1 THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL TRIBUNAL CASE NO. IT-96-20-I
2 FOR THE FORMER YUGOSLAVIA IN THE TRIAL CHAMBER
3 Friday, 4th March 1996 Before: CLAUDE JORDA (The Presiding Judge)
4 JUDGE FOUAD RIAD JUDGE ODIO BENITO THE PROSECUTOR OF THE TRIBUNAL
5 v. DJORDJE DJUKIC MR. ERIC OSTBERG and MR. MICHAEL KEAGAN appeared on
6 behalf of the Office of the Prosecutor MR. MILAN VUJIN and MS. JELENA
7 LOPICIC appeared on behalf of the Defence 4th March 1996 (12 noon)
8 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): The hearing is open. Mr Marro,
9 would you please give us the case number?
10 THE REGISTRAR (original in French): Thank you, sir, this is case
11 number IT-96-20-1, The Prosecutor of the Tribunal against Djorde
13 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Thank you, Mr Marro. Before we
14 begin, I would first like to take care of several technical issues to
15 know whether everybody hears us, both from the Office of the
16 Prosecutor as well as the defence. General Djukic, do you hear
17 everything? Are you hearing the interpretation? All right. We are
18 meeting today for the initial appearance of General Djukic in
19 accordance with Articles 20 and 21 and Rule 62 of our Statute and
20 Rules. Before we move forward to the hearing itself, I would like
21 first of all to read Articles 20 and 21 of the Statute that have been
22 adopted by the Security Council. Article 20 says: "Commencement and
23 conduct of trial proceedings. The Trial Chambers shall ensure that a
24 trial is fair and expeditious and that proceedings are conducted in
25 accordance with the Rules of Procedure and Evidence with full respect
1 for the rights of the accused and due regard for the protection of
2 victims and witnesses." I will read the indictment and be sure that
3 the rights of the accused have been respected and confirmed, that he
4 has understood the content of the indictment and orders for him to
5 plead guilty or not, and then set the date for the trial. Article 21
6 says, having to do with the rights of an individual: "That any person
7 shall understand the vital reasons, he must be informed as quickly as
8 possible in a language which he understands of the nature and the
9 cause of the charges against him, to have adequate time and
10 facilities for the preparation of his defence and to communicate with
11 counsel of his own choosing, and to be tried without undue delay." In
12 the Rules, Rule 61 gives the details of this, though I am not going
13 to recall it, but I am going to apply it for our case that we have
14 before us. First of all, I would like it to be clear that the
15 identification of the representatives of the Office of the Prosecutor
16 and the defence counsel have been made. I give you the floor, Mr Prosecutor.
17 MR OSTBERG: I am Eric Ostberg. I appear for the Prosecution, and with
18 me is Michael Keegan as my co-counsel.
19 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Thank you. I would now turn to the
20 defence. Mr Vujin?
21 MR VUJIN: My name is Vujin and today I am assisted by Ms Jelena
23 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Thank you. I would like Ms Lopicic
24 to tell us who she is. Would you rise and identify yourself, please?
25 MS LOPICIC: Hello, I am Jelena Lopicic.
1 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Do you get this down correctly, Mr
2 Marro? I do not want to stumble over your name. Could you spell it,
3 please? MS LOPICIC: LOPICIC .
4 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): We did not hear you, would you
5 please put your microphone on? Thank you. Would you please repeat
6 yourself so that I can understand better myself?
7 MS LOPICIC: My name is Jelena Lopicic. I am an assistant lawyer of Mr
9 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): If you could please put your
10 microphone on, the Tribunal, to ensure transparency and
11 identification of all the parties present, would like for you to give
12 us what your status is right now. Everyone sees that you are wearing
13 ordinary clothing and we would like to know what is your position,
14 what is your status. Are you a lawyer? Could you prove this? Could you show
15 us that you have a robe? Today, of course, the Tribunal will
16 believe you, because the General must have all of his rights
17 respected, as well as the defence, in accordance with the highest
18 standards, but, of course, the Tribunal must verify this. So, first
19 of all, could you confirm to us that you are a lawyer? Are you a
21 MS LOPICIC (original in Serbian): I am a legal assistant. (original
22 in English) I am in a practice now.
