 Q. That is something that I was going to ask

    24 you.

    25 A. No, no, no. Fortunately, there were none.

  96. 1 Q. Do you know whether supplies were sometimes

    2 difficult, that they were not normal?

    3 A. You bet. But as I've said, we always tried

    4 to do all that we could in order to mend, to repair,

    5 and to normalise the situation, let me tell you, as an

    6 inhabitant of the municipality of Busovaca, as an

    7 inhabitant of the village of Kaonik.

    8 Q. So during the conflict in the former half of

    9 1993, did older population in the area live in the same

    10 living conditions, same supply conditions, or were some

    11 better off and others worse off?

    12 A. By and large, they all lived under equal

    13 living conditions.

    14 Q. Does that apply also to Kaonik villages?

    15 A. Yes, it does.

    16 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Mr. Juric. We

    17 have no further questions.

    18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Meddegoda, it is your

    19 turn.

    20 Cross-examined by Mr. Meddegoda:

    21 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Juric.

    22 Mr. Juric, you have said to this court you

    23 are presently living in Kaonik, are you?

    24 A. I live in Kaonik now.

    25 Q. Before that, you lived in Busovaca. You were

  97. 1 born in the village of Hrasno in Busovaca where you

    2 lived for some time, and then for a while you also went

    3 to Zenica, after which you returned to Kaonik where you

    4 presently live?

    5 A. I was born in the village of Hrasno, I live

    6 in the municipality of Busovaca, and I only worked in

    7 Zenica, I only worked there and commuted between Zenica

    8 and Busovaca.

    9 Q. You said you worked in the metal industry in

    10 Zenica?

    11 A. Zenica Steelworks, yes, heavy industry.

    12 Q. Having lived in Busovaca a lifetime, within

    13 the municipality of Busovaca a lifetime, you knew most

    14 of the people living in that municipality?

    15 A. Busovaca.

    16 Q. Yes, I meant Busovaca municipality.

    17 A. Well, you could say I did, yes. I knew most

    18 of the people of my generation.

    19 Q. There was a time you said you were posted as

    20 a guard in the Kaonik camp, in the Kaonik prison, from

    21 the 1st of March, 1993.

    22 A. Yes, true.

    23 Q. During that time, you remember there were

    24 lots of Bosniaks who were brought to Kaonik prison from

    25 the surrounding villages from the municipality of

  98. 1 Busovaca?

    2 A. Well, I couldn't tell how many people were

    3 brought to the facility exactly, they were being

    4 brought in groups, so I couldn't give you an accurate

    5 figure.

    6 Q. How many groups were brought in, as far as

    7 you remember?

    8 A. In groups, at least when I was on duty, there

    9 were big groups of ten or fifteen. Depends.

    10 Q. Who would bring them to the camp?

    11 A. Who they were brought by? The military. By

    12 the military.

    13 Q. By which military were they being brought to

    14 the camp?

    15 A. HVO.

    16 Q. As far as you were aware -- you knew some of

    17 those people that were brought by the HVO military to

    18 Kaonik camp?

    19 A. Yes, I did know. Yes, I did know people.

    20 Yes, I did know those people who were brought in.

    21 Q. As far as you know, those people who were

    22 brought in were good citizens of the community to which

    23 you belonged? The community of Busovaca, I mean.

    24 A. Doubtlessly, doubtlessly. They were decent

    25 people. They were being brought only for their

  99. 1 protection because fighting was going on.

    2 Q. You said you were sufficiently -- you said

    3 that guards, together with you, how many other guards

    4 were on duty at the Kaonik camp?

    5 A. Two per shift.

    6 Q. Two per shift. And you belonged to the

    7 Domobran unit?

    8 A. Yes, yes. That unit was called Domobran unit

    9 because it was an older generation of men.

    10 Q. ... in the Domobran unit as far as you were

    11 concerned? Who was the immediate superior to whom you

    12 would report?

    13 A. Our deputy commander was my predecessor, as

    14 the witness, Bagovic (sic), he was the one who decided

    15 who would be on duty when and who posted us.

    16 Q. You mean the witness who testified before

    17 you?

    18 A. Yes.

    19 Q. And you're referring particularly to the

    20 witness Batinic, not Bagovic.

    21 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's mistake. I'm

    22 sorry.


