1 Wednesday, 30 January 2008
2 [Boskoski Defence Opening Statement]
3 [Open session]
4 [The accused entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 a.m.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Good morning to everyone.
7 I understand there may be a matter you wish to raise, Mr. Saxon,
8 before the Defence gives its opening statement.
9 MR. SAXON: Very briefly, Your Honour, just two procedural points.
10 Last night the Prosecution reviewed the timing of direct
11 examination, cross-examination, and re-direct proposed by my learned
12 colleague. And while the Prosecution is grateful for the proposals of the
13 one-to-one ratio between direct exam and cross-examination, and will do
14 its very best to stick to that ratio if not use less time, the Prosecution
15 is concerned about the timing, the proposed timing, for one particular
16 witness from the Boskoski Defence, and perhaps we should move into private
17 session for a moment.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Private.
19 [Private session]
24 [Open session]
25 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're back in open session.
1 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Residovic.
2 MS. RESIDOVIC: Thank you very much.
3 [Interpretation] Mr. President, Esteemed Judges, it is my duty and
4 honour to address the Trial Chamber on behalf of Mr. Boskoski Defence by
5 presenting this opening statement before the Defence starts presenting its
7 Your Honours, it was by no mean easy to choose what issues to
8 raise in this opening statement. It was particularly difficult in light
9 of the fact that the Defence, at this very moment, is convinced that the
10 Prosecutor, in the course of the presentation of their own case, failed to
11 prove a single important element of the indictment.
12 It was even more difficult to decide whether to start presenting
13 our case at all in a situation like this and whether our evidence will
14 help you, Your Honours, to reach a decision in respect of the
15 responsibility of our client.
16 The decision has been made. The Defence will present its case in
17 a very limited scope, so this opening statement will very much go along
18 these same lines.
19 We shall try not to start evaluating the evidence which would go
20 against the meaning of the opening statement. We shall keep our argument
21 and evaluation of all the evidence to the final statement of the Defence.
22 In our opening statement, Your Honours, we shall refer briefly to
23 the burden of proof. We shall try and explain why we present the Defence
24 case. We are going to point to the erroneous strategy on the part of
25 Prosecution, and we shall present a short overview of the evidence that we
1 will present to prove our case that has already been put forth.
2 When it comes to the burden of proof, Your Honour, we would like
3 to remind everybody of the main principle of every criminal proceedings
4 including this one. The burden of proof is on the Prosecutor. It is on
5 the Prosecutor all the time. It is on the Prosecutor even during the
6 presentation of the Defence case, which means our position is clear and
7 founded in the law. It is up to the Prosecutor to prove the elements of
8 the indictments in the sense they have been presented in the indictment.
9 What is it that our client Mr. Boskoski has been charged with.
10 Let us remind ourselves. By the Second Amended Indictment, Ljube Boskoski
11 has been charged with failing to investigate and punish the perpetrators
12 in the crime which are mentioned in the indictment and who were under his
13 de jure and de facto control allegedly. This is item 11 of the
14 indictment. In other words, Ljube Boskoski has not been charged
15 perpetrating the acts himself, ordering them, or participating in their
16 perpetration in any way. He has been charged with command responsibility.
17 It is our position that the evidence that has been heard so far has not
18 proved any such responsibility on part of Mr. Ljube Boskoski.
19 The Defence will not go into the reasons which the Prosecutor was
20 guided by when it issued the indictment against Ljube Boskoski. But when
21 the indictment was issued, the Prosecutor took upon himself the burden of
23 The Prosecutor had the right to present his case in the way best
24 suited and the Trial Chamber, in -- during the presentation of the
25 Prosecutor's case, has allowed the Prosecutor to do exactly that.
1 However, the Prosecutor had to be aware of the fact that he has to accept
2 the consequences of his choice in the selection of evidence to be
3 presented as well as the witnesses that would be called. We are
4 convinced, Your Honours, that this Trial Chamber will honour the
5 presumption of innocence of the accused and that the burden of proof, not
6 for a single moment, will be passed on to him.
