1 Thursday, 22 May 2003
2 [Open session]
3 --- Upon commencing at 9.05 a.m.
4 [The accused entered court]
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning, everybody. Mr. Brdjanin is here.
6 Madam Registrar, could you call the case, please?
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours, this is case number
8 IT-99-36-T, the Prosecutor versus Radoslav Brdjanin.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Thank you, Madam Registrar. Mr. Brdjanin,
10 good morning to you and the usual question. Can you follow in a language
11 that you can understand?
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. Yes, I
14 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. You may sit down. Appearances for the
16 MR. NICHOLLS: Good morning, Your Honours. Julian Nicholls with
17 Joanna Korner and Denise Gustin.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you and good morning to you. Appearances
19 for the Defence?
20 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Good morning, Your Honours. David Cunningham
21 with Barbara Baruch and Vesna Anic.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you and good morning to you, too. Any
23 preliminaries? No? Let's bring the witness in. Just for the record,
24 Madam Registrar, would you just announce the time schedule for today, what
25 time we will be sitting? We have started at 9.00.
1 THE REGISTRAR: We start at 9.00 and then we going to have a break
2 at 10.30 and we're going to resume at 11.00 and then going to have a break
3 at 12.30, and then have a lunch break from 12.30 to 2.00 and then we're
4 going to sit from 2.00 to 4.00.
5 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I want to mention something in relation
6 to the length of time I have for this witness but I'll wait until -- for
7 the next witness. I'll wait until this witness is finished.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
9 [The witness entered court]
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Just to make it clear, we are flexible, I mean, if
11 you want to start at 2.30 instead of 2.00 and finish at 4.30 instead of
12 4.00, we are flexible. It's not something which needs to be strictly
13 adhered to.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Welcome. You won't be here for long, I hope but we
16 still require from you that you repeat the solemn declaration that you
17 made yesterday and the day before.
18 Usher, please.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
20 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
21 WITNESS: RUSMIR MUJANIC [Resumed]
22 [Witness answered through interpreter]
23 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, sir. You may sit down. Please be
25 Mrs. Baruch.
1 MS. BARUCH: May it please the Court, Your Honours.
2 Cross-examination by Ms. Baruch: [Continued]
3 Q. Mr. Mujanic, good morning.
4 A. Good morning.
5 Q. I have one more question about the German statement that you gave
6 at Kirhajm Tek. Can you tell me what year you gave that statement? Was
7 it when you just arrived in the Stuttgart area?
8 A. It was in 1996, I believe.
9 Q. Do you remember the month?
10 A. I can't give you the exact date, no.
11 Q. Not even the month? Okay.
12 A. No. I can't remember.
13 Q. Mr. Mujanic, do you know Zaim Zukandzic?
14 A. Yes, I do.
15 Q. Are you related to him?
16 A. No. He is my brother-in-law.
17 Q. Okay. And did he visit you at Sloga?
18 A. Yes. Once he did.
19 Q. Did he bring you food at the Dom Kulture?
20 A. Also once.
21 Q. And did he bring you blankets at Sloga?
22 A. No, he didn't.
23 Q. Can you tell me, then, why he might say something like, "While in
24 Lisnja, we learned that many of the men from Lisnja who were detained at
25 the Sloga factory and Dom Kulture were not being fed. Myself and others
1 were allowed to go to these camps to visit our relatives. I went to visit
2 my relatives, Sead Carkaric [phoen], Zulfo Zukandzic, Muharem Zuric
3 [phoen], and Rusmir Mujanic. I was allowed to bring food to my relatives
4 and after the men were taken to Sloga, I would also visit them and bring
5 food. They had no blankets and we also brought them blankets as well."
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Where are you reading from, please, Madam Baruch?
7 MS. BARUCH: It's from a statement I have.
8 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I'm sorry.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: It may be regular in Texas.
10 MS. KORNER: I should have stood up I know it's Mr. Nicholls'
11 witness, but as you know Your Honour I've raised this question.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, we have raised it before and it's a --
13 MS. KORNER: It's not in our submission proper, it's even less
14 proper now from a statement to put to a witness what another witness may
15 have said in a statement and may have said in court. It is of course
16 perfectly proper to ask the witness whether he agrees with something
17 without indicating what it is or where it comes from.
18 MS. BARUCH: I tried not to indicate where it came from but may I
19 pose the question differently.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: It's too late now. You didn't -- I don't agree with
21 you at all when you say that you tried not to indicate where it came from,
22 because your previous question was precisely this: Can you tell me, then,
23 why he might say something like -- and then you started reading. Then I
24 asked you where you were reading from, and you said it's from a statement
25 that I have. This kind of incident has happened before, with
1 Mr. Ackerman, and the practice here is that it is not regular. You can
2 address a question to the witness without indicating who the maker of the
3 statement is or who may have stated that. You put the question whether
4 it's correct or not, and he will answer that, but it's not regular -- I
5 mean it's not a practice that is accepted by this Trial Chamber. Or by
6 other Trial Chambers for that matter.
7 MS. BARUCH: Would then it be proper, Your Honour, for me to ask
8 why would a person without saying their name indicate that they had
9 brought him a blanket.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: No, you just put the question to him, which you did
11 already, whether his relative, Mr. so and so did bring him.
12 MS. BARUCH: Blankets.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: He answered in the negative. And it should stop
14 there. Then later on, if you need to bring forward evidence to contradict
15 what the witness has stated, you're free to do that but you don't confront
16 the witness with the statement made by someone else here in -- during --
17 in the course of his testimony. That's the practice of this Court.
18 MS. BARUCH: The thing that had confused me is I was told --
19 JUDGE AGIUS: You're new here so I'm not blaming you I'm just
20 explaining to you what the practice is.
21 MS. BARUCH: I thought one had to put it to the witness.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: You put it already. You had put it already.
23 MS. BARUCH: Okay. I don't know how to proceed, then.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: No. I think you have to forget it now and move to
25 the next question.
1 MS. BARUCH: I have no next question, Your Honour. That's the end
2 of my questioning.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. All right.
4 MS. BARUCH: I suppose I have to pass the witness.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Are you sure, Mr. Mujanic, that you never
6 received any blankets from anyone while you were at Sloga?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm sure that I did not receive any
8 blankets from anybody.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So Ms. Korner -- sorry, Mr. Nicholls, is
10 there re-examination?
11 MR. NICHOLLS: No, Your Honour.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Judge Janu? Yes, Judge Janu would like to put some
13 questions to you, Mr. Mujanic.
14 Questioned by the Court:
15 JUDGE JANU: Mr. Witness, I would like to take you back to your
16 testimony, when you were describing for us the establishment of the TO,
17 and you said that there was some sort of order for you to choose the group
18 of people and you did so, you chose -- you were not -- 40 or 48 people,
19 and you also said that you have chosen those who were free of alcohol and
20 you have chosen calm people. I would like to know if this condition, so
21 say, to choose secure people, was a part of the order you received or if
22 it was your consideration that the people who cannot be trusted cannot
23 have a gun for free use. So my question is if it was part of the order,
24 these conditions, or if it was just your natural consideration.
25 A. It was our natural reaction because people who are prone to
1 drinking, they can do all sorts of things if they are drunk. They can
2 provoke people or hurt somebody. So that's what we did amongst ourselves
3 in the village. We chose those people that we considered would be
4 appropriate for the task. So that would be that.
5 JUDGE JANU: Thank you. That's all. Thank you.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't have any questions either, which essentially
7 means that your testimony ends here. On behalf of the Tribunal and on
8 behalf of my two colleagues and my own behalf I should like to thank you
9 for having come over to give evidence, to testify in this case. You will
10 be attended to by the usher first and later on by other officers of this
11 Tribunal to ensure that you will be able to return to your country and
12 they will attend to all your needs in the meantime. Once more I thank you
13 and you're free to go now. Thank you.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you and goodbye.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Safe journey.
16 [The witness withdrew]
17 MR. NICHOLLS: I would now tender the Prnjavor binder which has
18 been provided, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. With the numbers that -- consecutive
20 numbers as they appear in each of the --
21 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you. Are you happy with that, Madam
24 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. You don't have any reason to ask
1 questions or clarification? Thank you.
2 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honour, I don't know if I should also mention
3 the three new exhibits which I put in with the witness.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: I think they have been admitted already.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: That's what I thought. I just wanted to make sure.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: The thing is this: That --
7 MR. NICHOLLS: That was P1801, 1802, 1803.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Korner yesterday in our oral decision, we did
9 point out three or four documents that you need to bring Mr. Inayat or
10 whoever, I don't know who.
11 MS. KORNER: I put Mr. Inayat back on to this problem. As Your
12 Honour knows, there are various forms that are completed to show where
13 exhibits come from. These particular forms for some reason only indicate
14 who received them and not from where. And Mr. Inayat is making attempts
15 to see if we can expand on this.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.
17 MS. KORNER: If not, I think we may be able to deal with them
18 through another route, but that's a matter for the Court.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
20 MS. KORNER: But Your Honour may I deal with the exhibits previous
21 exhibits? Because I've been helpfully -- we have been helpfully reminded
22 by the Registrar that we haven't yet actually formally moved into
24 JUDGE AGIUS: She is right.
25 MS. KORNER: The binders which related to Bosanski Novi, Donji
1 Vakuf and the five or so from Prijedor. Your Honour, I may be wrong but I
2 don't recall any objection from the Defence to any of the documents, and
3 it's one of the matters I raised the day before yesterday in those
4 binders, and I would therefore ask Your Honours formally to admit them
5 into evidence, the documents contained therein, subject to the usual
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So the Chamber reserves its decision on this,
8 after Mrs. Baruch or Mr. Cunningham will confer with Mr. Ackerman and in
9 the meantime everyone can check. After that we can easily decide yes or
10 no or 100 per cent or less than 100 per cent. But it's something that can
11 be looked into. But please on Monday, Mrs. Baruch, please come back with
12 some kind of response. If not directly to us, through the Registrar, you
13 can communicate Mr. Ackerman's response to Ms. Korner or the -- someone
14 else from the team, the Prosecution team, and we will attend to it then on
15 Monday, first thing. Okay? Thank you.
16 MS. KORNER: Can I come back then to today's witness for two
18 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment until I find where -- okay. They are all
20 MS. KORNER: As Your Honour is aware, I think, the witness arrived
21 the day before yesterday, bringing with him a bundle of further documents
22 which we had translated at speed over night and I'm deeply grateful and I
23 think it's worth mentioning to Your Honours it was not done by CLSS but by
24 persons in another unit whose normal job is not to do translations and
25 they literally worked I think all night. They haven't, however, been done
1 by CLSS. Therefore, they are not in that sense authorised translations,
2 so if there are errors, Your Honour, I hope that Your Honour will forgive
3 it and if it turns out that there are serious errors, then we will try and
4 correct it.
5 Your Honour, I should also say the documents themselves with three
6 exceptions are in fact the -- I'll come back to what I mean by originals
7 but they are the originals that he copied, if Your Honours saw attached to
8 his statement was his own notebook, and he'd copied various documents that
9 he was given and he'll explain how he came by them when he testifies.
10 These are the actual documents themselves. He has with him the originals
11 of the documents he has acquired, and by originals, I understand, though I
12 haven't seen them myself, they are not photocopies, they are actual --
13 it's so long since typewriters were used, carbon copies which he was
14 provided with so I asked him when I spoke with him yesterday to bring them
15 with him today so that Your Honours and the Defence can look at them if
16 they so require.
17 Your Honour, that's the first point. As I say, there are only
18 three which have not in some form or other been notified to the Defence.
19 Your Honour, the second matter is this: I heard Your Honours'
20 discussion yesterday with Mr. Nicholls about the time that I have to call
21 him. Your Honours, the problem -- I go back to what I said the day before
22 yesterday, Mr. Ackerman has raised an objection to every document in this
23 binder, bar two. In order therefore really to, as it were, persuade Your
24 Honours that these are documents that are probative, Your Honours, I would
25 have to establish through evidence that what is said in them is correct or
1 that they had been seen before or where they came from. Now this witness
2 can actually assist with quite a lot of them. Your Honours, I don't want
3 to take any more time than I have to over this and that is why I asked
4 whether or not Mr. Ackerman might rethink what is effectively in our
5 submission a sweeping and not particularly selective objection. Some I
6 can see like the ones Your Honours have ruled we have to find other
7 evidence but Your Honour, I'm asking Your Honours, I will try and finish
8 today with this witness in chief, but if I have to take him through and
9 establish to Your Honour's satisfaction that these documents are
10 authentic, and did come into existence when we suggest that they did,
11 well, then, Your Honours, it means taking him to many of the documents so
12 Your Honour that's the application I make and the only thing I really
13 would like to know from Your Honours today or now is whether Your Honours
14 will restrict me just to today in chief. That's the only question I have.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: We haven't discussed this. Ideally, yes, if it is
16 possible to finish today, it would be ideal, and with the understanding
17 that the same thing will be done with the Defence. In other words, the
18 thing is Ms. Korner let's proceed and then we will decide as we go along,
19 because if you consider this to be a key witness, particularly with regard
20 to the authenticity and probative value of some documents, you have been
21 working with us for long enough to know that we do not try to shut you
22 down or to restrict your --
23 MS. KORNER: What I may try to do.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Or the Defence for that matter, if it's -- we only
25 clamp down on you when it's necessary.
1 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I think Your Honour is going to hear an
2 answer from some of the documents he brought which as Your Honour will
3 hear have never been supplied to AID and Your Honour will see that their
4 identical to the ones supplied in the format and the like. Your Honour
5 what I may try and do, subject to any objection by the Defence, is I'm
6 dealing with this evidence by topics and there are many documents that
7 relates to topics and I may say -- ask him to look at a couple and then
8 simply mention the exhibit numbers that also relate to the same topic.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Perhaps what you could also do, Ms. Korner, is to
10 gather these documents that you are mostly interested in, in a bundle, and
11 we will hand them over to the witness and then perhaps you could use a
12 blanket formula in the kind of questions that you ask him with reference
13 to all those documents in general, plus, if he has anything to add with
14 regard to any one of them in particular, and we tried -- we tried to cover
15 the question of authenticity in that manner.
16 MS. KORNER: I think if Your Honours simply -- it's easier if it
17 stays because the Petrovac bundle is chronological, the documents slot in
18 that way. I will simply refer him to the documents that I consider --
19 JUDGE AGIUS: I want to make sure and it's my duty to make sure is
20 that when he is asked questions about documents in general and particular,
21 he knows exactly which documents he's being asked about.
22 MS. KORNER: Yes.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: That's very important for me. I mean, it's more
24 important for me to stop and wait until he goes through all these
25 documents to make sure that he knows what he's talking about rather than
1 to go through some other procedure lengthy or shorter but I mean it's up
2 to you. I do not --
3 MS. KORNER: I understand. Your Honour, for reasons that are
4 obvious because we are stacked up with witnesses next week, I would like
5 to be able to finish him in any event today.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Of course, Mrs. Baruch, you will have every
7 opportunity to cross-examine, Mr. Cunningham you'll have every opportunity
8 to cross-examine the witness on any of these documents. I mean this is
9 something that if I may add, since both of you are new to this case, this
10 is something that arose in the early stages of the trial, especially when
11 the French team of lawyers defending General Talic were present. They had
12 come forward with a sort of a generic, blanket objection to all documents
13 coming from a specific source. Mr. Ackerman was less generic than them,
14 and he restricted his objection to documents, to the exhibiting of,
15 tendering of documents in exhibit to certain documents only. In the
16 course of the proceedings here, one of these sources which Mr. Ackerman
17 generally contests is the AID. So his objection is in line with what he
18 has been doing until now. The understanding, however, has also been in
19 the sense that source is -- attendability of the source is not something
20 that is pre-emptively decided before the trial starts or in the early
21 stages of the trial. It's something that we will consider as we go along
22 and we'll decide upon at the right time, together with all the other
23 evidence, because it may well be that a document which has been furnished
24 by AID to the Prosecution, Office of the Prosecutor, is also -- exists
25 also in other places and as is most often the case is also produced by
1 witnesses or brought forward by witnesses, et cetera. So you will convey
2 this to Mr. Ackerman at your earliest and in the meantime we proceed and
3 you regulate the way you conduct -- I mean that's something in which we
4 will not interfere.
5 MS. KORNER: Thank you, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: The next witness does not have any protective
8 MS. KORNER: No.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.
10 MS. KORNER: Just because, Mr. Cunningham, I haven't looked upon
11 him before, I propose, unless there is an objection, to lead on background
12 matters and irrelevant matters because otherwise we will take a long time.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: I think there shouldn't be an objection.
