{short description of image}

  1. 1 Tuesday, 27th October 1998

    2 (Open session)

    3 --- Upon commencing at 10.14 a.m.

    4 JUDGE JORDA: Please be seated. Registrar

    5 have the accused brought in, please.

    6 (The accused entered court).

    7 JUDGE JORDA: First I would like to say good

    8 morning to the interpreters in the booths. Good

    9 morning. We can be sure that everybody can hear me,

    10 the Prosecution, the Defence, and the accused, my

    11 colleagues, and now we are going to continue. It is

    12 now a quarter after 10, Mr. Kehoe. You have until a

    13 quarter to 11. All right?

    14 MR. KEHOE: I understand, Judge.

    15 JUDGE JORDA: Very well. Okay, we can now

    16 have General Marin brought in, that is the witness.

    17 (The witness entered court).

    18 JUDGE JORDA: Let me remind you that this is

    19 a public hearing. Before we begin, I would like to

    20 welcome Joelle Sauvage, who is a French legal officer

    21 who is the presiding Judge of the Appeals Chamber, and

    22 I would like to thank the parties and my colleagues as

    23 well for having agreed to her having come here. She

    24 has been a Judge for a long time, I'm not going to say

    25 how long, because it is a woman, it wouldn't be

  2. 1 proper. All right, I would like to thank you.

    2 All right, Brigadier, Marin, the floor is

    3 yours, did you rest up?

    4 A. Yes, thank you, Mr. President, thank you for

    5 asking me, and good day to you, too.

    6 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Kehoe.

    7 MR. KEHOE:

    8 Q. Good morning, Brigadier.

    9 A. Good morning.

    10 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, given that we have

    11 a half-hour, I would like to expedite our way through

    12 some of these issues. If I can just take the Court,

    13 based on the documents that the Brigadier reviewed

    14 yesterday, and specifically referring to Article 27,

    15 again, of Exhibit 533, excuse me, Exhibit 534, which is

    16 the decree on the military district courts. If I may

    17 read through this, Mr. President, and give the

    18 documents to the Court and move on with the

    19 questioning, it would speed things up significantly.

    20 In Article 27, the third paragraph that notes

    21 concerning the powers of a commander to arrest; it

    22 notes that a military commander at the position of the

    23 commander of the regiment, or at a hierarchically

    24 equivalent or higher position, as well as authorised

    25 officials of the internal affairs and security bodies

  3. 1 and military police, may arrest a person in the

    2 military in cases provided for by the Law on Criminal

    3 Procedure and ordered custody.

    4 If I might have the assistance of the usher.

    5 JUDGE JORDA: Is this in, number 2, 27? This

    6 is tab 2, but there are several texts; could you tell

    7 me which one this is, please?

    8 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, we are referring

    9 to Exhibit 534, the decree on military courts, and we

    10 are discussing the accused's power to arrest within the

    11 decree on military courts in Article 27.

    12 JUDGE JORDA: Thank you, all right, my

    13 eminent colleague, Judge Riad, has given it to me. Go

    14 ahead.

    15 MR. KEHOE: This cross references,

    16 Mr. President, the Law on Criminal Procedure and

    17 ordered custody, and I'm referring to Article 191 in

    18 that decree.

    19 THE REGISTRAR: The following document is

    20 537, 537A for the English version.

    21 MR. KEHOE: Article 91 of Exhibit 537, Your

    22 Honours, says, "Custody shall always be ordered against

    23 a person if there is a warranted suspicion that he has

    24 committed a crime for which the law prescribes the

    25 death penalty."

  4. 1 Excuse me, I'm sorry, the transcript says

    2 Article 91, and it should read Article 191 in Exhibit

    3 537, and that notes that "Custody shall always be

    4 ordered against a person if there is a warranted

    5 suspicion that he has committed a crime for which the

    6 law prescribes the death penalty. Custody need not be

    7 ordered if the circumstances indicate that in the

    8 particular case involved the law prescribes a less

    9 severe penalty may be pronounced.

    10 And the reference point is back to Article 41

    11 of the criminal code of the Socialist Federal Republic

    12 of Yugoslavia, to determine those crimes for which the

    13 death penalty is called for. And for that point I

    14 would like to go to the criminal code of the Socialist

    15 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, which is the next

    16 exhibit.

    17 THE REGISTRAR: 538, 538A for the English

    18 version.

    19 MR. KEHOE: In this particular exhibit,

    20 Mr. President and Your Honours, this is the law from

    21 the criminal code of the Socialist Federal Republic of

    22 Yugoslavia, which talks about those crimes for which

    23 mandatory custody is warranted.

    24 And these crimes, as the Court can review in

    25 the particular statutes that are set forth in Exhibit

  5. 1 538, include crimes of genocide, crimes against the

    2 civilian population, the wounded and the sick,

    3 prisoners of war, murder of the enemy who surrender

    4 their arms, et cetera; those crimes account for many of

    5 the crimes that we are discussing or have been

    6 discussing in this trial.

    7 So, with those particular references,

    8 Mr. President, Your Honour, we will continue to examine

    9 the witness on the remaining subjects.

    10 Q. Brigadier, in addition to the powers that we

    11 discussed previously concerning the accused's power to

    12 arrest and investigate, I would like to show you two

    13 exhibits, and those are Exhibit 456/74 and

    14 Prosecutor’s Exhibit 456/77.

    15 Now, Brigadier, the first order, 456/74 is an

    16 order of the accused, Colonel Blaskic, by packet on the

    17 24th of October 1992, and it reads as follows: "Mensud

    18 Alic, mayor of the JNA, is currently in Trogir. If he

    19 should take the road to Travnik, arrest him; and if he

    20 resists, execute him."

    21 That's Exhibit 456/74. The next exhibit,

    22 456/77 is in October of 1993, almost a year later, and

    23 this is the 11th of October, 1993. Again, another

    24 order executed by Colonel Blaskic, and it goes to all

    25 brigades, all commanders of independent units, the

  6. 1 Vitezovi, Trvkto, the 4th Military Police Battalion and

    2 others and reads as follows: "The rising number of

    3 soldiers deserting their positions and defence lines

    4 has resulted in the loss of defended facilities and the

    5 entire defence lines. In order to prevent such

    6 occurrences, I hereby issue the following:

    7 1. Undertake the following disciplinary

    8 measures against any soldier and their immediate

    9 commander who desert defence lines. A) execution of

    10 the unit/soldier; B) unit commanders will be declared

    11 traitors of the nation and given the most severe

    12 sentence of death by firing squad in front of the

    13 unit.

    14 2. All units and soldiers will be notified

    15 of this order.

    16 3. This order will come into force

    17 immediately, and commanders of brigades and independent

    18 units will be responsible to me for its execution."

    19 My question for you, Brigadier, as the Chief

    20 of Staff and as a man who was close to Colonel

    21 Blaskic: Where did Blaskic find the power to order

    22 that soldiers and commanders be executed if they desert

    23 the lines?

    24 A. I do not know the source for issuing

    25 authorisations of this kind, but I do recall the

  7. 1 contents of this order. I recall the time it was

    2 issued, and as far as I know, it was issued on the

    3 basis of a command by the head of the main staff. And

    4 the object was to frighten the soldiers, that is, to

    5 make them become serious in their duties and in

    6 connection to their combat assignments. Because we see

    7 that the date is the 11th of October 1993, when the HVO

    8 and the units in Central Bosnia and in all the enclaves

    9 were at their last, on their last strengths.

    10 It was, therefore, to frighten the soldiers,

    11 because in point 2 it says all units and soldiers

    12 should be informed of this order; so this kind of order

    13 issued, of course, it was never implemented and the

    14 order was never executed over anybody.

    15 Q. Well, first off, on this order, Brigadier,

    16 there is no reference on this order that such an order

    17 was given by the HVO main staff in Mostar; isn't that

    18 correct?

    19 A. I said, as far as I recall, this document was

    20 written on the basis of that. I remember the contents

    21 of the document and I remember the object, why it was

    22 written and under what circumstances it was written,

    23 and I have explained that.

    24 Q. And Brigadier, death by firing squad is, of

    25 course, the most severe form of penalty that anybody

  8. 1 could suffer from; isn't that correct?

    2 A. Yes, and in this case, this could never be

    3 ordered by General Blaskic, and that is why this

    4 particular order, according to its contents, was never

    5 put into practice.

    6 Nobody was sentenced to death by a firing

    7 squad. So, the aim was to make the soldiers more

    8 serious and frighten them. And in point 2 it says

    9 inform all units and soldiers of this order, so the

    10 commanders were given instructions to read out the text

    11 to the soldiers so the soldiers would come to realise

    12 just how serious the situation was.

    13 You can see from the order, the shock terms

    14 used by General Blaskic, when he talked about stopping

    15 the destruction of houses and the burning of houses and

    16 civilians, so he used energetically and most seriously,

    17 and all the terms used in that kind of terminology for

    18 that particular purpose.

    19 Q. You would agree with me, Brigadier, that this

    20 particular order, based on the received stamp from Emil

    21 Heran, the head of the brigade commander of the Bobovac

    22 Brigade was received in Vares.

    23 A. Kara (phoen).

    24 Q. In Vares.

    25 A. Yes, yes, this document, the commander of the

  9. 1 brigade in Vares. And this can be seen from the upper

    2 right-hand corner. So this document was written, was

    3 copied out as he received it from the commander at

    4 Operative Zone, and you can see that from the document

    5 itself.

    6 Q. Now, the first order that you have, Exhibit

    7 456/74, which is the other order to execute; was that

    8 also based on an order from headquarters? We're

    9 talking about the 24th of October, 1992 order, when

    10 Mensud Alic was ordered to be arrested, and if he

    11 resisted, execute him.

    12 So you'll notice it has no reference point

    13 back to anything from HVO headquarters.

    14 A. For this particular document, number 456/74,

    15 I did not know about the document, the text itself

    16 speaks of the circumstances, and how to act in those

    17 circumstances. I don't know the source of this

    18 information, that is, from whence the information came,

    19 but Mr. Mensud Alic had started out towards Travnik.

    20 But, as far as I know, this did not happen,

    21 either. So, I do not know that this happened, that is,

    22 that Mr. Mensud turned up, or that he was arrested or

    23 that he was killed. I do not know that.

    24 Q. Let me shift gears, Brigadier, and talk about

    25 punishment given to special purpose units, PPN units.

  10. 1 On page 12.189, the question by Mr. Nobilo was as

    2 follows: "Tell the Court, could Colonel Blaskic and

    3 the disciplinary court and the prosecutor's office,

    4 could it punish members of the PPN units?"

    5 And your answer was: "No, we do not have the

    6 necessary competence for this."

    7 Do you recall that statement and do you

    8 recall that answer?

    9 A. I recall that statement and I recall the

    10 answer. And that is how it was.

    11 Q. Well, Brigadier, --

    12 A. Let me just emphasise that the units which

    13 were not within the composition of the Operative Zone,

    14 that is to say, those units who were under operative

    15 command.

    16 Q. Brigadier, the individual by the name of Zuti

    17 was, ran a PPN unit; isn't that right?

    18 A. The Zuti units, the yellow units, was within

    19 the composition of the Frankopan Brigade, so it was not

    20 a unit organisationally linked directly to the Defence

    21 Ministry or any other institution. It was a unit

    22 which, that is to say, a group of 30 individuals who

    23 proclaimed themselves to be special purpose units, and

    24 they acted within the frameworks of the Frankopan

    25 Brigade, just as a company or platoon within the

  11. 1 framework of the brigade.

    2 The special purpose units, which were not

    3 organisationally linked to the commander of the

    4 Operative Zone, was the military police and the

    5 Vitezovi, the Knights; whereas, all the other special

    6 purpose units were in the composition of the brigades.

    7 And they endeavoured, that is to say, they were made up

    8 of specially trained individuals. There were 30

    9 soldiers, and they proclaimed themselves to be special

    10 purpose units, but they acted within the composition of

    11 the brigade.

    12 JUDGE JORDA: Excuse me, Brigadier, we're not

    13 going to go through the entire organisation of the

    14 brigade again. What is your question, Mr. Kehoe?

    15 MR. KEHOE:

    16 Q. So, you're telling us that there are some PPN

    17 units that Blaskic could have punished and some PPN

    18 units that he could not have punished; is that right?

    19 A. Yes, units, special purpose units within the

    20 frameworks of brigades could be punished by General

    21 Blaskic, but the other ones not within the composition

    22 of the Operative Zone could not have been punished, and

    23 these are the Vitezovi, The Knights, and the military

    24 police.

    25 Q. Let's talk about Exhibits 237 and 239. Those

  12. 1 are Defence Exhibits 237 and 239, and also Defence

    2 Exhibit 213.

    3 Brigadier, the first two exhibits, 237 and

    4 239, are disciplinary orders, I'm sorry -- are

    5 disciplinary orders that were given by Colonel Blaskic

    6 against members of the Zuti PPN unit; isn't that right?

    7 A. Yes, from this order you can see what I

    8 stated a moment ago. And it says that in document

    9 number -- just one moment please, 239, on page 1, it

    10 states that Borobon Zvenivic and the PPN Zuti, the

    11 yellows of the Frankopan Brigade, which means this

    12 special purpose unit was within the composition of the

    13 Frankopan Brigade.

    14 And that is what happened in Novi Travnik,

    15 there were others, they were called Grasshoppers there,

    16 or any other term. But from this document you can see

    17 precisely what I claimed a moment ago.

    18 Q. Well, Brigadier, let me show you Defence

    19 Exhibit 213, which is the report that was issued by the

    20 military police after Zuti and his men broke one of

    21 their members out of the military prison in Kaonik.

    22 You talked about that report, and you talked about that

    23 being a significant event in Central Bosnia; isn't that

    24 correct?

    25 A. Yes, this was a significant event, first of

  13. 1 all, because the members of, with PZO arms came to the

    2 command of the military police, so as to influence the

    3 outcome related to the detainees from their unit.

    4 Q. Brigadier, as the chief of operations did

    5 Blaskic ever issue an order to arrest, to investigate,

    6 to detain or to otherwise discipline any member or Zuti

    7 or any member of his unit for this outrageous piece of

    8 conduct that you discussed during your direct

    9 testimony?

    10 A. As far as I recall, yes, an investigation was

    11 initiated. The outcome of it is not known, and the

    12 punishment, the sanctions proclaimed are not known.

    13 Had I, if I had the document, I would recall it,

    14 perhaps, as I do the event. But I do know that an

    15 investigation was initiated.

    16 Q. So, Brigadier, you recall the event, but you

    17 don't recall the result of any investigation of this

    18 outrageous event; is that your testimony?

    19 A. I do not remember the outcome of the

    20 investigation. I said that as far as investigations

    21 are concerned, I told you what I can say about it. If

    22 somebody conducted an investigation, in this case I

    23 imagine this should have been the security service.

    24 Q. Well, Brigadier, let me ask you another

    25 question: So, you said there are PPN units that Zuti,

  14. 1 that Blaskic could have disciplined, but other special

    2 purpose units, like the Vitezovi, that Blaskic could

    3 not discipline; is that right?

    4 A. Yes, that's right.

    5 Q. When did it become evident to Blaskic and to

    6 you and to other members in the HVO staff that members

    7 of the Vitezovi had committed war crimes?

    8 A. I personally, I personally did not have any

    9 concrete facts or events proving that the Vitezovi unit

    10 had committed a crime.

    11 Q. Did Blaskic?

    12 A. As far as I know, he did not. But if I

    13 didn't know, and I'm speaking in my own name, because

    14 had General Blaskic known I would have known, too.

    15 Q. So, as far as you know, there were no facts

    16 in the possession of either Blaskic or you that the

    17 Vitezovi had committed any war crimes at all; is that

    18 your testimony?

    19 A. Please, I am responsible for the Vitezovi

    20 unit as a whole. But whether an individual from

    21 Vitezovi, or a group of five or ten, or six people

    22 committed certain war crimes, that I cannot confirm.

    23 But, the unit, as such, whether it received orders from

    24 General Blaskic, and whether they did that, I don't

    25 know. Or rather I know they never got the order to do

  15. 1 that.

    2 MR. NOBILO: Mr. President, there is a

    3 mistranslation. The witness said that he is

    4 responsible, but he meant that he was responding, that

    5 he is replying to the question. And answering a

    6 question and answering to someone is a different

    7 thing. So, please let us clarify this with the

    8 witness. Is he answerable for the actions of the

    9 Vitezovi, or is he answering the question put to him?

    10 JUDGE JORDA: What was the question,

    11 Mr. Kehoe?

    12 MR. KEHOE: We're moving down on the list,

    13 I'm not sure what the translation was. The folks in

    14 the translation booth translated what the witness

    15 said. If they want to ask in redirect to clarify it, I

    16 invite them to do so. The time is running out, I have

    17 questions I would like to get through before this.

    18 MR. HAYMAN: If we could have a copy of that

    19 page of the transcript for, if the Court can provide

    20 that, we don't have a way to generate that immediately;

    21 otherwise it's lost, that's why Mr. Nobilo mentioned

    22 it, because if we don't mention it, it's lost.

    23 JUDGE JORDA: Registrar, can we have a copy

    24 of that page?

    25 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, of course.

  16. 1 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Kehoe, continue, you still

    2 have three minutes.

    3 MR. KEHOE:

    4 Q. Brigadier, when was the first time that you

    5 and Blaskic and the other headquarters concluded that

    6 the 4th military police had committed war crimes?

    7 A. I don't have interpretation.

    8 JUDGE JORDA: Is it working now? Do you hear

    9 now, Brigadier?

    10 A. I never, in 1993, or today, was in the

    11 opportunity, or did I have at my disposal facts that

    12 would show that the military police had committed war

    13 crimes.

    14 Q. Brigadier, let me ask you some questions. To

    15 your knowledge as chief of operations and as the deputy

    16 commander, did Blaskic ever arrest, punish, discipline,

    17 or dismiss any HVO commander or soldier for burning

    18 Muslim property, for destroying Muslim sacral objects,

    19 such as mosques, for killing Muslim civilians or

    20 non-combatants, for forcing Muslim civilians and

    21 prisoners of war to dig trenches, for using Muslims and

    22 prisoners of war as human shields, plundering and

    23 looting Muslim property, unlawfully detaining Muslim

    24 civilians or unlawfully detaining Muslim civilians at a

    25 headquarters which is likely to be armed by hostile

  17. 1 fire; all of those things, do you know of Blaskic ever

    2 arresting, punishing, disciplining any commander or any

    3 subordinate for any of that stuff, at any time? And if

    4 you do, please tell the Judges about it.

    5 A. I am not aware of that, but I do know the

    6 following: That for destroying the mosque in Kiseljak

    7 he issued orders to investigate this event; that he

    8 issued orders to prohibit most strictly the destruction

    9 of mosques, and unsoldierly conduct with civilians; and

    10 everything else, as far as actions towards civilians is

    11 concerned, and which is in contravention to the Geneva

    12 Conventions, I said General Blaskic, that he did have

    13 the name and surname of -- had General Blaskic had the

    14 name and surname of the person who had burned and

    15 looted, he would have prosecuted him.

    16 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, I'm almost

    17 completed these are the last three questions.

    18 Q. Brigadier, take the Kiseljak mosque. After

    19 that issue of the destruction of the Kiseljak mosque

    20 came to the attention of Blaskic, was anybody in the

    21 HVO prosecuted or disciplined for the destruction of

    22 the mosque in Kiseljak?

    23 A. As far as the mosque in Kiseljak is

    24 concerned, the order that we saw here, I don't know

    25 whether it was introduced by the Defence or the

  18. 1 Prosecution, it is evident that General Blaskic ordered

    2 the commander of the operative group, or rather the

    3 commander of the Brigade Ban Jelacic, to investigate

    4 and ascertain facts related to this event. The reasons

    5 for this are well-known to us.

    6 Q. Excuse me, I hate to interrupt, Mr.

    7 President, with the time constraints; the question is a

    8 yes or no.

    9 Did you, was anybody disciplined for the

    10 destruction of the Kiseljak mosque? Yes or no.

    11 A. As far as I know, nobody was by General

    12 Blaskic. Now, whether the commander of the Ban Jelacic

    13 Brigade, according to the orders received from General

    14 Blaskic, did he get a name or surname and take action,

    15 that I don't know, but as far as I know, General

    16 Blaskic did not.

    17 Q. Now, when you were serving as a deputy

    18 military prosecutor, was anybody disciplined in the HVO

    19 for any of the crimes that we talked about?

    20 Was anybody disciplined for any of these

    21 crimes directed against the Muslim population; the

    22 burning of property, the destroying of mosques, killing

    23 of Muslim civilians, et cetera? To your knowledge, was

    24 anybody disciplined in the HVO?

    25 A. For such events, as far as I know, no one was

  19. 1 punished, and I already said why there were no names,

    2 but may I recall -- Mr. President, may I just tell you

    3 one thing?

    4 JUDGE JORDA: Brigadier, I think that you

    5 have explained the reasons. You don't have to justify

    6 yourself. We're simply asking a question. The

    7 question was to know whether, in fact, there were or

    8 there were not -- there was or there wasn't any

    9 punishment. That's point of the question. Do you

    10 still have another question, Mr. Kehoe?

    11 MR. KEHOE: One final question.

    12 JUDGE JORDA: This is the last. You're

    13 forcing me to be like a football referee, because we're

    14 counting this down. I know there were technical

    15 interruptions but it's the last question, Mr. Kehoe.

    16 MR. KEHOE: Brigadier, the bottom line is; as

    17 far as you know, no HVO members are either prosecuted

    18 or disciplined by the military authorities for the

    19 crimes that we talked about, the burning of Muslim

    20 property, the destroying of Muslim sacred sites, et

    21 cetera.

    22 JUDGE JORDA: That's not a question,

    23 Mr. Kehoe. Ask your question. You're making a comment

    24 about the answer of the -- so you're going to finish

    25 with your comment or you're going to finish with the

  20. 1 question? You were allowed one question, no comments.

    2 MR. KEHOE:

    3 Q. Brigadier, no one was ever disciplined and no

    4 one was ever prosecuted for any of these crimes; isn't

    5 that right?

    6 MR. NOBILO: Mr. President --

    7 Mr. President --

    8 JUDGE JORDA: The question was asked.

    9 Mr. Nobilo, do you have amenity you'd like to make?

    10 MR. NOBILO: Exactly what you said just now.

    11 Thank you.

    12 JUDGE JORDA: I think that you have finished,

    13 Mr. Kehoe.

    14 MR. KEHOE: I have finished, Mr. President.

    15 JUDGE JORDA: This is for the Defence and for

    16 the Prosecution: When the parties are limited in time,

    17 they must ask questions very directly and very

    18 concisely. Remember, Mr. Kehoe, we could have been

    19 more concise and more direct for several days already.

    20 All right. The cross-examination is now

    21 finished. You know that according to the Rules and

    22 Statutes the Defence counsel can now use the witness

    23 for re-examination. You spoke about how many -- how

    24 much time? Do you think that you're going to finish by

    25 1.00, Mr. Nobilo? There's going to be a break, as we

  21. 1 ordinarily have, around 11.20.

    2 MR. NOBILO: I'm afraid that according to my

    3 calculations, after more than two weeks of

    4 cross-examination the two hours or two and a half hours

    5 would be the minimum time I require, but I'm really

    6 going to act in haste, and I'm going to put a minimum

    7 of questions and we have no intention of keeping the

    8 Brigadier longer than necessary.

    9 JUDGE JORDA: I would like to speak with my

    10 colleagues once again. We spoke a little bit together

    11 last night, but I would like to consult them again.

    12 Mr. Nobilo, Mr. Hayman, for your

    13 re-examination you have until 1.00, and then you will

    14 have 30 minutes when we begin again in the afternoon.

    15 That's 30 minutes between 2.30 and 3.00.

    16 MR. HAYMAN: So it be, Mr. President, we

    17 respect your order, but we object, having placed us

    18 under an overall limit, which would properly

    19 incentivise the Defence to use its time wisely, to

    20 place specific time limits on our examination,

    21 particularly two and half or less than two and a half

    22 hours after two weeks of cross-examination, I think

    23 that is inconsistent with the framework that the Court

    24 established in terms of an overall time limit.

    25 If there is an overall time limit, this is

  22. 1 the Defence's time, and if Mr. Nobilo needs two and a

    2 half hours or two hours and 45 minutes, we submit that

    3 hold us to our overall limit, but you should not place

    4 this type of additional limit on us, because it has no

    5 effect on the overall length of the trial. Unlike a

    6 limit on the Prosecutor's time, he was not using his

    7 time, he was using our time, as I understand the

    8 Court's ruling, during cross-examination. So we were

    9 not similarly situated with the Prosecutor, and there

    10 is not the same reason or justification to put a

    11 specific time limit on redirect. I think Mr. Nobilo

    12 has said he's going to move quickly and expeditiously.

