1 - -Upon commencing at 10.05 a.m.
2 (In open session)
3 JUDGE JORDA: Please have the accused brought
4 in. We will now resume the hearing.
5 (The accused entered court)
6 JUDGE JORDA: Is everybody here? The
7 interpreter is here, good morning. Let's begin.
8 Mr. Cayley, I think is going to be questioning.
9 MR. CAYLEY: Good morning, Mr. President,
10 Your Honours, learned counsel. The next witness is
11 Captain Jean Marc Lanthier, a Canadian army officer who
12 served from 1992 to 1994. If you wish, I'll move
13 straight into the summary of the evidence of the
15 JUDGE JORDA: Yes, go ahead, please.
16 MR. CAYLEY: The witness served with the
17 Canadian battalion, which was the Canadian government's
18 contribution to the United Nations protection force in
19 Bosnia-Herzegovina from October 1992 to May 1993 and
20 then he completed a second tour from October 1993 until
21 May of 1994. The Canadian battalion was based in the
22 municipality of Visoko, which is a municipality which
23 borders on the municipality of Kiseljak. The larger
24 part of his testimony will be concerned with events
25 that he witnessed in the municipality of Kiseljak. He
1 will speak, first of all, to you about the HVO military
2 command structure and will, in fact, relate to you two
3 conversations which he had, one with Mr. Mario Bradara
4 in the HVO headquarters in Kiseljak, about the
5 structure of the HVO and its command elements, and then
6 a subsequent conversation which he had with General
7 Blaskic, then Colonel Blaskic, in Vitez, who confirmed
8 to him, the structure, as explained by Mr. Bradara and
9 confirmed that all of the HVO forces in the Kiseljak
10 command were under his own command, under Colonel
11 Blaskic's command.
12 He will speak to you of his experience in the
13 Busovaca joint commission very briefly, as an observer,
14 and he will relate to you his understanding of the
15 relationship, as he saw it, between the then Colonel
16 Blaskic and Mr. Dario Kordic.
17 He will then speak of events after the 16th
18 of April, in the municipalities of Vitez and Kiseljak.
19 He will very briefly relate to you, what he saw of the
20 village of Ahmici and the mosque in that village. He
21 will speak of two attempted visits to Colonel Blaskic
22 at the HVO headquarters in Vitez to try and get a
23 better understanding of what was going on at the time.
24 The two visits were unsuccessful. He will explain to
25 you why that occurred.
1 He will then relate to the court the violence
2 and destruction which subsequently occurred in the
3 municipality of Kiseljak and he will relate to the
4 court his knowledge of the destruction which took place
5 in a number of Bosnia Muslim villages, after the 16th
6 of April. Particularly, he will relate to you his
7 knowledge of the village of Rotilj, he will give to the
8 court the detention of civilians, the inhuman treatment
9 of those civilians, the use of able-bodied men for the
10 digging of trenches.
11 He will relate to you numerous complaints
12 that he made about what he saw taking place to the HVO
13 headquarters in Kiseljak. He will tell you of the
14 explanations that were given to him by the headquarters
15 in Kiseljak, as to the nature of the military operation
16 that was taking place and the peculiar security
17 practices of the HVO, in relation to Bosnian Muslim
18 civilians. He will relate to you his knowledge of the
19 detention of civilians, in the HVO headquarters at
20 Kiseljak, in the barracks, and will explain to you that
21 his questions in this area ultimately ended in death
22 threats being made against him by the HVO.
23 He will then briefly speak to you of his
24 second tour in Bosnia from October 1993 to May 1994 and
25 this will concern, particularly, events in the
1 municipality of Fojnica. He will explain to you that
2 during this time, the Canadian battalion took upon
3 itself the running of two hospitals for the mentally
4 and physically handicapped in the towns of Bakavici and
5 Drin. He will explain that the Canadian battalion took
6 on this responsibility because staff had fled as a
7 result of combat activities. He will explain to you,
8 how the HVO forbid any member of staff to return to the
9 Bakavici hospital, how ultimately the hospital was used
10 by the HVO for covering and concealment during combat
11 operations and how the HVO utilised mental patients in
12 order to clear mine fields, in the area.
13 He will to speak to you of how HVO -- how
14 UNPROFOR convoys were continually fired upon by the HVO
15 on their journey between Kiseljak and Fojnica.
16 And he will speak to you of one particular
17 convoy of medical and essential supplies for these two
18 hospitals which had been previously authorised by the
19 HVO from Kiseljak and then was attacked, even though a
20 symbol of the Red Cross was prominently displayed on
21 the convoy. He will explain of the complaint he made
22 to the HVO headquarters about the attack on the
24 In the final part of his testimony, he will
25 speak to you concerning the knowledge of his presence
1 of organised units in the municipality of Kiseljak. He
2 will speak to you of his understanding of the
3 effectiveness of the chain of command of the HVO and
4 the communication facilities available to the HVO, both
5 in terms of electronic transmission through radio and
6 facsimile and telephone links and through road links
7 between the various areas under HVO control.
8 Finally, he will give you his professional
9 opinion, as a soldier, on the nature of the military
10 operation that he saw taking place during his first
11 tour of duty in the municipalities of Vitez and
12 Kiseljak. The evidence is relevant, I believe, to
13 paragraphs 3 and 4, 5, 5.1 and 5.2. It's relevant to
14 count 1, the persecution charge, paragraph 6.0 to 6.7,
15 counts 2 to 4, the unlawful attack charges, paragraph
16 8, counts 5 to 10, the wilful killing and serious
17 injury charges. Paragraph 9, counts 11 to 13,
18 destruction and plunder of property, paragraph 10 of
19 the indictment, count 14, the destruction of
20 institutions dedicated to religion, paragraph 11, and
21 finally counts 15 to 20 which deals with the inhumane
22 treatments and taking of civilians as hostages. That's
23 paragraphs 12 to 16.
24 JUDGE JORDA: Thank you. That was very
25 clear, Mr. Cayley. We will stick with that plan and
1 I'll tell that to the witness so that we can -- so we
2 can try not to take any unnecessary delays. Your
3 questioning, about how long do you expect to be asking
5 MR. CAYLEY: One and a half to two hours,
6 Your Honour.
7 JUDGE JORDA: All right. We can have Captain
8 Lanthier, is it Lanthier or Lanthier?
9 MR. CAYLEY: Lanthier.
10 JUDGE JORDA: Lanthier, yes, I see.
12 (The witness entered court).
13 JUDGE JORDA: Do you hear me?
14 A. Perfectly.
15 JUDGE JORDA: First, give us your name, your
16 first name and your rank. Please remain standing. In
17 a few moments for you to read your declaration.
18 THE WITNESS: I declare solemnly that I will
19 tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the
21 JUDGE JORDA: Thank you, Captain, you may be
22 seated. You have been called in by the Prosecution as
23 part of the trial at the International Criminal
24 Tribunal of General Blaskic who is here in this
25 courtroom. As the judges have asked then, the
1 Prosecutor has given us a resume of your testimony.
2 Therefore, we're going to ask you not to get lost into
3 details, but to remain with the major features of your
5 JUDGE JORDA: Lanthier, L-A-N-T-H-I-E-R, is
6 that right? You will stick with the main points in
7 your testimony. Of course, it's being understood, if
8 some of the points have been omitted, in that case, the
9 Prosecutor will ask you the relevant questions.
10 Mr. Cayley, you may proceed.
11 MR. CAYLEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
12 Q. Good morning, Captain Lanthier, if you can
13 remember, and I will do the same, to speak fairly
14 slowly to allow the interpreters to clearly interpret
15 what you're saying, that will help matters along.
16 I think I'm correct in saying that you joined
17 the Canadian Armed Forces from university in 1989?
18 A. Yes, that's correct.
19 Q. I think you are a Cavalry Officer and you
20 commissioned into the 12th Armed Regiment in Canada
21 based in Val-Cartier in Canada?
22 A. That's correct.
23 Q. I believe you've done a number of jobs in the
24 army, including troop leader, squad run battle officer,
25 I think you remember staff officer to General Canes for
1 two years; is that correct?
2 A. Yes, that's correct.
3 Q. You are, I think, a graduate of the command
4 and staff college at Kingston and you are currently the
5 operations officer of your regiment?
6 A. Yes, that's correct.
7 Q. Am I right in saying that between October of
8 1993 and May of 1993, you served with the second Royal
9 Canadian Regiment in Visoko in Bosnia-Herzegovina?
10 A. The second -- I'm sorry. The interpreter
11 cannot hear the witness very clearly.
12 Q. I'll repeat the question. Am I right in
13 saying that between October of 1992 and May of 1993,
14 you served with the second Canadian regiment in Visoko
15 in Bosnia-Herzegovina?
16 A. Yes, that's correct. The name was the second
17 Royal Canadian Regiment Battalion.
18 Q. I think the regiment was delayed in Lipik, in
19 the Republic of Croatia, for three months, and you
20 actually deployed to Visoko in February of 1993?
21 A. That's correct. Initially, we were supposed
22 to go to Banja Luka and Bosnia-Herzegovina, but we were
23 delayed and it was only in the summer that we went
24 there. We went to Visoko in the middle of February
1 Q. Could you explain to the court very briefly
2 what the mission of the Canadian Battalion was in
4 A. The UNPROFOR mission for the Canadian
5 battalion was to provide support to the UNHCR. At that
6 time, we were talking about convoy escorting. That was
7 the major mission of the Canadian Battalion.
8 MR. CAYLEY: If the witness could be shown
9 exhibit 329. I'll just inform the technical staff
10 there's a scatter pattern on the television screen, but
11 I think everybody has this exhibit in front of them,
12 without wasting any more time.
13 Q. Captain Lanthier, what does this map
15 A. This represents principally the Canadian
16 Battalion's area of responsibility in 1993 when we
17 arrived. Perhaps I'll use the document because you
18 don't see it very clearly on the screen, but this was
19 the municipality in which the Canadian Battalion was
20 based in Visoko. The other sectors in which we
21 operated were the following: Visoko, Kiseljak,
22 Kresevo, Fojnica, Vares, Olovo, Busovaca. We were not
23 responsible for Busovaca, but we would go by it in
24 order to get to Kiseljak, so I was very familiar with
25 that sector.
1 Sometimes we had a company that was deployed
2 and there was also a platoon that was near Visaje, and
3 we would use it in order to move about in the area.
4 The sectors that are dark show the sectors where the
5 Canadian battalion was responsible, and that was a
6 sector that I was very familiar with because I worked
7 in that sector.
8 Q. What was your position with the Canadian
9 battalion from February to mid-May of 1993?
10 A. I was the deputy to the officer. What I
11 would do then in my sector I was responsible for, the
12 three military parties were there. The Bosnian forces
13 from the government, they were called the BiH forces.
14 There was the HVO, and there was the Bosnian-Serb army,
15 there were the three factions there, and we tried to
16 establish liaisons among them to be sure that we could
17 be free to move about in order to do our work and to be
18 sure, also, that we would have the freedom of movement
19 for the UNHCR in our sector of responsibility.
20 At the same time, as part of the same
21 responsibility, but this was not an implicit function,
22 not an explicit one, I had to act as a liaison --
23 responsible for the liaison with the UNHCR with the
24 field officers. This was the term that was used,
25 "field officers," in order to work on site, and then
1 my role was to determine to what extent humanitarian
2 assistance was needed in our sector of responsibility.
3 I would be in contact with the UNHCR as a
4 person who was able to give to the UNHCR daily
5 briefings about the status of the situation where the
6 fighting was taking place, and the needs, if there were
7 any needs for convoy escorting. That is a summary,
8 more or less, of my responsibilities.
9 Although I was the deputy for the officer for
10 the military parties, we were not able to stay in
11 contact with the Serbs there. We had daily contact
12 with the BiH forces and with the HVO.
13 Q. Captain Lanthier, if I could ask you to
14 consciously slow your pace down, I suffer from the same
15 thing, unfortunately, because then the interpreters
16 will find it easier to interpret what you're saying.
17 Just to summarise, the essence of your duty
18 was to act as a liaison officer between the three
19 belligerent parties, the Bosnia government forces, the
20 Bosnian-Serb forces and the HVO?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Now, I think, as liaison officer, shortly
23 after you arrived in Theatre, you needed to establish
24 contact with the local headquarters or commands of the
25 three warring factions, and I wonder if you can tell
1 the court about how you went about that?
2 A. As soon as I arrived, we began to deploy in
3 the middle of February. During the first week, we set
4 up our camp in Visoko, so I didn't start working as a
5 liaison immediately, even though in that sector where
6 we had arrived was not under the responsibility of
7 UNPROFOR, as such, but rather the British Battalion
8 that was in Vitez at that point. There was, who had
9 already established --
10 JUDGE JORDA: Excuse me, this is middle of
11 February now? You arrived in the middle of February;
12 is that right? Thank you.
13 A. At that point, the British liaison officer
14 had already established certain contacts with the
15 various forces on the ground. He delegated these
16 responsibilities to me because now he had to
17 concentrate only on the British battalion sector. He
18 quickly showed me the locations of the various
19 headquarters in my area of responsibility, without
20 really introducing me to the commanders, except for one
21 of the brigades, the BiH brigade, the 365th, I believe
22 it was. Mr. Sinad -- I don't remember his last name.
23 Sinad was his first name, but I don't remember his last
25 We were the new arrivals, if you like, and we
1 had to go meet the various commanders of the different
2 headquarters. The first headquarters where I went was
3 the one that was in Kiseljak, in the Kiseljak
4 barracks. The commander, when I arrived, introduced
5 himself to me as Mr. Ivica Rajic. The first reaction
6 of Mr. Rajic was that he was not particularly
7 interested in discussing anything with me on that day,
8 but that he would rather that I refer to his Mario
9 Bradara and said that he, Mr. Bradara, was responsible
10 for the discussions with me and that I should speak
11 with him for any points that I wanted to talk about.
12 I also knew somewhat of the organisation --
13 something of the organisation, the HVO in our area of
15 And also explained in very general terms The
16 British officer had explained the sector to me and also
17 explained how the forces were distributed on the
19 And when I spoke with Mr. Bradara, I asked
20 him to explain to me how the -- what was the chain of
21 command and what was the structure, the structure of
22 the forces, that is, the HVO forces in our area of
23 responsibility in Central Bosnia, because obviously
24 the chain of command was not limited only to ours, our
25 sector but overflowed into another one as well.
1 It was therefore clear, as Mr. Rajic had
2 said, I was explained the lower structures. There
3 were four units. The four subordinate headquarters of
4 Mr. Rajic were in the Municipality of Vares, Krosova,
5 Kiseljak and Fojnica.
6 That was the lower structures on the ground.
7 As far as the size of the forces of Kiseljak, I really
8 wasn't quite sure, were they brigades, were they
9 battalions, I really didn't know. I wasn't told
10 whether it was a brigade or a battalion, but I was told
11 that there were four municipalities.
12 The four units did answer to Kiseljak and
13 that was the operational group which answered to a
14 higher force which was commanded by General Blaskic.
15 MR. CAYLEY: The transcript has stopped.
16 It's not coming up.
17 --- Short pause.
18 MR. CAYLEY: I understand, Mr. President,
19 that it's not actually working at the moment, so there
20 is no simultaneous transcript being produced.
21 I'm being informed, Mr. President, would it
22 be appropriate for us to take a break in order for them
23 to sort out the technical problems?
24 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
25 --- Proceedings reconvened at 10.40 a.m.
2 JUDGE JORDA: We can now resume. Please be
3 seated. I think that we will take a break around
4 11:30. Let's go on. Perhaps we should go back a
5 little bit.
6 MR. CAYLEY: I agree with you, Mr. President,
7 if the witness could be shown Exhibit 330.
8 Q. Captain Lanthier, remembering to speak
9 perhaps deliberately slowly, if you could go back to
10 your visit to the HVO barracks in Kiseljak and your
11 meeting with Mr. Rajic and Mr. Bradara, where
12 Mr. Bradara explained to you the command structure of
13 the HVO in central Bosnia, and if you could refer to
14 this diagram whilst you're explaining that.
15 One question before you answer that main
16 question, did you, in fact, draw this diagram out for
17 the Office of the Prosecutor?
18 A. Yes. I'm the one who prepared this. When we
19 met, I explained to you, because I was asked to make an
20 organisational chart and that's what I did. When I met
21 Mr. Bradara, I was told what this represents.
22 Q. If you could run through the area concerning
23 Kiseljak and just briefly summarise to the court what
24 Mr. Bradara led you to understand was the structure in
1 A. As I said, it was explained to me during the
2 meeting with Mr. Bradara that Kiseljak, that is, the
3 headquarters, was responsible for four regions that you
4 can see here at the bottom, Fojnice, Kresevo, Kiseljak,
5 and Vares.
6 These four units or formations, I didn't know
7 how large they were, and it was later on when I went on
8 site, I was able to see how large they were,
9 specifically Vares. The Kiseljak was also a brigade.
10 It was the Ana Esic brigade. Kresovo and Fojnice, I
11 was never really sure whether they were battalions or
12 brigades. The four missions or units were under the
13 command of the operational group of the HVO in
14 Kiseljak. Kiseljak answered to Vitez, which was a
15 headquarters for the operational zone level for central
16 Bosnia which was commanded.
17 Q. If I could just clarify a number of points
18 with you, what was the name of the brigade in Vares?
19 A. Bobovac, I think it was called, the Bobovac
21 Q. The Bobovac brigade; is that correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. In Kiseljak, what was the name of the brigade
24 in Kiseljak?
25 A. Ban Jelacic brigade.
1 Q. The Ban Jelacic brigade. Now, all of the
2 structure in Kiseljak and this subordinate units, this
3 was represented to you by deputy commander Mario
5 A. Yes, that's correct. It was during that
6 discussion when I was asked for an explanation of the
7 forces on the ground, I learned that the Vares sector
8 was an enclave at that time because it was surrounded
9 by the BiH and the Bosnia-Serb army on the right
10 side. In Kiseljak, there were also forces. I asked
11 them to explain to me the chain of command and the
12 formations for all these units in my sector of
13 responsibility, and it was at that point that he
14 explained to me how things were.
15 Q. I believe you subsequently paid a visit to
16 Colonel Blaskic in Vitez because Mr. Bradara explained
17 to you that Mr. Blaskic, Colonel Blaskic, was the
18 superior commander based there?
19 A. Yes, that's right. I decided to visit the
20 Vitez headquarters of General Blaskic. Although Vitez
21 was not in my sector of responsibility, the Vitez area
22 was under the responsibility of the British battalion
23 which was based in Vitez, but it was important for me
24 to introduce myself to Colonel Blaskic, and the reasons
25 which were behind this visit were the fact that we were
1 new in the region. We were working on a part of the
2 ground which was under the control of the HVO which was
3 under the command and control of Colonel Blaskic.
4 Therefore, for me, it was important to
5 introduce myself and to introduce the Canadian
6 battalion to General Blaskic at that time. It was also
7 important for me to know, to meet Rajic's superior.
8 Since I'm a military person, the chain of command is
9 very crucial and I have to know if there is a problem
10 in the Kiseljak or Vares area that I should be able to
11 go up the chain of command in order to settle the
12 problem on a higher level. This is why I made an
13 appointment with Colonel Blaskic and after that --
14 JUDGE JORDA: Please go slowly. Please go
16 A. I had an appointment with Colonel Blaskic and
17 that's when I met him.
18 MR. CAYLEY:
19 Q. At that meeting, did you ask Colonel Blaskic
20 about the chain of command going from his headquarters
21 to Kiseljak?
22 A. The first thing at that visit was to
23 introduce myself and to introduce the Canadian
24 Battalion as well, to describe its mission, and to
25 explain how it worked. Then I explained why I had come
1 to see him, and I explained that it was for the reasons
2 that I just told you, and I also told him that it was
3 important for me to know that if there were problems
4 that I couldn't settle, I should be able to work with
5 the Kiseljak area. He told me, in fact, that area was
6 under his control, that is, in control of those
7 forces -- of the area in which the Canadian forces
8 were located.
9 Q. Did, in fact, Colonel Blaskic say to you that
10 all HVO forces in the Kiseljak area were under his
12 A. Yes. At that time, yes, he confirmed to me
13 that the Kiseljak operational group headquarters
14 answered directly to him and that he controlled and
15 commanded it at that time.
16 Q. You concluded from that that the subordinate
17 units in Fojnica, Kresevo, Kiseljak, and Vares all
18 ultimately answered to Colonel Blaskic?
