1 Friday, 11 December 2009
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 10.03 a.m.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Stamp.
6 MR. STAMP: Thank you very much, Your Honours, and good morning.
7 WITNESS: VLASTIMIR DJORDJEVIC [Resumed]
8 [Witness answered through interpreter]
9 Cross-examination by Mr. Stamp: [Continued]
10 Q. Good morning, Mr. Djordjevic. If we --
11 A. Good morning.
12 Q. The -- who were the persons who were the accused persons in the
13 Bitiqi brother's trial that you testified in? Just the names, please.
14 A. I think that one of them was Popovic, and I don't know the
15 other's name, but they are two police officers.
16 Q. And I think part of the allegations were that the -- the three
17 brothers were removed from custody at a police station or gaol in
18 Prokuplje and taken to Petrovo Selo, a police base at Petrovo Selo. Is
19 that correct, and if so, who arranged for them to be moved?
20 A. It is correct that those are the three persons. They had been
21 fined for a misdemeanour, and they were kept in prison. The municipal
22 prison at Prokuplje, they were serving their sentence, and the decision
23 for them to be moved was taken by the minister.
24 Q. Who did he -- well, who arranged for them to be transported from
25 Prokuplje to Petrovo Selo?
1 A. I spoke about that to the investigating magistrate over there,
2 and I answered questions about it. It was my task to call up Goran
3 Radosavljevic and pass on to him the minister's instruction that he
4 should organise their transportation from Prokuplje to the training
5 centre over there. As I couldn't reach him, I passed on that instruction
6 to Popovic, who was one of the officers at the centre at the time who he
7 happened to be there.
8 Q. That's the training centre at Petrovo Selo?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. So on your instructions the three boys were handed over to -- to
11 Popovic, Sreten Popovic?
12 A. They weren't handed over to Sreten Popovic following my
13 instruction. I informed Sreten Popovic that he should go to Prokuplje
14 and take over those three persons, and others, as was established in the
15 proceedings there, forwarded instructions to the SUP in that territory
16 that the -- those people should be handed over to Popovic and that he
17 should see to it that they be transported.
18 Q. And this was in July 1999?
19 A. Yes, I think so.
20 Q. And I think you said that was your last involvement in respect to
21 these three persons?
22 A. Yes. I just gave that instruction to Popovic, and he later went
23 and completed the task, and he took the persons to his training centre
24 where he was.
25 Q. That's at Petrovo Selo -- or Selo. Sorry.
1 A. Yes, yes, Petrovo Selo.
2 Q. And the bodies of these three persons were later found in 2001 in
3 one of the mass graves at Petrovo Selo. Is that what happened later?
4 A. Yes. I learned as much from the press later.
5 Q. Yesterday -- or not yesterday. I think on Monday you were asked
6 some questions while you were giving evidence in chief, and you gave an
7 answer which indicated that you're aware that the bodies that SUP Chief
8 Keric called and spoke to you about were from Kosovo. Is that correct?
9 A. The first information from Chief Keric was that there were some
10 bodies, and once he had conducted more detailed checks and established
11 who they were, I, following the information received from him, came to
12 the conclusion that those bodies were from Kosovo based on what he had
13 told me.
14 Q. And in discussing this event -- or not this particular event but
15 events of the bodies being concealed at Batajnica, buried at Batajnica,
16 you said that the minister warned you to be careful what you were doing.
17 This was a serious matter. I was wondering what you meant by that. Was
18 the minister threatening you at that stage?
19 A. At that moment I understood that to be a serious threat.
20 Q. You mean -- what did you consider he could do to you if you
21 failed to abide by his instructions?
22 A. I -- I feared for my own life then, nothing else, and that's how
23 I understood his warning, to keep my mouth shut and not speak about it
24 and that I should do what he was ordering me to.
25 Q. You thought that the minister was capable of doing you harm to
1 the extent where you could be killed because you might have exposed what
2 was going on?
3 A. That's how I understood it.
4 Q. Did the minister in the past give you any indication or any
5 reason to think that he was so dangerous a person?
6 A. If he tells me to be careful what I'm doing and think of myself,
7 he certainly wasn't -- didn't mean that my job was at stake but, rather,
8 something very serious.
9 Q. Yes, but, you know, there are threats from some people and there
10 are threats from other people. You took this one seriously apparently.
11 Did the minister, by anything he did or say, or anything you knew about
12 the minister, was there anything that caused you to think that the
13 minister was willing and able to carry out the threat?
14 A. I think at those times of war and even later life in Serbia
15 wasn't very expensive. You could get killed. It was very rough
16 immediately after the war. There were many bodies in both territories,
17 and if you want to achieve something and get a witness out of the way,
18 and at the time there also were political assassinations and attempted
19 murders of political leaders or journalists or some high-profile
20 politicians. I lived in Serbia
21 Q. But in 1999, were you then aware of the minister having been
22 involved in that sort of thing?
23 A. I didn't know that he was involved in anything. I merely
24 received a threat from him which I took very seriously, and it was about
25 my bodily integrity. And bearing in mind all the events of that time,
1 the only possible conclusion for me was to obey and keep silent or I
2 wouldn't fare well in my estimate. And when I say that, I mean I
3 wouldn't fare well physically.
4 Q. You said that he told you -- or if I could start over. After the
5 first two truckloads were -- were buried by -- by the person in charge of
6 the Batajnica base, a few days later he called you again, and that there
7 were two occasions following that first occasion when he called you about
8 other trucks being at the base with bodies to be disposed of. Do you
9 know on those two occasions how many trucks we're talking about?
10 A. I'm not sure which situation you're referring to now. I was
11 called by the minister, and he said to me after the initial burial of the
12 two truckloads from the Danube
13 over there. Call the officer that we spoke about here and tell him to do
14 the same." So the minister gave me that instruction that the bodies that
15 already had been brought there should be buried.
16 Q. Yes. And earlier you said, and this is at 9732 of the
17 transcript, that he called you in respect to more trucks on two occasions
18 after the first occasion.
19 Well, firstly, was it only two occasions after the first
20 occasion, or is it possible that there were more occasions?
21 A. Whether who called me?
22 Q. The minister. The minister.
23 A. Well, then say so. The minister called me twice and told me what
24 I related to you a minute ago, that there were some trucks there already
25 and that I should call that officer and pass on to him that he should
1 proceed as earlier. That's what I received from the minister. And I did
2 call the officer there and passed it on to him, related to him that he
3 should proceed as earlier, and that's what happened.
4 Q. Okay. Just to be clear about the sequence, there was the first
5 occasion when he called you at -- in respect to trucks at Batajnica, and
6 then there were two occasions after that. Is that what you're saying?
7 A. Now I'll repeat for the third time, and you keep asking me the
8 same thing for the third time. Here's what I'm saying. The first time
9 when the bodies were brought where they were brought to Batajnica, the
10 minister called me and said, "Two trucks are at that centre," and they
11 had been brought there earlier from the Danube. "Find the officer and
12 tell him to get the job done."
13 I carried out the order, and after that the minister called me
14 two more times and tells me that there are two or three more trucks.
15 That's what he said to me then. So he called me twice. And I should
16 forward the order that the previous procedure should be repeated, and
17 that's what I did. I called the officer, related that to him, and he did
18 the job.
19 Q. On all of these occasions, these three occasions, do you know how
20 many trucks in all were involved?
21 A. I really don't know.
22 Q. [Microphone not activated] Caslav Golubovic testified ...
23 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
24 JUDGE PARKER: Carry on.
25 MR. STAMP: Thank you.
1 Q. Mr. Golubovic testified that he served as your subordinate for
2 years, and I think the word he used was "correct." He always knew you to
3 be correct and professional, and from time to time when he was in Serbia
4 he would -- he would sometime pop by your office. He also testified that
5 he told you that among the bodies found at Bor there were male and female
6 victims. Did he tell you that?
7 A. I don't doubt that he probably told me that too. He spoke to me
8 about those bodies, the way they were dressed, which all points to what
9 I've already said. I suppose that he gave that information to me also.
10 There is no reason why he shouldn't have.
11 Q. And he also said that he told you that there were one or more
12 children. Did he -- do you recall him telling you that?
13 A. I suppose that he told me what he knew at that moment. He spoke
14 about 20 or 30 bodies having been found, but how many children were among
15 them, or women or men, he wasn't able to state in numeric terms. I
16 suppose that there would have been female bodies among them too, but
17 whether there were children and how many, he can't have known at the
18 moment. He may have just given me a general figure, a total figure.
19 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Djurdjic.
20 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I believe that these
21 are very important issues, and it would be good if the exact words that
22 anybody said to Mr. Djordjevic should be quoted literally, because we are
23 dealing with some details. Mr. Djordjevic is being asked whether he
24 remembers or he doesn't remember. So when somebody's words are being
25 related, they should be quoted accurately for him to be able to confirm
1 or deny.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Unfortunately, as you see, the witness commenced
3 his answer by saying, "I suppose that he told me what he knew at the
4 moment." The witness has no accurate recollection of the conversation,
5 as I understand his evidence.
6 Carry on, Mr. Stamp.
7 MR. STAMP: Thank you. Thank you.
8 Q. And what I put Mr. Golubovic to have said was at 1736 of the
10 Were you aware of how the arrangements were made to send down the
11 truck from Belgrade
12 A. No. Before that, I told the minister for the last time that I
13 had been informed that they need one more truck over there because they
14 have no more trucks. Caslav Golubovic's phone -- or phone number is
15 so-and-so, and I no longer want to take part in this, and from that
16 moment on I had nothing to do with any additional transport until the day
17 when the minister called me up and gave me the orders that we have
18 already mentioned.
19 Q. Did you instruct Mr. Borisav -- well, before we -- you had a chef
20 de cabinet at the time, and if so, was his name?
21 A. Slobodan Borisavljevic.
22 Q. Was he actually a lawyer as well?
23 A. No. He was a graduate of the military academy.
24 Q. Did -- what did his duties as chef de cabinet entail?
25 A. His duties were to collect all reports from this -- the duty
1 centre, the operations centre, and in the morning he would brief me about
2 the content of those reports. He was also duty-bound to process any
3 documents that were sent from various administrations to be signed, as
4 well as drafting dispatches for me to sign and to send them on to the
5 administrations. That is the entire correspondence, the mail. Daily I
6 would sign mail for two hours in the afternoon. We had a great many
7 employees and much work. So his role was, first and foremost, to handle
8 and process documents, prepare them for me to sign or forward them to the
10 Q. Was he also responsible to monitor local and international media
11 reports and filter the information that might be important to you?
12 A. No. His duty was in relation to the documents that he received
13 from the secretariat of the interior to inform me of them and not to go
14 through the foreign press.
15 Q. Well, from -- from where would you receive information? Not just
16 the foreign press. I understand that as chief of the public security
17 department you would have a media office. You would have people
18 monitoring the press, wouldn't you? Not just the foreign but local, what
19 is happening in the media. If he's not the person, who was?
20 A. I received newspapers daily in the morning. There would be
21 papers waiting for me at my desk, and I would skim through them, and I'm
22 referring to the local newspapers. I'm not sure what you're referring
23 to. In my office I only had the chef de cabinet and the administrative
24 secretary. They were the staff that I had at my disposal. I didn't have
25 anyone else. That was the extent of my office.
1 Q. The -- did the -- the MUP then, the headquarters of the MUP,
2 including the minister's office, have a section that monitored the media?
3 I ask you because this is, to my understanding, a normal thing for most
4 large police organisations in the world.
5 A. Attached to the minister there was the public relations media
6 office, and I think that they followed and monitored foreign and domestic
7 press and informed the minister thereof. I did not have a service of
8 that sort, and this was not within my competence.