    24 Q. How long was the shift of guard duty?

    25 A. Two hours.

  100. 1 Q. Where would you be normally detailed for

    2 duty?

    3 A. By the facility, by the facility next to the

    4 facility, outside.

    5 Q. When you say "next to the facility," what did

    6 the facility comprise of?

    7 A. The facility was made of bricks and the roof

    8 and construction materials. What else could it be?

    9 Q. I know that. How many buildings comprised

    10 the facility? That's my question to you.

    11 A. Only one building there where those people

    12 were, in that facility, where the Muslims were, there

    13 was only one building there.

    14 Q. Were you on duty inside the building, or were

    15 you on duty outside that building?

    16 A. Outside. Outside the building. Outside, not

    17 inside.

    18 Q. Were there other buildings within the Kaonik

    19 prison barracks facility, as far as you know?

    20 A. There were other buildings, there were other

    21 buildings there. Those we found after the JNA army.

    22 There were a few warehouses, barracks where the

    23 soldiers were quartered, canteen and the like.

    24 Q. This building that you're talking of where

    25 you were on duty outside, how far is it from the main

  101. 1 gate, from the main entrance to the camp premises?

    2 A. Some 200 to 300 metres.

    3 Q. When you come along the road, are there other

    4 buildings that you would pass before you would get to

    5 that particular building that you are talking of?

    6 A. Yes, I passed by them.

    7 Q. You were on duty outside the building -- how

    8 many buildings did you have to pass before coming to

    9 that particular facility?

    10 A. I pulled by two buildings, two buildings, the

    11 barracks down there and a smaller one there which was

    12 not for that purpose. Nobody could be accommodated

    13 there.

    14 Q. By "the barracks," you mean the building with

    15 the -- the two-storey building by the gate?

    16 A. Yes, the ground floor and one floor. That is

    17 the barracks. That is where the soldiers were.

    18 Q. You said, Witness, in the course of your

    19 testimony a short while ago that there were civilians

    20 who voluntarily came and sought shelter in Kaonik.

    21 A. Yes, yes. They did.

    22 Q. Would you be able to recall or remember any

    23 of those persons, the names of those persons who came

    24 and voluntarily sought shelter?

    25 A. There were Barucija from Skradno who came on

  102. 1 their own to get accommodation because there was

    2 fighting going on there, so to avoid it, and they had

    3 sent their womenfolk before and they had stayed to look

    4 after their houses, but when they realised it was

    5 dangerous, then they came there to be accommodated

    6 somewhere there.

    7 Q. Was he the only person who came, as far as

    8 you are aware, to take shelter, or do you know others

    9 who also sought shelter in Kaonik?

    10 A. There were several persons, a number of

    11 persons, but I cannot remember their names and their

    12 family names. It was some five or six years back.

    13 Q. So the only name that you can remember is the

    14 name that you just gave?

    15 A. Yes, Barucija was the surname, and it was a

    16 whole village with that surname, there was a whole

    17 village up there in Skradno, a whole village, and they

    18 were all Barucijas.

    19 Q. Witness, you said you were on duty mostly

    20 during the night, your guard shift was in the night?

    21 A. Yes, you could say so, mostly.

    22 Q. Do you recall -- do you remember what your

    23 shift hours were?

    24 A. Well, every four hours, off two hours duty

    25 and four hours on, and it just depended, you know, how

  103. 1 it came out. Sometimes I was there at 8.00, at 10.00,

    2 at 12.00, at 2.00 a.m. and so on.

    3 Q. Now, Witness, you said that you were -- knew

    4 the accused, Mr. Aleksovski?

    5 A. I did.

    6 Q. You met him for the first time, as you said,

    7 the 1st of March, the day you got to Kaonik?

    8 A. Correct.

    9 Q. Did you meet him often -- did you often meet

    10 him in the camp?

    11 A. I don't think it is a camp. I don't see it

    12 as a camp. It was a facility. No, he did not go up

    13 there among men who were up there. He did not go there

    14 very often. He usually spent time at his office.

    15 Q. And do you know where his office --

    16 A. He would come out and go up there to see

    17 us -- to see what we were doing, how we were behaving

    18 ourselves.

    19 Q. And on those occasions you would talk to him,

    20 no doubt, when he came there?

