Case No IT-95-14
1 Wednesday, 25th June 1997
2 (10.00 am)
3 JUDGE JORDA: Please be seated. Turning to the Registrar,
4 would you have the accused brought in, please?
5 (Accused enters court)
6 JUDGE JORDA: Are the interpreters prepared? Does the
7 Prosecutor hear? Good morning. Do you hear me?
8 MR. KEHOE: Yes, your Honour.
9 JUDGE JORDA: You do. Mr. Hayman, Mr. Nobilo, good morning.
10 Do you hear me? General Blaskic, do you hear me?
11 GENERAL BLASKIC: Yes.
12 JUDGE JORDA: Everything is working properly. We can now
13 resume our work. I would like to tell the Prosecutor
14 that the Tribunal has decided that it would sit this
15 afternoon and if the expert witness has not completed
16 his testimony this morning, he will continue this
17 afternoon, starting at 3 o'clock. Therefore we are
18 resuming our hearing and I give the floor to the
20 MR. HARMON: Good morning, Mr. President and your Honours.
21 Before we start with the testimony of Mr. Donia, I would
22 request that in respect of eight items that were marked
23 for identification yesterday, starting with the
24 organogram that I referred to in my opening statement as
25 the first item, the second item being my letter to
1 Messrs Hayman and Nobilo in respect of witnesses; the
2 third item was the notes, the outline that was referred
3 to and the French translation; the fifth items -- items
4 5 through 8 were various maps referred to by Mr. Donia, I
5 would request, your Honour, that all those items be
6 admitted into evidence and I would request, your Honour,
7 that in respect of the second item, which is my letter
8 to Messrs Hayman and Nobilo, that that be maintained
9 under seal pending a decision by this court on a motion
10 that is pending before it.
11 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Hayman?
12 MR. HAYMAN: Good morning, your Honour.
13 JUDGE JORDA: Good morning.
14 MR. HAYMAN: We certainly have no objection to maintaining
15 the letter concerning the identity of witnesses under
16 seal. I would say with respect to the other matters,
17 first of all the diagram of the purported structure of
18 the HVO, that was used in argument by counsel. There
19 has been no testimony that it's accurate. There has
20 been no testimony as to its source. It's premature to
21 admit that diagram into evidence. With respect to
22 Mr. Donia's notes and his chronology, I was reviewing the
23 chronology last night. This is the item that has
24 already been provided to the court, to which we do not
25 object. I have no idea who wrote this chronology.
1 This chronology spans from the 6th century to 1995, well
2 after the end of the charges in this case. For
3 example, there's an entry of 9th July 1993 regarding a
4 meeting between a Mr. Owen, Croatian President Tudjman
5 and others. Was this witness there? Was he present at
6 the meeting? Has he reviewed documents? I have no
7 idea. We have no idea of the foundation of the
8 information for this outline, and I'm surprised that the
9 Prosecutor would move for its admission at this time.
10 It may well be proper to admit it later but it is
11 certainly premature. The same goes, I submit, for the
12 outline of his testimony. We have not even heard his
13 direct testimony concerning the contents of this
14 outline, much less any cross-examination. The maps --
15 we have not been told yet where the maps came from, at
16 least with respect to all of them. There has been a
17 general reference to a census and so forth. I do not
18 expect there to be an issue with the maps, but I think
19 we need to have the sources clarified before they are
21 JUDGE JORDA: First, I would like to shed some light on the
22 problem of terminology. I am given the French word
23 "piece d'identification". I know the expression in
24 French "piece a conviction" for evidence. I do not
25 know whether the interpretation was meant to talk about
1 "piece a conviction", that is evidence, Prosecutor
2 evidence. Did you mean Prosecutor evidence or
3 inculpatory evidence? We talk about this terminology
4 and maps. Did you mean these to be inculpatory
5 evidence? Is that what you meant by that? Do you want
6 us to put the list of witnesses under seal? Is that
7 what you meant?
8 MR. HARMON: I do not mean they are inculpatory evidence,
9 your Honour. I just ask the court to admit them for
10 its review and I would ask that they be admitted for
11 that purpose.
12 JUDGE JORDA: Now we are talking about a problem of
13 terminology here. I do not really -- I'm not that
14 familiar with your system, so when you talk about
15 evidence, I wasn't sure what you meant. I thought you
16 meant it to be Prosecutor evidence. That's why I asked
17 the interpreters if that's the -- what is the correct
18 term? Are we talking about prosecutorial evidence? Are
19 you saying that we have to file identifying documents?
20 I do not really know quite know what that means, this
21 "piece d'identification" in French. Do you want filed
22 documents as documents which the Tribunal will be able
23 to use in its deliberations before it arrives at its
24 judgement? All right. So we are talking about
25 Prosecutor's evidence. So we have now solved the
1 problem of terminology. Mr. Hayman, do you agree with
2 the terminology expressed that way?
3 MR. HAYMAN: I understand the concept. I am not sure I
4 know what French phrase will be used for it.
5 JUDGE JORDA: At least if we understand what we mean by
6 concept we are all right. The second point, that is as
7 far as keeping these under seal, I have no problem with
8 that. As far as the other documents are concerned,
9 Mr. Hayman is contesting them personally. I will, of
10 course, consult with my colleagues, but I would lean
11 rather towards favouring what is being discussed here be
12 put in as prosecutorial evidence for the Tribunal, which
13 can then be contested later by the Defence, if it wants,
14 during its cross-examination, during which, Mr. Hayman,
15 you could bring another map or you could contest the
16 chronological outline that the expert witness gave
17 evidence. I myself could not tell you whether really
18 it was in 1342 that the Franciscan mission was set up in
19 Bosnia. Perhaps it was in 1343 or 1341. All that
20 could be contested as everything could be contested.
21 Personally I will consult my colleagues but I think this
22 should be filed and then afterwards the Defence can
23 contest things. If you wish to show another map with
24 another set of arguments, all right. For the time
25 being the only thing I need to do is whether we should
1 admit these today or whether we should admit these after
2 your cross-examination. For that I will discuss it
3 with my colleagues. (Pause.)
4 Mr. Hayman, Mr. Harmon, the Tribunal has decided
5 that it will admit all the documents right now, all of
6 the Prosecutor's evidence. Of course when you do your
7 cross-examination or in the following weeks, at any
8 point in the proceedings throughout the trial you,
9 Mr. Hayman, of course can and will be permitted by the
10 Tribunal -- will supply any other documents or you can
11 contest the organisational chart or the map, do anything
12 you like. The comment I am making to the Defence today
13 -- I would like to say this so things be clear in the
14 future -- goes in the opposite direction. That is when
15 you have documents to produce, Mr. Hayman, in theory they
16 will be presented to the Tribunal. They will be
17 attached as evidence and the Prosecutor also will be
18 able to contest them at the point that he wishes to.
19 We have now completed with this incident and I give you
20 back the floor: Mr. Hayman, yes.
21 MR. HAYMAN: Yes. I didn't know to whom the floor was being
22 returned, your Honour. Thank you. I just --
23 JUDGE JORDA: No, I'm sorry. I had given the floor back
24 to the Prosecutor, but unless you have something you
25 would like to add, but I think that the incident is now
2 MR. HAYMAN: I accept -- I am not contesting the court's
3 point or the court's ruling, but so we have clarity of
4 terms and concepts, it is foreign to me that a document
5 would be admitted for its truth, for the truth of the
6 matters asserted when there has been no testimony of the
7 source or accuracy or authenticity of the document.
8 For example, assertions that in 1992 and 1993, which are
9 central to the time period of this case, that certain
10 things happened. For example, on page 4 of the
11 chronology. If those are now accepted as proven facts,
12 because this chronology has been admitted, that troubles
13 me a great deal. I simply want to state that for the
15 JUDGE JORDA: I think what separates us is a conceptual
16 problem and a legal culture. We cannot throughout this
17 trial keep opposing one legal system against the
18 other. As I said to you yesterday, the Tribunal
19 guarantees an equitable, just trial for the accused, and
20 also allows the accused -- sorry -- the Prosecution to
21 prove what it has charged. The problem is a very
22 simple one, I think, and I do not want us to be become
23 overly complicated. So for the last time I would like
24 to speak to that question, because the Tribunal will not
25 come back to this issue.
1 You have every right -- I turn now to General
2 Blaskic -- you can contest the entire document. You
3 can contest, for example, Mr. Hayman, the chronology that
4 was presented. I think, as far as the history of the
5 Balkans, we could bring in ten different experts and
6 perhaps they would have ten different interpretations.
7 You can go from the 6th to the 7th century, start from
8 that point. You can go back to 1992, 1993. You will
9 have every possible right in order to contest anything
10 you like. We did not say and the Tribunal is not
11 stating today that this is being considered as
12 historical truth. We all know in this Tribunal that
13 historical truths essentially are evanescent. As it
14 stands now, this is simply a document that the witness
15 submitted, which you accepted to hear, whom you accepted
16 to hear. He has the right to say what he wants. This
17 is a witness who is brought in by the Prosecutor. He
18 has the right to say since you said this that in 1992 or
19 1993 -- I do not really know what fact you were pointing
20 to -- that there was a meeting. You will contest
21 that. You will contest the military organisational
22 chart. You have every right to contest everything that
23 you want to contest but for the time being we are
24 hearing a prosecution witness. You will have every
25 right to cross-examine or every right to say or to ask
1 him whether his sources are based on what or, in fact,
2 where his sources come from. So I believe, Mr. Hayman,
3 that for the next six months of trial we should not
4 constantly bring about a clash of different legal
5 systems. What we are trying to do is to have a just
6 and equitable trial. I will insist on this warmly.
7 It was never said in the Rules of the Tribunal in Rule 1
8 that we will apply the procedures that Mr. Hayman is used
9 to using in Common Law in Los Angeles. We never said
10 that, Mr. Hayman. We are simply applying in this
11 Tribunal a procedure that is just and equitable and I
12 claim when one attaches this to the case file of the
13 Tribunal the Tribunal will use it, but it also means you
14 have every right to contest the document at the time
15 when you will consider it opportune to do so, whether it
16 be Monday, today or with your historical experts and the
17 tribunal will accept your experts if you wish to call
18 them. I will give you back the floor, but I would not
19 like that every time there is a document presented we go
20 back to the same question of sources. They can be
21 contested when you like. This is what I wanted to say
22 to you. I give you the floor for the last time on this
23 point. Mr. Hayman.
24 MR. HAYMAN: We are not seeking to aggravate the court and I
25 want to assure the court of that. I am trying to make
1 clear for our own purposes so the proceedings will move
2 smoothly what the requirements are for the admission of
3 exhibits and we need not address that at further length
4 now. I am not seeking to delay the proceedings.
5 Believe me, we want the proceedings to move forward
6 quickly. I think it is important at some point that
7 the requirements for the admission of substantive
8 evidence be clear to the parties because we do come,
9 some of us from different legal cultures. It is
10 important that I understand the court's requirements so
11 I can abide by them, because we do want to abide by
12 them, your Honour. Thank you.
13 JUDGE JORDA: All right. With this final word on which
14 there is consensus, we can close this discussion. If I
15 have to speak firmly, it is because the incident and
16 discovery of documents will be treated as they have just
17 been treated. I claim along with my colleagues that we
18 will perfectly respect the inter-party aspects of the
19 proceedings. It is now 10.22. I give you back the
20 floor, Prosecutor.
21 MR. KEHOE: Good morning, Mr. President and your Honours.
22 The Prosecutor would call Mr. Donia back to the stand.
23 If the usher can step out ... thank you.
24 As Mr. Donia is coming in, Mr. President, could the
25 usher just give exhibits 5, 7 and 8 back to
1 Mr. Donia? . Exhibit 6, per the Registrar's records, is
2 the map on the wall. I ask that, your Honour, just to
3 facilitate the proceedings so that Mr. Donia can move
4 back and forth between these documents.
5 (Witness enters court).
6 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Donia, I give you the floor to answer the
7 questions that the Prosecutor will ask you.
8 MR. KEHOE: Good morning, Mr. Donia.
9 A. Good morning.
10 Q. I believe we left off yesterday --
11 JUDGE JORDA: Naturally I would like to remind Mr. Donia
12 that you are under oath and you have been since
13 yesterday. You do not have to take the oath again but
14 of course the oath you took yesterday covers your entire
15 testimony so long as you will be in front of the Trial
16 Chamber. I give you the floor.
17 MR. KEHOE: Again, Mr. Donia, I believe we left off yesterday
18 with the exhibit before you, exhibit 5, and with the
19 request to the usher if we could put that back on the
20 ELMO. I stand corrected. It's exhibit 8. If we
21 could take that out of the sleeve, Mr. Usher. There is
22 a bit of a glare on that. Thank you.
23 I believe, Mr. Donia, if you turn back to
24 Prosecutor's Exhibit 8, that's the exhibit that we left
25 off on yesterday, where you were explaining essentially
1 the full extent of the Bosnian State during the time
2 period in the late 14th century; is that correct, sir?
3 A. Yes, 12th-14th centuries.
4 Q. Before we move to that, can you just again with your
5 pointer point to the outline of the full extent of that
7 A. The Bosnian State began in the late 12th century in this
8 small, almost circular area and subsequently expanded to
9 include almost all of what is present day Bosnia and
10 came to include much of the Dalmatian coast and also
11 that part of the Dalmatian coast which had previously
12 been ruled by the Nemanja dynasty.
13 Q. So it would be fair to say, Mr. Donia, that by the late
14 14th century, looking at the full extent of the Bosnian
15 Empire, it encompassed large portions of present day
17 A. Significant portions of it. It was not an empire; it
18 was a kingdom.
19 Q. I'm sorry. A kingdom. Thank you. I believe we were
20 next going to move to the kingdom of Croatia.
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Your Honour, before we begin with that, if I may request
23 the usher to hand an exhibit out. I believe the number
24 sequentially at this point, your Honour, is Prosecutor's
25 Exhibit 9.
1 Mr. Donia, I put the map on the ELMO. You have
2 freedom to refer to it as you so wish, but could you
3 tell us a little bit about the historical kingdom of
4 Croatia going back to the Middle Ages, please?
5 A. The kingdom of Croatia originally emerged from a group
6 of South Slavic tribal leaders who were vassals of the
7 Francs. After the death of Charlemagne in 814 they
8 increasingly came to assert their independence.
9 Vladislav who ruled starting in 821 was the first of
10 these leaders to style himself as a Duke of the
11 Croatians and Dalmatians. By legend and documentation
12 the zenith of the Croatian holdings was reached under
13 King Tomislav, whose dates are uncertain, but he ruled
14 roughly in the period from the very early 10th century,
15 say around 910 until about 920 or 925. He was crowned
16 King of Croatia with the permission of the Pope and has
17 since become a very important figure in the iconography
18 of Croatian national history. In fact on the map which
19 is a map of Croatia at the time of Tomislav, one sees a
20 picture of the statue of Tomislav that greets the
21 visitor today to Zagreb on walking out of the main
22 railroad station, a very stately and monumental statue
23 right in front of the central railroad station in
25 Q. You are pointing to the upper right-hand corner of the
2 A. Yes. Subsequent rulers lost and then regained much of
3 the authority that Tomislav had. The foundation or
4 strongest point and capital of this Croatian kingdom was
5 in the area of the central and northern Dalmatian coast,
6 about where this arrow begins. It was extended on the
7 basis of conquests and subsequently Bans or governors
8 were appointed for various areas, Pannonia, Dalmatia and
9 Bosnia. The Croatian kingdom reached difficult times
10 in the very late 11th century as the last holder of the
11 Crown died out and for a period of about ten years there
12 were conflicts over who would hold the thrown.
13 This came to an end in the year 1102, which is an
14 important date in Croatian history, with the Pacta
15 Conventa, which is referenced in my chronology, in which
16 a group of Croatian nobles met with the Hungarian King
17 and agreed to become united with the Hungarian Crown.
18 Croatian historians portray this as a voluntary
19 submission. Hungarian historians tend to portray it
20 more as a result of a conquest, but it had great
21 significance in that until 1918, all the way from 1102
22 until 1918, Croatia was a part of the Crown of Hungary
23 and the Crown of Hungary carried the title the kingdom
24 of Hungary and Croatia.
25 Q. 1918 is the end of the first world war?
1 A. That's right. So for, what, eight centuries or more
2 this was the case. This is very important, because it
3 meant that throughout this period Croatian nobles had a
4 diet which they attended with greater or lesser
5 regularity, and was attached to the Hungarian Crown.
6 1102, however, is the date at which the Medieval
7 Croatian empire -- kingdom, excuse me, lost its
8 independence and was for one purpose to a greater or
9 lesser extent subjected to Hungarian domination or
10 influence right up through the next many centuries.
11 The Croatian kingdom was to become in the 20th
12 century the basis of claims for territorial accusation
13 by Croatian nationalists. Some of those were
14 reasonably based and others of them get rather
15 outlandish, but certainly one can see that on the map
16 the territory that the Medieval kingdom encompassed --
17 Medieval kingdom of Croatia encompassed included
18 virtually all, nearly all Bosnia.
19 I would like to turn briefly, after having
20 discussed that, to the Serbian empire, which at times
21 also exerted an influence in the land that became Bosnia
22 -- was Bosnia in 1990.
23 Q. Before we move to the Serbia map, would it be fair to
24 say, Mr. Donia, that, looking at the last two exhibits,
25 there are vast reaches of land that overlap one another
1 for the high watermark of the Republic of Croatia under
2 Tomislavgrad in the late 19th century and the high
3 watermark for the Kingdom of Bosnia in the 14th century?
4 A. Yes, that is the characteristic of these Medieval
5 empires. One never knows how extensive the control of
6 the Croatian Kings was over this northern area, for
7 example, of so-called Pannonian Croatia. The attention
8 of later chroniclers was particularly drawn by important
9 events like battles and coronations, and these are two
10 of the battles that took place, but as far as the degree
11 of day-to-day control exercised and also questions of
12 identity of the people in these kingdoms, much is not
14 Q. Your Honour, before we move to the Serbian map, we would
15 like to introduce Exhibit 9, the historical map of the
16 kingdom of Croatia, into evidence.
17 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Hayman?
18 MR. HAYMAN: I have no objection if we could learn who
19 created the map, whether this witness did or did it come
20 from some other text or treaties.
21 JUDGE JORDA: This is a relevant question. Mr. Donia, did
22 you draw this map? I want to tell you, Mr. Donia, that
23 the Defence objection allows me to make this
24 clarification. Before you came in this morning there
25 was an incident involving contesting possibly of all of
1 these documents. They have been tendered into the
2 file. Let me tell you that the Tribunal has decided
3 that all the documents, including these today or those
4 that will be coming tomorrow from either of the parties,
5 will be tendered to the case file. For the time being
6 they are documents in the case file which will help the
7 judges to deliberate. They can, therefore, be totally
8 contested, as they were today by the Defence. Therefore
9 the Defence question is relevant. We're asking you
10 what sources you are using so the day that there is
11 cross-examination you may be able to answer properly.
12 This is a question I would like you to answer. Did you
13 draw up this map or did you find it in documents and if
14 you did find them in documents, could you cite them,
16 A. Yes, Mr. President. The map came from a book entitled
17 "The Serbs: History, Myth and the Destruction of
18 Yugoslavia", published by Yale University Press this
19 year, 1997. This is the Serbian map, 1196-1355.
20 The prior map, Mr. President, the one that's
21 currently on the ELMO, is from a book entitled -- it's
22 by Stjepan Antoljak -- "Pregled hrvatske povijesti",
23 published in Split, Croatia in 1994.
24 JUDGE JORDA: Generally speaking, Mr. Donia, therefore, if
25 you do not mind, I would like you to draw us up a list
1 for this afternoon or tomorrow that you would give to
2 the Tribunal through the Registry, a list in which you
3 would summarise the text from which these maps came and,
4 of course, it will be given to the Defence and will be
5 put into the record of the Tribunal. You may continue.
6 A. I'll do that, sir.
7 JUDGE JORDA: Thank you.
8 MR. KEHOE: Your Honour, the next map that we will address
9 ourselves to is the map of Medieval Serbia. If I can
10 hand it to the usher. For the purposes of the record,
11 this is exhibit 10.
12 Now, Mr. Donia, before we actually turn to the map,
13 you had some preliminary comments that you wanted to
14 give to the court concerning the Medieval Serbian area?
15 A. In contrast to the Croatian kingdom, the Serbian kingdom
16 emerged further to the south and east and ended up very
17 much within the cultural and religious influence of
18 Constantinople and therefore Eastern Orthodoxy. This
19 is not how it began because in the year 1077 the land
20 actually was ruled by a ruler Constantine Bodin, who
21 ruled as a Catholic. But under the rule of Stefan
22 Nemanja, which began in 1168, one sees this transition
23 or emphasis on association with orthodoxy. That was
24 confirmed later in this period of the Serbian empire
25 when Stefan II, who was the son and successor of
1 Nemanja, was crowned first by a papal legate in 1217 and
2 then by a representative of the Eastern empire in 1222.