19 A. Yes, through the Kiseljak headquarters. That
20 is, the chain of command as I understood it at that
21 time, and General Blaskic explained to me that starting
22 from the army headquarters, which was located in
23 Mostar, because he answered to Mostar, and it
24 controlled Kiseljak which, in turn, controlled the four
25 units or formations that appear on the organisational
2 Q. Am I right in saying that --
3 JUDGE RIAD: I would like him to repeat
5 A. What I had said, as it was explained to me
6 and what I understood, is that Colonel Blaskic who
7 commanded the Vitez operational zone and that he was
8 under the command of the army general command which was
9 in Mostar, and Vitez controlled the operational group
10 which was located in the barracks in Kiseljak, and they
11 were controlled by the Fojnica, Kresevo, Kiseljak and
13 MR. CAYLEY:
14 Q. Am I also right in saying that at that
15 meeting, Colonel Blaskic said that, although his door
16 was always open, it wouldn't be necessary for you to
17 visit him because Kiseljak was directly under his
18 military order?
19 A. Yes, that's right. The discussion that I had
20 with Colonel Blaskic was one which was very friendly,
21 and he certainly did mention that his door was always
22 open to me, that I was welcome, and that if I wanted to
23 see him, I just had to make an appointment. But I,
24 according to him, wouldn't really have to see him again
25 because I could settle my problems by speaking directly
1 to people in Kiseljak, and Kiseljak answered to him
3 So, therefore, at that point, it was clear
4 that I should address myself to Kiseljak in order to
5 settle any problems in my sector of responsibility,
6 because Kiseljak was responsible for all the forces
7 that were located in this zone, the Canadian Battalion
8 area of responsibility, but that if I did have a
9 problem, I should not hesitate to contact him.
10 Q. Now, you have now indicated on this
11 structural diagram, two other operational groups. Now,
12 you're aware that they existed?
13 A. Yes, they explained to me what the general
14 structure in Bosnia was, that is, as it relates to the
15 HVO forces. I don't remember the details, the specific
16 names of the operational groups and the other
17 operational areas. I was particularly interested in
18 the ones that had to do with my area of responsibility
19 because that was where we principally operated, but
20 it's true that I did know that there were other
21 operational groups that existed as well. I was very
22 aware of that.
23 Q. And that these other operational groups were
24 under the command of Colonel Blaskic?
25 A. Yes, that's right, similarly to what I just
1 said about Kiseljak.
2 Q. Thank you. Now, let us return to Mr. Bradara
3 who introduced himself to you as the deputy commander
4 in Kiseljak. If the witness could be shown
5 exhibit 331? Now, you have viewed a video, which is
6 exhibit 260, and this is a still from that video. Who
7 is the man that is identified by the red circle?
8 A. That's Mario Bradara.
9 Q. If the witness could be shown exhibit 332,
10 again, this is a still from exhibit 260. Do you
11 recognise the man there with the red circle around his
13 A. That's also Mr. Bradara.
14 Q. How many times did you meet Mario Bradara?
15 A. During my first tour in Bosnia, it would be
16 hard for me to tell you exactly how many times now, but
17 I met him several times a week. The first time I met
18 him was around the end of February and I left in the
19 middle of May, I guess, about 30 or 40 times. I
20 couldn't tell you exactly, but many times and
22 Q. That's a fair enough approximation. Now,
23 just to conclude on the meetings that you had with
24 Mr. Bradara and Mr. Blaskic, when did they occur, those
25 two meetings, an approximate time period?
1 A. Probably the first week of March in '93.
2 Q. And these are the two meetings where the
3 command structure of the HVO was explained to you?
4 A. That's right.
5 Q. Mr. Bradara, can you tell the court how he
6 was dressed when you met him, what types of uniform he
8 A. Mr. Bradara stood out. Well, the only two
9 times I saw him in uniforms, once he was wearing a
10 black uniform, one with two badges, one of the HVO
11 forces in Bosnia and the second, I really don't
12 remember what it represented. The only other uniform I
13 ever saw him wear was an urban camouflage uniform. It
14 was a grey/white uniform which one would usually use
15 when fighting in urban areas.
16 Q. Was Mario Bradara always able to make
17 decisions on his own or did you observe him referring
18 up the chain of command to give you decisions about
19 various matters involving the military?
20 A. The impression that I received is that on
21 several occasions, the only thing I could actually get
22 from Mr. Bradara would be given later. I would get the
23 answers to questions that I would ask later on. Even
24 though he had been delegated authority by Mr. Rajic
25 during the first meeting that I had with them,
1 Mr. Bradara would regularly consult him for important
2 decisions, that is, consult his superior, when I say
4 Q. When you're referring to his superior, you
5 mean Mr. Rajic?
6 A. That's right.
7 Q. So you gained the impression while you were
8 there that the chain of command was actually working,
9 that subordinates were referring to superiors and vice
11 A. Absolutely.
12 Q. I would like to move on now in time and I
13 would like you to explain to the court your
14 recollection of your attendance at the Busovaca joint
15 commission. I think that happened in the first week of
17 A. Yes, indeed. In early March, the first or
18 second week of March 1993, I was not an active member
19 of the Busovaca commission. However, I was invited by
20 one of the members of the ECMM who was, himself, a
21 member, and I attended then just as an observer, rather
22 than as an actual member. My role was not as an active
23 participant, but rather as a listener. I went to
24 follow the discussions that were taking place in the
25 context of that joint Busovaca commission about
1 activities in the field, which I was familiar with, at
2 least with regard to the military and the humanitarian
3 activities within the area of responsibility of -- it
4 was in that capacity that I was invited. I was
5 participating in an inactive way in this joint Busovaca
7 The first meeting I attended, there were
8 several people attending there. Of course, there were
9 representatives of the ECMM. There were also the
10 military observers and there were also various
11 representatives from various factions. There was
12 Flarjo Nakic who was in charge of the operational zone
13 of Vitez and there were also members of the third core
14 in Mirodan. And also a another person whose name
15 escapes me now, but these were the people who attended
16 the first meeting I attended. I did not attend a large
17 number of such meetings.
18 Under the umbrella of this same commission,
19 in the spirit of this commission, I attended as an
20 observer other meetings which, I believe, were referred
21 to as coordination commissions. These, particularly,
22 the various deputy commanders -- rather, did not join
23 the different deputy commanders, but rather the
24 commanders of the different factions, and on two or
25 three occasions, I attended in which Colonel Blaskic
1 was present and Mr. Stuart was the commander of the
2 British Battalion in Vitez. There was also the
3 commander of the third core. There was also Dario
4 Kordic and also a woman from the political wing, from
5 Bosniak, and I don't remember her name.
6 Q. Could you describe to the court the
7 interaction that you saw taking place between Colonel
8 Blaskic and Mr. Dario Kordic?
9 A. As I stated earlier, I was there as an
10 observer, and so I was not at the table as an active
11 participant, but rather sitting further back, and so I
12 participated in a meeting with one of the translators
13 who was helping me and I was introduced to. During the
14 first meeting, I spoke with Mr. Dario Kordic, who was
15 introduced to me as one of the head political persons
16 for the Bosnians in Croatia.
17 When I heard the conversations and the
18 discussions that took place, my impression was that
19 Kordic could be described as an advisor in political
20 matters to Colonel Blaskic. This is, at least, the
21 impression I had and that I was able to understand from
22 the discussions that took place.
23 Q. Now, in the transcript, you stated that he
24 was one of the head political persons for the Bosnians
25 in Croatia. I think you probably mean the other way
1 around. Was he one of the head political persons for
2 the Bosnian Croats in Bosnia?
3 A. Yes, indeed.
4 Q. Now, can you describe from what you saw and
5 from what your interpreter was telling you of the
6 relationship between the then Colonel Blaskic and
7 Mr. Kordic?
8 A. With regards to the military issues, because,
9 as far as I remember, this meeting covered a large
10 number of issues, economic questions, also military and
11 also social and humanitarian issues. What I was able
12 to note and what interested me, in particular, was the
13 military issues, particularly dealing with the warring
14 factions. My perception was that, as I stated earlier,
15 Mr. Kordic was a political advisor, but as far as
16 military events were concerned, it was Colonel Blaskic
17 who, indeed, had the last word and took decisions or
18 gave his agreement to any type of activity taking
20 Q. Now, I think on the 17th of April, you
21 visited a Bosnian army, Bosnian government force
22 commander, at the operational group based at Istok, and
23 I think he told you about his concerns in the
24 municipality of Vitez, and I wonder if you could tell
25 the court about that meeting and then about your
1 subsequent visit to the municipality of Vitez.
2 A. Maybe to clarify, first of all, why I was
3 meeting with the commander of Istok based at Visoko,
4 which was the camp based at Visoko, which is 300 or 400
5 metres from the headquarters of the operational group
6 of Istok. This was a Muslim operational group which
7 was patrolling the various Muslim brigades in our area
8 of responsibility.
9 Now, this headquarters covered the 302nd
10 brigade and also the 304th brigade, which is located in
11 Brezja. These were close to our camp. Therefore, the
12 relations I had with this headquarters, I had the
13 intentions of beginning my day with the meetings with
14 the Istok headquarters and also meeting with Memisevic
15 where I would receive reports on the situations and
16 things that had occurred during the recent time. This
17 would enable me to find out what was going on in my
18 area of responsibility, which, perhaps, I myself was
19 not able to observe. And this was how I was able to
20 obtain information about what was going on. Later on,
21 I would be able to look in more detail to what was
22 going on.
23 So these daily meetings, as I said, took
24 place with Mr. Memisevic in which he would indicate to
25 me that in the Vitez pocket there seemed to be a
1 conflict taking place and that the Muslim civilians
2 living in the Kiseljak pocket were victims of an attack
3 that had been launched by the Croatian forces.
4 Q. If I can interrupt. You just said the
5 Bosnian Muslim civilians living in the Kiseljak pocket
6 were the victims of attack, I think you were being told
7 at this time about Muslim civilians living in the Vitez
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Vitez?
11 A. Yes. Yes, indeed. These were Muslim
12 civilians in the Vitez pocket that were victims of an
13 attack and, at that time, there were several houses
14 that were burned and there were some civilians who were
15 being taken prisoner and there were some crimes
16 committed against them. He asked me whether or not I
17 was in a position to give him any information about the
18 report that he had received. At that point, I had no
19 information that would enable me to confirm or deny the
20 information in that report. And so I decided myself to
21 go to the Vitez pocket, although Vitez itself was not
22 within my area of responsibility. My feeling was that
23 if something were to occur in the Vitez pocket, which
24 is the impression that Mr. Memisevic had, that these
25 same attackers could perhaps actually spread to attack
1 the Kiseljak pocket area.
2 So my first reaction, therefore, was to go to
3 the Vitez area to see and decide whether or not,
4 indeed, something was going on and also to meet with
5 Colonel Blaskic to obtain more details about what,
6 indeed, occurred.
7 So I took the road and I went through Vitez
8 pocket to go to the headquarters located in Vitez.
9 JUDGE JORDA: What day was that, exactly?
10 A. That was on the 18th or the 19th, I believe,
11 of April. So going through the Vitez pocket, which I
12 would go through on a regular basis, because I had to
13 regularly visit the British battalion in Vitez, I noted
14 that there was, indeed, some residences or buildings
15 that had been burned and there, indeed, had been
16 fighting in the city. The city itself, the city of
17 Vitez, was much more quiet than normally, and it gave
18 me the impression that it was a ghost town, and that is
19 one way that I can describe the feeling I had when I
20 arrived there.
21 When I arrived at the Vitez headquarters,
22 with the intention of meeting with Colonel Blaskic,
23 outside the hotel itself, outside the entrance to the
24 hotel were the headquarters, I was told there was no
25 one available to meet with me. At that moment, I
1 decided I should simply return and I returned to the
2 Canadian camp. But while going along the main road, I
3 passed by the Ahmici village to see even more what was
4 going on. I noted that there were several residences
5 that had been burned or destroyed and also that a
6 Mosque, which had now been completely destroyed. My
7 impression was that there had indeed been an attack,
8 that had taken place, against the Muslim population in
9 the Vitez pocket.
10 Q. Now, I think you, in fact, returned again at
11 this time to the HVO headquarters in Vitez on a second
12 occasion to try and see Colonel Blaskic about what saw
13 had taken place in the municipality of Vitez. Can you
14 tell the court about that second visit?
15 A. Yes, indeed, I still had not received a
16 response. I had spoken with several offers of the
17 Britbat who had given me some details, so I was in a
18 position to note something had occurred in the Vitez
19 pocket, but I needed more information given the fact
20 that we normally -- in the cases of conflicts, whether
21 we need more information to see whether this could
22 spread to the Kiseljak pocket. So I went to Vitez,
23 once again, to meet with Mr. Blaskic, but on that
24 occasion, I was able to go inside the headquarters, but
25 I was not able to meet with Colonel Blaskic who was
1 still absent. Mr. Rajic was not present either, but I
2 was able to meet with one of his representatives who
3 gave me some information and told me at that moment,
4 that the deputy commander was not available, but he
5 stated he -- whether he, as one of the other Staff
6 Officers could give me some information or details
7 about the activities that took place the day before.
8 Q. Transcript, the transcript indicates that
9 Mr. Rajic was not present in the headquarters and I
10 think in fact, you meant Mr. Nakic?
11 A. Yes, I believe that's what I said, Mr. Nakic.
12 Q. What was his position in the headquarters in
14 A. He was the deputy commander to Colonel
16 Q. Now, as I interrupted you, you were just
17 explaining that one of Colonel Blaskic's
18 representatives, one of the staff offices in his
19 headquarters met you. What did he say, to you?
20 A. The officer, not the representative of the
21 staff of the headquarters, indicated that neither the
22 commander, nor the deputy commanders were available.
23 When I asked for some clarifications about the events
24 which took place, the preceding days, he answered that
25 he had no comment he could make on that issue and that
1 that ended our discussion there.
2 Q. Now, I think you returned to Visoko and you
3 briefed your commanding officer about what you had seen
4 in the Vitez municipality. Now, I would like to move
5 to the 19th of April when I think you met with
6 Mr. Memisevic again, and he told you this time of
7 certain HVO activities that had commenced in the
8 Kiseljak municipality. Can you tell the court about
9 that occasion and what you subsequently did?
10 A. Yes, indeed. The next day, the next morning
11 on the 19th, I, again, met, as I did every morning,
12 with Mr. Memisevic. At that time, he told me that he
13 had received a report and informed me about the report,
14 about the events that had taken place in Vitez on the
15 day of the 16th and that the same events that were now
16 occurring in the Kiseljak municipality, and he said
17 that it seemed -- because he was not in a position to
18 confirm in a very precise manner the details of that
19 report, but he said that there were attacks against the
20 Muslim citizens in the Kiseljak pocket, and he named a
21 few villages which had a very large percentage of
22 Muslim citizens. With this information, I decided to
23 go through the Kiseljak pocket in order to confirm by
24 site or on site whether or not such activities had
25 taken place.
1 So I went to the direct road, the long road,
2 rather, through Busovaca going down the south-east to
3 the Kiseljak pocket and at that moment, I did note that
4 there were a number of or many houses that had been
5 damaged and had been slightly burned and had been
6 plundered and destroyed. Getting even closer to the
7 city of Kiseljak, I noted in the northern part of the
8 road, on a hill somewhere nearby, I noted that there
9 was a heavy machine-gun that was firing into the houses
10 from its position. It was a very constant machine-gun
11 fire and here I had the impression that either -- from
12 the fact that some of these houses were burnt, I had
13 the impression that either there was some sort of flame
14 that was used to ignite these houses or, perhaps, some
15 sort of igniting shells that had been used to destroy
16 these homes.
17 Q. Did you see any fire being returned from
18 these houses into which this heavy machine-gun was
20 A. No, not at all. All I could note was that it
21 was a heavy fire coming from only one direction and it
22 was not a battle, but rather an attack without any
23 response. There was nothing at all that gave me the
24 impression that this was a combat between two parties,
25 but simply an attack on these residences. It would not
1 indicate to me that they were of any military nature or
2 putting up any defence involving combat, at least
3 that's what I deduced.
4 Q. Now, you also stated that you noted the
5 houses appeared to become -- appear to be set on fire
6 when these rounds of ammunition from this heavy machine
7 gun hit them. Did you conclude what type of ammunition
8 was being used?
9 A. My impression was that these were either
10 incendiary bombs or some sort of tracer, something
11 that's used to aid a cannon to follow the trajectory of
12 a shell. If these tracers were to hit something that
13 was flammable, then the objects would catch fire or
14 perhaps they would also use an incendiary type of
15 ammunition, and it would have the same effect.
16 Q. I think you then visited the HVO headquarters
17 in Kiseljak to try and discover what was taking place.
18 Can you tell the court about that visit?
19 A. Yes. The purpose of my visit in going
20 through the long path to Kiseljak was to get to
21 Kiseljak. I could not go there directly without having
22 some idea of what was going on. The main purpose of my
23 visit was to see what the goings on were, and so I went
24 to the Kiseljak barracks with the purpose of meeting
25 with Mario Bradara. When I went to the barracks, I was
1 told, quite simply, that at the main entrance to the
2 Kiseljak barracks, there is a metal barrier that had
3 been erected there, and I was told that Mr. Bradara was
4 not available.
5 Q. Now, I think you then briefed the United
6 Nations protection forces in Kiseljak about what had
7 taken place, and then you tried to gain access to the
8 village of Rotilj. Can you please tell the court about
9 your first attempt to enter that village?
10 A. Yes, as I stated, when I left the
11 headquarters of Kiseljak, the headquarters were
12 UNPROFORs located quite close to the area of Kiseljak
13 and so I stopped and I made a report to the head of the
14 operations headquarters at UNPROFOR and also to the G-5
15 in dealing with civilians and military and at that
16 moment, I went or rather I tried to go to the village
17 of Rotilj. The reason I tried to go to this village
18 was also -- is because this is one of the villages in
19 which Mr. Memisevic had indicated, there was a large
20 percentage of Muslims. When I approached -- when you
21 try to go to the Kiseljak to this village, you have to
22 take a secondary road on the left but I noted there was
23 a road blocked that was being manned by some soldiers
24 and also a police car, some Croatian soldiers. I was
25 not able, therefore, to go all the way to the Rotilj
1 village, because they prevented me from doing so.
2 Q. The police and the soldiers at the roadblock,
3 these were HVO soldiers and civilian police?
4 A. Yes, they were civilian police. They were
5 wearing blue uniforms.
6 Q. Were there also HVO soldiers present at that
8 A. Yes, indeed. There were two or three
9 soldiers. I don't know the exact number, but there
10 were a few.
11 Q. Now, just to clarify matters, it's not
12 particularly important, but you mentioned G-5. Am I
13 right in saying that G-5 is a NATO term for a staff
14 division that deals with civilian affairs?
15 A. Yes, that's right. It is one of the branches
16 of the headquarters, at that time.
17 Q. Now, I think you then returned to the
18 battalion in Visoko and you briefed the commanding
19 officer and the operations officer on what you had seen
20 in the Kiseljak municipality. Then on the 20th of
21 April, you, in fact, received permission to visit
23 A. Yes, indeed. On the 20th, I received
24 authorisation to go to the Rotilj village with an
25 escort. I was given two soldiers, two Croatian
1 soldiers from the Kiseljak --
2 Q. I'll interrupt you, captain Lanthier, if the
3 witness can be shown exhibit 333 because I think this
4 will help you explain to the court. You say you
5 received permission. From whom did you have to receive
6 permission to enter Rotilj?
7 A. I went to the Kiseljak headquarters in order
8 to obtain access, since there are two Croatian soldiers
9 who had refused me access, to the Rotilj village. So I
10 went to the headquarters in order to obtain
12 Q. You're referring to the HVO headquarters in
14 A. That's right.
15 JUDGE JORDA: When you refer to Croatian
16 soldiers, please specify?
17 A. HVO, says the witness.
18 JUDGE JORDA: Thank you.
19 MR. CAYLEY:
20 Q. If you could -- using the aerial photograph
21 that is on the ELMO in front of you, if you could
22 explain to the court your visit to Borina and Rotilj
23 and what you discovered in those villages on the 20th
24 of April, and if you could remember to speak slowly.