14 MR. CUNNINGHAM: I don't have any objection.
15 MS. KORNER: Thank you.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Usher? Could you please bring in the next
18 [The witness entered court]
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you, sir.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Welcome to this Tribunal. I take it from the way
22 you have answered and nodded that you are receiving interpretation in a
23 language that you understand?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm sorry, I did not understand your
1 JUDGE AGIUS: I take it that what I am saying in English is being
2 translated to you in a language that you understand?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: You are here to give evidence and I need hardly
5 remind you about that, and before I explain to you the procedure, I would
6 kindly ask you to enter a solemn declaration, which is equivalent to an
7 oath, that in the course of your testimony you will be speaking the truth,
8 the whole truth and nothing but the truth. This is required by our rules
9 of evidence and procedure and the text of the solemn declaration has been
10 prepared for you. It's contained in a piece of paper that has just been
11 handed to you. Please read that solemn declaration aloud and that will be
12 your undertaking with this Tribunal that you will be telling us the whole
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
15 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
16 WITNESS: AHMET HIDIC
17 [Witness answered through interpreter]
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. You may sit down. And very briefly I'm going
19 to explain to you what's going to happen. You will first be asked a
20 series of questions by Ms. Korner, who is the chief officer, lead counsel,
21 for the Prosecution here, and whom you have met already. She will be
22 followed by Mr. Cunningham, who is defending Mr. Radoslav Brdjanin who is
23 the accused in this trial. Mr. Cunningham is the gentleman to your left.
24 You do not have any freedom, any right, to make distinctions between
25 questions coming from the Prosecution and questions coming from the
1 Defence. The Defence has got equal rights, as the Prosecution, to
2 cross-examine you, to ask you questions, and therefore, you have an
3 obligation which arises also from the solemn declaration that you have
4 just entered, to answer each question that is put to you, irrespective of
5 where it's coming from, as fully and as truthfully as possible. If you
6 don't, you will incur the wrath of myself and of this Tribunal.
7 Should you not understand a question or should you like a question
8 to be repeated to you, you address me and I'll make sure that the question
9 is clarified to you. If you need to refer to any documents which you may
10 have with you or which you may be shown, you are free to do so. However,
11 documents which you have or you may brought with you which are original
12 and which are not yet in the possession of the Tribunal or of the
13 Prosecutor as originals, you may and you shall be asked to produce them so
14 that they can be checked, seen and verified. Of course, if you want them
15 back you will have them back but you cannot refuse to show the Defence in
16 particular any documents that you will be making use of. All right? Am I
17 being clear?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Having said that, having said that, I leave you in
20 the hands of -- in the able hands of Ms. Korner, who will put to you a
21 series of questions.
22 MS. KORNER: Yes, thank you, Your Honour.
23 Examined by Ms. Korner:
24 Q. Sir, could you give your name, please, to the Court?
25 A. My name is Ahmet Hidic and I come from Bosanski Petrovac.
1 Q. And were you born on the 22nd of December, 1946?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And are you a Bosniak by nationality?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Mr. Hidic, I'm going to in a moment ask you a few general
6 questions about Bosanski Petrovac but I want to now deal with how you came
7 to give evidence here. I think you originally made a statement in 1999 to
8 an investigator from this Tribunal; is that right?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Subsequently, you were seen again a year -- roughly a year later,
11 in July of 2000, and you were asked to give further details of the matters
12 contained in your statement; is that correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And finally, as far as statements to this Tribunal are concerned,
15 did you make a further statement the day before yesterday in connection
16 with the documents that you had brought with you?
17 A. Yes, that's correct.
18 Q. And which I think you've brought the originals with you today, is
19 that also right?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And if necessary, if the Court or the Defence wish to see them,
22 you're prepared to let them be seen; is that right?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. As far as any other interview is concerned, shortly after you were
25 expelled from Bosanski Petrovac and whilst you were in Travnik, were you
1 interviewed on film by a member of one of the international organisations
2 that was present in Travnik?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And did you there give an account of the events in Bosanski
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And did that interview or at least part of it appear on a
8 programme on Sarajevo TV called Witness to Genocide?
9 A. I think that that's right.
10 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, I know that Your Honour has got the
11 notes that I made during my interview with the witness yesterday. We do
12 have the video here. We don't intend to use it because it's effectively
13 the same as the evidence. I think you've got a transcript in any event
14 but if the Defence wish to play it, it is available.
15 Q. Now, Mr. Hidic I want then to turn please to the question of the
16 documents just to deal with that, as a discrete topic. Did you return to
17 Bosanski Petrovac on the 20th of September, 1995?
18 A. Yes, that's correct.
19 Q. And was that approximately a week after it had been retaken by the
20 Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina?
21 A. I think that that's right, between the 14th and the 20th, which is
22 some six days.
23 Q. When you returned to Bosanski Petrovac, in what sort of state was
24 the town? And I'm talking about the town as opposed to the municipality.
25 A. Well, it was surprising for me, having been absent from Bosanski
1 Petrovac for three years, to see that there were many troops, very few
2 civilians. There were very few civilians there. And I got to meet some
3 of my acquaintances but everything was vacant, wrecked, deserted. I hope
4 this is enough.
5 Q. As far as the municipal building was concerned, where the records
6 are kept, was that occupied or what was that -- what was the state of that
8 A. The building was vacant as well. And in a way, if I can say so,
9 it was full of people. The people who were setting up a certain rhythm of
10 life there. I entered the building for the first time not on the 20th but
11 a day or two after that. Upon the invitation of the people who sent me to
12 Travnik to central Bosnia to organise the return of the refugees back into
13 Bosanski Petrovac. So they had already been some people there discharging
14 certain administrative duties.
15 Q. What was happening to the records that had been kept within the
16 assembly building or the -- I'm sorry, the municipal building?
17 A. The archive was strewn about, not only in the offices but all
18 over, including the basement. The major part of the archive was simply
19 strewn about everywhere and I saw a lot of records in the basement. The
20 archive was available, was available to everyone.
21 Q. Now, did you start to collect documents which related to the
22 period of 1991 and 1992? In particular 1992.
23 A. Not immediately, since I had one month to organise the return of
24 people. So sometime towards the end of the year and early 1996 I started
25 collecting certain documents. People knew that I was doing that so they
1 were bringing documents to me so that the documents who had some
2 significance could be preserved.
3 Q. All right. And the people who were providing you with the
4 documents, because you were interested in preservation of these records,
5 who were they?
6 A. Mostly residents, clerks. In one word: Employees of the
7 municipality from the reception clerk to, let's say, an officer of the
8 municipality or at the time president of the War Presidency.
9 Q. And those documents that you were provided with, did you keep
11 A. I kept what I received.
12 Q. In some cases, did you make a note of the contents of the
13 documents in a notebook?
14 A. Yes, yes.
15 Q. And what -- what impelled you, what was the criteria that made you
16 record the contents of some documents in your notebook?
17 A. It mostly had to do with documents from 1992, so let's say from
18 May of 1992 until September, which is the period of time during which we
19 Bosniaks stayed in Bosanski Petrovac. The documents mostly pertained to
20 the meetings of the Crisis Staff, and they remained there in the municipal
21 building after the withdrawal of Serbs from Bosanski Petrovac.
22 Q. All right. And did you then provide some of the documents,
23 including your notebook, to the investigator, Mr. Grady, who you saw in
24 July of 2000?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And did you bring with you to this Court other documents
2 effectively those that you had made a note of in your notebook?
3 A. These documents, the documents that are mentioned in the notebook
4 are the ones that are photocopied except for a few documents which were
5 new and which I have turned over to you.
6 Q. All right. Now, can I just ask, the documents that you were given
7 by these people who were providing them to you, were they photocopies of
8 the documents that were in the building or were they actual carbon copies
9 of the documents?
10 A. These are all originals and they come from the Office of the
11 President of the executive board of Bosanski Petrovac municipality at the
13 Q. All right. Have you ever had any connection with the Bosnian
14 state organisation called AID?
15 A. No.
16 Q. Did you ever make a statement to anybody from AID? Or speak to
18 A. No.
19 Q. Did you ever provide to AID copies or originals of documents that
20 you had received?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Thank you. Now, can I ask you a little bit about Bosanski
23 Petrovac? First of all, could you look at a map of the whole area known
24 as the autonomous region of Krajina? It's P446.1. And we'll have it up
25 on the ELMO.
1 Now, Mr. Hidic, we can see, I think, at least if we are lucky, we
2 can see, Bosanski Petrovac is towards the left of the map. Is it bordered
3 by Kljuc, Sanski Most, Bosanska Krupa and Bihac?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And it's not shown on the map but did you also have a border with
7 A. No. We did not have a border with Croatia. We did not. Our
8 borders went from Kulen Vakuf, so the borders of Bihac municipality,
9 towards Bosanska Krupa, over the Grmec mountains towards Sanski Most, to
10 the east towards Kljuc and to the south towards Drvar municipality.
11 Q. You're absolutely right. So although it's not marked it would be
12 Drvar municipality, all right. Yes. All right. Thank you. Now we've
13 established where it was in relation to the other municipalities. Thank
14 you. That's all for that map.
15 Now, could you look at, please, a census, a record of the census
16 that was taken in 1971, 1981 and 1991, which is Exhibit P60? If you turn
17 in that, please, to the second page, you will see it starts with Banja
18 Luka and then -- no, if you go next page, turn it, I'm sorry, to the page
19 that begins Banja Luka. Thank you. If we move down the list, we can see
20 Bosanski Petrovac and for 1991, I think the total population was 15.621.
21 The Croats were a tiny proportion, 48, 0.3. The Muslims, 3.288, 21 per
22 cent. And then the Serbs were 11.694, forming 74.9 per cent. And I think
23 as far as you're concerned that's obviously -- it's an accurate figure?
24 A. The figure is accurate. However, I disagree with the first total
25 number, 15.661 [as interpreted], because the records show there is a
1 document that demonstrates that 15.552 residents lived in Bosanski
2 Petrovac municipality according to the census of 1991. The percentages of
3 the ethnic composition are approximately accurate.
4 Q. All right. Thank you.
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Presiding Judge.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: The interpreter -- I had the interpretation say
8 15.661. And in actual fact at least in the document that I have, that we
9 have, it says 15.621, just for the record, because it doesn't really make
10 any difference.
11 MS. KORNER: That's why I didn't bother to correct it. I heard
12 that as well, Your Honour.
13 Q. Thank you, yes, you needn't trouble with that document.
14 But I'd like just to deal with figures in one go. Can you now
15 look, please, at Exhibit P5 -- 56? Now, sir, I know you hadn't seen this
16 document before you came to this Court. It's a document that was prepared
17 apparently by Republika Srpska in May of 1993. It's stated to be a list
18 of citizens who have moved out and into the area covered by the sector.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Korner, just to be fair with the Defence, could
20 anyone enlighten me as to whether this document was objected to by
21 Mr. Ackerman? It was one of the documents objected to by Mr. Ackerman?
22 MS. KORNER: I don't think so but we will have to go back to the
23 Banja Luka list.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: In the meantime, perhaps Ms. Gustin can check that
25 if she can.
1 MS. KORNER: We can certainly let Your Honour know after the
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Exactly. Just to know what the position is.
4 MS. KORNER: Yes. I rather feel it comes from one of the seizures
5 in 1998 in Banja Luka, and I don't think there was much objection to
7 Q. Can we turn, please, in that document, and it's not suggested by
8 any means, Your Honour, this is an accurate census -- to -- in the --
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Third page.
10 MS. KORNER: Third page, thank you.
11 Q. Yes it's the third page in B/C/S as well. Can you see item number
12 10 is Petrovac?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. In May of 1993, according to however this was compiled, 3.200
15 Muslims had moved out, no Croats, and 100 Serbs, and 4.000 Serbs had moved
16 in. Now, you had left by then but would you agree that 3.200 Muslims had
17 moved out?
18 A. I think that a larger number of Muslims left Bosanski Petrovac,
19 not 3200. I believe that between 50 and 70 Muslims remained, because they
20 were either members of the Serbian army and they had their families there,
21 or they were quite infirm and were unable to leave.
22 Q. So you think by May of 1993, that instead of 3.200 having moved
23 out, something in the -- well, in fact, there were 3.288 originally
24 apparently in Petrovac in 1991 so that would be about right, wouldn't it?
25 If you say there were about 50 people left?
1 A. Absolutely.
2 Q. So in other words, by May of 1993, barely a Muslim was left. All
4 MS. KORNER: Your Honours Ms. Gustin has managed to look up her
5 records and it was -- this document was admitted on the 18th of February,
6 and indeed Mr. Ackerman used it during his cross-examination of BT21. So
7 I think it was accepted.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you.
9 MS. KORNER: Thank you, you can put that away.
10 Q. Finally, ask I ask you to look at one more map before we deal with
11 the substantive part of your evidence and that is a map of Bosanski
13 MS. KORNER: Which will be a new exhibit, Your Honour. P1804.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: No objections I take it from the Defence?
15 MS. KORNER: I think Defence have got it.
16 MR. CUNNINGHAM: We don't have any objection to that, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Cunningham. It's being so admitted
18 as Exhibit P1804. Thank you.
19 MS. KORNER:
20 Q. Now, you had an opportunity to look at this map yesterday?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. It is clear, as we've seen from the census, that Petrovac was a
23 large majority Serb municipality. Two villages have been marked, that is
24 Bjelaj and Rasinovac as Muslim villages. Can you just tell us whether
25 that's totally accurate in the sense whether there was a Muslim majority
1 in those villages?
2 A. It is absolutely not correct. Bjelaj and Rasinovac were villages
3 inhabited by Muslims, but the population of these two villages is mixed,
4 and those two villages are predominantly Serb villages.
5 Q. But in -- I think -- that's intended to indicate in any of the
6 other villages that are shown there, were there Muslims living or were
7 they all Serb? For example, Kolunic or Medeno Polje?
8 A. I can say that all the other villages are currently Serbian
9 villages, ethnically cleansed. However, previously, in these villages,
10 there were also some Bosniaks and Croats, like in the town of Bosanski
11 Petrovac itself, that is in the centre of the town.
12 Q. All right. That's what I was going to ask you. For the town
13 itself, which we can see marked, Petrovac, what was the mix of population
15 A. Also mixed according to the last census, there is a balance in the
16 population, but some 20 or 30 years ago, it was predominantly Muslim or
17 Bosniak urban area.
18 Q. And as we are going to hear, were there certain areas within
19 Petrovac that were entirely inhabited by Bosniaks?
20 A. Obviously, the old streets or Mahalas as we call them were
21 typically Bosniak or Muslim areas of residence.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Looking at this map, where would you say, in 1991,
23 1992, was the biggest concentration of Muslim inhabitants? In which town
24 or village or city or whatever? Looking at this map. Was there any where
25 where there was a big concentration of Muslims? Or proportionately, I
1 mean? There were 3.200, 3.300 Muslims living in the municipality of
2 Bosanski Petrovac in 1991, according to the census that we -- you were
3 referring to before. Where were they living? Was there any where in the
4 municipality where there was a big concentration of Muslims? Or were they
5 were just spread out everywhere but always in a minority in 1991?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In 1991, Bosniaks mostly resided in
7 the so-called Mahalas or old streets, and if necessary, I can give you
8 their names, in order to provide you with a clearer picture. So Biscani
9 was a settlement inhabited by Bosniaks, up to the erection of the Skender
10 Kulenovic residential area which was a new residential area that accepted
11 a number of residents who were not Bosniaks. What I'm saying is that the
12 lowest number of flats there were inhabited by Bosniaks. I'm -- so
13 Didovici, Gaj, Ploca, Pekinska, were the names of the streets. All those
14 were the streets with the highest concentration of Muslims. Obviously,
15 the nucleus of the town was an urban area. That received the new settlers
16 and they were predominantly Serbs.
17 MS. KORNER:
18 Q. I think the point was this: Of the Muslims who lived in the
19 municipality, did most of them inhabit the town of Bosanski Petrovac and
20 the two villages that we can see marked in green on that map?
21 A. That is absolutely correct.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Ms. Korner.
23 MS. KORNER: All right. You can put that map away now or the
24 usher can take it away.
25 Q. I've just got one more question and that deals with Petrovac as it
1 is today. I think that the Serbs remained in Bosanski Petrovac until the
2 army of the Bosnian Serbs pulled out in 1995; is that right?
3 A. No. The Serbs left together with the Serbian army.
4 Q. Yes. Sorry, that's what I meant. My fault.
5 Then you told us that you were -- you became one of the people who
6 was organising the return of the Bosniaks. Did the Serbs also start to
7 return to Petrovac after the 1997 elections?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And I think that your estimate of the present population is it
10 consists of about 7 and a half thousand people, of which 50 per cent
11 roughly are Serbs?
12 A. Yes, yes.
13 Q. All right. Now, can I turn to the events of 1991 and 1992? Was
14 your job in 1991 and 1992 as a machine locksmith but also as the manager
15 of a warehouse for a company in Bosanski Petrovac?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And in 1991 and 1992, were you a member of any political party?
18 A. No.
19 Q. However, I think it's right you're today the President of the SDA
20 in Petrovac?
21 A. Yes. These are the duties that I discharge and I was elected in
23 Q. When did you actually become a member of the SDA?
24 A. During the war, in 1993.
25 Q. I want to ask you about the relationships between the communities,
1 the different ethnic communities in Petrovac before 1991. What were
2 relations like really between the Bosniaks, as they are now called, and
3 the Serbs?
4 A. I believe that they were absolutely good, and there was a high
5 degree of tolerance between Serbs and Bosniaks, and according to a popular
6 story, we believe that the fraternity and unity was the strongest in
7 Bosanski Petrovac. That is what politicians used to say when they were
8 talking about the situation in Bosanski Petrovac.