7 In a case in which the consequences for the accused are very
8 grave, for example, the responsibility for not taking measures to punish a
9 crime of murder, the Prosecutor cannot hope that any omissions and lax in
10 the evidence will compensate by the facts which are not part of the
11 evidence. We are convinced, Your Honours, that the Prosecutor has not
12 called certain witnesses because he was aware that by testifying, these
13 witnesses might jeopardise his case. However, this can by no means be
14 justification for the Prosecutor's actions.
15 We would like to remind that you at the outset of this trial, we
16 emphasised that the omission on the part of the Prosecutor to call the
17 witnesses which are obviously in a position to provide relevant proof has
18 to be taken in evaluating certain evidence. For example, there were no
19 witnesses that could speak about the structure and competences in the
20 Ministry of Interior, save for the lowest levels.
21 There were no witness from the crime prevention police under which
22 authority is undertaking measures in order to elucidate crimes and
23 discover perpetrators. There were no judges who took part in the
24 proceedings. If these and such witnesses had been called, the Defence
25 believes that these witnesses would have proven the position of the
1 Defence on the competences and responsibilities of the minister; and in
2 that sense, they would have refuted the Prosecutor's allegations.
3 Your Honours, the Defence does not doubt the honesty and the
4 professional attitude of the Prosecutor that he has shown during the
5 proceedings. All we're saying is that this was his strategy that he
6 choice and the decision that he made. All this time the Prosecutor has
7 believed that he can prove the charges. At the same time, avoiding
8 witnesses that might provide positive testimony and relevant facts about
9 the case, because the Prosecutor was aware that these very facts would
10 have shaken his position and his strategy.
11 The question arises here, Your Honours, why is it that the -- the
12 Defence is presenting their case in the first place. Why are we calling
13 the witnesses to start with? The reason is not that the Defence thinks
14 that there is even the slightest need to present something new or to
15 additionally explain the Defence case. It is also not because the Defence
16 believes that the Prosecutor proved any relevant part of the indictment.
17 The reason why we're presenting our case is not to establish the lack of
18 responsibility of Mr. Boskoski because we believe that his alleged
19 responsibility has not been proven during the Prosecution case.
20 To the contrary, our position is that the Trial Chamber is already
21 in the position to set Mr. Boskoski free and find him not guilty. The
22 main reasons, Your Honour, for which we are calling viva voce witnesses
23 for which we're presenting written statements and additional documents is
24 to give the Trial Chamber additional evidence in addition to the evidence
25 that we've heard with an even more solid foundation that will allow you,
1 Your Honours, to find Mr. Boskoski not guilty based on the complete and
2 adequate basis for such decision.
3 In other words, we would like to repel even the little unclarity
4 that the Prosecutor intentionally or unintentionally left hanging in the
5 air with regard to some very important issues in this case. We believe
6 that our evidence will provide a positive contribution towards the
7 elucidation of these ambiguities in order to allow the Trial Chambers to
8 make their decision.
9 With that intention in mind, we will present a majority of the 92
10 bis statements because they are actually a repetition of the evidence that
11 we have already heard. The previous position has decided the scope and
12 the framework of the Defence case.
13 Your Honours, we do not want to reopen the case and all the issues
14 that has already been treated and that leave nothing to be said. Many
15 parts of this case have already been considered in an adequate way, and
16 the reputation of the same facts would not contribute to the establishment
17 of truth and would not help the Trial Chamber to make their decision. We
18 have chosen only the limited aspects of the Prosecutor's case. We have
19 opted only for a few witnesses that we propose to be heard viva voce.
20 There are numerous other witnesses who would have a lot to say
21 about the same facts, but we fully believe and we hope that the witnesses
22 that you're going to hear will allow you to look at the totality of the
23 efforts and activities that were made not only on the part of the
24 witnesses but also by other persons who will not have been called to
25 testify. In other words, when you listen to the witnesses, you have to be
1 aware of the fact that this will not be only their testimony but the
2 picture of all the other numerous witnesses who, together with them, and
3 independently of them, undertook numerous measures but they could not
4 appear before the Trial Chamber in person.
