1 Friday, 6 December 2002
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.08 a.m.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: So Madam Registrar, let's call the case, please.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. Good morning, Your Honours.
7 This is case number IT-99-36-T, the Prosecutor versus Radoslav Brdjanin.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Brdjanin, good morning to you. Can you hear me
9 in a language that you can understand?
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. Yes, I
11 can hear you and I understand you.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Appearances for the Prosecution.
13 MR. WAIDYARATNE: Good morning, Your Honour, I'm Kapila
14 Waidyaratne, for the Prosecution. My colleague, Mr. Nicholas Koumjian
15 will be taking the witness today. Your Honour may excuse him, he's out
16 talking to the witness.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: He is not out. He is in.
18 MR. WAIDYARATNE: Thank you, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
20 MR. WAIDYARATNE: I think Mr. Koumjian will introduce himself.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: You forgot Ms. Gustin. Appearances for Radoslav
23 MR. ACKERMAN: Good morning, Your Honours I'm John Ackerman and
24 I'm here with Milan Trbojevic and Marela Jevtovic.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: And I thank you and good morning to you too. Today
1 we have Witness 7.40. I take it that he has not asked for and has
2 therefore not been granted any protective measures.
3 MR. KOUMJIAN: Correct.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Any preliminaries before we bring in the witness.
5 MR. KOUMJIAN: What I was explaining to the witness is if we do
6 not finish with him today and I expect we will, Mr. Waidyaratne will be
7 handling his cross-examination on Monday because I'm doing Stakic.
8 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour I hope the Prosecutor will let me do
9 the cross-examination.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you both. Let's bring in Mr. Garibovic.
11 Well it very much depends upon you, Mr. Koumjian. His statement is here.
12 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour in addition --
13 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think he is a witness that deserves to be
14 here more than a day. I personally -- is it the first time he's giving
16 MR. KOUMJIAN: This is not a Stakic witness.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: No he's not a Stakic. This is why, but I do have --
18 no, I don't think it's the first time he's giving evidence.
19 MR. KOUMJIAN: No it's not. He has testified about Omarska
21 JUDGE AGIUS: He gave evidence in Omarska? That one I didn't
23 MR. ACKERMAN: In addition, Your Honour we provided a letter to
24 the Prosecution saying we do not contest the Mount Vlasic events so I
25 don't think it will be necessary to go into much detail regarding those.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Anyway, that's up to the Prosecution. As usual I do
2 not or I try not to interfere much. But I'm sure that Mr. Koumjian will
3 take into account what you've just stated, Mr. Ackerman. Namely that you
4 are not contesting as such the occurrence of those events you referred to.
5 Mr. Koumjian, you will soon start your examination-in-chief but first let
6 me ask the witness to make the solemn declaration.
7 [The witness entered court]
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you, sir.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: You have given evidence in this Tribunal before so
11 you know what the practice is. You are holding in your hand the text of a
12 solemn declaration. That will be your undertaking with this Tribunal,
13 with this Chamber, that in the course of your testimony, you will be
14 saying the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. So I invite
15 you now to enter that solemn declaration.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
17 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
18 WITNESS: EMSUD GARIBOVIC
19 [Witness answered through interpreter]
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. You may sit down.
21 Yes. Good morning to you. And welcome to this Tribunal. You are
22 going to be questioned or asked a series of questions by the Prosecution
23 first and the officer of the Prosecution who will be questioning you is
24 Mr. Koumjian whom I understand you already know. After that, you will be
25 cross-examined by the Defence. I invite you to answer the questions in
1 the simplest of ways, shortest way. Don't go at a tangent just answer the
2 question the whole question and nothing but the question and that will
3 almost guarantee you being able to go back home by tomorrow. Otherwise,
4 you will have to come back or stay here over the weekend in The Hague and
5 continue your testimony on Monday. And I can assure you the weekend is
6 going to be pretty cold. Thank you. Mr. Koumjian.
7 Examined by Mr. Koumjian.
8 Q. Good morning, Mr. Garibovic. Would you state your name for the
10 A. I am Emsud Garibovic.
11 Q. And Mr. Garibovic, where and when -- where were you born and what
12 year were you born?
13 A. I was born in Trnopolje on the 29th of September.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: [Previous translation continues] ... is already in
15 the testimony that you gave in the other case where you said where you
16 were born and about Garibi and whatever. Do you confirm to us that what
17 you testified in the other case is truthful, is the truth?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it is.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: [Previous translation continues] ... crux of what
20 you want out of the witness, Mr. Koumjian and forget about the small
21 details. We can refer to them from the transcript of the previous
23 MR. KOUMJIAN: We haven't offered the transcripts of the previous
24 testimony or discussed it. It's from a different case, Omarska, but I
25 will proceed accordingly.
1 Q. Sir, in 1992, can you tell us where you were living?
2 A. I was living in Trnopolje.
3 Q. Did you actually live in Trnopolje or in a hamlet in the area of
5 A. Yes. In a hamlet called Garibi.
6 Q. Your last name is Garibovic. Were there many other people with
7 the same last name in that hamlet?
8 A. Yes. A village, a whole village, some 80 houses strong was called
9 after Garibovics who lived there.
10 MR. KOUMJIAN: Could I ask the usher if you could move please the
11 ELMO so that I have a line of sight to the witness? Thank you. A little
12 bit further back. Thanks.
13 Q. Sir, in 1992, I want to take you to the day of the takeover of the
14 municipality of Prijedor by Serbian authorities. Do you recall that
15 morning what your experience was?
16 A. Like this: Over the radio and throughout the media the population
17 were being simply called upon to surrender, they were also invited to lay
18 down weapons if they had any. That is what I can tell you about that.
19 Q. At that time, where were you working?
20 A. I was working for a factory called Javor in Prijedor.
21 Q. That morning, were you able to go to work?
22 A. No. On a -- en route to Prijedor at the checkpoint I was turned
23 back, together with a number of other passengers who were taking the same
24 bus. The passengers who were turned back were by and large all Muslims.
25 Q. When you say they were turned back, describe what happened. Who
1 turned you back?
2 A. At the checkpoint, near Cirkin Polje, they boarded a bus with
3 weapons and they asked us simply for our IDs to look at them. Those who
4 didn't have them but we simply had to all get off the bus because we were
5 told that we had done what we had to do and there was nothing for us in
6 Prijedor any more so that when we got off the bus, we all went home.
7 Others stayed there to wait for another bus, which was to come from
8 Prijedor. Shortly, and others mostly went back on foot, but by and large,
9 all the Muslims who were on that bus were turned back.
10 Q. You said that they boarded the bus. Were these people in uniforms
11 and if so, can you tell us do you know what type of uniforms they were?
12 A. Yes. They were in uniforms. The uniforms were those of the
13 Yugoslav People's Army.
14 Q. When you went back home, I want to talk about that period of time
15 between that day, the day of the takeover, and the attacks that you
16 witnessed on Hambarine, and Kozarac. Did you go back to Garibi after
17 being turned back from work?
18 A. I did, yes, and after that, I did not go to work any more. I
19 spent all my time at home.
20 Q. Who were you living with at that time?
21 A. I was living -- well I had two brothers and two sisters and my
22 father worked abroad in Germany. My mother died some ten years before the
23 war. So I lived in my father's house, although I'd already built my house
24 but we had not moved house yet, since my wife was the housewife. I mean
25 she was looking after the whole household there.
1 Q. You said your wife. Did you have any children and if so, what
2 ages were your children in 1992?
3 A. I did. I had two sons. The first one was called Sead and the
4 other one was called Mirsad. The elder is 18 now and the younger one is
5 14. So one was born in 1985 and the other one in 1989.
6 Q. During the few weeks between when you were turned back from work
7 following the takeover and the attacks, can you describe what life was
8 like for the people in Garibi?
9 A. Life was very bad. People were afraid. We were simply afraid.
10 People, I mean men and women and children, left their homes at night and
11 went to a nearby village called Sivci. And when day would come, they
12 would come back home and engage in whatever business, whatever chores they
13 had. That is tended to their forms and their livestock and so on and so
14 forth. But there was a great deal of fear. People were not there, would
15 quit their homes at night and come back by day.
16 Q. Was Garibi a village made up of one particular ethnicity and which
18 A. That's right. They were Muslims, although around them there were
19 Serb houses, there were villages such as Radonjici, Nisevici and so on.
20 Q. Any time were there -- was there a checkpoint set up anywhere
21 around Garibi either by the people of Garibi or those from the surrounding
23 A. Yes. A checkpoint was set up in Trnopolje and it was at a
24 crossing on the way to Petrov Gaj.
25 Q. Who controlled that checkpoint?
1 A. That checkpoint was controlled as I have said before, before the
2 split occurred, everybody was involved in that -- at that checkpoint,
3 Muslims and Croats and Serbs. In Trnopolje, there were members of 17
4 different ethnic groups and prior to the conflict, they were all manning
5 those checkpoints. However, when things fell apart, only Muslims and
6 others stayed there.
7 Q. So at one point the checkpoints were mixed and later, the -- is it
8 correct that the Serbs left the mixed checkpoints?
9 A. That's right, yes.
10 Q. I want to go now to the day of the attack on Hambarine. First we
11 don't expect you to have a perfect memory for dates. If you do not
12 remember the exact date, that's fine. But do you remember the day of the
13 attack on Hambarine?
14 A. I do. It was Saturday to Sunday, the night between Saturday and
16 Q. How did you become aware of the attack on Hambarine?
17 A. One could hear shells falling. I could not see that but one could
18 hear shells falling over that place.
19 Q. Garibi is actually on the other side of Prijedor from Hambarine;
20 is that correct? It's quite a distance away?
21 A. That's right. It's quite some distance away.
22 Q. After witnessing the attack on Hambarine, do you recall hearing
23 any radio announcements?
24 A. Yes. The next day, that is Sunday, people are invited again to
25 turn over weapons, if they had any, any weapons from pistols, hunting
1 rifles, all weapons. It was pointed out. All the weapons that people had
2 at home, whether they be licensed pieces or not. They were all invited to
3 turn them over.
4 Q. Which people were being invited to turn in their weapons, all the
5 people of Prijedor or who was it directed against? Or towards?
6 A. Muslims and others only. I mean the non-Serb population, Croats
7 and others.
8 Q. Do you know if there were calls for the Serbian population to turn
9 over their weapons by the Serbian authorities?
10 A. No. They were not invited to turn in their weapons.
11 Q. During the period of time in late 1991 and early 1992, leading up
12 to these events, did you see any evidence or become aware in any way of
13 any arming of the Serbian population in the areas of your neighbours in
14 the areas around where you lived?
15 A. Yes. I heard that nearby Serb villages, one of them, Nisevici
16 that a helicopter landed there one day and simply that some weapons had
17 been brought, and other places such as Radonjici and Petrov Gaj, I could
18 see their lorries arriving, covered with canvasses and they were arriving
19 there and I presume they were also bringing in weapons.
20 Q. On the Sunday, after you heard the announcements regarding the
21 surrender of weapons, what happened? That Sunday, after the attack on
22 Hambarine, you said you heard demands for surrender of weapons. And then
23 what occurred?
24 A. Well, afternoon, around 1.00, that is when several shells were
25 fired on my village, and simply people from my places started fleeing
1 towards Sivci, some towards Huskici and so on.
2 Q. From where you were, could you see any other areas that were being
3 shelled besides your village?
4 A. At that time, no, but in the afternoon, when it was already
5 getting dark, the shells started to fall on all the surrounding places
6 with Muslim populations. This happened in Kozarac, Kozarusa, Mujkanovici,
7 Huskici, Kevljani, so all the surrounding settlements.
8 Q. You indicated that Garibi was surrounded by Serbian villages; is
9 that correct? Or Serbian population.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Was anyone in Garibi before or during this attack shooting out,
12 firing their weapons at anyone outside of Garibi?
