1 Wednesday, 10 October 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.03 a.m.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Good morning, everybody.
7 Mr. Registrar, could you please call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Thank you and good morning, Your Honours.
9 This is case number IT-04-83-T, the Prosecutor versus Rasim Delic.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
11 Could we have appearances for today, starting with the
13 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President.
14 Good morning, Your Honours, counsel and everyone in and around the
15 courtroom. Daryl Mundis for the Prosecution, assisted today by our case
16 managers, Alma Imamovic and Francisca Duijvestein.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, thank you very much.
18 And for the Defence.
19 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. Good
20 morning to my learned friends from the OTP, everyone in and around the
21 courtroom. Vasvija Vidovic and Nicholas Robson for General Delic. Our
22 case manager is Lejla Gluhic.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much, Madam Vidovic.
24 WITNESS: SEJFULAH MRKALJEVIC [Resumed]
25 [Witness answered through interpreter]
1 Good morning, sir. Mr. Witness, good morning to you.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yesterday, at the beginning of your testimony, you
4 made a declaration to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing else
5 but the truth. I just want to warn you and remind you that you are still
6 bound by that declaration. Understood?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand that.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
9 Mr. Mundis.
10 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President.
11 Examination by Mr. Mundis: [Continued]
12 Q. Good morning, Mr. Mrkaljevic.
13 A. Good morning.
14 Q. I'd like to pick up on a theme we were talking about right at the
15 end of the session yesterday, and I'd like to ask you, sir, how the work
16 product of the 3rd Corps Intelligence Department was integrated into
17 planning for military operations of the 3rd Corps.
18 A. The 3rd Corps Intelligence Department was responsible for
19 presenting to the 3rd Corps Staff all fresh intelligence information that
20 could assist in carrying out their tasks.
21 Q. How, sir, would that intelligence information assist the 3rd Corps
22 Staff in carrying out their tasks?
23 A. Intelligence would normally provide any information that was
24 available on the enemy along the front line, the enemy's forces, and this
25 was necessary in order to be able to plan certain activities in a timely
1 manner. At the same time, intelligence that was of exceptional importance
2 or priority would be passed along as fast as possible, and this would then
3 signal to our units any need for interventions and made it possible for
4 them to organise their defences along the front line in the best possible
6 Q. What was the working relationship, Mr. Mrkaljevic, between the
7 Intelligence Department and the Security Department of the 3rd Corps
8 during the time that you were assigned to the 3rd Corps Intelligence
10 A. The 3rd Corps Intelligence Department had a good level of
11 cooperation with the Military Security Department. We would exchange all
12 our information on a daily basis, any information that was relevant to us,
13 the Intelligence Department, or to them, the Military Security Department.
14 Q. During the time, sir, in the summer of 1995 through the end of
15 that year, who was the 3rd Corps assistant commander for Security?
16 A. Between the summer of 1995, it was Mr. Ekrem Halihodzic. After
17 that, Mr. Agan Haseljic [Realtime transcript read in error "Mr. Alan"] was
18 appointed. But that was the end of the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
19 Q. And, sir, for the record, the transcript didn't catch the name of
20 the person who was appointed after Mr. Ekrem Halihodzic. Could you repeat
21 his name, please?
22 A. Mr. Agan Haseljic.
23 Q. During this time period, sir, when you were in the 3rd Corps
24 Intelligence Department, where was or where were the offices of the 3rd
25 Corps Intelligence Department located?
1 A. The offices were located in the Command building, on the first
2 floor. You took a flight of stairs up to the first floor, and then this
3 was in the left wing of the building.
4 Q. Sir, where was the -- let's start with what you've called the
5 Command building. Where was that building, in what town and location?
6 A. The 3rd Corps Command or, rather, the building that housed the
7 Command of the 3rd Corps was in Zenica. These buildings belonged to the
8 Technoprojekt company, and these were just outside the Zenica ironworks
9 compound. This was gate number 4. That's what we used to call it. It
10 was a gate used to access the Zenica ironworks compound.
11 Q. And where was the office of the 3rd Corps commander during this
12 time period, summer 1995?
13 A. The commander's office, first you took the stairs to the first
14 floor, and then just on the right, first door on the right, in fact.
15 Q. And, sir, if you know, where was the Security Department of the
16 3rd Corps in the summer of 1995?
17 A. In the summer of 1995, the assistant commander for Security of the
18 3rd Corps or, rather -- you took the stairs up to the first floor, you
19 turned right, and then the last door on the left, that's where his office
20 was. Was.
21 MR. MUNDIS: With the assistance of the Registrar, Your Honours, I
22 would ask that the witness be allowed to draw a sketch of the first floor,
23 the floor plan of the first floor of the 3rd Corps building, as he's
24 described it, and I believe this can be done electronically on the screen
25 using the electronic pen. So I would ask that the usher assist in that.
1 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, with this technology, you'll be able to draw
2 directly on the screen in front of you, and I would ask you, sir, if you
3 could please draw a floor plan, to the best of your recollection, of the
4 first floor of the 3rd Corps headquarters building to include the
5 commander's office, the Intelligence Department and the Security
7 A. [Marks]. What I'm drawing now, I'm trying to get my bearings.
8 This is north, right, in relation to the building. This is a reference
9 point for the gate [marks], and these are the cardinal points [marks].
10 What I'm drawing right now is the staircase into the building.
11 This one is outside the building [indicates] and this one leads up to the
12 first floor [indicates].
13 Office number 1, this is the 3rd Corps commander's office. Office
14 number 2, this is where the secretary was. Office number 3, the mess
15 where officers of the 3rd Corps took lunch. Office number 4, the people
16 who worked in the officers' restaurant and other auxiliary staff. This
17 was once you took the staircase up to the first floor on the right, there
18 were the commander's offices and on the left was the restaurant and the
19 restaurant staff. Office number 5, the lavatory. Office number 6,
20 assistant commander for Intelligence, 3rd Corps. Office number 7, office
21 number 7 was the operator and the desk clerk of the 3rd Corps. Office
22 number 8, Department for Intelligence and Reconnaissance. Office number
23 9, my office, and my officers were there too.
24 Office number 10. Office number 10 was for officers from the
25 electronic surveillance team. Office 11 and office 12, as well as office
1 13 and 14, officers from the Military Security Department. Last office,
2 number 14, assistant commander of the 3rd Corps' military security. I
3 must say this, though: In this room, up to about midway through 1994,
4 there was the deputy commander, Mr. Dzemal Merdan. When officers left for
5 other duties, Mr. Dzemal Merdan was moved to a ground-floor office, and
6 the location was the same where you see office number 6 on the first
7 floor, but on the ground floor, that was Mr. Dzemal Merdan's office. For
8 a brief while, he served as chief of Staff.
9 Q. And when you say, sir, referring to room 14, "up to about midway
10 through 1994, there was the deputy commander, Mr. Dzemal Merdan," after
11 Mr. Merdan moved to the ground floor, who occupied room number 14?
12 A. From that moment on, room number 14 was occupied by the assistant
13 commander of the 3rd Corps Military Security. Up to that point in time,
14 between 13 and 14, there was a partition that was built, a smaller room,
15 if you like, and assistant commander for Military Security, from the time
16 the corps was set up and until he eventually moved to room 14, used to be
17 in room number 13.
18 Q. And just so we're clear, sir, what officer occupied room number
19 6? Who was the -- the name of the person who was in room number 6.
20 A. Room number 6 was occupied by Mr. Edin Husic.
21 Q. And room number 14, after Mr. Merdan moved to the first floor,
22 what was the name of the officer or officers who worked in room 14?
23 A. Office number 14 was occupied by the assistant commander for
24 Military Security, Mr. Ekrem Halihodzic.
25 Q. And again, sir, so that we're absolutely clear, what is the name
1 of the person who occupied room number 1?
2 A. Office number 1 was occupied by Mr. Commander of the 3rd Corps,
3 Sakib Mahmuljin.
4 Q. Now, so that we're also clear, sir, can you tell us which rooms or
5 numbers of rooms were occupied by the 3rd Corps Intelligence Department in
7 A. In the summer of 1995, the Intelligence Department was in rooms 6,
8 7, 8, 9 and 10, but certain adjustments were made later on; no significant
9 ones, though. Certain rooms were made over in order to create even better
10 working conditions.
11 Q. And, sir, again just for purposes of clarity, which room or rooms
12 housed the Security Department of the 3rd Corps in the summer of 1995?
13 A. In the summer of 1995, the Military Security Department was in the
14 right wing of the building. It was in rooms 11, 12, 13 and 14, as I've
15 pointed out already. There were certain adjustments. Rooms were
16 refurbished. Those rooms that were slightly larger, they would be divided
17 in two in order to create two smaller rooms, but this was just to improve
18 their functional aspect, so the conditions were better then for the
19 officers' work.
20 Q. And sir, again, for purposes of clarity, could you again take the
21 marker and place an "X" near the front entrance of this building? I know
22 you described that as you drew it, but could you please place an"X" near
23 the front door where you would enter the building.
24 A. [Marks]. The entrance was this way [indicates]. I'm putting a
25 little cross right there, so these are the steps that you take to get to
1 the entrance door.
2 Q. And you also, at the beginning, when you drew the sketch, you
3 placed an arrow with the letter "S." Again, can you indicate which
4 direction the letter "S" refers to?
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: The letter "S" or the arrow?
6 MR. MUNDIS: The "S" on top of the arrow at the upper right of the
8 Q. What direction does that refer to?
9 A. North.
10 Q. Can you indicate on this sketch where gate 4 that you've referred
11 to, the gate into the Zenica ironworks, is located?
12 A. [Marks]. Number 1, the railway passing down the -- or past the
13 north flank of the building of the Corps Command.
14 Q. Let me stop you there, sir, because we've already marked General
15 Mahmuljin's office as number 1. Could you take the number 1 at the
16 railroad tracks and make that into a number 15, please?
17 A. Sure, I can make it over into 15 [marks]. 15 is the railway track
18 passing the northern face of the Corps Command. Number 16 is the fence
19 that was put up to the west of the Corps Command building. Gate number 4
20 used to access the Zenica ironworks compound, is right here, number 17.
21 This was about 30 metres northwest from the Corps Command building itself.
22 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. Mrkaljevic. I would ask the sketch be
23 captured and admitted into evidence, Your Honours.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: The sketch is admitted into evidence. May it
25 please be given an exhibit number.
1 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, Exhibit number 572.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
3 MR. MUNDIS:
4 Q. We turn, sir, to the issue of reports that were received by the
5 Intelligence Department of the 3rd Corps. Could you remind the Trial
6 Chamber which units of the 3rd Corps sent reports to the Intelligence
8 A. The Intelligence Department of the 3rd Corps Command received
9 reports from independent units, division commands, the 35th and the 37th
10 Divisions. At the same time, reports were submitted by independent units,
11 unless they were subordinated to a higher-ranking unit. Those units were
12 the 303rd Mountain Brigade, the 330th Mountain Light Infantry Brigade, the
13 7th Muslim Brigade, and I mentioned the 314th Mountain Brigade yesterday.
14 I apologise, if my apology can be taken into account. Why? Because the
15 314th Mountain Brigade, early 1995, and I can provide you with the exact
16 date if that's necessary, was disbanded. Parts of that unit joined other
18 MR. MUNDIS: I would ask, with the assistance of the Registrar,
19 that the witness now be shown the document previously marked P02112.
21 Q. Sir, do you see the document on the screen in front of you?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Can you tell us what this document is, please?
24 A. This is an interim intelligence report sent by the assistant
25 commander for Intelligence of the 35th Division, submitted to the
1 Intelligence Department of the 3rd Corps Command. This is
2 marked "Priority," which means that it was supposed to be passed along as
3 quickly as possible. If I look at the report and how it's made, I see
4 that this gentleman is trying to inform us about the situation along the
5 front line in his area of responsibility, in terms of intelligence; yet at
6 the same time he's trying to inform us about the situation and activities
7 being undertaken by the army's units.
8 Q. Sir, I draw your attention to paragraph 1 of this document, to the
9 part of the document right above the little black dot, the first -- the
10 top black dot on the left-hand side. Do you see a reference there, sir,
11 to Odreda El-M?
12 A. Yes. In this paragraph, what it says is this:
13 "So far during combat operations, 30 Chetniks have been killed in
14 the Potselovo sector. The their bodies remained on our side. Unofficial
15 sources suggest that aggressor soldiers had been arrested as -- and one
16 tank was seized from the El Mudjahedin Detachment."
17 Q. Sir, what would the 3rd Corps Intelligence Department do with the
18 type of information contained in this report that you see before you?
19 A. The sort of information presented in this report is priority
20 information, and this document contains information that had to be
21 processed analytically as soon as possible. The officer in charge would
22 inform himself about this situation, familiarise himself with the
23 substance of any document that arrived, and he would immediately tell his
24 direct superior, in this case this was the 3rd Corps commander, or anyone
25 standing in for that person --
1 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Mundis, I apologise for interrupting, but I
2 think that there is some unclarity as to the interpretation of the passage
3 that you drew the witness's attention to. In the translation, you can see
4 it reads that:
5 "Unofficial sources suggest aggressor soldiers were seized and
6 one tank --"
7 And I think the translation was "From the Mujahid Detachment," and
8 that is not consistent with what is on the other screen.