9 Q. Did you receive any briefings from them?
10 A. Their duties were toward the minister, not me. Whatever they
11 prepared for the minister and whatever they had to do based on his
12 request was intended for him. I could not issue any orders or any
13 requests to them.
14 Q. Yes. I was really asking if you received from them press
15 briefings or press clippings.
16 A. No, I did not.
17 Q. I see. Back to Mr. Borisavljevic. How long was he your chef de
19 A. He had been chef de cabinet of the earlier chief of service and
20 Deputy Minister Stojicic since I was the acting incumbent following his
21 death several months later. He kept his duty as chef de cabinet of the
22 chief of the sector, he had been appointed beforehand and continued in
23 his duty which spanned from 1997, throughout the war, and he stayed with
24 the minister's office even after the war, I believe. I know that
25 definitely he was transferred to the minister's office and that for a
1 while Zoran Alimpic was chef de cabinet, my chef de cabinet.
3 A. I trusted people as a rule, so I placed my trust in him as well.
4 Q. You entrusted him with the task of doing the paperwork to cover
5 the operational expenses for the workers who had retrieved the bodies in
6 Bor, didn't you?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Did you tell him what it was about?
9 A. I think that he knew what this was about even earlier on. The
10 paper that the chief of the SUP
11 crime police, and they in turn sent a request to my office because they
12 were in need of these special operative resources. So that paper was
13 written by him. He dispensed the necessary money to the crime police
14 administration, and this money was subsequently used as remuneration for
15 the workers at Bor. I'm not sure which of the papers he handled. I know
16 that he dealt with the operative procedure for expenses, but I can't tell
17 you which documents he specifically produced and what they were about.
18 MR. STAMP: Can we look at 05227. That's a 65 ter number. And
19 it's P391.
20 Q. This is a request for your approval of the payment of 10.000
21 dinars for the operational expenses incurred, dated the 22 of April 1999.
22 Before we look at this document, it was Mr. Golubovic, according to his
23 testimony, who told you that they needed $10.000 to pay these workers.
24 Is that so?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And the name of the operation was Dubina II. You are -- or who
2 was it who dubbed the operation Dubina II?
3 A. I didn't dub it. And as for the action itself, well, I'm really
4 not familiar with the name at all, Dubina II.
5 As the letter before us states -- it's not clear to me. I don't
6 know who initiated the action, who named it. I am really in the dark on
7 that. I suppose that at the time I was signing this I didn't pay much
8 attention to it. I knew what the money was intended for, and the name of
9 the action obviously did not interest me at the time.
10 Q. Very well. How did Major General Ilic, who signed the request,
11 become involved in this activity?
12 A. He only had to do with the paperwork level of it. Caslav called
13 me and told me that money had to be obtained. Since it was not possible
14 to use the resources of the secretariat, I told him that he should send a
15 request to the crime police administration since that was the only way in
16 which monies could be transferred as operational expenses. That was the
17 only way to do it in keeping with the law, to go through the crime police
18 administration. So the request was sent to the administration chief and
19 through the office they received the amount of 10.000. Caslav
20 subsequently made sure the workers received the money.
21 The role of the crime police was to credit the money in such a
22 way as to abide by the law.
23 Q. Okay. So if we look at P392. This is a payment order on the
24 22nd of April.
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And if you look at the bottom of it you will see that somebody
2 signed for receipt of the money. Who signed for receipt of the money?
3 A. I can't recognise the signature at this time.
4 Q. Does it look like --
5 A. I cannot decipher it.
6 Q. Does it look like Mr. Ilic's signature?
7 A. Possibly. It could be Ilic's signature. It's possible.
8 Q. At the top it says, To pay to Major General Ilic the sum of
9 10.000 dinars. Very well. And --
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And if we move to 393, P393. It's a payment of operational
12 expenses for Dubina II document, dated 22nd of April 1999. And if you
13 look at the second page in English and B/C/S, we see where the workers,
14 including -- well, five workers signed for having received the money on
15 the 27th of April. That's the normal documentation for this procedure,
16 is it?
17 A. I don't think it's out of the ordinary. The worker who paid out
18 the money had to have the signature of the persons receiving it in order
19 for him to have receipt that they had indeed received money. It could
20 have been done perhaps differently with a special format of receipt.
21 Q. Okay. Who -- who is it that signed as having confirmed payment
22 was made on the 27th?
23 A. It is confirmed by the chief of the OKP, meaning the crime police
24 department of the Bor SUP
25 police department from Bor.
1 Q. Okay. Do you know who from the ministry carried the money down
2 to Bor?
3 A. I don't know. Dragan Ilic took over the money, and I can't
4 remember who he handed it over to in order for the money to be paid out
5 in the field. I don't recall who he assigned for that specific task.
6 Q. Caslav Golubovic said that it was a policeman by the name of
7 Aleksic who was working at the criminal police administration under
8 General Ilic's command. Does that jog your memory, that he ...
9 A. Well, yes. If that's what Caslav said, then it is likely that
10 Caslav did hand him over the money. There's no reason for me to doubt
11 that the person Aleksic from the crime police administration gave the
12 money to Golubovic.
13 Q. Do you remember Aleksic's first name?
14 A. Not at this time. I know of an individual, Aleksic, having been
15 there. If you told me, I might recognise the name, but I can't recall it
16 at this time.
17 Q. Very well. Now, didn't the minister, either yourself or the
18 minister, task Mr. Ilic and Mr. Aleksic to go down to Kosovo and engage
19 themselves in operations that were referred to as clearing the
20 battle-field or "asanacija"?
21 A. This is a completely different topic now.
22 Q. Yes, but I'm asking nonetheless. Do you recall that they were
23 sent down to Kosovo? Well, let's break down the question. Do you recall
24 that they were sent down to Kosovo to work down there during the war,
25 both Ilic and Aleksic?
1 A. I know that Dragan Ilic was down there, and I believe that
2 Aleksic was as well, but I know for a fact that Dragan Ilic was there,
3 and I believe he went there twice. The travel order and the task that he
4 was to go about down there was given by the minister.
5 Q. Do you know what the task was?
6 A. I had a better recollection of the second time when Dragan Ilic
7 came to Belgrade
8 his bills. He told me that he had had the task to help and instruct the
9 chiefs of crime police departments to properly conduct crime scene
10 investigations, which ranged from deaths to sites of bombardment. That
11 was the extent of his tasks as he explained them to me. He got in touch
12 with the chief of the staff, the chiefs of crime police departments, and
13 his tasks had, as he put it, mostly to do with upgrading the expertise of
14 the crime police in crime scene investigations, et cetera.
15 Q. Very well.
16 MR. STAMP: Your Honours, I wonder if we could go into private
17 session just for a moment.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Private.
19 [Private session]
4 [Open session]
5 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're back in open session.
6 MR. STAMP:
7 Q. K93 was tasked by Assistant Minister Zekovic on quite a few
8 occasions to go and collect corpses [Realtime transcript read in error
9 "corporations"] from various places [Realtime transcript read in error
10 "polices"]. Firstly, did you know K93, and for how long if so?
11 A. I knew him. I don't know for how long. He worked in the service
12 employing drivers, but I knew him, yes.
13 Q. Were you on speaking terms with him?
14 A. I was on speaking terms with everyone. Some ten years
15 previously, he would be my driver on some of the business trips I did,
16 but that was the extent of our communication. We would greet each other
17 as work associates, and that was in fact the extent of my communication
18 with him.
19 Q. Who was your driver in 1999?
20 A. Bogdan Lipovac.
21 Q. Do you know who was Mr. Zekovic's driver in 1999?
22 A. I think that Basanovic was his driver for a period of time. He
23 was able to use other drivers too. I don't think he always used that one
24 driver. It depended on the availability of drivers. Basanovic was the
25 driver present in the particular service, and whenever he was available
1 he would drive whoever needed a driver.
2 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness's microphone please be
3 removed a little bit.
4 MR. STAMP: From his shoulder. I think it rubs on his sleeve.
5 JUDGE PARKER: While that is happening, on page 16, line 10, the
6 word "corporations" should be "corpses," and the word "polices" should be
8 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honour.
10 MR. STAMP: I'm sorry, Your Honours. That has to be -- to be
11 expunged. I'm so sorry.
12 Q. Do you know whether or not K93 was also the driver for Sreten
13 Lukic at some point in time?
14 A. I don't know. It is possible that he, just as I did, would call
15 upon the service to provide him with a driver, and whoever was available
16 was provided him. I don't think he was specifically assigned to be his
17 driver. It is possible that he was his driver for some of the business
18 trips. I can't be more precise than that.
19 Q. K93 and another witness, K88, testified that Bogdan Lipovac and
20 Basanovic, Dragan Basanovic, were two of the persons who drove some of
21 the trucks with the corpses to Batajnica. Do you know of that?
22 A. No, I don't know that.
23 Q. In May 19 -- I'm sorry, 2001, can you recall participating in a
24 discussion with Mr. Lukic and K93 in Mr. Lukic's office?
25 A. After retiring on the 4th until I left on the 12th of May, I came
1 to the office there daily, and I was also at Lukic's office, and it's
2 possible that he also arrived on an occasion when I was there. I cannot
3 rule that out.
4 Q. He said that he was involved in an argument with Lukic about his
5 transfer, and you came and joined the argument or the discussion. Do you
6 recall participating in the discussion with Mr. Lukic and K93 regarding
7 his transfer? And when I say "transfer," I mean for him to go to work
8 somewhere outside of Belgrade
9 A. At the time, I was a pensioner, and I had serious problems of my
10 own. So the problems of other people, including Sreten Lukic or the
11 other person, I may have entered when they were having an argument, but I
12 cannot remember what they were spoke -- talking about. I think I saw
13 something like that, but what they talked about -- I came there as a
14 pensioner to take care of some of my own business.
15 Q. How long had you known Djordje Keric up to April 1999? That's
16 the SUP
17 A. Maybe for a -- for 15 years.
18 Q. He -- well, how long did the operation to retrieve the bodies
19 from Lake Perucac
20 that operation last? Do you recall?
21 A. I cannot remember precisely, but my last contact was when he
22 informed me that apart from the bodies what could be sitting over there
23 were also parts of some sort of a crate, and maybe a day or two later
24 I -- we had a phone conversation when he informed me what had been done
25 with the bodies found. So the procedure there, that is the exhumation of
1 the bodies and their burial close to the dam, took a short period of
3 Q. Well, he said two days thereabouts. Would that be consistent
4 with your memory?
5 A. Yes. It's possible that it took two days.
6 Q. He also said that he was duty-bound to keep you abreast of the
7 developments and that he was in telephone contact with you several times
8 over those two days. Is that correct?
9 A. He contacted me twice only, as far as I remember, or three times
10 at the most. So once when he told me that, and after that one more time
11 or two more times. Our last communication was when he informed me about
12 what they had done.
13 Q. He said that -- well, do you know the SUP crime chief, what his
14 name was at the time? If I could recall, Zoran Mitricevic or Mitricivic.
15 A. Yes. The name of the chief was Zoran Mitricevic, if I'm not
16 mistaken. He was the chief of the criminal police service. I knew his
17 name, although I had no personal contact with him.
18 Q. Well, did you -- at the time when you got the first call from
19 Keric reporting that this truck with the bodies was seen in the lake, did
20 you instruct Keric to send the crime chief, whether by name or just by
21 position, the crime chief for the SUP
22 situation was?
23 A. When the chief of the SUP
24 the people in the field, I just gave orders to conduct additional checks
25 and see what that was all about. That's all I asked of him, to have
1 complete information and be able to inform the minister. I didn't tell
2 him either to send the chief of the criminal police or Zoran Mitricevic
3 or anybody else by name. That was for him to decide. He could have
4 entrusted the department of the interior with that. So I just required
5 him to conduct a detailed check of the situation and how -- but how, that
6 was for him to decide.