3 The Serbian empire underwent a development
4 somewhat like that of the Bosnian and Croatian in that
5 it began in a smaller area adjacent to the Adriatic Sea.
6 Q. Are you turning to the map and pointing to that area?
7 A. I am pointing to the darkened area on this map, which
8 was the core original Serbian empire. You see the
9 names Zeta, Raska and Hum, which were areas or regions
10 that were united under Stefan Nemanja. This darkened
11 area is indicated here at the time of his abdication in
12 1196 came to be the area that was then a part of
13 Serbia. It subsequently expanded both to the north and
14 to the east and to the south and came to encompass
15 substantial territory, which again became important in
16 the 20th century as the basis for claims for the
17 expanding Serbian state.
18 Religion was important to the rulers of all these
19 Medieval states on the basis of their alliances with the
20 east and west. Perhaps more important than any
21 cultural or personal piety attributes to many of these
22 leaders in any case was their position in the alliances
23 of the time between the Hungarian Kingdom to the north,
24 the Byzantine Empire to the east and various political
25 forces to the west and up into Bosnia.
1 The period of multi-national empires really came
2 to an end because of pressure from the emerging
3 challenge of the Ottoman Empire, which is represented on
4 this map in what is present day Asiatic Turkey. Also
5 on this map are represented the two very important
6 conflicts with the Ottoman Empire, the battle of
7 Naritza, 1371 and the battle at Kosovo Polje in 1389.
8 Both of these battles were styled as losses to the
9 Serbian kingdom. The battle of Kosovo Polje in 1389
10 assumed great significance in the late 1980s as it
11 became the basis for asserting nationalist claims by
12 Serbian President Milosevic. The nature of that
13 battle, however, is very much debated by historians in
14 terms of who won and who emerged victorious. It is
15 unquestionably true that the Serbian empire in somewhat
16 reduced form continued for some decades after that
17 battle. Nevertheless, the tide of Ottoman conquests in
18 south-eastern Europe was well advanced by the year 1389.
19 Q. Going back to the map, Exhibit 10, can you point to the
20 essentially high watermark or the furthest reaches of
21 the kingdom of Serbia?
22 A. Yes. The far reaches include really all of
23 south-eastern Europe but down almost to the Aegean Sea
24 in most places, up into what is present day Serbia --
25 the Drina river is here; that is the boundary with
1 Bosnia -- into the south sort of Central Bosnia and Hum,
2 which was the term used at the time for what is present
3 day Herzegovina. So this extends over what is today
4 Greece and what is Albania.
5 Q. Once again would it be fair to say that these Medieval
6 states, be it Croatia at its high watermark, Bosnia at
7 its high watermark, or Serbia at its high watermark
9 A. Yes, and, in fact, there is probably not a square
10 centimetre of land in the entire region that couldn't be
11 claimed by at least 2 or 3 empires at the time if one
12 wished to also include Hungary and Venice and the
13 Byzantine Empire and the Ottomans.
14 Q. Obviously the Ottoman Empire and the taking over of the
15 Balkans by the Ottoman Empire dramatically changed the
16 composition of the Balkans, but what conclusions do you,
17 as a historian, make about the events or the State of
18 Medieval or the Medieval Balkan States just prior to the
19 Ottoman Empire?
20 A. The Medieval Balkan States had all seen their high water
21 marks by the time that the Ottomans entered Europe.
22 Some were gone already. In fact, Croatia was by that
23 time a part of the Hungarian Crown. Others were
24 weakened by the existing battles by the Ottomans. The
25 nature of those states, I think, is very important to
1 understand. They were really emerging tribal leaders
2 striving for greater status and power. Their degree of
3 control is always subject to question. It principally
4 was a matter of their using armed retinues and vassals,
5 which themselves often held better control of the land,
6 and allying themselves based on religious affiliation
7 with and against neighbouring rivals.
8 Q. Mr. Donia, is what happened in the Balkan States from the
9 10th century on to the 4th (sic) century consistent with
10 what was happening throughout Europe throughout this
12 A. Generally I think it was, yes. There are some
13 differences. Perhaps the process of state formation
14 was more advanced in other places than here, but the
15 similar pattern of the emergence of a feudal society
16 superseding a tribal one is indeed very similar. Later
17 on there are further similarities that would suggest
18 particularly parallels with areas of Eastern Europe in
19 the Polish and Russian areas.
20 Q. Mr. Donia, before we proceed on, turning back to the ELMO
21 and Exhibit 10, the kingdom of Serbia, what is the
22 source for that map, sir?
23 A. That's the book I just cited, "the Serbs: history, myth
24 and the destruction of Yugoslavia" published by Yale
25 University Press this year.
1 Q. Your Honour, the Prosecutor would offer Exhibit 10 into
3 MR. HAYMAN: No objection.
4 JUDGE JORDA: Yes, Mr. Hayman?
5 MR. HAYMAN: No objection.
6 MR. KEHOE: May I proceed, Mr. President? We now come to an
7 area or a period of time post the battle of Kosovo Polje
8 in 1389 and the rise of the Ottoman Empire, do we not?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Let's talk a little bit about the Ottoman Empire and its
11 impact historically and moving in chronological order
12 its impact on the Balkans?
13 A. The Ottoman Empire was in some respects a different kind
14 of empire than the Medieval Bosnian kingdoms. It
15 originated in the Turkic tribes of Anatolia, that is in
16 Asia, across the Bosphorus and was highly organised as
17 an empire of conquest. It is forays into south-eastern
18 Europe resulted in successive triumphs and slowly it was
19 able to conquer much of south-eastern Europe, in fact
20 laying siege on two occasions to the city of Vienna, the
21 latest in 1687.
22 The conquest of the Ottoman Empire in Bosnia and
23 in areas immediately adjacent to Bosnia changed the
24 social landscape in very important ways. First of all,
25 the Ottoman Empire was Islamic and brought with it a
1 religious faith which prior to that time had only
2 fragmentary presence in the Balkans. While there are
3 very few instances of forced conversions by the Ottoman
4 Empire in Bosnia and in the Balkans more generally,
5 there were many conversions to Islam in Bosnia itself.
6 The significance of these conversions can't be
7 emphasised too much, because in other areas of the
8 Balkans one did not see this kind of conversion to
9 Islam. So a historical explanation is called for,
10 which is a matter of great controversy. As I
11 indicated, the present Bosnian Muslim historians tend to
12 look to the Medieval Bosnian Church, which they
13 frequently believe to be Bogomil as the source of the
14 people who converted to Islam. They pointed out that
15 many of these converts were members of the nobility or
16 land-owning class and had to gain their retention of
17 lands and privileges under the Ottoman Empire.
18 What we find is that these conversions, and there
19 were conversions in all directions in the first 150
20 years of Ottoman Rule, substantially changed the
21 demographic character or the religious character of
23 Q. When you say there were conversions in all directions,
24 what do you mean?
25 A. There were conversions from Catholicism to Orthodoxy,
1 from Orthodoxy to Catholicism and from both of those
2 faiths to Islam. One finds a fluidity, if you will, of
3 religious change. People felt relatively free to adopt
4 different religions without serious adverse
5 consequences. What that suggests to me is that the
6 communities of religion were at that time not yet formed
7 with firm boundaries. People thought of themselves as
8 belonging to a particular local community and the search
9 for a religious affiliation was an important one, but
10 one which could be pursued without adverse consequences
11 in many instances.
12 Q. If you can give us a time-frame, Mr. Donia. Starting
13 from the battle of Kosovo Polje in 1389, what time-frame
14 do you give for these religious conversions?
15 A. 1463 is the date that is normally accepted for the
16 subjugation of Bosnia by the Ottomans. In the 140
17 years from 1463 -- perhaps the early decades of the 17th
18 century are the times that we see these conversions
19 taking place, and in general the latter half of the 15th
20 and the rest of the 16th centuries are times of great
21 religious and demographic change in Bosnia.
22 I think I am ready for the next map, if you would
23 like to...
24 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, if we could have with the court's
25 permission the next map handed to the witness, which I
1 believe is Exhibit 11. (Next map handed).
2 If we can turn to the map Exhibit 11, Mr. Donia --
3 JUDGE JORDA: Just a moment. The source of this map,
5 A. I'm sorry, Mr. President and your Honours. I do not
6 have the precise citation here. It is an Atlas of
7 Croatian History, which I can provide you perhaps after
8 the break.
9 MR. KEHOE: We can take a break -- at the mid-morning break,
10 your Honour, we will bring the book down with the source
11 and provide it to your Honours. Why don't you proceed,
12 Mr. Donia?
13 A. This map shows the Ottoman Empire's boundaries with its
14 neighbours to the north-west and here in the Dalmatian
15 area in the south-west.
16 Q. You are pointing to the map on the screen?
17 A. Right. It suggests, first of all, that the Bosnia we
18 now come to know on contemporary maps existed largely in
19 the Ottoman Empire as an area of Ottoman
20 administration. This triangle that becomes so
22 I mentioned that the demographic structure of
23 Bosnia was changed substantially by conversions. The
24 second major way in which it was changed during Ottoman
25 years was through migration. Critical to that process
1 was the establishment of the so-called military
2 frontier. I will just run the area where that frontier
3 was established. The origins of the military frontier
4 go back to the desire of both the Habsburg Empire and
5 the Ottoman Empire to fortify the boundary between them
6 with a warrior class which was prepared either to defend
7 the territory or participate in further assaults or
8 protection of the boundary lands.
9 Q. What is that called in Bosnian Serbo-Croatian? What is
10 that known as, that military frontier?
11 A. It's called the Krijina. The result was that the
12 Habsburg Empire, which ruled this area on the other side
13 of the boundary, established boundary zones which they
14 encouraged migration into and in particular bestowed
15 freedom of religion and property on those people who
16 chose to move there, principally of the Orthodox
17 persuasion. So in the centuries of Ottoman Rule from
18 about 1600 on, one sees the development of this so call
19 military frontier area, which on this map is represented
20 in a lighter shade of pink all round the boundaries of
21 the Ottoman Empire in what was then Habsburg territory
22 and clearly part of what historically were Croatian
24 So the result of that was the migration of
25 thousands of Serbian Orthodox people to the area of a
1 boundary between the Ottomans and the Habsburgs.
2 On the Turkish side or Ottoman side, if you will,
3 of that boundary a similar process occurred. Those
4 frontier areas were fortified in some cases by Muslims
5 and in many cases by Orthodox, who were also drawn to
6 that region. Migration further continued as the
7 Ottoman Empire later on in that area began to recede and
8 some of these areas were abandoned by other settlers and
9 Orthodox in particular came to move into those areas.
10 The long and short of that is that the earlier
11 years of Ottoman administration were very good ones for
12 the Serbian Orthodox population from a demographic
13 standpoint. They were less advantageous to
14 Catholics. Part of the reason for that was that the
15 Ottomans established a so-called millet system in which
16 they provided limited autonomy or organisation to
17 peoples of the book, that is those who were viewed as
18 sharing the book with Muslims. There was an Orthodox
19 millet system and a Jewish millet system which were very
20 important for this area.
21 The third development -- I have mentioned two
22 developments that have changed the demographic character
23 of the area. One was the conversions, two was
24 migration and the third characteristic was economic and
25 social development. The period of the 16th century was
1 one of considerable prosperity in the Ottoman Empire and
2 led to the growth of cities throughout Bosnia and, in
3 fact, throughout the western part of the empire.
4 Those cities became overwhelmingly Muslim in
5 composition. There were others living in them. Jewish
6 populations, for example, in various cities from 1492 at
7 the time of the Sephardic emigration from Spain into
8 Croatia were an important part of those cities.
9 However, it is from this time that the Muslim
10 demographic occupation of those cities truly dates.
11 Later in the years of Ottoman administration the
12 noble class or military class of Muslims gradually
13 acquired greater authority over the peasants of Bosnia,
14 and while there were some Christian peasants, Orthodox
15 and Catholic who remained free, many entered into a
16 status in which they owed obligations to Muslim
17 landlords. This was a development that was very common
18 in one form or another throughout Eastern Europe in the
19 17th and 18th centuries. It led to the rise of social
20 tensions between the Christian and Muslim population,
21 the Christian population meaning both the Serbian
22 Orthodox population and the Catholic population. That
23 came to a situation in the 19th century where some of
24 those conflicts developed into peasant rebellions.
25 But in the early years of the Ottoman
1 administration, that first 150 to 200 years it was a
2 time of relative urbanisation, growth and important
3 changes in religious affiliation and migration that
4 truly shook up the demographic character of Bosnia from
5 its Medieval times.
6 The period of Ottoman administration lasted until
7 1878. In 1878 an important changing of the guard
8 occurred. I think we are perhaps ready to look at the
9 next map.
10 Q. Again, with the court's permission, we can turn to
11 Exhibit 12. Mr. President and your Honours, I did not
12 forget with the last map to introduce it into evidence
13 but at the break I will get the source of that map.
14 JUDGE JORDA: Very well.
15 MR. KEHOE: May I proceed? Mr. Donia, turning to Exhibit 12?
16 A. Yes, I have the source for this, Mr. President, if you
17 wish. It's the historical Atlas of East Central Europe
18 prepared by Paul Robert Magocsi and published by
19 University of Toronto Press in 1993. This map shows
20 the Ottoman Empire at the time just prior to this
21 changing of the guard in 1878. It shows the Kingdom of
22 Croatia and Slovenia which was at that time, as we
23 mentioned earlier, a part of the Crown of Hungary and
24 the Kingdom of Dalmatia surrounding this Ottoman area of
1 It also shows that in this area around the city of
2 Belgrade an autonomous area has arisen known as the
3 Kingdom of Serbia. This began with an uprising in the
4 year 1804 and with progressive expansion of the
5 territory resulted in the territory of Serbia reaching
6 the boundaries that it shows here. Nevertheless at
7 this time the Ottoman Empire had substantial holdings
8 throughout south-eastern Europe, but was discernibly in
9 economic and administrative decline. Its decline was
10 hastened by a large peasant rebellion, which began in
11 the year 1875 and resulted in Serbia and Montenegro
12 coming to the aid of the Orthodox, Serbian Orthodox
13 peasants in Bosnia. In a war with the Ottoman Empire
14 they were soundly defeated and Russia entered the war on
15 behalf of Serbia and Montenegro, resulting in the final
16 analysis in a large pan-European conference known as the
17 Congress of Berlin. The Congress of Berlin in 1878
18 redrew the map of the Balkans.
19 As a result of that congress Austria-Hungary, also
20 known as the Habsburg Empire, represented here by the
21 area in blue, was given Bosnia and Herzegovina to occupy
22 and administer.
23 We are ready for the next map.
24 Q. We can turn once again, Mr. President, with the
25 assistance of the usher -- I believe this is
1 Exhibit 13. Before we move to Exhibit 13, we would
2 move Exhibit 12, the Balkan peninsula map, 1877, into
4 I believe with regard to this next exhibit,
5 Mr. Donia, the Balkan peninsula 1878-1912, which has been
6 marked as Exhibit 13, that is the same source as the
7 prior map, is it not?
8 A. Yes, it is. Paul Robert Magocsi, the historical Atlas
9 of East Central Europe.
10 The largest change to note in this map is that
11 Bosnia has now become blue, reflecting the domination of
12 Austria-Hungary in Bosnia. Additionally Serbia has
13 become internationally recognised as independent, as was
14 its small neighbour, Montenegro for some time, and a
15 corridor of land separates the two, Serbia and
16 Montenegro, which is the area known as the Sanjak of
17 Novi Pazar.
18 The Austro-Hungarian period in Bosnia lasted from
19 1878 to 1918. This period was -- ushered in the era of
20 modernisation in Bosnia and set off substantial changes
21 in its political life. It meant the arrival of a
22 central, highly organised state apparatus and
23 bureaucracy, the development of transportation and
24 communication infrastructure, the development of a
25 periodical press and industrialisation. It also
1 ushered in a period of organised political parties for
2 the first time in Bosnia.
3 Significantly, however, the Habsburg authorities
4 declined to abolish the system of dues that was owed by
5 Christian peasants to Muslim landlords. Instead, they
6 formalised and codified them in law. Thus it was that
7 the tension between Muslim landlords and Christian
8 peasants continued during the Austro-Hungarian period
9 and towards the end of it may have intensified. There
10 were some peasant rebellions after the turn of the
12 In my discussion of the Ottoman and
13 Austro-Hungarian periods I have omitted one very
14 important development that I would like to touch on
15 briefly, and that really was the rise of nationalism.
16 In Bosnia itself this process itself can be seen as the
17 progressive development from a religious community into
18 nationality. There are several stages to it. I
19 mentioned that religious conversions in the period of
20 early Ottoman administration seemed to be very fluid,
21 something that individuals seemed to be able to
22 undertake with relative ease. As time went along,
23 however, these decisions became more difficult and
24 transition from one religious community to another
25 became more difficult.
1 Q. Why is that so?
2 A. The religious communities themselves slowly developed
3 cultural traits, which were unique to them. So there
4 arose a whole set of cultural practices which were
5 unrelated to religion per se but which came increasingly
6 to mark one's identity as a member of a religious
7 community and ethnic group. These pertained to matters
8 including honouring holidays, use of cuisine, attire,
9 especially hats, and oral traditions that were handed
10 down from one generation to another, which came to mark
11 people as distinctly a part of one community or another.
12 Much of this endured into the 20th century,
13 particularly in rural areas. Key in the development of
14 this process were clearly the religious institutions,
15 the Serbian Orthodox church, the Fransciscan missions in
16 Bosnia and Muslim religious figures. As a result of
17 this process over time these ethnic groups evolved into
18 nationalities where more and more of the peasantry and
19 lower classes came to identify themselves with a nation
20 in addition to a religious community.
21 Q. So in practical terms, Mr. Donia, what does that mean?
22 A. It means that the Serbian Orthodox became Serbs, the
23 Catholics came to identify themselves firmly as Croats
24 and the Muslims came over time to identify themselves as
25 members of the Bosnian Muslim group. This is reflected
1 very clearly in some census numbers in the 20th century,
2 which we will get to in a minute.
3 But I think it is important to recognise that the
4 intellectual movements which supported this process of
5 identification took root outside of Bosnia itself,
6 largely in Serbia and Croatia. This process, which is
7 known as national awakening by the students of it,
8 really was well advanced in both Croatia and Serbia
9 before it had a major echo in Bosnia in the course of
10 the 19th century. I would emphasise that nationalism
11 is in Bosnia very much a mid to late 19th century and
12 20th century development. Those are the times in which
13 one can see its echo having a major impact with the
14 modernisation and developments that take with
15 Austro-Hungarian administration.
16 Q. Prior to that time, prior to this rise of nationalism,
17 how did these particular individuals -- how did they
18 consider themselves?
19 A. Well, that's a very good question, and again the
20 evidence on that is not as extensive as we would like it
21 to be, and any generalisations about it, I think, are
22 dangerous, but the most important parts of identity
23 appear to be local identity, identity with a village or
24 region and religion, either Catholic or Serbian
25 Orthodox. Those seem to be the most powerful
1 components of identity. Certainly cognisance of one's
2 role in a social class was very important. That was
3 something that was reinforced by the various
4 restrictions and limitations on Christians during
5 Ottoman Rule. So I would say local, religious and
6 social orientation were probably the most important
7 sources of identity in so far as we can determine
9 MR. KEHOE: Excuse me, Mr. Donia. Mr. President?
10 JUDGE JORDA: I think that we shall now have a break and
11 resume at 11.35.
12 (11.15 am)
13 (Short break)
14 (11.35 am)
15 (Accused re-enters court)
16 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Kehoe, you can have your witness come in
18 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, I believe the usher just went back
19 to get him.
20 (Witness re-enters court)
21 MR. KEHOE: May I proceed, Mr. President? Mr. President,
22 before we move on with Mr. Donia's testimony in
23 chronological order, if I could refer back to what has
24 been previously marked as Prosecutor's Exhibit 11, which
25 is the map listed at the top of the page, Croatian lands
1 in the 19th century. Mr. Donia, I believe that's to
2 your right. Could you tell the Trial Chamber the
3 source of that map?
4 A. Yes. It's from a Concise Atlas of the Republic of
5 Croatia and of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina
6 published by the Miroslav Kulajia Lexicographical
7 Institute in Zagreb.
8 Q. Your Honour, at this time we would offer into evidence
9 Prosecutor's Exhibit 11.
10 JUDGE JORDA: So this is document number 11. Which one?
11 Oh, yes, I see which one it is. Thank you.
12 MR. KEHOE: Just to take care of some details concerning
13 these exhibits, the Exhibit 13, which is still on the
14 ELMO, is the Balkan peninsula map 1878-1912. It is on
15 the ELMO now. I believe Mr. Donia has previously
16 identified that source, and we would offer Prosecutor's
17 Exhibit 13 into evidence.
18 JUDGE JORDA: The Trial Chamber agrees. You may proceed,
19 Mr. Prosecutor, with the following question.
20 MR. KEHOE: Thank you, Mr. President. Mr. Donia, if we can
21 go back and return to where we left off, you had some
22 comments you wanted to make concerning the Muslims and
23 some of your prior testimony?