23 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Where do you practice, if I may
24 ask? Where do you practice?
25 MS LOPICIC: Serbia. JUDGE JORDA (original in French): As I suggested,
1 I hope that the Tribunal will authorise you to assume the defence of
2 General Djukic. I believe that the Tribunal would like to see you
3 dressed in the proper robes and for you to give all the elements of
4 accreditation to the Registrar as quickly as you can. Your
5 registration in the bar, the number of your registration for the
6 Belgrade bar. I think it would be better for you to come dressed in a
7 robe. Do we agree? Thank you. You can sit down. The question which I
8 would like to ask you, and to ask Mr Vujin as well, in order to
9 ensure myself that we are respecting the rights of the accused and to
10 facilitate all of our tasks, is to be sure for the defence that you
11 are th lawyers, or the lawyer, Mr Vujin, that was chosen by General
12 Djukic. Can you confirm this, Mr Vujin, that you were the lawyer
13 chosen by the General?
14 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): Yes, your Honour, I am a lawyer that
15 General Djukic has chosen, together with Mr Toma Fila as his defence
16 counsel. Mr Fila will join us later on. Thank you. And, of course,
17 Miss Lopicic will appear from time to time as our legal assistant.
18 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Another question, Mr Vujin: the
19 Tribunal would like to ensure the proper relationship of defence and
20 Prosecutor, but we would like there to be a lawyer who is the
21 principal interlocutor for the Tribunal for any correspondence or any
22 kind of communication among those representing the Registrar and the
23 Bar. Mr Vujin, do you accept being, if you like, the leader of the
24 General's defence?
25 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): Yes, your Honour, I have agreed with
1 my colleague, Mr Fila, and with the Registrar of the Tribunal. It was
2 decided that I will be the main lawyer, so all the communications
3 shall be addressed to me. Thank you.
4 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Thank you, sir. You may remain
5 standing, because I still have a number of questions I would like to
6 ask you. We are now coming into the proceedings themselves of the
7 initial appearance, and I would first of all like to be sure that the
8 accused has received a copy of the indictment. The accused received a
9 copy of the indictment on Friday, I was told this was so, in both
10 languages. Can you confirm this for me, please?
11 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): Your Honour, I can confirm it.
12 General Djukic, the accused, has received a copy of the indictment,
13 together with all the supplementary documents, both in English and in
14 Serbian languages. I confirm it on his behalf.
15 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Can you also confirm to me that you
16 were able to speak about this indictment with the accused, that is
17 that the accused has understood the content of the indictment? I will
18 ask about it later. We have very specific terms having to do with
19 protection of the accused, so I would like to be sure, by asking you
20 this question: were you able to speak about this indictment with him
21 or not at all, not yet?
22 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): Yes, your Honour, we had enough time
23 to discuss the counts of the indictment, and, on behalf of the
24 defence, I discussed it with General Djukic. He understands fully the
25 counts of the indictment, and he is completely ready for today's
2 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Thank you, Mr Vujin. Under those
3 circumstances you may sit down now.
4 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): If you would allow me, your Honour, I
5 would just like to add, your Honour, that we think that the
6 indictment was issued against Rules of Procedure and Evidence and
7 against Provisions of the Statute, so the indictment has not been
8 issued in the right way, because there was not a formal request
9 addressed to the Superior Court in Sarajevo for the deferral of the
10 investigation. As you may know, the Superior Court in Sarajevo is
11 conducting criminal proceedings and, according to Articles 9 and 10
12 of the Rules, this Tribunal should have decided whether it will take
13 over the case of General Djukic under its competence or not. This has
14 not been done, so we have a sort of a judicial legal nonsense, I will
15 say it that way, that General Djukic has been investigated both here
16 and there, and I think this is contrary to the Rules of Procedure and
17 Evidence and contrary to the Statute and contrary to the
18 international law. In this respect, we have prepared a couple of
19 motions that we will file through the Registry in seven copies.
