1 Tuesday, 18 June 2002
2 [Open session]
3 --- Upon commencing at 2.15 p.m.
4 [The accused entered court]
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Madam Registrar, could you call the case,
7 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. This is the case number,
8 IT-99-36-T, the Prosecutor versus Radoslav Brdjanin and Momir Talic.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon to you, Mr. Brdjanin. Can you hear
10 me in a language that you can understand?
11 THE ACCUSED BRDJANIN: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your
12 Honours. I can hear you and I understand you.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. You may sit down.
14 General Talic, good afternoon to you. Can you hear me in a
15 language that you can understand?
16 THE ACCUSED TALIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours.
17 I can hear you in a language that I understand.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. And you may sit down.
19 Appearances for the Prosecution.
20 MR. CAYLEY: May it please Your Honours. Good afternoon. My name
21 is Andrew Cayley and I appear on behalf of the Prosecutor with my learned
22 friend Mr. Julian Nicholls together with case manager Denise Gustin.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon to you, Mr. Cayley.
24 Appearances for Radoslav Brdjanin.
25 MR. ACKERMAN: Good afternoon, Your Honours. I'm here with my
1 co-counsel Milan Trbojevic and Marela Jevtovic.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon to you, Mr. Ackerman.
3 Appearances for General Talic.
4 MR. ZECEVIC: Good afternoon, Your Honours. Slobodan Zecevic and
5 Ms. Natasha Fauveau for Talic -- General Talic, thank you.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon to you, Mr. Zecevic.
7 Any preliminaries?
8 MR. CAYLEY: Very briefly, Your Honour. You will have seen that
9 the solicitors Finers Innocent filed an application for certification for
10 appeal, and I just wanted to inform the Court that the Prosecution is
11 taking a neutral position in respect of that application.
12 Secondly, the next witness based on what the Defence stated
13 yesterday that Ms. Fauveau had some more questions to ask and
14 Mr. Trbojevic indicated he had 15 minutes of cross-examination, will be
15 able at 3.00 to give evidence.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Cayley.
17 So -- yes, Mr. Ackerman.
18 MR. ACKERMAN: With regard to that request for certificate, we
19 take the same neutral position with regard to it.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: We haven't had time to discuss it as yet. We will
21 be discussing it possibly tomorrow and we will be in a position to hand
22 down our decision by the end of the week. But it's important for us to
23 know that you're putting it on record that you're taking a neutral
24 position. I don't know about the Defence team for General Talic.
25 [Defence counsel confer]
1 JUDGE AGIUS: This is the --
2 MR. ZECEVIC: We are -- I'm sorry, Your Honours. But I have to
3 confer with my co-counsel.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: That's quite understandable.
5 MR. ZECEVIC: Because I'm not aware of what we are talking about
6 at the moment. But we are taking the neutral position as well. Thank
8 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. And you are the least interested in
9 the decision in any case, because ...
10 So later on in the week, please expect a very short decision on
11 certification -- leave for appeal or not. Okay?
12 So witness.
13 [The witness entered court]
14 [Trial Chamber confers]
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon to you, Mr. Zulic.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Before you proceed with your testimony, may I ask
18 you to repeat the solemn declaration once more, please. Hopefully for the
19 last time.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you. Thank you. I solemnly
21 declare that I will speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
23 WITNESS: AHMET ZULIC [Resumed]
24 [Witness answered through interpreter]
25 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, sir, and you may sit down. Thank you.
1 Madam Fauveau, I just want to make sure that the microphone and
2 headphone, everything is in order. Yes, you may proceed. Thank you.
3 Cross-examined by Ms. Fauveau-Ivanovic: [Continued]
4 Q. [Interpretation] Sir, you spoke of the day when you were taken to
5 the Partisan cemetery and you said you were taken there by four persons,
6 the same persons that arrested you; is that correct?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. So these four persons were three police officers and a driver; is
9 that right?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. At the Partisan cemetery, you saw a group of soldiers wearing
12 olive-grey uniforms; is that right?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Is it not true that the members of the SOS wore the same uniforms?
15 A. Yes, they did, but not their leaders.
16 Q. You saw another group of persons among whom was Rasula; is that
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And Nemanja Tripkovic was also among that group.
20 A. Yes, he was.
21 Q. Yesterday you said that Nemanja Tripkovic was wearing a camouflage
22 uniform; is that right?
23 A. Yes, it is.
24 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] I should like to ask the
25 Prosecutor to show the witness the written statement from 2001, please.
1 It's on page 10 of the English version, third paragraph; and in
2 the Serbo-Croat version, it is page 9, second paragraph from the bottom.
3 Q. In that statement, you said that Nedeljko Rasula and Nemanja
4 Tripkovic were both in civilian clothes. Have you found that?
5 A. I have, yes. That's correct.
6 Q. So was Nemanja Tripkovic in civilian clothes or in a uniform?
7 A. It's correct that he was in uniform because he never took off that
8 uniform. He was in uniform. That is correct. I know that also because
9 he would come to our village in a uniform.
10 Q. If you look at the sentence prior to that one, you said that Brano
11 Davidovic was the only one in a uniform.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam Fauveau, what he says was "The only one in a
13 military camouflage uniform."
14 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, but he said that
15 Tripkovic was in a camouflage uniform as well.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah. But with regard to Brano Davidovic, he's not
17 saying that he was the only one in a military uniform.
18 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] I agree with you,
19 Mr. President. But it doesn't change my question because according to
20 yesterday's statement, Nemanja Tripkovic was also wearing a camouflage
22 JUDGE AGIUS: That's what he is saying today as well. He was
23 saying -- he's repeating that today.
24 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, quite. My question
25 is: Why did he say that Brano Davidovic was the only person in a
1 camouflage uniform?
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Zulic, what's your answer to that question?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can answer -- I didn't read my
4 diary when I was giving this statement. I gave my diary -- I handed the
5 diary over at the end of my statement and I gave that statement eight
6 years later; therefore, I said straight away that some things I said in
7 the statement, given eight years after the events, naturally I couldn't
8 remember everything. Today it is exactly ten years that I was arrested,
9 on the 18th of June. I didn't want to do this intentionally to -- I
10 repeat that. I will never mention any name intentionally or defame anyone
12 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Are you quite sure that Brano Davidovic was present at the
14 cemetery on that day?
15 A. Brano Davidovic, how could I not know someone who lives 500 metres
16 away from me? He was my neighbour. And he was chief of police before the
17 war. He was president of the youth organisation in the municipality, the
18 union of socialist youth, as it was called. Who then would I know if not
20 Q. In your diary, page 20 of book 1, you enumerated the persons who
21 were present on that day at the Partisan cemetery.
22 A. I don't have the numbers here.
23 I've found it.
24 Q. Why did you not mention Brano Davidovic among those persons?
25 A. Yes. Probably I didn't remember, because I wrote the diary also
1 after the event, in January 1993, because I need to see -- I was writing
2 this, and as I said I wasn't writing it for anybody except for my
3 children. I didn't mention Brano Davidovic because -- I didn't mention
4 him because I hate him. Unfortunately, no.
5 Q. So you abide by your statement that Brano Davidovic was at the
6 Partisan cemetery.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Do you know whether Brano Davidovic was still in the police in
10 A. I don't know that, whether he was in the police or something else,
11 but I think he was some kind of a military commander.
12 Q. An army commander or a commander in the TO, the Territorial
14 A. I don't know whether there was any Territorial Defence then.
15 There was no Territorial Defence then. There was the SOS, the 6th Krajina
16 Brigade, Seselj's men, and private military forces.
17 Q. Are you quite sure that Brano Davidovic was not a member of one of
18 those private military forces or of the SOS?
19 A. I'm quite sure he was not in a private army. There was Marko
20 Cevapdzija who led a private army, whom I really don't know. He's from
22 Q. Are you quite sure that he was not in the SOS?
23 A. I'm not.
24 Q. You spoke yesterday of a certain Milan Raus. Did you know that
25 person before the war?
1 A. That person was a metalworker, I think, by trade. That was his
2 original occupation, and he went to school with me for eight years and he
3 wears a moustache.
4 Q. Before the war, did he have any military position, any position in
5 the military?
6 A. Before the war, I don't know what kind of a position he had in the
7 military but I know that he went to the front in Croatia.
8 Q. Do you know when he returned from the front there?
9 A. I don't know. But I know that I would see him before the war in
10 various cafes wearing a military uniform.
11 Q. Would you agree with me that many people wore uniforms in those
12 days in Bosnia?
13 A. In Bosnia? There was the army during the war in Croatia and
14 reserve forces went from Sanski Most to Croatia to the front, and one
15 Muslim, Ramo Nalic -- sorry, two Muslims, Ahmet Hadzic as well.
16 Q. My question was something else. Is it not true that many persons
17 in Bosnia wore military uniforms at the beginning of 1992?
18 A. I thought you were asking me about 1991. And in 1992 it is true
19 that many people wore uniforms.
20 Q. So many of those people who wore uniforms were not in the army,
21 were they?
22 A. How do I know who they belonged to? Those I know about I will
23 tell you. What I don't know, I can't tell you.
24 Q. Would you agree with me that there were many people wearing a
25 uniform who did not belong to the regular army in Bosnia at the beginning
1 of 1992?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Yesterday you spoke of a JNA general, General Daljevic.
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And you said that that general had retired at the time.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. So at the time he was no longer a member of the JNA, was he?
8 A. He was not. In my opinion, he was not in the JNA. But I don't
9 know that; he knows.
10 Q. And you're not sure that General Daljevic was at the Partisan
11 cemetery, are you?
12 A. No. I said that in my statement too. I sat with the man towards
13 the end of 1991 because he has a son-in-law, Slavko Milunovic and he was
14 a colleague of mine working with me and we shared the same office and we
15 were talking. And judging by his face, his appearance, I thought it was
16 he. I can't say a thousand per cent that it was he.
17 Q. So it is just a supposition on your part.
18 A. It is my supposition. There's another one. That morning a
19 helicopter landed at the stadium in Sanski Most, Podgrmec, opposite the
20 police station. And there's only some 20 metres between them.
21 Q. You said yesterday that a certain Simo Simetic was cutting
22 people's throats. This Simo Simetic was in civilian clothes, wasn't he?
23 A. No.
24 Q. How was he dressed, then?
25 A. He was wearing some kind of military uniform, a military uniform.
1 Q. When you say "a military uniform," what do you mean by that?
2 A. It wasn't buttoned up. He had a military shirt on, the type worn
3 by the regular army. He didn't wear a cap.
4 Q. So it wasn't a complete uniform of the regular army.
5 A. No. He didn't have a cap on his head.
6 Q. Was it the same uniform worn by members of the group around him,
7 the same as they wore?
8 A. The shirt was the same.
9 Q. Yesterday you said that Rasula ordered Simo Simetic to leave you
10 alone; is that right?
11 A. It is.
12 Q. And you know Rasula's voice well, don't you?
13 A. Correct.
14 Q. Could you look at your written statement, please, page 10, the one
15 but last paragraph in the English version; and page 10, first paragraph,
16 in the Serbo-Croatian version.
17 You said, didn't you, that it was Mahuna or Macura who told Simo
18 Simetic not to kill you?
19 A. Yes. But after Rasula.
20 Q. You didn't mention Rasula in your statement.
21 A. I didn't? I didn't. I keep telling you it's true that I didn't
22 remember everything eight or nine years later.
23 Q. In your diary, if you look at the page just before the page on
24 which the people present are listed, you just said that you heard a voice
25 which said "That is enough."
1 A. Correct. I assume so.
2 Q. You didn't mention Rasula either in that diary. Why?
3 A. I didn't. I didn't write this for the Court. I didn't write down
4 a thousand things. This was written for me, for my own grandchildren.
5 Q. So this diary contains information that is not correct; is that
7 A. My diary? My diary?
8 Q. Yes.
9 A. No. I just didn't write down everything. This is a tenth part of
10 all the things that happened.
11 Q. Yesterday you described the incident when Macura put his pistol in
12 your mouth. And you said that this incident followed the massacre, came
13 after the massacre. However, in your diary - if you look, it is page 17,
14 which is two pages prior to the place where you mentioned the voice that
15 said "That's enough" - you described the same incident but saying that
16 this occurred prior to the massacre.
17 A. In book 1?
18 Q. Yes, book 1. It is two pages prior to the page on which you speak
19 about the person who said "That's enough."
20 A. That is correct.
21 Q. So what is written in the diary is correct? Is that what you're
23 A. What I stated is correct. I am saying again that I looked through
24 the diary later on and then I remembered some things that I couldn't think
25 of yesterday, so I didn't answer some questions, actually.
1 Q. After what happened at that cemetery -- so the same people took
2 you to the cemetery that took you to Betonirka; is that right?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. So three policemen and a driver; is that right?
5 A. That's right.
6 Q. You spoke yesterday of your transfer to Manjaca, and you said that
7 the people who put you on that truck were policemen. Is that right?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And these policemen accompanied you to Manjaca.