9 Q. What -- as a community, did most people know other people, if not
10 to talk to, by sight? And particularly, I should say, the local
12 A. Yes, absolutely. People knew each other. They were very close
13 relations. People were acquaintances. They were friends. Bosanski
14 Petrovac is a small town and people knew each other regardless of where
15 they resided, whether they resided in the urban part of the area or
16 whether they resided in the rural part of the area.
17 Q. All right. Now, can I turn to the municipal assembly? Did that
18 have 50 seats?
19 A. Yes, according to the elections that were held in 1991, there were
20 50 seats.
21 Q. 1990, I think?
22 A. I'm sorry, I apologise, it was in 1990.
23 Q. And I'm just going to put the results effectively you told us
24 about. The SDS I think won 33 seats, the SDA 8 seats, the SDP 6 seats and
25 the Reformist Party, 3 seats?
1 A. Yes, that is correct.
2 Q. As far as the positions, the key positions, in the municipality
3 were, was the President of the municipal assembly Rajko Novakovic of the
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. The deputy president, Mustafa Ferizovic from the SDA?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. President of the executive board, a Mr. Latinovic, SDS?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And the head of the police, a Dragan Gacesa?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. I'm sorry, the commander of the police was Mr. Kecman?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And the head of the TO was an Obrad Vrzina?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Being members of the SDS?
17 A. That's correct.
18 Q. Now, I want to move, please, to really how events progressed from
19 1990, in terms of the atmosphere. During the election period in 1990,
20 were there rallies held in Bosanski Petrovac?
21 A. Yes. Like elsewhere in Bosnia and Herzegovina, there were rallies
22 in Bosanski Petrovac as well. That was all built up to the elections.
23 Q. All right. And was there any change, as it were, in the feeling
24 between the ethnicities? Was there, as it were, more nationalistic
25 feeling coming into the events?
1 A. There was a turn in the relationship between the people, both in
2 their private relations as well as at all the other levels of
3 communication. I believe that the decisive factor in all that was the
4 meeting of the SDS in front of the church in Bosanski -- that was the
5 foundation of that party and that constituted a big turn in the
6 relationships in Bosanski Petrovac.
7 Q. Now, had there been or was there organised an exhumation during
8 this period?
9 A. The exhumations took place earlier. Some year before that. In
10 1990. And it took place in Risovacka Jama, some 20 kilometres away from
11 the centre of Bosanski Petrovac municipality, in the local community of
12 Krnjeusa somewhere between Krnjeusa local commune and Bosanska Krupa local
14 Q. And the exhumation just briefly, because you say it was earlier,
15 was of what?
16 A. The remains of the Serbs who perished during the Second World War,
17 at least this is what was said around the town these days, of the remains
18 of those who died during the Second World War.
19 Q. And was that exhumation used in any way to, as it were, incite
20 nationalistic feeling?
21 A. Yes. There was a rally organised during the burial in Krnjeusa
22 and that meeting was attended by all the leaders of the Serbian people,
23 politicians and religious leaders so yes, I would say that this rally was
24 used for political and nationalistic purposes.
25 Q. And you say that it was attended by political and religious
1 leaders. Can you remember any of the political leaders who attended?
2 A. I believe that Biljana Plavsic was there. I must say that
3 Bosniaks, that is Muslims, could not attend such a rally. It never
4 occurred to us to attend it, in any case. However, the Serbs who were
5 there told us that Biljana Plavsic was there, that Raskovic came from
6 Croatia, from the autonomous region of Krajina and there were some other
7 politicians. I don't know who they were because I wasn't there and I
8 didn't see them personally. As for the clerics, there was Pavle and also
9 the Hrizostem of the Bihac and Petrovac area. And there were also
10 politicians from the Bosanski Petrovac area obviously.
11 Q. Right. Now, you've told us there was also a rally outside the
12 church during the run-up to the elections. Once the war started in
13 Croatia, how did that affect the relationships between the ethnicities and
14 what was happening in Petrovac?
15 A. The war in Croatia did have a huge bearing on the life in Bosanski
16 Petrovac municipality. A lot of volunteers from Bosanski Petrovac went to
17 Croatia and on their return, they expressed extreme radical tendencies and
18 their behaviour changed and it never again was what it used to be before
19 they went to Croatia.
20 Q. Before the war in Croatia began, had there been any military
21 installations in Bosanski Petrovac?
22 A. No, never.
23 Q. Were any regular troops of the JNA stationed there?
24 A. No.
25 Q. Once it started, what was the situation in respect of military
1 activity in Petrovac?
2 A. I believe that at the beginning of the war, when a number of
3 troops came from Croatia, Bosanski Petrovac, during those days, from the
4 direction of Bihac and Knin, there were endless columns of motorised units
5 of the JNA. Since I worked in Bosnaplast and this is on the road that
6 leads via Drvar to Knin, I could see that these columns had a flag with a
7 five-pointed star when they were leaving and on their return they did not
8 have that flag. They had Milosevic's picture instead. These columns were
9 on the move for maybe a month or even two months during that period of
11 Q. Were any troops actually stationed in Petrovac itself?
12 A. Obviously, a lot of the troops of the former JNA were in Bosanski
13 Petrovac. They were deployed in various places, mostly in those places
14 where they could work or they could organise some details so they occupied
15 factories, they occupied even schools or some recreational objects, and
16 things like that.
17 Q. Were there any rallies held in respect of the JNA in Petrovac?
18 A. Yes. There was a rally. I believe that was when the last
19 generation of recruits was being sent off to the JNA. A lot of the
20 citizens of Bosanski Petrovac, both Serbs and Bosniaks, attended that
21 rally and there were also representatives of the command and of the Bihac
22 garrison who attended this festivity of sending of the last generation of
23 recruits to the JNA and this rally served to express the support for the
24 JNA by the Serbs and -- the words of support were used for the JNA during
25 that rally.
1 Q. All right. I'd like you to have a look, please, as Exhibit
2 P1816. Now, this is a news item that was apparently on Bosanski Petrovac
3 Radio, and it deals with a public forum, the JNA and mobilisation around
4 the 2nd of November, 1991, and it talks about the people who attended,
5 Colonels Vukovic, Vukelic, Skundric, Osman Selak and so on and so forth.
6 And it describes -- it's really an open forum with questions in respect of
7 mobilisation. Now, do you know, was this around the time of the rally
8 that you just spoken to or is this the rally you were describing?
9 A. I believe that this was before the rally, and what I have just
10 stated about the rally confirms the presence of these people on behalf of
11 Bosanski Petrovac municipality, that is people who were in charge of that
12 rally on behalf of Bosanski Petrovac municipality.
13 Q. Can I just ask this? Colonel Osman Selak, did you know anything
14 about him? Had you ever heard about him before this or at all?
15 A. No. I personally didn't know him. I didn't hear of him, but I
16 believe that he came from the Bihac garrison.
17 Q. All right. Yes. Thank you. You can put that document away.
18 MS. KORNER: Your Honour I note the time. That may be an
19 appropriate time for a break.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: So we will have a 25-minute break -- 30-minute
21 break. We will resume again at 11.00. Thank you.
22 --- Recess taken at 10.29 a.m.
23 --- On resuming at 11.02 a.m.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Ms. Korner.
25 MS. KORNER: Before we move on, Mr. Cunningham has requested that
1 he be allowed to examine the original documents, plus his notebook, which
2 Mr. Hidic has brought, over the luncheon adjournment so that Mr. Hidic
3 understands, Defence counsel undertake to return them without doing
4 anything to them but if Your Honour will --
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, is that okay with you? Do you understand what
6 Ms. Korner has --
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. So that's agreed. You will go through
9 them, Mr. Cunningham, and then return them.
10 MR. CUNNINGHAM: At the lunch hour, Your Honour. Thank you, Your
12 MS. KORNER:
13 Q. We've dealt with the increase of the military activity in Petrovac
14 after the war in Croatia. Can we just for a moment consider the police in
15 Petrovac? What was the ethnic makeup of the police force in Petrovac,
17 A. I am absolutely sure that 99 per cent of them were Serbs, so that
18 was the ethnic composition.
19 Q. All right. Now, as far as the posts were concerned, the political
20 posts, we've discussed the people who -- the head and command of the
21 police. Was there ever a time when a Bosniak became the commander or a
22 SDA member, I should say, of the police, which was the second rank, second
23 position, in the police station?
24 A. I know that following the elections, there were negotiations held
25 between political parties concerning the allocation of key offices, and
1 that the SDA insisting on having its member as chief of police. However,
2 that never materialised.
3 Q. All right. I want to jump ahead, please, but on this topic to a
4 document P1824, because it's dated the 11th of March, 1992. Now, this is
5 the minutes apparently of the Crisis Staff on the 11th of March, 1992, and
6 I'll deal as a separate topic with the Crisis Staff but on the agenda we
7 see analysis and assessment of events of 10th of March, 1992,
8 Mr. Novakovic talking about the administration of the Bihac security
9 centre carried out personnel changes at the public security station in
10 Bosanski Petrovac, against the will of the Bosanski Petrovac authority and
11 Fuad Ferizovic was appointed commander of the public security station and
12 other personnel changes. This caused public indignation, and I'll leave
13 out the next sentence. In addition to the above-mentioned candidates, the
14 SDS nominated Dragan Gacesa commander of the Bihac public security
15 station, disgruntled at the changes the Bosanski Petrovac public security
16 station set up several road blocks.
17 Now, the first thing is the appointment apparently of
18 Mr. Ferizovic was made by Bihac security centre. Did the police station
19 in Petrovac come under the Bihac area?
20 A. Yes, it was within the composition of the security centre in
22 Q. And if you don't know the answer to this, do say so straight away,
23 Mr. Hidic but what was the ethnic makeup in Bihac? Was it a
24 Serb-controlled municipality or Bosniak, or was there a division?
25 A. I can say that there were 15.000 Serbs living in Bihac, and the
1 composition was quite balanced when it came to the security services
2 centre in Bihac.
3 Q. All right. Now, were you aware that a Mr. Fuad Ferizovic had been
4 appointed commander of the Petrovac SJB?
5 A. I knew that he was nominated by the SDA. I knew that he was a
6 lawyer with a proper degree and that prior to that, he was acting
7 secretary of the health centre in Petrovac. As such, he was nominated to
8 the post of the commander of the police station in Bosanski Petrovac.
9 Q. Did he ever take it up? Did he ever take that position up?
10 A. No.
11 Q. And it says here that apparently road blocks were set up by
12 members of the SJB in Petrovac. Do you remember that happening?
13 A. I don't know that. However, that was probably done because of the
14 very name of the person who was supposed to be head of the police
15 administration. I think that this is what motivated it.
16 Q. All right. In the upshot, and we can see it through the
17 documents, did Mr. Gacesa, as you told us, become the head of the police
18 in Petrovac?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Yes, thank you. You can put that document aside now.
21 Now, can we move to the topic of the, as it were, political
22 alignment of Bosanski Petrovac? Did you become aware of the establishment
23 of an organisation called the association of the Bosnian Krajina
25 A. Yes, yes. I knew about that.
1 Q. All right. I want you to look, please, now, at a document which
2 is marked P5, please.
3 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, it's in the Petrovac bundle behind
4 divider 4, although it's an earlier exhibit. And at the same time, have
5 P1813, because the two documents are linked.
6 Q. This is a decision, the first document, P5, dated the 26th of
7 April, 1991, of the Petrovac municipal assembly, which decided on the 10th
8 of April, 1991, to separate the municipality from the Bihac intermunicipal
9 regional association. And if you look at the second document, of the same
10 date, also a decision of the municipal assembly, the decision there to
11 join the community of the municipalities of Bosanska Krajina. I don't
12 think we need go through that.
13 Now, were you aware of this decision at the time?
14 A. Yes. The very joining of Bosanski Petrovac municipality to the
15 SAO of Krajina was publicly announced. Therefore, Bosanski Petrovac was
16 the second municipality in Banja Luka region which after Bosansko Grahovo
17 publicly announced it was joining it, so before Banja Luka joined. I am
18 aware of that because that was announced on television as well.
19 Q. Now, historically, was Petrovac part of the Bihac region or the
20 Banja Luka region?
21 A. Petrovac, as far as I know, always gravitated and was in the
22 composition of Bihac area, regardless of what type of administration was
23 in place at the time, during the Austro-Hungarian empire, during the
24 former Yugoslavia, and also just before the outbreak of the war, it was in
25 Bihac area and there was a municipality association of three
1 municipalities but that was all under the Bihac area.
2 Q. Was the SDA and were the Bosniaks in Petrovac in favour of this?
3 A. I know that they walked out of the assembly session when voting on
4 this decision on joining Bosnian Krajina was going on. I know that the
5 SDP assemblymen voted against this decision. However, the SDS had a
6 majority so the decision was adopted.
7 Q. I'd like you to have a look, this is the last document on this
8 topic, at Exhibit P1810. This appears to be the text of a radio broadcast
9 and it appears to be an interview with Rajko Novakovic, the president of
10 the assembly. It deals with the decision to leave and, as you stated,
11 that the SDA did not vote in favour. And then Mr. Novakovic spoke about
12 the reasons for joining the Krajina municipalities. He gives his reasons
13 there, effectively because about the lack of benefit that you'd received,
14 that the municipality had received from Bihac. Now, two questions.
15 First, do you remember hearing him make that speech or broadcast?
16 A. No. I personally did not. I believe that this was a news item
17 prepared for the local radio station, because I can see there a signature
18 of a journalist who was a journalist of Radio Petrovac at the time, Pero
19 Dosen, I know him as a journalist and this was most probably announced
20 on Radio Petrovac.
21 Q. All right. Can we deal with that? It says -- it's got "P. Do" as
22 a typed signature and we will see the related documents. That's a
23 Mr. Pero Dosen, you believe?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And you knew him personally, did you as a journalist for the
2 A. That's right.
3 Q. All right. And maybe obvious but what nationality was he?
4 A. A Serb.
5 Q. The reasons that are given, though, were those reasons with which
6 you as a citizen of Petrovac would agree?
7 A. Let me tell you, these are political reasons that prompted
8 Novakovic into giving this statement. However, this here is not true. It
9 is partially true but not entirely, because there were other
10 municipalities in the region that lived under very modest circumstances.
11 Their infrastructure was not regulated, as was the case in Bosanski
13 Q. Thank you. Could you look, please, then, at the next document,
14 P1811, on the topic of Radio Petrovac? Addressed to Serbs and all
15 upstanding people of Krajina. Let us stem the tide of fascism. Our
16 houses, towns and villages are being torched and destroyed. We are
17 fighting against Ustasha and Islamic fascists, scandalous lies,
18 international conspiracy and so on and so forth. And finally, people of
19 Petrovac, do not be taken in by any disinformation. You can get the real
20 information by Radio Petrovac between 10.00 and 1300 hours every day
21 except Monday because the station is provided with a permanent electrical
23 Now, there is no date on this. Perhaps you can help us. Did you
24 hear first of all this particular broadcast?
25 A. I think that this was after the war had broken out. Radio
1 Bosanski Petrovac commenced every working day with this type of
3 Q. So you're talking now about after April of 1992; is that right?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. So every day they would start with this kind of broadcast?
6 A. Unfortunately, I have to point out that we Bosniaks were not able
7 to follow the local broadcast, both radio and television, because we had
8 power outages at the time when these types of programmes were broadcast.
9 Q. Before the war began, before April, 1992, was Petrovac
10 broadcasting this type of -- trying to find a neutral word for it --
12 A. No. Not at all like this.
13 Q. And as far as the radio station was concerned, before April, 1992,
14 who were the people running the station? What ethnicity?
15 A. All of the employees were Serbs. I don't know exactly how many
16 employees they had, but there was just one employee who was a Bosniak, a
17 lady announcer of Radio Bosanski Petrovac. Her name was Jasna Balic.
18 Immediately, in the beginning, she was forced to read out an announcement
19 that she did not agree with. She was forced to read it out. And
20 following that, she was banned from entering Radio Bosanski Petrovac.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: How did you come to know this?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Jasna Balic was expelled together
23 with me and other Bosniaks into central Bosnia, into Zenica. Before
24 she departed to the United States, I used to have frequent contacts with
25 her. We knew each other very well. This is what she claimed to me. She
1 was forced by Milan Latinovic a retired journalist to read out an
2 announcement following which she was fired.
3 MS. KORNER:
4 Q. I think you're aware, Mr. Hidic, that if you can indicate when you
5 give us a piece of information how you know it, that will assist the
7 A. All right.
8 Q. Now, on the subject -- thank you. The document can go back now.
9 On the subject of telecommunications, then, please, where did Bosanski
10 Petrovac receive its television programmes from in 1991?
11 A. Throughout 1991, Bosanski Petrovac had both radio and television
12 broadcasts from the TV transmitter in Ostrelj which is an elevation of
13 1330 metres, so we received through that tower television programme from
14 Sarajevo, and other studios that were -- formed part of that broadcast.
15 And the same applied to radio programme. It also came from Sarajevo.
16 Q. And did that change?
17 A. Yes. Absolutely. It did change. As early as 1991, Pljesevica
18 which is above Bihac, and which was dominant elevation, supplying
19 television signals from Croatia. Ostrelj was damaged or rather
20 destroyed -- the TV tower there was destroyed. There were various rumours
21 going around but the truth is that somebody did it on purpose in order to
22 disrupt the broadcast of the radio television from Sarajevo.