    13 JUDGE JORDA: That may give you an answer.

    14 Let me remind you from the Rules and Statute, the

    15 Judges have a right to say at what point they consider

    16 that they have been sufficiently informed about all of

    17 the questions that were dealt with. That's the basic

    18 and legal point. In fact, we could go on and on

    19 speaking about the time that you've been given, and,

    20 Mr. Hayman, you could even be given, as part of the

    21 Defence time, another eight days for your

    22 re-examination, but we Judges, we consider that after

    23 three weeks of hearing this witness, it is now time to

    24 conclude, and that by giving you two or two and a half

    25 hours for re-examination is sufficient to allow you to

  23. 1 clarify the questions that you want to ask, and which

    2 allow you to respond to some parts of the

    3 cross-examination. Let us not waste any more time

    4 now.

    5 Judge Riad says that you yourself are the one

    6 who said it was for two hours or two and a half hours.

    7 Let's not waste any more time. If you agree go, Mr.

    8 Nobilo, go right into your re-examination,

    9 understanding that it will be over at 3.00. Go ahead.

    10 Re-examined by Mr. Nobilo:

    11 MR. NOBILO: Thank you, Mr. President.

    12 So at this point in time we start, and I

    13 suggest that we place on the ELMO this document so that

    14 the numbers could be seen, please. Could I please

    15 approach the easel?

    16 THE REGISTRAR: Mr. Nobilo, the documents

    17 which you are giving us here are D406 and 408 and 404;

    18 is that correct?

    19 MR. NOBILO: And 407 and 408, but it's not

    20 important to have all those documents now, but for

    21 orienting the Prosecutors.

    22 Q. Brigadier Marin, the Presiding Judge,

    23 Mr. Jorda, also said -- noted that the numbers on the

    24 orders of General Blaskic were rising, jumping. I

    25 think that was the word used by the Judge. So could

  24. 1 you explain to the Court how these numbers were formed

    2 by using, as an example, some of the documents we

    3 already introduced, D405, D404, D406, D407 and D408.

    4 So do you please explain to the Court how these numbers

    5 were established?

    6 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, the

    7 establishment of numbers in 1993, in the command of the

    8 operative zone, was defined by the very internal

    9 organisation of this command. The establishment of a

    10 number was done in the following way: I draw your

    11 attention to the following schematic. Number 01,

    12 number 01, that is a document, a document. That is to

    13 say, when a document is --

    14 JUDGE JORDA: Just a moment, please. On the

    15 screen -- I don't see it on the screen. What is it, --

    16 all right. I think we should see it on the screen.

    17 A. This is 406 now; right?

    18 JUDGE JORDA: Yes, all right.

    19 MR. NOBILO: Perhaps the camera could zoom in

    20 on this number -- this document.

    21 A. Mr. President, that is to say, every

    22 document -- every document where General Blaskic's

    23 text -- name is at the end of the text, that means

    24 that his document, and the reference number is 01.

    25 Now, we do have on the monitor 406. That is

  25. 1 this document, and also the same goes for number 405.

    2 That is to say that General Blaskic had the number 01.

    3 The head of staff had number 02. This is a document of

    4 the head of staff. This is document 407.

    5 MR. NOBILO:

    6 Q. Just a minute, please.

    7 A. Or document 408. It's all the same.

    8 Document 408 shows the same thing. Further on, the

    9 operational department that I headed had number 03, et

    10 cetera.

    11 That is to say, that in the command of the

    12 operative zone, the establishment of numbers, these

    13 reference numbers was conducted as follows: We had

    14 organisational units, and then we started from the

    15 commander, 01; the head of staff, 02; operative --

    16 operations, 03; and then 04 was logistics.

    17 Q. To the best of your recollection, how many

    18 departments were there -- or, rather, how many numbers

    19 were there such as 01, 02, et cetera, that were used

    20 when setting up this reference number?

    21 A. Documents. To the best of my recollection,

    22 when these numbers were allocated in the command from

    23 01 onwards, as far as I can remember, it went from 01

    24 to 010. I could put this much more clearly if I had

    25 all the departments here now, but --

  26. 1 Q. Let us try to shorten these proceedings, our

    2 time is short, and what did this reference number

    3 consist of, what numbers?

    4 A. Reference number -- when this reference

    5 number is set up, it consisted of the following: That

    6 is to say, of the person who is the signatory of the

    7 document. If it is the commander, then it's his

    8 number. Then the month when the document was

    9 created -- the month when the document was created, and

    10 also the registered number -- I mean, that was

    11 registered in the book that was kept.

    12 MR. HAYMAN: He's pointing to something and

    13 the translation comes five, or six or ten seconds

    14 later. The Judges --

    15 JUDGE JORDA: I think that Mr. Hayman is

    16 objecting to his own witness.

    17 MR. NOBILO: No, but we are under pressure,

    18 under time pressure.

    19 MR. HAYMAN: We have to slow down,

    20 Mr. President. This is very important, very

    21 complicated, very detailed, and it may take half an

    22 hour to explain but it's very important, and I'm just

    23 trying to --

    24 JUDGE JORDA: Ask your witness, Mr. Hayman.

    25 Mr. Hayman, the problem of time relates very much to

  27. 1 the way that the witness answers. I wanted to say that

    2 to you a while back. You are now suffering yourself in

    3 that the witness is unable to answer concisely. You

    4 can't do anything about it, nor can I, and we are

    5 wasting a lot of time.

    6 Brigadier, try to be clear and concise when

    7 you give your answers. We can ask this from an

    8 important military official. It can't be asked of all

    9 witnesses, but we can ask you. Each time you're asked

    10 a question, you go into very long comments, and this is

    11 why we have spent three weeks. Try to answer -- this

    12 is not the Prosecution but the Defence asking the

    13 question. Try to answer clearly and concisely.

    14 Mr. Nobilo, ask your question again but ask

    15 it clearly, and think about the interpreters. And this

    16 is for my benefit as well.

    17 MR. NOBILO: Thank you, Mr. President. Thank

    18 you, Mr. President. I shall try to guide the witness

    19 with my questions so that we would shorten this.

    20 Q. So, Brigadier, you said that every department

    21 had its own designating number from 01 to 010?

    22 A. Yes.

    23 Q. And that that is the first part of the

    24 reference number?

    25 A. Yes.

  28. 1 Q. What is the second part of the reference

    2 number?

    3 A. The second part of the reference number is

    4 the month when the document was created.

    5 Q. How is the third part of the reference number

    6 established?

    7 A. The third part of the reference number is

    8 established on the basis of the order in which

    9 documents arrive in the General Services Unit. So, for

    10 example, if there were 10 documents registered before a

    11 new document arrives, then the next document that

    12 arrives will be number 11, the document after that will

    13 be 12, et cetera, et cetera.

    14 Q. Is it your testimony that in the general

    15 office you had one book of registry and one series of

    16 numbers?

    17 A. Yes, that is so, and you can see this from

    18 this schematic on the establishment of a reference

    19 number.

    20 Q. Does that mean, for example, that when

    21 Colonel Blaskic, in document 405, is number 271, and

    22 after that you take up number -- the next numbers, and

    23 all the members of the operations department of Central

    24 Bosnia go in the same order, and then when Colonel

    25 Blaskic writes his next document, then there is a

  29. 1 difference from 271 to 366 in the same month?

    2 A. Yes, precisely. That is what it means. That

    3 is what I explained before you put your question.

    4 Q. Is that the reason why one person, regardless

    5 of whether it is Colonel Blaskic or you as the barer of

    6 number 03, have such different serial numbers within

    7 the same day and the same week?

    8 A. Yes, that is the main difference involved.

    9 And the difference between numbers is affected by the

    10 number of the documents that was created that day in

    11 the command, whether it was in logistics in the

    12 command, in the commander's office. So the sum of all

    13 these documents that were created in that day is equal

    14 to the number of documents that were registered that

    15 day. The registration of every document went in a

    16 certain order.

    17 If my document was created at 12.00, it was

    18 registered as being created at 12.00. If I made a

    19 document at 3.00 and if somebody else used reference

    20 numbers in the meantime, then perhaps it will be a

    21 difference of 3, 5 or 10 numbers. That is the kind of

    22 system we had of reference numbers in the command of

    23 the operative zone.

    24 Q. Brigadier, could you tell us, to the best

    25 your recollection --

  30. 1 MR. KEHOE: Thank you.

    2 MR. NOBILO:

    3 Q. Brigadier, could you tell us, to the best of

    4 your recollection, when did you introduce this system

    5 of numbers and when did you move on to a different

    6 system of numbers?

    7 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, this system of

    8 numbers, this one here, as far as I remember, we

    9 introduced in mid December 1992, or the end of December

    10 1992. I cannot recall the exact date. And this was

    11 internal within the command of the operative zone.

    12 When we got, from the Ministry of Defence,

    13 concrete instructions with numbers, then in the command

    14 of the operative zone and in the subordinate units that

    15 were within the command of the operative zone, we gave

    16 this assignment and we acted according to the

    17 instructions of the Ministry of Defence. To the best

    18 of my recollection, such a document did not arrive from

    19 the Ministry until the end of 1993 or the beginning of

    20 1994.

    21 Q. Brigadier, what we see here on this paper,

    22 who wrote this?

    23 A. I made this schematic on the basis of the

    24 documents that were introduced by the Defence and the

    25 Prosecution, because these documents were numbered this

  31. 1 document, this document, this document, so that on

    2 every copy that has one one could see how this number

    3 was made.

    4 MR. NOBILO: I kindly ask the registrar to

    5 tender this -- to register this, and I tender it into

    6 evidence.

    7 JUDGE JORDA: Give it a number, a very simple

    8 number. What will the number be?

    9 THE REGISTRAR: It will be D411.

    10 JUDGE JORDA: Thank you.

    11 MR. NOBILO:

    12 Q. Brigadier, let's move to another area. At

    13 the beginning of the cross-examination you answered the

    14 Prosecutor's questions as to the numbers of the

    15 commands in the operative zone, and you introduced a

    16 document which stated that the operative zone and the

    17 command of the operative zone should have 105

    18 individuals. The Defence showed you a document dated

    19 August 1993, as opposed to the first document which was

    20 1992, which stated that the command should have 60

    21 people. Could you tell the Trial Chamber -- please,

    22 now, you are working in the Federal army, you are head

    23 of the main staff of what is the equivalent of the

    24 corps for the operative zone.

    25 Tell the Court, please, in peacetime, that is

  32. 1 to say not in wartime, effectively speaking, how many

    2 people work in the command in the Croatian component of

    3 the army of the Federation?

    4 A. Mr. President, in the command of the -- and

    5 the staff today in peacetime, we have about 109, 110

    6 people working there.

    7 Q. In peacetime, how many soldiers do you have?

    8 A. In peacetime, that is to say today, the first

    9 guard has about -- corps has about 10,500 soldiers.

    10 Q. And if there were to be a war, how many would

    11 you be?

    12 A. In wartime, that is to say wartime

    13 formations, the command of the first guard formation

    14 would have -- the corps would have 220,000 (sic)

    15 people.

    16 Q. Now, on the 16th of April the war broke out

    17 with the Muslims, and up to the first cease-fire of the

    18 20th of April, that is to say in the four days of the

    19 most intensive fighting, how many of you were in the

    20 command of the Central Bosnia operative zone?

    21 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, the days you

    22 mentioned, that is to say, from the 16th up to the

    23 cease-fire, in the command of the operative zone there

    24 were seven people working there.

    25 Q. There has been a mistake. It says that the

  33. 1 corps has 220,000 people. That was an error. In the

    2 command of the corps in wartime the figure was 220

    3 individuals. So there has been a misinterpretation, it

    4 was not 220,000 but 220.

    5 I'm going to ask you again, Brigadier, in

    6 case of war, in your corps, which is the equivalent for

    7 the operative zone, how many members would the staff

    8 have?

    9 A. There should be 220, 220 workers, 220 members

    10 of the command.

    11 Q. Thank you. Let us move on to another area.

    12 We have been speaking at length about the educational

    13 and training structure, and you maintained that in the

    14 operative zone of Central Bosnia there were only three

    15 officers who had military academy training and

    16 experience in command posts, officers' posts, from the

    17 JNA. The Prosecutor showed you a series of names of

    18 individuals who were reservists, reserve officers, and

    19 who, during their military service, for six months

    20 attended a school for reserve officers.

    21 Do you still maintain that you did not have

    22 educated officers for the types of assignments and

    23 professional tasks in the operative zone of Central

    24 Bosnia in 1992 and 1993?

    25 A. Yes, I maintain that now, as well, and I note

  34. 1 that in the brigades and in the command of the

    2 operative zone, that is to say of all the officers who

    3 were on duty there, nobody was capacitated to perform

    4 tasks that were entrusted to him at that time. And me

    5 too, as the commander of the operative department, was

    6 not trained to perform the assignments I was given

    7 because I had not been to the corresponding schools to

    8 perform those assignments, but the situation was such

    9 and I performed my duties.

    10 Q. Brigadier, tell the Trial Chamber, please,

    11 when somebody goes to school for -- a reserve officer

    12 school for six months, which the JNA organised during

    13 military service, what rank would he receive?

    14 A. After emerging from this particular school

    15 for non-commissioned officers, the rank would be First

    16 Lieutenant. When he goes back to his civilian duties

    17 and he has his wartime assignments, in his years of

    18 service, that is while he is a reservist, unless he

    19 performs professional duties he could reach the rank of

    20 Captain First Class. That is to say, he could perform

    21 the duty after commander of a company and have command

    22 over 110 to 120 individuals -- soldiers.

    23 Q. Could you tell the Court, please, in the

    24 command of the operative zone, did anybody -- was

    25 anybody capacitated to perform the functions command of

  35. 1 the main staff?

    2 A. In the command of the operative zone, of all

    3 of us who were there at the time, nobody had been

    4 trained to perform the functions he was, in fact,

    5 performing, and neither was General Blaskic. Why?

    6 Because General Blaskic was trained and capacitated for

    7 a company commander. He had the rank of Captain First

    8 Class, but he had not graduated from any command school

    9 or main staff school, and he was performing functions

    10 of a two star general.

    11 Q. Brigadier, at least on paper, at one point

    12 you had 12 brigades, as much as 12 brigades. Now, tell

    13 the Court, to command a brigade in every conventional

    14 type of army, what rank must you hold and what kind of

    15 experience must you have?

    16 A. In order to command a brigade in an organised

    17 army, you have to be a Colonel and have completed a

    18 school for commanding officers.

    19 Q. Of the 12 commanders of the brigade, did any

    20 one of them have such schooling? Had he completed --

    21 graduated from a school of that kind?

    22 A. None of our brigade commanders had graduated

    23 from any school of that kind.

    24 Q. So you had 12 brigades, and on an average,

    25 each brigade had, let us say, three battalions, which

  36. 1 makes a total of 36 battalions. So tell the Court,

    2 please, the commanders of the 36 battalions, did you

    3 have a single man commanding one of the 36 battalions

    4 having the prescribed educational level and training to

    5 command a battalion?

    6 A. No, we did not, because an officer, if he

    7 were to have the prescribed educational levels to

    8 perform battalion commander, would have to have the

    9 rank of major, he would have had to have completed

    10 military academy, and have completed a course in

    11 command, and in our battalions we did not have a single

    12 individual of that type.

    13 Q. Now, if we had 36 battalions and each

    14 battalion had, let us say, three to four companies,

    15 without going into mathematical calculation, we are

    16 talking about 100 commanders of the companies, as you

    17 had reserve officers who were capacitated to command

    18 companies, can you then tell us whether at the level of

    19 companies you had trained officers who were able to

    20 command companies?

    21 A. No, we did not have trained and capacitated

    22 commanders of companies. Why not? Because the

    23 officers who had been equipped and trained to command a

    24 company, had completed school, that they were at posts

    25 of the commanders of battalions and brigades in the

  37. 1 commands of brigades, and in the commands of the

    2 operative zone. So that the commanders of the

    3 companies and platoons, in practical terms, were people

    4 without any kind of military training. That is to say,

    5 they were individuals who were chosen by the members of

    6 the units to be commanded by them in their villages and

    7 in the places where these units were set up and

    8 organised.

    9 Q. You said that Tihomir Blaskic, the accused,

    10 had the rank of First Class Captain and had been

    11 trained to command a company. How many men does a

    12 company have?

    13 A. A company has between 100 to 120 men,

    14 depending on the kind of company it is. One hundred to

    15 one hundred and twenty soldiers.

    16 Q. Tell the Court, please, which rank and how

    17 many years of experience would a commander have to have

    18 of an operative zone or corps, whichever you like?

    19 A. According to our organisation so far, and the

    20 first guard corps, which is based on NATO standards,

    21 the commander of an operative zone or commander of a

    22 corps would have to be a two star general, and he would

    23 have had to have completed his military academy or

    24 military school, staff schools, war schools, command

    25 schools, and at least 15 to 20 years of active service

  38. 1 in the army with, of course, very good results in his

    2 work, and tried and tested capabilities of command.

    3 Q. The Prosecutor showed you document 476, which

    4 represented the structure of the fourth corps of the

    5 Yugoslav People's Army. Tell the Court, please, having

    6 looked at the document and studied it, what were you

    7 able to ascertain? How many officers and what level

    8 was envisaged for the command of the corps of that

    9 kind?

    10 A. Having analysed the structure of the

    11 commanding officers of the 4th Corps offered by the

    12 Prosecutor, I ascertained the following: In that

    13 particular corps there should have been one officer

    14 with rank of General, 62 higher ranking officers, that

    15 is to say Majors or Colonels, 25 First Class Captains,

    16 and if we add this together, 91 officers in the command

    17 of a corps of the rank shown to us and in the documents

    18 shown to us by the Prosecutor.

    19 Q. And you had seven during the April war?

    20 A. Yes, that is -- those are the facts.

    21 MR. NOBILO: Mr. President, let me move on to

    22 another area now, and I would have to prepare some

    23 documents for that. So perhaps we could take a break

    24 at this point.

    25 JUDGE JORDA: Yes. The interpreters also

  39. 1 need a break. We'll take a 20-minute break.

    2 --- Recess taken at 11.20 a.m.

    3 --- On resuming at 11.50 a.m.

    4 JUDGE JORDA: We will now resume the

    5 hearing. Have the accused brought in, please.

    6 (The accused entered court).

    7 JUDGE JORDA: I am sorry for the delay. I am

    8 adjusting, but the clocks are not all the same in the

    9 Tribunal. You're not going to have 30 minutes, but 40

    10 minutes this afternoon, Mr. Nobilo, so you can be

    11 reassured. But that does not apply to the Prosecution,

    12 or did not apply to the Prosecution this morning.

    13 Mr. Nobilo, go ahead.

    14 MR. NOBILO: Thank you, Mr. President.

    15 Q. Let us move to a new area. The Prosecutor

    16 showed you documents from which it emerged that in the

    17 Operative Zone you were commanded to determine in which

    18 units there were members of the Croatian army, the HV;

    19 and you said that you received a command from the main

    20 staff and that you further sent it further down the

    21 line.

    22 Tell the Court, please, what was the reason

    23 for you to issue a command to the brigades to determine

    24 who belonged, and whether in your area there were

    25 members of the Croatian army, although you knew there

  40. 1 were no such members? Why did you issue this order?

    2 What was the reason for issuing an order under these

    3 circumstances?

    4 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, the order by

    5 General Blaskic, the commander of the Operative Zone,

    6 concerning data on whether there were officers of the

    7 Croatian army in our brigades was written and came into

    8 being on the basis of an order from the head of the

    9 main staff.

    10 It was on the basis of that order that we had

    11 to write our own order, in turn, and in the text, and

    12 according to its contents, it is exactly the same as

    13 the commander of the main staff. Had the commander of

    14 the main staff sent a questionnaire as to whether we

    15 had formations linked to this, then we could answer on

    16 the basis of our facts and figures; but the order was

    17 given, so it had to be dispatched to the commands of

    18 subordinate units, as I said.

    19 Q. However, this order, its preamble does not

    20 refer to the commander of the chief of the main staff,

    21 which you issued in the Operative Zone; how do you

    22 explain this?

    23 A. Well, why there is no preamble, that is to

    24 say, the preamble on the title of the document, on the

    25 basis of which our order was written, as I know the man

  41. 1 who wrote it, he does not have military training at

    2 all, and I think that is one of the main reasons that

    3 is not stated here, because he wrote this order in a

    4 non-professional way.

    5 Q. Would you now take a look, please, at two

    6 documents, one of them is 406, P406/26, and the other

    7 is 406/27, and another document, 406, was issued by

    8 Tihomir Blaskic and the Central Bosnia Operative Zone,

    9 and the second document, 406/27, was issued by Zeljko

    10 Siljeg, the commander of the Operative Zone of

    11 north-western Herzegovina.

    12 And to make matters short, I am going to read

    13 Blaskic's order, and what is required. With each of my

    14 sentences, you can read what Siljeg asked for.

    15 And it is an order from the Operative Zone

    16 dated the 5th of October, 1992, and the order of the

    17 Operative Zone for north-western Herzegovina of the 6th

    18 of October. So, I'm going to read your Operative Zone

    19 Central Bosnia order.

    20 The first thing you asked for is the first

    21 name, the father's name and the last name.

    22 A. Yes.

    23 Q. Just one moment, please. Now, read out

    24 exactly what Zeljko Siljeg asked for in the 2nd

    25 Operative Zone a day later.

  42. 1 A. The command to the north-western Herzegovina

    2 Brigades with its headquarters in Tomislavgrad, and he

    3 is asking of its units the first name, father's name

    4 and last name, he is asking for that, too.

    5 Q. And now I'm reading the second line of the

    6 order: The date of birth, the place and municipality

    7 of birth, that is what Blaskic is calling for; and he

    8 is calling for the same; the date, place and

    9 municipality of birth.

    10 And now I'm reading the third line of

    11 Blaskic's order, which is the personal number, rank and

    12 a number of the promotion of the decree. What is

    13 Siljeg asking for?

    14 A. The same, the JNB, the personal

    15 identification number, and the rank and promotion

    16 order.

    17 Q. So, Mr. President, everything else is

    18 identical, too, so this will save us reading the

    19 document in full.

    20 What do you deduce from the fact that in two

    21 orders in two Operative Zones the same wording, the

    22 same text is used, the same commas, if you will, and in

    23 fact, it is absolutely identical; what can you conclude

    24 from that?

    25 A. From this I conclude that this order, in the

  43. 1 command of the Operative Zone, was written on the basis

    2 of the order from the commander of the main staff,

    3 which sent his order to all the Operative Zones, and

    4 here we have an example of the Operative Zone for

    5 north-western Herzegovina.

    6 According to the date of the document, you

    7 can see these two documents were written on the basis

    8 of the command from the commander of the main staff.

    9 Q. Now, may I have documents 406, P407?

    10 These are also two orders issued by Blaskic

    11 and Zeljko Siljeg, that is to say, commanders of two

    12 Operative Zones, both orders are dated the 12th of

    13 April, 1994; right?

    14 A. Yes.

    15 Q. I'm going to read a text from Blaskic's

    16 order, the first sentence, point 1, and then you read

    17 point 1 from Siljeg.

    18 So, Blaskic says, "Submit a list of all

    19 officers of--

    20 MR. KEHOE: Excuse me, Your Honour, what

    21 exhibit is that?

    22 MR. NOBILO: 406/54 and 406/55, Prosecutor's

    23 Exhibit.

    24 MR. KEHOE: I understand. You didn't mention

    25 those, or they didn't come across in the translation.

  44. 1 MR. NOBILO:

    2 Q. So, we have two orders which speak of

    3 establishing a list of Croatian officers into the HVO.

    4 I'm reading point 1 of Blaskic's order from the 12th of

    5 April, 1993.

    6 "Submit a list of all officers of the

    7 Croatian army in your units and commands."

    8 Please read point 1 of the order issued by

    9 Zeljko Siljeg from Operative Zone Central Bosnia dated

    10 the same date, that is to say, the 12th of April 1993,

    11 north-west Herzegovina that is.

    12 A. "Submit the list of all Croatian army

    13 officers present in your units and headquarters."

    14 Q. I am reading the second point of the Tihomir

    15 Blaskic's order.

    16 "In addition to the name, give the father's

    17 name, last name, number of the order with which he was

    18 sent to the HVO, rank and number of transfer decree,"

    19 and now there is something illegible. We cannot see

    20 quite clearly because it is illegible. Could you

    21 please read these few words from the order of Colonel

    22 Siljeg?

    23 A. Rank and transfer --

    24 Q. No, no, from the very beginning, read point

    25 2.

  45. 1 A. In the order of the Operative Zone of

    2 north-west Herzegovina it says: "In addition to name,

    3 father's name and last name, submit the orders which

    4 authorised his referral to the HVO, rank and number of

    5 decree of promotion, (reserve and career), the duty he

    6 is currently carrying out in your army and the duties

    7 he has carried out so far."

    8 Q. Brigadier, tell us, these two texts, are they

    9 literally identical?