5 The Prosecutor's strategy on the criminal investigation and
6 Mr. Boskoski's responsibility in view of the Defence was nothing more than
7 knocking on a wrong door.
8 Throughout the proceedings, the Prosecutor ascribes to
9 Mr. Boskoski the responsibilities that were not truly his and he does that
10 only because he was minister. One thing is already clear, and after the
11 Defence case is over we believe it will become even more clear, and this
12 is that the Prosecutor tries to append upon the minister the duties and
13 responsibilities which were not truly his but rather the responsibilities
14 of the judiciary or other persons and organs in the ministry. In other
15 words, for the most of his case, the Prosecutor has been knocking on a
16 wrong door.
17 The Prosecutor believes that the duties of a minister equal the
18 duties of the ministry, which does not have any foundation in the
19 evidence, laws, or practices. Starting from these premises, I dare say
20 that the Prosecutor has put his case completely wrongly. He alleges that
21 the police is in charge in criminal investigation, including the Ljuboten
22 case; although, it is abundantly clear that the investigation in any such
23 case is at the responsibility of the judiciary. The erroneous thesis on
24 which the Prosecutor based his case was assigning to the Ministry of
25 Interior and especially a minister all those duties that they truly did
1 not have under the law.
2 The lack of understanding of the position and the mandate of the
3 ministry has led the Prosecutor to a wrong trail. The minister is simply
4 not a replacement for all those whose responsibilities are determined by
5 the law, nor can he assume the responsibilities of other employees in the
6 ministry. The position of the Prosecutor leads almost to the principle of
7 the objective responsibility which could be defined in the following way.
8 Because a certain person is a minister, and only because of that fact, he
9 is responsible for everything. In other words, objective or strict
10 responsibility is a completely different thing than the responsibility of
11 a superior pursuant to Article 7(3) of the Statute.
12 The objective responsibility would mean that a superior person may
13 be proclaimed guilty because of the position that he was in and for the
14 simple fact that his subordinate committed a crime. Luckily enough, the
15 case law of this Tribunal is the best protection from any such attempt to
16 define the responsibility of a superior.
17 Your Honours, on this occasion, I would also like to say that the
18 responsibility of a superior is not an obligation on the part of the
19 superior to arrive at results. In other words, the responsibility of a
20 superior person is not based on the result. If the superior person has
21 undertaken the necessary and reasonable measures, irrespective of the fact
22 whether they resulted in a -- discovering and punishing the perpetrator,
23 still the duty has been properly done.
24 Your Honours, before I start explaining the evidence that we
25 intend to present, allow me to repeat some of the measures -- some of the
1 measures that the Minister Boskoski undertook, and these measures arise
2 from the Prosecutor's case.
3 These measures were undertaken transparently and objectively, as
4 can be seen from Exhibit 1D6. On the 12th and then on the 14th of August,
5 the duty operation centre of the Ministry of Interior sector in Skopje
6 informed the duty prosecutor and the judge on the events in Ljuboten on
7 the presence of bodies in the village and, thus, performing his duty and
8 handing the case over to -- into the hands of the judiciary.
9 On the 13th of August, 2001, only one day after the event in the
10 village and around the village of Ljuboten, Minister Boskoski set up a
11 commission consisting of the most responsible persons in the Ministry of
12 Interior and tasked them with investigating what had happened in Ljuboten
13 and around it. Let me remind the Trial Chamber that this is Exhibit
14 number P73.
15 He personally approached the media and said publicly how important
16 is the fact that the representatives of the court went to the site which
17 arises from Exhibit P362. I will remind you of some of his words on the
18 occasion, and I quote: "One of the basic questions or issues of today's
19 meeting are the bodies of the five civilians which are still inaccessible
20 to the Macedonian security forces so as to enable them to investigate and
21 establish the cause of death."