23 Q. After it had been destroyed, this tower, from where did you
24 receive programmes?
25 A. All broadcasts that we could follow, radio and television
1 broadcasts, mostly came from Banja Luka area, from Banja Luka television,
2 Belgrade, Novi Sad, Pristina, and Titograd television stations. So only
3 these programmes were available to us.
4 Q. Did the programmes that you were receiving from Banja Luka, Novi
5 Sad and the like, have any effect upon the relationships between the
6 nationalities in Krupa -- in Petrovac?
7 A. Naturally, absolutely. That had a huge impact. All of the
8 information that we received represented only one side of the reality. We
9 could receive no other information.
10 Q. We saw this broadcast that Petrovac put out after the war
11 started. Were the type of programmes that you were receiving before the
12 war, before April, 1992, did they contain any of this type of material
13 that we can see in that one?
14 A. I can tell you that all of the previous programmes, television
15 programmes, were -- that were aired from Sarajevo studio were of a quite
16 different nature. There was a programme of daily news coming from YUTEL
17 television station that covered this area and it was followed both by
18 Serbs and Bosniaks in this area and I heard very many positive comments
19 regarding this programme.
20 Q. I'll leave the topic.
21 Now I want to deal with two events, then, at the end of 1991. Do
22 you remember the Serbs holding their plebiscite?
23 A. Yes. I think that it went on for two days.
24 Q. All right. I'd like you to have a look, please, at P1817. This
25 appears to be a news report from something called Vijesti. Do you know
1 what that is?
2 A. I believe that this is a local news, and this confirms what I have
3 just said a little while ago. This was signed by Jasna Balic.
4 Q. Right. And it talks about a meeting between the SDS and SDA in
5 respect of this plebiscite. States that the position of the opposition
6 parties is that national plebiscites do not solve problems and the
7 opposition asks the main parties in Bosanski Petrovac, the SDS and the
8 SDA, to preserve peace and unity. The opposition parties cannot and will
9 not prevent their members from taking part in the plebiscite, and then
10 they are concerned by the existence of ballot papers in different colours
11 which leads in advance to division. Do you know what that's a reference
12 to? And if you don't, say so straight away.
13 A. I can say that the political parties had frequent contacts.
14 Personally I am not familiar with this and I cannot provide you with any
15 comment on this.
16 Q. All right. But then the bottom, can we just move, then, to the
17 next part? The position of the SDA is that a plebiscite of the Serbian
18 people and all others who are for Yugoslavia is unconstitutional and
19 illegal. The SDA membership is also in favour of remaining in Yugoslavia
20 but away agreed by all of us together and not in the way offered by a
21 unilateral plebiscite in favour of a referendum of all nations and
22 nationalities and so on. And then finally, the most important thing in
23 all of this is that after reconciling positions concerning the plebiscite
24 following the joint meeting, people went for a coffee together in the way
25 that we in Bosanski Petrovac have become accustomed to doing.
1 Would you agree with that last sentence, that that was the
2 relationship between the Serbian and the Bosniaks in -- even in November,
3 1991, in Petrovac?
4 A. Yes. That was the relationship between the political
5 representatives. They had daily contacts and it is possible that they did
6 go and have a cup of coffee together and that's what the conclusion was.
7 Q. Taking it broader than just the political parties, would that be a
8 summary of the relationship between all peoples, Serb and Bosniak, in
10 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Excuse me, Your Honour, I object. I'm going to
11 object to the leading question.
12 MS. KORNER: I'll rephrase the question.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Ms. Korner, please do.
14 MS. KORNER:
15 Q. That's the attitude between the SDS and the SDA. How was that
16 reflected in ordinary life between SDS members or Serbs, and Bosniaks?
17 A. It is very hard for me to give you an answer to this question,
18 given the time that has elapsed but I would say that the relationships in
19 1991 were still good. At least as far as the political parties are
20 concerned. And even amongst the people, the general public, the climate
21 was positive, I would say.
22 Q. Okay. All right. Now can we look at December, 1991? Could you
23 be shown, please, P1818? I'm sorry, it's the wrong one. I beg your
24 pardon, it's not the one I want. I'm so sorry. It's P1819. Now this is
25 apparently minutes of a meeting of the SDS party Secretariat. We can see
1 who the meeting was attended by. I just want to know if you know who
2 these people are. Dragan Miljanovic?
3 A. Yes. I know Dragan Miljanovic. He was not only a member of the
4 Crisis Staff but he was a deputy as well, and a member of the SDS inner
5 circle. He was one of the founders of the SDS.
6 Q. In Petrovac or nationally?
7 A. In Bosanski Petrovac. I am talking about Bosanski Petrovac.
8 Q. Nenad Dragisic?
9 A. Yes. I know him personally as well. He has a bachelor's degree
10 in economics.
11 Q. Jovo Radojko?
12 A. I don't know this gentleman but I know that immediately before the
13 conflict in Croatia, Jovo Radojko came to Bosanski Petrovac and that's
14 where he originates from. He is a lawyer who had used to work in either
15 Zagreb or somewhere in Croatia before the conflict in Croatia started.
16 And if you will allow me, he was the secretary of the executive board of
17 Bosanski Petrovac municipality after the elections.
18 Q. All right. Then very quickly, then, Mr. Knezevic?
19 A. Zdravko Knezevic, I know.
20 Q. What position did he hold in Petrovac?
21 A. I know he was one of the leaders of the SDS but I don't know what
22 position he held. I don't even know whether he has any particular
24 Q. All right. And finally Mr. Novakovic. Now we've seen him before
25 but did you know Mr. Novakovic personally?
1 A. Yes. I did. I believe that he is somewhat younger than me but
2 nevertheless I knew him very well.
3 Q. Just jump ahead. Is he still alive?
4 A. No. He is not. Rajko Novakovic was killed in 1992. I believe
5 that it was on the Grabez front line, when he was patrolling the lines and
6 that was after the expulsion of Bosniaks from Bosanski Petrovac. This was
7 maybe one or two months after that. I believe that this happened in
8 November. The circumstances of his death were rather strange, if you will
9 allow me. There were some controversial things involved in his death.
10 There are stories on the one hand and there is an official version saying
11 that he was killed by a sniper.
12 MR. CUNNINGHAM: I apologise, Your Honour.
13 MS. KORNER: I think he has finished Your Honour. I was going to
14 stop him in any event.
15 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Then that waives my objection Your Honour. My
16 objection is moot now that the question is over.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Please, Ms. Korner.
18 MS. KORNER:
19 Q. I want to move to some of the items that appear on this agenda or
20 meeting. Item number 2, states that the instruction on the organisation
21 and activity of organs of the Serbian people in Bosnia-Herzegovina in
22 emergency circumstances needs to be typed in seven copies and every member
23 of the Secretariat is to be given a copy. I want to ask you carefully
24 about this. Did you ever in 1992 become aware of instructions being
25 issued by the SDS to the main board SDS to local boards SDS?
1 A. No. I was not aware of that in 1992.
2 Q. All right. But we can leave out the, I think, items 3 and 4 and 5
3 but can we come to item 7, where it talks about, and this is December of
4 1991, Mr. Miljanovic, the deputy, raised the question of personnel changes
5 in public enterprises. The vote was unanimous to replace the directors of
6 the power supply company and the veterinary station and so on and so
8 Now, do you know in 1991, what the ethnicity was of these
10 A. The director of the power supply company was a Bosniak. That is a
11 Muslim. The veterinary station as well, another Bosniak and the director
12 of the postal services was another Bosniak. We are talking about
13 managers, not directors.
14 Q. It may be the translation -- what's the word in the -- in your
15 copy? What does it say?
16 A. Directors.
17 Q. All right. Do you know, were these people replaced?
18 A. Yes. They were.
19 Q. Before December of 1991, had there been any removal of managers or
20 directors who were Bosniaks?
21 A. Before 1991, no. There were none.
22 Q. This document is dated the 26th of December, 1991. After
23 December, 1991, what happened to Bosniaks, first of all who were in
24 positions of managers or directors?
25 A. The few of them who were managers were removed, and replaced.
1 Maybe there were one or two cases in which they had to stay on longer, and
2 I'm talking about the head of finances in the municipality, who remained
3 in his position up to mid-June, 1992. I was also active up to that time.
4 I went to work, and I worked, and I believe that the two of us were the
5 last Bosniaks who remained working in Bosanski Petrovac.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. One moment, Ms. Korner. Just to clear this up
7 a little bit. You were referred to the directors of Elektrodistribucija
8 and the veterinary station and I take it that you did confirm in your
9 testimony that these two persons were removed from their positions.
10 MS. KORNER: Yes, he did.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: That's correct?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: You also mentioned because you were referred to that
14 particular paragraph the director of the post telegraph and telegram
15 service who you said was also a Bosniak. Was he also sacked?
16 MS. KORNER: No, veterinary station, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Post telegraph and telegram service. He said that
18 that person was also a Bosniak. Was he removed or retained in his
19 position? Because the paragraph that was read out to you here says that
20 while a decision, a unanimous decision was being taken to replace the
21 directors of the power supply company and the veterinary station, support
22 was being extended to the director of the post telegraph and telegram
23 service and I understood you saying that this last director of the post
24 telegraph and telegram service was a Bosniak. Was he a Bosniak.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes he was a Bosniak.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: And was he retained while the others were sacked?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I believe that he was the last
3 person to be removed. I don't know exactly when that happened. But yes,
4 he was removed eventually.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: And why would you say, in this vote that was taken
6 on this day, as related in this document, such a distinction was made
7 between the -- this person and the other two Bosniaks that were sacked?
8 Why would they decide to keep one and even extend assistance and support
9 and sack the other two? Why would that be so?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If this is important, I really don't
11 know, but if this is important, I believe that this Bosniak was married to
12 a Serb woman. I know his family name was Ferizovic, and that he was a
13 professionally speaking indispensable. He was an expert in his field.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Ms. Korner, please proceed.
15 MS. KORNER: Thank you.
16 Q. Can we deal with this? Here we see that these people have to be
17 removed and you've told us that this went on until there were very few
18 left. What reason was given to people, I'll come to your case in a
19 moment, but from what you'd gathered, for removing them from their
20 positions, Bosniaks?
21 A. None of those who were removed were given any particular reasons.
22 They were just sent away. They were told to go on holiday, and that was
23 the only thing that we learned about these people.
24 Q. Can we come to your particular case? Although again we are
25 jumping ahead slightly. You remained in your position until when?
1 A. I believe that I stayed on up to mid-June or thereabouts.
2 Q. Can you think of any reason why you would have been kept on longer
3 than other Bosniaks in their jobs?
4 A. I believe, and have believed all this time, that the reason was
5 that I was the head of the warehouse which stored all the tools for the
6 machinery in the fabric where I worked, and I was the only person who was
7 in charge of that warehouse, and I believe that that was the only reason
8 why they kept me on for such a long time. Eventually, I, as all the
9 others, was told that I should stop coming, the key was taken away from
10 me, and in my work book, the last day of my work, recorded in that work
11 book was sometime towards the end of April, although I effectively worked
12 up to mid-June or thereabouts.
13 Q. Roughly how many Bosniaks were left in their jobs by mid-June? As
14 a proportion of working Bosniaks?
15 A. I've mentioned Mrs. Senada Mehdin who was a bachelor's degree in
16 economics. She was the head of finances, and she was the last Bosniak to
17 stay on. As soon as she completed her current -- her ongoing duties, she
18 was said that she should not report for work any longer.
19 Q. And when was that, roughly?
20 A. I believe that this was in the second half of June, between the
21 15th and the 20th of June. I can't give you the exact date.
22 Q. The people who were dismissed, did any of them lose their
23 apartments or houses as a result of losing their jobs?
24 A. No, but those who left Bosanski Petrovac obviously they lost their
25 property. It was in some other hands.
1 Q. I'll come on to that later. Now, then finally, please, on this
2 document, in that same item number 7, it states that a meeting of the
3 Crisis Staff was scheduled to be held in the Office of the President of
4 the municipal assembly on the 30th of December, 1991.
5 When did you become aware that this body calling itself the Crisis
6 Staff was in existence?
7 A. It was something that was known and we also knew that they met
8 every day during the working hours, and in the evening. There were
9 stories about that in the town and the information could be received from
10 the representatives of the Serbs. Those were the people who could move
11 around freely and so on and so forth. And they were the ones who spread
12 this information, and we received that kind of information from those
14 Q. All right. Can we try and put a time period? This is December,
15 1991. When was, roughly, when was the first time you heard from Serbs or
16 from other people that there was this Crisis Staff? If you can remember.
17 A. I must say at this point that I really did not understand your
18 question. I thought you referred to the Crisis Staff but there was no
19 Crisis Staff in 1991. I believe that I have misunderstood your question.
20 The Crisis Staff started existing sometime in April.
21 Q. All right. So that's what I'm trying to get at. You first heard
22 about a Crisis Staff, the existence of a Crisis Staff in April of 1992?
23 A. Yes, that's correct.
24 Q. Thank you. Now, the final question on this document is on the
25 original, is there a signature? On the copy you've got, I'm sorry, the
1 B/C/S copy?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And whose signature is that?
4 A. Nenad Dragisic's signature.
5 Q. I think you told us that you knew him. Would you recognise his
7 A. Yes, I would, absolutely.
8 Q. As far as you're concerned, is that his signature?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. What about the stamp?
11 A. I am not familiar with this stamp. There were changes in Bosanski
12 Petrovac municipality and the stamps were changed as well. So I'm not
13 familiar with this particular stamp.
14 Q. Can you just tell us, though, what it says?
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Because it has not been translated.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have some problems with my eye
17 sight but I believe this is a stamp of the Serbian democratic party so
18 this is a party stamp.
19 MS. KORNER:
20 Q. Okay. I think does under the bottom of the shield, does that say
21 Bosanski Petrovac?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. I think I'll leave it to Judge Janu who can do this better than I
24 can. All right. Yes, you can put that document away.
25 Now, before we look at the activities of the Crisis Staff and what
1 happened in Petrovac, did there come a time in Petrovac when freedom of
2 movement became limited?
3 A. Could you please repeat the question? I have not understood you
5 Q. At some stage in Bosanski Petrovac, were there controls set up to
6 prevent people from moving freely within Petrovac or leaving it?
7 A. Yes, of course. As early as 1999, there were some checkpoints.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: 1999?
9 THE INTERPRETER: Sorry, the interpreter's correction, 1991.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There were some checkpoints where
12 you had to show your ID. Otherwise you were not able to leave.
13 MS. KORNER:
14 Q. All right. And did those checkpoints restrict everyone or just
15 some people?
16 A. At the beginning, at those checkpoints, only some vehicles and
17 buses were checked, and as a rule, those were the buses on route between
18 Bihac and Sarajevo. That is Bosniak municipalities. Later on, that
19 control became more rigorous and if you will allow me, I would like to say
20 that this checkups also involved military conscripts, who also had to
21 produce some military IDs and Bosniaks had to state their reasons for
22 leaving Bosanski Petrovac in a written form. They had to have a written
23 explanation where they were going and why. And also that applied to
24 military conscripts as well.
25 Q. And briefly, please, on this topic, could you look at P1825? This
12 Blank pages inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts. Pages 16181 to 16185.
1 is a document dated the 1st of April, 1992, issued by the municipal
2 assembly. But if you go to the end, is it signed by Mr. Novakovic and
3 bears a stamp as well, as president of the people's defence council?
4 A. The copy that I have is barely legible, as far as the signature is
5 concerned and the same applies to the stamp imprint. It is quite unclear.
6 So I couldn't tell from this. Perhaps you have a better copy.
7 Q. I'm afraid we don't but what I just want to ask you about is, it
8 states here he's not signing as president of the municipal assembly but
9 president of the people's defence council. Was that a position that he
10 held as well as being president of the municipal assembly?
11 A. Yes, absolutely. Together with the Crisis Staff, which operated
12 during April or rather during the beginning of the conflict, people's
13 defence council operated in 1991, which means that it was established much
14 prior to that. There were two Bosniaks in that council. One was the
15 vice-president of the municipality and the other Bosniak was an official
16 who worked in the people's defence, and at that time, for a brief period
17 of time, he was appointed chief of the people's defence. And I think that
18 this is why Rajko Novakovic signed this as president of the people's
19 defence council.
20 Q. And the two Bosniaks on the council, how long did they last on the
22 A. Vice-president of the municipality remained there until the Crisis
23 Staff was established.
24 Q. All right. Now, just two things on this document. Item number 7,
25 the public security station in Bosanski Petrovac is instructed to ensure
1 total control of passage and entry into the territory of Bosanski Petrovac
2 of all persons. And then if we look at item -- now I've lost it -- oh,
3 yes, I'm sorry, item number 8, the public security station in Bosanski
4 Petrovac is obliged to prevent passage and if necessary apprehend all
5 persons about whom there is reasonable doubt that they could threaten the
6 security of Bosanski Petrovac citizens.