25 A. While I was given access to Rotilj with an
1 escort, as I stated earlier. Now, the escort which
2 preceded us, took one of the smaller roads which went
3 to the west of Kiseljak and they introduced to us --
4 helped us get into Rotilj village. We were accompanied
5 by a Mr. Colonel Landry, who was in this area, and also
6 we were accompanied by a translator, so we went to
7 Borina village which is identified here by circle 1 and
8 they were told here this is Rotilj village. I don't
9 know if this was an error in reading the map by our
10 escort, and it was obvious at that point at least to
11 Colonel Landry that this was not Rotilj village. We
12 asked for permission of this escort, in order to leave
13 from our vehicles, to get out of our vehicles and
14 investigate a little closer some of the surroundings.
15 They allowed us to do so and Colonel Landry and myself
16 and also the translator walked on foot without an
17 escort. At that moment, we went down the direction
18 which is indicated by the arrow to the circle 2 where
19 we went from Borina village to Rotilj village.
20 When we went to Rotilj, we were welcomed by
21 some 30 persons. Everyone was moving about in order to
22 see us. It was the first UN presence that they had
23 seen, since the events that had occurred just two days
24 earlier. At that moment, they told us that there had
25 been an attack that had taken place against Rotilj
1 village and that there had been several crimes that had
2 been committed. One of the first persons later on that
3 came to present themselves to us directly, both to
4 myself and Mr. Colonel Landry was about 30 years old or
5 so and was living within the house. He came out of his
6 house and came to us. And the man explained to us,
7 that when the attack occurred, he had been outside of
8 the house in his field since he was a farmer and that
9 his wife who was alone in the house had been a victim
10 of the rape and that all of the soldiers that had come
11 into the house had raped her and then had been
12 executed, that is she had been shot in the head. Even
13 though the body was not there anymore, there was
14 evidence to show that there had been a body there. The
15 table and the lamp had dried blood on it, as well as
16 the floor. There were several shells that were in the
17 living room and several pieces of bone which had
18 scattered and splattered at the bottom of the wall.
19 So I was able to see the physical evidence of
20 the -- I could see the physical evidence of the crime,
21 even though I did not see the body and that was proof
22 that there had been a crime committed there.
23 Then we went out. There were other relatives
24 there, other family -- relatives of the victim, family
25 members, who introduced themselves to me and to Colonel
1 Landry and we had been told that there had been -- the
2 house next to it had been killed, there was a
3 40-year-old man and a young teenager who had been
4 caught on the main road, and they were executed and
5 after that, their heads had been cut off. Where I was
6 taken, the bodies weren't there any more, but you could
7 still see pools of blood and pieces of brain that were
8 lying on the ground. There was a woman there that told
9 me that her husband had been captured and he had been
10 burned with car battery acid and then I couldn't see
11 whether this person had been executed by the bullets,
12 but he was a victim, in any case.
13 I didn't see the remains, but that was at the
14 cemetery near the entrance to the village and we were
15 shown where the bodies were buried in the cemetery.
16 There were eight locations where you could see that the
17 earth had been moved and that the earth was still moist
18 and then I was told -- I do remember that I was told
19 there were 17 people who were victims of the attack.
20 From what I understood, the members of the same family
21 had been buried in a common grave, and that's why there
22 were fewer graves than victims.
23 When I asked a few questions, because I
24 wanted further explanation, I wanted to know how the
25 attack occurred, and I was explained that on the
1 evening of the 18th, there were soldiers who had
2 appeared who had taken control of the perimeter of the
3 city so that nobody could get out and that in the
4 middle of the village, a heavy machine gun had been set
5 up and there were soldiers who went from house to
6 house, pulling the people out, and then at that point,
7 there was communication which -- so that I had the
8 impression that it was a command post that was on the
9 ground, somewhat north of Rotilj, and that there had
10 been a communication with them and then they went from
11 house to house and some of the houses, some of the
12 people had been executed.
13 So the impression that I immediately had was
14 that it was an attack which had been carried out
15 according to infantry platoon tactics which you will
16 find in urban combat in defence of the perimeter,
17 communications, that was a term that we use, fighting
18 in built up areas, and that's the impression that we
19 had. So Colonel Landry and I continued to walk. You
20 can see there's a third circle, number 3, and we went
21 there to see what had happened. There were several
22 houses, especially in what's covered by circle number
23 2, the houses that were burned. Then we went to the
24 east and there was less destruction there. That's what
25 happened during my first visit to the village of
2 MR. CAYLEY: I can conclude my questions
3 after the break, Mr. President, on this area.
4 JUDGE JORDA: All right. We'll take a
5 20-minute break.
6 --- Recess taken at 11.35 a.m.
7 --- On resuming at 12:00 p.m.
9 JUDGE JORDA: We will now resume the hearing. Have the
10 accused brought in, please.
11 (Witness enters court room).
12 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Cayley, we're now going to
14 MR. CAYLEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
15 If the ELMO could be illuminated, please.
16 Q. Now, Captain Lanthier, we were talking about
17 the aftermath of an attack that you witnessed in the
18 village of Rotilj.
19 Did the villagers identify the soldiers who
20 attacked the village?
21 A. Correction about the question, I was not
22 present at the attack. I got information from the
23 survivors -- the victims who told me what they had
25 I was not an eye witness to any of it, but
1 what I was told is -- the term that they used was they
2 were HVO soldiers who had committed the attack.
3 Q. Now, you mentioned a number of houses had
4 been burned down, and I wonder if you can indicate on
5 the photograph where you saw houses that were burned?
6 A. It was mainly in this -- what's in the circle
7 No. 2. I can't tell you individual houses. This is
8 some time later now.
9 Q. And in area 3, did you notice any houses that
10 were burned in that area?
11 A. I think I remember that there was some, but
12 the level of discussion (sic) wasn't nearly anywhere
13 what I indicated in the circle marked 2.
14 Q. Now, the transcript indicates that the 'level
15 of discussion' wasn't nearly anywhere what I indicated
16 in circle marked 2.
17 I think you meant the level of destruction
18 was not anywhere near that which you had seen in circle
19 No. 2; is that correct?
20 JUDGE JORDA: What is happening with the
21 transcript. It seems that this is frequent, we're
22 having a lot of basic and frequent errors with the
24 Can you explain this to us, Mr. Registrar.
25 Not only the names, but there's meaning which is
1 changed too.
2 I'm not blaming anybody for this, but we have
3 to be concerned about it. We can't use a transcript
4 which has errors. Mr. Cayley is being very careful
5 about the transcript, but it can't be easy to ask
6 questions and then to make sure that the sense of the
7 question has been indicated properly in the
9 THE REGISTRAR: Well, this is a new team and
10 we will look into the question.
11 JUDGE JORDA: It's a new team. There are
12 really mistakes, serious errors. It's worrisome.
13 Beyond the technical questions itself, I'm asking the
14 team who is working there with all the understanding of
15 the difficulties of doing the transcript, but to be
17 Perhaps the witness could speak a little bit
18 more quietly. If you like, we could change the team.
19 We have new teams that come in to work. We have a new
21 But I would like the transcript to be correct
22 and reflect what the transcript has said because when
23 the cross-examination comes, the Defence is going to
24 use the transcript.
25 All right. That's all I have to say. Speak
1 slowly, let's try to work in such a way that errors are
2 limited as much as possible.
3 Thank you very much. Proceed.
4 THE WITNESS; To answer your question, the
5 level of destruction which I remember seeing in circle
6 3 was much less than what you see in No. 2.
7 MR. CAYLEY:
8 Q. Captain Lanthier, how did you and the
9 individuals who accompanied you react to what you saw
10 in the village of Rotilj?
11 A. My initial reaction was horror, horror,
12 horror, in the face of the savagery of the acts, in the
13 violence. The aggressiveness that was demonstrated by
14 the attack, which I didn't see, but of which the
15 physical evidence was still there, and it was really
16 absolutely stunning, it was a reaction of disgust, both
17 on my part and Colonel Landry, because Colonel Landry
18 was speaking about one of the victims, or speaking with
19 one of the survivors of the victims -- of the family of
20 the victims was really - burst into tears when she told
21 what had happened.
22 The very human nature of these acts was just
24 Q. Now, moving on, and if the witness could be
25 shown Exhibit 334. One final point, Captain
2 Why do you believe that the HVO, first of
3 all, took you to the village of Borina rather than to
4 the village of Rotilj?
5 A. My impression was that it was deliberate,
6 they didn't want us to find out what had happened.
7 That's the impression I have.
8 Q. And the village of Borina was in tact; was it
9 not. How far was the village of Rotilj from the
10 Kiseljak barracks?
11 A. A. If you look at it on a line along the
12 road - well, on average we talk about 1,500 to 2,000
14 Q. I'm sorry, I interrupted you in fact before
15 you could answer one of my questions. The village of
16 Borina, was that in tact when you visited, the first
17 village that you visited?
18 A. When we were in Borina, I don't remember
19 having seen any destruction.
20 Q. Now, you have Exhibit 334 in front of you and
21 I wonder if you can tell the court about the visits
22 that you made on either the 21st or the 22nd of April
23 of 1993 to those villages and if you could recall for
24 the court what you saw in those villages that are
25 highlighted on this map?
1 A. I went Bakovici to the villages that you see
2 in orange. During my first visit, we were going along
3 the main road but I couldn't get into the villages
5 As I said, there was firing directed at some
6 of the houses. And as a liaison officer, the only
7 thing I had was a jeep with a vinyl roof, so I didn't
8 have any armoured protection which would allow me to go
9 into the sector where the firing was going on and which
10 was still heavy.
11 But several days later when it seemed that
12 the attack was over, I went to the villages and I got
13 out of my vehicle and I walked about within the village
14 in order to try to understand exactly whether or not
15 there was any kind of evidence about what had
17 And I went into several houses myself. The
18 first thing I saw when I went in is that I didn't have
19 to break the door open because the doors had either
20 been torn off or were just torn open.
21 I would go into the houses, I could see that
22 there had been theft, there had been vandalism which
23 makes me think that the contents of the drawers had
24 been thrown out on the floor.
25 There was broken glass on the floor and all
1 of this showed me that there had been vandalism within
2 the house.
3 The houses had also been burned, some of the
4 houses that were next to the barns. There was dead
5 cattle and others, there was still cattle but it was in
6 very, very bad condition, and we could see that it had
7 deliberately been sacked.
8 And for the purposes of the transcript those
9 are the villages of Svinjarevo, Gormionica, Gromiljak,
10 Polje Visjnica and Visjnica.
11 I think you had earlier, as you already
12 explained to the court, made a journey to Rotilj?
13 A. Yes, that's right. These were the villages
14 which are indicated in orange on the map.
15 Q. Now, I think in a stretch of road past the
16 village of Gromiljak you came across house that was
17 undamaged, and I wonder if you can tell the court about
18 that event?
19 A. When I was going from village to village,
20 something which particularly struck me, was just on the
21 northern part of the road there was a group of three
22 isolated houses, two of which on the ends were
23 destroyed, but the one in the middle was absolutely in
24 tact, one could see there was activity in the house.
25 I went to the house, the one in the middle
1 that was in tact and I asked to speak to the people who
2 lived there. The person who was in the house at that
3 point didn't want to answer me, didn't want to answer
4 the questions he opened the door, but didn't want to
5 speak to me.
6 I then learned when I spoke with other people
7 later on that the house belonged to a citizen of
8 Croatian origin which, therefore, seemed to confirm to
9 me that it was not - what had happened in the Kiseljak
10 pocket is what is known as ethnic cleansing, where
11 deliberately the citizens had been attacked, that is,
12 those citizens of Muslim origin and only them. The
13 others had been left untouched.
14 It wasn't specifically the villages that were
15 attacked, but specifically people within the villages.
16 That was what allowed me - that is the conclusion I
17 came to.
18 Q. Do you recall seeing any inhabitants in these
19 villages when you visited them?
20 A. The villages were deserted. The only thing
21 that was left was some livestock, cows, chickens, but
22 except for the house I mentioned to you around
23 Gromiljak, I didn't see any presence of human beings in
24 those villages.
25 I don't know where their residents were at
1 that point, and at that point I wasn't able to find any
2 of the victims or any dead people lying in the houses.
3 And I so I suppose that either they escaped during the
4 attack and fled, or that they had been captured and, in
5 that case, I was not in a position to determine what
6 might have happened with the residents of those
8 Q. Now, I think after seeing everything in the
9 villages that are marked on this map you made a visit
10 to the HVO headquarters in Kiseljak to see Mr. Mario
12 Can you tell the court about that visit.
13 A. With what I was able to learn about the
14 situation, it was clear that there had been ethnic
15 cleansing, similar to what had been reported by the
16 BRITBAT in the Vitez pocket.
17 I went to the Kiseljak headquarters of the
18 HVO in order to learn about what had happened, to get
19 explanations about the events which had occurred.
20 I met Mr. Bradara and his explanations at
21 that time were that they were isolated acts which had
22 been committed by citizens who revolted - who were sick
23 of the situation and it was out of his control,
24 something which happened just like that.
25 He answered the same thing for the village of
1 Rotilj, where he said there also they were isolated
2 acts of citizens who revolted and frustrated, he used
3 the word frustrated.
4 My personal opinion, which I expressed to him
5 at that time, is that I didn't believe that this was
6 the result of simple - ordinary citizens but rather
7 that these were synchronised acts, they had a military
9 The very nature of the attack caused one to
10 think of tactics that would be used in an infantry
11 platoon in order to carry out something like this in
12 the defence of a perimeter or defence of terrain or for
14 These were all indications that they were
15 military activities, the fact that these took place in
16 the Kiseljak pocket took place about 48 hours after
17 what had happened in the Vitez pocket and that seemed
18 to confirm to me that this was something which had been
19 synchronised, it was not the result of chance.
20 And then I explained my feelings to Mr.
21 Bradara at that point and he answered, no, that's not
22 the case at all, it's simply that these citizens got
23 very excited and that's how they reacted to the
25 Q. So Mr. Bradara was lying to you about what
1 had occurred in the Kiseljak pocket?
2 A. Yes, that was absolutely the impression that
3 I had, that he was not being honest with me.
4 Q. Now, I think subsequently you decided to make
5 weekly visits to the village of Rotilj and I'd like you
6 to explain to the court what occurred on those visits,
7 and from whom you needed authority to visit the village
8 of Rotilj in all of your visits?
9 A. Now I knew that Rotilj had actually been
10 attacked and that it was the only place where I had
11 still seen that there were people living after the
13 As I said, in the other villages all were
14 abandoned, but Rotilj still had people living in it.
15 And at that time I asked Mr. Bradara for
16 authorisation to visit the village regularly which was
17 granted to me and it was written in - it was going to
18 be in writing 24 hours in advance saying that I could
19 go once a week to the village of Rotilj for
20 humanitarian purposes.
21 The purpose of my visit was to be sure that
22 the basic living conditions of those people would be
23 sufficient and, therefore, I spoke about water and
24 medicine, clothing, that is the basic commodities.
25 When authorisation was given to me the first
1 time and when I arrived in the village of Rotilj, as
2 far as I remember there was a couple -- there was a
3 couple there, or several hundred people there, I don't
4 have the exact number of people who were there, but
5 those were the people who were in detention in the
6 village of Rotilj.
7 Why do I say that they were in detention, I
8 do say because I myself saw with my own eyes that they
9 had been mainly women, children and especially old
11 In the village there was absolutely no men
12 who could have been of fighting age, the people there
13 were either very young, children or old people who
14 would no longer be able to do very much at all.
15 In advance I received authorisation from
16 Bradara, I went to the village, I spoke to the people
17 there and I was told that they were living in
18 overcrowded conditions. They talked about -- they said
19 there were sometimes more than 10 people living in one
20 house. Drinking water was a problem even though there
21 was an aquaduct and a well but the water available was
22 not sufficient for the number of people in the village
23 and there was also several health problems, and
24 afterwards I often took representatives of the World
25 Health Organisation with me, that is physicians,
1 specialists, who could take care of people who are in a
2 precarious condition.
3 And then I was told - one could feel in the
4 village, feel that they were detained, there were
5 people - nobody was in handcuffs, nobody was being
6 threatened by a weapon in front of me, but one had the
7 feeling in this village, it was said, sort of,
8 indirectly that nobody could try or would try to escape
9 from that village.
10 I don't have the document with me, when you
11 look at the aerial photograph you can see that it's
12 rather isolated, sort of in the fields, and it would be
13 possible to escape during night.
14 But what I gathered from speaking to the
15 village residents is that nobody dared to try to escape
16 because they were afraid if they were to flee there
17 would be reciprocal measures against those who didn't
18 escape. There was old people there, young children,
19 very young people, and it would have been impossible
20 for most of the people to - to make a mass escape.
21 And then they were afraid.
22 I certainly had the feeling that had they
23 tried to escape there would have been something taken -
24 gone against - there was old couple, when I say old
25 couple I say they were about 60 years old and they
1 explained to me that in April, 1992 they came to visit
2 their family in Rotilj and that when he came - when
3 they were about to go back to Sarajevo because they
4 came from Sarajevo they were prevented from leaving
5 Kiseljak and they were brought to Rotilj and,
6 therefore, that couple was being held against their
7 will. And this is since April of '92 and now this is
8 April,' 93 and it was already a year that the couple
9 was there.
10 And they gave me the number of their son
11 living in France so I could try to contact. I never
12 was able to do so. But this is an example of people
13 who were being held against their will.
14 I had asked where the men were because you
15 could see, as I said, that there were no men of
16 fighting age in Rotilj, and I was then told that the
17 men had been taken in the morning and they had been
18 taken to the confrontation lines and that they were
19 digging trenches during the day.
20 This is the information that was given to me
21 by the residents of the village.
22 And with that information I went to see
23 Bradara. After my first visit to the village of
24 Rotilj, I asked him questions about what I had been
25 told. I wanted to know why these people were being
1 kept against their will. And Bradara said to me -
2 answered me that it was for their own safety. That it
3 was in order to avoid having what happened elsewhere
4 happen to them and so it was for their own good they
5 were being kept.
6 When I asked why men were being taken to dig
7 trenches, Bradara answered that they were not being
8 forced to go, but they were volunteers, they were
9 sympathisers of our cause, they were going of their own
10 will to dig the trenches.
11 That comment seemed absolutely ludicrous to
12 me and I must - I said I couldn't believe that. I
13 said that their relatives, their friends had been
14 massacred and now he was telling me that they were
15 going to dig trenches of their own will. It's hard for
16 me to believe that.
17 And I also suggested to Bradara that through
18 the International Red Cross Committee there be
19 organisations -- be organised help for them.
20 Bradara, however, didn't want to accede to
21 my proposal to get people help from the outside and all
22 that he had said were two things, that in fact they
23 were prisoners, they were detained against their own
24 will and that, in addition to that, some of those
25 residents or detainees were being used as forced labour
1 on the front line.
2 That's what my visits allowed me to
4 Q. So I'm right in saying that the HVO readily
5 admitted that they were using able-bodied men from
6 Rotilj to dig trenches on the front lines?
7 A. Yes, absolutely.
8 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Cayley, please don't repeat
9 things too often, we understood. Thank you.
10 MR. CAYLEY:
11 Q. Now just to describe the atmosphere in
12 Rotilj, to make it absolutely clear what the atmosphere
13 was like in this camp, could you explain to the Judges
14 what you sensed the feelings of these people were in
15 that village?
16 A. It was not said openly. I was not under
17 escort, but you can still feel the fear and almost a
18 panic feeling among the people who were there. It
19 seemed that they were trying to speak, but were not
20 seeing -- or showing anyone that was visiting that they
21 were actually speaking to me.
22 Perhaps they felt like the walls had ears and
23 that perhaps certain events would be told and they
24 would be heard. So there was A palatable fear that was
25 existing in that village.
1 Q. Do you recall how many times you complained
2 about what was taking place in Rotilj to the HVO
3 headquarters in Kiseljak?
4 A. I had visited the Rotilj village on a weekly
5 basis, I would visit them three or four times the
6 Rotilj village, from my first visit to the time of my
7 departure and each time there would be someone who
8 could come to see me, a detainee who would then tell me
9 something, and then they would also beg us to try to
11 Each time I sent my reports of these
12 complaints to Mr. Mario Bradara, so three or four times
13 after my visit and several other occasions. I was
14 called in the course of my duties to see Mr. Bradara on
15 several occasions, as I said, each week as well, but at
16 least on four different occasions I mentioned and I
17 made complaints to Mr. Bradara.
18 Q. Let's move on. Now, at the end of April and
19 the beginning of May you had a report of civilian
20 detainees in the Kiseljak barracks, and I'm going to
21 place Exhibit 335 in front of you and with the use of
22 that Exhibit I wonder if you can relate to the court
23 your knowledge of the presence of civilian prisoners in
24 the Kiseljak barracks?
