1 1 Tuesday, 3rd November, 1998
2 (Open session)
3 --- Upon commencing at 10.17 a.m.
4 JUDGE JORDA: Have the accused brought in,
6 (The accused entered court)
7 JUDGE JORDA: Good morning to the
8 interpreters. We will now continue hearing the
9 testimony of the Defence witness. Mr. Dubuisson, would
10 you have the witness brought in, please? Have Father
11 Pervan brought in.
12 (The witness entered court)
13 JUDGE JORDA: Father Pervan, do you hear me?
14 THE WITNESS: Yes, I hear you.
15 JUDGE JORDA: Please be seated. We're going
16 to continue the direct-examination conducted by
17 Mr. Nobilo, and Mr. Hayman who have called you to
18 testify in this case. Mr. Nobilo, please, proceed.
19 Examined by Mr. Nobilo:
20 MR. NOBILO: Thank you, Mr. President.
21 Q. Good morning, Father Ivan. Just put that
22 away so we can see each other. Right.
23 So the first subject I would like to deal
24 with this morning is the work of Caritas. Please tell
25 the Court what is Caritas, what kind of an organisation
1 is it?
2 A. Your Honours, first of all, I have to say a
3 few words by way of introduction. Through the 700
4 years of the activity of my community, the Franciscans,
5 in Bosnia, it is well-known that the friars took care
6 of the poor, and all who were imperilled in any way.
7 It is also a well-known fact that friars, priests, in
8 Bosnia-Herzegovina, throughout their activity, opened
9 schools, taught children and helped gifted children to
10 get an education in Italy, France and, notably,
12 None of us friars knows how far back the
13 bread of St. Ante dates back to. The bread of St. Ante
14 is our internal Franciscan humanitarian organisation,
15 which takes care of the poor and all those who are
16 needy in any way. Our organisation works in all
17 Franciscan communities. At the level of the general
18 church, there is also care for the poor and the sick,
19 and there is a humanitarian organisation at the level
20 of the entire church which is called Caritas.
21 There are separate organisations in different
22 States where there are several diocese, so there are
23 several Caritas, so to speak. There are several
24 Caritas for example, in Bosnia-Herzegovina, of the
25 Bishop's conference in Bosnia-Herzegovina, which
1 consisted of the Archbishop of Sarajevo, the Bishop of
2 Banja Luka and Trevinsko (phoen) Matrinska in Mostar.
3 Kiseljak directly belongs to Caritas of the diocese in
5 In 1992, in addition to the humanitarian
6 organisation that existed in the parish of Kiseljak,
7 which is a Franciscan parish, under the instructions of
8 Vinko Pulic, Caritas was established at the level of
9 the parish of Kiseljak within the Sarajevo diocese.
10 Q. What was your post in the Caritas of the
11 parish of Kiseljak?
12 A. In the Caritas of the Kiseljak parish I was
13 director of the municipal Caritas.
14 Q. What was the first activity you carried out,
15 and on what occasion and who did you give this aid to?
16 A. As soon as we established Caritas at the
17 level of Kiseljak, this was in 1992 in Croatia, war had
18 already broken out, especially in the eastern part of
19 Croatia, notably in Dalmatia. In the parish of
20 Kiseljak, we were collecting aid, and sending it to
21 those who needed it, especially Dubrovnik, Zadar and
23 Q. Tell me, when Sarajevo was laid siege to by
24 the army of Republika Srpska and when it was attacked,
25 who did you personally send trade to inter alia?
1 A. First of all, we should say that Kiseljak was
2 cut off from Sarajevo. However, as we agreed with the
3 Serbian humanitarian organisation Preporod Renasance,
4 and they made a deal with their army, so from Kiseljak
5 we could send aid to Sarajevo but we had to give 30 per
6 cent of that to Preporod. Of course, there were
7 problems involved.
8 We had to hide certain parcels because the
9 Serb soldiers searched the packages, and if they would
10 often find a name -- find a package with a Muslim name
11 and surname, they would take those parcels away. We
12 would send aid to Sarajevo, and Mr. Ivo Komsic helped
13 the work of Caritas. He later become the President of
14 Bosnia-Herzegovina. With his initiative, with my
15 approval, and I did this very gladly, we sent
16 communications to Jerko Doko, Mr. Alija Itzebegovic and
17 Stefan Kljuic. Of course, we had to conceal all of
18 this because the Serb soldiers would have taken all
19 this away. So we changed their names. Instead of
20 "Alija" we put "Ilija", and we called him Fra Ilija,
21 and Fra Jerko and Fra Stefan, so we used the
22 pseudonyms, calling them friars, and those people in
23 Sarajevo who were seeing this knew exactly who it was
24 for. Perhaps this was not a nice thing to do, but
25 those packages worked much better than those received
1 by other people.
2 Q. The war is on in Sarajevo, people are fleeing
3 Sarajevo. Kiseljak is very close to Sarajevo. There
4 are many refugees coming in from Sarajevo. Has Caritas
5 taken part in putting up these refugees, and what
6 nationality did they belong to and what was going on,
7 generally speaking?
8 A. A particularly big wave of refugees from
9 Sarajevo came from April 1992 until the end of June
10 1992. That is to say, within those three months. Most
11 of the refugees got out of Sarajevo by way of Kiseljak,
12 because Kiseljak was not under blockade then. We had
13 buses, so those who wanted to continue managed to do so
14 from here. However, most refugees stayed in Kiseljak.
15 Of course, we did take part in putting up
16 these refugees, but not only Caritas but the entire
17 population did. From Kubilica (phoen) to Kiseljak,
18 this is a 10 kilometre distance. Many people got out
19 of their homes and took out food, cakes, drinks,
20 clothes and offered all of this to the refugees.
21 Some people were even brought in dead. At a
22 checkpoint in Kubilica a lady had a heart attack. A
23 lot of people say that this was because she was afraid
24 and others say that she was very happy to get out of
25 the hell of Sarajevo.
1 Q. Please tell the Court whether all these
2 refugees belonged to the same ethnic group or not.
3 A. No, no. The -- the least number of refugees
4 were Serbs, and the most were Croats or Muslims. So if
5 I were to speak of my own estimate, I would think it
6 was a 50/50 ratio.
7 Q. Thank you. In the second half of 1992,
8 you -- or rather, Caritas organised a collection
9 centre, a warehouse of sorts; wasn't that the case?
10 A. Yes. Since in Split we had a collection
11 centre and a warehouse in Split, and before that,
12 actually, we had one which was in Sarajevo, so we would
13 bring food in to Kiseljak so it would be closer to the
14 other Caritas, Tuzla, Kiseljak, Zenica, Zepce,
15 Kresevo, Fojnica, Busovaca.
16 And initially, our upper church was our
17 warehouse. You don't know this, but the church in
18 Kiseljak consists of two parts. It has a crypt and the
19 upper part of the church was not being used, it's a
20 very big area, and that's where we kept all this food
21 and distributed it throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina,
22 or, rather, those centres that were accessible at the
24 Q. In Kiseljak you were not the only
25 humanitarian organisation. There was also Merhamet and
1 the Red Cross. Can you tell us about these other
2 organisations, whether there was co-operation between
3 them and who covered which area of work?
4 A. The municipality of Kiseljak, before the war,
5 had a population consisting of two ethnic groups
6 primarily before the war; 53 per cent were Croats, 46
7 per cent were Muslims, 3 percent Serbs, and the
8 remaining 1 per cent were those who were uncommitted or
9 who chose to be Yugoslavs. They called themselves
11 As the war broke out in Bosnia-Herzegovina,
12 quite openly, notably in Sarajevo and in Posavina and
13 around Krajina around Banja Luka, we established
14 Caritas, but the Islamic community also established a
15 humanitarian society called Merhamet. At the level of
16 the municipality, the civilian authorities had an
17 international organisation, the Red Cross.
18 In 1992, to the great satisfaction of all
19 Caritas, Merhamet and the Red Cross worked together.
20 When I say that they worked together, I mean the
21 following: We agreed that Caritas would take over care
22 for the Catholics, for the Croats, that Merhamet would
23 take care of the Muslims, and that the Red Cross would
24 coordinate the work of these two societies. We reached
25 such an agreement and this functioned very well.
1 Caritas and Merhamet were supposed to
2 compliment each other, so what Caritas did not have we
3 would get for free from Merhamet, and what Merhamet did
4 not have they could get from Caritas for free. We gave
5 each other as much as was needed if this was possible,
6 of course, if we had the required amounts.
7 Q. Tell me, when did Merhamet stop working on
8 the territory of the municipality of the Kiseljak?
9 A. Merhamet worked in 1992, and then they had
10 some internal problems of their own in their
11 organisation. They did not agree with the leadership
12 of Merhamet, so, therefore, they had less and less
13 food. And also, the donations they were receiving
14 became smaller and smaller. Merhamet worked in 1992,
15 and in 1993. I do not know why and how they no longer
17 Q. Does that mean that at one point in time you
18 started taking care of the Muslim population too that
19 needed assistance? If that is so, could you please
20 explain to the Court which villages you brought aid to,
21 or, rather, the Muslim populations of those villages?
22 A. Yes. Before Merhamet stopped working, many
23 Muslims came to the church, because that's where the
24 warehouse was, and they asked me personally to give
25 them food. During this first period of time I would
1 tell them to go to Merhamet, and they said, "There's
2 nothing down there, we want to get supplies from you."
3 Of course, at the time when Merhamet was
4 working as well, I did give aid to the Muslims, and
5 often it was easier for me to give something to a
6 Muslim than to try to justify myself and to make
7 excuses because of the agreement reached between
8 Merhamet and Caritas.
9 However, since Merhamet worked less and less,
10 more and more Muslims came to us, to Caritas, and
11 received aid there. At that time, we gave the most
12 assistance to those Muslims who were closest to the
13 church. That is to say, Muslims in town, Muslims in
14 Rotilj, Muslims in Visnjica, but other villages where
15 they worked, but also at like Duhreta (phoen), Polje,
16 Radanovici, Grahovcici, Han Ploca, Palez.
17 Q. When you say "town" are you referring to the
18 town of Kiseljak?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. At one point in time when you reached your
21 peak, how many people were you feeding, Caritas?
22 A. You mean at the peak or at any time?
23 Q. No, I'm saying what was the maximum number of
24 people that received aid and food from Caritas,
25 refugees or the local population, irrespective of
2 A. There were 18,000.
3 Q. Tell me, did you have any problems? We know,
4 from this trial and otherwise, that in Bosnia there
5 were interethnic tensions and later conflicts. Were
6 you under pressure of any kind because you gave help
7 and aid to the Muslims and you are a Catholic
9 A. I shall tell you the following: Before the
10 conflict with the Muslims, that is to say between the
11 army of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the HVO, in the entire
12 municipality, throughout the public, everyone knew that
13 the priest from Caritas is giving aid to the Muslims.
14 Many knew this, many saw this. None of the official
15 authorities, military, civilian and political objected
16 to this. They didn't ask me why I was doing this.
17 Of course, there were some people, especially
18 during the war, who were affected by the war, who lost
19 their nearest and dearest. There were people who were
20 wounded, people who were expelled and who were
21 muttering complaints as to why aid was being given to
22 those who had expelled them.
23 You'll have to understand this. At that
24 time, per week, I would have 10 or 15 funerals for
25 people who got killed. So there were families, there
1 were children, there were old parents, so there were
2 such objections that were raised by some people. Not
3 that often to me personally but there were rumours.
4 People talked throughout town, in their homes, et
6 Q. Tell me -- at this point we're just talking
7 about Caritas -- in relation to your humanitarian work,
8 did you have any contact or conversation with Tihomir
9 Blaskic exclusively related to helping Muslims through
11 A. In 1992, through the period from the spring
12 until the winter, I was in contact many times with
13 Mr. Blaskic. At that time we did not specifically talk
14 about Caritas, but he knew what I was doing. He knew
15 that I was distributing aid to the Muslims as well. He
16 was in Kiseljak when we took in Muslims from other
17 places too, and I did have a conversation with him
18 about Caritas as well. This was in the second half of
19 the month of May 1993. This was at the funeral of Mato
20 Lucic. In Kiseljak he's called Maturice. This was a
21 tête-à-tête conversation, although they were surrounded
22 by other people. We exchanged a few words, he asked me
23 how I was, what I was doing, what I knew, whether there
24 were any problems, and I said that I was sad, and
25 dismayed and tired, and that Caritas would eat me up, I
2 I also told him that there would be problems
3 probably with people, Muslims, who remained in
4 Kiseljak. They didn't have an organisation of their
5 own, and that they would come to seek aid from Caritas
6 in the municipality of Kiseljak. And he said the
7 following: "You are a priest. You are a Franciscan.
8 You are a Friar. You know what your calling is. It
9 means the following: You have to give."
10 Q. Tell me, were people revolted when Maturice
11 was killed and can you tell me a few words about the
12 reputation he enjoyed amongst the Croats? Was mention
13 made of this that there would be additional problems in
14 this respect?
15 A. Anto Lucic Maturice was a young man whom I
16 have known since 1983, because I was in Capelan his
17 native parish, the parish of Bembrdo, and he was
18 enrolled at the Yugoslav People's Army military school
19 and had to be a party member, which means that publicly
20 he was not able to declare his religion. He was not
21 able to christen his children and have his wedding
22 rights performed in a church. I knew that and when I
23 was a priest in my younger days, secretly we would hear
24 his confession and give him absolution.
25 When the war broke out, as an officer of the
1 Yugoslav People's army, he came to Kiseljak black, he
2 was a young man who always found time to smile, he
3 would joke, he was a very clean man, kept himself
4 clean, he was dark featured and in the army he was
5 highly respected. The army liked him. He was the
6 deputy of the head of the barracks in Kiseljak. That
7 is to say, the head of the military units in Kiseljak.
8 He was killed, I think, on the 10th of May
9 when there was a cease-fire of some sort, and when we
10 had hopes that the war would perhaps not break out and
11 that those who make such decisions would be able to
12 come to a decision. But he died and was killed during
13 a reconnoitring activity. There were two other
14 soldiers with him when he was killed. There was an
15 enormous funeral with many people attending. There was
16 the army, there were soldiers who came to the funeral,
17 and they got drunk out of desperation. People who were
18 revolted by everything that had happened, and they
19 said, "Well, they've skilled our best man."