7 Apart from the double negative, but in April of 1992, was this
8 actually applied to everybody or was any particular section of persons
9 picked upon?
10 A. This pertained exclusively to non-Serbs. That is to say Bosniaks
11 and Croats, who at the time moved through the territory. They were taken
12 off buses and taken to police stations. As far as I know, it pertained to
13 these persons. However, in the beginning, certain Serbs were also taken
14 into custody.
15 Q. But by this point, April of 1992, were certain Serbs still being
16 taken into custody?
17 A. I'm not aware of that.
18 Q. All right. Now, I just want to deal by looking very quickly at
19 the documents with the events of April, 1992. Can you look, please,
20 although this is undated, but at the next exhibit, P1826? This appears to
21 be a document addressed to the assembly of Republika Srpska and to the
22 President, calling on them to protect the Serbian people in Croatia, on
23 the territory of the Autonomous Region of Krajina, and states, furthermore
24 we ask you to provide the necessary weapons to arm people so that the
25 protected Serbian people, which was attacked during the Easter holiday of
1 peace and love, can be defended. I want to ask you first of all about the
2 allegation that there was an attack during the Easter holiday. Do you
3 know what that was a reference to?
4 A. No, I don't know.
5 Q. It's a request, and as we can see, it's signed by or there is a
6 signature, that says Mr. Novakovic, asking for weapons to arm people. Did
7 you notice in Petrovac any increase in persons carrying weapons, Serbs
8 carrying weapons?
9 A. I personally did not see it but every night I could hear the
10 sounds of shooting, bursts of shots fired in Bosanski Petrovac, that took
11 place in 1991 and especially at the beginning of 1992, prior to the
12 outbreak of war. That was a daily occurrence. One could hear shots fired
13 both during various celebrations, festivities, one could hear automatic
14 fire opened regularly based on which I conclude there was a large number
15 of weapons in Bosanski Petrovac before the outbreak of war.
16 Q. All right. Thank you. You can put that document away. Can you
17 look, please, as Exhibit P1827 which really just confirms what you told us
18 earlier. It's in fact two documents.
19 This is document signed, both signed by Mr. Novakovic, apparently,
21 JUDGE AGIUS: It's for Rajko Novakovic.
22 MS. KORNER: Is it? So it is, Your Honour, thank you very much.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: At least the first one.
24 MS. KORNER: I think they are both za. Yes, they are, sorry. On
25 his behalf.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
2 MS. KORNER:
3 Q. It shows that the assembly, on the 10th of April, relieved
4 Mr. Ferizovic of the veterinary surgery of his duty. They appointed Suljo
5 Kartal an employee, as the acting director. What nationality was he?
6 A. Suljo Kartal is also a Muslim, but this requires an explanation.
7 Enver Ferizovic refused to be mobilised and to be sent to Kupres as
8 director of veterinary station and this is why he was removed from office
9 and Suljo Kartal immediately upon his appointment, was deployed within a
10 unit that was sent to battlefield in Kupres.
11 Q. Okay. But he was in fact a Bosniak?
12 A. Yes. Also a Bosniak.
13 Q. Then if we look at the next document, in that -- in that bundle,
14 that's all right. That shows Mr. Ramic, Ahmet Ramic, the
15 electrodistributor, shall be relieved and Mr. Milorad Bursac to be
16 appointed as acting manager. Mr. Ramic, being a Bosniak, and Mr. Bursac
17 being a Serb, we take it?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. All right. Now, can we look at, please, the events in later April
20 and May? Did there come a time when there was an order to disarm?
21 A. Yes, naturally. There was -- there was. There even was a
22 proclamation on disarming and collecting weapons from Muslims
23 exclusively. That applied both to sports weapons and all other kinds of
24 weapons. Muslims were required to surrender them before a certain
1 Q. All right. Can you remember now when that was roughly? I mean
2 we've looked at documents from April. Was it in April or May or later?
3 A. I think it was in May that this activity took place in May.
4 Q. And how was the order given? In other words, by public
5 announcement in newspapers, over the radio? How?
6 A. I think that in this case, there was an announcement over local
7 radio and also personal calls were made to people who were recorded as
8 owners of weapons with a licence.
9 Q. And who issued the order to disarm?
10 A. This came from the police administration, from the police station.
11 Q. Now, you say it was exclusively to the Muslim population, and it
12 applied to sports weapons and all other kind of weapons. Did you yourself
13 own any kind of a weapon?
14 A. No.
15 Q. Once time for the deadline of handing these weapons in had passed,
16 what actually happened?
17 A. I think that the urban settlement of Bosanski Petrovac was blocked
18 after that and the search was conducted in some houses, not all of the
19 houses were searched, only certain houses, but definitely a large number
20 of houses were searched by policemen, both active and reserve forces that
21 had already been activated at that time. So the reserve forces had been
22 activated earlier and they were involved in this.
23 Q. Was there any demand that Serbs who were not serving in the army
24 should surrender their licensed weapons or any weapons they had?
25 A. Not at all, absolutely not.
1 Q. As far as you were concerned, did the Bosniaks in Petrovac pose
2 any threat to the Serbs who lived in Petrovac?
3 A. Both now and then, when that was going on, I can say that Bosniaks
4 represented no threat whatsoever to the Serb population in Bosanski
5 Petrovac municipality, not only because they were an ethnic minority in
6 that town but they were no threat whatsoever. They represented no danger
7 to Serb people.
8 Q. Was there any kind of resistance to what the Serbs were doing to
9 the Bosniaks? And by that, I mean violent resistance, shooting at Serbs,
10 resisting searches or anything like that.
11 A. I'm not aware of any such thing and I believe, and I claim that
12 not for a single moment was there any resistance or any activity of that
13 sort against Serbian authorities, either the military authorities or the
14 civilian authorities in that period.
15 Q. People were asked to -- I say asked -- ordered to surrender their
16 weapons. Did any Bosniaks that you know, either refuse to hand in their
17 weapons or attempted to obtain weapons?
18 A. I don't know of any such attempts, but I'm sure that there were
19 such attempts.
20 Q. Were there any --
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's get this clear, because your question,
22 Ms. Korner, was referring to two separate or different actions. One
23 either refused to hand in their weapons or attempted to obtain weapons.
24 And he is saying that he doesn't know of any such attempts but he's sure
25 that there were such attempts. Attempts at what? Are you aware or are
1 you sure that there were Bosniaks that refused to hand in their weapons?
2 Let's take them one by one. You said that you don't know of any cases
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Nobody refused that, there was not a
5 single case registered of anybody refusing to do that.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: And with regard to attempts to obtaining -- to
7 obtain weapons, you said you don't know of any cases but you're sure that
8 there were?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Of course. There were people
10 who obtained weapons. They were able to buy weapons, and those weapons
11 had already been registered or had previously been bought by Serb soldiers
12 or other Serbs. So one could purchase weapons and such weapons would then
13 fall on the investigation and it was confiscated later on by the police
14 after the investigation had been carried out because all these weapons
15 were registered. These weapons all arrived from the front lines through
16 various channels.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: I think if I read you well, Ms. Korner, that your
18 question was not directed actually to any attempt to acquire weapons in a
19 regular manner because we are referring at a time -- referring to a time
20 when there was a call for the surrender of weapons. So Ms. Korner's
21 question must be answered within the context of that particular event, and
22 so I repeat the question: Were there any Bosniaks that you know of or
23 that you believe that did not actually hand the weapons to the authorities
24 when they were asked or called upon to do so?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm not aware of any such thing.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: During the same period, were there attempts by some
2 Bosniaks to acquire weapons, to acquire weapons in a clandestine manner,
3 not in a legal manner?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. There were such attempts.
5 I've already said that.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: But we now have it placed within the proper
7 context. Yes, Ms. Korner, sorry to have butted in like this but I needed
8 to clarify this in my mind.
9 MS. KORNER: It was my fault because I asked a two-fact question.
10 Q. All right. I now want to look, please, at how the Crisis Staff
11 dealt with events in Petrovac after May or during May and after. Could
12 you look, please, at P1829?
13 MS. KORNER: Your Honour what I propose to do is indicate when I
14 go through the ones, the documents that he's actually provided for us.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Exactly. This is what I was going to ask you
16 because these -- I don't know whether all of them are replicated but it
17 seems that the majority of them are. So --
18 MS. KORNER: No, none of the documents that he's provided we have
19 received from other sources.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Oh, I see.
21 MS. KORNER: They are all completely no -- except that he brought
22 with him a further copy of one which he had earlier given us but there is
23 no replication.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.
25 MS. KORNER:
1 Q. Exhibit 1829 is minutes of the 15th session of the Crisis Staff of
2 Petrovac and we see that -- who the members of that Crisis Staff were.
3 They include a Lieutenant Colonel Sovilj. I think that's right. Did you
4 know who he was?
5 A. I personally don't know him.
6 Q. The agenda starts with definition of the procedure regarding the
7 order by the Banja Luka regional Secretariat for National Defence, and I
8 think Your Honour will find that relates to the disarmament order if we
9 want to look back at the gazettes but I want to ask you about -- if you
10 can move, please, it's page 4 in the translation. It's the decisions.
11 It's decision number 2 which talks about shooting in public places. In
12 the B/C/S, I don't know, it's -- I think it's on the third page. Thanks.
13 Shooting in public places and all other shooting is strictly prohibited
14 because such a misuse of ammunition endangers security and jeopardises the
15 defence capacity of the Serbian people and so on.
16 Did you notice -- you described how there was a lot of shooting
17 going on at night. Did you notice there was a reduction after this
19 A. It's a very difficult question but this only confirms the fact
20 that what I have just said really did happen. There was a lot of shooting
21 on the daily basis, and I don't think that this was reduced at any point
22 in time. It continued and all sorts of intimidation continued especially
23 in the urban area, in the town, and if you will allow me, especially
24 before the soldiers were leaving for operations, for the front lines, this
25 increased and the intensity of all of that would step up.
1 Q. And then item number 3, of the decision, or decision number 3,
2 commission is being set up to draw a proposal for insignia that will be
3 displayed publicly, ways of displaying Serbian flags so on and so forth
4 and a possible change of name of the town and street names in Bosanski
6 Was there a change, forget about the Serbian flags and all the
7 rest of it, but was there a change of name for various street names and
8 for Petrovac itself?
9 A. I did not notice these changes, so the decision -- there was a
10 decision to change the name of Bosanski Petrovac. Everybody voted against
11 it except for the members of the SDS. I think that in May, Bosanski
12 Petrovac lost the Bosanski prefix and it remained simply known as Petrovac
13 as was proposed by the SDS assemblymen in the assembly.
14 Q. All right. Briefly in the last -- that's it for the document,
15 thank you. In the last few minutes before we break, there is a reference
16 there to the autonomous region, it's the Secretariat for National Defence,
17 in later documents that you've provided, there are references to the
18 Crisis Staff of the region. Did you become aware that there was a
19 regional Crisis Staff in Banja Luka?
20 A. I couldn't tell you that because I didn't know it at the time.
21 Later on, we learned that there had been such an organisation and that it
22 was in operation but at the time I didn't know about that.
23 Q. So when you say later on, is that when you returned and looked at
24 the documents?
25 A. No, no. Later on, I learned from people in town that there were
1 such institutions in operation.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Later on, how --
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That was publicly discussed.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Later on, when? You learned later on. How much
5 later on? When? When did you learn about the existence of the regional
6 Crisis Staff?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] During my stay in Bosanski Petrovac,
8 until the day we left that town. So that means sometime between May and
9 September, during that period of time.
10 MS. KORNER: Thank you.
11 Q. While these dismissals and acts against Bosniaks were continuing,
12 were you still -- were Serbs still talking to Bosniaks?
13 A. I think that there had been contacts, but that they were already
14 under pressure. People were afraid of meeting personally, having contacts
15 with somebody in public places, but there had been contacts until the last
16 day between Serbs and Bosniaks, and by this I'm referring to ordinary
17 citizens, but there was a certain dose of fear involved.
18 Q. Yes, because you say you heard about the regional Crisis Staff
19 through Serbs talking - let me find the words - from other people in
20 town who I think -- I'm not sure it's come up on the screen, but I think
21 you said that there was -- it was from Serbs telling people?
22 A. If it is of any assistance, I can tell you that I had a friend, a
23 retired policeman, who had been reactivated. We had frequent contacts and
24 while talking to him, I learned certain things and to be quite frank, I
25 didn't need that information. I just happened to learn that from that
1 man. I can give you his name. It is Milovan Atlagic. He was a retired
2 policeman in Bosanski Petrovac. My neighbour and childhood friend.
3 Q. All right.
4 MS. KORNER: Your Honour I think --
5 JUDGE AGIUS: I think we need to stop here, yes. So we'll have a
6 lunch break now and we'll resume at 2.00. Thank you.
7 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.30 p.m.
8 --- On resuming at 2.02 p.m.
9 MS. KORNER: Your Honour before the witness comes in.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Ms. Korner?
11 MS. KORNER: I don't think it appears his notebook wasn't in --
12 I'm sorry, I see Mr. Cunningham is on his feet but it appears his notebook
13 wasn't in this envelope so we are not sure whether he did bring that. I
14 don't know if Your Honours want to see. Those are the originals.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: We will have a look at them. Yes, I think so.
16 MS. KORNER: Shall I hand them to Your Honour's legal officer and
17 then I'll explain to Mr. Hidic or Your Honours can explain that --
18 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Your Honour, please. Microphone for
19 the Presiding Judge, please.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, sorry interpreters. Mr. Cunningham do I take
21 it that you want to address the Trial Chamber about the next week's
23 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Yes, sir. The Court asked me to go into the
24 prospect of us working a full day each day next week and I would
25 respectfully ask the Court that we not do that subject to what I'm about
1 to tell the Court. When Mr. Ackerman approached me about getting on this
2 case it became clear to me and your subsequent pronouncements have made it
3 even clearer that should Mr. Ackerman not be able to continue it's going
4 to fall on to my shoulders to be able to step into the void and assume the
5 role as lead counsel for the defendant. I have no problem whatsoever with
6 that. That was made clear to me from the start but in order to do that
7 job, I've had to go through and I am still I've barely cracked the surface
8 of reading the transcripts. I believe we are in our 184th day of trial.
9 I've read very, very few days of trial even though I'm trying to read at
10 least two, three days of trial testimony at night. So that makes it
11 difficult for me on an extended work schedule to, one, prepare for
12 participate in the proceedings, two, prepared for the next day and three,
13 get caught up.
14 There is an additional problem that's occasioned by the fact that
15 we are without our case manager. As we found out yesterday, it is very,
16 very difficult or two days ago, found out it's very difficult to conduct a
17 full day's proceedings get to the detention centre and have any meaningful
18 conversations with the defendant. We are trying to do that as best we can
19 during breaks. But quite candidly we are hampered by the fact that we do
20 to the have the case manager, and I'm still figuring out the system. I
21 have no doubt of my ability to participate in this process or get up to
22 speed but I would respectfully ask the Court no to not sit late next week.
23 Now, having said that the Office of the Prosecutor has approached me and
24 as you know from their prior conversations, there is a witness who has had
25 a number of work problems, work-related problems. I sympathise with those
1 problems and I think we have reached what I hope the Court considers a
2 happy medium and a compromise and that is we would work late Monday and
3 Tuesday, full sessions, as if today, to accommodate this witness, as well
4 as the witness that has the work problems so I hope the Tribunal finds
5 that to be a happy medium and I'll say in advance that so as to avoid a
6 recurrence of what happened with the past witness, last witness, who had
7 to come in today for maybe 15, 20 minutes, if the Court's schedule
8 permits, I can say I have no problem extending beyond the 4.30 hours to
9 ensure that that witness makes it home.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Thank you, Mr. Cunningham.
11 MS. KORNER: I understand the problem and much though I would like
12 to be able to invite Your Honours to sit while we've got the opportunity a
13 full day, I know the problems with the Defence and I don't think it would
14 be right to raise -- I would however like if I may, to -- and
15 Mr. Cunningham has agreed, Monday and Tuesday because there is this
16 witness and the second witness from Petrovac he's the one with the work
17 problems. There is then Mr. Kaiser who has agreed he would be able to
18 testify on Wednesday. We anticipate he will be through in one session, I
19 mean one sitting of the court.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: So are we agreed that we will work extended hours
21 only on Monday and Tuesday?
22 MS. KORNER: Yes.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Is that okay with you, Mr. Cunningham?
24 MR. CUNNINGHAM: It is, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: So be it. Madam Registrar, you will make the
1 necessary adjustments to the Court schedule. All right? That's okay with
3 JUDGE JANU: Yes.
4 JUDGE TAYA: Yes.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: I suppose we can bring in the witness and we can
6 proceed, if there is nothing else that needs to be said.
7 [The witness entered court]
8 MS. KORNER: We all agree on that one, Your Honour. I would be
9 happy if we get rid of this utterly useless equipment from here.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: It's all crammed, everything is crammed in this
12 MS. KORNER: I'm afraid the British have to take responsibility
13 for this Court as well.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, so all you need to do is to effect the changes
15 in the official court schedule because the public ought to have a right to
16 know, to start with. All right? Otherwise we can proceed.