25 A. I was told that in the Kiseljak barracks
1 there was some prisoners being held. At that time I
2 had no proof that could confirm or deny what was being
3 told to me about the Kiseljak - told to me in the
4 Kiseljak village, rather.
5 But in the barracks, during my regular visit
6 with Mr. Bradara, I noted there were several children
7 that were playing in the field right near the barracks,
8 and it's surrounded by -- rather, the barracks that
9 are indicated in circle No. 2, here you found the
10 offices for the Kiseljak headquarters.
11 And so in order to go to this location I had
12 a very clear view of the barracks circled in No. 2 and
13 I could see children playing there and I could also see
14 some clothes drying on a line.
15 There were some scarves and dresses and other
16 clothing, and I cannot understand why these children or
17 this clothing would be there. This is military
18 barracks, it was not a sort of shelter, and so I
19 wondered what was going on.
20 And I asked Mr. Bradara who was detained,
21 whether or not there was someone being detained in
22 these barracks, and Mr. Bradara admitted that indeed
23 there was 100 persons being detained in these barracks.
24 When I asked why they were being detained, he
25 responded that they were here for their own good in
1 order to avoid that they be victims of attacks by other
2 citizens in the Kiseljak pocket.
3 I continued to question him and his answer
4 was, well, if we were to free them then they would pose
5 a threat to the HVO. A threat from women and
6 children. That was something that -- what he was
7 indicating to me. I didn't see where the threat was.
8 And during subsequent visits, I requested
9 permission to visit once again with these detainees to
10 find out what conditions they were living because it
11 seemed - to make sure they were adequate conditions
12 living conditions but this authorisation was not given,
13 I was not able to physically go there and visit with
15 And during a meeting with Mr. Bradara I
16 dropped this particular issue and I went on to other
17 points on the agenda. Later on I went to visit in
18 building No. 1. In order to get there you had to go
19 through barracks in circle No. 2. So instead of going
20 directly to this particular area I went - I kind of
21 took a side road towards the barracks.
22 I said I would go there quite frequently to
23 the Kiseljak barracks, and to such a point that at the
24 main gate when they see that I was the person in the
25 vehicle they would let me come in even without asking
1 for my UNPROFOR card or without identifying my identity
2 because they knew me by sight.
3 So they let me go all the way up to
4 headquarters. Instead of going directly to the
5 destination I attempted to go and visit with two
6 buildings there circled in No. 2, but as I approached
7 there was a guard that immediately intercepted me and
8 redirected me into the proper direction towards
10 And when I entered into the Mr. Bradara's
11 obvious, his office is what you get to when you turn to
12 the right, second or third door to the right and so the
13 window looks into the interior of the complex.
14 And one of the first remarks he made to me
15 was that I should have stopped asked questions - that I
16 should not have stopped and asked questions, I should
17 have let the subject drop.
18 At the moment there was a solder there armed
19 with a weapon who was pointing the weapon at me. So
20 the clear message was - the message in that case,
21 rather, was clear and I said I'm no longer going to
22 bring there issue up and simply drop that discussion at
23 that moment.
24 When I was - I don't know what happened to
25 those detainees then because I had to leave that
1 location and after that I returned to Canada.
2 So these were the circumstances in which I
3 became aware of the presence of detainees in the
4 Kiseljak barracks which presence was admitted by Mr.
5 Bradara himself.
6 Q. Just to clarify the photograph, the area
7 circled 1 is the HVO headquarters building; is it not?
8 A. Yes, that's correct. It's the building in
9 which I had my meetings with Mr. Bradara.
10 Q. And the arrow in circle 2 in one of those
11 buildings, you recall that is where the civilian
12 detainees were being kept?
13 A. Yes, I don't exactly remember whether it was
14 the one more to the left or more to the right. It was
15 in one of the two. That's why when they showed me the
16 photo I circled both of them because I can't recall
17 which one it was in.
18 Q. Now, what was the state of supplies into the
19 Kiseljak pocket when you were there during your first
20 tour, and when I talk about supplies I mean ammunition,
21 food, fuel?
22 A. One thing that was interesting that I noted
23 right away after I arrived in central Bosnia was that
24 the Kiseljak pocket and the small pocket in the
25 northern area of my area of responsibility was that it
1 was well supplied. What I mean by that is that the
2 stores were open, things like chocolate, beer were
3 available. There was no lack of fuel.
4 And even the gas stations were open.
5 Everything seemed to be working in a normal state.
6 When I say that I mean that it did not seem to be an
7 isolated pocket in the situation of war. I'd go to
8 Visoko and elsewhere and all these kind of supplies did
9 not exist in those areas, in areas controlled by
10 Bosnian forces. In those cases these things were not
12 So I was quite surprised to find the quality
13 of life which was available in Kiseljak. When I talk
14 about Kiseljak and environs.
15 When I talk about Kiseljak, I am not talking
16 about the city itself but the particular pocket, the
18 And so all these supplies were available and
19 I was quite surprised. Now I can give you an example
20 of the prices. I can't remember the exact price for
21 diesel, but I think it was a few Dutch marks in
22 Kiseljak, three or four, but the same litre in Visoko
23 you can obtain for some 20 Dutch marks and you can only
24 obtain on the black market there, in Kiseljak you can
25 obtain them in a regular gas station.
1 I just on a curious note asked some people
2 about there and I was told that, with some degree of
3 pride I must add, that Croatia was in with convoys with
4 resupplies, with fuel, diesel and all the things would
5 come from Croatia would send - then be sent with
6 convoys controlled by the Bosnian Serbs.
7 And then to go through Kiseljak pocket
8 because the Kiseljak pocket was in direct line with the
9 Bosnian Serb army, so the way in which they would pay
10 for this passage through there territory was with fuel,
11 with diesel and gasoline or petrol.
12 The biggest problem was getting fuel because
13 there are sanctions that existed that prevented access
14 to fuel. So there was definitely an agreement between
15 the two parties, and Croatia would be able to meet the
16 needs in Kiseljak.
17 And I'm not sure what type of agreement
18 existed but it was easy to see that such agreement did
19 exist. I can also note that some of the munitions came
20 from Croatia. What was told me - what led me to
21 believe that was there were many types of munitions and
22 you can also see different artillery cannons which are
23 on a trailer which were being brought around the city
24 and I could see those type of cannons, and there gave
25 me there impression.
1 And when I would come from Sarajevo to
2 Kiseljak the road was blocked, and when I walked about
3 one kilometre to go to where the block was, I can't
4 remember the term in French, but there was MRS, it was
5 a rocket launcher that was located there and this is a
6 weapon that is not easy to make, and the fact that it
7 was being used and that this type of weapon was on the
8 main road. This is a vehicle that is able to roll with
9 the launcher in the Bakovici of its load.
10 The tactical reaction at this time could not
11 have necessarily this type of weapon. So if it was
12 possible to, for example, to burn a vehicle carrying
13 this type of load, meant that they had this access to
14 this type of weaponry.
15 This indicated to me that most likely on the
16 convoys coming from Croatia that there were weapons and
17 there was ammunition on the convoys.
18 Q. Now, who actually admitted to you that these
19 supplies were coming from the Republic of Croatia?
20 A. Mr. Bradara himself.
21 Q. I think you said indeed he was very proud of
22 the fact that supplies were coming from The republic
23 of Croatia?
24 A. Yes. When he explained what had happened to
25 me he hardly tried to hide the smile on his face. You
1 could see that he was a bit proud of what he was
2 telling me.
3 Q. And these supplies were being run through
4 Bosnian Serb controlled territory; is that correct?
5 A. Yes, through the south from the eastern
6 direction to the west into the Kiseljak pocket, the
7 same thing for Vares, Vares the convoys would go
8 towards the north and towards the west to Vares.
9 Q. Now I want to talk to you briefly about your
10 second tour in Bosnia-Herzegovina which I think was
11 from October of 1993 to May of 1994.
12 What position did you occupy during your
13 second tour with the Canadian battalion in Bosnia?
14 A. During my second tour I was the senior
15 liaison officer. I have five liaison officers who
16 worked for me.
17 The situation had changed, now there was a
18 battalion that was there, see we go on shifts, rotation
19 six-month rotations. The Canadian battalion had
20 replaced mine and so I came Bakovici.
21 But when I returned there were now good
22 relations with the Bosnian Serbs and so we had daily
23 contacts with the three fighting parties and there was
24 also liaison with each of the factions.
25 I had a fourth person who was working in
1 Sarajevo and a fifth who would fill in any kind of
2 holes that there were, if there were special liaison
4 But my main roll was to work with UNHCR to
5 try to understand what were the humanitarian needs of
6 the people and to present reports to them on safety
7 situations, security situation, as far as knowing
8 whether escorts were needed. This type of thing.
9 This was one of my responsibilities.
10 Q. If the witness could be shown Exhibit 336.
11 Now, during your second tour with whom were you
12 liaising at HVO headquarters in Kiseljak?
13 A. During my second tour of duty the point of
14 contact that was given to me at that moment in order to
15 discuss all discussions with HVO was Kulacic (sic),
16 Vinko Lucic was the name, he was the person who had
17 came from the main headquarters of the Croatian army --
18 Bosnian Croatian army and he indicated to me that he
19 was the person I had to meet with.
20 I knew somewhat the structure at that
21 moment. Ivica Rajic was at that time the commander,
22 but he was no longer in Kiseljak.
23 What I was told at that moment he had gone to
24 Busovaca, but Mario Bradara was still there, I
25 encountered him on one or two occasion during my tour
1 of duty. We were not able to have meetings, we knew
2 each other already, were able to greet one another.
3 So Vinko Lucic was the person I met with on a daily
4 basis or almost daily basis.
5 Q. And your understanding at this time was that
6 Colonel Bradara was still overall operational zone
7 commander in the region?
8 A. My discussions with Lucic, yes, indicated to
9 me that Colonel Bradara was still and he was still
10 commander of the operational zone for central Bosnia
11 for the HVO.
12 Q. Now, if you could refer to the map that is in
13 front of you and explain to the judges the tactical
14 situation on the ground in the area of Fonjica when you
16 A. I'd like to Bakovici up a little bit.
17 During my first tour of duty in 1993 one of the things
18 about Fonjica was the atmosphere that was there.
19 Elsewhere it was quite obvious that there was fighting
20 going on, but in Fonjica itself it was atmosphere which
21 was altogether different.
22 There seemed to be - it seemed to me that
23 there had never been any fighting in Fonjica. When you
24 went to Fonjica during the war you were not aware of
25 war at all. Everyone was on their terraces and there
1 were soldiers there, there were HVO soldiers both were
2 present in the same city and there were no conflicts
3 that were obvious. This is something that struck me at
4 the beginning. This is something that was unique to
6 And when I returned in October, 1993 the
7 situation was completely different. At that time there
8 was some fighting that had taken place and this had
9 taken place in Fonjica, Fonjica city had been heavily
10 damaged and I was told by officers of the battalion,
11 the 2nd Royal Battalion who were there when I was not
12 there explained to me that the Croatian forces of the
13 HVO had to pull Bakovici to the south east.
14 And when they pulled Bakovici they had burned
15 several of the residents and some of the industries of
16 Fonjica. In particular, in Fonjica there was a very
17 large wood industry where wood was treated and used and
18 cut into various materials and this was completely
19 burned down.
20 But the tactical situation that was at hand
21 was quite graphical as you see on your screen. The
22 BiH controlled part of the territory that was - can you
23 still hear me when I move to this area - it was - it
24 had HVO forces were in the southern area south of the
25 blue line. They controlled the territory in the
1 south. And, as I said, they did not look at this line
2 as necessarily as a defensive line, but rather as a
3 graphical representation.
4 Now you had the BiH forces who were
5 controlling, you see the green line, they were
6 controlling what was north. So this is north of the
7 Fonjica area which is controlled by the BiH.
8 The reason why we use the little green line
9 here this is particular example is one I used to
10 explain the situation that we encountered when we went
11 to Fonjica, which is not directly related but what is
12 nonetheless important is that when this conflict took
13 place in the Fonjica area there were two psychiatric
14 hospitals there in the Fonjica area.
15 The first, Adrine, which was located in No. 1
16 and then the other one is in Bakovici which is located
17 near No. 2 on the map.
18 Now these hospitals had young patients,
19 children, handicapped persons physically and mentally.
20 This is in the first No. 1 and at Bakovici you had
21 adult patients and nonetheless, in all you had 400 or
22 500 patients in all in those two hospitals.
23 Now when the combat broke out, the medical
24 and civilian members, those persons supporting the
25 staff here in these hospitals, immediately abandoned
1 both hospitals. So in June, 1993 during one of the
2 tours of the patrols, rather of the Canadian battalion
3 we encountered these two hospitals and we saw that all
4 the patients s had been left on their.
5 Own at that time we intervened by giving each
6 of the hospitals a platoon to deal with those two
7 hospitals. The goal here was to try to help to
8 maintain and save the lives of those patients who had
9 been abandoned several days without food, without
10 water, without any type of care or sanitation and the
11 mental state of these patients was horrible, so we had
12 to spend some days there to take care of them.
13 From June, 1993 the Canadian battalion had a
14 physical presence in these two hospitals. I'd say
15 there was platoon size or maybe a little less than a
16 platoon which is normally around 30 persons in a
17 Canadian platoon and so we maintained our presence
18 there until I left in May, 1994. We finally had a mill
19 tear presence Canadian military presence in those two
20 hospitals. And then we were there solely to deal with
21 the patients we were there to watch them feed them,
22 to help them and help to re-establish the buildings
23 themselves so there was almost an entire company 23 if
24 you will have men working on those two hospitals they
25 played a certain roll and that was what the Canadian
1 Battalion was able to accomplish as a mission in that
3 Q. Now, am I right in saying that during the
4 early part of November of 1993, the HVO launched an
5 offensive northwards towards the Bosnian army?
6 A. Yes, that's what I said that was importance
7 of our presence there in the fields, the line blue --
8 the blue line represents approximately where the
9 territory controlled by the HVO ends. So if you will,
10 north-west. Now, you can see on the front line, I don't
11 know whether it's visible on the screen, but if you
12 look at the topographical lines, the terrain which is
13 located behind Bakovici, or near Bakovici, shows that
14 Bakovici is in the very bottom of the valley and you
15 have an orange line that goes up to Sakovici, and there
16 you see that it is located in a valley with two --
17 flanked rather by two mountains to the west and to the
18 east. Now, if I recall correctly it was on second of
19 November but definitely during the first week of
20 February 1993 after our arrival because there was a
21 relief that was made of the forces that was there on
22 the 22nd and so on that evening there, there was still
23 a platoon located there in the Bakovici hospital and
24 the roll was there to deal with the patients. We also
25 had observation posts and monitoring posts. Soldiers
1 were responsible for making sure they could see what
2 was going on or around their position. So they can
3 maintain a certain level of security for the hospital.
4 And also for the soldiers who were located there. In
5 the evening, after we were installed, there was also -
6 there was a offensive that was launched in the
7 south-eastern part which went along the road towards the
8 north and this offensive came from the HVO and for the
9 first time they were using caterpillar vehicles.
10 Now this is quite important because these
11 were armoured vehicles with assault vehicles which are
12 rarely seen in this part of Bosnia. On occasion one
13 might see isolated cases of these kinds of vehicles but
14 it was extremely rare. They do not see the actual
15 armoured vehicle with their own eyes but they heard
16 them coming and approaching. You can hear the sounds
17 of these caterpillared vehicles, given the weight of
18 these vehicles and the sound of the motors, for us it's
19 something that's very easy to recognise. Because this
20 type of vehicle is used by the Bosnian forces and would
21 date back to the same type of vehicles used by the
22 Soviet army.
23 This is a type of clicking sound that is made
24 by the sound of the caterpillar type of metal falling
25 and moving forward. So it was quite easy to recognise
1 for us.
2 I am saying all of this to say at that moment
3 there was an attack launched by the HVO force and we
4 felt their purpose here was to move up the valley
5 towards Fonjica in order to capture Fonjica.
6 So during that attack the hospital which is
7 located in the lower part of the valley gives an
8 indirect way cover for those persons who you can see
9 people who were advancing.
10 So the hospital, if you will, could give you
11 some degree of cover, and so indeed there was some HVO
12 soldiers who penetrated the hospital and used it as a
13 position from which they were able to open fire.
14 At that moment the platoon was under control
15 of Mr. Stevenson and his reaction was that, first of
16 all, take the patients from the first floor and move
17 them upstairs and also to remove the HVO soldiers not
18 by force, but tell them that this is a hospital and
19 it's unacceptable for them to use a hospital for a
20 cover -- for the purposes of cover.
21 And so they came to an agreement that the
22 Bosnian forces no longer used the first floor but
23 instead they still nonetheless used that building as
24 cover in order to return fire from the Bosnian forces
25 from the north-west.
1 And so this is more or less what was
2 happening at that time and there was also received a
3 report later on that there were some chemical weapons
4 that were used during that attack, but our
5 investigation did not enable us to establish that
6 indeed there were such weapons used.
7 So this is a report, but I cannot confirm or
8 not confirm whether or not such chemical weapons were
9 use. There were no indications no clues that would
10 tell us if such weapons were used.
11 Q. In the transcript it states that in fact
12 Bosnian forces -- the Canadian soldiers came to
13 agreement with the Bosnian soldiers to leave the
15 Were they Bosnian government forces that
16 occupied the hospital or HVO soldiers?
17 A. Well, what occurred is that our soldiers.
18 The Canadian soldiers asked the HVO soldiers occupying
19 ground level to leave the premises, so we asked them to
20 leave the premises, this is a hospital, it is
21 unacceptable for them to use a medical institution to
22 defend yourself.
23 And so this is what we asked the HVO soldiers
24 to leave the premises.
25 MR. CAYLEY: I think, Mr. President, this
1 may be an appropriate time to pause.
2 JUDGE JORDA: Yes, I agree with you.
3 Well, we're going to resume at 2.30.
4 ---Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.
5 ---On resuming at 2.35 p.m.
6 JUDGE JORDA: We will now resume our
7 hearing. Registrar, have the accused brought in,
9 (The accused entered court)
10 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Cayley? You may proceed.
11 MR. CAYLEY: Good afternoon, Mr. President,
12 Your Honours, Learned Counsel. If the ELMO could be
13 illuminated, please. Captain Lanthier, we've completed
14 before lunchtime, your testimony concerning the use of
15 the hospital at Bakovici, by the HVO, for covering
16 concealment, whilst mounting a mechanised infantry
17 attack north into Fonjica.
18 I would now like you to tell the court about
19 your knowledge of the use of patients within the
20 hospital for proving routes through mine fields in the
21 locality of Bakovici?
22 A. The Bakovici hospital and the property around
23 it did not have a gate which could close things up
24 completely, therefore it was natural for those patients
25 outside who could -- that is, people who -- other
1 people who wanted to go out of the hospital, it was
2 normal for them to leave but that they would stay near
3 the hospital, which meant that they could not be all
4 watched over constantly. It was clear that the
5 patients would go a little bit further than the
6 immediate surroundings of the hospital, the actual
7 compound itself of the hospital. I was told when we
8 changed with the second battalion, that on some
9 occasions, some of these patients had gone a little far
10 from the hospital and they were taken by HVO soldiers
11 and then they were used to verify whether there were
12 mines around.
13 It was a normal thing to use anti personnel
14 mines in defence of position, and that was very
15 frequent in Bosnia, but what happened is that some of
16 the patients were taken by the HVO soldiers and asked
17 to move, in a given direction, in order to check
18 whether there were mines. If the patient could go
19 forward without setting off a mine, then we knew that
20 there was an opening, that is, a place that you could
21 go through safely. But, if on the other hand, the
22 patient set off a mine, first of all, the patient would
23 be seriously wounded, if he wasn't killed, and then
24 that was a way of proving that there was a mine field.
25 It was a way, therefore, of detecting whether there was
1 mine fields.
2 This was reported to me by the group that had
3 been there before us. And some of our soldiers who
4 were there, told us about a time when a mentally
5 handicapped patient, who was a little bit older, had
6 been taken by the HVO soldiers, in fact, to check
7 whether there was a mine field and the patient had set
8 off the mine and had been killed.