20 Q. And in circumstances of this kind, you found
21 the need to talk to Blaskic about aid and assistance?
22 A. Yes, that was the motive for my talks with
23 Blaskic, because as you know, I too am only a man and I
24 have my own fears.
25 Q. And before we move into another area, the
1 refugees to the municipality of Kiseljak, I would like
2 to ask the registrar to give us the number of the
3 exhibit for the series of documents which represent
4 lists that Caritas drew up and referred to aid and
5 assistance to the Muslims in Muslim villages.
6 THE REGISTRAR: D424/1 through 18.
7 MR. NOBILO: Would you pass the documents
8 around, please?
9 THE REGISTRAR: It was D423.
10 Q. While we're waiting for the documents to be
11 handed out, would you please leaf through the
12 documents, and then we will discuss them.
13 Father Ivan, please tell us how I came by
14 those documents. Who gave me the documents, and are
15 the photocopies authentic representations of the
16 documents you gave me?
17 A. Yes, they are authentic copies of the
18 originals that I have in my possession.
19 Q. Tell me, please, what does this set of
20 documents, this set of lists represent?
21 A. This set of lists represents the names and
22 surnames of individuals who received aid from Caritas,
23 and are of the Muslim ethnic group and of the Islamic
25 I should also like to add one sentence here,
1 and that is that in Caritas we did not have a column
2 for ethnic group, nationality; but here it is easy to
3 see from the names and surnames who belongs to which
4 ethnic group.
5 Q. Thank you. We're now going to move to
6 another subject, and it is refugees in the Kiseljak
7 municipality. Do you know how many Catholics your
8 parish had?
9 A. Yes, I do. My parish, before the war, had
10 4.300 Catholics living in it, and mostly Croats.
11 Q. Tell me, in 1992, where did the refugees come
12 to, from which areas, and what ethnic group did they
13 belong to and who were they fleeing?
14 A. In 1992, up until the month of June, we had
15 an influx of refugees, mostly from Sarajevo and the
16 environs of Sarajevo, and from places which had already
17 been taken control of by the Serbian army.
18 Among those refugees, mostly there were
19 Croats and Muslims, and some Serbs from mixed marriages
20 who had mixed marriages.
21 From June onwards, we had an influx of
22 refugees, mostly from the Banja Luka region, from the
23 Travnik area, from Zenica, Konjic and the environs.
24 That is say all Rakovica, that is to say all the places
25 which had been taken control of by the Serbian army.
1 That is, I'm talking about the year 1992.
2 Q. How many refugees did you take in at the
4 A. I think that in September, already, the
5 number of refugees who had decided to remain in
6 Kiseljak, in the parish of Kiseljak, was at least
8 Q. Thank you.
9 A. Up until the end of that year, there were a
10 little more than 2.000 refugees, in 1992.
11 Q. So, these 2.000 refugees, for the most part,
12 had fled in the face of the Serb onslaught. What
13 happened in January of 1993? Did you have a new wave
14 of refugees? Where did they come from, and who did
15 they flee from, and what ethnic group did they belong
17 A. In January, 1993 there was an attack between
18 the BH army and the HVO, and this was in the region of
19 the Kiseljak municipality, that is to say, between
20 Kiseljak municipality and the Busovaca municipality.
21 This conflict took place in the village of Bilalovac,
22 Kacuni, Oseliste, Bukovice, Gusti Grab, Pezici,
23 Nezirovici and Donja Polje.
24 At that time, in that conflict, the HVO lost
25 the battle, and there were a large number of refugees,
1 approximately 2.000 of them. They fled from Kiseljak,
2 they fled from the war, and according to their ethnic
3 group, they were Croats, and they came from the
4 villages of Bilalovac, Kacuni, Bukovice, Poselisje,
5 Gusti Grab, and from all the villages, the northern
6 lying villages of the Brestoska parish. And as I said,
7 there were about 2.000 of them.
8 Q. Those 2.000 Croats who had fled in the face
9 of the war, and the villages that you enumerated, we're
10 not going to show them on the map now, but they are
11 located between Bilalovac and Kacuni, that is to say,
12 they are partially from the Busovaca municipality and
13 in part from the Kiseljak municipality; is that
15 A. Yes, that is correct, Bilalovac, up to
16 Klokops (phoen) and including Klokope (phoen), belongs
17 to the Kiseljak municipality, Poselisje, Gusti Grab,
18 Bukovci, Nezirovici, Donja Polje belong to the Busovaca
20 So the conflict was between the army of BH
21 and the HVO, and it occurred on the borderline between
22 the two municipalities.
23 Q. So after this second wave of refugees, Croats
24 who had fled from Kacuni and Bilalovac, up until the
25 month of April, there were no new waves of refugees.
1 But before we go on to discuss the month of April, I
2 should like to suggest that we read a report from
3 Catholic clergy from Bosnia, which you, yourself,
4 signed and which, according to our knowledge, was
5 written at that time.
6 MR. NOBILO: I should now like to ask this
7 document to be handed out.
8 I apologise, the Croatian original exists in
9 one sample only, and I'm going to have it Xeroxed
10 during the break, and we shall be submitting a
11 translation of it. As it exists in English, I'm going
12 to read it out so that it can be translated into
14 THE REGISTRAR: D424, for the BCS version,
15 and 424A for the English version.
16 MR. NOBILO:
17 Q. I am going to read the text, the interpreters
18 do not have the text in English. It is titled
19 "Statement by the Catholic clergy from Central
21 "For 13 years of permanent presence and
22 tradition, and out of the feeling of responsibility for
23 our people, and before our people, gives us the right
24 and makes it incumbent upon us to raise our voice. We
25 feel it to be our duty to draw attention to both the
1 Croatian and Muslim people that we condemn the tragic
2 events which have happened in this region against the
3 will of both peoples.
4 Without intending to create policy or to
5 decide upon any political system or alliance, we
6 support the basic rights of every man living in this
7 region, which is sacred to us. Immorality and crime do
8 not bring any good to those who commit them, let alone
9 to those who are subjected to them.
10 The tradition of this unique region and
11 people, especially of the Croatian people and its
12 customs, is to respect every man and his freedoms, and
13 to live in the spirit of tolerance and Christian love
14 with all the people with whom we share the space, the
15 spirit and the breath.
16 Therefore, we demand that those persons in
17 authority, either civilian or military, and all those
18 who," in adverted commas, "in the name of the people,
19 commit any acts which are contrary to those, and sow
20 the seeds of fear and hatred should be isolated and
21 uncovered in the name of the basic right of a life of
22 freedom to every man.
23 We recommend that truthful people from both
24 sides, who enjoy the reputation and trust, found joint
25 commissions which will visit our whole region and
1 restore the confidence which has been seriously
3 In an effort to stop all unwanted events, we
4 call God's blessing and wish peace and good will to all
5 those who can hear this voice of protest, as well as to
6 those who think differently."
7 And this document is signed by a number of
8 fathers, first of all, we have Father Likica Malicovic
9 (phoen), the guardian of Fojnica, and Father Ivan
10 Pervan, the parish priest of Kiseljak.
11 So, tell us, please, first of all, whether
12 you gave us this statement, this proclamation?
13 A. Yes, I did.
14 Q. And tell us the circumstances under which it
15 came into being, why it was written, and in which way
16 you published it and made it public to the people.
17 A. Well, it was written out of the need that was
18 felt at the time, which was not a good time, that it be
19 the voice of reason, that it be the voice of human
20 dignity, and that it be the voice of believers and
21 those people who believe in God and who wish all people
22 to be brothers. It was written at the time before the
23 April conflicts.
24 We compiled this document, wrote it, signed
25 and published it in the public information media via
1 the local radio stations, local television, but also
2 via the media which did not only exist in Kiseljak, but
3 elsewhere, as well. So this was published by the
4 Slobodna Dalmacija newspaper in Split, as well.
5 Q. However, in April a new wave of refugees
6 broke out in your parish. Can you explain to the
7 Court -- and before that, may we place a map on the
8 ELMO, and I should like to ask you to try and find the
9 villages from which the new wave of refugees came to
10 the Kiseljak municipality.
11 THE REGISTRAR: The map is D425.
12 MR. NOBILO: On the ELMO, please. Would you
13 place the map on the ELMO, please?
14 Q. We will move on to a larger map, because what
15 I wanted to show you does not exist on this map.
16 Would you please tell the Trial Chamber where
17 the refugees came from in April, 1993 in the Kiseljak
18 municipality, from which villages, and how many of them
19 were there?
20 A. In April, 1993, refugees came from the
21 northern villages of the Brestoska parish, what
22 remained of them, and especially from the southern part
23 of the Kiseljak municipality, the part which links up
24 the region towards Sarajevo.
25 They are the villages of Pirin, Bukovica
1 Mokrine, Zabrdje, Medvjedice, Fojakovac (phoen), and
2 then we have from Potofzezo (phoen), and refugees which
3 were able from Zupa to come to us.
4 Q. Would you please point Kiseljak out on the
5 map to us, and then the area from which the refugees
6 came in from the villages that you enumerated?
7 A. (Indicating).
8 Q. So that is the town of Kiseljak and the
9 centre of your parish. Where did the refugees come
11 JUDGE JORDA: Usher, would you please give
12 the witness the microphone?
13 A. From Gunjaca (phoen) and Brestoska, the
14 houses which were near the church. And from the
15 churches, the delineation line and the frontline was
16 100 metres away from the church. I'm going to show you
17 Pirin and the other places, but they won't be able to
18 hear me.
19 Q. We have a new microphone now, so you will be
20 able to be heard.
21 A. Bukovica, Mokrine, Zezelovo, Zabrdje,
23 Q. Tell me, what area of the municipalities, was
24 it south-west?
25 A. It is the southern reaches of the
1 municipality, that is to say, the part of the
2 municipality linking up the territory towards Sarajevo,
3 south of Kiseljak, the road towards Sarajevo.
4 Q. Thank you, you may take your seat again.
5 And tell the Court, please, what ethnic group
6 did these refugees belong to from the villages that you
7 have just enumerated and indicated to us, and who were
8 they fleeing from?
9 A. All the refugees were of the Croat ethnic
10 group, Zupa and Kiseljak, about 1.500 of them came.
11 Some of them remained in Zupa, Lepenaca, Bambrdo and
12 some went to Zupa Gromiljak, to the parish of
13 Gromiljak, and they fled in the face of the BH army.
14 So, it was the Muslim army that they were fleeing
16 Q. The new wave of refugees came in July, 1993.
17 Can you explain to the Court the municipalities that
18 these refugees had fled from, how many of them there
19 were, what ethnic group they belonged to and who they
20 were fleeing from?
21 A. In July, on the 3rd and 4th of July, 1993, a
22 large number of refugees, about 2.500 of them, came to
23 the Kiseljak parish from the Fojnica municipality and
24 from the Kresevo municipality.
25 From the Kresevo municipality the Dezevice
1 parish, and from the Fojnica municipality from Fojnica
2 proper, and all the upper villages around Fojnica, that
3 is to say, the villages linking up the area towards
4 Gornji Vakuf, Sebesic and the Laska Ravan.
5 They had also fled after the conflict between
6 the BH army and the HVO because their houses were set
7 fire to, there were a lot of dead there, and they were
8 all Croats, those who came to Kiseljak.
9 And amongst them there was a priest who was
10 in the village, he was not able to go back to Fojnica.
11 Q. The next large wave of refugees came in
12 November, 1993. Can you explain again to the Court
13 which municipalities and which places these refugees
14 came from, how many of them were there, what ethnic
15 group did they belong to and why did they run away?
16 A. Today is exactly five years from the date on
17 which this took place. Exactly five years ago today,
18 around 3.500 refugees came to Kiseljak. These are
19 refugees who came from Catici, Kakanj, all the villages
20 of Kraljeva Sutjeska, I can enumerate all of them if
21 necessary, from Zupa, Borovica, from upper and lower
22 Borovica, from Vares and all the surrounding villages.
23 They came after the conflict between the army
24 of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the HVO.
25 Through Brgul they came to Kiseljak. In
1 Kiseljak, later, 2.500 of them stayed on, but I also
2 know for sure that many of these refugees immediately
3 continued towards Stolac and Capljina, where they live
4 until the present day.
5 So, 3.500 of them came to Kiseljak, 2.500
6 stayed on for good, and the other refugees from Kakanj
7 proceeded to Herzegovina where they live until the
8 present day.
9 Q. Tell me, let us concentrate, rather, on state
10 municipalities, rather than parishes. Is it true that
11 in 1993, in November, these refugees were from Vares
12 and Kakanj, those municipalities?
13 A. I didn't understand you.
14 Q. You told us what parishes these refugees came
15 from; but if we were to look at municipalities, the
16 state government units of administration, would it be
17 correct to say that these refugees in November, 1993
18 came from the municipality of Vares and the
19 municipality of Kakanj?
20 A. Yes, the municipality of Kakanj and the
21 municipality of Vares.
22 Q. Thank you. You said that before the war your
23 parish had 4.300 Catholics.
24 A. Yes, that is what I said.
25 Q. During the war, did the number of your parish
1 go down? I mean amongst the original population.
2 A. Yes, during the war I had less than 3.500 of
3 them. From 1991 to 1993, many of them went to safer
4 places, especially to western Europe, and during the
5 war in 1993, I never had more than 3.500 parishioners.
6 Q. So, in your municipality, or rather, in your
7 parish, where there are less people, which is smaller
8 than the municipality of Kiseljak, how many people did
9 you receive at your peak time?
10 A. I can prove and show that at end of 1993, in
11 my parish, there were 14.000 refugees. But we must
12 bear in mind the following: Kiseljak does not have
13 only one parish, it also has the parish of Lepenica and
14 the Zupa Gomoljica and of Lepenez (phoen). Gromoljan
15 also took a lot of refugees, and at one point it was
16 assumed that in the municipality of Kiseljak there were
17 over 30.000 refugees.