9 MR. MUNDIS: Let me ask the witness to clarify that.
10 Q. Sir, the sentence that contains the reference to Odreda "El-M,"
11 can you please read that sentence out again?
12 A. The sentence reads as follows in Bosnian:
13 "There is unofficial information that there are captured aggressor
14 soldiers and a tank at the El Mudjahedin Detachment."
15 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, sir. And, Your Honours, we'll ask that
16 this document be revised in terms of its translation.
17 Q. But let me ask you this, sir: In the language of military
18 intelligence, do you know what "unofficial sources" would refer to?
19 A. When information is obtained, an assessment is made as to whether
20 it is confirmed or unconfirmed. If the information is confirmed and if it
21 is completely accurate, then this is immediately indicated, that this
22 information is accurate and confirmed. If information is unconfirmed or
23 if there is any doubt as to its credibility or accuracy, then an
24 indication is made in the report whether this is confirmed or unconfirmed,
25 official or unofficial.
1 In the context of this document, this means that when
2 Mr. Hajderhodzic indicated this was unofficial information, information
3 from the unofficial sources, that means that this information was not
5 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Could we perhaps have the date of
6 this document on the record, please.
7 MR. MUNDIS:
8 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, what is the date of this document?
9 A. In the upper left-hand corner, the heading of this document
10 specifies the point in time where this -- when this document was made.
11 Zavidovici, the 27th of May, 1995. Operational time, 1250 hours.
12 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. Mrkaljevic.
13 The Prosecution would ask this document be admitted into evidence
14 and we'll substitute a revised English translation once that's available.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much. The document is admitted into
16 evidence. May it please be given an exhibit number.
17 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, Exhibit number 573.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
19 Mr. Mundis.
20 MR. MUNDIS: The Prosecution would ask the witness now be shown
21 Exhibit 554. Exhibit 554.
22 And perhaps if we could scroll to the bottom of the B/C/S version
23 of this document.
24 Q. Sir, can you tell us who drafted this document?
25 A. I am the author of this document, and this is a report where I
1 inform or, rather, report to Mr. Husic. At the time when this document
2 was drafted, Mr. Husic was at the forward command post of the 3rd Corps
3 Command in the Orahovo sector. In order to facilitate orientation,
4 Orahovo is northeast of Sarajevo, about 30 kilometres away.
5 My responsibility was to send this report to Mr. Husic in order to
6 inform him about the implementation of the task that had been received.
7 Q. Sir, I would ask, and we could go to page -- the bottom of page 3
8 in the English version. Mr. Mrkaljevic, I would like to ask you about the
9 paragraph that begins -- that you can see on the middle of the screen in
10 front of you that begins: "O nasim aktivnostima ..." Do you see that
12 A. Yes, I can see it.
13 Q. Could you tell us, sir, about the situation that you're describing
14 in that paragraph, which in the English begins: "I briefed the commander
15 ..." for reference of the Trial Chamber. Can you tell us about what
16 you're reporting in this paragraph?
17 A. In this report, I describe the activities that were carried out in
18 the course of that day. It reads as follows:
19 "I briefed the commander of the 3rd Corps about our activities
20 during the day, the briefing of the assistant commander for Intelligence
21 and the current situation at a briefing held at 2200 hours. He agreed
22 with the situation as it was presented and at the same time he approved
23 the activities planned for today as follows:
24 "Inspection of parts of the area of responsibility of the 328th
25 Mountain Brigade in the grede Podsjelovo sector, focusing on analysing the
1 situation at observation posts and their work; meet with the superior
2 officer of the El Mudjahedin Detachment in order to seize part of the
3 seized documents and request approval to contact the prisoners from the
4 1st Prnjavor Light Infantry Brigade who are located at their camp at the
5 14th kilometre towards Kamenica village."
6 Q. Let me ask you some follow-up questions based on this part of your
7 report, Mr. Mrkaljevic.
8 In the first part of this paragraph, there's a reference to "the
9 briefing of the assistant commander for Intelligence." Can you tell us,
10 sir, to the best of your recollection, to whom you were referring when you
11 wrote "the assistant commander for Intelligence"?
12 A. On the 23rd, late at night, I set off from Orahovo to Sarajevo. I
13 came to Zavidovici in the early morning hours. I rested a little bit, and
14 between 12.30, at the forward command post of the 35th Division, I met the
15 assistant commander for Intelligence, Mr. Izudin Hajderhodzic, where he
16 briefed me, giving me an overview of the current situation in the area of
17 responsibility of the 35th Division. I immediately made an arrangement
18 with him.
19 There is a restaurant, Panorama, Hotel Panorama, which is to the
20 west of Zavidovici on the Krivaja River, and in two hours, in fact, the
21 forward command post of the 3rd Corps was situated there, if necessary.
22 So it was arranged that all the assistant commanders of all the units that
23 were engaged in the area of responsibility of the 35th Division should go
24 there in order to be briefed.
25 Q. Let me ask you, sir, about this meeting where you say, "I met the
1 assistant commander for intelligence, Mr. Izudin Hajderhodzic, where he
2 briefed me." What did he brief you about? What did he tell you about
3 during this meeting?
4 A. Well, at the meeting itself, he briefed me about the situation and
5 some of the problems that had to do with an issue that he had already
6 raised in his interim report. He told me that the information that the El
7 Mudjahid Detachment, in its camp at the 14th kilometre, held about two or
8 three, I don't know for sure, members of the 1st Prnjavor Light Brigade,
9 was confirmed, so this information was confirmed. He gave me an overview
10 of the situation on the front line, and he also informed me about the
11 problems relating to the logistic support of observation posts. The main
12 problem there was radio communication equipment.
13 Q. And, sir, again turning to the document, there's a reference to
14 the fact that you briefed the commander of the 3rd Corps. When and where
15 was that briefing?
16 A. The briefing of the 3rd Corps commander was held at the Panorama
17 building. I indicated in this report that it was at 2200 hours.
18 Q. Sir, let me interrupt. On which day?
19 A. That was all on the 24th, because when I came to Zavidovici I
20 reported to the commander to let him know that I was there.
21 Q. And just for purposes of clarification, when you say "the 24th,"
22 can you tell us which month and year?
23 A. I do apologise. The 24th of May, 1995.
24 Q. The transcript just indicated "May," sir. This document is dated
25 after May. Can you clarify that for us, please?
1 A. I apologise. My mistake. 24th of July, 1995.
2 Q. And again, sir, when you said, as reflected on lines 1 and 2 of
3 page 16: "I reported to the commander to let him know that I was there,"
4 which commander are you referring to?
5 A. I'm referring to Mr. Sakib Mahmuljin, the corps commander.
6 Q. To the best of your recollection, Mr. Mrkaljevic, when you briefed
7 Sakib Mahmuljin on 24 July 1995 at 2200 hours, what were the topics that
8 you discussed with him in this briefing?
9 A. In accordance with the usual procedure in intelligence affairs,
10 when the commander is being briefed, a commander is told about the
11 situation in the area of responsibility or that section of the area of
12 responsibility where he is at the time with regard the enemy activities.
13 Then the situation with regard to the current activities of persons and
14 officers in the Intelligence Service, then the situation regarding the
15 forthcoming activities of the persons in the Intelligence Service, and, if
16 necessary, any other issues that might impinge on the execution of certain
17 tasks, be it in terms of logistic support or any other aspects.
18 Q. Again, if we could go to the bottom of the Bosnian version of this
19 page and to the bottom of page 3 in the English version, I'd like to ask
20 you, sir, about that second bullet point that we were just discussing a
21 few moments ago.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry, if I may just interrupt, Mr. Mundis, you
23 asked the witness what were the topics that he discussed with
24 Mr. Mahmuljin on the briefing of the 24th of July at 2200 hours. He has
25 told us, in his answer, a general sketch of what is usually reported in
1 accordance with the procedure. He hasn't told us the exact topics that
2 were discussed that day. I would like to hear those topics.
3 MR. MUNDIS: I was attempting to do that by reference to the
4 document, but I'll ask the witness.
5 Q. Sir, can you recall the specific topics that you briefed General
6 Mahmuljin about at this briefing on 24 July 1995 at 2200 hours? What,
7 specifically, did you tell him?
8 A. Specifically, at the briefing for the commander of the 3rd Corps
9 at 2200 hours, I informed him about the briefing that was received from
10 the assistant commanders during the day, the assistant commanders for
11 intelligence of the units engaged in the area of responsibility of the
12 35th Division.
13 The second issue that I presented to the commander was the current
14 intelligence situation, with some recently-acquired information about the
15 enemy activities in the area of responsibility of the 35th Division.
16 The third issue that I dealt with or, rather, that I reported on
17 to the commander was the issue of the documents that had been seized,
18 because from my contact with Mr. Edin Husic, it was suggested to me that I
19 should not raise the issue of the captured members of the 1st Prnjavor
20 Brigade because another service was dealing with that problem, which means
21 that I did not brief the commander on the issue of the prisoners.
22 The next issue on which I briefed the commander was the issue of
23 the logistic support for the tasks whose implementation was planned in the
24 forthcoming period.
25 Q. Let me ask you, sir, when you say, "I reported to the commander on
1 the issue of the documents that had been seized," what documents are you
2 referring to?
3 A. During combat in the broader sector of Podsjelovo, members of the
4 El Mujahid Detachment found some documents on the VRS troops that related
5 to their units. The ID documents found on the persons were something that
6 we needed to analyse them, and all the information, all the data that we
7 could glean from them, were to be collated with the information or data
8 that we already had at our disposal. This is standard operating procedure
9 regarding any documents that are seized.
10 Q. Now, Mr. Mrkaljevic --
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry. Were there -- did you find only ID
12 documents -- I beg your pardon. Did the El Mudjahedin Detachment seize ID
13 documents only or were there any other documents over and above the ID
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The documents that were seized and
16 that were taken over from the El Mudjahedin Detachment, when we're talking
17 about this specific case, provided us with information that some ID
18 documents had been obtained, and there were also several notebooks that
19 were found with the members of the Republika Srpska Army, the first
20 Prnjavor Brigade. But I have to say that we did not receive those
21 documents immediately, as soon as we requested them. This was handed over
22 to us in a period of time, maybe a month or a month and a half later, and
23 it was handed over to Mr. Izudin Hajderhodzic.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
25 MR. MUNDIS:
1 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, as reflected on page 18, lines 2 through 6, you
2 told us:
3 "Because from my contact with Mr. Edin Husic, it was suggested to
4 me that I should not raise the issue of the captured members of the 1st
5 Prnjavor Brigade because another service was dealing with that problem."
6 Do you recall, sir, what other service was dealing with that
8 A. The problem of the takeover of the captured Republika Srpska Army
9 soldiers was in the purview of the Military Security Service.
10 Q. I would now ask you if you could turn your attention back to the
11 document on the screen in front of you and the second bullet point of the
12 paragraph we were discussing before. Can you tell us, sir, what
13 instructions you received from the 3rd Corps commander after you briefed
14 him on 24 July 1995 at 2200 hours?
15 A. After the commander received the report of the 24th of July, 1995,
16 the 3rd Corps commander immediately approved that I may request the
17 documents that had been seized. He gave his approval that there was a
18 need to visit the area of responsibility of the 328th Mountain Brigade, to
19 inspect it. That is the broader grede Podsjelovo sector. And combat
20 operations reference that I referred to here were carried out in that
22 And at the same time, when I made the request, he gave me the
23 green light to use a car in order to carry out those activities. That was
24 the car that had been used by operations officers to come to that area in
25 the -- to that site in the area of responsibility of the 35th Division.
1 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, I'd like to focus your attention on the second
2 bullet point, that is, not the part about Podsjelovo. Your document
3 says "request approval to contact the prisoners of the 1st Prnjavor Light
4 Infantry Brigade at their camp located 14 kilometres towards Kamenica
6 And I'd like you to explain to us, sir, how that came to be
7 written in your report.
8 A. I wrote this report. You can see up there in the heading, if we
9 could scroll it up, please. This report was drafted at 1946 hours on the
10 24th of July, 1995, and as such, it was encrypted and sent to the forward
11 command post at Orahovo.
12 Q. I believe you've told us earlier, sir, that this briefing that you
13 had with the 3rd Corps commander was at 2200 hours on 24 July 1995. Can
14 you explain how the document was --
15 A. Yes, yes, yes, I did note that in the report, because I had
16 already been in contact with the commander and he indicated that there
17 would be this briefing at 2200 hours at the Panorama building.
18 Q. Well, can you explain to us, sir, how the document indicates that
19 General Mahmuljin authorised you to take certain steps, if the document
20 was sent before the meeting?
21 A. As I've told you already, I had spoken to the commander of the
22 record already by this time, and I told him about the situation. He
23 agreed. I covered that information in my report. I informed Mr. Husic
24 exactly what I had spoken to the commander about.
25 Q. Now, you told us, sir, on page 18, lines 5 and 6: "I did not
1 brief the commander on the issue of the prisoners."