17 Good afternoon.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: We will be proceeding. Ms. Korner will continue
20 with her examination-in-chief.
21 MS. KORNER:
22 Q. And Mr. Hidic, just so you know the Judges have your documents at
23 the moment and will be handed back to you at the end of the day I imagine?
24 JUDGE AGIUS: So these Mr. Cunningham hasn't seen as yet?
25 MS. KORNER: Yes, he has.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: He has. What I wanted to know is one thing. There
2 seems to be some or quite a number of paragraphs and sometimes just
3 sentences which have been underlined in blue by a pen or whatever. Did
4 you underline those paragraphs and those sentences or was it someone
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was me and only me.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.
8 MS. KORNER: Thank you.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Usher? I thank you. Give them back and we needed
10 to clarify, did you get everything that you wanted, Mr. Cunningham, during
11 the break?
12 MR. CUNNINGHAM: We did, Your Honour, thank you.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.
14 MS. KORNER:
15 Q. Sir, we were talking about the regional Crisis Staff just before
16 the break and I now want to ask you about Mr. Brdjanin. First an easiest
17 question have you ever met Mr. Brdjanin?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Did you ever see him in Petrovac?
20 A. No, not personally.
21 Q. In 1992, were you aware of Mr. Brdjanin?
22 A. No.
23 Q. All right. When was the first time that you heard of
24 Mr. Brdjanin?
25 A. I believe that I heard his name on one of the TV shows. I don't
1 know which one.
2 Q. And when was that?
3 A. It was sometime in 1992, during the period that we are talking
4 about. I don't know whether it was at the beginning of that period in
5 March or in April, I can't really tell you.
6 Q. You say you believe you heard his name on television. Did you
7 ever hear him personally speak, either on television or on radio?
8 A. No, I didn't.
9 Q. What position in 1992 did you understand Mr. Brdjanin to hold?
10 A. Personally, I didn't know anything about that.
11 Q. All right. So you heard him on television --
12 JUDGE AGIUS: He heard about him.
13 MS. KORNER: I'm sorry, heard about him. Yes, you're quite right.
14 Q. Heard about him on television. In what context, can you remember?
15 A. I really can't tell you at this moment because at that very moment
16 I didn't pay too much attention to that. It didn't concern me directly.
17 In other words, I personally was not interested in that.
18 Q. Okay. Did you know whether or not he had anything to do with the
19 regional Crisis Staff that you told us you heard about?
20 A. I can't give you a positive answer. I was not absolutely sure.
21 I'm not sure that I knew that at that time.
22 Q. All right. Did you hear his name mentioned on television once or
23 more than once?
24 A. What I could follow and hear on television while I could, I
25 believe that I heard his name, the name of Brdjanin, being mentioned one
1 in a certain context.
2 Q. And you can't recall the context any longer?
3 A. Unfortunately, I can't.
4 Q. Don't worry. How much interest did you take in politics in 1992?
5 A. I didn't take any interest in politics at all.
6 Q. All right. Let's -- can we then move on to deal with the events
7 as they unfolded in Petrovac? Perhaps using the documents.
8 MS. KORNER: Now, Your Honour, the next document I'm going to ask
9 to produce but I don't know if we need take the witness through it, is the
10 Crisis Staff minutes dated the 21st of May, 1992, because that's a new
11 document produced by Mr. Hidic, and Your Honour may I ask that that be
12 marked Exhibit P -- I think Your Honours and the registry were given a
13 bundle of these.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
15 MS. KORNER: P1805.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: We are talking of 21st of May, correct.
17 MS. KORNER: It's the 21st of May with the number KS 10/92.
18 Except --
19 JUDGE AGIUS: This will be P?
20 MS. KORNER: P -- I'm sorry. P1805. 1805. The only --
21 Q. First of all, perhaps you ought to confirm, Mr. Hidic, that's one
22 of the documents you were given, is it?
23 A. It is.
24 Q. The writing that we can see on the -- there, this handwriting on
25 the first page, was that written by you or by somebody else?
1 A. It was written by me.
2 Q. All right. And it --
3 A. Are you talking about the upper right corner where it says, "2/95"
4 I can't say correctly recorded in the book. This is my handwriting, and
5 this is what I wrote. And this book is the notebook, a photocopied
6 notebook that was made available to this Trial Chamber earlier on.
7 Q. That's right. And we can see a reference to that.
8 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, the notebook itself, I think, or the
9 photocopy, had better also be produced as an exhibit at this stage.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: I think so, yes.
11 MS. KORNER: That will be 1806.
12 Q. Now, I'm not going to take you through this except for this: The
13 Crisis Staff spent a whole meeting effectively talking about cows. And it
14 is described as the distribution and accommodation of cattle brought from
15 the areas of immediate war operations. This is a recurring theme
16 throughout these minutes. Were cows of importance in Petrovac, as a
17 matter of interest?
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Zelenbaba thought so.
19 MS. KORNER: I'm sorry, I didn't catch that.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Zelenbaba thought so.
21 MS. KORNER: Yes, well, quite.
22 Q. But it's perhaps unusual to see so much time spent on cows in a
23 municipality. So perhaps you can just help us on that.
24 A. In a nutshell, this was war booty. The cows were from Kupres and
25 the vicinity where the aggression had taken place and all the cattle was
1 collected as war booty and this has to do with me as well, because I was
2 still working at the Bosnaplast. This was the logistical centre and this
3 is where the cattle was initially accommodated and later on they just
4 disappeared and I can see here that they were dwelling upon this issue for
5 quite sometime.
6 Q. All right. Thank you. That can go back to the Registry. Could
7 you now look at a set of minutes from the 24th of May, again a document
8 that you provided. Actually, just -- oh, yes, there are three of them.
9 This is the one with the number, sorry, quite right, KS 13/92, that's it.
10 I just want you to identify this is one of your documents and your hand --
11 and your writing?
12 JUDGE AGIUS: This will be 1807?
13 MS. KORNER: It will.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: You can borrow mine.
15 THE REGISTRAR: I found it.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: You sure?
17 MS. KORNER:
18 Q. Again, one of the documents that was given to you, Mr. Hidic?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And again is it your writing in the top, right-hand corner?
21 A. Yes, it is.
22 Q. All right. Yes. Can we just look at the decision, please, at the
23 end of that document? Where it says the executive board will ask from
24 companies and organisations to provide plans of production and work during
25 wartime. And then the companies and organisations which fail to meet this
1 request completely shall be held responsible to the Crisis Staff and the
2 executive board is hereby authorised to change the managers of such
3 companies following a consultation of the Crisis Staff. Item 2, ethnic
4 Muslims shall be engaged in the companies and organisations in accordance
5 with the need, i.e., at the request of the companies and organisations
6 which employ them.
7 This brackets request must be based on the needs determined in the
8 agreed plan of war production.
9 Jovica Sepa voted against this decision. Do you know this
11 A. Yes. I know who Jovica Sepa is. He was an official. He was one
12 of the top officials in the general administration, and the administration
13 for the economy, and he was also given the mandate to be in charge of all
14 the activities regarding the people's defence when the former person in
15 charge, who was a Muslim, was dismissed. So he was in charge of all the
16 activities regarding people's defence.
17 Q. Did your company go on to some kind of what's called a wartime
19 A. My company was among the first that went to a wartime schedule,
20 and it was proclaimed a logistical centre already in 1991, between the
21 month of September and the month of November, when it was organised as a
22 company which included a logistical centre and if I may add to that, my
23 director was one of the -- one of those who were appointed in the chain of
24 the military structure as one of the heads of the logistical centres. His
25 name was Matincevic [phoen] and he was a technology engineer. He was --
1 who was in charge of production. He also had a rank, a reserve rank. He
2 was a reserve non-commissioned officer.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Stop here for the time being. Could the witness be
4 shown, please, Exhibit P1819 which he's seen already this morning? And
5 the reason for doing so, Ms. Korner, is that when you went through the
6 list of the members present at the first meeting of the party secretariat,
7 the SDS, held on the 26th of December, 1991, between Jovo Radojko and
8 Zdravko Nedznevic [phoen], you skipped the person who -- whose name was
9 not exactly too clear. Jovica Sepa. Sir, could I ask you to look at the
10 B/C/S version of that -- of those minutes? First paragraph, second line,
11 you have Jovo Radojko. Could you read the next name? Would that be the
12 Jovica Sepa that you have been referring to now.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Jovica Sepa who was also a
14 member of the Crisis Staff.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: So whoever read that as Jepa [phoen] was wrong. It
16 should be Sepa according to you.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Sepa is the correct pronunciation.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: So we have a completed the team of persons attending
19 that meeting now.
20 MS. KORNER: Thank you, Your Honour that's very helpful. And in
21 fact, if Your Honours look at P1831 I'm not going to trouble the witness
22 with it but there you will see the list of the members of the Crisis
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
25 MS. KORNER:
1 Q. I have just one last question, please, Mr. Hidic on this
2 document. And that is this: Were you aware of any request being made
3 that you should stay on in your company? In other words did your manager
4 or whoever tell you that they'd made a request?
5 A. No.
6 Q. All right. That's that document. Thank you very much. Can we
7 move to the second document for the 24th of May, which is the one with the
8 number 14/92? Which is Exhibit 1808, please. And again, I don't -- very
9 briefly, it talks first about military arrangements and then we are back
10 to cows and the decision is that all cows which were stolen from a farm in
11 Medeno Polje, where is Medeno?
12 A. Medeno Polje, if I may say, is seven or eight kilometres from the
13 centre of the town, and this was a place where a farm was, and it still
14 is, and this is for raising cattle owned by the combine of Bosanski
15 Petrovac. During the war it was used to accommodate these cows which were
16 a war booty taken from the entire area of Bosanski Petrovac.
17 Q. Thank you. Then the last one, please, for that day?
18 JUDGE AGIUS: This will be 1808.
19 MS. KORNER: I think I said, sorry, Your Honour, it's 1808, for
20 the 24th of May, which is 16/92, which will become 1809, please.
21 Q. Again, is that one of the documents that you were given,
22 Mr. Hidic, and which has your writing on the top right-hand corner?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And if we look at the last page, it's got a signature on it but no
1 A. Yes, that's correct.
2 Q. [Previous interpretation continues] ... you in regards to which
3 copy such -- of the minutes this would be?
4 A. I think that following each session of the Crisis Staff, there
5 were several copies made and it is most likely that certain copies were
6 not stamped, that means they were signed but not stamped by clerks who
7 normally did that. This isn't just an isolated example. There were many
8 examples like this. There were more copies made than the number of Crisis
9 Staff members attending the session.
10 Q. All right. Now, you obviously didn't attend the sessions
11 yourself. How do you know this is what was happening?
12 A. I suppose that that was the case, because there is a large number
13 of documents, not signed and not stamped, that were found following the
14 liberation of Bosanski Petrovac. They were found either in the archives
15 that were in disarray or in -- within certain records in certain offices.
16 Q. And did you -- you told us that you yourself went into the
17 municipal building and saw these documents. Do you yourself notice
18 unsigned copies and signed but not stamped, in the municipal building
19 after the BiH Army had come in?
20 A. Yes. I saw such documents.
21 Q. All right. Now I want you to look, please, just at one aspect of
22 this meeting and how it impacted on the lives of Bosniaks in Bosanski
23 Petrovac. Item number 3 of the decision. Premises within the building of
24 the public security station Petrovac will be prepared for detaining
25 perpetrators of criminal acts, perpetrators of flagrant criminal acts,
1 criminal acts against safety and criminal acts that jeopardise the
2 defensive ability of the Serb people will be detained in a prison until a
3 trial. Prisoners in custody can be utilised for work of a public interest
4 as well as on jobs related to defensive preparation, building of shelters,
5 transport of military equipment, and other things. That's parts
6 underlined. That's your underlining, is it?
7 A. Yes. I think that I underlined that.
8 Q. Right. Now, it's said here that the premises within the public
9 security station can be used for detaining people. Were people -- did
10 people after the 24th of May, Bosniaks, I'm sorry, not people, were they
12 A. Yes. It is true that these premises were designated for this use
13 in the basement of the police station in Bosanski Petrovac, and it is true
14 that people were detained in those premises. Finally, those premises were
15 not large enough to accommodate all of those who were brought into that
16 building, and I'm referring here to Bosniaks.
17 Q. All right. We are going to move on to what then happened because
18 the police station was not large enough but the Bosniaks who were being
19 arrested, from your knowledge -- first of all, did you know people who
20 were arrested?
21 A. I did [Realtime transcript read in error "didn't"] know them. I
22 also had occasion to talk to them following their release or following
23 their departure from the camp in August.
24 Q. I thought you said you did know them but it's been translated as
25 you didn't?
1 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters's note, I believe that I said I
2 did know them.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I know some of those people-- some
4 of those persons personally.
5 MS. KORNER: All right.
6 Q. Were they told why they were being arrested?
7 A. They were mostly arrested because they were suspected of being in
8 possession of weapons. There were some other reasons as well, but most of
9 them were arrested because they were suspected of owning or possessing a
10 firearm. These were mostly people who had private businesses, catering
11 establishments, shops and so on. They were mostly people who had a
12 prominent standing in Bosanski Petrovac municipality, members of the
13 Muslim community.
14 Q. Now then it goes on to say that prisoners in custody can be
15 utilised for work of what's described as a public interest and then for
16 defensive preparations. Were people made to carry out this kind of work,
17 to your knowledge?
18 A. The people I had contacts with were not made to do that but some
19 were used to unload humanitarian aid that was arriving at the time, flour,
20 foodstuffs and so on.
21 Q. All right. And then if you just look at, please, item number 5,
22 which is an order to the Petrovacka Brigade. What was the Petrovacka
23 Brigade, if you know?
24 A. Petrovac Brigade is a formation that was established towards the
25 end of 1991, early 1992. Initially, it was located in the sports hall
1 within the secondary school centre. That was in fact a battalion that
2 later on was used as a nucleus once the Petrovac Brigade was established.
3 Q. Thank you. Yes, that's all you need that one for.
4 Can we move, then, please, to the next document you supplied,
5 which is the minutes of the 28th of May, which bear the number 17/92. And
6 it's -- it's 1865, now, Your Honour, because we are now on the Petrovac
7 binder. We used up some unused exhibits. Numbers, rather.
8 Again, sir, does that bear your writing in the top right-hand
10 A. Yes, that's my writing.
11 Q. Now, in item number 1, there is Mr. Miljanovic informing the
12 meeting of the results of the talks with the representatives of the SDA
13 citizens forum. Can you tell us what this SDA citizens forum was?
14 A. It wasn't the SDA citizens forum. It was the citizens forum of
15 the citizens of Bosanski Petrovac. The SDA citizens forum is a political
16 party so it's a different thing. People mentioned below Safet Hidic and
17 Mustafa Ferizovic were representatives of the SDA whereas the citizens
18 forum was an independent body established in cooperation with the
19 representatives of Serb authorities and that body had contacts with Serb
20 authorities in Bosanski Petrovac. It was aimed at criticising the SDA and
21 facilitating the cooperation with the SDS. And people in it were
22 exclusively people from the SDS.
23 Q. And when you say that it was aimed at criticising the SDA, in what
25 A. Let me clarify this. The citizens forum consisted of people who
1 were either in mixed marriages or were former communists in power earlier,
2 or with close ties to the former authorities in the former Yugoslavia, not
3 just Bosanski Petrovac.
4 Q. And what sort of activities were they undertaking?
5 A. I think that their main activity dealt with the issues concerning
6 preparations for the moving out of Muslims from Bosanski Petrovac. This
7 is what they discussed in contacts with representatives of Serb
8 authorities who had very little time for them, just like for other
9 representatives. I also think that the citizens forum had an important
10 role concerning the status of camp mates who were imprisoned in camp.
11 They attempted to establish contacts with the international community and
12 with authorities in Bosanski Petrovac in order to secure release of people
13 who were imprisoned in camps. Some of their children or family members
14 were in the citizens forum.
15 Q. All right. Well, let's just look briefly at what they were doing
16 apparently in the discussion that was reported. The SDA representatives
17 were said to be spreading alarming rumours by saying that Muslim citizens
18 want to emigrate collectively but according to Dragan Ivanic, the
19 citizens forum has an unanimous stand with respect to the Muslims being
20 loyal citizens and supporting the authority. Mr. Ivanic being who?
21 A. Dragan Ivanic is the President of the municipal board or rather
22 the executive board of the SDS in Bosanski Petrovac municipality.
23 Q. All right. And then they accuse Mr. Hidic and Mr. Ferizovic of
24 illegal arming. Safet Hidic, was he any relation to you?
25 A. We are relatives but not close relatives. We do have the same
1 family name.
2 Q. And Mr. Ferizovic apparently accused of illegal arming. Did you
3 know both these gentlemen, Safet Hidic and Mustafa Ferizovic?
4 A. Naturally, I knew them.
5 Q. Were you aware of them providing illegal arms to the Bosniaks?
6 A. I didn't know. However, I was an eyewitness when Mr. Safet Hidic
7 personally surrendered to the police his rifle, explaining that he did
8 have a rifle. The police came into his yard and he personally turned over
9 his weapon to the police men who came there. We lived on the same street
10 so that's how I know this.