22 The organs of the ministry continued to monitor the security
23 situation around the village. Upon the initiative of the minister, the
24 ministry proposed exhumation and post-mortem which was beyond the duty of
25 either the minister or the ministry, and this has been clearly shown in
1 Exhibit P102.
2 It arises from this exhibit that there was a clear intention on
3 the part of the minister and the ministry to elucidate the facts and
4 establish the circumstances that led to the death of these people in the
5 village of Ljuboten.
6 Your Honours, as you may have seen from the evidence, efforts were
7 made to interview the villagers of Ljuboten. One of the exhibits that
8 speaks to that fact is Exhibit number P104. Whatever he did, the minister
9 informed the coordination body in the government, in order to keep them
10 abreast of the events in Ljuboten. He submitted to the government the
11 report that the commission composed of the most responsible persons
12 drafted on the 4th of September, which is Exhibit number P378.
13 As the minister responsible for the situation in his area, he
14 informed the government about this report and the government of the
15 Republic of Macedonia discussed that report and drew conclusions based on
16 it. This is 1D134. He acted in keeping with the conclusions of the
17 government, and he submitted his proposals to the Ministry of Defence.
18 The crime technologists undertook measures that it was allowed to
19 use upped the law and that the court asked for it to undertake. The
20 ministry submitted its report to the office of the International Criminal
21 Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in Skopje. There was full cooperation
22 with the international community. There were continued efforts to collect
23 information under rather difficult conditions on the part of the UBK
24 through their operative sources.
25 The minister personally supported the independent work of the
1 judiciary. The minister personally provided support to the work of this
2 Tribunal which is all visible in the evidence 1D202 and at numerous other
3 pieces of evidence.
4 In answering questions about Ljuboten, the minister said, and I
5 quote: "There's no dilemma with regard to this matter. We, the
6 Macedonian police, were the first one to ask for an investigation to be
7 done into Ljuboten, and you know only too well that the reason why there
8 was no on-site inspection was the fact that armed groups in the village
9 did not allow the investigative judge, the prosecutor, and the crime
10 prevention police of the Republic of Macedonia, and I'm talking about
11 three independent organs, to enter the village and to establish the real
12 situation on the same day when the report had been received that the
13 crimes had been committed; and if we have been able to do that, the whole
14 situation would be different.
15 Then he goes on to say: "Look, the public prosecutor is an
16 independent institution and I don't want to interfere with its work."
17 And, finally: "We respect the international Tribunal, and we
18 shall do our utmost to reveal the crimes and to investigate all the crimes
19 that have been committed in the territory of the Republic of Macedonia."
20 The minister also established a commission that was in charge of
21 receiving complaints with regard to the behaviour of the police towards
22 the Albanian population.
23 Your Honours, I have mentioned just a few, maybe some dozen pieces
24 of evidence, of the hundreds that we've had an occasion to see before this
25 Trial Chamber. Contrary to the allegation on the part of the Prosecutor
1 that the investigation was false, the evidence has shown that all the
2 possible and reasonable measures were taken, and no superior should be
3 required to undertake things that are impossible to undertake.
4 Our evidence will show that Minister Boskoski did everything that
5 was possible under the circumstances that prevailed in the Republic of
6 Macedonia in the year 2001 and 2002.
7 The Prosecution came forth with another wrong argument, according
8 to the view of the Defence. He knocked on the wrong door, introducing the
9 question of disciplinary procedures and responsibility of the minister to
10 carry out these procedures. When the case of responsibility for failure
11 to carry out criminal procedure fell through for the Prosecution, he
12 opened a new case. He shifted to the area of responsibility of the
13 minister for failure to undertake disciplinary measures. This area best
14 shows how inaccurate and almost artificial the case is, which is trying to
15 be proved towards or against Minister Boskoski.
16 The new approach of the Prosecution about the responsibility of
17 the minister is not founded in law or in the evidence. Two of the five
18 witnesses which the Defence is calling to testify viva voce will clarify
19 the facts presented also during the course of the presentation of the
20 Prosecution and, in particular, that the minister did not have the
21 authorisation to undertake disciplinary procedure, that his authorisations
22 were to appoint disciplinary commissions, appoint persons authorised to
23 undertake the procedure, and reach a decision in the first instance after
24 the procedure has been carried out and the proposal of this disciplinary
1 These witnesses will clarify that a disciplinary procedure can be
2 led only against people employed in the Ministry of Interior.
