1 Wednesday, 10 February 2010
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.03 a.m.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Good morning.
6 Ms. Kravetz, you promised us some entertainment.
7 MS. KRAVETZ: Thank you, Your Honour. I'm not sure how
8 entertaining I will be but I'll try my best. Your Honours, I just wanted
9 to raise a matter of concern regarding the next witness. One of the
10 issues or topics that is listed in the 65 ter summary for the next
11 witness is that he will speak about a meeting in March 1999 between
12 General Ojdanic and General Drewienkiewicz, also known as General DZ. As
13 Your Honours remember, General DZ testified before this Court in June of
14 last year, and during his testimony in this trial the Defence did not put
15 any questions to him about this specific issue.
16 Now, it is our view - and this is the concern we have - that if
17 the evidence of the following witness is brought to contradict the
18 testimony of General DZ, the proper and fair way to have proceeded during
19 his testimony for the Defence to have put questions to him on this matter
20 in order to allow him to comment and provide his version of events. And
21 we believe that that would have been the fair way to proceed because that
22 would have assisted Your Honours in assessing the credibility of
23 contradictory evidence that is brought in regards -- with regards to his
24 testimony. That did not happen during his testimony, and so we just
25 wanted to raise this matter and leave it for Your Honours to deal with in
1 the best way you consider necessary.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Do you have reason to anticipate that the evidence
3 of the witness will differ from that of the previous witness in some
4 material way? We don't have any indication of the nature of the evidence
5 of this witness except on extremely brief and broad outline.
6 MS. KRAVETZ: That is true, and that's why I'm raising it at this
7 stage is to alert Your Honours. We don't have more details about what he
8 would say about this meeting, but I -- we did not lead any evidence on
9 this specific meeting, and that is why we believe, if this was an issue
10 that the Defence intended to broach, they should have raised it during
11 the testimony of General DZ. This is not a matter that was addressed
12 specifically. And had it been raised during his testimony, it is our
13 view that General DZ may have provided a different version of accounts
14 than the one this witness will provide.
15 But I do agree with Your Honours that the summary is very brief,
16 and it may be that this witness's evidence will not be contradicting that
17 of General DZ. Just based on the summary alone, I'm not able to tell
19 JUDGE PARKER: So you're speaking essentially out of caution at
20 the moment?
21 MS. KRAVETZ: I am, Your Honours, that's why I'm raising it as a
22 matter of concern.
23 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
24 Mr. Djurdjic.
25 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I believe
1 there is no cause for concern. It was an omission, that is to say, the
2 statement -- this is a meeting between General Ojdanic and General DZ in
3 March 1999. This witness attended the meeting. I think it was in
4 November or December 1998. We have the actual date. But I can tell you
5 in advance that this is some seminar that was organised in March 1999
6 where Mr. Drewienkiewicz lectured. So the witness is mentioning it in
7 that context only. Ojdanic was not present at all at the seminar, so I
8 believe there will be no problems whatsoever in this regard.
9 As for what was said whether we had any questions for
10 General Drewienkiewicz at the time, believe me, the Defence did not even
11 know about that seminar in March 1999. And I believe that it doesn't
12 really matter. Drewienkiewicz was just present, and this is a mistake.
13 This is simply an error, the fact that it was called a meeting. It was a
15 So you will hear the witness and, if necessary, I'll even cut
16 that part short. But anyway, I think there's really no need for concern
17 or is there any need for General DZ to testify again.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Well, with that re-assurance, we'll
19 proceed. And we expect that the evidence of the witness will be no more
20 than you have indicated about that occasion, whether it be a seminar or a
22 Ms. Kravetz, you're ready to proceed? That could be useful,
23 couldn't it? It could be useful.
24 Mr. Djurdjic.
25 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I don't mind. I certainly don't
1 mind. Yes, Ms. Kravetz can proceed, yes.
2 JUDGE PARKER: You have a very generous spirit.
3 [The witness entered court]
4 JUDGE PARKER: Good morning.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Would you please read aloud the affirmation on the
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
9 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Please sit down.
11 Are the microphones on for the witness?
12 Yes, Mr. Djurdjic.
13 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
14 WITNESS: KOSTA NOVAKOVIC
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 Examination by Mr. Djurdjic:
17 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Novakovic, could you please give us your
18 personal details for the transcript.
19 A. I'm Kosta Novakovic. I was born on the 6th of December, 1949, in
20 Bijeljina, the municipality of Benkovac.
21 Q. Thank you. Before we start working, would you like me to call
22 you colonel or Mr. Novakovic?
23 A. Mr. Novakovic.
24 Q. Thank you. Mr. Novakovic, you and I speak the same language.
25 The purpose of these proceedings is to have your testimony properly
1 recorded in the transcript as interpreted. So I will try to speak at a
2 pace that is proper for having this job done as it should be, and I'm
3 kindly asking you to do the same. The easiest way of doing it is to wait
4 for me to finish my question and to finish -- and to see that the
5 transcript has finished recording my question, and then you start
7 Mr. Novakovic, can you tell us what your profession is today?
8 A. I'm a retiree. I used to be a military officer.
9 Q. Thank you. In which army did you serve at your point of
11 A. I retired from the Army of Yugoslavia and I held the rank of
13 Q. Thank you. What is your education, Mr. Novakovic?
14 A. First I completed elementary school, then high school, then the
15 military academy, the higher military political school, post-graduate
16 studies. My master's degree was entitled the international legal status
17 of national minorities. And my doctorate was entitled national
18 minorities and defence in Yugoslavia, in the context of national
19 minorities, defence, and security of multi-ethnic countries, that is to
20 say that I hold a doctorate.
21 Q. Thank you. Can you tell us which positions you held in 1998 and
23 A. In 1998 and in 1999, I was an independent desk officer in the
24 first administration of the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia,
25 that's the operations administration. To be more specific, I headed the
1 desk for combat-readiness for the 2nd Army.
2 Q. Thank you. In addition to the position that you referred to just
3 now, during 1998 and 1999 did you have any other special duties?
4 A. Yes. Towards the end of 1998, specifically in the month of
5 October, on the basis of a special order of the Chief of General Staff of
6 the Army of Yugoslavia, I was appointed as member of a team for relations
7 between the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia with the missions of
8 the OSCE and NATO for verification in Kosovo and Metohija. I was
9 involved in that team from October 1998 until March 1999.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have document
12 D006-1479, and I would like to ask the Honourable Trial Chamber to allow
13 the witness to use the hard copy that has been prepared for him so that
14 we could proceed more efficiently.
15 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, indeed.
16 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Mr. Novakovic, this document is number 1 in your binder. It is a
18 document on the appointment of the VJ team for liaison with the OSCE and
19 NATO missions from the 22nd of October, 1998. It was an order by
20 General Momcilo Perisic.
21 Mr. Novakovic, can you tell us in relation to this document what
22 kind of a team composition is this, what were the tasks before this team?
23 A. This was an expert team. We can say it was an expert group or a
24 commission, that is to say that it consisted primarily of experts from
25 different fields, whose task was to prepare proposals, orders, analyses,
1 and yet again further orders, all with a view to making it possible to
2 allow the Kosovo Verification Mission to implement their tasks properly,
3 that is to say to make it possible for the representatives of NATO and
4 the OSCE to carry out their duties and responsibilities based on the
5 agreement with OSCE and NATO in the field of verification in
6 Kosovo and Metohija.
7 Q. Thank you. As for the composition of this team, what can you say
8 about that in terms of organisational units?
9 A. We see 13 people here, but it actually consisted of 15 persons.
10 We can see, if we look at the composition of the team, that the two top
11 people of the team were persons who held the rank of assistant
12 Chief of General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia. The team also
13 consisted of representatives of the first administration, specifically
14 Lazic is a border expert. Then also all the branches and services as
15 embodied in the General Staff, that is to say the ground forces, the air
16 force, and anti-aircraft defence sector, then the intelligence
17 administration, information and moral guidance, et cetera. You can see
18 that these were people who were professionals in their respective fields.
19 I wish to note that several people from this team had been
20 military attachés of Yugoslavia in various countries in the world and
21 that several people had experience in working with peacekeeping
22 organisations with UNPROFOR, KFOR, SFOR, et cetera. So these were
23 professionals. And you can also see what importance was attached to this
24 team on the basis of the fact that the Chief of General Staff appointed
25 two of his assistant chiefs, that is to say, General Obradovic, who was
1 the team leader; and General Panic, who was deputy team leader. Then
2 there was a secretary, it was Mr. Strunjac, but he was ill, so I often
3 stood in for him. So I took part in the work of this team even more
5 Q. Thank you. You've given us an exhaustive answer, but now I would
6 like to know, in relation to your basic duty, how did the fact that you
7 were appointed to this team affect your regular job?
8 A. At first we were all volunteers, if I can put it that way, on
9 this team. That is to say that this was an additional duty that we
10 discharged. So we carried out these duties and obligations in addition
11 to our regular duties. However, after the team was appointed, all of us
12 became busier and busier in relation to the team, and we did our regular
13 jobs less and less. So our colleagues took over our work in our
14 respective administrations. Later on, we were almost exclusively devoted
15 to the tasks entrusted to this team.
16 Q. Thank you. I see that this liaison team was supposed to liaise
17 with OSCE and NATO missions. Could you explain that to us. What was the
18 field of work of this team?
19 A. Yes. The team was called precisely that way, liaison with the
20 OSCE and NATO missions, because there were two basic agreements, that is
21 to say, there was one agreement that was called the agreement between the
22 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the OSCE mission that was signed by
23 Mr. Geremek, who was chairman-in-office in the OSCE at the time, and
24 Mr. Jovanovic, who was foreign minister of Yugoslavia at the time. Then
25 there was yet another agreement with the NATO mission that had been
1 signed by General Clark from NATO and Mr. Perisic, Chief of General Staff
2 of the Army of Yugoslavia. That is to say that there were two different
4 Q. Thank you. Did this team actually enforce both agreements?
5 A. Yes, and equally so, that is to say, we carried out both duties
6 in the same way.
7 Q. Thank you. Later on we will go back to this other agreement with
8 NATO, but I would like to ask you something else. How did this team
9 organise its work?
10 A. The team organised work round the clock, 24 hours a day; that is
11 to say non-stop. In the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia, we were
12 given separate premises, and it was fully technically equipped, I mean
13 our offices were. So we had the ability to communicate non-stop amongst
14 ourselves, then with our respective administrations, and most importantly
15 we had the possibility of communicating with the teams that existed in
16 the armies, corps, and even up to the level of liaison officers who were
17 in different garrisons in Kosovo and in the border battalions in
18 Kosovo and Metohija. We held daily meetings, and we also had these
19 briefings, that is to say, daily briefings where we analysed the
20 situation every day.
21 Q. Thank you. Now I would like to ask you for your comment
22 regarding paragraph 3 of this document. It is on page 2.
23 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we have page 2 both in B/C/S
24 and in English, please.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You mean where it says that the
1 liaison team shall draw up the instructions?
2 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Yes, yes.
4 A. Yes, we drew up these instructions on the work and organisation
5 of the team. In those instructions we --
6 Q. All right. Thank you very much. So in this way you were given
7 that task?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Did you adopt these instructions?
10 A. Yes, yes, yes. First the instructions and then the guide-lines
11 on that basis.
12 Q. Fine. We'll get to that.
13 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] But, Your Honours, could I please
14 tender this document first.
15 JUDGE PARKER: Before, I notice in the last paragraph - and it
16 repeats something earlier in the document - there's no mention of the
17 1st Army. Is that significant?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't think so because there was
19 no need for a team in the 1st Army because the 1st Army had its
20 headquarters in Belgrade, and it was not -- and the verification mission,
21 rather, was not engaged in the territory of the 1st Army.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. The document will be received.
23 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D00589, Your Honours.
24 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have document
1 Q. That is number 2 in your binder, Mr. Novakovic. What we have
2 here is a report dated the 2nd of March of the command of the 52nd --
3 57th Border Battalion sent to the liaison team of the Pristina Corps.
4 Mr. Novakovic, would that illustrate the implementation of these orders
5 in depth, the orders of the Chief of General Staff of the
6 22nd of October? Could you please explain a bit how this actually
7 functioned, the reporting that is?
8 A. Maybe we should have mentioned earlier that teams at the Army of
9 Yugoslavia in addition to this team in the General Staff had also, as the
10 President noticed, teams in the 2nd Army, 3rd Army, in the air force, and
11 anti-aircraft defence. Furthermore, in the 3rd Army the main team was in
12 the Pristina Corps, and liaison officers were practically in garrisons
13 that had their bases in brigade commands, Pristina, Djakovica, Urosevac,
14 and Pec, and in border battalions. And in the air force and
15 anti-aircraft defence, the teams were at corps level in the commands.
16 There was no team, for instance, in the 1st Army or in the navy. So that
17 was the system of liaison teams in depth. And since we had daily
18 communications and we also had certain obligation -- obligations towards
19 the OSCE and NATO missions, we needed to report to the missions; but in
20 the same way, liaison teams reported to us about the implementation of
21 tasks owed to the NATO and OSCE missions.