    10 A. Yes, these two texts are absolutely

    11 identical, and they were created on the basis of the

    12 order of the head of the main staff, which is clear

    13 from the preamble of the command issued by the

    14 commander of north-west Herzegovina, and which is also

    15 obvious from the date that was created when this was

    16 created in the Operative Zone of Central Bosnia, and of

    17 north-west Herzegovina respectively, and that is the

    18 12th of April, 1993.

    19 Q. So, the order from the Operative Zone of

    20 north-west Herzegovina has a preamble, and it is shown

    21 on which basis this order is issued, and the order from

    22 Central Bosnia does not have a preamble. Could you

    23 read the preamble of the order from north-west

    24 Herzegovina?

    25 A. "Pursuant to the order issued by the main

  46. 1 staff of the HZ H-B number 01-618/83 of the 12th of

    2 April, 1993, and with the purpose of completing the

    3 records and defining the status of Croatian army

    4 officers in the HVO, I issue the following order."

    5 Q. All right. So, do you still maintain that

    6 you issued orders on checking whether there are members

    7 of the Croatian army in your Operative Zone?

    8 A. Exclusively on the basis of the orders issued

    9 by the higher command, yes, I maintain that assertion,

    10 and I maintain the assertion that in the command and

    11 the units of the operative command of Central Bosnia

    12 there were no officers of the Croatian army or soldiers

    13 of the Croatian army.

    14 Q. Thank you. Let us move on to a new area.

    15 I'm asking for document 406/56, Prosecutor's Exhibit

    16 406/56.

    17 Brigadier, if you remember the Prosecutor

    18 showed you this document. This is a letter of the HVO

    19 of the Travnik municipality, that is to say, the

    20 civilian structures of the Travnik municipality sent to

    21 the president of the Republic of Croatia, Franjo

    22 Tudjman. I'm going to read out to you a quotation

    23 which I believe is relevant, and then I'm going to put

    24 a few questions to you.

    25 The quotation in the original is on page 2 in

  47. 1 the last section, where it says: "Dear Mr. President,"

    2 in the middle of this paragraph, "It would be helpful

    3 to us if, from the Republic of Croatia, which is being

    4 used as a country of transit, it would be very helpful

    5 if you would prevent the entry of foreign nationals

    6 which come from Islamic countries and who are fighting

    7 here in the ranks of the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina

    8 and who are fighting against everything that is

    9 Croatian and Christian here." And then the next

    10 section.

    11 "It would be very helpful if you would, once

    12 again, instruct your assistants to send to this area

    13 senior officers of the Croatian army headed by General

    14 Praljak to consolidate our units in the Lasva Valley."

    15 Brigadier, what is your comment, in view of

    16 the fact that the municipality of Travnik, that is to

    17 say, a civilian structure, is writing to the president

    18 of a different state?

    19 Is this something that should be customary?

    20 A. It is obvious from this letter that the

    21 municipal authorities are directly addressing the

    22 president of a state, which is to say that they are

    23 behaving as a state, as one state. About these

    24 problems, they should be writing to the central

    25 authorities of Herceg-Bosna, or of Bosnia and

  48. 1 Herzegovina; however, they don't do that.

    2 They are directly addressing the president of

    3 a state, and they are avoiding all other institutions,

    4 side stepping them. And this most evidently shows how

    5 municipal authorities behaved, and this is only one

    6 example.

    7 Q. All right, thank you. Another question. The

    8 civilian structures of one municipality ask for

    9 military officers which should come to the Lasva Valley

    10 and consolidate the defence; what does that say to you,

    11 and what is your comment on that?

    12 A. This directly speaks of the following: That

    13 municipal authorities have an influence over military

    14 affairs, and that they directly wish to influence

    15 personnel policies in the army.

    16 But it also shows another thing, which I kept

    17 highlighting here, and that is that the municipal

    18 authorities are concluding that there aren't any

    19 trained officers, that is to say, officers who are

    20 trained for the posts that they hold, and that they are

    21 trying to find them in this way, in another state.

    22 Q. Brigadier, please tell the Court, General

    23 Praljak, who was then a general in the Croatian army,

    24 with his officers, had he come to the Lasva Valley,

    25 what would that have meant? Who would have commanded

  49. 1 the Lasva Valley?

    2 A. Had General Praljak, as requested by the

    3 municipal authorities, come to the command of the

    4 Operative Zone, it is logical that, due to his rank, he

    5 would have been commanding the Operative Zone, and the

    6 officers who would have come with him would have

    7 performed certain duties instead of us who were there

    8 in the command of the Operative Zone.

    9 However, according to this letter, according

    10 to the request made by this letter, these officers

    11 never came. General Praljak never came to command the

    12 Operative Zone.

    13 Q. This letter was written on the 12th of April,

    14 1993. On the 16th of April, 1993, four days later, war

    15 broke out. In those four days, did anyone come from

    16 the Croatian army? You said that Praljak didn't come,

    17 but did anyone come from the Croatian army before you

    18 were fully surrounded?

    19 A. No one came from the Croatian army in this

    20 period of time to the command of the Operative Zone, or

    21 to the area covered by the Operative Zone of Central

    22 Bosnia.

    23 Q. All right. We shall refer very briefly to

    24 the next area. Why, from the 16th of April 1993, when

    25 the war with the Muslims broke out, and until the 20th

  50. 1 of April 1993 when some kind of a cease-fire was

    2 carried out and Blaskic went to Zenica for talks, why

    3 didn't anyone from the command of the Operative Zone go

    4 to the ground within those four days to check the units

    5 and to report directly to Blaskic as to what he saw at

    6 the combat positions and what he saw in the villages of

    7 the Lasva Valley?

    8 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, in my statement,

    9 when I was questioned by the Defence, I said that that

    10 morning when the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, the 16th

    11 of April, carried out attack against HVO units in the

    12 Lasva Valley in the command, there were only 7 of us

    13 there, and I was the only one involved in operations.

    14 And taking into account these numbers, it was

    15 impossible to do anything outside the command itself,

    16 and there wasn't anyone who could go to see the

    17 situation on the ground.

    18 Q. Let us move on to the next point. We spoke a

    19 lot about the principle of voluntariness. The

    20 Prosecutor showed you many documents from which it

    21 stems that Blaskic, on several occasions, in April,

    22 1992, in July, in September, in October and in

    23 November, 1992, and also in February, 1993, asked for

    24 this voluntariness to be abolished.

    25 Please tell this Court, Brigadier, what

  51. 1 conclusion do you draw from the fact that Blaskic has

    2 to repeat an average of every other month this kind of

    3 order? And if not, why did he not manage to do away

    4 with the principle of voluntariness in the HVO?

    5 A. It is true these orders were issued. Why

    6 were they issued? They were issued because on the

    7 ground they were not being carried out completely at

    8 all.

    9 In my judgement, and on the basis of what I

    10 know about the organisational set up of the army at

    11 that time in the area of the Lasva River Valley, or in

    12 the Operative Zone, is as follows: At that time units

    13 were established on a voluntary basis, that is to say,

    14 in the villages, and the commanders were elected, too.

    15 And practically this could not have been broken up.

    16 That is to say, people did not want this to be broken

    17 up.

    18 So, the units established in villages, and

    19 volunteers were defending their homes directly, and

    20 they have their own logic of behaviour which deviate

    21 from military principles and logic.

    22 I remember when I came to these units on

    23 various occasions, they would tell me, "we don't need

    24 any kind of commander, we are defending our own village

    25 and we know what we're going to do," that is exactly

  52. 1 the way it was.

    2 Q. Brigadier, tell the Court, nevertheless,

    3 generally speaking, was this principle of voluntariness

    4 broken up somehow? If so, when, under what

    5 circumstances?

    6 A. Now, when I analysed the situation during

    7 1993, I may state that October, November, December,

    8 1993, that the logic, according to which people acted,

    9 that is to say, that the principle of voluntariness had

    10 to be there was a bit changed. Why?

    11 We came to a different, into a different

    12 situation, and people realised that if they were not

    13 guided by military logic we would all go down the

    14 drain, or rather we could not defend ourselves, and

    15 that practically we would be expelled or that the HVO

    16 units would be defeated by the BH army.

    17 So, this is just a small step forward when

    18 people realised there was no way out of a given

    19 situation, and that after ten months or so they

    20 realised military logic is the kind of logic that one

    21 has to pursue both in a unit and in war.

    22 Q. Thank you, now we move on to a different

    23 subject. We are not going to offer any documents, in

    24 order to speed up matters, but for the purpose of the

    25 transcript, I wish to mention Prosecutor's Exhibit

  53. 1 481.

    2 The Prosecutor showed you this, and it says

    3 that special purpose units in the military police

    4 should recruit young men with such and such

    5 characteristics. So, one could derive from that

    6 document that some kind of selection was being carried

    7 out in the military police. And according to the

    8 Prosecutor's intention, this is in opposition to what

    9 you had been saying, that that is there was no

    10 selection made for the military police. Can you

    11 explain this to the Court? And do you still maintain

    12 your original assertion? If so, why?

    13 A. Mr. President, Your Honour, I maintain my

    14 assertion, that is, that for the military police, for

    15 the military police, there was no selection except for

    16 the establishment of special purposes units within the

    17 military police.

    18 I don't know exactly, I think this unit had a

    19 total of 15 men, and the entire military police that

    20 went throughout the central, the zone of Central Bosnia

    21 had a total of 400 men; so for this entire military

    22 police there were no defined standards. Young men who

    23 wanted to go to the military police were recruited as

    24 volunteers, just as they entered other units.

    25 Q. Thank you. Again, in a telegraphic fashion,

  54. 1 we move on to a different subject area, and I'm asking

    2 you directly. In January, or at any other time after

    3 that, did Tihomir Blaskic had have a different office

    4 in his capacity as commander of the Operative Zone of

    5 Central Bosnia in Kiseljak? Did he have an office in

    6 Kiseljak outside of the Hotel Vitez or anywhere else?

    7 A. Throughout the war General Blaskic did not

    8 have a different office or a different command post,

    9 except for the Vitez Hotel. So, he did not have it in

    10 the region of Kiseljak, either. I said that during the

    11 January conflicts General Blaskic just accidentally

    12 happened to be in the area of Kiseljak, and that as he

    13 was acting as commander, he used the seal of the

    14 commander of the brigade and he used the offices and

    15 the communications that this brigade had.

    16 Q. Let us move on further. When we talked about

    17 training, we also talked about barracks, and the

    18 Prosecutor asked you in detail about all the different

    19 barracks, and you said that all barracks under HVO

    20 control were essentially warehouses, except the one in

    21 Kiseljak and in Travnik.

    22 So, please tell the Court, out of total of

    23 8.400 men that you had under arms, how many soldiers

    24 were accommodated in barracks during 1992 and 1993?

    25 A. In these two barracks that you mentioned,

  55. 1 which were built functionally for putting up an army,

    2 in that period of time for which you are asking me, to

    3 the best of my recollection, there was never more than

    4 100 soldiers; however, there is one specific

    5 characteristic involved, as far as the Travnik barracks

    6 are concerned.

    7 After the units of the army of

    8 Bosnia-Herzegovina took away the barracks from the

    9 former JNA, the two armies moved in there together, the

    10 HVO and the BH army, and the HVO soldiers were there

    11 until refugees came to the area of Travnik from places

    12 where the army of Republika Srpska had expelled the

    13 Muslim Bosniak population and the Croatian population.

    14 These are the following locations. Kljuc, Petrovac,

    15 Bosanska Krupa, Banja Luka, that is to say the area of

    16 north-west Bosnia. After that, in Travnik, in the

    17 Travnik barracks, there weren't any members of the HVO

    18 left.

    19 Q. Does that mean that after that, only Kiseljak

    20 had some soldiers in the barracks?

    21 A. Yes.

    22 Q. We spoke of the shortages of the -- the

    23 shortcomings of the HVO organisation and the

    24 distinction between an armed people and the regular

    25 army of a State, and in that context you spoke about

  56. 1 training, and on that basis, for two afternoons or for

    2 an entire day the Prosecutor asked you a series of

    3 questions.

    4 So tell the Court, are you denying that HVO

    5 soldiers had some kind of training in terms of using

    6 weapons, small arms or whatever? Was that the

    7 shortcoming? That was what you meant?

    8 A. Yes, that is what I meant in my testimony. I

    9 did not deny that there was training of individuals.

    10 However, in the structure of training as an activity

    11 which is carried out within the army, there is training

    12 of an individual, of a soldier, there is training of a

    13 unit, of a unit as a whole, and there is training of

    14 the command.

    15 In the command of the Operative Zone of

    16 Central Bosnia, we did not have conditions or the right

    17 people who could carry out the training of a platoon,

    18 of a battalion or brigade, that is to say up to 2.000

    19 people, and in carrying out defence or attack

    20 activities, we did not have this kind of training.

    21 Also, we did not have training of the command of the

    22 brigade of a battalion, of the command of the Operative

    23 Zone, in terms of their duties that they're supposed to

    24 carry out during the war. That is to say either in

    25 defence or an attack, how all of this should function,

  57. 1 how orders should be issued, how organisations should

    2 be set up, how reporting and control should be set up,

    3 and how tactically one should act in this.

    4 Q. Brigadier, could you please speak a bit

    5 slower, because I imagine this is very hard on the

    6 Prosecutor. We haven't got much time left, but it is

    7 important to make what we are saying understandable.

    8 You said that you did not have training of

    9 units from the command cadre. What about the units --

    10 what about tactical training? Did that mean training

    11 of the units? And what does tactical unit training

    12 mean, and what was done in terms of reporting and

    13 control?

    14 A. Yes. I said that there were no training of

    15 the units, and this kind of training is tactical

    16 training, that is how to use the unit, how to command

    17 and issue orders to the unit, how to exchange

    18 information, how to report, how to coordinate

    19 activities and how to control everything.

    20 Q. Brigadier, tell us, please, was it simple for

    21 the functioning of the line of command, chain of

    22 command, was it essential for a soldier to be able to

    23 shoot properly or to throw a bomb properly, or was it

    24 essential to have tactical training of units and

    25 commanders?

  58. 1 A. What was important? Well, for the system of

    2 command, for the command process itself, it was

    3 important how and in what way the commander and the

    4 commanding officers were functioning, whether they were

    5 capacitated to control, to issue commands, to report

    6 and to organise all the business that was under his

    7 command and assignment.

    8 Q. For example, tactical training. I've seen it

    9 many times in films, and fighting in built-up areas and

    10 populated areas. Now, what problems there are related

    11 to control on the part of the commander, and reporting

    12 of his -- reporting by subordinates to their commanding

    13 officers at the place where the fighting is taking

    14 place, and how do we promote the functioning of units

    15 in settlements in populated areas?

    16 A. Fighting in populated and built-up areas, in

    17 the theory and tactics that we applied and that I

    18 studied, the theory of tactics studied in the former

    19 Yugoslav People's Army, this is treated as being the

    20 most sophisticated and complicated type of fighting

    21 because it is in a populated area, which makes

    22 commanding difficult, it makes control difficult, and,

    23 therefore, it makes the overall functioning of the

    24 system of command more difficult. Therefore, under

    25 situations of this kind, the commander commanding a

  59. 1 unit in a populated area is faced with a very difficult

    2 situation in controlling the state of affairs and the

    3 developments in the battlefield and in the populated

    4 area where the fighting is taking place.

    5 Q. For the units to become trained to fight in

    6 populated areas, what is undertaken in armies, and were

    7 you able to undertake this kind of training in the

    8 Central Bosnia Operative Zone in 1993?

    9 A. For us to train the unit and to capacitate

    10 the commander to be able to command in a populated

    11 area, what had to be done was to tactically train the

    12 units and the commander in performing their duties, and

    13 we did not implement this kind of training in the

    14 course of 1993 and 1994, and even today we haven't

    15 reached the level of capacitation that we can in

    16 peacetime implement this kind of training, because it

    17 is a highly complex form of training which requires

    18 high quality instructors and professionally trained

    19 officers specifically for that kind of combat

    20 activity.

    21 Q. Tell us, Brigadier, am I right in saying that

    22 I personally looked at special purpose units of the

    23 Croatian police which were using stage sets, as in

    24 theatres, to train themselves for fighting in a

    25 populated area? Is this a customary way of training

  60. 1 units for fighting in populated areas?

    2 A. Yes, that is one of the ways, and it does

    3 look like a stage set, as you say.

    4 Q. Let us move on. The Prosecutor showed you

    5 Prosecution Exhibit 484, which represents the plan and

    6 programme for training of the new people to the armed

    7 forces of Herceg-Bosna. Tell us, please, when you

    8 trained people who had no training and came to you

    9 without any experience, that is to say, very young men,

    10 and up to what level of tactical training did you train

    11 these novices?

    12 A. Well, Mr. President, for me to be better

    13 understood, let me say what a novice is. A novice is a

    14 young man who has -- who is 18 years of age and who has

    15 had no military training up to that age. The training

    16 of such young men in the Lasva River Valley was

    17 organised in September, 1993, and on the basis of the

    18 plan and programme which was offered by the Prosecutor

    19 here.

    20 Due to the state of war that existed and the

    21 fact that we did not have adequate programs and

    22 training facilities, we realised this in an abridged

    23 form, and the highest level of tactical training with

    24 young men of that particular age, and within the

    25 frameworks of that kind of training was to train them

  61. 1 up to the level of a platoon. That is to say, 30

    2 soldiers, and how they are to be behave in a given

    3 situation, whether they are dealing with a forest area

    4 in the mountains or in plains. So different types of

    5 combat activity, defence activities, offensive

    6 activities and so on and so forth.

    7 Q. Thank you. May we proceed. The Prosecutor

    8 asked you about snipers and their weapons. Could you

    9 please tell the Court, did you have sniper units, that

    10 is to say, were there individuals who had something

    11 that could be termed a sniper or a weapon like a

    12 sniper?

    13 A. I say that and I maintain that now and I know

    14 it was so, in the Lasva River Valley, there were no

    15 organised units -- sniper units. We did not have teams

    16 for the training of snipers, and we did not have, in

    17 the units themselves, standard sniper type weapons. I

    18 said -- I have already said what kind of snipers we had

    19 in the brigades. They were improvised snipers devised

    20 on the basis of an M-48 Second World War rifle with an

    21 optic sight device, or a hunting carbine type rifle

    22 which also had optic sight devices, and that was used

    23 as a sniper weapon.

    24 However, on the picture shown to us by the

    25 Prosecutor, it could be seen --

  62. 1 Q. We're talking about a photograph of the

    2 Draganoff type of weapon, and it was Prosecution's

    3 Exhibit 82/10.

    4 Could you explain to the Court what a -- the

    5 gun was. It looks like a sniper, in fact?

    6 A. The type of weapon that was shown on the

    7 photograph is a weapon of a 12, 7 millimetre calibre,

    8 with the possibility of a long range -- longer range,

    9 and is used for the destruction of fortified enemy

    10 targets. That is to say, for shooting at bunkers,

    11 fortifications or at long -- on a long range with a

    12 target at a distance.

    13 Q. Have I understood you correctly to say that

    14 the Draganoff weapon shown on the picture is not used

    15 against men because it is too destructive and the

    16 calibre is too great?

    17 A. Yes, that is correct.

    18 MR. NOBILO: The next area that I would like

    19 to focus on is the appointing of commanders and their

    20 recalling and dismissing, and the inference of the

    21 municipality and Blaskic's influence in the appointment

    22 of brigade commanders and unit commanders.

    23 Q. Tell the Court, please -- we saw orders for

    24 appointing Cerkez, that is to say, the commander of the

    25 Vitez Brigade. And we saw that Blaskic referred to the

  63. 1 law, a legal provision which gives him the right, the

    2 legal right and legal basis, for appointing commanders,

    3 and you say that it is the municipality which had the

    4 decisive role and influence in deciding who would be

    5 commander. Would you explain to the Court what we're

    6 talking about here?

    7 A. Well, on several occasions so far we have

    8 talked -- discussed this subject, and I shall try as

    9 briefly as possible and as succinctly as possible to

    10 indicate two activities that had to be implemented for

    11 somebody to be appointed commander of the brigade. The

    12 municipality did not have the legal right to influence

    13 the appointment of commanders, that was the right of

    14 General Blaskic.

    15 However, because of the situation in actual

    16 fact, the prevailing situation, General Blaskic had to

    17 balance out and balance between legal rights, and the

    18 will and demands and requirements of the municipal

    19 authorities. And in balancing the two out, and in a

    20 situation of this kind, he had to seek for a compromise

    21 solution in order to satisfy his formal authorisations

    22 and to satisfy actual conditions in the field and to

    23 satisfy the municipal authorities. As General Blaskic,

    24 whenever he was able to and had the possibility of

    25 doing so, he always adhered to rules and regulations

  64. 1 under law. And he, therefore, issued orders and wrote

    2 orders for appointments. And in this way he secured,

    3 on a long-term basis, the fact that the system of

    4 command and the authorisations that he had implemented

    5 in the municipalities and the units, and that they

    6 should come to realise there that he is the individual

    7 who plays a key role there. However, that was not the

    8 case, and on the basis of several examples we saw how

    9 this actually functioned.

    10 Q. Brigadier, you stated that Blaskic had to

    11 balance between the two, that is to say between his

    12 legal authorisations and the actual state of affairs,

    13 which means that the actual state of affairs he would

    14 give shape to in his orders based on laws and

    15 regulation. Was this also true when he commanded the

    16 Knights, the Vitezovi? Was he able to balance there

    17 the situation as it existed, and when he discussed the

    18 operations with Darko Kraljevic, did he issue formal

    19 orders? Am I right in saying this?

    20 A. Yes, that is how things stood.

    21 Q. Now, this difference between the actual state

    22 of affairs on the spot, and legal norms, and laws, and

    23 rules and regulations, is it the same difference that

    24 exists -- and please tell me if I'm right and correct

    25 me if I'm wrong -- as I say, which existed between the

  65. 1 real army, what the HVO had to be, and what it actually

    2 was. Is it the same balancing act and the same

    3 difference between the actual state of affairs and what

    4 the laws of Herceg-Bosna proclaimed an army should be?

    5 A. Yes, that is true. According to the laws of

    6 the HVO, the HVO was an armed force of the Croatian

    7 community in Herzegovina, and, therefore, equal to an

    8 army, but in actual terms, de facto, the units of the

    9 HVO were armed peasants in the villages, and it is in

    10 this difference that the essence lies of the

    11 non-functioning of the system of chain and command --

    12 of the chain of command. And whenever I answered

    13 questions here, I always emphasise the problem of units

    14 in the villages, and that is the key to the lack of

    15 functioning of the system of command.

    16 Q. Brigadier, tell the Court, please -- there

    17 are people who come from countries where the rule of

    18 law prevails and where it is quite normal for everybody

    19 to respect the law, it is only criminals who did not

    20 respect the law. Tell the Court whether Bosnia, in

    21 1993, was a legal State or was it not, where the rule

    22 of law prevailed and where the legal system in Bosnia

    23 functioned in all areas, or did it not?

    24 A. We all know full well that this system did

    25 not function and that Bosnia was a State but it was not

  66. 1 a legal State, because conditions in it were as we all

    2 know they were. The conditions are common knowledge to

    3 us.

    4 Q. And to follow on from that topic and in very

    5 concrete terms, the Prosecutor showed you a series of

    6 documents which refer to the Fojnica case, and the

    7 commander Stjepan Stipa Tuka, who was the commander of

    8 the battalion in Fojnica. So please tell the Trial

    9 Chamber now why Blaskic -- Colonel Blaskic issued an

    10 order to the battalion of Fojnica Stjepan Tuka. What

    11 was the sense of issuing that particular order, whether

    12 to make relations between Croats and Muslims worse or

    13 something else?

    14 A. When we spoke about this particular order, I

    15 indicated two particular facts. The day when the order

    16 was issued, the war in the Vitez area and Novi Travnik

    17 area was raging for three days. The attacks of the BH

    18 army were strong attacks. The forces of the BH army

    19 came across the Fojnica region, and the order issued to

    20 the commander of the Fojnica battalion was issued with

    21 the aim and objective of linking up the forces and

    22 consolidating the forces of the BH so that these same

    23 forces would not attack the areas of the Lasva River

    24 Valley.

    25 Q. You say that the war was already ongoing.

  67. 1 Can you explain to us why Stjepan Tuka refused to

    2 execute the order of the Operative Zone? What was the

    3 logic guiding him in refusing to abide by those

    4 orders?

    5 A. Stjepan Tuka refused to implement the order

    6 he received because in that way the -- that is what

    7 the civilian authorities, who acted as a State wanted,

    8 and they had the logics of being a State. And when it

    9 was not attacked, and we're thinking about the

    10 municipality of Fojnica they do not want to initiate

    11 military actions in their particular area, and that is

    12 the basic reason why the order by General Blaskic was

    13 not implemented to consolidate the units and forces in

    14 the Fojnica area.

    15 Q. Now, please tell the Court whether Blaskic

    16 issued Stjepan Tuka in Fojnica, or the commander of the

    17 Ban Jelisic Brigade then, or at any time ever, an order

    18 to attack the Muslim civilians, or were these orders

    19 exclusively for an attack to be launched on the units

    20 of the BH army, that is to consolidate the BH army

    21 units to the Serbs?