9 I went to Vinko Lucic with that report and
10 asked that that kind of practise be stopped, that that
11 kind of practise was completely inhumane. At that
12 time, it was a practise that was being used, but --
13 that is the fact -- but he didn't consider very
14 important that patients would set off mines. He didn't
15 really clear. It was clear according to the report
16 that I read from our soldiers in the hospital that it
17 wasn't -- there weren't patients who had gotten lost,
18 but who had accepted to go where the HVO soldiers had
19 told them to go with the results that we know. So it
20 was an absolutely inhumane practise but it was clear
21 that they didn't care very much about it at all, that
22 is on the level of the Kiseljak headquarters.
23 Q. Just to clarify, you reported this matter to
24 Mr. Vinko Lucic at the headquarters in Kiseljak?
25 A. That's right.
1 Q. Now, am I right in saying that the staff of
2 the Bakovici hospital, actually wished to return to it
3 and to take care of the patients?
4 A. The reason I tried to do, which took up a lot
5 of my time was to allow the civilian employees who had
6 been working in the Bakovici hospital, and in the Drina
7 hospital to go back. When I came there in the autumn
8 of 1993, neither of the two hospitals had civilian
9 employees working in them. That was the only -- the --
10 and the Canadian battalion had to take care of the
11 patients. Once we were there, we would -- it was hard
12 to take the patients to the hospital in Drina and in
13 Bakovici. It was also very difficult because on
14 several occasions, I tried to get the employees brought
16 Bakovici was on the front-line as the blue
17 line on the map shows. I negotiated the return of
18 those employees with the former administrator of the
19 Fojnica municipality, who was now living in Kiseljak,
20 and who was responsible for those hospitals,
21 particularly the Bakovici one. Since it was in HVO
22 controlled territory. On several occasions, I was able
23 to reach an agreement with him so that the employees
24 would be able to come back and the agreement was that
25 there would be a presence in the hospital, there would
1 be fewer of them, but that there would be a section,
2 not a platoon, and that there would be an armoured
3 escort for those employees and we would go pick up the
4 employees around 8.00 in the morning, and we would go
5 cross the mountains taking the orange road, a road that
6 went through the south, through the mountains. You
7 can't see it on this map. We would go through the
8 mountains and get to Bakovici. That was the
10 But on two or three occasions, once we had
11 reached an agreement, when the patrol came to Kiseljak
12 to pick up the employees, the agreement wasn't honoured
13 and without any explanation as to why an agreement
14 which had been reached the night before was no longer
15 being honoured the next morning, and I was told it was
16 part of the hospital administrator's powers, that is,
17 he was responsible for managing his own employees, but
18 the clearer question was that the HVO refused to allow
19 the employees to return to their work.
20 This is an impression which formed in my mind
21 when I heard the refusal on the part of the authorities
22 about why they were not respecting the agreement and I
23 thought that way we would have to talk about the whole
24 thing all over again. That was the impression that I
25 had, that they didn't want it to go through.
1 Q. Now, if we could move ahead in time to the
2 third week of January and I would like to describe to
3 the court the events surrounding a humanitarian aid
4 convoy which was bringing urgent medical supplies to
5 the hospital in Bakovici. If you could recount that
6 story to the court, from your initial agreement with
7 the HVO in Kiseljak, through to the journey to
8 Bakovici, and I believe that journey was the only
9 route, marked orange on the ELMO, and you can refer to
10 that in order to assist the judges in understanding
11 your testimony.
12 A. I could explain further the circumstances of
13 the attack on the convoy. We maintained a presence in
14 the Drina and Bakovici hospitals until I left in May
15 1994. The situation and the position of the forces on
16 the ground means that the orange route, which
17 originally was on the right side of your map, the
18 orange road, we go from east to west, and at some
19 point, I don't know if you can see it very clearly, but
20 this section here, this part I'm showing on the map
21 right here (indicating) is in the area which is in
22 what's known as no-man's land, meaning no forces in
23 control of it but which can be controlled by fire,
24 either with light arms or with submachine guns. Since
25 the route was very open to attacks, we recommended to
1 UNHCR to give us the responsibility of bringing in the
2 necessary commodities for the Bakovici hospital. UNHCR
3 supplied the civilian vehicles as well as civilian
4 soldiers, that is we decided we would bring in
5 humanitarian assistance in our own vehicles, assistance
6 to the Drina and Bacavici hospitals. In order for
7 these convoys to pass, you needed prior authorisation
8 from the Kiseljak headquarters, 24 hours in advance, at
9 least. We had to go to the Kiseljak headquarters. We
10 had to ask for authorisation to have the humanitarian
11 assistance convoy and indicated each of the vehicles
12 had to be present in the convoy to describe all the
13 commodities and the amounts that would be brought in,
14 that is the amounts -- it was mostly coal that we had
15 there to heat up the two hospitals and also some food
16 to bring in to feed the patients. Gasoline in order to
17 have the generators operated, and both the hospitals
18 used generators, coal generators, as well as medicine
19 and other medical supplies that were required for the
20 health of the patients.
21 Therefore, we had to give details of all of
22 this and then we would get written authorisation from
23 Vinko Lucic which he would sign and which would then
24 allow us to go through the various road blocks which
25 were on the roads in order for us to go to the
1 hospitals in Drina and Bakovici. What was peculiar to
2 this road, it that it was located in no-man's land and
3 controlled by firing. In fact, in each occasion that
4 Canadian battalion vehicles used the road, there was
5 shooting that came from the HVO positions. Personally,
6 I came under that fire. Most of the time, it was
7 firing that was being carried out in order to
8 intimidate us. It wasn't -- it didn't hit my vehicle.
9 I was in a 4 by 4, so they were just firing, but most
10 of the time, one could see the shots exploding on the
11 road, therefore it was very easy to see from where the
12 firing was coming. Each time I complained, and I
13 complained throughout my tour of duty, every time there
14 was an attack, which was not justified and that was at
15 the Kiseljak headquarters, and every single time the
16 answer that was given to me is that these were isolated
17 acts, that they were not authorised, and it was simply
18 local initiatives of soldiers on the ground. A local
19 initiative, perhaps, but the responsibility of the
20 commander at that point should have been, if he had not
21 authorised it, to make sure that his troops received
22 the order to have this shooting stopped or to take out
23 those of his superior officers who did not get the
24 orders respected.
25 When we come to the conclusion that this was
1 not a local initiative, but that when one considered
2 the commander was not doing his duty by stopping the
3 attacks from being carried out. In any case, the major
4 attacks against our soldiers were in the third week of
5 January 1994, while a convoy, I think it was in the
6 morning, was going from Kiseljak in order to bring --
7 supplies to both hospitals, and it came under HVO fire.
8 At that point, the fire ordinarily was
9 directed only at the armoured vehicles, that is, I had
10 said that the non-armoured vehicles were often not --
11 were not being fired on where the armoured ones might
12 have been fired on, and then the bullets would ricochet
14 On that occasion, the non-armoured vehicles
15 transporting humanitarian aid were also fired on. They
16 were 'cougars' with turrets, there were cargo vehicles
17 with humanitarian aid and they were well-known, because
18 we received the written organisation for it to go
19 through from Mr. Lucic, in order to send the materials
20 through, and there was an ambulance convoy which was
21 transporting the medical supplies and frequently, these
22 medical supplies had to be refrigerated and the
23 required vehicles for this were often the Red Cross
25 The convoy was attacked. It came under
1 machine gun attack and then we lost two people -- had
2 two casualties. The front part of the convoy was hit.
3 The driver was hit two or three times in the foot but
4 was able to take it on to Drina, and the other
5 chauffeur did not lose control -- was not hit but he
6 lost control of the vehicle which went off the road and
7 that was a vehicle which was transporting diesel. We
8 had to blow it up so that nobody else could use it
9 later on because we didn't have the physical means in
10 order to withdraw it, to pull out vehicles from ditches
11 on the side of the road.
12 At the time that the attack was reported to
13 Mr. Lucic, there was a complaint made. We said it was
14 an unjustified attack. We had been authorised to be
15 there. This was mandatory aid for the patients in the
16 two hospitals. The answer that Lucic gave was the
17 same, once again, that it was a local initiative. It
18 was something which he had not ordered and he denied
19 that it had been ordered, but once again, in my
20 opinion, he showed that he had not carried out his
21 responsibilities because he knew very well that we were
22 frequently prey to attacks and that he did not protect
23 us from having this kind of attack happen again. It
24 was this kind of attack that we experienced during the
25 third week of January 1994.
1 Q. Just to clarify, when you say that you dealt
2 with Mr. Vinko Lucic at the Kiseljak headquarters and
3 that you complained to Mr. Lucic at the Kiseljak
4 headquarters, you're referring to the HVO headquarters?
5 A. Yes. Mr. Lucic, as I said, was my contact
6 point at the Kiseljak headquarters.
7 Q. And he, indeed, has authorised this convoy to
8 travel the route from Kiseljak down to the Bakovici
10 A. Yes, absolutely. There was a checkpoint,
11 which was at this point I'm showing you right here on
12 the map (indicating); we were authorised to go to
13 Bakovici and Drina without written authorisation for
14 HVO. This was for the convoy, that is two armoured
15 vehicles going through without any problems, without
16 written authorisation, but when there was a convoy, one
17 had to have the written authorisation from Mr. Lucic.
18 Q. And this convoy was prominently displaying
19 the symbol of the international committee for the Red
21 A. The ambulance that was going with the convoy
22 had the emblem of the Red Cross. There was no way of
23 mistaking it for something else.
24 Q. If the witness could be shown an exhibit
25 that's previously been admitted, which is
1 Exhibit 80/5. Captain Lanthier, can you identify any
2 of the individuals in that photograph?
3 A. On the right is Mr. Vinko Lucic. There's
4 Colonel Blaskic. I can't remember this man's name. I
5 met him once. He was introduced to me as the commander
6 of the Croatian army in Bosnia, that's the HVO.
7 Q. The man in the extreme right of the
8 photograph is Mr. Vinko Lucic, next to his left is, of
9 course, Colonel Blaskic, and the man to the left of
10 Colonel Blaskic you only know as the commander of the
11 Bosnia Croat forces in Bosnia. Thank you?
12 A. That's right.
13 JUDGE RIAD: What was the exact position --
14 what was his exact responsibility in relation to
15 General Blaskic? What was Vinko Lucic?
16 A. I had been introduced to him -- he himself
17 introduced himself as the liaison officer of the HVO
18 army headquarters in Mostar, and he answered to the
19 Mostar headquarters.
20 JUDGE RIAD: Thank you.
21 MR. CAYLEY: Moving to the conclusion of your
22 examination-in-chief, can you tell the Court what you
23 know about the presence of organised Bosnian government
24 forces in the municipality of Kiseljak?
25 A. As far as I know, in the Kiseljak pocket as
1 such, there was no Bosnian government forces. The
2 forces that were organised were not -- they were
3 outside that pocket so there was no military formation
4 within the Kiseljak pocket.
5 Q. Now, Captain Lanthier, based exclusively on
6 your knowledge of facts on the ground, can you describe
7 to the Court the effectiveness of the HVO chain of
8 command in the Vitez, Kiseljak and Vares areas from
9 your experience in theatre during your two tours?
10 A. The chain of command on the HVO side seemed
11 to be operating without any difficulty. Two specific
12 examples that I can give you would be one of my first
13 meetings with Colonel Blaskic, I explained why I wanted
14 to introduce myself to him because there were problems
15 -- in case of problems with Kiseljak, I could refer to
16 him in order to solve the problems that I might be
17 confronted with.
18 I called upon him on two occasions, that I
19 remember. I can't remember the details of the
20 problems. I think they were related to something --
21 they had to do with freedom of movement in Kiseljak,
22 and I thought that shouldn't have been a problem, so I
23 went to see Colonel Blaskic about that. I remember --
24 this shows that the chain of command was operating
25 because these situations were resolved once Colonel
1 Blaskic intervened.
2 As regards to the exercise of the chain of
3 command, one of the basic criteria is communications,
4 and the HVO had excellent communications among the
5 various locations of its headquarters, particularly the
6 presence of telephones and civilian lines, because the
7 PPT building was under HVO control in Kiseljak and
8 those telephone lines were working so they could use
9 telephones to communicate. They could use faxes. I
10 saw faxes in Kiseljak and in the Vares Hotel where the
11 Vares brigade was located. <Svenko>, who was the deputy
12 to the commander in Vares, he received a fax right in
13 front of me. So you can see it was working. Also,
14 that there were high frequency antennae, and there were
15 also telephones that showed that there were satellite
16 dishes on the roofs of the headquarters.
17 I saw all of that and so they could see that
18 there was a great deal of possibility to maintain
19 communications among the various headquarters, which
20 allowed the commander to exercise commander control
21 over his troops.
22 Q. What did your interpreter tell you about the
23 communications capacities at the Kiseljak barracks?
24 A. One of the things that my interpreter at that
25 particular time, in 1992, the interpreter was an army
1 radio operator, so not only was he familiar with
2 communications, but he also showed me the location of
3 some of the antennas which were used by the
4 headquarters. I, myself, was very familiar with the
5 various frequencies used on the air waves, but he explained
6 even more about the systems used in Bosnia on various
8 The former Yugoslavia at that time had some
9 of the best works of communication, as far as
10 frequencies are concerned, in Europe, and definitely
11 some of them were very well used.
12 Q. So would it be accurate to say that, in your
13 opinion, the tactical communications capacity of the
14 HVO in central Bosnia was really very good?
15 A. Yes, that's my opinion. That was confirmed,
16 also, by observing the various types of communications
17 equipment used.
18 Q. Now, speaking of physical links between
19 Kiseljak and Vitez, are you aware of any rout from
20 Kiseljak to Vitez which does not involve the use of the
21 main road through Busovaca?
22 A. To my knowledge, there is one road or one
23 path that does exist between Kiseljak and Vitez. I was
24 fortunate to be able to have a good knowledge of the
25 area in which I was working, and the road that I'm
1 referring to is a dirt road which goes from the south
2 of Vitez and goes down towards the south or south-east
3 to go towards the east afterwards. With a four-wheel
4 drive vehicle, one could take this dirt road, on this
5 dirt road but on one occasion, I was able to use this
6 road from Kiseljak to Vitez and the topographic map
7 that I had was not -- rather, it was not of the same
8 quality. In fact, very similar to what we have here, a
9 photocopy, but none the less, I was able to find it
10 just by chance using the various roads in the path
11 because it's a very hilly area and would have to go
12 through a forest -- through forests.
13 Q. So this was a road which avoided having to
14 use the main road from Vitez to Kiseljak that goes
15 through Busovaca?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. How would you comment on the degree of
18 cooperation that you received from the Bosnian
19 government forces and the degree of cooperation that
20 you received from the HVO? How would you compare the
21 two during the nine months that you spent in Bosnia?
22 A. I must say that the cooperation received from
23 the BiH, from the Bosnian forces, government forces,
24 were much better than those received from the HVO. As
25 I said during my first tour of duty, in particular, I
1 made daily visits to the Visoko headquarters, and there
2 I would receive an overview of what was going on in the
3 area which was under its control.
4 This gave me a very good idea of what was
5 going on, because our troops were not in a position to
6 be able to be aware of everything that was going on in
7 the sector, and so I was able to get some idea of what
8 was going on. With the information that he would give
9 me, I was then able to help me in my research and also
10 see whether I could confirm what was in the reports.
11 On one occasion, I was given a topographic map from the
12 Bosnian army indicating all of their weapons, both in
13 the HVO and the BiH army. At one time, I went to an
14 exclusion zone. So, if you will, the cooperation from
15 the BiH was good.
16 With regards to the HVO, that was a little
17 different, very different, in fact. Yes, it's true, we
18 were not located in the same city, but I would move
19 about on a daily basis to Kiseljak, either to talk to
20 Mr. Bradara or Mr. Lucic, to talk about the various
21 reports, but the discussions were never as productive.
22 In order to obtain information, it seemed like I was
23 pulling teeth. The information that was given to me
24 would often not correspond to what I could have deduced
25 from looking at what had happened. I can give you
1 several examples. I gave you a few examples earlier
2 this morning. As far as cooperation was concerned,
3 that was quite different.
4 Q. Finally, and referring particularly to the
5 time of your service in April of 1993, what is your
6 professional opinion of the military operation that you
7 saw taking place in Vitez and Kiseljak during that
9 A. Well, in my mind, it was clear, and even more
10 so in retrospect, that the operations that were carried
11 out in the Vitez and Kiseljak pockets constituted
12 ethnic cleansing of the Muslim population living
13 there. They were carried out in the military fashion.
14 The tactics utilised and the use of the land and all
15 the other factors, which I've already mentioned,
16 indicates quite clearly that these were not -- that one
17 day to the next, a farmer decides to exterminate his
18 neighbours, but rather a systematic extermination, or
19 an attempt at a systematic extermination through an
20 organised force or a synchronised force. When you look
21 at what happened in Vitez two days later, this thing
22 continued in the Kiseljak pocket, and then several days
23 later, in Breza, in this 302nd bigrade, I was told that
24 the same thing was being prepared for Vares and
25 Stupnido. And I was told by this brigade that he
1 feared for Stupnido.
2 History showed later on that the exact same
3 thing was to happen there. So it was systematic, it
4 was organised, and there was no doubt whatsoever that
5 this was a military operation against a civilian
7 MR. CAYLEY: Thank you, Captain Lanthier. I
8 have no further questions. If I can apply for
9 admission into evidence of exhibits 329 through to 336,
10 please, Mr. President?
11 JUDGE JORDA: Are there any observations from
12 the Defence?
13 MR. HAYMAN: Only one, Mr. President. 329?
14 A. There's a municipality that is darkened in
15 that was not within the CANBAT area of responsibility,
16 the Busovaca municipality, and the witness has
17 testified that all the darkened municipalities were
18 within the CANBAT area of responsibility. So I would
19 ask the witness mark through that municipality and
20 initial it or something or that the map otherwise be
21 altered prior to admission.
22 MR. CAYLEY: I think actually the point of
23 the testimony of the witness was to not only indicate
24 the areas of responsibility, but I think he also
25 indicated that they were municipalities that he
1 actually travelled in.
2 I would suggest to the Court that the map
3 does not need any form of amendment and can be admitted
4 as it is. If there's a dispute, perhaps the witness
5 then can be asked to clarify matters.
6 JUDGE JORDA: I think it's quite easy to
7 resolve. These are problems which are not real, true
8 problems. I think Mr. Hayman made an observation that
9 it is marked on the transcript as such, and we are
10 going to then allow for these documents to be admitted
11 as such.
12 Mr. Hayman, are you going to be entering the
14 MR. HAYMAN: Yes, Mr. President.
15 JUDGE JORDA: Captain, you are now going to
16 receive questions being put to you by Mr. Hayman who is
17 one of the Defence Counsel for General Blaskic.
18 Mr. Hayman, you have the floor.
19 MR. HAYMAN: Thank you, Mr. President, Your
21 Cross-Examination by Mr. Hayman:
22 Q. Good afternoon, Captain.
23 A. Good afternoon.
24 Q. During your first tour of duty in Bosnia,
25 were you the liaison officer for CANBAT in your sector
1 or were you the deputy liaison officer?
2 A. I was the liaison officer for the warring
3 factions and not the deputy.
4 Q. So did you have a staff of liaison officers
5 below you as you did during your second tour, or did
6 you have some other position during your first tour?
7 A. During my first tour, I was the only liaison
8 officer for the warring factions; therefore, I did not
9 have any staff or other liaison officers working under
10 my orders.
11 Q. When you say the liaison officer for the
12 warring factions, was there any other liaison officer
13 for CANBAT during your first tour, other than
15 A. One other individual had two functions.
16 Mr. Lambert was also there as a liaison officer. Once
17 a week, he will go to the UNHCR in order to sometimes
18 give briefings to the UNHCR. That was the role of the
19 liaison in the sense that he also coordinated with
20 people outside of his own unit but no contact with the
21 warring factions was involved. So I was the only, the
22 sole warring factions liaison officer.
23 JUDGE JORDA: Captain, when you receive
24 questions, of course it's quite normal that you would
25 face the defence. However, when you respond, it is
1 also equally normal that you face the judges. Please
2 do so.
3 MR. HAYMAN: Is it fair to say that you were
4 the only liaison officer for the warring parties and
5 that you had sole responsibility for the Koscan, Vares
6 Visoko, and Kiseljak, Fojnica, Kresevo areas?
7 A. Well, as far as liaison activities, yes, but
8 I was not the only person in the field. The
9 responsibility of the tactical officer in the UNHCR was
10 also to go into the field and to cover the entire area.