22 So here we see a report from the liaison officer from the
23 57th Border Battalion, and this report speaks about the visit of OSCE
24 representatives to his unit, or rather, the units of the
25 57th Border Battalion, the border units covered by that battalion.
1 Q. Let me just follow-up on the question posed by the President. In
2 this team that was organised, this team had to liaise with both NATO and
3 the OSCE verification mission. In view of this second agreement with
4 NATO, which strategic group was responsible for NATO?
5 A. Our team was responsible, but also the strategic group of the air
6 force and anti-aircraft defence. If you noticed, perhaps, I mentioned
7 that Mr. Marjanovic was part of our team, but otherwise he was chief of
8 administration for the air force and anti-aircraft defence in the
9 General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia. He is the officer who signed
10 the memorandum of understanding with NATO on the one hand and the air
11 force on the other hand.
12 Q. Is that the reason why there were no representatives of the
13 1st Army on this team?
14 A. Yes, they were not needed, as the navy was not needed on the
16 Q. Mr. Novakovic, although here we are already in March, we see that
17 a delegation had arrived from the Kosovo Verification Mission to the
18 border area. Could you give me your brief comment on the second and
19 third paragraphs of the report. It begins with:
20 "I was told they are able to provide ..." in the end of the third
22 A. I'd like to mention that in these communications with the
23 missions there were almost no problems with the NATO mission, and there
24 were no major problems with the verification of the situation at the
25 border, either on the border itself or behind the lines of the border.
1 There were certain problems concerning entry and exit. It was said that
2 a seven-day plan should be submitted, because the resolution itself says
3 that border units may be inspected at request and the request had to come
4 from the verification mission. So the verification mission didn't have
5 to make any major effort; it simply had to notify its intention to visit.
6 However, nobody was able to move around there without permission, not
7 even an officer of the VJ. You had to notify your arrival primarily for
8 security reasons. You had to be protected. Notification could be
9 24 hours in advance, but even shorter in order to organise access, as it
10 says here.
11 Q. And what does the third paragraph say about the position of the
13 A. There were no particular issues concerning the border, and they
14 did not point out any problems.
15 Q. Please look at the last sentence.
16 A. They had no questions regarding the border or -- is that what you
18 Q. No, the next one.
19 A. The meeting was also attended by Major Slobodan Spasic --
20 Q. No, no. This paragraph that begins with:
21 "Their attention was drawn ..."
22 A. Yes, their attention was drawn --
23 Q. You don't have to read aloud. Just comment on the last part of
24 that sentence.
25 A. Yes, the representative of mission said that in future all visits
1 would be announced, like all other entries to the border belt. He agreed
2 with the liaison officer, and I believe that after that there were no
3 further problems.
4 Q. Now please look at the last paragraph. "On return" or "after
5 returning ..." It's the fifth line from the bottom.
6 A. Yes, there were quite a few problems on this issue. When they
7 returned, another team was requested. I have to tell you that at one
8 point when the mission was well established, in five regional centres
9 they were able to have five different teams, five different patrols. So
10 if it's five times 50, that meant 250 liaison officers were needed at any
11 one time to follow the work of the verification mission. And we always
12 thought that this activity should be co-ordinated because these liaison
13 officers couldn't keep up and we didn't have many of these people who
14 were able to follow-up on the work of the mission. There were delays,
15 there were misunderstandings that shouldn't have occurred.
16 Q. Thank you very much.
17 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Can I tender this document now?
18 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
19 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the document has
20 already been admitted as Exhibit D00577.
21 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
22 I thank the interpreter.
23 Q. Mr. Novakovic, you heard their comment. You need to speak more
24 slowly, and I will try to.
25 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Now, can I ask for D006-1434.
1 Q. Your number 3, Mr. Novakovic. This is a regular weekly report of
2 the command of the 3rd Army in its liaison team with both missions dated
3 24 December, 1999 [sic], addressed to the General Staff of the Army of
5 Mr. Novakovic, did you receive such reports, and how did you
6 proceed after receiving them?
7 A. Yes, we in the team -- on the team of the General Staff received
8 such weekly reports regularly, and we also regularly received daily
9 reports. On the basis of these reports, specifically this weekly one,
10 and based on reports made available by the command of the air force and
11 anti-aircraft defence, we, the team members, wrote up our own weekly
12 report. And through the federal government's commission, that report
13 would be submitted to the NATO and OSCE mission every week.
14 Q. Thank you. We see it's a very voluminous report.
15 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I'd like to see page 4 in English
16 and page 5 in B/C/S.
17 Q. Could you comment on this paragraph that begins with the words
18 "On the same day ..."
19 JUDGE PARKER: Could I mention, Mr. Djurdjic, page 14, line 24,
20 you quoted the date as the 24th of December, 1999. If you look at the
21 original and look at the content of the document, I think clearly the
22 date was 24th of December, 1998.
23 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] As usual, you're right,
24 Your Honour. I was reading too fast and I was told to slow down. But
25 the document is from the 24th December, 1998. But even more precisely it
1 says regular weekly report from the period of the 18th until
2 24th December. Thank you.
3 Q. Mr. Novakovic, we said page 5. This paragraph that begins with
4 the words "On the same day ..."
5 A. Yes, this report speaks a lot about contacts on that day and
6 other days, so with the representatives of the two missions. And we see
7 in this paragraph that the gentleman from the mission, in this case
8 probably members of KDOM, had not been announced. And they were told to
9 speak to the liaison officer first and try to resolve their problem.
10 Q. Thank you. Whose representative was it? It's in the second
12 A. Someone from the British embassy.
13 Q. No, a member of the mission of --
14 A. OSCE.
15 Q. Yes, yes.
16 A. Yes, but he was temporary attaché with the British embassy, and
17 by that time the KDOM was supposed to integrate with the mission. In any
18 case, he was told what he needed to do because there were no liaison
19 officers around and nobody could escort him.
20 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Can we now see page 6, that's 5 in
22 I'd like you to look at -- I can't see it in English and I can't
23 see the B/C/S either. Page 5 in English, further down, please. Towards
24 the bottom. That's the Serbian. Can we now see the same thing in
25 English. No, I still can't see it. It's section 2, page 5, in English.
1 That's just above subheading "proposals" I think.
2 Q. Mr. Novakovic, did you have a look at this paragraph?
3 A. Which one?
4 Q. The one that begins with:
5 "On 24 December ..."
6 A. Yes, yes.
7 Q. Can you give us your comment regarding the procedure of
9 A. Yes, there were problems about this and they were not isolated
10 problems. They cropped up quite often. Namely, liaison officers
11 sometimes insisted on certain other issues and there were problems when
12 they were supposed to go out into the field to verify an incident. I
13 don't mean to say that the main task of the mission was the verification
14 of incidents and cease-fires. We see here that the member of this team
15 did not go out into the field to verify, and that incident had not been
16 verified at that time. Later, perhaps, but not at this time.
17 Q. And what was our position concerning the verification of
18 cease-fire, and what did we propose, if anything?
19 A. We were always pushing the idea - and I think we were
20 right - that a protocol, an aide-memoire, should be drawn up and that the
21 principle should be followed that each incident should be followed by
22 writing up a protocol to be signed by both sides so that later there
23 would be no manipulation with reports. Because it sometimes happened
24 that everyone is in agreement while they are in the field and they note
25 the same situation, both the mission and the VJ representatives, but as
1 the report went further up, we realised that the ultimate report looked
2 quite differently. So by the time the report was finalised by the
3 mission, it was quite different. That's why we insisted on that.
4 Q. Thank you. We see that the Yugoslav Army had formed a team.
5 Could you tell us something, if you know, that at the level of the
6 country, the FRY, a team was also set up for relations with the KVM, and
7 what was the relation between these two teams?
8 A. Yes, I'm familiar with that. As I noted at the beginning, I know
9 that at the level of the federal state there was a commission, and that
10 commission was the main body in Yugoslavia in terms of co-operation with
11 the OSCE and NATO missions. At the head of this commission was the vice
12 premier in the federal government, I think it was Mr. Sainovic. And the
13 commission comprised a number of ministers. But what was important for
14 us from the army was that Defence minister and the Chief of General Staff
15 were, by virtue of their positions, also members of this commission.
16 Specifically, during 1998, it was General Perisic. And once
17 General Ojdanic was appointed Chief of General Staff, he was a member of
18 that team, that is to say, the commission. However, in both cases and
19 throughout the time during which the commission existed, they were
20 replaced by General Milorad Obradovic in the commission. He was an
21 assistant to the Chief of General Staff, and for us it was important that
22 he was heading the team of the Yugoslav Army General Staff. So through
23 our head we had within the team a direct liaison and contacts with the
24 Federal Commission. So to cut a long story short, in addition to the
25 Federal Commission I know that there were also federal bodies, working
1 groups, within the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the
2 Federal Ministry of the Interior, that is to say, within the police.
3 Q. Thank you. Mr. Novakovic, could you tell us what were the legal
4 documents on the basis of which the team of the Yugoslav Army worked?
5 A. The Yugoslav Army team was working on the basis of the order of
6 the Chief of General Staff. Actually, when we were discussing this team
7 and the commission a while ago, what was our relation? The relation was
8 professional, and the commission was not superior to our team. The team
9 was based within the General Staff. And even though we had our own team
10 leader, our main superior was always the Chief of General Staff. This is
11 why I emphasise that we were working on the orders of the Chief of the
12 General Staff.
13 However, it is important that these orders followed from the
14 obligations, that is to say, the agreement, with the OSCE mission, the
15 agreement with the NATO mission, the agreement of -- about subregional
16 control of weapons, as well as documents concerning diplomatic relations
17 and so on. I cannot remember the specific names now.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please see P1074. And
20 before that, I tender exhibit which was already in evidence, D006-1434.
21 JUDGE PARKER: That is the report of the 24th of December, 1998.
22 That will be received.
23 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00590.
24 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Mr. Novakovic, in your binder under tab 4, it's P1074, it is
1 Resolution 1160 dating March 1998, a resolution of the
2 UN Security Council. So, Mr. Novakovic, it is page 3 in both versions,
3 and let us focus on item 10 in the end of it. Could you please comment
4 on the end of this item, 10, and tell us, as for your team and the
5 relations with the missions, what did this mean?
6 A. Yes, when I said what were the documents on the basis of which we
7 were working, I had forgotten to note that our orders were also drawn up,
8 of course, on the basis of all resolutions of UN Security Council,
9 beginning with 1160, 1199, and all the others that followed. And as for
10 this item 10 here, we can see that the resolution stresses the importance
11 of the implementation of the agreement on subregional arms control,
12 signed in Florence. We can see the year as well. This is important
13 because the lack of understanding of this issue caused some problems with
14 the representatives of the KVM because apart from the fact that they were
15 not in charge of that, they very often insisted that they should
16 implement the control from this agreement. And we can see that somebody
17 else was in charge of implementing the agreement as it was until now.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please get D469 on the
20 screen. This is the agreement on subregional arms control signed in
21 Florence in 1996.
22 Q. That is number 5 in your binder, Mr. Novakovic. And the
23 resolution refers to this agreement and its implementation. And what was
24 the substance of this agreement on control in terms of the control
1 A. The substance was that all the interested countries, that is to
2 say, the countries of the former Yugoslavia, could at any given time
3 request to examine the situation as regards the weapons, I think
4 everything over the calibre 12.7 millimetres, that is to say, heavy
5 weapons. And I have to stress that there were never any problems in
6 connection with this. Even on one occasion at a meeting that I attended
7 with the Chief of General Staff when he received Mr. Drewienkiewicz who
8 was the deputy of the head of the mission, Mr. Drewienkiewicz expressed
9 himself in very positive terms about the implementation of the
10 obligations following from the agreement.
11 Q. Thank you. I'm interested in the control procedures which were
12 set out in this agreement. And the control was implemented in accordance
13 with this agreement?
14 A. Yes, it was implemented, and there were no problems at all as I
15 said. And this procedure was continued.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please see D160.
18 Q. It's number 6 in your binder, Mr. Novakovic. This is
19 Resolution 1199, dated 23rd of September, 1998, a
20 Security Council Resolution. And if we could please see what it says
21 under item 1 on page 2, if you could please comment on what was requested
22 by the UN Security Council in this resolution.
23 A. We can see here that the first request was that all groups and
24 individuals immediately cease hostilities. So the cease-fire was the
25 basic task of the Kosovo Verification Mission, to note that there was a
1 cease-fire and also to record any incidents.
2 Q. Thank you.
3 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we now please see the next
4 page of this document and look at item 4(b).