2 And in light of that testimony, I'd like to ask you to explain how
3 your document indicates that General Mahmuljin requested you to contact
4 the prisoners at the 14 km camp.
5 A. I never asked him the question. Probably, and when I
6 say "probably," probably he already had all the information on prisoners
7 at his fingertips. In addition to that, this was to avoid any overlap
8 between the various competences of people who were involved in the
9 situation. That was another reason I didn't ask the question. And also I
10 was trying to comply with the instructions I had received from Mr. Edin
12 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, can you tell us what steps, if any, you took with
13 respect to General Mahmuljin's order as reflected in the second bullet
14 point of the document in front of you?
15 A. This second bullet, is that about the involvement so far?
16 Q. If we could perhaps scroll down in the Bosnian version.
17 A. Oh, this is a different portion, isn't it?
18 Q. No, sir, it's the same portion we've been discussing. It's the
19 bullet point that says: "Meet with superior officer of the El Mudjahedin
21 A. This is not an order by the corps commander. This is my report.
22 Q. Well, if we -- let me interrupt you there, because perhaps you can
23 explain this, because the prefatory language of your report, which you've
24 read out to us, indicates that you briefed the commander of the 3rd
25 Corps. The second sentence says:
1 "He agreed with the presented situation and approved the
2 following activities planned for today."
3 Is that what your report says, sir?
4 A. That's what it says. A specific situation was issued. He agreed
5 to this. He gave the green light, and he gave the go-ahead to the
6 activities for the 27th of May, 1995.
7 Q. Now, Mr. Mrkaljevic, when you say, "He agreed to this, he gave the
8 green light, he gave the go-ahead," to whom are you referring?
9 A. Specifically, I'm referring to me, that I should carry out these
10 activities that I had previously put forward to him.
11 Q. I understand that, sir, but I'm asking you who the "he" was. You
12 told us, "He agreed to this, he gave the green light, he gave the
13 go-ahead." Who is the "he" that you're referring to and that's referred
14 to in your document?
15 A. I apologise. The reference was to the 3rd Corps commander.
16 Q. Now, based on your testimony and what the document says, it
17 indicates that he approved the following activities, and the "he" being
18 General Mahmuljin, he agreed and approved for you to meet the superior
19 officer of the El Mudjahedin Detachment. That's what the second bullet
20 point of your document says. What steps, if any, did you take --
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. What steps, sir, if any, did you take to comply with what was
23 written in second bullet point of your document, Exhibit 554?
24 A. The 25th of July, 1995, in the morning hours, in a motor vehicle,
25 accompanied by Mr. Izudin Hajderhodzic from Zavidovici, we arrived in the
1 general Livade village area. This is an area south of grede Podsjelovo.
2 At the time, the Command of the El Mudjahedin Detachment was located
4 On our arrival in Livade village, we found a place where there
5 were several houses, and that's where the El Mudjahid Detachment Command
6 was. At a distance of 150 to 200 metres from there, we were pulled over
7 by two armed members of the El Mudjahid Detachment. They didn't allow us
8 to pass. We had to wait there. A person came up of Afro-Asian origin.
9 That was my take, at least. I think the name was Ajman Awar [as
10 interpreted] or something like that. I'm not exactly certain. We talked
11 to this person. We talked about the hand-over of the documents that had
12 been seized.
13 Several minutes later, after 10.00, he promised that he would see
14 the commander of the El Mujahid Detachment about this and that they would
15 see what could be done about this. I pressed him on it, saying that he
16 should do this immediately, talk to the commander of the El Mudjahid
17 Detachment, I mean, so that I might know whether the seized documents
18 would be handed over to us immediately by the El Mujahid Detachment or
19 not. He categorically refused, saying, "When the time comes, this will be
20 dealt with." He turned away from us and walked away towards the buildings
21 where the El Mujahid Detachment Command used to be. I had no choice but
22 to turn to my colleague, Mr. Izudin, get back in our vehicle, and drive
23 back to Zavidovici.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Can we just get clarification here?
25 You said, "On our arrival in Livade village." Do I understand you
1 to say that Livade village is the same place as the camp which is located
2 14 kilometres towards Kamenica village?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Now, then I would like you to clarify. The
5 document says that Mr. Mahmuljin approved that you meet with the superior
6 officer of the El Mudjahedin Detachment to remove part of the seized
7 documents and request approval to contact the prisoners of the 1st
8 Infantry -- okay, I'm sorry, I'm sorry. You may proceed.
9 MR. MUNDIS: Your Honour, I also note the time, and I am aware of
10 the fact that I've gone over the amount of time I'd estimated for the
11 direct. I would again ask if I could have a little bit of additional time
12 following the break to just wrap up a couple of issues, and then I'll
13 cease with the direct examination of the witness.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Very well. Are you saying this is a convenient
16 MR. MUNDIS: It is indeed.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: We'll take a break and come back at quarter to
19 Court adjourned.
20 --- Recess taken at 10.15 a.m.
21 --- On resuming at 10.46 a.m.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Mundis.
23 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President.
24 Q. Now, Mr. Mrkaljevic, earlier this morning, in response to a
25 question, I believe, from the Bench, you talked about the documents that
1 are referred to in Exhibit 554, which is the document that's in front of
2 you. Can you tell us, sir, to the best of your recollection, when you
3 received the documents referred to in this paragraph of your document?
4 A. The documents referred to in this paragraph are documents that
5 were seized throughout this period by the 1st Prnjavor Brigade. We didn't
6 personally receive those. The documents never reached the Intelligence
7 Department. They were included in an intelligence report, and Mr. Izudin
8 Hajderhodzic processed these documents for the purpose of that report, and
9 there was a delay, as I pointed out already, a delay of about a month or a
10 month and a half. I can't be more specific than that.
11 Q. The document in front of you, sir, also, as we've discussed
12 earlier, makes reference to the "logor" or camp at 14 km near Kamenica.
13 You told us a few moments ago that you and Mr. Hajderhodzic went to
14 Livade. Did you, sir, at any point in time, in accordance with the
15 approval you received from General Mahmuljin, did you at any point in time
16 go to the 14 km camp in order to see the prisoners referred to?
17 A. No.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: While on that point, I just want to ask the
19 question: When you talked to the gentleman you say you think his name is
20 Ajman, after you had been pulled off 150 to 200 metres from their camp,
21 did you raise the question of the prisoners with him, because you've only
22 told us about the documents.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I was talking about the
24 documents that were seized, and I didn't raise the issue of POWs at all.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Any reason for that?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I've stated the reason
2 already. My superior, Edin Husic, made the suggestion that I should not
3 raise the issue of the POWs of the 1st Prnjavor Light Infantry Brigade at
4 all, just to make sure there was no overlap between the various
5 competences. This was an issue dealt with by the Military Security
6 Service, because that was within their purview.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: I understood you to say that you didn't raise that
8 issue when you talked to Mr. Sakib Mahmuljin. But this document here says
9 Mr. Sakib Mahmuljin has approved that you go and talk to the superior
10 officer of the El Mudjahedin Detachment, to remove the documents and to
11 request approval to see the prisoners. So -- let me finish.
12 So I would expect that when you went to Livade, you were going to
13 deal with two issues, the question of documents and the question of
14 prisoners. You had approval to deal with the question of prisoners,
15 according to this document.
16 Are you now saying, notwithstanding this approval to find out
17 about prisoners, you still decided not to deal with the question of
18 prisoners when you got to Livade?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As I said before, at the briefing,
20 when I informed the commander about this, I never raised anything to do
21 with POWs, because my own superior, Edin Husic, had previously made the
22 suggestion to me that --
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: I understand that part, sir. Please, let's get on
24 a little bit, let's make progress. I hear you on that point. I'm talking
25 now about Exhibit 554 that is before you. Exhibit 554 before you,
1 notwithstanding you having not raised the issue of prisoners of war with
2 Mr. Mahmuljin, Mr. Mahmuljin is giving you approval here to raise the
3 issue with the El Mudjahedin Detachment, and I'm asking you: Did you
4 raise the issue with the El Mudjahedin Detachment when you met this man in
5 Livade? And if you didn't, why didn't you? Because you've got the
6 approval, unless I'm misunderstanding something.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When I met the members of the El
8 Mudjahedin Detachment, I didn't raise the issue of POWs. I didn't raise
9 the issue because I had previously received instructions from my superior,
10 Mr. Edin Husic.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. And do you know whether the security people
12 within the 3rd Corps did follow up the question of prisoners of war, now
13 that you didn't deal with it?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't, but if I bear in mind the
15 instructions that I received from my superior, Edin Husic, the suggestion
16 that he made, I think it likely that because it would have been one of
17 their responsibilities, that service would have been on the job already by
18 this time.
19 When I say "likely," I mean this: I was never in touch with
20 anyone from that service at the time. I never talked to any of them about
21 this particular subject.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
23 Yes, Mr. Mundis.
24 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Witness, you and Mr. Hajderhodzic
25 went to Livade just to talk about those documents; right?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
2 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Do you know if Mr. Hajderhodzic
3 had ever been to Livade previously to deal with POWs?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He had been to Livade, yes, but I
5 can't say for sure whether he asked any members of the El Mudjahedin
6 Detachment to see the prisoners. He never told me anything about that
8 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Thank you.
9 MR. MUNDIS:
10 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, on at least one occasion this morning, and perhaps
11 two, you've mentioned this person, Iaman, that you encountered in Livade
12 when you went there with Mr. Hajderhodzic. Other than that instance in
13 Livade, sir, did you on any other occasion have any interaction with this
14 person, Iaman?
15 A. I personally did not hold any meetings with that person over the
16 ensuing period of time or at all, for that matter. That was the first
17 time I met him in person.
18 Q. Had you ever --
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry. I'm sorry to do this to you. This
20 name, "Iaman," is being spelled quite a number of times, and Madam Vidovic
21 warned us about this the other day. I thought "Ajman" is spelled
22 A-J-M-A-N, not "Iaman," or is it a different name, this?
23 MR. MUNDIS: I don't want to be in a position of testifying, but I
24 believe sometimes in the documents the name is transliterated in different
25 ways, and there are different spellings in documents, and perhaps with
1 different court reporters, occasionally we get different spellings as
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. I just hope when we read this three months'
4 down the line, we'll be able to see it for "Eimen."
5 MR. MUNDIS: I agree, Your Honours, and I also know that when it
6 comes to searching, electronically searching transcripts that this raises
7 a whole host of issues which I have raised on a number of occasions with
8 both the interpretation booth and the court reporters and discussed with
9 my learned colleagues from the Defence as well. It is a slight problem,
10 and again it's also reflected in documents where names are transliterated
11 in various ways, particularly names that might have originally been in a
12 language other than B/C/S or English, and I'll simply leave that, as it
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
15 MR. MUNDIS:
16 Q. Sir, you just told us, as reflected on lines 4 and 5 of page
17 29: "This was the first time I met him in person." Had you ever seen
18 this person, Ajman, before, or heard his name before?
19 A. I had never seen Ajman before. I had heard his name from
20 colleagues who were, in a way, in touch with him occasionally.
21 Q. When you say "colleagues," sir, to whom are you referring?
22 A. Some colleagues from the Military Security Service who pointed out
23 sometimes off the record that they had met Ajman. Was this the same
24 person, was this not the same person? I can hardly say. I did not,
25 myself, attend those meetings.
1 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, you also told me, or answered in response to a
2 question I asked you a few moments ago, about the 14 km camp, that you did
3 not, on the 25th of July, 1995, go to that location. For purposes of
4 clarification, sir, were you at any point in time in the camp at 14 km, as
5 you put it?
6 A. No, I wasn't. In some reports, this is referred to as a camp.
7 Technically speaking, the true definition of that location would be a
8 deployment sector, because that is or was where a unit was stationed.
9 This is near the Gostovici River. The 14-kilometre reference is the
10 distance between the location and the town of Zavidovici.
11 Q. And when you say, sir, that a unit was stationed there, what unit
12 are you referring to?
13 A. I mean the El Mudjahedin Detachment.
14 Q. Were there any other what you've called deployment sectors of the
15 El Mudjahedin Detachment along the Gostovici River?
16 A. They were in part also in Borovica village along the Gostovic
17 River. They were staying in a number of family homes there, and also at
18 the 14-kilometre location.
19 MR. MUNDIS: I would now ask that the witness be shown Exhibit
21 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, do you see the document on the screen in front of
23 A. Yes, I do.
24 Q. Can you tell us what this document is, please?
25 A. This is the operations log or operations diary that is kept at the
1 command post of a unit. In this particular case, this is the operations
2 diary kept by the duty officer at the forward command post of the 3rd
3 Corps. In the broader sector of the Kamenica village, the site is Luke.
4 MR. MUNDIS: Can we please go, in the Bosnian version of this
5 document, to the page bearing ERN number 0185-5080. And in the English
6 version, we need to go to the same, the page bearing the same ERN number.
7 If we could scroll up to the top in the Bosnian, please, or top half of
8 the document. That's fine.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: Are you opening the English version?