    22 A. All the orders which came from the command of

    23 the Operative Zone towards all -- issued to all

    24 brigades had exclusively as their intentions, the units

    25 had as their task, to fight against the BH army units,

  68. 1 because for us the HVO in the Lasva River Valley were

    2 not -- we were not attacked by civilians, we were

    3 attacked by the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and there

    4 would be no advantages to be gained from -- if a unit,

    5 for example, were to do something, which happened,

    6 which occurred in the area with the villages or with

    7 the civilians, and that is something that the commander

    8 of the Operative Zone would only reap problems from and

    9 not any gains or advantages.

    10 Q. Well, let's forget for a moment the tactical

    11 needs and what an attack on -- and the fact that attack

    12 on civilians is a war crime, but tell us quite simply.

    13 So let's leave that behind for the moment for us to be

    14 as explicit in our explanations as possible what you in

    15 the Operative Zone of Central Bosnia, you fighting for

    16 survival there were -- had more use of -- if Fojnica or

    17 Kiseljak were to consolidate 100 enemy solders with

    18 them, link them, or if it were to set fire to 100

    19 civilian houses. Well, let us forget that this is

    20 against the law any more, but for rational purposes,

    21 what would serve your purpose best?

    22 A. Well, quite obviously, each commander and the

    23 command of the Operative Zone would only reap service

    24 if there was fighting with the units of the Bosnian

    25 army and if they were to engage those units, and

  69. 1 certainly not to set fire to houses or behave towards

    2 civilians as individuals behaved. As for the command

    3 of the Operative Zone, this only meant extra problems,

    4 and made his overall situation more difficult as a

    5 commander of the Operative Zone.

    6 Q. Colonel Blaskic, for the first time, contrary

    7 to a decision of the municipality of the State and, as

    8 you say, you equate the municipality with the State, he

    9 replaces Tuka and orders that the commander of the

    10 Fojnica battalion must be replaced within a period of

    11 three hours. Was this order ever implemented?

    12 A. The order which came from General Blaskic on

    13 the replacement of the battalion commander was not

    14 fulfilled within the time span ordered, and that is the

    15 only time that General Blaskic was not able to balance

    16 out the two and the two opposites. So you have the law

    17 and you have the existing situation. But he acted

    18 according to his authorisation, and what happened -- we

    19 know what happened and what ensued.

    20 Q. Blaskic issued an order for combat action of

    21 the battalions, right?

    22 A. Yes.

    23 Q. Was this order ever carried out?

    24 A. That order was never carried out, but the

    25 tragedy lies in the fact that Fojnica, after two and a

  70. 1 half months, would fall into the hands of the BH army.

    2 The BH army expelled the HVO soldiers, expelled

    3 civilians, and there were houses that were burned, and

    4 the greatest tragedy was that the friar was killed in

    5 front of his monastery. That is the same one who put

    6 his signature in support of Commander Tuka when he

    7 decided not to carry out the General's orders.

    8 Q. You said that this was the first time that

    9 Blaskic was not balancing and that he resorted to his

    10 legal right, and that he was dealing with something

    11 that could be called mutiny. But what would have

    12 happened if Blaskic had strictly applied the law, the

    13 legal authorities that he had, that we read about today

    14 and on several occasions during these proceedings?

    15 What would have happened had he acted as harshly as he

    16 did there in keeping with his legal authority?

    17 A. Had General Blaskic acted that way, I know

    18 the situation, I know the relationships, he would have

    19 had a complete break-up of the entire system. He would

    20 have had total disobedience had he not been balancing

    21 between that which is his right and that which it was

    22 truly possible to enforce.

    23 Q. At the moment, when Vitez and Busovaca are

    24 literally in flames and when it is a question of hours

    25 or days when you would fall, what was the situation in

  71. 1 Travnik, Fojnica, Vares, Kakanj and Novi Travnik? What

    2 was going on over there in these days in April 1993?

    3 A. In those place that is you mentioned just now

    4 during the war on the territory of Busovaca, Kiseljak

    5 and Vitez, the BH army did not take combat action but

    6 it maintained a cease-fire, and it maintained an

    7 apparent peace.

    8 Q. Why? Were they the proponent of peace and

    9 were you the causes of a war or why?

    10 A. No, that was not the reason. The army of

    11 Bosnia and Herzegovina, in its general plan for taking

    12 of the Lasva River Valley, had as its object to take

    13 one place after one. They did not want an all-out

    14 attack. They would take one place by one. The

    15 municipality of Kiseljak, Vitez, Novi Travnik,

    16 Busovaca, that is to say, the HVO was dominant as

    17 compared to the army then. The objective was to

    18 individually take these municipalities, and then those

    19 municipalities where the BH army was dominant would

    20 practically fall under their control by themselves.

    21 Q. Tell the Court, you say that in Travnik,

    22 Fojnica, Vares and Kakanj, in April 1993, during the

    23 April war between the HVO and the BH army there was

    24 peace. Tell me, what happened to that area? What

    25 ultimately happened to the HVO, and what happened to

  72. 1 the civilians, and the property and houses of

    2 civilians, Croat civilians?

    3 A. From the month of April, after the conflict

    4 in Vitez and Busovaca, within two and half or three

    5 months both Travnik and part of New Travnik, and Vares,

    6 and Kakanj and Fojnica fully came under BH army

    7 control. The BH army attacked HVO units that were in

    8 this territory. The civilian population fled, fled,

    9 and there were the same consequences as were after the

    10 January conflict and the April conflict. So there were

    11 burned out -- burnt houses, there was destruction of

    12 sacral buildings and everything else that the war in

    13 Bosnia-Herzegovina brought along.

    14 Q. When you said that houses and sacral objects

    15 were burned down, are you referring to Croatian houses

    16 and churches?

    17 A. Yes, I'm referring to that. As far as I can

    18 remember, I saw somewhere a document which was an

    19 analysis -- or, rather, statistics after the war

    20 between the BH army and the HVO on the number of burned

    21 houses, the number of destroyed religious buildings of

    22 Croat Catholics and Muslim Bosniaks. I think that

    23 there are such statistics somewhere, and one can see

    24 the proportions of the war and the differences involved

    25 between the HVO and the BH army.

  73. 1 Q. Do you perhaps remember, if you don't, you

    2 don't, what the ratio was? How many houses were

    3 destroyed -- I mean, of the Croats and of the Muslims?

    4 A. I could not remember the exact number. I saw

    5 this document somewhere as an analysis, as a

    6 statistical report, and it would really be very

    7 inaccurate on my part to engage in guesswork.

    8 Q. Thank you. Let us also telegraphically refer

    9 to the causes of the consequence -- of the conflict.

    10 You said that during your direct-examination that,

    11 inter alia, in the conflicts between Croats and Muslims

    12 in Herceg-Bosna, some of the most important ones was

    13 that the Muslim population was sent to the mixed

    14 population areas of Central Bosnia. That is to say,

    15 the Muslims that fled from Serbian pressure in

    16 Krajina. Then there was the struggle for communication

    17 lines in Central Bosnia, and in that way the corps of

    18 Herceg-Bosna were linked up, and also an effort was

    19 made to take the military factories that were in

    20 Central Bosnia.

    21 On the other hand, the Prosecutor showed you

    22 a series of documents from which it would stem that the

    23 HVO, the Croatian community of Herceg-Bosna would try

    24 to take over government in the municipalities, that is

    25 to say to concentrate power in the hands of the Croats,

  74. 1 whereas the Muslim representatives were expelled from

    2 the municipality. You saw many documents related to

    3 this subject.

    4 Now, tell the Court: Do you maintain your

    5 conclusions on the basic causes of the conflict and how

    6 do you comment on this? How do you explain the

    7 documents that the Prosecutor showed you?

    8 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, I still maintain

    9 my assertion related to the causes of the conflict that

    10 I presented while being questioned by the Defence. I

    11 said that this was my personal opinion. But the causes

    12 of the conflict that the Prosecutor offered during the

    13 cross-examination and my own, in my own judgement, are

    14 simply supplementary from the point of view of logic.

    15 When speaking of the forceful take-over of

    16 power. I know the following happened, that in every

    17 municipality in Central Bosnia, there were two

    18 authorities. There was the HVO, where there were Croat

    19 officials. In some municipalities were even Muslim

    20 Bosniaks too. And there was the Muslim Bosniak

    21 authority where there were mostly Muslim Bosniak

    22 officials, and in some municipalities Croats too,

    23 because the civilian authority of the HVO and the

    24 military authority of the-- was established in Tuzla,

    25 Bihac and Zenica. That is to say, every municipality

  75. 1 had two authorities. Every authority had its own

    2 police and every authority had its own army. But what

    3 do they have together? Together they had a territory.

    4 In my opinion, those were the key problems,

    5 and as far as I know, that is what had happened. And

    6 the process, how this evolved, is something I'm not

    7 familiar with as I said, because I was not involved in

    8 political organisations or civilian authorities.

    9 Q. Brigadier, you said there were two

    10 authorities; however, at one point the Prosecutor

    11 showed you some documents, one authority suppressed the

    12 other. In Busovaca, Vitez, for example, the Croatian

    13 authority became dominant, although the Muslim

    14 authority did not cease to exist. But tell the Court

    15 what happened in Zenica, Maglaj, Bugojno, Gornji Vakuf,

    16 Komusina and Travnik, who suppressed who there?

    17 A. In the municipalities that you mentioned, in

    18 those municipalities, Muslim Bosniaks were dominant.

    19 The same thing happened in those municipalities as

    20 happened in Busovaca and Novi Travnik. But the Croats

    21 in these municipalities did not remain without an

    22 authority of their own, just as the Muslim Bosniaks did

    23 not remain without an authority of their own in those

    24 municipalities where the Croats were dominant.

    25 Because what does predominant mean?

  76. 1 Predominance, practically, in Zenica meant the

    2 following: The former premises of the municipal

    3 authorities, the Muslim Bosniaks stayed there. But,

    4 for example, in Vitez, the former buildings of the

    5 municipal authorities were where the Croats stayed,

    6 that is, the representatives of the Croat authorities.

    7 And the Muslim Bosniaks established their -- civilian

    8 authorities established their own civilian authorities

    9 in the part of Vitez called Stari Vitez.

    10 Q. Kiseljak, Busovaca and Vitez; are these

    11 municipalities where the Croats had dominant authority?

    12 A. Yes, those were municipalities where Croats

    13 had dominant authority. From the military point of

    14 view, these are municipalities which cover the

    15 territory which cuts across the communication lines of

    16 the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina and cuts their territory

    17 controlled by the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and that

    18 is one of the reasons why the army of

    19 Bosnia-Herzegovina was so strongly determined to attack

    20 these regions. Because by doing so they would have

    21 attained three key objectives: First of all, they

    22 would have fully rounded off the military production;

    23 they would have had the factories in Novi Travnik,

    24 Vitez and Travnik; and they would also take the key

    25 communications line between Travnik and Kiseljak, which

  77. 1 linked up the area which was under the control of the

    2 BH army and the HVO, that is to say, the area outside

    3 the area that was controlled by the army of Republika

    4 Srpska.

    5 Q. Brigadier, do you wish to say that there was

    6 war in the territory where the Croatian authority was

    7 more dominant, and then the Bosniak authority thought

    8 that they did not control that territory, and for the

    9 reasons you mentioned, that territory was important for

    10 them?

    11 MR. KEHOE: Excuse me, Counsel, I let it go

    12 for a long time, Mr. President, but Mr. Nobilo is

    13 testifying, I don't think it is called for. Questions

    14 to the witness, I think, are proper; so, I just object

    15 to counsel's form at this point.

    16 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Kehoe, for days and days

    17 and days I am trying to remember the number of times

    18 each of you, the Defence, the Prosecution, made

    19 comments with the questions. You did that, too,

    20 Mr. Kehoe.

    21 Having said this, I do agree with you, it

    22 would be better to ask questions more directly. And I

    23 would like to remind the Defence we're going to break

    24 soon and they are going to have 40 minutes to finish.

    25 Try to attenuate your comments and you can argue at the

  78. 1 end.

    2 MR. NOBILO: Certainly, Mr. President, I

    3 agree with you, but I'm trying to save time in that

    4 way. Instead of putting five questions, I put one

    5 question. I try to bring things together, only for the

    6 sake of time; although, I agree this is not the way to

    7 put questions.

    8 JUDGE JORDA: But don't go into too many

    9 details, because the Judges are not fooled. You are

    10 asking questions, and it is at the end of the hearing

    11 that the Judges will make an evaluation, go ahead.

    12 MR. NOBILO:

    13 Q. When you said that your conclusions on what

    14 the main causes of the war were, and those that were

    15 offered to you by the Prosecutor are not in mutual

    16 conflict, but are rather supplementary to one another,

    17 logically; what did you mean by that, if you can say so

    18 in two sentences?

    19 A. I meant to speak of this division of

    20 authority, because in my conclusions, in my statements

    21 on the causes of the conflict, I said that there was a

    22 paralysis of power, a paralysis of central government,

    23 and that all authority was reduced to the municipality

    24 basically.

    25 So, there was a division, the actions were

  79. 1 quite clear. The establishment of authority was quite

    2 clear, and also, what each authority had available.

    3 That is to say, Croatian and Bosnian authority had the

    4 police and the army and other parts of the civilian

    5 structure of the authority that they had established.

    6 Q. All right. Let us move on. Very briefly,

    7 telegraphically, we only have five minutes left in this

    8 series; repeat when you were deputy disciplinary

    9 prosecutor and when this disciplinary court was

    10 established?

    11 A. As far as I can remember, the disciplinary

    12 court was established in September, 1993 with the tasks

    13 that are written down in the regulations.

    14 Q. And then, further on, you said that Blaskic

    15 was cut off in Kiseljak during the conflict from the

    16 25th of January, 1993 until the beginning of March

    17 1993, you do not recall the exact date.

    18 So, I'm asking you the following: In this

    19 period, from the 21st of January until the beginning of

    20 March, 1993, did Blaskic ever, was Tihomir Blaskic ever

    21 in the command of the Operative Zone of Central Bosnia

    22 in the Hotel Vitez?

    23 A. In that period of time that you are asking me

    24 about, General Blaskic was never in the command of the

    25 Operative Zone at the command post at Vitez Hotel.

  80. 1 Q. Further on, also telegraphically, was it

    2 customary that Croat civilians would dig trenches, or

    3 to put it more aptly, civilian residents of Busovaca

    4 and Vitez, this picture of civilians digging trenches,

    5 was this a customary thing?

    6 A. Yes, but soldiers that had a rifle did not

    7 all have the same positions. So, if somebody would

    8 pass by and look, even a soldier, even a soldier who

    9 was digging, if he did not wear a uniform, he would

    10 look like a civilian, too. And that was the situation

    11 with the BH army and the HVO, we didn't have enough

    12 uniforms and weapons.

    13 Q. Tell me, Brigadier, is it a well-known fact

    14 there was work duty? And within which work duty did

    15 civilians who were not in the HVO have to carry out

    16 various duties and dig trenches?

    17 A. Yes, there was work duty, and at the level of

    18 every municipality those citizens who were not in HVO

    19 units had work duty. This work duty was carried out

    20 through engagement in work units, work platoons, which

    21 carried out different duties.

    22 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Nobilo, it is now 1.00

    23 thank you for your telegraphic style, and I invite you

    24 to continue in that telegraphic style starting at 2.30

    25 until ten after 3.00. The hearing is suspended.

  81. 1 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.

























  82. 1 --- On resuming at 2.40 p.m.

    2 JUDGE JORDA: We will now resume the hearing,

    3 have the accused brought in, please. Please be

    4 seated.

    5 (The accused entered court).

    6 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Nobilo, you who were so

    7 brilliant at mathematics this morning when we were

    8 listening to the witness, do you agree that, do you

    9 agree to stop 22 minutes after 3? Is that all right?

    10 Judge Shahabuddeen said 3.25.

    11 MR. NOBILO: Whatever Your Honours feel to be

    12 right, if the witness turns up, of course.

    13 JUDGE JORDA: We will wait for the witness.

    14 (The witness entered court).

    15 JUDGE JORDA: Good afternoon, Brigadier.

    16 Mr. Nobilo, the floor is yours.

    17 THE WITNESS: Good afternoon.

    18 MR. NOBILO: Would the registrar hand out the

    19 new set of documents, which will be Defence Exhibit

    20 412, and give the witness D345?

    21 Mr. President, these are records and death

    22 certificates, which I'm afraid we don't have the

    23 translations of, but it is quite clear in the first

    24 place that we have the name and surname, and secondly,

    25 the date of death. May we have it on the ELMO for our

  83. 1 interpreters?

    2 All the documents were issued by the town of

    3 Vitez, the municipality of Vitez, at the request of the

    4 Defence. The Defence has a separate stamp in the

    5 original where the municipality of Vitez confirms that

    6 the copies are authentic copies and equal to the

    7 original; if you need that, we can tend to those, as

    8 well.

    9 Q. So, Brigadier, if you recall, for several

    10 days we looked at the dead, according to this list in

    11 D345, to ascertain how many people had died on what

    12 particular date. And I should now like to ask you to

    13 take a look at document D345, the name under number 80,

    14 Grbovac Nedeljko, and to tell the Court, according to

    15 this document, when he died.

    16 A. Grbovac Marko Nedeljko, it is number 80, he

    17 is registered under number 80; according to the death

    18 certificate, this document, he died on the 16th of

    19 April, 1993.

    20 Q. And take a look, please, at number 80, when

    21 his death was recorded?

    22 A. On the 22nd of December, 1993.

    23 Q. That is eight months later. Let's proceed.

    24 We're only going to take a few cases to illustrate the

    25 point. In 454, D, under 454, Franjic-Bares Anto.

  84. 1 Would you see when the death was recorded?

    2 A. Number 454, Franjic-Bares Milko Anto, it was

    3 recorded that he died on the 21st of April, 1993. And

    4 on the document, from the death certificates, it is

    5 stated that he died on the 16th of April, 1993.

    6 Q. Number 322, Vidovic Zoran, would you take a

    7 look and see what the document states, the list of

    8 killed of the HVO? When did he die?

    9 A. What did you say? 322 was the number, I

    10 believe?

    11 Q. Vidovic Zoran, 322, Zoran.

    12 A. 322, Vidovic Ivica Zoran, it is a little

    13 illegible, but the date is the 21st or the 24th of

    14 April, 1992; and the death certificate, the official

    15 document from, on the death certificate, the date of

    16 death is the 16th of April, 1993.

    17 Q. The next, 319, Vidovic Ivica, when did he

    18 die, according to document 345?

    19 A. On the 18th of April, 1993.

    20 Q. And look at the death certificate.

    21 A. On the 16th of April, 1993.

    22 Q. Number 429, Ivankovic Zlatko?

    23 A. What did you say?

    24 Q. 429, Ivankovic Zlatko.

    25 A. Ivankovic Zlatko, I have it on the 18th of

  85. 1 April 1993, and according to the death certificate,

    2 16th of April, 1993.

    3 Q. Take a look below the date, where it states

    4 the place of death; what does it say?

    5 A. Ivankovic Zlatko, the place of death, in the

    6 death certificate, you mean, the place of death was

    7 Ahmici.

    8 Q. Let us proceed. Number 482 Zuljevic Ivan,

    9 when does it say he died?

    10 A. According to the document D345, Zuljevic

    11 Karko Ivan, on the 21st of April, 1993; and according

    12 to the death certificate, on the 16th of April, 1993.

    13 Q. Zepackic Ivica, number 481; when did he die,

    14 according to document 345?

    15 A. Zepackic Stipica Ivica, as far as I can make

    16 out here, it is the 18th of April, 1993; and according

    17 to the death certificate, it is the 16th of April,

    18 1993.

    19 MR. NOBILO: So, that is the set that we

    20 chose. We have other documents, but we're not going to

    21 go into those now, not to take up too much time. So,

    22 we're offering these documents as evidence, as well.

    23 And we're also offering original documents

    24 where they are certified photo copies, and on the

    25 backside it states that they are identical to the photo

  86. 1 copies of the originals, and we would like to tender

    2 these in evidence.

    3 Q. What can you conclude, Brigadier, from these

    4 differences? What can you conclude on the precision

    5 and quality of the documents as regards the day of

    6 death of documents D345?

    7 A. When it comes to the date of death in

    8 document 345, the dates are not the exact facts, and we

    9 saw this on the basis of the death certificates.

    10 Q. Let us move to another subject now. You were

    11 asked about the Vance-Owen Plan, and you said that it

    12 was politics and that you have scant information as to

    13 the plan and its application because you were a soldier

    14 and you were in a sort of information isolation.

    15 But as a citizen of Bosnia-Herzegovina, I'm

    16 going to ask you this at a very ordinary level, general

    17 knowledge level, related to the Vance-Owen Plan, some

    18 basic questions which I feel you should know as a

    19 citizen of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

    20 As far as you know, to the best of your

    21 knowledge, was the Vance-Owen Plan acceptable for the

    22 Croats?

    23 A. As far as I know, it was.

    24 Q. Tell the Court, please, whether the

    25 Vance-Owen Plan was signed by Alija Izetbegovic as the

  87. 1 representative of the Bosniak side?

    2 A. As far as I know, the Vance-Owen Plan, by the

    3 representative of the Bosniak side, was not signed.

    4 Q. After the Vance-Owen Plan, the war broke out

    5 between the Croats and the Muslims, which ended with

    6 the Washington plan or the Washington Accords.

    7 A. Yes.

    8 Q. Were the Washington Accords signed by both

    9 the Croats and the Bosniaks?

    10 A. Yes, the Washington Accords were signed by

    11 the political representatives of both Croats and

    12 Bosniaks in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

    13 Q. According to the opinion that prevails among

    14 the citizens of Bosnia-Herzegovina, or at least the

    15 Croatian population of Bosnia-Herzegovina, which plan

    16 was more advantageous to the Croats, Vance-Owen

    17 agreement?

    18 A. According to the information and the talks

    19 that people had, the Vance-Owen Plan was more

    20 advantageous for the Croats.

    21 Q. Well, if the Vance-Owen Plan was more

    22 advantageous for the Croats and the Washington Accords

    23 for the Muslims, because they did not want to sign the

    24 Vance-Owen Plan, then the war that broke out between

    25 the Vance-Owen Plan and the Washington Accords, who

  88. 1 would it benefit, objectively speaking?

    2 A. The Bosniak Muslims.

    3 Q. Did you ever hear mention in Central Bosnia

    4 that on the 15th of April the HVO issue an ultimatum to

    5 the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina?

    6 A. I never heard of information of that kind,

    7 and I never saw a document like that.

    8 Q. As we need a map here, unfortunately we

    9 failed to bring it, we will discuss the map later on

    10 when we have it.

    11 Linked to Zenica, the Prosecutor asked you a

    12 series of questions about Zenica and the facilities

    13 under HVO control in Zenica. So, please tell the Court

    14 now; did the HVO in Zenica have a barracks where it had

    15 the necessary forces? Or did it only have facilities

    16 where the command of certain units were located?

    17 A. The HVO in Zenica did not have barracks with

    18 ready to act forces. The only standard type of

    19 barracks in Zenica, there was one barracks, in fact,

    20 and that barracks was controlled by the units of the

    21 army of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

    22 Q. Where was the HVO army in the municipality of

    23 Zenica? Where were they located and stationed?

    24 A. The HVO in the Zenica municipality, as in all

    25 other municipalities, the HVO soldiers, that is to say,

  89. 1 were in their own villages and houses where they lived.

    2 Q. The Prosecutor showed you document 520, we're

    3 not going to bring out these documents, but it is a map

    4 with positions designated which the HVO controlled on

    5 the 15th or the 16th of April, 1993.

    6 So, tell the Court, now, what the map shows;

    7 are they combat positions or something else?

    8 A. They were not combat positions, they are

    9 soldiers who, in their own villages, controlled their

    10 own village. Combat positions in Zenica is not

    11 something that the HVO had.

    12 Q. Therefore, those positions which were marked

    13 on the map were Croatian villages in which those

    14 soldiers lived; is that what you want to say?

    15 A. Yes, that is what I said and what I mean.

    16 Q. In document 521, it is the report which came

    17 from the Zenica Brigade towards the Operative Zone

    18 which states that the town is under control; was that a

    19 realistic report? What did it mean?

    20 A. It was a completely unrealistic report, and

    21 that was borne out by the condition in the fields.

    22 When the BiH army attacked the Zenica units, in two

    23 hours the HVO was, in practical terms, dysfunctioned.

    24 It was blocked, disarmed, and it was an unrealistic,

    25 unobjective report.

  90. 1 Q. May we now place a new map on the easel?

    2 While the map is being fixed to the easel, let me

    3 repeat some elements of a document, Brigadier, if I

    4 may. I will be repeating elements from a document

    5 which will be the basis for my asking you questions.