13 A. No.
14 Q. What did you do with your wife and your small children at that
16 A. I went to a neighbouring village with my wife and children, the
17 village was called Huskici.
18 Q. Did you have some family at Huskici?
19 A. Yes. The wife of my brother used to live there before she got
21 Q. What happened when you all arrived in Huskici?
22 A. That evening was just terrible. All the surrounding settlements
23 were shelled all night, until morning. I stayed in that house and the
24 other citizens also stayed in their homes since there was a stream there,
25 some people crossed the stream and fled, but for the most part, we stayed
1 in the village of Huskici.
2 Q. During that time, in the village of Huskici did you see any
3 Muslims or Muslim forces firing or attacking Serbs or other people?
4 A. No, I didn't see that.
5 Q. How long did you stay in Huskici and what happened next?
6 A. I stayed in Huskici that night and the next day, I went to Brdjani
7 with my wife and children.
8 Q. Why did you go to Brdjani?
9 A. We had heard from some people that there will be a kind of
10 surrender, a column would be formed and that it would be possible to go to
12 Q. What did you -- what happened when you left for Brdjani?
13 A. Everything looked just terrible. All the houses were devastated
14 by the shelling. There was a lot of dead cattle around. Everything
15 around was destroyed by the shelling.
16 Q. What happened when you and your family were travelling towards
17 Brdjani? Did you arrive there?
18 A. Yes. I arrived at Brdjani, and then later, I came back again
19 because we had heard that it was allegedly possible to go to Prijedor. I
20 returned through Kozarac.
21 Q. How long did the shelling go on for? You said it started at about
22 1.00 on Sunday. When did the shelling stop?
23 A. In the morning.
24 Q. Would that be Monday morning? You said it started Sunday
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And then what --
3 A. Yes. It stopped on Monday morning.
4 Q. You said you tried to go to Prijedor through Kozarac; is that
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. What did you see when you went through Kozarac and what happened?
8 A. Kozarac was completely destroyed.
9 Q. You and your family joined a convoy or a large group of people
10 going towards Prijedor; is that correct?
11 A. Yes, that's right.
12 Q. Were you in a vehicle? Were you walking? Were you carrying your
13 children? How did you travel?
14 A. We went on foot towards Prijedor.
15 Q. Was that convoy or that group of people, were they organised by
16 any army or police at any point? Did you see any of the Serbian army or
17 the police?
18 A. Yes. They were standing on the sides as an escort on the way to
20 Q. How were the people walking? Were all the families mixed
21 together? And at any time was anything organised by the police or army?
22 A. When we started to turn from Kozarac, on the road that leads to
23 Prijedor, we were all mixed up. All the time, men, women, and children
24 were walking along and they were all mixed together. After a while, the
25 soldiers who were standing on the sides regrouped everybody. They made
1 the men walk on one side and the women and children on the other side so
2 there was a division.
3 Q. And you were walking towards Prijedor; is that correct?
4 A. Yes. Then we were stopped next to the Ziko restaurant or next
5 to the Limenka bus stop which was there.
6 Q. What happened at this stop?
7 A. The place where they stopped us, they started immediately to beat
8 certain people. They asked if anybody had a knife or anything like that,
9 they confiscated that. People threw those things away. A lot of soldiers
10 were stationed there. There were tanks, mortars on the sides. I could
11 see all of that. And people there were loaded up into buses. The men
12 were loaded into buses, as well as the women and children, but men were
13 taken to certain buses and women were taken to other buses. In any case,
14 there were buses there and we went into those buses.
15 Q. Were those buses from a particular company? Did you recognise
17 A. They were blue buses that I used to ride on every morning when I
18 went to work. They were the blue Ikarus buses of the Prijedor transport
20 Q. That's also called AutoTransport Prijedor; is that correct?
21 A. Yes, that's correct.
22 Q. Where did the bus that you were on take you to?
23 A. It took me to Trnopolje.
24 Q. Did you see, among the men, were the men all put on buses
25 indiscriminately or did you see any selection of men for various buses?
1 A. Yes. Some were separated and put on the buses. In any case,
2 there was some kind of grouping made. I couldn't see that right away,
3 only later, since most men went to Omarska and only two or three buses of
4 men at that time arrived at Trnopolje.
5 Q. You had mentioned your brother, one of your brothers. You had a
6 brother named -- you had two brothers; is that correct?
7 A. Yes, that's correct.
8 Q. Were your brothers with you when you were travelling on that -- to
9 surrender in Prijedor?
10 A. No. My brothers were not with me.
11 Q. When you got to the Trnopolje camp, did you find either of your
13 A. No. I didn't find any of my brothers there.
14 Q. When you arrived there, did you see your wife and children?
15 A. Yes, but only in the morning, because when we arrived we were --
16 the men, we were locked up in a gym and that's where we spent the whole
18 Q. The next morning you saw your wife. How long did -- is it correct
19 that you stayed at the Trnopolje camp yourself until the 21st of August,
20 1992? Is that correct?
21 A. Yes, that's correct.
22 Q. How long were your wife and children at the camp?
23 A. They didn't stay that long. They were there for a few days and
24 then after that, all the women, together with the children, went to a
25 nearby village called Sivci.
1 Q. This Court has heard quite a bit of evidence, I believe, about the
2 conditions at the Trnopolje camp so I do not think it's necessary for you
3 to go into detail but having been there for quite sometime, can you just
4 briefly describe to the Judges what it was like to be in the Trnopolje
6 A. Yes. The conditions were bad. There were no toilets, there was
7 no water, there was mud all around. There was a lot of rain at the time.
8 There was no food. Simply the conditions were really bad.
9 Q. Focusing on the period of time prior to the visit of foreign
10 journalists on, I believe, the 5th of August, can you describe what the
11 food was like up until that time?
12 A. We didn't get any food, only if we managed to get some food
13 ourselves, or if we had someone to bring it to us. Since my wife was in
14 Sivci, she managed to bring something for me to eat, and whatever she
15 brought, I would share with the others so it was very little. As far as
16 the Red Cross is concerned, it existed but we weren't getting anything
17 from them. People who had money were able to buy bread and those who did
18 not have any money were not able to do that, only if they were given
19 something to eat by somebody then were they able to eat.
20 Q. You mentioned your brothers. Did you learn where your brothers
21 were while you were at the camp?
22 A. Yes. My brother Ahmet was in Sivci the whole time and then after,
23 when Sivci was cleansed of men, he was taken to Keraterm. My brother
24 Irfan was caught or captured in Benkovac with another group, a group of
25 people who had simply tried to cross over Mount Kozara. They just wanted
1 to go to another territory, to Croatia or somewhere like that, but in this
2 attempt, they were captured and the whole group was transferred to the
3 Omarska camp.
4 Q. And is it correct that your understanding was in the group your
5 brother was in, the men were armed? Irfan's group?
6 A. Yes. They did have some weapons from the Territorial Defence,
7 which had been distributed before.
8 Q. Did you learn how your brother was treated at the Omarska camp?
9 A. Yes. I found that out from men who had arrived. Actually, the
10 first group of people who had been released from Omarska told me about
11 what happened to people whose last name was Garibovic in Omarska.
12 Q. What happened to those people named Garibovic in Omarska?
13 A. One evening, they asked all the persons with the Garibovic last
14 name to come outside. My brother Irfan came out with that group. They
15 beat them senseless on the way out. And then a car engine was heard to
16 start up and they were driven away somewhere and to this very day, nothing
17 is known about those people.
18 Q. Do you know how many people from Garibi that you know were taken
19 away that night and disappeared?
20 A. That night, 11 people were taken away.
21 Q. I don't think it's necessary to give the names of those
23 JUDGE AGIUS: It's up to you.
24 MR. KOUMJIAN: Some courts are listing the names of victims so we
25 could do that.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, exactly but I think he also refers to some of
2 these details in his previous testimony and certainly, in his statements
3 to the German FBI.
4 MR. KOUMJIAN: That's correct but they are technically not
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, exactly but I don't -- if we need to know these
7 names we will have them admitted. If not we will go ahead. Yes,
8 Mr. Ackerman.
9 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, with regard to that previous
10 transcript, the preliminary information about his date of birth and his
11 family and all that, this list of names that we are talking about now, we
12 will stipulate to all of that and therefore it becomes an official part of
13 the record.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. Thank you.
15 MR. KOUMJIAN: Thank you, Mr. Ackerman.
16 Q. You also -- so it's not necessary, sir, Mr. Garibovic, to mention
17 all those names which you've testified to before. In the Trnopolje camp,
18 I think you may have been aware that some of the Serbian authorities say
19 that this was a camp only for people who wanted to come. It was voluntary
20 and that you were free to leave at any time. Did you feel free to leave
21 the Trnopolje camp at any time?
22 A. No. I didn't feel free, and people did not leave the camp.
23 Q. Do you recall if there was a machine-gun set up at the camp at
24 one -- in one point in the camp?
25 A. Yes. It was there. It was placed at the entrance. And there
1 were several such places throughout the camp where there were camp guards
2 who did have weapons. They were armed. They were guarding us.
3 Q. This machine-gun, was it pointed out, as if protecting the camp or
4 was it pointed in towards the camp?
5 A. Sometimes it was pointed towards the camp. The weapons that were
6 there, that people carried, was in all kinds of positions. It was pointed
7 towards us, sometimes they carried it with them, sometimes they would
8 leave it. But generally it was pointed towards us.
9 Q. You talked about learning about the people or the guards at
10 Omarska looking for people named Garibovic. When you found that out, how
11 did you feel in the Trnopolje camp? Did that frighten you?
12 A. Yes. I was frightened at the Trnopolje camp, and I simply started
13 to avoid such contacts with other people. I was simply afraid.
14 Q. In the Trnopolje camp, did you learn of any killings of people who
15 had been inmates there?
16 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour I'll object to that, unless he can say
17 who it was he learned it from and who was killed and detail, something
18 more than just base rumour.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: But the question isn't that -- whether he had heard
20 anything of the sort but whether he learned of any killings of people who
21 had been inmates there. So let's take it -- I understand your objection
22 but I don't think you are right. But let's be specific. While you were
23 in Trnopolje, were you yourself witness of any killings? Did you see
24 anyone being killed while you were in Trnopolje?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not, but people left the camp
1 that I know about and never came back again, throughout the time that I
2 spent at the camp. They simply ended up somewhere.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: And you learned about this while you were still in
4 Trnopolje or afterwards?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] While I was at the Trnopolje camp.
6 I was there for three months and people were disappearing after a month, a
7 month and a half, two months.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Any way, I will leave it at that and leave it in
9 your hands, Mr. Koumjian but please try to be as specific as possible.
10 MR. KOUMJIAN:
11 Q. Mr. Garibovic, were there ever any times that the guards asked
12 Muslims, the inmates, to go bury individuals?
13 A. Yes. That was asked and people would go and bury the persons and
14 then come back.
15 Q. Did you ever speak to any of these individuals who had to bury
16 persons who had been killed from the Trnopolje camp or surrounding the
17 Trnopolje camp?
18 A. I would see people leaving and coming back. The people went down
19 that road. I can give you an example here. For example, when Matrici and
20 other villages were rounded up, that night many people were killed and the
21 next day people, other people, went to bury them.
22 Q. Did you know of a family in the Trnopolje camp, and I believe the
23 name is Forici -- Forici?
24 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour it's Forici. We have heard this
25 about six times and I've never contested it.
1 MR. KOUMJIAN: Okay. Given that I will go on. Thank you.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Ackerman, taking you up on this, whenever you
3 can intervene along these lines, the Chamber will appreciate it. Thank
5 MR. KOUMJIAN:
6 Q. Mr. Garibovic we were talking about your feelings of whether
7 you could leave or not. After you learned about the guards at Omarska
8 looking for Garibovics, did you attempt to get out of Trnopolje?