20 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): We have not got to that point yet,
21 sir. You may sit down. We have noted what you have said. Please sit
22 down. I will remind you of what I said on Friday, that the status of
23 the General has changed from witness to suspect, and now to accused.
24 But the Registrar has noted what you have said. For things to be very
25 clear, I would like to ask Mr Marro, the Registrar, once again, to
1 read the indictment and to ensure that this is once again made
2 public, in public, to General Djukic.
3 THE REGISTRAR (original in French): Case number IT-96-20-1, the
4 Prosecution against Djorde Djukic. The Prosecutor of the
5 International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, pursuant
6 to his authority under Article 18 of the Statute of the International
7 Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia ("The Statute of the
8 Tribunal") charges: Djorde Djukic With a crime against humanity and a
9 violation of the laws and customs of war as set forth below: The
10 accused Djorde Djukic was born on 8th March 1934 in the village of
11 Petrovo Vrelo, Glamoc Municipality in Bosnia and Herzegovina. His
12 personal identification number is 0803934710458, and he possesses an
13 identification card of the Republika Srpska under the number 196/94.
14 He permanently resides in Belgrade, Bulevar Lenjina 151, Belgrade. In
15 the Yugoslav People's Army, he held the post of Chief of the
16 Technical Department of the Federal Secretariat for National Defence.
17 He currently holds the rank of Lieutenant General in the Bosnian Serb
18 Army and in the Yugoslav Army. He serves in the main staff of the
19 Bosnian Serb Army and is the Assistant Commander for Logistics to
20 Ratko Mladic, the Commander of the Bosnian Serb armed forces. Djorde
21 Djukic has been a member of the Main Staff of the Bosnian Serb Army
22 from 19th May 1992 to the present. The main staff is and has been
23 responsible for the planning, preparation and execution of Bosnian
24 Serb military operations in Bosnia and Herzegovina. In his capacity
25 as Assistant Commander for Logistics to the commander of the Bosnian
12 Blank pages inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts. Pages 8 to 12.
1 Serb armed forces, and as a member of the main staff of the Bosnian
2 Serb Army, Djorde Djukic's duties included, but were not limited to:
3 regulating the requirements of units in all issues regarding logistic
4 supplies within the Bosnian Serb Army; proposing appointments of
5 personnel; issuing orders relating to the supply of material for
6 units of the Bosnian Serb Army; regulating the transfer of material
7 to logistics bases; and making decisions on the removal of material
8 and technical equipment from Bosnian Serb Army stocks and the use of
9 the said equipment. General allegations. At all times relevant to
10 this indictment, a state of armed conflict and partial occupation
11 existed in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the territory of the former
12 Yugoslavia. In charging a crime against humanity, a crime recognised
13 by Article 5 of the Statute of the Tribunal, the alleged acts or
14 omissions were part of a widespread, systematic or large-scale attack
15 directed against a civilian population. Charges. Counts 1 and 2.
16 Crime against humanity. Violation of the laws and customs of war.
17 Djorde Djukic, in concert with others, planned, prepared, or
18 otherwise aided and abetted in the planning and preparation of the acts and
19 operations of the Bosnian Serb Army and its agents. These
20 acts and operations included the following crimes: Shelling of
21 civilian targets. From about May 1992 to about December 1995, in
22 Sarajevo, Bosnian Serb military forces, on a widespread and
23 systematic basis, deliberately or indiscriminately fired on civilian
24 targets that were of no military significance in order to kill,
25 injure, terrorise, and demoralise the civilian population of
1 Sarajevo. By these acts and omissions, in relation to the shelling of
2 civilian targets in Sarajevo, Djorde Djukic committed:
3 Count 1: A crime against humanity, punishable under Article 5(i)
4 (inhumane acts) of the Statute of the Tribunal. Count 2: A violation
5 of the laws and customs of war, punishable under Article 3 of the
6 Statute of the Tribunal. Signed by the Prosecutor of this Tribunal,
7 Richard J Goldstone, on 29th February 1996.
8 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Thank you, Mr Marro. General
9 Djukic, would you please rise? You will indicate to the Tribunal the
10 main elements which identify you, and then I will ask you questions
11 having to do with the counts. Would you first tell the Tribunal the
12 elements having to do with your identification?