18 Q. So, if we are now to dwell on your parish
19 only, which you know the best, of course, there were
20 3.500 Catholics from amongst the local population, the
21 original population, you received 14.000 people on the
22 territory of your parish, all of them Catholics,
24 This large concentration of refugees, which
25 considerably exceeded the possibilities you had for
1 feeding them, giving them shelter, et cetera; did this
2 also have a destructive effect on interhuman relations,
3 interethnic relations, in particular?
4 A. Oh, it was terrible. There is one more thing
5 I wish to add. When the refugees came in, or rather
6 before the war, Kiseljak and the municipality had
7 25.000 inhabitants. During the war the municipality
8 lost a lot of its territory, and therefore, a lot of
9 the housing facilities.
10 Also during the war many houses were
11 destroyed, mined, torched, and when the refugees came
12 in, although they are Catholics and Croats, and
13 although they were often relatives, they quarrelled and
14 especially over housing space, and this certainly had
15 an effect on interethnic relations in the parish and in
16 Kiseljak in general.
17 Q. The parish of Kiseljak and the municipality
18 of Kiseljak was abandoned by a large number of
19 Muslims. Can you explain to the Court under which
20 conditions this happened? What were the reasons why
21 the Muslims were leaving the municipality of Kiseljak
22 and your parish, for instance?
23 A. Throughout Bosnia-Herzegovina it was the
24 same. When the army would lose a battle somewhere, the
25 army would withdraw, and together with the army the
1 people would leave, too. This happened with all three
2 armies, with all three peoples, this happened wherever
3 there were conflicts, wherever there was war.
4 The other reason was, a very important one,
5 was the following: I shall give you an example,
7 When the refugees from Fojnica came in, they
8 went to the Muslim village of Duhre, and they told the
9 villagers, Muslims of Duhre, that your Muslims had
10 evicted them, our houses are in Fojnica, you go to
11 Fojnica and we will live here, and that's exactly what
13 Later on in peacetime, until the present day,
14 many houses are occupied in this way, people reached
15 that kind of agreement, you live in my house and I will
16 live in yours. There were quite a few such cases.
17 Q. Was it always a matter of agreement, as you
18 mentioned, between the population of Fojnica and the
19 population of Duhre, or was there violence, too, and
20 were some Muslims evicted from their houses by force by
21 some of the refugees, and also by some of the
22 extremists from amongst the Croats?
23 A. Yes, there were forceful evictions of Muslims
24 from their homes. There were extremists in the
25 Croatian population.
1 Q. As time went by, the village of Rotilj became
2 the home of a large number of Muslims. Tell the Court
3 more about the village of Rotilj. Who lived there
4 predominantly, what were the characteristics of this
6 A. The village of Rotilj is a village that
7 adjoins the town of Kiseljak. Most of the population
8 was Muslim. The houses belonged to Croats and Muslims,
9 but then the Croat village of Bjorne (phoen) is
10 adjacent. They are only about 50 to 100 metres away,
11 so these are Croat houses.
12 This is a village that is by an asphalt road,
13 it is a village that had electricity, telephones, a
14 village that had a water supply of its own, its own
15 fields, and it also had direct access to the forest.
16 Many of the villagers worked in Kiseljak.
17 So, it was one of the bigger Muslim
18 villages. They could work in agriculture and work in
19 the city at the same time, and also sell timber, which
20 is very important, because 70 per cent of the
21 population of Kiseljak still uses wood for heating.
22 Q. During 1993, during the April fighting, a
23 large number of Muslims from other villages came to the
24 village of Rotilj so they could live there. Tell me,
25 why were these villagers, these Muslims, fleeing their
2 These were not villagers who fled together
3 with the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, so what are the
4 other reasons that compelled these people to move into
6 A. The fighting between the army of Bosnia and
7 Herzegovina and the Croatian Defence Council started in
8 Rotilj during the first days of the conflict, and this
9 conflict was one of the first to end, as well, because
10 the HVO won the battle in Rotilj, took away the arms,
11 and peace came to prevail there.
12 After the first fighting in Rotilj, there
13 were never more conflicts, there were never anymore
14 conflicts. A few houses were burned down in Rotilj,
15 however, many houses remained intact.
16 Many Muslims who were evicted by the refugees
17 thought that the fighting would stop, perhaps, and they
18 wanted to be closer to their own homes, and they went
19 to Rotilj, either to stay with their relatives or in an
20 abandoned house.
21 I remember an example of this kind, a man
22 from Kiseljak, Mirsad Mujkic, he was a baker, and at
23 that time I was not in Kiseljak, he was evicted from
24 his own home, together with his wife and two children,
25 and a family came to stay there, a family of nine. He
1 also went to Rotilj with his wife and children.
2 When I came home, after my trip, I brought
3 him into the house of Zdravko Lukic (phoen), a Croat in
4 town, and that is where he spent the war, together with
5 his family.
6 They are Muslims, but they spent the war in
7 the house of Zdravko Lukic, and the civilian and
8 military and political authorities knew about this.
9 So, many people went to Rotilj simply trying to get
10 away from the war.
11 Q. Tell me, who are the Muslims who came to
12 Rotilj, from what villages?
13 A. To the best of my knowledge from Duhra
14 Ardanovic, Duhre, Pernjaci (phoen), Palez, Kacuprija
15 (phoen), Donji Palez, Kiseljak.
16 Q. You described the forceful eviction of people
17 by refugees and Muslim villages and in the town of
18 Kiseljak through the example that you just mentioned to
19 us; and tell me, did you know of the HVO, the army
20 coming in to a village, putting people into trucks and
21 moving them out of the village concerned?
22 A. I'm not aware of such cases.
23 Q. In Rotilj, a ramp was placed at the entrance
24 to the village; who put this there and why, and for
25 what reason, to the best of your knowledge?
1 A. When the fighting stopped in Rotilj itself,
2 when the fighting stopped in Rotilj itself, then at the
3 entrance into the village, just above town, a ramp was
4 placed. It was simply a log which would be moved by
5 hand up and down.
6 Q. Just a minute. I think that there is a
7 mistake in translation. When we are talking about a
8 ramp, we are talking about a BRKLJA, and in English it
9 was said "ramp", and I think that that means some kind
10 of a take off. Could you please describe what was on
11 the road?
12 A. Let us assume that there is a road between me
13 and the Honourable Judges, and let us assume it is 20
14 centimetres wide, and then the ramp I'm referring to is
15 a log that was placed as a road block. It is a log,
16 five to ten centimetres wide, 4 to 5 metres long; so,
17 it's there as a road block, rather.
18 Q. Who else was there and why was this done?
19 A. So this roadblock, as we are going to call it
20 from now on, was placed at the initiative of the people
21 from the village of Borina. The reason is the that
22 Muslims from the village of Rotilj wanted to protect
23 themselves from those people who wished to go to Rotilj
24 and to harm the Muslims in some way, either to rob them
25 or to mistreat them spiritually or physically. So that
1 was the main reason.
2 First days, and I remember that well, at that
3 roadblock were two elderly men without any weapons.
4 Their task was the following: If somebody wanted to
5 get into Rotilj, they should use the phone that they
6 had there to let the police or the army know about it.
7 I didn't ask them who they were supposed to notify.
8 This ramp was a precautionary measure so that something
9 wrong wouldn't happen.
10 Q. Perhaps now we could distribute the maps that
11 we already introduced into evidence, and we have copies
12 for the Honourable Judges and for our colleagues from
13 the Prosecution.
14 Father Ivan, you can sit down now. We'll
15 bring the ELMO up to you and it will be more practical
16 that way. So if you'll take a seat.
17 Would you repeat the number of the exhibit,
19 THE REGISTRAR: For the map it's D425.
20 MR. NOBILO:
21 Q. Sit down, please. I'm going to ask you a
23 According to your knowledge -- I'm going to
24 ask you a question. As far as you know, was Rotilj a
25 camp or not, a prison camp or not?
1 A. I maintain that it was not a camp.
2 Q. Why do you say that?
3 A. Because the barrier or the roadblock was set
4 up at the entrance to the village of Rotilj in a place
5 called Privori. From the village of Rotilj there are
6 many other roads which can be taken to lead you to all
7 the roads in the Kiseljak municipality, and roads in
8 the Kresevo municipality.
9 Q. Let us dwell for a moment on these roads, and
10 turn, if you will, to the map, please, and explain to
11 the Court what number 1 marked on the map means, what
12 it denotes, and use your indicator to tell us what
13 number 1 means.
14 A. Number 1 is the exact position of the
16 Q. Would you show us the road from Kiseljak to
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. What do the numbers from 2 to 8 represent,
20 and the arrows there, the numbers and the arrows from 2
21 to 8?
22 A. These numbers from 2 to 8 and the arrows
23 represent alternative paths from which you can get out
24 of Rotilj.
25 Q. Can you use a tractor or car to traverse
1 those roads?
2 A. Yes, you can still exit by car, such as a
3 Volkeswagen Golf, although the roads have not been seen
4 to for the last five years. They have not been
5 repaired for the last five years.
6 Q. Tell us whether around the village of Rotilj,
7 which is a circle marked on the map, whether there were
8 any guards, and whether there were any mines, and
9 whether these roads were guarded in any way, the roads
10 around the village.
11 A. Around the village of Rotilj, as far as I
12 know, there were no obstacles, no barriers, no guard
13 points, checkpoints, and the road was not mined.
14 Q. In addition to the roadblock on the road
15 which was made up of a log, as we already said, and two
16 HVO soldiers manning it, could you reach the villages
17 circumventing that block?
18 A. Yes, but this is the easiest way because it
19 is an asphalt road, whereas in other places, if
20 somebody wanted to go to the village, the villagers,
21 for example, from Borina, that is number 2 on the map,
22 those who wanted to protect these people would see it
23 and they would react to the situation, so that it was
24 the psychological indicator to those who wished to
25 enter that -- the village was being guarded and watched
1 over that nothing terrible could happen.
2 Q. Were there any Croat houses and Croatians in
3 the village of Rotilj throughout the war?
4 A. Well, throughout the war, and before the war,
5 during the war, and after the conflict as well in the
6 village of Rotilj, which is predominantly a Muslim
7 village, there were Croats. Immediately after the
8 roadblock, the barrier, towards Rotilj, there were
9 Croats living there.
10 Q. How many Croatian houses and how many Croats
11 lived in the village of Rotilj throughout 1993?
12 A. Up until the arrival of the refugees, the
13 Croat refugees to the village of Rotilj, who still live
14 in Rotilj, together with the Muslim population in
15 Muslim houses there were at least 10 houses which were
16 permanently inhabited in Rotilj. And let me repeat
17 once again, and I'm going to show you the road from
18 Rotilj and Borina, which are asphalt roads, and between
19 those two places Croats and Muslims live along side
20 each other. They live along side each other today,
21 they did so before, during, and as I say, after the
22 conflict. (Indicating). So between these two roads
23 Croats and Muslims lived together, from the roadblock,
24 during the conflict, and Croats used to live here as
1 Q. Tell me, please, whether the Muslims from
2 Rotilj would go to your church in Kiseljak on business
3 of any kind.
4 A. Yes. They used to come. They could go by
5 the roadblock or via Borina and past the cemetery.
6 Q. Could you show us the road they would have
8 A. They came this way and took what they needed
9 (indicating). I should like to mention that at that
10 time, while the ramp --I'm using the word "ramp", but
11 shall I say the barrier, or obstacle or block, while it
12 existed in Privori and throughout the time after that,
13 these people had a Croat physician in the village.
14 Actually, it was a lady doctor that saw to their
15 health, and they would come to her at all times during
16 the day and night. If they had other requirements,
17 other needs, they would either come to the doctor up to
18 the roadblock, ask for medical aid and assistance. And
19 I know this personally because I visited the lady
20 doctor, and I know that an ambulance, together with a
21 doctor, and a nurse and the driver would go to Rotilj
22 and give medical assistance there.
23 MR. NOBILO: Mr. President, do you think this
24 is a good time to take a break, perhaps?
25 JUDGE JORDA: I was waiting for the end of
1 the questions about Rotilj. We're going to suspend the
2 hearing until 11.50
3 --- Recess taken at 11.28 a.m.
4 --- On resuming at 12.12 p.m.
5 JUDGE JORDA: We will now resume. Have the
6 accused brought in, please.
7 (The accused entered court)
8 JUDGE JORDA: Would I like to apologise for
9 the delay. It was my fault, but I had some other
10 business to attend to during the break, since the break
11 is only the time that I can. However, I am not guilty
12 of the fact that the map has fallen off.
13 MR. NOBILO: Thank you.
14 Q. Father Pervan, before the break we talked
15 about the roads leading out of Rotilj. Nobody guarded
16 them, they weren't mined. Could you tell me and then
17 could you show me on the map whether one could go from
18 Rotilj to territory controlled by BH army? If so,
19 could you please show this to us?
20 A. Yes. One could reach the territory under the
21 control of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina in this way,
22 and in several ways, rather. There were many roads
23 leading towards that territory. All these roads went
24 through the forest, but they were all accessible and
25 you could go through them.
1 I'm going to show you at least one road that
2 one could take to -- from Rotilj to the territory
3 controlled by the army of BH. So it went through
4 Suplja Bukva, Jelacke, through Katici and Popina
5 (phoen), and to Rakova Noga, and from Rakova Noga
6 towards Ramici, Hodzici, Handzici, Grmacki and from
7 Grmacki the road to Crnicki Kamenik, which was then and
8 is until the present day under the control of the army
9 of Bosnia-Herzegovina. I'll show you on the big map
11 THE REGISTRAR: The map is D426.
12 A. This is Rotilj. This is the road that goes
13 to Suka Bukve from this side, and it goes back to
14 Jelacke. The same road can be taken the other way
15 around. Underneath Vis again to Ravni Grad and then to
16 Jelacke. From Jelacki the road goes down to Popina one
17 and a half kilometres away, then to Rahmici and
18 Hodzici. I have to take a look so I can see properly.
19 From Hodzici and Grmacki it goes to Crnicki Kamenik.
20 Crnicki Kamenik is a Croatian village with a chapel
21 which was taken by the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and
22 it stayed there. And this entire territory down here
23 is under control of the BH army, and is so until the
24 present day.