9 A. Yes. One day, since the Red Cross was distributing -- it's like
10 this. When Keraterm camp was disbanded and some people came, but not all,
11 from Omarska, there was a lot of people, it was overcrowded at Trnopolje,
12 and life conditions, living conditions, were impossible and they saw
13 that. So they allowed people from Prijedor, with a pass, to go to
14 Prijedor, but this pass had to be picked up at the Red Cross. It was
15 issued at the Red Cross by Major Slobodan Kuruzovic. So one day I went to
16 collect this pass, since I had an uncle in Prijedor, and I wanted to leave
17 Trnopolje and go to Prijedor. However, I wasn't allowed to do that.
18 Q. Did you speak personally to Kuruzovic, requesting the pass, the
19 permission to leave the camp?
20 A. Yes. When I saw in that same period people who had applied for
21 this pass and they did get the pass, but I did not, so then I myself went
22 there and spoke to Kuruzovic and he said to me that I couldn't get such a
23 pass. There was a kind of remark or some kind of intervention, as far as
24 I was concerned, and that I was not allowed to go to Prijedor so I
25 returned to the camp.
1 Q. Did Kuruzovic tell you who had intervened in your case or explain
2 what he meant by there was some kind of intervention in your case?
3 A. No. He said that he didn't know anything, that simply there was
4 some kind of intervention and that I could not leave the camp.
5 Q. You mentioned prisoners arriving from Keraterm and Omarska. When
6 you saw them, when you observed their physical condition, can you tell us
7 if there was anything noticeable about them?
8 JUDGE AGIUS: I authorise you to be specific here and go direct.
9 MR. KOUMJIAN:
10 Q. What did they look like, the men that came from Omarska and
12 A. Those people were different from us who were at Trnopolje. Those
13 people looked terrible. They had lost 20 to 30 kilograms. They had
14 beards, they were dirty, they had dysentery. I can say that they looked
15 awful. Some of them were beaten. I could see that when they were taking
16 their clothes off, other people had to help them to do that. Some of them
17 couldn't even walk. They had to be helped by others. It was really
19 Q. I want to go now to the -- excuse me, at some point in the camp,
20 did the International Red Cross arrive at Trnopolje?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. How -- when was that in relation to when you left the camp, the
23 21st of August? Can you give us an approximate date of when they -- the
24 International Red Cross first started to come to Trnopolje?
25 A. Yes. This was sometime after the Keraterm camp was disbanded. I
1 can't remember the exact date but it was at that time. Already at that
2 time a group had arrived to Trnopolje from Omarska but at that time,
3 Omarska was not yet disbanded.
4 Q. Prior to the 21st of August, had convoys left the Trnopolje camp?
5 A. Yes. There were several convoys which went towards Travnik.
6 Buses and trailer trucks usually went to Travnik. But there were also two
7 or three -- I can't remember exactly but I can say three convoys by rail
8 that went towards Banja Luka and Zenica. I don't know who else managed to
9 get on those convoys but my wife and children did.
10 Q. Do you know approximately when your wife was put on to the train
11 convoy, was able to get on to the train convoy?
12 A. It was sometime in mid-June perhaps. I can't remember really. I
13 only know it was June, June or perhaps July. I can't really remember. It
14 was either late June or July. I don't know. All I know is that my wife
15 and children left with a convoy going through Banja Luka.
16 Q. Did your wife describe the kind of train it was? Was it a
17 passenger train with benches for seats or? What did she tell you about
18 the train and the conditions in which she was transported out of the
20 A. Like this: It wasn't far from the camp so that I could see myself
21 what kind of rolling stock was used and what kind of carriages were that
22 my wife left. Those convoys were made of metal. I'd say those were
23 livestock wagons. And she and others left in those carriages which looked
24 more like those used to transport livestock. I mean they were made of
25 metal and they were all closed, there were no windows, there was just one,
1 a door, which in the middle of which opened but of course the door had to
2 be shut during the transport.
3 Q. Did she describe the conditions during the transport?
4 A. The conditions were bad. Children, old people, a number of sick
5 among them. They had no water. They had no food. They had no air. It
6 was very hot. The train stopped on a number of occasions but the door
7 wouldn't open. They did not know why that train stopped so that it was
8 very difficult, a very difficult trip.
9 Q. On all of these convoys, prior to the 21st of August, was there
10 any selection of the people that could go? Were young men, for example,
11 allowed to get on to these convoys?
12 A. Like this: It was mostly women, children and the elderly. Men
13 were not allowed. Men who looked, men who were of a younger age, they
14 could not leave the Trnopolje camp unless they had some money, unless they
15 had connections, unless they knew somebody. Then perhaps some of them did
16 manage to leave.
17 Q. You talked about the International Red Cross. Prior to the 21st
18 of August, the day you left on the convoy for Vlasic, had the
19 International Red Cross registered you and other men at the Trnopolje
21 A. No, not during my stay. Nobody registered. So I didn't either.
22 Q. On the 21st of August, did a convoy appear at the camp? Or let me
23 back -- ask you another question. How did you first learn about the
24 convoy that you were on, on the 21st of August? What was the first
25 information you received about that?
1 A. Let me put it this way: All the convoys from Trnopolje, people
2 from the neighbourhood were rounded up the day before and brought to
3 Trnopolje and then could be taken away the next day. So if they brought
4 people from nearby places, they would be brought there in the evening and
5 then the next day, they would be sent on.
6 Q. Prior to the 21st of August convoy, was there a particular area
7 that was brought to the camp or, or village?
8 A. Sure. For instance, when I left, there were people from the area
9 of Dzonlagici.
10 Q. Did you learn about the convoy the morning of the 21st of August
11 or the -- or prior to that?
12 A. Before that.
13 Q. On the 21st of August, what time did the convoy begin to form?
14 Did any trucks or buses arrive at the Trnopolje camp?
15 A. Yes. Only four buses came from Prijedor. There were no trucks.
16 Q. Was Slobodan Kuruzovic present on that morning?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Was this convoy similar to the others in that young men were not
19 allowed to board?
20 A. I can answer that in the affirmative.
21 Q. Young men were not allowed to board the convoy the 21st of August?
22 A. Like this: They did not allow us, but again, on the other hand,
23 they did not stop us. You understand what I mean? They did to the stand
24 by the buses and turn men back. They stood there and saw us get on but
25 had they been standing by the door, none of us would have been allowed to
1 board. So they didn't prevent us but they didn't allow us. We were
2 simply let on to the buses. That is how I can put it.
3 Q. Approximately how many people were on the bus that you boarded?
4 A. Many, many. I'd say, I'm sure there were more than 100, perhaps
5 even as many as 150 in a bus.
6 Q. Did the four buses that you saw arrive at the camp leave together?
7 And if so, where did they go?
8 A. Well, after we boarded them, we arrived in Kozarac. We left
9 Trnopolje and arrived in Kozarac.
10 Q. At Kozarac, did you see other vehicles that joined your buses?
11 A. Yes. When we arrived in Kozarac, then on the main Prijedor-Banja
12 Luka road, we waited to be joined by a convoy which was allegedly to
13 arrive from Sanski Most or Gomjenica, Sanski Most, I know it was something
14 like that. And I know that we waited there for a while to be joined by
15 this convoy coming from the direction of Prijedor and there was all --
16 there were also trailers, I mean trucks.
17 Q. When this convoy joined you, were you able to see how many buses
18 and trucks, additional, had joined the four buses that came from the
19 Trnopolje camp on the convoy?
20 A. I couldn't see that, because I was in the bus, but there were very
21 many people and I can say that they allowed, since they there -- since
22 those four buses were crammed, some people were allowed to get off the
23 buses and get on to trucks or perhaps some other buses. I don't really
24 know how many vehicles there were behind us or what else was there so that
25 some people left the buses because they were overcrowded and moved over to
1 trucks, trailers and so on.
2 Q. The buses that arrived at the camp, did you recognise the buses
3 and if so, could you tell us what company they came from?
4 A. Those buses were blue and they were of Ikarus make, the same kind
5 of buses I used to take to go to work and from work of the AutoTransport
6 Prijedor of course.
7 Q. Were the drivers of the bus, if you were able to notice, regular
8 civilian drivers?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. When the buses arrived, was there any group of police or army
11 escorting the buses that came with you on the convoy?
12 A. Yes. All of those convoys that were organised were escorted by
13 the military and the police.
14 Q. This particular group that escorted you, can you describe the
15 uniforms? Were they all wearing the same uniforms?
16 A. In front, the driver wore the uniform of the former Yugoslav army,
17 so that was that. Those who came in vehicles -- in blue vehicles, they
18 had blue uniforms, patterned uniforms, and those were the police. And one
19 or two who were in the front also wore uniforms of the former Yugoslav
20 People's Army.
21 Q. When you say blue patterned uniforms, is that a -- do you mean a
22 camouflage or what kind of pattern do you mean?
23 A. I'd say it was something like camouflage.
24 Q. Those -- the convoy proceeded through Banja Luka and through
25 Skender Vakuf and made several stops which I don't think we need to go
1 into in detail; is that correct?
2 A. It is. I can say that we did not stop anywhere, and that it all
3 went on like that. There were no problems until we reached Skender Vakuf.
4 Q. At some point -- well is it correct that there were several stops
5 at -- following that; is that correct? Following Skender Vakuf?
6 A. Yes, yes. Following Skender Vakuf, we stopped several times. I
7 cannot tell you how many times exactly but I do know that we were stopped
8 several times.
9 Q. At one stop, did you notice an individual carrying a
11 A. That's right.
12 Q. What kind of uniform was this individual wearing?
13 A. He was also in a Yugoslav People's Army uniform except that he
14 also had a red beret on his head.
15 Q. Can you briefly describe him?
16 A. Well, he was about 190 tall. He was rather -- his complexion was
17 dark. He was slim. At that time, he also had some kind of a talky-walky
18 in his hand and he was using it to converse with somebody. And when
19 getting off and passing by him on my way to a brook, I overheard him say
20 something like, "Well, in about half an hour."
21 Q. Did he say that to you or on the walkie-talkie?
22 A. On walkie-talkie because he was talking with somebody.
23 Q. After you reboarded the bus following that stop, did you see that
24 man again?
25 A. Yes. He was in the front of the bus.
1 Q. And what did he say or do at that time?
2 A. He simply said, after -- before -- after the separation, because
3 for a while, we all proceeded together but then the bus was stopped again,
4 and then men of my age, older than I am, and younger, were separated or
5 rather we were ordered to move over to an empty bus.
6 Q. At that point, where men were separated, are you saying it was men
7 of approximately military age, 16 to 50, something like that?
8 THE INTERPRETER: Sorry, we could not hear the witness.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Can you repeat your answer? Because the
10 interpreters didn't hear you.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, those were men of my age,
12 older than I am, than I was, and younger, too.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
14 MR. KOUMJIAN:
15 Q. Well, were they children and elderly men or only men that were not
16 either children or elderly?
17 A. Children and women and the elderly stayed in the bus.
18 Q. At that point where you were separated, was it only your bus or
19 could you see if men were being selected from other buses and trucks on
20 the convoy?
21 A. I could not see anything, because as we got off, we were ordered
22 to keep our heads down.
23 Q. Did you see if any men came on to your bus that hadn't been on the
24 bus before? Or perhaps -- let me withdraw that because my question may
25 assume something that's not true. At the point where men were separated,
1 did you get back on the same bus or did you get on a different bus?
2 A. No. We got on to another bus which was empty.
3 Q. On that empty bus, did you see only people that had been on your
4 bus or did you see some other men join you?
5 A. We were ordered to keep our heads down, so all I can say is that
6 the bus was full and that there were many people in it.
7 Q. Thank you. I know it's very difficult and -- but please tell me
8 if you can give any estimate of the number of people that were on your
9 bus? Can you give us any idea, after the men were separated, and were you
10 put back on the new bus, how many men do you think were on that bus?