11 Q. I take it you were the only liaison officer
12 whose charge it was to maintain contact with the
13 warring parties in the municipalities I listed?
14 A. No, not necessarily. I was the initial
15 appointed liaison, but I'm sure that once a liaison is
16 established at the location of the other headquarters
17 within the area of responsibility would then be
18 disclosed to all the members within this tactical
20 For example, if someone is going to be with a
21 convoy, escorting a convoy, and they encounter a
22 problem, I cannot intervene to help. That person would
23 then go to the headquarters to speak with a member of
24 that particular headquarters. And so I'm not the only
25 person who would have a direct contact with the members
1 of the headquarters in that area of responsibility.
2 Q. I take it, then, it's more accurate to say
3 you were the only full-time liaison officer for the
4 warring parties in the municipalities I listed;
6 A. Correct.
7 Q. Now, you said you arrived in Visoko in
8 mid-February 1993. How long thereafter did you first
9 visit the Kiseljak barracks?
10 A. It must have taken a week, so near the end of
11 February, I say, or even perhaps towards the early part
12 of March. I'm saying approximately, I can't remember
13 the exact date.
14 Q. If Exhibit 330 could be provided and placed
15 on the ELMO, that would be helpful, Mr. President. You
16 relayed a briefing or a discussion you had with
17 Mr. Bradara in the course of your first meeting or
18 visit to the Kiseljak barracks. Is it correct that as
19 a liaison officer, one of your functions was to
20 familiarise yourself with who were the commanders in
21 the field with whom one would conduct a liaison?
22 A. Yes. I think I said approximately what I
23 expressed in my testimony earlier.
24 Q. You have identified the Bobovac brigade as
25 being the HVO unit in Vares. Can you tell us who the
1 commander was of that brigade at any time during your
3 A. It was Emil Arah.
4 Q. Was that during your first tour, your second
5 tour, or both?
6 A. I remember that it was, indeed, during my
7 first tour of duty, but right now I do not remember
8 whether or not during my second tour of duty he was
9 still there. At that time, I was no longer the warring
10 factions liaison officer, but rather added to the
11 UNHCR. My role was different then. So then the line
12 of command was not as clear in all cases, especially
13 since from our arrival in Vares, as I remember, it was
14 attacked by the BiH, and so Stupni did fall. And at
15 that time, that's one of the reasons I have no real
16 clear memory of what that line of command was in that
17 area. I was not quite clear of the name of the
19 A. And did you ever learn that after the
20 massacre at Stupni do, Emil Arah or Hares, as you have
21 called him, was removed as the brigade commander of the
22 HVO in Vares. Did you ever hear that?
23 A. Quite honestly, I cannot recall with any
25 Q. You cannot recall with detail. Can you
1 recall anything concerning that event?
2 A. As far as the Stupni do, after the Stupni do
3 massacre, we were not able to carry out any detailed
4 investigation escorted by the tactical groups. As far
5 as most of the details are concerned, I received a
6 report from Ivica Rajic about Stupni do, but as far as
7 the other details are concerned, it was at the very
8 early part of our arrival there, so I wasn't able to
9 get an idea of the field there, so really the details I
10 don't know.
11 Q. You said a moment ago that Stupni do fell.
12 Did you mean that the HVO unit in Vares was expelled
13 and the BiH army second corps took control of Vares in
14 December of 1993?
15 A. Attack was carried out by the BiH and the
16 city was, in part, captured by the BiH.
17 Q. Was that in approximately December 1993, to
18 your knowledge?
19 A. I believe it was earlier than that. It was,
20 rather, in November.
21 Q. Of 1993?
22 A. Correct.
23 Q. Thank you. Now, turning to the Kiseljak
24 municipality. When you first met with Ivica Rajic, the
25 Commander, as you've described him, of the Ban Jelacic
1 Brigade and we'll refer to Mr. Bradara, did you learn
2 or were you told how long or for what period of time
3 Ivica Rajic had been the brigade commander in Kiseljak?
4 A. No, I don't think I said that Mr. Rajic was
5 the commander of the brigade in Kiseljak. I think what
6 I stated that he was the commander of the headquarters
7 which was located in Kiseljak, and that under his
8 command, he had four units. We don't see it on the
9 screen now, but Kiseljak, Kresevo, Fojnica, and Vares.
10 As far as Ban Jelacic, I'm sorry, the name
11 comes to mind, I'm not sure whether it was Ban Jelacic,
12 but in any case, it wasn't Mr. Rajic.
13 Q. I stand corrected in terms of your
14 characterisation of your testimony. So your testimony
15 is that Rajic was not the brigade commander; he was
16 only the operational group commander in Kiseljak;
18 A. Yes, that was my understanding, yes.
19 Q. Do you know who the brigade commander was in
20 late February or early March 1993 when you first
21 visited the brigade?
22 A. As I just told you, I'm not certain of the
23 name. The name of Mijo Bosic came to mind, but I can't
24 tell you that indeed this is the name of the commander,
25 but my relation, given the fact that this was a
1 headquarters that was above Kiseljak and controlled all
2 of the HVOs in the area of responsibility, I was not
3 called upon to work directly with the commanders of the
4 brigades or units, if you will, beneath them. I worked
5 principally with Mr. Bradara, who was a deputy
6 commander to Rajic. And that's why all the operational
7 groups underneath Rajic I did encounter from time to
8 time, once or twice, especially in Vares, because Vares
9 was much more isolated in a way; not completely
10 isolated, but more so. And this is why the commanders
11 from Fojnica, Kresevo, and Kiseljak's names escape me
12 for the time being.
13 Q. Does the name Mijo Bosic mean anything to you
14 in connection with the brigade commander of the Ban
15 Jelacic Brigade?
16 A. I said it twice. This is a name that comes
17 to mind. Perhaps my pronunciation is incorrect, but
18 I've used this name twice already.
19 Q. Does it come to mind in any connection, such
20 as the commander of the brigade in Kiseljak?
21 A. I'm sorry, I don't know.
22 JUDGE JORDA: Please ask your question more
23 directly, Mr. Hayman. These are the type of questions
24 which are so subtle, that perhaps it would be better,
25 since you're dealing here with judges, I think it is
1 better that you ask the question directly, otherwise
2 you seem to be wasting a bit of time.
3 MR. HAYMAN:
4 Q. Captain, did you ever hear that Mijo Bosic
5 was the brigade commander of the HVO brigade in
7 A. For the third time, I will repeat that the
8 name escapes me, but I'm associating the name of Mijo
9 Bosic to the commander of the Ban Jelacic brigade. I
10 don't know if he was, indeed, the commander, but this
11 is the name that comes to mind. This is the third time
12 you've asked me this question in a different way.
13 Q. Did you ever hear that Mr. Bradara had become
14 the brigade commander of the Ban Jelacic Brigade in
16 A. No. Mario Bradara was never introduced to me
17 as the commander of the Kiseljak brigade. He was
18 introduced to me as the deputy commander for the
19 operation of the group for Kiseljak, and it was in this
20 capacity that I carried out my meetings with him. If
21 at one time or another he changed his post, this was
22 not indicated to me in my meetings with him during my
23 first tour of duty. It was in his capacity as deputy
24 commander that I had dealings with him.
25 Q. Did you ever hear that Ivica Rajic had taken
1 the post of brigade commander in addition to the post
2 of commander of the operational group based in
4 A. To understand the question correctly, you're
5 asking whether or not he had two roles, the commander
6 of the operational group and also the brigade?
7 Q. I'm asking you, did you ever hear in May,
8 April or May, of 1993 that Ivica Rajic had taken on
9 dual positions as brigade commander and commander of
10 the operational group?
11 A. No. This information was not given to me, if
12 that was the case.
13 Q. Now, in Visoko, was there an HVO unit in
15 A. No, there was no unit there, not during my
16 time, not the HVO unit in Visoko.
17 Q. What 'corpus' or 'corps' of the BiH army was
18 in Visoko?
19 A. There was an operational group there in
20 Visoko. It was subordinate to the headquarters which
21 was located in Sarajevo.
22 Q. Were units of the first corps of the BiH army
23 based in Visoko?
24 A. I must be careful in answering that question,
25 because when we talk about a unit which belongs to a
1 particular corps, it's difficult to say whether or not
2 this is under an operational group, because this is a
3 group that's responsible to its higher headquarters. A
4 unit that belongs to its first corps is within the
5 chain of command, you must go directly to ISTOK.
6 And then I must respond directly to the other
7 lower subordinate -- I'm not sure whether -- you can
8 ask your question differently to see if I understand
9 you correctly, first of all.
10 Q. Why don't I rephrase it. Was the first corps
11 of the BiH army based in Visoko?
12 A. The first corps was in Sarajevo, and the
13 ISTOK responded to the first corps located in Sarajevo.
14 Q. Part of your answer is being translated.
15 Perhaps it's operational group, OG ISTOK, I'm not sure
16 what it is. It is not comprehensible to me.
17 Can you assist me in understanding what unit
18 or group you're identifying in Visoko. Is that
19 operational group ISTOK, I-S-T-O-K?
20 A. Yes, indeed, that's correct.
21 Q. In Fojnica, there was an HVO brigade?
22 A. Yes, there was a group or a unit, as I
23 indicated earlier, Fojnica was quite unique during my
24 first tour of duty in that there was an absence of war
25 in Fojnica and that was quite clear.
1 So I was not called upon to work a great deal
2 with the commander for the units or groups located in
3 Fojnica. I only met with him once and his name escapes
4 me. For a battalion or a brigade, I'm not really in a
5 position to tell you what was the size of the troops in
6 Fojnica at that time.
7 Q. To your knowledge, did Mijo Bosic ever become
8 the HVO commander in Fojnica?
9 A. I don't know.
10 Q. Did Mario Bradara ever become the HVO brigade
11 commander, or other commander of HVO unit or units in
12 Fojnica, to your knowledge?
13 A. If he was, he never informed me of it.
14 Q. Now, between when you left the theatre after
15 your first tour and returned during your second tour,
16 the HVO was expelled from Fojnica, correct, and the BiH
17 army took control of Fojnica?
18 A. That's a situation that corresponded to my
19 arrival in October 1993. I was told that there had
20 been fighting in the area and that Fojnica now was
21 controlled by the government, the Bosnian forces.
22 Q. Were you also told that approximately 6,000
23 Croats had been displaced from Fojnica as a result of
24 that conflict in Fojnica?
25 A. Well, as far as the numbers are concerned,
1 that escapes me once again. My role at that moment was
2 no longer a role as in liaison officer in the field.
3 At that moment, I was working primarily with the UNHCR
4 for most of the time. What I can, perhaps, do is if
5 there was warring -- a war going on there, then during
6 a war, it was quite often to have a movement of
7 population in Bosnia.
8 Q. Was Vares an HVO enclave prior to its fall to
9 the BiH army?
10 A. It was one of the HVO enclaves.
11 Q. And Kiseljak, was Kiseljak, after you arrived
12 -- well, after January of 1993 and thus prior to your
13 arrival in February 1993, was Kiseljak also an HVO
15 A. Yes, the Kiseljak pocket was controlled by
16 the HVO.
17 Q. And that pocket was surrounded, was it not,
18 by the BiH army and, in one part, the Bosnian-Serb
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And the Vitez Busovaca pocket, that also was
22 an enclave, was it not, surrounded by the BiH army?
23 A. That's right.
24 Q. Now, you have indicated on exhibit 330 two
25 other operational groups. If you don't know, please
1 say so, I won't belabour the point. But was Maglaj
2 also a location under the command of the operational
3 zone, central Bosnia, and was it also an HVO enclave
4 prior to its fall?
5 A. Honestly, I don't really know now. Five
6 years have passed, I don't remember. Since Maglaj
7 wasn't in my sector, I don't really know.
8 Q. I understand completely. How about Zepca, do
9 you know whether Zepca was also an HVO enclave within
10 the central Bosnian operative zone?
11 A. I think so, but once again, I have to say
12 that my memory is not good enough to be able to tell
13 you with certainty.
14 Q. Lastly, Usora, was that also an HVO enclave
15 within the central Bosnian operative zone?
16 A. I don't know. I don't know at all.
17 Q. Between these various enclaves, those that
18 you've identified, did you personally, yourself, see
19 BiH army units?
20 A. I want to be sure I understand your
21 question. Is it whether the BiH forces were completely
22 surrounding those enclaves? Is that the question
23 you're asking? Is that the sense of the question?
24 Q. I'll make it more precise. For example,
25 between the Kiseljak enclave and the Vitez Busovaca
1 enclave, did you yourself see the BiH army units that
2 were separating those two enclaves?
3 A. On the ground -- there were Bosnian
4 government forces on the ground, but there was not a
5 continuous line or with complete defensive positions
6 surrounding a region. 'Civilous' I think is
7 the word that is used in English for that.
8 For example, at Kacuni and Bilalovac - on the
9 main road from Busovaca to Kiseljak - did you,
10 yourself, observe front-line positions between the HVO
11 and the BiH army in each of those locations?
12 A. Yes, possibly. I don't remember where, as
13 soon as I arrived, those positions were, in fact. I
14 know the Busovaca and Kiseljak, it was Bilalovac and
15 Kacuni they cut the road and, by definition, the road
16 then became a main road -- one of the roads that you
17 could go through.
18 I remember this because when I was in
19 Washington corps, one of the purposes of the battalion
20 came to patrol the front lines, and I know that in
21 April of 1994, there were Bilalovac positions in
23 But earlier than that, I really couldn't tell
24 you whether there were defensive positions, whether
25 there had been anything that had been dug out at those
2 Q. Did you transit that road, the main road from
3 Busovaca to Kiseljak during either of your tours?
4 A. Yes, as I said in my testimony this morning,
5 this was a road that I took many times.
6 Q. And were there BiH army checkpoints or
7 barricades on that road at both Bilalovac -- the area
8 of Bilalovac and the area of Kacuni when you transited
9 that road?
10 A. There were. At what time they came, whether
11 it was the beginning of my tour, I'm not really quite
12 sure as to the time that these checkpoints existed.
13 But when I was there, there were checkpoints
14 that existed in Kacuni and Bilalovac.
15 Q. May I ask the Registrar if 330 is on the ELMO
16 and if it could be activated, please? Thank you.
17 On Exhibit 330, it is indicated that Franjo
18 Nakic was the deputy commander of the operational
19 zone. Where did you get that impression?
20 A. If I remember correctly, the first time that
21 I met Mr. Nakic it was during a meeting for the joint
22 Busovaca commission, if I'm not mistaken.
23 I think it was as such that he was introduced
24 to me, if I remember correctly. That was the time that
25 I -- that his role was introduced to me, or that
1 explained to me.
2 Q. Outside of the protocols and formal
3 introductions at the Busovaca joint commission, did
4 anyone ever tell you that Franjo Nakic was the deputy
5 commander to Colonel Blaskic?
6 A. I remember I met Mr. Nakic at the Hotel Vitez
7 I believe, although I'm not sure. I think that he was
8 present during one of my meetings with Colonel Blaskic,
9 but the details are a bit fuzzy in my mind now.
10 But I met him several times, and I do
11 remember that I met him in Busovaca and in Vitez.
12 Q. You told us of a visit to Colonel Blaskic, a
13 courtesy call, if you will, to introduce yourself. Is
14 that a fair characterisation of the visit?
15 A. Courtesy call, if you like. The purpose was
16 to introduce me -- to introduce myself, introduce the
17 Canadian battalion, which had just come in, along with
18 UNPROFOR in central Bosnia and which was working in a
19 part of the area which is under HVO control.
20 It was a bit more than a courtesy call, it
21 was more to establish more specific relations and not
22 merely to introduce myself to him.
23 Q. When was that visit?
24 A. If I'm not mistaken, it must have been the
25 first week of March, 1993.
1 Q. And you went to Vitez to see him; is that
3 A. That's correct.
4 Q. Is that because you knew his headquarters was
5 in Vitez?
6 A. The British officer who was responsible for
7 liaison in the region before I arrived, as I said this
8 morning, had identified the positions of the various
9 headquarters. And since we were rather close to the
10 Vitez headquarters--
11 THE INTERPRETER: I think the interpreter
12 missed a bit of the answer there.
13 MR. HAYMAN:
14 Q. The answer ends, 'and since we were rather
15 close to the Vitez headquarters'.
16 Do you have anything to add to that?
17 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter made a
18 mistake there, yes.
19 A. The British corps was close to the -- he
20 showed me where the HVO headquarters were in Vitez.
21 Because it wasn't the Canadian camp that was there but
22 the British one.
23 Q. Did the BRITBAT liaison officer tell you that
24 Colonel Blaskic's headquarters was in the Hotel Vitez
25 in Vitez, in roughly March of 1993?
1 A. He showed me the place. I don't remember
2 whether at that point he identified by name Colonel
3 Blaskic. But this was all very quickly -- this was
4 done very quickly.
5 He explained all the responsibilities that
6 were involved during the course of one day. So I don't
7 -- I'm not sure whether he mentioned the name
8 specifically of Colonel Blaskic as the commander of the
9 operational zone of Vitez.
10 Q. The conversation you had with Colonel Blaskic
11 in, I believe you said, the first week of March, 1993,
12 was that with the benefit of an interpreter?
13 A. Yes. Since my knowledge of the Serb/
14 Croatian language was zero, I worked with an
16 Q. You said you discussed the subject in general
17 terms - and I'm not characterising your testimony - the
18 area of responsibility; that is, the area of
19 responsibility within the operational zone of central
21 Do you remember what term or terms precisely
22 were used to characterise his area of responsibility?
23 Was it area of responsibility? Was it command? Was it
25 What term or terms were actually used, if you
2 A. As regards the exact terms, I couldn't tell
3 you. I can't tell you the specific terms that we
4 used. I'm familiar with the general concept. As far
5 as certain specific terms that we used, no, I couldn't
6 tell you that.
7 Q. Did you take any notes? Do you have anything
8 to refresh your recollection so that you could be more
10 A. Unfortunately, yes. I say unfortunately,
11 because, as I was saying, we were rotations, and so
12 each meeting that I was present at there were notes
13 taken on it, and then there was an information sheet,
14 and when I left, it was natural to give the notebook
15 with the information sheets in it to the next person.
16 So the notes were exchanged, but my own
17 notebook was not kept, and when I came back in October,
18 1993 for my second tour, I was not able to get my
19 notebook back.
20 So, no, I do not have any notes anymore which
21 give detailed descriptions of my conversations and
22 meetings with all of the people that I might have met
23 during my stay in 1992 and 1993.
24 Q. In the course of this conversation, did you
25 discuss with Colonel Blaskic the difficulties involved
1 in being responsible for an area that included enclaves
2 in Vitez Busovaca, the Kiseljak enclave, the Vares
3 enclave and, perhaps, the other enclaves in Kiseljak
4 and Busovaca.
5 Did you discuss that topic with him at this
7 A. No. At that time, he did not tell me that he
8 was experiencing any difficulties in controlling those
9 enclaves. Perhaps it would be the opposite, in fact.
10 He said that his door was open if I needed to see him
11 again, not to hesitate to come back to see him and --
12 or make an appointment and come back to see him.
13 And if he wasn't in Kiseljak, then I could
14 see him elsewhere. If he could, he would help me to
15 solve any problems that might have come about in
16 Kiseljak. This seemed to me that he was in a position
17 to exercise command and control of the various
18 formations that were under his responsibility.
19 Q. I understand he said that his door was open
20 to you, but did you discuss the subject with him of
21 what was involved in commanding an area that was broken
22 up into four or five or more isolated enclaves? Did
23 you discuss that subject matter with him?
24 MR. CAYLEY: Mr. President, objection. The
25 question has now been asked twice. The witness has
1 answered the question. Mr. Hayman has expressed it
2 very clearly and the witness has answered.
3 MR. HAYMAN: He answered that Colonel Blaskic
4 said that 'my door would always be open to you'. He
5 didn't say whether or not this subject was discussed.
6 If it was, fine; if it wasn't, fine.
7 I just would like an answer to that
9 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Hayman, he answered you.
10 He answered you very specifically. Maybe he answered
11 you in a way that you don't like, but he did answer.
12 He said that the problem was not brought up,
13 but what Colonel Blaskic did say was something that
14 would make him think that Colonel Blaskic had certain
15 manoeuvrability and I think that was clear then. You
16 can move on to the next question.
17 MR. HAYMAN: I'll move on. My translation
18 was not as clear as Your Honour indicated, but I'm
19 pleased that the answer was.