5 Q. If you could please comment on that.
6 A. Yes. I have to say that there were different opinions about how
7 to interpret this item, and that was precisely where some problems arose
8 and there were even tensions, especially this issue including access and
9 complete freedom of movement of such monitors to, from, and within
10 Kosovo, unimpeded, et cetera, et cetera, there were no problems.
11 However, the mission representatives continually interpreted this item as
12 if it meant accessing military facilities and barracks. And I have to
13 say this was, throughout the period of our co-operation, one of the major
15 We believed that this did not automatically mean that they were
16 at liberty to enter any military facility or barracks, because finally
17 there were no incidents there that needed to be verified. And we have
18 seen that the subregional arms control was in charge of controlling all
19 the arms, and the OSCE was provided with lists of weapons in every
20 period, annually. We also provided the Kosovo Verification Mission with
21 that. But to cut the long story short, throughout this period I think
22 that the only real tension was caused by this.
23 Q. Thank you. We shall revisit this issue later on.
24 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we now see the Exhibit P835.
25 Q. And that's tab 7 in your binder, Mr. Novakovic. This is the
1 agreement on the OSCE Kosovo Verification Mission signed by Mr. Geremek
2 as the OSCE chairman and Mr. Zivadin Jovanovic as the foreign minister of
3 FRY on the 16th of October, 1998.
4 Mr. Novakovic, we have already said, but let us look at
5 Roman numeral I, item 1, could you just briefly tell us what is envisaged
7 A. The verification mission will be established in accordance with
8 the UN Security Council Resolution, and the FRY agreed to that.
9 Q. Thank you. You don't have to say anything further. Now I'm
10 interested in item 5, and what is the information you have about the
11 implementation of this particular item?
12 A. Yes. First there was an observation mission, that was the KDOM,
13 and it worked on behalf of the OSCE mission. But once the verification
14 mission was fully established, then the KDOM would be absorbed by it. I
15 think it is well-known that the representatives of KDOM were actually
16 representatives of NATO countries and some other countries who were
17 mostly military attachés and their assistants and deputies. Some
18 countries even had 30 or 40 and at the end even 120 representatives. And
19 I must say at the beginning that they noted the situation, they had
20 access to everything; but I know that even after the mission was
21 established, some of them remained outside of the mission. They were not
22 members of it.
23 Q. Thank you. And as for item 6?
24 A. Yes, it was noted that the FRY government guaranteed safety and
25 security, and I think that there were no problems regarding this issue.
1 But we shall see that there were some problems when individual members or
2 even top figures within the mission expressed concern, but I think that
3 in military terms this would be called stoking up the situation. I think
4 that there were no problems -- not that I think. I know that there were
5 no problems in terms of incidents caused by FRY representatives with
6 mission representatives. Of course there were some minor incidents
7 because not everything is ideal.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] If we could please have a look at
10 the Roman numeral II on the next page of the document you have in front
11 of you. And if we could see, again, item 1 in that section.
12 Q. So, Mr. Novakovic, did you ever receive reports of the
13 Kosovo Verification Mission during their stay in the FRY?
14 A. No, that was agreed on, but really we had no feedback. That is
15 to say, we did not receive any reports.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have a look at
18 section beginning with the Roman numeral III and item number 1. It's on
19 the same page in English. If we could just scroll down, please. It is
20 at the bottom of the page, the last item.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I see that. It is emphasised
22 here, because it was the most important task, that the mission would
23 travel throughout Kosovo and verify whether all the parties were
24 honouring the cease-fire, that it would request reports on the
25 cease-fire, and again the issue of the freedom of movement and access to
1 various places.
2 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Mr. Novakovic, was the emphasise of the mission to verify the
4 cease-fire considering the reports that you received, and was freedom of
5 movement and freedom of access something that was allowed to them in
6 accordance with this agreement?
7 A. I think that it was not implemented that way. We can see and
8 note that the main task was to record cease-fire -- now I cannot say that
9 it was not the main task, but that was not always the focus of their
10 activities, as I said. Very often they would rather focus on facilities,
11 access to facilities, and that was something they kept insisting on. And
12 as for freedom of movement, they had absolute freedom of movement except
13 for entry to barracks, even though concessions were made even in that
14 sense. According to some agreements the representatives of the mission
15 were allowed to enter barracks without any major problems.
16 Q. Thank you. Do you know, considering the differing
17 interpretations of the provisions of the agreement, which are obvious
18 from what you said, were there any proposals that were sent to the
19 mission about how to overcome this?
20 A. Well, our people at the lower levels in the teams of various
21 armies and corps, and even from our main team and from the
22 Federal Commission, had some proposals. They would say, Well, gentlemen,
23 please could we use the diplomatic channels and propose to resolve this
24 issue, specifically this issue of entry to the barracks?
25 However, there was no understanding on the part of the mission
1 representatives because General Drewienkiewicz would always say, No, this
2 issue is resolved for us. We can enter any barracks whenever we want to.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Now I'd like to have a look at the
5 next page, please --, or rather, we already do have that page in English,
6 but could we just see the right page in B/C/S.
7 Q. So tell me, did the FRY honour its obligation to send weekly
9 A. Yes, absolutely. We already commented on that in relation to
10 another document a few minutes ago. We received reports primarily from
11 the team from the 3rd Army and also from the air force and anti-aircraft
12 defence. We compiled the report. I think it was on Tuesday usually.
13 And we sent our report to the federal government, and the federal
14 government sent it to the Kosovo Verification Mission.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we now look at paragraph 4,
18 Q. Tell us, is that the part of the agreement that you talked about
19 when you spoke about the border belt? So it is your page 3, number 4.
20 A. Yes. So the mission shall maintain liaison with FRY authorities
21 concerning border control activities and movements by units with border
22 control responsibilities through areas of Kosovo away from the border.
23 So these are in-depth security units. And when invited by the FRY
24 authorities and upon its request, the verification mission will visit
25 border control units and accompany them as they perform their normal
1 border control roles, so there was no problem whatsoever. They could
2 accompany them when they were exercising control at the state border.
3 Q. Thank you. But we see here that what was envisaged was to act
4 upon their request?
5 A. Yes, absolutely, I said that.
6 Q. Let us translate this into practical terms. To whom were they
7 supposed to submit such a request?
8 A. It wasn't a written request, specific application of any kind.
9 They were just supposed to tell the liaison officer, We will come
10 tomorrow; we will come within the next five days; we will come in a
11 month's time.
12 Quite simply, we were so flexible that we -- I mean, I say "we,"
13 but I mean that it was people on the ground. It was easier to work that
14 way, quite simply to announce that during the next few days, for
15 instance, the members of the mission will be on the ground. Because in
16 that area, in that belt, no one was allowed to move about except for the
17 population living there. Our officers could not move there without
18 permission either.
19 Q. In practice, what did KVM members do in relation to this
21 A. In practice, I don't know why this was the case, but often there
22 were situations when they would come unannounced and then they wanted to
23 intervene immediately. They said that they didn't have enough time.
24 They wanted to engage in verifications straightaway. But the problem was
25 that we did not have enough liaison officers, especially not in the first
2 Let me try to explain this in two specific sentences: This
3 liaison officer could have been, say, a commander of a border company,
4 and he could have been at a particular border post, X, for instance. And
5 then they, the verifiers, appear at border post Y. So there can be, say,
6 two hours required for him to get from border post X to border post Y. I
7 am not very familiar with the border, but the people who are very
8 knowledgeable know that it wasn't all that readily accessible and it
9 wasn't really easy to negotiate these difficult areas.
10 Also, it was a question related to the personal security and
11 safety of the verifiers. They were supposed to be escorted and guarded
12 while touring the border area. We saw that our country did take upon
13 itself to provide security for the verifiers.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I'd like us to move on to the next
16 page, please, Roman numeral IV, number 2.
17 Q. This agreement envisaged the 2.000 unarmed verifiers from OSCE
18 member countries will be there.
19 Mr. Novakovic, to the best of your knowledge, these unarmed
20 verifiers, what were they, professionally?
21 A. I have to say that first and foremost the OSCE mission was
22 supposed to be a civilian mission. As for the verifiers, over
23 90 per cent of them were officers. We knew some of these people from
24 contacts that we had in the territory of the former Yugoslavia. Suffice
25 it to say that the deputy chief of mission was a general, and he
1 introduced himself that way in public. Then there were a few other
2 generals and colonels and officers at different levels. So practically
3 this was a civilian mission consisting of professional soldiers, of
4 military officers.
5 Q. Thank you. As a team, were you aware of the problems related to
6 the personal weapons of the members of the KVM?
7 A. Well, not directly, but there was some information to the effect
8 that they asked to use weapons. But it was clearly stated here that they
9 were supposed to be unarmed, so we could not accept that. I repeat that
10 our country had the obligation to protect them.
11 Q. Thank you. Did you know, perhaps, of some requests pertaining to
12 helicopters, requests that were made to the organs for co-operation with
14 A. Helicopters were mentioned, I think, for medical purposes. And
15 we, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, made an offer. We did not have
16 enough helicopters. The military medical academy and our medical service
17 in general could have handled that obligation on their own too. And in
18 the agreement there was no mention of the use of any helicopters that
19 were not owned by the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we now have document P837,
23 Q. It's number 8 for you, Mr. Novakovic. This is a record from a
24 meeting held on the 25th of October, 1998, that was signed by
25 Mr. Nikola Sainovic, General Vlastimir Djordjevic, General Klaus Naumann,
1 and General Wesley Clark. I would like to ask you, Mr. Novakovic, in
2 relation to paragraph 4 --
3 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] So could we actually have the next
4 page, please, if possible in both versions.
5 Q. Have you seen it, Mr. Novakovic?
6 A. Yes, I looked at paragraph 4 and --
7 Q. Could you now look at paragraph 7.
8 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] We have to move on to the next
9 page in both versions.
10 Q. Mr. Novakovic, we see here that the FRY, the Federal
11 Republic of Yugoslavia, that is to say, the federal government and the
12 republican governments, took upon themselves an obligation that they
13 would meet by 1200 hours on the 27th of October, 1998, and they would
14 notify KDOM thereof. And by 1200 hours on the 29th of October, they will
15 be informed about the new structures and numbers. I would be interested
16 in hearing whether we met these obligations?
17 A. Yes, I can say that that is the case. After these
18 agreements - and we do know what preceded this agreement - the FRY met
19 these requests and acted in accordance with paragraph 7. That is to say
20 that the units were out of Kosovo and Metohija except for these groups as
21 stated here.
22 Q. Thank you. We did not go into the political and security
23 situation in the beginning of October 1998, but I would like to ask you
24 about the consequences if obligations from the agreement were not met, in
25 view of the preceding situation that is.
1 A. At that time, there was a looming danger of NATO bombing, and
2 that threat unfortunately was materialised several months later.
3 Q. Thank you. Could you please look at paragraph 5 now, please.
4 That states the units that were allowed to stay outside the border belt.
5 I would like to know whether these -- this agreement and these
6 obligations that were taken forbade the training activities of the units
7 of the Army of Yugoslavia?
8 A. No. We see that as far as these three units are concerned, there
9 weren't any serious problems in relation to verification. Sometimes the
10 question of personnel levels was raised, but I think it was a minor
11 issue, not really noteworthy. We saw in the agreement and in our
12 reporting obligations that we were supposed to include in our reports the
13 entry of units into Kosovo and Metohija, their departure from Kosovo and
14 Metohija, and their movement within the boundary of Kosovo and Metohija.
15 That is to say, if a unit moved about outside Kosovo and Metohija, that
16 was possibly for supplies or some intervention if a unit had been
18 For the most part, units moved about for training purposes. So
19 training was not forbid, even more so because very often units were
20 supposed to be replaced. Units could stay in Kosovo for three months
21 after completing training. I'm referring to soldiers. So a group of
22 soldiers needs to be brought into Kosovo, then returned, and the ones who
23 did come in were young soldiers, relatively young, who had just completed
24 their training. So they were supposed to receive additional training
25 there in the field where they were supposed to be. So I emphasise that
1 the training of soldiers and officers was allowed.
2 Q. Thank you. Roman numeral III
3 you give us your comment on that. How did the commission apply this part
4 of the agreement?
5 A. Yes. It was stated very clearly that the units of the
6 Army of Yugoslavia, in accordance with the right to self-defence,
7 retained the right to respond adequately and proportionately. The
8 question of this proportionate response, very often in theory and in
9 practice there is reference to excessive use of force in case of
10 terrorist actions. It is hard to define that particular issue, whether
11 the commander at a given point in time can assess on the spot which force
12 he is going to use to respond. That's a different matter altogether.
13 The important thing is that at a given point in time a unit of the
14 Army of Yugoslavia had the right to respond adequately and
15 proportionately to any form of terrorist activity or a violation of law
16 that could jeopardise lives and safety.
17 Q. Thank you.
18 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have
19 65 ter document 00454. It's a Prosecution document.
20 Q. It is tab 9 in your binder. Mr. Novakovic, this is an agreement
21 between NATO and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. You told us that
22 your team was tasked with co-operating with this NATO mission as well on
23 the basis of the decision that we've already seen. So that is the
24 agreement of the 15th of October, 1998. Tell me, to the best of your
25 knowledge, how was this agreement carried out?