10 MR. MUNDIS: Now we seem to have lost the Bosnian version. And if
11 we could go to the top half of the Bosnian version and the top of the page
12 in English. Thank you.
13 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, I would draw your attention to the handwritten
14 material that is between entry number 308 and entry number 309 and ask you
15 if you can tell us what is reflected by the information that's written
17 A. In this document, in the part that you referred to, it is
18 indicated that duty was handed over by Jusuf Halilagic, and that I
19 personally, Sejfulah Mrkaljevic, took over as the duty officer. And you
20 can see our signatures here. It's an issue that I assumed as the duty
21 officer at the Luke forward command post.
22 Q. And, sir, on what date did you assume command at the Luke
23 forward -- or assume the role of duty officer at the Luke forward command
24 post on this date, as reflected in these entries?
25 A. The hand-over of duty at the forward command post was usually done
1 in the morning, between 7.30 and 8.00.
2 Q. And my question, sir, is: This part of the logbook that we're
3 looking at, or the diary, what date or dates does this indicate that you
4 took over as duty officer from Mr. Halilagic?
5 A. Under entry 309, this is the chronological order of the receipt of
6 information. The time indicated here is 1400 hours, and the date is the
7 13th of September, and this is 1995. And the text reads as follows:
8 "Urgent call for the commander from General Delic. He is to call
9 him at the IKM of the General Staff in Visoko."
10 Q. Now, sir, just a couple of clarifying questions, if I may. When
11 you say "urgent call for the commander," what commander are you referring
13 A. The reference is Commander Sakib Mahmuljin, the commander of the
14 3rd Corps.
15 Q. And when you say, sir, "he is to call him," what are you -- what
16 are you writing down or what is being noted in the logbook?
17 A. The entry here, I don't know if you have an original page where an
18 entry is made, where you can see the headings, and you have the column 1,
19 2, 3, 4 and 5, and the header -- the table header, if I may explain this
20 briefly, specify first the number under which the information was
21 recorded. If you allow me, I know that this is a little bit extensive,
22 but I have to elaborate.
23 And then in column 2, it is stated that the time when the
24 information was received or a document was received, and the date. Column
25 3, the kind of information, whether it was in the textual form or perhaps
1 a document.
2 Thank you very much, precisely.
3 And then column 4, from whom to whom it is being forwarded. And
4 column 5 is the signature of the officer or person who received
5 information or a document.
6 I think that now I managed to provide clarification for a number
7 of issues that may arise from this entry, could we now please go back to
8 the actual entry?
9 And here, in column 4, this is all in my handwriting. It is
10 indicated as follows -- could you please zoom in on column 4. Excellent,
11 thank you. Could you scroll down a little bit there just below my
13 "Gentlemen, it is stipulated quite specifically OKM 3 KOC IKM,"
14 and my initials are there.
15 And this means that I received the information from the office of
16 the commander of the 3rd Corps. I cannot now tell you specifically
17 whether it was relayed to me by the commander's secretary or one of the
18 officers who usually were there in the office, and I immediately forwarded
19 this information to the Operations Centre of the forward command post of
20 the 3rd Corps, because the commander of the 3rd Corps, Sakib Mahmuljin,
21 was not present at Luke.
22 Q. Okay. Mr. Mrkaljevic, can you explain to us -- you just said, "I
23 cannot now tell you specifically whether it was relayed to me by the
24 commander's secretary or one of the officers who usually were there in the
25 office." What are you referring to when you told us that?
1 A. When I explained that to you, I meant that I personally did not
2 take that phone call from General Delic. This means that the telephone
3 call had not come from General Delic, but this was just a piece of
4 information that was relayed, that the commander of the 3rd Corps, Sakib
5 Mahmuljin, should urgently report to or call General Delic at the forward
6 command post of the General Staff in Visoko.
7 Q. And just so we're all clear, sir, when you say, "This means that
8 the telephone call had not come from General Delic," from whom did the
9 call come? Who called you, in other words?
10 A. I was given information from the OKM of the 3rd Corps in Zenica. I
11 cannot now tell you whether I received this information from the lady who
12 was Sakib Mahmuljin's secretary at the basic command post in Zenica or
13 whether this was relayed to me by an officer who was in Commander Sakib
14 Mahmuljin's office at the basic command post of the 3rd Corps in Zenica.
15 Q. And, sir, when you say "OKM," what does that abbreviation refer
17 A. The abbreviation OKM refers to basic command post of the 3rd
18 Corps, and it was located in Zenica, as I have already explained to you.
19 It was in Technoprojekt building.
20 Q. What's the difference between a basic command post of the 3rd
21 Corps and the 3rd Corps headquarters building?
22 A. There's no difference. The command building, that's what it is.
23 In military parlance, we refer to it as a basic command post. So when I
24 was telling you where the headquarters of the 3rd Corps were, I in fact
25 meant the basic command post. That's one and the same thing. Or, rather,
1 to make it easier for you, that's the main command post.
2 Q. And finally, Mr. Mrkaljevic, do you recall where General Mahmuljin
3 was on 14 September 1995 at approximately 1400 hours, when you received
4 this phone call as reflected on line 309 of Exhibit 511?
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Madam Vidovic.
6 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Just to avoid any confusion, the
7 date in the diary is the 13th, not the 14th of September.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Madam Vidovic.
9 Mr. --
10 MR. MUNDIS: Sorry, my mistake, my mistake.
11 Q. Do you recall where General Mahmuljin was on 13 September 1995, at
12 approximately 1400 hours when you received this phone call that's
13 reflected on line 309 of Exhibit 511?
14 A. At the time when I received the phone call, I can't tell you where
15 the commander of the 3rd Corps, Sakib Mahmuljin, was. But I do know that
16 he was in the field. When I say "in the field," I assume that he was with
17 one of the units or that he was in a meeting with somebody somewhere,
18 because I checked, and at that time he was not at the forward command post
19 in Luke. And I immediately relayed this information to the Operations
20 Centre, and the Operations Centre is the centre where all the
21 communication equipment is, and they are responsible for informing the
22 commander -- they were responsible to inform the commander about this
23 phone call, using communications equipment. When I say "commander," I
24 mean Sakib Mahmuljin.
25 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. Mrkaljevic.
1 The Prosecution has no further questions at this time, Your
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Just before Madam Vidovic takes over the
4 cross-examination, I would like to get some little clarification on
5 Exhibit 554. Could we have it, please.
6 Could we go to that page where we were talking about the approval
7 to do certain things. Right.
8 Sir, can you just explain to us what these abbreviations mean, you
9 know, in this paragraph.
10 "I briefed the commander of the 3rd Corps about our activities
11 during the day, the briefing of PK for ObP."
12 What do those --
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "PK for ObP" is an abbreviation for
14 assistant commander for Intelligence.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
16 Madam Vidovic.
17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
18 Cross-examination by Ms. Vidovic:
19 Q. Good morning, Mr. Mrkaljevic.
20 A. Good morning.
21 Q. I will be asking you some questions on behalf of General Rasim
22 Delic, as his Defence counsel. The nature of the cross-examination is
23 such that you will be able to answer many of my questions with a
24 simple "yes" or "no," but if you feel that you need to provide any further
25 explanations, please do so.
1 Since we speak the same language, I would kindly ask you to make a
2 pause between my question and your answer in order for the record to be
3 able to keep up with us.
4 First of all, Mr. Mrkaljevic, I would like to ask you, what kind
5 of education have you had in your civilian life?
6 A. My education in the civilian life is as follows: In 1977, I
7 completed three years of secondary education. It was a school for
8 mechanical engineering. In 1984 and 1985, I completed the fourth and the
9 fifth educational degrees, again in mechanical engineering. And then in
10 early 1986, I reported to the Republican Department for the Exploitation
11 of Coal Mines in Bosnia and Herzegovina in order to take the Republican
12 examination for the independent operator in underground exploitation of
13 coal in coal mines in Bosnia and Herzegovina. And I managed to complete
14 that within the stipulated time period.
15 Q. Thank you. In other words, the education that you received before
16 the war, as a civilian, enabled you to work in technical jobs in a coal
17 mine; am I right?
18 A. Yes, you're right. In order to clarify things a bit, I was
19 working on the maintenance of the underground coal mine exploitation in a
20 coal mine.
21 Q. Could you please tell us, where did you complete this -- the
22 fourth and the fifth degree of your education?
23 A. The fourth and the fifth degree of my education were completed in
24 Zenica. That was a department of the Workers University, and this was --
25 the courses were held in the secondary school for mechanical engineering
1 in Zenica.
2 Q. Thank you. You told us that you did your national service in the
3 Reserve Officers School in Zadar; is that correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. This school trains the cadets for the tasks of platoon commanders;
6 is that so, in essence?
7 A. Yes, in essence, that is so in infantry. But as I indicated
8 earlier, I completed the Reserve Officers School for anti-aircraft
9 artillery and rocket units in the former JNA, which means, in military
10 parlance, that I was trained to command a battery of anti-aircraft
11 weapons. And just to make a comparison, with the infantry that would be
12 the company-level command post.
13 Q. What I'm driving at, what I'm interested in, is you were trained
14 to operate anti-aircraft weapons in the army?
15 A. Yes, but in the course of my training and my internship after I
16 completed this level of education, as an officer in the former JNA I held
17 the rank of a sergeant. We carried out tasks that were closely linked
18 with the infantry too.
19 Q. Thank you. Mr. Mrkaljevic, I have a number of questions, so I
20 would kindly like to ask you to answer my questions as briefly as you can,
21 in particular in this segment of my cross-examination.
22 What I want to know is the following: You did not undergo any
23 kind of training for intelligence work before the war; is that correct?
24 A. Before the war, in 1986, during the two-month training in the
25 training centre in Derventa, that's the training centre of the former
1 Yugoslav People's Army, JNA, I received training for the infantry company
2 commander, and at the same time, as part of that training, we went through
3 some topics that had to do with intelligence work. And I'm sorry I'm
4 taking your time, but this had to do with how to establish observation
5 posts in infantry, how they should operate, what the observers should do,
6 what their duties were and responsibilities, and how they were to go about
7 carrying it out. So -- and there was also some abridged training for the
8 gathering and processing of intelligence.
9 Q. Yes, but apart from what you've just told us, the two-month course
10 that you just described to us, you did not undergo any intelligence
11 officer training. What you just described to us is not intelligence
12 officer training?
13 A. I know that, because the former Yugoslav People's Army had special
14 centres where intelligence officers were trained, and I did not undergo
15 that kind of training.
16 Q. Yes. This was in Pancevo, and you did not undergo that?
17 A. Yes. It was known colloquially as "the 5.000 training."
18 Q. You did not undergo any training for a security officer?
19 A. No, I did not.
20 Q. You did not graduate from a military academy?
21 A. I am not a graduate of the military academy. I wanted to do so,
22 but it was not possible. But in the Reserve Officers School in the former
23 JNA, it is some kind of a abridged form of a military academy training.
24 Q. And this abridged form of a military academy training, it takes
25 six months instead of four years; is that so?
1 A. Yes, ma'am.
2 Q. As you call it, the abridged military academy training, you did
3 not receive any training for a military officer work?
4 A. No, I did not. I was not supposed to train for the intelligence
5 officer. My branch was anti-aircraft defence.
6 Q. So you left the JNA with the rank of a second lieutenant, and when
7 the war started, you had the rank of a lieutenant; is that correct?
8 A. I left the JNA with the rank of a sergeant, and pursuant to a
9 degree, I was promoted to the rank of the second lieutenant. That was an
10 automatic promotion. And later on, I was promoted to lieutenant.
11 Q. Do you agree with me that on the average, the former JNA -- the
12 practice in the former JNA was that a reserve officer would be promoted to
13 a new rank every four years; is that so?
14 A. Yes, but provided that in that period, that officer had
15 participated in a certain number of exercises with his unit, and that was
16 the basic precondition for the promotion to the next higher rank.
17 Q. So I conclude that in this period of 12 years, you did not take
18 part in the exercises, that you did not participate in a sufficient number
19 of exercises to be promoted, because you were promoted only by one rank in
20 the 12-year period?
21 A. Ma'am, I did not participate in anti-aircraft defence exercises
22 because the exercises for those units were not held all that often,
23 because they were quite expensive in terms of equipment and they were
24 quite complicated, and also I did not volunteer to participate in
25 exercises, but you had to be assigned by somebody.
1 Q. Please understand, I'm not trying to criticise you. I'm just
2 trying to ascertain what the facts are. How many drills did you have over
3 that time?
4 A. Madam, I understand your question, and my answer reflects that.
5 The drills that I did, I did whenever I was summoned by my superiors to go
6 there and attend one of those drills.
7 Q. There weren't that many, after all. How many would you say?
8 A. Based on my recollection, three or four. A few, very few.
9 Certainly not enough to get a promotion.
10 Q. And this all had to do with anti-aircraft defence; it didn't have
11 anything to do with intelligence business, did it?
12 A. Yes, that's right. In 1986, after I had completed my training in
13 Derventa, I became the commander of a TO detachment in charge of the mines
14 at Zenica.
15 Q. Thank you. Let's start with the relevant questions.
16 While testifying yesterday, you said that in May 1993, you started
17 your service with the 3rd Corps of the BH Army; right?