24 A. We have been speaking of the rise of nationalism as a
25 largely 19th century phenomenon. The position of the
1 Bosnian Muslims in this emerging nationalist picture was
2 unique, for the Bosnian Muslims did not develop a
3 nationalist movement with the same traits as the Serbs
4 and Croats did until very late, until, in fact, the
5 period of socialism in the second Yugoslavia. Rather,
6 they continued to define themselves as a religious
7 community. The nationalist movements can be seen, I
8 think, as going through three phases, although at times
9 these overlap a great deal. The first phase really is
10 the attempt to define a cultural community. That's
11 typically based on language, defining a common language
12 for the group. That was indeed the concern of the
13 early intellectual leaders of the Serbian and Croatian
14 national movements. The second phase concerns defining
15 a political community. It comes to concentrate on
16 control of trying to have one's own state. The third
17 phase becomes a territorial one. The Muslims were not
18 able to engage in this kind of exchange at this time
19 because, of course, they were dispersed throughout the
20 territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina and failed to see
21 themselves -- let us say at this time did not promote
22 themselves as a nationality equivalent to the Serbs and
23 Croats. However, as we look at political behaviour,
24 it's very clear that they behaved in a manner in which
25 they conceived themselves as a separate group.
1 One can get a notion of this by looking at the
2 first formal political organisations that arose in
3 Austria or in Austrian-occupied Bosnia for the
4 Parliamentary elections of 1910. In 1908
5 Austria-Hungary formally annexed Bosnia-Herzegovina,
6 which ended the ambiguity that existed at the Congress
7 of Berlin and subsequently ruled it directly. This
8 enabled them to promulgate a constitution which led to
9 the elections to Parliament in 1910.
10 Q. So prior to 1908 it was not formally part of the
11 Austro-Hungarian empire?
12 A. It was given to them to occupy and administer in 1878,
13 which was a de facto occupation and administration, but
14 de jure did not come into play until the 1908
16 Q. Continue.
17 A. The first formal political organisations that were
18 created in the first decade of the 20th century were for
19 the Serbs the Serbian National Organisation; for the
20 Croats the Croatian National Union, and a second one
21 really, which was the Croatian Catholic Association, and
22 for the Muslims the Muslim National Organisation.
23 These three parties, each based on an ethnic group or
24 nationality, competed in the elections in 1910 and won
25 the majority of seats, although I would emphasise that
1 this election was on a very limited franchise using a
2 curia system that was used in Austria-Hungary at that
3 time, and thus the number of voters was a small
4 percentage of the total population of
5 Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Muslims --
6 JUDGE JORDA: Excuse me. When you say "curious" ...
7 A. Curia.
8 JUDGE JORDA: Excuse me?
9 A. That would be curia, C-U-R-I-A.
10 MR. KEHOE: What is that system, if you can, just simply?
11 A. It set up categories of voters. One enrolled in a
12 particular category for a social class or group in which
13 to vote.
14 Q. In contrast to one man, one vote type of system?
15 A. Right in contrast to more universal and open type of
16 voting. It was a very conservative, class conscious
17 approach to voting.
18 About this time, starting in, let us say, the
19 1890s and moving forward, it became fashionable for
20 Muslims who were politically active and some
21 intellectuals to declare themselves as Croats or
22 Serbs. It appears that this was a very limited
23 phenomenon, limited to those classes that were
24 politically active and intellectuals. It was a rather
25 fluid form of identity. While some Muslims would
1 declare themselves as a Serb or Croat and stay that way
2 for life, others would feel very free to change
3 associations, depending on circumstances.
4 Q. Was that also true of Serbs and Croats?
5 A. It was really not a phenomenon that was typical of Serbs
6 and Croats. It did happen on occasion but the
7 phenomenon which I am speaking of, which I call
8 coloration, to adopt a coloration as Serb or Croat as
9 a phenomenon was limited to the Muslims. Much has been
10 made of this coloration phenomenon by later nationalist
11 writers and historians, with some good reason. There's
12 no denying that it took place. The delegates to the
13 constituent assembly in 1920, for example, declared
14 their nationalities and most of them declared themselves
15 as Croats, the Muslims delegates. Others declared
16 themselves as Serbs, as Yugoslavs and I think one as
18 The reality, however, is even as these people
19 declared themselves with a national coloration of
20 Serbo-Croat, there are very few instances of them
21 abandoning participation in specifically Muslim
22 political organisations, so that a Muslim political
23 organisation might include many people who had declared
24 themselves as Serbs and Croats by coloration.
25 Q. We are talking about the time-frame of the first decade
1 of the 20th century?
2 A. This phenomenon begins really in the 1890s and continues
3 through the period, I would say, of the early socialist
4 years. There grew up a conviction, I think, amongst
5 intellectuals of both Serbian and Croatian nationalist
6 writers and thinkers that this meant that all Muslims
7 would follow the leadership of their politically active
8 class and proclaim themselves Serbs or Croats.
9 Indeed, much of the dialogue that goes on about
10 nationality in Bosnia in the early decades of the 20th
11 century focuses on whether the Muslims are really Croats
12 or really Serbs. There develops this conviction that
13 if you scratch a Muslim, you will find something else
14 underneath, either a Serb or Croat. This became a
15 vitally important point in the 1940s, 1950s, 1960s and
16 even into the period of the 1990s. When we come to
17 census data, we can look at specific declarations which
18 show that this was indeed an extremely limited
19 phenomenon, but it was important for the political
20 elites at the time.
21 Q. Moving ahead for a moment, why was that important in the
23 A. It was important because it led certain nationalists to
24 look at the population of Bosnia, to combine, let us
25 say, the Serbs and Muslims, and say that all of Bosnia
1 was Muslim -- was Serb.
2 Q. Go ahead.
3 A. Or conversely to look at the population as Croats and
4 Muslims and conclude that Bosnia was a majority Muslim
5 -- Croatian -- excuse me -- Croat Republic.
6 Q. Is one of the people that makes that conclusion
7 President Franjo Tudjman of the Republic of Croatia?
8 A. Writing as a historian in the 1980s, he drew exactly
9 that conclusion.
10 Q. Continue on, sir.
11 A. The picture in Austria-Hungary was one in which the
12 nationalist movements of the Serbs and Croats were
13 advancing and, in fact, those nationalist movements had
14 moved to what we might think of the level of state --
15 the second phrase of nationalism, contending that
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina was for the Croats a Croatian land or
17 for the Serbs a Serbian land. The Muslims on this
18 issue, of course, retained their insistence that they
19 were a religious community and looked back still with
20 some friendliness on the days of the Ottoman
22 But, of course, Austro-Hungarian Rule came to an
23 end. That began really with the outbreak of the Balkan
24 wars in 1912, which resulted in a substantial addition
1 Q. Are you moving back to Exhibit 13 on the ELMO?
2 A. A substantial addition of Serbian territory to the
3 south, in this area here, and a period of conflict, the
4 first really in the 20th century, which cast into doubt
5 the existing boundaries in an important way.
6 On June 28th, 1914, a very famous date in history,
7 the Archduke Francis Ferdinand, successor to the Emperor
8 of Austria, was assassinated in Sarajevo by a group of
9 eight Bosnian Serb nationalists. This did not
10 immediately lead to World War I, but it set off a period
11 of intense diplomacy that resulted some weeks later in
12 the outbreak of World War I. There was very little
13 fighting on Bosnian territory in World War I, despite
14 the important role of the Sarajevo event in the outbreak
15 of war. There was a great deal of fighting in
16 neighbouring Serbia and the Serbian military experienced
17 great losses in World War I.
18 But in 1918, of course, the dual monarchy of
19 Austria-Hungary, and the Germans, the dual powers were
20 defeated ending this period of multi-national empire
21 rule in the South Slavs lands. That is kind of an
22 important boundary point, because it leads thereafter to
23 the two Yugoslavias, the first one the Royal Yugoslavia,
24 and the second one the socialist one of 1945.
25 Q. Mr. Donia, at this point, as you say, 1918 becomes a
1 significant point into moving into the two
2 Yugoslavias. To summarise, where are we at this point
3 in the history of Bosnia and exactly what is going on as
4 we move into the two Yugoslavias?
5 A. Well, first of all, the nationalist movements have
6 transformed the political landscape. Religion has
7 always been important and continues to be important, but
8 as far as political participation is concerned,
9 nationality has now superseded religion in terms of
10 identifying the way that people chose to affiliate
11 politically. It also continued really in Bosnia. At
12 this point the situation where a Muslim land owning
13 class had substantial dues paid to it by the peasantry
14 made up principally, almost exclusively, of Serbs and
15 Croats. So while there was a substantial free
16 peasantry, this practice continued right to the last day
17 of Austro-Hungarian administration.
18 Q. Moving now to the two Yugoslavias, what date were they
19 formulated, the first one?
20 A. May I move to the next map perhaps?
21 Q. Sure. If I can ask the usher, Mr. President, to show
22 Mr. Donia and counsel, as well as the bench,
23 Exhibit 14. Mr. Donia, turning your attention to
24 Exhibit 14, what is Exhibit 14 and what is the source
25 for that map?
1 A. This is a map that appears in a book. I will give you
2 the translated title in English. It is by Ljubo Boban,
3 a Croatian historian. The book is "Croatian Borders
4 from 1918 to 1993", published in Zagreb in 1993 by a
5 publisher Skolska Knjiga of the Croatian Academy of Arts
6 and Sciences.
7 Q. Turning to the map itself and using the map for the
8 purposes of your testimony, what is this map, sir?
9 A. This is a map of the two Yugoslavias. The top one is
10 the creation -- I will just translate this. The
11 creation of the Yugoslav State after 1918. I wanted to
12 share it with you in part because it shows the
13 remarkable similarities of the map of Bosnia both in
14 1918 and in 1945, but in any case it shows the creation
15 of the Yugoslav State which was proclaimed on December
16 1st, 1918 as a constitutional monarchy under the
17 rulership of the Royal House of Serbia.
18 As can be seen, this configuration generally
19 respected the existing administrative units that made up
20 the Royal Yugoslavia. The Croatian lands familiar from
21 this sort of half moon shape was pretty much the way it
22 had existed under Austro-Hungarian administration.
23 Slovenia, made up of a couple of provinces that had
24 previously been part of the Austrian part of the
25 Austro-Hungarian monarchy; Bosnia in this now familiar
1 triangular shape with the very rough edges along the
2 right-hand side, as it had existed under Austria-Hungary
3 with a few changes, and a large Serbian state with its
4 smaller neighbour, Montenegro, consisting of what had
5 been Serbia, plus some additional territories that
6 represented both gains in the Balkan wars and additions
8 Q. For the sake of accuracy, Mr. Donia, when the kingdom was
9 established in 1918, it had not yet received the name
10 the kingdom of Yugoslavia; is that correct?
11 A. That is correct. The title was the kingdoms of the
12 Serbs, Slovenes -- Croats and Slovenes and thus was only
13 to receive the name the kingdom of Yugoslavia in 1929.
14 The Kingdom of Yugoslavia or the Kingdom of Serbs,
15 Croats and Slovenes was born of a number of factors,
16 certainly the hopes by Serbian politicians that this
17 would represent an opportunity to expand Serbian
18 influence in the new state; by Croatian politicians with
19 the hope that in an equitable South Slavs political
20 entity could be created, and a desire to prevent
21 additional accusations of their territory by Italy,
22 which was an important factor at that time, and by the
23 idealistic views of Wilsonian politicians and diplomats,
24 who hoped to create states based on nationalist
1 It was, however, a State that was beset from early
2 on by severe questions of national organisation. It
3 had a central Parliament and in an event that was to
4 touch off many subsequent developments in 1928 the
5 leader of the Croatian peasant party, Stjepan Radic was
6 assassinated in Parliament. He was shot on 20th June
7 1928 and died in August of 1928. He was a rather
8 controversial and mercurial figure. His death left the
9 Yugoslav Kingdom or the kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and
10 Slovenes in a great deal of turmoil. King Alexander
11 responded to this on 6th January 1929 by declaring a
12 royal dictatorship. This royal dictatorship was
13 designed to dampen the nationality conflicts in the
14 kingdom and he changed the name to the kingdom of
15 Yugoslavia. He also radically changed the internal
16 administration of the state, which should move us to the
17 next map.
18 Q. Before we do that, your Honour, Exhibit 14, the map of
19 the two Yugoslavias has been previously identified at
20 source and we just move it into evidence and turn with
21 the court's permission to exhibit 15, which I am handing
22 to the usher.
23 JUDGE JORDA: Excuse me. I just want clarification.
24 I do not want to interrupt your presentation. Why was
25 the Serb dynasty chosen in 1918?
1 A. It was clearly the strongest existing, let's say, point
2 of political gravity. The Serbian state had emerged
3 from the Balkan wars and World War I as the clearly
4 leading entity in the confederation or the grouping of
5 South Slavs peoples and certainly the one with the most
6 political experience and political independence. I do
7 not think there was a whole lot of question about which
8 dynasty it would be. There was some discussion about
9 what political form Yugoslavia might take, but this was
10 clearly the most rational one.
11 MR. KEHOE: Turning your attention to the exhibit that's on
12 the ELMO at this point, which is Exhibit 15, which is a
13 map dated in 1929, Mr. Donia, can you give us the source
14 of that map before you begin discussion on Exhibit 15?
15 A. This likewise comes from the work of Ljubo Boban,
16 "Hrvatske granice od 1918 do 1993 godine", which is the
17 work I cited earlier, published in Zagreb by Skolska
18 Knjiga and the Croatian Academy of Arts and Sciences.
19 Q. What does that map depict?
20 A. Bosnia disappears and entirely new political units'
21 merge in what has been re-named the Kingdom of
22 Yugoslavia. These entities -- there are nine of them
24 Q. You are pointing to the map on the ELMO?
25 A. Right, are named not after nationalities, not after
1 administrative units but after geographical features.
2 There was concentration of one or another nationality in
3 them but they were designed by the monarchy to try to
4 dampen down nationalist passions. Simultaneously or
5 about the same time the monarchy outlawed the communist
6 party, which was then a growing political force, and all
7 parties based on confessional or ethno-national
9 Q. Did this result in some additional hostilities within
10 the region?
11 A. Well, it actually succeeded in dampening things down for
12 a period of time but if left many questions
13 unresolved. It was particularly a time in the 1930s
14 were external forces were becoming more important to
15 Yugoslavia. One looked at the rise of fascist Italy to
16 the west and to the north the growth of an increasingly
17 aggressive Germany, and the next major development that
18 occurs in the history of the first Yugoslavia was in
19 October of 1934, when King Alexander, who had proclaimed
20 this arrangement, was assassinated by a group of
21 terrorists, led by or participated by in members by the
22 Croatian ultra nationalist Ustace. The word "Ustace"
23 means insurgents or rebels. Obviously his reign came to
24 an end at that point and left the authority in the land
25 in the hands of a regent.
1 Q. At this point, at the time of his assassination, the
2 nine banovinas are still in place, are they not?
3 A. They remained in place through his assassination.
4 Again under increasing threats from Nazi Germany and
5 Mussolini's Italy in 1939 the Regent, Prince Paul,
6 authorised the Prime Minister Cvetkovic to pursue an
7 agreement with Vladko Macek, who was the head of the
8 Croatian Peasant Party, and the successor to Stjepan
9 Radic. These negotiations lasted some months and were
10 essentially an effort on the part of the regency to
11 establish a working coalition between the Serbian and
12 Croatian nationalist forces within Yugoslavia. They
13 may be seen in a sense as an agreement of the -- which
14 was final reached in August 1939, an agreement between
15 the two largest actors in Yugoslavia at the expense of
16 the smaller ones.
17 This 1939 agreement, finally signed on 22nd
18 August, is known as the Cvetkovic-Macek agreement --
19 it has a couple of names, which I want to just take a
20 minute to outline -- the Sporazum, which simply means
21 agreement, or the so-called Banovina Plan. The term
22 "Banovina", and these are all Banovinas here, derives
23 from the word that had been used from the Middle Ages,
24 of course, a Slavic term based on Ban or governor. So
25 the Banovina may be interpreted as a governorship.
1 This agreement altered the map and became known as the
2 Banovina plan. I would like to go to that map at this
4 Q. The Banovina plan alters the map Exhibit 15?
5 A. That is correct. It alters it in important ways,
6 although some of the boundaries remain.
7 Q. Before we move to Exhibit 16, we will offer into
8 evidence Prosecutor's Exhibit 15, which is on the ELMO,
9 and we would offer to the usher Prosecutor's Exhibit 16,
10 which is now being handed to the court and counsel.
11 JUDGE JORDA: Judge Riad?
12 JUDGE RIAD: You mentioned.
13 THE INTERPRETER: Will the Judge please put his microphone
15 JUDGE RIAD: You mentioned the it altered the map. In
16 what way did it alter the map? Did it increase the
17 Serbian part or the Croatian part or the Muslim part?
18 A. I will be glad to answer your question. It increased
19 the size of really the Banovina that had the most Croats
20 in it and created one super-Croatian banovina. So it
21 departed from the rule of banovinas as based purely on
22 geographic features and created one which was explicitly
23 national, Croatian.
24 MR. KEHOE: If I may, Judge Riad, and if we can discuss this
25 with Exhibit 16, with the court's permission, and before
1 we discuss that, can we take a look at that particular
2 exhibit, Mr. Donia, and source that particular exhibit,
3 Exhibit 16, which is on the ELMO?
4 A. Yes. This is likewise from the Ljubo Boban work cited
5 in the previous two maps. I should note that Boban
6 wrote a book some years ago about the Cvetkovic-Macek
7 agreement and so it should be a good authority on the
8 creation of this map.
9 Q. Turn your attention to Exhibit 16, the banovina and
10 explain it please?
11 A. This small inset gives an overall picture of how the map
12 was revised. The Croatian banovina now becomes a
13 large, almost encircling, almost completely encircling
14 oval around a territory which is left in another
15 banovina and represents the result of the Croatian Macek
16 pursuit of the territorial aims of the Croats. It was
17 ultimately a village-by-village kind of negotiation but
18 became extremely important in the 1990s, because it
19 seemed to define the historical territorial ambitions of
20 Croatian nationalists. It was cited repeatedly by
21 President Tudjman and others in their notion of what
22 Croatia ought to encompass.
23 To cite one person who got to know President
24 Tudjman well, Lord David Owen, after spending much time
25 with him in negotiations in 1992 and 1993, cites this
1 specific agreement:
2 "Because the 1939 Cvetkovic-Macek agreement had
3 given the Croatian nation control over substantial parts
4 of Bosnia-Herzegovina, many Croats, not least Franjo
5 Tudjman, never in their hearts accepted the 1945
6 boundary between Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina".
7 Q. After the war in 1945 it significantly cut back the
8 Croatian banovina, did it not?
9 A. Yes. This arrangement lasted from 1939 until 1941.
10 That was a two year window of time in which the Croatian
11 Banovina was a functioning part of the Royal Yugoslav
13 Q. When this was established or agreed upon in August of
14 1939 was this tied to the ancient kingdoms or the
15 Medieval kingdoms of Croatia?
16 A. It was much more based upon demographic claims and
17 really did not reference those ancient kingdoms, that is
18 the Medieval period, so much.
19 Q. You just referenced comments by Lord Owen concerning
20 Franjo Tudjman's interest in the banovina plan. If you
21 take a look at Exhibit 16, is the Lasva River Valley
22 area of Central Bosnia included in this 1939 banovina?
23 A. Yes. The Lasva Valley of Central Bosnia -- I will
24 attempt to point out about where it is.
25 Q. You are pointing to the map on the ELMO?
1 A. Is about at this extreme north-west salient or
2 north-west portion of this salient stretching into
4 Q. That would be in the area of Travnik?
5 A. That's right. South and perhaps slightly east of
7 Q. Your Honour, before we proceed, we would move into
8 evidence Exhibit 16.
9 Mr. Donia, proceed, sir.
10 A. The Cvetkovic-Macek agreement was reached under some
11 duress by the regency. There was considerable contact
12 at that time between Macek and the Italian government.
13 It was widely known that the Italians were prepared to
14 support Macek vigorously in pursuit of a Croatian entity
15 within Yugoslavia or perhaps even Croatian independence
16 from Yugoslavia, and so the next two years really were a
17 very difficult period of trying to accommodate the
18 varying interests, even though the Croatian needs or
19 demands had largely been met in the Cvetkovic-Macek
20 agreement. The consequence of much political turmoil
21 in Yugoslavia, however, was that Hitler and Germany were
22 not satisfied and on April 6th, 1941 Hitler initiated an
23 invasion of Yugoslavia, starting with a bombing of
24 Belgrade, which killed thousands of people and brought
25 considerable destruction to that city.