11 Q. And was this at the time of the disarmament process that you spoke
13 A. Yes, precisely then.
14 Q. And we are back to cows again and finally, please in the
15 conclusion, it says, men under 60 must not leave the territory of the
16 Petrovac municipality until the situation of the illegal arming of the
17 Muslim people is carried out or investigated. At this stage of the game,
18 at this stage of the proceedings, were people -- were Bosniaks or people
19 who wanted to allowed to emigrate?
20 A. I think that following the expiration of the final ultimatum which
21 was at the end of May, it was impossible to leave Bosanski Petrovac
22 without Serb authorities knowing about this. It was impossible to leave
23 without a pass or without having somebody guaranteeing for those who were
24 leaving Bosanski Petrovac. It was impossible to leave without the
25 knowledge of the representatives of Serb authorities. It was especially
1 impossible to go into the direction of Bihac.
2 Q. All right. Thank you. That's all I want to ask you about that
3 document. Can you look, please, for a moment, but I don't think we have
4 the one for this. Just a moment. I just want to check the numbers.
5 Yes. You'll need to look, please, at the photocopy of your own notebook
6 because I don't think we have got the document for this one entry, which
7 is the document that was attached to the statement and is now P1808 -- 06,
8 I'm sorry. Actually don't trouble. I think I'm anxious to get on so
9 don't worry about that, no. Can we move, though to the next document we
10 haven't looked at before, seen before, the 1st of June minutes which are
11 numbered 22/92? And can you just identify those as another document that
12 you have provided and again which contains your writing at the right-hand
14 A. Yes.
15 MS. KORNER: Thank you. Your Honours could that be made P1866?
16 Q. And then could you now be handed the next document, also dated the
17 1st of June but KS 23/92?
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Korner, are you going to give this last document
19 and the previous one separate number from Exhibit number from P1865 and
20 1866 because 1865 and 1866 I think the original or the source is
21 different, no? Or are they --
22 MS. KORNER: These are all new documents, Your Honour. These are
23 all still from him.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Still from him. So the one we saw last, is it going
25 to be 1866 or 1865? Or 1811? Is there a reason why --
1 THE REGISTRAR: There was a whole new binder.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Is there a reason why we have jumped from 1809 to --
3 MS. KORNER: Yes, sorry, I don't know whether Your Honour
4 obviously missed that I said what we did was use up unused exhibit numbers
5 then we've got the binder and now we are going on.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: That explains it. I did misunderstand everything
8 MS. KORNER: That's fine.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: So this is 1866. The previous one remains 1865.
10 MS. KORNER: And what I hope the witness, Your Honours, now have
11 in front of you is 1st of June with the number 22/92.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: And this will be 1867.
13 MS. KORNER: And this will be 1867, absolutely, thank you, Your
14 Honour. And I don't actually think other than -- I think you've already
15 said this is your handwriting in the right-hand side of the first page,
16 isn't it?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. I don't think other than that, there is anything that I want to
19 draw your attention to. Then on the same day a lot of meetings again on
20 one day, it's the 1st of June, 1992, with the number 23/92.
21 MS. KORNER: Your Honour I'm sorry, I think we've lost track
22 slightly of the exhibit numbers now. Can we just do a confirmation.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: It's all my fault, I think, Ms. Korner.
24 MS. KORNER: I don't think so.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: I have mixed you up because I referred to the
1 previous one as 1867 myself when it should have remained 1866 so this new
2 one, KS 23/92 which becomes 1867.
3 MS. KORNER: Yes, 23/92 is 1867.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm sorry, I apologise for the mixup.
5 MS. KORNER: It's all right. And again, Your Honour, I think --
7 Q. Can you just look, please, at item 2 on that document? The Crisis
8 Staff has also discussed the situation in the territory of the Petrovac
9 municipality regarding the emigration of some SDA representatives. The
10 Crisis Staff has concluded that the best solution at the moment is the
11 said representatives stay in Petrovac for the benefit of their people.
12 Did you know any of the SDA representatives who wanted to emigrate?
13 A. I would like to take this opportunity to say that Mr. Safet Hidic,
14 leader of the SDA, upon the consent of the municipal board of the SDS, on
15 the 3rd of June, left the territory of Bosanski Petrovac. He was taken by
16 the same man to a checkpoint in Lecin [phoen], and after that he crossed
17 on foot over the bridge to the other side, to the settlement called
18 Golubici from where he went to Bihac. So the President of the SDS
19 directly assisted the President of the SDA in leaving the area and going
20 to Bihac. There were other four people accompanying him.
21 Q. What about other members of the SDA? Were any who wished to leave
22 prevented from so doing?
23 A. I think that another prominent member of the SDA, Mustafa
24 Ferizovic, as vice-president of the party and vice-president of the
25 assembly, was also in Bihac at the time. I think that he left between the
1 20th and 30th of May. He went to Bihac area and his departure was also
2 organised by some representatives of the authorities.
3 Q. All right. Thank you. That's all I want to ask you on that.
4 Could you have the next document, please, which is dated the 2nd
5 of June, and is number 29/92? P1868. Thank you. I wonder if you
6 could -- could you fine the original, please, sir, in your bundle, of that
7 document? In your -- the ones you brought with you, sorry, if you could
8 find the original one for that date? Could you just let me have it for a
9 moment? Yes.
10 MS. KORNER: Your Honour I just wanted to check. The stamp is as
11 smudged on the original as on the photocopy. Your Honour just checking if
12 there is anything I need to ask. I don't think that there is. No, Your
13 Honour, apart from say asking you, sir, that's obviously as we can see one
14 of the documents you provided?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Thank you. You can hand that back. Can you now be handed,
17 please, the one dated the 3rd of June, 32/92? Which will be P1869.
18 Again, sir, can you just confirm that's one of the documents that you were
19 given and that you provided to us?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Now --
22 A. Although unfortunately, it was not photocopied properly in the top
23 corner, but I can see the traces and I know that this is the next,
24 chronologically speaking, document in my records.
25 Q. Now, this is the 3rd of June and it says this, the agenda,
1 discussing the conclusions of the Autonomous Region Krajina Crisis Staff
2 in Banja Luka. We look at what was discussed. Mr. Latinovic read the
3 conclusions of the Krajina staff -- Krajina Crisis Staff in Banja
4 Luka reached at the session held on the 29th of the 5th and after
5 discussion the Crisis Staff of the Petrovac municipality gave a
6 proposition for the aforementioned conclusion to be adopted in full. Been
7 decided that all Muslims and Croats who so wish be enabled to evacuate
8 from the territory of the autonomous region, et cetera, et cetera, and
9 effectively it quotes the decision.
10 Then --
11 MS. KORNER: And Your Honour -- Your Honours may recall that
12 that's one of the ones we have gone through in the gazettes before.
13 Q. In reaching this kind of decision based on the principle of family
14 for family the Autonomous Region of Krajina Crisis Staff bore in mind
15 first of all the fact that several thousand Muslims from Prijedor, Sanski
16 Most and Bosanski Novi in their own free will wish to evacuate to central
17 Bosnia and vice versa. At the same time, the Crisis Staff has decided to
18 confront all the forms of forceful evacuation of the population or
19 evacuation of the population under any kind of pressure and to prevent
20 such attempts with all means possible. And has invited the leaderships of
21 the SDA and HDZ to deal with this. And it deals with that.
22 Now, I just want to jump ahead for a moment and just -- but answer
23 this simply, if you can, yes or no. Here, it's the Crisis Staff of
24 Petrovac has decided that they don't want to forcibly evacuate the
25 population or put any pressure on them. In respect of Petrovac, was that
1 intention actually carried out? In other words, were the people who left
2 doing so without pressure or without any force being applied?
3 A. No. I believe that this is not accurate. People did not leave
4 Bosanski Petrovac voluntarily.
5 Q. And in fact, it decided to form a board for the implementation of
6 the conclusion of evacuation of Muslims. All right. Thank you. That's
7 that one. Then the next document is --
8 MS. KORNER: Your Honour in fact there is a note in the diary but
9 -- that relates to a document another one from the 3rd of June which
10 talks about talks with Dr. Karadzic and Mladic but I don't think I need to
11 do that. Actually I think do I. I'm sorry, Your Honour. Could the
12 witness now be handed the notebook? Because there is a couple of things I
13 want to ask. Could Your Honours go to page 8? It's the entry relating to
14 the minutes of 3rd of June, 35/92. I've got them, sorry. Your Honour I
15 do apologise. We have got the minutes. So I'm sorry. It's the next set
16 of minutes.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, exactly.
18 MS. KORNER:
19 Q. Sir, you can hand that back to the usher and you'll be handed the
20 proper minutes, it's the 4th of June relating to the 3rd. That's the
21 thing. The agenda for this meeting was the political security station in
22 the municipality -- situation in the municipality and the incident in
23 Biscani. We can see that Mr. Novakovic had had talks with Dr. Karadzic
24 and General Mladic but I want to come to the incident in Biscani, please,
25 which we will find -- it's the third page of our translation. It's under
1 the conclusions, please. Now, first of all, what is Biscani?
2 A. Biscani is one part of Bosanski Petrovac inhabited exclusively by
3 Bosniaks or Muslims, and most of the Muslims who were residents of
4 Bosanski Petrovac resided in that particular area.
5 Q. And do you know what incident this is referring to?
6 A. Yes, I do. I know exactly what this is all about. This was the
7 first murder that happened in Bosanski Petrovac municipality on the 2nd of
8 June, 1992. Actually it was two murders that took place and a few people
9 were injured, and on that particular evening, there was a lot more
10 shooting than on any other given night.
11 Q. And here it is said that perpetrators were the conscripts and that
12 the military command was responsible for it. He suggests the military
13 police be responsible for the reservists and the SJB for civilians. All
14 right. Thank you. That should be P1870, please. Can you look now,
15 please, at your next document, 36/92, dated the 5th of June? And I'd just
16 like you to identify again please your writing on the document and then we
17 can leave that.
18 A. Yes. This is my writing.
19 Q. Thank you. Your Honour that is P1871.
20 And then please the next document is the 8th of June, 40/92. And
21 could you just identify again your writing on the document? And that's
22 all we need to do.
23 MS. KORNER: And that will be P1 --
24 A. Yes, I can confirm my handwriting.
25 MS. KORNER: P1872.
1 Q. Then the next one you brought for us is the 9th of June, 43/92.
2 Could you again please just identify your writing?
3 A. Yes. Again, this is my handwriting.
4 Q. That's that one. Thank you.
5 MS. KORNER: P1873. Thank you.
6 Q. And we may as well finish them off although we now jump. There is
7 one -- yes, the next one, there is one intervening, Your Honour, which
8 we have already exhibited as P236 so I'm just going to produce these.
9 Could you be handed 10th of June, document which is 50/92? And just again
10 identify your handwriting?
11 A. Yes. I can confirm that.
12 MS. KORNER: Your Honour that will be P -- sorry, Your Honour,
13 what I was saying, I'm sorry, I may have confused something because I
14 rather muttered my way through that. This is the 10th of June and it's
15 got the number 50/92. If Your Honours look at the Petrovac bundle behind
16 number 25, there is one for the 10th of June which bears an earlier
17 number. That's what I was saying. But I think we still go on with the
18 numbers we have got so it's P1874. Your Honour if I'm going too fast for
19 the Registrar, perhaps she can stop me.
20 The next one we've got -- just a moment. Yes, interestingly
21 enough, the number is different but Your Honour it's supposedly dated the
22 12th of June -- no, I think -- just a moment. Your Honour, that is right.
23 Anyhow it's the 12th of June but it's 48/92.
24 Q. Yours, again, is it, Mr. Hidic?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. All right. Thank you.
2 MS. KORNER: P1875. And can we now look, please, at the minutes
3 for the 13th of June, which bear the designation 54/92?
4 Q. And again, sir, can you confirm that your writing is on the
5 original of this document?
6 A. Yes, I can confirm that.
7 Q. Item number 2 of the decisions -- I'm sorry, yeah, a report -- if
8 we can look at that, a report on the security station was submitted by
9 Mr. Gacesa, the police officer that we saw, and then followed up by
10 Mr. Vrzina. I think you said that he was the TO and Major Radulovic, some
11 negligence, which did however -- however did not seriously affect the
12 security situation, disarmament of the paramilitary formations of -- and
13 citizens who are in illegal possession of arms is to be continued and
14 brought to a close. And then over the page for us, the bodies in charge
15 are to finalise activities regarding the disarmament of the paramilitary
16 formations and citizens who illegally possess weapons. Appropriate
17 repressive measures are to be taken against individuals who took part in
18 illegal armament of paramilitary organisations, et cetera. Now, this is
19 the middle of June or thereabouts. So even after the deadline, was there
20 still disarming orders being given or actions being taken to disarm?
21 A. I don't know. I see that they dealt with this issue, but I really
22 can't give you any specific answers. I don't know whether at this time
23 they were dealing with the issue of disarming and who it was that they
24 were disarming.
25 Q. All right.
1 MS. KORNER: That's P1876. And then the final two sections, two
2 lots of minutes, both for the 16th of June -- sorry, it's not two. I
3 think it's one. Or was it two? No, that's right. There are two copies
4 of the same set of minutes but there is a difference as we'll see. Can
5 you be handed both, please, for the 16th of June which don't have a number
6 to them?
7 Q. Now, are you looking, please, Mr. Hidic, at the ones they have got
8 a number stamped on top, 02930178 and 179?
9 A. I have the first one but I don't know -- I don't have the second
10 one. I have --
11 Q. Have you got two pages with numbers 02930178 and 179?
12 A. I do have both. I apologise. I did not see the second page.
13 Q. That's got 7 signatures at the end of it; is that right?
14 A. That is right.
15 Q. Now could you have a look, please, at the same document but with
16 the numbers 02930180 and 181? Again, seven signatures; is that correct?
17 A. That is correct.
18 Q. And I don't know whether you can read the signature on number 7,
19 I would be very surprised if you can. But equally, Your Honours, the
20 reason that it appears --
21 JUDGE AGIUS: They are different.
22 MS. KORNER: There are different signatures without being
23 handwriting experts that would appear to be the case. So, Your Honour,
24 now I suppose we better have them as the same exhibit number, P1877.
25 Could the higher range, as it were, the 178, 179, copies be point 1 and
1 the second set, point 2? And this is the session held on the 16th of
2 June, and the agenda. And then we see that the President briefly stated
3 the situation on the front and said that our losses included one dead and
4 19 wounded and he added that he was expecting the Crisis Staff to take a
5 clear stand towards the Muslims while the military post was demanding
6 steps against them to prevent their operative actions and organisation in
7 the rear of our forces.
8 And then it talks about apparently a list of 40 persons believed
9 to be organisers as a special group and paramilitaries and so on and
10 disarmament. I think I asked you earlier today, Mr. Hidic, were you
11 aware, leaving aside people would were actually fighting on the
12 battlefield, were you aware of any armed groups of Muslims operating
13 within Bosanski Petrovac?
14 A. No, I wasn't.
15 Q. All right. Those are the minutes that you brought with you. Can
16 I just deal with your final three documents then and get that out of the
18 JUDGE AGIUS: The final three documents I take it were the ones
19 which were distributed this morning?
20 MS. KORNER: No. The one -- they were in the package that Your
21 Honours got. There are three slightly separate documents and Your Honour
22 will recall I said yesterday that, or whatever it was, that there were
23 three documents that we haven't seen before.
24 Q. The first document, please, will be this -- something headed the
25 Bosanski Petrovac country club report on the events in Bosanski Petrovac.
1 Can you just look at that, please? I'm not sure that the translation is a
2 very good one. Could you just read out?
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Cunningham?
4 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Excuse me for interrupting. Your Honour, has
5 this exhibit been admitted yet?
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Not yet, no. It's going to be tendered, I suppose
7 together with the rest.
8 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Is it proper to make an objection at this point
9 or should I wait until then?
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Usually if you want to register your an objection
11 you can register it now. It would help us decide if there is a real
12 problem indeed with the admission of this document.
13 MS. KORNER: It might help, Mr. Cunningham if I ask some questions
14 to establish what it is, how he got it, and what the contents and that
15 might help decide if the objection is based on it's not his report.
16 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Then in that respect I'm going to go ahead yield
17 the floor at this time.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't have an idea as to what your objection is
19 and I don't have an idea what you are about to ask in any case so do
20 proceed Ms. Korner and then we will take it. You can rest assured,
21 Mr. Cunningham and Mrs. Baruch that the practice we adopt is we are sure
22 there is no prejudice in any case even if a document -- this is why I
23 tell you please do keep in mind all the time that this is a trial being
24 conducted by three professional judges and not -- in the absence of a lay
25 jury. It makes a big difference.
1 MS. KORNER:
2 Q. Sir, could you just read the top line of this document? Just read
3 it out? I want to have the translation.
4 A. The Bosanski Petrovac expatriates club. If that is what you had
5 in mind.
6 Q. It is. I didn't think country club was quite --
7 JUDGE AGIUS: In fact I was going to ask. Usually I go and play
8 golf in the country club in my country so --
9 MS. KORNER: The interpreter yesterday raised her eyebrows when
10 she saw this. As I said, Your Honour, occasionally when you ask for quick
11 interpretation. So expatriate sounds much better.