11 A. Perhaps around 150 in my bus.
12 Q. At any point on the convoy, were you robbed or did anyone demand
13 goods or money from you or others on the convoy?
14 A. Yes. On our way, the man with this red beret he had a small bag.
15 So he passed it around and we were told to put in money or jewellery
16 or whatever we had so some people did and put it in this small sack. I
17 mean whatever they had.
18 Q. That man with the red beret you described him but did you notice
19 anything about his mouth?
20 A. Yes. I think -- no, I don't think. I saw when I passed by him, I
21 cannot be 100 per cent sure but I think -- I think he was missing some
22 teeth or at any rate that his teeth were in bad shape.
23 Q. The men who were separated, were they put on only one bus or more
24 than one bus?
25 A. I didn't understand the question. I can't answer it.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Could you please repeat your question, Mr. Koumjian?
2 MR. KOUMJIAN: Of course.
3 Q. At the point where military-age men were separated, could you see
4 if there was only one bus that you were being put on, the bus that you
5 were on, or was there a second or third bus?
6 A. All I saw was that bus, which I took.
7 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour I'm coming to a point where it might be
8 not very convenient to break in ten minutes. Do you want me to continue
9 longer on break now?
10 JUDGE AGIUS: We will break now, Mr. Koumjian, and we will resume
11 in 25 minutes' time. How do you think you're going?
12 MR. KOUMJIAN: I'm going well. I think we'll finish.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: I would imagine so. In other words, you are
14 confident that you would finish with the witness in the course of the next
16 MR. KOUMJIAN: Yes.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you. Would that put you in a position
18 to conclude your cross.
19 MR. ACKERMAN: I have a very short cross, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
21 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, if I could I bring up one matter since
22 we do have a few minutes, I was instructed to bring up.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: In the presence of the witness?
24 MR. KOUMJIAN: I don't think it's a problem. There is a witness
25 BT30 arriving tomorrow and the question is do Your Honours want the
1 witness to testify Monday? The witness would be available to testify
2 Monday if that's necessary but we only have four witnesses for next week.
3 We do not believe it will take all week for those four witnesses.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: I was told or rather we were told by Ms. Korner that
5 you had no witnesses for Monday.
6 MR. KOUMJIAN: And that's why I was asked to relay this new
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Ackerman.
9 MR. ACKERMAN: My sense is that if that witness doesn't testify
10 that's the witness we scheduled for Tuesday.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, for Tuesday, exactly. And 7.3 if I remember
13 MR. ACKERMAN: If we sit on Monday then we probably can't sit on
14 Tuesday because of the way we've arranged to do the witnesses and so if
15 one of those days has to be off it probably ought to be Monday. Do you
16 understand what I'm saying?
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. We will sit on Tuesday. We will sit on
18 Tuesday because the moment one starts disrupting the arrangements made,
19 everyone usually tries to make some arrangements the moment that there is
20 an opportunity of some free time. So I can quite understand,
21 Mr. Ackerman, that was the understanding until the day before yesterday so
22 let's leave it at that. Okay? And let's try and finish with this witness
23 today. I thank you. We will resume in 25 minutes' time. Thank you.
24 --- Recess taken at 10.23 a.m.
25 --- On resuming at 10.53 a.m.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, sorry for the delay. Mr. Koumjian, you may
2 resume. Thank you.
3 MR. KOUMJIAN:
4 Q. Mr. Garibovic, when we were last speaking you told us that after
5 the point of separation, you were placed on the bus, the very crowded bus,
6 with about 150 men. How far did that bus then drive or how much further
7 before you made a stop in that bus, in terms of time?
8 A. Not long, 10, 15 minutes maybe.
9 Q. When you were on the bus at that point, were you allowed to look
10 around or was there an order not to?
11 A. We were ordered to keep our heads down, to look at the ground, and
12 our hands at our -- at the back.
13 Q. At that point, or after being separated and placed on that bus, at
14 that point, did someone come to collect your valuables?
15 A. No.
16 Q. Well, that -- please help me because I'm a little confused. At
17 what point -- I believe we talked about the fact that you were asked to
18 give up money and valuables; is that correct? All the prisoners?
19 JUDGE AGIUS: He did testify on this earlier on he said a man with
20 a green beret, a red beret, with a red beret and put everything in a bag,
21 and he had a missing tooth or something. So what else do you want to know
22 from him?
23 MR. KOUMJIAN:
24 Q. After the 10 or 15 minutes when the bus stopped, what happened?
25 A. The man in the red beret, who was in the front of the bus, told
1 us, "Now you'll get off the bus. And now you're going to be exchanged,
2 living for the living and dead for the dead."
3 Q. Did you get off the bus and what happened when you got off the
5 A. Yes. Like this, we all got off through the front door, because
6 the rear door wasn't open and behind the bus, we formed a column, standing
7 in two, that is how we were ordered to stand, in a line of two.
8 Q. When you got off the bus, did everyone from your bus exit and form
9 those two lines? Was it your entire bus that was then lined up outside,
10 as far as you could see?
11 A. Yes. All people got off my bus, but when I got off, I could see
12 some ten metres away that there was another identical bus standing in
13 front of us.
14 Q. Did you see anyone get off that bus yourself? Did you see that?
15 A. No.
16 Q. When you were lined up at that point, can you describe the area
17 that you were in, what it looked like? What was the road like?
18 A. The road was all stones, and across from us where we lined, there
19 was an elevation, but it was rocky, that is a rocky area, and the road, it
20 wasn't asphalt. It looked paved with stones.
21 Q. When you say there was an elevation on one side, do you mean that
22 there was a sheer rock face on one side of the road?
23 A. That's right. As we were lined up in those two lines, this rock
24 was behind us and on the other side, there was a chasm. So in other words
25 it was a wood path, a forest path, which was cut through.
1 Q. What happened after you were lined up in the two rows?
2 A. We were ordered to turn to the right, and then the command was to
3 simply start, to move, lined as we were, except that we had to keep our
4 heads down and our hands had to be on our backs. One of the colleagues
5 who was there did not keep his head sufficiently down, I remember this
6 well, and a soldier came up and hit him so badly that he fell straight
7 away, and then told us we had to keep our heads down as much as possible,
8 and hands at the back.
9 Q. What was the order then?
10 A. Then we were ordered to turn and proceed, and I can say that we
11 went on foot for some 10 or 15 minutes from the place I mean where we had
12 got off the bus.
13 Q. So you were walking in two lines; is that correct?
14 A. Walking, yes. And then the command was to stop.
15 Q. And then what?
16 A. To step forward two paces. I don't remember whether it was two or
17 three, but be that as it may, we were told to turn towards the chasm and
18 to make two or three steps forward. As I was the first one next to the
19 chasm, I did not manage to make those two or three steps because I can't
20 tell you exactly but I know that had I made that, either second or third,
21 I would have dropped down so that I stopped at the very edge, and then we
22 were ordered to go down on our knees. I did not manage to kneel, as I
23 did, because the man behind me, as we were standing in this line, he
24 simply pushed me into that chasm and that is when we once again heard the
25 gunfire from behind our backs.
12 Blank pages inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts. Pages 12482 to 12488.
1 Q. When you walked to the edge of that cliff and squatted down, can
2 you describe or do you recall now about that abyss? Can you give us any
3 estimate of the depth of the drop?
4 A. All I can say is the place where I was, it didn't look like that,
5 because I was somewhere in the back of the column. The place where I was,
6 it was a little bit like this, but the column was to the right of me and
7 it was perhaps 20 or 30 metres long, the men were lined up, so the place
8 where we were, the chasm was so steep, this is what it looked like.
9 Q. You've indicated for your hand I'm going to describe it for the
10 record, that the witness indicated an almost 90 degree angle as far as the
11 edge of the cliff. I think he actually indicated that the cliff slightly
12 protruded over the abyss.
13 Would you agree, Mr. Ackerman?
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Incidentally, Mr. Koumjian, do you have any
15 photographs of this area or videos of this place?
16 MR. KOUMJIAN: Yes. We have photographs. We will have them at
17 the next break. Obviously taken much later but yes.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
19 MR. KOUMJIAN:
20 Q. Sir, you said you were at one end of the line and -- am I correct
21 from what I understood you to say, at the point you were at, it was a
22 little less steep, the cliff, there was a little angle; is that correct?
23 A. Yes, that's correct.
24 Q. You said the man behind you pushed you. Is it correct that the
25 two lines were right next to each other at the edge of the cliff?
1 A. Yes, that's correct. I am repeating it once more. I didn't
2 manage to make two or three paces. I can't remember. But had I made
3 three paces I would have already fallen down the cliff so I was already
4 pushed, but we didn't even manage to kneel and by that time, by the time
5 we knelt, they had -- kneeled down they had already fired into our backs.
6 Q. Okay. That was my question. When did you hear the gunfire in
7 relation to when you were pushed? Was it before or after you were
9 A. You could hear it immediately, as we were kneeling down. At that
10 time, I wasn't pushed yet.
11 Q. What do you recall about your fall?
12 A. It was like this: I remember, because I remained conscious
13 throughout, I didn't lose consciousness, I turned over my head and then I
14 rolled down the rocks and then I was stopped by rocks and by some growth
15 that was quite low to the ground, but other people further up had been
16 shot and I could see a man with half his head missing, who rolled over my
17 body and continued to roll down. So when I stopped, there were already a
18 lot of people at the bottom who had been shot at and who had fallen down.
19 Q. Do you have any estimate of the number of metres that you fell?
20 A. It was all very fast. I don't know exactly how many metres it
21 was. I can't say. And I haven't been back there yet, although I do want
22 to go back but I haven't been back to that place yet.
23 Q. When you reached the bottom, did you smell anything?
24 A. Yes. I could smell something bad. During my fall, I could see
25 clothing around, so I believe that we were not the only group that was
1 harmed in that place.
2 Q. When you say you smelled something bad, I don't know if you had
3 ever smelled a decaying human body, but were you familiar with that smell?
4 A. No.
5 Q. When you smelled that at the bottom, did you feel -- did you think
6 that that was the odour of human decay, a human body decaying?
7 A. Yes. That's what I thought.
8 Q. How long did you hear the shooting go on for?
9 A. The shooting went on for so long, for as long as -- for the time
10 that it took me to get up from where I was and cross to the other side of
11 the water. During my fall, there was water down at the bottom, water
12 flowing, so I got up and the impetus to get up was given to me by my
13 colleague who was there before me who got up and left. Then I also got up
14 and started moving after him.
15 Q. And I don't believe there is a problem. We'll use his first
16 name. Was that Bahrija that you saw?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And just so you know, he's given us permission to use his name,
19 just so you don't feel concerned about that.
20 A. Very well.
21 Q. When you saw him, what did the two of you do? You and Bahrija?
22 A. He gave me the impetus to get up and to follow him. Then we
23 crossed to the other side of that river and we passed between two water
24 mills that were there on the river. They were made of wood. And we
25 crossed to the other side. The other side was covered by a wood.
1 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, I'm going to select a couple of
2 photographs and show them to Mr. Ackerman first.
3 Q. Mr. Garibovic, do you know what happened to the people on the
4 other bus that you saw when you got off your bus?
5 A. I was under such stress after that that I simply was not able to
6 move from there. Bahrija left me for a moment and went towards the cliff,
7 from the other side, and he saw how they were bringing, from the first bus
8 that was standing in front of our bus, certain numbers of people and they
9 were killing them. And those people also ended up down there.