1 In the ensuing weeks and months all of Yugoslavia
2 came under either Italian or German occupation, and also
3 was carved up in an entirely new way resulting in new
4 political units, which I can show on the next map.
5 Q. Before we move to that next map, Mr. Donia, when this
6 agreement was being entered into by the kingdom, were
7 there other Croatian movements that were growing
8 throughout -- in other parts of Europe that the kingdom
9 was trying to quiet down as a result of this agreement?
10 A. We noted that the Croatian Ustace, a right-wing
11 nationalist group, had planned and carried out the
12 assassination of King Alexander in October 1934.
13 Thereafter the Ustace were somewhat contained, but
14 continued to be sponsored and to some degree trained by
15 camps in Italy. The Ustace, this extreme right-wing
16 organisation, came to be an increasing threat to
17 stability domestically in Yugoslavia and to factor in
18 the arrangements that the Italians and Germans were to
19 make for the administration of the territory of
21 Q. So in somewhat pedestrian terms why would the kingdom
22 enter into this type of an agreement?
23 A. Well, the kingdom entered into the agreement to try to
24 achieve something -- a viable political arrangement over
25 the long-term but also to stave off the threat of some
1 sort of rebellion or uprising, possible uprising by the
2 Croatians, but this is not to minimise the fact that the
3 agreement was reached by domestic forces or arrived at
4 by domestic political leaders. However, the rising
5 presence of the Ustace was a factor. It was a
6 destabilising factor at this time in Yugoslavia.
7 Q. This particular entity, the Croatian banovina, existed
8 from August of 1993 and essentially ended upon the
9 attack by Nazi Germany on 6th April 1941; is that
11 A. Let's not move it forward quite so far. It was 1939,
12 not 1993, but 1939-1941 was when this existed, yes.
13 Q. So something less than two years?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. I believe you mentioned you wanted to move to the next
16 map. I request the usher to hand the next map, which I
17 believe is Exhibit 17.
18 If we can turn our attention, before we begin this
19 discussion, Mr. Donia, to Exhibit 17 which is on the ELMO
20 and can you reference that map, sir?
21 A. That is from the same source I cited earlier, the Ljubo
22 Boban collection of maps.
23 Q. What is Exhibit 17?
24 A. This represents a division of Yugoslavia by the
25 occupying forces in 1941. The relevant portion --
1 there is much division both north and south of it, but I
2 would say that the relevant portion here is the large
3 yellow block in the middle, which was a large area of
4 territory awarded to the so-called independent state of
5 Croatia. The independent state of Croatia was an
6 administrative entity under the leadership of Ustace
7 representatives, who were essentially installed by the
8 Germans to administer that territory.
9 The large or rather heavy line running through the
10 central part of the country represents the line between
11 German and Italian occupation forces. The Germans
12 occupied the areas to the north of this line, which runs
13 right through the heart of Bosnia, and the Italians, the
14 area to the south of the line.
15 Q. So Sarajevo was in the German area, for instance, and
16 Knin is in the Italian area?
17 A. Yes. Mostar, for example, was in the Italian area. I
18 can designate Mostar, for example, in the Italian area
20 Q. Sarajevo, right above it?
21 A. Are Sarajevo, above it, in the German area. On a
22 day-by-day basis much of this administration was
23 actually done by ustase appointees, but the military
24 picture came increasingly to pit the occupying forces
25 against resistance movements that arose in this period
1 of time.
2 Before I go into that, however, I think it's
3 important to note that the ustase probably entered this
4 period with a considerable popular support. What
5 popular support they had they tended to lose when they
6 reached an agreement with Italy early in the war and
7 allowed Italy to annex a portion, an important portion,
8 of the Dalmatian coast. That was something, of course,
9 which was dear to the heart of Croatian nationalists,
10 because it had been the heart of the old Dalmatian
11 Kingdom, and made the Ustace appear as sort of lackeys
12 of the Italians in particular. It certainly
13 compromised their popularity, although not nearly so
14 much as the things that they were to do in the period
15 after they came to power.
16 Q. For the purposes of the record, Mr. Donia, you were
17 pointing on the map to the light green area on the
18 Dalmatian coast?
19 A. Right. The Ustace Rule was brutal. It resulted in
20 the deaths of many thousands of people. It was
21 directed against Jews, against Serbs, against gypsies
22 and against opponents of the Ustace regime of just about
23 every conceivable coloration. The number of victims
24 that came out of this is a very controversial topic.
25 The Croats have -- as a historian Franjo Tudjman has
1 been at the forefront of this movement -- have given
2 some numbers for losses that are lower than those that
3 had previously been used, but there's no doubt that many
4 tens of thousands of people or more perished at the
5 hands of Ustace in camps that were created and in
6 various programmes of expulsion and atrocities within
7 territories controlled by them.
8 It was, in short, the first great outburst of
9 ethnic hostility done by a very organised group, the
10 Ustace, with backing from the Germans, although the
11 Germans at times even tried to rein them in or make
12 their extermination activities more systematic, if you
13 will. It was a time of horrific atrocities.
14 This certainly helped the birth of resistance
15 movements. There were two principal resistance
16 movements, one which was greater Serbian in its
17 orientation and led by Dragan Mohilovic, a former
18 officer in the Royal Yugoslav Army. The second, which
19 was led by the partisans under Josip Broz Tito was
20 organised by the Communist Party of Yugoslavia. Over
21 the course of time from 1941 until 1945 the partition as
22 a movement emerged as the strongest of these and
23 succeeded in liberating substantial portions of
24 territory in Yugoslavia, particularly in Bosnia, after
25 some extremely fierce fighting with the occupying
2 The reasons for the partisan triumph, I think, are
3 three-fold. First of all, the partisans succeeded in
4 winning British and allied support that had initially at
5 the beginning of the war been directed to Mohilovic and
6 the royalist -- and the so-called Cetnik forces.
7 Secondly, the partisans were prepared to ignore the
8 civilian losses that were frequently inflicted on the
9 population by Germans, German troops in particular, in
10 retaliation for their resistance activities. Third,
11 and perhaps most important for our discussion, they
12 insisted firmly on a policy of equality towards all
13 nationalities of Yugoslavia. This policy as
14 annunciated at several meetings during the war and came
15 to be the foundation of a national equality policy in
16 socialist Yugoslavia once the partisans came to power in
18 Q. Going back to the actual war period itself, 1941-1945,
19 there has been much discussion, certainly in the 1990s,
20 has there not, to use the period of time of 1941-1945 to
21 support the theory that all the problems in the former
22 Yugoslavia result from ancient tribal hatred. What is
23 your position on that as a historian?
24 A. The primary instance of it, and I noted that relations
25 between groups in Yugoslavia or in the lands that
1 formerly made up Yugoslavia have two very important
2 violent periods, and one is that beginning in 1941,
3 running until 1945, and the second, the one that begins
4 in 1992 -- 1991. I think it's important to understand
5 the Ustace approach to the Muslim population of Bosnia,
6 because it enters into the question of how nationalities
7 determined their relations in the years after 1990.
8 The Ustace rulers, puppet regime, if you like, of
9 the German-Italian occupiers, were intent on converting
10 or driving out or killing much of the Serbian
11 population. Their attitude towards the Muslims was
12 different, at least in theory, namely they viewed the
13 Muslims as Croats, as Croats of the Muslim faith, and
14 thus reflected that tendency that I have alluded to
15 earlier on the part of some nationalists of both Serb
16 and Croat persuasion to look at the Muslims as a group
17 of their particular nationality but of a different
18 religion. The Ustace regime took an existing building
19 in Zagreb, surrounded it with -- put a minaret around it
20 -- by it and made it into a mosque, and frequently made
21 a point of celebrating the fact that they viewed Muslims
22 as good Croats and, in fact, in some cases as the most
23 pure Croats.
24 The reality was that they also under the German
25 occupiers established a special unit for Muslims and in
1 that unit thousands of Muslims at one time were brought
2 in as part of the German forces, although the methods of
3 the Ustace came to discredit them in so many eyes that
4 this unit was essentially non-functional by 1944.
5 Nevertheless, there was a perception and indeed a
6 reality that at points in time during the Ustace regime
7 there was widespread Muslim collaboration with the
8 Ustace and their rule.
9 Q. So going back in history, Mr. Donia, coming from 1945,
10 how many instances are there of South Slavs killing
11 South Slavs?
12 A. Well, I do not know whether I can count instances but in
13 terms of large scale.
14 Q. Well, large scale?
15 A. Instances I think going from 1945 on you have very few
16 instances of that. Part of that is due to the nature
17 of the second Yugoslavia, the regime that took hold and
18 the way in which nationality relations were ordered
19 through much of it.
20 Q. I believe you wanted to move to the second Yugoslavia
22 A. I would like to return to the map that we began with, if
23 I may.
24 Q. Sure.
25 A. The Yugoslavia after 1945.
1 Q. That for the purposes of the record, your Honours, is
2 Exhibit 14.
3 A. In the aftermath of World War II the partisans led by
4 Tito came to establish a firm control over Yugoslavia
5 and implemented a centralised state, one committed to
6 rapid socialisation of the means of production and to
7 Stalinist political principles. There was to be one
8 party, a communist party of Yugoslavia, and organised
9 opposition after some very nominal original -- initial
10 coalition period was not permitted. In fact, the
11 seizure of power and his treatment of political
12 opponents on Tito's part was particularly brutal.
13 The new state was created along lines that are
14 similar, but there are a couple of important differences
15 to point out, because they would assume great
16 significance in the events of 1991 -- 1990 forward.
17 Number one, Serbia was created as a smaller state than
18 had existed in the previous Yugoslavia, but with two
19 autonomous provinces attached to it, Voivodina and
20 Kosovo, originally known as Kosovo Metoko.
21 Those were largely part of the Serbian Republic
22 but had substantial autonomy and particularly in the
23 latter part of the socialist period had their own
24 representatives at many Federal bodies. One should
25 also note that Croatia receives a substantial smaller
1 piece of land here, having lost this salient further
2 into what became the Vojvodina area. The map looks
3 surprisingly the same. The political system could not
4 have been more different.
5 The centralisation meant that when these
6 particular boundaries were drawn, they were hardly a
7 matter of resolving conflicts between contending
8 political sources. Rather a submission was set up.
9 It was not viewed as consequential because the party and
10 the State were to be so centralised that internal border
11 issues within Yugoslavia would not assume great
12 importance in subsequent years. This calculation, of
13 course, was completely wrong, and in the 1990s they were
14 to assume enormous significance.
15 In 1948 Tito came to a very strong difference of
16 views with Stalin and the Yugoslav communist party was
17 expelled from the Communist Information Bureau. This
18 break with Stalin in 1948 set off a whole new course for
19 Yugoslavia. Initially Yugoslavia had been really only
20 the east European country substantially liberated from
21 Nazi control by a indigenous resistance movement, but
22 this also meant that there was a firm independent spirit
23 in Tito's government and party, and this led to the
24 break with Stalin.
25 After 1948 Tito and the party felt a need to lay
1 out a new course, one which would distinguish them from
2 the tight central control and path that Stalin had set
3 out. This search led to two key answers. Number one
4 was workers' self-management domestically, and the
5 second was participation in the movement known as
6 non-alignment. For our purposes the result of the
7 emphasis on workers' self-management was over time a
8 substantial decentralisation of economic and political
9 authority from the central government. This was not
10 immediate and it took a couple of decades, but
11 ultimately workers' self-management came to mean less
12 power at the centre.
13 Q. So on a Federal level did the Federal Government become
14 less important?
15 A. It became progressively less important and the
16 republics, the six republics and two autonomous regions
17 that made up socialist Yugoslavia became progressively
18 more important. The decentralisation was also
19 accompanied by increasing openness. Yugoslavia had at
20 one point over 1 million guest workers in western
21 Europe, co-operative arrangements with outside firms and
22 was generally starting to become more a part of the
23 western European economy than any of the other countries
24 of east Europe were. Still this was a period of rapid
25 industrialisation and very rapid urbanisation. To take
1 one example, if one recalls that the city of Sarajevo
2 had a population in 1918 -- say 1910 is the last census
3 -- of about 50,000, by 1991 it was over 500,000. Such
4 growth, while it was somewhat exceptional, was taking
5 place in many of Yugoslavia's cities and in Bosnia's
7 Ultimately socialist Yugoslavia had to deal with
8 some of the same nationality questions that had plagued
9 the first Yugoslavia. In 1971 a period of intense
10 political and literary activity by the Croats led to a
11 series of purges that Tito carried out both in Croatia
12 and in other republics of Yugoslavia. In 1974 a new
13 constitution was promulgated, which in a sense finalised
14 the process of decentralisation and in many important
15 respects set the stage for the conflict between
16 republics which was to occur in the 1990s.
17 Q. How did it do that? How did the 1974 constitution do
19 A. It enshrined the authority of the republics and severely
20 limited the authority of the central government.
21 Q. So would it be fair to say that the 1974 constitution
22 was yet another step to make the republics more powerful
23 and the Federal Government less powerful?
24 A. Yes. By the time of the 1974 constitution other
25 institutions became perhaps more important than the
1 Federal Government in providing internal cohesion to
2 Yugoslavia. Those two institutions at that time would
3 have been the Yugoslav National Army and the League of
4 Communists, as the Communist Party came to be called in
6 Q. Presumably the then leader of Yugoslavia, Tito,
7 President Tito, agreed with this. Why did he agree to
8 such a decentralisation?
9 A. This was really Tito's last major foray into reforming
10 political life in Yugoslavia. He was extremely
11 concerned about a successor. One might think that he
12 would be concerned about having a strong successor or
13 want a strong successor, but, in fact, he did not want
14 anything of the kind. He wanted to be sure that no-one
15 would be able to concentrate power in his or her hands
16 and so he established both an extreme decentralisation
17 and a very complex mechanism to rule after his death.
18 This was known -- I say he established; it was
19 established in the constitution of 1974. It was known
20 as the Federal Presidency. There were other organs and
21 institutions as well, but the Federal Presidency was to
22 be the principal one. The Presidency was to elect a
23 President or have a President which would rotate
24 annually. Each of the constituent entities of
25 Yugoslavia was to have one person in line for that
1 Presidency. So the rotation came to be by republic or
2 entity and for only one year. As it turned out, this
3 effectively paralysed the institution of the Presidency
4 after Tito's death on March 4th -- May 4th, 1980.
5 The death of Tito, in fact, was widely expected to
6 set off some sort of internal turbulence in
7 Yugoslavia. Surprisingly to many people it did not,
8 and it would be another 11 years before actual
9 disintegration physically started taking place.
10 However, developments in the 1980s did move
11 towards the ultimate disintegration of the country in
12 several respects. First of all, discussion and
13 political dialogue became increasingly free. The
14 constraints that had been there during socialism
15 gradually fell away and one saw in the 1980s throughout
16 Yugoslavia the emergence of an aggressive, investigative
17 free press. This converged with the process of
18 decentralisation to by the late 1980s create pressures
19 for pluralism in all republics of Yugoslavia.
20 The economic crisis was another factor that
21 brought this to bear. There was a hyper-inflation that
22 developed starting in the mid-1980s and brought under
23 control only briefly in 1989, but economically
24 Yugoslavia probably deteriorated substantially from the
25 time of Tito's death until 1990.
1 Finally -- additionally, there came to be an
2 increasing nationalist dialogue in Yugoslavia and in
3 1987 with the rise of the leader Slobodan Milosevic in
4 Serbia, for the first time we saw the Serbian Communist
5 Party essentially taken over by people devoted to a
6 nationalist programme.
7 Q. Would it be fair to say, Mr. Donia in the various
8 republics and specifically Serbia, Bosnia and Croatia
9 are having problems in the 1980s, but those problems are
11 A. They are different, and one must keep in mind that the
12 republics are contending with one another for Federal
13 resources during this period, not nationalities per
14 se. So the fact that Bosnia, which was a republic that
15 had three nationalities within it, was contending for
16 resources with, let us say, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro
17 and Macedonia or whatever, meant that in many cases
18 members of those nationalities in Bosnia were working
19 together to promote The Republic's interest. So the
20 outbreak of pluralism, if you will, or the advent of
21 pluralism in Bosnia, which can be traced perhaps to 1987
22 takes a different form. It did not take a specifically
23 nationalist form in the years from 1987-1989.
24 The first evidence of a perhaps breach in the wall
25 was in August of 1987, when a scandal became public
1 knowledge surrounding the enterprise called Agrocomerc,
2 which is an enterprise which produced food stuffs in
3 north-western Bosnia. This scandal concerned the
4 issuance of bonds. It reminds one very much of an
5 American junk bond scandal. It set off a series of
6 revelations and accusations about use of public funds
7 and basically bonds that were not backed by
8 collateral. It resulted through this chain of events
9 in the resignation of Hamdija Pozderac, who was then a
10 member of the Federal Presidency from Bosnia, and in
11 this complex process of rotation that I have mentioned
12 was next in line to become President of the Presidency.
13 The manager of Agrocomerc, Fikret Abdic, was
14 arrested, jailed and this long investigation began,
15 which actually never brought any final conclusion.
16 Then in April of 1988 the Neum scandal took
17 place. This was the accusation, and a very true one,
18 that the leaders of the Bosnian party were using public
19 funds and the advantages that came to them as party
20 leaders to build luxury villas on the one small outlet
21 that Bosnia enjoyed on the Adriatic coast. This was
22 really a scandal that was broken by investigative
23 journalists and supported by the Socialist Youth
24 Alliance of Bosnia-Herzegovina, which subsequently
25 opposed some appointments of the old guard to government
1 posts. Thus we see this coalition in Bosnia between
2 youth, particularly members of the Socialist Youth
3 Alliance, and investigative journalists resulting in
4 pluralism being introduced and open discussion being
5 introduced in the organs of the League of Communists of
6 Bosnia. This was a generation conflict more than an
7 ethnic or national one as it took place in Bosnia.
8 In November 1988 there was an investigation of
9 student dissent at Sarajevo University by Bosnian
10 police, which resulted in again exposure in the press
11 and in April of 1989 the Bosnian Republican Assembly
12 adopted constitutional amendments favouring more
13 democratic elections, a market economy and limiting
14 powers of the Bosnian presidency.
15 Now this was really the very familiar east
16 European way of emerging pluralism under the auspices of
17 existing representative bodies or leadership. In a
18 sense the Bosnian Republic Assembly voted itself into an
19 era of democracy. This happened in one form or another
20 in all republics and in many places throughout Eastern
22 The actual demise of Yugoslavia, and let us say
23 Yugoslav central institutions, can really be traced to
24 January of 1990, when to try to address all the
25 conflicts that were going, constitutional, economic,
1 there was an extraordinary party congress convened of
2 the League of Communists. The 14th extraordinary party
3 congress. In the extensive discussion no agreement was
4 reached and the Slovene delegation shortly followed by
5 the Croatian delegation walked out of the 14th party
6 congress, and the congress subsequently adjourned
7 indefinitely. This removed for all practical purposes
8 the League of Communists of Yugoslavia as a central
9 institution that could provide coherence to Yugoslavia
10 and left only one institution claiming effectively to
11 represent a force for unity, that of the Yugoslav
12 National Army.
13 The constitutional changes had indeed provided for
14 the pluralist elections in each republic in 1990.
15 There was an effort to have an election across all of
16 Yugoslavia, which was never held because of opposition
17 from some groups, but it brought about the election that
18 we began our discussion with, which brought national
19 leaders to power in each republic and in Bosnia in
20 November 1990.
21 Q. Mr. Donia, just prior to this election in Bosnia in
22 November 1990, looking back at the history and the
23 historical era as well as the two Yugoslavias, what do
24 you as a historian see where we are and what conclusions
25 have you drawn on the State of Yugoslavia at that point?
1 A. Well, the first observation to make is that the
2 Yugoslavia of 1990 was an extremely different place than
3 it had been at the turn of the 20th century. It was an
4 extremely modernised country, highly urbanised relative
5 to what it had been 90 years before. It had gone
6 through two political efforts to create an entity which
7 would meet the aspirations of various South Slavs
8 groups, and clearly these had not been successful.
9 Nevertheless there was widespread belief and support for
10 the notion that people could get along and could reach a
11 constitutional political arrangement that would keep the
12 place in one manner or another intact. This was really
13 the rise of a confederational approach to political
15 It was also a society in which nationalist
16 political activity was assuming very important forms.
17 It was coming to the forefront. As was the case in
18 other places in Europe, in Eastern Europe, socialism had
19 been widely discredited as an economic system, and the
20 centralised, single party system had clearly been
21 discredited as a political system as well.
22 This, I think, left Yugoslavia in general and
23 Bosnia in particular in a search for an arrangement with
24 which it could move forward into the 1990s on the basis
25 of either a coalition or constitutional arrangement that
1 would keep the aspirations of all groups together.
2 Q. Mr. President, we are going to move into an entirely
3 separate area. I know, Mr. President, you mentioned that
4 generally you would want to end at 1 o'clock.