25 Q. Thank you, please sit down. Father Pervan,
1 what is the first time you personally went to Rotilj,
2 on what occasion and why?
3 A. This was at the very beginning when the
4 fighting broke out. The fighting that was less
5 intensive than the conflicts that took place before
6 that, and a lot less intensive than what ensued.
7 Near the church in Kiseljak, and near my
8 flat, there is a hotel called Dalmacija, which was the
9 UNPROFOR base.
10 One evening, at 10.00, Mr. Daniel Furman came
11 from UNPROFOR. I don't know what he did in UNPROFOR, I
12 don't know his exact post, but we often saw each
13 other. Later on, he drove me in a carrier to Fojnica
14 when the priests were killed, and he came and told me
15 that in UNPROFOR they had food for Muslims, notably for
16 children, in Rotilj, but that there was a roadblock up
17 there, and then he asked me to take that food up
19 I got ready. I took my own car, I put the
20 seats down, I went to the UNPROFOR base. I loaded the
21 food into the car and everything else that was there,
22 and I drove it to Rotilj between 10.15 and quarter to
23 eleven at night. That is to say, between 10.15 p.m.
24 And 10.45 p.m.
25 I went straight to Salko Hodzic's house. I
1 gave this to him. When I came to Rotilj I walked into
2 the first house where the Muslims were and I asked
3 which one of them was in charge of their affairs, and
4 he -- and they said, "Salko Hodzic." I went to see
5 Salko Hodzic. I gave it to him, and we have been
6 co-operating until the present day.
7 Q. Tell me, after this first trip you took, in a
8 way we can see from this document that Rotilj became
9 part of your regular system of supplies. After that
10 would you come to Rotilj regularly and bring in food?
11 A. I did not take food to Rotilj any more, I
12 would go there to see them, have coffee and talk to
13 them, but the director of Caritas and the workers of
14 Caritas would invariably take them food.
15 Q. Tell me, from your perception and from the
16 conversations you had with other people, did you see
17 anything that would lead you to the conclusion that
18 Rotilj was a camp, or did any one of the Muslims
19 complain to you that they were in a camp and that they
20 were not free?
21 A. Rotilj was not a camp. The Muslims in Rotilj
22 did complain of their living conditions. They were
23 complaining because their relatives were not there,
24 there was shooting, people were getting killed, there
25 was a war going on, but in Rotilj no one persecuted
1 them, especially when other Croats came to Rotilj.
2 Then I was often a witness of them drinking coffee
4 I assert that Rotilj was not a camp. What
5 all other refugees from other places had, they had
6 too. Of course, we have to say it was not easy for
7 them by virtue of the fact that there was a war between
8 the Croats and Muslims, and they were Muslims. And it
9 was not easy for them from a psychological point of
10 view, and psychological pain is a very difficult thing
11 as well, but I assert once again that Rotilj was not a
13 Q. In 1993, when you went to see Muslims and had
14 coffee with them --
15 A. I'm sorry, I didn't hear you.
16 Q. In 1993, when you went to Rotilj to have
17 coffee with the Muslims as you said, did somebody say,
18 "This is a camp, we are detained"?
19 A. No. No one ever told me that.
20 Q. Please tell the Court, why did you take food
21 to Rotilj while other refugees came to the Caritas
22 warehouse to collect food? What was the reason for
24 A. I shall tell you the following: For a long
25 period of time, we would store food in our upper
1 church. The churchyard is big enough for 30 cars only,
2 so it's a very small churchyard, although the church
3 itself is big. We wanted to avoid any kind of
4 commotion. That is why we took food to Rotilj
5 ourselves, for two reasons. And we also took food to
6 Brnjaci for another reason. In Rotilj, where the
7 Muslims were, we took food because it was easier for us
8 to load this food in large quantities and ask them to
9 distribute it themselves. So it was easier for us this
10 way, because the Caritas organisation of Kiseljak had
11 six and a half thousand voluntary days of work. That
12 is to say that very many people worked for years. So
13 we didn't want to have any commotion. That was one
15 The other reason was that, heaven forbid, any
16 kind of incident break out in front of the church or in
17 the church, because the fathers and mothers of people
18 who got killed in Kiseljak in those days were coming to
19 the church, and that is why I took food to Brnjaci,
20 which was a 100 per cent Croat and Catholic village.
21 So those were the reasons why I did that.
22 Q. What were supplies like in Rotilj at that
23 time? Did Rotilj have more or less food than Visoko,
24 for example, where Muslims lived under BH army
1 A. I must say something that was positive in
2 Kiseljak and Visoko. From September and October, at
3 the lines near Kiseljak and Visoko, there were not any
4 attacks when the Croats from Kiseljak and the Muslims
5 from Visoko were manning the lines.
6 Many people from Kiseljak and Visoko knew
7 each other because they are only 13 kilometres away. A
8 lot of them went to Kiseljak and a lot of them went to
9 Visoko, before the war.
10 So, when the BH army was on one side,
11 consisting of people from Visoko, and on the other side
12 when they were Croats from Kiseljak, there was no
13 shooting at these lines. People would shout and talk
14 to one another because the trenches were often 10 or 20
15 metres away from one another.
16 On one occasion on a radio frequency, they
17 had agreed on what the radio frequency would be, it was
18 14.500, they talked to one another without introducing
20 An HVO soldier told the man on the other
21 side, "I know who you are," and he said, "no, you
22 don't," and he said, "I know him, I know you, and I
23 know your father, and I watch him every day from my
24 house. You are Hodzic's men," and he said, "Tell my
25 father to send me a parcel to Visoko."
1 So from that one may conclude that Muslims in
2 Visoko had less food than the Muslims in Kiseljak. I
3 know for sure that a sack of flour in Visoko was a
4 hundred Deutschmark and in Kiseljak no one bought
5 flour, and the Muslims didn't buy flour, either.
6 Q. We heard before this Court that Rotilj was
7 overpopulated, that there were a lot of people staying
8 in one house; and how would you comment on that?
9 A. Well, that is true. In Rotilj, as I said,
10 some houses had burned down. So, there was less
11 housing space. A lot of people came to Rotilj, and I
12 know that in the house of Salko Hodzic, there were 17
13 people staying there.
14 I went there for coffee and it was hot, so we
15 sat outside. But I must say that in my house, also,
16 the parish house, on the floor, on sponge mats, I had
17 15 people staying there for 15 days, that is where they
18 slept and that is where they ate.
19 When refugees would come in, and when they
20 would seek shelter, then Muslims would go and stay with
21 each other, especially in bigger houses.
22 There is one more thing I wish to mention in
23 connection with food in Visoko. Before the war, I had
24 a friend, a Muslim, his name was Samir Topalovic. His
25 father's name was Fadil, his father was in Kiseljak, he
1 works at the public utilities company, and he received
2 his salary throughout the war.
3 Samir came from Rotilj to see me at the
4 parish house while the roadblock was still there, and
5 he said that he had trouble with his kidneys, and when
6 he went to the toilet that there was blood in his
7 urine, and he asked me whether I could help him get to
8 Visoko and then to Zenica to the hospital. And I did
10 When he was supposed to go, he came to see me
11 again, and he asked me whether he would take a parcel
12 of food from Rotilj to Visoko. My friend Samir went
13 and, unfortunately, he got killed in the fighting at
14 Zavrtaljka, and he was brought dead to Kiseljak.
15 Q. When you say he got killed, what do you mean;
16 later, or then when he was crossing to Visoko?
17 A. He got killed three months after he left.
18 Q. You said that in Split you had a warehouse of
19 the Caritas organisation for the entire diocese of
20 Bosnia. Could you tell me who sent supplies to this
21 warehouse and what road you took and what this trip
22 would be like and who you had to discuss this with and
23 how you did it, in general terms.
24 So, please, where was your warehouse, first
25 of all, in Split?
1 A. The Caritas organisation of the Bosnia
2 diocese got a big warehouse at TTS in order to store
3 their food supplies. Various humanitarian
4 organisations used that warehouse, and the various
5 Caritas organisations of various municipalities, and
6 various Bishop organisations.
7 We got food from many countries, for example,
8 I know for sure from France, Switzerland, Austria,
9 Germany, and particularly Sweden.
10 Q. Food was in Croatia, and now we have up here
11 on the easel a map where the zones of responsibilities
12 are of the army of Republika Srpska, red colour; green
13 colour, army of Bosnia-Herzegovina; and yellow colour
14 denotes the HVO.
15 Could you explain to the Court which road you
16 had to take and through whose territory and how many
17 kilometres to Split to collect this food?
18 A. Do you want me to get up?
19 Q. Yes, please do, and show this on the map.
20 JUDGE JORDA: What is the date of the map?
21 You are defining the zones of influence of the various
22 armies, but it would be better for you to state
23 precisely the month, because the situation would
25 You said in blue you have the Bosnian army;
1 is that correct?
2 MR. NOBILO: No, no, the Bosnian army is
3 green. Green is the Bosnian army, yellow is the HVO
4 and red is the army of Republika Srpska. During the
5 Washington Accords -- I think it's a mistake, it's a
6 mistake in colours. This is what it looked like after
7 the April conflict.
8 JUDGE JORDA: There is blue here. The
9 question I'm asking, I should have asked it right away,
10 I don't like to interrupt, but I should have asked this
11 question: If you want to make the explanations of your
12 witness clear, we have to know what is the date that
13 you are defining the places and what the colours
14 represent. If I have understood correctly, the red is
15 the Serbian army.
16 MR. NOBILO: This is the map during the
17 fighting. This is when the Washington Accords were
18 signed, after the war. This is what this map shows.
19 The armies that are shown held this particular area
20 under their control at the end of the war.
21 JUDGE JORDA: At the end of the war, then; is
22 that what you are saying?
23 MR. NOBILO: The end of the war, yes.
24 JUDGE JORDA: So, the red is the Serb army.
25 MR. NOBILO: Exactly.
1 JUDGE JORDA: And the entire territory
2 indicated in green is what?
3 MR. NOBILO: Is under control of the army of
4 Bosnia and Herzegovina.
5 JUDGE JORDA: And yellow is what you would
6 call the HVO enclaves; is that correct?
7 MR. NOBILO: Yes, that is the territory under
8 HVO control.
9 JUDGE JORDA: And the blue mark?
10 MR. NOBILO: The blue should be zones that
11 were under UN control.
12 JUDGE JORDA: Very well. Thank you very
14 MR. NOBILO:
15 Q. So this map is important for us so that we
16 can see who held what territory, so that we could see
17 what the road from Kiseljak to Split was, where
18 humanitarian aid was taken.
19 So Fra Pervan, please show the Court the
20 enclave of Kiseljak, and describe your trip from
21 Kiseljak to Split and back.
22 A. The enclave of Kiseljak, that is where the
23 tip, this tip here, the tip of the indicator, the
24 pointer. It is, for the most part, surrounded by the
25 army of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
1 On one short section the enclave of Kiseljak
2 is under the control of the Croatian Defence Council,
3 and this borders on the army of the Republika Srpska.
4 That place is called Kobiljaca, and it is on the road
5 from Kiseljak, Ilidza to Sarajevo.
6 In August we had a lot of refugees already,
7 and there was a threat of catastrophe breaking out.
8 The food supplies had already dwindled and were
9 disappearing, and we were afraid of a catastrophe
10 breaking out.
11 The people responsible in Kiseljak of the
12 civilian military and police authorities there, they
13 contacted the authorities of the Republika Srpska, I
14 think with the approval of their superiors. They
15 decided that from Kiseljak, via the territory of the
16 Republika Srpska controlled by the Serbian army, that a
17 route could be made, a road taken towards Croatia, that
18 is to say, towards Split, which is where we wanted it
19 to go.
20 But that remuneration was to be made, that
21 is, payment was to be made for passing through that
22 way. I started out with a convoy from Kiseljak, and on
23 the small map you can see these places better, and I'm
24 going to enumerate them now. There are quite a lot of
25 these places, but let us take them in this order:
1 Kiseljak, Kobiljaca, Rakovica, Ilidza, Semizovac,
2 Srednje, Vucja Luka, Pale, Han Pijesak, Vlasenica,
3 Zvornik, Bijeljna, Brcko, Samac, Modrica, Doboj,
4 Derventa, Prnjavor, Banja Luka, Prijedor, Glamoc,
5 Bosansko Grahovo, Livno, Tril, Hlis and Split.
6 Q. How many kilometres is that route in length?
7 A. The route is 1.196 kilometres long.
8 Q. And how far is it from Kiseljak to Split?
9 A. Kiseljak, Split is 289 kilometres.
10 Q. You may resume your seat.
11 You said that the civilian and military
12 authorities had planned this passage for you to take
13 the humanitarian aid through, they had decided upon
14 that with the Serbs, and you had passed that route
15 several times in another shorter route, as well, and we
16 will mention this later on.
17 Can you describe to us the conditions, the
18 agreement made with the Serbs on that occasion?
19 A. I said, that is to say from 1995 up to the
20 present day, I said at least 20 times that if I had to
21 take that route again I would say I'm not going. It
22 was a very difficult route, and a very ugly one.
23 We had MacAdam road surfaces on many
24 occasions, very often we had to have a truck with us,
25 and they would take the food. We were maltreated. We
1 were mistreated both by the Serb soldiers, and there
2 were some words that I cannot repeat to this Court
3 today, and gestures which I cannot show to anybody,
4 they were so, in such poor taste.
5 But we were sworn at, we were cursed, our
6 national identity was cursed and our religion was
7 cursed, in very vulgar terms. And very often we,
8 although we were accompanied by the Serb police, we
9 never reached our destination intact.
10 They took the canvasses off our trucks, and
11 very often there was shooting, and we passed close by
12 to the delineation point between the two armies, the
13 Serb army and the BH army, and the BH army attacked our
14 convoys very often and opened fire on us.
15 In the Posedena region between Orasje and
16 Rijeka, thinking that it was Serb trucks that were
17 passing, the HVO even shot at us.
