1 Thursday, 28th May, 1998
2 (In open session)
3 --- Upon commencing at 9.33 a.m.
4 (The accused entered court)
5 JUDGE CASSESE: Good morning. If the
6 registrar would be so kind as to call out the case
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honour.
9 Case number IT-95-13a-T, the Prosecutor versus Slavko
11 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you. Mr. Dokmanovic,
12 do you feel comfortable?
13 THE WITNESS: Yes.
14 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you. Mr. Fila?
15 MR. FILA: Your Honour, I'll continue.
16 WITNESS: SLAVKO DOKMANOVIC
17 Examined by Mr. Fila
18 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, yesterday we left off with --
19 at Vodicka. Could you tell me who Zlatko and Jovanka
20 Vodicka were, how did you come to know them, make
21 friends with them?
22 A. I would like to apologise for what happened
23 yesterday, first of all. I was emotionally very close
24 to that man, and I was very distressed.
25 Zlatko Vodicka was my best friend. I've
1 known him since 1971. Jovanka came in 1972. We were
2 together almost every single day, and he died on the
3 15th of September last year, and that is why I was so
4 distressed yesterday.
5 Q. You were in prison at the time; is that
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. What was Zlatko Vodicka by nationality and
9 how did he declare himself and what religion was he?
10 A. He declared himself as a Croat of the
11 Catholic faith.
12 Q. And how as a Catholic, if his father was a
13 Czech and his mother an Austrian?
14 A. According to what I know, his parents were
15 also born in the territory of Croatia and his parents
16 always declared themselves as Croats.
17 Q. I should like to ask you now, if I may, to
18 explain once again whether, at that time, on the 20th
19 of November at VELEPROMET, you learned something of the
20 fate of Jovanka and Zlatko and what happened to them
21 generally in the war situation?
22 A. Zlatko was at my house and Jovanka was in the
23 basement, in the cellar in Vukovar because they had a
24 house in Vukovar. He went to look for her on the 18th;
25 that is to say, when entrance to Vukovar was possible.
1 I did not know what was happening, but on the
2 18th he did not find her. He went again on the 19th
3 and then he found Jovanka.
4 Q. How did you learn of this and when?
5 A. Well, I learned of this in VELEPROMET from
7 Q. That is to say on the 20th; is that right?
8 A. Yes, on the 20th. Because Zlatko, when he
9 found Jovanka as he found her near Sid on the motorway,
10 he went -- they slept in Sid and stayed in Sid and
11 Kosic's family was in Sid, and somehow or other they
12 saw each other and they said -- he said that Zlatko had
13 found Jovanka.
14 Q. May we see the tape at one particular point
15 when you say -- say something, a sentence. Could you
16 tell us -- it is D2? Could you tell us what the
17 sentence is, what you are saying in that sentence?
18 (Videotape played)
19 Q. What did you say there?
20 A. I said Zlatko has found Jovanka.
21 Q. Does that refer to Vodicka?
22 A. Absolutely, yes.
23 Q. I apologise?
24 A. It was for me a very happy piece of news
25 because we had lost all hope, both Zlatko and us, we
1 thought that Jovanka had perhaps died in the fighting
2 around Vukovar because he had heard nothing of her for
3 almost a month, he didn't know what was happening.
4 Q. Before he came to your house to live, Zlatko
5 Vodicka, in what town did he live?
6 A. Zlatko Vodicka was a veterinary (sic), and
7 they lived in Vukovar where they had their family
8 house, they lived in Trpinja for some 15 years in the
9 veterinary station, in the flat above it. After that
10 they built a house in Vukovar and moved to Vukovar
11 sometime after 1980, I think, perhaps '83, '84, but
12 Zlatko continued to work in Trpinja as a vet.
13 Jovanka worked in the veterinary station in
14 Vukovar. At the time when Vukovar was closed off and
15 nobody was able to leave Vukovar and the villages
16 around were closed off Zlatko could no longer travel to
17 Trpinja, and then they transferred him to work at
18 Jakobovac which is a livestock farm near Vukovar. And
19 he worked there for some time, I think somewhere until
20 the 15th or 16th of October, when Vukovar was closed
21 off, when the army set up a blockade at Vukovar from
22 that direction, he was at work, at Jakobovac on the
23 farm and he was not able to return to Vukovar.