5 JUDGE JORDA: Yes. That is why, Mr. Prosecutor, I think
6 that we can conclude the testimony at this stage with
7 the 1990s. So I propose we now rise and meet again at
8 3.00 pm with the continuation of the testimony by
9 Mr. Donia. The hearing is adjourned.
10 (1.00 pm)
11 (Luncheon adjournment)
12 (2.05 pm)
13 JUDGE JORDA: I ask the Registrar to have the accused
14 brought in, please.
15 (Accused re-enters court)
16 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Kehoe, perhaps the usher could have the
17 witness brought in.
18 MR. KEHOE: He stepped out to do that, your Honour.
19 JUDGE JORDA: Since he is not here, Mr. Kehoe, do you think
20 that his deposition is going to take all afternoon? Is
21 it going to continue tomorrow? What do you think it's
22 going to be in terms of time? I know you do not have
23 the answers he is going to give you but at least you
24 have the questions you are going to ask him.
25 MR. KEHOE: I do have the questions, your Honour. I
1 believe that we will finish with Mr. Donia this
3 JUDGE JORDA: All right. So then possibly -- we will talk
4 about it a little bit later -- you can let us know
5 whether there are other witnesses for the rest of the
7 MR. KEHOE: Yes, your Honour.
8 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Donia, I hope you have rested a bit,
9 got your strength back and are prepared to continue?
10 A. Yes, sir.
11 JUDGE JORDA: Go ahead.
12 MR. KEHOE: Your Honour, before we begin, just for
13 record-keeping purposes, we would like to introduce
14 Exhibit 17, which was the 1941 map that Mr. Donia
15 referenced this morning.
16 JUDGE JORDA: All right.
17 MR. KEHOE: Likewise, with the permission of the usher, we
18 would ask that Prosecutor's Exhibit 5, which is the map
19 of Yugoslavia from 1991, and I believe it is just to the
20 right of Mr. Donia, if we could put that on the ELMO.
21 Thank you, Mr. President.
22 Mr. Donia, we left off this morning finishing with
23 1990, and I ask you, sir, that after the post-1990
24 period are there certain trends that you recognise that
25 added to and contributed to the catastrophic events that
1 we saw in Central Bosnia in 1993?
2 A. Yes. We have thus far proceeded somewhat
3 chronologically, and I find that it's easier to
4 understand these events after 1990 by approaching them
5 in terms of the major trends that took place in the area
6 and just to look forward on the outline that I
7 prepared. These are, first of all, the variants of
8 nationalism; secondly, what might be called the greater
9 Serbian coalition, and its role in Bosnia in particular;
10 third, the strengthening of the armies of Croatia and
11 Bosnia-Herzegovina; fourth, the involvement of the
12 international community in the lands that made up
13 Yugoslavia, especially Bosnia; and, finally, the
14 transformation of the Croatian democratic union in
15 Bosnia, these are the five trends that I would like to
16 discuss in the period after 1990.
17 Q. Would it be fair to say this these trends are going on
18 at the same time in many cases?
19 A. They are going on simultaneously and sometimes are
20 difficult to disentangle, but we will strike to look at
21 them separately with a hope to understanding the
22 sequence of events as well.
23 Q. Proceed, sir.
24 A. The first of these is the variance of nationalism. I
25 had mentioned that nationalist leaders came to power in
1 the elections of 1990 in all republics and in Bosnia
2 representatives of the three primary nationalities came
3 to dominate the post-1990 assembly. Nevertheless the
4 forms that nationalism took were quite different as it
5 emerged in this post-1990 period. For President
6 Milosevic of Serbia and Serbian nationalism, I think the
7 word that best describes the nature of nationalism is
8 expediency. The nature of Milosevic's nationalism was
9 such that he encouraged many of his followers to take to
10 the streets in demonstrations which had as their
11 objective the intimidation of the existing Communist
12 Party leadership in virtually all republics, including
13 Montenegro, Kosovo, Vojvodina and an attempt to do so in
15 The result of that was that several of the
16 leaderships of those provinces in the course of 1988
17 resigned and were replaced by people more loyal to
18 Milosevic's notion of a greater Serbia.
19 In March of 1989 the Serbian assembly voted
20 certain constitutional amendments, which basically ended
21 -- functionally ended the autonomy that Kosovo and
22 Vojvodina -- let me point these out here -- Vojvodina
23 the autonomous area to the north of Serbia.
24 Q. You are pointing to a map on the ELMO?
25 A. And Kosovo which had a large Albanian population to the
1 south of Serbia. These areas were subject to having
2 their political and security organs suspended by the
3 Serbian assembly after March of 1989. With this
4 constitutional amendment in place and new powers derived
5 from his control of the assembly or the leaderships of
6 those areas and Montenegro, Milosevic was in a
7 relatively strong position to dominate events within the
8 Yugoslav Federation from that point on.
9 However, it turned out that Milosevic's
10 nationalism was largely a tool of convenience, and he
11 subsequently abandoned that strategy in the course of
12 the mid-1990s. Owing to various pressures that were
13 put upon him largely by the international community and
14 other requirements he adopted a course which has become
15 in the meantime something very different from the
16 nationalism that he was espousing in the late 1980s.
17 Without going into a great deal of detail about the
18 political nature of that, I feel the word to describe
19 the official nationalism as it came out of Milosevic's
20 Serbia is really "expediency".
21 For the Bosnian Muslims I think the word is
22 "flexibility". The Bosnian Muslims have historically
23 in the 20th century been much more comfortable with a
24 multi-ethnic, plural religious society than other
25 movements of ethnic identity and nationalism. Part of
1 that is due to their historical situation in the middle
2 of these two zones of influence, east and west, and
3 living in Bosnia-Herzegovina, which is itself a
4 multi-ethnic society.
5 In the 1990 elections the leading vote-getter for
6 the presidency was, in fact, Fikret Abdic, who we met
7 earlier as the manager of the Agrocomerc enterprise
8 who, if anything, had a more secular orientation than
9 President Izetbegovic. Abdic declined to become
10 President of the Bosnian Presidency and returned to his
11 regional enclave in Bihac and Izetbegovic subsequently
12 became President. Once Izetbegovic assumed the
13 Presidency of Bosnia in 1990, he, together with the
14 President of Macedonia, was the primary mover in an
15 effort to find a confederational solution to the
16 disintegration of the Yugoslav federation. This
17 occurred in a series of talks in early 1991 from January
18 through late March, known as the YU talks. These
19 clearly did not result in the kind of outcome that
20 either he or his Macedonian colleague might have liked,
21 in large measure because President Milosevic was able to
22 frustrate many of these aims, but clearly it was the
23 intent of Izetbegovic to seek a confederation solution,
24 which would provide for continued ties but very loose
25 ties of the various components of the Yugoslav
2 For the Croatians if there is a word to describe
3 the nature of Croatian nationalism in this post-1990
4 period, I believe it is "consistency". The tone and
5 direction of Croatia's nationalism has been set more
6 than anything else by Croatia's current President,
7 President Tudjman. In writings that go back to his
8 days as a historian, and there are substantial writings
9 from that period, viewpoints from which he appears never
10 to have wavered and, in fact, President Tudjman has
11 never disguised his annexationist intentions towards
12 Bosnia and Herzegovina. In a work that he produced for
13 publication in English in the United States in 1981
14 entitled "Nationalism in Contemporary Europe" he spelt
15 out some of these views. I believe we have ...
16 Q. With the court's permission, can I ask the usher to
17 distribute what has been marked as Prosecutor's
18 Exhibit 18? Your Honour, this is the only exhibit we
19 have that has not been translated into French as yet,
20 but it will be.
21 Mr. Donia, before we talk specifically about the
22 pages annexed to Prosecutor's Exhibit 18, tell us a
23 little bit about this book.
24 A. This book is entitled "Nationalism and Contemporary
25 Europe". It was published at about the same time in
1 the language then known as Serbo-Croatian in Munich, and
2 was subsequently reprinted in Croatian in Zagreb in
3 1990. The excerpt that we are looking at is the United
4 States Library of Congress copy of this work in English
5 published by East European Monographs of Boulder,
6 Colorado, and distributed by Colombia University Press.
7 Q. Now as we page through Prosecutor's Exhibit 18, the
8 index indicates that there are numerous issues discussed
9 in this volume; is that correct?
10 A. Yes. I think it's fair to characterise this as a very
11 learned and wide-ranging work with vision and scope,
12 which has one portion of it devoted to the questions
13 involved with Yugoslav nationality.
14 Q. The point -- the pages from that volume that we have
15 annexed to the exhibit, can you address yourself to
16 those particular pages? I am referring to
17 pages 112 through 115?
18 A. Yes. May I have another copy perhaps of the exhibit?
19 It's a little bit difficult to ... thank you. At the
20 last paragraph on page 112 begins where I'm pointing
21 here. We see that again writing as a historian here Dr
22 Tudjman writes a chart passage regarding the post-World
23 War II decision to unite the Vojvodina as an autonomous
24 area with Serbia or associate it with Serbia. He writes:
25 "Several reasons could be given in favour of the
1 decision to unite Vojvodina with Serbia. The two areas
2 had strong historical, national, economic and cultural
3 ties and their union was also in the interest of the
4 state community as a whole. The fixing of the
5 boundaries for Vojvodina and Serbia is a different
6 question and will be discussed later. However, there
7 are many indications" -- I tell you there are some
8 typographical errors in this passage -- "there are many
9 indications that the same logical criteria were not
10 applied to the case of Bosnia-Herzegovina, which
11 according to the same yardstick should have been part of
12 the Croatian Federal unit. Bosnia and Herzegovina was
13 declared a separate Federal Republic within the borders
14 established during the Turkish occupation".
15 Q. Excuse me. Slow down just a bit while you are reading
17 A. "But large parts of Croatia had been incorporated into
18 Bosnia by the Turks. Furthermore, Bosnia and
19 Herzegovina were historically linked with Croatia and
20 they together comprise an indivisible, geographic and
21 economic entity. Bosnia and Herzegovina occupy the
22 central part of this whole, separating southern", that
23 is the coastal Dalmatian area, "from northern Pannonia",
24 that area closest to Hungary.
25 Q. Could you just flip the map back on the ELMO and point
1 to what we are talking about there. With the
2 assistance of the usher, could you put Exhibit 5 back on
3 the ELMO? If you could use that map, Mr. Donia, to
4 describe what Dr Tudjman is talking about?
5 A. Let me read the sentence again:
6 "Bosnia and Herzegovina occupy the central part of
7 this whole".
8 He is speaking here to this large triangular area:
9 " ... separating southern (Dalmatian) from
10 northern (Pannonian) Croatia. The creation of a
11 separate Bosnia and Herzegovina makes the territorial
12 and geographic position of Croatia extremely unnatural
13 in the economic sense and therefore in the broadest
14 nationalist political sense very unfavourable for life
15 and development and in the narrower administrative sense
16 unsuitable and disadvantageous.
17 These factors largely explain why the 1939
18 agreement between Belgrade and Zagreb", which we have
19 referred to as the Cvetkovic-Macek agreement, "included
20 the following areas of Bosnia into the Banovina of
22 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Donia, would you put the book back on the
23 ELMO so the interpreters can translate it for you and
24 for us?
25 MR. KEHOE: I am sorry, your Honour. I just took it off.
1 A. We're right here in the text.
2 JUDGE JORDA: I think that you were reading the text of the
3 second paragraph of page 113, which begins:
4 "These factors largely explain why the 1939 ..."
5 That is the point that I had got to.
6 A. Yes, sir.
7 "These factors largely explain why the 1939
8 agreement between Belgrade and Zagreb included the
9 following areas of Bosnia into the Banovina of Croatia:
10 the whole of Herzegovina and Mostar and those Bosnian
11 districts where the Croats have a clear majority
12 (Bugojno, Fojnica, Travnik, Derventa, Gradacac, Brcko)".
13 I would like to pause at this point to examine
14 what he means by that. If one goes to the census of
15 1991 and looks at those six districts, I would like to
16 read off from the 1991 census the percentage of
17 self-declared Croats in those districts.
18 Bugojno: 34.1 per cent.
19 Fojnica: 40.9 per cent.
20 Travnik: 36.9 per cent.
21 Derventa: 39.0 per cent.
22 Gradacac: 15.0 per cent.
23 Brcko, 25.4 per cent.
24 These numbers from the 1991 census are taken from
25 the same source as this map here, which is, in fact, on
1 the back of the map, these district numbers are printed
3 Thus in none of these districts in 1991 is there a
4 Croatian majority. In fact, the only way to get to
5 those numbers, to say that the districts in question,
6 these six districts, have a clear Croat majority, is to
7 include their Muslim populations. Indeed, as he
8 continues his discussion, Dr Tudjman makes exactly that
9 point. I go to this next full paragraph at the bottom
10 of page 113:
11 "There is little doubt that the main reasons for
12 declaring Bosnia and Herzegovina a separate federal
13 state was the mixed composition of its population and
14 the fact that since the last century the greatest
15 controversy between Croatian and Serbian political
16 leaders concerned the ownership of Bosnia and
17 Herzegovina. The decision, therefore, to make Bosnia
18 and Herzegovina a separate federal unit was purportedly
19 taken as an unbiased standpoint. Croatia laid claim to
20 Bosnia and Herzegovina on the basis of a common history
21 and the fact that they constituted a geo-political
22 whole. Serbia's claim was based on "natural right", as
23 the Serbian, Orthodox population constituted a plurality
24 (about 44 per cent) while the Croatian, Catholic
25 population made up about 23 per cent of the population
1 and the Muslims 33 per cent. Though the Orthodox
2 population was in the minority as compared to the
3 ethnically largely identical Catholic and Muslim
4 population, which together comprised a majority of 56
5 per cent ..."
6 Q. Excuse me, Mr. Donia. Would you just let the usher flip
7 the page?
8 A. We're right here, having cited this 56 per cent as a
9 majority made up of the Catholic and Muslim population:
10 " ... (which has now grown to 62 per cent) the
11 Serbian side overly stressed the "right of the sword",
12 since Serbia had entered World War I because of Bosnia
13 and Herzegovina and had been a victor in the conflict.
14 An objective examination of the numerical
15 composition of the population of Bosnia and Herzegovina
16 cannot ignore that the majority of the Muslims is in its
17 ethnic character and speech incontrovertibly of Croatian
18 origin. Despite religious and cultural distinctions
19 created by history, the vast majority of the Muslims
20 declared themselves Croats when an opportunity arose.
21 This was done in 1920 by the Muslim representatives in
22 the constituent assembly".
23 As a note here, I have indicated earlier that that
24 was the case, that the delegates to that assembly in the
25 majority declared themselves of Croatian coloration:
1 "It was done by the Muslim intelligentsia and
2 masses during the Banovina Hrvatska", that is the
3 Croatian Banovina, that period from 1939-1941, "and the
4 independent state of Croatia", the period from
5 1941-1945, "which all Muslims and Catholics of
6 Bosnia-Herzegovina at first accepted as their own
7 state. The historical fact regarding the attitude in
8 World War II of the Muslim population is bolstered by
9 many examples in the war memoirs of Milovan Djilas, a
10 member of the top Communist Party of Yugoslav
11 leadership. The fact that the Muslim population was
12 largely of Croatian persuasion was recognised between
13 the two wars by Svetozar Pribicevic, who was one of the
14 most uncompromising champions of Greater Serbian
15 unitarianism. About the Bosnian Muslims he wrote:
16 'Their intellectuals are in the vast majority of
17 Croatian orientated; and the masses blindly follow the
18 intellectuals in all political actions. There should
19 be no mistake about this. The hegemonistic system in
20 particular ... has meant that the Bosnian Muslims in
21 their aspirations and their views on the future
22 completely identify themselves with the Croats. Any
23 Serbian statesman who fails to take this fact into
24 account cannot be considered seriously'. On the basis
25 of these facts we arrive at the conclusion that a
1 majority of the population of Bosnia and Herzegovina is
3 This is the argument that the historian,
4 Dr Tudjman, advances. He cites, of course, one Serbian
5 politician and Milovan Djilas' memoirs. One might
6 wish that he would look at the censuses we have taken
7 place in Bosnia roughly every ten years over the past
8 really century, and I would just like to give you an
9 idea of what those censuses revealed in terms of
10 self-declarations by the Muslims of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
11 Q. Before you begin, Mr. President and your Honours,
12 Mr. Donia is going to be referring to some statistics at
13 this point. A copy of those statistics have been
14 provided to defence counsel. Proceed, Mr. Donia?
15 A. The 1948 census asked the question of religion and gave
16 the choice to people in Bosnia of nationality but did
17 not include the Bosnian Muslim nationality as an option,
18 so this was a pure case of Bosnia's Muslims being able
19 to declare themselves either Serb or Croat. The
20 religious identity showed that 890,094 people declared
21 themselves Muslim. Of those 24,914 declared themselves
22 Croat by nationality. This increased the number of
23 Croats in Bosnia by about 8 per cent. Almost 3 times
24 that many declared themselves Serbs, 71,125. This was
25 the first post-war opportunity that Bosnia's Muslims had
1 to declare themselves of Serbian or Croatian
2 nationality. Again in 1953 there was no option to
3 declare themselves as Muslims by nationality, but
4 891,800 people chose to use the identity of Yugoslavs.
5 In 1961 it became possible to identify themselves as
6 Muslim in the ethnic sense and 842,000 people so
7 declared themselves. These numbers continued to
8 rise. In 1971 it was 1,482,430; in 1981, 1,630,033;
9 and in 1991, just over 1.9 million Bosnians declared
10 themselves as Muslims by nationality.
11 Q. Given Dr Tudjman's comments, what do these statistics
12 indicate to you?
13 A. The Muslims of Bosnia clearly had multiple opportunities
14 to declare themselves either Croat or Serb by
15 nationality. Very few did so. I think it speaks
16 eloquently to the lack of any deep-seated identity of
17 the Muslim population as either Serbs or Croats.
18 There was also in addition to the evidence that
19 President Tudjman himself wrote in his works the
20 observations of outsiders who had got to know him in
21 the course of negotiations since he assumed the office
22 of the Presidency of Croatia.
23 In 1993 -- excuse me -- the observations of
24 foreigners include those of Lord David Owen, who got to
25 know President Tudjman well in the course of
1 negotiations in 1992 and 1993. His comment in his
2 recent memoirs, entitled "Balkan odyssey" was as
4 "Tudjman's nationalism is worn openly on his
5 sleeve. He has one purpose in life: to control all
6 the territory that he believes historically belongs to
7 Croatia, to that end he will use any means. He will do
8 it with a smile, a quizzical look or a fit of rage,
9 indications of the seething activity that drives him
11 Warren Zimmermann, the US Ambassador to Yugoslavia
12 at the time of the 1990 elections in Croatia met with
13 President Tudjman for the first time over breakfast the
14 day after his victory. He later wrote in a book just
15 published this year:
16 "Unlike Milosevic, who was driven by power,
17 Tudjman betrayed an obsession with creating
18 nationalism. His devotion to Croatia was of the most
19 narrow-minded sort. He stated flatly and with no
20 evidence: "Bosnia has historically within a part of
21 Croatia and has always been in Croatia's geo-political
22 sphere. Not only do Croats live in Bosnia but most
23 Muslims in Bosnia consider themselves Croats".
24 Finally, the consistency of the Tudjman's
25 nationalism position has been demonstrated by several
1 occasions which Lord Owen reports in his book, in which
2 Tudjman openly and without any pretence spoke on behalf
3 of the Bosnian Croats. He cites an incident on
4 July 9th, 1993, when he reports that over lunch:
5 "Tudjman seemed grudgingly to accept that if the
6 Croats wanted Novi Travnik, Vitez and Busovaca, then the
7 arithmetic alone dictates that they would have to give
8 Stolac to the Muslims".
9 Again in December of 1993 in the course of further
10 search for a solution to the on-going conflict:
11 "As the search for more territory for the Muslims
12 gathered momentum, the Croatian Government once again,
13 and without any attempt to pretend that they did not set
14 policy for the Bosnian Croats, stated to all the EU
15 Ambassadors in Zagreb that there had to be 17.5 per cent
16 for any predominantly Croatian republic and in no
17 circumstances could Vitez and Busovaca be given up ...
18 Their formal position was set out in a letter to us from
19 President Tudjman on 20th December 1993".
20 Q. Stopping you there, Vitez and Busovaca, are in the Lasva
21 Valley, are they not?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Continue, sir.
24 A. I've been attempting to characterise the variants of
25 nationalism amongst the various parties and would add to
1 my comments thus far on the Croatian nationalism that
2 there was another variant of it in Bosnia led by the
3 person who was elected, who won the most votes in the
4 1990 election, and that was Mr. Stjepan Kljuic, who was
5 clearly a Croatian nationalist, but strongly favoured a
6 unified Bosnia and Herzegovina and the realisation of
7 Bosnians Croats' ambitions within the unity of
8 Bosnia-Herzegovina. I will have occasion to go into
9 his role a bit more later.