    21 A. If he asked a question, we would tell them.

    22 Q. Do you know where his office was?

    23 A. I do.

    24 Q. And where was that?

    25 A. Down there below, below this building. That

  104. 1 was also a small building and that is where his office

    2 was.

    3 Q. Had you been to that building?

    4 A. Well, yes, I dropped by, but I never went

    5 into any detail nor did a round of it.

    6 Q. Did you drop by to speak to Mr. Aleksovski

    7 when you dropped by to that building?

    8 A. Only if there was something, if there was

    9 some communication to convey or something like that,

    10 but otherwise, no.

    11 Q. When you had communication to convey to him,

    12 you did convey that communication to him?

    13 A. If there was a message, then why not?

    14 Q. I take it that there would have been

    15 instances when he spoke to you and gave you whatever

    16 instructions, depending on communications that you gave

    17 to him?

    18 A. Why, of course, if we talked, he told us to

    19 take care, that we look after these people, that

    20 nothing happens to them, that nobody comes to ill-treat

    21 them, and things like that, to look after them, in that

    22 sense, those were the messages, the communications.

    23 Q. You said that you helped Mr. Izet Mekic?

    24 A. Yes, sir.

    25 Q. Do you remember the circumstances in which

  105. 1 you helped Mr. Mekic?

    2 A. I remember that he had to go to Zenica

    3 voluntarily, I mean, on his own decided and he had to

    4 take his belongings and quite a lot of them, so I

    5 helped him, you know, in a wheelbarrow, something -- I

    6 helped him drive it to the barricade, and he had a cow

    7 and he asked me to take over that cow, not to leave it

    8 there, and I refused it, I found it embarrassing, but

    9 he took that cow and brought it to my place, and I fed

    10 this cow until I could, and I sold it and I took the

    11 money to him, that is, I sent a message to him, and he

    12 came to where one could come to Gavrine Kuce and I gave

    13 the man the money I got for his cow.

    14 Q. Where was he before Zenica?

    15 A. He was from Skradvo.

    16 Q. He had been living in Skradvo for a long time

    17 before that?

    18 A. Yes, yes.

    19 Q. Witness, in the camp, do you know of a guard

    20 by the name of Zarko Petrovic?

    21 A. No. I don't remember.

    22 Q. Have you heard the name or have you heard of

    23 a guard by the name of Marko Krilic?

    24 A. No, no, I don't really know those younger

    25 people, especially in a uniform, I don't differentiate

  106. 1 between them.

    2 Q. And Miro Maric?

    3 A. I've heard of a Miro Maric who died. To know

    4 him really, no, I did not.

    5 Q. What was he in the camp or in the prison

    6 facility, as you say it was?

    7 A. Well, he was probably down there, a guard or

    8 military police or whatever. I'm not sure.

    9 Q. Did you also know a person by the name of

    10 Goran Medugorac?

    11 A. No, I really don't.

    12 Q. Would the name Dzemo ring a bell in your

    13 mind?

    14 A. Dzemo.

    15 Q. Dzemo?

    16 A. I knew a Dzemo over there at Kaonik who was

    17 there, but he also was an HVO soldier for a while.

    18 Q. Witness, do you know another person by the

    19 same name as you by the name of Stipo Juric who was

    20 also a guard in the camp?

    21 A. Juric?

    22 Q. Juric.

    23 A. I know no one but myself.

    24 MR. MEDDEGODA: No further questions in

    25 cross-examination, Your Honours.

  107. 1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, do you have

    2 any additional questions?

    3 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Lordships, we have no

    4 additional questions.

    5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Juric, the Chamber has

    6 no further questions for you. You are finished giving

    7 your evidence here. We should like to thank you very

    8 much and wish you a pleasant journey back to your

    9 country. Thank you.

    10 THE WITNESS: Thank you.

    11 (The witness withdrew)

    12 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Lordships, we worked

    13 today at a very accelerated rate. We did not call any

    14 other witnesses for today, so that we have no one here

    15 for today.

    16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: In other words, we have to

    17 congratulate ourselves on our good work.

    18 We shall adjourn now and resume again at 9.00

    19 tomorrow, like today. Thank you very much.

    20 --- Whereupon proceedings adjourned at

    21 12.57 p.m., to the reconvened on

    22 Wednesday, the 1st day of July,

    23 1998, at 9.00 a.m.