18 Q. Tell us, please, whether at one point you
19 were taken hostage for a number of days on Serb
20 territory, and if so, what the conditions accompanying
21 this were.
22 A. When the agreement was reached, of course,
23 there was no love lost between us, and it was a very
24 difficult time. At one point we were housed in the
25 camp in Sanski Most, we were put up there, and on
1 another occasion we waited to be given passage, free
2 passage in Stolac up to 11.00 p.m.
3 Q. Why did they refuse to let you pass?
4 A. On one occasion, for 26 hours, I was in
5 prison in Bileca, and what happened was the following:
6 The price of free passage for the convoy carrying food,
7 supplies and clothing was to be paid to the Serbs, and
8 if everything was not okay, the Serbs would wait for
9 the money to be paid in and would hold us hostage
10 during that time.
11 I remember on one occasion the price for
12 passage was ten cisterns of petrol. Ten passed, the
13 tenth was late, and we had to wait until this fuel
14 supply had been met.
15 When I was in Bileca in the prison the
16 conditions were very difficult there. I felt
17 miserable, and I thought that I would never leave that
18 prison. On that occasion, the price was 10.000
19 Deutschmarks to be paid for free passage.
20 At the entrance to the territory of Republika
21 Srpska this sum was not paid on time and we had to wait
22 in the prison until the money was paid. And they had
23 rifles, which had already been filled with ammunition,
24 so I was afraid of losing my life.
25 Q. From your viewpoint, and with regard to the
1 humanitarian convoys, do you think this co-operation
2 was justified?
3 A. Well, as a man, I say that I physically would
4 not have survived this, but in my mind, and in my soul,
5 if necessary, I would justify this tomorrow and I would
6 do it all again, if I were able to go through the same
7 hardships physically.
8 I think that all my sufferings, all the
9 difficulties that I had and my drivers had were nothing
10 compared to how much we were able to save the people,
11 and that was more valuable. The act is always more
12 valuable than the hardships you have to go through to
13 achieve those acts.
14 Q. Could you please tell the Court, for us to
15 get a general impression, how big was your convoy? How
16 many tons of food were you able to take in one
17 particular tour of this convoy?
18 A. Well, the most aid that I was able to take
19 over was 1.032 tons, 44 trucks and one bus, which was
20 full of food, and I gave this food to the Serbian
21 civilians and soldiers; although, we had paid for our
22 free passage, but they wouldn't allow us to pass before
23 we gave them some food.
24 So, at one point I gave them all five tons,
25 and was able to take only ten parcels with me.
1 Q. Apart from your convoy, did Kiseljak organise
2 commercial convoys of any kind, in the sense of trade,
3 selling, buying and selling? If so, could you tell us
4 who organised this and the kind of goods that were
5 bought and sold in this way and to whom they were sold?
6 A. Yes. The municipal authorities, both
7 civilian and military, at that time organised what was
8 known as commercial convoys, and these convoys, too,
9 had to be paid for. I think that they were more
10 expensive than the humanitarian convoys, and thank God
11 they did not bring, they did not bring flour, oil and
13 For the most part they bought these goods in
14 Croatia and in Europe and then sold those goods.
15 Q. What goods were they?
16 A. Well, for example, cigarettes, alcoholic
17 beverage, and goods that were expensive, as well as
18 clothing, footwear, jewellery and watches.
19 Q. And who were these goods sold to?
20 A. These goods were sold both in Kiseljak
21 proper; but most of the goods were sold in the area
22 from Kiseljak to Visoko, that is to say, to the
24 Q. Did you say, was anything sold to the Serbs,
25 or were any exchanges made with the Serbs?
1 A. It was difficult to sell these goods to the
2 Serbs because the Serbs didn't have money to pay for
3 them, and if some of these goods were given to the
4 Serbs, it was on the basis of a barter, of an exchange
5 sort of system.
6 Q. Do you consider that this kind of trade,
7 during those war days, on the part of the civilian and
8 military authorities, that a significant amount of
9 money was collected, which represented a certain amount
10 of economic power, which was not typical in other areas
11 as in Central Bosnia?
12 A. Yes, that's true. This kind of trade that
13 went on with the Muslim side, and we know today that
14 those goods went up to Tuzla and Zenica, they made
15 Kiseljak economically, and later on, both militarily
17 For example, Kiseljak had an army, and it was
18 thanks to the goods that it sold in Visoko that it got
19 from the Muslims in Visoko 400.000 pairs of army
21 I know for a fact that from Breza via Visoko,
22 for the primary school and secondary school, we bought
23 coal, and it came from Visoko and Breza, so that our
24 school had heating in the very difficult cold days.
25 Why it had heating, I did not state this, when the
1 refugees came to us and we spoke about the lack of
2 space and that more refugees had to be put up in one
3 house, throughout the war in the primary school and
4 secondary school we had collective lodging for the
5 Croat refugees.
6 This collective housing is ongoing in
7 Kiseljak today, because there are still refugees there,
8 and we still do not have enough flats and houses to
9 accommodate them in.
10 Q. What about the situation in Kiseljak, as far
11 as supplies were concerned? Were the shops open? Did
12 you have citric fruits and bananas and things that
13 could not have been thought about in Bosnia at that
15 A. Yes, in Kiseljak the shops were open, they
16 worked all the time, as did the cafes. On a regular
17 basis I went to have coffee in the cafes, and a drink,
18 and all the kind of things were functioning which
19 nobody could imagine at that time in the rest of
21 Q. You personally, did you take part only in the
22 humanitarian convoys, or did you participate in the
23 commercial convoys?
24 A. No, I only took part in the humanitarian
25 convoys. I had nothing to do with the commercial
1 convoys. I knew about them, I knew the prices, I knew
2 what was being sold and the kind of goods they had, but
3 materially speaking, physically speaking, I did not
4 participate in them.
5 Q. On the map, when you showed us the arrows and
6 the 1.000 kilometre route that you took to Split, there
7 is a shorter route marked with two arrows. Could you
8 explain to the Trial Chamber what that route shows?
9 A. In the second stage of our travels towards
10 Croatia and Split, we received approval from the Serbs
11 to shorten our route, because they had de-mined a part
12 of their territory around Stolac, so we were able to
13 shorten our route, and that is the route we took later
15 That particular route leads from Kiseljak,
16 out of Kiseljak towards Kobiljaca, Rakovica, Ilidza,
17 Semizovac, Srednje, Vucja Luka, Pale, Bukovica, Trnovo,
18 Dobra Polje, and I forgot to mention Foca, and then we
19 have Gacko, we go on to Gacko, and from Gacko up to the
20 cross-roads of Planje, and then on to Berkovici from
21 Berkovici to Stolac, from Stolac to Capljina, from
22 Capljina to Citluk, from Citluk we went to Grude, from
23 Grude to Imovski (phoen) from Imovski, once again,
24 through Senj, or from Capljina we would go down to
25 Metkovic and use the Adriatic road towards Split.
1 Q. Can we, therefore, say that on the map which
2 shows the routes, the route you have just described,
3 leads to the south and is marked with two parallel
5 A. Yes, that is correct.
6 Q. Was this map drawn up according to
7 instructions from you?
8 A. Yes, I stuck it together myself.
9 Q. Let us move to a different subject now, and
10 that is the way that Kiseljak was cut off from Vitez
11 and Busovaca.
12 When, according to your recollections, were
13 communication lines cut off for the first time between
14 Busovaca and Kiseljak?
15 A. According to my knowledge, this was in the
16 third decade (sic) of January, the end of January, when
17 conflicts broke out along the edges of the Kiseljak and
18 Busovaca municipality, that is to say, conflicts in
19 Klokoti, as we call this area, it is the village of
20 Bilalova, Klokoti, Kacuni, Gusti Grab, Bukovci, Crpe
21 (phoen), Nezirovci, Besici and Donja Polje.
22 Q. When you personally were in Busavaca, when
23 were you last in Busovaca and how did you get there?
24 A. The last time I was in Busovaca was after the
25 conflict in January, that is to say, after the first
1 conflict in Klokoti, a cease-fire reigned and that
2 lasted up until April. As there was a war house in
3 1992, and I brought food there, I had a war house in my
4 church, I wanted to take food to the Caritas
5 organisation for the parish in Busovaca.
6 One day I went to Bilalovac, I found Mr. Ganu
7 and Mr. Sefer there, they were policemen in Kiseljak,
8 and I knew them, and I asked them to give me permission
9 to take two truckloads of food to Busovaca, and this is
10 what they told me: They said, "We can give you safe
11 passage, and we're going to give it to you, but you
12 have to go to the municipality of Kacuni, and you will
13 receive additional permission there."
14 When they went to Bilalovac they set up the
15 Kiseljak municipality there.
16 Q. Who are you thinking of there?
17 A. The Muslims, the Muslims in Kacuni founded
18 the municipality of Busovaca, and I was given
19 permission by them, and one of their policemen took me
20 to Kacuni, he asked me whether I knew where the house
21 of Enijad Mekic was, Enijad Mekic before the war was a
22 Hodza and he was president of the party of democratic
23 action. I went to his house, I was wearing a uniform,
24 and I found Enijad sitting down wearing a uniform of
1 Q. When you say you were in uniform, what kind
2 of uniform were you wearing?
3 A. No, no, my uniform is the Franciscan, the
4 type of Franciscan robes of our order, that Franciscans
5 all the over the world wear. I said why I had come and
6 we knew each other from before the war, and he took me
7 to Husnija and there was some very unpleasant talks
8 there, but I was given permission. I went back to
9 Kiseljak and on that day in the afternoon I loaded up
10 two trucks and the morning after I left. In Kacuni the
11 trucks were examined in great detail. They didn't
12 curse us, they didn't swear at us, they didn't do
13 anything to us, they let us go towards Busovaca. We
14 unloaded there, went back to Kiseljak, and that was the
15 last time that I went to Kiseljak up until the
16 cease-fire in 1994.
17 Q. You mean the last time you were in Busovaca?
18 A. Yes, I'm sorry, Busovaca.
19 Q. Would you give us the date? When was that?
20 A. My convoy, you mean? Yes, I think that it
21 was at the beginning of March, 1993.
22 Q. When was the territory between Busovaca and
23 Vitez - sorry, Kiseljak, cut off completely? When did
24 you notice this, when was this cut off, and when did
25 you come to the territory, or rather, how did you come
1 to the territory of Kiseljak in May 1993?
2 A. After the January conflict, when there was a
3 cease-fire, after the Easter holidays, I went through
4 Kresevo, Tarcin and Konjic, and Mostar, I went out of
5 Croatia. I went to Europe. I went on a trip.
6 When I came back from Europe, when I went to
7 Split, I could not reach Kiseljak anymore. I waited
8 for a few days in Split, and then I heard that in
9 Citluk there were also people who wanted to go to
10 Central Bosnia to Kiseljak, Zepce and Vares. I came to
11 Citluk with my own car and my driver, and I asked who
12 wanted to come with me. And I said, "Well, let's go,
13 and let's hope for the best." Many people wanted to
14 come along from Vares, Zepce and Fojnica. In this
15 convoy most of us were Croats, but there were also two
16 Muslims with us, Fuad Curic and Zecevic, I think his
17 name was Osman. We agreed to do this and they were
18 afraid. We agreed to stick together and with the help
19 of God we would finally reach our destination. At 1.00
20 in the afternoon we went from Citluk to Posusje and
21 then to Duvno, from Duvno over the mountain of Rama.
22 It is a very difficult road. In the evening we arrived
23 in Prozor and we spent the night in front of the
24 Franciscan monastery in Rama near Prozor. In the
25 morning we went to Gornji Vakuf where the cease-fire
1 was still on, and the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina,
2 and the army of the Croatian Defence Council were both
3 there in town.
4 The two of us, my driver and I, and Faud
5 Curic and Zecevic, I think his name as Osman, went to
6 see the local commander of the army of
7 Bosnia-Herzegovina. We talked to him. We said that we
8 wanted to go home. We asked him to help us, and he
9 made it possible for us to go home.
10 We left Gornji Vakuf, we took the road that
11 leads to Novi Travnik by Sebicic (phoen). We arrived
12 at Sebicic, and then part of this road goes to Fojnica
13 near the Prokosko Lake, and the other road leads to
14 Novi Travnik via Vitez. We went via the lake.
15 When we got to the top of Laska Ravan, behind
16 the trees there were members of the army of
17 Bosnia-Herzegovina with their guns aiming at us. And
18 they mistreated us, they cursed at us.
19 Faud Curic and Zecevic went to Fojnica. They
20 were gone for two hours. Then I had to go too.
21 When I got down there by Prokos, a young man
22 pointed his gun at me and put it underneath my neck.
23 He was drunk, and he said, "I'll kill you, because you
24 are from Kiseljak." And then another fellow came by
25 and told this first one not to touch me.
1 We continue our trip. In the evening we
2 arrived in Kiseljak at 10.00.
3 Q. What date was this?
4 A. I arrived on the 7th.
5 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Nobilo, we have to
6 interrupt now and we will resume at 2.45.
7 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.
8 --- On resuming at 2.55 p.m.
9 JUDGE JORDA: The hearing will now resume.
10 Have the accused brought in, please.
11 (The accused entered court)
12 JUDGE JORDA: As soon as the witness comes
13 in, let's have Father Ivan brought in.
14 (The witness entered court)
15 JUDGE JORDA: If you agree, we can now
16 resume. Mr. Nobilo, take up at the point we left off.
17 MR. NOBILO: Thank you, Mr. President.
18 Q. Mr. Pervan, we talked about your return to
19 Kiseljak after the April conflict. That was what we
20 were talking about before the lunch break. Could you
21 tell us what date you entered the Kiseljak
23 A. I entered the Kiseljak municipality on the
24 7th of May, in the evening hours.
25 Q. The 7th of May, 1993?
1 A. Yes, 1993.
2 Q. Tell us, where can you enter the municipality
3 of Kiseljak, at what place?
4 A. I entered the Kiseljak municipality at
5 Plocari, which means that I took the road leading from
6 Fojnica to Kiseljak. I went that route -- on that
8 Q. Was there any danger on the way or on the
9 road entering Kiseljak?