1 A. This agreement was carried out practically without any problems
2 whatsoever. Perhaps I can put it this way: There were three important
3 tasks there, that is to say, verification and requests to exercise
4 control over the air-space above Kosovo and Metohija and the joint zone
5 of security which is 25 kilometres away from the so-called administrative
6 border of Kosovo and Metohija.
7 The second group of tasks was the control of integrated systems
8 of air defence, that is to say, the air defences that were in Kosovo and
9 Metohija were grouped in particular locations, garrisons, so that they
10 could be under control. And the third group of tasks on the basis of
11 this agreement related to command over this air-space control. And this
12 command was carried out from two centres, namely, the centre at the
13 command of the air force and air defence of the Army of Yugoslavia,
14 specifically in Zemun, and there were three NATO officers present at that
15 centre. The other centre was the centre of the Joint Command, which I
16 cannot remember its exact name right now. That was in Vicenza in Italy,
17 and three air force officers of the Army of Yugoslavia were present
19 Q. Thank you. This was military verification; right?
20 A. Yes, military verification.
21 Q. You said there were no problems, but did the
22 Kosovo Verification Mission, to the best of your knowledge, attempt to
23 exercise the kind of control regulated by this agreement that we're
24 looking at now?
25 A. Yes, there were a number of such attempts, and they created
1 problems because we thought they shouldn't be doing that, considering
2 that the issue had been quite adequately resolved by our agreement with
3 NATO. And that's how representatives of the mission were able to get
4 information from their colleagues in NATO at any time. That's one thing.
5 And second, they were not in charge of controlling these systems,
6 although we did, as a sign of goodwill and co-operation, we did allow
7 them a couple of times to look even at these systems.
8 Q. Do you know what happened with these systems that were reviewed
9 by the Kosovo Verification Mission during the aggression?
10 A. Well, I can give you some indicators. It speaks volumes that
11 these systems were destroyed among the first at the beginning of the
13 Q. Thank you.
14 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Can I tender this document now,
15 Your Honours?
16 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
17 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00591.
18 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I believe it's time
19 for the break.
20 JUDGE PARKER: We will have now the first break and resume at
22 --- Recess taken at 10.32 a.m.
23 --- On resuming at 11.04 a.m.
24 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Djurdjic.
25 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
1 Q. Mr. Novakovic, just for the record, we need to clear up certain
2 things. It is -- you are recorded as saying:
3 "We did not have ... helicopters."
4 And then you spoke about helicopters by the military medical
5 academy that were offered.
6 A. No. I said that the agreement did not mention any helicopters in
7 relation to the mission, but we had helicopters. And since medical
8 issues were being discussed, I said that the military medical academy
9 with its teams could provide medical services and the air force had
10 helicopters, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was able to deal with the
11 issue quite well.
12 Q. Thank you. Did the mission accept this offer made by the FRY
13 with regard to the use of its helicopters?
14 A. No, they did not.
15 Q. You said the agreement did not envisage any helicopters for the
16 civilian verification mission, but were any steps taken to amend the
17 agreement by the Kosovo Verification Mission, to the best of your
19 A. Not that I know of. They did not propose any such thing.
20 Q. Mr. Novakovic, could you now move to document in tab 11.
21 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] And may I ask for D006-1447.
22 Q. Let me ask you first, this team of the General Staff of the VJ
23 for the implementation of agreements with NATO and the OSCE, did it
24 produce any documents so that this could be implemented on lower levels
25 of the VJ?
1 A. Yes. I've already mentioned we made the basic document called
2 instructions. We also made one instruction, one draft protocol, and a
3 draft aide-memoire. We also produced a draft joint protocol and a couple
4 of more suggestions. If teams at lower levels required anything from us,
5 we made it available to them either verbally or in writing.
6 Q. Bearing in mind all your activities and the documents we've just
7 mentioned as being basic documents, how did the VJ view its co-operation
8 with the KVM?
9 A. I believe that from the outset we had a relationship with NATO
10 and the KVM that we took very seriously, and you will see that in our
11 engagement of human resources and in the fact that we concentrated on our
12 jobs related to the team at the detriment of our regular jobs and that we
13 created teams at lower levels of the VJ. And we made every effort to
14 enable the best possible implementation of our agreements with NATO and
15 the OSCE. To sum up, we did our best to enable the verification mission
16 to do its job.
17 Q. Thank you.
18 We have before us a document called: Summary of obligations,
19 tasks, implementation, and methodology of work ensuing from the agreement
20 on the OSCE Kosmet Verification Mission, dated 16 October 1998. It was
21 produced at the office of the federal minister of foreign affairs. It's
22 your tab 11. Have you found it?
23 A. Yes, yes.
24 Q. What can you say about this document? What were the VJ's
1 A. This document issues a number of tasks to all the parties
2 involved in the agreement with the mission. We see here the Federal
3 Foreign Ministry, the Federal Ministry of the Interior, the Republic
4 Ministry of the Interior, the Army of Yugoslavia also has certain
5 obligations, as does the Ministry for Telecommunications, the
6 Federal Ministry for Traffic and Transport, the Yugoslav Red Cross, and
7 the Commission for Refugees. And then we have a table which states a
8 number of tasks, indicating who is responsible --
9 Q. Just a moment.
10 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Can we see the next page in
11 English and in B/C/S.
12 Q. Please go on, Mr. Novakovic.
13 A. One task for the Army of Yugoslavia is to guarantee the security
14 and safety of the OSCE mission, to co-operate in the mission's evacuation
15 in case of emergency, to co-ordinate and provide support to the
16 authorities and members of the mission, to provide medical services
17 through the military medical academy.
18 Q. Just a moment.
19 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I believe we can move on to the
20 next page.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Then the Army of Yugoslavia is
22 under obligation to provide access to the airport in Belgrade, to produce
23 reports on the situation and the movement of forces, to maintain contacts
24 regarding the inspection of units.
25 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Thank you, Mr. Novakovic.
2 A. All these are specific tasks that were elaborated later in
3 separate documents. Here they are just listed.
4 Q. Can you explain the relationship of this team for liaison with
5 NATO and OSCE and the other agencies listed here. What were their links
6 like in practice?
7 A. As far as VJ is concerned, we had a vertical system of
8 communication. At the top was the General Staff of the
9 Army of Yugoslavia, lower come teams of the armies --
10 Q. No, I mean with other agencies.
11 A. We did the co-ordination of this co-operation, but we were not
12 subordinated in relation to the Federal Commission. All these other
13 agencies, such as ministries, had horizontal links. They had parallel
14 Working Groups.
15 Q. What about the teams at lower levels of the VJ, did they have
16 co-ordination points in Pristina in order to co-operate with similar
17 bases of other authorities?
18 A. Just as we had a team in the VJ, they had appropriate
19 communications with their own agencies at higher levels. Teams in armies
20 and at corps level also had horizontal links with appropriate authorities
21 on the ground. There was a co-ordination body specifically in Pristina,
22 and they had direct links with that body.
23 Q. Thank you very much.
24 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I tender this document.
25 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.
1 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D00592, Your Honours.
2 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Mr. Novakovic, please go back now to tab 10.
4 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] And I kindly request document
6 Q. This is an instruction on the relations between the VJ on the one
7 hand and OSCE and NATO missions on the other hand for verification in
8 Kosovo and Metohija dated 20th October, 1998, adopted by the
9 Chief of the General Staff of the VJ, Lieutenant-General Momcilo Perisic.
10 Can you tell us, Mr. Novakovic, about the nature of this
11 document, how it came to be, and how it was implemented as far as the VJ
12 is concerned?
13 A. This is an instruction, a fundamental document, that instructs
14 all the other parties involved, including our team, which issues they
15 will be dealing with. First of all, there are general provisions
16 invoking the documents that underlie this co-operation, such as the
17 resolutions and agreements. It also says that it does not affect our
18 sovereignty, that the mission has the approval of the
19 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, that enjoys -- it enjoys diplomatic
20 immunity --
21 Q. Just a moment. Look at para 2. I would like your comment on the
22 last sentence in para 2:
23 "Armed attacks against individuals and installations of the VJ,
24 the combat rules of engagement ..."
25 A. We have already seen the right of self-defence and response to
1 terrorist attacks in one of the basic documents. We believed that this
2 should also be included in this basic document, and it is indeed included
3 in this first chapter. We attached special importance to it, and we
4 wanted it in the first chapter. And we also wanted to invoke combat
6 Q. Is this also envisaged by the Rules of Service of the
7 Army of Yugoslavia?
8 A. Primarily combat rules, rules of engagement. But also in the
9 laws and the constitution of the FRY and the constitutions of some other
10 countries in that period, the army's defined, saying the army is to
11 protect sovereignty, territorial integrity, and the constitutional order.
12 So the protection of the constitutional order is one of the duties of the
13 army. It was written on the Law on Defence and the Law on the
14 Army of Yugoslavia.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 A. If I may continue, I won't be too long. In the second part, the
17 document speaks of the duties of the mission, the co-operation at the
18 level of the 3rd Army and the command of the air force, the team in
19 Vicenza is mentioned. It elaborates co-operation at the level of the
20 anti-aircraft defence and mentions the team at the level of the
21 Pristina Corps and the level of garrisons. It also mentions liaison
22 officers and auxiliary personnel.
23 Q. About liaison officers, what kind of profile was required? What
24 were the duties of liaison officers at the beginning, and how did they
25 develop over time?
1 A. There is a great difference between the initial period and later
2 periods. These people were taken from unit commands, such as battalions
3 and brigades and border battalions. Some of these were officers or
4 commanding officers who had what was needed, such as basic knowledge of
5 foreign language. But as time went on, we found other people who had a
6 more perfect command of English. And in the last stage, when we were
7 preparing a workshop, we brought in a group of 20 men whose exclusive
8 task was to be liaison officers. They had good English; they were
9 experienced; and they were able to work in shifts, 24 hour/7 and be at
10 the disposal of the Army of Yugoslavia.
11 Q. If I understood you correctly, at this last stage you had liaison
12 officers who had no other job?
13 A. Yes, it was their only duty. They had been brought in from other
14 organisational units of the General Staff, and they were given temporary
15 appointments as liaison officers. But we also kept on the previous
16 liaison officers. So the number of liaison people increased.
17 Q. Thank you.
18 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please turn to page 6
19 now, page 6 in both versions, please. That's in chapter 2 under (a).
20 Q. Mr. Novakovic, it says:
21 "By submitting reports to the OSCE verification missions ..."
22 Did your team members fulfil this obligation, and how did they do
24 A. Yes, I think I have noted this twice already, that on receiving
25 reports from the teams, primarily from the 3rd Army, the air force, and
1 anti-aircraft defence, we would collate these reports and then we would
2 send them to the mission through the Federal Commission once a week.
3 Q. Thank you. And under (g)?
4 A. You mean this, following the mission?
5 Q. Yes, yes.
6 A. You can see here that we fulfilled all the elementary duties from
7 the agreements with the missions of OSCE and NATO and the resolutions.
8 This is a document that was written at the beginning, so some things are
9 repeated, but we were maybe too extensive in our descriptions. But we
10 say here that we would escort the representatives from the OSCE mission
11 during their movements in the border zone, during their visits of border
13 Q. Thank you. I see here that in spite of such detailed
14 instructions, in the attachment that you also submitted all the basic
15 documents which obliged the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, all the
16 resolutions and the agreements that we have discussed, so that they could
17 directly read these documents, those who used the instructions?
18 A. Yes, we did that. And all our associates, I mean, all the teams
19 and liaison officers were sent all the documents as well as all other
20 guide-lines so that we would educate them as well as possible. And I
21 should say that, on one occasion, we made a study in which we included
22 all the documents that we mentioned as well as others. And on one
23 occasion when there was a meeting of the Chief of General Staff, and I
24 think General Perisic was the chief at the time, we gave this study, it
25 was a whole book, to General Clark.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I tender this document into
4 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00593.
6 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please see D006-1502.
7 Q. It is your tab 12, Mr. Novakovic, and it is Defence number 76,
8 that's the Defence number. We'll see it on the screen in a second.
9 These are notes from the meeting between the Chief of the
10 General Staff of the Yugoslav Army, Dragoljub Ojdanic, and the deputy
11 chief of the OSCE mission in Kosovo and Metohija,
12 Major-General John Drewienkiewicz. The notes are dated the
13 15th of December, 1998, and the meeting was held on the
14 27th of November, 1998.
15 Mr. Novakovic, did you attending this meeting between
16 General Drewienkiewicz and General Ojdanic?
17 A. Yes, I attended the meeting. And that can be seen from footnote
18 number 1, which lists the members, those who attended the meeting, and my
19 name is included there.
20 Q. Thank you. Can you tell us what was the atmosphere in which this
21 meeting was held?
22 A. Well, let me say that it was protocolary atmosphere. At the
23 beginning I think that around this time General Ojdanic had been
24 appointed Chief of General Staff, and General Drewienkiewicz asked to be
25 received by him.