12 Q. Mr. Hidic, can you just tell us, please, what is this
14 A. This organisation was established once Bosniaks were expelled from
15 Bosanski Petrovac, and once some of them arrived in Croatia where they
16 were accommodating during the year 1992. And then in late 1992, and early
17 1993, they established this expatriate's club which was based in Zagreb.
18 Their task according to the information I had, was to establish contacts
19 with everybody from Petrovac who was residing on the territory of Croatia
20 at that time. It was a humanitarian organisation whose aim was to help
21 and assist all the citizens of Bosanski Petrovac who found themselves on
22 the territory of Croatia at that time.
23 Q. All right. The report doesn't have a date on it. Do you know
24 when it was actually written?
25 A. I believe that it was to mark the first anniversary of the
1 expulsion of Bosniaks from Bosanski Petrovac. There was some sort of a
2 festivity or some sort of a day organised to mark that anniversary and
3 that's the information I had, and it was some year or year and a half
4 after, after that.
5 Q. And how did you acquire a copy of this?
6 A. This copy was given to me personally by one of the members of that
7 club. His name was Mase Druzic, if that is something you need to know.
8 He was a member of this club.
9 Q. Now, it describes in brief the events that took place in Petrovac
10 from June until the departure in August. Have you read through that, this
12 A. Yes. I am familiar with this document. I've read it more than
14 Q. Is this -- are the descriptions of those events that you know
15 about, are they an accurate description?
16 A. I believe that this is a very accurate description of all the
17 developments that took place during the period described in this document,
18 and everything that was happening at that time during the negotiations.
19 If you will allow me I'd like to say that this document also speaks about
20 the members of the forum in Bosanski Petrovac who were in charge of
21 certain activities in Bosanski Petrovac and later on became members of
22 this club.
23 Q. Yes. Well, I think we can see that on the second page.
24 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I don't know Mr. Cunningham wishes to
25 maintain the objection.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Cunningham?
2 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Judge, I understand the Tribunal's Rules that you
3 can have hearsay on hearsay on hearsay but having said that I'm still
4 going to object to the authenticity of the document, to the extent that
5 there has been what I'll call a lack of corroboration.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Right. That goes on record.
7 MS. KORNER: Well, I --
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Ms. Korner?
9 MS. KORNER: I take it the gentleman you said who gave you this
10 copy himself, you gave us, Mr. Druzic, is he still alive and well?
11 A. Yes. And he lives in Bosanski Petrovac.
12 Q. Right. So if it's really necessary and the Defence actually
13 request it, he can come to court and testify that this document was
14 prepared by this club based on the knowledge of the events from the
15 members of this club. Is that right?
16 JUDGE AGIUS: That was a question.
17 MS. KORNER: It was a question.
18 Q. He would be able to come and testify would it, about?
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Maybe you're expecting a little bit too much from
20 the witness to answer for the other gentleman, but --
21 MS. KORNER: Let me put it this way, I'm making a point through
22 the question.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. The document is being admitted.
24 MS. KORNER: P1878, please, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: On the face of it. And of course without prejudice
1 to any probative value, if at all, that it might have. This would be P?
2 MS. KORNER: 1878. The last two documents, please, that you
3 brought, the first is a communication to the Krajina autonomous region
4 from the Petrovac municipal assembly, sorry, the Petrovac -- Crisis Staff,
5 with the number KS 65/92. Now, Your Honours, I think we better put it up
6 on the ELMO because it refers to a particular decision of the Crisis Staff
7 of the autonomous region. It's Exhibit P255. If we can put that on the
8 ELMO so you can see what it's responding to.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. This is KS 65/92, isn't it?
10 MS. KORNER: It is, and this document, because it says "Crisis
11 Staff decision number 03531/92" and you can see that at the top of Exhibit
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
14 MS. KORNER: I don't think we need read through it to save time.
15 It's responding to what they were ordered to do and what they've done.
16 The steps envisaged in item 1, para 1, have been implemented, same steps
17 in social owned enterprises, all members of police of Muslim active and
18 reserve sacked, employees of Muslim nationality and the steps by the
19 Krajina Crisis Staff and the stages of being implemented in the BiH Serb
20 republic armies units and blah blah blah. I always wonder how you
21 translate "blah blah blah" but never mind.
22 Q. Yes, is this a document that was handed to you or from the
23 municipal assembly building, from the assembly building, in Petrovac?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Yes.
1 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, may that then be made, please, P1880?
2 JUDGE AGIUS: 80?
3 MS. KORNER: 79, 79, 79.
4 Q. And the last document, please, then, which is a communication to
5 Mr. Zupljanin. It's KS 64/92.
6 And it's clearly a report to Mr. Zupljanin from the Crisis Staff
7 signed by Mr. Novakovic, stamped, again is that a document that you were
8 given apparently originating from the municipal building?
9 A. Yes, it is.
10 Q. Thank you, sir. Your Honours, that is Exhibit P1880. And those
11 are all the new documents.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: With regard to this document, Ms. Korner, sir, can I
13 ask you to read to yourself the last main paragraph starting, "Due to
14 insufficient training or excessive tolerance."
15 MS. KORNER: Yes, that thank you, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Read it out because then I'm going to ask you a
18 MS. KORNER: You'd like me to read it out, yes. It says here,
19 sir, that due to insufficient training or excessive tolerance, at present
20 in our town, just like in all other small towns, members of our police
21 have not been able to put an end to it. That's mass theft, I think it's
22 referring to. Well, it says -- Your Honour I think we need to go to the
23 paragraph before. It says we are also witnessing mass theft in areas
24 where combat or cleansing operations are taking place or have already
25 taken place. Then it talks about the training and tolerance, and then
1 says we are asking you to immediately send one special purpose police
2 detachment to Petrovac to bring peace and prevent the decreasing morale
3 among part of our population, including members of the Serbian army, and
4 to prevent anarchy and chaos.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Taking you back to that period in time, Mr. Hidic,
6 did you notice any difference -- first of all, would you accept that the
7 description being given by Rajko Novakovic in this memo to Stojan
8 Zupljanin is a true picture of the situation in the area at the time?
9 Would you agree that it was so, that there was mass theft and that during
10 police curfew, there was shooting, demolishing and looting of taverns,
11 shops, even of Serbs? Would you accept that that was taking place around
12 about the last week of June of the year 1992?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, absolutely. I would agree with
14 what is stated here. Your Honours, with your permission I would like to
15 corroborate this with facts. At the time, a large number of cars that had
16 been stolen and were in Bosanski Petrovac municipality, driven by soldiers
17 and various other people, so perhaps this fact is something that prompted
18 them into writing this. I know that there was a lot of looting going on
19 and that items that had been stolen were confiscated, and these items were
20 found in certain areas where Serb soldiers were.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: And in the subsequent weeks and perhaps months but
22 not too many, did you notice any change for the better or did things
23 remain the same or get worse? After the 25th of June, 1992, after the end
24 of June, 1992, in other words. Was there a change in the state of affairs
25 that you've just described?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think that there had been some
2 changes. In fact, I know that there were certain forces, I don't know if
3 they were regular police or military police, going around and confiscating
4 what the members of the Serb army called as war booty, so various looted
5 items, and all of that was stored in front of the police station. So I
6 can tell you that effort was made in this regard.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: And would you know where these policemen that
8 restored a little bit of order came from?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I truly don't know.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: But were they from your area, from the municipality,
11 or from outside the municipality?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know that either.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Yes, Ms. Korner. Judge Janu would like to
14 put an additional question.
15 JUDGE JANU: When you say it was confiscated, what do you mean by
16 that? It was written back to the owners or it was confiscated by the
17 municipality -- it belonged to the municipality
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. It was not returned. It was
19 stored on the grounds of the police administration in Bosanski Petrovac.
20 Some of the items were stored there. So it was -- it was confiscated from
21 some of the people, not from all of the people. And this is why I said
22 that there were some changes and that perhaps was put into force because
23 of this appeal written appeal, that was issued previously.
24 JUDGE JANU: So there was no any attempt to give it back to the
25 owners, those cars and other items?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know of a single case where
2 it was returned to its rightful owner.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Ms. Korner?
4 MS. KORNER:
5 Q. Sorry, can I just ask two questions on that document, please,
6 while you've still got it, sir? First, it refers to areas which have been
7 cleansed. By June of -- 25th of June, were there any cleansing operations
8 taking place? In other words, expulsions? That you knew of?
9 A. If I can say so, I think that this pertains to certain areas where
10 members of the Serb army were already present, at least that's how I
11 understand it, that this refers to those very areas that were already
12 occupied by the Serb army. In Bihac area, in Kulen Vakuf, in Orasac and
13 so on, perhaps even Bosanska Krupa.
14 Q. Okay. And secondly, it says, please send a special purpose police
15 detachment. To your knowledge, was -- did such -- was such a police
16 detachment ever sent?
17 A. I have a piece of information, and I'm now referring to the same
18 source, that an officer, Atlagic, was appointed, and his task was to
19 attempt to resolve these issues of looted property through military police
20 or rather to confiscate it from the person in whose possession the looted
21 item was.
22 Q. All right. You say from your source. Now, we've looked at a
23 number of the Crisis Staff decisions you acquired after 1995 or after the
24 war was over. At the time, in 1992, through May and June, were you, the
25 Bosniaks, being told -- not obviously word for word, but what was
1 happening in these Crisis Staff meetings?
2 A. It was impossible to know what was going on there. Not directly.
3 We had no direct knowledge of what was going on. We had no access to such
4 places. We couldn't even access the building of municipality.
5 Q. You've -- you said you had a source who told you about this police
6 officer being appointed and you said there were still contacts between
7 Serbs and the Bosniaks. Were you being given any information about what
8 was being planned for Bosniaks?
9 A. Naturally, it was a public secret in Bosanski Petrovac that
10 Muslims from that town would never be able to go to Bihac, but that they
11 would rather be directed towards central Bosnia. It was a public secret.
12 It was already prepared, the road that they would have to take, although
13 different things were said in public. If I understood your question
15 Q. Yes, thank you. Now, there are just three other documents.
16 MS. KORNER: Your Honours I didn't put them on the list because
17 it's only now that I've appreciated the difference. If Your Honours and
18 the Defence please look at P245, which is a Crisis Staff minute for the
19 14th of June, number 55/92? And Your Honours, Mr. Hidic provided attached
20 to his second statement what I thought was an identical copy. It is if
21 you look at the English but it's not if you look at his copy. I think he
22 better have a look, please, at the attachment, not P245, please, but the
23 attachment to his statement. It's got the number 7.61 on it. Okay. I'm
24 sorry, in that case, we've got another copy. I think Your Honours have
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
2 MS. KORNER: Can the witness -- I don't think we gave it -- we
3 didn't put it on the list for the Registry, so...
4 JUDGE AGIUS: I have one, 245 but.
5 MS. KORNER: You didn't get it either. I'm sorry, Your Honours.
6 In that case, can I exhibit it formally through him and I'll make sure
7 that everybody has copies but the Defence -- I know it wasn't on the list
8 it would have been an attachment to the second statement but we will make
9 more copies.
10 Q. First of all, sir, can you identify that as one of the documents
11 that you received from the municipal assembly documents? A photocopy of
12 it, rather? With your writing in the right-hand side?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And can you just put it on the ELMO so that Their Honours and --
15 could we move it so that the right-hand corner -- yeah.
16 And then could we now put it on the last page of that document, on
17 to the ELMO? And if Your Honours look at 245 in the last page, there is a
18 difference. I'm sorry, can I just see what you're putting up? That
19 should be -- I'm sorry, it should be -- I think this is a mistake here.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: That's a different one, no?
21 MS. KORNER: It's a different one but it does actually correspond
22 with another document which is P -- no, no, hang on one minute. Sorry. I
23 think I'll leave that until Monday, put the two bundles together because I
24 only spotted it now and I think I'm going to confuse the issue horribly.
25 We will deal with this Monday and I'll move on. It's my fault.
1 Q. All right. Can we then, please, now, move --
2 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, did Your Honour say 4 or 4.30?
3 JUDGE AGIUS: 4.00 but if we need to stay up to 4.30, I have no
4 problems if the other two Judges and the rest of you -- pardon? We have
5 to take into consideration, exactly, the interpreters the technicians.
6 MS. KORNER: That's what I'm asking because we have gone for an
7 hour and three-quarters already without a break and if we were, I was
8 simply going to say I imagine there has to be a change of tapes anyhow,
9 don't we have to change them?
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. We will soon know.
11 THE REGISTRAR: We have a two hour tape so we can go to 4.00.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Let us go up to 4.00.
13 MS. KORNER: All right.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: That was agreed beforehand.
15 MS. KORNER: All right.
16 Q. So then can we then, please, just, I think, move through what
17 happened in the major months really of June, July and August? And I think
18 perhaps the best way of dealing with this is if you go back to the
19 Croatian list of events and fill in what you know about these. And if I
20 have my own copy. I've forgotten what the exhibit number is. It's this
21 one. The country club. It's Exhibit P1878.
22 There we see the events that they say, the first arrests started
23 in Petrovac on the 13th of June, and then on the 18th of June, the killing
24 of the people from -- called Kavaz. Now, did you know about that?
25 A. Yes, I did know.
1 Q. When did you first hear about it?
2 A. That same day. It took place in the evening and the very next day
3 I knew about the killing of the Kavaz couple. So I knew about that.
4 Q. If we move then to July the 3rd, we see there that Muslims who had
5 been detained at the police station were taken to the Kozila camp. Now
6 you told us about the police station and you said that there was another
7 camp. When was the first time that you heard about this camp?
8 A. The first time was when the -- when the people who had been
9 arrested and interrogated at the police station were taken there. Their
10 wives, their family members, already knew about that, and they attempted
11 to make contact with them and to take some clothing and other items to
12 them. I believe that they insisted upon that on a daily basis. They
13 pleaded with Rajko Novakovic, with Serb authorities. They waited in front
14 of the municipality for days in order to see them and to pass on their
16 Q. Did you yourself know that a camp had been established in Kozila?
17 I'm sorry, did you know anybody who had been taken to that camp, is the
18 proper question.
19 A. I knew almost all of the people who were imprisoned. Some I knew
20 directly. Some people were my relatives, distant relatives, close
21 relatives, and so on.
22 Q. All right. Now, can you look, please, at Exhibit P1838? This is
23 a session of the Crisis Staff on the 30th of June?
24 JUDGE AGIUS: On the 29th.
25 MS. KORNER: Sorry, yes, it's the date of the document that is the
1 30th. It was held on the 29th, thank you, Your Honour.
2 Q. And Mr. Novakovic is dealing with the political and security
3 situation and then if you look at the second paragraph, the Muslims of
4 Petrovac are behaving as if they are wounded and are showing great fear.
5 More of them should be arrested and isolated as a precaution. After which
6 they should be given work obligations because there will be a lot of
7 harvesting to do. First, would you agree with that assessment, that the
8 Muslims in Petrovac were showing great fear?
9 A. Definitely. They lived in constant fear, which was especially
10 obvious in the evening hours, or rather during curfew, and this fear
11 brought people together, in fact. They met with other people in order not
12 to be alone. Complete absolute fear reigned among them. All of us could
13 feel that.
14 Q. Were you aware of people being arrested and isolated as a
15 precaution, in other words not having committed an offence, and then being
16 sent off to do harvesting?
17 A. These people who had been isolated and imprisoned were not sent to
18 do that but rather other people were called up, mobilised, to do those
19 kind of tasks. I myself received summons to do that and participated in
20 one such activity.
21 Q. And then can we go to the conclusion number 1 of that document?
22 Until the prison in Kozila -- I think that should read Kozila rather than
23 -- maybe -- is made operational, a plan should be made to arrest and
24 bring in under custody all Muslims fit for military service who are
25 thought to be capable of causing any harm to the Serbs.
1 Was that something that happened? Men of military age were just
3 A. Definitely. They were not just imprisoned but during those days,
4 they -- those who were not imprisoned had to report to the police
5 administration twice a day, in the morning and in the evening, not just
6 men but also women who were treated just like men, they also had to report
7 twice, once in the morning and once in the afternoon.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 MS. KORNER: Your Honours in fact I'm going to move on to the
10 topic of the murders and expulsions so that's probably appropriate. Your
11 Honour, I anticipate I should be one -- just another hour on Monday
12 morning. With a bit of optimism.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you anticipate, Mr. Cunningham, that you will be
14 in a position to conclude your cross on Monday?
15 MR. CUNNINGHAM: My hope is that my cross will be long enough to
16 cover the subject but short enough to be interesting. I think I will be
17 done by the end of the day, easily.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. So perhaps you can make arrangements,
19 Ms. Korner, for the return of --
20 MS. KORNER: Yes, Your Honour, I explained to Mr. Hidic yesterday
21 that he'd have to now wait until Monday.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Thank you, Ms. Korner and thank you,
23 Mr. Hidic, for understanding. So the case stands adjourned until Monday,
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: And that will be an extended-hours day. Thank you.
2 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at
3 3.57 p.m., to be reconvened on Monday,
4 the 26th day of May, 2003, at 9.00 a.m.