10 A. From Fojnica to the entrance to the Kiseljak
11 municipality there were no incidents, but when we came
12 to the village of Luge (phoen), which where the road
13 passes through, we had to stop, and then you have to
14 move right onto a road which isn't an asphalt road,
15 which is an earth -- dirt road, a village road, because
16 we couldn't go up to the Fojnica cross-roads going from
17 Kiseljak to Busovaca, because any movement of men or
18 anything else, and it was night, and we couldn't move
19 without lighting, and there was shooting from
20 Gomionica, strong firing, I think from machine-guns
21 from the direction of Gomionica.
22 Q. And who was at Gomionica in that direction?
23 A. There was the BH army.
24 Q. Tell the Trial Chamber, please, after
25 returning to Kiseljak, after the conflict at Trajvan
1 (phoen), was there any possibility whatsoever of coming
2 to Busovaca and Vitez, that pocket, the Busovaca-Vitez
3 pocket? Was there a secret road or route that you
4 could reach this area?
5 A. No. There was no route from Kiseljak to
6 Busovaca. Nothing of that kind existed, public or
7 covert, secret. If there was a road, it could only be
8 across Fojnica to the Laska plain, but when we got
9 there the BH army was there, as I said, and the road
10 from Kislejak to Busovaca was cut off from Bilalovac,
11 that is to say from the church in Brestovska, 100
12 metres away from the church to the lower valley in the
13 municipality of Busovaca.
14 I think this is very simple to explain, that
15 is to say, how the fighting took place between the HVO
16 and the BH army. Every side along its enclave, along
17 the municipality had dug trenches --
18 JUDGE JORDA: Could we shorten this a bit,
19 unless it's very, very important for you, Mr. Nobilo,
20 because, otherwise, we're going to need a lot of time.
21 Excuse me for interrupting here. Of course, you're the
22 one who can see where you're trying to go in terms of
23 your strategy, I'm not trying to force you to do
24 anything, but we're going through a great many details
1 MR. NOBILO: Mr. President, we shall be
2 concluding in 45 minutes' time, but the impossibility
3 of communication between Kislejak and Busovaca, I
4 think, is an important point. But we're not going to
5 use too much of your time on that point.
6 Q. Let's leave, for the moment, whether they
7 were asphalt or dirt roads. Could you reach Busovaca
8 to Kiseljak through the fields, or valleys or whatever?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Why not?
11 A. Because everything was blocked with two
12 armies on both sides. The roads were blocked and the
13 whole Kiseljak enclave was surrounded by front-lines on
14 both sides, both the BH army and the HVO.
15 Q. Yes.
16 A. The HVO line and then along this line you had
17 the BH army.
18 Q. Can we take an example, and we're going to
19 illustrate, by means of that example, that the two
20 Croatian pockets, Kiseljak and Busovaca, operated in
21 different manners.
22 Tell us the price of cigarettes or food, for
23 example, in Kiseljak and what were the prices in
25 A. The prices were drastically different. I
1 forgot to take a packet of my own cigarettes, but the
2 price of one packet of cigarettes with 20 cigarettes in
3 Kiseljak was one Deutschmark, In Busovaca that price
4 was 100 Deutschmarks. One litre of oil in Kiseljak
5 was one and a half to two Deutschmarks in Busovaca, 70
6 Deutschmarks for a friend, 100 for others, and if you
7 knew nobody, it was 200 Deutschmarks. And I believe
8 that you would be able to find people, had they been
9 able to go to Busovaca, they would have invested their
10 10,000 marks in cigarettes, place them in cigarettes,
11 and earn 1 million marks' profit. But, of course,
12 there was no profit of that kind and people of that
13 kind engaging in anything of that kind. Nobody thought
14 of this because we knew -- everybody knew it was
16 Q. Tell me, in Kiseljak, was there -- were there
17 enough weapons and grenades, and what do you know about
18 the situation in Vitez and Busovaca?
19 A. Kiseljak, as far as I remember, and as far as
20 I heard from the soldiers, had enough ammunition,
21 rifles and mortars, grenades, but later on I heard that
22 in Busovaca there was a shortage of all that.
23 Q. Did you have any explosives?
24 A. No, we did not have explosives. We had to
25 purchase explosives either in Herzegovina or from the
2 Q. Tell me, with the friars in Busovaca, how did
3 you communicate with them personally, you yourself?
4 A. Well, they sent me, via UNPROFOR, letters and
5 money, and would I answer to their letters, and I would
6 send up to 4 kilograms of coffee and cigarettes via
7 UNPROFOR to them.
8 Q. Tell me, the radio ham station, did you know
9 how to use it?
10 A. Yes, but other people would tune in for me,
11 tune it in for me.
12 Q. So did you have frank talks where everybody
13 could take part?
14 A. Yes. We were linked with all radio hams,
15 amateurs, both in Busovaca, with Belgrade, Zagreb and
16 throughout Europe, anywhere that the radio station
17 could be heard.
18 Q. Now, tell me, do you recall any coded
19 messages of the BH army and the man who deciphered
20 those codes? Can you explain to us how this happened?
21 A. Yes, do I remember. Very often I went to the
22 room where the public radio ham station, amateur radio
23 station, was working. Mijo Raso, my friend, was there,
24 Ivica Marjanovic, they were all my friends, and Miss
25 Prgomet. I would have coffee with them, because it was
1 located in the centre of town. They played cards,
2 chess, I listened to messages. There would be 2CC38,
3 that would be the kind of code, and this would be taken
4 to Mijo Raso, and this was deciphered very easily.
5 They were able to decipher what the Muslim soldiers and
6 others -- the messages they sent out.
7 Q. You said that Tihomir Blaskic attended the
8 funeral of Mato Lucic sometime after the 10th of May,
9 because he was killed on the 10th of May. Tell us how
10 he came to the funeral.
11 A. He was escorted by UNPROFOR in an Armoured
12 Personnel Carrier.
13 Q. Was he brought to the cemetery?
14 A. No. He came to the house where Mato's
15 parents lived, and he used the UNPROFOR APC vehicle,
16 and then he went to Busovaca or Vitez. He went via --
17 back via Bilalovac.
18 Q. After the funeral of Mato Lucic, that is to
19 say, sometime after the 10th of May, 1993 up to the end
20 of the war in 1994, did you ever see or hear of the
21 fact that Tihomir Blaskic had come to Kiseljak after
22 Mato Lucic's funeral when he was in Kiseljak the last
24 A. Mr. Blaskic never, until the cease-fire in
25 1994, came to Kiseljak. I did not see him nor did I
1 ever hear of him coming.
2 Q. You said the funeral rites for Colonel
3 Blaskic's father. That was sometime after Mato Lucic's
4 funeral, in the second part of 1993 that is.
5 Tell us, did Blaskic come on that occasion or
6 would he have come had he been able to?
7 A. Mr. Blaskic was not there. I personally
8 buried his father at the Kiseljak cemetery. He did not
9 come on that occasion. Had he been able to, he would
10 have come. I personally believe, I don't want to say
11 anything against Mr. Blaskic, but I think he loved his
12 father more than he loved his mother.
13 Q. What about the circumstances of the funeral?
14 Was there any shooting?
15 A. Yes. We always had problems with funerals at
16 the Kiseljak cemetery, because on the opposite side
17 from Visoko, which is one and a half kilometres as the
18 crow flies, the cemetery was shelled. That is to say,
19 the grenades fell on the cemetery.
20 Q. Could you now describe to the Court the
21 following: In the course of 1992 you met Colonel
22 Blaskic, and at the beginning of 1993 you met him
23 again. Can you describe him as a man and a soldier?
24 What impression did he leave?
25 A. I met mister -- Colonel Blaskic in the spring
1 of 1992. I knew that he was appointed as commander of
2 the barracks. We met in the street. He lived in the
3 town itself. We would go and have a drink together,
4 because in -- the war was not ongoing in Kiseljak yet.
5 He went to church, he attended mass and other religious
6 rites, and the impression he left on me, and everybody
7 else, was that he was a quiet man, a serious man, a
8 calm man, an honest man, somebody always who would
9 adhere to his principles. He did not make a lot of
10 noise. He was always calm in presenting his
11 arguments. I think that he was -- did he not like
12 aggression, and I think psychologically and physically
13 he is what I would say a pure man, call a pure man.
14 Q. At that time in Bosnia, there were
15 international -- tense international relations.
16 There was tension and antagonisms around the different
17 nations and religions. Can you assess what his
18 attitude was towards members of ethnic groups? Was he
19 an extremist? Was he an extreme nationalist?
20 A. At the time when Mr. Blaskic was in Kiseljak,
21 there were no conflicts between the Muslim and Croat
22 people, and, thereby, the situation was quite
23 different. There was conflict between the army of the
24 Republika Srpska, the Serbs, and the others. I never
25 heard Mr. Blaskic say anything bad about any
1 nationality, or that he would give bad names to other
2 members -- members of other ethnic groups. I never
3 heard him doing anything of that kind.
4 Q. When he came from Kiseljak, he came from
5 Austria where he had fled to from the JNA, and where
6 the parents of his wife had lived for many years and
7 were well-off. Did he explain to you the motives for
8 which from a quiet country like Austria and civilian
9 life, in the spring of 1992 he went to the Kiseljak
10 area? What were his motives for doing so and what were
11 his intentions?
12 A. We discussed that subject. Mr. Blaskic
13 graduated from the officer school of the Yugoslav
14 People's Army, he was a commander himself in one of the
15 barracks, and he was able to see what was being
16 prepared and what was going on. He was able to see
17 quite clearly that the majority of the cases, 90 per
18 cent of the cases in the army, in the Yugoslav People's
19 army before the war, were that the officers were
20 Serbs. He saw what had happened to Slovenia and
21 Croatia, and he saw what was going to happen to
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina. And so for patriotic reasons he
23 came back, because he knew the Croatian people and the
24 Muslim people do not have enough well-trained, educated
25 and equipped officers.
1 He came back to the region where he used to
2 live, his parents and his sister lived there, his
3 brother who was ill. So he came back from patriotic
4 reasons, patriotic motives, not to get his own back on
5 anybody. He came to help Kiseljak remain where it was
6 and to have Bosnia-Herzegovina remain as it always was.
7 Q. And who at that time was the enemy? Who
8 attacked Bosnia-Herzegovina when he came back?
9 A. When Mr. Blaskic came to Kiseljak,
10 Bosnia-Herzegovina was being attacked by the army of
11 the Republika Srpska, by the Serbs. It was the Serbs
12 against the Croats and Muslims.
13 MR. NOBILO: Mr. President, I have talked
14 to -- the indictment. I would like to move to a
15 private session and I will explain the reasons for
17 JUDGE JORDA: All right. The Judges agree.
18 Perhaps there was an error here on the transcript.
19 Yes, it will be a private session.
20 (Private session)
13 Pages 14443 to 14457 redacted - in private session
4 MR. CAYLEY: In respect of the exhibits, I
5 have no objections, apart from Exhibit 423, which is
6 the very large document on lists of beneficiaries of
7 Caritas. And the only reason I have a reservation is I
8 would like to read it, and it must be, well, I think
9 it's at least 100 pages long.
10 JUDGE JORDA: What objection do you have? Of
11 course, nobody is going to prevent you from reading
12 this voluminous document. You would simply prefer to
13 set a condition for accepting the document on having
14 read it.
15 MR. CAYLEY: I would like to read it, Mr.
16 President, before accepting it without objection; I
17 suspect there will not be any objection, but I feel
18 foolish accepting a document which I haven't read. The
19 other documents I have no problem with.
20 JUDGE JORDA: Yes, that's to your credit,
21 Mr. Cayley, to your credit. All right, you will read
22 the document, and then in the coming days we ask that
23 you not forget to remind us of that, in case my memory
24 fails me.
25 MR. CAYLEY: I will remind you, Mr.
2 JUDGE JORDA: I won't read it today, I'll
3 read it later on, at the time of our deliberations; so
4 if you don't mind, at the right time you will indicate
5 it to us.
6 Are we now back in a public session? Yes, we
7 are in a public session. All right, the screens have
8 come back up.
9 Mr. Cayley, you will be conducting the
11 Father Pervan, you are going to be asked
12 questions by the Prosecution as part of the
13 cross-examination. If you agree, Father, when you hear
14 the questions, of course, it's normal for you to turn
15 to the Prosecutor, but when you answer, please turn to
16 the Judges. All right?
17 Very well. Mr. Cayley.
18 MR. CAYLEY: Thank you.
19 Cross-examined by Mr. Cayley:
20 Q. Good afternoon, Father, my name is Cayley,
21 these are my colleagues, Mr. Harmon and Mr. Kehoe. I
22 will address you as Mr. Pervan during your
23 cross-examination, I think it makes the transcript
24 clearer, and for the reasons alluded to by the
25 President yesterday.
1 First of all, I would like to talk to you
2 about your role in the charitable organisation,
4 Now, you stated that it was in fact your
5 colleagues who regularly entered Rotilj with aid from
6 Caritas and that you were an infrequent visitor; is
7 that correct, to Rotilj?
8 A. I went to Rotilj not all that frequently, but
9 at least once every seven or ten days, and we would
10 hand out the food when there was -- this was perhaps
11 once a month, sometimes more often.
12 Q. How regularly did your colleagues visit the
13 village of Rotilj, the other Caritas workers?
14 A. They would go according to need, when needed,
15 and I went privately to have a cup of coffee, and at
16 all other times when I was invited by them to come and
17 visit them.
18 Q. After the conflict on the 18th of April,
19 1993, when did you first visit Rotilj?
20 A. I visited Rotilj when Daniel Furman asked me
21 to bring food from UNPROFOR to the village.
22 Q. Can you give me a date, or an approximate
23 date of that visit?
24 A. I can't give you a date now, because I was so
25 excited at the time and they were such difficult times
1 that I don't remember exactly, but I do know that it
2 was during the first cease-fire or lull before the
4 Q. So, that would be in April, would it, Father,
5 April of 1993?
6 A. No, I don't think so, because I came home on
7 the 7th of May.