1 Q. All right.
2 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please see page 2 of this
3 document in both versions.
4 Q. What I'm interested in is at the top of the page in B/C/S,
5 Mr. Novakovic, the section where General Drewienkiewicz promised that the
6 work of the mission will be open and that he would submit reports of the
7 mission to the Yugoslav Army 72 hours after the verification at the
8 latest. Can you please explain this for us and how this was implemented?
9 A. Well, the mission did not submit such reports.
10 Q. Thank you. Were there any attempts to obtain such reports?
11 A. Through General Obradovic, who was our representative in the
12 commission, we requested that such reports be submitted. However, there
13 was no reaction to that.
14 Q. Thank you. Now we can see in the next paragraph the procedures
15 with the so-called KLA are mentioned. Can you tell us what was the
16 position of the mission in relation to the Kosovo Liberation Army during
17 their stay in the territory of FRY?
18 A. There were many requests and tasks and comments expressed at this
19 meeting, but General Drewienkiewicz really expressed the position that
20 the procedure would be the same with the so-called KLA. And as far as I
21 know, the political agreement was never reached, at least I do not know
22 that it was reached between the mission on the one hand and the KLA on
23 the other.
24 Q. Thank you. Could you now look at the paragraph where
25 General Obradovic and Marjanovic are mentioned. Could we comment on this
1 part of the notes about the methodology of conducting verification, if
2 you could expand a little bit on this?
3 A. General Ojdanic acted on the information about the work of the
4 mission, which he received, and he emphasised that the VJ was ready to
5 honour all the provisions from the resolution, that it would submit
6 reports. I said that we did submit them. But he also asked if the
7 reports that we submit to the mission would be identical to the reports
8 that the mission submitted to OSCE, because there were some indications
9 that they were not exactly the same. We could understand that this was
10 professionally processed and so on. General Obradovic requested -- maybe
11 not to force, I don't think he used that term, but to make sure that the
12 political leadership of the Kosovo Albanians be placed -- place the
13 so-called KLA under control, because there were some indications that
14 these terrorist forces - as we called them in our speech - were not under
15 control. And he was interested in the methods of work. And it was
16 precisely in terms of the methods that we proposed to create a protocol.
17 And on behalf of our team, the person who was in charge of drafting the
18 protocol was Colonel Marjanovic with a group of other people, and he also
19 talked about the protocol.
20 However, General Drewienkiewicz was skeptical. He said that he
21 had no time for such a protocol, that it would take a lot of time.
22 However, it was possible to draw it up in a day or two. So it was not
23 true that much time was needed for that.
24 Q. As for the information, you see in the last paragraph,
25 General Drewienkiewicz says that they requested information about
1 weapons, and number of troops should be submitted to the mission so that
2 they would know what to verify. Was this the information that had
3 already been submitted; and if yes, to whom and how, and were there any
4 later procedures relating to this on part of the Yugoslav Army?
5 A. Yes. I have to say that at the beginning of the meeting,
6 General Drewienkiewicz expressed satisfaction and said that the
7 Yugoslav Army was appropriately submitting reports in terms of the
8 subregional arms control, that he had no objections, that he had already
9 watched a film on how to do that, and that he had no objections relating
10 to that. However, he said that he wished to receive such a report as
11 well, because he expressed the position that the KVM mission was also
12 entitled to control the heavy weapons systems, which is not in the
14 Further, we told General Drewienkiewicz that he could receive the
15 report from NATO representatives, that is to say, from the
16 Kosovo Diplomatic Mission, as they had already collected the information.
17 And then the general said that he wished to receive it directly from the
18 Yugoslav Army. And I know that within two or three days, around the
19 30th, we simply used the same information that we had submitted to OSCE.
20 So now we took out the information relating to units stationed in
21 Kosovo and Metohija and we submitted that to the
22 Kosovo Verification Mission, also through the Federal Commission through
23 which we would usually submit documents. So we did send the information
24 to them.
25 Q. Thank you.
1 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] If we could please move to page 3
2 of this document.
3 Q. You already started talking about this. We see here
4 General Obradovic and what he said.
5 A. I have already said, in terms of this agreement on subregional
6 arms control, and there was this issue of entry to barracks that was
7 raised here and it dominated the meeting. General Obradovic said that
8 the issue was not regulated by the agreement and that this could not be
9 done before a political decision was made and before the
10 Chief of General Staff issued an order that would regulate that. And at
11 a later stage of our relations, we will see that we had envisaged this
12 possibility even though there was no political decision, that the
13 Chief of General Staff could, on certain occasions, allow even this kind
14 of verification, that would imply entry to barracks. And we really
15 allowed that from time to time -- not frequently, but we did do it
17 Q. Mr. Novakovic, we see here that this was a meeting between the
18 deputy head of the Kosovo Verification Mission and the
19 Chief of General Staff and this kind of response given to the deputy head
20 of the Kosovo Verification Mission.
21 Can you please tell us whether the General Staff was authorised
22 to negotiate about amendments to the agreement on the Kosovo Verification
24 A. No, no, absolutely not. You may note here that General Obradovic
25 also said in one sentence that this could not be implemented until a
1 political decision was made, and the order of the Chief of General Staff
2 could not follow without a political decision. And on that occasion we
3 also asked General Drewienkiewicz and other persons who were attending
4 the meeting, there was a whole delegation, to raise this issue through
5 the head of the mission, Mr. Walker, through appropriate diplomatic
6 channels so that the issue be examined at the political levels, and then
7 there would be no problems at all -- there shouldn't have been any
9 Q. Thank you. Mr. Novakovic, what I find interesting here, you
10 already explained that General Ojdanic also said that the authorities
11 were asked to provide an appropriate interpretation, that this was the
12 way to do that, but this is what I find interesting. We have here a
13 representative of the Kosovo Verification Mission. He has a very high
14 position. He may be the second man. And he requests from us information
15 that was already submitted to OSCE, that is to say, the organisation
16 which set up the verification mission, which is a part of the OSCE
18 A. Yes, it is peculiar, but you have seen that, in spite of that,
19 General Ojdanic promised - and we really fulfilled that - that we would
20 submit the information, and that as for other information we could not
21 allow that without a political decision, not really information but
22 allowing access to barracks and so on. Whatever else was at the level of
23 the Yugoslav Army was resolved.
24 Q. Thank you. What is also mentioned here is the agreement on arms
25 control, the subregional one, and the procedures, and that the
1 Kosovo Verification Mission, as we can see here, wanted to control such
2 arms as well. But what was provided in the agreement? How was the
3 military control of arms to be conducted according to the subregional
5 A. Yes. There was an appropriate announcement, I think 36 hours
6 were needed, there would be an announcement, and at any moment it was
7 possible for the interested parties to examine and as many times as they
8 wished what they wanted to examine.
9 Q. General Novakovic [as interpreted], did this agreement on
10 subregional arms control then allow someone to come somewhere and say:
11 I want to count the weaponry now?
12 A. No, no. Announcement was necessary. And even putting that
13 aside, the Kosovo Verification Mission did not have the -- was not
14 authorised to do that. We have looked at what the UN Security Council
15 Resolution said and also what the agreement says; it remained in force, I
16 mean the verification according to the subregional arms control. And the
17 UN Security Council Resolution confirmed the importance of this
19 Q. Thank you. According to what you know, did the members of the
20 Kosovo Verification Mission wish not only to come directly to the border
21 zone and enter facilities or barracks, but also to enter VJ barracks and
22 facilities whenever they would show up there?
23 A. Yes, that happened frequently, and I already emphasised several
24 times that that was the greatest problem and that that was where the
25 misunderstandings happened. Some of the verifiers even behaved
1 inappropriately. They almost wanted to enter by force through the
2 guards. But they were officers and they knew that this was not possible.
3 I don't know how they imagined that they could just pass by the guards.
4 It was inappropriate in my view that a verifier should try to enter in
5 that way. But there were such incidents, and we submitted reports on
7 Q. Thank you.
8 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I tender this document into
10 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00594.
12 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have
13 document D008-1553 [sic].
14 Q. That is tab 13 in your binder, Mr. Novakovic. 481 is the Defence
15 number. Thank you.
16 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] And can I ask which question I'm
17 supposed to repeat?
18 Thank you. And if I need to repeat it, the number I said was
19 D008-1553, and I think that we now have the right document on the screen.
20 Q. That is the order of the Chief of General Staff of the
21 Army of Yugoslavia dated the 11th of December, 1998. It has to do with
22 control and assistance to the 3rd Army with regard to relations with OSCE
23 and NATO missions.
24 Mr. Novakovic, can you tell us a bit more about this order?
25 A. Yes, with the permission of the Honourable Trial Chamber, just
1 two remarks. In view of this period from October 1998 until March 1999,
2 I was in Kosovo three times on such missions. Once I was in a large
3 group that was headed by the Chief of General Staff, and twice I was
4 leader of this Working Group from the team, once on the basis of this
5 order in December and another time in March when we organised a seminar.
6 Now, what was the principle involved? We were viewing the way in which
7 the Army of Yugoslavia had carried out its obligations until then, what
8 needed to be resolved, and we, a work group, went to the actual area
9 involved. We visited all the commands, units in the garrisons in
10 Kosovo and Metohija, that is to say that we were in the corps command, in
11 the brigade commands, the border battalions, and those three areas that
12 were -- three units that were in the area. On the basis of that, we
13 compiled a report. On the basis of the report, the
14 Chief of General Staff wrote an order, on the basis of which we improved
15 our work and resolved the problems involved.
16 So this is the initial order on the basis of which we were
17 authorised to go to the units of the Pristina Corps, I mean the
18 Working Group. That would be it in the briefest possible terms.
19 Q. We see here that the date is the 11th of December, 1998, and now
20 paragraph 2 says training through seminars. Tell me, how many training
21 seminars were there after this 11th of December, if you know?
22 A. We had several meetings, and the most important seminar was the
23 one that was held in March.
24 Q. Thank you. We'll deal with that later. And now we see on
25 page 4, or rather, page 3. We see the work-plan. We see that you're the
1 person who wrote it up.
2 A. Yes, my colleagues and I. As you can see, it was the
3 Chief of General Staff who signed the order, and the leader of our team,
4 General Obradovic, approved this document. So during the course of those
5 few days while we were there, we briefly outlined what we would do. The
6 important thing is that we visited all the units concerned, the corps
7 command, the brigade commands, and the commands of the border battalions.
8 We had the opportunity of contacting the liaison team from the 3rd Army
9 there, the one that was detached in Pristina. At that point, it was
10 headed by General Tomislav Mladenovic.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could this document please be
13 admitted into evidence.
14 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
15 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00595.
16 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have document
18 Q. That is tab 14 for you, Mr. Novakovic, and it's Defence
19 number 79. We see a report of the Work Group of the team, and it's sent
20 to the General Staff. It has to do with relations with NATO -- the NATO
21 mission. It was signed by Colonel Novakovic. It has to do with the
22 implementation of the previous document, namely, the order of the
23 11th of December, 1998. Mr. Novakovic, you submitted this report. I
24 would like us to comment upon paragraph 1, if you could tell us briefly.
25 A. Yes. After the control that we carried out over those three
1 days, we talked to several persons, namely, the command structure, that
2 is to say, the commanders, and the representatives of the teams, first
3 and foremost, the leaders of teams and liaison officers. We saw what the
4 problems involved were. Then we wrote up a report and subsequently made
5 proposals as to what we thought should be done. Here we are stating what
6 the situation is. First of all we say that verification of the reported
7 PVO, that is to say, verification in accordance with the agreement with
8 NATO, was carried out in accordance with the agreed procedure, that is to
9 say, the protocol that had been agreed upon, that it was carried out
10 professionally, and that the situation on the ground corresponded to the
11 reported one. A verification report was compiled in Serbian and English,
12 it was signed for each verification, and what is pointed out here was the
13 high level of co-operation on the part of the Army of Yugoslavia.
14 Q. Thank you. Could we now hear your comments on paragraph 2.
15 A. Well, that refers to the problem that we keep going back to. We
16 don't want to say that everything was bad in relation to the OSCE
17 mission, but there were quite a few problems involved because of their
18 insistence not to announce their visits. That was the main problem.
19 They said something more or less along the lines of: That is what we've
20 been allowed to do on the basis of the Security Council Resolution and
21 that is that. Perhaps there was nervousness on both sides because we
22 could not always be very co-operative if we did not have a liaison
23 officer nearby at a particular moment. But the basic point was that they
24 insisted that this had to be done at all costs and without previous
25 contacts and consultations, agreement. We will see that at all levels
1 the teams had hundreds of meetings. There were tens of meetings held
2 every day.
3 Q. Thank you. I see here in paragraph 3 that it is stated that the
4 Kosovo Verification Mission was duly informed on time about incidents,
5 and the command of the Pristina Corps required the verification of
6 incidents, but in some instances the KVM verifiers refused to sign the
7 verification reports. Can you tell us a bit more about that?