7 Q. Very well. Keric testified that when he received information
8 that the bodies in the box in the -- in the river -- in the lake were
9 increasing, he called you and informed you of that, and you told him that
10 the orders of the minister was that the bodies should be removed from the
11 lake and buried in a grave named Lake Perucac
12 said, You convey the minister's orders to bury the bodies in the dam. Do
13 you recall that?
14 A. I didn't convey to him anything regarding the burial of the
15 bodies. He informed me, and once he had informed me that next to the
16 bodies there was also that box, I passed the information on to the
17 minister, but I received no feedback from the minister, nor did I require
18 Keric to do anything. That being the case, Keric called me, and he
19 informed me what he had done and how. I passed the information on to the
20 minister, and that was all my involvement with Perucac and the bodies
21 that were found there.
22 Q. Did Mr. Keric tell you that an attempt had been made to sink the
23 truck, the box, in the dam and that had failed? Not in the dam, in the
25 A. No. He didn't relate any such detail to me, nor did I elicit
1 such information from him. He informed me of what he had done, and I
2 passed on that information and that was all my involvement.
3 Q. Did he -- I'm sorry. Did you not instruct him that he should not
4 inform the investigating judge and that entire event should be kept as a
5 secret, as secret as possible? Because that's his testimony. Is that
7 A. I didn't give him any orders to the effect that he should refrain
8 from informing the Prosecutor or judicial organs. At that moment, I
9 was -- well, in a sort of argument with the minister, and I wanted to
10 be -- to keep out of some things. We have seen that this was one more
11 case which pointed to what had happened on the Danube.
12 I didn't relate to him any details because I wanted to keep out
13 of the entire story, and I have said so already.
14 Q. Do you know, since you were at that time in argument with the
15 minister, whether the minister spoke to Keric and told him, gave him the
16 instructions to bury the bodies at the bank of the lake and not to inform
17 the judge or the prosecuting authorities?
18 A. I don't know whether the minister gave orders to anybody with
19 regard to that, nor did Keric say to me when he definitely informed me of
20 what had been done, whether he had received orders to that effect from
21 the minister or anybody else. I didn't know about that at the time.
22 Q. I'd like us to look at a document and -- and see if that jogs
23 your memory. This is 65 ter 06003. And it's a record of the testimony
24 of Zoran Mitricevic before the investigating judge, having been cautioned
25 to speak the truth and warned of the consequence of giving false
2 MR. STAMP: If we could go quickly to page 6 of this record in
3 the English, which is page 5 in the B/C/S. We want to look at the bottom
4 half of page 5 in the B/C/S and the top half of page 6 in the English.
5 Q. Have a read of that, Mr. Djordjevic, from where he refers to
6 Slavko Petrovic and Djordjevic. Not you, but another policeman of the
7 same name who was at Uzice at the time.
8 MR. STAMP: Could we scroll to the top in English, please. Thank
10 Q. He said he went up to the lake with Slavko Petrovic and
11 Djordjevic. There were two -- there was also an inspector, Milutinovic.
12 They could see the refrigerating box that had surfaced on the lake, a
13 freight box which resembled the refrigeration box of a lorry. That there
14 are many bodies inside, that the bodies are dropping out of it, that it
15 had fallen apart in the water and that they were floating on the water.
16 "I immediately informed Chief Keric by phone about this, and he
17 said, Wait until I get instructions from the ministry. And before that
18 when he set off, I said, 'What are we going to do. Yes, Djoko said
19 immediately. I hadn't even informed him.' He said no taking of photos,
20 no record-taking, no informing the judge, prosecutor, nobody whatever.
21 That is the order from above. That is what the chief of department
22 ordered and that is how it has to be done. I informed him that there was
23 no chance of sinking it, nor could it be sunk. So what were we to do
24 next? Then after a few of those calls and discussions he said we should
25 try to pull this out and that this be buried some place, that these were
1 the instructions he got from the MUP."
2 Does this refresh your memory as to the instructions that you
3 gave Mr. Keric?
4 A. Should I answer? This doesn't refresh my memory in any way. I
5 never gave any such orders to Keric. I merely said to him that he should
6 check what that was about and inform me so that I could inform the
7 minister. After that, he sent a team that went to the place and they saw
8 what they saw, this box, and after that Keric called and said there were
9 not only bodies on the water but that there was also this box.
10 I received that information from him with the intention of
11 passing it on to the minister, which I did.
12 I didn't give any instructions to Keric, neither to sink the
13 refrigeration box nor to take the bodies out of the water or bury them
14 where they were buried. That's what Keric did after he had informed me
15 but before he had reported to me about what had been done, namely that
16 the bodies had been recovered and buried near the dam. That was the
17 entire communication between Keric and me. Any communication between
18 Keric and Mitricevic is not known to me.
19 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Djurdjic.
20 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, now we are treading
21 on ground that is similar to interviews. Statements made by persons who
22 haven't testified here are being used now, and their statements, it
23 wasn't possible to verify them. Still, the Prosecutor is using these
25 We are now tackling the issue of how statements should be dealt
1 with, and there is a pertinent decision made by this Bench, and I'll -- I
2 can say what was decided on the 24th of June this year when I
3 cross-examined, when Ms. Kravetz intervened with regard to Clark
4 statement. So I believe that only the circumstances can be dealt with
5 and not what Mr. Stamp is doing, namely, quoting. So in accordance with
6 your decision, that's the way how the accused can be questioned. So on
7 the 24th of June, 1999, you made a pertinent decision.
8 MR. STAMP: Your Honours, I could check that, but I was following
9 carefully, and I do not recall any decision to the effect that you could
10 not ask a witness whether or not he could comment on what somebody else
11 has said. That is the question. I'm not trying to tender the statement.
12 I'm not using it as evidence. I just merely say to the witness, "These
13 are what your subordinates have said. What are your comments? Do you
14 now recall having heard that they said this?"
15 JUDGE PARKER: At the moment, Mr. Stamp, I would not interfere
16 with what you are doing, and it may be possible during the coming break
17 to check exactly the decision referred to by Mr. Djurdjic to see that my
18 memory of it is accurate.
19 Carry on, please.
20 MR. STAMP: Thank you.
21 Q. Do you know of any reason that Mr. Keric or Mr. Mitricevic would
22 have to lie about this aspect, that you gave an instructions based on
23 directions you got from the minister to bury the bodies?
24 JUDGE PARKER: That's going too far, Mr. Stamp.
25 MR. STAMP: Very well. Could we with your leave, Your Honours,
1 jut go into private session briefly.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Private.
3 MR. STAMP:
4 Q. Mr. Djordjevic, I'm going to ask you some questions --
5 MR. STAMP: Sorry. I'm so sorry.
6 [Private session]
2 [Open session]
3 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're in open session.
4 JUDGE PARKER: We will adjourn now and resume at five minutes to
6 --- Recess taken at 11.27 a.m.
7 --- On resuming at 12.05 p.m.
8 JUDGE PARKER: My apologies that we were delayed coming in.
9 Mr. Stamp.
10 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honours.
11 Q. Mr. Djordjevic, K87 testified or -- testified and gave a
12 statement much consistent to what you have said. He also told us that --
13 that you instructed him to use -- or to make use of an excavator to dig
14 the hole, and that excavator was obtained with a permit that you
16 Do you recall making those arrangements?
17 A. I can't tell by the number whether it was the officer present
18 there or someone else.
19 Q. Well, I think K87 said that someone else, another witness, K88.
20 He went to your office to collect the permit for the excavator, to obtain
21 an excavator from a construction company in Batajnica.
22 A. In other words, I don't know who 87 or 88 are. At any rate,
23 nobody came to see me to obtain a permit for an excavator.
24 At the point in time when I was conveying the order in my office
25 to the person in charge of that facility, the question was raised as to
1 how the matter would be brought to a close. There ensued a discussion
2 concerning the use of an excavator for those purposes. He told me that
3 there was an excavator to be found near the feature, near that facility,
4 and I instructed him that he should go and obtain the excavator in order
5 to do the job. Nobody came to see me later on for any sort of permit or
6 my consent for the use of an excavator because I can't give one to begin
7 with. That's all I remember concerning the use of an excavator.
8 Q. Very well.
9 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Djurdjic.
10 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, first it was cited
11 that one K person said so-and-so, and then the other K person said
12 so-and-so. Can we please quote the statements of these witnesses. And
13 I'm sure that one of the two witnesses, K88, definitely did not say what
14 Mr. Stamp has just cited. It was, rather, the other K who was involved
15 in this discussion.
16 I don't want to influence witness's answer in any way. My
17 remarks have to do with the procedural matter, my objections.
18 JUDGE PARKER: I think from what you have said that you have
19 misunderstood what was said at page 26, line 19. What was said, that K87
20 said that another person, K88, went to your office. It's not the both of
21 them gave evidence of the same thing, but one of them only said that the
22 other one had gone to the office.
23 Thank you, Mr. Djurdjic.
24 Again, though, Mr. Stamp, we're being reminded that sometimes you
25 are putting matters very loosely. The Defence are concerned of material
1 matters. So as with yesterday, if you would take the time to be more
2 precise. Thank you.
3 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honours. And I was reference to
4 P1414, paragraph 13 and paragraph 18. That's what I was citing.
5 Q. Mr. Djordjevic, K -- did K87 eventually contact you and requested
6 that you stop sending bodies to the SAJ
7 A. I think that at one point in time after the second call he
8 expressed his dissatisfaction with the situation. But it wasn't me who
9 was sending bodies to him. The bodies arrived, and I only conveyed
10 orders. I wasn't pleased with my participation in these events, just as
11 he was not, but that's what the situation was like.
12 Q. And if we could move on to Mr. Trajkovic. You had worked closely
13 with Mr. Trajkovic for many years going up from 1999, had you not?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Approximately how many years going up to that, 1999?
16 A. You're probably referring to 1999. It was interpreted back to me
17 as 1990.
18 Up until the time he joined the special unit through to the end
19 of his term there in 2000, I worked closely with him if I could -- I can
20 put it that way. But we were not on unfriendly or hostile terms.
21 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter is not sure. Perhaps the
22 within said "We were not as friends."
23 MR. STAMP:
24 Q. He said that when K87 told him about the burial, he spoke to you
25 on a couple of occasions about it, and your response was, "What can I
1 tell you? All my brave generals buried their heads into the sand, and
2 they left it to me to finish this part of the work."
3 A. In my discussions with he -- him and with Caslav Golubovic and
4 Keric, I clearly expressed my dissatisfaction with the way things were
5 being dealt with. I think that I spoke to him once, not several times
6 after the war, and that time I also expressed my dissatisfaction at
7 having been drawn into it. I didn't say anything of the sort. Perhaps
8 it was his liberal interpretation of the matter. I said that I had been
9 drawn in to doing things contrary to my will and wishes. That was the
10 way I explained my attitude toward it. I didn't have any benefit from
12 Q. Did you also tell him that the decision to -- to bury the bodies
13 there had been made from a very high level?
14 A. I didn't use those words. I said that there was someone above me
15 who decided about it, and I did what I did and that's why I'm here.
16 Q. Mr. Golubovic said that it was not lawful for the police to
17 remove the bodies without an order from the investigating judge. Would
18 you agree with me that the removal of the bodies from Bor was unlawful at
19 the time?
20 A. I think that it was in keeping with the decree which was amended
21 for the times of war in relation to the criminal investigation and
22 examinations done by the police. I think that under that decree certain
23 actions could be taken and subsequently the bodies of the judiciary could
24 be reported to. I can't make an assessment now whether it was in
25 accordance with or contrary to the law.