    6 The document is D269, which represents an

    7 order issued by, combat order issued by Blaskic on the

    8 night between the 15th and 16th of April at 1.30 a.m.,

    9 and the order tells the Vitez Brigade to block

    10 the villages of Kruscica, Vranska and Donja Vecerska;

    11 do you remember that order?

    12 A. Yes, I remember the order and the contents of

    13 the order.

    14 Q. The Prosecutor asked you a series of

    15 questions connected to that order, and now I'm going to

    16 read out something that the Prosecutor asked you in

    17 point 3 of the order. It is stated that, "In front of

    18 you, you have forces of the 4th Battalion of the

    19 military police. Behind you, you have your own

    20 forces. To the right of you are located the units of

    21 the Nikola Subic-Zrinski Brigade. To the left of you

    22 are the forces of the civilian police."

    23 Brigadier, we have before us a classical map

    24 of the JNA, Zenica 4. Please tell the Court, first,

    25 something has been marked on it; who marked what is

  91. 1 marked on the map?

    2 A. What you can see on the map is something that

    3 I marked in on the basis of the document that you have

    4 just read out.

    5 Q. Would you take your indicator, please, and

    6 explain to the Court in which way a soldier, the lines

    7 of thinking of a soldier and how a soldier thinks, and

    8 for the Vitez Brigade, what it means to be in front of

    9 you, behind you, to the left and to the right of you?

    10 So, would you position the Vitez Brigade,

    11 first of all, and explain the terms used which are

    12 perhaps not clear to people who are not soldiers?

    13 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, the task and

    14 order to the Vitez Brigade which was issued and which

    15 has just been read out by the Defence attorney, the

    16 Vitez Brigade had the concrete task over forces in this

    17 area to affect a blockade of the village of Kruscica

    18 and the village of Vranjska, and these are the

    19 positions with these lateral lines.

    20 In relationship towards this position here,

    21 and that is military, held by the Vitez Brigade, to the

    22 right of it is it municipality of Busovaca, this line

    23 here; and therefore, the forces of the Nikola

    24 Subic-Zrinski Brigade, which is located in this area,

    25 in front, means these positions here, in front of these

  92. 1 positions is a road controlled by the military police,

    2 and it was stated, in front of these positions of the

    3 Vitez Brigade we have the military police; to the left

    4 of it, to the left of these positions, in the town of

    5 Vitez itself, in performing their task, we have the

    6 civilian police.

    7 And for that reason, General Blaskic issued

    8 an explanation to the commander of the brigade as to

    9 the deployment of forces in relationship to the tasks

    10 assigned to the Vitez Brigade.

    11 Q. Is this standard practice, that is, when

    12 assignment is given, to state at all times who is to

    13 the left and who is to the right of the forces to which

    14 the order is being issued?

    15 A. Yes, that is standard practice in the army,

    16 you have to know who is on your left and who is on your

    17 right, who is in front of you and who is in the rear.

    18 Q. You said that to the left was the civilian

    19 police in the town of Vitez; was the civilian police in

    20 the town of Vitez, that is, did it have a front-line, or

    21 was this the usual standard task within the task

    22 performed by the police?

    23 A. It did not have a front-line, it was in the

    24 town, as I said, that is where it was located, and that

    25 is where it implemented its duties, the duties of a

  93. 1 civilian police force.

    2 Q. Thank you. Let us now move to document D280,

    3 and I would like this document to be shown the

    4 Brigadier, D280, it is a report Colonel Blaskic

    5 received from the military police from Ahmici on the

    6 16th of April, 1993.

    7 MR. NOBILO: While we're waiting for this map

    8 which is on the easel, we would like to have it

    9 admitted into evidence as a new exhibit; so, could you

    10 please give it a number?

    11 THE REGISTRAR: The map will be D413. The

    12 death certificate, which we have received two original

    13 copies, bis, or /1 for the copy and -- /1 bis for the

    14 --

    15 MR. NOBILO: Would you please repeat this?

    16 Because we don't know what the basic number for the

    17 death certificates is. We didn't get in the

    18 interpretation.

    19 THE REGISTRAR: D413 for the map which is on

    20 the easel, and the death certificate, as we have

    21 received true certified copies from the local

    22 administration, they will have /1 through 8. And the

    23 first one which was presented, which was only a copy,

    24 those have bis, bis. D, of course, for 12/1, et

    25 cetera.

  94. 1 MR. NOBILO:

    2 Q. So, in this report, D280, at the very

    3 beginning mention is made of the order issued by

    4 Colonel Blaskic from this very same date, the 16th of

    5 April 1993.

    6 So, could you please tell the Court what this

    7 was all about and what kind of order this was?

    8 A. The order that is mentioned in the preamble

    9 of this report, is the order in which General Blaskic

    10 asked for a combat report from the commander of the

    11 military police. And on the basis of this order the

    12 commander of the military police sent this report which

    13 I now have in my hands.

    14 Q. Tell me, Brigadier, was the military police

    15 duty bound to send such a report routinely to the

    16 command? Why did Blaskic specifically have to ask for

    17 this to be sent? What happened?

    18 A. In the regular system the military police did

    19 not have to submit regular operative or combat reports

    20 as the brigades did that were under his immediate

    21 command. And it is for that reason, that is to realise

    22 what the situation at the front-line was, General

    23 Blaskic wrote this order and asked for a report from

    24 the commander of the military police.

    25 Q. You did not explain to us why the military

  95. 1 police did not have to send these regular reports.

    2 A. I said that the military police was under the

    3 operative command and it did not have to regularly

    4 report to the commander of the Operative Zone on all

    5 its activities.

    6 Q. In your direct examination, and I think also

    7 when were you cross-examined by the Prosecutor, you

    8 said that in Ahmici there was a unit of the army of

    9 Bosnia and Herzegovina. On the basis of what are you

    10 claiming that there was a BH army unit there?

    11 A. I made this statement on the basis of the

    12 following: Because, first of all, the system of the BH

    13 army and of the HVO was according to the territorial

    14 principal, according to the villages concerned and

    15 Ahmici is one of the bigger Bosniak Muslim villages.

    16 So, that is why there was a unit there. And the second

    17 reason why I claim so was that in October, 1992, the

    18 members of the BH army in the village of Ahmici put up

    19 a barricade, that is to say a military road block which

    20 they defended with arms and which was removed after

    21 fighting with the HVO. And the third reason why I

    22 claim that was that the lines after the fighting at

    23 Ahmici, the HVO took positions 50 metres away from the

    24 last house in Ahmici, or rather, about 150 metres away

    25 from the main road.

  96. 1 What does this say? That the unit of the BH

    2 army did exist in Ahmici and there was resistance,

    3 because had there not been there kind of resistance,

    4 the HVO would have placed the line much, much farther

    5 away from the main road, because from that position the

    6 units of the BH army could control the main road by

    7 their own fire. That line remained until the very end

    8 of the war, because the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina

    9 had adequate forces which stopped the further progress

    10 of the HVO.

    11 Q. We heard on several occasions that in the

    12 school in Dubravica was the headquarters of the

    13 Vitezovi Special Purposes Unit. As one of Blaskic's

    14 closest associates and chief of operations, did you

    15 ever inspect this command post?

    16 A. Neither I nor any one of my colleagues, my

    17 co-workers, inspected the Vitezovi units. We were not

    18 in charge.

    19 Q. Did you ever walk into this school?

    20 A. No.

    21 Q. Brigadier, there were quite a few questions

    22 in response to the Prosecutor's questions as to what

    23 Blaskic did from the moment when he found out that the

    24 crime in Ahmici occurred, on the 20th of April, 1993,

    25 in the evening in Zenica, and until the moment when he

  97. 1 issued an order for an investigation on the 10th of May

    2 1993. So, it is a period of 20 days. You said that he

    3 was saving the living, and that was his priority in

    4 terms of the investigation, so could you please explain

    5 to the Court, in specific terms, what activities he

    6 took and what orders he issued from the evening of the

    7 20th, that is to say from the 21st onwards, until the

    8 10th of May 1993?

    9 A. Yes. I said that during that period of time,

    10 after he found out about these events, General Blaskic

    11 took a large number of activities with the objective of

    12 protecting the living, or rather, protecting the

    13 Bosniak Muslims who still lived in the town of Vitez

    14 and the other villages on the territory of the Vitez

    15 municipality, and with that objective he issued the

    16 following orders. And I explained all of these orders,

    17 on the 21st of April 1993, an order was issued on the

    18 protection of civilians, on the 22nd of April, 1993, an

    19 order prohibiting the burning of houses, on the 23rd,

    20 the behaviour of members of the HVO, the level of --

    21 THE INTERPRETER: Could you please read

    22 slower because of the interpreters?

    23 A. On the 24th of April, the General issued an

    24 order on stopping arbitrariness of commanders and

    25 individuals who were not carrying out orders issued by

  98. 1 their superiors, who were making decisions

    2 independently in contravention of the orders received,

    3 and who were oppressing civilians, and he asks for the

    4 arrest of individuals and groups who got out of

    5 control.

    6 Also on the 24th of April he issued an order

    7 on attitude towards civilians and prisoners in keeping

    8 with the Geneva Conventions, also on the 24th April

    9 1993, he issued an order related to one's attitude

    10 towards the wounded.

    11 On the same day, on the 24th of April, 1993,

    12 he issued an order related to the treatment of the

    13 property and housing of Bosniak Muslims who were

    14 citizens of Vitez and who were temporarily absent.

    15 On the 26th of April he issued an order

    16 prohibiting non-military behaviour towards imprisoned

    17 civilians, which was in contradiction to the Geneva

    18 Conventions.

    19 And on the 27th of April he issued an order

    20 on releasing all civilians, which was based on the

    21 agreement on this activity.

    22 Q. And on what date are you referring to?

    23 A. The 23rd of May, April, he sent a letter to

    24 Mr. Stewart related to the establishment of a joint

    25 commission, in order to ascertain the facts related to

  99. 1 the events in Ahmici.

    2 These are only written traces of General

    3 Blaskic's activities. Throughout this period of time

    4 he made every effort, through personal contact with his

    5 commanders, to ensure that all these orders of his were

    6 carried out.

    7 The results of these orders issued were that,

    8 although there were Bosniak Muslims in the town of

    9 Vitez which was under HVO control and in the villages,

    10 we managed not to have repeated the tragedy that

    11 occurred in Ahmici.

    12 Q. Let us move on to the next area now. You

    13 remember yesterday we talked about the interview of

    14 Colonel Blaskic from 1993, the interview of Ivica Rajic

    15 that was given sometime in 1995.

    16 You said that Blaskic gave this interview

    17 while the war was still on and that, of course, as a

    18 soldier he would not present his difficulties before

    19 the public, in the newspapers.

    20 A. Yes, that is what I said, and that is evident

    21 from the interview and also from the date when this

    22 newspaper was published.

    23 Q. Tell me, under what conditions did Rajic give

    24 his interview?

    25 A. Mr. Rajic, and one can see when this

  100. 1 newspaper was published, made his statement when the

    2 war was over, in a situation when the truth could fully

    3 be presented, in a situation when this would not affect

    4 combat activities because there was no combat action

    5 any more, because the war was over. So that is the

    6 difference between these two interviews. The general

    7 gave his interview during the war, and Mr. Rajic's

    8 interview took place after the end of the war.

    9 Q. And what do you wish to say in terms of the

    10 circumstances under which the interviews were given?

    11 Which one speaks more reliably about the events in

    12 Central Bosnia?

    13 A. It is certainly the interview of Mr. Rajic,

    14 because it was presented in peacetime conditions when

    15 there was no combat action.

    16 Q. So after the war?

    17 A. Yes.

    18 Q. Again, we are moving on to another area. We

    19 have five minutes left. You talked about the shelling

    20 of Zenica. The Prosecutor showed you a document where

    21 Colonel Blaskic was talking about, I quote, "Electronic

    22 surveillance," which was related to intelligence as to

    23 where the shells were fired from, and then you said you

    24 did not know of such instruments of such devices in the

    25 Operative Zone of Central Bosnia.

  101. 1 A. Yes, that is what I said.

    2 Q. Please tell the Court whether your military

    3 intelligence service headed by Ivica Zajko, when they

    4 would tell you that the enemy, either the Serbs or the

    5 Muslims, would shell you and from where?

    6 A. Yes, we would receive such information.

    7 Q. How did they provide this information? What

    8 did they use?

    9 A. The intelligence service had surveillance

    10 radio equipment with which they would enter the

    11 frequency of the radio network either of the BH army or

    12 the army of Republika Srpska, and once you enter their

    13 frequencies you could listen to their conversations

    14 either in the units of the BH army, between their

    15 commanders or the commanders of the army of the

    16 Republika Srpska. So you can listen to commands, and

    17 you can hear all other data that this particular army

    18 is transferring in this way.

    19 Q. And in this way the military intelligence

    20 service received data and that's how they conveyed it

    21 to you; right?

    22 A. Yes, that's how information was obtained.

    23 Q. These radio devices for monitoring what the

    24 enemy is saying, is it a routine thing? Is it a

    25 customary thing? Is it a device that exists in the JNA

  102. 1 and other armies for decades?

    2 A. Yes. Yes. This is a radio receiver for

    3 listening in on conversations.

    4 Q. And when the Prosecutor used this

    5 sophisticated term "electronic monitoring", what did

    6 you think of?

    7 A. At that time I thought that it was such an

    8 instrument which had such capacities that one could

    9 come to the place where a shell fell, and that from

    10 that position you could determine the location where

    11 the shell was fired from. Until the present day I have

    12 not known whether the HVO had such an instrument, and I

    13 don't know it until the present day, and that is why I

    14 said that I didn't know the HVO had this kind of an

    15 instrument.

    16 Q. However, if we were to translate into

    17 Croatian this word "electronic monitoring", it would be

    18 electronic listening -- if it were to translate it

    19 differently, "like listening" in or "surveillance",

    20 would we really understand it that way? I mean, the

    21 device that Ivica Zajko had, could you understand it

    22 that way?

    23 A. Yes, then I could.

    24 Q. On several occasions you told the Court that

    25 you did not have any insight into the Ahmici

  103. 1 investigations that were conducted by SIS on the basis

    2 of Colonel Blaskic's orders.

    3 A. Yes, that is what I said.

    4 Q. Please tell the Court, SIS is an abbreviation

    5 for the Security and Intelligence Service, but among

    6 the soldiers, among the people, what is a different

    7 name for this service?

    8 A. That Security and Intelligence Service, among

    9 the soldiers and among the people, is called -- it is

    10 called the Secret Service. It is called the Secret

    11 Service.

    12 Q. What is the basic method of SIS activity?

    13 A. The basic method of SIS activity is secrecy.

    14 So whatever they do they do under secrecy rules.

    15 Q. So are things kept secret from members of the

    16 command too? You were head of operations, and

    17 according to your post, could you have insight into

    18 what this Secret Service was doing?

    19 A. No, I never could do this, and I didn't have

    20 access to it. Not only I, but not a single officer on

    21 the staff. That is to say, starting from the head of

    22 the staff and all the other officers who were there, we

    23 did not have access.

    24 Q. One more thing I wish to ask you, it just

    25 crossed my mind. Stari Vitez was surrounded, 500 by

  104. 1 600 was the territory that was under control of the BH

    2 army, and the HVO was all around. Tell the Court, were

    3 there any proposals to do this by military means, that

    4 is to say , did anybody make any proposals to Colonel

    5 Blaskic to take Stari Vitez by military means, and if

    6 did he not act in this way why did he not take these

    7 proposals into consideration?

    8 A. There were such thoughts, there were

    9 proposals, there were requests, there were demands of

    10 this kind that were made even by the man in the street,

    11 but General Blaskic never decided to take such a step

    12 and he never issued military orders to take Stari Vitez

    13 in that way where the Bosniak Muslims lived and where

    14 the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina was. Because of such a

    15 stance of his, General Blaskic, in Vitez -- General

    16 Blaskic, in Vitez, people objected. People in Vitez

    17 objected to what General Blaskic did. Even the man in

    18 the street objected, because during the war, a

    19 significant number of civilians and military men were

    20 killed by sniper fire from Stari Vitez. But General

    21 Blaskic knew, having drawn on all the experience he

    22 had, that the army was not organised, this was a

    23 populated area, and that it had -- had his units taken

    24 such action there would be great loss of life of

    25 civilians and soldiers, and there would be a lot of

  105. 1 destruction of property, notably housing.

    2 Q. And the last question we are fitting into the

    3 time limits, the last question: The Honourable Judges

    4 also objected to the fact that there were voids in your

    5 memory too. So could you please explain how you

    6 function? How come you remember some things better and

    7 some things not so well five or six years after these

    8 events?

    9 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, in the statement

    10 I have made so far I have said quite a few times that I

    11 remember better those events for which I was directly

    12 in charge of, but as I was reminded through documents

    13 that the Defence showed to me before I came here, I

    14 remembered certain events even better. Some other

    15 tasks and assignments that were carried out in the

    16 command of the Operative Zone and that were not within

    17 my own province of work I do remember them, but the

    18 details related to that part of the job I could not say

    19 for sure, because I just wanted to say what I could

    20 claim with certitude, because I only spoke of facts and

    21 events that I know of for sure.

    22 I remember when we first -- when I first met

    23 the Defence counsel and when we talked, I had more

    24 questions than were put to me by both the Defence and

    25 the Prosecutor together, and I said that I could not

  106. 1 remember everything, and I said what the areas were,

    2 where I could speak specifically, and on the basis of

    3 facts, where I could explain this on the basis of my

    4 memory and on the basis of documents.

    5 My basic memory and my basic remembering of

    6 all these events was based on the documents I was

    7 shown. I remember when the attorney asked me whether

    8 General Blaskic issued orders in line with the Geneva

    9 Conventions. Before I saw these documents I said,

    10 "Yes, I know he did," but at that point in time I

    11 could the not even remember five or six of them.

    12 However, he reminded me of this. He showed me those

    13 documents. Then I remembered each and every activity

    14 from that order.

    15 So that is the reason why -- why -- why I did

    16 not remember all the things related to all combat

    17 actions. And everything that was happening within the

    18 area of the Operative Zone I could not remember with

    19 the same degree of certitude.

    20 MR. NOBILO: Thank you, Brigadier. The

    21 Defence is concluded. Thank you, Mr. President.

    22 We have already tendered into evidence

    23 several exhibits, and now we would like to have

    24 admitted D411 from our additional questioning, D412 and

    25 D413. Thank you.

  107. 1 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, I think that the

    2 Court reserved on the admission of all Defence

    3 documents pursuant to the Prosecutor's request. I

    4 think that that was still a subject of discussion. If

    5 I'm not mistaken, Mr. Dubuisson.

    6 THE REGISTRAR: During the admission, at the

    7 end of the examination-in-chief, you expressed some

    8 reservations and you said that you wanted to have some

    9 more time --

    10 MR. KEHOE: Yes.

    11 THE REGISTRAR: -- in order to look at these

    12 documents. These documents begin with D199 and the

    13 last one is D413. At the time only one decision has

    14 been taken. It has to do with D410 A and B, and as

    15 regards that document, the decision is it would not be

    16 admitted. That was the decision of 2 October, 1998.

    17 And the same thing applies for you too,

    18 Mr. Prosecutor. Your document 406, 267 to 558, as well

    19 as 458, I think it is, which is part of the video we

    20 saw yesterday, has also not yet been admitted.

    21 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Mr. President. If the --

    22 correct me if I'm wrong, Mr. Dubuisson, the Prosecutor

    23 numbers run from 476 to 538; is that correct?

    24 THE REGISTRAR: 476 to 538 --

    25 MR. KEHOE: Yes.

  108. 1 THE REGISTRAR: -- including 436A, which is

    2 the video we saw yesterday.

    3 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Mr. President. We would

    4 offer those exhibits into evidence on behalf of the

    5 Prosecutor. The question with regard to the Defence

    6 exhibits emanated from the exhibits that came in. We

    7 are talking about the combat orders of the accused,

    8 267, 268 and 269. Again, Mr. President and Your

    9 Honours, these are the documents that the Office of the

    10 Prosecutor has been seeking since January of last

    11 year. Of course, they come in in the Defence case, and

    12 I think it would be beneficial to the Court as to the

    13 source of those documents, given the fact that we have

    14 been unable to get those documents through binding

    15 orders coming from this Court.

    16 JUDGE JORDA: I take it these are two

    17 questions which are different, two questions which are

    18 related, in your opinion, but have to be dealt with

    19 separately. There's the question of the binding order

    20 for disclosure of documents which has not been

    21 executed, which is continuing through these procedures,

    22 and there is the fact that today you are asking to make

    23 your comments about those documents which were supplied

    24 to you now, that is supplied two weeks ago, and which

    25 were recognised by the witness, they were identified by

  109. 1 him. According to a decision we took several months

    2 ago, you know the relevance and the competence of the

    3 Judges alone appears simple. There is no fundamental

    4 objection as to the question of admissibility.

    5 I'd like to hear what Mr. Hayman has to say

    6 about this, but it seems there's no problem once it has

    7 been identified by counsel. But since these -- these

    8 documents were the not given to you by Croatia -- yes,

    9 I think it was Croatia, and that we have received them

    10 through another channel today, is a question which

    11 arises as to the application of our internal rules, and

    12 which will give rise, as you know, to a decision by

    13 this Trial Chamber.

    14 Mr. Hayman, do you have any questions you

    15 would like to add both to that first question regarding

    16 the Prosecutor's comments, and, secondly, the comments

    17 having to do with the Prosecution documents?

    18 First of all, have you any comments to make

    19 about the tendering of Prosecution documents which I

    20 have here, 476 to 538, except for one document which is

    21 not admitted. I believe it's 510 -- 410. Yes, it's

    22 410. Do you have any comments to make about that,

    23 Mr. Hayman?

    24 MR. HAYMAN: I have three comments,

    25 Mr. President. With respect to the Prosecution

  110. 1 exhibits tendered, we have no objections save four.

    2 That is we object to four of them because we don't

    3 believe they have been authenticated. I can identify

    4 them. Exhibit 499, that's Prosecutor's Exhibit 499--

    5 JUDGE JORDA: Please go slowly. 449.

    6 MR. HAYMAN: Yes, Mr. President. The witness

    7 testified --

    8 JUDGE JORDA: These were documents which

    9 were -- these are Defence documents; is that right?

    10 MR. HAYMAN: No, Mr. President. These are

    11 the documents shown to the witness on cross-examination

    12 by the Prosecutor and that the Prosecutor now tenders,

    13 or I understand him to be tendering them. There are

    14 50 -- 40 or 50 of them. We have objections --

    15 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Registrar, 499, what is

    16 that? Perhaps I made a mistake here. All right 499 --

    17 actually, I thought it was this document here. This

    18 was an order which was signed by Mr. Ante Jelavic on

    19 the 28th of February 1997. It's this one, this; is

    20 that right? Ante Jelavic. This document was provided

    21 by the Prosecution.

    22 What comment do you want to make about that

    23 document, Mr. Hayman?

    24 MR. HAYMAN: That they showed it to the

    25 witness, Mr. President, and they asked him if he knew

  111. 1 of it or recognised it, and he said no. He said that

    2 he didn't author it, he didn't know it, and he could

    3 not identify the document. The same was said of

    4 Exhibit 500, Prosecutor's Exhibit 500, another document

    5 that bears the name, I believe, of the same individual,

    6 Mr. Jelavic.

    7 MR. KEHOE: If I may, Mr. President, those

    8 two documents are documents that have been sent to the

    9 clerk's office and were sent directly to Judge

    10 McDonald. Once they were sent to Judge McDonald by

    11 these particular parties, then copies were provided to

    12 the Office of the Prosecutor. So these are now

    13 official records sent directly to Judge McDonald

    14 pursuant to a binding order. So even if this

    15 particular witness had not seen these documents, which

    16 is instructive for other reasons, Your Honour can

    17 simply have the Registrar's office pull these documents

    18 up and the Court can take notice of these particular

    19 documents having been sent to Judge McDonald by

    20 Mr. Jelavic.

    21 MR. HAYMAN: That may be the case,

    22 Mr. President. This we don't know. This all has

    23 occurred in secrecy as far as the Defence is

    24 concerned. We are not privy to these matters and these

    25 documents. We simply wanted to note that without

  112. 1 further information, the witness did not recognise or

    2 identify the document, so that issue exists to 499 and

    3 Prosecutor's Exhibit 500.

    4 JUDGE JORDA: I would like to consult my

    5 colleagues.

    6 The Judges would like to show the witness

    7 once again to see whether at least the appearance of

    8 the document -- or both the documents, in fact, is one

    9 which would make it a strong possibility that they are

    10 authentic. I would like both the documents to be shown

    11 again to the witness, because apparently they appear to

    12 be very much like the ones.

    13 You've seen many documents like that,

    14 Brigadier. Does that one look like many of the other

    15 ones that you've already seen?