8 A. Yes, that was one of the problems too, because when we have these
9 discussions, we are actually presenting the problems as they were. The
10 KVM did carry out its obligations on the basis of the agreement, but,
11 indeed, we always insisted on having the report, the minutes, signed
12 together. What our people saw and what the OSCE people saw, that had to
13 be agreed upon so both parties could sign. However, some verification
14 mission members did sign these reports and others thought that it wasn't
15 necessary and they wouldn't, so that was the problem.
16 Q. Thank you. We see here that there were no such problems with
17 NATO. We see that in paragraph 1 in reference to air-space control,
18 et cetera.
19 A. That's right.
20 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we look at the next page
21 now -- the English is fine, actually, paragraph 4 is here. But could we
22 have the next page in Serbian.
23 Q. Can you give us your comment on paragraph 4.
24 A. Well, yes. We are stating here that liaison officers from those
25 units are fully trained for the implementation of these tasks, and we
1 just pointed out, yet again, this problem of the constant insistence on a
2 protocol so that there would be a single approach. There were many
3 members of the verification missions and many groups, and there weren't
4 problems in our dealings with all of them, but there really was that
5 problem of having a single protocol. Perhaps it did not have to be a
6 single protocol, but there has to be a system that would be agreed upon.
7 The representatives of the army and the KVM do not always have to agree
8 on everything, but we insisted that it all be written in the document.
9 Q. Thank you. In relation to that, did you elaborate a methodology
10 and did you offer it to the KVM in order to accept and carry out such a
12 A. Yes, yes. We wrote up this protocol. It was Colonel Marjanovic
13 who did that, but I also prepared a memo. However, throughout that
14 period, it really depended on an independent decision taken by the
15 verifier. The verifiers would individually say whether they wanted to
16 sign it or not.
17 Q. What about the procedure involved? We see the methodology. Did
18 that actually -- was that fully carried out?
19 A. Well, it depended on the verifiers involved. I don't really want
20 to single anyone out on the basis of the state they originally came from,
21 but it depended on how they carried out verification on the ground. Some
22 of these people, some of the leaders of these verification teams, did
23 have understanding and others did not. So that was the situation.
24 Q. Thank you. Did you have any information as to why some verifiers
25 refused to apply such a procedure and for you to sign these reports?
1 A. Well, usually the answer was: That is not what the agreement
3 Q. Thank you. And you gave proposals at the end of this document.
4 Would you have anything to explain to us in relation to these proposals?
5 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] It's the next page in English.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. In this first proposal, we
7 speak of the need to have this protocol and an appropriate methodology.
8 Also, there is a reference to the Federal Commission, so we are asking
9 for their position on this problem of accessing units. Also, there was
10 this problem of minefields that existed only in the border belt. There
11 weren't any in the territory of Kosovo and Metohija -- or at least the
12 army had not created any minefields there. Then also there was the
13 possibility of creating a separate administration which would make it
14 more official than just a team.
15 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Thank you, Mr. Novakovic, we can read up on that. We can read it
17 ourselves. If you have nothing to add to what was written here --
18 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I would like to tender this
19 document, Your Honours.
20 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
21 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00596.
22 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] May I now ask for D006-1469.
23 Q. That's tab 15 for you, sir. This is an order from the
24 Chief of the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia dated
25 23rd December, 1998. I should like to ask you, Mr. Novakovic, to explain
1 in simple terms.
2 A. This is an order from the Chief of General Staff. It's giving a
3 different shape to our observations from the ground when we went on a
4 field mission and that we had submitted to our team leader that the
5 Chief of the General Staff is now making this official. Again, he
6 insists on the protocol and the methodology of verification. There was a
7 problem with who was going to be the representative of the
8 Army of Yugoslavia on the co-ordination team. We suggested this. And
9 the Chief of the General Staff decided that it should be the team leader
10 from the 3rd Army in Pristina, General Mladenovic.
11 Furthermore, the Chief of the General Staff says that whenever
12 possible liaison officers in garrisons and in border battalions should be
13 relieved of other duties and focus on their work with the
14 Kosovo Verification Mission. Also, he specifies that daily and weekly
15 exchanges of information with the mission should take place, but only one
16 weekly report should be written. Why? Because there had been this idea
17 of writing a daily report to the missions, and at lower levels liaison
18 officers were not really inclined to accept this. It was too much work,
19 and it was not envisaged by the agreement anyway. So --
20 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Could we now look at para 6,
21 sub-para 2.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's the issue of entry into
23 barracks. Verification in barracks, border posts, depots, except the
24 anti-aircraft defence systems, are not to be accepted without special
25 approval. When I say "border posts," that means entering the watch-tower
1 itself, inspecting the personnel and their weapons. That requires a
2 special approval from the Chief of the General Staff. And the
3 Chief of the General Staff leaves open the possibility of giving access
4 to barracks, regardless of political agreement to defuse tensions and
5 display a sign of goodwill.
6 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Thank you.
8 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I tender this document for
10 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.
11 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D00597, Your Honours.
12 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Can we now look at D006-1457.
13 Q. Tab 16. It's a 65 ter number 72. That's an order of the
14 Chief of the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia dated 8 March 1999.
15 Mr. Novakovic, explain this order, please, and tell me whether you had
16 made any proposals about this to the Chief of the General Staff.
17 A. This is already March 1999, and this is -- this was our best
18 proposal, our best offer for regulating our relations with the
19 mission -- with the missions. There is a reference to minor deficiencies
20 and omissions, mainly at the lower level. I'm not trying to say that we
21 at the higher level were better, but at lower levels people did have less
22 experience. It was decided that one order should cover all these issues
23 and specify what should be done better. I just need to say that a few
24 days before this order we had made an analysis of our relationship and
25 co-operation of the problems we had on our side and the KVM experienced,
1 the sticking points; and we presented the results to our team.
2 General Obradovic's team leader, and as assistant Chief of the
3 General Staff, reported at a collegium meeting or directly to the
4 Chief of the General Staff in this matter. And the Chief of the
5 General Staff accepted most of our suggestions. And, on that basis, he
6 gave us approval to prepare an order that he signed eventually,
7 organisation of the work and relations between the VJ and the missions.
8 I believe this is the last order of this kind.
9 And one of the tasks given here specifies exactly what need --
10 what needs to be done at each level. This replaces all previous orders
11 from the Chief of the General Staff, and there had been a dozen or so.
12 We are now moving into a stage where, on the basis of this order, we're
13 organising a workshop not for the sake of organising a workshop, but
14 forming a group of 20 liaison officers who will have no other duties but
16 Q. Thank you. I see it mentions some strategic groups and some
17 changes in personnel, but I believe point 6 is interesting because it
18 deals with the jurisdiction of the Pristina Corps.
19 A. Yes. There are no major changes, but it states where the team of
20 the 3rd Army should be based. It used to be in a barracks and it's now
21 relocated, but it gives more detail how liaison officers from the
22 Pristina Corps need to be placed: Two officers in the corps command --
23 we're talking about these new officers, and it speaks of every garrison,
24 Mitrovica, Pec, Djakovica, Prizren, Urosevac, two officers each in the
25 brigade command and one officer per border battalion. That means
1 20 officers who are able to work 24/7 and be constantly at the disposal
2 of both the VJ and the KVM, that is, both missions, the OSCE and NATO.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I tender this document for
6 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00598.
8 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] May I now call D006-1560.
9 Q. That's your tab 17, 65 ter 78. We see another order of the
10 Chief of the General Staff dated 8 March 1999, organising and conducting
11 a seminar including team members and liaison officers. Could you explain
12 this order?
13 A. I've already said a few words about it. This is our crown
14 achievement, our best result. And now we receive an order from the
15 Chief of the General Staff to organise a seminar to work with team
16 members and with liaison officers. Four or five colleagues from my team
17 and myself were involved, and we spent four or five days there. We had
18 contacts with the corps command, with brigade commands, and we
19 organised - although I don't see the plan here - we organised this
20 workshop in such a way that it was attended by all those who had served
21 as liaison officers before; brigade commanders from the Pristina Corps
22 were present on the first day; and there were 20 liaison officers in the
23 rank of captain first class to colonel - I keep emphasising this - who
24 travelled with me to Belgrade -- from Belgrade. And we educated all
25 these people together with those who were already liaison officers.
1 We presented the political and other bases for our work, we
2 exchanged opinions, after that we had several hours of deliberations.
3 But mainly, we showed how this verification should be done within units
4 and on the border. I emphasise that we availed ourselves of this
5 opportunity to include in this workshop representatives of the
6 verification mission from OSCE. General Drewienkiewicz was present
7 personally. We wanted him to see with our [as interpreted] own eyes what
8 we were doing, and we gave him an opportunity to make an address to team
9 members and liaison officers about -- I remember his particular slide,
10 the things that cause anger --
11 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I think we should
12 interrupt the witness here in order to avoid certain problems we've had
13 before. It's enough to know that he was involved. But if the
14 Trial Chamber believes I should, I can allow the witness to tell us which
15 topics were discussed. But perhaps to avoid problems, although I don't
16 see any problem.
17 [Trial Chamber confers]
18 JUDGE PARKER: We don't need those details. Thank you.
19 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. If you have anything else to say apart from Drewienkiewicz?
21 A. I meant to mention just a few words about the -- maybe I got
22 carried away.
23 Q. Never mind.
24 Mr. Novakovic, we see that this was on the 8th of March and the
25 mission left the territory of the FRY in Kosovo and Metohija on the 20th.
1 Could you tell us whether their departure took place in complete safety?
2 A. Let me add that this order was dated 8 March, but we had this
3 workshop from the 10th to the 14th. And the mission were absolutely safe
4 as they were leaving. There were never any security issues.
5 Q. You told us this seminar lasted until the 14th. What were the
6 objectives of the Army of Yugoslavia, or rather, the General Staff in
7 terms of future co-operation with the KVM that was expected?
8 A. Well, we had already lined up the next group of liaison officers.
9 We thought the current ones would serve for a month or two, and it shows
10 that Yugoslavia was reckoning with long-term co-operation. And the
11 agreement itself said the mission would be working for at least a year.
12 And Yugoslavia was prepared for this work in the long run.
13 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I tender this document,
14 Your Honours.
15 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
16 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00599.
17 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Mr. Novakovic, thank you for answering my questions. Thank you
19 for appearing as a Defence witness.
20 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, my examination is
22 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Djurdjic.
23 Ms. Kravetz.
24 MS. KRAVETZ: Thank you, Your Honour. Just a minute to set up.
25 Cross-examination by Ms. Kravetz:
1 Q. Good morning, sir.
2 A. Good morning.
3 Q. Today you've told us about your role as a member of a VJ liaison
4 team with the OSCE and NATO, and we saw a document that my learned
5 colleague showed you which had the composition of this team. This team
6 was headed by General Milorad Obradovic; is that correct?
7 A. Yes, correct.
8 Q. And General Obradovic was assistant chief for operations and
9 staff of the VJ and a member of the VJ General Staff; correct?
10 A. Yes, that's correct.
11 Q. Now, you've told us today that you were quite involved in the
12 work of this liaison team, in fact, you told us that you often acted as
13 secretary to this liaison team; correct?
14 A. That's correct too.
15 Q. And you've also mentioned the fact that the 3rd Army Command, in
16 order for you to fulfil your work as a member of this team, would send
17 this liaison team daily and weekly reports?
18 A. Yes, yes, that's true.
19 Q. And these reports would contain information about the movements
20 of VJ units attached to the 3rd Army in Kosovo; correct?
21 A. Precisely, everything that the agreement required us to report.
22 Q. And these reports would also contain information about any
23 incidents involving the VJ which the 3rd Army had -- 3rd Army unit had
24 participated in?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. So would it be fair to say, sir, that the members of this liaison
2 team were quite well informed of the activities of the units of the
3 3rd Army in Kosovo during the period that this liaison team existed?
4 A. Yes, in terms of what we were discussing, yes.
5 Q. And you've said the role of this team was to facilitate the work
6 of the KVM, and for this purpose you prepared some instructions that were
7 sent on to the 3rd Army Command and to its units that were deployed in
8 Kosovo, no?
9 A. Yes, correct.
10 Q. And these instructions included or attached the relevant
11 UN Security Council Resolutions and also copies of the agreements that
12 we've been -- that you've been discussing here today with my learned
13 colleague which you've referred to as the OSCE agreement and the NATO
15 A. We did that to make sure that our associates are as well informed
16 as possible on the subject.
17 Q. And you yourself also had to become quite conversant or well
18 informed of the contents of these different documents, the OSCE
19 agreement, the NATO agreement, and UN Security Council Resolutions?
20 A. Yes. We had the time and we had the space and the documents,
22 Q. And other members of your liaison team as well had to familiarise
23 themselves with all these documents in order to carry out their work?
24 A. Yes, absolutely.
25 Q. I want to start by showing you one of these agreements, which is
1 P837, if we could turn to that. And this is an agreement that you
2 were -- that you discussed with my learned colleague and which you refer
3 to as the NATO agreement is also known as the Clark-Naumann Agreement.