3 And, Your Honours, as seeking responsibility for the ministry in
4 the criminal procedure fell under the weight and force of the evidence,
5 also the theory for alleged responsibility of the minister because of
6 failure to undertake disciplinary measures be also, once again, knocking
7 on the wrong door.
8 Allow me now, Your Honours, to turn, in short, to the evidence
9 which the Defence will present in the upcoming period.
10 Witness number 2, on the 65 ter list of the Defence, will give
11 testimony viva voce. In this case, in which the Minister of the Interior
12 is accused, the Prosecutor decided not to call any experts from the area
13 of the internal affairs, especially experts that could speak about the
14 structure and work of the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of
16 We believe that from that fact the Trial Chamber can have the
17 wrong conclusions. What is important for us is that witness number 2 can
18 provide positive, relevant proof that will assist the Trial Chamber to
19 better understand the laws and the practice that determined the behaviour
20 of the minister and which are of importance for this case.
21 This testimony, from the point of view of an expert, will be a
22 confirmation of the statements of credible and reliable witnesses
23 presented already before this Court.
24 The expert witness will, among other things, clarify the
25 following: The place and structure of the Ministry of Interior in the
1 legal system of the Republic of Macedonia in its relation with other state
2 bodies; explain the function of the Ministry of Interior and how the work
3 and responsibilities are allocated and organised in the Ministry of
4 Interior, both horizontally and vertically; explain who, in accordance
5 with the law of the employees of the ministries which is of importance for
6 establishing issues of his responsibility in the disciplinary procedure;
7 explain why reservists are not subject to disciplinary procedures. The
8 topic of his expertise will be the notion -- the term of authorised
9 person. What this means from the point of view of authorisations and
10 powers in terms of duties and activities in the Ministry of Interior.
11 The expert witness will clarify also the role of the minister in
12 terms of the work of the ministry with a particular view to the role of
13 including the MOI or the role of the MOI in the investigation activities
14 and disciplinary procedure, will clarify the role of the MOI in the
15 criminal procedure when the Ministry of Interior is under the authority of
16 judicial bodies. He will also clarify that the minister does not have a
17 role nor authorities in this procedure.
18 The expert, Your Honours, will also clarify the role of those
19 bodies of the ministries which do have certain tasks in the pre-criminal
20 and criminal investigation, and will list who and when has certain
21 authorisations over them. The witness will clarify also why the
22 competences and authorisations which the Prosecution claims to be of the
23 minister are, in effect, not his.
24 The expert will show that the minister is not an operative part in
25 the activities of the Ministry of Interior. He will clarify the law and
1 the functioning operation of the disciplinary procedure in the MOI and, in
2 particular, the role of the minister in this process. Contrary to the
3 claims of the Prosecution, the expert will show that the minister cannot
4 and does not have the authorisation to initiate a disciplinary procedure
5 in the Ministry of Interior.
6 The expert witness will also give his expertise about two other
7 issues which are relevant to this case: The nature and the specific
8 characteristics of individual commissions, such as the up with which
9 Minister Boskoski set up for examining the case of Ljuboten; and on other
10 issue, the relevance of the law on Amnesty after the procedure of the MOI.
11 In accordance with presenting the evidence of the expert witness,
12 the Trial Chamber can also debate other relevant issues, positions of the
13 minister. It will be confirmed that the role of the Ministry of Interior
14 is no different than the roles of ministers in other ministries. The
15 nature of authorities in ministry changes but not the position and the
16 responsibility of the minister. He is a manager with precise
17 authorisations as are ministers of foreign affairs, culture, information,
18 and others, which clearly derives from this Law on State Administration.