1 Q. The burial of the bodies, though, in mass graves in -- let's
2 start with Batajnica. That was unlawful.
3 A. Yes. That was not in keeping with the regulations.
4 Q. And also at Lake Perucac
5 in keeping with the regulations either.
6 A. That's right. It was not in keeping with the regulations.
7 Q. You said the minister also -- or that you conveyed an order to
8 Mr. Golubovic to destroy the truck. That was also unlawful.
9 A. Yes, definitely. This order of his whereby he said that when the
10 bodies are transported the refrigerator truck ought to be destroyed, this
11 was a signal to me that I definitely had to take myself out of the entire
12 situation. I could see the turn of the events, that they -- they weren't
13 taking a good turn, and unfortunately it all took a different course
15 Q. You said that you told the minister on more than one occasion
16 that you wanted to set up a group or a commission to investigate these
17 corpses. Now, did you then realise that that was your duty under the
18 law, to have these corpses that had emerged properly investigated?
19 A. Yes. After the first conversation and the order I conveyed to
20 Caslav, on my return to the minister's office I proposed that the case be
21 settled in such a way as to send a team that would inquire into what this
22 was about and where the bodies came from in order to clear up the whole
23 process, to put it that way. He remained silent. He disagreed with my
24 proposal, and it all pointed to the fact that something went wrong. He
25 did not agree with me that a team should be put together in order to
1 elucidate the details and facts surrounding the emergence of these
3 Q. But you realised at that time that that was the proper and lawful
4 thing to do.
5 A. Well, yes. I knew that the matter had to be approached this way.
6 I proceeded first and foremost from myself. I didn't know what had
7 happened. I didn't know where the bodies had come from. I didn't see
8 what sort of role I was to play in this. That's why I tried to clear the
9 matter up, but things were not done that way. They were done
11 Q. You said that when you had tried to obtain information from the
12 minister he said that certain incidents, certain isolated incidents that
13 happened down there, and something should be done to prevent the
14 revelation or the finding of these bodies which resulted from these
16 The question is: Did that cause you to become aware that these
17 bodies were the bodies of persons who were the victims of murder or
18 unlawful killing?
19 A. According to his words, and he told me at the time that these
20 were isolated cases involving deaths, as well as consequences of NATO
21 bombing. That was his response to my insistence that the matter be
22 cleared up, that the matter be elucidated. He said that these were the
23 consequences of bombing, as well as casualties following the fighting
24 with terrorists, as well as isolated cases.
25 Q. Isolated cases of what?
1 A. Of incidents causing deaths of the persons who were there.
2 Q. Of murder. Weren't you aware that the reason why the minister
3 wanted these bodies concealed, to use -- to quote you, the minister said
4 that something should be done to prevent the revelation of the finding of
5 these bodies was because these were the bodies of people, at least some
6 of them, who were the victims of murder?
7 A. He used the word "incidents." Whether they were murders, my
8 understanding was based on what he said at the time, and he said that
9 there had been isolated cases and that there were other cases that came
10 as a result of NATO bombing.
11 I was not aware of any murders having taken place down there
12 involving the deaths of civilians in greater or smaller numbers. I
13 wasn't aware of any such events.
14 Q. Okay. But I was asking you to be reasonable. What conceivable
15 reason could the minister have to be burying the bodies and concealing
16 for years the bodies of persons who were the victims of NATO bombing?
17 A. I am testifying about what he told me at the time. Now, what his
18 motives and reasons for it were, well, he told me that the main
19 motivation behind this course of action was that it should not become
20 known, NATO… I don’t know, that bodies should not be uncovered, that
21 NATO might use this to justify their bombings and so on. That's how he
22 put it to me.
23 Q. No. I just want to make this clear to you what I'm asking. What
24 you, in the position you're at --
25 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Djurdjic.
1 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I think that the last
2 statement was not entered correctly into the transcript. Perhaps
3 Mr. Popovic could draw your attention to what this is about. The matter
4 is English and I'm not in command of it.
5 MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if you'll allow me to
6 state that what I have to do is with line 20. It is said that NATO might
7 be using them as a -- the results of NATO bombings were not mentioned in
8 his answer at all, that they might be using -- NATO might be using it as
9 justification for the results of NATO bombings. But he didn't put it
10 that way. You will see if you listen to the tape that what was said in
11 Serbian was quite different.
12 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Popovic. We will have that part of
13 the transcript verified in due course. Thank you.
14 Carry on, Mr. Stamp.
15 MR. STAMP: Thank you.
16 Q. Okay. I just want to make this clear. We have heard your
17 evidence as to what the minister said and what he told you and also what
18 he did not tell you. What I'm asking you is about what conclusions you
19 drew at the time. What was your state of mind, because that is very
21 When -- what -- what reason could the minister have, in your
22 view, to be concealing the bodies of the victims of NATO bombing?
23 A. That's what he told me, but what reason he may have had, I
24 really -- I know that later, sometime during the NATO bombing, he gave
25 orders to file criminal complaints against NATO countries and NATO
1 leaders, and most of them were sentenced to 20 years of prison. That was
2 his struggle. That was his attitude. I couldn't read his mind.
3 Q. Based on the position you were in at the time, why or what reason
4 would the minister have, in your view, to be concealing for years the
5 bodies of persons who were killed in alleged anti-terrorist operations?
6 A. I don't know what conclusion to draw. Acting upon his orders, at
7 one moment I did something of which I didn't approve then, and I don't
8 approve of it now, and it has burdened me for years, but at that moment
9 while the country was being devastated and while people were getting
10 killed in Serbia
11 did at the moment, and I accepted his orders without opposing them. I'm
12 aware that this was a big mistake I made, but what happened cannot be
13 made undone. I am ashamed of my deeds, and I believe that the Court's
14 decision will be adequate, and I will be held responsible for what I did.
15 I know that I'm not responsible for the death of anybody in
17 happened and I'm here now.
18 Q. I'm referring back to what you said, and having regard to your
19 testimony about Mr. Stojiljkovic decision and orders to conceal these
20 truckloads of bodies, weren't you aware that these bodies must have been
21 the victims or these were the corpses of the victims of crimes committed
22 by the police, and that why Mr. Stojiljkovic wanted to conceal them?
23 A. Well, those weren't persons who had lost their lives under normal
24 circumstances but certainly as a consequence of the overall events down
25 there in Kosovo.
1 Q. Okay. I'm not saying now that you knew anything about what was
2 going on in Kosovo, so bear with me. Let us, for the -- for now, for the
3 purpose of this question, accept that you don't -- or did not know what
4 was going on in Kosovo.
5 What I want you to do is put yourself back to what was going on
6 in your mind at that period in 1999 when Minister Stojiljkovic said that
7 these bodies were to be concealed. Did you not draw the conclusion, or
8 at least suspect that these were the victims of unlawful conduct by the
9 police in Kosovo?
10 A. After some of his orders, I realised that this wasn't due
11 process. This wasn't the normal regular procedure, that there had been
12 victims in Serbia
13 keeping with the laws and regulations, and all that indicated that things
14 were being done that were not regular. And the purpose of those
15 irregular activities, the only conclusion that can be drawn about that is
16 that those -- the intention was for those bodies to be concealed in an
17 irregular manner. That's what I can make of it now. I hope you're
18 satisfied with this answer.
19 Q. Partially, but, you know, it requires a little bit more first,
20 before I understand that.
21 Firstly, Mr. Stojiljkovic -- or did you draw the conclusion that
22 Mr. Stojiljkovic would have wanted these bodies concealed because they
23 resulted from crimes or irregular activities of persons that he was
24 responsible for, that is, the police in Kosovo?
25 A. Well, I didn't draw any conclusions because there were no
1 elements available to me to do that. I supposed that the cause of death
2 of those persons was what he said to me and possibly something else in
3 addition. So I really had no concrete knowledge about the circumstances
4 in which those people were killed. My assumptions at the moment could
5 have been all sorts of things, but I was certainly aware of the procedure
6 being irregular at the time.
7 Q. Of course, but just coming back to the question. Didn't you at
8 least suspect that Mr. Stojiljkovic wanted these bodies concealed because
9 they resulted from irregular activities of persons that he was
10 responsible for, that is the police?
11 A. Well, of course I had -- I suspected that the people came to harm
12 in the activities at Kosovo, but I couldn't know how that happened,
13 whether we're speak -- talking about crimes or bombing or something else,
14 but everything indicates what you're assuming, but those were my
15 assumptions, too, that those were bodies of persons who had lost their
16 lives under circumstances I was unfamiliar with then, and I could suppose
17 that they had been killed in one or more of many ways.
18 Q. Yes, but Stojiljkovic, the minister for the MUP -- and I keep
19 getting back to this. I'd like just to get your answer so we can move
20 on. He's a minister for the police. Didn't you conclude or at least
21 suspect that he wanted these bodies concealed because the killings
22 resulted from police action in Kosovo?
23 A. You're now making me assume things. I am testifying to what I
24 know and what he told me. These people could have lost their lives in
25 several ways down there. My assumption in this case is that those
1 persons who came to harm were not treated fairly, but how they got killed
2 is not for me to speculate about. I could have suspected this or that,
3 but I really had no information about how they were killed. But
4 certainly the minister's decision to handle the bodies of the people
5 killed down there the way they were handled certainly isn't all right.
6 Q. Was there in place -- well, could I ask the question this way:
7 If you had information indicating that the minister, Stojiljkovic, was
8 involved in criminal conduct, were there procedures in place for you as
9 the chief of the police to take action?
10 A. I proposed some procedural steps at the beginning, but when I
11 became aware that these were his exclusive prerogatives, after he failed
12 to take relevant decisions I couldn't do anything. I as an individual
13 couldn't elucidate the situation or find out what had happened. When I
14 made those proposals, he didn't accept them, and he made it clear -- or
15 clearly pointed out the limits of my activities and my interest. And my
16 legal -- the legal possibilities and the factual possibilities for me
17 were -- I didn't have any legal or factual possibility to do anything and
18 without his decision and the organs at his disposal.
19 Q. But surely, Mr. Djordjevic, if you as police chief, or any
20 policeman in Serbia
21 have been committing crimes, reasonable -- or information that would lead
22 you to reasonably believe that the minister might have committed crimes,
23 there must be a procedure that you could follow.
24 A. I don't know which procedure that may have been. If he issues an
25 order to do something and threatens me to mind my own business and that
1 he is responsible for that, at that time when people were getting killed
2 in Serbia
3 that it wasn't right, and I'm willing to -- to assume responsibility for
4 a rash action.
5 Q. Yes, but I'm asking you a more hypothetical question. Just
6 speaking hypothetically, and separate yourself from the -- that
7 particular incident, what procedures would a policeman in Serbia
8 time adopt or follow when that policeman had information or allegations
9 that led him reasonably to believe that a person in high office, like a
10 minister of the government, was committing crimes?
11 A. All persons are equally responsible for crimes, so whoever
12 commits a crime or any other criminal offence should be treated like
13 anybody else. That's not a contentious issue.
14 So if I knew or if somebody knew of somebody else having
15 committed a crime, that criminal responsibility has to be established and
16 subsequently processed by pressing criminal charges and the rest. That's
17 the regular procedure that follows any -- the reception of any
18 information about criminal offences irrespective of who committed them.
19 I should have acted accordingly, and I would probably have gotten
20 killed and everything would have been all right now and there would be no
22 I didn't act that way, although I assumed that there may have
23 been a crime involved and that the procedure wasn't regular and fair, but
24 I didn't.
25 Q. Yeah, precisely. That's reasonable to assume or conclude that a
1 crime was committed. But the fact that it was minister for the MUP,
2 Stojiljkovic, who was concealing the body, must have indicated to you,
3 sir, that possibly it was the police who were committing the crime.