10 A. Correct.
11 Q. And these policemen --
12 A. Actually, I don't know whether they escorted us or someone else.
13 I didn't see it.
14 Q. And when you arrived at Manjaca, did you see those policemen there
15 or did you not see them?
16 A. I saw them there.
17 Q. And during the trip, you had a bottle of aftershave lotion with
18 you; is that right?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. How were you able to keep that bottle at Betonirka?
21 A. Tonci brought it for me, the man I spoke about, saying that he was
22 the person who opened the door, who would bring us food. And I looked for
23 him after the war, but unfortunately he's no longer among the living
24 because he assisted Muslims. Both he and his shift of five men, they gave
25 us food and water, as much as they had. And they never took people out
1 when they were on duty at night to beat them. They didn't take them out
2 to christen them or anything. So I feel duty-bound towards them because
3 they probably saved my life. And it is my duty to show them every
4 respect, even though they are Serbs.
5 Q. Once you entered Manjaca, you did receive water, didn't you? Is
6 that right?
7 A. From whom? From those detainees of ours who arrived with us in
8 the convoy? And it was only once we entered the garage that they brought
9 us water. But that was one cup of two decilitres of water per person. I
10 said that yesterday.
11 Q. But you were given water once you entered the garages at Manjaca;
12 is that right?
13 A. Yes, that's right. But I must repeat again: For a person who had
14 been -- who has been travelling - I don't know exactly for how long - but
15 roughly from 11.00 until the sun started setting. Would one decilitre of
16 water be sufficient? If you think that's sufficient, then there's nothing
17 I can say.
18 Q. A moment ago you mentioned 2 decilitres. Was it 1 or 2?
19 A. Please don't confuse me. I didn't say 2 decilitres. 2 decilitres
20 were shared by two men.
21 Q. It's not what you said, but I shall move on to another question.
22 After entering Manjaca you were examined by a doctor, weren't
24 A. On the third day I think it was.
25 Q. And later a doctor of the Red Cross examined you as well.
1 A. Yes, he did.
2 Q. Did the doctor from Manjaca examine you later again as well?
3 A. He didn't examine me later on. He hid some medicines and he said
4 to me that they would kill me -- kill him for these couple of small
5 bottles that he brought me to drink if they knew he had given them to me.
6 Q. You said yesterday that you ate grass at Manjaca. Is that true?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Could you tell us when you ate grass.
9 A. I ate grass as soon as I started walking around a bit and was able
10 to pick some grass, I ate grass until aid arrived from the Red Cross.
11 It wasn't just me that ate grass; others did too.
12 Q. Could you please specify the date approximately of the day when
13 you ate grass and were beaten after that.
14 A. It doesn't say that anywhere. I can't.
15 Q. In any event, it was after the arrival of the Red Cross at the
16 camp; is that right?
17 A. After the arrival of the Red Cross?
18 Q. Yes.
19 A. Even before I would graze a little, and it was best around the
20 toilet. It was highest.
21 Q. The occasion I'm referring to, when you were beaten after that,
22 was that after the Red Cross arrived at Manjaca.
23 A. Yes. I think it was.
24 Q. So you continued eating grass even though the Red Cross brought
1 A. That's not true. The Red Cross didn't bring food until sometime
2 around the 28th or the 30th of August. I don't know exactly, but I think
3 it was the 28th or the 30th of August. And the first time the Red
4 Cross -- I'm saying from memory now -- the date when Mr. Michel [phoen] -
5 I can't look it up in the diary now - came. Now, whether that was the
6 17th or the 20th of July when he came for the first time and that was the
7 first time that we were brought some cigarettes.
8 Q. So between the 17th of July and the 30th of August, the Red Cross
9 did not bring any food?
10 A. No. No.
11 Q. Why didn't you write down in your diary that you ate grass at
13 A. I think I did, but I don't know. But I think I did. I wrote down
14 that he slapped me because I was eating grass. Not just me; Ahmet Alisic,
15 Osman Hodzic, all of those who left the line to pick grass were hit like
16 this on the head. But later on - I have to point this out - when Spaga
17 came, he brought Alisic Ahmet some food so that he couldn't eat grass.
18 But that young man had terrible diarrhoea.
19 Q. You spoke about the death of Omer Filipovic. Did you see Omer
20 Filipovic being killed?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Did you see Omer Filipovic's body?
23 A. Yes. And Esad Bender's.
24 Q. Where did you see Omer Filipovic's body?
25 A. I saw it when they were carrying it in the morning, at 6.00 in the
1 morning from the stables. They called the -- what they called the
2 clinic. It was a horse stable. It's a small building which is covered,
3 and that's where the bodies were.
4 Q. And where were you at 6.00 in the morning?
5 A. We were going to breakfast. And we had been lined up facing
6 downwards because at Manjaca where the stables are, it's a slope. You
7 look from -- you look downwards, and you can see everything right up to
8 the road down there.
9 Q. Yesterday you said that the prisoners had to clean the camp before
10 international persons visited it; is that correct?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And you said that the prisoners who had more clothes had to
13 arrange their clothes, they had to sort them. Is that correct?
14 A. Yes, it is.
15 Q. So some prisoners had clothes that they could use to change into;
16 is that correct?
17 A. Well, if they even had a coat and a shirt, they would wear that
18 coat in the middle of summer. They would hang it up in the afternoon
19 somewhere because there was only a roof up there and it was terrible. It
20 was so hot. There was no attic. So the heat was just unbearable inside.
21 Q. You spoke about Muhamed Boskovic, and you said that he was in
22 charge of facilitating relations between prisoners and the camp command;
23 is that correct?
24 A. Yes, it is.
25 Q. And Muhamed Boskovic was also a prisoner, wasn't he?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And in fact, he was your representative with the camp command; is
3 that correct -- at the camp command?
4 A. I don't know what he was, but he communicated with the command.
5 He was in contact with them.
6 Q. And he protected the prisoners' interests.
7 A. Yes, he did. But he was always beaten for that.
8 Q. After you had arrived at the camp from the 17th of July, the Red
9 Cross visited the camp on a regular basis; is that correct?
10 A. Every 15 days.
11 Q. Is it true to say that certain prisoner groups were released after
12 you -- before you?
13 A. Yes. One group, whose legs had been broken and their arms, they
14 were released and they went off to England. Mr. Bernard Kouchner promised
15 them that he would get them out of the camp.
16 Q. But other prisoners had been released before the release of this
17 group; isn't that correct?
18 A. Yes, it's correct. That's true. They were people who were
19 underage, who weren't adults, and people over 60 years of age.
20 Q. In your diary - it's the third book -- it's in the third book of
21 your diary - you said that you were more sure -- that you were in greater
22 safety in the camps than your family which was at liberty; is that
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam Fauveau, could you please direct the witness
25 straight to the part of his diary to which you are referring.
1 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] It's the third book, page
3 JUDGE AGIUS: 15 in the original or --
4 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] In the original,
5 Mr. President.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: So in the English translation, it would be page
8 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Unfortunately I don't know
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the translation isn't
11 necessary. I'll answer that question.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah. But we need to know exactly what you said in
13 the diary.
14 At least how does the paragraph start, the words in the beginning
15 of the paragraph?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's true that I wrote that I was in
17 greater safety at Manjaca than my family was. I wrote that. But that was
18 when a woman came who was always -- a woman from the International Red
19 Cross. She was present at all times and supervised the recovery of the
20 prisoners. She was there every day, so those -- no one was maltreated
21 then. It was no longer as it was up until the 30th of August.
22 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. In fact you said that twice. You said on two occasions - in
24 August for the first time and in the month of October for the second
25 time - is that correct?
1 A. When I say "from August," from August things were easier. I
2 haven't found that. But if in the diary it says from September or
3 October -- but from August onwards I said that that's when discipline
4 became a little more lax. There were no longer beatings, maltreatment,
5 because -- as Bula was replaced -- Kovacevic came and replaced him.
6 Kovacevic, also known as Spaga. That's when discipline was no longer so
7 terrible. When Kovacevic came, I no longer saw Bula.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Incidentally, Madam Fauveau, may I refer you to the
9 book 3, English version, page 6, bottom of the page, last five lines.
10 "That Thursday I was slapped by a Chetnik because I had picked a dandelion
11 to eat it, hungry as I was. Many people ate grass. I just wasn't lucky,
12 so I got slapped. He cursed my mother on account of my grazing on
13 Serbian grass. They would do this to anyone they caught eating grass or
14 walking on it." That's because earlier on you --
15 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise,
16 Mr. President. But in the Serbo-Croat version, which I have used, the
17 copy is pretty bad. It's certainly a part that I was not able to read.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I thank you.
19 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Yesterday you said that you had been liberated from Manjaca on the
21 23rd of November, 1992.
22 A. Yes. The 22nd or the 24th, but I was released towards the end of
24 Q. Isn't it true to say that you were released on the 14th of
25 November, 1992?
1 A. I don't think that's correct.
2 Q. Would you allow for the possibility that it was on the 14th?
3 A. It would have been better if I'd been released on the 18th of
4 June, 1992.
5 Q. And when you were released, there were still prisoners in the
6 camp; is that correct?
7 A. Yes, it is.
8 Q. And in fact this camp was closed one month later; is that
10 A. I don't know about that.
11 Q. At the hearing of the 7th of June, 1992 you said that you had been
12 released together with Judge Draganovic. Do you remember saying that?
13 A. Yes, I do.
14 Q. Wasn't Judge Draganovic in fact released one month later than
16 A. I know I was with him in Karlovac and in Cologne. We went to
17 Cologne together.
18 Q. And up until what date were you in Karlovac?
19 A. Up until just before Christmas, a day before Christmas we arrived
20 in Cologne.
21 Q. So you would allow for the possibility that Judge Draganovic
22 joined you in Karlovac in the middle of December.
23 A. Yes, that's possible. It's possible he was released then. I know
24 that all those over 45 years of age were released -- were released from
25 Manjaca, and that someone underage was -- remained in Manjaca and they
1 wouldn't let him go.
2 Q. When you arrived in The Hague, you provided the Prosecutor with a
3 notebook that you had in Manjaca. How did you receive this notebook?
4 A. I was sent a packet from -- to Manjaca from Banja Luka and clothes
5 and food and cigarettes. A Serb did this. No one touched this parcel; I
6 have to say that. It wasn't opened. No one opened it. Because whoever
7 got a carton of cigarettes in Manjaca, that person was a real capitalist.
8 Q. When did you receive this notebook?
9 A. In August. I received the parcel in August.
10 Q. And in fact in this notebook there were certain notes, there were
11 certain telephone numbers; is that correct?
12 A. Yes, it's correct. Because on the message that I received -- in
13 the message I received, they thought we would be leaving -- we would be
14 released on the 30th of August via the intermediary of the Red Cross.
15 Q. You said on the 7th of June that you had written your diary, the
16 one that you wrote later on, so that no one would ever forget what had
17 happened; is that correct?
18 A. Not so that no one would forget. You have misunderstood it. Read
19 the title -- or maybe someone translated it incorrectly.
20 Q. In any event, that's what it says in the transcript on page 6849
21 of the version -- of the French version. I'm referring to the title "So
22 that your grandchildren will never forget what happened"; is that
24 A. That's correct.
25 Q. But you also said that you hadn't written down everything in this
1 diary so as not to affect the people, contaminate the people for whom this
2 had been written; is that correct?
3 A. That's correct.
4 Q. So you yourself selected events that would best be forgotten; is
5 that correct?
6 A. Yes, of course. Because there was a war in the Balkans every 40
7 to 50 years. And if I incited hatred among my grandchildren, then they
8 again would have to live through war, through expulsions. Either they
9 would have to do so or Serbs or Croats. Because I want my grandchildren
10 to live in peace, since I wasn't able to do so.
11 Q. On page 2 of this diary you wrote a sentence --
12 JUDGE AGIUS: [Previous translation continues] ...
13 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] The first one. It's right
14 at the very beginning.
15 Q. And you said "The Serbs as the Serbs are doing their work and
16 are preparing for massacres."
17 A. That's correct. That's true.
18 Q. Did you want to say that the Serbs -- what was characteristic of
19 the Serbs was that they would prepare for massacres?
20 A. No, but that they would sit down and eat with you and then they
21 would be capable of killing you, because all of these people that I know
22 I've eaten with them all, went to their houses, I've had drinks with them,
23 installed central heating in their houses, sorted out the water. Some
24 went to schools with some of them. Some of them were my teachers. Others
25 were my children's teachers. Some of them were even personal friends who
1 surprised me. But there were some who didn't surprise me. Some were
2 incredibly terrible. And I thank them for now.
3 Q. This sentence in fact, it's one of your opinions; is that correct?
4 A. I expressed my opinion. They told us when we had a joint meeting
5 of all the local communes, Podbrijezje, Sanski Most, they said we'd hold
6 hands, we'll go to the municipality so that they don't make us quarrel
7 among ourselves. And a few days later they said, "You go on your own
8 patrols. We won't go with you."