18 A. Yes, in early May, the first half of May 1993, I was transferred
19 from the 303rd to the 3rd Corps Command.
20 Q. Very well. And you became an intelligence desk officer; right?
21 A. Yes, you're quite right.
22 Q. In order to be able to do that job properly, one would have needed
23 a certain amount of knowledge in order to be able to understand any
24 information being received, in order to have a military familiarity with
25 this kind of information and in order to be able to process such
1 information; am I right?
2 A. Yes, 50/50, I would say. You are right to some degree, but not
3 entirely, because whoever knows anything about anything, whoever is
4 familiar with the goings on of our day-to-day existence know something
5 about how intelligence is gathered. Therefore, I can say that when I
6 first came to work there, this was something entirely new to me, but I
7 only took a very brief time to master the whole thing.
8 Q. Do you agree that one of your principal tasks was to draft
9 technical assessments and prepare proposals?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Do you agree that this required some sort of technical military
13 A. That may well be the case, but each of my assessments applied, and
14 I think my work had a lot of validity; at least to me it did.
15 Q. Do you agree -- let me ask you this: Do you agree that the corps
16 commander is a very high-ranking command?
17 A. Being familiar with the military terminology, the Corps Command is
18 a command where only those officers could work that held the highest
19 ranks. The level back in the JNA would have been major, colonel,
20 lieutenant colonel, major general, lieutenant general, and up from there,
21 officers with a very strong military background and training, officers who
22 were very experienced and who had long stints in the army behind them
24 Q. All right. This is the way I see it: You came to work there.
25 Your job required a certain military rank, major, for example, military
1 background, military knowledge, military academy, and so on and so forth.
2 Is that right?
3 A. Yes, you are entirely right. But if you turn back a couple of
4 pages in that particular book, you will realise that in the regular Army
5 of the BH, there were certain ranks you will see, who did what, and if you
6 look at the overall situation that prevailed at the time, this should
7 become clear to you.
8 I was no exception, if you look at the officers who were in such
9 jobs at the time. There was no straying from the standard at all, if you
10 look at what the situation was.
11 Q. That is precisely what I'm trying to ask you. You and your
12 colleagues from the 3rd Corps did not have the requisite training to
13 perform their jobs at such a high-ranking command as the 3rd Corps
14 Command; right?
15 A. Yes. I said the BH Army.
16 Q. Yes, the BH Army, that's what I mean.
17 A. When I say "the BH Army," I mean the BH Army in its entirety. It
18 was created from nothing, literally from scratch.
19 Q. I see what you mean. You came in May 1993, you joined the corps.
20 You must know, then, that the corps wasn't established -- or rather its
21 establishment had not been ordered before the end of 1992 and early 1993.
22 Is that right?
23 A. Yes, you're quite right, madam. I'm quite familiar with the
24 procedure regarding the establishment of the 3rd Corps.
25 Q. All right. I'm not going into that. I will just be asking you to
1 tell me about a number of peculiarities that had to do with this.
2 Would you agree that even in peace time, a corps like that would
3 take a long time to set up? You came there and you saw what the situation
4 was and what it meant; right?
5 A. Yes, I was aware of the situation, and I know full well that in
6 order to set up a unit or a command of corps level, in my assessment this
7 might take between one year and one and a half years, roughly speaking.
8 There needs to be a filtering process in terms of the officers joining the
9 corps. One must train them, and then there should be a test of their
10 abilities and aptitude for carrying out certain assignments and tasks in
11 those positions.
12 Q. Very well. Let me ask you this, too: The personnel-related
13 problems that you talked about, the fact that many men were not properly
14 trained, do you agree that the situation was even more difficult across
15 the brigades than in the corps?
16 A. Well, that's self-implicit, isn't it? If I may just explain this,
17 in my work, especially at the level of the 3rd Corps, we were facing a
18 great deal of hardship and problems, because over a very short period of
19 time, especially at the initial stage, there was a huge influx of officers
20 that simply passed through our service; not just officers, ordinary
21 soldiers, too. We had to do daily repetitions of certain things. We had
22 to take to the field, speak to local commanders to stop this situation, to
23 bring things -- to take things back where they used to be in order to
24 achieve a quality level that would have allowed us to perform certain
1 Q. Thank you. Witness, you have enumerated for us some units from
2 which the 3rd Corps Command was receiving reports. You mentioned the 35th
3 Division, the 37th Division, the 303rd Brigade, the 330th Brigade, the 7th
4 Muslim Brigade. And just to clarify matters here, these were units that
5 were directly subordinated to the 3rd Corps; am I right?
6 A. Yes, you're right. And as I've mentioned before, it was a slip of
7 the tongue on my part in relation to this period, because what I'm talking
8 about is the 314th Brigade midway through 1995, because as far as I know,
9 in early 1995 it was disbanded and then parts of this unit were redeployed
10 and joined other units, the 303rd, the 330th and so on and so forth.
11 Q. All right. Let's just clarify matters a little bit. When you
12 talked about receiving reports, what you have in mind from these units you
13 just enumerated, what you have in mind is the period of 1995; right?
14 A. Yes, precisely, the period that I was actually asked about by the
16 Q. Thank you very much. So these brigades that you mentioned, these
17 were independent brigades under the 3rd Corps; right?
18 A. Yes, these were independent brigades under the 3rd Corps, unless
19 in some aspects or at certain times they were resubordinated to another
20 high-ranking unit. In this specific situation, it could have been the
21 35th Division or the 37th Division, within the structure and the makeup of
22 the 3rd Corps.
23 Q. Right. All right. The 7th Muslim Brigade, during the events that
24 you witnessed in 1995, it wasn't resubordinated to the 35th Division, was
25 it? Do you know about that?
1 A. This specific period in time, you mean? Units of the 35th
2 Division were active in the area. The El Mudjahid Detachment, the 375th
3 Light Brigade, the joint detachment of the joint battalion of the 303, 330
4 and 319, and an incomplete battalion of the 7th Muslim Brigade. So it
5 wasn't an entire brigade that was resubordinated to the 35th Division, it
6 was these units that I have just listed for you.
7 Q. All right. That's all I wanted to clarify. Thank you.
8 Whatever the case may be, the 3rd Corps never received reports
9 from the brigades that were part of the 35th or 37th Divisions; am I
11 A. Yes, you're quite right. If we had been receiving reports from
12 them, that would have been a direct violation of the subordination system.
13 Q. All right. Let me ask you about -- let me ask you about something
14 that you said yesterday and today. You spoke about the reporting system
15 down the intelligence line; right?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. You say that units were supposed to submit intelligence reports;
19 A. Yes. When I said "were supposed to submit those," I said nothing
20 about the circumstances surrounding this process. And, secondly, the
21 circumstances at times made it impossible for them to submit reports in a
22 timely manner. Our officers made every effort to deal with their tasks
23 and assignments in a timely manner.
24 Q. All right. Do you remember that the reports you were receiving,
25 I'm talking about the quality of those reports, the quality hinged
1 directly on the quality of incoming intelligence and the accuracy of
2 incoming intelligence, I mean intelligence being received from people who
3 were out in the field?
4 A. Madam, your assessment is entirely accurate.
5 Q. Say, for example, you weren't on the ground, you weren't in an
6 area where a certain thing was happening. It would have been very
7 difficult for you to take in what the situation really was, would it not?
8 A. Yes, you're quite right.
9 Q. So suppose you went somewhere in the field. Suppose you had no
10 report. You would never know whether your information, the information
11 that you were receiving, was complete and accurate, would you?
12 A. I'll try to put this as mildly as possible. We tried to speak to
13 each and every officer we had. We tried to get them to study,
14 cross-reference and double-check any information received before it was
15 submitted to the Intelligence Department of the 3rd Corps Command.
16 Q. All right. I'll be returning to that issue at a later stage, but
17 now I will ask you something about your evidence yesterday.
18 You said that you were receiving information from people in the
19 field. You would process this information, and then -- and then this
20 information would be submitted to the Intelligence Administration in
21 Sarajevo or, alternatively, in Kakanj. All right, this is what I'll ask
22 you questions about.
23 First of all, you knew that there was a command post of the
24 General Staff in Kakanj throughout 1995?
25 A. Yes, forward command post.
1 Q. I'm talking about a command post, sir.
2 A. Yes, but you must add this little word, "forward," because that's
3 what it was.
4 Q. So it is your belief that this was, in fact, a forward command
5 post; right?
6 A. Yes, precisely, that is my belief. If I may -- if I may explain,
7 and if you could compare that to the explanation that I provided to the
8 OTP when they asked me about the basic command post and the forward
9 command post --
10 Q. No need, Mr. Mrkaljevic. Can you just please stick to answering
11 my questions, kindly.
12 Whatever we call it, "command post" or "forward command post,"
13 what I mean to ask you is the following: You were an intelligence
14 officer. You knew that this command post was monitoring combat operations
15 and the planning of combat operations in certain cases; you did know that,
16 didn't you?
17 A. Yes, I did, madam. However, we produced reports for the
18 Intelligence Administration at times because of orders received from our
19 superiors, the late General Mustafa Hajrulahovic, for example, were
20 forwarded also to the command post in Kakanj.
21 Q. One step at a time, please. Do you agree that certain officers
22 from the Intelligence Administration were responsible for the planning and
23 monitoring of combat operations, and some of those were, in fact, based in
24 Kakanj throughout 1995; is that right?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Do you agree that intelligence reports from people, officers
2 working in the field, were essential to them precisely because they were
3 monitoring combat operations?
4 A. That is self-evident, isn't it?
5 Q. And yet you can't tell us exactly what sort of information was
6 being sent to Kakanj and what other sort of information was being sent to
7 Sarajevo; right?
8 A. No, quite the contrary, in fact. I can say exactly. I did the
9 same report, the same assessments, the same weekly summary reports, the
10 same information letters, the same conclusions. The header would normally
11 read "Intelligence Administration of the General Staff of the BH Army,"
12 paragraph 1, paragraph 2. And of course as I said before, if the late
13 General Hajrulahovic so ordered, in the second paragraph there would be
14 this: "Intelligence Department, Kakanj Forward Command Post."
15 Q. All right. Do you agree with me that accurate information about
16 who you sent these reports to and who actually received it could be seen
17 if we actually had those documents available to us, the documents you're
18 talking about; right?
19 A. Yes, that's right, madam. If you go to the archive, you will see
20 all the documents, who they were addressed to and who they were forwarded
22 Q. And do you agree with me that the most reliable information as to
23 the fact whether a document was sent or received by anyone is what is
24 written on the document itself?
25 A. Precisely, ma'am.
1 Q. You mentioned General Hajrulahovic, and I noted that you
2 said "late General Hajrulahovic." Could you please help us? He was your
3 superior officer. When did General Mustafa Hajrulahovic die, if you know?
4 A. I think it was -- another question to ask, please.
5 Q. Well, if you know. That's what I said.
6 A. I say it was in early 1998. I'm really embarrassed. I don't know
7 the exact date, but I think that would be it.
8 Q. Thank you. Now let me go back to the Intelligence Department of
9 the 3rd Corps. You explained to us in detail the structure of the
10 intelligence organ in the 3rd Corps. You described the sections, the
11 analysis section, the planning section, the section for cooperation with
12 international organisations, and the section that dealt with electronic
13 reconnaissance. You told us that that section -- that section had 13
15 A. I said that the Intelligence Department had between 12 and 14
16 staff. At some points in time, it was 12. At other points, it was 14.
17 Let me just give you an example.
18 Over a period of maybe two months, I would say two, three or four
19 staff under me in my section saw there was a great deal of people coming
20 in and out of the department.
21 Q. What I want to ask you: Of the 13 staff in the Intelligence
22 Department, could you please tell the Trial Chamber how many of them were
23 graduates of a military academy?
24 A. As far as I know, in the 3rd Corps Intelligence Department only
25 Mr. Edin Husic was a graduate of a military academy, Mr. Samir Sakic was a
1 graduate, Mr. Emin Prijic was a graduate of a secondary military school.
2 I had completed the Reserve Officers School, and there were some other
3 officers who had completed military secondary schools. And the other
4 officers mostly had civilian jobs.
5 Q. Yes. The way I understand you, two of them were graduates of the
6 military academy. Am I right?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And do you agree with me that Mr. Husic did not have intelligence
9 expertise, he did not receive that kind of military training specific for
10 intelligence officers?
11 A. Well, to tell you the truth, just before the war he graduated from
12 the military academy, so I can only assume -- I cannot tell you that with
13 any certainty, but I assume that he did not have a sufficient degree of
14 knowledge or expertise in the intelligence work. The other gentleman that
15 was a graduate of the military academy, Samir Sakic, he completed it just
16 before the war also, and he was -- his specialty was armoured units.
17 This was an additional problem in our work, but I would like you
18 to go back to what I said about the army as a whole. This was an
19 inevitable consequence of the situation.
20 Q. But what I am trying to find out here is to clarify the level of
21 expertise among the people who worked in intelligence.