    16 A. Mr. President, the documents, as you say, are

    17 very similar to a large number of other documents that

    18 we have seen. Looking at these two documents now, I

    19 can base my opinions on the signature by Defence

    20 Minister Ante Jelavic. As far as I recall, Minister

    21 Jelavic did have a signature of this kind, but as I did

    22 not see the documents prior to this I cannot say for

    23 certain, but I do think that he did sign his documents

    24 in this kind of way.

    25 JUDGE JORDA: All right. They will be

  113. 1 admitted. They can be given to the registrar.

    2 MR. HAYMAN: That's fine.

    3 JUDGE JORDA: Any other comment?

    4 MR. HAYMAN: The two other documents to which

    5 we object are Prosecutor's Exhibit 524 and 528.

    6 JUDGE JORDA: As soon as we get them out --

    7 if I'm not wrong, I've got them in front of me here.

    8 It's an announcement to the Croatia people. Is that

    9 the one?

    10 MR. KEHOE: That's correct, Mr. President,

    11 that's 524. And an identifying feature of that -- the

    12 witness said he didn't know this document, but an

    13 identifying feature of the document is the fax number

    14 on the top of the page, which this witness identified

    15 as the fax number for the Hotel Vitez, that

    16 387-271-1300 is the fax number for the Hotel Vitez.

    17 JUDGE JORDA: Yes, but that was settled. We

    18 did talk about the fax number. What's your comment,

    19 Mr. Hayman, about 524?

    20 MR. HAYMAN: That the witness didn't know the

    21 document. It's not signed, it's not stamped. It has a

    22 fax line on the copy, but it is a photocopy, and so,

    23 quite frankly, what that means exactly --

    24 JUDGE JORDA: All right. If we've got to

    25 take out all photocopies -- if we take out all of the

  114. 1 photocopies here we might as well stop today. We've

    2 been working with photocopies for months and months. I

    3 remember very clearly that the witness recognised and

    4 identified the fax number. The fact that he didn't see

    5 the document is just the way it was before with the

    6 other one.

    7 MR. HAYMAN: With all due respect,

    8 Mr. President, he said it's the same fax number as on

    9 another document which purported to be sent from the

    10 Operative Zone command. I simply wanted to point out

    11 that was the extent to which the document has in any

    12 way been authenticated. If that's sufficient for the

    13 Court, so be it.

    14 With respect to Prosecutor's Exhibit 528,

    15 this is a document that purports to be a document of

    16 the --

    17 JUDGE JORDA: All right. The document is

    18 admitted. All right. Let's move on to 528.

    19 MR. HAYMAN: 528 purports to be a document of

    20 the army of the Bosnia Serbs. The witness was not

    21 familiar with the document or the author of the

    22 document.

    23 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Kehoe.

    24 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Mr. President. The witness

    25 did say he was unfamiliar with this document. This

  115. 1 document was given to the Office of the Prosecutor by

    2 the Bosnian government. We simply offer it at this

    3 point based on giving the source, and allow the Court

    4 to weigh what is in that particular document with

    5 informing the Court where the Office of the Prosecutor

    6 obtained that document, and give the Court the weight

    7 to which the Court believes it deserves.

    8 JUDGE JORDA: Does the witness recognise the

    9 signature of Commander Boskic? Brigadier? You've got

    10 it in the B/C/S version. It's negotiations with the

    11 Ustashe, and it is signed by Lieutenant-Colonel

    12 Boskic. Does this signature appear to be authentic,

    13 that is the document that was provided by the Bosnian

    14 government?

    15 Of course, you're not expected to recognise

    16 all the signatures, but we will evaluate the relevance

    17 of that document when we deliberate.

    18 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, as I have not

    19 seen the document that Commander Lieutenant-Colonel

    20 Boskic -- I have never seen in my life. I do not know

    21 the man. I don't know his signature. The stamp is

    22 unknown to me. So this document is something that I am

    23 looking at the for the first time, and I know nothing

    24 about it or its author.

    25 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Kehoe, pursuant to our

  116. 1 decision of several months ago, we do not have to offer

    2 the source. Do you want to have an ex parte meeting in

    3 order to see what the source is? We'd rather settle

    4 this today. We cannot work in several months asking

    5 ourselves whether or not this document was admitted or

    6 was not admitted. Our decision was very clear. Do you

    7 want to reveal the source that would help us come to a

    8 decision as to the admission of this document or do you

    9 not?

    10 MR. KEHOE: Certainly, Judge, and I'll

    11 concede -- I'll give it to you in open court. There's

    12 no reason to even go ex parte. The source of this

    13 particular document came to the Office of the

    14 Prosecutor from the government of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

    15 They provided that with other documents concerning the

    16 Serbs, and this document didn't come in isolation.

    17 That's -- candidly, Mr. President and Your Honours,

    18 that's all I know about this particular document. But

    19 I do believe that this was a document that came from

    20 the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina government. I can

    21 go back and backtrack this document yet further and

    22 find out yet more information, but --

    23 JUDGE JORDA: Not at all. We're not going to

    24 waste our energy with that.

    25 Mr. Hayman, this document will be admitted

  117. 1 with the reservation that between now and the time of

    2 the deliberations if you have anything you want to

    3 contest -- let me speak more slowly. Excuse me.

    4 The document will be admitted and you will

    5 note that, Mr. Registrar. It will be admitted with the

    6 reservation, with Mr. Kehoe's explanations, that if you

    7 have any comments which would raise questions as to the

    8 source and relevance of the document, you would

    9 communicate those to the Judges, who will take them

    10 into account when they deliberate if they need it. And

    11 they would, of course, take into account as well your


    13 Do you have any other observations you'd like

    14 to make? Did you understand what I said, Mr. Hayman?

    15 MR. HAYMAN: I understood and accept it. Our

    16 position has been and continues to be if the source

    17 offered by the Prosecutor is not creator of the

    18 document -- in other words, we don't know how the

    19 Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina came into this document,

    20 or whether they believe it to be genuine or a forgery,

    21 then merely saying that they got it from a third party

    22 not related to the source of the document isn't

    23 sufficient, but I don't have anything further to say on

    24 that.

    25 I did want to say in response to your earlier

  118. 1 comments that I take it then there's no objection of

    2 putting aside --

    3 JUDGE JORDA: The Judges are no further bound

    4 by the government of Bosnia and Herzegovina than they

    5 are by the government of Croatia or the Croatian Muslim

    6 Federation. When they give us documents, which is not

    7 something that happens very often, Judges have to

    8 operate on probability and relevance, and that is why

    9 I'm giving you the opportunity, with this document 528,

    10 to make any comments. And having said this, this might

    11 lead the Judges into not using it. As things stand

    12 now, I think we cannot do anything more than that.

    13 MR. HAYMAN: My only comment Mr. President,

    14 is based on what we know, there is a 50 per cent

    15 probability it is a genuine document, and there's a 50

    16 per cent probability it's a forgery. We have no idea,

    17 and we have no way to further investigate the document

    18 by contacting Bosnian Serb authorities. It's a dead

    19 end. The other comments we have are number two --

    20 MR. KEHOE: First of all, I object to

    21 counsel's comments about 50 per cent forgery and 50 per

    22 cent not.

    23 MR. HAYMAN: Did the Prosecutor get it from

    24 the Bosnian intelligence service? Is that how they got

    25 it? If it is, what I suggest is we be allowed to

  119. 1 cross-examine the person or representative of the

    2 organisation that gave it to him. And if that's the

    3 secret service, we heard today how secret services

    4 operate in secret, they have covert methods, and so

    5 forth, and there you are.

    6 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Hayman, let us not raise

    7 the problem of sources too much. I refer you back to

    8 our decision regarding the production and source of

    9 documents, which is the final criteria for accepting

    10 documents, and that was identification by the witness.

    11 Nonetheless, it is just as true that there

    12 may be possibilities when identification is

    13 impossible. It is not because a witness does not make

    14 identification that the Judges automatically will say

    15 they cannot use a document. They must, however, review

    16 it with more prudence.

    17 As to your comment about the source, let us

    18 not try to move away from that system, otherwise the

    19 Judges could also ask questions regarding the source of

    20 all the documents, to know why there were documents in

    21 your possession as regards this testimony, whereas

    22 there are others that the Prosecution couldn't get hold

    23 of.

    24 Let's leave this question aside for the time

    25 being. It will be settled, as I said to the

  120. 1 Prosecutor, as part of the decision on the orders for

    2 production of documents which are not executed either

    3 by Croatia or by Bosnia. You know that we have both

    4 possibilities, I'm not even going to speak about

    5 Serbia.

    6 If you like, I think we can leave this

    7 question aside. I think there are three documents

    8 which have been admitted, and the fourth one is

    9 admitted, taking into your account your comments,

    10 Mr. Hayman. That was the first question that I asked

    11 you.

    12 There was a second question having to do with

    13 the Defence documents.

    14 MR. HAYMAN: Yes, we would ask, excluding

    15 Exhibit D410, that Defence Exhibits D189 to and

    16 including D413, be admitted without objection,

    17 apparently, of the Prosecutor.

    18 JUDGE JORDA: All right, we have now heard a

    19 comment by the Prosecutor (sic). Are you maintaining

    20 your position, Mr. Kehoe?

    21 MR. KEHOE: Just, our position was only with

    22 regard to three documents. I understand,

    23 Mr. President, what your position is with regard to

    24 those three documents, that is D267, 268 and 269; but

    25 the balance of those documents we have no objection,

  121. 1 except as previously stated on those three.

    2 JUDGE JORDA: Are there any other comments

    3 before we take a break?

    4 MR. KEHOE: Not from the office of the

    5 Prosecutor, Mr. President.

    6 JUDGE JORDA: The registrar is saying

    7 something to me. The registrar is pointing out the

    8 Prosecutor's observations. Could I have the numbers,

    9 again, please?

    10 THE REGISTRAR: 267, 268 and 269.

    11 JUDGE JORDA: They have been admitted

    12 pursuant to the same comments, that is, having to do

    13 with problems of source, which will be reviewed by the

    14 Judges when they deliberate. I'm asking each of the

    15 parties that if they have any doubts or any comments as

    16 to the source of the documents, either you, Mr. Nobilo

    17 and Mr. Hayman, and Mr. Kehoe and Mr. Harmon, you can

    18 still write a brief to us before the deliberations.

    19 There are the Judges questions, of course,

    20 that will be asked. Brigadier, you cannot yet leave

    21 because we have questions to ask, we're going to take a

    22 20-minute break.

    23 --- Recess taken at 3.50 p.m.

    24 --- On resuming at 4.17 p.m.

    25 JUDGE JORDA: We will resume the hearing.

  122. 1 Have the accused brought in, please.

    2 (The accused entered court).

    3 JUDGE JORDA: Brigadier, we are almost at the

    4 end of this long testimony. I will give the floor to

    5 my colleagues so that they can ask the questions which

    6 they feel are appropriate. Let me begin with Judge

    7 Riad.

    8 JUDGE RIAD: Thank you, Mr. President. Good

    9 afternoon, General, Brigadier Marin.

    10 A. Good afternoon, Your Honour.

    11 JUDGE RIAD: Perhaps you might cast some

    12 light, or some bit more light on some of your

    13 conclusions, some of which seem equivocal to me,

    14 specifically as regards to your diagnosis of the events

    15 to which you were privileged witness.

    16 The first conclusion, which seems a bit

    17 equivocal to me, related to the origins of the war in

    18 Central Bosnia between the Croats and the Muslims. I

    19 noted that you said that the Muslims had quickly

    20 abandoned the ground to the Serbs, they didn't know how

    21 to defend themselves, and the Serbs were able to gain

    22 territory, which would imply that they were weak, they

    23 were much weaker than the Serbs, that in fact they were

    24 really conquered. And yet, they opened up another

    25 front and attacked the Croats.

  123. 1 What strategy could that serve, that is, to

    2 have a weak army opening up another front? Could you

    3 explain to me what strategy that could be? All the

    4 more so, all the more so, since you indicated in one of

    5 the documents that General Blaskic declared that the

    6 Muslims did not want the war against the Croats, that

    7 is document, I believe, 276, how can you reconcile

    8 those two observations which are more or less

    9 irreconcilable, that is, in your opinion?

    10 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, when I spoke

    11 about the fact that the army of the Republika Srpska

    12 had very quickly, in an easy way, expelled the Bosniak

    13 Muslims, and that portion of the Croats who lived in

    14 the municipality that I'm not going to mention, when I

    15 spoke of the time of the very beginnings of the

    16 aggression, in fact, of the army of the Republika

    17 Srpska on Bosnia-Herzegovina, in that part of my

    18 testimony I mentioned the following municipalities: I

    19 mentioned the municipalities of western Bosnia, that is

    20 to say, Kljuc, Petrovac, Prijedor, Banja Luka, Skender

    21 Vakuf, Donji Vakuf, Bosanska Krupa, and several other

    22 places, which are in that area of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

    23 It is in these places, Mr. President, and

    24 Your Honours, that the Bosniak Muslims, according to

    25 the population census of 1991, they were a relative and

  124. 1 somewhere an absolute majority.

    2 However, in those places the Croats were

    3 represented to a small amount, and the HVO was not

    4 organised in those places.

    5 Now, what does that mean? It means that the

    6 army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, that is to say, the

    7 political leadership of the Muslims and Bosniaks at the

    8 beginning of the aggression of the army of the

    9 Republika Srpska, helped by the Yugoslav People's Army

    10 in the area of Bosnia-Herzegovina, wavered, they were

    11 not decisive and resolute in standing up to that

    12 aggression, and this assertion I illustrated by the

    13 facts and stated the destinies of the Bosniak Muslims

    14 in the municipalities I mentioned.

    15 However, on the other side we have a

    16 different development of events. That is to say, in

    17 places where the Croats were, perhaps, a relative

    18 majority in some places, or the same percentage as the

    19 Muslim Bosniaks, and where the HVO was organised, that

    20 is to say, where the HVO was organised, together with

    21 the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, there a resistance was

    22 made to the army of the Republika Srpska.

    23 We have a comparison there. For example,

    24 Donji Vakuf, where the Muslim Bosniaks were the

    25 majority, the army of the Republika Srpska was able to

  125. 1 take control in one day.

    2 However, Jajce, if we look at it on the map,

    3 is in the interior where there are Croats and the HVO

    4 exists and where it is working jointly with the

    5 Territorial Defence at the time of the Bosnian army,

    6 Jajce defended itself right up to the end of November,

    7 that is to say, the end of October, 1992.

    8 So, my observation and conclusion referred to

    9 the successes of the army of the Republika Srpska

    10 compared to the municipalities where the Muslim Bosniak

    11 population was a majority.

    12 And at the time it was the beginning of the

    13 aggression of the army of the Republika Srpska on

    14 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and in that context, Mr. President

    15 and Your Honours, I made my observation that one of the

    16 reasons for doubt and dissatisfaction on the part of

    17 the Croat people in Bosnia-Herzegovina with regard to

    18 the measures taken by the political leadership, when

    19 talking about aggression and standing up to that

    20 aggression, was that wavering or indecision.

    21 I'm going to give you the example of the

    22 village of Ravno, which was first attacked, which was

    23 attached first in the aggression by the army of the

    24 Republika Srpska on Bosnia-Herzegovina, and it is a

    25 village with a large percentage, or perhaps 100 per

  126. 1 cent Croat population; I remember, for example, the

    2 news on television or reports when the head of the

    3 Bosniak Muslims, who was a member of the presidency of

    4 Bosnia-Herzegovina of the day, and was the presiding

    5 individual, said after that aggression, and after the

    6 fact that the village was completely burned to the

    7 ground and the people expelled, that it was not a war

    8 -- I will try and remember the statement -- he said

    9 "it's not our war."

    10 So in that context, Mr. President, I made the

    11 conclusions that I made and the statements that I

    12 made.

    13 And would you remind me, you had another part

    14 of the question, so as to give you a detailed answer?

    15 Will you repeat the second part of your question,

    16 please?

    17 Yes, I remember, the second part of your

    18 question referred to whether the army of

    19 Bosnia-Herzegovina, in the state that existed, can open

    20 a second front towards the HVO.

    21 Yes, those are the facts, and that is the

    22 truth. The army of Bosnia-Herzegovina openly attacked

    23 the HVO in January, and that was the year of 1993. The

    24 conflicts I mentioned occurred in March 1992. So, that

    25 is a year when certain movements had been made with

  127. 1 regard to equipment organisation, system, and so on.

    2 I said that through the promotion activities

    3 in Central Bosnia, there were rumours, there was

    4 stories that certain extremists, which existed both in

    5 the ranks of the BH army and the HVO, and I'm speaking

    6 principally of the BH army, said we do not have enough

    7 forces to fight against the Serbs, but we have enough

    8 forces to fight against the Croats.

    9 And furthermore, the second reason why an

    10 open attack occurred on the BH units, in the HVO units

    11 in Central Bosnia, was that in Central Bosnia there was

    12 a concentration of the military industry, that is to

    13 say, in Konjic we had the production of ammunition, in

    14 Vitez we had an explosives factory, in Novi Travnik

    15 there was an ammunition factory, again, for guns, and

    16 in Travnik footwear and clothing was produced for

    17 purposes of the army.

    18 So, with this kind of goal in mind, and to

    19 master this territory, the BH army would gain all the

    20 prerequisites to be able to arm itself and re-equip

    21 itself and independently to produce everything it

    22 needed, equipment and armaments for waging a war.

    23 Second, the territory of Central Bosnia, and

    24 particularly the Kiseljak, Busovaca, Vitez and Novi

    25 Travnik municipalities, with their geographic

  128. 1 distribution, are at key points on roads in Central

    2 Bosnia, communication lines.

    3 And I said that all wars in

    4 Bosnia-Herzegovina were, to all practical purposes, all

    5 the armies waging war in Bosnia-Herzegovina waged them

    6 for the communication lines. Those in control of the

    7 communication lines would be the winners of the war.

    8 JUDGE RIAD: Thank you, Brigadier. I would

    9 like to ask you to give us a shorter answer, that way

    10 we can finish this afternoon.

    11 When we hear you, it seems that the sudden

    12 defeat of the Muslims, at Donji Vakuf in particular, in

    13 one day, provoked discontent among the Croats,

    14 vis-à-vis the Croats who withdrew quickly.

    15 Can one say that that discontent provoked a

    16 certain type of aggression on the part of the Croats

    17 against the Muslims, in order to teach them a lesson?

    18 To teach them how to act? As you can say, give them a

    19 good spanking?

    20 A. Mr. President, I did not maintain that, I did

    21 not think that, and that was not how things stood. It

    22 was not to teach them a lesson, to teach anyone a

    23 lesson, in fact.

    24 But, it was, quite simply, that the Croats

    25 were not able to understand that the Muslim Bosniaks,

  129. 1 at the start, immediately at the beginning, did not

    2 firmly stand up in defence of the places that I

    3 mentioned. Because there had, there did not have any

    4 different conditions in Zenica, in connection to

    5 Bosanska, Petrovac, because the population ratio was

    6 that the units could have been organised.

    7 JUDGE RIAD: Thank you. I have another

    8 clarification I would like to ask for, which has to do

    9 with the role of General Blaskic vis-à-vis orders.

    10 General Blaskic issued many orders to protect

    11 civilians. For example, I have documents here, D480,

    12 I'm not going to cite them all, but he gave the orders

    13 to protect civilians. He even gave orders for

    14 fighting. Frequently they were orders that I saw in

    15 the transcript, when I wasn't there, I'm not sure that

    16 it was 456, I believe, in which he was addressing

    17 himself to Vitezovi and to the military police.

    18 In an army worthy of its name, I suppose that

    19 one gives orders that can be carried out; which means

    20 that even the Vitezovi, that is the military police,

    21 were subordinate to General Blaskic and received orders

    22 from him, and that he could give orders to protect

    23 civilians.

    24 At the same time you said that sometimes the

    25 -- here I am saying one word -- that they were really

  130. 1 bluff, because they could not be carried out, such as

    2 the orders to convict, condemn to death people, that

    3 these orders in fact were simply an illusion.

    4 Can you confirm the conclusion that the

    5 Prosecutor drew this morning, to which you did not

    6 answer; that is, that nobody was prosecuted for war

    7 crimes, and that the General Blaskic's orders were not

    8 obeyed, they were not followed by any serious steps

    9 taken in order to punish the guilty ones?

    10 I would add that as regards, for example,

    11 Ahmici, and this morning as well, I believe it was the

    12 Kiseljak mosque, when you were asked why there was no

    13 investigation or if there was an investigation; and you

    14 said "how can an investigation be carried out if you

    15 don't know the people who committed the atrocity?"

    16 But that's why the investigation is carried

    17 out, in order to find out who committed the acts. Why

    18 do you say, what reasons can you give for there having

    19 been no orders and there was no follow-up to the orders

    20 from General Blaskic which asked that the civilians be

    21 protected?

    22 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, the Judge said,

    23 is it not logical that an order issued should be

    24 executed by the army? Yes, in an army which is

    25 organised, Your Honour, which has standards and codes

  131. 1 of conduct that have been built up, in that kind of

    2 army orders are, of course, executed.

    3 The failure to execute orders in the HVO, but

    4 I don't want to say that no orders issued were

    5 implemented, but were not executed strictly, orders by

    6 the commander of the Operative Zone to the HVO units,

    7 is the result, and I have said that; that is the

    8 difference between the HVO as an armed force of

    9 Herceg-Bosna, what it should have been and what the HVO

    10 actually was.

    11 I said, Mr. President, that the organisation

    12 of the HVO began in villages where family relationships

    13 existed, and where you didn't want, where you had

    14 neighbourly relations and you didn't want to go against

    15 those relations.

    16 And so, at a lower level, because of this

    17 familiarity in the relationships that existed in the

    18 village, in practice, none of the tasks were

    19 implemented with regard to punishment.

    20 Second, the orders which were issued to

    21 protect civilians best testify to how much General

    22 Blaskic, as a professional soldier, invested efforts,

    23 under existing conditions, the conditions under which

    24 he lived and worked, so that he could, with his

    25 subordinates, create the, bring to bear that they

  132. 1 should fight against crimes of this kind, and to

    2 prevent, in their units, appearances and phenomena of

    3 this kind.

    4 I said on several occasions all these

    5 criminal instances and conduct towards civilians, the

    6 burning of houses and so on, that many of these

    7 activities were done secretly in a covert fashion,

    8 because nobody wanted to do this and to have it known,

    9 widely known. And that is where the problem lies.

    10 Furthermore, the existence of informal

    11 groups, unofficial groups which had weapons at their

    12 disposal, you see the PPN, special purpose units in the

    13 brigades, for example 20 young men say they are a

    14 special brigade and give themselves the name of

    15 Grasshoppers, for example; and those 20 young men in

    16 the units, on the next day or two days later might

    17 leave the units.

    18 So, it was not, organisationally speaking,

    19 something that had been standardised and ordered. And

    20 it is for these reasons that the execution of orders

    21 was made more difficult.

    22 I said that as the war progressed, as people

    23 began to realise what war meant and what the dangers

    24 that war brought with it and what consequences it

    25 brought, already in 1993, on the eve of the Washington

  133. 1 Accords, we had a higher degree of execution of the

    2 General's orders.

    3 The General was consistent and persistent in

    4 fighting against everything that was not in conformity

    5 with military ethics and logics and the Geneva

    6 Conventions and other agreements.

    7 Furthermore, when we come to the mosque in

    8 Kiseljak, he ordered the commander of the brigade to

    9 ascertain and investigate this incident and the state

    10 of affairs there. Furthermore, he ordered the

    11 commanders to send him the names and surnames of

    12 individuals who had burned houses, but he was never

    13 able to arrive at any name.

    14 Why not? Because the commander of the

    15 brigade could not arrive at a name himself. So the

    16 commander of the brigade did not refuse to execute that

    17 order, he was just not able to implement it, because he

    18 did not get the right information, that is to say,

    19 someone with a name and surname was the perpetrator of

    20 one of these incidents.

    21 So the key problem was that the HVO was badly

    22 organised, was in the process of being established and

    23 being born, and not a well organised army at that time.

    24 JUDGE RIAD: Could you tell me succinctly, if

    25 there were any people, and name them if you can, any

  134. 1 people who were prosecuted for war crimes?

    2 I accept that one could not condemn to death,

    3 as we spoke about at great length yesterday, because

    4 that might have caused trouble in the army, and it

    5 might have had an effect on the General's popularity.

    6 But even theoretically were any prosecutions for war

    7 crimes carried out against certain individuals? And

    8 who were they? That's all. In general, as regards all

    9 the incidents.

    10 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, there was no

    11 such prosecution, but investigations had been ordered.

    12 We saw what General Blaskic got when he ordered

    13 investigation of certain cases.

    14 JUDGE RIAD: I'm going to move to another

    15 question about which I would like some clarification.

    16 One has constantly said that the General was

    17 not able to appoint or dismiss commanders, that he

    18 needed the consent, or perhaps consultation with the

    19 local authorities.