10 Thus these three variants of nationalism played an
11 important role in the events from 1990 onward and they
12 were manifest in ways that were at times extremely
13 different. There was no question that there was an
14 annexationist desire of the Serbian side toward Bosnia
15 manifested over a long period of time, and that there
16 was an effort by the Bosnian Muslim leadership to
17 mitigate and compromise amongst these factors. The
18 Croatian nationalist side as it emerged from Croatia may
19 be seen to be remarkably consistent over a period of
21 The second trend that I would point to was the
22 emergence of the so-called greater Serbian alliance.
23 Q. Before we move into that, if we could, with the usher's
24 permission, move Exhibit 5, the map, back on to the
25 ELMO. At this juncture, while the usher is fixing the
1 map, we would move Exhibit 18, which is the excerpt from
2 Dr Tudjman's book, into evidence.
3 Proceed, Mr. Donia.
4 A. This alliance was one at the centre of which lay the
5 Yugoslav national army, the JNA, for the JNA made
6 possible the many horrific events that were initiated by
7 Serb nationalists both in Croatia and Bosnia in the
8 periods 1991-1995.
9 Q. Mr. Donia, when we talk about the JNA, it is the Yugoslav
10 national army, the Yugoslav people's army?
11 A. Right. We are using its Serbian acronym there, the
12 JNA. The members of this alliance were Milosevic's
13 Serbian Republic or what is sometimes called the Rump
14 Yugoslavia, the Yugoslav National Army itself, the Serbs
15 who inhabited the so-called Krijina region of Croatia,
16 and if one recalls the military frontier map that we
17 displayed earlier, that is the areas really in which
18 Serbs were resident, in this arc, particularly this area
19 with the capital city of Knin, K-N-I-N, which I am
20 pointing to right here on the map. As of the 1991
21 census about 600,000 Serbs lived in Croatia. As
22 indicated, they had been there for some centuries, most
23 of them, from the time of the migrations that brought
24 them there to guard the military frontiers or other
25 migrations that were set off by economic factors.
1 The next member of this coalition was the Bosnian
2 Serbs, who were widely dispersed throughout Bosnia, but
3 in the course of 1991 came into occupation of
4 substantial portions of Bosnia which they then
5 consolidated their military control over in 1992, and,
6 finally and most ominously, the paramilitaries who were
7 used frequently by the Yugoslav national army to do the
8 actual work of ethnic cleansing of Croats and Muslims
9 from Bosnia.
10 There are three critical events in the evolution
11 of this coalition, which I will just briefly touch on.
12 The first was the ten day war in Slovenia. In June
13 1991 Slovenia and Croatia issued declarations of
14 independence. The Yugoslav army intervened to prevent
15 the Slovenes -- attempted to intervene to prevent the
16 Slovenes from declaring independence and met
17 surprisingly effective resistance, as the Slovenes
18 attempted to establish their control of border posts and
19 some key military objectives. In a very few days the
20 Yugoslav National Army command made the decision not to
21 contest the independence of Slovenia with an additional
22 infusion of forces, and after a brief conflict, a
23 cease-fire resulted and the Yugoslav army withdrew from
24 Slovenia, leaving it to pursue independence.
25 Such was not the fate of Croatia which had both a
1 large Serbian population and greater strategic
2 importance to the JNA. The events of late 1990 and
3 1991 showed that the Yugoslav National Army was prepared
4 to sponsor an uprising by the Serbs of Croatia and
5 essentially to fight a war in alliance with them against
6 the Croats. This was a very bloody conflict. It cost
7 many thousands of lives. It saw the first incidence of
8 ethnic cleansing which took place in Croatia and
9 resulted in a very great threat, in fact, to the
10 existence of the -- continued existence of the Croatian
11 state at its height.
12 There were two key areas which I should mention
13 here. One is the --
14 Q. You are referring back to the map on the ELMO?
15 A. Yes, to the map. One is the city of Vukovar, which was
16 besieged for many weeks and it was ultimately virtually
17 destroyed -- I am pointing to it -- Vukovar right on the
18 border here, a beautiful central European Baroque city,
19 which was virtually destroyed by JNA artillery fire, and
20 ultimately surrendered to the JNA on November 17th,
22 The second city which because it gained such
23 notoriety, the assaults on the city of Dubrovnik, the
24 Medieval walled city, attained great attention
25 internationally, because they threatened an important
1 cultural monument, although the actual casualties were
2 probably much less significant than they were in many
3 other parts of Croatia. That seemed to draw a great
4 deal of international attention to the fighting in
6 This war finally ended in a cease-fire in January
7 of 1992, a cease-fire which was achieved by mediation of
8 former US Secretary of State Cyrus Vance, and which
9 resulted in the deployment of United Nations
10 peace-keeping troops in Croatia in the very early spring
11 of 1992.
12 The third event that was important here was the
13 war in Bosnia itself. The Yugoslav National Army
14 followed a source that was in some respects akin to what
15 it had done in the Croatian war in that it was in
16 coalition and co-operation with the Bosnian Serb
17 leadership, and focused its work on assaulting the
18 cities particularly of Eastern Bosnia and in conquering
19 large portions of territory in the western part of
20 Bosnia. I will just generally give you an idea of
21 those, if I may, by again pointing to the ELMO. The
22 cities of Eastern Bosnia which fell to a combination of
23 the Yugoslav National Army and paramilitaries who were
24 doing much of the actual ethnic cleansing lay largely
25 along this boundary of Bosnia with Serbia and also in
1 the spring and summer of 1992 in large areas of western
2 Bosnia, around the city of Banja Luka and areas
3 extending out from it.
4 The Yugoslav army in principle arrived at the same
5 decision that it did in Croatia, which was that it
6 strategically had a vested interest in making sure that
7 Bosnia-Herzegovina did not as a unitary state secede
8 from the Yugoslav Federation and consequently pursued
9 the very brutal and costly war there. If the coalition
10 of Serbs was, in fact, diabolical in its deeds in
11 Croatia and Bosnia, it turned out to be surprisingly
12 fragile in its long-term composition.
13 This coalition first came unravelled or started to
14 become unravelled in March 1993 when Milosevic made the
15 decision to accept the Vance-Owen Peace Plan and asked
16 his Bosnian Serb allies to do the same. They declined
17 to do so in events which we will get to in a minute.
18 That split between at least a part of the Bosnian Serb
19 leadership and Milosevic continues to this day. It was
20 manifest most recently in the elections of September
21 1996 in Bosnia and again in an agreement reached only a
22 couple of months ago in March of 1997, and it became
23 slowly evident that Milosevic's control over the
24 different elements of this coalition and his willingness
25 to support them was subject to a number of conditions
1 and factors which eventually left some of them out
2 without his help.
3 Much of the strategy of the Yugoslav National Army
4 focused on supporting the paramilitaries in their taking
5 of cities and towns.
6 Q. Mr. Donia, when you talk about paramilitaries, have
7 certain names through these paramilitary groups become
8 somewhat popularised?
9 A. The two names most associated with these are Mr. Cecel
10 and Arkan, which is a short name or a pseudonym for
11 Mr. Raznadovic, who had militaries that were supported
12 and so some degree trained in Serbia prior to the
13 violence that broke out in Croatia.
14 The nature of the Yugoslav National Army in Bosnia
15 underwent a change in April of 1992, when Milosevic
16 promulgated a new constitution for the Rump
17 Yugoslavia. This was a constitution designed to
18 recognise that Yugoslavia now existed only of Serbia and
19 Montenegro, the other states having withdrawn or
20 declared their independence, but this declaration ended
21 the last shred of pretence that the Yugoslav National
22 Army in Bosnia was anything other than a foreign force
23 in occupation.
24 The next day Bosnian President Izetbegovic
25 demanded the complete withdrawal of the Yugoslav
1 National Army from Bosnia, but the -- there had been
2 preparation for this in advance on the part of the army,
3 and on May 4th, 1992 the federal Presidency of
4 Yugoslavia ordered the withdrawal of all troops who were
5 citizens of the Yugoslav federal Republic. This was an
6 attempt to argue that it had complied with international
7 pressure to withdraw its army. However, it left
8 virtually all of its arms behind and all of its men who
9 were said to be from Bosnia, and, in fact, the
10 composition of those forces changed very little, but did
11 come under the command of General Radko Mladic, who
12 continues to command them to this day. At that point
13 the nomenclature used to refer to the Yugoslav National
14 Army in Bosnia was changed to the Bosnian Serb Army.
15 Q. Mr. Donia, in Bosnian Serbo-Croatian are the initials
16 normally used to refer to that army VRS?
17 A. Yes. The second trend then that I have discussed here
18 was this greater Serb coalition with drastic and
19 negative consequences for both Croatia and Bosnia and
20 the ultimate unravelling of it, which began in March of
22 The third trend I would like to point out because
23 it is -- I will not elaborate on it, but I would just
24 like to acknowledge it -- is whereas the armies of
25 Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina at the beginning of this
1 conflict were nothing more than territorial forces, in
2 the course of 1991, 1992 and 1993 they became stronger,
3 more effective fighting forces.
4 Q. Mr. Donia, let me interrupt you for one moment. When
5 you say territorial forces, are you referring to the
6 defensive plan that had been inherent in the defensive
7 plan for the former Yugoslavia in the use of territorial
8 forces spread throughout the country?
9 A. Yes, that was the origin of these forces.
10 Q. Can you just explain that for me?
11 A. Well, they were created in a period of socialist
12 Yugoslavia as a kind of a reserve force or domestic
13 component of the military force intended to assure that
14 any invader might face very serious -- serious
15 resistance from local forces. These were effectively
16 lightly armed at the time that the conflict broke out
17 so, building an army for Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina
18 was a substantial task and, in fact, both succeeded to
19 some degree in the course of those three years in
20 achieving not parity but greater strength, which enabled
21 them to become more effective on the battlefield.
22 The fourth trend was the involvement of the
23 international community in the lands that made up
24 Yugoslavia particularly Bosnia. It will be remembered
25 that the discussions between the republics ended
1 effectively with the elections of 1990 until the
2 Yugoslav YU talks were initiated in January-March of
3 1991. The international community first became
4 involved formally in this picture when the Slovenes
5 declared independence in June of 1991 and the European
6 Community despatched a delegation to try to mediate
7 between the Slovenes and the JNA. This mediation was
8 successful and marked the beginning of a protracted
9 involvement by the European union, the then European
10 community, as of, I think, 1994 called the European
11 Union, which is the area within the region.
12 Cyrus Vance as the personal representative of the
13 United Nations Secretary-General mediated the conflict in
14 Croatia resulting ultimately in the cease-fire of
15 January 2nd, 1992, and the deployment of UN
17 There were five important plans that were brought
18 to the contenders in the region by the international
19 community. I am going to just identify them. One can
20 probably determine that there were 25 or 50 or 100, but
21 I would like to categorise them as five primary plans
22 brought together by the international community.
23 The first of these was an agreement mediated by
24 the European union on February 23rd, 1992, which was
25 just before the conflict in Bosnia began. The second
1 was the Vance-Owen Peace Plan of January 1993, which
2 I'll discuss in greater detail in a moment. The third
3 was the combination of proposals known typically as the
4 Owen Stoltenberg proposals from June of 1993 until very
5 early 1994. Fourth, just to complete the picture, was
6 the federation agreement between the Serbs and Croats
7 reached at the -- excuse me -- the Bosnian government
8 and the Croats or the Muslims and the Croats, reached in
9 March of 1994, and, finally, the current arrangement,
10 the Dayton Peace Agreement, signed in November 1995.
11 The first of these, the Lisbon agreement was a
12 meeting held in Lisbon and attended by President
13 Izetbegovic of Bosnia, Mate Boban as a representative of
14 the Bosnian Croats and representatives of the Bosnian
15 Serbs to partition -- let me not use the word
16 "partition" -- to create cantons in Bosnia.
17 Q. When you use the word "cantons", what do you mean?
18 A. On the Swiss model, that is areas which had perhaps an
19 ethnic concentration in them. It retained a central
20 government with some authority, but clearly the cantons
21 were a way to establish separate areas to satisfy the
22 aspirations of the competing groups.
23 This agreement was renounced by President
24 Izetbegovic almost as soon as he returned from Lisbon.
25 It resulted in further meetings in the next 30 days, but
1 failed to stem the tide that was then moving towards
3 It will be remembered that in -- just to identify
4 a date here -- on 29th February and 1st March 1992 a
5 referendum was held in Bosnia on the question of
6 sovereignty and independence and that referendum was a
7 deadline against which negotiators were then working to
8 try to secure an agreement. That effort failed.
9 The second major international plan was the
10 Vance-Owen Peace Plan. This emerged from discussions
11 and negotiations that began at the London conference of
12 August 1992. The London conference was convened to
13 include numerous countries in a discussion of the future
14 of Bosnia, to address the war which was then raging and
15 in particular was pitting the Bosnian Serbs, who were
16 having considerable success then, against the Bosnian
18 The London conference resulted in the appointment
19 of co-chairmen of the Steering Committee of the
20 International Conference on the Former Yugoslavia, which
21 is what the London conference came to be called. Those
22 co-chairmen were Lord David Owen representing the
23 European Community, and Cyrus Vance as the personal
24 representative of the Secretary-General of the United
1 Negotiations began immediately after the London
2 conference and proceeded intensively, but not until
3 January 2nd, 1993 was the first formal plenary session
4 held. At that time the Vance-Owen Peace Plan was
5 released to the public, largely because the co-chairmen
6 had at that point not succeeded in bringing all parties
7 on board.
8 The Vance-Owen Peace Plan turned out to be the
9 high watermark of Croatian nationalist fortunes in
10 Bosnia from a territorial standpoint.
11 Q. If I can ask the usher, your Honour, to hand out what
12 has been marked as Prosecutor's Exhibit 19. Before we
13 proceed in talking about this particular map, Mr. Donia,
14 where did this map come from?
15 A. The map in black and white only appears in David Owen's
16 book "Balkan Odyssey".
17 Q. Who did the rather professional job for colouring in the
18 blue and red areas?
19 A. Thank you for your compliment. I did. I coloured
20 this in to show -- the only thing I really wanted to
21 show was the three Croatian dominated provinces which
22 were designed in the plan.
23 Q. You are turning to the ELMO.
24 A. I'll turn to the ELMO here and show that provinces 3, 8
25 and 10 in the Vance-Owen Peace Plan in its original
1 formulation from January 1993 were to be provinces in
2 which Croatian authority was to be established and
3 forces were to be there until the demilitarisation
5 Q. That was Bosnian Croat forces?
6 A. Yes. The Vance-Owen --
7 Q. Just before you move on, by way of explanation, how
8 about the red and white areas?
9 A. The red areas were those designated for the Bosnian
10 Serbs and the white areas for the Bosnian government or
11 at that time frequently also referred to the Bosnian
13 The Vance-Owen Peace Plan, in fact, consisted of
14 four elements. One was the map. It proved to be the
15 most controversial and difficult. Second was a set of
16 constitutional provisions. Third was a cease-fire
17 arrangement or cessation of hostilities. Fourth were a
18 set of interim provisions for the transition to a
19 demilitarised Bosnia-Herzegovina. At the first
20 available opportunity on January 4th 1993 Mate Boban
21 signed all four provisions of the Vance-Owen Peace Plan
22 on behalf of Bosnia's Croats. The map and the map only
23 was resisted by President Izetbegovic of Bosnia, and the
24 map and certain constitutional provisions were rejected
25 by Radovan Karadzic on behalf of the Bosnian Serbs.
1 An intense period of diplomacy followed, the
2 primary objective of which was to get the Bosnian
3 government, that is President Izetbegovic, to sign the
4 document, to agree to the document. The talks for the
5 conclusion were moved to New York and, in fact, all the
6 delegations made three different trips to the United
7 Nations in New York in pursuit of an agreement in
8 February and March of 1993.
9 After this protracted period of intense diplomatic
10 pressure, President Izetbegovic signed the Vance-Owen
11 Peace Plan in its entirety on March 25th, 1993. He
12 signed it with considerable reservations, expressed at
13 the time as an annex in a report to the
14 Secretary-General of the United Nations. His
15 reservations concerning the agreement pertained to his
16 desire to make sure that the results of ethnic cleansing
17 and conquest, by which he meant the ethnic cleansing and
18 conquest of the Bosnian Serbs, was not rewarded in the
20 The plan did, in fact, call for withdrawal by the
21 Bosnian Serbs from numerous areas then under their
22 military control, but it nonetheless awarded them, as
23 can be seen, substantial portions of Bosnia in the form
24 of the provinces designated.
25 What was the Bosnian Serb position on Vance-Owen?
1 In addition to rejecting the map and constitutional
2 provisions, on the ground the Bosnian Serbs increased
3 their activities, launched new assaults on villages in
4 Eastern Bosnia, tightened their siege of the city of
5 Srevonica and stepped up their pressure on the city of
6 Sarajevo, which had been under siege since May of
7 1992. Indeed, it's hard to return to the reports of
8 activities at this time without concluding that the
9 Bosnian Serbs were deliberately taunting the
10 international community in an effort to defy and in a
11 sense step up the pressure for increasing their own
12 gains through this defiance of the international
14 On April 2nd, 1993 the Serbian representative
15 assembly meeting at Belica specifically voted to reject
16 the Vance-Owen Peace Plan. This was deeply
17 disappointing to the negotiators and to the various
18 members of the international community who had hoped
19 that this would be accepted by the Bosnian Serbs,
20 perhaps with some modest changes as a basis for
21 concluding the peace. This was dismaying news to the
22 Bosnian Croats. The Vance-Owen Peace Plan constituted
23 the realisation of their basic territorial aims in
24 Bosnia, which was why Boban had signed it so eagerly in
25 January of 1992.
1 Going forward, the future for subsequent peace
2 plans was uncertain. As the Bosnian Serbs continued to
3 make consistent territorial gains in Eastern Bosnia, the
4 available territory for agreement was shrinking.
5 The Americans were pressing Vance and Owen to
6 protect the interests of the Bosnian government, who
7 they were championing at that point, by awarding it
8 enough land to be a viable state. So the Croats at
9 that point had no hope of scoring additional territorial
10 gains. Once the Vance-Owen Peace Plan was essentially
11 dead, about a month later subsequent events would prove
12 that the high watermark of Croatian fortunes was indeed
13 the Vance-Owen Peace Plan.
14 I would like to illustrate that point by looking
15 at a comparison of Vance-Owen with the two plans that
16 came to make up the Owen-Stoltenberg proposals of that
18 Q. Your Honour, at this time -- yes, your Honour,
19 Mr. President.
20 THE INTERPRETER: Could we have the microphone, please?
21 JUDGE JORDA: We will resume at 4.30.
22 (4.15 pm)
23 (Short break)
24 (4.30 pm)
25 JUDGE JORDA: We are resuming the hearing. Can we have
1 the accused brought in, please?
2 (Accused re-enters court)
3 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Prosecutor?
4 MR. KEHOE: Yes, your Honour. I do believe the usher went
5 to get Mr. Donia:
6 (Witness re-enters court)
7 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Prosecutor?
8 MR. KEHOE: Thank you, Mr. President. Mr. Donia, in your
9 testimony approximately half an hour ago, prior to the
10 break, you were talking about the current head of the
11 VRS army, the Bosnian Serb Army. You identified him as
12 Ratko Mladic during the time-frame 1992-1993; is that
13 correct? Is he still the --
14 A. No, I misspoke. He formally stepped down from the
15 command of the Bosnian Serb Army shortly after the
16 conclusion of the Dayton Peace Agreement.
17 Q. Your Honour, we just wanted to make that correction and
18 then move back.
19 Now, you were talking about the particular
20 Vance-Owen map that was on the ELMO previously, your
21 Honour, and that is Prosecutor's Exhibit 19, which was
22 sourced as coming from Lord Owen's book, and we would
23 like to introduce that into evidence. We would like to
24 move on.
25 Mr. Donia, just prior to the break you were talking
1 about some additional variations of the plan that took
2 place after the Vance-Owen plan was rejected in April of
3 1993; is that correct?
4 A. It was, in fact, rejected several times by three
5 successive Bosnian Serb assemblies. It was rejected
6 three times by those assemblies and ultimately by a
7 referendum in April through May of 1993. Subsequent to
8 this other talks were held, and various plans were put
9 on the table for further discussion, and I was about to
10 suggest that we might look at those plans in comparison
11 to the Vance-Owen plan in terms of the degree of
12 territory awarded to the Bosnian Croats.
13 Q. Mr. President, if we could ask the usher to hand out what
14 has been marked as Prosecutor's Exhibit 20. Again,
15 Mr. Donia, before we discuss Prosecutor's Exhibit 20,
16 what is the source of these two maps, sir, that are on
17 this page?