24 The only free road, passable road, was
25 towards Ilok, so he went to Ilok. Jovanka remained in
1 Vukovar, and from that day they had no contact. They
2 did not hear each other or see each other until they
3 were reunited again on the 19th of November.
4 Q. That is to say, when -- when you were left --
5 when they left Ilok.
6 Did Markovic, the President of the
7 Municipality, did he invite you?
8 A. I got a message the day before saying Zlatko
9 had asked me to wait. I did not know that he was in
10 Ilok because we were not in contact, so that on that
11 day, I went there to see. I thought it was that day.
12 However, it turned out not to be that day but the day
14 Q. Which means that you went to Ilok twice; is
15 that right?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Were you on the bridge the first day?
18 A. Yes. Ljuba Novakovic was there, I came to
19 him in the municipal building to see what was going on
20 and they told me that he was on the bridge so I went to
21 the bridge and asked what was happening there, and they
22 said that the next day Ilok would be evacuated and I
23 remained there some five or ten minutes and returned.
24 Q. Then you went back the next day and then you
25 met Vodicka and that is how he came to be in your
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. I should now like to ask for the tape, the
4 last minute, 15.42, the time 15.42 p.m. Could you tell
5 me if you hear your voice and tell us what you are
6 saying and where you're saying it?
7 (Videotape played).
8 Mr. Dokmanovic, was that your voice?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Could you tell us, please -- may we rewind
11 the tape? When you hear your voice, please say that it
12 is you speaking and tell us what you were saying. May
13 we have the tape again, please?
14 A. Those are Negoslavci.
15 Q. What did you say there?
16 A. I said a sentence -- well, they're really
17 fucking me and how come they would have to know me.
18 Q. Was that from Negoslavci and on the
19 turning -- as we can see that Mr. Bos has returned, may
20 we show the accused Exhibit D48?
21 A. That is my clothing. I wore that clothing on
22 the 20th of November, 1991, but also I had it before
24 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, sometime in June, you left
25 Vukovar. Could you tell us what you wore from June up
1 to the 21st of November and later on, 1991, and why
2 you wore what you wore?
3 A. In the summer, I wore jeans and a T-shirt.
4 At times I would wear something else, change into
5 something else, depending on the conditions prevailing,
6 and in the autumn I began to wear this clothing when it
7 became colder. I had a greenish jacket from the Vupik
8 Vukovar company that we received as workers, and the
9 jacket, when it was cold, that was the jacket that I
11 Q. Why did you wear this clothing in the
13 A. Well, it was autumn.
14 Q. Yes, autumn, I'm sorry.
15 A. Well, there were at least two reasons. The
16 first reason was a practical reason because it was
17 easier to maintain this type of clothing, compared to
18 classical suits and classical clothes. In view of the
19 conditions we lived in, no electricity, water only from
20 time to time, everything had to be washed by hand. And
21 the other reason was that the times were such that
22 civilians were -- that people didn't like to see
23 civilians so much, that it was better to wear clothing
24 of this kind for passing through checkpoints.
25 That was the situation. Civilians were at a
1 disadvantage. So practically everybody wore some kind
2 of uniform, and anybody not in some kind of uniform
3 would be the odd man out.
4 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, you said that you recognised
5 on the tape the last sequence because between Vukovar
6 and Negoslavci, on the road, there are no houses at
7 that time, there were no houses.
8 I'm going to show you a tape which is the
9 exhibit of the Prosecution, P28, and I think that it is
10 item 14, it is a picture taken by the Prosecution from
11 a helicopter. They seem to have far more sophisticated
12 means than I do, so it is better to see the evidence
13 provided by the Prosecution.
14 Can any houses be seen in that picture?
15 Would you say whether it is found -- it is found that
16 from Vukovar to Negoslavci, there are no houses where
17 the buses were?