    20 Were there any cases when communal or local

    21 authorities opposed the appointments or dismissals of

    22 General Blaskic on the ground, in fact, did he ever run

    23 into any opposition to what he was doing?

    24 A. Yes, when dismissals were concerned, we have

    25 the case of Fojnica, when appointments are concerned,

  135. 1 General Blaskic, because he was aware of what the

    2 situation was, he knew what the situation was, what he

    3 could and could not carry out. I said that he was

    4 balancing between his powers and the actual situation

    5 on the ground.

    6 He was in a position to reconcile two

    7 opposites, on the one hand he had powers, and on the

    8 other hand he could not carry them out in practice.

    9 Mr. President, I will go a step further, as

    10 far as appointments are concerned. Even the municipal

    11 authorities could not impose a commander of a brigade

    12 if the army did not want it in the lower units.

    13 Also, the commander of a battalion could not

    14 be appointed if he were not accepted by the soldiers he

    15 was supposed to command. So, we would get down to

    16 village level, to company level, where you could not

    17 decree anyone, appoint anyone by decree. Not in a

    18 single case in Central Bosnia, in the Lasva Valley,

    19 General Blaskic or any commander could not appoint an

    20 officer, who was professionally trained, to appoint him

    21 to be a commander in a different village in a different

    22 unit. I mean, two people from a different village

    23 where this person did not live.

    24 For example, in the village of Krcevine,

    25 there could only be a commander from the village of

  136. 1 Krcevine, no matter how many able men you had, or in

    2 the village of Jardol, or wherever, that was the

    3 reality and the state of affairs.

    4 Because if you would appoint a person who

    5 these people did not want, he could not work with these

    6 people. They would refuse to carry out every one of

    7 his orders.

    8 JUDGE RIAD: Does this also apply to

    9 dismissals? Could he dismiss somebody from a community

    10 and replace him by somebody else from the same

    11 community, in order to please that community? Or was

    12 even that difficult?

    13 A. He could not even carry that out. That is to

    14 say, that the person he wanted to appoint would have to

    15 be approved of by the people this person would

    16 command. So, if it was a lower level unit, a company

    17 or whatever, 30 people, 100 people, that is to say the

    18 entire structure.

    19 JUDGE RIAD: He could not dismiss people,

    20 that's the question, he could not dismiss people. He

    21 could not take them out of service?

    22 A. He could not, he could not, although he did

    23 have the legal authority to do so.

    24 Q. Very well. Last question. I have noted that

    25 you said in the hearing of 6 October that you could not

  137. 1 assert whether officers or Croatian soldiers were

    2 participants in the HVO; and furthermore, yesterday or

    3 perhaps this morning, we spoke about a request, about a

    4 letter which was sent by the municipality on 12 April

    5 1993 to the president of Croatia, or to General

    6 Praljak, it was the general of the Croatian army,

    7 asking that he send higher ranking officers in order to

    8 re-enforce the Lasva Valley units.

    9 The fact that municipalities turned to the

    10 General of the Croatian army, was that a regular thing

    11 that happened, or was that a special way of acting

    12 which was not something which ordinarily was done?

    13 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, this was not

    14 usual and it wasn't unusual either. The letter we read

    15 out yesterday was written because of the way of

    16 thinking and the way of functioning of the municipal

    17 authorities of Travnik. It was in line with their

    18 thoughts. It's not that there was a procedure making

    19 it compulsory on them to do so or not to do so.

    20 Also, a similar letter could possibly have

    21 been written in other municipalities too. I don't know

    22 that. I cannot confirm that. But the most important

    23 thing is that this letter shows how independent a

    24 municipal authority is. That is to say, they

    25 circumvent the central authority of Herceg-Bosna. The

  138. 1 central authority of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which was

    2 paralysed, and they write a letter directly. I don't

    3 know what the effects were of that letter, but I know

    4 as far as officers are concerned, these officers never

    5 came and were never in the command of the Operative

    6 Zone of Central Bosnia. Not officers of the Croatian

    7 army or soldiers of the Croatian army.

    8 JUDGE RIAD: I said on 16 October that you

    9 didn't know. You said that you didn't know whether

    10 there were officers there or not, and now you're saying

    11 that there were not any.

    12 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, I said that I

    13 know that there were not any of them in the command of

    14 the Operative Zone. And the HVO had three other

    15 operative zones, north-western Herzegovina, Southeast

    16 Herzegovina, and whether there were such officers there

    17 at that time I don't know. And I said why. Because

    18 from 1991 until the Washington Accords, I was not in a

    19 position to leave the enclave, and I never received

    20 this official information by way of fact. So I'm

    21 saying this for sure in terms of the command of the

    22 Operative Zone of Central Bosnia where I was.

    23 JUDGE RIAD: Thank you very much, Brigadier.

    24 JUDGE JORDA: Thank you, Judge Riad. Let me

    25 now turn to Judge Shahabuddeen.

  139. 1 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: General, I will put a

    2 few questions to you for clarification. I appreciate

    3 that you cannot answer yes or no to every question, but

    4 I shall try my best to ensure that you do not have too

    5 great of difficulty. Of course, if you cannot answer

    6 yes or no, then I shall understand.

    7 Now, let me take up a point mentioned by

    8 Judge Riad towards the end of his questioning. It

    9 concerns the letter dated 12th of April, 1993, which

    10 was sent by the municipality of Travnik, I think under

    11 the hand of Mr. Purvan to President Tudjman, requesting

    12 a form of military assistance, and I have listened to

    13 your answer.

    14 I want you to react to a slightly different

    15 aspect of the matter. Was the municipality likely to

    16 write such a letter unless the HVO military authorities

    17 had advised them that there was a need for military

    18 assistance from the Republic of Croatia?

    19 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, this was not

    20 likely. You saw, Your Honour, that that letter did not

    21 even get into the command of the Operative Zone. This

    22 was an initiative taken by this municipal authority,

    23 because they were judging whether the officers were

    24 properly trained or not, and whether this or that thing

    25 was done, whatever it says there. So they did not

  140. 1 receive from the municipality any orders from the

    2 military authorities or certainly not from the

    3 Operative Zone.

    4 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Your answer would be

    5 that HVO military authorities were not likely to have

    6 advised the municipality to make that request?

    7 A. Yes.

    8 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: That's how I'd like us

    9 to proceed. Now, there was some evidence by you

    10 concerning an order issued by General Blaskic about

    11 confiscating weapons from Muslims and giving them to

    12 the HVO. I think that can be found at page 13.185 of

    13 the record, gentlemen. You also said that order was

    14 not carried out. Do you recall that branch of your

    15 testimony?

    16 A. I'm trying to remember. Does this perhaps

    17 pertain to lifting the state of alert -- raising the

    18 state of alert in December -- January 1993, when they

    19 are supposed to act with weapons as you just said,

    20 and --

    21 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: It was on the 16th of

    22 January, 1993, and General Petkovic --

    23 A. I remember that.

    24 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: -- had a covering

    25 order. You remember that. And you said --

  141. 1 A. Yes, I remember, Your Honour. So as far as

    2 this activity is concerned, this activity, which was

    3 ordered, it was ordered for the following reasons --

    4 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: No, I'm not going into

    5 the reasons, General, I'm just asking if you remember

    6 your testimony on that.

    7 A. I remember, Your Honour.

    8 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: You said that General

    9 Blaskic's order was not carried out. Do you recall

    10 your testimony to that effect?

    11 A. The order was not carried out because --

    12 because -- because --

    13 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I'm not interested in

    14 the reasons.

    15 A. Because the convey did not go. The convey

    16 did not go.

    17 JUDGE JORDA: General, for three weeks now

    18 you've been asked to answer the questions very

    19 precisely. I would like to support Judge

    20 Shahabuddeen. He doesn't want to hear the reasons

    21 right now. Just answer the questions as he asks them.

    22 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: You said in another

    23 place that, however, General Blaskic was geared to

    24 carrying out superior orders very strictly. Do you

    25 recall that?

  142. 1 A. Yes, that is what I said, and that is the way

    2 General Blaskic acted.

    3 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Did you report to

    4 General Petkovic on the fact that the orders issued by

    5 him, General Blaskic, had not been carried out?

    6 A. He did not inform General Petkovic about the

    7 case that I spoke of. And why not? What did I want to

    8 say? The convoys were not moving at the time when it

    9 was ordered to act in such and such a way with the

    10 convoys and to take away weapons, et cetera. There

    11 were no conveys because in Gornji Vakuf there was a

    12 cease-fire, and so this was signed quickly.

    13 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: To return to his order

    14 to which you referred this morning, directing

    15 commanding officers to execute deserters. Do you

    16 recall your evidence to that effect? I do not wish to

    17 spell it out.

    18 A. Yes, Your Honour. I remember. That is to

    19 say to execute those who leave the front-line.

    20 Q. And you said that that order was not intended

    21 to be carried out and was not, in fact, carried out?

    22 A. Yes, that is what I said.

    23 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, I ask you this

    24 question: If you were a local commander who received

    25 that order, would you understand that you were intended

  143. 1 to carry it out or that you were not intended to carry

    2 it out?

    3 A. I would understand it to have it carried out,

    4 but I would have read the order in its entirety. And a

    5 very important point in this order is point 2. That is

    6 to say, to read this in front of all the soldiers in

    7 line, so that all of them would be warned as to what

    8 would happen to them. So I would have analysed the

    9 entire order, not only one assignment therein.

    10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Very good, General.

    11 Now, let me turn to General Blaskic's report to you of

    12 his discovery in Zenica that people had been killed in

    13 Ahmici. You remember him saying that General Merdan

    14 was, in effect, distressed by the circumstance that 500

    15 civilians had been killed?

    16 A. Yes, Your Honours, Mr. President, that is

    17 what it says in the report. And as regards the figure,

    18 I cannot dwell on that because I do not know whether it

    19 is accurate or not.

    20 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Yes. His statement was

    21 that General Merdan was pretty worried about the 500

    22 civilians killed in Vitez. For the purposes of the

    23 record and the convenience of the bar, the page is

    24 12.504.

    25 Now, did General Blaskic say to you that that

  144. 1 figure was incorrect or that General Merdan's statement

    2 was inaccurate?

    3 A. The General did not tell me that. I will try

    4 to quote him -- rather, remember what he told me. At

    5 the meeting in Zenica, I got information that there is

    6 a large number of persons killed in Ahmici, and among

    7 them are civilians too. That is the only thing that

    8 the General told me. I do not know the exact losses,

    9 but I believe that not that many people were killed.

    10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, let's turn to these

    11 ammunition factories, if I may refer to them that way

    12 for short. There was one in Vitez, was there not?

    13 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, that was a

    14 factory of explosives, and in Konjic there was an

    15 ammunition factory, so these were explosives.

    16 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, you spoke about

    17 this this morning. You said that ABiH had a triple

    18 aim, and one of the three aims was that the ABiH wished

    19 to take over possession of these ammunition factories.

    20 I'm referring to that part of your evidence.

    21 A. Yes, yes.

    22 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, you were in the

    23 HVO.

    24 A. Yes.

    25 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Was the HVO likely to

  145. 1 allow the ABiH to capture these ammunition factories,

    2 or was it more likely that the HVO would have destroyed

    3 these factories before the ABiH could have taken them

    4 over?

    5 A. When the attack took place, the attack on

    6 this factory, because of the substance and the

    7 programme of production that this factory had, had

    8 there been an explosion of this kind the entire town of

    9 Vitez would have been jeopardised. So if it so

    10 happened that all the raw materials and everything that

    11 was in that factory was blown up, the town of Vitez

    12 would have suffered a catastrophe. That is to say, in

    13 a big radius, the town and the people.

    14 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: So those the

    15 catastrophic possible consequences, I gather from you

    16 that the HVO, if it lost, would have preferred not to

    17 destroy the factories?

    18 A. I don't know what at that time the commander

    19 of the Operative Zone would have decided, but I think

    20 he could not decide on his own what he would do with

    21 the factory in a situation in which the BH army would

    22 have broken our lines and come into a position to take

    23 the factory.

    24 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, let's turn a little

    25 to the burning of houses. I think the gist of your

  146. 1 evidence was that yes, houses were burnt, but all such

    2 burning that occurred occurred within the framework of

    3 a military conflict. Am I correct?

    4 A. Partly, yes. As far as the burning of houses

    5 is concerned, I said the following: That the burning

    6 of houses happened during the fighting, and that it

    7 happened after the fighting when there was no combat

    8 action in the way which I explained. That is to say,

    9 secretly during the night and under different

    10 circumstances, not to explain all the examples that I

    11 ever cited. So if Croatian houses are burning in the

    12 territory which is under BH army control, there will

    13 certainly be someone who will set fire to Muslim

    14 Bosniak houses. Or if Muslim Bosniak houses were

    15 burning on territory that was under HVO control, it is

    16 certain that Croatian houses under territory controlled

    17 by the BH army would be ablaze.

    18 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Let us take a

    19 hypothetical case like this. Muslims desire to evict

    20 and expel Croats from a Croat occupied village. The

    21 Muslims attack the Croat village, the Croats resist, a

    22 conflict ensues, and Croat houses are burnt. Would it

    23 be your position that those houses were burnt because

    24 of a military conflict or because of an original

    25 intention to evict the Croats from the village?

  147. 1 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, neither one nor

    2 the other. Allegation can not be taken explicitly as

    3 such for certain reasons. I said that houses were

    4 burning as a consequence of combat action, that is one

    5 thing. And they were burning for the reasons I

    6 mentioned. I could not assert that they were burning

    7 for the reasons that you mentioned here.

    8 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: You remember that

    9 document, Prosecutor's Exhibit 510, the one which

    10 said -- I wonder if you could be shown it.

    11 Mr. Registrar, could he be shown it?

    12 You remember there was some argument about a

    13 phrase which occurred in the passage, "The Bukovci

    14 village must be taken by nightfall on condition that we

    15 burn anything standing in our way." That's only for

    16 identification.

    17 A. I remember, Your Honour, Mr. President, yes.

    18 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, General, how would

    19 a commanding officer in the field, who received this

    20 document, understand that instruction? Would he

    21 understand it as meaning -- understand it as meaning

    22 that he was required to burn anything standing in his

    23 way, or would he not so understand it?

    24 A. In this case I would not understand it in

    25 that way. Why? Mr. President, Your Honours, the

  148. 1 assignment was to disarm the soldiers of the BH army in

    2 those villages, and if that did not happen, if they did

    3 not surrender their weapons voluntarily, then they

    4 would be threatened in this way. So the main thing to

    5 be done was to disarm them, and then the rest was by

    6 way of a threat.

    7 When one studies an order, one has to

    8 understand what is the priority task, and what are the

    9 additional tasks.

    10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I understand, General.

    11 Now, I want you to bear in mind the map that Mr. Nobilo

    12 very kindly put up on the easel, the green map, and

    13 have it in mind as I speak to you.

    14 Certain preparatory and combat orders had

    15 been issued by General Blaskic on the 15th and, I

    16 believe, on the morning of the 16th. Would I be right

    17 in thinking that the orientation there was this: That

    18 the various elements of the HVO, including the Military

    19 Police, would be looking in the direction of the

    20 Nadioci, Ahmici, Sivrino, Pirici axis; is that

    21 correct? No?

    22 A. Mr. President, Your Honours, that was not

    23 stated in the orders. If need be, I shall clarify all

    24 the details.

    25 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I know it wasn't

  149. 1 stated. I'm asking you whether as a matter of fact

    2 those elements of the HVO military would be oriented in

    3 the direction of the Nadioci, Ahmici, Sivrino, Pirici

    4 axis; is that correct?

    5 A. That is not correct.

    6 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: You tell me then what is

    7 correct.

    8 A. It is correct from the preparatory order

    9 issued on the 15th what the tasks all the units had. I

    10 will stress the tasks of the forces shown on this

    11 particular map.

    12 The Military Police had its task to control

    13 the communication line. To control the communication

    14 line, not to attack any village. All the brigades had

    15 the task of blocking, that is to say control the

    16 Croatian villages. There is no movement of forces, no

    17 attack, but at 1.00 a.m., General Blaskic, I suppose,

    18 had received additional information related to the

    19 intentions of the army, and in the area of the Vitez

    20 municipality where the Vitez Brigade was deployed, and

    21 I'll show you this, it is this entire region here, and

    22 according to his knowledge --

    23 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Could you show us, as

    24 well, Ahmici in relation to the other areas? Where is

    25 Ahmici? That's Ahmici.

  150. 1 A. That is Ahmici.

    2 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Am I right that some of

    3 the orders issued by General Blaskic at around this

    4 time mentioned that the army of the ABiH was occupying

    5 Ahmici or about to occupy the Ahmici area?

    6 A. The orders of General Blaskic to -- of which

    7 you mean do not say that. Ahmici was not occupied.

    8 There were BH army units there.

    9 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I see. If independent

    10 criminal elements infiltrated at that time and entered

    11 Ahmici, would the various elements of the HVO have been

    12 in a position to detect that fact?

    13 A. I do not understand you when you say

    14 "elements". You mean elements of the HVO or elements

    15 of the BH army?

    16 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: No. I wonder if I may

    17 have mixed my expressions up. Let me go again.

    18 If independent criminal elements had

    19 infiltrated at that time into the Ahmici area, would

    20 the various elements of the HVO have been in a position

    21 to detect that fact and to stop that intrusion?

    22 A. No, they wouldn't be in a position to stop it

    23 in the village of Ahmici. You could reach Ahmici from

    24 Zenica without the HVO knowing.

    25 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Could you reach Ahmici

  151. 1 from the main road along which the Military Police of

    2 the HVO were strung out without the HVO becoming aware

    3 of the intrusion?

    4 A. You couldn't get there, because Ahmici, the

    5 houses of Ahmici were along the road as well, along the

    6 edge of the road. They're very short distances, 20

    7 metres, 30 metres. And I said in my testimony how the

    8 conflict on the road occurred. We saw the report that

    9 the commander of the Military Police said they were

    10 attacked in the Bungalow. All these facts, to this

    11 very day, I am -- have not thrown light on.

    12 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Tell me something else.

    13 From where you were located in Vitez, could you hear

    14 any explosions coming from Ahmici?

    15 A. If there was fighting in the village of

    16 Ahmici and then -- then stronger explosions could be

    17 heard. But let me remind you that on the 16th, in the

    18 Vitez area, there were conflicts in the -- in places,

    19 Krucicia, Stari Vitez, Donja Rovna, Bare, Kuber,

    20 Ahmici, Krcevine, Grbavica and Jardoc.

    21 And if you recall, when I said that the

    22 civilian population had called us, the people said

    23 there was shooting from all sides, "We don't know what

    24 to do." And this was an appeal, and this was, in fact,

    25 fighting where there was detonation and the sound of

  152. 1 explosion on all sides.

    2 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Do I understand you, in

    3 effect, to be saying that the physical situation was

    4 too confusing for you to be able to locate precisely

    5 the direction from which any particular explosion was

    6 coming?

    7 A. The situation, we cannot say that it was

    8 confusing, but I said that the forces of shelling from

    9 the BH army, from the town of Vitez, an all-out attack,

    10 that was a surprise to us, because in the orders dated

    11 the 15th, we expected sabotage activity by the BH army

    12 on the command posts, and that is why we blocked the

    13 villages. But we did not expect an all-out attack, the

    14 kind that occurred. And in a situation of this kind,

    15 the command in which I was, it was our need to see

    16 where the attack came from, whether you would be able

    17 to counter it and stop it and so on. And the command

    18 in which I was located, that was the key question, and

    19 every command would have given thought to these matters

    20 in a situation of that kind.

    21 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: General, when did you

    22 first hear on the media that certain dreadful things

    23 had occurred at Ahmici? When was the first time that

    24 you heard that on the media?

    25 A. I cannot remember exactly the media, but I

  153. 1 heard about these events from my commander on the 20th

    2 of April, 1993.

    3 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Did you also hear of

    4 them from the media, from the radio, the newspapers and

    5 so on, television?

    6 A. I can't remember the date, but at that time

    7 during the war, via the media, the public information

    8 media, there was an all-out propaganda being launched

    9 in the sense of saying who was responsible for the

    10 attack, who had attacked whom and the kind of events

    11 that were taking place, and it was really -- there was

    12 a mass of information put out and misinformation, I

    13 might say, so that when all this ended, and when I

    14 compared and analysed the information, I saw that half

    15 of the information put out was not correct. For

    16 example, the massacre at Kuber, that was not true.

    17 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I have no doubt you

    18 could give us a great number of details, but answer

    19 this question. Did the propaganda, or the information

    20 on the media, also include references to war crimes

    21 having been committed at Ahmici and to the possibility

    22 of a war crimes court being set up?

    23 A. In the media I believe that Ahmici was

    24 mentioned. And the war crimes court, as far as I

    25 remember, it was at that time in April, or perhaps

  154. 1 March, the International Community did establish a war

    2 crimes court to deal with the crimes on the areas of

    3 the former Yugoslavia, I don't know exactly what date

    4 that was.

    5 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Let us turn a little to

    6 trench digging. I think you said that information came

    7 to you about trench digging. Did you recognise that

    8 information as referring to possible crimes against the

    9 international rules which applied to the conduct of

    10 warfare?

    11 A. That trenches were being dug and the line of

    12 defence set up, that was something I knew of, because

    13 we ordered the commanders of the units to see to those

    14 lines, because otherwise we wouldn't be able to defend

    15 ourselves.

    16 However, to engage civilians to set up this

    17 line, I said how this was done. It happened that

    18 everybody who was not a soldier and carried a rifle in

    19 those one, two or three days, how far it took to set up

    20 the line, was engaged via a work duty to perform those

    21 tasks.

    22 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Let me read your

    23 testimony at page 13.262. Mr. Prosecutor asked you

    24 this question: "Were those prisoners taken out to dig

    25 trenches on front-lines and elsewhere?" Answer: "I

  155. 1 cannot confirm that, although the information that I

    2 have personally received, as I worked with my

    3 colleagues, said that there were such things; but this

    4 was never ordered by the commander of the Operational

    5 Zone."

    6 Do you remember that part of your testimony?

    7 A. Yes, I do.

    8 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Let me ask you in

    9 general; you received some information on the subject.

    10 Did you think this was a sufficiently important matter

    11 for to you mention to General Blaskic? If so, did you

    12 mention it to him?

    13 A. That information which reached me in the way

    14 in which I stated, it came after the event, after it

    15 had happened, because that activity took place in the

    16 space of two or three days, in the conflicts in

    17 Busovaca, in January, and in the conflicts in Vitez on

    18 the 16th, so that, it was something that had already

    19 been done and passed.

    20 And I will just remind you of General

    21 Blaskic's order, where, on the basis of an order from

    22 the commander of the main staff, he asked the commander

    23 of the units to give them the names of individuals who

    24 acted in that way. So, I did not have the information

    25 at the time when this occurred on the 16th or the 17th.

  156. 1 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: The answer is that, for

    2 one reason or another, you did not relay to General

    3 Blaskic the information which you had received about

    4 trench digging by prisoners?

    5 A. The information that I received in the way

    6 that I received it, I did not relate to General

    7 Blaskic. This information did not reach me via the

    8 operative report. It was an information, some

    9 information that reached me through what people were

    10 saying in town, by word of mouth, so to speak.

    11 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Let me ask you a little

    12 bit about logistical cooperation between the Serb

    13 military and the Croat military, the HVO. I gather

    14 from what you say the cooperation was limited to

    15 logistic matters and to only in some places; is that

    16 right?

    17 A. Yes, yes, that is the information that I

    18 have.

    19 Q. Could you tell this Trial Chamber what was

    20 your understanding of the basis on which that

    21 cooperation was being done? What was the basis of it?

    22 A. The basis, in my opinion, and this is really

    23 my own personal opinion, the basis for that cooperation

    24 was necessity, or dire need of the HVO units acting in

    25 the Kiseljak area and the enclave and the Zepce area in

  157. 1 the enclave, because had they not received logistic

    2 material via the territory of Republika Srpska, they

    3 would have nothing to defend themselves with.

    4 And I felt this best in the encirclement in

    5 the Lasva Valley. It was our luck that along with the

    6 explosives factory, we were in fact defending ourselves

    7 in that way, and with that we were able to replace at

    8 least partially what we lacked. And so, it was dire

    9 need, it was necessity.

    10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Can you tell us whether

    11 General Blaskic knew of this limited cooperation based

    12 on necessity?

    13 A. I can't confirm that but I suppose he could

    14 have known about it.

    15 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Did you, yourself, think

    16 this was a sufficiently strange or important matter to

    17 mention to General Blaskic, I mean cooperation between

    18 the HVO and an active enemy in the field?

    19 A. Yes, Mr. President, Your Honours, it is

    20 strange, but it testifies to the character of the war

    21 in Bosnia-Herzegovina. You see, on the one hand you

    22 have HVO units in enclaves, and on the other hand the

    23 army cooperating, also on logistic matters, this is

    24 something that is very difficult to explain, both the

    25 cause and effects of that and the reasons for it.