18 A. Both maps are from Lord David Owen's book, "Balkan
19 odyssey". The top map is the one that we had just
20 looked at with a somewhat different coloration, and it
21 is the original Vance-Owen Peace Plan of 2nd January
22 1993. The lower part of the page was the proposal that
23 immediately succeeded the Vance-Owen plan, the Serb
24 proposal for the union of three republics from June of
1 Q. The coloration on both of those was done by the same
2 graphic designer as the prior exhibit?
3 A. Yes, sir.
4 Q. That's you?
5 A. Yes, that's me.
6 Q. Okay. Now the blue in both of those are the two areas
7 that were given to the Bosnian Croats; is that correct?
8 A. That is correct in these two different plans. The two
9 areas, and again I have coloured the three provinces
10 under Vance-Owen, the two separate areas consist of,
11 first of all, an area in the so-called Posavina area,
12 just south of the Sava River and then a large area of
13 western Herzegovina and Central Bosnia. Just looking
14 at the difference between the two plans, first of all,
15 as it pertains to the Posavina, one can see that the
16 size of the territory has been substantially reduced in
17 this text plan, and also that a corridor has been
18 proposed right through the middle of it, cutting it into
19 two portions.
20 As far as the area of Central Bosnia is concerned,
21 which will be recognised as that area roughly speaking
22 that was a part of the old Banovina Plan from 1939, in
23 this plan much of that area is reduced by a salient of
24 the Bosnian government coming into this area, and also
25 there is a reduction here right around the city of
2 Q. Just comparing these two maps, Mr. Donia, in the first
3 Vance-Owen Peace Plan map in Canton 10 in the centre the
4 areas of Busovaca, Vitez and down towards Kiseljak, at
5 least part of it, were given to the Bosnian Croats; is
6 that correct?
7 A. That is correct.
8 Q. Going back to the Serb proposal on the bottom of the
9 page, there have been some incursions on to that
10 territory, have there not?
11 A. That is correct.
12 Q. I'm sorry. Were you finished discussing this
13 particular map?
14 A. Yes. Again I would emphasise there were a series of
15 proposals and discussions held at this time which I have
16 referred to broadly as the Owen Stoltenberg talks or
17 proposals. So one must look at a couple of these
18 different proposals to see the point that the Vance-Owen
19 plan was indeed the high watermark of Croatian
20 territorial fortunes.
21 Q. On that note, your Honour, can we hand out what has been
22 marked as Prosecutor's Exhibit 21? If I give this to
23 the usher. I would also like to introduce into
24 evidence Prosecutor's Exhibit 20.
25 Mr. Donia, we have placed Prosecutor's Exhibit 21
1 on the ELMO. Could you please proceed, sir?
2 A. Yes. The source of these maps is the same. Both of
3 them came from a book by Lord David Owen, "Balkan
4 Odyssey", again coloration provided by me in the areas
5 which were expected to be Croat-dominated provinces.
6 The Posavina area in this plan is reduced both in size
7 and again by a small, barely perceptible corridor
8 running through the middle of it. Likewise, the area
9 of western Herzegovina and Central Bosnia is shrunk in
10 this map with a rather sharp protrusion up towards
11 Zenica, this salient that moves up into Central Bosnia.
12 The territory as a whole, however, is considerably
13 reduced in this map from the one that was formulated in
14 January of 1993.
15 The reasons for this were that the new search for
16 a peace plan in Bosnia came to centre around a
17 percentages gain. Once Vance-Owen was no longer a
18 viable agreement in the early summer of -- a viable
19 proposal in the early summer of 1993, there emerged a
20 question for a plan which would award at least 30 per
21 cent of the territory to the Bosnian government.
22 Later that percentage turned to 33 per cent, but
23 it became a question of only so much territory in Bosnia
24 to be awarded, and the fact that the Bosnian Serbs
25 continued intermittently through this period to make
1 limited territorial accusations.
2 The subsequent two peace plans, the federation
3 agreement of March 1994 and the Dayton Peace Agreement
4 of November 1995, I think need only be mentioned in this
5 context because their provisions go far beyond the scope
6 of this particular question, but they did, of course,
7 result in an end to the federation agreement in March
8 and effectively the agreement reached in February 1994
9 put an end, effectively a cease-fire to the conflict
10 between Muslims and Croats in Central Bosnia.
11 Q. Going back, if you would, Mr. Donia, to the Vance-Owen
12 plan as it was introduced on 2nd January 1993 and stayed
13 on the negotiating table until the spring of 1993, how
14 would you term that particular peace plan in terms of
15 the expectations and the desires of the Bosnian Croats?
16 A. Well, I think it was optimal for them. They received
17 substantial territorial awards, which mirrored in some
18 sense the agreement of 1939 in terms of having a major
19 salient into Central Bosnia, and also possession of a
20 significant portion of land in the Posavina.
21 Subsequent developments were never so kind to them as
22 they suffered some military losses and also were
23 increasingly pinched by the lack of available territory
24 to meet partly the America pressure to award the Bosnian
25 government enough land to be a viable state.
1 Q. Going back to that plan, sir, in cantons 3, 8 and 10,
2 which were awarded to the Bosnian Croats, the Lasva
3 Valley is set forth in canton 10, is it not?
4 A. It's definitely in canton 10. It's close to the
5 boundary, but well within it.
6 Q. If we can move on to the next portion of your
8 A. The last development or trend that I would like to
9 discuss in this period after 1990 before trying to bring
10 it together for you was the transformation of the
11 Croatian Democratic Union, or the HDZ, in Bosnia from a
12 party that represented all Bosnian Croats throughout
13 Bosnia to an organisation focused principally, not
14 exclusively, but principally upon a territorial unit,
15 that of Herceg-Bosna, as an extension of the Republic of
17 From 1991 onward the policy of The Republic of
18 Croatia towards Bosnia really proceeded along two
19 tracks, one, diplomatic and the other military. The
20 diplomatic solution required that Bosnia be subject to
21 possible partition or division, whereas a military
22 approach demanded Bosnia as an ally: militarily
23 speaking the Croatian army needed all the support that
24 it could get in fighting its war against the Serbs and
25 would need to have whatever help would be available from
1 the Bosnian government or the army of
3 This, in fact, was a rather sore point for the
4 Croats, because the Bosnians for their part were trying
5 desperately to maintain a position in the course of the
6 1991 war in Croatia which might keep them out of
7 confrontation with the Yugoslav National Army.
8 Interestingly enough, both courses of action, that is a
9 military alliance and a diplomatic division or partial
10 partition, ultimately could be pursued simultaneously
11 and with at least some success.
12 In 1991, March of 1991 -- this is really at the
13 time that the YU talks were going on in an effort to try
14 to find a confederational solution --
15 Q. By YU you mean Yugoslav Union?
16 A. Yes, the various republics of the Yugoslav Union. A
17 meeting was held at the -- just outside Belgrade at
18 Karadjordjevo between Tudjman and Milosevic.
19 Subsequent to this meeting the number of journalists
20 reported that they had discussed or reached an agreement
21 upon the partition of Bosnia. This touched off
22 widespread speculation which has continued ever since
23 without any concrete evidence of a map or specific
24 agreement, but a typical comment was that of the
25 Sarajevo daily Oslobodjenje of 14th June 1991 that there
1 were "too many facts showing that the partition of
2 Bosnia was almost a foregone conclusion".
3 Q. This meeting was between President Milosevic and
4 President Tudjman; is that correct?
5 A. That is correct.
6 Q. Was President Izetbegovic there?
7 A. No, there was no suggestion he was present. Again I
8 would emphasise that this is not something that we can
9 state with certainty was concluded or discussed, but it
10 was the subject of widespread speculation thereafter.
11 In May of 1992 an agreement was reached in principle
12 between Mate Boban, speaking for the Bosnian Croats, and
13 Radovan Karadzic, speaking for the Bosnian Serbs, in
14 Graz, which referenced the efforts then on-going of the
15 European Community to seek a resolution to the conflict
16 in Bosnia. Thus discussions or speculation of
17 discussions was rampant at this period of time really
18 about the possibility of partition. It was considered
19 an issue that was very much on the table in terms of
20 both the Serbs and Croats at this time.
21 On the other hand, the elections of 1990 brought
22 to power as the leading vote-getter of the Croatian
23 democratic community Stjepan Kljuic, who was committed
24 to a unified Bosnia, and opposed to plans of partition.
25 Q. This is the election taking place in Bosnia-Herzegovina?
1 A. That is correct. He was the leader elected -- became
2 the President of the Croatian Democratic Union, the
3 political party, in the wake of the 1990 elections.
4 The transformation of this party from a supporter of a
5 unified and sovereign Bosnia-Herzegovina into an
6 advocate for a territorial unit as an extension of the
7 Republic of Croatia occurred in several stages, and I
8 will briefly outline the primary events that occurred in
9 this transformation.
10 The first occurred in November of 1991 in two
11 separate meetings on November 12th and November 18th, in
12 which the Croatian Community of the Bosnian Posavina was
13 established, the Posavina area being this one there,
14 although I would hasten to point out that the time we
15 are talking about is well before the Vance-Owen Peace
16 Plan, and on 18th November the formation of the Croatian
17 Community of Herceg-Bosna or Herceg-Bosnia as the
18 political, cultural, economic and territorial union of
19 Bosnia-Herzegovina Croats. At that meeting Mate Boban
20 was elected the head of the Croatian Community of
21 Herceg-Bosna. This latter meeting was by far the most
22 important one, because it created and identified certain
23 districts in Bosnia that were to be a part of this
24 Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna. The context in
25 terms of time was that this is the low point, the nadir
1 of Croatian fortunes in Croatia itself. Vukovar
2 surrendered on 17th November 1991, so the formation of
3 the Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna occurs one day
4 later and at the same time the war in Bosnia is still
5 several months away. This is a time of critical --
6 it's a critical time for the survival of the Croatian
7 state and at the same time one well in advance of the
8 outbreak of hostilities in Bosnia or even the Bosnian
9 resolution on sovereignty and independence.
10 I would like to --
11 Q. If we could, your Honour, turn to the next map, which is
12 Prosecutor's Exhibit 22, and if I have not done it for
13 the record purposes, as the usher is handing that out,
14 the Prosecutor would like to enter into evidence
15 Exhibits 20 and 21, the two prior maps that Mr. Donia
16 spoke about from Mr. Owen's treatise or book.
17 Turning your attention to Exhibit 22, sir, what is
19 A. This is a map that I have created with the assistance of
20 your staff, sir, which simply stakes the provinces that
21 are named in the proclamation of 18th November 1991 and
22 draws a line around them. These were -- they are
23 solicited in the proclamation of 18th November 1991 --
24 are the districts which are included in the Croatian
25 Community of Herceg-Bosna. I would like to note two
1 exceptions which make this a little bit more difficult,
2 and that is that Trebinje here, the district immediately
3 adjacent to Montenegro, was, in fact, just overlooked
4 the city of Dubrovnik, and the proclamation for the
5 formation of the Croatian community of Herceg-Bosna
6 indicated that only part of that district was to become
7 a part of the community. In fact, the distribute of
8 Trebinje is overwhelmingly Serbian in ethnic
9 composition. So I think it stands to reason that that
10 was a military-driven determination.
11 The same is true of the province of Skender Vakuf,
12 not all of which was to be included in the Croatian
13 Community of Herceg-Bosna.
14 Q. Were there any restrictions on the rest of the
15 municipalities or opstinas that are set forth in this
17 A. No, that were all included in the proclamation. Now
18 this proclamation which was announced publicly on 18th
19 November essentially established a state-like apparatus
20 parallel to that of the political party of the Croatian
21 Community of Herceg-Bosna and was directed at a
22 diametrically opposed goal. If the party was at this
23 time and the party leadership at this time issuing
24 proclamations denouncing Serbian, Bosnian Serbian
25 activities as contributing to the ghettorisation of
1 Bosnia, the Croatian Community, on the other hand, was
2 engaging in an act at this time that was remarkably
3 similar to what the Serbs were doing at the very same
4 time establishing a separate community on a purely
5 territorial basis.
6 What was the ethnic composition of this very
7 widespread area of Herceg-Bosna?
8 Q. If I may at this point, your Honour, I would like to
9 hand out Prosecutor's Exhibit 22 -- excuse me -- 23, if
10 I can give it to the usher.
11 You have before you, Mr. Donia, a series of
12 statistics, of population statistics matched to the
13 municipalities set forth in the map for Herceg-Bosna; is
14 that correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. What are the source of these statistics, sir?
17 A. The statistics were taken from the 1991 census, and
18 that's on the back of the original of this document,
19 among other places, and the break-down by Croats,
20 Muslims and Serbs was determined from those sources and
21 then a percentage was calculated next to them.
22 Q. Who put it in this format?
23 A. I put it in this format. I just simply extracted from
24 the census data the information pertinent to these
25 districts. This answers the question of the
1 composition, the ethnic composition of Herceg-Bosna
2 which was to be a Croatian Community. If you take all
3 the districts combined, it consisted of 46 per cent
4 Croats. If one again includes the Muslims in the
5 number of Croats one could add another 33 per cent and
6 come up with a number of about 79 per cent Croats. In
7 terms of the percentage of Croats within Bosnia who were
8 included in Herceg-Bosna, the 1991 census revealed a
9 total number of Croats of 755,895; in other words, a
10 little over 50 per cent of the Croats in
11 Bosnia-Herzegovina were included in the territorial
12 concept of Herceg-Bosna. The rest remained outside of
14 Q. So what was the approximate percentage of Bosnian Croats
15 that were left outside of Herceg-Bosna?
16 A. About 40 per cent. Now some of those were included in
17 the Posavina so it is probably a little bit lower, but
18 just looking at Herceg-Bosna, about 60 per cent were
20 The next exhibit -- I want to just take the two
21 districts of Trebinje and Skender Vakuf out of this
22 picture, because they were included only partially.
23 One can't statistically divide the map that finely
24 according to the proclamation of 18th November 1991, but
25 I would like to at least demonstrate what happens if one
1 takes those two districts out completely.
2 Q. We are moving to the second page of this document.
3 A. We are looking at that now on the ELMO and the answer is
4 that the per cent of Croats just minus those with those
5 two districts out, Trebinje and Skender Vakuf goes to
6 about 48 per cent, 47.99 per cent. Thus the Croatian
7 Community of Herceg-Bosna, established as a territorial
8 unit, did not have a majority Croatian population within
9 it unless one would include the Muslim population of
10 this territory and count them as Muslims of Croatian
11 nationality. Thus the establishment of the community of
12 Herceg-Bosna as a political, cultural, economic and
13 territorial union.
14 The next transformation that occurred was that of
15 the party itself, the Croatian Democratic Union, the
16 HDZ, which occurred in early February 1992 in two
17 meetings, the first on 2nd February and the second on
18 9th February.
19 Q. Let me stop you there, Mr. Donia. So at the time that
20 the Croatian community of Herceg-Bosna is established on
21 18th November 1991, the HDZ, the elected party for
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina is still in existence and being run
23 by Stjepan Kljuic?
24 A. That is correct.
25 Q. Continue, sir.
1 A. On 2nd February at a meeting in Siroki Brijeg there was
2 a closed door session of the party leadership. At that
3 meeting Stjepan Kljuic resigned. He tendered his
4 resignation at that meeting. On walking out of the
5 meeting he was confronted by the press, who asked him
6 why he had resigned and he said that he would never as
7 long as he lives explain why he had resigned at that
8 meeting. To my knowledge he has not. Press
9 speculation immediately centred on the weakening of the
10 party's commitment to the sovereignty of
11 Bosnia-Herzegovina and, in fact, a representative of the
12 Croatian republic of Croatia the Croatian Democratic
13 Union, the party itself within The Republic of Croatia
14 was present at that meeting as well.
15 One week later, on 9th February, a second meeting
16 was held. At that meeting two resolutions were
17 passed. The first provided for dual citizenship for
18 all Croats who live in the territory of Herceg-Bosna.
19 This meant the dumping of those Croats outside the
20 community as far as this particular resolution was
21 concerned for dual citizenship purposes. Dual
22 citizenship, I would note, for example, would permit
23 them to vote in elections in The Republic of Croatia,
24 something which has happened extremely recently. A
25 second resolution, which pertained to the upcoming
1 referendum for the sovereignty and independence of
2 Bosnia and Herzegovina. After a very long discussion,
3 four hours, and with three opposing votes, this meeting
4 voted to amend or change the referendum question to
5 include references to national areas, that is cantons,
6 of the Serbs, Croats and Muslims.
7 Now, the resolution was at this point moving
8 rapidly forward. It was scheduled to be held on
9 29th February and 1st March, and was essentially being
10 held at the requirement of the Bodinter Commission (sic)
11 of the European Union, or then the European Community.
12 So it's not clear what this resolution hoped to achieve
13 in actually changing the language of the resolution, but
14 it put the party on record as adding a territorial
15 dimension to the referendum, one which would award
16 cantons or national areas presumably if implemented to
17 the various nationalities. It represented another step
18 towards the territorisation, if you will, of the HDZ.
19 This was a clash over the issue of cantonisation, which
20 Kljuic had opposed, and Mate Boban supported. This
21 meeting was, in fact, chaired by Mate Boban.
22 Q. At any point prior to Kljuic's resignation on 2nd
23 February 1992 had he advocated the partition and the
24 carving-up of Bosnia-Herzegovina?
25 A. He had not advocated the carving-up of
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina. Like everyone else, he was to some
2 degree caught up in these discussions about
3 cantonisation, and as a representative was clear on his
4 support for a unified Bosnia and Herzegovina, but
5 clearly played a role in those discussions about
6 cantonisation. Nevertheless, the issue was a clear-cut
7 one within the party between Kljuic and Boban.
8 Q. With Kljuic opposing and Boban in favour?
9 A. Yes. The party, Croatian Democratic Union, subsequently
10 was brought into line with the notion of Herceg-Bosna as
11 a territorial unit, and the footprints of this
12 transformation, the behavioural footprints, if you will,
13 from a party representing all Croats living in
14 Bosnia-Herzegovina to the HDZ as an advocate for
15 Herceg-Bosna as a territorial extension of the Republic
16 of Croatia can be seen in numerous declarations by the
17 party and the government in subsequent months.
18 Q. So it would be fair to say, Mr. Donia, as a result of
19 this movement by the HDZ party to becoming a territorial
20 party, the other Bosnian Croats living outside of the
21 Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna were essentially left
23 A. They were left out of this territorial dimension, yes.
24 In fact, Stjepan Kljuic made exactly that point in
25 debating this with Boban in the press, that, in fact,
1 this would exclude a large -- a significant portion, a
2 large portion, not a majority but a large portion of the
3 creation community in Bosnia.
4 Q. Do you consider there is a serious change in the
5 direction of the HDZ party?
6 A. Yes, there is. At this point between November of 1991
7 and February of 1992 we see a 180 degree of direction in
8 that old spirit of nationalism that I mentioned earlier
9 from defining a cultural community to defining a
10 territorial unit on which certain peoples live.
11 The next event that suggested this was in July of
12 1992, when there was another declaration of the Croatian
13 Community of Herceg-Bosna as a self-governing community
14 by its Presidency, and again in November of 1992 -- by
15 this time the war very much raging in Bosnia -- when
16 there was a General Assembly of the Croatian community
17 of Herceg-Bosna and the party, government and military
18 functions were fused at that meeting under the
19 leadership of Mr. Boban.
20 In many respects the Croatian Community of
21 Herceg-Bosna mirrored the efforts by the Bosnian Serbs
22 to proclaim a separate territory. It proceeded
23 somewhat less vigorously at first, but came to the same
24 conclusion, and the effects of it could be seen in these
25 various resolutions and in the various ways in which the
1 administration developed in the course of 1992.
2 Q. What was that conclusion?
3 A. That this was a party, an organisation and a military
4 that was devoted to territorial aims as opposed to the
5 interests of the cultural community of Bosnia's Croats.
6 Finally, I would like to move to the convergence
7 of trends that occurred really in 1993. I have
8 discussed the major developments after 1990 and in many
9 respects several of these come together in the course of
10 1993 to take us to the events in the Lasva Valley.
11 The first, of course, was the Vance-Owen Peace
12 Plan. It was a remarkably favourable document for the
13 Bosnian Croats, given that at this point in time they
14 had done very little other than the proclamations that
15 established Herceg-Bosna and, of course, been an
16 important part of the military struggle against the
17 Serbs, but in terms of their participation in the
18 negotiations, the discussions with Izetbegovic had come
19 to certain territorial boundaries which were not viewed
20 by many to have great importance, because the military
21 alliance was deemed to be a relatively secure one. It's
22 not possible to understand the developments of March and
23 April 1993 without a sense of how these Serbian outrages
24 in Eastern Bosnia had riveted the attention of the
25 international community and the world press on their
1 activities. To visit the press of the time is to see
2 daily stories about Srevonica, the tightening siege, the
3 ways in which the Bosnian Serbs were attempting to
4 co-opt the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
5 into participating into the ethnic separation of peoples
6 by transporting people out of Srevonica and out of the
7 city of Tuzla. All of these events riveted the
8 attention of both the world media and the international
9 community on Eastern Bosnia.