4 Isn't that correct?
5 A. Well, that's a mere assumption, whether it was the police or
6 anybody else. I can't know who committed those crimes. Possibly the
7 police. Possibly the citizens killed each other. It may have been due
8 to the bombing. Everything is possible. I had no information about the
9 circumstances in which those people were killed. We saw here in the
10 proceedings that there were really some gruesome situations. Who had
11 committed those misdeeds and crimes. In some instances the perpetrators
12 were police officers. In others they were citizens dressed up in some
13 type of uniform. In other instances again, the military was involved.
14 My conclusions to that effect would be completely arbitrary. I have no
15 information based on which I could infer how those people came to harm
16 from these or -- or other structures.
17 Q. In your subsequent -- subsequent meetings with the president of
19 Mr. Stojiljkovic was doing?
20 A. I never had a meeting with Milutinovic in four eyes. I only met
21 Mr. Milutinovic when the MUP delegation was led by Minister Stojiljkovic
22 or upon Milutinovic's order when we went to see the president of the SRJ,
23 when he had a meeting with the leaders of the police and the military and
24 some politicians. So I never had a private meeting with Milutinovic,
25 just him and me.
1 Q. Did you take any steps to inform the president, Milutinovic?
2 A. I told you why I didn't take any steps. That was a time of
3 random destruction, and I was threatened to mind my own life and for all
4 those reasons I opted to keep silent, and I never said anything to
5 anybody until my conversation with Trajkovic, and only after he had said
6 that one of his subordinates had informed him about that.
13 A. Yes. I can't tell by the number now, but I suppose that it was
14 the leader of that group that was established to -- to establish the
15 facts about the bodies found. If that's the man, he was mentioning a
16 certain note, then that's a different topic for discussion.
17 Q. One moment.
18 MR. STAMP: Could we go into private session briefly, Your
20 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, and we'll redact your previous question,
21 Mr. Stamp. That testimony was in closed session.
22 [Private session]
11 Pages 10013-10018 redacted. Private session.
3 [Open session]
4 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're back in open session.
5 MR. STAMP:
6 Q. And you were there again on the 17th of February in Pristina for
7 the MUP meeting where Mr. Stojiljkovic and Mr. Lukic, in particular, made
8 presentations on the future plans?
9 A. On the 17th of February, 1999?
10 Q. Yes.
11 A. Yes, I was present at the meeting.
12 Q. And you were also there on the 8th of March, 1999, according to
13 Mr. Cvetic.
14 A. I really don't remember being there on the 8th of March.
15 Q. And you were there at a MUP staff meeting on the 16th of April,
17 A. Yes, I was.
18 Q. And you met, according to Mr. Djakovic, with Mr. Lazarevic on the
19 18th of April.
20 A. That's a different matter altogether.
21 Q. Sorry. I withdraw that last question.
22 Were you also there on the 18th of April, in Kosovo?
23 A. Yes, I was.
24 Q. Were you there from the 16th to the 18th or after the 18th?
25 A. On the morning of the 16th, I set out for the staff meeting with
1 the minister. We got there, had the meeting. The minister held a
2 conference, and we returned to Belgrade
3 in the evening hours, we were in Belgrade
4 Q. When did you return to Kosovo after that?
5 A. Two days later. Since decisions were handed out on the
6 appointment of certain chiefs of SUP structures and hand-over of duties
7 at the 16th of -- of April meeting, I was given the instruction by the
8 minister to go there and see what was going on. So I left Belgrade on
9 the morning of the 18th, got to Pristina, toured the Pristina SUP and saw
10 the chief who was supposed to be replaced. I finished my meeting with
11 him. I also visited the staff prior to the meeting with him. I also
12 went to Urosevac where I was present during the hand-over of duty between
13 the former and incumbent chief of the SUP. I stayed to talk to them and
14 went back to Pristina. Subsequently, I also met with Generals Pavkovic,
15 Lazarevic, and Djakovic.
16 Q. And on these occasions, the 16th and the 19th of April, the 19th
17 in particular because you travelled to -- to Urosevac as well, did you
18 not observe that in many places the villages where the ethnic Albanian
19 population -- population inhabited were in ruins, were burnt?
20 A. Well, first of all, I wasn't there on the 19th. I left Belgrade
21 on the morning of the 18th. And it was in the early evening hours
22 that -- on that same day that I went to Belgrade.
23 What I was able to see from the main road and the damage I saw
24 was extensively also in Pristina due to bombing. Pristina was all
25 potholed from bombing. There had been bombing of that area on several
1 occasions. It was not down to me to inquire into the damage and how it
2 was inflicted, the damage on the buildings that I saw. I didn't have
3 occasion to go and tour villages in order to find out the extent of
4 damage and who it was inflicted by. I really wasn't able to deal with
5 that. There was a war on. There was general fire.
6 Q. Did you know that even while you were there on the 18th of April
7 people, that is Kosovo Albanians, were being expelled from -- from
8 Pristina area, from the area around -- from the area in Pristina
10 A. In the discussions I had in Urosevac, I asked the chief about the
11 situation and the developments. He told me that movement was noted of
12 civilians, primarily by train to Macedonia, because the railway line goes
13 through Urosevac. And this was something I was able to hear from the
14 reports from Belgrade
15 So I got the following information from the incumbent chief and
16 the former chief of Urosevac. People were on the move because they
17 feared bombing and fighting with terrorists. They feared for their
18 safety, and that's why they decided to leave the territory.
19 I also knew from before, from 1998, that civilians had been on
20 the move depending on where various operations took place. Nobody told
21 me on that occasion that civilians were being driven out or forced out of
22 their flats. What the chief informed me about was in a way confirmation
23 of what I had already known, that citizens were leaving because they
24 feared for their safety on account of bombing. There was no question of
25 these civilians having been driven out by whatever authorities.
1 Q. While you were there on any -- well, before we -- I move to
2 that -- you were also there on the 10th of July, 1999, or thereabouts?
3 A. Yes, I was there on the 10th of July.
4 Q. In July 1999, how many times were you there?
5 A. In Kosovo?
6 Q. In Kosovo, yes.
7 A. From the 10th of June -- or, rather, as of the 10th of June the
8 police forces had been withdrawn and nobody was able to go to Kosovo any
9 longer. But I -- I apologise. I was at the negotiations as a member of
10 the co-ordinating body with the KFOR or NATO forces at the border
11 crossing of Medere. It was a facility belonging to the international
12 forces, and we were discussing the security zone. It may have been in
13 2001. That was the only time I got into the territory, some 100 metres
14 into the territory, but after that presence of mine in Kosovo earlier on
15 I never went there again.
16 Q. I'm just focusing on June and July 1999. How many times did you
17 go to Kosovo in those two months?
18 A. In July and June -- well, I was -- the only time I was there was
19 the 10th of June when we had a meeting about the implementation of the
20 agreement with NATO concerning the withdrawal of our forces. So that was
21 my only visit there for the months of June, July, and the subsequent
23 Q. Okay. Right. And it's the 10th of July, actually, you mean.
24 The transcript says 10th of June.
25 A. No, no. June. It was the month of June, not the month of July.
1 Q. I see. Thank you. When you went there in April 1999, did you
2 meet with Obrad Stevanovic?
3 A. Both times. On the 16th when I was there with the minister, and
4 on the 18th when I got there I met with Obrad Stevanovic. And I also saw
5 him on the 10th of June.
6 Q. Did you ask him or ask Mr. Lukic or any member of the staff if
7 they knew anything about the bodies that the minister directed to be
8 buried in Serbia
9 A. No. I didn't discuss any of these matters with them, because
10 under the order or under the request from the minister I was forbidden
11 from discussing the topic with anyone.
12 Q. Even while you were in Belgrade
13 May 1999, you were in contact with them. You could contact them from
14 where you were in Belgrade
15 A. I could be in contact with them when the telephone lines were up
16 and running, and I certainly was in contact with them at the time,
17 especially when some of our personnel were killed. I would be in touch
18 with them on that score. Other than that, I didn't have any regular
19 contacts with them.
20 The end -- based on the task I received from the minister, I have
21 not able to give them any orders or tasks. These were primarily brief
22 private conversations, not -- nothing official.
23 Q. What sort of working relationship did you have with
24 Mr. Stevanovic?
25 A. We were assistant -- assistant ministers, both he and I. We were
1 on a par, to put it that way. We both received orders from the minister
2 regardless of the fact that at that point in time according to the
3 official decision I was the chief of the public security structure,
4 nevertheless, I couldn't issue Obrad Stevanovic with a single order since
5 we were both assistant ministers. He could receive orders solely from
6 the minister, not from me.
7 MR. STAMP: Could we bring up 65 ter number 0600 [sic]. And this
8 is the record of what Mr. Stevanovic said in his suspect -- what I want
9 to ask you now -- about -- it's 65 ter number 06000.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Djurdjic.
11 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, again we're dealing
12 with the interview with a suspect. This time it's Mr. Obrad Stevanovic.
13 I would like to check in advance, or, rather, to prevent the possibility
14 that this is dealt in the same manner as earlier statements of suspects.
15 Mr. Obrad Stevanovic was on the Prosecution's list of witnesses, but the
16 Prosecution eventually gave up on examining him. So I would like to know
17 about the procedure with regard to the use of such statements. Thank
19 JUDGE PARKER: Your question could involve a chapter of a book on
20 evidence, Mr. Djurdjic, and we won't go into that. What was done by
21 Mr. Stamp earlier today is in accordance with the procedures which we
22 accept and in our understanding is not at all contrary to what was said
23 on the -- in the decision in June to which you referred earlier. There
24 are limited uses that can be made and limited uses of such material for
25 our purposes. They mainly go to credit, not substantive evidence. So
1 rather than enter into an academic discussion, I think we will watch what
2 does happen. If Mr. Stamp errs, between us we will stop him,
3 Mr. Djurdjic.
4 Yes, Mr. Stamp.
5 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honours.
6 Q. This is the interview of Mr. Stevanovic on the 10th of August,
7 2002. If we could go to page 19 in the English, line 23. Well, just
8 page 19 in the English. If we could see the area around line 23. And
9 that is page 26 in B/C/S.
10 While we're getting there, you said, Mr. Djordjevic, and this is
11 at page 9413 of the transcript, that once Mr. Stojiljkovic was appointed,
12 you never held a single collegium on your own of the public security
14 A. I didn't say that.
15 Q. Maybe I misunderstood.
16 A. That's another question.
17 MR. STAMP: Could we scroll down the English transcript, please.
18 Your Honours, I wonder if this might be a convenient time,
19 because I notice that the -- the page references are not entirely
20 correct, so maybe I could check that in the break so we could move more
22 JUDGE PARKER: Yes. Good move, Mr. Stamp.
23 We will adjourn now. We will resume in one hour's time, having
24 had the lunch break. So we now adjourn.
25 --- Recess taken at 1.35 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 2.38 p.m.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Stamp.
3 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honours.
4 Q. Mr. Djordjevic, were there meetings of the collegium, the
5 ministers' collegium, during 1998?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And were there meetings of the ministers' collegium during 1999
8 as well?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. You said earlier, and this is page 9413 of the transcript, from
11 line 5, which is what I quoted to you immediately before the break but
12 I'll just read it again:
13 "When Minister Stojiljkovic became minister, I was acting chief
14 of the RJB, and later on in 1998 when I became chief of RJB, I never held
15 a single collegium of mine own. That is to say there was no collegium of
16 the public security. The minister of interior once a week inquired of
17 his collegium all the heads of the different lines of work in the
18 headquarters of the ministry, that is to say all the heads of
19 administrations then he called the chief of the secretariat of internal
20 affairs in Belgrade
21 If we could look at this document again. This is the record of
22 Mr. Stevanovic's interview, and we want page 20, line 1 in English, page
23 26, line 24 in B/C/S.