  158. 1 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Let us turn to women and

    2 children being made to stand in the streets and then

    3 being taken into a building next to Mr. Cerkez's

    4 building. Do you remember that testimony?

    5 A. Yes, I remember that testimony.

    6 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: If a shell fell on the

    7 part of the building occupied by Mr. Cerkez, could the

    8 blast affect the women and children in the adjoining

    9 part of the building?

    10 A. No, because that building where the civilians

    11 were placed was constructively speaking the strongest

    12 building in Vitez, and Vitez as a town had no shelter,

    13 no standard shelters for civilians in the case of

    14 shelling.

    15 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I ask you a

    16 supplementary question on that. Suppose the enemy

    17 wanted to shell Mr. Cerkez; do you, as a military man,

    18 estimate that there might have been a risk of the shell

    19 either falling on the part of the building occupied by

    20 the women or children, or falling hard nearby?

    21 A. It was possible. However, if you allow me,

    22 Your Honour, the town of Vitez is a small area. It

    23 would have been a greater tragedy had those civilians

    24 remained outside in the streets. And practically

    25 speaking, we had nowhere to put those people, because

  159. 1 there was fighting going on.

    2 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, I want to talk

    3 about the HV symbols which some elements of the

    4 military were wearing. I gather from what you said

    5 that some Croats in Herzeg-Bosna went over to help the

    6 military in Croatia, and they came back wearing

    7 Croatian insignia; is that correct?

    8 A. Yes, that is correct, because the war in

    9 Croatia began before it began in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

    10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Would you, then, have

    11 expected that in your hour of need the Croatian

    12 military or elements of the Croatian military would

    13 then come over to the Lasva Valley to help the HVO?

    14 A. I could have expected everything, but I know

    15 what actually happened. In the Lasva Valley, there was

    16 no Croatian army.

    17 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, from your evidence

    18 and the evidence of others who testified for the

    19 Defence, the picture I have received is that the HVO

    20 was out numbered and under equipped in relation to the

    21 ABiH; do you subscribe to that view?

    22 A. Yes, Your Honour, I subscribe to that view;

    23 but I also confirm that for the units of the Operative

    24 Zone of Central Bosnia, I know the situation there.

    25 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: In those circumstances,

  160. 1 if military elements from Croatia had come over to help

    2 you, to help the HVO, would the HVO have welcomed that?

    3 A. When you are in a situation, in the kind of

    4 situation that we were in, and that is, you have the

    5 encirclement there, you can see it, everybody giving

    6 you assistance would be welcomed. Because it was truly

    7 a situation where it was difficult to find a way out,

    8 and it was a struggle for survival, or to go under.

    9 Because we saw the fate of the soldiers and civilians

    10 in those places which were not defended, both Travnik,

    11 Kakanj, Vares, and so on.

    12 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Let me ask you a

    13 question or two about this military concept of unity of

    14 command or unity of control. Is it unity of control

    15 you call it?

    16 A. As a function of control it is not unity, it

    17 is -- so, unity is command, which implies

    18 subordination, responsibility and so on.

    19 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, you remember that

    20 on the ABiH side it was the 7th Muslim Brigade and the

    21 HVO were not too sure how closely connected the 7th

    22 Muslim Brigade was to the ABiH, or whether it was on

    23 the control under the ABiH?

    24 A. I did not quite understand the question.

    25 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Let me put it in pieces

  161. 1 to you, then. Do you remember speaking about the 7th

    2 Muslim Brigade?

    3 A. Yes.

    4 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: And you remember saying

    5 something to us to the effect that the 7th Muslim

    6 Brigade might not have been fully under the control of

    7 the ABiH?

    8 A. I remember that. I said that. Just a bit,

    9 just a minute, please. I said that we were not sure

    10 whether the 3rd Corps controlled the 7th Brigade, not

    11 the army as an army. If not the 3rd Corps, then

    12 perhaps the general staff had control over them, so the

    13 3rd Corps.

    14 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I accept that

    15 qualification. I'm grateful to you for it.

    16 Nevertheless, the HVO authorities wrote to

    17 the 3rd Corps in respect of things being done by the

    18 7th Muslim Brigade?

    19 A. As far as I can remember, we did send such a

    20 letter.

    21 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Now, would you say, to

    22 use the language of Mr. Nobilo, that the proposition to

    23 be deduced from that is that you associated unity of

    24 command with exclusivity of command, that is, there

    25 could be no parallel and independent force existing in

  162. 1 the same side, it all had to be brought under one

    2 single control; wasn't that your point of view?

    3 A. No. It would have been necessary and it

    4 could have functioned that way, but it did not. And I

    5 said how it had functioned. It was desirable, and that

    6 is what every commander would have wished for, that is

    7 to say, if he had forces on his territory and under his

    8 command, he would be the only one who would command

    9 them.

    10 But that was not the situation, neither with

    11 the army or the HVO. So, these were problems which

    12 were characteristic of the beginning of the

    13 organisation and set up both of the HVO and the army.

    14 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I finally invite your

    15 attention to Exhibit 362, I think it's a Prosecutor's

    16 Exhibit 362, dated 24 April, 1993.

    17 Mr. Dubuisson, I hope I'm not misleading you,

    18 I better show you the document that I have. It's

    19 marked 362 in lead pencil. No? 24 April? No.

    20 MR. KEHOE: Judge, I think it's a Defence

    21 Exhibit.

    22 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: That solves the

    23 mystery. It is a Defence Exhibit. May I ask you a

    24 preliminary question like this, General? Would I be

    25 correct in supposing that in practically all armies

  163. 1 there would be a tendency to have out of control

    2 elements?

    3 A. I could not confirm that, in a state where

    4 there is rule of law that should not be the case. And

    5 in the situation that we had in Bosnia and Herzegovina,

    6 both the army and the HVO, this was possible, and this

    7 was practically an every day practice. It was reality.

    8 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: What should not be is

    9 distinguishable from what could be. Now, if you look

    10 at this document, am I right that General Blaskic here

    11 is asserting a right of control over out of control

    12 elements?

    13 In paragraph 3 he says, "The individuals and

    14 groups who are completely out of control are to be

    15 arrested immediately." Do you see that?

    16 A. Yes, Your Honour, I see that, I see this

    17 paragraph, and it confirms that General Blaskic did not

    18 reconcile himself to this phenomenon, and he fought

    19 against such phenomena constantly. Practically, until

    20 the Washington Accords, he did not accept this fact.

    21 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I understand that. One

    22 last document is Defence 359, Defence document 359.

    23 Now, you see this document, like some others, was

    24 addressed to a number of elements, including military

    25 police 4th Battalion and Special Purposes Unit

  164. 1 Vitezovi.

    2 Would you say, General Marin, that you would

    3 understand this document as a document displaying the

    4 exercise of authority by the commander who signed it

    5 over the military police and the Special Purposes Unit

    6 Vitezovi?

    7 A. No. This is an operative order, how to

    8 behave on the ground, what to do.

    9 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: I see. Now, look at

    10 paragraph 3, it says there, "Those who act in violation

    11 of this order are to be subject to the strictest

    12 measures in line with the rules on military discipline

    13 in HVO units."

    14 Wouldn't you understand that as being also

    15 addressed to the Vitezovi?

    16 A. Yes, yes, but that would be carried out by

    17 their commander. That is to say, for a member of the

    18 Vitezovi, a disciplinary measure can be imposed only by

    19 the commander of Vitezovi, and not General Blaskic, for

    20 a member of the military police it is only a commander

    21 of the military police that can carry out this

    22 disciplinary action.

    23 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Are you saying that the

    24 relationship was this: That General Blaskic could

    25 issue operational orders to the Vitezovi, but in case

  165. 1 of non-compliance, he couldn't enforce them by imposing

    2 any sanctions, he had to refer the matter to other

    3 authorities? Is that the position?

    4 A. Yes, and we saw in the process of reaching

    5 such orders, the General, in order to prevent this from

    6 happening, always talked to the commander of the

    7 Vitezovi, and then when he agreed, he would send these

    8 orders in order to strengthen the organisation and

    9 command and to show that orders had to be respected.

    10 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: If I understand you

    11 correctly, he had the power to issue operational

    12 orders, but he didn't have the power, himself, to

    13 enforce them by imposing any sanctions of his own.

    14 A. Yes.

    15 JUDGE SHAHABUDDEEN: Thank you, General.

    16 JUDGE JORDA: Thank you, Judge Shahabuddeen.

    17 I want to turn to my interpreter friends again, because

    18 it is now 5.45, we have gone beyond the time limit.

    19 You know, of course, the interpreters are going to be

    20 in court tomorrow morning, but we are going to resume

    21 at 2 o'clock. I have a few questions I would like to

    22 ask. Thanks to my colleagues, many of my own questions

    23 were already asked. I would like to turn to the

    24 interpreters and ask them whether we could go ten

    25 minutes or fifteen minutes longer and so finish with

  166. 1 this testimony so that the Brigadier can go home and

    2 not have to wait until the day after tomorrow or

    3 tomorrow afternoon.

    4 Once again, I would like to thank the

    5 interpreters, and once again, I would express my

    6 appreciation. I will ask some very concluding

    7 questions.

    8 Brigadier, you have answered many questions

    9 asked by my colleagues. One asked, perhaps, was not

    10 really taken up over the many days that we have been

    11 meeting, that is the political aspect about everything

    12 that happened regarding the constitution of the

    13 Croatian defence community.

    14 Before I ask my question I would like to ask

    15 whether you agree on the premise. Do you remember this

    16 entire period between 1992 and January 1993 when a real

    17 state within the state had been constituted, there was

    18 a currency, there was an official journal, there were

    19 schools and rules of all types, and also very great

    20 propaganda from the political players of Herceg-Bosna

    21 which kindled that part of the population in Central

    22 Bosnia? Do you remember that? I don't know if you do,

    23 but perhaps you do.

    24 But do you agree that politicians assert a

    25 certain idea of the extension, the hegemony of the

  167. 1 thoughts and ideas of a more extensive Croatian

    2 territory which might in fact cross, spill over into

    3 Bosnia and Herzegovina? Would you agree with that?

    4 Would you say that that existed?

    5 A. Mr. President, I could not confirm what you

    6 have said. Everything I know about political

    7 developments in Bosnia and Herzegovina is the

    8 following: I know there was a paralysis of government

    9 in Bosnia and Herzegovina, that the official, legally

    10 and legitimately, elected parliament fell apart, and it

    11 fell apart when the deputies of the Serb people left

    12 the parliament of Bosnia and Herzegovina, when they

    13 decided, when their political leadership decided to

    14 carry out an aggression.

    15 JUDGE JORDA: Excuse me, Brigadier, I'm not

    16 asking for your, for justifications, that's not the

    17 question. I simply wanted to know whether you would

    18 agree that there was the constitution in Herceg-Bosna,

    19 that there was an official journal, there was currency

    20 which was related to Croatian currency, there were

    21 changes in the teaching programmes, there was a kind of

    22 state within a state.

    23 I'm not asking whether that was justified or

    24 not, perhaps it was or was not, that's not the

    25 question. I want to know whether there was that period

  168. 1 of intense propaganda which could have kindled the

    2 spirits through propaganda, through television? Did

    3 that exist, do you remember, and do you agree?

    4 A. Mr. President, when we saw that this question

    5 of all normative enactments did exist, the legislation,

    6 et cetera, as far as propaganda is concerned, in Bosnia

    7 and Herzegovina, all three sides did engage in some

    8 kind of propaganda, Mr. President.

    9 I really am not a member of any political

    10 party, I was never the member of any political party,

    11 and I'm not today, and I was never in a political body,

    12 and I don't know what kind of political decisions were

    13 made and what their objectives were.

    14 So, indeed, to give a yes or no answer to

    15 your question would be too arbitrary. I do not know

    16 enough in order to say it was so or it was not so.

    17 Because the truth is between yes and no.

    18 JUDGE JORDA: I am very pleased that you

    19 answered that, because at least now I have an answer,

    20 that the truth is now down somewhere between yes and

    21 no. That's how you have often answered. But that was

    22 the not the question.

    23 At least you agree that at that period there

    24 was, at least on the Croatian side after the

    25 elections -- or on the Croatian Party that came out of

  169. 1 the election, that there was a kind of heating up of

    2 public opinion against the Muslims with the

    3 constitution of a real -- let's not call it a State,

    4 but a kind of a political and administrative

    5 organisation. Do you like that term better?

    6 A. As far as I know, this was a temporary set-up,

    7 administrative set-up, but I could not agree with you,

    8 Mr. President, that immediately after the elections

    9 there was unrest. It was after the aggression of the

    10 army of Republika Srpska against Bosnia-Herzegovina,

    11 that's when the problem started.

    12 JUDGE JORDA: Brigadier, you always have the

    13 impression that you're going to be accused of

    14 something. I am assure that you the accused is sitting

    15 over there. We're trying to shed light on the subject,

    16 but you're always on the defensive. You don't have to

    17 be on the defensive. Try to relax a little bit.

    18 It seemed to me that when we saw a text which

    19 put into place a new -- I don't think we'd be going too

    20 far that there was a kind of constitution.

    21 Mr. Nobilo, I new this was the time you were

    22 going to come in. All right, but go quickly (sic)

    23 please for the interpreter's sake.

    24 MR. NOBILO: Yes. I know that it is not

    25 proper for me to interrupt the Presiding Judge, but

  170. 1 perhaps it can be helpful if we move to a private

    2 session. This witness works where he works, and the

    3 people who created this are his bosses and so you have

    4 to appreciate that.

    5 JUDGE JORDA: Let me remind you, Mr. Nobilo,

    6 that the witness, when he answered, puts himself to a

    7 justifying position. I haven't yet asked my question.

    8 I was only asking him whether he agreed that between

    9 November and February of 1993; through the documents,

    10 through school curriculum that had been changed,

    11 currency that was introduced, I suppose it's not

    12 General Marin who is the one who originated all of

    13 that. If the General feels accused, that's his own

    14 feeling.

    15 Let me finally get to my question that I want

    16 to ask.

    17 As far as you know, did the accused, through

    18 his personal opinions, participate or share, rather,

    19 the idea of the constitution of this entity, which we

    20 call Bosnian Croat, within that central part of

    21 Bosnia-Herzegovina? Was he able to play a political

    22 role?

    23 You see, that is a question that has to do

    24 with the accused and not with you, Brigadier.

    25 A. As far as I know, General Blaskic did not

  171. 1 have a political role. However, as commander of the

    2 Operative Zone, he certainly did have a certain

    3 significance, but that he had a political role or a

    4 political office, I'm not aware of that.

    5 JUDGE JORDA: Therefore, in your opinion, he

    6 had been appointed only because of his military

    7 qualifications?

    8 A. As far as I know that is the way it was,

    9 because General Blaskic, may I remind you,

    10 Mr. President, came from Austria, from Austria, after

    11 he escaped from the former JNA, and he was appointed

    12 commander. I don't know whether he was a member of the

    13 HDZ ever. I don't know that.

    14 JUDGE JORDA: This is my question: Within

    15 the context of that time, could one imagine that the

    16 Croatian defence community would name one of the

    17 highest military officials right before the war was

    18 about to begin, could it appoint one of its military

    19 officials about whom they were not sure that he shared

    20 the political opinions of the political leaders of

    21 Herceg-Bosna? Did you understand my question?

    22 A. I did. I do not think that at that time when

    23 General Blaskic was appointed a man could be appointed

    24 to that office without being ready to shoulder the

    25 burden of defence, the defence of the territory and

  172. 1 Croatian people.

    2 General Blaskic was appointed commander of

    3 the operative zone when there was fighting against the

    4 army of Republika Srpska, and when we held the

    5 front-line together with the BH army. That's when

    6 General Blaskic was appointed.

    7 JUDGE JORDA: In order to finish with that

    8 question, you consider that, first of all, General

    9 Blaskic did not have any political role in the first

    10 place, and in the second place, he believed that his

    11 military activities were to serve the Croatian people.

    12 Do we agree with those two theories? First

    13 proposal -- proposition, rather, is that he only played

    14 a military role, but the second proposition is that he

    15 put his military qualifications at the service of the

    16 Croatian people. You are the one who just said that.

    17 A. Yes. And I feel that I played the same kind

    18 of role too, and every officer in --

    19 JUDGE JORDA: Don't speak but you.

    20 Otherwise, Mr. Nobilo is going to get up and say we

    21 have to move into a private session. Don't speak about

    22 yourself.

    23 The question that I want to ask, and I'm

    24 going to change gears, at one point my colleague, Judge

    25 Shahabuddeen, was speaking, very strangely, the

  173. 1 accused, who is Colonel Blaskic, speaks about the

    2 creation of this Tribunal, which proves that he was

    3 well-informed. And he emphasises in that order that

    4 what is happening, that is -- that certain types of

    5 atrocities that have been committed might allegedly be

    6 considered to be crimes, and you know that crimes --

    7 the word "crime" was written with capital letters. Do

    8 you remember that? There were two orders. I think

    9 that those are Defence exhibits. One which the defence

    10 says now there's a Tribunal --

    11 A. Yes, Mr. President, I remember.

    12 JUDGE JORDA: I won't ask you whether the

    13 accused was concerned about those same issues before

    14 the establishment of the Tribunal, because that was not

    15 my question. But in a second order he said, let me

    16 remind you, that what might be considered atrocities

    17 could also be considered crimes in International Law.

    18 Therefore, my question is to know whether at any point

    19 the accused wrote to his superiors, informed his

    20 superiors about his doubts, about the questions he was

    21 asking himself about the crimes.

    22 For example, did he write to General Petkovic

    23 and say, "You know, I believe that there are crimes

    24 which may be being committed, and I think that's very

    25 serious." In your opinion, did he do that, or was that

  174. 1 not part of your responsibilities and there would be no

    2 way for you to know so? Did you understand my

    3 question?

    4 A. Yes, I did, Mr. President. General Blaskic,

    5 with regard to the problems he had, and, therefore,

    6 also the problems related to the non-functioning of the

    7 order system, he wrote about that to his superiors.

    8 However, his superiors could not help him with this

    9 either for two reasons. One is the physical separation

    10 that took place then, and the second was that the

    11 entire HVO functioned in a similar or perhaps exactly

    12 the same way in which the Operative Zone of Central

    13 Bosnia functions. There are several reports sent by

    14 General Blaskic to General Petkovic, where he sends him

    15 detailed information on how it was. That is to say,

    16 from a military point of view from the point of view of

    17 problems, needs and other things.

    18 JUDGE JORDA: Yes. You remember that among

    19 other things, there is a report in which the accused

    20 says, "The winter is coming, it's going to be a very

    21 harsh winter, we don't have blankets, we don't have

    22 material, we don't have boots, because it's going to

    23 snow." Therefore, he was addressing himself to his

    24 superiors. Strategically speaking, you should know

    25 that because you were the number two operative person.

  175. 1 My question is to know whether or not he

    2 drafted a report in which he said, "The war has begun,

    3 it's a horrible war, atrocities are being committed on

    4 all sides, but there are some which may have been

    5 committed by our people, they're crimes, what should we

    6 do? I have elements that are out of control."

    7 Did you speak about that together?

    8 A. Yes, Mr. President. We saw the report after

    9 the meeting with Stewart, that he wrote everything that

    10 was mentioned, and what the problems were. And there

    11 is a report from May, the month of May, after the

    12 cease-fire was signed, after the fighting in April.

    13 And the General writes to his superiors exactly the way

    14 military rules prescribe. And General Petkovic also

    15 attended meetings with General Blaskic in Zenica, and

    16 on the 21st in Bila. So in that way, together with

    17 Sefer Halilovic, the commander of the army, they were

    18 all practically familiar with what was discussed at

    19 that meeting. So the general did write about the

    20 situation.

    21 JUDGE JORDA: Therefore, he had the

    22 information. That's what you're saying to us right

    23 now. At least -- well, he had the information about

    24 what was going on. As regards violations of

    25 International Humanitarian Law, the accused had

  176. 1 information, at least at the time, that there were

    2 meetings being held at the representative of the ECMM

    3 and UNPROFOR. He had information available to him. Do

    4 we agree on that?

    5 A. Information? Yes. Yes. Information on the

    6 violation of those laws. It started on the 21st, and

    7 then Mr. Stewart on the 22nd, et cetera. Information

    8 on events, not about persons.

    9 JUDGE JORDA: In the briefings, do you

    10 remember the accused having said, "I'm very worried.

    11 I'm going to send another message asking for help,

    12 expressing my distress. I'm going to send it to my

    13 superiors." Did he also give you instructions of that

    14 nature, or he was simply satisfied with having received

    15 the information?

    16 A. In that form -- I mean, that General Blaskic

    17 spoke in that form, that I do not recall, but I do know

    18 what he did in terms of improving the situation on the

    19 ground as much as possible, and I know what he wrote on

    20 the 25th or 26th to his superior in Mostar -- or,

    21 rather, in Posusje.

    22 JUDGE JORDA: To finish with that point, one

    23 day, did the accused ever say to you, "I'm going to

    24 resign"? "I can't stay in this position."

    25 You heard my question. This is the very

  177. 1 nature of great -- of people who are very, very -- of

    2 very high, important positions. I'm going back --

    3 you've been saying to us for three weeks that his

    4 subordinates don't obey him, his superiors don't help

    5 him or he can't reach them. Did one day he say to

    6 you, "I've come from Vienna in Austria. I am a

    7 professional." You did say that. You know that you

    8 said that he was a professional. "I'm just simply going

    9 to resign." Do you remember his having said that once

    10 or twice, or not at all, or did it never come to his

    11 mind?

    12 A. I do not remember, or rather, the General did

    13 not say this in front of me. However, I'm trying to go

    14 back to this situation and to the General's thinking.

    15 And I assert that a situation would have been even

    16 worse if the operative zone command was not headed by a

    17 person such as General Blaskic, and I say this with

    18 full responsibility. Because out of all of us,

    19 although he was not fully qualified for the job, he was

    20 certainly the most qualified officer amongst all of

    21 us.

    22 JUDGE JORDA: I'm going to ask you my last

    23 question. During your long testimony, I have

    24 frequently had difficulties in distinguishing your

    25 specific responsibilities, because at one point you're

  178. 1 number two of the staff, you have important

    2 responsibilities and very often you said that you

    3 weren't there, you didn't attend the proper briefing,

    4 or that you were absent, or that you were doing

    5 something else.

    6 I have to confess this to you, this was

    7 somewhat problematic for me. With a bit of time now, I

    8 want to ask you one question only.

    9 General Blaskic was, therefore, the highest

    10 military authority in Central Bosnia for the 3rd

    11 Operative Zone. We do agree to that; do we not?

    12 A. Yes, I agree with that.

    13 Q. You claim that he fully exercised his

    14 responsibility. I can ask the question differently.

    15 Would you agree with me if I said that he

    16 fully carried out his responsibilities as the chief of

    17 the Operative Zone in Central Bosnia?

    18 A. Yes. General Blaskic tried and strived for

    19 ensuring the carrying out of his post as it was

    20 required.

    21 JUDGE JORDA: You're very close to him, you

    22 were very close to him every day. Here is my

    23 question: At any given point during that time of

    24 command and war, in the application of -- to

    25 international humanitarian law, do you believe that the

  179. 1 accused may have made some mistakes either as regards

    2 the organisation of his troops, or in the information

    3 of his superiors, or in the reports that he might have

    4 given to UNPROFOR? Do you remember it possible that he

    5 made mistakes, or do you think that he made no mistakes

    6 at all?

    7 A. In my personal judgement I believe that

    8 General Blaskic did everything that was possible during

    9 1993 as commander of the Operative Zone. Truth to

    10 tell, after such actions we still have the situation as

    11 it was in the war between the units of the army and the

    12 HVO.

    13 JUDGE JORDA: Very well. I think that if

    14 there are no further questions, first of all, the

    15 Tribunal would like to thank you, Brigadier Marin. You

    16 came -- I know you have important responsibilities in

    17 your country. You came for a few days at first, and

    18 then, as it turned out, for several weeks. The

    19 Tribunal is grateful to you for having answered its

    20 very long questions and the questions of the Judges,

    21 and thanks to the availability of our interpreters, you

    22 will not have to come back tomorrow and the Tribunal

    23 wishes you God speed when you return home and resume

    24 your responsibilities.

    25 Once again I would like to thank the

  180. 1 interpreters. I think at 9.30 -- no? I was thinking

    2 about the interpreters. I'll see the interpreters at

    3 9.30. Mr. Hayman, I didn't make a mistake there. I

    4 know that you're very vigilant, but here this vigilance

    5 was the not quite right.

    6 Now, we'll see the interpreters at 9.30,

    7 because I know -- and I know that they're tired, and we

    8 have to resume.

    9 However, both the Defence and the accused --

    10 the Prosecution and the accused we'll see at 2.00

    11 tomorrow afternoon. The Court stands adjourned.

    12 THE WITNESS: You too, Mr. President.

    13 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at

    14 6.10 p.m., to be reconvened on

    15 Wednesday, the 28th day of October,

    16 1998 at 2.00 p.m.