10 Q. So the people from what you call the first bus, the bus that was
11 in front of yours, were taken off after you and killed in smaller groups,
12 according to what Bahrija told you; is that correct? Bahrija; is that
14 A. That's correct.
15 MR. KOUMJIAN: Could the usher just bring these to Mr. Ackerman?
16 I'll get to them later.
17 Q. What did you and Bahrija do?
18 A. Bahrija looked as if he were in a much better state than I was.
19 He was not so beaten up and he was psychologically in better shape than I
20 was. We waited until morning in that place. I say morning but maybe it
21 was about 3.00 or 4.00 a.m. Then we started to climb, to go up through
22 the forest, because the terrain was steep. But I didn't say this. After
23 the shooting stopped, you could still hear the sounds of people who had
24 not died yet. You could hear them. They were giving signs of life. They
25 were moaning. I cannot claim exactly whether they were people from our
1 group who had survived and who were going somewhere, who were climbing up
2 or maybe they were people who were hit and who were down at the bottom in
3 that group just lying there but were still giving signs of life.
4 Q. How long did you hear them moaning? Throughout the time that you
5 were staying at the bottom waiting for daylight?
6 A. It went on the entire time that we were there, and we were there
7 until perhaps about 3.00 a.m. That whole evening and until 3.00 a.m.
8 The people could be heard for several hours and then after that, there was
10 Q. You indicated you've never been back to that spot, and I don't
11 know, has anyone ever shown you photographs of an area that they believe
12 was spot of the massacre?
13 A. No. Nobody ever showed me photographs.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Ackerman?
15 MR. ACKERMAN: I don't know if this would assist. The photographs
16 that I was shown are attached to a Rule 92 bis witness proffer that I have
17 agreed to and you're going to get that testimony and all the photographs,
18 more than what he has there, and if it's awkward for this witness to try
19 to identify them or something, you're going to have them in any event
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, let's show them to the witness. Perhaps we
22 will have some sort of an indication from him whether the terrain is
23 familiar or not.
24 MR. KOUMJIAN: Before I do that, Your Honour, I have the witness's
25 testimony from the Omarska case. May that be marked as Exhibit P1538?
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Madam Chuqing just check the sequence and --
2 the number sequence, make sure that it is 1538. I usually rely 100 per
3 cent on Ms. Gustin. Is that correct? Yes. So that will be P1538. Yes,
4 Mr. Ackerman?
5 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, I haven't looked at this with a view
6 toward whether there should be redactions or not. I think there are none.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: I would imagine that there aren't any, Mr. Ackerman.
8 MR. ACKERMAN: I think they are not. I hadn't considered this
9 might be offered as an exhibit so I hadn't looked through it.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: I went through it more or less the details of what
11 we have now. It's a little bit basically about the Vlasic itself. It's
12 exactly almost a replica of what he's testified now. And much of what
13 he's testified today he was not asked upon in the other case. So I
14 don't -- and there was no mention of your client.
15 Yes. The only thing that there is that he was eventually treated
16 for wounds in Banja Luka but again, in the Banja Luka hospital and there
17 are some -- yes, some, but he didn't testify.
18 MR. KOUMJIAN: I'll go over that in I think more detail.
19 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, I read it yesterday so I know pretty
20 much what it says. All I was saying to you was that it hadn't occurred to
21 me that the Prosecution might offer it as an exhibit so I hadn't read it
22 from the standpoint of whether I would agree to its submission or not or
23 contest its admission. If that's the case that they want to offer it as
24 an exhibit it seems to me we are kind of in a position we are with the
25 rest of these witnesses where we are offering their prior testimony that
1 that pretty much forms the direct examination and we could avoid going
2 through a lot of this stuff over and over again.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: There was my suggestion in the first place to
4 Mr. Koumjian at the beginning of the session, the sitting today. But any
5 way --
6 MR. KOUMJIAN: That's not what -- we hadn't anticipated using it
7 at all but Mr. Ackerman brought up the offer to stipulate to the names
8 included in that testimony.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: He was being proposed as under Rule 92 bis, no?
10 MR. KOUMJIAN: No. This witness?
11 JUDGE AGIUS: I think so. Let me check to make sure.
12 MR. KOUMJIAN: No.
13 MR. ACKERMAN: There is another witness whose testimony is
14 virtually identical, Your Honour, that I have agreed to.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: No, no, it was viva voce. But anyway if we can
16 speed up, accelerate as much as we could, that would be better.
17 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour I have five photographs marked P1539, 1
18 through 5.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes and usher, please, put them one by one on the
20 ELMO and the witness can follow either directly on the ELMO or on his
22 MR. KOUMJIAN:
23 Q. Mr. Garibovic you may either look at the screen or look at the
24 photograph to your right but that photograph that's on the screen, do you
25 recognise that spot?
1 A. I've said many times where I was, and the place where we stopped
2 was at a bend in the road. So according to what I remember, and to what I
3 said, this could be this bend here.
4 Q. Okay. Let's look at the next photograph we understand you can
5 only --
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's for the record, does the first photo that has
7 been shown have a marking on it or an ERN number or something? Can.
8 MR. KOUMJIAN: We have marked it with the exhibit number
9 attachment 1.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Even if it's going to be exhibited later on but at
11 least we will have a reference indicated now because otherwise we will
12 lose complete track of which photo he's --
13 MR. KOUMJIAN: Not an ERN number but that was P1539-1 and this
14 would be P1539-2.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
16 MR. KOUMJIAN:
17 Q. Sir, this appears to be a photograph of an abyss, a cliff. Does
18 this appear to be consistent to you with what you remember the cliff
19 looking like that you fell down?
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Don't -- Mr. Garibovic, don't be afraid if you --
21 because this is like any other cliffs. There are many cliffs like that
22 near the village where I live. So if the Prosecutor asked me to say
23 whether that is a cliff near where I live, I would say, looks like it. So
24 don't worry, it's not that important. It's not going to change any --
25 anything if you say, "I don't know. I don't recognise that cliff or it
1 looks like it, I mean they were falling down, they had time to look at the
2 configuration of the cliff, in any case.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can state the following. On our
4 right side, if you go in this direction, it's true that this road was like
5 that, and that there were rocks on the right side. On the left side where
6 we were was the abyss and the river was flowing down at the bottom. In
7 that period, in August, there was water flowing down there.
8 MR. KOUMJIAN: Thank you, now we are looking at photograph number
10 Q. And again just any brief comment that you may have on this
11 photograph, Mr. Garibovic.
12 A. Yes. Now you can see. We are going downhill. That's shown on
13 this photograph. And I remember that. There was an incline, if this is
14 an incline here, and it seems to me that this photograph does show an
15 incline. This part of the road here. If this is an incline or if the
16 road goes down here, then I remember that we were going down the road like
17 this. And it's true that this could -- this road could be going downwards
18 like I say. That's what is shown here on this photograph, a descent.
19 Q. Next photograph, please.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: I think --
21 MR. KOUMJIAN: I think the photograph needs to be...
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Exactly, I think so. I'm trying to make heads or
23 tails of it.
24 MR. KOUMJIAN:
25 Q. Do you have any comment about this photograph, Mr. Garibovic?
1 None is necessary.
2 A. I think that this part here is where the river flows and that this
3 part here is the end of the abyss, but it seems that at the time when this
4 photograph was taken, there was no water there.
5 Q. Thank you?
6 JUDGE AGIUS: This seems to be taken from the top, no? From an
7 elevated position?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation]
9 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat what he said.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Could you repeat what --
11 JUDGE JANU: He said he doesn't know.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: You don't know, okay. Go ahead.
13 MR. KOUMJIAN:
14 Q. The next photograph, please. Is that it? Okay. Thank you.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Can I have those photographs?
16 MR. KOUMJIAN:
17 Q. Mr. Garibovic, can you tell the Judges what happened after 3.00
18 a.m. when you and Bahrija climbed up -- what happened over the next few
20 A. I cannot say exactly whether it was two or three days that we were
21 wandering on Mount Vlasic. Bahrija looked much better than I did. He was
22 in much better psychological shape, and he wasn't so bruised from the
23 fall, not as bruised as I was. I had had a much harder time. I had heavy
24 bruising all over my body. In the morning I was all swollen up. So that
25 for the entire road that we were going, he was helping me when we were
1 climbing up the hills and going through the woods, when the going was
2 rough, he would help me. We didn't dare give any signs of ourselves or go
3 and talk to anybody. We did pass by houses but we couldn't call at them.
4 We couldn't call at those houses. We did the best we could with food. We
5 drank water in one place we found wild strawberries so that's what we
6 ate. First we were wandering around and there was no water but then after
7 a while we found some water and we drank there. However, later we had
8 stomach problems and that was it. Mostly, we spent three days wandering
9 around Mount Vlasic. We didn't dare make ourselves known to everyone.
10 After a heavy rain one day, towards evening, we had gotten soaked
11 through. This is a forest area, and the rains there are very strong and
12 cold. So after a while we saw this shepherd who was looking after sheep
13 and we decided to ask for help. We went up to him and asked him if he
14 could help us. He gave us a little bit of cheese and bread. And he said
15 that he couldn't help us any more than that. However, after this help
16 that he gave us, in the meantime he went, he knew the terrain well, and he
17 reported -- this place where he went where soldiers were, was called
18 Galica. It was a settlement. And there was a kind of military post
19 there. There were some mountain houses there. But the army was stationed
20 there. So he went there and he reported us. However, because we arrived
21 at that place where we were captured first, and when we got there, the
22 soldier who was at that line stopped us and we -- when we went up to him,
23 he said the following, "Is anyone else coming?" And we said no. And he
24 said, "If anyone else appears, I will kill you right away." But nobody
25 else appeared, nothing happened, so then he -- so that he wouldn't leave
1 that line where he was, he took his rifle and fired into the air so that
2 somebody would come from those rooms where the soldiers were stationed,
3 and which were nearby. After the shot, one soldier came and he took us
4 towards those little houses. When we came up to the houses, a soldier
5 came out, another one, other than the one who brought us there, and he
6 ordered us to lie down on the ground and to turn our heads down towards
7 the grass. Then one of them said, "Go and bring a knife so that we can
8 slaughter them." Then a couple of minutes later, there was a command
9 issued for us to stand up. Then a soldier took us and brought us inside a
10 room which was full of soldiers, and there were beds there lined up in
11 that room. One of them already said that he knew Bahrija from somewhere
12 when we went inside, he asked us if we had any money, if we had any
13 papers. I had 50 German marks. That was confiscated. One of them took
14 that right away and already figured out how much alcohol he could buy for
15 that amount of money. After that, it was decided that they should drive
16 us, but we didn't know where. We were put into a truck, together with two
17 soldiers who were sitting in the back, and we were taken to some command
18 or other. I don't know where this command actually was. I can say that
19 they treated us fairly when we got there. Since I wasn't wearing
20 anything, I wandered three days on -- over Vlasic with no clothes. I only
21 had one pair of torn pants that I was wearing. I had a torn shirt which
22 had gotten soaked in the rain so I was holding that in my hand when we got
23 there, they gave us something to wear and they gave us something to eat
24 for dinner. They didn't ask us anything, where we were from, who we were,
25 nobody asked us anything.
1 I also wish to state the following: That place when we came, the
2 first -- at first when we were captured, they asked us where we were from
3 and we said we were from the convoy, this was the first place that we came
4 to. But they didn't ask anything about the convoy, what it was or
5 anything like that. So they took us and drove us in this truck for a
6 while. We got to the command. They gave us dinner to eat. They gave us
7 clothes to wear. We put their military uniform on. That's what they had
8 and that's what we put on, the military shirts and so on. After that, we
9 were taken in a luxury vehicle, I don't know what model car it was, we
10 were taken to Skender Vakuf.
11 Q. And were you interviewed in Skender Vakuf about the massacre on
12 Mount Vlasic?
13 A. Like this: When Bahrija and I arrived there, there were already
14 some who had succumbed earlier and who had asked for help and who had been
15 brought there earlier. Should I give you the names of those people who
16 were already there before us or perhaps that is not important.
17 Q. I think if the names are necessary, we can do it in private
18 session but these are other survivors of the massacre; is that correct?