24 A. Please, sir. What you have read out is false. I don't know what
25 kind of translation this is, but the first sentence about
1 Minister Stojiljkovic and of me being head of public security and all
2 that, these are not my words. I never said that. I really don't
3 understand how these transcripts are made.
4 I can say how it should be. I wasn't chief when the minister
5 arrived or anything. I really don't understand how things are recorded
6 here. But I can explain everything from the beginning if necessary.
7 Q. All right. I just wanted to focus on the collegium for the time
9 While Minister Stojiljkovic was minister, you didn't hold any of
10 your own collegium. Is that what you're saying?
11 A. The deputy minister and the chief of public security who was the
12 highest-ranking official in the ministry was killed on the 11th of April,
13 1997. At that moment, I was the highest-ranking colonel-general, and I
14 was assistant minister. Mirko Marjanovic, the prime minister, who was
15 responsible for the ministry said to me, "There is no minister. You are
16 the highest-ranking official. Until we resolve the situation you will be
17 in charge of the ministry."
18 After some days -- ten days or so Minister Stojiljkovic arrived,
19 and during that time I continued as was earlier done by the chief of
20 sector, and when Minister Stojiljkovic arrived he said to me, "Continue
21 the way you worked before," and that went on until the 1st of June. And
22 so only on the 1st of June did I become acting official, and then he
23 appointed the assistants. And after that only one collegium was held
24 with the minister, and -- who was present and who had briefings is
25 mentioned there, and then we also saw the document, the official document
1 by which he called his collegium in 1998.
2 Q. Okay. I'm trying to move quickly, so I'll just ask you, you
3 also -- there were also collegium meetings in 1999, meetings of the
4 ministers' collegium.
5 A. Yes. That was our usual way of work.
6 Q. Throughout the war as well?
7 A. Yes, throughout the war. If sometimes a situation was critical,
8 we may have failed to meet, but as a rule it went on throughout the war.
9 Q. And it was approximately -- it was usually once a week?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Usually on Tuesdays?
12 A. Yes, as far as I remember.
13 Q. And Mr. Stevanovic said this: "He said once a week the minister
14 held his collegium but not often this was done on his behalf by the head
15 of the service, the public security service. As far as I remember, this
16 was always on a Tuesday."
17 Do you recall holding the collegium meetings on behalf of the
19 A. I don't know what that is supposed to mean, a collegium meeting
20 on behalf of the minister. There was no such thing.
21 Q. Do you recall holding or chairing collegium meetings in the
22 absence of the minister? And let's focus on 1999 -- in 1999.
23 A. Let me first tell you I never chaired the collegium for the
24 minister in his presence [as interpreted]. There was no such situation.
25 And now we can focus on whichever year you prefer.
1 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: "In his absence,"
2 not "in the minister's presence."
3 MR. STAMP:
4 Q. Can we find the corresponding page in B/C/S, the one we have
5 here? We're looking at page 20 in English. I think we want page 26 in
7 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Djurdjic.
8 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] There's a mistake in the
9 transcript on line 22. It should read, "In the absence," and not "in the
11 JUDGE PARKER: That's corrected at lines 24 and 25.
12 MR. STAMP:
13 Q. Could you go in B/C/S to page 26, and could we view line 14 --
14 line 24. We're on page 27 now, I think. Oh, it's page 27 it's actually
15 I'm told.
16 Mr. Stevanovic is recorded to have said here:
17 "More often -- I'll just read the whole sentence.
18 "Once a week the minister held his collegium but more often this
19 was done on his behalf by the head of service, the public security
21 Do you recall that? Do you recall that you often held these
22 collegium meetings on behalf of the minister?
23 A. I have just said I held collegiums from the 11th of April for the
24 month that followed until the minister settled the personnel issues and
25 until he drafted a decision by which he appointed me acting official, and
1 which meeting Stevanovic is referring to here I really don't know. The
2 minister never entrusted me to chair a meeting attended by all assistants
3 or people from the state security or anything else. He may be referring
4 to meetings before the minister resolved these issues. Then they were at
5 meetings with me. But that was up until the -- until mid-1997. After
6 that, the minister took over these duties and it -- it wasn't possible
7 for me to chair meetings on his behalf.
8 Q. In any case, these meetings would involve the minister, yourself,
9 the heads of the different lines of work in headquarters, that is the
10 heads of the administrations, and the chief of the secretariat for
12 attendees at these collegium meetings?
13 A. Yes, and apart from these you mentioned, there was also the chief
14 of state security and his assistant minister. Yes, there were such
16 Q. And if we could move on to page 46 in English. We want to look
17 in the vicinity of line 5. And page 63 in Serbian, starting from line 1.
18 At these collegium meetings, particularly in 1999, wasn't the
19 security in Kosovo always the focus of attention? Was this one of the
20 main topics on the agenda of these collegium meetings?
21 A. That wasn't the main topic at all. The topic was general
22 security. If we're referring to 1999. If we're talking about 1998. So
23 if we focus on 1999, I can speak my mind, but I don't know which year you
25 Q. Okay. Let's focus on 1998 first. Was one of the main topics on
1 the agenda for discussion in 1998 the security situation in Kosovo?
2 A. When the situation in Kosovo was most complicated I was in
3 Kosovo, so I didn't attend these collegium meetings. I suppose that they
4 also spoke about the security situation in Kosovo, but I wasn't present
5 and cannot comment. In 1998, when it -- when the situation was most
6 difficult, I was down there all the time.
7 Q. In 1999, was the security situation in Kosovo also an important
8 topic on the agenda of these collegium meetings?
9 A. In 1999, since the start of the bombing, the main topic was not
10 only Kosovo, it was the general situation in Serbia. And as for Kosovo,
11 the chiefs of the administrations, we saw some minutes of other meetings.
12 So these chiefs and the -- they only briefed about logistical issues and
13 problems if there were any. At collegium meetings, there was no
14 discussion about combat activities involving the units deployed there.
15 Q. And could we look at line 46 -- sorry, line 26 in the English.
16 Page 47, line 26. And if we could find the corresponding part.
17 Did you discuss tactics for the forces to employ or that could be
18 employed by the forces in Kosovo during the collegium meetings in 1999?
19 A. I would like to know whether Obrad Stevanovic is speaking about
20 meetings held in 1998 or 1999.
21 Q. No, that's -- we'll get to that. Focus on my question. Did you
22 discuss tactics in respect to the tactics that could be employed by the
23 members of the MUP in Kosovo in 1999?
24 A. Well, for the carrying out of anti-terrorist activities in Kosovo
25 or for the defence of the country in that territory the minister
1 established a MUP staff, the headquarters of which was in Pristina. The
2 MUP staff had its personnel responsible for individual areas including
3 the entire activities there. And the actions and operations down there
4 they both planned and carried out in co-ordination with the military.
5 At the ministers' collegium meetings, there was never any
6 discussion about operations conducted by units in Kosovo. That was the
7 staff's responsibility within -- it was within their remit. And the way
8 Obrad is discussing it here, well, that's a discussion at a very general
9 level about some security situation and some general tasks, what happened
10 during the bombing, but -- or rather during the bombings Obrad didn't
11 attend these meeting because he was in Kosovo.
12 Q. Did you discuss at the meetings in 1999, particularly in February
13 of 1999, the plans for the upcoming anti-terrorist offensive in Kosovo?
14 A. How should we have discussed it? Who should have presented those
15 plans when the -- all the experts were down in Kosovo? No -- no plans
16 were discussed at this collegium meeting.
17 Q. Wasn't it -- well, were these -- were minutes taken of these
18 meetings, the collegium meetings in 1999?
19 A. Yes, they were.
20 Q. Did you get copies? Weren't copies distributed to all
21 participants in the meeting?
22 A. Yes. The copies -- or, rather, the minutes were taken by
23 somebody from the analyses administration, and a day or two after the
24 meeting there was a general summary of what was discussed there with the
25 conclusions ordered by the minister, and that document was then
1 distributed to all the persons that had attended the collegium meeting.
2 Q. Do you know where the official minutes were supposed to be stored
3 or what happened to them?
4 A. I think that a set of minutes should certainly be stored with the
5 analysis administration which originally drafted them. In addition to
6 that, all the participants at the meetings had to have copies of them,
7 but what became of these minutes is not something I know.
8 Q. Did you keep copies?
9 A. Throughout my time there copies were kept with the chef de
10 cabinet. As soon as I received the document, I would review it and hand
11 it over to be stored. On my retirement, I was no longer interested in
12 that. I don't know where the minutes are held.
13 Q. Wasn't it part of the rules of your service that you should keep
14 a work notebook?
15 A. That was never the case on the police force. This is typical for
16 the army. The police never had such official documents as a notebook
17 which had to be filled out and filed.
18 Well, you see, Djakovic kept private notes which now carry the
19 weight of evidence, but this wasn't typical of the police. Everyone had
20 their own notebooks or notes, and it was their personal business as to
21 what they did with them.
22 Q. Do you know whether or not Obrad Stevanovic kept a work notebook?
23 A. I don't know about that.
24 Q. Did you see him take notes at meetings?
25 A. Every participant at the collegium meeting carried along a
1 notebook or --
2 Q. Okay.
3 A. -- shuffle of papers that they would either make notes on or
4 report from.
5 Q. Okay. Could we look at 01898. This is a handwritten notebook
6 of -- of Mr. Stevanovic.
7 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Djurdjic.
8 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I think that the
9 document which the Prosecutor seeks to present is a very specific one,
10 and I'd like to provide some explanations.
11 This is a document which the Prosecution sought to tender into
12 evidence but withdrew the request once the Defence put forth their
13 submissions, and this was supposed to be done through witness Philip Coo.
14 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter didn't catch the name.
15 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I don't know if there is cause for
16 us to move into private session, because I think some of the matters I
17 wish to address now were discussed in private session in a different case
18 before this Tribunal.
19 MR. STAMP: Your Honour, before we get into discussion, there are
20 dangers with the accused here who must always be present in addressing
21 upon matters which might turn out to be assisting in the answers.
22 May I just say I merely want to show him what is recorded in the
23 notebook and get his comments.
24 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. We will proceed along that course
25 without needing to hear your full submissions about this notebook,
1 Mr. Djurdjic, because unless the witness adopts what's in this notebook
2 it's -- it doesn't go any further with us.
3 Carry on, Mr. Stamp.
4 MR. STAMP: Could we just go to page 2 in the B/C/S. In the
5 English as well.
6 Q. This is Mr. Stevanovic's writing, Mr. Djordjevic? Can you
7 identify it?
8 A. No.
9 MR. STAMP: Could we go to page 40 and 41 in English. B/C/S, 29
10 to 30. Is that the corresponding page in B/C/S? In B/C/S is -- I think
11 in B/C/S we might want to look at the preceding page.
12 THE INTERPRETER: It is the corresponding page in B/C/S.
13 MR. STAMP: Okay, could we go to the top of the page then,
14 please. Could we scroll to the top of the page in English please. And
15 could we get that part in B/C/S. 16th of February, 1999, collegium of
16 the NRJB. Final meeting in Belgrade
17 Q. This writing is clearer now. Can you identify the writing,
18 Mr. Djordjevic?
19 A. I cannot, nor did there exist a collegium at the time. If this
20 is to refer to a collegium of the chief of the public security sector,
21 then I can tell you that there was no such collegium at that point in
23 MR. STAMP: Can we go to the next page in B/C/S. I want to find
24 the part where it says "For the collegium of the minister."
25 Q. I think it is referring there, Mr. Djordjevic, to a collegium of
1 the minister. Do you recall a meeting being held, a collegium meeting of
2 the minister, being held on the 16th of February? 1999.