9 Q. At the end of your diary - it's the very last sentence in book 3,
10 the last sentence in your diary - you said something from Jajce -- of a
11 man from Jajce. You said that this man from Jajce said that the Croats
12 were worse than the Serbs.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Isn't it true that you personally didn't have any experiences with
15 the Croats?
16 A. Yes, that's correct. I had experiences with Croats. They're
17 friends of mine, like the Serbs. I still have today. But that prisoner
18 from Jajce, what he said, that was his opinion. I just wrote it down.
19 Q. But nevertheless you thought that your grandchildren should know
20 that the Croats were bad too.
21 A. No. You didn't mention that I mentioned Muslims in my diary too,
22 that they took food and smuggled it. It's all the same to me. If someone
23 is dishonest, he's dishonest.
24 Q. At the hearing of the 7th of June, you said that you had written
25 this diary in December 1992 and January 1993; is that correct?
1 A. Yes, it is.
2 Q. Could you have a look at your statement of 2001. It's page 15 in
3 the English version and it's the third paragraph, which is in fact a
4 sentence. And it's page 14, the second paragraph, which is also a
5 sentence, in the Serbo-Croat version.
6 In the preceding paragraph, you spoke about the 20th of August,
7 1992. And then you said: [In English] "I made no diary entries after
8 this date." [Interpretation] Did you write a diary in Manjaca itself?
9 A. I said that I wrote a diary in Manjaca from August, this one, this
10 small one, and not this bundle here.
11 Q. But in this notebook there is no date.
12 A. Which notebook?
13 Q. In the notebook that you used in Manjaca.
14 A. What do you mean there's no date? There are dates. Not all of
15 the dates, but certain dates are there. And what I could remember, I
16 wrote that down. 28th of August, 29th of August, the 30th of August.
17 Q. On what page is that?
18 A. Well, it's on the third page here, the third sheet, so that would
19 be the sixth page then. But I didn't use this when I was writing this
20 diary. So maybe I changed the dates. Maybe I mixed up the dates in the
21 diary, moved them. Because when I was writing this, I didn't have these
22 things. I went from Cologne and only saw my wife and children for a few
23 hours and I left the notebook with her so that she could phone Germany so
24 that she could know whom to call for help, because I didn't know where I
25 was going to in Germany.
1 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I don't know
2 which copy the witness has, but there are no dates in the copy that I
3 have. That's for sure.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated]
5 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Mr. President, please.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: I apologise. Mr. Zulic, you've heard what
7 Madam Fauveau has just pointed out.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Can you start with this particular diary, the one
10 you kept in Manjaca. Do you have it in front of you? Yes. Do you have
12 THE WITNESS: [No audible response]
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. And going -- starting from the first page.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, this has been torn up, this
15 cover part, and I'm very ...
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Could you show us at least one page on which there
17 is a date. That will make the life of everyone easier. On the ELMO,
18 yes. We could put it on the ELMO, actually.
19 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] The events that appear on
20 this page, these are events that would have nothing to do with your
21 detention in Manjaca; isn't that correct?
22 A. Yes, but these are events which are related -- this is related
23 with the event that took place in Sana -- in Sanski Most, Mahala.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: For example, I see in what seems to be the
25 penultimate page -- not exactly the penultimate but -- there is on the
1 left-hand side of the page written vertically in the margin "26 May," then
2 there is another word which I can't read. Perhaps the witness can
3 enlighten us on it. I don't know if it's important. Because if it's not
4 important, let's move to the next -- to the next question, Madam Fauveau.
5 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. I'm going back to the diary that you wrote in December 1992 and
7 January 1993. On page 1 of your diary at the very beginning you speak of
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. We're you in Bijeljina in 1992?
11 A. I wasn't, but I watched television. I had a TV set.
12 Q. Which television station were you able to watch?
13 A. Sarajevo Television in those days.
14 Q. So until May 1992 you were able to watch Sarajevo Television; is
15 that right?
16 A. That's right.
17 Q. But you personally did not see what was happening in Bijeljina; is
18 that right?
19 A. I did not, but I saw on television when Madam Biljana Plavsic was
20 kissing Arkan, and I saw Fikret Abdic on television.
21 Q. You also mentioned Selo Ravno. You personally didn't see what
22 happened there, did you?
23 A. I didn't, but I saw everything on television perfectly.
24 Q. And as for Mostar, you weren't there either.
25 A. No. No. This was just a chronology of events, what happened
1 before Sanski Most. I saw Alija Izetbegovic on a tank telling the people
2 that there would be no war. And then the Croats - I can't remember their
3 names - down there in Herzegovina, that was on television too.
4 Q. You also speak of Foca. You were not in Foca either, were you?
5 A. No. That was also on the basis of television reports.
6 Q. On page 3 you speak of Bosanski Novi, Prijedor, and Kozarac.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Were you in Bosanski Novi in 1992?
9 A. No. But refugees came from Bosanski Novi -- Ahmet and Dina. I
10 don't remember the surname. He's Mehemed Drobic's brother-in-law, my
11 next-door neighbour. He spoke about it and said that the place had been
12 occupied, that refugees had been rounded up, put on a train, and
13 transported abroad. That is what he told me.
14 Q. Is it not true that in your diary you describe many events of
15 which you have no personal knowledge?
16 A. Surely images on the TV screen are sufficient that one sees. If
17 something is shown on television -- for instance, you would say that Alija
18 Izetbegovic was not on a JNA tank saying that there would be no war, but
19 this was featured in public on television. Also on television we saw
20 Biljana Plavsic kissing Arkan; then also that Fikret Abdic was captured.
21 I remember very well that he was lying on the ground in Bijeljina. This
22 was on television. This was not montage. If you think, madam, that some
23 things cannot be verified, you are wrong. They can easily.
24 Q. You also speak of events in Prijedor. Regarding the events in
25 Prijedor and Bosanski Novi, you didn't see them on television.
1 A. No. But I learnt from the refugees what was going on. They came
2 through the woods.
3 Q. But you personally have no means of verifying whether the version
4 told you by these persons was indeed the truth.
5 A. Why did I have to verify when you could hear the shells from
6 Prijedor, in Kozarac too you can hear the cannonade from heavy guns.
7 Not rifle fire but guns and tanks and heavy artillery. I assume that is
8 what they were -- can be heard. So you go out during the night at 1.00
9 a.m. and you can hear it. Also refugees were coming from Prijedor and
10 Kozarac through the woods, and they were saying and telling what was going
11 on. I didn't write down that I was in Prijedor.
12 Q. In any event, you have no possibility of checking what exactly
13 happened in Prijedor, Kozarac, or Bosanski Novi; is that right?
14 MR. CAYLEY: Mr. President, objection. It's been asked and it's
15 been answered about three times.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Objection sustained. Next question, Madam Fauveau.
17 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. When you speak of rape, murder in Prijedor, how could you know
19 that there were any such instances?
20 A. I said, through the refugees, from the refugees. Unfortunately
21 after the war it proved to be true. I didn't know it at the time, but the
22 refugees who came through the woods spoke about it. And when the war
23 ended, it was the truth. I didn't claim that these things happened. I
24 noted down what the refugees said as they arrived. In Podbrijezje was a
25 place for refugees. That is why it wasn't immediately shelled straight
2 Q. What you wrote in your diary is in Prijedor a war is being
3 raged -- or rather, cleansing, burning down of the city, murders of
4 Muslims, rapes.
5 A. Yes. Yes. Ljubinka Hilmije came from Prijedor with her two
6 sons. Her husband had been killed in his house, in the apartment and she
7 came to stay with Fadil Jakupovic, her brother-in-law, and that is what
8 she said. I didn't make it up. Jakupovic was killed in his own
10 Q. In any event you personally did not see any murder.
11 A. I did not. But I wrote down what they told me. And unfortunately
12 when I returned home in 1996, it is true that Hilmije Jakupovic was killed
13 in 1992. So the woman told the truth.
14 Q. But is it also true that at the time when you wrote that down you
15 didn't know that that was the truth?
16 A. That --
17 JUDGE AGIUS: [Previous translation continues] ... next question,
18 Madam Fauveau.
19 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Is it not true that this diary is more of impressions on your part
21 than a recounting of the truth?
22 A. I don't know what your understanding is, but you have now given me
23 the strength to write down everything that happened. I never thought of
24 completing this, but now you have given me the impetus. You haven't
25 angered me at all. You have given me the will to really finish something
1 that I never intended to finish. Thank you for doing that for me.
2 Q. Aren't you afraid that your grandchildren will have a distorted
3 impression of events?
4 A. They will not have a distorted version. They will only then know
5 the real truth. Only then will they get the whole truth, because I'll go
6 around and collect information about events and write things down. You've
7 just encouraged me to do that. Thank you.
8 Q. Aren't you afraid of conveying to them a feeling of hatred towards
9 other nations?
10 A. I have to do that.
11 MS. FAUVEAU-IVANOVIC: [Interpretation] I have no further
12 questions, Mr. President.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Madam Fauveau.
14 Mr. Trbojevic, you have a cross-examination to do. I think we
15 will have to leave it for -- until after 4.00, because we're going to have
16 a break now, rather than starting and stopping you after the first
17 question we'll break and you will commence your cross-examination
18 immediately after the break.
19 In the meantime, Mr. Cayley, please have the other -- the next
20 witness ready, because I would anticipate that this cross-examination not
21 to last long.
22 Am I correct?
23 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, Mr. President.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: So we'll have a break now. We will resume at 4.00.
25 Thank you.
1 -- Recess taken at 3.44 p.m.
2 --- On resuming at 4.09 p.m.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Sorry, everyone, for the delay. But it was
4 unavoidable unfortunately.
5 Yes. Mr. Trbojevic -- Mr. Zulic, there's going to be now a --
6 another cross-examination from the co-counsel appearing for Radoslav
8 Mr. Trbojevic, the witness is in your hands.
9 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
10 Cross-examined by Mr. Trbojevic:
11 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Zulic, on page 6 of your statement to the
12 Prosecution, you explained --
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Which statement, please? Of 2001 or of 2000?
14 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] 2001.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Page 6 --
16 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] 14th of June, 2001.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Page 6.
18 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] In the Serbian version, fourth
20 Q. Have you found it, please?
21 A. On the 27th of May? Is that what you're referring to?
22 Q. Yes. There is your description that the population of Mahala were
23 gathered at the soccer field in Krkojevci, whereas the population of
24 Muhici at the driving school training ground.
25 You said that you heard this on the radio.
1 A. They were invited over the radio to leave their houses to -- so
2 that the Serb forces could deal with the Green Berets.
3 Q. So your conclusion was that this announcement on Radio Sana was
5 A. Yes, that is what I thought; it was correct.
6 Q. But yesterday you also said that an announcement on the same radio
7 when reporting about the attack of the Green Berets at Hrustovo was not
9 A. Not Hrustovo but Cirkici as far as I know.
10 Q. You also said yesterday that there was a report on the same radio
11 station about an attack on Vrhpolje mentioning the casualties on the Serb
12 side, dead and wounded.
13 A. I think that I didn't say that yesterday. Vrhpolje? I don't
14 think there was any mention of Vrhpolje.
15 Q. But did you know that that was not true?
16 A. I said that this was announced on Radio Sanski Most, but I learnt
17 from the refugees when they arrived in Podbrijezje what was going on.
18 That is true. When the refugees came, when they were brought to
19 Podbrijezje from the school, then I learnt that that was unfortunately
21 Q. Unfortunately it is quite clear to me that there's no logic which
22 would help us to establish what the witness thought listening to the
23 radio, what when he was listening to the refugees, what when he made notes
24 in one diary and what when we made notes in another diary and what he's
25 saying today, so that I can just draw attention to these differences and
2 JUDGE AGIUS: That's a submission. You will have ample time to
3 make it in due course, and you will definitely not be stopped. But you
4 are going to be stopped now.
5 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] Yes. I'm sorry. I've finished
6 with that.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Go ahead. Next question.
8 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. On page 7 of that same statement, second paragraph.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Second paragraph in the Serbo-Croat version or in
11 the English version? I suppose --
12 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] In the Serbian language.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Second full paragraph, [B/C/S spoken]. Is that the
15 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] The year is 1996. "In 1996."
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So for the record -- for the record we're
17 referring to page 7 in the English version, the third paragraph before
18 the -- before the end, starting "In 1996."
19 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Have you found it?
21 A. I have found it. "In 1996 --"
22 Q. You said that the Bosnian army did not wish you to film Mahala so
23 you did it secretly and that Mahala looked approximately like it did in
25 A. That is correct.
1 Q. Will you tell us, do you know why they didn't want you to film
3 A. I do know. I was with foreign license plates, German license
4 plates, and I didn't have permission to film. No one knew who was doing
5 the filming in 1996 and for what purpose.
6 Q. Could you explain to us in what respect was it approximately the
8 A. The situation was approximately the same. That means that the
9 houses through donations of international organisations for roofs,
10 windows, doors, roof tiles were given.