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you require the names, Mr. Ackerman? Okay. We
20 can do without. Thank you.
21 MR. KOUMJIAN:
22 Q. These were other survivors of the massacre, correct? You were
23 interviewed by military about the massacre; is that correct?
24 A. Yes, it is.
25 Q. And then is it true that at a later point you were also
1 interviewed by police officer -- a police investigator and a judge? Is
2 that correct? In Banja Luka?
3 A. Let me just add one other thing. That evening, I mean we arrived
4 there in the evening, that is where we spent the night and in the morning
5 we were all taken for examination. We had to undergo three different
6 interrogations here in Skender Vakuf. The first one was, I don't know
7 whether he was a colonel or a major or something but he was a rather
8 high-ranking officer and when I was interrogated he said to me, the
9 following: "Garibovic, what you are going to tell me, see that you tell
10 us just as it was, to speak the truth. And in future, if anyone asks you
11 anything about it, just try to do the same." And after what I told him,
12 he read out the statement to me and I signed it. And supposedly everybody
13 did this. But then we were taken to the police once again and made
14 identical statements there and then we went to the crime investigation
15 department. So that was what was in Skender Vakuf. We had to give our
16 statements three times.
17 Q. While we are on the subject of your statements, you also were
18 interviewed by a judge along with I believe four other survivors; is that
20 A. It is. That was after we left the hospital. The CID of the Banja
21 Luka Public Security Service took us to the Court and there we again had
22 to give statements. But let me put it this way: The gentleman who
23 questioned us never stopped, because he'd get interested in something or
24 all he said was, "Go on, go on, go on, go on. Finished? Sign. The next
1 Q. How long did the interviews of all five of you take with the
3 A. Not very long. I can't tell you exactly, but perhaps half an
4 hour, as far as I'm concerned. I remember well how it was all typed out
5 and that I signed it in the end, and we all went through the same
7 JUDGE AGIUS: The five -- the question was for the five of you,
8 how long did the interviewing process last? Not just yours. The five of
9 you altogether, was it just 30 minutes as you say?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. It could have taken two and a
11 half, three hours perhaps, for the five of us.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So I was right in my mind. Yes,
13 Mr. Koumjian.
14 MR. KOUMJIAN:
15 Q. From Skender Vakuf were you taken to a hospital in Banja Luka?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Which hospital were you taken to?
18 A. First we were taken to a hospital which was in the centre. That
19 was the surgery department. But there we stayed only perhaps one day or
20 so. And the next day we were taken to Paprikovac that was a hospital
21 out of town.
22 Q. And is that a -- was that an eye hospital?
23 A. That's right. Where we were hospitalised at Paprikovac. It was
24 on the fourth floor, and yes, that was the eye hospital or the eye
1 Q. Can you describe for the Judges the treatment and the conditions
2 you lived in in those hospitals in Banja Luka?
3 A. We were beaten. They wouldn't leave us alone for a single moment,
4 for those 21 days. We were beaten all the time. We were beaten by the
5 staff, by the personnel, by those who came from the outside. The guards
6 beat us. They would go on all night long, forcing us to learn these Serb
7 songs, and they did all the worst, and that's all there is.
8 Q. Were you allowed to drink water, all you wanted?
9 A. Like this, for 20 days, we were forbidden, we were not allowed to
10 get off the bed without asking for permission. Prior to our asking for
11 whatever, we had to raise like this, three fingers. This room was
12 glass-walled and the guard who was watching us, he walked all the time so
13 when he would see the sign he would pretend he didn't, and at times you
14 had to keep our fingers for half an hour up to ask for help. But he
15 would never come into ask what was the matter. And if he did pay
16 attention, that -- he would come in and beat you. And that is how it went
17 on. We spent a lot of time there and we were never allowed to ask for
18 anything or anything. And at times they would force us to keep our faces
19 down in the pillows for two or more hours and it was hot but you had to
20 turn your head face down to the pillow and try to breathe like that. They
21 beat us with cables, with sticks, with whatever. They simply wouldn't
22 leave us alone after all the rest.
23 Q. How many people were in your room who were survivors of the Vlasic
24 Mountain massacre?
25 A. Six.
1 Q. Were there other individuals in the room who were not from the
2 massacre, who were non-Serbs?
3 A. Yes. I remember well a man who was called Milan Rozankovic,
4 he was brought because he'd allegedly been captured somewhere in the
5 Dubocac. And when he arrived, all he had was a bottle with him and he was
6 bleeding into it. He was beaten there in the hospital so that they had to
7 put that bottle on the other side. They beat him and they would beat him
8 until he would lose consciousness, and I learned from the colleague who
9 was the last one to leave, that Rozankovic succumbed to the beatings. He
10 was beaten the most of all of us.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Ackerman?
12 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, the -- we didn't hear what he said in
13 and the transcript reflects that we didn't hear what he said where this
14 person was captured. He said he had been captured somewhere in the...
15 JUDGE AGIUS: I heard somewhere in the bottom but again I agree
16 with you that it doesn't show in the transcript but there is the arrow
17 which means they will fill it up later on.
18 MR. ACKERMAN: I'd kind of like to know what is because I might
19 want to question him about it.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Sir, you said, "I remember well a man who was
21 called Milan Rozankovic. He was brought because he had allegedly been
22 captured somewhere in." Where was he captured?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Dubocac.
24 Q. Is that an area -- do you know where that is?
25 A. No.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Is it anywhere near where you were captured?
2 A. No. This was the first time I heard of the place.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Yes, Mr. Koumjian.
4 MR. KOUMJIAN:
5 Q. How did the doctors treat you and what knowledge did they have of
6 the mistreatment that others were -- the beatings that were going on?
7 A. Like this: Those shifts there, the guards, and I think they took
8 shifts, two or three times a day, they ordered us as follows. When the
9 doctor came or comes on his round, when the doctor asks you how are you,
10 you must say that you are all right. You may not ask for any medicines.
11 You may not talk about anything. How are you, how are you doing today?
13 So that when a doctor would come and ask us how we were, we were
14 say that we were fine, and so he would do his round, dress the wounds.
15 Q. Do you recall how a particular doctor treated and greeted
16 Mr. Rozankovic, the Croat gentleman you said was beaten to death in
17 the hospital?
18 A. Yes. That was Dr. Stanisic. He was -- he showed the most
19 repulsion towards us of all the doctors. When he would come in he would
20 say, "Ah, Rozankovic does it hurt? It hurts, doesn't it? See how it
21 hurts? That's how our people hurt." So he would move from one to the
22 other one of us but he would always stop by Rozankovic.
23 Q. Mr. Garibovic, you spent a couple months, three months, in the
24 Trnopolje camp approximately. How do you compare the time in the hospital
25 in Banja Luka to your time in the camp?
1 A. I can tell you that I fared worse in the hospital.
2 Q. Mr. Garibovic, do you know when the people in the Trnopolje camp
3 learned about the massacre on Mount Vlasic of the convoy that had left the
4 camp on the 21st of August?
5 A. That same evening, I think, because women and children had gone
6 through. They said that very many men had been separated and they could
7 not say what had happened, except that they'd been separated. And then --
8 well, one could find out what had happened.
9 Q. Maybe confusing to us. You said the women said that they had been
10 separated. Was it your understanding that women arrived in Travnik and --
11 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm going to stop you for a moment. I hate to do
12 this, Mr. Koumjian in the middle of a question but it's becoming a little
13 bit confusing. Your previous question was, "Mr. Garibovic, do you know
14 when the people in the Trnopolje camp learned about the massacre on Mount
15 Vlasic of the convoy that had left the camp on the 21st of August." I
16 suppose anyone who left Trnopolje on the 21st of August never turned back
17 to Trnopolje camp, no?
18 MR. KOUMJIAN: That's what I'm trying to explain. Let me try to
19 explain it. I understand, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: So, go -- I mean, I will allow you to ask whatever
21 question you like but please, put it in a different manner.
22 MR. ACKERMAN: I was going to object because I don't know unless
23 there is some foundation for knowledge that he would have about what
24 people in Trnopolje camp learned.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, but I think he didn't mean the people in
1 Trnopolje because it doesn't make sense.
2 MR. KOUMJIAN: I do mean that I'm sorry but I'll explain.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Unless you have some other information.
4 MR. KOUMJIAN: My fault, I'll try to explain.
5 Q. Sir, Mr. Garibovic, did your brother Ahmet did he try to get on
6 the convoy on the 21st and was unable to; is that correct?
7 A. It is, yes.
8 Q. Before you left the Trnopolje camp in August, do you know if the
9 people in the camp had access to Sarajevo Radio? Were people able to hear
10 Sarajevo Radio from the camp?
11 A. I think so, yes. I believe one could hear it. Of course people
12 who had radios or transistors, because there were frequent power cuts.
13 Q. Your brother Ahmet, he survived the war; is that correct?
14 A. He did.
15 Q. And did you speak to him about what he learned about the convoy
16 that you had been on? Did he tell you what the word was in Trnopolje,
17 what people had heard about the convoy?
18 A. Like this: The next day, Mr. Kuruzovic came to them and said,
19 "Listen, there has been some gunfire on Vlasic but it was something,
20 nothing, nothing much happened, and a new convoy would be put together
22 Q. Do you know if before Mr. Kuruzovic spoke to the inmates in
23 Trnopolje, people had heard on the radio about the massacre? Or that
24 people were missing that did not arrive in Travnik with the rest of the
1 A. Well, I've already said it. It was right that evening that one
2 learned that men had been separated in that convoy -- from that convoy.
3 Q. Going back to that, because I think it's a matter of importance,
4 when you were in Trnopolje camp, did you ever hear anything about a
5 massacre at the Keraterm camp? Was that widely known?
6 A. Well, I did hear about it when that happened, and later on, too,
7 from my brother, because he was in Keraterm throughout and also from other
8 people who came, that it also, that one night a horrible massacre happened
9 there too one night.
10 Q. Was that widely known among the people at Trnopolje, that this
11 massacre had occurred?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Tell the Judges how you eventually were released from the
15 A. As somebody who had recovered.
16 Q. Well, were you visited by the -- were you taken in by Merhamet in
17 Banja Luka?
18 A. Well, I've already said something about it. After I was released
19 from the hospital, the criminal investigation department of the public
20 security centre in Banja Luka took us over and I already said that we made
21 those statements. And then they asked us if we had any relations in Banja
22 Luka, and some did, some didn't, but they couldn't find any of them when
23 they checked so that gentleman who drove us said, "Well, if Merhamet
24 didn't take you over, I don't know what to do with you." But then when he
25 went to Merhamet and made some inquiries there then those people took us
2 Q. While were you being housed by Merhamet, were you registered by
3 the International Red Cross?
4 A. You see, I forgot to mention that, the International Red Cross
5 registered us while we were at Stokica [phoen], still that is in the
6 hospital there. However, the guard who guarded us, he immediately
7 collected all those cards and took them away and we never saw them until
8 we were released from the hospital.
9 Q. When you were -- how did you get out of the area of Banja Luka,
10 out of Bosnia?
11 A. How? We left with the help of those internationals. They came to
12 Merhamet. I mean UNPROFOR, they came there, they put us in their
13 vehicles, then took us to Trnopolje, and on the way there, they said,
14 "Well, if you need some water or to relieve yourselves, they had provided
15 everything there so that we had not to go out and they went to
16 Mr. Kuruzovic in the Red Cross, they arranged with all the papers, they
17 signed whatever we -- we needed to sign to leave Republika Srpska, and
18 said that we were renouncing our property and all the rest, so we did not
19 get off the vehicles in Trnopolje and that was that. We arrived in
20 Trnopolje, these papers were already done by that time, and together
21 with other inmates, we reached Karlovac and from Karlovac, then
22 Switzerland, Germany and that was that.
23 Q. I gather your brother Ahmet was aware that you were on the convoy
24 on the 21st of August. Do you know when your family became aware that you
25 had survived?