19 This is exhibit P92, Articles 47 to 49.
20 This will show that the role of the minister derives from the law,
21 stems from the law, and that the Minister of Interior cannot be put on the
22 same level as the commander of the army of the Republic of Macedonia at
23 any which time. The expert will show that the minister does not replace
24 other bodies and individuals in the MOI, that he is not a police officer,
25 a commander, an inspector in operative sectors. He is not a director of
1 the state security service or another sector. The minister is a minister
2 with his own rights and responsibilities.
3 Witness, under the number 1, from the 65 ter list of the Defence
4 witnesses, will be called because he can testify about some crucial issues
5 of this case. The Defence feels that the testimony of this witness is
6 relevant to establish the following.
7 Contrary to the claims of the Prosecution, the minister, in
8 accordance with the regulations of the Republic of Macedonia, does not
9 have the obligation or authorisation to undertake a disciplinary
11 Contrary to the claims of the Prosecution, the role of the
12 minister in the disciplinary procedure is limited to appointing members of
13 the disciplinary commissions, appointing persons authorised to undertake
14 such procedures, and passing decisions on the proposal of the disciplinary
15 commissions after the established procedure has been carried out.
16 Contrary to the allegations and claims of the Prosecution, the
17 decision of the minister in the disciplinary procedure is not final. It
18 can be changed in the appeal procedure from the disciplinary commission
19 in the government or in a judicial procedure. Thus, this witness will
20 show that the minister does not initiate nor does it end the disciplinary
22 Contrary to the claims of the Prosecution, the witness will show
23 that a disciplinary procedure cannot be led against reservists.
24 Contrary to the claims of the Prosecution, persons suspect for
25 having committed criminal acts in and around Ljuboten, if they were not
1 employed of the MOI or unless they were employees of the MOI, could not
2 have been subject to a disciplinary procedure in the MOI.
3 The Defence expects that the witness, in the course of his
4 testimony, to present the following. That only persons employed in the
5 Ministry of Interior, persons against whom a disciplinary procedure can be
6 led. Disciplinary procedure is regulated by law on the Ministry of
7 Interior, collective agreements, other by-laws and decisions of the
8 minister. The witness is fully aware of the system, the rules, and
9 procedures in view of the professional experience and long-term practice
10 on legal issues in the Ministry of Interior. These laws and by-laws, in
11 full, are determined by the bodies and regulate the procedure under which
12 a disciplinary procedure is carried out.
13 The regulations also lay out the sanctions and the manner in which
14 the procedure is implemented if various regulations -- in various cases
15 foreseen by regulations. We expect that the witness will explain which
16 conditions must be fulfilled in order for a person to become an employee
17 of the MOI, will clarify also the special conditions which an employee
18 must fulfil in order to be employed in the Ministry of Interior. We
19 believe that the witness will also testify about the appeal procedure on
20 the decision of the ministers which takes place in front of the government
21 commission, which has its own rules of procedure.
22 Also, as we, in deciding to call this witness, said we anticipate
23 that this witness will confirm that the minister does not have the right
24 to initiate a disciplinary procedure and that reservists cannot be subject
25 to this procedure.
1 In his testimony, we expect the witness to show that in this
2 procedure in front of the commission, which carries out the evidence and
3 assesses responsibility, the minister does not have any role at all. The
4 minister will -- the witness will also show that the disciplinary
5 procedure can be led only against known individuals for breaking the
6 disciplinary, and this follows very swiftly.
7 The role of the minister in the disciplinary procedure, we expect,
8 will be confirmed by this witness and that he will confirm that the
9 minister can only reach a decision about appointing members of the
10 commission, to appoint persons responsible for initiating the procedure,
11 and to reach a decision on the proposal of the disciplinary commission
12 after this procedure has been carried out. Also, he will clarify that
13 this decision of the minister can be appealed, that will be decided by an
14 independent government commission, and a judicial case can also be led
15 against such a case of the minister.