18 May we see the tape, please?
19 That's Vukovar; is that right?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Now pay attention, please. Not 3. Fourteen,
22 please. You can start with 13 and go on to 14.
23 In the meantime, while we set technical
24 matters right, I am going to ask you the last question
25 of this investigation. Are you married? Do you have a
1 family? How did you get married? Tell us a little bit
2 about yourself while we're seeing to the tape.
3 A. I am married to a wonderful woman, I've been
4 married since 1969. We have two grown-up children, a
5 daughter, who is married, and a son, who is married.
6 Q. Do you have any grandchildren?
7 A. I have two grandchildren, a little girl,
8 she's 8 years old, whom you saw.
9 Q. Yes.
10 A. And a boy of eight months.
11 Q. Whom, unfortunately, you have not seen yet.
12 And your daughter is expecting?
13 A. Yes, my daughter is expecting a third baby.
14 Q. Were you ever convicted of any crime in your
16 A. No, never. I was a court expert for many
17 years, I had no problems when it came to law and order.
18 Q. Apart from the love of your family, what
19 other -- what else can you tell us?
20 A. Well, I come from a village background,
21 peasant background, my parents were farmers, and I came
22 to love farming when I was a boy, so I studied
23 agriculture and agriculture was my second love after my
25 Q. What were you doing in politics?
1 A. Well, men make mistakes. I made that mistake
2 in 1990 when I thought that by a multi-party system, we
3 would finally rid ourselves of the fetters, and my
4 friends, in view of the position I held in my
5 environment, persuaded me to enter into politics.
6 Right at the beginning, my wife tried to
7 dissuade me and said "Why do you want to go into
8 politics, Slavko. We have a nice life. It's not for
9 you." Unfortunately, I did not listen to her and
10 that's why I find myself here in The Hague today.
11 MR. FILA: May we see the tape now, please,
12 13, 14, the 13-14 segments. This is the exit from
13 Vukovar and the road to Ovcara. What part of Vukovar
14 is this?
15 A. It is part of the barracks, it is the Jewish
16 cemetery which had a wall around it when I was
17 President of the Municipal Assembly.
18 Q. Now please pay attention to what we are going
19 to see now. What road is this?
20 A. It is the road leading from Vukovar.
21 Q. Is that the road you took on the occasion?
22 A. It is the road towards Negoslavci.
23 Q. So it is the road that you went along on the
24 20th of November moving out of Vukovar.
25 Are there any houses there?
1 A. No, there are just fields. This is private
2 property all around.
3 Q. Stop one minute. This is the turning to
4 Ovcara. From Ovcara to Vukovar, is there a single
6 A. In 1991, there was not a single house on that
8 Q. Thank you. That's all we need the tape for.
9 I should now like to ask Your Honours,
10 Mr. Dokmanovic wanted to say a few words, if he may and
11 if that is usual, if it is acceptable? Thank you. And
12 we have no further questions on the part of the
14 THE WITNESS: Honourable Mr. President, Your
15 Honours, ladies and gentlemen. After several months,
16 it was eleven months yesterday since I have been in
17 prison, this is the first occasion I have had to say
18 something, for you to hear my voice, the sound of my
19 voice, and I'm very grateful to you for that. As I am
20 under oath, everything that I am going to say will be
21 the truth, and these sentences, including the sentences
22 that I'm addressing to you, esteemed Judges.
23 I thank you very much for the way in which
24 you have conducted my hearing conscientiously. I
25 should like to emphasise the very humane relationship
1 which everybody working, all the staff of the prison
2 have towards me, particularly the warden, Mr. McFadden,
3 who had a lot of understanding for all my human crises.
4 Your Honours, you will bring in a sentence
5 according to your consciences. Whatever that sentence
6 is, you should know that you have a completely broken
7 man sitting before you whose life will never be the
8 same. It is quite certain that this hearing has
9 affected my psyche so much that I don't think I'll ever
10 be able to feel differently than I feel at this moment.