22 My next question is the following: You described to us how you
23 did your analysis. Before joining the analysis section, could you please
24 tell the Trial Chamber how many kinds of analysis had you drafted up until
25 that time in your entire life?
1 A. Well, until my arrival in the 3rd Corps Command, I had drafted a
2 couple of analyses in the operations organ of the 303rd Mountain Brigade,
3 and I remember that I did a couple of analyses as a reserve lieutenant,
4 but the analyses primarily had to do with the readiness for the
5 performance of certain tasks. In other words, they were not directly
6 linked with intelligence work.
7 I can see here that I have to tell you, when I said that in 1986 I
8 took the exam for the underground coal exploitation before a Republican
9 inspector, I received approval from the highest level of the Republican
10 authorities to be able to work independently on the underground
11 exploitation of coal, and let me tell you, performing this kind of job is
12 commensurately -- involves a higher responsibility than any job in the
13 army that I had, so I know and you know that when I worked in a coal pit
14 that was the second most dangerous coal pit in the world, I know that it
15 might not seem that way to you, you might not accept that, but Raspotocje
16 coal pit was the second most dangerous coal pit, the concentration of
17 methane and so on. That's where I worked, and I had 35 people working for
18 me, and I was responsible for them. And while I worked there, nobody was
19 killed or injured.
20 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, I understand that, I understand the importance of
21 your work, but I'm trying to get to the facts that are relevant for us,
22 and I want to find out what you know about that. I'm not here to
23 challenge your abilities. Please don't take it that way.
24 Let me go back to what we were talking about, but, Your Honours, I
25 see that it is time now for our break. I can then continue after the
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much, Madam Vidovic.
3 We'll take the break and come back at half past 12.00.
4 Court adjourned.
5 --- Recess taken at 12.00 p.m.
6 --- On resuming at 12.30 p.m.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Madam Vidovic.
8 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
9 Q. In your evidence yesterday, you told us about the sources that
10 your department, the department where you worked, used to get the
11 intelligence. I asked you a little while ago about how you received
12 information from the subordinate units, so I will not be asking you about
13 that. I will be going back to that a bit later with regard to specific
14 documents. But I want to ask you something else in this regard.
15 Yesterday, you told us about other sources that were available,
16 and you mentioned the documents that were seized from the enemy; is that
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And you said professional literature. What kind of literature did
20 you mean, the kind that you seized from the enemy or literature that the
21 BH Army had? What do you mean by that? I don't know.
22 A. When I spoke about professional literature, I meant the literature
23 concerning the enemy forces, their professional literature that came into
24 our possession.
25 Q. Fine. Do you agree with me that you didn't have much of that kind
1 of literature, you did not come by it all that often?
2 A. The conditions in which we worked were below minimum, because we
3 had to start from scratch. Right at the beginning, we encountered many
4 difficulties. We didn't have this kind of professional literature at our
6 Q. Thank you. You also didn't have other equipment such as, for
7 instance, night-vision equipment and other kinds of equipment that
8 intelligence officers need in order to be able to get a full picture?
9 A. Yes, precisely. The equipment that the units -- intelligence
10 units and intelligence officers should have in order to be able to monitor
11 the situation adequately. You also mentioned the night-vision equipment
12 and other types of equipment used to monitor the front line.
13 Q. In your evidence yesterday, you told us that media were a source,
14 the media from the other side in the conflict, that this was yet another
15 source of information that you used, and now I want to ask you something
16 in this regard.
17 You will agree with me that in the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina,
18 the media played a very important role in fomenting inter-ethnic hatred?
19 A. Yes, you are right on that account. They were the key factor,
20 both the audio and visual media, they were one of the key factors in the
21 breakup of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
22 Q. Do you agree that there was a high degree of hatred and mistrust
23 in the Croatian and Serbian media aimed at the people who were loyal to
24 the forces of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina?
25 A. Yes, I agree fully with you. What you say is completely correct.
1 Q. Now I would like you to look at a document.
2 Could the witness please look at Exhibit 235.
3 Do you agree -- okay, let's wait for the English version. But can
4 I ask you to look at the first part of this document while we're waiting
5 for the English version.
6 Do you agree that you have in front of you a press release from
7 the 3rd Corps Press Centre? The date is the 11th of June, 1993?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. You worked there at the time. I want to ask you now to read the
10 first two passages to yourself.
11 A. Fine. I did.
12 Q. It says here that lies are being disseminated through the media in
13 the neighbouring state of Croatia, and it says further on that the purpose
14 is to deepen the rift between the Croatian and Muslim peoples. Would you
15 agree with this statement, that very often lies were disseminated through
16 the media in Croatia and Serbia?
17 A. Yes, I am very familiar with that. The people in Croatia and
18 Serbia were served the kind of information that the politicians wanted
19 them to have for their own purposes.
20 Q. The purpose of this is the following: You told us that the media
21 were used as a source of intelligence, either TV broadcasts or the press.
22 How could you then -- this is a report from the very same corps where you
23 served. How could you then take seriously what is written in the media
24 and put it in your analysis if we are talking about this kind of reporting
25 in Croatian and Serbian media?
1 A. Well, let me explain this to you and to the Trial Chamber.
2 If, for instance, you have the Herzeg-Bosna radio station in
3 Kakanj, and if they have some kind of a show and then they mention
4 somebody, a name and they say, "Dear Marko, your family wishes to say
5 hello to you," or, "Sorry you are not here with us," you -- and say that
6 he is stationed at such-and-such a place at such-and-such a unit, we take
7 this information, we process it, and then we collate it, we classify it,
8 and it is useful to us. We learn from this kind of information about the
9 deployment of certain HVO units, where units are deployed, on what section
10 of the front line facing us.
11 So when I said that we were monitoring the public media, the
12 press, radio or TV, when I said that those were our sources of
13 information, this is the way in which we obtain intelligence that was
14 useful for us.
15 Q. But let me just clarify this. If the media, for instance, report
16 that the Muslim forces killed a hundred or 200 people, captured so many
17 people, how did you treat this information? Was that relevant to you?
18 What did you do with that?
19 A. Well, we knew that this was, in fact, disinformation, not
20 information, in the true sense of the word, because disseminating this
21 kind of information served the purpose of creating the impression under
22 one's own populace that the Muslim forces had perpetrated a massacre,
23 killed so many people and so on and so forth. We did not take that into
24 account at all because we knew that it was disinformation.
25 When I explained to the Prosecutor yesterday the role played by
1 one of the subsections in the Intelligence Department that dealt with
2 this, there were two and sometimes three officers in the Intelligence
3 Department who monitored these reports, reports of this kind in the
4 media. They also read the press from the other side. They studied those
5 reports, and they immediately submitted reports where they classified
6 those bits and pieces as either information or misinformation.
7 Q. Thank you. But at any rate, you didn't do that?
8 A. I did not monitor the media. I didn't do this kind of task.
9 Q. Thank you. Now let me ask you something else.
10 Could the witness please be shown Exhibit 570.
11 Witness, do you remember that you saw this document yesterday? It
12 was about your appointment. You remember that, don't you?
13 A. Yes, my promotion, yes, and I commented on it.
14 Q. All right. Thank you very much.
15 Could we now please go to page 2 of this document, the signature
16 specifically. That is also the last page in both versions, the English
17 and the B/C/S. The English. Right.
18 Your Honours, could we please zoom in on the stamp. All right.
19 There is a part of the -- yeah, right, this is fine. This is fine, thank
20 you. Leave it like that.
21 Witness, you saw that this was a document of the Supreme Command
22 Staff. Do you agree with me that the stamp belongs to the Supreme Command
23 Staff? You can clearly see that it says "Supreme Command Staff, Army
24 General Delic." Can you see another word right there, perhaps?
25 A. This is not General Delic's signature. That's the first thing.
1 This is his stamp, stamp number 3, but that's different. Normally, number
2 3 stamps were used by personnel officers in staffs and commands, and the
3 little word there is "for" or "on behalf of." I don't know who initialled
4 or signed this document. I can only speculate.
5 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, just for the record
6 and also for the OTP's benefit, I think the document should be
7 re-translated, because the English version, as far as I see, has no
8 indication that this is signed on behalf of or for someone else.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Madam Vidovic.
10 Mr. Mundis, do you have anything to say on that?
11 MR. MUNDIS: No, Your Honours. We can either submit the document
12 for revision or simply take the transcript, as it's indicated clearly on
13 the Bosnian version, we can see the handwriting "za" which there's no
14 dispute that means "for" or "signed on behalf of." There's no dispute
15 about that.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Mundis.
17 Yes, Madam Vidovic.
18 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. We can put this away
20 Q. Yesterday and today, you were asked questions about the
21 Mujahedin. As far as I understand your evidence, you have precious
22 little personal knowledge about the Mujahedin, do you not?
23 A. Madam, I wouldn't agree with your statement. It's not about
24 knowledge. I've explained this already. I had very little experience
25 that I acquired through direct experience with them, through meeting them,
1 which means I didn't have the sort of experience that would have told me
2 how to treat these people and how to deal with them.
3 Q. All right. You remember saying to the investigators of the OTP --
4 or rather making a statement to them on the 28th of February?
5 A. Yes, I do remember that.
6 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, maybe it would be a
7 good idea to show the witness D549. This is a tape, 7248, page B7 out of
8 18, and page 112 of the Bosnian transcript.
9 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, you see the Bosnian version as we are waiting for
10 the English to come up. I will quote this portion of the transcript for
11 you. You said:
12 "When it comes to the El Mudjahedin Detachment," that we mentioned
13 yesterday, "I previously mentioned the problems and difficulties that we
14 had in communication with that unit. I personally never had an
15 opportunity to get in touch with any members of the El Mudjahedin
16 Detachment, and I never received any indication from my superior officer
17 that he had ever had an opportunity to contact members of the El
18 Mudjahedin Detachment."
19 Let me ask you, first of all, this truly reflects your words, the
20 words you shared with the OTP investigators?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. When you say "superior officer," you mean Mr. Edin Husic; right?
23 A. Yes, that's who I mean. He was my direct superior at the 3rd
24 Corps Command.
25 Q. Further, in answer to this question by the OTP, you said:
1 "Yes, Edin Husic, that's who I'm referring to, so for this reason
2 I cannot recall that any information at all ever came from the El
3 Mudjahedin Detachment about the enemy or its deployment from the El
4 Mudjahedin Detachment to the Intelligence Department of the 3rd Corps"?
5 A. I don't see that part of the transcript.
6 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we just scroll the
7 document down a little, please.
8 A. Yes, that's right.
9 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. That's what you said to the investigators?
11 A. Yes, that's what I said to the investigators, and I stand by
12 that. As chief of the analysis sector, I never received a single letter
13 in writing from them.
14 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Very well. If we could please --
15 JUDGE HARHOFF: There seems to be some sort of an unclarity in the
16 English translation. At page -- at line number 20, where the witness
17 confirms that he's speaking about Edin Husic, he continues to say
18 that, "So for the above reasons, I cannot recall that any piece of
19 information ever came from the El Mujahid about the enemy," and then he
20 goes on to say, "or its deployment from El Mujahid to the intelligence
21 department of the 3rd Corps."
22 What exactly is that supposed to mean?
23 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, it should mean that
24 the translation is not accurate. I just quoted what's written there. "I
25 can't remember that any information on the enemy forces ever reached the
1 Intelligence Department of the 3rd Corps."
2 Q. Am I right, witness?
3 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note, can the speakers please be
4 asked not to overlap and speak one at a time. Thank you.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: You are asked not to speak at the same time,
6 please. Don't overlap.
7 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you.
8 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Now, Witness, about this, I showed you this section because I was
10 asked to ask you something else.
11 Based on this, I conclude that you never had an opportunity to
12 contact anyone from the El Mudjahedin Detachment. Right?
13 A. That's right. I stated in my evidence that on the 24th of July,
14 1995, I contacted -- well, I can tell you exactly who it was, Ajman. I
15 see that there was some confusion about that. That was the first time I
16 met that person. It could have been someone else altogether. I simply
17 didn't know him, but that's what he said his name was.
18 Q. Witness, I'm asking you about the detachment specifically, so I
19 wish to say something else about that.
20 You never received any intelligence from them, did you?
21 A. That's right.
22 Q. You never received any information on their victims?
23 A. That's right.
24 Q. Their plans?
25 A. Their plans, you're right.
1 Q. Let me ask you this: You didn't know what the composition of
2 those units was, who there was in that detachment; am I right?
3 A. Yes, you're right.
4 Q. Let me ask you this, then: You said a while ago they had another
5 HQ in Borovica. Actually, what you happened to know is there were some
6 Mujahedin who were there; you don't know if that was the El Mudjahedin
7 Detachment or not or a different group perhaps? Would I be right?
8 A. You're quite right. At that point in my statement, I clearly
9 stated that we were at Livade. This member of theirs introduced himself
10 as "Ajman." Was their command post there or not? I don't know. I didn't
11 know at the time, and I can't be certain. As for Borovica I know that
12 there was an element there. Was it the El Mujahid unit or not, I don't
13 know, but there were foreigners there of Afro-Asian extraction. I can't
14 say they were from the El Mudjahid Detachment or whatever.