16 The witness number 3, on the 65 ter list, is called because the
17 Defence believes the witness can provide relevant and reliable facts to
18 the Court -- to the Trial Chamber. This witness, as well as others, will
19 be called due to previously listed reasons for calling witnesses, but his
20 testimony is specifically linked, in addition to the already listed, to
21 the testimony of witness M-052.
22 It is clear that already in the process of cross-examination, the
23 Defence raised the issue of the credibility of Witness M-052 and the
24 truthfulness and reliability of the information which Witness M-052
25 presented before this Court.
1 In his testimony, the witness attempted to present his own
2 activities as responsibility of others who gave orders to him. We claim
3 that this person transfers responsibility to others because it is not in a
4 position to justify his own activities and undertake responsibility for
5 the own work within the framework of his own duties. The receipt of the
6 statement of this witness without giving the Trial Chamber the opportunity
7 to re-examine the statement by way of other witnesses would seriously
8 endanger the integrity of this trial.
9 The witness who we are calling was, during the time and events and
10 relates to Witness M-052, can present facts contrary to the allegations of
11 witness M-052 and can, in fact, present the facts as they did occur.
12 Contrary to Witness M-052, the witness comes without any promise
13 of any kind, without any deals, without any discussions of these deals
14 which could be offered to a witness. In addition, the witness comes fully
15 aware and with the knowledge that the Prosecution will accuse him that he
16 was a member of a joint criminal enterprise. This witness, as well as
17 Mr. Bliznakovski, according to the Prosecution, are members of joint
18 criminal enterprise due to one reason alone, because of the testimony of
19 witness M-052 which this one gave to the Prosecution and which the
20 Prosecution called aware that this witness is not speaking the truth.
21 The witness accepted to testify not in order to explain his own
22 role but to give an accurate statement about what he and the others
23 actually did.
24 Your Honours, you will maybe conclude that what this witness did
25 was imperfect, but you will have in front of you an honourable and honest
1 police officer who did the best he could in the given circumstances.
2 Apart from this, this witness, as we stated in the data about his
3 testimony, will testify to the structure and the competences of the
4 sectors of internal affairs and departments of internal affairs, SVR and
5 OVR. He will also speak about the participation of the Ministry of
6 Interior in the pre-trial stage of the procedure, about the tasks of the
7 MOI in the course of the criminal investigation, about the time and the
8 entities who submit a criminal report, and about other issues indicated in
9 the summary of his testimony.
10 The Witness number 4, from the 65 ter list of the Defence, will
11 testify contrary to the assertion of the Prosecutor that the measures that
12 Boskoski undertook were inadequate and ill-intended, that it was a sham
13 investigation. The testimony of this witness will show that the measures
14 that Minister Boskoski undertook were in good faith to fully clarify the
15 situation in and around Ljuboten, and that measures are taken against any
17 Contrary to the assertions of the Prosecutor, he never agreed nor
18 approved the crimes committed in and around Ljuboten, if any.
19 Contrary to the contention of the Prosecutor, Minister Boskoski
20 also demonstrated personal interest in clarifying the situation around
22 Contrary to the assertion of the Prosecutor, this testimony, as
23 well, will show that the Minister Boskoski informed the justice system
24 bodies, especially the prosecutor, about all findings that the minister
25 came across. So, with this in mind, we expect that the witness will
1 testify that the Minister Boskoski requested that information related to
2 Ljuboten are collected.
3 I apologise. That he undertook measures to come to those
4 information from various sources: Bodies of the Ministry of Interior,
5 sectors for internal affairs of Skopje, department of internal affairs,
6 forensic police department, forensics medicine institute. This witness
7 also participated in the meetings, and he transferred all the materials
8 collected to the public Prosecutor.
9 Witness could assist the Chamber to decide whether the information
10 that the MOI had were communicated to the justice system bodies,
11 especially to the Prosecutor.