11 Please allow me to say this before I begin to
12 answer any further questions. Please understand that
13 you have before you a man who, under oath, has declared
14 that he has never killed anybody or mistreated anybody
15 in his life.
16 Thank you for hearing me.
17 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you, Mr. Dokmanovic.
18 Mr. Niemann or Mr. Williamson?
19 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, just very
20 briefly, there's one sort of housekeeping matter before
21 I start putting questions to Mr. Dokmanovic.
22 In preparing for cross-examination, we
23 realised that the transcript of the interview with
24 Mr. Dokmanovic at the prison omitted the last two
25 pages. The videotape has been provided to the Defence,
1 they were present for the interview, and this is
2 something that we have just discovered. It's a very
3 brief part, but apparently there was discussion about
4 closing the interview out and then it was decided that
5 it would go on and one or two more questions were put
6 to him, so it is on the videotape, it just does not
7 appear in the transcript.
8 I have gotten the transcript done overnight
9 and I have a draft translation of it, so it is not a
10 final translation, but I can supplement this to the
11 transcript that everyone already has or I can give you
12 a new transcript which is complete and encompasses
13 everything. So whatever is your preference.
14 JUDGE CASSESE: You can simply supplement to
15 the present transcript we already have.
16 MR. WILLIAMSON: It is, Your Honour, very
17 brief. It's about two pages altogether, so I would
18 mark that as -- it is already marked as Prosecutor's
19 Exhibit 128A, this would be 128B, and the version in
20 128C would be the Serbian version.
21 MR. FILA: If I have understood you
22 correctly, it is the interview that I also attended at
23 the prison; right?
24 MR. WILLIAMSON: That is correct. This is
25 the one the Defence was present for and they have
1 received a videotape of it. As I say, there was
2 discussion at the very end about terminating it and
3 then it was decided to go on and ask a couple more
4 questions, and apparently the person transcribing it
5 heard the discussion on concluding it and felt that
6 that was the end.
7 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you.
8 MR. WILLIAMSON: May I proceed, Your Honour?
9 JUDGE CASSESE: Yes, please.
10 Cross-examined by Mr. Williamson
11 MR. WILLIAMSON:
12 Q. Now, Mr. Dokmanovic, when you met with
13 Mr. Curtis last June in Sombor, you did so with the
14 purpose of talking about crimes committed by Croats
15 against Serbs, did you not?
16 A. No. When I met him, my intention was to
17 discuss all the crimes that were committed there.
18 Q. And during --
19 A. It was not spelled out precisely that we
20 would discuss crimes that were committed by Croats
22 Q. And during the course of that interview, you
23 did not offer any information, however, about crimes
24 committed by Serbs, did you?
25 A. We hadn't even reached that point yet. Our
1 conversation took two days. On the second day, it was
2 very short because Mr. Curtis had actually discharged
3 his task to get me to come to Vukovar. That is why he
4 came to see me, not in order to obtain information.
5 The second day we talked very briefly, and our
6 conversation ended with the 2nd of May, 1991.
7 Q. And when you were discussing the 2nd of May
8 of 1991, the day of the Borovo Selo incident, the
9 version that you gave him was quite different from the
10 view that you expressed in court yesterday, that it was
11 impossible to ascertain who was responsible because, in
12 fact, you told Mr. Curtis that the Croats were
13 exclusively responsible for everything that had
14 happened at Borovo Selo, did you not?
15 A. Yesterday I said that I asked Mr. Ante
16 Markovic and Mr. Manolic, as the Prime Ministers of the
17 Federal and Croatian governments respectively, to
18 ascertain who was guilty for what had happened in
19 Borovo Selo.
20 Q. But I believe you also told the court that it
21 was impossible to decide who was responsible.
22 A. I did not say it was impossible to ascertain
23 that. It was possible to ascertain it, but I did not
24 have the possibilities to ascertain that or the
25 municipality didn't have the opportunity to ascertain
1 that. Someone who had far greater powers than I did or
2 that the assembly did could only ascertain that.
3 Q. But when you spoke with Mr. Curtis, you had
4 very clear views on who was responsible and you
5 expressed those to him, which seems to be different
6 from what you're saying to the court now.