13 GENERAL DJUKIC (original in Serbian): My name is Djorde Djukic. I
14 would like you to correct my rank. I am Colonel General. My father's
15 name is
16 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Excuse me, I am sorry. I would like
17 you to begin again because I did not receive the interpretations from
18 the beginning.
19 GENERAL DJUKIC (original in Serbian): So my name is Djorde Djukic. My
20 rank in the army is General Lieutenant, and I have been the assistant
21 to the Commandant of the General Staff of the Army of the Republika
22 Srpska and not the commander of the armed forces, as it is stated in
23 the indictment. If you need other information, my father's name is
24 Stavo, my mother's name is Boja. I was born on 8th March 1933 in the
25 village of Petrovo Vrelo in the Municipality of Glamoc, former
1 republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
2 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Thank you, General. Please remain
3 standing. As I read, and you heard it in your own language, you
4 understand that today you must say whether or not you are pleading
5 guilty or innocent on the entire indictment that the Registrar has
6 read to you, or on one or another of the counts. I would like you to
7 answer: are you prepared to plead guilty or not guilty on the whole
8 indictment, both of the charges, or only on one of them? Have you
9 understood my question? I would like you to answer it, please.
10 GENERAL DJUKIC (original in Serbian): Yes, thank you. I have heard
11 very well your question and I am ready to answer your question. Your
12 Honour, I clearly understand the indictment. I plead not guilty as I
13 have not done anything that would have put me in front of this
14 Tribunal today. I would like to emphasise that, reading my
15 indictment, you can conclude the following: the fact that I appear
16 before this Tribunal means that any member of the army of Republika
17 Srpska could appear here if the Tribunal needed it, any citizen of
18 the Republika Srpska could end up here. I would even go so far as
19 saying any civilian that happened to be, during the war, on the
20 territory of the Republika Srpska. But I will leave it to the
21 Tribunal to solve this issue, to solve this dilemma. I will leave it
22 to the Tribunal, to the international democratic public opinion.
23 Furthermore, I would like to add that I was captured, or kidnapped,
24 as a civilian. I wore civilian clothes. I was on the road that was
25 under the international control. Allow me to emphasise the following:
1 at the hearing in front of this Tribunal, when you were discussing
2 the lawfulness of my transfer and handing over of the documents, the
3 Tribunal adopted the position of the Registry. General Djukic is in
4 possession of the documents that were handed over to him on behalf of
5 the Registry on 29th January, whereas the stamp that you can see on
6 the document dates from 22nd February. Why is it like that? I leave
7 this to you and to the others. I would like to say once more that I
8 am convinced that this Tribunal will eventually defend the interests
9 of justice and not the interests of an institution. My status is not
10 known. It is not known whether I am tried in front of the
11 International Tribunal in The Hague or in front of the Superior Court
12 in Sarajevo, or in front of both of these courts, tribunals. All
13 these questions explain why I am not ready to co-operate with the
14 Prosecutor and why I am not ready to give any answers in front of
15 this Tribunal. Thank you.
16 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Thank you, General. Your statement
17 has been transcribed. As far as the discussions of today, which do
18 not have to do with the substance, this is the initial appearance of
19 the accused. What you said has been recorded, and I am sure that your
20 lawyer will base himself on what you have said at the time, but right
21 now we are assuming that you are pleading not guilty to the two
22 counts, crimes against humanity and violations of customs of war. Now
23 I would like to turn to the Prosecutor. Do you have any comments you
24 would like to make before I ask questions both to the Prosecutor and
25 to the defence? As far as everything that has happened so far, do you
1 have any particular questions you would like to ask?