12 The Witness number 5, in the 65 ter list, will testify in a
13 similar way as to witness before him. The relevance of this testimony is
14 similar to the relevance of the testimony of the witness that I just spoke
15 about. The truth and the testimony of this witness comprises the period
16 after the time indicated in the indictment, but it demonstrates the
17 continuous efforts of Minister Boskoski and the ministry to fully
18 elucidate the events in and around Ljuboten and to undertake appropriate
19 measures. So this testimony contradicts the assertion of the Prosecutor
20 that the measures that Minister Boskoski undertook were inadequate and
22 The Defence believes that this witness will be important to
23 ascertain that Minister Boskoski acted in good faith, intending that the
24 issues around Ljuboten are elucidated, that Minister Boskoski does not
25 agree or approve of the crime regardless of who was the perpetrator of it,
1 that Minister Boskoski demonstrated personal interest to clarify all and
2 any crimes, including the crimes, if any, committed in and around
4 What this witness can testify to are the efforts of the task force
5 that he belonged to, to obtain as many information as possible about any
6 crime committed. The witness will testify about the measures that he
7 personally undertook to learn what happened in and around Ljuboten. He
8 will also testify to the involvement of numerous bodies in the efforts to
9 clarify, elucidate the crimes that took place in the Republic of
10 Macedonia. His testimony will shed additional light to the overall
11 efforts undertaken in and outside the ministry in order to clarify the
12 events in and around Ljuboten. The witness will testify also why he and
13 the members of the task force were unable to do more than that.
14 Your Honours, the Defence proposed that 11 witness will testify
15 according to the 92 bis rule, that they are not called to testify before
16 the Court, and that their testimonies are accepted in writing as written
18 The testimonies of these witnesses are a vehicle through which
19 Defence offers the Chamber the necessary facts related to the context in
20 which the events described in the indictment transpired. Apart from this,
21 some of the proposed statements will enable the Trial Chamber to assess
22 the reliability of the testimonies of a number of Prosecutor's witnesses,
23 the reliability of whom was questioned during their testimony.
24 Some of these statements corroborate earlier evidence about the
25 involvement of the president of the Republic of Macedonia in the events
1 around Ljuboten, as well as the fact that numerous persons regarding which
2 the Prosecutor asserts that they were at Ljuboten never really became
3 members of the MOI. A part of the 92 bis statements speaks about the
4 personality of Minister Boskoski.
5 All evidence tendered will show that it is simply impossible to
6 conclude that Minister Boskoski failed to take all possible and reasonable
7 measures that he had the duty to undertake in the given circumstances.
8 At the end, Your Honours, I wish to say the following: At this
9 moment, many people in the Republic of Macedonia are following the work of
10 this Chamber with due attention. Many people in Macedonia are asking
11 today the question whether this Chamber will really try the case on the
12 basis of evidence and whether it will really require that the Prosecutor
13 must prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.
14 This Defence, the person we appear for, Mr. Boskoski, and I
15 personally, have faith in the international legal system and in this
16 Court. In the light of the evidence that you heard and those that you
17 will hear, I am convinced that you will be able to bring the only just
18 decision in this case. The Defence believes that you will acquit
19 Mr. Boskoski, based on the counts of the indictment, for the simple reason
20 that you will be convinced that he is not responsible for the actions that
21 he is accused of.
22 Thank you.
23 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much, Ms. Residovic.
24 Mr. Apostolski, were you considering making an opening statement
25 at this point, or would you prefer to do so after the close of the
1 evidence led for the Defence of Mr. Boskoski? I think the Rules would
2 allow you to take either course.
3 MR. APOSTOLSKI: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours.
4 The Defence of Mr. Johan Tarculovski will make its opening
5 statement before the start of leading of evidence of Defence of Mr. Johan
6 Tarculovski, so after the Defence of Mr. Boskoski has led its evidence.
7 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much.
8 Well, as the opening statement of the Defence of Mr. Boskoski has
9 now been given by Ms. Residovic, according to the timetable proposed, the
10 Chamber will now adjourn, with a view to commencing hearing the witnesses
11 to be called by the Defence of Mr. Boskoski, commencing tomorrow morning
12 at 9.00.
13 We now adjourn.
14 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 10.07 a.m.,
15 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 31st day of
16 January, 2008, at 9.00 a.m.