4 MS. KRAVETZ: And I would like to -- if we could go to number 2,
5 Roman numeral II, number 2, both in the English and the B/C/S is the next
6 page. And in the English it's on the next page.
7 Q. Now, you've spoken a bit about this agreement, and this agreement
8 basically contains the obligations that the FRY government accepted to
9 comply with when it was signed; correct?
10 A. Yes, correct.
11 Q. Now, if we look at number 2, this provision refers to:
12 "Any additional ... heavy weapons ... and equipment brought into
13 Kosovo or transferred to the VJ -- from the VJ to police/special units
14 will be withdrawn from Kosovo or returned to the VJ."
15 This was one of the obligations that was agreed upon pursuant to
16 this agreement; correct?
17 A. Yes, correct.
18 Q. And a second obligation, if we look at page -- number 4 is that:
19 "All VJ units and additional equipment brought into Kosovo after
20 February 1999 [sic] was to be withdrawn from Kosovo."
21 Correct, sir, that's another obligation that's contained within
22 this agreement?
23 A. Yes, correct.
24 Q. And we see that number 5 provides that:
25 "... all VJ elements remaining in Kosovo will return to garrison
1 except for three company-sized teams which will remain deployed, and the
2 agreement indicates the lines of communication for these three
3 company-sized teams were allowed to be deployed:
4 "The Pec-Lapusnik-Pristina road; Djakovica-Klina; and
5 Prizren-Suva Reka-Pristina ..."
6 So you agree with me, sir, that this agreement only allowed for
7 three company-sized teams to be deployed outside of barracks, and these
8 were the access of deployments that were allowed according to this
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Now, if we look at number 8 - and I believe you've spoken a bit
12 about this.
13 MS. KRAVETZ: And we have to scroll down in the English.
14 Q. This agreement contains, as an obligation to VJ and MUP
15 commanders, to provide KDOM/OSCE, which later became KVM "detailed weekly
16 reports of manning, weapons, and activities of their forces." And also
17 there was an obligation to "provide immediate notification to KVM or
18 Kosovo OSCE of any deployments contrary to these provisions ..."
19 You see, that sir, that that's another obligation that's
20 contained within --
21 A. Yes, yes, I agree.
22 Q. You were asked as well about the mandate or role of OSCE -- we're
23 not going to bring this document up at this stage, but generally you
24 indicated that the main function of the OSCE was to verify the cease-fire
25 between all parties in Kosovo; correct?
1 A. Yes, that's the basic function.
2 Q. And they were to verify and report on any incidents that occurred
3 in violation of this cease-fire?
4 A. Yes, correct.
5 MS. KRAVETZ: Your Honour, I see I've run out of time. I think I
6 will continue on this right after the break.
7 JUDGE PARKER: We will resume at 1.00.
8 --- Recess taken at 12.29 p.m.
9 --- On resuming at 1.03 p.m.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Kravetz.
11 MS. KRAVETZ: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Q. Now, sir, right before the break we were looking at the agreement
13 that's before us in the screen, and we had gone over the obligations that
14 the governments of FRY and Serbia had agreed upon when signing this
15 agreement. Now, one of the obligations we saw that had been agreed upon
16 was a reduction of the troop strength to the level pre-February 1998.
17 Now, sir, you would agree with me that in order for the OSCE/KVM mission
18 to verify that this specific obligation of the agreement had been
19 complied with, it required information of the units that had been
20 withdrawn from Kosovo at the time of the signing of the agreement and
21 those that remained in Kosovo; correct?
22 A. Yes, that is correct.
23 Q. And in relation to the obligation that concerned heavy weapons,
24 that is, 12.7 millimetres and above, that needed to be also reduced to
25 levels pre-February 1998, the KVM mission would require information about
1 weapons that had been withdrawn with [sic] Kosovo after the signing of
2 this agreement and information on the weapons that remained in the
3 province; correct?
4 A. Yes, that verification was carried out precisely by KDOM. There
5 was nothing that was in dispute there.
6 Q. Now, you've referred to a meeting between General Ojdanic and
7 General Drewienkiewicz which you yourself attended which took place in --
8 on 27th November, 1998. You remember speaking about that earlier?
9 A. Yes, I remember that.
10 Q. And we saw notes of this meeting which were dated
11 15th December, 1998, which you went over with my learned colleague. You
12 remember that specific document I'm referring to?
13 A. Yes, I remember that.
14 Q. Now, while discussing this document, we saw that one of the
15 points that had been raised by General Drewienkiewicz during this meeting
16 was the need to -- for the VJ to provide information, detailed
17 information, as to the weapons and troop strength on the ground at the
18 time, and we're speaking of November 1998?
19 A. Yes, I remember that I said in my reply that two or three days
20 after that meeting, I think it was on the 30th of November, we submitted
21 all required information to the mission regarding personnel and arms
22 levels in the territory of Kosovo and Metohija.
23 Q. We will get to that in a minute. Are you aware, sir, that this
24 meeting was preceded by a request sent by the head of the KVM mission to
25 President Milosevic, where this specific information was requested,
1 detailed information on troop strength and weaponry deployed in Kosovo?
2 A. I just heard of the existence of some letter, but I was not aware
3 of the letter.
4 Q. Maybe we can look at it together.
5 MS. KRAVETZ: It's P838, if that could be brought up on the
7 Q. Here we have the letter. This is dated 23rd November, 1998, and
8 it's -- this was sent a couple days before the meeting you attended,
9 which you spoke about. And if we look at paragraph 3, it indicates:
10 "OSCE requires detailed information on all FRY and Serbian
11 security forces in Kosovo, and the type of information required is
13 This means the armed forces and it indicates which types of units
14 they're referring to, and there's also a chart attached indicating what
15 type of weaponry.
16 So you would agree with me, sir, that this is the type of
17 information that during your meeting with General Drewienkiewicz this is
18 a type of information he was requesting, formation of the units, and also
19 on the weaponry deployed?
20 A. To tell you the truth, first of all, I'm surprised why this
21 letter was sent to the president rather than to some other bodies,
22 because usually it's not the president who deals with such matters --
23 Q. Sir, sir --
24 A. -- I mean, up until then, we hadn't had information --
25 Q. If I can just stop you there. All I'm asking is if at that
1 meeting that you attended this is the type of information that
2 General Drewienkiewicz asked for. And what we see here is if - and I'm
3 looking specifically at paragraph 3 - this is information, detailed
4 information, on all FRY Serbian security forces, and this means the armed
5 forces, and specific units are indicated there. And also information for
6 those security units at which no formation, unit, or subunit is located,
7 et cetera. So this is the type of information he was asking for
8 specifically, no?
9 A. No, that's not the way he had put it, but he did mention the
11 Q. Sir, and if we look at the next page of the letter, we see
12 there's also - and I'm referring to paragraph 2 - there's also a
13 requirement of information on all FRY security forces, including weapons
14 and equipment, which were withdrawn from Kosovo on 28th October, 1998.
15 And again, my question to you is: This is the information that
16 General Drewienkiewicz was asking for at the meeting that you attended?
17 I'm not asking if he asked for it in the specific same terms as in the
18 letter but if this was the information he was requesting.
19 A. Well, I cannot confirm it in that way. Some dates were
20 mentioned, but there weren't any concrete indicators. Only a letter was
21 mentioned. We said that it is KDOM that has this information. As I
22 already said a few days later, we provided information pertaining to
23 units in Kosovo and Metohija.
24 Q. I'm not sure you have answered my question, sir. What I'm asking
25 for is, at this meeting, General Drewienkiewicz asked for specific
1 information on weapons, as is indicated in this letter, no? Including
2 weapons and equipment which were withdrawn from Kosovo by October 28th.
3 A. I was present, but I hadn't heard of General Drewienkiewicz
4 spelling out his questions in concrete terms. He confirmed all his
5 questions in writing in a letter, but we hadn't had a look at the letter
6 at the time.
7 Q. But you attended the meeting, no? You spoke about it earlier.
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And at this meeting General Drewienkiewicz asked specifically for
10 information on the units deployed and the weaponry that the VJ had in
11 Kosovo at the time; correct?
12 A. I don't know whether that is correct, but I know that we did
13 provide the information.
14 Q. Maybe we can go back and look at the notes from this meeting, and
15 this is 65 ter of the Defence number 76 which you were already shown
16 earlier. And this is D594. I'm sorry, I don't know which tab that is in
17 your binder, but the document will ...
18 MR. DJURDJIC: Excuse me. [Interpretation] 12, Mr. Novakovic.
19 MS. KRAVETZ: Thank you for that.
20 So if we could go to page 3 in the English, and I believe this is
21 on page 2 in the B/C/S.
22 Q. And I'm looking for a paragraph that starts with:
23 "General Drewienkiewicz has said that six weeks had already
24 passed" and "time was running out ..."
25 And if we look at the last sentence of that paragraph, have you
1 found the passage, sir? It's on the second page. I believe it's the
2 third paragraph from the bottom up, the last sentence. Have you found
3 the passage, sir?
4 A. Yes, I found it.
5 Q. So we see that General Drewienkiewicz is saying:
6 "... six weeks had already passed, time was running out, and he
7 had no intention of wasting time in drafting a protocol."
8 And the last sentence says:
9 "However, in order to perform the first and any other
10 verifications, it is necessary to send the requested details relating to
11 weapons and strength to the OSCE mission so that it knows what it is to
12 verify -- is to be verified."
13 You see that sentence?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. So what I was asking you earlier and which you indicated you did
16 not have any recollection about is that at this meeting
17 General Drewienkiewicz asked for this same information that we were
18 looking at earlier in the letter, that is, for details on the weapons and
19 troop strength of the VJ; correct?
20 A. Well, not necessarily. That's not the reply I gave or at least
21 that's not the way I remember it. However, I did say -- or rather, it
22 wasn't clear to me what six weeks General Drewienkiewicz meant, because I
23 know that the mission was rather late.
24 However, this is my specific answer to your question: A few days
25 after the meeting, we submitted information concerning personnel levels
1 and arms levels in Kosovo and Metohija in that period of time.
2 Q. Okay. You still haven't answered my question, but I understand
3 that what you're saying is that some days later you submitted information
4 about personnel?
5 A. Right.
6 Q. And I believe that in an answer to a question of my learned
7 colleague you said that this was done sometime by the 30th of November,
8 if I'm correct, you indicated that day?
9 A. I said a few days. I don't know exactly.
10 Q. And you also indicated when -- in answer to a question by my
11 learned colleague that it was your understanding that the KVM had no
12 mandate to any sort of -- to any sort of arms control, that there was a
13 separate agreement dealing with arms control?
14 A. Yes, that's what I said, when it's being done in barracks and
15 also in terms of the agreement on subregional arms control, and the
16 document's based on that. And the OSCE had information about that.
17 Q. So the information that you supplied some days after, following
18 this meeting on 27th November, was, in fact, information relevant to the
19 subregional agreement on arms control, if I'm understanding correctly,
20 that's the information that was supplied to the OSCE/KVM?
21 A. However, it so happened that it contained exactly what was
22 required by the OSCE mission, because it pertained to indicators in that
23 period of time and in that area. That is to say, it did not pertain to
24 the entire army. And that's what subregional arms control meant. But it
25 was only the Army of Yugoslavia, just in the territory of
1 Kosovo and Metohija.
2 Q. So you're saying that the information that you provide on the
3 30th of November in fact indicated the troop levels that had -- that
4 remained in Kosovo after the signing of the agreement and those that had
5 left by 28th of October?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And you're also saying that, with relation to the weapons, this
8 information contained the weapons that had been deployed in Kosovo at the
9 time and those that had been withdrawn?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Now, I want to show you another document. This is P1001, and
12 this is a letter of 12 December 1998. And I see this document is being
13 brought up. And this is a letter that is addressed to Nikola Sainovic,
14 whom you mentioned earlier was the president of the federal -- or the
15 head of the Federal Commission for Co-operation, and it is sent by the
16 head of the KVM mission, Ambassador Walker. And if we look at the first
17 line it says:
18 "At our meeting on Wednesday," so this is some days prior to the
19 sending of this letter, "we discussed the need for verification base-line
20 information. And we also covered the lack of formal response to my
21 letter ..."
22 And it refers back to the letter we've just looked at and says:
23 "You will recall that the ... information" that's required "is
24 necessary to establish the base-line of forces, weapons, and structures
25 that it," the KVM, "would subsequently have to verify."
1 Do you see that there?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. So, sir, this letter is being sent almost two weeks after you say
4 information was provided to the KVM, the information that was requested.
5 You would agree with me, sir, that the information that you provided was
6 not the information that General Drewienkiewicz was asking for at the
7 meeting that you had with him and General Ojdanic on the
8 27th of November?
9 A. First of all, I'm not familiar with this letter. Now, it can,
10 perhaps, be interpreted that way, but I'm not sure.