10 In fact, what occurred in March and early April of
11 1993 occurred in relative obscurity from the point of
12 view of the world press and the international community.
13 Q. Mr. Donia, when you say what occurred, are you referring
14 to the Bosnian Croat-Bosnian Muslim clashes in central
16 A. Yes, and, in fact, from the point of view of the Bosnian
17 Croats, both from the point of view of the international
18 attention being directed to it and the slowly closing
19 door of the Vance-Owen Peace Plan, which would
20 subsequently limit their ability to gain -- make any
21 territorial gains, constituted a window of opportunity
22 to implement some of these territorial aspirations that
23 were expressed in the declaration of the Croatian
24 Community of Herceg-Bosna.
25 Specifically in this time period it will be
1 remembered that on 25th May President Izetbegovic signed
2 the Vance-Owen Peace Plan in its entirety in New York.
3 At this time all subsequent attention was directed on
4 pressuring the Bosnian Serbs to comply and sign the
5 peace agreement. However, Izetbegovic's compliance
6 with the agreement was expressly limited at the time
7 that he signed it. He expected -- he declared to see
8 international pressure to force the Bosnian Serbs to
9 sign and decease -- cease their hostilities against
10 Srevonica in particular.
11 At a news conference on 28th March President
12 Izetbegovic in Zagreb stated that he would give it
13 another ten-fifteen days before he withdrew his
14 signature from the Vance-Owen Peace Plan if the Serbs
15 were not forced to comply by the international
16 community. He denounced the renewed Serbian offensives
17 in Eastern Bosnia, which had already led to the capture
18 of several small towns, villages and tightening of the
19 noose around Srevonica and increasing difficulty for its
21 He also reported that he had met with President
22 Tudjman the day before and that they had discussed the
23 growing tensions between the HVO and the army of
24 Bosnia-Herzegovina in Central Bosnia. He announced
25 that they had agreed upon a central command, a common
1 command for the forces to end those hostilities.
2 At the same time the role of the United States
3 became significant. This was in the early weeks of the
4 Clinton administration. On 10th February US Secretary
5 of State, Warren Christopher, had announced US policy
6 which was a relatively tough one towards the Bosnian
7 Serbs, but by 28th March he had already begun to back
8 pedal in terms of US willingness to use its forces or in
9 any way to support the actual deployment of force to
10 compel Bosnian Serb compliance and, in fact, on 28th
11 March he announced on the CBS programme "Face the
12 nation" that he was basically -- it was basically a
13 statement that he accepted the ancient tribal hatreds
14 historical interpretation of Bosnia's history. He
16 "The hatred between all three groups is almost
17 unbelievable and it's centuries old. That really is
18 the problem from hell. The United States does not have
19 the means to make people in that region of the world
20 like each other".
21 This was the policy maker's signal of back
22 pedalling from engaging in the crisis.
23 Q. Mr. Donia, what did that indicate to the three factions
24 at that time?
25 A. It certainly indicated that the possibly anticipated US
1 active engagement and support of the peace process would
2 very likely not be brought to bear.
3 On 2nd April the Serbian Assembly meeting at
4 Bileca rejected the Vance-Owen Peace Plan for the first
5 time and to many observers the future of Vance-Owen was
6 starting to look rather shaky.
7 On 3rd April 1993 the HVO met and issued an
8 ominous ultimatum. I would like to move to the next
10 Q. Yes. Your Honour, at this time I would like to first
11 introduce into evidence the two prior exhibits, which
12 was the Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna map, which is
13 Exhibit 22, and the statistics, two page statistics,
14 which are exhibits 23. We next turn to two newspaper
15 articles, one from Vjesnik, dated 4th April 1993, and
16 the other in Slobodna Dalmacija of the same date. Your
17 Honour, these newspaper articles are being presented by
18 the Prosecutor in English as well as French. 24 is the
19 Vjesnik article. Then we can turn to that, which is
20 the Slobodna Dalmacija article.
21 Your Honour, for the purposes of the record the
22 French version of the Slobodna Dalmacija will be
23 Prosecutor Exhibit 24A -- excuse me -- Vjesnik will be
24 24A and the English version 24B. I also ask the usher
25 if we can hand out the two copies of -- copies of the
1 article in Slobodna Dalmacija, which is Prosecutor's
2 Exhibit 25A in French and 25B in English. May I
3 proceed, Mr. President?
4 Before we talk about the ultimatum that is
5 reported in these articles, tell us a little bit about
6 these two newspapers, Vjesnik and Slobodna Dalmacija?
7 A. Vjesnik was at the time and remains the official
8 government publication or strongly reflects the official
9 government viewpoint of the Republic of Croatia.
10 Slobodna Dalmacija is somewhat less -- is considered to
11 be a more independent paper, but both have policies of
12 extensive reporting on matters pertaining to Bosnia, and
13 I would say both covered the affairs of the Bosnian
14 Croats and military matters in Bosnia generally very
16 Q. Drawing your attention back to these exhibits and to
17 complete your testimony, you were talking about a
18 particular announcement made by the Bosnian Croats on
19 3rd April, a day after the Vance-Owen Peace Plan was
20 rejected by the Bosnian Serb assembly?
21 A. Both of these articles report upon the same event, a
22 meeting and draft six point agreement by the HVO, that
23 is the military arm of the Croatian Community of
24 Herceg-Bosna. These -- the draft six point agreement
25 interprets Izetbegovic's signing of the Vance-Owen
1 agreement as effectively transferring sovereignty from
2 the Government of Bosnia-Herzegovina to the interim
3 arrangements that are specified in the Owen-Vance or
4 Vance-Owen Peace Plan.
5 I just go through the six points which are on --
6 if you are looking at the Vjesnik article, this one
8 Q. I believe it's on page 3 of the translation and on the
9 original it's an insert in the right-hand column; is
10 that correct, sir?
11 A. Yes. I think it will be easiest if we just deal with
12 the Vjesnik report. The Slobodna Dalmacija version is
13 virtually identical. It appears that a press release
14 was prepared and both reporters, as may sometimes be the
15 case, made the press release the primary body of their
17 So we are on page 3 of the Vjesnik article in a
18 small insert that says "Box". The language begins:
19 "The statement on co-operation ..."
20 This again was an insert in the Vjesnik article:
21 "The statement on co-operation of the Croatian and
22 Muslim people.
23 On the military structure in Bosnia-Herzegovina
24 until complete demilitarisation and on other issues
25 already signed by Mate Boban and to be signed by Alija
1 Izetbegovic reads as follows".
2 Now as background Alija Izetbegovic was not
3 there. In fact, at this point he was on his way to the
4 Middle East, and so it's a one-sided HVO document, and
5 as you go through it, you see there is no prospect that
6 Izetbegovic would sign this:
7 "After the signing of the Vance-Owen Peace Plan
8 Alija Izetbegovic and Mate Boban are agreed that:
9 1. All misunderstandings have been avoided
10 between the Croatian and Muslim people concerning the
11 borders of the provinces and temporary authority in them
12 and in the republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
13 2. All armed forces of the HVO and the police of
14 the Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna, as well as of
15 the HVO army, the Bosnia-Herzegovina army and
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina Ministry of the Interior, known as
17 MUP, which originate outside their provinces shall have
18 to identify themselves and leave such provinces within
19 three days".
20 This pertains to the provinces that were outlined
21 in the Vance-Owen Peace Plan.
22 Q. So for the purposes of the Vance-Owen Peace Plan, the
23 Bosnian Muslim side or the Bosnian government side would
24 have to get out of areas 3, 8 and 10?
25 A. Within three days. It doesn't specify within three
1 days of what but it goes on to specify a date. Point
2 three becomes more specific:
3 "3. Until the complete demilitarisation of
4 Bosnia-Herzegovina as envisaged under the peace plan",
5 which it did, "and for reasons of more efficient defence
6 against aggression, the domicile armed forces of HVO and
7 the BH army in provinces 1, 5 and 9 shall be placed on
8 the command of the main staff of the Bosnia-Herzegovina
9 army and in provinces 3, 8 and 10 under the command of
10 the main staff of the HVO".
11 Thus this agreement provides for the segregation
12 of military forces into the provinces which were
13 assigned to the respective groups:
14 "Those forces which cannot accept this decision
15 have the possibility to leave the provinces.
16 4. The main staff of the HVO and the main staff
17 of the BH army shall set up a joint command no later
18 than 15th April 1993".
19 The date 15th April subsequently assumed great
20 significance as a deadline for this ultimatum to be
22 "5. Conflicts between the HVO and the BH army
23 shall stop at once and are never to be resumed.
24 6. The free movement of people and goods on all
25 thoroughfares in the free territory of the
1 above-mentioned provinces shall be made possible at
3 Q. So is there a deadline date put into this six point
5 A. The deadline date is 15th April. It is specifically
6 the deadline for the establishment of a joint command.
7 Q. To your knowledge, did Alija Izetbegovic ever sign this
9 A. Not to my knowledge.
10 Q. We turn to the body of the article itself. Is there
11 anything in the body of this article itself that
12 describes, based on the information from the Croatian
13 Community of Herceg-Bosna, what the HVO plan to do
14 should this not be implemented?
15 A. On page 2 of the article in the second full paragraph
16 this threat becomes an ultimatum:
17 "In the event that the statement is not signed by
18 the heads of the Muslim delegation in provinces 3, 8 and
19 10 ...".
20 Now remember the declaration was for Alija
21 Izetbegovic's signature, but it now shifts to say if it
22 is not signed by authorities in the provinces:
23 " ... the Croatian Defence Council of the Croatian
24 Community of Herceg-Bosna has decided to apply the
25 provisions of the peace plan whereby each national armed
1 force shall retreat to their domicile provinces", says
2 the report".
3 This is the report that's on the meeting:
4 "If the joint statement is not implemented, the
5 competent military and other bodies of the Croatian
6 Defence Council of the Croatian community of
7 Herceg-Bosna shall implement the said item of the basic
8 document in the territories of Provinces 3, 8 and 10".
9 It will, in other words, unilaterally implement
10 those provisions:
11 "At the same time the Croatian Defence Council of
12 the Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna shall respect the
13 competence of the authorities in provinces where the
14 other two nations are in the majority".
15 That is the Muslims and Serbs. I would just like
16 to cite one other portion of this, which goes to show
17 that the HVO at this point viewed sovereignty as having
18 passed from the Government of Bosnia-Herzegovina to the
19 Vance-Owen Peace Plan and that is two paragraphs down:
20 "Since the basic document and the agreement on
21 transitional organisation ..." -- these are documents
22 that are part of the Vance-Owen Peace Plan -- "clearly
23 distinguish between the future central authority and
24 authority in the provinces, the Croatian Defence
25 Council", which is the HVO, "of the Croatian Community
1 of Herceg-Bosna shall prevent any attempt to establish
2 various bodies appointed by the present unilateral
4 This is a reference to the Presidency of the
5 Government of Bosnia-Herzegovina:
6 "And the Government of the Bosnia-Herzegovina,
7 counties, for instance, and shall respect and implement
8 all decision of the future Presidency of the republic of
9 Bosnia-Herzegovina and the transitional central
10 government of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina in
11 compliance with the obligations undertaken by signing
12 the peace plan".
13 In short, this document, cloaked in the language
14 of implementing the peace agreement and moving towards
15 demilitarisation, permits the HVO to use April 15th as a
16 deadline for unilateral implementation of these
18 Subsequent press reports to this document report
19 that in various ways the Croatian Community or the HVO
20 is treating these commitments as ones not to be honoured
21 if the agreement was not signed by all parties. There
22 were reports of further blockades going north from
23 Mostar over the course of the next ten days.
24 On 16th April 1993 hostilities again broke out in
25 Central Bosnia.
1 Q. Now, Mr. Donia, just to back up one second, during this
2 time-frame the hostilities are still on-going in Eastern
3 Bosnia in and around Srevonica, are they not?
4 A. They are.
5 Q. Prior to the rejection of the Vance-Owen Peace Plan of
6 April 2nd, 1993, we had a Vance-Owen Peace Plan that was
7 the most favourable territorial plan for the Bosnian
8 Croats, was it not?
9 A. That is correct.
10 Q. This announcement made on 3rd April gave a deadline of
11 15th April 1993; is that right?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Based on your testimony, President Izetbegovic never
14 signed this agreement?
15 A. Not to my knowledge.
16 Q. And hostilities broke out in the Lasva Valley in Central
17 Bosnia on 16th April 1993, the day after the deadline;
18 is that correct?
19 A. That is correct.
20 Q. May I have one moment, your Honour? Your Honour,
21 subject to the admission of Prosecutor's Exhibit 24 and
22 25, which is the article of Vjesnik -- I'm sorry.
23 JUDGE JORDA: I apologise. Please go on.
24 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, I would offer into evidence the
25 two newspaper articles that have been discussed by
1 Mr. Donia, Exhibits 24 and 25, and subject to their
2 admission, the Prosecutor has no further questions of
3 this witness.
4 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Hayman?
5 MR. HAYMAN: Subject, of course, to the opportunity to read
6 them in their entirety, we have no objection at this
8 JUDGE JORDA: Quite. As I said this morning, you will
9 have every possibility to know how much time you will
10 need, and that time will be allotted to you.
11 Therefore, under that reserve, which appears in the
12 transcript, Mr. Prosecutor, you may continue.
13 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, I have no further questions of
14 Mr. Donia at this time.
15 JUDGE JORDA: Very well. Thank you. I turn now to the
16 Defence and also my colleagues. We certainly have
17 certain questions to put to the witness. Perhaps it
18 would be better to ask them after the Defence has had an
19 opportunity to ask them questions, but let me consult my
20 colleagues first (Pause.). Therefore, my colleagues
21 agree that we will wait for the cross-examination for us
22 to address a certain number of questions for the sake of
23 clarification. What I would like to do in accordance
24 with what we said this morning is to organise
25 ourselves. I should like to remind you that the
1 Defence has not had the opportunity to organise itself
2 to the extent that the spelling mistake on the name of
3 the witness did not allow it to prepare for the witness,
4 that is Professor Donia. That's the first point.
5 The second point is that all the evidence that the
6 Tribunal wishes to have in its record will, of course,
7 be open to the Defence for dispute. I turn now to
8 Mr. Hayman and Mr. Nobilo and also to learn what the
9 programme is for tomorrow. Today is Wednesday. We
10 spoke of Monday, 30th. There's no obligation or any
11 objection to delaying it further. I just wish to
12 remind you be that next week we will be meeting Monday,
13 Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday morning, because the whole
14 day of Friday will be devoted to the Tadic case. If
15 you need more time to prepare, we can meet in July.
16 I'm saying that it is absolutely up to you and I think I
17 can speak on behalf of my colleagues. Yes, Mr. Hayman.
18 MR. HAYMAN: May I confer with Mr. Nobilo for a moment, your
20 JUDGE JORDA: Yes, of course. Yes, Mr. Hayman?
21 MR. HAYMAN: Since learning the identity of this witness, we
22 have learned that he has either published or contributed
23 as an author to two books and at least two articles.
24 We do not physically have those yet. They are being
25 obtained and being sent by courier to us. Hopefully
1 they will arrive tomorrow. If they do, we can be
2 prepared to cross-examine the witness on Monday. So
3 subject to the vagaries of international courier
4 service, we certainly hope to do that.
5 JUDGE JORDA: In that case under the reserve of these
6 objections and except if the Prosecution has an
7 objection -- I'm sure you will not have any
8 objections. Mr. Prosecutor, do you have anything to
10 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, I personally have no objections.
11 Mr. Donia is a businessman --
12 JUDGE JORDA: I am coming to that, Mr. Prosecutor. I turn
13 now to the witness. We are now planning your time,
14 Professor, so if you could come back on Monday, that
15 would be very nice, but it wouldn't be a good idea to
16 make you come on Monday and then the Defence may not be
17 ready because of the mail. What is your programme,
19 A. Mr. President, your Honours, I regretfully have prior
20 business commitments that I have engaged in for next
21 week and it would be exceptionally difficult for me to
22 be with you on Monday or at any point next week. I am
23 glad to be at your disposal at some later point in the
24 month of July for as long as you need me, but would beg
25 the court's indulgence, if possible, for business
1 commitments that I have in the United States next
3 JUDGE JORDA: Yes, Mr. Hayman? I was going to make a
4 suggestion, and that is because of this error, we are
5 putting the witness in a very difficult situation.
6 Nevertheless, we need to give the Defence time to
7 prepare. Could we then plan the cross-examination of
8 this witness the first day in July, 21st July I think?
9 Of course those are not the ideal conditions, because
10 there will be so much time in between your testimony and
11 the cross-examination. What is your view, Mr. Hayman?
12 MR. HAYMAN: We, with the court, regret the inconvenience to
13 the witness, your Honour, and although the difficulty,
14 of course, is memories fade over weeks and it will be
15 harder for all of us to bring the examination we have
16 just heard into the mind of the witness so that we can
17 examine him on the details, we are pleased to proceed on
18 the 21st. We will proceed as the court wishes.
19 JUDGE JORDA: Very well. I'm going to propose and all the
20 judges have a plenary session on 9th, 10th and 11th
21 July. Also I know there will be hearings within the
22 Tadic case. Then there is the fifteen days for the
23 Celebici trial. So it is rather difficult for me to
24 dispose of the time of my colleagues, but provisionally
25 we can plan that on the first Dave of our hearing -- I
1 think it is 21st July -- is that so -- we will do
2 that. If we can do anything better, we will do so,
3 because I agree with you that memories fade and these
4 are very substantive issues, and this also applies not
5 only to the defence but to the judges as well, and so
6 that is what we will do.
7 The Tribunal wishes to thank you, Professor, for
8 the many hours that you spent with us, to convey a great
9 deal of information to us. This will be discussed by
10 the Defence in the month of July and in the meantime we
11 would like to thank you again. I would like to ask the
12 usher to accompany you out and then we will see how to
13 plan our work for the future. Thank you.
14 (Witness withdraws from court).
15 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, while the witness is being taken
16 out of the courtroom, escorted out of the courtroom,
17 could I just ask a procedural question concerning the
18 articles that I just admitted into evidence? There are
19 actually three documents for each of those articles,
20 that is the original newspaper article, the English
21 translation and the French translation. I'm not sure
22 how the Registrar wants to capture that with numbers, if
23 it is 25 and then 25A and 25B or 25 A, B and C.
24 JUDGE JORDA: I would prefer that we add letters, that the
25 first article, whichever you choose, should be called
1 24, then the French version B, A, it doesn't matter and
2 the same for the other two. What do you think,
3 Mr. Registrar.
4 THE REGISTRAR: Exactly. The original will be exhibit and
5 the English and French versions will be numbered A and
6 B, the French version A and the English version B.
7 JUDGE JORDA: I salute this specific homage to languages.
8 I turn now to the Prosecutor to ask him whether he has
9 witnesses to appear either tomorrow morning or Friday
10 morning, because, as you know -- or even the whole day
11 tomorrow, or tomorrow afternoon. Do you have other
12 witnesses for this week or not?
13 MR. KEHOE: Yes, your Honour, I will have a witness for
14 Friday morning. Regretfully I do not have a witness
15 for tomorrow.
16 JUDGE JORDA: Very well. We are at a public hearing.
17 I'm asking you and I say this for the benefit of the
18 Defence too, because they will be having witnesses, and
19 I think I can -- I'm sure, in fact, that I can speak on
20 behalf of my colleagues that it would not be a good idea
21 for the credibility of the institutions nor for our work
22 that we delay and interrupt proceedings in this way and
23 that we do not have witnesses.
24 I recognise the difficulties. Your programme is
25 a difficult one and we on the side of the Tribunal for
1 technical and material reasons were not able to ensure
2 all the days we need. Therefore I'm not reproaching
3 anyone. We are all dependent on technical
4 facilities. I'm asking you, the Prosecution, at this
5 moment, because you are presenting your evidence.
6 Afterwards the same will be asked of the Defence -- to
7 try to make sure that there are no interruptions in the
8 continuity of our proceedings. It is not good for the
9 witnesses, who do not always know when they should
10 appear, and above all it's not good for the debate, for
11 the accused, for the Defence and it's not good for the
12 judges, because debates have a certain drama of their
13 own, a certain sequence, and when that is interrupted,
14 it's not a good thing. Therefore I would insist in
15 collaboration with the Registry we proceed in a
16 harmonious manner.
17 We will hear your witness on Friday morning. I
18 beg you to envisage hearings. You know that the Tadic
19 case will be heard in the afternoon, but the Tribunal
20 intends to work Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
21 mornings. You have been warned in advance, and I think
22 that you should try to even change your sequence to
23 provide the court with the continuity of its work. We
24 will have the cross-examination they have witness in
25 four weeks, which is not easy, but the Tribunal is here
1 to ensure order, and it will do its best also on its
2 part. To that end we meet again on Friday at 10
3 o'clock. The meeting is adjourned. (5.50 pm)
4 (Hearing adjourned until 10 o'clock on Friday morning)