7 A. Mr. Curtis had the intention of putting me
8 into prison from the very outset. I don't know what he
9 wrote about. I am telling you what it was like. The
10 conflict there was initiated by the Croatian police,
11 but it is certain that not only one side is to be
12 blamed because there was a general showdown, so that is
13 what I was saying on that occasion too.
14 Q. And when you were talking yesterday about
15 offering to voluntarily come to The Hague, that was
16 said in the context of coming here as a witness against
17 Croatian perpetrators, was it not? It was not to come
18 here and stand trial.
19 A. No mention was made of the conditions under
20 which I would come to The Hague. We only talked about
21 it, and Mr. Curtis asked me whether I would make a
22 statement and sign a statement or possibly come to The
23 Hague. I said that I would agree to both one and the
24 other. No mention was made of whether it would be
25 under one set of conditions or another set of
2 Q. You spoke yesterday about your family having
3 been in Trpinja for 250 years and how you had been
4 forced from your home. In 1991, by UN estimates, 97
5 percent of the Croatian population in Vukovar
6 municipality were forced out, and many of those
7 families had been there for 250 years or more.
8 What did you do, as someone who was in and
9 out of political office up until 1996, to bring those
10 people back to their homes?
11 A. I had a political office until the 6th of
12 June, 1991. What I did after that was not a political
13 office. This was a professional job I did as Minister
14 of Agriculture in the government of the district of
15 Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem, and the director
16 of the Vinarija.
17 When I became President of the Municipal
18 Assembly again in 1994, I advocated the restoration of
19 Vukovar and the signing of the Erdut agreement which
20 meant that everyone should return to their homes.
21 Q. In terms of the Erdut agreement, that didn't
22 come about until 1995, did it?
23 A. Yes, when it was signed, when the Erdut
24 agreement was signed.
25 Q. And, in fact, negotiations for the Erdut
1 agreement did not begin until late 1995 either, did
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And at that point in time, Croatia had just
5 taken back all of the other Serb-held territory within
6 its borders, and so there was a threat of military
7 invasion from Croatia, and Belgrade had made it very
8 clear to the Serbs in Eastern Slavonia that you had to
9 come to some type of agreement with the Croats, had
10 they not?
11 A. The instructions that I had and the
12 information that I had -- I don't know about what
13 you're saying -- but the group of people who were there
14 decided to go into negotiations. No one ever called me
15 and ordered me to start negotiations.
16 Q. Well, what I'm suggesting to you,
17 Mr. Dokmanovic, is that at the end of 1995, the people
18 in Eastern Slavonia really did not have much of a
19 choice, and your only option was to enter into
20 negotiations at that point in time, and that the only
21 thing at issue was how long the transition would take
22 and the terms of the transition; isn't that fair to
24 A. From this time distance and from your
25 position, one could think along those lines. At that
1 time and from the position that I was in and the
2 position from which the people were in, those who were
3 in favour of negotiations were a minority even then.
4 Q. Now, do you recall telling Mr. Curtis on June
5 24th of last year that in 1991, objectively, there was
6 no way that the Croats could ever come back to Vukovar?
7 A. I don't understand. In 1991? What period of
8 1991? The Croats were in Vukovar in 1991.
9 Q. After the battle had ended in November of
10 1991, when you were discussing that period with
11 Mr. Curtis, do you recall telling him that objectively
12 the conclusion of you and the government was that there
13 was no way that the Croats could ever come back to
15 A. I did not say that to Mr. Curtis. But, in
16 1991, after the fighting for Vukovar, there were no
17 proper living conditions for the Croat or the Serb
18 population. There were several thousand inhabitants
19 there, 2.000 or 3.000, in the facilities and the
20 buildings that were preserved at least up to a point,
21 but the rest of the population was either in Serbia or
22 in Croatia.
23 Q. Now, what led you to go to this meeting that
24 was supposed to occur with General Klein was the fact
25 that you were seeking compensation for your house since
1 you had had to leave Croatia. Did your government make
2 any efforts to compensate all of the Croats for the
3 homes that they had lost?