1 A. It was after I left the hospital, because I called them from
3 Q. When did you rejoin your wife?
4 A. In Germany, in January.
5 Q. Mr. Garibovic, do you know anyone who was on those two buses on
6 Vlasic Mountain and did not survive?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Can you name those individuals that you can recall right now, that
9 you knew?
10 A. Like this: There are eight neighbours of mine who were all called
11 Garibovic, Kemal, then the father and son, also Kadir and his son Elvir
12 Kararic, they also lived in my village but they had a different last name.
13 So Kemal Garibovic, Vasif Garibovic, Tajib Garibovic.
14 Q. Did you see anyone who you knew from your work in the factory?
15 A. No.
16 Q. Who was the manager of the factory in Kozarac, Mala Privreda?
17 A. Oh, yes. Whilst I still worked for Mala Privreda, it was Asim
18 Fazlic. He was my ex-manager and his brother, and they were with me in
19 this column that I mentioned. They were recognisable by the clothes they
20 were wearing because they had a kind of sweat-suits which were rather
21 bright coloured so that they were pretty conspicuous.
22 Q. And Jasim Fazlic and his brother are missing to this day, to your
23 knowledge, along with all the Garibovics and people from your village that
24 you mentioned?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And to your knowledge, have their remains ever been located? Have
2 their bodies ever been found?
3 A. No, no, never. Nobody was found.
4 MR. KOUMJIAN: Thank you, Mr. Garibovic, no further questions.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Koumjian. Mr. Ackerman, is there a
6 problem with the transcript?
7 MR. ACKERMAN: No, it's not.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Mr. Garibovic, you are going to be
9 cross-examined now by Mr. Ackerman who is the lead counsel for the accused
10 Mr. Brdjanin. Mr. Ackerman you may proceed.
11 MR. ACKERMAN: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Cross-examined by Mr. Ackerman:
13 Q. I can still say good morning, Mr. Garibovic, for another four
14 minutes. How are you? First thing I should tell you is that all of us
15 here on I think I speak probably for everybody in the courtroom, we are --
16 we have a lot of sympathy for what happened to you on that day, we are
17 sorry that it happened and I hope you understand that. I'm going to be
18 very brief with you. I have very few questions to ask you and we will get
19 through this very quickly if you can listen carefully and answer my
20 questions with as short an answer as you possibly can. Would you try to
21 do that?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. I want to talk to you first about Trnopolje. And some of the
24 things I'm going to ask you are kind of a repetition of what you've
25 already said today. When you first went to Trnopolje, you in fact saw
1 your wife and children there but what you said in your statement was the
2 next day, you couldn't find her but then later she came to visit you,
4 A. Perhaps I said that.
5 Q. And when she came to visit you after you couldn't find her any
6 more, you learned that the authorities at Trnopolje were letting women and
7 children who had relatives or friends living in the area leave Trnopolje
8 and go live with them, right?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And she was able to go to Sivci?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And throughout the period when she was still in the area, she was
13 allowed to come and visit you at Trnopolje, bring you food, things of that
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And you said in that -- in your statement that before she left on
17 that convoy on the train, apparently, the railroad, that she was not
18 required to sign any kind of papers.
19 A. No.
20 Q. She was not, was she?
21 A. No.
22 Q. At Trnopolje, you knew that the commander was a person named
23 Slobodan Kuruzovic?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. He was a military person, was he?
1 A. Yes, at that time.
2 Q. And his office was in a bar across from the outpatient clinic, a
3 bar that was called Lovac?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And that was his office when you first got to Trnopolje and it was
6 still his office in early August, was it not, when you went to see him?
7 A. Yes, that's right.
8 Q. Did you notice that he had a fairly serious drinking problem?
9 Were you aware of that, that he drank a lot of alcohol?
10 A. I don't know how I would be able to notice that.
11 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please speak up?
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, usher, perhaps you could move the microphones
13 nearer to the witness or ask the witness to move nearer to the
14 microphones. Or do both. Yes.
15 MR. ACKERMAN:
16 Q. There was a point, was there not, when you went to see him in his
17 office to try to get permission to leave?
18 A. Yes, that's right.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, usher, there is I think a document for me to
21 MR. ACKERMAN:
22 Q. Did you notice that he had a drinking problem, that he was
23 drinking on that day?
24 A. No.
25 Q. Okay. You've told us that during your stay you didn't see anyone
1 killed or see anyone getting beaten, and it's also true, isn't it, that
2 you were not beaten during any of the time you stayed in Trnopolje?
3 A. I personally was not.
4 Q. Do you know who the guards were? Do you know what organisation
5 they were from? Were they military? What were they?
6 A. The guards that were there came from Prijedor every day, by bus
7 from Prijedor to Trnopolje. They wore military uniforms, of course, and
8 they had weapons.
9 Q. And it's the case, isn't it, that there was no fence completely
10 surrounding Trnopolje?
11 A. The fence was put up and dismantled as it suited whoever was
12 there. It was put up and then taken down.
13 Q. But never was there a fence surrounding the entire complex, was
15 A. It was too large to be completely encircled by a fence, but small
16 fences were put up and people were placed inside. For example, when the
17 people from Omarska came, they were detained separately, a small
18 encirclement was made and then when the men from Keraterm came, they were
19 also enclosed. However, when the International Red Cross was supposed to
20 visit the camp, this was all taken down and people were mixed up. On
21 whose orders this was done, I really wouldn't be able to tell you.
22 Q. You were there almost three months, and that period of time you're
23 talking about right now was right close to the end, after the journalists
24 came but prior to that, don't you know that people were able to go in and
25 out of Trnopolje at night, pretty much at will?
1 A. Sir, this did not happen at night. Nobody went in or went out of
2 the Trnopolje camp, and I can tell you that for a fact. I was there for
3 three months. There was shooting sometimes all night, at Trnopolje, and I
4 don't know why people would leave Trnopolje and where they would go, and
5 for what reason. Nobody came into or left Trnopolje at night.
6 Q. So anybody who would say that they did that would not be telling
7 the truth, I take it?
8 A. That's right. During the day, I'm not saying people did go around
9 to Sivci and so on during the day. However, at night, nobody dared to
10 leave Trnopolje, to walk around.
11 Q. Isn't it the case that the people that were at Trnopolje were
12 being protected by guards or by local Serb people from extremists on the
13 outside who would come in at night and do bad things?
14 A. No. That is not true.
15 Q. How many convoys of people would you say left Trnopolje before the
16 10th of August?
17 MR. KOUMJIAN: Does Mr. Ackerman mean to say the 10th of August or
18 does he mean the 21st the day he left.
19 MR. ACKERMAN: I mean the 10th.
20 MR. KOUMJIAN: Okay, thank you.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Garibovic, the date that you have to pay
22 attention for is the 10th of August of 1992. And you are being asked if
23 you know how many convoys of people you would say left Trnopolje before
24 that particular date. 10th of August.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was like this: I can say, but I
1 cannot say that with certainty, that there were several rail convoys, and
2 those were the closed-type carriages and one of them was the one that my
3 wife left with. Then there were other convoys that were organised, but
4 all the convoys that were organised would go via Trnopolje and onwards.
5 There were also convoys with buses and trucks, and there were also four or
6 five of those. I was at Trnopolje so I know, but I cannot say whether
7 there were two or three, how many, but in any case, all the convoys went
8 through Trnopolje.
9 MR. ACKERMAN:
10 Q. I wasn't very precise in my question. Let me try to do a better
11 job. I'm only interested in convoys in which people who were at Trnopolje
12 left in. I know that you saw lots of convoys that went -- that were
13 taking people from other places but people from Trnopolje, how many
14 convoys do you think there were before the 10th of August that actually
15 took people out of Trnopolje?
16 A. I don't understand you again but let me try to answer your
17 question. All men from --
18 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... you ought to give me a chance
19 to be clear?
20 A. No.
21 Q. You went into Trnopolje in May, sometime near the end of May, and
22 you left on the 21st of August. You know that there were some
23 internationals who showed up there early in August, around the 10th.
24 There were journalists who came there and some other people. And what I
25 want to know is between the time that you went in there and the time that
1 these internationals came, how many convoys transported people out of
2 Trnopolje to other places? And I don't ask you to be precise because I
3 know you can't so I'm not looking for a precise number.
4 A. I think when the International Red Cross came to Trnopolje for the
5 first time, so I don't know from that time whether there was any convoy.
6 I can't tell you. I really don't know how many convoys there were.
7 Q. But there were convoys prior to the 10th of August?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Do you know how many people left Trnopolje on those convoys prior
10 to the 10th of August? Just -- and I know you can't be precise. What
11 would be your estimate?
12 A. It's hard to say. I am repeating once more, all the places that
13 had been cleansed in the Prijedor municipality and the surrounding places,
14 all the people from that area were mostly brought to Trnopolje, and the
15 next day they would leave. So some people would then get mixed up. Some
16 people that had already been in Trnopolje would leave as well as those who
17 had just arrived. So I cannot really answer precisely.
18 Q. All right. Thank you. I think you've done the best you can, and
19 I appreciate it. Now, there came a time on the 21st of August, when you
20 actually yourself got on a bus and left Trnopolje. And the first time
21 that bus you were on stopped was at the Kozarac junction, correct?
22 A. Yes, that's correct.
23 Q. And there, you say that you were joined -- that that convoy was
24 joined by some big trucks with trailers. Do you know how many big trucks
25 with trailers joined the convoy at that point?
1 A. I don't know, because I couldn't see how long the column was
2 because I was in the bus. We waited for the column to form. I can't say
3 how many trucks there were or other vehicles for that matter.
4 Q. And once those trucks got there, because your buses were rather
5 crowded, you were invited, weren't you, to leave the bus and go, get on
6 one of those trucks where it might not be so crowded?
7 A. Yes. A certain number of people left the buses and crossed into
8 the -- moved into the trucks, which were not as overcrowded as the buses.
9 However, I did not leave the bus.
10 Q. All I want to establish is that had you wanted to, you could have,
11 apparently, you were invited to?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Okay. The convoy then proceeded, I think you said, to Skender
14 Vakuf and then after you left there, the convoy stopped several times and
15 you said that you saw during those stops you saw soldiers passing by and
16 looking into the buses? Correct?
17 A. Yes, that's correct.
18 Q. And you had not seen these soldiers before that period of time
19 when you left Skender Vakuf, had you?
20 A. No.
21 Q. It was also at that time that for the first time you saw this man
22 with the red beret and the walkie-talkie, correct?
23 A. Yes, that's correct.
24 Q. Now, was the convoy completely intact still at that point? Were
25 the trucks and the trailers and all the buses still part of that convoy?
1 Was it this same convoy that had left the Kozarac junction?
2 A. I think that it was.
3 Q. And then we get to that point where you were asked -- you and
4 several others were asked to get off the bus you were on and get on a
5 different bus, correct?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And what you said in your testimony -- your previous testimony, at
8 page 5828, was that after you boarded those buses, the whole convoy was
9 allowed to pass and proceed, correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Did you get any sense of how many vehicles passed and proceeded
12 the bus you were then on?
13 A. I don't know how many vehicles, but in any case, the vehicles
15 Q. Do you know what happened to that convoy that was allowed to pass
16 on and proceed?
17 A. The convoy reached Turbe, because these were the people from the
18 convoy that remained behind, women, children, the elderly.
19 Q. That convoy that went on after you had changed buses, to your
20 knowledge actually made it to a safe area, correct?
21 A. Yes, that's correct.
22 Q. I take it you don't know of anything that would have kept the
23 soldiers that were there at that spot from simply taking everybody off
24 that convoy and killing all of them that day, do you? They could have
25 done that, couldn't they?