11 Q. So you meant that repairs had started.
12 A. Yes.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Trbojevic, try to allow a pause between the
14 statement of the witness and your next question, because if you jump
15 straight in you will create difficulties for the interpreters.
16 And the same applies to you, sir. Try to allow -- allow an
17 interval of time before you start answering. Thank you.
18 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. On page 8 of the same statement -- it's the one but last paragraph
20 in the Serbian version. Have you found it, Mr. Zulic?
21 A. Yes, I have.
22 Q. You described the situation in the garage. And you said among
23 other things that the guards would not allow you to go to the toilet.
24 A. Correct. Only after Tonci and his shift.
25 Q. But is it true that you did leave the garage for meals?
1 A. We did go out and we had to eat; otherwise he would cock his
2 pistol and say, "Who doesn't finish in two minutes, I'll shoot at his
3 head." And --
4 Q. You've told us that. I'm just trying to establish whether it was
5 possible to leave the garage several times a day.
6 A. Yes. It is correct that that was possible for two minutes. That
7 was possible.
8 Q. That's fine. Let's move on. On page 9 of this statement, the
9 paragraph beginning with the words "Around the 22nd of June."
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. "On about the 22nd of June, 1992." It says that you went down
12 towards the stream through the bushes and then you were given a hoe and
13 told to dig your own grave. "There were already 20 to 25 men doing the
14 same thing when I arrived there," et cetera.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Yesterday in your testimony you said that they gave you a hoe but
17 you didn't say that they told you what to do.
18 A. I don't remember saying that they didn't tell me what to do.
19 Q. So did they tell you or didn't they?
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's clarify this, because it could well be a
21 matter -- a question of interpretation. But as far as I can remember -
22 and usually my memory doesn't fail me that much - the question that was
23 put to the witness yesterday was not whether he was told what to do but
24 whether he was told what he was going to dig for, what was the purpose for
25 the digging. And he replied yesterday that he was not told what he was
1 going to dig for but he arrived at a conclusion. I mean, it's being
2 interpreted now -- what your question was: "Yesterday in your testimony
3 you said that they gave you a hoe but you didn't say what they told you --
4 that they told you what to do." It may well be a question of
5 interpretation. I don't know, because I can't follow from the B/C/S into
7 But what's your comment, Mr. Zulic, if there is a comment to
9 Do you have a question, basically, because you --
10 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] I explained my question. In the
11 statement it says that he was told to dig his own grave.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
13 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] My question is: Did they say
15 A. They did. But yesterday nobody asked me whether they told me
16 that. His Honour, the Judge is right.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Move to the next question, Mr. Trbojevic, because
18 it's -- because I can't be right and wrong at the same time. So move to
19 the next question, please.
20 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. In your description of that undoubtedly horrific event was not
22 completed. Did this group of people actually dig 20 or so graves or not?
23 A. They couldn't dig them; just as I couldn't. They could have dug
24 30 or 50 -- a hole 30 or 50 centimetres deep because of the soil.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: He explained that yesterday.
1 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] Very well.
2 Q. Let's go on to page 11, then, in which you refer to your arrival
3 at Manjaca. Page 11 in the Serbian language, third paragraph. Have you
4 found it, Mr. Zulic?
5 A. Yes. I know that -- please ask me your question.
6 Q. Towards the end of that paragraph, you say that men armed with
7 rifles were on guard and that they were wearing Chetnik garb. What kind
8 of garb was it?
9 A. Camouflage.
10 Q. How did Chetnik garb differ from other camouflage uniforms?
11 A. There was no difference. They're all Chetniks to me. For me, if
12 they kept me in a camp, they were Chetniks. I didn't make up their name.
13 Draza Mihajlovic [phoen] gave them that name. If I was named Ahmet they
14 shouldn't be insulted by this, because they also were prone to sing
15 Chetnik songs. So why couldn't I call them that? I didn't name them like
16 that. I'm not to blame that somebody gave me Ahmet as a name, that
17 someone -- my parents named me Ahmet. It was my parents' fault.
18 Q. Thank you. I think you've answered in greater detail than I had
19 expected -- or rather, more sincerely that I had expected.
20 Talking about this trip to Manjaca, you told us that you set off
21 around 11.00.
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And that the journey lasted until the afternoon.
24 A. Until the sunset, something like that. I didn't have a watch.
25 Q. My question is: How is it possible that you were so thirsty with
1 all due respect for the inhuman conditions and the heat and the high
2 temperature and everything for you to decide to drink your shaving
3 lotion? You're a serious person. You know that most of the content in a
4 shaving lotion is alcohol.
5 A. I'll give you an answer. But on that day the temperature was
6 extremely high. Let me ask you what you would have done to survive. When
7 you simply see people dropping just like that. 64 men covered by canvas.
8 Allow me to explain.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Let him finish, please, Mr. Trbojevic.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm very good at maths, but I know
11 from medicine that a person needs 3 cubic metres of air per minute
12 [Realtime transcript read in error "American"]. And 64 men in a truck 5
13 by 2 and a half with a tarpaulin about 3 metres high, work out the volume
14 and you will see how much air there was and how much water the people
15 needed. The arithmetic is very simple. Take a pen, multiply width by
16 length and height, you will get the volume and you will be able to
17 calculate how much air there was inside.
18 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. I'm just trying to draw attention to the fact that you don't put
20 out a fire with petrol nor do you quench your thirst with alcohol?
21 A. I was just thinking of how I could quench my thirst. I thought
22 about it. I saw people dying, so I thought that I might die. And if I
23 hadn't done that, I may not be sitting here today with you. Maybe you'd
24 prefer it if I wasn't here.
25 Q. No. Why?
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Next question.
2 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Could I ask you to tell us how you did that operation -- carried
4 out that operation, the taking of urine and its use.
5 A. Yes. Very simply. When I drank the aftershave lotion, I took --
6 I urinated. I didn't know that I was passing blood at the time. I didn't
7 see that. I removed the boy's head from my lap. And then this took
8 place -- and then peed.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Ackerman.
10 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, line 11 says that three cubic metres
11 of air per American. I think -- I think that must be something else.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Three cubic metres of air per person. That's
13 what -- that's what the witness said.
14 MR. ACKERMAN: I think that's what he said.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Whether or not that is correct or not, I don't know,
16 because I'm not familiar with how much air.
17 MR. ACKERMAN: Us Americans do need quite a bit of air.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: They carry it with them sometimes as well, you
20 MR. ACKERMAN: That's right. We get pretty hot.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Trbojevic, please let's get it over and
22 done with. Next question.
23 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours.
24 Q. I have to ask the witness whether he stands by his claim that a
25 loaf of bread of 800 grammes was divided into 44 parts.
1 A. Yes, that's correct. A loaf of 800 grammes, 22 slices would be
2 cut, and then you would cut those slices along the length. And then it
3 depended who would get a gramme extra or more.
4 Q. Do you know that that would work out to 18 grammes per slice?
5 A. Well, do you?
6 Q. It's impossible to cut such slices with a knife.
7 A. That's not correct. Give me a soldier's loaf of bread and I'll
8 cut it up and you'll see that it's possible and give me a knife. I'll
9 show you how this is done. That's why I ate grass.
10 MR. TRBOJEVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have no further
11 questions. Thank you very much.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Trbojevic.
13 Is there re-examination?
14 [Trial Chamber confers]
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Zulic, your testimony, your evidence here has
16 finally come to an end. I wish to thank you for having come over to give
17 evidence and you will now be escorted by the usher and taken care of and
18 returned to where you want to go. I thank you once more.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. Thank you,
20 Your Honours. And I would like to thank the Prosecution too.
21 [The witness withdrew]
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Is the next witness ready?
23 MR. CAYLEY: Yes, Your Honour. The next witness is ready.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: I thought so. So Mr. Nicholls will be handling the
25 next witness. What we don't have is an indication of what documents we
1 will be -- you will be using.
2 And incidentally, before I forget, with regard to the previous
3 witness there is the sketch he drew of Manjaca camp, which was indicated
4 to us as being possibly -- being made use of by Defence for -- you're not
5 making use of it. Because it was also given a -- an exhibit number,
6 DB80-something, I think or something like that.
7 MR. ACKERMAN: I firmly believed it was going to be used, Your
8 Honour, but it was not, so --
9 JUDGE AGIUS: DB89.
10 MR. ACKERMAN: I suspect what we'll do is withdraw it as an
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Madam Registrar, do you have it on record as
13 it being exhibit DB89, or not yet?
14 THE REGISTRAR: Not yet. It's never been used.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I take it that it is not being tendered. So
16 remove that, DB89.
17 MR. CAYLEY: Mr. President, on the issue of exhibits, my
18 understanding is the exhibits for this witness were tendered and admitted,
19 which is why I haven't mentioned it.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: All of them. There are no exhibits forthcoming from
21 the Defence but all the exhibits tendered by the Prosecution have been
23 MR. CAYLEY: Thank you.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. You can admit -- bring forward the
25 witness, please.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 [The witness entered court]
2 JUDGE AGIUS: There are no protective measures.
3 MR. NICHOLLS: No, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: No.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: And with this witness, Your Honour, there will be
6 some exhibits. I'm sorry, we -- I thought a list had been provided. But
7 we have them and will pass them out as we come to them. There will be
8 very, very few.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you, Mr. Nicholls.
10 Mr. Faik Biscevic, good afternoon to you.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Before addressing you any further, I think it is my
13 duty to apologise to you for having kept you here waiting from 3.00. This
14 was not done capriciously, but it was something that we had to do because
15 the testimony of the previous witness took longer than we had anticipated.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's no problem.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you for your understanding.
18 Now, you will -- may I ask you to stand up, please. The usher
19 standing next to you is going to give you the text of a solemn declaration
20 that you are required to make here in open court before you start giving
21 evidence. It is a declaration to tell us the truth. It's the equivalent
22 of an oath, in other words. Can I ask you to proceed with making that
23 declaration, please.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
25 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
1 WITNESS: FAIK BISCEVIC
2 [Witness answered through interpreter]
3 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. You may sit down.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Before we start giving evidence -- you start giving
6 evidence, may I explain to you a little bit where you are and who you are
7 surrounded with. You see here us three. I'm the Presiding Judge and I am
8 flanked by two other Judges, that together we form this Trial Chamber --
9 we compose this Trial Chamber. I am -- my name is Agius and I come from
10 Malta. To my right is Judge Janu from the Czech Republic ask to my left
11 is Judge Taya from Japan.
12 The persons right in front of us is the Registry personnel.
13 And then to your right in the front row you have -- you see three
14 persons. That's the team for the Prosecution that is handling this case.
15 And the gentleman at the -- furthest -- at the extreme left -- extreme
16 right is the -- is counsel who will be conducting the
18 And to your left in the front row there are two teams for the
19 Defence. The first team is the Defence team for accused Brdjanin,
20 Radoslav Brdjanin, and the last two persons are the Defence team for
21 General Talic.
22 I think with that we can proceed. The procedure is that you will
23 first be asked a series of questions by the Prosecution, at the end of
24 which - and that could be today or it could be tomorrow, I don't know -
25 you will then be cross-examined separately by the two Defence teams.
1 After that, you may have some questions directed to you from the Bench,
2 from the Judges themselves, and also possibly a re-examination.
3 Mr. Nicholls, you may proceed with the examination-in-chief.
4 Thank you.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour.
6 Examined by Mr. Nicholls:
7 Q. Mr. Biscevic, I'd like to start with briefly going through your
8 background. You were born in June 1940 in Prijedor municipality; is that
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And then nearly right away, before you were one years old, your
12 family and you moved to Sanski Most.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. For the next 52 years, until 1992, you lived almost exclusively in
15 Sanski Most, other than a few years away for schooling and in your
16 military service.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And in Sanski Most before 1992, you worked as a dentist, and I
19 believe you had actually two practices.
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Another business which you had was a goldsmith shop which was in
22 Sanski Most town which sold jewellery and also you would repair jewellery
23 in that shop.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. You were married, and in 1992 you lived with your wife and your
1 three sons.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And one of your sons worked with you in your dental practice and
4 the other two at that point were training to be dentists so that they
5 could join you later.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Now, in November 1992 you left -- you were transferred from
8 Manjaca camp at that point to Croatia and you returned permanently to
9 Sanski Most.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Sorry, in 1995.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And that's where you live now and you are still a practicing
14 dentist there with one of your sons.
15 A. [No interpretation]
16 Q. Now, I want to go back to 1989 and talk about your political
17 activities and some meetings which you attended. Now, prior -- before
18 1989 were you active in politics or interested in politics?
19 A. No, I wasn't.
20 Q. But then you became the first President of the SDA party in Sanski
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And could you just tell the Chamber when you became president and
24 how long you served as President of the SDA.
25 A. After the annual assembly in Sanski Most in 1990, I became the
1 President of the SDA party in Sanski Most.
2 Q. And how long were you president for?
3 A. For one year, one term of office. One year later there were
4 re-elections and I wasn't a candidate at those elections. Someone else
5 came. Someone else was appointed.