4 A. It was not only my house, it was other houses
5 too, of Serbs who had abandoned that area. That was
6 supposed to be the subject of this discussion, and that
7 is why Mr. Knezevic went with me, who was from Baranja
8 and who also left his house there, so that we could see
9 whether something could be done because all of us who
10 had left did not really have proper homes.
11 But regardless of how I went and why I went,
12 I had full guarantees, both of Mr. Curtis and of
13 Mr. Klein, that I would safely return to Sombor. They
14 both lied. All of that was with the objective of
15 baiting me, bringing me here in a most deceitful way.
16 Q. I'll again put the question to you: Were any
17 efforts made, while you were in the government or while
18 you were in the municipal administration, to compensate
19 the Croats for their homes that were all destroyed? I
20 mean, your home is still standing in Trpinja. Their
21 homes were levelled. Were any efforts made to
22 compensate them for those houses?
23 A. While I was President of the Municipal
24 Assembly in '94 and 1995, restoration works were being
25 carried out on all the buildings, depending on the
1 amount of funds available.
2 The town of Vukovar was so devastated that
3 the municipality did not have the possibility to
4 restore everything that had been destroyed. We talked
5 about that to the members of the European Community and
6 the United Nations and UNTAES, that funds would have to
7 be provided for restoring all of this, and if this
8 would not be done, the renewal of Vukovar would take a
9 very long period of time. No difference was being made
10 when a building was being restored as to whether it was
11 a Serb or a Croat apartment that was being restored.
12 I don't know what you mean when you say that
13 the municipality as an institution should compensate
14 the Croats whose houses were destroyed. There weren't
15 financial resources available for that kind of thing.
16 It wasn't possible.
17 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, if you were a man of peace
18 and reconciliation, why is the perception of you so
19 different among Croats? I mean, you're charged with
20 fomenting rebellion, and you're clearly not welcome in
21 Croatia. Why is that if you were reaching out to them
22 for reconciliation?
23 A. Yesterday evidence was presented here as to
24 what the President of the Municipal Assembly of Vukovar
25 did in order to preserve the peace in town. If that is
1 not understood, it can be shown once again. But the
2 situation was such that the control and the possibility
3 that the President of the Municipal Assembly of Vukovar
4 had were not sufficient for preserving the peace.
5 The Croats accuse me because they think that,
6 in a way, I supported the Serb side as President rather than
7 the Croat side. The Serbs are charging me with the
8 opposite, that I was too inclined towards the Croats
9 and that I pursued too lenient a policy, if that was a
10 policy at all.
11 My orientation was to preserve Yugoslavia as
12 much as possible and to have the problems that were
13 coming out resolved by peaceful means. This is
14 highlighted practically in all the statements that were
15 issued. I thought that we were too small an
16 environment to decide on the ultimate outcome of the
17 Yugoslav crisis. I believe until the present day that
18 this should have been resolved at higher levels, not
19 allow every village and every municipality fend for
20 itself to the best of its ability. Regrettably,
21 Vukovar had the toughest time of all.
22 Now, from this time distance, one can lecture
23 what should have been done at that point, but at that
24 time, I was in favour of peace and I clearly expressed
1 Q. Now, you indicated yesterday that you were
2 present at the meeting in Srb on July 25th, 1990, at
3 the time that the Serb National Council was formed;
5 A. I was present.
6 Q. And you said that you were surprised by what
7 you heard there and that, in effect, you disagreed with
8 the views that were being expressed; no?
9 A. I did not say that. I said that I was
10 surprised by the atmosphere that I saw.
11 Q. Well, in what way were you surprised?
12 A. In the area of Vukovar, we still had a
13 relatively peaceful situation at that time except that
14 the members of the Croatian Democratic Union from time
15 to time demonstrated with cars or in other ways in town
16 and in the surrounding villages, and they flew their
17 national flag, their party flag, they sang provocative
18 songs, and very often they were provoking people in
19 other ways too. At that time, the Serbs were not doing
21 When I went there, I saw a big gathering with
22 a lot of Serb insignia and a different kind of
23 atmosphere, something that did not exist in Vukovar.