20 JUDGE JORDA: That's the role of the
21 presiding judge in order to clarify interpretations.
22 MR. HAYMAN: One moment, Mr. President. My
23 colleague indicates there was something in the
24 transcript about General Blaskic being in Kiseljak.
25 Q. You met him in Vitez; correct?
1 A. Yes. That's what I wanted to say, that I had
2 gone to Vitez to meet Colonel Blaskic.
3 Q. Turning to the Busovaca joint commission, do
4 you know why it was established?
5 A. The Busovaca commission was established
6 before I arrived. The specific purpose of the
7 commission was not explained to me in a very specific
9 What I was able to deduce from my involvement
10 was that it was -- one of the objectives that I noticed
11 at that time was that we tried to establish some kind
12 of normality within the region, and I remember that
13 there were discussions about military, economic and
14 social matters.
15 The very nature and the exact mandate of the
16 commission, the joint Busovaca commission is something
17 that I don't remember right now.
18 Q. Where were the meetings of the Busovaca joint
19 commission, that you attended, held?
20 A. The first one that I attended was in the
21 Busovaca region. I can't give you the exact place. It
22 was, I remember, in Busovaca, but exactly where I don't
24 Q. Did you attend other meetings of the
25 commission in other places, or were all the meetings
1 you attended in Busovaca?
2 A. I can't really tell you whether it was a
3 meeting of the commission or the coordination
4 committee, but I do remember there was a meeting which
5 took place in Vitez. I don't know which meeting it
6 was, but I remember there was a meeting in Vitez.
7 Q. Did Colonel Blaskic participate in these
8 meetings? Did he speak at these meetings?
9 A. Colonel Blaskic, as I said, was not present
10 in Busovaca. It was Nakic who was there.
11 The other meeting, which was called the
12 coordinating committee. There Colonel Blaskic was
13 there along with Colonel Stewart as the commander of
14 the British battalion, and during that meeting Colonel
15 Blaskic spoke several times.
16 JUDGE JORDA: I think we will now take a
17 break, Mr. Hayman. About how much longer do you have,
18 Mr. Hayman?
19 MR. HAYMAN: I think I'm about halfway
20 through, Mr. President, halfway through my
22 JUDGE JORDA: All right. We'll take a
23 20-minute break.
24 ---Recess taken at 3.50 p.m.
25 ---On resuming at 3:50 p.m.
1 JUDGE JORDA: The hearing will now resume.
2 Have the accused brought in, please.
3 (The accused entered court)
4 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Hayman, would you go on?
5 MR. HAYMAN: Thank you, Mr. President.
6 Q. Captain, you were describing before the break
7 that there was a meeting at which Colonel Stewart
8 attended, Colonel Blaskic attended, and you believed it
9 might be a coordinating committee meeting and you also
10 attended; is that correct?
11 A. Yes, that's what I said.
12 Q. Were there any other meetings, that is,
13 formal meetings such as of the Busovaca joint
14 commission or other formal group meetings that you
15 attended at which Colonel Blaskic also attended?
16 A. Aside from what I've said to you about the
17 several meetings I attended, I don't remember having
18 attended any others where Colonel Blaskic was present.
19 Q. The coordination committee meeting you've
20 described, is that the meeting where also Mr. Kordic
21 was also present?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. At this meeting, do you remember what Colonel
24 Blaskic said, if anything?
25 A. As I said, I think that he spoke several
1 times, but just exactly what he said and the specific
2 subjects that were spoken about, I can't recall.
3 Q. Now, I believe you said you understood
4 Mr. Kordic to be a political advisor to Colonel
5 Blaskic. Is that your understanding or opinion or was
6 that the understanding or opinion of your interpreter
7 which that person relayed to you?
8 A. No, that's my own opinion. As I said, I was
9 not an active member of the commission, I was a back
10 bencher, as we say in English, so I would go through my
11 interpreter to know what was being said during the
12 discussions. She interpreted for me, that was what she
13 was supposed to do.
14 Since I had -- Dario Kordic had been
15 presented to me as one of the political leaders of the
16 HVO in central Bosnia, the impression that I formed was
17 that Mr. Kordic, when he would advise Colonel Blaskic
18 or speak to him, that he would -- acted as a sort of
19 political advisor. That's the personally opinion that
20 I formed.
21 Q. And you formed this based on seeing them
22 together at one or more meetings; is that right, formed
23 this opinion?
24 A. As I said, I went to two or three meetings
25 and what was said and what my interpreter interpreted
1 for me allowed me to form that opinion.
2 Q. So at how many meetings did you see both
3 Colonel Blaskic and Mr. Kordic?
4 A. As I said, two or three times, not more than
6 Q. Were those Busovaca joint commission meetings
7 or some kind of other meeting?
8 A. As I also said, it was under the umbrella --
9 I don't think that they were the very meetings of the
10 Busovaca joint commission, but rather on a higher
11 level. But I don't have the exact name. I think it
12 was the coordinating committee. I think that was the
13 name of the meetings. But I really can't guarantee you
14 that 100 percent.
15 Q. Can you tell us anything that Colonel Blaskic
16 said at any of those meetings?
17 A. No, it's too long ago. Just what was said is
18 not something I can remember now. I can remember the
19 ideas, the concepts, and what the people represented in
20 my opinion then, that was why I used the words I used
21 in my statement and described the people as I did,
22 often in general terms, because I remembered the
23 concepts, but not the specific locations or the
24 specific addresses or the exact words that were said.
25 You're talking about something that went on
1 more than five years ago now.
2 Q. Can you tell us anything about what was said
3 between Colonel Blaskic and Mr. Kordic at any of the
4 meetings that were attended by both of them?
5 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Hayman, please move to
6 another question. It's been 10 minutes now that we're
7 trying to learn what Mr. Blaskic and Mr. Kordic said.
8 What are you trying to do? Are you trying
9 to destabilise the witness? He's answered everything
10 he can answer.
11 Please, change your questions. We know what
12 was said, we know what the witness can remember, what
13 he can't remember.
14 Try to move forward. You're working with
15 professional judges. We understand. We're listening.
16 Please, move to another question, Mr. Hayman.
17 MR. HAYMAN: Could the witness be shown
18 Exhibit 80-9? Could it be placed on the ELMO, please?
19 Q. Captain, could you look at 80-9 and tell us
20 if you see Mr. Kordic in this photograph?
21 A. I think that's who it is (indicating).
22 Q. I'm sorry? Can we have a translation?
23 A. I think that's who it is.
25 MR. HAYMAN: Can we have a translation?
1 THE INTERPRETER: It didn't come through on
2 the microphone.
3 MR. HAYMAN:
4 Q. If you could turn back to the microphone so
5 the interpreter can pick up your answer.
6 A. This individual I'm pointing to with the
7 pointer, I think that's Mr. Kordic.
8 As I said, I only met him several times and
9 they were not personally conversations I had with him.
10 So I know the name very well, and I did meet him, but
11 as an individual and what he looked like, I think
12 that's Mr. Kordic, but I really can't tell you that for
14 Q. Indicating for the record, Mr. President, the
15 witness has indicated the camouflaged individual who is
16 the third person from the far right of the exhibit
17 immediately behind two men who are not in uniform, in
18 striped -- vertically striped shirts.
19 We're done with that exhibit, Mr. Registrar,
20 thank you.
21 Turning to the 17th of April, 1993, you said
22 you had a conversation with a BiH army commander in
23 Visoko concerning the conflict in Vitez.
24 Did he tell you that he had received
25 information up the chain of command within the BiH army
1 concerning this conflict in Vitez?
2 A. When I was speaking in the morning with the
3 -- with Memisevic, he told us that he heard there was
4 fighting in Vitez, but he didn't know whether they were
5 subordinate formations or whether they were on a higher
7 He simply said to me that something was going
8 on and he noted it for me.
9 Q. You said you went to see or to attempt to
10 see Colonel Blaskic on either the 18th or 19th of
11 April, 1993, and you went to Vitez to try and see him;
13 A. That's right.
14 Q. Did you make an appointment before you went?
15 Did you call before you went?
16 A. No. As I think I said, there was no
17 telephone line from Visoko that was operational with
18 Vitez, so I couldn't make an appointment.
19 Yes, it's true that Colonel Blaskic had told
20 me not to hesitate to make an appointment, but it
21 wasn't easy, given the situation, it wasn't so easy to
22 make appointments with Colonel Blaskic before going to
23 see him.
24 Q. Speaking of telephone lines, did the
25 telephone line from Vitez to Kiseljak run through
1 Kacuni and Bilalovac, if you know?
2 A. I don't know exactly where the telephone
3 lines were located. That, I don't know.
4 Q. Do you know whether from a Vitez phone you
5 could telephone Kiseljak during your tours of duty in
6 Bosnia-Herzegovina or vice-versa?
7 A. The telephone lines, as far as I know were
8 operating, and when he met him in the beginning of
9 March, he was the one who used the telephone to make
10 the appointment with Colonel Blaskic which showed me,
11 at that time, there was telephone connection and that
12 the telephone was working.
13 Q. You said you went back to try and see Colonel
14 Blaskic again. When was that; was it the next day, two
15 days later? Can you help us pinpoint that date?
16 A. If I'm not mistaken, the first time was the
17 18th and so it must have been the 19th that I went back
18 to Vitez. The 18th or 19th, it was two days in a row.
19 I think it was the 18th and 19th, but maybe
20 it was the 17th and 18th, or maybe the 18th and 19th.
21 It was two days in a row. It wasn't a day afterwards.
22 Q. Did you call ahead to try and make an
23 appointment on the second occasion when you went back,
24 or did you just go and try to get a meeting after you
1 A. Since the telephone wasn't working the next
2 day either, I couldn't make an appointment and so I
3 just went to Vitez.
4 Q. On the 19th of April, you told us you went
5 from Visoko to Kiseljak and you went through Busovaca
6 which was, we might call, the northerly route; is that
8 A. Yes. We would go from Visoko, go up and then
9 go to the south-east toward Kiseljak.
10 Q. Why did you go that route as opposed to going
11 straight down from Visoko and in through Kiseljak?
12 A. I think I said this morning that according to
13 what Mr. Memisevic's report gave to me, said that r had
14 been similar attacks in the Kiseljak pocket, and I
15 didn't want to go to the headquarters in Kiseljak
16 saying that BiH forces told me that.
17 Q. Why did you do that, then?
18 A. My approach was to go on site in order to
19 confirm or not to confirm what had happened before
20 going to the Kiseljak headquarters to ask questions
21 about things that they wouldn't have known.
22 But I wanted to confirm -- Mr. Memisevic's
23 report would see to be correct, and that's when I met
24 Mr. Bradara in Kiseljak.
25 Q. You said you saw a machine gun firing into a
1 house or houses on that occasion. Do you remember what
2 village that was?
3 A. The village, the exact village, I don't
4 remember, but it was right north-west of the city of
5 Kiseljak. The picture's in my head, it was a rather
6 open land and it would rise towards the east and the
7 machine-guns would fire towards the north-west.
8 But I can't tell you the exact name of the
9 village. It was open ground north-west of Kiseljak,
10 north of the road.
11 Q. For how long did you observe this activity?
12 A. I didn't remain in those positions. I could
13 see that there was, in fact, firing, shooting going
14 on. I continued the road to the headquarters in
16 Q. If Exhibit 333 could be provided to the
17 witness and, perhaps, put on the ELMO? I'm turning
18 your attention to the 20th of April, 1993. You said
19 you were first taken to Borina. Is Borina on higher
20 ground than Rotilj, itself?
21 A. As I recall, yes, because I think I remember
22 -- or it seems I went down a hill with Colonel Landry
23 when I was going toward Rotilj. Therefore, as I
24 recall, yes, Borina was higher up, but I would have to
25 look on a map in order to know more specifically.
1 Q. How many persons were you told by the Muslim
2 inhabitants of Rotilj had been killed in the recent
3 attack or conflict that had occurred there?
4 A. I'm not sure I'm understanding the question.
5 Could you repeat it for me, please?
6 Q. How many persons were you told by the Muslim
7 inhabitants of Rotilj had been killed in the recent
8 attack or conflict that had occurred in that village?
9 A. I was told that it was 17.
10 Q. Did you talk to any Croat inhabitants of
11 Rotilj during your visit?
12 A. At that time, the people who came to speak to
13 me didn't say hello, I'm a Croatian, this is what
14 happened. The people who came to me just said that --
15 just described what had happened to their families or
16 to the people that they knew in the village of Rotilj.
17 Q. Were you told by anyone on that occasion
18 whether any Croats had been killed in the course of the
19 conflict that had recently occurred in Rotilj?
20 A. No. Nobody told me that there were any
21 Croats who had been killed.
22 Q. Did anyone tell you that r had been a number
23 of military-aged Muslim males in the village who had
24 possessed something in excess of 50 rifles prior to the
1 A. I'm not sure I got that question, that they
2 had 50 weapons, is that what you asked me?
3 Q. Yes. You went and you spoke to a number of
4 residents in Rotilj. Did any of them tell you that r
5 had been a number of military-aged men of Muslim
6 ethnicity in Rotilj prior to the conflict in possession
7 of upwards of 50 or more rifles?
8 A. Now I understand. Yes, I was told that there
9 were men who were of fighting age, that is, who could
10 fight, but I was not told that they had weapons.
11 After having spent 13 months in Bosnia and
12 Croatia, I know that many of the residents, a great
13 majority of the residents had weapons, whether they
14 were hunting weapons or other kinds of weapons. That
15 was frequent but I was never told that there were men
16 who had caches of arms in Rotilj.
17 So I was not told that Rotilj was a possible
18 military target.
19 Q. Were you told by any inhabitants that r had
20 been negotiations between representatives of the
21 village and the HVO over the surrender of those weapons
22 that the villagers had possessed?
23 Did anyone mention that to you?
24 A. No. I was never told, neither by the
25 inhabitants who were there, nor by Mario Bradara. When
1 I spoke to him, he never indicated to me that r had
2 been any type of a talk about this, when this was
3 attacked. This is something that never came up.
4 Q. Can you tell us in circle 2 on Exhibit 333,
5 approximately how many burned houses did you see?
6 A. I can't recall how many houses, exactly. If
7 you look at the photo, perhaps you might try to deduce
8 the number of houses.
9 To my memory, there's a certain number, but I
10 cannot tell you an exact number in this case.
11 Q. Can you estimate? If you can't, just tell
12 us. I'm not trying to force you into a figure, but --
13 MR. CAYLEY: Mr. President, the witness has
14 indicated what his answer is to this question. He
15 can't say anything else.
16 JUDGE JORDA: No, Mr. Cayley, not exactly,
17 otherwise I would have stopped Mr. Hayman before he
18 made the question.
19 He's asking for a basic estimation.
20 A. No, because I can't tell you how many houses
21 -- what I can say is that in circle 2, most of them
22 were affected, while in circle 3 not all of them were.
23 That's all I can say.
24 Q. Would you agree that there were hundreds of
25 houses in the village as a whole?
1 A. Hundreds seem to be quite a high number. I
2 can look at the photograph in more detail, but that
3 seems a bit high. I can't give you the number of
4 houses which are there in the entire village.
5 Q. If Exhibit 334 could be provided to the
6 witness. You indicated that on the 21st or 22nd of
7 April, 1993, you visited the villages that are
8 indicated on Exhibit 334.
9 Now, excluding the village of Rotilj, which
10 we've already discussed, I believe I heard you
11 properly, but I want to make sure, that there were no
12 residents residing in any of the other five villages
13 marked on 334 at the time you visited them on the 21st
14 or 22nd of April, 1993?
15 A. Well, in the houses that I saw and the places
16 where I visited, except the north of Gromiljak, I did
17 not encounter anyone in the houses, in the places that
18 I visited. I did not go into each house.
19 You should understand that at that time that
20 even if the attack was no longer underway, I was a
21 target of fire and once in awhile I had to hide in some
22 stables in order to avoid attacks.
23 So this was not an easy task to go out and
24 inspect this village. I saw what I saw and I did not
25 see any sign of life, other than those of livestock,
1 which I mentioned earlier.
2 Q. Are you able to tell us with respect to the
3 five villages indicated on 334, excluding Rotilj, what
4 proportion or what rough percentage of houses were
5 burned on the occasion that you visited them?
6 A. A very large percentage. I cannot give you
7 an exact percentage point, but I would say a great
8 majority of them were affected.
9 Q. In each of those five villages, is that your
11 A. To my knowledge. Perhaps if you look at an
12 in aerial photo, you might have a better idea of how
13 many were actually affected.
14 Q. You said you went to see Mr. Bradara after
15 this inspection and had a discussion with him and he
16 gave you explanations that you found unsatisfactory.
17 Is that a fair statement?
18 A. Yes. Well, perhaps inspection is a bit
19 strong. I did not inspect, as such, rather I noted by
20 looking and as noted, as you stated, Mr. Bradara's
21 explanation seemed to me to be quite improbable. This
22 is my opinion based on our meeting.
23 Q. Do you have any information concerning on
24 what the Kiseljak brigade or the operative group in
25 Kiseljak may have reported to Colonel Blaskic
1 concerning events in the Kiseljak municipality at the
3 A. I'm not sure I really understand your
4 question. Are you asking me if I was aware of what the
5 Kiseljak headquarters responded to Vitez? Is that what
6 you're saying?
7 I would like to be able to understand your
9 Q. I'll restate it. My question is, do you have
10 any information concerning what the Kiseljak brigade or
11 the operative group may have reported up the chain of
12 command to Colonel Blaskic concerning these events,
13 given Mr. Bradara's response to you concerning -- that
14 these events were localised, unrelated incidents
15 committed by frustrated citizens or what have you?
16 A. No. I have not seen any report about what
17 was communicated up the chain of command.
18 Q. You said you visited Rotilj later on on a
19 weekly basis. Was that during your second tour or
20 during your first?
21 A. That was during my first tour of duty, during
22 the events that took place around, let's say, the 18th
23 of April.
24 In the week that followed, I began to carry
25 out weekly visits in Rotilj.
1 Q. Do you know whether, by the time of your
2 second visit were the residents of Rotilj receiving
3 regular food assistance from Caritas and/or Merhamet?
4 A. I really can't tell you which organisation
5 provided humanitarian relief, whether it was Merhamet
6 the Muslin group or Caritas.
7 I'm not in a position to say so. As far as
8 the quantity of humanitarian aid, I'm really unable to
9 say how much was received.
10 Q. At the Kiseljak barracks, did you see any
12 A. I did not see the detainees. Well, let me
13 back up. I saw children who were playing in the
14 grounds in front, whether or not they were detainees,
15 my impression was they were detainees, indeed.
16 What Mr. Bradara informed me, that they were
17 being detained for their security. I saw children
18 outside. I saw other signs, however, to use the
19 English expression, tell-tale signs that indicated the
20 presence of women in the Kiseljak barracks.
21 So I only saw children, but Mr. Bradara
22 admitted that for their own security, according to him,
23 these persons were detained in the Kiseljak barracks.
24 Q. You described the wealth of supplies and,
25 indeed, even luxuries in the Kiseljak enclave. Did you
1 find the conditions different in the Vitez Busovaca
2 enclave during your first tour when you visited that
3 enclave; that is, with respect to the availability of
4 supplies and the low cost of gasoline, cigarettes,
5 chocolate and the like which you found in Kiseljak?
6 A. Well, Busovaca, because this was not within
7 my area of responsibility, I travelled through
8 Busovaca, but I never stopped there except for the few
9 meetings I mentioned to you, and I did not carry on
10 liaisons with either civilian or military persons
11 there, but to the best of my memory, don't forget I
12 spent very, very little time there, but to state
13 precisely, I really can't tell you whether Busovaca was
14 as good a situation as Kiseljak.
15 I would say no, but it's very unclear in my
16 mind right now.
17 Q. Can you tell the court whether there was any
18 piece of territory controlled by the Bosnian-Serb army
19 that was adjacent to the Vitez Busovaca enclave and
20 whether there was such a piece of territory adjacent to
21 the Kiseljak enclave?
22 A. Well, as far as I can remember, in the
23 eastern part, definitely not, but in the western part,
24 I'm trying to visualise myself, the front-lines there.
25 I don't know if -- not to my knowledge, not
1 to my memory.
2 Q. Did you ever receive any information or
3 reports concerning who profited from the sale of
4 petroleum products or other smuggled goods to the
5 Bosnia-Serbs? That is, who within the Kiseljak pocket
6 profited from that activity?