8 Q. So, your first visit to Rotilj was in May, or
9 subsequent to the 7th of May?
10 A. After the 7th of May, yes.
11 Q. And your testimony is that you visited on a
12 regular basis after that, every seven to ten days.
13 A. Yes, that's what I said. And let me add that
14 after the roadblock I went every other day, I went to
15 visit the doctor, the lady doctor, and I discussed the
16 problems she had. So, I would pass the roadblock
17 almost every day, the ramp, as I say, or roadblock.
18 Q. So now your testimony is that you visited
19 Rotilj after the 7th of May every other day?
20 A. Yes, but I did not talk to the Muslim
21 population, I just passed the roadblock at the
22 beginning; and I talked to them every seven or ten
23 days, and every time that they would come to the office
24 in the parish, and whenever I was invited to go there.
25 Q. Did you require an HVO escort to go into the
1 village of Rotilj?
2 A. Never.
3 Q. Now, you've provided to the Court very long
4 lists of Caritas beneficiaries which identify the name
5 of the individual and the place in which that
6 beneficiary was located.
7 Do you have any records at all indicating how
8 much aid was supplied to Rotilj and the other Muslim
9 villages during 1993?
10 A. The list, Caritas list was jointly kept, the
11 records were jointly kept, because according to our
12 statute and according to my own vocation, my calling,
13 we were not allowed to list people by their ethnic
14 group. So, sometimes we would do it in alphabetical
15 order, and sometimes according to the places, that is
16 to say, the villages they belonged to.
17 I think that in some documents it is stated
18 that my head calculated that each member of Rotilj was
19 given 95 kilograms of food from August '93 to
20 March '94.
21 Furthermore, in the documents, there was a
22 column when the food was issued, and under the column,
23 this was food that I took myself to Rotilj, which was
24 not always recorded.
25 Q. Do you have any of those documents with you
1 now indicating how much aid was delivered to the
2 villages in Rotilj, the quantities?
3 A. What I just said, I think that I gave the
4 Defence this document, these documents. We would have
5 to look through them.
6 Q. Now, the aid that was delivered to Rotilj,
7 how often was there a delivery of humanitarian aid to
8 the village of Rotilj?
9 A. Humanitarian aid to Rotilj was delivered as I
10 said, every time when food was handed out to
11 everybody. So Rotilj was never an exception when it
12 came to distributing food.
13 There was one case when we gave aid only to
14 the refugees, and only to the Muslims in Rotilj, when
15 the domestic poor were excluded from this handout of
17 But whenever aid and relief was given out to
18 the needy, it was always handed out in the village of
19 Rotilj, to everybody, one and all.
20 Q. Could you say with some specificity, was it
21 delivered on a monthly basis, or a six-week basis, on
22 an eight-week basis, to the village of Rotilj, aid from
24 A. I have a list here of when the food was
25 distributed. In 1993, let us see, it was from the 18th
1 of January to the 22nd of January. In February it was
2 from the 22nd to the 26th. In March it was from the
3 30th to the 6th of April. In May it was from the 24th
4 to the 31st of May. In June it was from the 7th to the
5 17th. There was no delivery in August. In September
6 it was from the 6th to the 12th of September. In
7 October there were no deliveries, on the 11th to the
8 19th of October. And on the 25th of November to the
9 3rd of December. There was nothing again until
10 February, 1994.
11 So we distributed food when we had it. We
12 were not able to say when we would be distributing the
13 food, it depended on the convoy. I would go and get
14 the food and sometimes I would spend 17 days en route
15 in bringing back the food needed.
16 Q. So with, I think, an omission in October,
17 food was delivered on a monthly basis?
18 A. No, we should look at the details for each
19 month. If you ask me which particular month you have
20 in mind I will tell you whether food was distributed or
21 not. Ask me a month.
22 Q. Well, in the break I think it is best if
23 Mr. Nobilo gives me a copy a document, then I can look
24 and we can discuss it, because at the moment we're
25 discussing a document that I can't see.
1 JUDGE JORDA: Do you agree with that,
2 Mr. Nobilo?
3 MR. NOBILO: Yes, we wanted to speed up
4 proceedings. We have ten kilos of documents, but we
5 haven't brought everything with us now.
6 JUDGE JORDA: I knew that in the end it would
7 be my fault, Mr. Nobilo. We'll have to stop. This is
8 as long as we have to go, we have to stop today at five
9 o'clock. Would you like us to take a break right now,
10 Mr. Cayley, so we can look at the document? Otherwise
11 I suggest we take a break in five or six minutes.
12 I'm not making any more decisions today, you
13 make the decision.
14 MR. CAYLEY: Five or six minutes is fine, Mr.
16 JUDGE JORDA: Then take the five or six
18 MR. CAYLEY:
19 Q. You were aware there were other agencies that
20 were delivering humanitarian aid to Rotilj, indeed to
21 many parts of Bosnia?
22 A. Yes, I am aware of that. They did it apart
23 from the parish Caritas organisation, and I acquiesced
24 to this, I knew it.
25 Q. And I think one of those organisations was
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And I think, also present in the village of
4 Rotilj, assessing the humanitarian needs of the
5 villages, were UNPROFOR officers and ECMM officials; do
6 you recall that?
7 A. I think there were the UNPROFOR doctors and
8 many others, and nobody prevented them from helping
9 people, nor could anybody, or did anybody want to
10 prevent this.
11 Q. Do you recall the presence of ECMM officials
12 in the village of Rotilj, the European Community
13 Monitoring Mission?
14 A. I wasn't present when they were there, but I
15 know that they were in Kiseljak all the time.
16 Q. And I think you may have had conversations
17 with them at some stage during 1993?
18 A. If I talked to the UNPROFOR men and the
19 monitors and everybody else coming from outside, and I
20 did talk to them, then all those talks took place in my
21 house, in my guest room.
22 Q. Now, you said in your evidence in chief that
23 there was also the Muslim aid foundation, Merhamet; do
24 you recall that?
25 A. Yes, I remember it well.
1 Q. And you stated that they were also providing
2 humanitarian aid in Kiseljak; do you recall that?
3 A. Yes, in the course of 1992 until they began
4 to argue amongst themselves. And as long as they had
5 donations from outside, we worked together, and I was
6 very -- and I know Menso Melezovic to this day, and we
7 see each other, he now lives in Fojnica and was the
8 head of the Merhamet, and he came to my house only a
9 few days ago for coffee and a drink.
10 Q. When did Merhamet cease to function in
12 A. I think that it could have been at the end of
13 1992, sometime thereabouts, and it ceased functioning
14 in January when the conflicts broke out between the BH
15 army and the HVO in Klokoti, Kacuni, Bilalovac, those
17 Q. Now, the Judges in this Court have heard from
18 another witness that the Merhamet warehouse in Kiseljak
19 was plundered and burned down; do you know of that
21 A. I was in Kiseljak, and that is true.
22 Q. And that was done by the HVO in Kiseljak;
23 wasn't it?
24 A. That was done by people living in Kiseljak,
25 and they are Croats. I did not see when this actually
1 happened, I did not see them face-to-face. Probably
2 they belonged to the HVO, but they were individuals,
3 they were a group of people, and they did this with the
4 Merhamet warehouse, which is a bad thing.
5 MR. CAYLEY: We can stop at this point, Mr.
6 President, if you wish, for a break.
7 JUDGE JORDA: We will resume at a quarter
8 after 4.00 and work until 5.00.
9 --- Recess taken at 3.55 p.m.
10 --- On resuming at 3.20 p.m.
11 JUDGE JORDA: We'll now resume have the
12 accused brought in, please.
13 (The accused entered court)
14 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Registrar as far as the
15 schedule goes, we're very confused. I see that the
16 clock in the courtroom is fast and the ones in the
17 other offices are slow, which makes for all other kinds
18 of problems.
19 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, that's true. I have no
20 further comment.
21 JUDGE JORDA: You are responsible for
22 everything, everything. You have to be responsible for
23 all the clocks, but now we'll give the floor back to
24 Mr. Cayley.
25 MR. CAYLEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
1 Q. Mr. Pervan, before the break we were
2 discussing the destruction of the warehouse of the
3 Muslim aid foundation Merhamet. Do you recall that
5 A. Yes, I do. I said that the warehouse was
6 destroyed, set fire to and destroyed.
7 Q. Do you recall when that occurred in 1993?
8 A. I think it occurred at the beginning of the
9 conflict of the BH army and the Croatian Defence
11 Q. So would that be January of 1993 or April of
13 A. After April 1993.
14 Q. Thank you. Now, when that warehouse was
15 destroyed, that must have had quite an impact on the
16 Muslim population in Kiseljak?
17 A. Yes, of course it did.
18 Q. People were very frightened. That's right;
19 isn't it?
20 A. Yes, I think they were.
21 Q. Now, you say that individual members of the
22 HVO were responsible for destroying that warehouse.
23 Are you aware as to whether or not there was ever any
24 sort of police investigation into that occurrence?
25 A. I'm not aware of that, no.
1 Q. Are you aware of anybody being charged with
2 destroying the warehouse, anybody from the Kiseljak
4 A. I don't know.
5 Q. Thank you. Now, you mentioned earlier that
6 you were engaged in running convoys through Bosnia from
7 Croatia to Kiseljak. Do you recall that?
8 A. Yes, I spoke about that.
9 Q. How many of those convoys in 1993 did you
10 personally supervise from Croatia to Bosnia?
11 A. I think at least half of them, but I would
12 have to look at the food distribution and delivery
13 records and then I would know the number of convoys,
14 according to how -- the number of times food was
15 distributed. But from 1992, we counted, up to the end
16 of the war, that 211 times we took food to Kiseljak.
17 Two hundred and eleven times, especially at times when
18 there was no conflicts between the BH army and the
20 Q. So you would have personally been engaged in
21 roughly a hundred of those convoys, moving food from
22 Croatia to Kiseljak?
23 A. About that much, yes.
24 Q. And how long were you away from Kiseljak
25 during each of these convoy movements? I assume you
1 went from Kiseljak to Croatia, and then from Croatia
2 back to Kiseljak. How long did each convoy take in
4 A. Before the conflicts between the BH army and
5 the HVO, those convoys -- we would leave in the
6 morning, early in the morning, and return in the
7 evening. Most of my journeys were between that time.
8 From August 1993, up until the end of the
9 conflict, I went much less because we had fewer
10 convoys. So during that time it could have been --
11 there could have been 15 convoys during the conflict,
12 and I was in 7 of them, at least 7 of them.
13 The journey was a long one, but later on we
14 would shorten the road and use the route by Stolac, so
15 three days one way. Except the case that I mentioned
16 when the tax had not been paid to the Serbian
17 government and the Serbian army, and on that occasion
18 we stayed 18 days, and that was in August. But
19 otherwise, a maximum of three days. The journey took a
20 maximum of three days.
21 Q. So between April of 1993 and January of 1994,
22 how many convoys do you estimate that you supervised
23 from Croatia to Bosnia?
24 A. As I said, I think that from August up until
25 April 1994, there could have been a maximum of 15 to
1 17, and that I supervised half. So at least eight
2 convoys myself.
3 Q. And on average, each of those convoys took
4 three or four days, apart from the one where you were
5 imprisoned for a period, I think, and that took 18
7 A. Yes, 17 days. Ten days and 11 nights, and I
8 spent 26 hours at the prison in Bileca. And I must say
9 to the Court and to you that I was not included in the
10 commercial convoy. So we're only talking about
11 humanitarian convoys, which functioned over a longer
12 period of time, once a month or once every 35 days,
13 whereas commercial convoys would go once a week or
14 twice a week. So I supervised humanitarian convoys
16 Q. Now, Father, are you aware, moving on to
17 another subject, are you aware that in July of 1993 the
18 villages of Rotilj reported to the European Community
19 Monitoring Mission that they were almost out of food?
20 Are you aware of that?
21 A. Their report to the Monitoring Mission is
22 something that I'm not aware of, but in July 1993, we
23 did not deliver food to anybody. We had some clothing
24 which we gave out to the refugees who came to Kiseljak,
25 and at the beginning of July, the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th and
1 5th, refugees from Fojnica arrived, and I know I could
2 not give food out to them either. So we didn't give
3 out food to anyone in the course of that month because
4 we had no food.
5 Q. Do you recall personally meeting with
6 representatives of ECMM in August of 1993, where you
7 stated to them that the HVO did not approve of delivery
8 of Caritas aid to Rotilj?
9 A. I do not recall that day and that particular
10 date, but I don't think that that is what I said.
11 Perhaps that was a mistranslation. I could have said,
12 and that was the truth, that certain individuals who
13 wore uniforms, whose sons had died, or brothers had
14 died or had been expelled, that there was resistance on
15 their part as to why I was sending food to the village
16 of Rotilj. I heard criticisms of that kind, but I
17 continued doing what I thought best, and I continued
18 sending food to Rotilj regardless of those criticisms
19 which came from individuals. But never officially,
20 either in written form or orally from the authorities,
21 either military or civilian, were criticisms of that
22 kind or reproaches of that kind made to me, but I know
23 that some people were against giving out food. But we
24 didn't bother about them. We didn't pay attention to
1 Q. Now, you stated earlier that, in fact, in
2 July of 1993 you didn't supply any aid to Rotilj. In
3 fact, you said you didn't supply aid to anybody, if I'm
4 correct myself; is that correct? You stated that you
5 didn't supply aid to anybody in July of 1993. Do you
6 recall that?
7 A. No, I did not bring convoys. That's what I
8 had in mind when I said that. But we did give out the
9 food that we had. What we had, they were the vestiges
10 of the vestiges. I understood you incorrectly. I
11 thought you were talking about convoys when I did go
12 from Split to Kiseljak so I must understood you, I
14 Q. So what was the availability of supplies in
15 July 1993 to Caritas?
16 A. Would you clarify your question, please?
17 Q. Did you have supplies in Caritas to
18 distribute to the Muslims in Rotilj in July of 1993?