15 Q. Thank you very much. So you know there were Arabs of Afro-Asian
16 extraction, but you don't know if they in fact belonged to the El Mujahid
17 or a different group?
18 A. Or a different group. I don't know, and to be quite frank, I
19 didn't ask too many questions.
20 Q. Just a minute, please. Were someone, for example, to believe that
21 all the Arabs who ever came to Bosnian at the time were a compact, unified
22 group, would that be true or accurate?
23 A. No, it wouldn't.
24 Q. Can you elaborate on that, please?
25 A. When I say "no," I'm not denying what you say. My evidence
1 implies that you are right. All of the groups falling under the
2 name "El Mujahid," and those were members of Afro-Asian origin, not just
3 Arabs, that's why I'm using the expression "Afro-Asian origin"
4 or "extraction," they were not a single entity, they were not an entity
5 that was easy to coordinate, to work with, and to put it quite mildly, a
6 unit that could have been placed under a unified system of command, so
7 that's what I'm saying in response to your theory.
8 Q. It's still a little bit unclear. Let's try to clarify. Do you
9 agree that not even the BH Army had exact information on who those Arabs
10 were; were they a single group, were there five different groups, were
11 there two groups, three? That's what I mean. They weren't all together
12 under the El Mudjahedin Detachment, they were not a single group. Am I
14 A. Yes, you're right.
15 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Excuse me. Excuse my
16 interruption, but, Ms. Vidovic, do you want me to follow your
17 cross-examination or not, simply because I can no longer follow.
18 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] My apologies, Your Honour. I have a
19 splitting headache, and I find it very difficult to focus right now. That
20 may be why I'm speaking too fast. I will take that into account, by all
21 means. Thank you. My apologies.
22 Q. Right, Witness, let me ask you something else now.
23 Can we please look at Exhibit 511.
24 Witness, the translation has been marked as attachment 0185-5080.
25 Page 20 of the Bosnian, please.
1 Witness, you remember the Prosecutor showing you this document
3 A. Indeed, I do.
4 Q. And you explained that this invitation was sent to the forward
5 command post in Zenica, to the OKM in Zenica, and someone passed the
6 information along to you. And now let me ask you this. It says: "Call
7 for the commander by General Delic." I wish to clarify this.
8 Did you know whether General Sead Delic was also actively involved
9 in Operation Farz?
10 A. Yes, I did know, as a matter of fact.
11 Q. But it doesn't say here: "Call from General Rasim Delic" or what
12 I would find natural: "Call from the commander of the Supreme Command
13 Staff." That's not how it reads; right?
14 A. Yes, you're entirely right.
15 Q. Therefore, you can't rule out the possibility that this call may
16 have come from General Sead Delic, can you?
17 A. What I believe is that whoever passed this information along to me
18 should have indicated this, whether the call had come from General Delic,
19 the commander of the Supreme Staff Command, or from General Sead Delic,
20 commander of the 2nd Corps of the BH Army. But let's clarify this
22 Had this been about something like that, I'm certain that General
23 Sead Delic would not have gone through the basic command post of the 3rd
24 Corps, because he was probably directly in touch with Mr. Mahmuljin about
25 this. I'll refrain from further comments.
1 Q. What if I were to put to you that General Delic, on the 13th of
2 September, was nowhere near Bosnia and Herzegovina, nor could he have been
3 in Visoko, would you accept that?
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Just a second. Which General Delic, Madam Vidovic,
5 now that we have introduced General Sead?
6 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honour. Rasim
7 Delic, I mean General Rasim Delic.
8 Q. He was far away on the 13th of September. Would you accept the
9 possibility that maybe this document is not clear about who called?
10 A. I would accept that possibility. I didn't know at the time where
11 General Rasim Delic was. For that reason, and I did comment a while ago,
12 I would be embarrassed to make any assessment whatsoever for fear it might
13 be erroneous. I know that Mr. Delic was in touch with Sakib Mahmuljin,
14 commander of the 3rd Corps, but I have no idea where Mr. General Rasim
15 Delic was at the time.
16 Q. You don't know for a fact that Sead Delic, for example, may have
17 gone to Visoko, may have phoned the basic command post for any reason
18 whatsoever. You can't rule that out, can you ?
19 A. Of course I don't know. I can't rule it out, no.
20 Q. Just to clarify matters even further, did this person tell you
21 that this was Commander Delic or did the person just say that this was
22 General Delic?
23 A. What I wrote is what I heard, literally. This is the way the
24 information was submitted to me, to the letter, and that's how it was
25 recorded, who it came from, who it was being forwarded to, and my
1 initials, as you can see. As I said a while ago, I would be embarrassed
2 to speculate.
3 Q. Thank you. Now let me ask you something.
4 Could we put this document away, please.
5 Let me ask you something on a different topic. You were asked a
6 number of questions that directly or indirectly touch upon the issue of
7 the prisoners of war in the summer of 1995, and I would like to ask you
8 some questions about that.
9 Mr. Mrkaljevic, do you agree that the treatment of prisoners of
10 war in the BH Army was fully regulated by the rules of the BH Army?
11 A. You're absolutely correct in what you say. I myself, when I was
12 in contact with the prisoners of war, I always bore in mind the rights of
13 the prisoners of war, to be treated in the spirit and the letter of the
14 Geneva Conventions, and all BH Army personnel that I know who were in
15 contact with the prisoners of war abided by that fully, in my belief, and
16 I base that belief partly on my own personal attitudes.
17 Q. In other words --
18 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] I apologise. This is something
19 that is quite important to me.
20 The French interpretation that I received indicated "I believe" --
21 oh, yes, yes, now I see. I do apologise. Yes, it's fine now, thank you.
22 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the witness please look at
23 Exhibit 392, please.
24 Q. Mr. Mrkaljevic, do you agree with me that you have in front of you
25 an order from the General Staff, dated the 8th of May, 1995? This is the
1 order for the implementation of the provisions of International Law of
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Could you please look at the right-hand side. Do you agree that
5 this order was sent to the commands of all corps, that this is what it
6 says here?
7 A. In the middle of the document, among the addressees, I see that it
8 says here the Kakanj command post, all corps commands, and then all the
9 other units and commands that were in contact with the General Staff.
10 Q. Thank you. You mentioned the Geneva Conventions a little while
11 ago. Do you agree that this document was received by the 3rd Corps and
12 that all of you knew about this order about the treatment of the prisoners
13 of war, that they should be treated in accordance with the Geneva
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Could you please look at paragraph 2. That's on page 2 in the
17 English version. Do you agree that access to prisoners is to be allowed
18 for the Red Cross, that this is the order?
19 A. Yes.
20 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] And could we look at paragraph 3 of
21 this document.
22 Q. Do you agree that the prisoners of war should not be quartered in
23 areas caught up in immediate combat operations?
24 A. Yes, you're right.
25 Q. Could you please look at paragraph 5. Here it is ordered that the
1 units of the BH Army should be informed about this order?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. So in the 3rd Corps and in all the units subordinate to the 3rd
4 Corps were aware of this order and the fact that it was stipulated how the
5 prisoners of war are to be treated?
6 A. Yes, I personally was aware of all that, and I believe that all of
7 my colleagues who were in the 3rd Corps Command were quite aware of all
8 this and that they complied with this in their acts and actions. This is
9 an order that came from the highest level in the BH Army, and I believe
10 that it was probably through this order -- or rather that all members of
11 the BH Army were made aware of the contents of this order.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: I just wanted to observe one little point.
13 Could we please zoom in on the stamp.
14 Sir, whose signature is that?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is General Rasim Delic's
16 signature. That's his signature.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: What number stamp is that?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This stamp bears the number "3," and
19 if you allow me, I can explain this.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's what I wanted.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I, in the Intelligence Department,
22 if I had an order that was to be dispatched urgently to the lower-level
23 units, this order was drafted as a document and it was sent to the General
24 Affairs office. In the General Affairs office, a clerk would go through
25 this document to check for any grammatical errors, and then this document
1 would go to the commander for his signature.
2 Let me make this even more clear. In this case, it would be the
3 commander of the 3rd Corps. He would be signing this document. This is
4 just an example.
5 Once the document was signed, an indication would be made about
6 the person who drafted the document. If I drafted the document, that was
7 a lower-level service in the corps, then the stamp would bear the
8 number "2" or "3". In this case, it was "3". If the order was made in
9 the office of the commander, the stamp would have number 1.
10 So this is the stamp that was under the control -- strict control
11 of the senior officer in the Command. On the basis of what I was able to
12 see, this document was drafted in the personnel section or in the legal
13 unit of the personnel section, and it was then taken to General Delic for
14 his signature. He signed it. And then in the General Affairs section, it
15 was sent to the legal unit, and that's why it bears the stamp with the
16 number "3". The document in this form is then sent to the units.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Do I understand you to say General Rasim Delic will
18 sign, he doesn't put his stamp on, the document goes back to the general
19 legal administration office where it then gets stamped? Is that what
20 you're saying, in short?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. And when you see a stamp on a
22 document, some stamps are designated "1", some "2", some "3". The stamp
23 that bears number 1 is kept by the commander. The stamp with number 2 is
24 usually used by the chief of Staff.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Which commander?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The commander of the unit in
2 question. In this particular case, when we're talking about this document
3 here, if we have a stamp with the number "1", that would be the commander,
4 General Rasim Delic, the commander of the General Staff.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Now, you see, when you tried to answer my question,
6 you confused me because you made an example about a document drafted
7 somewhere else or being done by somebody lower than General Rasim Delic.
8 Now, this is a document signed by General Rasim Delic. It bears stamp
9 number 3. I just want to know, because of what you said a little earlier,
10 that stamp number 3 was used by personnel. Is that what you said?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: And that document which bore stamp number 3 was
13 signed for General Rasim Delic by somebody else. Now, this one is signed
14 by General Rasim Delic himself, and I'm just saying: How does then stamp
15 number 3 come onto this document if it was signed in General Delic's
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I tried to explain a little while
18 ago. I'm sorry if I failed.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Please do so very briefly, and don't give examples
20 of other people drafting the document. This one is signed by General
21 Delic. Just tell us about this one, if you know. If you don't know, you
22 don't know.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As a member of the army, I can
24 explain this very briefly.
25 The document was drafted by another service that is in charge of
1 some legal affairs.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry, I'm going to hold you there. Forget about
3 the drafting. The document is before General Delic for signature. He
4 signs. What then happens? It doesn't matter where it was drafted. Why
5 doesn't he put the number 1 stamp then on there?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I couldn't explain that to you now,
7 why he didn't put his own stamp on it.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Then can you explain, if he's there and he doesn't
9 put his own stamp, how then this stamp comes on? Does it mean -- and let
10 me just do it very quickly for you. Do you mean that he just signs and
11 the person who brought the document takes the document back to his office,
12 and in his office there's the number 3 stamp which he then puts? Is that
13 the explanation?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much. That's all I wanted to
16 understand. Thank you, madam.
17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Sir, let me just ask you one question in order to clarify this for
19 the Trial Chamber and for all of us, indeed.
20 Do you agree that the commanders had their office, their cabinet,
21 and that some documents were drafted in the office?
22 A. Yes, I agree with you. That's precisely what I wanted to say.
23 Q. There were also various services or administrations that also
24 produced documents?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Some of those documents, because of their importance, had to be
2 signed by the commander?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Once such a document is signed, it is always recorded in the
5 originating unit, it bears the appropriate number, and that is why it is
6 sent back to that particular unit or section where it is stamped?
7 A. Yes, you're right. That's what I tried to explain. The unit or
8 section drafting the document is responsible for certifying this document
9 with a stamp and sending it to the lower-level units. That's what I was
10 trying to explain.
11 Q. Fine, fine, thank you.
12 At any rate, Your Honours, we will have witnesses who work there,
13 and we will explain that through them.
14 Witness, let us now go back --
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: He explained it when I asked him, really, even when
16 you -- he's given the same explanation that he gave to me, so I'm happy
17 with the explanation.
18 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
19 Q. Witness, I would like you to look at document Exhibit 444.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: Now, is this a document or exhibit?
21 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Exhibit, Your Honour.
22 Q. Witness, as we wait for this document to show up, you remember
23 that we were talking about the orders on the implementation of the
24 International Law of War were sent to the lower-level units, and now I
25 would like you to look at this document here. You see that this is a
1 document from the 35th Division, bearing the date of the 18th of July,
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And that this is an order for the continuation of the attack,
5 Proljece-95 and -- witness, do you see that?
6 A. Yes, yes, I can see it.
7 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the witness please look at
8 page 8 in the Bosnian version and page 21 in the English version.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: Before you go away, is this an order from the 35th
10 Division to the corps, to the 3rd Corps? The division is giving an order
11 to the corps?
12 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour, that's not what I
13 said. Maybe there is a misinterpretation.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: No, no, I'm reading the document. It comes from
15 the 35th Division. That's where it comes from; isn't it so?
16 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: It is addressed to the 3rd Corps Command, and I'm
18 asking the question: Do I understand that the division is giving an order
19 to the corps?