6 Q. Now, even after you stopped serving as president, did you remain
7 active in SDA politics as a member of the main board?
8 A. Yes, I did.
9 Q. And during that time, around -- throughout 1990, could you tell
10 me -- tell us what relationships were like between Serbs and non-Serbs in
11 Sanski Most, and also between the three political parties.
12 A. At that time the relations between the Serbs and non-Serbs were
13 quite normal. First of all, the Party of Democratic Action was formed and
14 both Serbs and Catholics were in it. Mr. Rasula Nedeljko and Mr. Ante
15 Tunic were among them. And at the end of the assembly session they
16 congratulated me and they went to celebrate with me because they had been
18 Q. You mentioned Mr. Rasula. That's Nedeljko Rasula. Could you
19 please explain to me who that person was and how you know him. When did
20 you first meet him, for instance?
21 A. Nedeljko Rasula was the President of the SDS of the other party in
22 Sanski Most. But before that Mr. Nedeljko Rasula was a teacher. We both
23 went to the same secondary school, so we knew each other personally. He
24 was a patient of mine. He would come to my practice for dental treatment.
25 Q. Now, after you stopped acting as president and -- but continued to
1 remain active with the SDA as a board member, did you attend meetings,
2 municipality meetings and SDA meetings?
3 A. Yes. Mostly all the meetings, unless I was prevented from doing
4 so or unless I was travelling somewhere. I would always attend, and I
5 would decide on all the issues on the agenda, on all the problems that
6 would arise at that moment.
7 Q. Now, these meetings you've talked about, did Mr. Rasula also
8 attend these meetings?
9 A. In general, if it was the municipal assembly or if there was some
10 sort of inter-party agreement, then Rasula would be present. He was the
11 first president and then he was the mayor and he was replaced by Vlado
12 Vrkes who was the president of the party. So Mr. Rasula in general
13 attended all the meetings.
14 Q. Moving up to 1991 and 1992 specifically, how many meetings of any
15 kind do you believe you attended where Mr. Rasula was also present?
16 A. Well, at least a hundred which we attended, in the course of 1991
17 and 1992. Approximately that number.
18 Q. Now, at these meetings, to the best of your memory - because it
19 was ten years ago - would Mr. Rasula take notes during the meetings?
20 A. Mr. Rasula was a professor. He was a very orderly man. He had a
21 nice characteristic. And regardless of who was leading a meeting, whether
22 it was he himself or someone else, he would keep his own private notes.
23 He would take his own notes and he would make a summary at the end. He
24 would make a note of the date, and he would put down his signature, he
25 would sign it. That was something specific to him. And next to his name
1 he would put the name -- his father's name and his surname. We often
2 laughed about this but his father died in the course of the Second World
3 War and as a sign of gratitude he would put down his father's name next to
4 his signature. That was something that was characteristic of him. Not
5 everyone would do this, and this is -- in this way, he was different from
7 Q. Okay. My question was specifically: Did he take notes? And
8 you've answered that he did. Is this something which you personally
10 A. [No audible response]
11 Q. You need to answer verbally, because we're recording this
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. It's important that you say either "yes" or
14 "no." Because otherwise, if you nod it won't go into the records. Thank
16 So your answer was or is?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said yes, as we formed three
18 parties we were in all respects the political authorities in Sanski Most.
19 We were those who were in power. And now it was necessary to establish
20 some sort of authority, solve those problems. The meetings when they were
21 held, if I was presiding I would be in the middle and the President of the
22 HDZ, Mr. Tunic, or the SDS President, Mr. Rasula would be by my sides or
23 it would be the other way around. If it was Rasula who was presiding or
24 Ante, we would be sitting next to them. At the beginning we were in
25 general, together and later, if there were inter-party agreements for
1 example between the SDA and the SDS then the representatives of the SDS,
2 the main board, they would sit on one side of the table and we would sit
3 on the other side of the table. And the two of us we sat opposite each
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Try to answer the question, the whole question, and
6 nothing but the question, leaving other matters for the time being until
7 you are asked about other matters.
8 The question was whether you can confirm by simply saying yes or
9 no that from your personal experience you know that Mr. Rasula kept
10 notes. This is something that you personally observed. That was the
11 question. Please answer yes or no.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: So Mr. Nicholls, your next question.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
15 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour.
16 Q. That's right, as I discussed with you, if you can try to answer
17 the question that I ask you, we'll move on more quickly and we'll cover
18 everything more -- more efficiently.
19 While you observed Mr. Rasula making notes at these meetings when
20 you were either sitting next to him or across from him in the room, do you
21 remember what kind of -- what method he would use? Whether he used
22 loose-leaf paper, whether he wrote in a book or a binder, if you can
23 describe what he took notes on.
24 A. In Bosnia and Herzegovina it was the custom for companies or
25 enterprises to give as gifts to friends or businessmen who held some sort
1 of posts, they would give them special diaries which were valid for about
2 a year. They had a certain size and they had -- they included a calendar,
3 the days for the entire year, so it was possible to make notes for a
4 certain day in such diaries. And if such a diary was given as a present,
5 you'd have the name of the company up at the top so that you would know
6 which company had given this as a present. But it was possible to buy
7 such diaries in book shops and in such a case you wouldn't have a
8 heading. That was the difference. They were either red or -- they were
9 either black or a sort of dark yellow colour.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: And Mr. Rasula's, what kind of diary or whatever did
11 he use that you know of, that you can tell us, to take his notes?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was a diary. It was a diary.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: It was a diary.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Can you describe it? I'm trying to take over a
16 little bit because otherwise we'll never get there.
17 Can you describe it?
18 MR. NICHOLLS: And if I could add specifically for 1992. Can you
19 remember what sort of diary he used to keep notes in?
20 A. Not only he had it. These were standard diaries, 25 by 15. That
21 was the size. Not only Rasula had it, but I had such a diary and other
22 people had such diaries too.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Biscevic, more or less between October and
24 mid-January, if not February, in my country I get something like 20, 30,
25 40 different diaries which I never use. But if I use one of them and I
1 want to explain to you which one I'm using, I have to describe it. This
2 is what is being asked from you. Can you remember -- can you describe
3 this diary that you saw Mr. Rasula take -- put down notes in? Can you
4 describe it? Did it have a cover? Did the cover have a colour? This is
5 what we want to know, not the size or whether it was a diary or not. We
6 have understood that it was a diary. But can you describe it? In other
7 words, if we were to go looking for a diary possibly kept by Mr. Rasula,
8 what should we -- what should we be looking for? How are we going to
9 identify this diary from so many others?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said that the diaries were either
11 black or dark coffee colour. I don't know why this diary is important. I
12 didn't pay attention to it. But I'm telling you in general what the
13 diaries look like and what sort Rasula had, what he used to make notes and
14 what I made -- used to make notes. It was black, as I said. He was
15 orderly, and he kept this diary in an orderly way, in a more orderly way
16 than we did. That was what was specific about him.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Next question.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour. What I'd like to do now is
19 show an item to the witness and see if he can recognise it. This is not
20 something that we're planning --
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah. Before you do that, perhaps you can ask him
22 whether there is anything else that he can recall that could help us
23 identify the diary.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: You've heard the question, sir. If you could
25 answer His Honour.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Did you ever observe him writing in this diary near
2 enough to see how he wrote?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, we sat next to each other.
4 Yes, I was very near him, at most of the meetings. As we were
5 presidents. So we would sit next to each other, on the whole. And these
6 diaries -- I'll repeat this again -- they are standard diaries. You can
7 have a hundred such diaries which are all identical. It wasn't only
8 Rasula who had such a diary or only myself. Hundreds of such diaries were
9 issued and used.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm not going to put any direct questions myself,
11 Mr. Nicholls.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honour, if I could show this object to the
13 witness. It's -- I'll identify it by its ERN number for the record. It's
14 01363236 through 01363305. And Ms. Gustin has that item.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Well, if it can -- if it can be taken out of that
16 plastic -- I don't know whether it can.
17 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honour.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: No.
19 MR. NICHOLLS: No. I'd prefer we don't do that. That's a chain
20 of custody item.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I wondered, actually.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: So I'd also like to state for the record that the
23 witness is having to look at that item through a plastic covering and
24 envelope which he's not able to open.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: And your question is?
1 MR. NICHOLLS:
2 Q. My question is: If you can remember, does that look like or is
3 that one of the diaries you've been describing to us? You've told us that
4 there were many. Is that similar to or not similar to the diary which you
5 saw Mr. Rasula recording notes in at meetings in 1992? And you can pick
6 it up or hold it. Just don't open the envelope.
7 A. Diaries of this kind were those that we had. Now, whether this is
8 Rasula's or not is not something I can claim.
9 Q. Yes. But --
10 A. But this type of diary we did have in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
11 Q. And if you can tell me -- my question is not whether that is
12 Mr. Rasula's diary but whether that is -- as you've said, is of the type
13 you had. Is that of the type which he used?
14 A. Yes, yes. That is the type, yes.
15 Q. Thank you. Now, moving on, you've told us that in the beginning
16 when you were President of the SDA the relationships with the other
17 parties and between Serbs and non-Serbs in general in Sanski Most were --
18 were good or correct, were normal. When did these good or normal
19 relationships start to break down?
20 A. There was a war in Slovenia that lasted some ten days or so and it
21 was over. Then the war moved to Croatia. When the war started in
22 Croatia, there was a mass call-up into the reserve forces of the Yugoslav
23 People's Army among Muslims and Croats who were rounded up and sent to the
24 front in Croatia. At that very moment we were faced with a dilemma as to
25 what should be done. Since the war was already on in Croatia, there were
1 large numbers of fighters, reservists coming back and when they would get
2 to Sanski Most they would get drunk, start shooting, throw hand grenades,
3 and provoke the Muslims and Croats. And that is when in certain
4 businesses started to be destroyed over the night. During the night we
5 would hear that it had happened the next day. Though we didn't know what
6 was really going on or who was behind it. In the meantime, as we saw that
7 the war was ongoing in Croatia, our relationships started to break down
8 from that moment on.
9 Q. Thank you. And what was the SDA position on the mobilisation and
10 whether Bosniak men from Sanski Most should go and fight in that war?
11 A. The position of the Yugoslav People's Army was that you were
12 drafted and you have to go where you are sent, where it is necessary. And
13 the need for that existed in the Republic of Croatia, which was in those
14 days a Yugoslav republic, a republic of Yugoslavia. However, as our
15 businesses were being blown up, we said that if our boys are going to be
16 called up, they should not go to Croatia, they should remain in Bosnia and
17 Herzegovina. If they are sent to Croatia, then we would not let the
18 Muslims and Croats go.
19 Q. Now, you talked about these problems with soldiers returning from
20 Croatia, blowing up property, and drinking. Were these incidents
21 investigated by the police, these crimes?
22 A. Yes. The police did investigate those crimes, but they never
23 discovered anything. Then we requested that we should have mixed patrols
24 during the night consisting of Serbs, Croats, and Muslims who would put on
25 uniforms so that people would know that they're officials to try and
1 establish who was -- who were the perpetrators. However, the military
2 department -- the head of the military department specifically, said that
3 they were doing their work properly and when they discovered what would
4 happen, they would let us know. But nothing came of that.
5 Q. And did these incidents of bombings and shootings at night, did
6 that continue on after, or was it ever stopped by the military police?
7 A. It continued on a nightly basis. Then they started getting drunk
8 during the daytime too, because Serb soldiers coming from the front could
9 freely carry weapons. There were no restrictions. And the army protected
11 Q. And just to --
12 A. They could do what they wanted.
13 Q. Just to be clear, could you tell me what time period you're
14 talking about now when you're describing these incidents of soldiers
15 causing problems.
16 A. This was the period of roughly the spring of 1992. End of 1991
17 and the spring of 1992.
18 Q. And were these problems which you've talked about, were those
19 discussed at municipality meetings at which you were present, to your
21 A. All meetings that were being held at the time - and they were held
22 almost every day, both in the municipality and in the military department
23 attached to the Secretariat for Defence and in the MUP - I attended too,
24 being a member of the main board.
25 Q. But at these meetings you weren't able to resolve these problems
1 and stop these shootings at night, or these explosions?
2 A. No. We couldn't. The situation worsened from one day to the
4 Q. And was Serb property damaged as well, or was it just non-Serb
5 property that was damaged?
6 A. No. No Serb property was damaged; only non-Serb property.
7 Q. And just before I move on, how frequent were these explosions of
8 non-Serb property?
9 A. At first not so frequently, but afterwards almost every night.
10 Q. Now, if you can tell me who was Branko Basara?
11 A. Mr. Branko Basara was the commander of the 6th Krajina Brigade who
12 came to Sanski Most with his unit from Jasenovac.