3 A. First in relation to the previous sentence there is reference to
4 a collegium of public security there. Is the author of these notes a
5 member of the collegium? That's the basic question. And who does this
6 notebook belong to?
7 So if Obrad was supposed to be a member of my collegium, that
8 doesn't make sense to me, because an assistant minister cannot be a
9 member of the collegium of an assistant minister.
10 Q. But just --
11 A. This really isn't clear to me at all who was writing and what
12 that person was writing.
13 Q. I'm instructed that this is the notebook of Mr. Obrad Stevanovic.
14 I have those clear instructions. He has [indiscernible] for the
15 collegium of the minister, and he also dates it, which is coming back to
16 the question, and I remind you we don't have much time, the 16th of
17 February, 1999. Do you recall attending any collegium meeting on the
18 16th of February, 1999?
19 A. I don't recall it. How should I recall a specific collegium
20 meeting on a specific date ten years later to this day? I don't deny
21 that a collegium of ministers was held that week. We would normally have
22 collegium meetings on Tuesdays every week, but whether one was held on
23 the 16th of February is really beyond me. I cannot possibly recall
24 everything. I can't recall what the discussions were about or who kept
25 notes of the meeting.
1 Q. Well, you recall just about that period having discussions at a
2 collegium meeting where the finishing touches of a plan for a broad
3 anti-terrorist operation with the MUP and the Pristina Corps was
5 A. Where are you reading this from? Where am I supposed to find it?
6 Q. It's just the first starred item under item 1.
7 "Together with the Pristina Corps, the finishing touches are
8 being put to a plan for a broad anti-terrorist operation in the period
9 between the possible air-strikes and the entry of ground forces."
10 Do you remember that discussion?
11 A. Firstly, this is preparation for discussion. It doesn't mean
12 that he presented these positions. He was merely preparing himself for
13 the meeting. I am not familiar with this sort of thing at all, with this
14 sort of topic being discussed at the collegium meeting. If this is
15 indeed his notebook and the date, then he probably made note of something
16 that he intended to discuss. Whether he actually talked about it is not
17 something I can tell you now.
18 Q. In the police administration, that's the next starred item:
19 "... a plan is being prepared for measures to be taken in
20 accordance with a plan of defence in case of possible NATO aggression."
21 Do you recall that being discussed at collegium meetings in
22 mid-February 1999?
23 A. There was reference to general preparations and updating all the
24 defence plans within the ministry. This was the sort of orders that were
25 issued at the time for the structures out in the field.
1 Q. And the next note, the next starred note is:
2 "Preparations are also underway for your meeting with SUP chiefs
3 and Department of Border Police commanders in Pristina, at 1100 hours on
5 Now, I just inform you that the 16th of February, 1999, was a
6 Tuesday. Do you remember briefings and -- well, before I even go on, do
7 you recall that we discussed earlier on your presence and participation
8 at a meeting in Pristina on the 17th, Wednesday the 17th of February,
9 1999? Do you recall at a meeting the day before that, a collegium on the
10 Tuesday before that, you were briefed on preparations for a meeting with
13 A. I really don't remember.
14 Q. Do you remember at a collegium meeting the day before the meeting
15 in Pristina on the 17th that it was discussed that you will also deliver
16 decisions on early promotions to higher ranks, which is the next item?
17 A. At the meeting held in the staff on the 17th of February I
18 informed about it, but at this sort of meeting that discussed this sort
19 of topic and this sort of an agenda, I think -- I'm not familiar with it.
20 Now, in relation to the first items of the agenda, was this
21 something that Obrad made note of that he intended to present to the
22 minister? I really can't tell you. Those were his notes based on which
23 he would probably address the minister, but I don't know what this is all
25 Q. Well, can you recall being briefed that you would be -- deliver
1 decisions on early promotions to higher ranks? And ...
2 A. This is what I did at the meeting on the following day, and that
3 was the extent of my obligation which I discharged at the meeting on the
4 following day. I didn't discuss anything else, either the terrorist or
5 anti-terrorist activities or any other obligations that there may have
6 existed at this meeting with the minister. I had my task. Assistant
7 ministers who were responsible for certain other matters discussed
8 different topics with the minister.
9 Q. Yes, but you don't seem to remember much about what was
10 discussed. Do you remember, simply, do you remember, that before you
11 went down to this big meeting in Pristina there was a collegium meeting
12 the day before?
13 A. Well, how should I be able to remember ten years on? Do I
14 remember when a meeting was held ten years ago, what the subjects
15 discussed were, and who discussed them? Well, I simply don't know how I
16 should remember that. If there were minutes reflecting the topics that
17 were discussed, fine, but these were personal notes written by someone
18 who may have intended to do this and that, and you're taking it as a
19 conclusion that this was something that indeed transpired at the meeting.
20 I don't remember.
21 Q. Let's --
22 MR. STAMP: Your Honours, could this document be marked for the
23 time being, for identity?
24 JUDGE PARKER: It can be marked for identification.
25 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit P1509 marked
1 for identification.
2 MR. STAMP: Could we look again at P85.
3 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Djurdjic.
4 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] May I complete what I was about to
5 state and then we interrupted it? Let me inform Their Honours that this
6 is a document -- may I continue, Your Honour?
7 JUDGE PARKER: I'm not seeing the purpose of it at this moment,
8 Mr. Djurdjic. We -- at the moment this document isn't going anywhere.
9 We will see whether any more use is made of it, and it may or may not
10 become useful to hear you. Thank you.
11 MR. STAMP:
12 Q. You look at the participants in that meeting, Mr. Djordjevic, and
13 you see --
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Also:
16 "General Lukic opened the meeting devoted to the security
17 situation and assigning future tasks."
18 And you say, if we could go towards the bottom that General Lukic
19 was discussing a plan of the RJB -- I'm quoting:
20 "A plan of the RJB has been worked out to prevent and thwart the
21 enemy of NATO troops into our territory. The staff plans, when it is
22 ordered to carry out three mopping-up operations in the Podujevo,
23 Dragobilje, and Drenica areas and has allotted around 4.000 policemen,
24 etcetera, for that plan."
25 Just take note of that for the time being. Could we move to the
1 last page. Recorded here:
2 "Colonel-General Vlastimir Djordjevic said that five officers
3 from the AP, that's from Kosovo and Metohija, were awarding early
4 promotions and had given them decisions on promotion."
5 And having seen that, do you now recall that the day before this
6 major meeting there was a collegium meeting in which these two matters
7 were discussed?
8 A. About the RJB plan, promotions, or what?
9 Q. These two plans, the plans for the anti-terrorist mopping-up
10 operation and the early award, the award of early promotion to some
12 A. What I can see here is my obligation, which I met, and I can only
13 see it next to the promotion decision. Nowhere else do I see any
14 obligations of mine arising from any of the plans in relation to any
16 Q. Was there also at that time, Mr. Djordjevic, a broader
17 Serbia-wide plan that was being prepared, a defence plan that your
18 ministry was involved in preparing?
19 A. Certainly there existed a defence plan at the national level.
20 That's customary for all. What I am not clear on is the role of the
21 ministry. I know the obligations that I placed upon the secretariats and
22 that was to update their own plans to update the system of mobilisation
23 and calling up the reserve force, et cetera.
24 Now, as for the plans for the defence of the country for the
25 public security sector as to how to prevent NATO forces from entering the
1 country, that's not something I'm aware of. That's not the sort of plan
2 that public security would produce. There was a dispatch asking for the
3 regular defence plans which any organisational unit of public security
4 had to be updated and activated.
5 MR. STAMP: If we could go back to P -- sorry, to the document
6 just marked for identity. That's P1509 just for the record. And could
7 we just go to page -- page 4 of it.
8 It's a little bit difficult to see, but could you scroll further
9 to the right of the page.
10 Q. The question is -- just look at this, and can you tell us if this
11 represents to your memory, and I know you probably couldn't be absolutely
12 precise, but approximately the number of troops -- sorry, the number of
13 policemen who were assigned and active in Kosovo in April 1999? The 3rd
14 of April, 1999.
15 A. On the 3rd of April, 1999, I was charged with the
16 secretariats outside of Kosovo and Metohija. All
17 additional units that were deployed – the units from
18 Kosovo and Metohija – were the responsibility of others.
19 I'm really not familiar with this
21 Q. That's all you need to say. So you're saying that
22 notwithstanding that you're chief of the public security department, you
23 didn't know approximately how many policemen were serving in Kosovo
24 during the war?
25 A. I did not, because it was the MUP staff in Kosovo that was
1 responsible for all these forces.
2 Q. But headquarters would have to at least supply them with
3 logistics. You signed the orders deploying PJP officers down there and
4 withdrawing some on rotation. Are you saying that at your headquarters
5 you had divested yourself of the policemen in Kosovo to such an extent
6 that you would not -- could not give the Court an idea of how many police
7 officers were stationed down there during the war?
8 A. I believe that this table is accurate. I don't know who made it
9 or where the document is from, but it's possible that the figure is
10 accurate. However, the tasks they carried out in Kosovo were not under
11 my agreement.
12 Q. I…,I…,I…, you know-- [Overlapping speakers]
13 A. My task --
14 Q. You know, you have said that many times. I'm not asking you
15 about the tasks that you carried out.
16 Prior to this period, in January 1999 did you attend a
17 co-ordination meeting with Mr. Milosevic, Mr. Milutinovic, Mr. Ojdanic,
18 Mr. Stojiljkovic, Pavkovic, Lukic in Beli Dvor in Belgrade, the 5th of
19 January, 1999?
20 A. I may have attended that meeting.
21 Q. Without wasting time, I represent to you now that Mr. Sainovic,
22 in his interview with the Prosecution, said that on that day there was a
23 co-ordination meeting on Sainovic, the 5th of January, 1999 -- sorry, a
24 co-ordination meeting on the situation in Kosovo on the 5th of January,
25 1999, which included Mr. Milutinovic, Mr. Milosevic, Mr. Ojdanic,
1 Mr. Stojiljkovic, Mr. Pavkovic, and Mr. Lukic. Do you recall attending
2 that meeting in your capacity as chief of the public security department?
3 JUDGE PARKER: We've had an answer to that. "I may have
4 attended," was the witness's answer.
5 MR. STAMP: Your Honour, that is not a direct answer to my
6 question. If he recalls attending or not.
7 JUDGE PARKER: He said, "I may have attended."
8 MR. STAMP: I heard him, but is that a direct answer whether he
9 recalls --
10 JUDGE PARKER: I think that's all you're going to get, Mr. Stamp.
11 I think you need to move on.
12 MR. STAMP:
13 Q. Do you recall escorting Mr. Seselj down to Kosovo in mid-January
15 A. No, I didn't escort Seselj in Kosovo. I was in the escort of the
16 prime minister and the minister of the interior, and Seselj was there as
17 vice-prime minister, and there were other vice-prime ministers. I
18 believe there were four vice-prime ministers in all with the prime
19 minister and other ministers.
20 MR. STAMP: Could we have a look at the video which is 65, 0980.
21 Sorry, it is 65 ter number 0980.
22 [Video-clip played]
23 "... parliament duly backed Milosevic's rejection of the
24 Rambouillet terms as did the Serb public. Serbia's deputy prime minister
25 revealed what Milosevic was planning to do next."
1 THE INTERPRETER: "[Voiceover] If it comes to bombing by the NATO
2 alliance, if an American aggression happens, we Serbs will suffer
3 significant casualties, but there will be no Albanians in Kosovo."