20 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, maybe I can ask the
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, I was asking the witness myself. That's why
23 I'm looking at him.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, as regards this order,
25 I would like to ask for a copy of this document or, rather, to move it to
1 the right.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the upper right-hand corner,
4 there is a stamp, the 35th Division Command, stamp number 1. This order
5 is sent to the 3rd Corps Command not so that they can execute this order,
6 but it is sent to them for their approval. And if there is any need or
7 any opportunity after this order is analysed, some corrections can be
8 made, and then another order is drafted which will then include the
9 instructions and corrections received from above. So this order is not
10 sent to the Corps Command so that they can execute it, but for their
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: It's a proposal of an order sent to the 3rd Corps?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Precisely, precisely.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
15 I'm sorry to interrupt you, Madam Vidovic, but I just wanted to
16 understand that little problem.
17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. This has
18 greatly assisted us.
19 Q. Witness, can we please go to page 8 of the Bosnian. Twenty-one is
20 the English page. Can you please look at item 4 -- 11.4, actually.
21 My question to you is very brief. It's quite obvious that in the
22 35th Division, one knew about the orders concerning International Law of
23 War. If you look at this: "Bring in all prisoners to the nearest unit's
24 OV, then to the 35th Division OV Collection Centre in Zavidovici with the
25 35th Division Military Police Company," it is obvious that they are
1 separating POWs from the area of combat operations by this order; right?
2 A. Yes, you're quite right, madam. But if I may provide a brief
4 Q. Keep it brief, please.
5 A. Every time there's an order to commence and execute combat
6 operations, it has a number of items, and this defines all those involved,
7 staff commands and subordinate units. It says that they should stick to
8 the provisions of the Geneva Conventions when dealing with POWs, and you
9 can find this same instruction in all the orders that were produced. I'm
10 not talking about 1995 and onwards, but the even earlier ones, orders
11 issued by superiors to subordinates.
12 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
13 If the witness could please now look at Exhibit 554, which is a
14 document that he was shown earlier today.
15 Q. Witness -- could we just zoom in slightly for the witness to see
16 what it's about. You've been asked a great many questions about this
17 document by both the OTP and the Chamber. What I'll ask you is to provide
18 a number of clarifications.
19 Could you please first look at the top of this document. This is
20 a telegram; right?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Based on this, I infer that at this point in time no other
23 communications systems were operational between you and this particular
24 forward command post at Orahovo.
25 A. No.
1 Q. When you say "no," what does that mean?
2 A. No, there was no other communications system that was operational
3 at the time.
4 Q. Therefore, you exchanged telegrams; right?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. The time at which this document was produced, the 24th of July,
7 1995. All right. I see that there was a forward command post of the 3rd
8 Corps at Orahovo, and what I want to ask you is this: I'm right, aren't
9 I, if I say that at this time, within the BH Army, there was a large-scale
10 operation in progress in order to lift the blockade of Sarajevo, known as
11 Action T; am I right?
12 A. Yes, you're right. In my statement to the OTP, I pointed out that
13 in order to carry this out, to carry out what follows, based on this
14 report, the night before, on the 23rd, I stood up to my superior, Edin
15 Husic, and I refused to carry out this order. I simply said "no." I was
16 physically exhausted by this time because I had already spent 20-something
17 days in the area around Sarajevo. I have certain photographs -- I have
18 certain photographs back home showing me at the time. Someone might just
19 be scared to death if they looked at me in those photographs. I had no
20 time to rest, I had no time to eat or sleep or anything. I refused to
21 carry out this order because the officer who was at this command post in
22 Zenica at the time, who was supposed to implement this order, failed to do
23 so. I don't know why. But after all, I eventually agreed, at the
24 suggestion of other colleagues and the forward command post at Orahovo, as
25 I said in my previous statement, the distance from Sarajevo is about 30
1 kilometres northeast. I got into my car and I drove to Zavidovici.
2 Q. Thank you very much. Orahovo is the forward command post of the
3 3rd Corps for that particular operation, Operation T?
4 A. Yes, Operation T, lifting the siege around Sarajevo.
5 Q. All right. Please, please, am I right if I say that General
6 Mahmuljin, at the time, and most of his Command were at Orahovo?
7 A. Yes, that's right, most of them were at Orahovo.
8 Q. On the 24th of July; right?
9 A. On the 23rd, he was. On the 24th, he came to Panorama Hotel for a
10 briefing at about 2200 hours.
11 Q. When you say "Panorama," that's in Zavidovici?
12 A. Yes, in Zavidovici.
13 Q. In other words, are you trying to say that he came to Zavidovici?
14 A. Yes, he came to Zavidovici.
15 Q. My understanding is you're writing this document in order to
16 inform General Mahmuljin because your direct superior, Edin Husic, is not
17 around. Right?
18 A. Yes, precisely, precisely. I did say in my evidence previously
19 that my role was, at the same time, to stand in for Mr. Edin Husic at
20 certain times. However, at the basic command post in Zenica, Amir
21 Abazovic was standing in for Commander Husic. He was a captain. And
22 together with Ekrem Halihodzic, they were supposed to go to Zavidovici in
23 order to try to deal with this problem that had just arisen.
24 Q. All right, fine. Let me ask you something else. Obviously, and
25 it was just in Orahovo, how far is that from where you were at the time?
1 A. About 90 kilometres, more perhaps. Perhaps 120, 130, thereabouts.
2 Q. What remains unclear is this: You have instructions from General
4 A. Indeed.
5 Q. And then you go on to say, "My superior, Husic, gave me
6 instructions to the effect that I should not work with POWs." Just a
7 minute, sir, just a minute, please. What remains unclear to me, at least,
8 is this: If Mr. Edin Husic is away, he's 90 kilometres away from you,
9 that's one thing I don't understand.
10 A. 120 kilometres away from me. The night before, when I cleared out
11 on the 23rd, he immediately, and I mean immediately, made this suggestion
12 to me. He immediately instructed me, "Don't get involved too much with
13 POWs," the reason being a different service was tasked with dealing with
14 that problem. "Your responsibility is to resolve the issue of the
15 documents that were seized." Again, I pointed out that I refused this
16 order, I refused to follow this order, I refused to carry it through, the
17 reason being there was another officer who was in charge of this who
18 simply failed to deal with it.
19 Normally, to be quite honest, I was the one who was always
20 appointed whenever there were chestnuts to be picked out of the fire.
21 Q. Mr. Husic told you this on the 23rd, in the evening; right?
22 A. Yes, the 23rd, in the evening.
23 Q. The 23rd in the evening --
24 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note, could the speakers please be
25 asked to not overlap. Thank you. It is becoming truly impossible to
1 follow. Thank you.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry. The interpreters are really having a rough
3 time. They are complaining. Just read what they are
4 saying, "Interpreters note," and I can say they are really
5 saying, "Please." May I just add, Judge Lattanzi has also been saying
6 that the French interpretation is much slower than the English
7 interpretation, so if you interrupt in the English, it means that hers has
8 hardly even begun.
9 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Witness, could you please not barge in every time I finish my
11 question. Leave some time between. Thank you.
12 So what I was asking you about, you received instructions from
13 Mr. Husic on the 23rd, the evening of the 23rd. That was my
14 understanding. Now, can you tell me this: When exactly did you receive
15 instructions from General Mahmuljin, or, rather, when did you receive what
16 the document says, "Approved planned activities for the day, General
17 Mahmuljin"; when?
18 A. General Mahmuljin, having received my report, the commander of the
19 3rd Corps, Sakib Mahmuljin, at 2200 hours that night, the night of the
20 24th of July, he approved these activities, meaning he approved these
21 activities, but I was sort of sticking more to the instructions previously
22 received by my direct superior, Edin Husic.
23 Q. Thank you. Let me ask you something else.
24 Be that as it may, you did not write or submit any sort of
25 information to do with poor treatment, mistreatment, physical abuse, any
1 sort of poor treatment of prisoners at all?
2 A. No, never. I never submitted any information like that.
3 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Witness.
4 Your Honours, I have no further questions.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Madam Vidovic.
6 Mr. Mundis, re-examination.
7 MR. MUNDIS: No questions. Thank you, Mr. President.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much, Mr. Mundis.
10 Questioned by the Court:
11 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] I have a question about this
12 aspect. You said, "I refused to carry out this order." There were two
13 orders; right? There was one about you not getting involved with the
14 prisoners, with the issue of prisoners. There was another order which
15 said that you had to deal with the document issue. Therefore, you refused
16 to carry out the order telling you to deal with the documents; right?
17 Because you were too tired, that was my understanding. I'm not entirely
18 clear about that.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'm sorry if you
20 misunderstood my evidence or perhaps because it has been misinterpreted.
21 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Probably it was me
22 misunderstanding your answer. At one point in time, you said you were
23 told not to get involved with the prisoner issue; you were told to resolve
24 the document issue. And then you said, "I refused to carry out that
25 order." I'm not sure which one you were referring to.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I will try to explain
2 what this is about, this misunderstanding.
3 When I said that I refused to carry out an order, that was in
4 reference to the order on my departure, the order telling me to leave
5 Orahovo for Zavidovici. That's what my refusal was about. It was in
6 reference to that particular order.
7 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Thanks for clarifying. Thank
9 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you.
10 I just have one little question relating to the resubordination of
11 the El Mujahid Detachment to the 35th Division, and my question is: Was
12 your section given any information about the resubordination of the El
13 Mujahid Detachment to the 35th Division? Were you notified of this
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When resubordination is carried out,
16 it's done by whichever unit is responsible for this resubordination. At
17 the same time, all the services and departments at the 3rd Corps Command
18 are familiarised with any order on resubordination. How, this is a matter
19 for the Intelligence Department, and we need guidance in planning all
20 activities of the resubordination or any particular instance of the
22 JUDGE HARHOFF: Well, this is very interesting. I was not aware
23 of that. Can you explain what steps you took to facilitate the
24 resubordination of the El Mujahid Detachment to the 35th Division in, when
25 was it, 1995, July 1995, I think?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm 100 per cent certain. This is a
2 Bosnian proverb. That is why I said, "Excuse me, this is a Bosnian
3 proverb." We would have done anything that we were asked to do just to
4 make this situation about resubordination easier. However, when a
5 superior officer drafts an order, this order normally details tasks and
6 responsibilities. Based on the specific order, specifically the
7 Intelligence Department of the 3rd Corps Command, had certain
9 The question, the issue of resubordination itself, well, we didn't
10 have any influence on that or responsibilities regarding that, not really,
11 except for the following situation or possibility: Say there was a
12 subordinate unit that was requesting new intelligence, fresh intelligence
13 from us, upon their arrival in a new deployment area, that was the one
15 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you. I don't know if I have understood you
16 correctly. Perhaps I should rephrase my question.
17 Did you take any steps at all to further the resubordination of
18 the El Mujahid Detachment to the 35th Division in the summer of 1995? Do
19 you recall if you did?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the summer of 1995, the
21 Intelligence Department of the 3rd Corps had the following
22 responsibility: We made available to the 35th Division all of our new
24 JUDGE HARHOFF: But did you have any intelligence on the El
25 Mujahid Detachment which you passed on to the 35th Division?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I think you
2 misunderstand me. We don't provide intelligence on the El Mujahid
3 Detachment. We provide intelligence on the enemy.
4 JUDGE HARHOFF: Well, I'm sure I have misunderstood you, and maybe
5 you have misunderstood my question.
6 I was interested to know whether your unit was in any way involved
7 in the resubordination of the Mujahid Detachment to the 35th Division, and
8 the reason I'm asking, in order to clarify this for you, is that it has
9 been surrounded with some degree of unclarity, during this trial, just how
10 and why and when the Mujahid Detachment was resubordinated down to the
11 35th Division and back again to the 3rd Corps, and back again to the 35th
12 Division. This, at least in my view, is obscure.
13 So now that you are here and you are in the intelligence service,
14 I wanted to know if you can help us out on that. If you can't, then
15 that's fine. I wouldn't expect you to, but I couldn't help asking the
16 question and taking the advantage of your being here.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Talking about the intelligence
18 situation, intelligence on the El Mujahid Detachment, specifically, this
19 sort of information could only have been provided by a different service,
20 the Military Security Service, in as far as they had any intelligence on
21 them at all. My own service dealt with issues regarding the enemy alone,
22 any information, any data on the enemy that we retrieved.
23 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm so glad. Thank you, too.
25 JUDGE HARHOFF: Sorry. Thank you, too.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Judge.
2 Any questions arising from the questions by the Judges?
3 MR. MUNDIS: None from the Prosecution, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Madam Vidovic.
5 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] None, Your Honours.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
7 Good timing, sir. It's just the time to end your testimony, and
8 it's time to break. Thank you very much for coming to testify. On behalf
9 of the Trial Chamber, I just wanted to say thank you and we wish you a
10 pleasant journey back home. You are now excused. You may stand down.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you. Thank you very much,
12 Your Honours. It has been an honour for me to be of any assistance to
13 you, and I certainly hope that I have been.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
15 Court adjourned. We'll adjourn to tomorrow at 9.00, same
17 [The witness withdrew]
18 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.45 p.m.,
19 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 11th day of
20 October, 2007, at 9.00 a.m.