7 A. First of all, I'm not prepared to say this is
8 a contraband; to say as far as who benefited from this,
9 unless there was someone who gathered the money from
10 what was sold, and I'm not in a position to say so, but
11 this was much more than simple contraband.
12 This was something that was organised by the
13 authorities and this was not only something that was
14 brought -- hidden from the authorities, it was
15 something that was quite sanctioned by them and
16 Mr. Bradara told me quite clearly that this was known
17 and quite sanctioned. If they had been contraband, it
18 would not have been sanctioned. That's the impression I
20 Q. Let's turn to the second tour and the
21 situation you described in and around Fojnica. With
22 respect to these two hospitals, psychiatric hospitals,
23 had they been under civilian administration or military
24 administration as of the first time that relevant
25 events were brought to your attention?
1 A. They were under civilian authority. There
2 was a civilian manager there in each hospital.
3 Q. Is it correct that you were not present when
4 the initial fall, if you will, of Fojnica to the BiH
5 army occurred?
6 A. Yes, indeed, that's right. That happened as
7 it was reported to me in the spring of 199 -- the
8 beginning of summer, 1993. At the time, I was in
9 Canada, but it was during a briefing that I received
10 about what was going on as the post was passed on in
11 October, 1993.
12 Q. You said there were some houses burned in the
13 course of those events. Do you know, were those Muslim
14 homes or Croat homes?
15 A. I do not know. All I know is what was told
16 to me is that there were houses that were burned by
17 Croatian forces. I will not venture so far as to say
18 who owned these houses.
19 Q. Now, later in November when you've described
20 additional difficulties, if you will, at the hospitals,
21 were you there or did you receive reports from others
22 concerning these activities?
23 A. If you're referring to the attack or the
24 offensive that was launched by the HVO in the early
25 part of November, I was not there.
1 That was during the evening. We had Canadian
2 troops which were under the command of UNPROFOR, but
3 given the importance of what was happening there and
4 the situation on the ground, I was in the regimental
5 command post which is in direct contact with the troops
6 and so I was able to follow the development of the
7 situation there.
8 The reason why I was not -- the reason why I
9 went directly to the place, is because I needed to try
10 and get a complete report of what was going on there.
11 So if need be, I could go to Kiseljak to get a more
12 detailed report. But, of course, to travel that even
13 would be difficult. There's only one time in which we
14 did so. I don't remember exactly -- what I can say is
15 I was in a position to be able to follow on the radio
16 the various events that took place as they were
17 reported to us by the persons, the commanders who were
18 there on site.
19 Q. Again, my question was very simple. Were you
20 there? I'll ask you another short question and ask you
21 to focus on it to the best of your ability.
22 Did you ever go, during the November
23 offensive, to the hospitals or go with any of the
24 convoys that were attacked? Do you have any personally
25 knowledge of these events?
1 A. I did not see it with my own eyes, the
2 attack. I don't have personally knowledge, but I saw
3 the reports and heard their voices on the radio.
4 Q. Were the reports of these events that you
5 received written or oral?
6 A. No, these were verbal. Perhaps, I don't
7 know, it's a bit vague. Maybe I should explain the
9 This is the VHF radio and it's transmitted
10 over a certain frequency and there's a receptor that
11 takes a relay and it receives all of these reports in
12 real-time, and then transmits them to the person who is
13 to receive these reports.
14 Q. With respect to the soldiers that entered one
15 of the hospitals, do you know, were those individual
16 soldiers? Was it a platoon? Was it a larger unit of
17 soldiers? How many soldiers went into the hospital, if
18 you know?
19 A. All I can tell you is that based on what I
20 heard is that there was a platoon that was there and
21 they told us that there were soldiers that had
22 penetrated the hospital and they were opening fire from
23 the hospital.
24 Apart from that, I can't give you more
1 Q. You said there was a platoon that was there.
2 Are you referring to the CANBAT platoon?
3 A. Yes, that's right. We had the equivalent of
4 some 30 persons who were to handle the management of
5 the hospital. I cannot give you the names of the
6 soldiers of the HVO who were using the hospital or who
7 were members of the company or the platoon or the
8 battalion that was there.
9 Q. Did you receive any information that any
10 patients were injured in any fighting in or around the
11 hospital on the occasion that you described?
12 A. No, fortunately not. When the situation took
13 place, we moved the patients to upper levels in the
14 hospital, and so their peace of mind enabled them to
15 move them out of harm's way.
16 Indeed when we look at the injuries that
17 people may have received there or may have come from
18 some of the fire coming from the BiH troops and
19 returning fire to the HVO troops, but fortunately our
20 soldiers did move the patients to avoid any harm coming
21 to them.
22 Q. You said that there were allegations that
23 chemical weapons had been used in the course of the
24 conflict in November, 1993 in and around Fojnica.
25 What side was it alleged to that conflict had
1 used chemical weapons?
2 A. Just to repeat, it was the BiH that indicated
3 that the HVO had used them. Our own investigation did
4 not enable us to confirm that, and the Canadian
5 battalion found that there was no use of any type of
6 weapons of this type. I did not carry this any further
7 because the investigation did not enable us to divulge
9 We were using a special kind of camera which
10 would enable us to detect the presence of these type of
11 products in the air and we used these products, we
12 found nothing at all. And so there was no proof
13 whatsoever that any chemical agents had been used.
14 Q. You have described allegations that patients
15 were directed into mine fields in order to discover the
16 presence of mines.
17 Was this related to you by other members of
18 CANBAT as activities they had seen or activities that
19 were related to them by the mental patients or
20 psychiatric patients; if you know?
21 A. As we come back now, I want to talk to you
22 about the responsibility in that area. It was said
23 that this did, indeed, take place, but I don't know
24 whether or not these activities were reported by
25 patients to CANBAT or whether or not this was seen.
1 But I know that in one particular ^^ corps,
2 it was our soldiers who were witnesses to this event,
3 where one elderly patient was brought by the soldiers,
4 the Croatian-- or, rather, the HVO soldiers.
5 Q. You said in one particular 'corps' it was our
6 soldiers who witnessed the event. What do you mean by
8 A. I'm sorry. There must be an error in
9 translation. What I said that in one particular case,
10 in one particular case, this was not a report, if you
11 will, of a report. This was one of our own members of
12 our own Canadian battalion that was a witness to that
14 Q. This was a sending of a patient into a mine
16 A. Yes, indeed, that's right.
17 Q. Was the patient Muslim, Croat; do you know,
18 or was it not reported to you?
19 A. No, it didn't have any importance to us and I
20 don't remember the ethnic background of the patient.
21 Q. The convoys that you've described coming
22 under fire on the way to the hospitals in Bakovici and
23 Drin, I believe was the town, were those UNHCR convoys?
24 A. No. As I explained, we don't have that
25 particular document, but the road, when we would go to
1 the west from Kiseljak, from Kiseljak to Busovaca, that
2 would then go towards the north-west.
3 For Fojnica, it would go towards the west and
4 curve and then go to the Southwest. Now, the first
5 part of that road was under the control of the HVO.
6 After that you went into what I referred to as a
7 no-man's land.
8 And this particular area was always under
9 fire and, for this reason, we recommended very strongly
10 to the UNHCR not to use any trucks or any civilian
11 vehicles; rather, in this area, because of the imminent
12 danger of being attacked, and so we used our own
13 vehicles, military vehicles for this.
14 Each time we have any type of convoy, we had
15 to have some sort of written authorisation because it
16 was to make sure these were humanitarian aid being
17 transferred, but in military vehicles.
18 So the forces there from the HVO knew very
19 well what was contained in this convoy and what type of
20 goods were being transported in these convoys.
21 Q. If the usher could retrieve the easel for a
22 few questions I have in mind. I have some other
23 questions to ask you in the mean time.
24 You said that, to your knowledge, there was
25 no BiH army presence in the Kiseljak enclave. Do you
1 recall that testimony?
2 A. Yes, there was no BiH units working or active
3 within the Kiseljak enclave, that's true.
4 Q. What time or times do you have in mind when
5 you give that testimony, the entire period of both of
6 your tours or something less than that point -- those
7 points in time?
8 A. As far as from the time period in which I
9 arrived in spring, 1993 and also during my other tour
10 of duty in October, 1993 to May.
11 Q. So during both of your tours, that's your
13 A. Yes, that's right.
14 Q. Do you know what the Territorial Defence is
15 or TO?
16 A. Yes, I am familiar with that concept.
17 Q. Were there TO units in the Kiseljak enclave
18 during either of your tour of duties -- tours of duty,
19 excuse me?
20 A. To my knowledge, there were no units
21 organised for Territorial Defence. If we can say that
22 there were some men of Muslim origin who were still
23 living in the Kiseljak enclave, as I stated, it was not
24 rare, it was quite frequent for these men to possess
25 hunting weapons, personally weapons and it's quite
1 probable that if an attack had been launched against
2 the village, that these men would protect their own
4 If they are saying now that these men, as a
5 group, would constitute some sort of unit that was
6 responding to a command of the BiH, well then, there I
7 would not agree with that line of thinking.
8 Q. If Defence Exhibit 125 could be placed before
9 the witness, Mr. President, and on the ELMO.
10 Recognising that this document, Captain,
11 is in the BSC language, I'm going to tell you that this
12 document purports to be an organisational schemata of
13 Territorial Defence or TO units in certain locations in
14 Bosnia-Herzegovina, including in the Kiseljak
16 I'm going to ask my colleague to read the
17 names of the locations underneath the Kiseljak box, if
18 you will, which is in the lower centre portion of the
20 MR. NOBILO: The title of the whole document
21 is the Municipal Staff of the Armed Forces and it shows
22 the units of the municipal staff of the armed forces of
23 Kiseljak belonging to that headquarters.
24 If we read the central portion, we have the
25 Kiseljak unit, then the 4th of July, then the Rotilj,
1 then the Palez unit, and the Palez Trebinje unit. To
2 the right we have Topole, Radanovici, Han Ploca,
3 Ljubinje, and Bakovici, and to the left, Gromiluk,
4 Brestovsko and Bilalovac.
5 Q. I take it, Captain, that you would be
6 surprised to learn that there were TO units in these
7 locations in 1992 and '93 up to the conflict that
9 MR. CAYLEY: Mr. President, I'm objecting to
10 this point. I really strongly object. This is a
11 document that has not been admitted into evidence. The
12 witness yesterday didn't recognise it. This witness
13 has never seen it. There's no date on it, it can't be
14 placed in time.
15 It is absolutely absurd to ask this witness
16 about whether he knows anything about this document.
17 MR. HAYMAN: What's important, Mr. President,
18 is if he doesn't, that be in the record, because if
19 ultimately in this case this document is proven to be
20 authentic and to represent facts at relevant periods in
21 time, then that's information the court should have.
22 This is not information he has and he doesn't
23 factor any such information into the opinions that he's
24 given the court. That's my purpose.
25 JUDGE JORDA: The Judges' opinion yesterday
1 was to say, and I think they will continue to maintain
2 that rule, that first of all the documents should be
3 admitted or not, that the discussion should first take
4 place and not constantly talking about a document which
5 will not be admitted.
6 The Registrar has just said that this
7 document was admitted, Mr. Cayley.
8 MR. CAYLEY: My understanding from
9 my colleague, Mr. Harmon, was that it was not admitted
10 into evidence.
11 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Registrar?
12 THE REGISTRAR: As regards the document D125,
13 yesterday it was said that the witness did not
14 recognise the document because he had never seen it.
15 However, the stamp was the same as on D124 and, for
16 that reason, the Trial Chamber admitted D125. In any
17 case, this had to do with -- this was valid for
18 yesterday's witness and I can ask the witness.
19 JUDGE JORDA: Now, I can ask the witness
20 whether this is a document which you can identify
21 either through the stamp or through the data or other
22 contents of the document.
23 A. I had not ever seen this document as such. I
24 don't see the date. I do recognise the symbol in the
25 middle of the stamp, but during the time that I was
1 there, I didn't ever see a stamp which indicated a BiH
2 army stamp with Kiseljak on it like that.
3 JUDGE JORDA: So I don't recognise this
4 document. Therefore, this document is not -- you don't
5 recognise it?
6 A. No, I do not.
7 JUDGE JORDA: All right. It is not
8 recognised and it cannot be admitted. No point in
9 going on or talking any more about a document which
10 isn't not admitted, however, your comments have been
11 indicated in the transcript.
12 A. May I make a suggestion.
13 JUDGE JORDA: Yes, you may?
14 A. Personally I believe, since I spoke to most
15 of the civilian authorities and military authorities on
16 the ground, when they talk about Bilalovac and Kacuni,
17 and I do think that the authorities in place would have
18 spoken to me about this had they known about it. I
19 wasn't aware -- as far as I know, there were no
20 organised units for the reasons that I say.
21 That is, when I spoke to the municipal
22 authorities of those places, I was never told that the
23 Territorial Defence forces existed and I think that
24 they would have told me that, given my relations with
1 JUDGE JORDA: Are you satisfied with this
2 comment, Mr. Hayman?
3 MR. HAYMAN: Mr. President, I'm going to
4 thank you for permitting the witness to put an answer
5 into the record.
6 And thank you, Captain.
7 A. Very well.
8 JUDGE JORDA: Please move on to another
9 question, Mr. Hayman.
10 MR. HAYMAN: Yes, I will, Mr. President.
11 Q. You've described the chain of command of the
12 HVO as you perceived it. Do you know, was one of the
13 purposes of the Busovaca joint commission so that
14 commanders could go into the field to try and persuade
15 local soldiers to obey the cease-fire that had been
16 ordered by Colonel Blaskic and General Haji Hasanovic
17 of the third corps, was that one of the purposes of the
18 Busovaca joint commission?
19 A. I can't remember if it was one of the
20 specific points or purposes of the commission at the
21 time. I don't remember.
22 Q. Do you agree with the following
23 characterisation? Suddenly, a very large column of
24 dispirited Croat soldiers appeared in Vitez. They
25 were not soldiers at all, very few had had any real
1 training. They could handle their weapons all right,
2 but were really civilians in uniform.
3 I'm reading from Colonel Stewart, Broken
4 Lives, page 92. Do you agree with that
5 characterisation of some or all HVO soldiers?
6 A. I didn't have the pleasure of reading Colonel
7 Stewart's book. This is an excerpt taken out of
9 What period are you talking about? It's hard
10 for me to qualify something or to say anything about
11 it, unless I know that.
12 What I can say is that I didn't operate in
13 Vitez. I went through Vitez several times in order to
14 go to the British battalion or the headquarters in
15 there, but that was not part of my zone of
16 responsibility, so I don't think I can really add to
17 that question.
18 JUDGE JORDA: Move to another question,
19 Mr. Hayman.
20 MR. HAYMAN:
21 Q. Now, you've told us that Vinko Lucic was the
22 liaison officer in Kiseljak posted by the HVO central
23 command in Mostar; correct?
24 A. Yes, it was in that capacity that he
25 introduced himself to me.
1 Q. And you understood that to mean that he
2 reported directly to the HVO command in Mostar;
4 A. Yes. This is common practise when a liaison
5 officer moves first from top to bottom and then from
6 right to left.
7 Q. Is it correct that during the period of time
8 you were having contacts with Vinko Lucic, you were not
9 having contacts with liaison officer that reported to
10 the operational zone for central Bosnia; correct?
11 A. I had no contact because I was told that my
12 contact point would be Vinko Lucic, only he. I can't
13 tell you why I was restricted in that way.
14 This is an observation that I had to accept.
15 Lucic was not a commander, he was a liaison officer,
16 and I would not be in a good position to tell you why
17 he was put in that place. It was never clear in my
18 mind. It was never clear why I had to work with Lucic,
19 rather than with the commander who was responsible for
20 the zone in which the Canadian battalion was located.
21 Q. Thank you. You've described using a dirt
22 road between Vitez and Kiseljak. Do you recall that
24 A. Absolutely.
25 Q. And you said you used it once. Can you tell
1 us with as much specificity as you can, when did you
2 use this road? What period of time?
3 A. At that time, it must be the very end of
4 April or beginning of May of 1993.
5 Q. Now, looking at the map, and there are two
6 maps, one on top of each other, one is of the
7 Vitez/Busovaca area, the other is in the Kiseljak
9 If you would like to look at it to answer
10 this question, please feel free.
11 But my first question is: You said the road
12 left Vitez to the south and then to the south-east. Did
13 this road go through Krujitsa? If you would like to
14 look and see where Krujitsa is, feel free?
15 A. When I prepared myself for coming here, I
16 tried to find the road. As I was explaining, the
17 topographical maps I had were photocopies, but I
18 remember approximately the road that went from south of
19 Vitez, it went first to the south and then it would cut
20 out to the south-east. I cannot tell you.
21 I tried to find the map and to see the map,
22 but I can't really give you a specific answer. If you
23 have an aerial view, then I think that we would be able
24 to retrace the road on an aerial photo, but when I see
25 it on the map, I guess I could not -- I couldn't draw
1 the road for you.
2 Q. You're saying you cannot draw it on a
3 topographical road, such as the JNA Zenica 4 map which
4 has been produced and put on the easel; is that right?
5 A. Yes, that's what I'm saying. As I said in my
6 testimony this morning, I knew that -- I had been told
7 there was a road. I almost found it by chance in the
8 field at an intersection of two roads. I was still
9 travelling around blindly because I couldn't find my
10 way around on the map.
11 So I really cannot draw it for you on the
13 Q. We'll go on to some other questions and I'm
14 going to ask my co-counsel to get an overhead
15 transparency and get the Registrar's assistance in
16 locating an aerial photograph, I know there's several
17 in evidence, at least of the Vitez area, so the witness
18 can draw at least the beginning of this road so we can
19 determine this origin.
20 So as not to hold up proceedings, I have
21 other questions, just a few more, not very many. I'll
22 continue with those and perhaps we can find that
24 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Hayman, I just want to ask
25 for confirmation of Captain Lanthier.
1 Would you, perhaps, be able to find the road
2 with an aerial photo?
3 A. As I said, if I saw an aerial photograph from
4 -- showing Vitez to the Kiseljak enclave, I may be
5 able to find a road which goes from one point to
6 another. That's what I would say.
7 JUDGE JORDA: Okay. Mr. Hayman, please
8 continue with your questions.
9 MR. HAYMAN: Thank you. If Mr. Nobilo could
10 be excused for the moment to retrieve the necessary
12 Q. Do you know of any occasion, can you tell us
13 of any occasion during either of your tours when an HVO
14 personnel used this dirt road or path?
15 A. I have no personally knowledge because I
16 didn't go with anybody from the HVO who used that road,
17 but what I saw or what I noted is simply there was a
19 Q. Do you know whether this road passed through
20 territory that was controlled by the BiH army?
21 A. Yes, because we alluded to this earlier.
22 There would be BiH forces surrounding the enclaves.
23 What I think is important to point out here
24 is they were not defensive positions, that is, that
25 there was not a line of obstacles and trenches all
1 along the perimeter, so it's possible that under good
2 conditions that one could travel from one point to
3 another, even if one had to go through some of the
4 territory that the other side was controlling.
5 Q. You described the level of cooperation from
6 the BiH army compared to the HVO. Were any
7 circumstances -- did any circumstances arise during
8 either of your tours where it was necessary for CANBAT
9 to use lethal force against any combatants?
10 A. I'm not sure that I understood your question,
11 whether we were called on to deploy the Canadian
12 elements against one of the three warring factions?
13 Is that what you're asking?
14 Q. My question was, did circumstances arise
15 during either of your tours when CANBAT were called
16 upon to fire upon BiH army, or Croat, HVO persons, to
17 fire on any of the warring parties as an act of defence
18 or whatever? Did that become necessary?
19 A. The Canadian battalion on several occasions
20 did fire against the three warring parties. At some
21 point we even conducted a blocking operation in the
22 exclusion zone of Sarajevo.
23 So, yes, we did respond for our own
24 self-protection by firing on the warring parties.
25 Q. You gave an opinion that the HVO engaged in
1 systematic ethnic cleansing, which fact was
2 demonstrated by the Stupni Do massacre.
3 Let me ask you if you've ever received the
4 following information and, if you hadn't, if receiving
5 it would change that opinion, and I'm going to read a
6 passage from an ECMM daily summary dated the 2nd of
7 November, 1993.
8 I can provide a copy to counsel so they can
9 read along, if they wish, and I will make -- I do think
10 a copy should be put into the record.
11 In paragraph 1, it states: "HCC, which I
12 believe is the reference to one of the ECMM centres in
13 the area, met with blank', and I'll leave the name out