4 MR. STAMP: Thank you. Could it be played again without any
5 translation so the witness might hear in B/C/S what Mr. Seselj was
7 JUDGE PARKER: Yes. Mr. Djurdjic.
8 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we haven't seen any
9 date indication in this video. The OTP showed us a video, but we don't
10 know when it -- when the footage was taken or where. So the OTP might as
11 well inform us when this was shot.
12 MR. STAMP: The witness can be asked to provide that information.
13 But it was in Belgrade
14 JUDGE PARKER: Belgrade
15 MR. STAMP:
16 Q. Do you remember -- could -- sorry.
17 MR. STAMP: Could this be played again but without the
18 translation so the witness could hear it in Serbian.
19 [Video-clip played]
21 Rambouillet terms as did the Serb public. Serbia's deputy prime minister
22 revealed what Milosevic was planning to do next.
23 "[No interpretation]"
24 MR. STAMP:
25 Q. This was, Mr. Djordjevic, in March after the Rambouillet talks
1 broke down. Were -- were you aware of Mr. Seselj's pronouncements at
2 this rally? This is a massive rally in Belgrade at a very critical
4 A. I don't really know anything about this rally of his, and he's
5 well known for using every plight of the Serbian people for his own
6 political benefit. He didn't give that speech as deputy prime minister.
7 And this is the first time I've seen this.
8 What he said over there and who was committed by it, that's part
9 of Mr. Seselj's political story. He always had some comments of his own,
10 but all were intended for his own personal promotion.
11 Q. Yes. That went well beyond what I was asking. Weren't you aware
12 at that time when you were planning for the defence of the country that
13 there was a hardening of attitudes by some persons in the leadership of
14 the country that involved the expulsion of the Kosovo Albanian population
15 from Kosovo as a solution to the problems in Kosovo? Weren't you aware
16 that many people in the leadership were expressing those views?
17 A. The man who put forward these positions hasn't set foot in Kosovo
18 in 1999. So all his activity was words, words that committed nobody.
19 Q. Weren't his White Eagles down there, his paramilitary down there,
20 acting sometimes in concert with policemen?
21 A. I don't know of the White Eagles being his organisation. As far
22 as my knowledge goes, no member of his party in whichever organisation
23 was in Kosovo and Metohija, and he personally also never went there.
24 Q. Could we move on to another document that was shown -- sorry.
25 MR. STAMP: Before we move on, could this video be received in
1 evidence and given an exhibit number.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
3 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit P1510.
4 MR. STAMP: Could we look at D3232.
5 Q. These are the instructions on information and reporting. You
6 spent a long time on it in chief in explaining the reporting system.
7 Can you remind us, did the staff and the SUPs, were they supposed
8 to send reports to -- to headquarters in Belgrade on the basis of these
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And --
12 A. The secretariats did, but this instruction didn't contain duties
13 of the staff. This was a normal instruction about information and
14 reporting, but it doesn't include the duties of the staff, only the
15 duties of the secretariats.
16 Q. Did the staff send its reports to Belgrade on the basis of this
17 instruction, notwithstanding that the instruction did not include the
19 A. Yes. In accordance with the elements as is set out here, they
20 submitted reports for Belgrade
21 that they received from the secretariats.
22 Q. When we speak of anti-terrorist operations, Mr. Djordjevic, these
23 operations frequently would involve searches, raids, blockades, ambushes
24 of terrorists and such like; is that correct?
25 A. Terrorist ambushes, well, I don't know what to do with that
1 phrase, whatever it means, but at any rate, if you're asking me whether
2 this instruction obliged the staff to report about all this, then my
3 answer is negative.
4 MR. STAMP: Could we go to page 3 in English, "Daily Reporting."
5 That's the part under Roman numeral III
6 same page in the B/C/S. We'd like to scroll down to the bottom in
7 English, please.
8 Q. Yes. I think you will start reading those first two lines and
9 then move to the next page only in B/C/S. When you're ready, say the
11 A. You mean this urgent information from item 1 or daily
12 information? What do you want me to read out?
13 Q. No, no, you don't need to read it out. I just wanted you to
14 refamiliarise yourself with the provisions in item 11. And you would
15 need to go on the next page when you are finished with that.
16 A. Now. What am I supposed to do with this page?
17 Q. No, no. I just wanted you to reorient yourself with this
18 document. You remember you spend a long time on it when you testified in
20 It basically says here that the data that should be included in
21 the daily reporting shall included -- shall include the data and events
22 and developments included in the information and reporting list. And you
23 were taken to the pages of the information and reporting list. I'd like
24 to take you to the last page of it, because perhaps that one was missed.
25 Just the last provision. If we could expand it in -- in Serbian,
2 It says:
3 "Operative actions and measures in which a large number of
4 employees and materiel and equipment are engaged (searches, raids,
5 blockades, searches of the terrain, ambushes, providing security and
7 As one category of event that should be included in the daily
9 The question now is this: Did you or anybody, to your knowledge,
10 in the public security department instruct the SUPs not to include this
11 type of data in their reports that they sent up on a daily basis?
12 A. This instruction includes events and developments in the regular
13 implementation of duties and tasks. In the course of such
14 implementation, what can happen is that some gang commits a crime and
15 then a search is organised or ambushes are set up to catch them or in
16 that sense some more complex activities, but this does not include
17 anti-terrorist actions or other combat actions. So according -- this
18 list isn't meant to apply to report about that.
19 Q. [Overlapping speakers]
20 A. So some --
21 Q. I know you have your explanation, and perhaps that could come out
22 again. I'm working against time. Just did you or anybody instruct the
23 SUPs not to include this material in their reports?
24 A. No way. The secretariats were to report but about the events
25 that I have mentioned, namely various more complex and yet regular
1 activities involved in catching criminals and other bandits and so on,
2 but not the way you want to interpreter it. Not what you want to read
3 into it. Such cases are not included -- or, rather, this doesn't apply
4 to such cases.
5 Q. Let's look at D296. These reports from the SUPs were supposed to
6 include civilian casualties or crimes again civilians, weren't they?
7 Mr. Djordjevic?
8 A. Yes. These reports must include crimes committed in the
10 Q. The report on the 29th of March, 1999. And if you see the
11 summary in the middle of the page it says:
12 "... of security-related events, incidents, information
13 registered between 600 hours on the 28th of March and 600 hours on the
14 29th of March, 1999."
15 And this is from the MUP staff in Kosovo to the MUP Belgrade. Is
16 that correct?
17 A. Yes, so.
18 Q. The information I think you had said but remind me if I'm
19 correct, the information contained in these reports would be similar to
20 what would be contained in the reports that were sent up by the
21 secretariats for the same period.
22 A. All information that the secretariats had and which are included
23 in the list of that instruction, they were duty-bound to report to the
24 staff and the ministry about it, because this -- these are regular
25 activities and regular events that happened from 0 hours to 2400 hours.
1 That's how it goes. And this report had an overview of security-related
2 events. It is meant for regular events as covered by that instruction.
3 MR. STAMP: Could we go to -- I think it's the last page in
4 English, please.
5 Q. Under section for serious crimes there's nothing. It does not
6 record any serious crimes.
7 You will recall, Mr. Djordjevic, that at least to your certain
8 knowledge in those hours in Podujevo there was a massacre of women and
9 children that occurred -- that involved police members and occurred in
10 the vicinity of the police station in Podujevo, according to Saranda
11 Bogojevci who testified here?
12 A. Yes, I remember.
13 Q. Is there a reason why that crime, that serious crime, is not
14 included in this report?
15 A. I can't see a particular reason. That event was known, and the
16 service took all measures from its remit with regard to that. Why it is
17 not mentioned here I don't understand. The only explanation would be
18 that what I said a little while ago is that this reporting covers regular
19 or routine events which are security related but not events that have to
20 do with anti-terrorist activities. That's a different chapter. This is
21 the only reason I can think of now.
22 Q. Okay. I remind you that when the police line up a group of women
23 and children and babies and shoot them with high-powered weapons, that
24 cannot be classified as anti-terrorist operations. That should be under
25 the heading of serious crime.
1 Did this not -- did the failure of this reporting to mention such
2 a serious crime not cause you to have concern about the information that
3 was being sent up in these documents and the fact that they did not
4 include serious crimes?
5 A. The information about this crime was received and the service
6 reacted. Why this report does not include that information I cannot
7 explain. I don't know why it is left unmentioned here.
8 Q. Let's move on then to another -- well, before I do, let me ask
9 you, did you see that report, a report of the Podujevo incident, in the
10 report from the SUP
11 jurisdiction Podujevo fell?
12 A. No. I cannot recall now whether there was such a report.
13 Q. Did you take any steps against the SUP chief or the OUP chief or
14 the persons in Kosovo who failed to send up in their daily reporting a
15 formal reference to this most gruesome crime?
16 A. Well, I must repeat that at that moment, this sort of event
17 was - is something the staff was in charge of. At that time, I had
18 reports from the field where crimes against civilian population were also
19 committed, in the second part of NATO bombing, and reports about heavy
20 damage. Therefore at that point I was tasked by the minister to follow
21 that situation. And this situation down there, whether that had to do
22 with all this activity was for the staff to take care of. Anyway, my
23 attention wasn't focused on drafting paper reports, but I knew of the
24 events. I was informed, and I knew what the OUP in charge and the
25 relevant authority had done. So nobody wanted to conceal the event or
1 slight the consequences or play them down, actually, or I don't know what.
2 Q. And I wanted to move on to something else, but you know, again
3 you haven't answered the question. Did you take any disciplinary steps
4 or whatever against the SUP
5 this in the reports that were sent on?
6 A. The ministry was aware of this event. Both the minister and I
7 were informed about it, and all the measures provided for by the law were
8 taken. At any rate --
9 Q. [Overlapping speakers]
10 A. -- my attention was directed during this period toward other
11 chiefs of secretariats and not the ones at Kosovo. This applied to the
12 particular event as well. I was in charge of other chiefs of
13 secretariats across Serbia
14 secretariats, they were discharged by others who were responsible to the
16 Q. So your answer is no, you did nothing in respect of these people
17 who didn't report it in the formal reporting.
18 A. The -- what happened was not covered up. It wasn't hushed up or
19 suppressed. All the competent organs did what they were supposed to do.
20 Now, whether I noticed at the time if this was part of the daily
21 report or not and if I took any disciplinary measures because this was
22 left out of the report, well, really, at that point in time the entire
24 crime, but you have to understand that half of Serbia was set alight at
25 the time.
1 Q. Very well. I don't -- I wanted to move on, but I think this
2 might be a convenient time.
3 JUDGE PARKER: We have reach the time. Can I inquire again as I
4 did last night, Mr. Stamp?
5 MR. STAMP: I would ask for -- for two sessions, or am I
6 misconstruing the inquiry?
7 JUDGE PARKER: No, you don't usually misconstrue inquiries,
8 Mr. Stamp. You want two session rather than one that we urged on you to
10 MR. STAMP: Yes.
11 JUDGE PARKER: It has become known to us today that because
12 another trial isn't sitting we can have a courtroom on Monday all day.
13 With that in mind, we will commence at 9.00 on Monday, and we will
14 adjourn for lunch at 12.30 and resume at 1.30 for Mr. Djurdjic's
15 re-examination, and you will just have to finish one way or another by
17 MR. STAMP: Thank you very much, Your Honours. I'm grateful.
18 JUDGE PARKER: And we will sit, if necessary, until after dark to
19 let Mr. Djurdjic finish.
20 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] [Microphone not activated]
21 JUDGE PARKER: And then you can be a relieved man. I think that
22 way we can be sure of finishing the evidence of the accused rather than
23 him having to hang over the break with the question of evidence
25 So we will now adjourn to resume at 9.00 on Monday morning.
1 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 4.07 p.m.
2 to be reconvened on Monday, the 14th day
3 of December, 2009, at 9.00 a.m.