11 Q. In fact, by this date, sir, the KVM had still not received any
12 information on what is referred to as base-line information, information
13 of the troop strength you had in Kosovo and the weaponry that had
14 remained after the signing of the agreement?
15 A. I'm just repeating that there was an indicator at one of our
16 meetings to the effect that we had sent the required information, the
17 information that was requested from us. Our professional service had
18 compiled this information, we put it all together and sent it. Now, when
19 the Kosovo Verification Mission received them, I don't know, but it
20 couldn't have taken them that long to get there.
21 Q. Sir, I'm not challenging the fact that you sent some information
22 to the KVM. What I'm putting to you is that the information you sent was
23 not the information required by the KVM in order to carry out its
25 A. If that question is being put to me, I cannot confirm it or deny
2 Q. But wasn't your role, sir, to liaise with the OSCE and KVM in
3 order to assist the mission to carry out its mandate? Haven't you told
4 us that that was your task, your role as one of the members of this
5 liaison team?
6 A. Absolutely.
7 Q. So, sir, you would have been aware, I presume, that by some weeks
8 after you participated in this meeting, KVM was still requesting
9 information on base-line figures. This would have been information
10 available to you as a member of this liaison team of the VJ with the
12 A. Maybe it's a question of nuance. Perhaps our reply was not in
13 accordance with Mr. Drewienkiewicz's rubrics, but it was in accordance
14 with our understanding of the matter. Perhaps there was a
15 misunderstanding. This is the first time I see this letter, that we had
16 not completed our task within 15 days. I don't think that that was
17 actually the case.
18 Q. So based on that answer, can we agree that although you did
19 provide information, this information may not have been in accordance
20 with what Mr. Drewienkiewicz from the KVM was requesting?
21 A. Well, perhaps it could be put that way. We believe it was in
22 accordance with the agreement, but perhaps it wasn't in accordance with
23 the rubrics that Mr. Drewienkiewicz had worked out for himself perhaps in
24 a very special way of his own.
25 But may I add that we certainly provided information to
1 Mr. Drewienkiewicz in detail. This information was obtained by KDOM.
2 They had absolute information about units that were leaving barracks in
3 Kosovo and Metohija all the way to this imaginary administrative boundary
4 with Kosovo and Metohija. These are units that had not been stationed
5 originally in Kosovo and Metohija, and they knew what the personnel
6 levels were in both situations. So both NATO and the OSCE did have these
7 indicators at certain points in time, even without our information that
8 we provided later.
9 Q. Okay. Let's move on from this point, sir. We saw in the
10 agreement that one of the obligations of the VJ was to - and this is
11 number 2 of the agreement which is P837 - that any additional equipment,
12 this is heavy weapons or equipment, brought into Kosovo or transferred to
13 the VJ from the police or Special Police was to be withdrawn from Kosovo,
14 returned to the VJ.
15 Now, sir, do you recall that one of the problems the VJ had in
16 complying with this specific obligation was that the MUP refused to
17 return some of the equipment, heavy weapons, and other equipment that had
18 been transferred by the VJ to Special Police units or to the MUP in
19 general in the summer of 1998? Do you recall that as being one of the
20 problems in complying with this provision?
21 A. I have to say that I'm not aware of this problem with the MUP.
22 Q. Okay, sir. If we could look -- maybe this reminds you of this.
23 MS. KRAVETZ: If we could look at P967. The document's still
24 being brought up. And if we could look at page 19 in the English and
25 page 21 of the B/C/S.
1 Q. And we see there that Lieutenant-General Milorad Obradovic is
2 speaking, and you've told us earlier that he was the head of the team of
3 which you were a member, this liaison team; correct?
4 A. Correct.
5 Q. So now we see there -- and if we look at the middle of the
6 paragraph it says:
7 "Part of the equipment to the Republic of Serbia a month ago we
8 requested it in writing the return of the equipment so that we could use
9 it in the briefing. MUP informed us today that they would not return
10 that equipment. Actually it includes 20 personnel carriers and
11 23 mortars that are subject to the OSCE agreement."
12 And these are, I should point out, sir, the minutes of the
13 VJ collegium of 3rd December, 1998. Do you recall that issue being
14 brought up by General Obradovic during the course of your work -- that
15 the MUP was failing to return 20 personnel carriers and 23 mortars?
16 A. I don't doubt that that was the case; however, I cannot present
17 my position in this regard because I did not attend collegium sessions
18 and I don't think that General Obradovic informed us about that. He is
19 speaking here in his capacity of assistant chief, and I'm not aware of
20 these indicators.
21 MS. KRAVETZ: I see my learned colleague is on his feet.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Djurdjic.
23 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] I'm trying to find the number that
24 my learned friend referred to on this list, but I can't find it on the
25 list and I can't find it in the binder -- and not provided in the
1 notification of the OTP.
2 MS. KRAVETZ: It was notified to the Defence on the
3 4th of February, I'm being told.
4 MR. DJURDJIC: [Interpretation] Very well, but I can't find it in
5 the list.
6 MS. KRAVETZ: It was notified by e-mail and as an additional
7 exhibit, so -- and I'm seeing nods of heads, so I take it that was
8 received by the Defence.
9 Q. Sir, during the course of your testimony today you were shown
10 Exhibit D590, if we could go back to that. Do you recall going through
11 this exhibit earlier with my learned colleague? It's a report from the
12 3rd Army command mission liaison team, and it's dated
13 24th December, 1999?
14 A. Yes, we commented on parts of the report.
15 Q. Now, during the course of your testimony you referred to
16 training, and you indicated the fact that the VJ was allowed to conduct
17 training out of barracks, so that was your understanding of the
18 agreement, prior notification to the KVM?
19 A. Yes, I said that -- although the agreement says that it was our
20 duty to provide information as to what had happened in the previous week,
21 that is to say that after things were done, we provided information. At
22 any rate, when the mission was established, we provided information in
23 advance. That is what the direct daily contacts meant. I repeat that
24 the agreement says that we are duty-bound to provide information on
25 movements of units from Kosovo to Kosovo and within the territory of
1 Kosovo for the proceeding week.
2 Q. But we did look at a provision, this was number 8 of the
3 agreement. We went through this together which states the obligation to
4 provide immediate notification to KDOM/OSCE of any deployments contrary
5 to the provisions and explain the circumstances regarding such
6 deployments. Do you recall that, sir, that we went through that
8 A. Yes. I've just said that we had these direct daily contacts in
9 which we provided information to the verification mission about these
11 Q. And this immediate -- this requirement of immediate notification
12 would also apply to situations where the VJ units decided to conduct
13 training exercises outside of barracks; correct?
14 A. It is not some training. It is specific training. So, yes; that
15 is correct. I also have to say that very often representatives of the
16 mission followed the column the unit involved when carrying out these
18 Q. Okay. Now if we can look at this report, and it's a report
19 that's sent to the General Staff and to your team, the OSCE and NATO
20 mission liaison team; correct?
21 A. That's right.
22 Q. And if we look under the first -- number 1, movement of units of
23 company strength, we see a reference, and it says:
24 "At 0800 hours on 19 December, a reinforced 15th Armoured Brigade
25 tc tank company consisting of" the units indicated there "went to the
1 Batlava airfield sector to carry out planned exercises pursuant to the
2 Unit Combat Training Plan and Programme."
3 Do you see that paragraph where it says that?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Now, sir, this locality is mentioned there, the Batlava airfield
6 sector, that was in the Podujevo municipality, also known as Malo Kosovo
7 area of Kosovo?
8 A. I have to say that unfortunately I'm not very familiar with the
9 geography of Kosovo, but -- well, this is probably the case. However, I
10 don't seen any problem involved.
11 Q. Okay. And, sir, the Podujevo municipality was a municipality of
12 quite some importance to the VJ because it was bisected by a strategic
13 route that went from Nis to Pristina. Are you aware of that, sir?
14 A. I don't want to sound contradictory, but I have to say that all
15 municipalities in Kosovo are important for the Army of Yugoslavia. Now,
16 as for this specific area, there's a training-ground there where the
17 Army of Yugoslavia carried out training, like any other army. It's an
18 area that was envisaged for such activities. And in this particular
19 case, it is that area called Batlava.
20 Q. Sir, you're -- you -- I suppose you are familiar, at least in
21 general terms, with the geography of Kosovo and southern Serbia, and you
22 would agree with me that the road going from Nis down to Pristina was an
23 important road, an important supply road?
24 A. An important road generally speaking for the movement of
25 population, for supplies, yes. It's a very important road.
1 Q. And it was also an important road for supply to the VJ because
2 supplies from Serbia into Kosovo would go down that road, no? The
3 Nis-Pristina road?
4 A. Possibly. I did not follow that.
5 Q. Very well. Now, earlier we had looked at the three supply roads
6 that were -- or the three main roads that were envisaged in the
7 agreements along which deployment was authorised. You recall that, that
8 we looked at that earlier?
9 A. Yes, but I think that this involves different reasoning. The
10 troops are in that area only to protect roads, whereas we see that units
11 are in this area for training purposes only. I think that there is a
12 substantial difference involved in terms of what is actually being done
13 and the procedure involved.
14 Q. I was just simply asking you, sir, if you remember that when we
15 were looking at the agreements we saw that what was authorised was the
16 deployment of three companies along three axes and we went through that
17 together. Do you recall that?
18 A. Yes, I confirmed that already. I agree with that.
19 Q. And you would also agree with me, sir, that this road that we've
20 been speaking about, the Pristina-Podujevo-Nis road, was not one of the
21 roads that was envisaged in the agreement along which deployment of
22 troops -- VJ troops was allowed?
23 A. If we are in the context of the text that you refer to, I could
24 not exactly make that kind of comment.
25 Q. I'm asking you a quite simple question, sir. We went over the
1 agreement together. You recall that? We went through the different
2 obligations the VJ had agreed to or the governments of Serbia had agreed
3 to with respect to the VJ and the MUP and the agreement, and we looked
4 specifically at the obligation to -- with -- keep forces in garrison
5 except for three company-sized units that were allowed to be deployed
6 again along certain roads. Do you recall that we looked at that?
7 A. We had a look at that, and we agreed.
8 Q. And this one was not one of the roads envisaged in the agreement,
9 the Podujevo-Nis road -- Pristina-Podujevo-Nis road?
10 A. I have to tell you, with all due respect, that I do not
11 understand your question.
12 Q. Sir, you've told us that you were quite familiar with both the
13 NATO and the OSCE agreement as part of your work; correct?
14 A. Yes, that's why I said that this has to do with training. There
15 is no mention of the road.
16 Q. I'm not asking that, sir. I'm just asking if this specific axis
17 was contemplated in the agreements, and this is something you would know,
18 sir, because it was your job to be fully informed of what obligations the
19 governments of Serbia and the FRY had agreed to pursuant to these
20 agreements, no?
21 A. Well, it is true that it's not on the list where those units are.
22 Q. Thank you. That's all I was asking, sir.
23 Before this agreement was signed, the VJ had a company stationed
24 near this training-ground or -- Batlava training-ground; correct?
25 A. I'm not aware of these activities. I really know very little
1 about that, except for the few indicators that are contained in the
3 Q. All I'm asking, sir, I'm not asking about what's indicated in the
4 report. I'm asking whether you're aware that the VJ had a company
5 deployed in this area prior to the conclusions of the agreement we've
6 looked at?
7 A. I don't know. I'm referring to the report because my activities
8 were related only to the reports of teams that liaised with the missions.
9 I did not follow other reports. Perhaps I knew a little about them, but
10 a very, very little. It was the 3rd Army and the Pristina Corps teams
11 that were predominantly involved.
12 Q. But you've told us that as part of your work you received weekly
13 and even daily reports from the 3rd Army Command; correct?
14 A. I didn't say the command. I said the liaison team from the
15 command of the 3rd Army and the Pristina Corps. That would be a specific
16 answer. I'm sure that that is what I had said earlier on as well.
17 Q. Very well. So you received -- you agree that you received daily
18 and even weekly reports from the liaison teams of the 3rd Army.
19 Now, you've told us that your work was to facilitate the job of
20 KVM and to -- and I presume that also included ensuring compliance with
21 the agreements that we've looked at; correct?
22 A. Yes, that's correct.
23 Q. So you would have also received information from the 3rd Army
24 liaison teams on how they had carried out their obligations under the
25 agreements, and specifically I'm speaking about the removal of units that
1 were not authorised to be deployed outside of barracks? You would have
2 had that information, no, sir?
3 A. Well, I cannot confirm that now, or, rather, I'm claiming that
4 there was no movement of units that were not allowed to move. Units were
5 allowed to be supplied and to train, but I don't see why that would be in
6 contravention of the agreement.
7 Q. That was not my question, sir.
8 MS. KRAVETZ: However, I see, Your Honours, that we've gone past
9 the time.
10 JUDGE PARKER: We have. We need to break now, and we will resume
11 tomorrow at 9.00.
12 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.48 p.m.,
13 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 11th day of
14 February, 2010, at 9.00 a.m.