2 MR OSTBERG: None, your Honour.
3 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): We will now go into the last part
4 of our hearing, that is to organise how we are going to work, so that
5 each of the parties will be able to make its claim for the accused or
6 for the Prosecutor in accordance with the system that has been set up
7 by the International Tribunal. I would first like to ask the
8 Prosecutor and the defence if you have preliminary questions which
9 you would like to discuss, or any motions? I would like to remind
10 you, for the proper understanding of our proceedings, as in all of
11 the proceedings in the important legal systems in all countries, that
12 there are a certain number of preliminary motions which can be raised
13 which might, in fact, be asked before the very substance of the trial
14 begins. They have been provided for in 72 and 73 of our Rules. I do
15 not have to read these. The Prosecutor and the defence are both very
16 familiar with them, but we must here, the Presiding Judge together
17 with the other two Judges, be sure in order to organise our work, if
18 there are going to be any preliminary questions. Mr Prosecutor, do
19 you have any preliminary questions you would like to raise?
20 MR OSTBERG: No, your Honour, we do not file any motion for the time
21 being at all. We will come back, I think, on your Honour's initiative
22 to the question of how we are going to proceed or the time needed
23 before the date of trial can be set.
24 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Mr Vujin?
25 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): Your Honour, the defence will have
1 preliminary motions in accordance with Rule 73 of the Rules of
2 Procedure and Evidence in accordance with points 1, 2, 3 and 4, and
3 this from the moment when we will receive the evidence on behalf of
4 the Prosecution. We will then assess the quality of that evidence. At
5 this moment, we can say that we will, of course, use our right to
6 file preliminary motions.
7 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Thank you, Mr Vujin. I would like
8 to recall that the preliminary motions - the defence has 60 days from
9 the point of this appearance in order to file them. All the different
10 parts of the accusation must be communicated to the defence, as it
11 must do for the Prosecution, in order for our work to be clearly
12 organised. There should be a pre-trial conference set up very
13 quickly; I think this would be in the interests both of the accused
14 I have already recalled the terms of our Tribunal, to ensure an
15 equitable trial. So I want to be sure, Mr Prosecutor, that starting
16 on 8th March at 11.00 there be a pre-trial conference here. I say
17 "here", for the interpretation. I believe, actually I am sure that
18 this is a good thing to do, and then in agreement with my colleagues,
19 we are going to set Friday, 8th March at 11.00 as the conference
20 which will be closed and will allow us to establish what we have to
21 do. Mr Vujin?
22 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): Your Honour, I do not think that this
23 is a good day for the defence, because we have some commitments in
24 Belgrade. Would it be possible to have a status conference next
25 Monday on 11th, I think it is 11th March, at noon?
1 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Monday, 11th, perhaps on 12th,
2 Tuesday? Let me turn to the Registrar.
3 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): Your Honour, I am not talking about
4 the 18th March. You have suggested 8th March, and we are suggesting
5 11th March, Monday, 11th.
6 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): I myself cannot be there on 11th.
7 So on Wednesday, or even Thursday of next week would be best.
8 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): Tuesday or Wednesday. Tuesday, 12th
9 March, is also a good date for me.
10 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): Would Thursday 14th be all right
11 for you, Mr Vujin?
12 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): Yes. JUDGE JORDA (original in
13 French): Thursday 14th, will that be all right for you, Mr
15 MR OSTBERG: Yes.
16 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): For scheduling, I am turning to Mr
17 Marro. Is there any problem,? Would you prefer it to be in the
18 morning or in the afternoon? Morning, afternoon?
19 MR VUJIN (original in Serbian): It is all the same for the defence.
20 It can be either in the morning or in the afternoon.
21 JUDGE JORDA (original in French): All right, Thursday, 14th March at
22 11.00. We will meet again here for a closed status conference where
23 you will file the preliminary motions that you plan to do, and you
24 are able to have a procedural discussion with the Prosecutor. Our
25 additional hearing should also set the date for the trial. The desire
1 of the Tribunal would be for this all to be started as quickly as
2 possible, without hurrying things too much. I think that it is too
3 early today, Mr Marro, for me to ask you to set the date of the
4 trial, because of course the trial date will depend on the contents
5 of the preliminary motions that will be decided on. Do you agree, Mr
6 Marro? Therefore, under those conditions, I suggest that we suspend
7 the Tribunal today and we will meet again on 14th March, Thursday, at
8 11.00. The session is adjourned. (12.35 pm) (Tribunal adjourned)