19 A. We did not have enough food to distribute,
20 but we distributed what food we had. In that month we
21 had mostly clothing and footwear, and nobody needed
22 that because it was exceptionally hot weather at the
23 time, but what we had we handed out.
24 Q. If I can distribute an exhibit.
25 Unfortunately, it's in English, Mr. Pervan, so you
1 won't be able to read it, but counsel will be able to
2 follow on this exhibit. Mr. Usher.
3 Now, this is a report of the European
4 Community Monitoring Mission, and it's dated the 27th
5 of August of 1993, and I will read to you a relevant
7 MR. HAYMAN: Counsel, could we have a
9 MR. CAYLEY: Of course.
10 THE REGISTRAR: 540.
11 MR. CAYLEY:
12 Q. And I'll read to you paragraph 4, which is on
13 page 2 of the document. This is a report by Philippe
14 Sidos and Oscar Meijboom. If it could be placed on the
15 ELMO so the interpreters can follow.
16 "We visited Rotilj where the situation is
17 unchanged. We met the local director of Caritas in
18 Kiseljak, who said that the main problem is the cut of
19 supplies from Split since March. They have the list of
20 Muslims in the Kiseljak area and deliver help for
21 them. They just received an official authorisation
22 from the mayor, 14 August, '93, for that, because it is
23 bad." -- I assume he meant considered bad by some
25 Now, Mr. Pervan, is the local director who is
1 referred to in that report, is that you or is that
2 somebody else in Kiseljak?
3 A. The director is mentioned of Caritas of the
4 collection centre of Kiseljak, and I said before that
5 Kiseljak was the collection centre for bringing in food
6 and from thence it was handed out. The director was
7 Bozo Boric, he is also a clergyman, but it is not me.
8 He is the director of that collection centre.
9 Q. Now, if as Mr. Boric is saying, the mayor of
10 Kiseljak only gave authorisation on the 14th of August,
11 1993 for the delivery of aid, Caritas aid, how were you
12 able to deliver prior to that date?
13 A. Bozo Boric is a man who worked in Kiseljak,
14 and he is a man -- he is an honest man who very often
15 criticised the authorities for the difficulties that
16 the Muslims were having to undergo. And he wanted to
17 make this official, and he kept writing and saying, "I
18 went to Rotilj." I said that at the beginning.
19 And when UNPROFOR said they could not go
20 because they said it was difficult to go during the
21 night, I did not seek authorisation for that. And that
22 is not the first time that I did not ask authorisation
23 from the municipality, because the -- what I thought
24 was that the church and the State are separate
25 institutions, and that the church has the right to do
1 what it wants.
2 Bozo wanted to legalise all this, and I know
3 he invested a great deal of time and effort to help
4 individual Muslims. I know of one particular family,
5 the family of Aga Ahmic, for example.
6 Q. Now, the mayor that is being referred to here
7 is Josip Boro; is it not?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And he's a man you know very well; is that
11 A. Yes, I know him.
12 Q. Now, I'll repeat the question again but ask
13 you a preliminary question. Was it possible to take
14 Caritas aid into Rotilj without the authorisation of
15 Josip Boro?
16 A. I did not ask Josip Boro for matters of that
17 kind of.
18 Q. Why did Father Bozo ask him for authorisation
19 to take aid into Rotilj on the 14th of August, 1993?
20 A. I do not know any other motive apart from the
21 fact that Bozo was a little unhappy, unhappily disposed
22 towards Josip Boro, not particularly Ivica Rajic, he
23 was not disposed to him. And there were problems at
24 the time with storing the goods that had been
25 delivered, and Bozo Boric wanted to have that in
2 Q. Josip Boro was the president of the HVO in
3 Kiseljak; wasn't he?
4 A. Josip Boro was the President of the HVO in
5 Kiseljak, but I think that no one asked him about
6 anything. That's what I said when Mr. Nobilo had
7 questioned me at the very end of his questioning. I
8 explained that.
9 Q. So what you're saying is that this official
10 authorisation by Josip Boro to take aid into Rotilj was
12 A. I think that that authorisation was received
13 at a meeting of the civilian and military authorities,
14 and then Josip Boro signed it. That is my opinion. At
15 that time not a single deal of significance was reached
16 without this kind of a meeting between Josip Boro as
17 the head of the municipality, Ivica Rajic as head of
18 the military, and Vinko Antunovic. And I don't know
19 who else was there because I never attended these
20 meetings, but Josip Boro signed all these documents as
21 head of the HVO because that was the set-up then.
22 Q. So this authorisation would have been
23 approved by the HVO military authorities; is that what
24 you're saying to the Judges?
25 A. I think that both the military and civilian
1 authorities had to authorise this together. That's
2 what I think.
3 Q. I will ask you one last time, Mr. Pervan.
4 How was it possible to take aid into Rotilj, prior to
5 the 14th of August, without authority from the HVO?
6 A. I could do that because I did not ask. I did
7 not ask for permission until the present day for
8 humanitarian assistance and aid, who I would give
9 something to. I did not allow any of the military or
10 any of the municipality people to come to the warehouse
11 of Caritas and to see what was there. Never, from the
12 very beginning until the present day, did I allow the
13 municipality, the military or the police to have
14 insight into who things were distributed to, how much
15 and when.
16 Q. So why did Father Bozo request authorisation
17 to take aid into Rotilj?
18 MR. NOBILO: Mr. President, we have been
19 repeating the same question for a few times now.
20 A. Legally speaking, Bozo Boric received
21 authority for this, but it was wrong for him to ask for
22 this permission, and it was wrong to then get authority
23 for it, because the village of Rotilj did not belong to
24 his scope of work, because he was head of the
25 collection centre, and it was the municipal Caritas
1 that was supposed to handle this affair.
2 I know Bozo. He's a man who likes to write,
3 he's an honest man, but he did things in a different
4 way. So that is my answer.
5 Q. Father, you both worked for the same
6 organisation in the same town.
7 A. The same organisation and the same collection
8 centre, but this was by accident that this collection
9 centre was in Kiseljak. We worked, but Bozo Boric was
10 only the director of that collection centre, he was not
11 in charge of a single parish in Kiseljak. So he was
12 not my superior in any way. And if this kind of
13 permission was to be sought, I was the one who was
14 supposed to seek it, and I did not think that I should
15 seek permission from anyone.
16 Q. Now, you mentioned a moment ago that Bozo
17 Boric -- I'm sorry if I'm not saying his name
18 correctly -- voiced a number of criticisms in respect
19 to the HVO authorities in Kiseljak. What were those
20 criticisms that he voiced?
21 A. Such criticisms were certainly voiced in
22 terms of what happened to Merhamet, what happened to
23 other houses, what happened to people, and by virtue of
24 my own vocation, I spoke about this from the alter too,
25 and I told people about this for several weeks, that is
1 to say, every Sunday when they came to mass. I have
2 documents to prove that, and I can show them to you
3 over here. So this is criticism against destruction,
4 against torching, against killing, against looting, and
5 that is the kind of criticism that I voiced every
6 Sunday and I can show it to you right now.
7 Q. And this was in respect of torching Muslim
8 homes, killing Muslim people; is that correct?
9 A. Yes. Our criticism pertained to soldiers,
10 individuals from the HVO who did evil in our parish,
11 primarily towards Muslims but also towards other
12 people, especially refugees belonging to the same
13 ethnic group.
14 Q. And what did the HVO authorities in Kiseljak
15 do after these complaints were made about this
17 A. I did not write to the HVO in Kiseljak. I
18 voiced this criticism in public, from the alter, in
19 front of people, because I thought, and I still think
20 today, it is better to speak to those people who did
21 that. And I know that Ivica Rajic and Bozo Boric, did
22 not order this. I spoke to the parents, and brothers
23 and sisters of those people who did this, that this was
24 evil and they were not supposed to loot, that they were
25 not supposed to kill, that they were not supposed to
1 hoard wealth in an unfair way. So that is why I told
3 Q. Did Father Bozic make representations to the
4 HVO in Kiseljak about the looting and the torching of
5 Muslim homes?
6 A. I'm not aware of that.
7 Q. Now, are you aware that during 1993 Muslim
8 women from Rotilj would come to the Caritas warehouse
9 with permission to collect aid? Are you aware of
11 A. I'm not aware of that.
12 Q. You never heard any accounts of Muslim women
13 being beaten in the town on their way to the Caritas
14 warehouse? Did you ever hear about that, Mr. Pervan?
15 A. First of all, I wish to say something else.
16 When these women -- these Muslim women came to see me
17 in my office at the church, they never asked for
18 permission, nor did they ever show me anything of the
19 kind. I did hear about this kind of excessive
20 behaviour in Kiseljak. It is not only women that were
21 attacked but Muslim men too.
22 Q. We'll come to permission from the HVO later
23 in your cross-examination, but can you tell the court
24 what you heard about people being beaten in the town on
25 their way to the Caritas warehouse?
1 A. I heard that there were such cases, that
2 Muslims, men or women, as they were going to Kiseljak
3 to buy something, that they had some bad things happen
4 to them, that some were even beaten. And, Your
5 Honours, I condemned this from the alter and I can show
6 you here what I spoke of then.
7 Q. If the next exhibit, Mr. Usher, could be
9 While that's being distributed, Mr. Pervan --
10 I'm sorry. Please --
11 THE REGISTRAR: This is 541, 541A for the
12 English version.
13 MR. CAYLEY:
14 Q. This was the HVO authorities who were your
15 landlord in Kiseljak, they provided Caritas with
16 accommodation. That's correct; isn't it?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Could you look at the document that's in
19 front of you now, it's a document signed by Josip Boro,
20 who was the president of the HVO, and confirm that this
21 is the document which authorised Caritas to occupy
22 certain premises in Kiseljak?
23 A. As far as this document is concerned, I am
24 aware of it, Your Honour. This is the document that
25 Josip Boro issued to Fra Bozo Boric, and this is where
1 he worked, he and his secretary, and this document is
2 not related to Caritas of the Kiseljak parish.
3 Q. To which Caritas does this document relate?
4 A. This relates to the collection centre in
5 Kiseljak, number 1. That was the name of this
6 collection centre. And Father Bozo Boric represented
7 it on behalf of the Verbonsiska diocese. So this was a
8 collection centre for all the parishes. The other one
9 was in Split. And even today there is such a
10 collection centre in Tuzla, in every diocese.
11 And in this document a mistake was made by
12 the President of the municipality. This is related
13 only to this office where Father Bozo and his secretary
14 were. Fra Bozo and his secretary have nothing to do
15 whatsoever with the Caritas of the parish of Kiseljak.
16 Q. So there were two Caritas in Kiseljak; is
17 that what you're saying to the Judges?
18 A. In the municipality of Kiseljak there were
19 four Caritas. The Caritas of Ban Brdo, the Caritas
20 of Kiseljak parish, of the Grominyak parish and of the
21 Brestosko parish, all of them took goods from this
22 joint collection centre. When Fra Bozo stopped going
23 there, because he did not want to go through Serb
24 territory, and I brought this food in then, and then he
25 gave the supplies to the Caritas in all the
2 THE INTERPRETER: The witness is going too
3 fast for the interpreters.
4 A. And this is what we did through this
5 collection centre. He was only director of this
6 centre, but Bozo had nothing to do whatsoever with the
7 distribution of the food. And as director of the
8 collection centre, he could give food to individual
9 persons or individual members.
10 MR. CAYLEY:
11 Q. Mr. Pervan, could you speak a little more
13 JUDGE JORDA: Yes. Try to speak a little
14 more slowly. You understood what my colleague wanted
15 to say.
16 MR. CAYLEY:
17 Q. So I'm not fully clear on the position in
18 respect of this document. Am I right in saying that
19 these premises were a collection point where all of the
20 various Caritas in Kiseljak would collect goods from
21 this accommodation referred to in the document, and
22 then it would be distributed on from there? Is that
23 the position?
24 A. No, that is not the way things are, and I
25 shall try to explain once again. The premises that Fra
1 Bozo got is a room of 20 square metres, 4 by 5 metres.
2 So it is an office really. And Fra Bozo got this on
3 the 25th of February, 1993. That is to say, when there
4 was a cease-fire that was still on, there was no
5 fighting between the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and
6 the Croatian Defence Council, Bozo wanted to bring
7 these goods in. However, then the war broke out, and
8 then Bozo would come to this room every now and then
9 when we would bring in this food. He lived in the
10 parish of Lepenica. That's where he was the priest.
11 And this was a small room that served as an office.
12 There were four chairs, a desk, and a typewriter and a
13 very small coffee set.
14 Q. Thank you, Mr. Pervan. In your conversations
15 with the local people in Rotilj, did they tell you that
16 the livestock in the village had either been killed in
17 April or had been subsequently stolen from them? Did
18 they tell you that?
19 A. Yes, I heard about that, yes.
20 Q. Can you tell the Judges what you know about
22 A. When the conflict broke out at Rotilj I was
23 not in Kiseljak, I heard about these conflicts, I heard
24 about the dead, and I heard that there were some houses
25 that were on fire. I heard that some of them were
1 ablaze because the hay went on fire, and I heard that
2 some of the livestock was killed. But I wasn't there.
3 That's what I heard.
4 When I came back to Kiseljak in May, in
5 Rotilj the fighting, the conflict was over, and there
6 was no fighting anymore.
7 MR. CAYLEY: Mr. President, I'm now going to
8 proceed to another area, so, it may be a good time to
9 finish for today.
10 JUDGE JORDA: Yes. Let me remind you that as
11 regards tomorrow, we will be sitting in the morning
12 from 10.00 to 1.00, tomorrow afternoon it will start at
13 2.30, and we will stop at about five minutes or ten
14 minutes to 5.00, I don't know exactly, I have to get
15 the details, because the Judges have been asked to come
16 to a meeting in honour of a visit by a person to the
17 International Criminal Tribunal. Let me remind you
18 that Thursday there is no morning session, but we will
19 begin at 3.00, and Friday we will proceed as usual,
20 whereas, the following week there are no hearings at
21 all. Court stands adjourned.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at
23 4.58 p.m., to be reconvened on
24 Wednesday, the 4th day of November, 1998
25 at 10.00 a.m.