1 A. Yes, that's right.
2 Q. Now, I want to go to that period of time after you had been
3 walking through the woods for I think you said about three days. You
4 eventually wound up in the hands of some Serb soldiers again, didn't you?
5 A. Yes, that's right.
6 Q. And they took you to Skender Vakuf?
7 A. Yes, that's right.
8 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... survivors?
9 A. Yes, that's right.
10 Q. And you were fed and were you given clothes?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And you made statements to police and the military and the
13 criminal investigation division?
14 A. That's right.
15 Q. And you were told by this high-ranking officer that you should
16 tell the truth and you did tell the truth, didn't you?
17 A. Yes. I believe that I told the truth.
18 Q. You told them that you were with a group that had been lined up
19 along the edge of that -- of that cliff and basically had been massacred,
20 that a few of you had survived but that most everyone else was killed?
21 A. Yes, that's right.
22 Q. At that point in time, these Serb soldiers and these Serb police
23 knew that you were a survivor of that massacre that you had witnessed that
24 massacre and that you had described this man with a red beret and a
25 Motorola, walkie-talkie, as being the one who appeared to be in charge?
1 A. Yes, that's right.
2 Q. And after providing them with that knowledge, do you know that if
3 the other survivors basically told the truth too about what they had
5 A. I think that they also told the truth.
6 Q. Do you recall one of the survivors that was with you being a young
7 man with a broken ankle, who couldn't walk?
8 A. No, I don't remember him.
9 Q. And then the next thing that happened was they took you all to the
10 hospital in Banja Luka, correct?
11 A. That's right.
12 Q. This same young man with the broken ankle, do you remember seeing
13 him as a survivor of this massacre in either of the hospitals you were in
14 in Banja Luka?
15 A. May I say this, sir? We were placed in three rooms. We could not
16 go to the other rooms, and I repeat this once again, we were not permitted
17 to get up and out of our bed. I don't know who was in the other rooms.
18 Q. I understand all that. My question wasn't an accusation. I just
19 want to know if you ever saw this person?
20 JUDGE AGIUS: But Mr. Ackerman, he has already -- he had already
21 answered to a previous question of yours, asking him whether -- do -- your
22 question was, "Do you recall one of the survivors that was with you being
23 a young man with a broken ankle who couldn't walk?" And his answer was
24 no. So how could he answer you in any way to your second question whether
25 this young man with the broken ankle, do you remember seeing him as a
1 survivor of this massacre in either of the hospitals in Banja Luka. He
2 doesn't seem to know of anyone with a broken ankle.
3 MR. ACKERMAN: I understand. I think I've gotten there. My first
4 question, Your Honour was about when he was at Skender Vakuf with the
5 other survivors and then I wondered if he might have seen this person this
6 person in the hospital in Banja Luka, and I got my answer he did not.
7 Q. When you surrendered or were captured by these soldiers before you
8 were taken to Skender Vakuf, they could have just shot you there, of
9 course, I assume, couldn't they, if they had wanted to?
10 A. It's true what you say.
11 Q. And once they took you to Skender Vakuf, and you made it clear
12 that you were witnesses to what had happened there, they also could have
13 shot you there, couldn't they?
14 A. Correct.
15 Q. Upon your release from the hospital in Banja Luka, you said you
16 were taken before a Judge and again made a statement about what you had
17 observed and experienced regarding this matter. I want to ask you just
18 one question about that. Was that a civilian judge or was that judge
19 wearing a uniform?
20 A. It was a civilian judge.
21 Q. And I think you've already told us that all of the survivors that
22 you were with at least went there and made a statement of their own
23 experiences, correct?
24 A. Yes, that's correct.
25 Q. And throughout the period that you had anything to do with the
1 police there in Banja Luka, you were treated correctly and properly,
2 weren't you?
3 A. Yes. But I didn't have any contact with the police, sir.
4 Q. Wasn't it the police that took you from the hospital to the
6 A. It was the criminal investigations service that took us.
7 Q. Well, was that part of the police or part of the military?
8 A. They were dressed in civilian clothes. I don't know what they
9 were, but they wore civilian clothes.
10 Q. They treated you correctly, didn't they, and properly?
11 A. Yes, that's correct.
12 Q. They are the same people who took you to Merhamet?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And Merhamet is a Muslim charitable organisation that was
15 operating in Banja Luka in August of 1992, correct?
16 A. Yes, that's correct what you say.
17 Q. I now have just a very few questions regarding your testimony
18 today. You were asked about when you boarded the bus at Trnopolje, if
19 Slobodan Kuruzovic was there, and if young men were allowed to board the
20 buses for the first time, and you indicated that that was the case,
22 A. Yes. He was standing next to the bus and everyone was boarding
23 the bus.
24 Q. Did you ever know that an English man by the name of Paddy Ashdown
25 visited Trnopolje in early August? Were you ever aware of that, a
1 politician from England?
2 A. No. I don't know that.
3 Q. You did know that there had been journalists there?
4 A. Yes. I knew that, because they did come to Trnopolje on one
6 Q. Have you learned since these events that serious efforts were made
7 to relieve the situation at Trnopolje and get the people there moved out,
8 exchanged, taken to other countries or something?
9 A. No one in Trnopolje knew that.
10 Q. But I'm -- what I'm saying is do you know that now? Did you learn
11 that afterwards?
12 A. No. I didn't learn that.
13 Q. All right. It's the case, isn't it, that after your convoy left
14 Skender Vakuf, you no longer saw any of the people from any of those
15 original people that were escorting you when you left Trnopolje? All of a
16 sudden, it was all these soldiers and the man with the red beret, correct?
17 A. That is not true.
18 Q. You told us that while you were in Trnopolje, people were brought
19 there from Omarska and I don't have your exact words but you said they
20 were all hairy, they had beards, they were very dirty. Am I correct that
21 that's your position?
22 A. I said that about the men who came from Keraterm and that is
23 also -- it also applies to those who came from Omarska.
24 Q. Did you know that the people in Omarska had been filmed by
25 international journalists just a few days before that? And have you ever
1 seen that film?
2 A. I've seen the film but I don't know when it was filmed or when it
4 Q. Well, in the film, you didn't see people that were dirty and
5 bearded and in the condition you described on their arrival at Omarska,
6 did you?
7 A. Yes, sir. They were hidden.
8 Q. I take it you weren't there?
9 A. I wasn't there but I saw the people who came from Omarska. I saw
10 what they looked like. I saw the state they were in.
11 Q. Well, do you know that journalists also came to Keraterm and
12 photographed the people that had come there from Omarska? Did you ever
13 see those films?
14 MR. KOUMJIAN: Excuse me.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Koumjian.
16 MR. KOUMJIAN: First it assumes facts not in evidence. And in
17 fact I think that's not correct. No journalist that I know of went to
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Don't answer the question because then you are
20 answering the question but in any case I am accepting your objection.
21 There is no evidence that he was in Keraterm in any case. So --
22 MR. ACKERMAN: I just misspoke, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah.
24 MR. ACKERMAN:
25 Q. What I intended to ask was, do you know journalists also came to
1 Trnopolje and photographed the people that had come there from Omarska?
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. That's different.
3 MR. ACKERMAN:
4 Q. Were you aware of that?
5 A. I'm aware of that and that is true. And they were taping people
6 from Keraterm who had arrived, and this footage travelled the world.
7 Q. When you were registered by the ICRC in Banja Luka, in the
8 hospital, you recall that happening?
9 A. That was done perhaps some ten days later, at Paprikovac.
10 Q. And you were able to speak with the ICRC in private?
11 A. No.
12 Q. You were not able to speak with them in private?
13 A. No, I wasn't, sir, because men who were guarding us were there
14 with them. They had weapons with them and they were there all the time.
15 Q. Did you tell the ICRC about the way that were you being treated?
16 A. We didn't dare do it.
17 Q. Don't you know that not being allowed to speak to you in private
18 was against ICRC policy and they would not have done that unless they
19 could have seen you privately? Did you know that?
20 MR. KOUMJIAN: Objection, whether he knows ICRC policy or not.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, objection sustained.
22 MR. ACKERMAN:
23 Q. That's all I have, Your Honour. Thank you?
24 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. Is there re-examination?
25 MR. KOUMJIAN: Yes, Your Honour.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: How long will it take you.
2 MR. KOUMJIAN: No more than ten minutes.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Ten minutes will require us because we have been
4 sitting for an hour and a half so the option is we either go on for
5 another ten minutes and then it will be over or we break for half an hour
6 and then resume. We go on? We go -- the technicians as well? I can't
7 see behind. Okay, Mr. Koumjian you may proceed.
8 MR. KOUMJIAN: Now the pressure is on.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Try to keep it as concise as possible, please.
10 Re-examined by Mr. Koumjian:
11 Q. Sir I just want to ask you a few questions concerning what the
12 Defence attorney asked you about the investigation of the crime and the
13 interviews you had with the police?
14 JUDGE AGIUS: We need a couple of minutes to change the tape so in
15 the meantime you can think about the question.
16 MR. KOUMJIAN: It's the first election I've ever won.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: That means you can go ahead. Yes, Mr. Koumjian, I
18 suggest to you repeat the question or I can read it out to the witness.
19 MR. KOUMJIAN: I'll repeat it I'll try to shorten it.
20 Q. Sir, in 1992, when you spoke to the police and the judge in Banja
21 Luka, did anyone ever show you any photographs or have you attend any
22 identification procedures, any kind of identification parade or line up to
23 see if you could recognise the perpetrators of the massacre?
24 A. No. I wasn't shown anything. I wasn't mentioned anything of the
1 Q. Did anyone show you photographs of the police who were on duty to
2 escort that convoy that day?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Would you have recognised in 1992 the man in the red beret that
5 you saw giving the orders and saying, "This is where we do the exchange,
6 the living for the living and the dead, it is known" if you had seen him
7 in 1992 would you have recognised him?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. In the hospital did you speak to one of the survivors who told you
10 that he recognised one of the perpetrators?
11 A. I don't remember.
12 Q. Do you remember one of the survivors telling you the name of one
13 of the people that he recognised the police at the massacre?
14 A. A mention -- a name came up, yes, yes, a name was mentioned.
15 Q. And what name was that?
16 A. Dragan Mrdja.
17 MR. KOUMJIAN: No further questions.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: So Mr. Garibovic, that brings to an end your
19 testimony in this trial. And very soon you will be escorted out of this
20 courtroom by the usher who will, together with other officers of the
21 court, look after you and attend to your needs to enable you to return to
22 your family. Before you leave this courtroom, it is my duty as the
23 Presiding Judge, in my name and also in the name of the other two Judges,
24 as well as that of the Tribunal in general to thank you for having
25 accepted to come and give evidence. I thank you once more and you will
1 now be escorted out of the courtroom.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
3 [The witness withdrew]
4 JUDGE AGIUS: I wish to thank you, Mr. Koumjian and you
5 Mr. Ackerman for being so cooperative today, as usual and enabling us to
6 finish even earlier than scheduled and to enable this gentleman to return
7 to his family and not spend the weekend here. Thank you, we'll meet on
8 Tuesday morning.
9 Mr. Usher, please escort the --
10 MR. KOUMJIAN: Just a --
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Incidentally there will be a decision, I signed it
12 this morning, a decision being handed down on the motion by General Talic
13 in this case. So please have a look at it. All right? Anything else?
14 Yes, Mr. Ackerman?
15 MR. ACKERMAN: Just a Rule 92 bis report. I have finished, Your
16 Honour. There are two of the witnesses who I have made inquiry of
17 Ms. Korner about. I can't file my final response to you until I get an
18 answer from her. I hope to have that as soon as I get it I can file it
19 rather immediately.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
21 MR. ACKERMAN: 94 I'll start working on this afternoon.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So until Tuesday. Thank you.
23 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at
24 12.35 p.m., to be reconvened on Tuesday,
25 the 10th day of December, 2002, at 9.00 a.m.