13 Q. When did you first meet him personally, approximately?
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Biscevic, it's -- I think -- I'm seeing you
15 referring to some notes that you have in front of you. I think it's only
16 fair to advise you beforehand that if you will in the course of your
17 testimony make reference or consult some notes, you may be asked to hand
18 them over so that they can be checked; in other words, the Defence, the
19 Tribunal, and everyone has a right to see those notes, copies of those
20 notes, yeah. We'll make copies. So it's your option. You have every
21 right to refer to notes that you may have kept or brought with you to
22 refresh your memory, but if you do you will have to make them available if
23 you are so requested.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am a dentist by occupation. I
25 have 40 years of service. I have about a million patients behind me in my
1 career. What happened ten years ago, if you want me to tell you the date
2 I will not be able to do so probably. I just took note of those dates.
3 It's up to you. This happened sometime in March. Mr. Basara with the 6th
4 Krajina Brigade arrived in Sanski Most.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Don't misunderstand me. We -- you are not being
6 criticised at all for referring to notes. One would expect you to have
7 something to help refresh your memory. However, you ought to know that if
8 you have notes which you are going to make use of in order to refresh your
9 memory, you may be required to make them available to us so that we
10 check. It's not a question that you don't have a right to consult those
12 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
13 Q. And Mr. Biscevic, I'd ask you to try not to refer to those notes,
14 just use your memory. It's okay to tell me if you don't remember
15 something. That's fine. It was ten years ago. And if you need to
16 refresh your memory, we can do that if it's necessary.
17 Now, I have to remember where I was. So sometime in March you met
18 Basara, who you said was commander of the 6th Krajina Brigade. What
19 capacity did you meet him in? How did you meet him? And I don't need the
20 specific date or anything like that, if you remember how it was that you
21 first -- you came to meet him.
22 A. There were incidents on a daily basis, and we requested that the
23 problems be resolved so that we had these daily meetings. And one day
24 when we had a meeting in the municipality, Mr. Basara came and so did
25 Mr. Zeljaja. I think he was a captain or maybe a major from Prijedor, to
1 attend these meetings of ours as representatives of the military of the
2 Yugoslav People's Army. We were glad to see them. He introduced himself
3 and said that he had come with his 6th Corps, that he had brought his
4 army, as he said, to rest after waging war in Croatia, and that they were
5 on leave and they would be on leave for a couple of day, and that there
6 would be no problems. As we were negotiating, the Serbs, Croats and
7 Muslims could not come to an agreement. Then Mr. Basara, as a military
8 figure of authority, said, "You politicians negotiate as you will, but
9 remember there must not be any war. We are guarantors of peace. And if
10 anything should happen, we will take control of it." And that is how I
11 met Mr. Basara. That was my first contact with him. Afterwards I had
13 Q. Thank you. And we'll talk about those further -- further contacts
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Nicholls, we have approximately three more
16 minutes. So whenever it's convenient for you to stop, if you are
17 switching on to something new, you just tell us.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: We could stop now.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. So we'll have a short break of 15 minutes,
20 resuming immediately after, and then we'll carry on. Thank you.
21 --- Recess taken at 5.14 p.m.
22 --- On resuming at 5.32 p.m.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Cayley, Mr. Ackerman, and Mr. Zecevic, it's
24 being suggested that on Thursday - this Thursday - we work in the morning
25 instead of in the afternoon. Would that be acceptable to you? Do you
1 have any other commitments that --
2 MR. CAYLEY: Yeah. That's actually problematic for me, Your
3 Honour. But I can see what I can do about reorganising my other
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So we will postpone -- would you let
6 Madam Chuqing know?
7 MR. CAYLEY: Yes, I will.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: As soon as possible, please.
9 MR. CAYLEY: Is that because we don't have a courtroom available?
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, exactly. I mean, not something -- if it
11 depended on me, I would opt for it every day, but it doesn't depend on me.
12 MR. CAYLEY: I will see what I can do.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Thank you, Mr. Cayley.
14 So Mr. Nicholls.
15 MR. NICHOLLS:
16 Q. Can you hear me, Mr. Biscevic?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Now, I'd like to turn your -- staying in the same time period, if
19 you could tell me a little bit about how weapons were taken from the
20 non-Serb population in Sanski Most. Could you start off by talking --
21 telling me about the weapons which were held by the TOs or Territorial
22 Defence. If you could tell me where those munitions were normally stored
23 and then if they were moved during 1992.
24 A. I shall try to explain things, to make things clearer for you.
25 First of all, we prohibited Muslims and Croats to report as reservists.
1 Though the order came from the army that they have to respond, otherwise
2 they could go to prison. As we did not accept this, our people did not
3 respond. After that, it was said that non-Serbs need not respond on
4 condition that they handed over their uniforms and their weapons. At the
5 same time we had regular meetings and at one meeting Mr. Nedeljko Rasula,
6 as the town mayor, brought with him a telegram which as he said - and we
7 didn't verify it - had come from Belgrade, according to which the weapons
8 of the Territorial Defence had to be stored in the MUP of Sanski Most.
9 And in addition to the weapons, that the active-duty military had, there
10 were also weapons for the Territorial Defence in companies, enterprises,
11 and other organisations, and there was a room where these weapons were
13 Q. Now, was that order carried out?
14 A. Absolutely so. A hundred per cent.
15 Q. And did that cause you and the non-Serb population any concern?
16 A. A great deal of concern, yes.
17 Q. Briefly why was that?
18 A. The Territorial Defence guaranteed arming in enterprises and local
19 communities and the villages may be mono-ethnic, be it Serb, Croat, or
20 Muslim. And in the municipalities inhabited by Muslims and Croats, if
21 they're left with no weapons, then they have nothing and that is what
22 caused us problems and that is why we were concerned.
23 Q. Thank you. Now, at some point were there also orders for
24 civilians to turn over their weapons, their licensed weapons?
25 A. As the weapons of the Territorial Defence were stored in the MUP
1 premises and attached to the MUP, was the building of the military
2 department of the Territorial Defence, then there were daily orders
3 broadcast on the radio station that weapons that had not been handed in,
4 had to be surrendered and no sanctions would be taken, no one would be
5 punished. Licensed weapons and weapons held by the military would not
6 have to be surrendered but only non-registered weapons. That is how it
7 was at first.
8 Q. You say at first. If you can continue. What happened with the
9 licensed weapons?
10 A. After that, again on Radio Sana there was an announcement which
11 said such and such a village or such and such a local community on such
12 and such a day at such and such a time had to bring their weapons and a
13 military truck would arrive with military officers to take over the
14 weapons, the weapons would be taken over, no receipts were given, the
15 weapons were driven away. We didn't know where they went.
16 Q. You said you -- these announcements would be made over the radio.
17 A. We were told they would be used for the Territorial Defence.
19 Q. Was radio transmission -- was that the normal way that these
20 announcements would be made, or were they made in other ways?
21 A. No. This was the normal method in those days.
22 Q. Did you or your family personally turn over any weapons as a
23 result of one of these announcements?
24 A. Yes. It was said that at 5.00 in the afternoon a truck would come
25 close to the house for licensed weapons, as both I and my son were hunters
1 we had licensed rifles, carbines, and pistols and we did not -- we
2 surrendered them all and we never received any receipts for them.
3 Q. Now, do you remember what day that was approximately?
4 A. That was just before the attack on Sanski Most, around April or
5 May. It started in April but then it escalated in May, because we have 26
6 villages so everything was not collected in one day. It took some time.
7 Q. Okay. And briefly back in -- back to April and the takeover of
8 the municipality building which occurred. You were -- if you understand
9 what I'm referring to, you were in -- you were one of the people in the
10 municipality building before the non-Serbs were ordered to leave; is that
12 A. Before the municipality was taken over, Nedeljko Rasula as the
13 town mayor organised a campaign to take control of the military department
14 and the MUP, then known as the SUP. On that day when the military
15 department and the SUP were taken over, all non-Serb preliminary were
16 simply driven out and from then on Sanski Most only had Serb police.
17 After that they were already able to do more or less what they wanted
18 because they had all the power, the weapons had been seized, so that we
19 were powerless. As they had captured the MUP and the military department,
20 then we said as the municipality building is at the other end of town,
21 then we said we would keep the municipality building, where we would have
22 our own centre; that is, the Croats and the Muslims. And that is when
23 differences arose between us, because this did not suit the Serbs. They
24 had already captured the radio station and the bank, and they didn't want
25 the municipality to be under our control. They -- until then we had
1 meetings amongst ourselves and there were some sorts of agreement amongst
2 ourselves. But it wasn't really agreements. They were giving orders --
3 so that finally on the 27th of April, as we had been in the municipality
4 for two days already, while we were in the municipality there were talks
5 between us and them. There was a delegation of theirs who came to discuss
6 what they could have in the building. But later on we saw that was a
7 farce. On the 27th of April, at 10.30 they launched a hand grenade.
8 There's a large square and a park next to the municipality. Then there's
9 the post office and the hotel across the way. They positioned two
10 machine-guns, hedge cogs all around so that there was no access. And the
11 military came in front of the municipality building. They were drinking
12 and shooting and acting in an unruly manner: And then they ordered us to
13 abandon the building or they would destroy it. And then a hand grenade
14 was thrown into the cellar. The building was not destroyed, but it was
15 enough for the Croats and the Muslims to climb out of a window and go to
16 the village of Sehovci. On the way there were no problems, though we did
17 see patrols. We saw them standing there, but they didn't cause us any
18 problems and they let us go to this village of Sehovci normally. We
19 stayed there until the next day in the morning. Nothing more happened.
20 Then the municipality was taken over. There was some shooting. And we
21 saw that the shooting was not limited to the area in front of the
22 municipality only but the main road from Prijedor to Kljuc, 1 and a half
23 kilometres away there were machine-gun nests opening fire, and we realised
24 afterwards that this was just a test to check whether the Muslims and the
25 Croats had any weapons and would resist, because they probably thought
1 that we would resist. And as no resistance was put up, we went to this
2 Muslim village, spent the night there. The next day everything was
3 peaceful. We went back and then the next day Mr. Talic intervened and he
4 came by helicopter to Sanski Most and he said that this should not have
5 happened, that Rasula was working on his own, that everything has to be
6 peaceful so that we could continue living peacefully.
7 From that moment on, there were no contacts or meetings between
8 Serbs and non-Serbs. There were no meetings. There were just orders. So
9 whatever they ordered, we had to carry out.
10 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please slow down.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Mr. --
12 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: The interpreters are asking me to ask you in turn to
14 slow down when you are giving your evidence, because you are giving them
15 too much work. Thank you.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I get a bit carried away.
17 MR. NICHOLLS:
18 Q. Just to clarify. You were in the municipality building at that
19 time and were one of the people who was forced out of it; correct?
20 A. The Croats and the Muslims and policemen who were of non-Serb
22 Q. But my -- what I just want to clarify is you were actually present
23 at that time and were one of those people; yes or no?
24 A. On that day I -- I was there. That evening I wasn't in the
25 municipality building, not when the shelling took place, because it was
1 Sunday, it was the weekend, and in the afternoon I went away for the
2 weekend, because I had a farm about 15 kilometres away. At the time there
3 were checkpoints. It was sealed off, and it was impossible to enter
4 anyway. So that evening I wasn't in the building. I wasn't in the
5 building when the hand -- when the grenade was launched.
6 Q. It's important to keep clear what you personally observed and what
7 you've heard about.
8 And similarly you spoke about a meeting where General Talic
9 spoke. You were not at that meeting, were you, the one you've just talked
11 A. I wasn't there. Mr. Mirzet Karabeg was.
12 Q. Now, after this event with the municipal -- municipality building
13 and the meeting which followed, in the next month you said that you,
14 meaning, I take it, non-Serbs had to do everything they said. Did things
15 calm down? Did they get worse? If you can just briefly tell me,
16 generally, whether things got better after that meeting or whether there
17 continued to be incidents of explosions and shootings and problems.
18 A. On a daily basis -- well, it carried on. It continued in a
19 negative sense. They had military power. This time they had the
20 policemen and they had political power, so that there was no need for them
21 to explain anything to us or to ask us for anything. The 6th Corps of
22 Lieutenant Colonel Basara was there. The reserve forces of the army was
23 there on a daily basis. They were all armed, because from that point in
24 time the reserve forces, the active police, and the active army, they had
25 the legal right to bear weapons. They set up checkpoints at all the
1 crossroads and these checkpoints were manned by armed soldiers.
2 Q. Okay. If I could move up now to the 25th of May, 1992. I want to
3 start talking to you about your personal story, what happened to you and
4 your family after that date. Okay?
5 A. On the 25th of May, the arrests had already started, the arrests
6 of us political leaders, so that Mr. Adil Draganovic had already been
7 arrested as well as Mr. Ico, a Croat whose name I don't know, and four
8 other -- five other men. Mr. Suad Sabic had been taken to MUP -- the MUP
9 for questioning. He was questioned there for a few hours and then a
10 colleague of his -- because the army was down below and he wasn't able to
11 go out, so a colleague of his took him home -- drove him home, and he was
12 arrested the following day. At that time, that was on the 25th, in the
13 evening of the 25th, as I had a goldsmith's shop in the centre of the
14 town. On the 25th, in the evening, next to my shop - because there are
15 about ten other shops there - a Zolja, a grenade was launched at one of
16 the shops in the evening. It was destroyed and the glass was broken, the
17 windows of all the other shops shattered because of the explosion.
18 Q. And was your shop damaged? I'm sorry. It wasn't clear to me from
19 your answer.
20 A. I can hear the interpreter. I'm waiting for the interpretation to
21 finish. That's why I slowed down a bit. I didn't finish what I had to
23 That morning I went there. All the windows -- everything was
24 covered in glass, my shop too. On that day, since it wasn't possible to
25 work, it was panic, I took some boards and boarded up the -- the window.
1 But at 4.00 in the afternoon I was told that the army was stealing from
2 the goldsmith's shop. They'd -- I didn't go there but a relative of mine
3 went there. But that was of no use at all.
4 That evening, on the 26th, an attack was carried out against
5 Sana. That evening there was shooting from all kinds of weapons, and this
6 took place in the town. I was in my house with my family at the time and
7 probably other people too, because we weren't soldiers. We thought that
8 there was just shooting going on in the town. But later on I found out
9 that this had been organised, this shooting had been organised and that
10 the surrounding hills had been taken by the army and the army was firing
11 from above. They were shelling from above, which were aimed at Sanski
12 Most -- which would fall on Sanski Most.
13 When the attack took place -- before that, they said -- they would
14 always say that armed forces have been surrendered but not a sufficient
15 number of arms. They would say, "Since Mahala has just Muslim population,
16 10 per cent of the people there haven't surrendered the weapons. They
17 should do so or the entire village shall be destroyed."
18 Q. Let me ask you. When you were walking through the town of Sanski
19 Most on the 26th of May, did you see any Muslims or Croats armed walking
20 around or did you see any armed resistance by Muslims or Croat civilians
21 or any non-Serbs at that time on that day?
22 A. Not a single one. We were only able to take sticks and go to war,
23 because there was nothing else to take.
24 Q. Let's move ahead one day to the 27th of May, 1992. What happened
25 to you at around 1.00 p.m. That day?
1 A. At 1.00 in the afternoon, three vehicles arrived, the army
2 arrived. They called me out. They said I had to go to a meeting
3 urgently to some sort of talks, that I was being summoned. A white
4 Mercedes and two other vehicles arrived. I was put in the Mercedes, in
5 the middle. There were two soldiers at the back and two at the front.
6 When I got in, they said that they had been ordered to handcuff me and
7 take me in. They handcuffed me as I was sitting in the middle and they
8 were sitting at the sides and there probably wasn't enough room so they
9 put the handcuffs at the front. My hands were in front of me. They took
10 me to the MUP building. I was left in the corridor there facing the
12 Q. I'm going to stop you for a minute. You were arrested at your
13 home at 1.00 p.m. Where was your wife and your three sons at that point
14 when you were arrested?
15 A. The attack against Sanski Most was in the evening, and then over
16 the Radio Sana they said, "We're now stopping with the attack for two
17 hours because in Gornja Mahala where the Muslims were in the majority
18 all the weapons hadn't surrendered and they would surrender the weapons in
19 two hours time all will be destroyed." My son, the eldest son, Haris,
20 that evening, as he had a girlfriend, she was in our house and she spent
21 the night there. During those two hours when there was no shooting, as
22 her father had had called her, he went to take her to her home. My wife
23 and myself and my two youngest son, who were twins, we were in our house,
24 we remained in our family house.
25 Q. Thank you. I'm sorry I interrupted you. Before I interrupted
1 you, you were saying you were taken to the MUP after you were arrested at
2 1.00 p.m. Can you tell me what happened when you arrived there.
3 A. I waited for some time in the MUP. The policemen who went there
4 with me, they went off somewhere, and they came back very quickly. They
5 ordered me to get into the car again and I passed through the town then I
6 saw that everything was burning in the town, the Muslim part, where the
7 shops were, that part was all burning. It had been destroyed. They drove
8 me through the town. And as I know the town of Sanski Most, they took me
9 to a village on the outskirts of Sanski Most. This village was called
10 Magarice. When we got there - that's about 3 or 4 kilometres from the
11 MUP - when they took me up there, that's a peasant place where Serbs
12 live. There was a house and a barn, a place where meat would be smoked.
13 And then I saw -- up until then I didn't know this, but I saw that there
14 were a lot of soldiers and there and lot of weapons, because you go along
15 the side. And as I was going along the side, there's a forest and then
16 there are fields and then I saw that they had boxes of weapons, about 60
17 by 80 centimetres and 50 centimetres high. They were piled up for about 2
18 metres and about 15 metres they extended to a length of about 15 metres.
19 Q. And which soldiers were --
20 A. And below at each -- every 10 metres -- as I'm a dentist, I don't
21 understand these things. But later on I heard that these were mortars.
22 These are small mortars. On a tripod there's one barrel and then they'd
23 put the shells in them and they would fire. Every 10 metres they had
24 positioned these mortars and they had binoculars. That's what you use
25 when you're put -- when you're determining the area, the geographical
1 area, and they could see everything with that. And then later, as I had
2 been imprisoned - I spent about 30 hours imprisonment - I saw that they
3 were observing through these devices and trying to decide which buildings
4 to destroy.
5 Q. Let me slow you down a little bit. You were taken up to this
6 village Magarice and you said you saw a lot of soldiers. Do you know --
7 well, I'll move on. Which -- what happened when you got there? Were you
8 taken out of the car?
9 A. When we got there, they took me out of the car. Then they -- we
10 went straight ahead, because there was an orchard there. We went -- right
11 in front of us. I knew Basara personally. I saw that he was sitting
12 there and an officer was with him. There was a table there in the garden
13 and there was a map of Sanski Most there. There was a litre of brandy.
14 They were sitting and drinking and looking at the map. And then I saw
15 there was a communication with Radio Sanski Most, because I could see
16 wires which probably went as far as Sana radio station. When I got there,
17 I approached them and I said, "Good day." The second person didn't say
18 anything. Basara pretended not to know me and said nothing. The other
19 one cursed me. He cursed my balija God and he said, "Come with me." He
20 then took me behind the orchard.
21 Q. Let me stop you. You said that you -- Basara was there. How do
22 you know that was Basara? You said he -- he acted as though he didn't
23 know. How are you sure that that was Branko Basara that you met on the
24 day you're telling us about?
25 A. We were in contact. We had attended quite a few meetings
1 together. We had discussed -- drank coffee together. So I knew him. He
2 probably felt uneasy, so -- so he bowed his head.
3 Q. Okay. And then what happened after you said this person who was
4 with him, this officer, began to curse -- curse at you and verbally abuse
6 A. He took me out of those grounds. He took me to the meadows which
7 were above the town. And it was a nice sunny day, so you could see the
8 town. You could see everything. Everything was very clear. And then he
9 cursed me and he said, "Look. You can see what you did to us." The town
10 was burning -- the entire town was burning, both the Muslim and the
11 Croatian part of the town was burning, because that's a special part of
12 town where the neighbourhoods join each other, so everything was burning.
13 He then took me back. I thought he was going to kill me, but he
14 took me back. He sat me down at a table. He gave me a sheet of paper,
15 and he said, "Write." He gave me a sheet of paper, and he said,
16 "Write." What was I to write? So when he came and saw that there was
17 nothing -- but before that, before that, when he was taking me back, two
18 soldiers were waiting. There was an orchard where there were plum trees
19 and a little sort of valley. Two soldiers were waiting. He didn't ask
20 them anything and he didn't say anything to them. They just took me
21 over. But I forgot to say when he saw that my handcuffs were -- my hands
22 were in front of me and I had handcuffs, he cursed them and said, "How are
23 you escorting him?"
24 Q. Who's he? Who said that?
25 A. This major. Not Basara but this officer.
1 Q. Okay. Continue, please.
2 A. "Put those handcuffs behind his back and make sure that they're as
3 tight as possible." And as I have larger bones, this hurt me. I am a big
4 man. This had to be behind my back. It was very difficult for me.
5 When we were turning, when he showed me the town, then two
6 soldiers simply took me -- took me from him. They took me to that orchard
7 then. They first took my documents, my papers, since I have all of them
8 here. Then they searched me, took everything out of my pockets, my money,
9 my driving licence, and then they started beating me. I don't know for
10 how long they beat me, but it was probably a long time. All I know is
11 that I broke the handcuffs. When they saw that the handcuffs were broken,
12 when I was no longer able to resist, then ...
13 Q. Take your time. It's all right. We can take a break whenever you
15 A. It's not necessary. It's not necessary to take a break. They
16 took some rope and they tied my hands in front of me. And then he said,
17 "Write." I didn't know what to write.
18 After is certain period of time had passed, he took a Skorpion,
19 hit me in the ears -- above the ears and he said, "What I'm going to say
20 you have to read." The soldiers put me in the car again, took me to the
21 town. I didn't know where. They took me to the radio station.
22 Q. Let me stop you before we get to the radio station. When you were
23 beaten in the orchard by these soldiers and you say that the handcuffs
24 broke, what were they -- how were they beating you? With their hands or
25 with sticks or -- I know it's difficult, but if you just describe it a
1 little bit.
2 A. They had their official truncheons and sticks, and they would beat
3 us with both. And they would hit us in the head, the kidneys, the legs,
4 in front. They would hit us in the kidneys.
5 Q. And then you said that -- and I'm not sure if the translation -- I
6 think it came out as that you were hit in the ear with a pistol. Is that
8 A. That was Basara. He didn't hit me. But he shot concern he fired
9 a shot from a Skorpion and said, "This is what is waiting for you and your
10 family if you don't read." I didn't know what he was talking about, what
11 he meant if I didn't read.
12 Q. And when you were -- you said up here you were told to write.
13 Were you told what to write? Were you told what words to put on this
14 piece of paper?
15 A. He said, "Write," and he left me there for a few minutes. When he
16 returned, there was nothing there. I simply didn't know what to write
17 about. I didn't know about what it was necessary to write, what it was
18 all about.
19 Q. Okay. And just before we move on, you said that you could look
20 down at the town and see buildings burning. We're talking about the town
21 of Sanski Most. What was the attitude of the soldiers there while this
22 was going on, if you observed that?
23 A. They were quite relaxed. They felt sure of themselves. They
24 sang. They drank. You could hear shooting. You know, for fun. They
25 weren't shooting at the city. So they -- I knew some of the reservists
1 and some people from Sanski Most. They simply pretended that they didn't
2 know me.
3 Q. Now, let's move on. You were telling us about how after this
4 beating and these events, you were taken by car to the radio station. And
5 can you just tell me approximately -- where is that radio station located
6 in general?
7 A. About 4 kilometres perhaps from that part. We drove there. They
8 took me to the radio station. And when I entered I found a sheet of
9 paper. There was some text on it. They made me sit down. There were two
10 soldiers at my sides. They were pointing Kalashnikovs at my head.
11 Q. Now, who brought you to the radio station? Civilians, police, or
13 A. No, soldiers. Camouflage uniforms. They weren't policemen.
14 Q. When you got to the --
15 A. They weren't civilians.
16 Q. When you got to the radio station, was there anybody that you knew
17 there? Did you know any of the people who worked had? Who was there
18 besides these two soldiers you said were pointing guns at you?
19 A. When I got there, opposite me -- the speaker of Sanski Most radio
20 station was sitting. Later I heard he was the director of the main Sana
21 Radio. Because before that that was Muslim who was expelled and
22 imprisoned and taken to a camp when I got there. Since I knew him -- his
23 mother knew me. She was a teacher of mine. His father was the chief of
24 the station. So he was a well-known person. He was younger than me. I
25 wasn't in contact with him, but I knew who this person was. He simply
1 shrugged his shoulders as if to say there was nothing he could do. That
2 things were as they were.
3 Q. Okay.
4 A. First of all he read something out. "We've captured the most
5 terrible extremist." That's what I heard. I didn't listen to that tape.
6 "We've found a soldier of Alija, representative of the party. It's his
7 fault for everything. He's one of the most extreme persons." And then I
8 was ordered to read that text.
9 Q. And that text was something that had been placed -- that you'd
10 never seen before that day.
11 A. No. No. And -- Badnjevic Ferid, one of the first ones that was
12 there, his nickname was Fajdo. I didn't even know Ferid. He had a cafe
13 in the village where Basara went every day. Later I found out that it was
14 Fajdo who was in question and I was surprised that he had been mentioned
15 as one of the main extremists. He was a friend of Basara's, but that's
16 how it was.
17 MR. NICHOLLS: Okay. At this point I'd like to play a tape
18 recording to the Chamber, have the witness identify it. I hope everybody
19 has a transcript.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's check on that first. Correct me if I am
21 wrong, Mr. Nicholls, transcript in the original B/C/S is 01104873, the
22 first page? Correct?
23 MR. NICHOLLS: I have to -- Ms. Gustin says yes, so ...
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. And the English version is ERN number
25 01907754 being the first page?
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: May I have confirmation from the interpreters that
3 they have a copy of each?
4 THE INTERPRETER: Yes, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Defence? All right.
6 MR. NICHOLLS: The tape is in B/C/S. It will be translated as
7 it's played. And I believe on the English version the first page should
8 be page 5 of the English translation of what we'll hear.
9 It should be keyed up to start at the section which is headed
10 "Female voice," which is just before we get to the main statement
11 [Audiotape played]
12 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] We call upon the inhabitants of
13 Podbrijezje to bring all their weapons and military equipment to the
14 crossroads at the checkpoint by 1800 hours. If not, at exactly 1810 hours
15 we will begin to shell the village. If the order is not complied with, we
16 will not bear moral or material responsibility for the consequences of the
18 The Serbian armed forces have captured the greatest Muslim and
19 Croatian extremist in the Sanski Most municipality Faik Biscevic who
20 attempted to flee from the town. This extremist will address the Croatian
21 and Muslim people over the radio and explain the reasons why he involved
22 them in the war.
23 Announcement, that all Muslims and Croats unconditionally hand
24 over all the weapons they possess legally and illegally and that they
25 surrender to the Serbian army and government because this is a Serbian
1 town. To avoid the soldiers having to use force to locate and seize
2 weapons, it would be better to hand over the weapons voluntarily otherwise
3 Sana will continue to be destroyed until final capitulation. That is why
4 we call upon all the citizens of Sana, Muslims and Croats, to hand over
5 their weapons straight away which would be better for them than to have
6 the town continue to be destroyed. That is why I ask you to see reason
7 and without delay, hand over all the weapons and surrender to the
8 legitimate Serbian authorities. This has to be done immediately. The
9 weapons have to be handed over in order for the destruction of the town
10 for which I bear most of the blame to cease. That is why again I call on
11 all Muslims and Croats to immediately hand over their weapons and
12 recognise the legitimate Serbian authorities so that the legitimate
13 authorities can start functioning as soon as possible and the destruction
14 of the town can end.
15 The Serbian armed forces guarantee the safety of all loyal Muslim
16 and Croatian citizens and I recommend to all Alijas and Tudjman's
17 extremists -- and I am their greatest follower in Sanski Most -- not to
18 lead their people into further bloodshed. I, Redzo Kurbegovic, Mirzet
19 Karabeg, Suad Sabic, Hasib Kamber, Ferid Burnic, Enver Burnic, Nihad
20 Kljucanin, Ekrem Medic, Nedzad Muhic, Eniz Sabanovic, Ahmed Paunovic, Hase
21 Osmancevic, Fahrudin Prsic, Arif Hodzic, Hidajet Dudic, Arif Muhanovic,
22 Fikret Agic, Muhamed Smajlovic, Muhamed Arapovic, Mehmed Alagic, Ibro
23 Pasic, Omer Krupic, Enisa Kurbegovic, Ibro Krickovic, Vahid Fajdo
24 Badnjevic, Safet Avdic, Vahid Handanagic, Suad Cehic, Ismet Ico Avdic and
25 his two brothers, Tale Zahirovic, Murahem Handanagic, Taib Crnkic, Hamza
1 Rekic, Fuad Kurbegovic, Osman Talic, Dervis Hamzic, Elhad Talic, and
2 Basic - I don't know his first name but he works in Borac Travnik in Lusci
3 Palanka - are guilty for everything that has happened recently. That is
4 why we are prepared, on the orders of the Serb armed forces to come out
5 before our people and to be judged by our people in the next few days. I
6 assure you that the command of the Serbian armed forces which is carrying
7 out the armed activities in Sanski Most was forced into such behaviour by
8 our lies and sycophancy. I call on all my sympathisers to join me to
9 surrender to the Serbian armed forces since that is the way we can stop
10 the further bloodshed of our people.
11 Sehovci, Poljak, Sasina, Podbrijezje and Caplje are to collect --
12 MR. NICHOLLS: [Previous translation continues] ...
13 Q. Do you recognise the voice on the tape we just heard, the long
15 A. Yes. Yes.
16 Q. Whose voice is it?
17 A. Mine.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's give it a number, please, now.
19 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: [Previous translation continues] ... the tape and
21 the transcript.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. That will be P827.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: What, the tape or --
24 MR. NICHOLLS: The tape. Let's make that the tape.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: And the transcript?
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Then that would be --
2 JUDGE AGIUS: A and B?
3 MR. NICHOLLS: That's fine, yeah.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Is that okay with you as well? P827.
5 Follow the usual sequence, Madam Registrar, with A and B
6 representing the English and the B/C/S versions. Thank you.
7 Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
8 MR. NICHOLLS:
9 Q. That was your voice -- that's a statement you were -- that you
10 read at gunpoint that day in the radio station in Sanski Most; is that
12 A. Two Kalashnikovs. Two soldiers, one on each side with two
14 Q. And that's the same statement that we've just heard that you were
15 forced to read that same day? The same words, the same statement? That's
16 a correct recording is what I'm trying to establish with you.
17 A. Yes. Yes.
18 Q. Now, that was your voice but --
19 A. Yes, it was.
20 Q. That statement, was it in any way voluntary on your part, making
21 that statement over the radio?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. My question is: Did you voluntarily make that statement?
24 A. I think that's a superfluous question. I had two Kalashnikovs on
25 each side of my head, and I didn't even know whether my family members had
1 been arrested or not. They had already been arrested, in fact, by then.
2 Q. I understand. And it is a silly question, but there will probably
3 be a couple more slightly silly questions that I have to ask you when
4 I'm trying to establish something for the record.
5 Now, all of those names which you read off as -- in that
6 statement - and I won't repeat them all - as being extremists who were in
7 league with you. Did you know who all these people were, those names you
8 were reading?
9 A. Some of them I didn't. I did know most of them, but some I
11 Q. Now, those people whose names you did know, were those dangerous
12 people? Were those people of danger to anybody in your opinion?
13 A. No. They were respected citizens, doctors, lawyers, judges,
14 businessmen, and they were all in the camp with me, each and every one of
15 them. If he wasn't killed, then he was with me in the camp.
16 Q. We'll get to that.
17 Now, after you -- let me ask you this: After you made that
18 statement on the radio - you were forced to make it - did you hear that
19 statement personally later? Do you know if that statement was replayed or
21 A. After spending 30 hours in the room used for smoking meat, they
22 took me to the prison in Sanski Most. In the prison in Sanski Most --
23 when we were going to eat, we left the cells. And also in the cell, as
24 the radio was tuned in loud upstairs where the Territorial Defence was, so
25 that for five or six days I kept listening to myself speaking, though in
1 fact I was in the cell. So I did hear it.
2 Q. Okay. Now, after you leave the radio station I think you just
3 said you're taken back to Magarice. Is that where -- were you taken back
4 to the same place, the same area where you had been given that severe
5 beating you were telling us about earlier?
6 A. They took me there. And when they took me back, the major was no
7 longer there but only Lieutenant Colonel Basara was there. They continued
8 beating. So they dragged me more or less. And he said, "Take that man
9 down there." And then they said to me, "Major" - whether it was
10 Brajic or Vukovic, I'm not sure of the surname - "explicitly ordered
11 that he must be here." So they shut me up in that curing room, hut,
12 where I spent 30 hours.
13 Q. And was there anybody else in that hut with you during that --
14 during that 30-hour period? Were you alone?
15 A. When I got there, I was alone. I was the first to be thrown in
16 there. However, the next day, when it dawned, Hamza Rekic was brought in
17 and then Asim, a male nurse. I don't remember his name. They behaved in
18 the same way. When they brought them in, these two soldiers would first
19 loot them, beat them up, and then bring them to where I was. They told
20 Hamza Rekic to come, and he came with his own Mercedes, and then they shut
21 him up. As for Asim, he was a young man. He was collecting the hay.
22 They found him there, and they brought him to Magarice.
23 Q. Okay. And while you were in there -- you've described it as a
24 hut. I take it as some small wooden shack or small wooden structure.
25 Correct me if that's wrong. Could you hear anything going on outside
1 while you were in there for those 30 hours or so?
2 A. Everything could be heard loud and clear. First of all, they had
3 gathered in large numbers. They had heard on Radio Sana - because there
4 were loudspeakers everywhere - that I had been arrested. And as they
5 knew me. They said, "We've caught Alija's combatant."
6 This curing shack is about 2 metres by 2, and they're simple
7 boards, and there's a space between them, and then some of them would come
8 and try and stab me with the bayonets. When I got there, I saw what it
9 was. Kemal Malovcic is a singer, a well-known singer, and he had a very
10 nice villa in a Muslim settlement, and they kept saying "Kemal's villa."
11 And they would say, "We've missed it," and then suddenly they would all
12 scream out, "We've hit it, and it's burning." So they were simply
13 targeting these buildings and destroying them.
14 Q. And just another silly question. When you say "they" and "them"
15 all through the statement you just made, you're talking about Serb
16 soldiers -- 6th Krajina soldiers -- 6th Krajina Corps soldiers?
17 A. Again, they -- the army, the Yugoslav People's Army, had a truck.
18 In front there were boards. And you could just see the barrel of a
19 machine-gun peeping out. When I got to Magarice, I got trucks -- I saw a
20 canteen, I saw an APC, and I saw a very large number of troops. They
21 would come to sleep there. They didn't sleep in town, they slept there,
22 so that I knew that that was where they were -- that their headquarters
23 were. Basara was there and another major and the command and a radio
24 station they used to issue orders about all operations that were going on
25 down in town.
1 Q. Okay. And you said that you were held there in this shack for 30
2 hours. Where were you -- what happened after that 30 hours? Where were
3 you taken?
4 A. At 12.00 at night they took us out where the canteen was and they
5 gave us some macaroni, some pasta. Each one of us got a plateful of
6 macaroni to eat because we hadn't eaten anything for 30 hours.
7 When we had eaten it, there were three cars that were brought
8 there and they put one of us in each car. There was -- I was in the
9 middle, two soldiers on each side, a third next to the driver, and the
10 driver. And all three had Kalashnikovs pointed at my head. As it was
11 midnight and as all three car were going, I thought that we were going to
12 be executed. Where else would they take us at that time of night? But
13 that didn't happen. They took us to the prison in the town of Sanski Most
15 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry. I'm not sure when exactly we --
16 JUDGE AGIUS: You have approximately one minute more.
17 MR. NICHOLLS: I think we may as well break.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated]
19 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, Mr. President.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: It's a good time to break, actually, because
21 there's a new chapter.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: So we need to stop here, because that's the time we
23 have allocated to us. We will continue tomorrow.
24 Do you think you will be in a position to finish your
25 examination-in-chief tomorrow?
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Definitely.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: And Defence?
3 MR. ZECEVIC: Your Honours, it depends, of course.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah, obviously. But more or less.
5 MR. ZECEVIC: We are going to conduct the cross-examination
6 anyhow, yes.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Well, try and conclude it tomorrow then.
8 Yes. You will be escorted out of this courtroom by the usher, and
9 you will return here tomorrow at 2.15. Hopefully there won't be the same
10 delay as there was today, because you will be the first witness and we
11 will start straight away according to our schedule. I thank you.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
13 [The witness stands down]
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Now, tomorrow we will be sitting in this same
15 courtroom, Courtroom I. I don't know about Thursday which courtroom would
16 that be if we work in the morning, which courtroom would that be.
17 THE REGISTRAR: Still Courtroom I perhaps.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Still courtroom --
19 THE REGISTRAR: But I will confirm for you tomorrow.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. But we will wait, of course, confirmation from
21 Mr. Cayley.
22 MR. CAYLEY: Well, Your Honour, to be frank with you, you should
23 go ahead anyway. What concerns me at the moment as you know Ms. Korner is
24 in another trial.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: I know.
1 MR. CAYLEY: And I know that you have a desire that at least one
2 of us be present in the courtroom.
3 Tomorrow I do have a problem. I've got an engagement that is
4 actually linked to Thursday, so I will not be here. And it's unlikely
5 that Ms. Korner will not be here either. But what we will try to do is
6 get another lawyer to sit in. It's unfortunately unavoidable and it's not
7 something we anticipated was going to happen.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's take it -- be more practical about it. This
9 witness, I suppose will finish tomorrow. I hope so at least. Lets
10 anticipate that we will finish with him tomorrow. Then the next one will
11 be 7.139; who will be examining?
12 MR. CAYLEY: Ms. Richterova, and that is who I'm hoping will be
13 able to sit in and replace me tomorrow with Mr. Nicholls.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. That should be enough. I think we could
15 move -- move ahead.
16 MR. CAYLEY: Thank you, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: But if you do have a problem, do let me know.
18 And if there is a problem with the Defence, any prior commitments
19 or anything, do let me know as well. Okay?
20 So we'll meet again tomorrow. We'll resume tomorrow at 2.15.
21 Thank you.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
23 at 6.32 p.m., to be reconvened on Wednesday,
24 the 19th day of June, 2002, at 2.15 p.m.