24 Q. And you viewed this atmosphere in a negative
1 A. I didn't say that. I said that I was
2 surprised by what I saw.
3 Q. So were you happy to be offered membership in
4 this organisation, in the Serb National Council?
5 A. First of all, I was surprised to have been
6 proposed there, and in terms of my inner feelings, I
7 cannot speak of that now, and I think that what I did
8 after that clearly demonstrates what my intention was.
9 Q. Well, I'm asking about your inner feelings at
10 that time. Was this something you were in favour of,
11 of joining the organisation or no?
12 A. My political convictions were Yugoslav. I
13 said that several times. It is only on the basis
14 that -- of something that led to Yugoslavia could I
15 emphasise my feelings. You're asking me how I felt
16 seven years ago at that gathering. I cannot tell you
17 precisely. I do not know exactly how I felt. I just
18 know that I was surprised. That is the only thing I
19 can say.
20 Q. Well, if you were pro-Yugoslav, why did you
21 just not decline membership in this organisation that
22 was clearly proposing a separatist pact for Serbs?
23 A. First of all, that is not true. Croatia
24 advocated separatism from Yugoslavia, the Serbs wanted
25 to remain in Yugoslavia; therefore, that problem should
1 be viewed the way it really was, not in a lopsided
2 manner the way you interpret it.
3 As far as my presentation is concerned, that
4 was impossible. I was about -- there were thousands of
5 people, and I was about a hundred metres away from the
6 stage, so it would have been impossible for me to speak
8 Q. But you didn't have to join the
9 organisation. I mean, they were creating a Serb
10 National Council, a Serb parliament situated at Srb.
11 This wasn't Yugoslav, this was Serb.
12 A. I said that the Serbs in Knin and in other
13 places advocated Yugoslavia, most of them, at that
14 point in time.
15 Q. So the way that you viewed this then is that
16 Serbs were basically equal to Yugoslavia?
17 A. That is what you're saying. I am saying that
18 the Serb people advocated the preservation of
19 Yugoslavia. Most of them.
20 Q. Well, can you understand how this might
21 engender opposition from Croats and Slovenes if you
22 were defining Yugoslavia as an entity which executes
23 the goals of the Serbs and the objectives of the Serbs?
24 A. That is not correct. Yugoslavia existed then
25 as a sovereign state. Separatism from Yugoslavia was
1 being expressed by Slovenia and Croatia. They were the
2 first to do so. Later on, other members did that as
3 well. So this is separatism of the republics that
4 wanted to leave Yugoslavia. And that is the core of
5 the matter.
6 Whether someone was threatened in Yugoslavia
7 or would have been threatened had Yugoslavia remained
8 is another story altogether. Until 1990, I claim that
9 not a single nation or nationality were threatened or
10 endangered in Yugoslavia.
11 Q. Now, this meeting of the Serb National
12 Council, though, where a Serb parliament is set up and
13 a declaration on sovereignty and autonomy of the
14 Serbian people is issued, this occurs eleven months
15 before Croatia declared its independence; correct?
16 Eleven months to the day.
17 A. You have to look at what happened that day in
18 the parliament of the Republic of Croatia and then we
19 can discuss this. Since you have all these documents,
20 you should have documents from the other side as well.
21 That is one thing.
22 Secondly, the Serb people in Croatia were a
23 sovereign people like the Croatian people, and Croatia
24 was a state of the Croatian and Serb peoples, so the
25 equality of rights of these peoples was stipulated in
1 the constitution of Croatia.
2 Q. After you became a member of the Serb
3 National Council, you waited until there was criticism
4 from the Croatian side before you resigned at this
5 meeting of the assembly; correct?
6 A. That is not correct.
7 Q. You indicated yesterday that there was a
8 tremendous amount of press coverage and that the HDZ
9 had been very critical of you in the press for joining
10 the Serb National Council and that they had called for
11 a meeting of the assembly in which you would be
12 censured, and it was at that point that you resigned.
13 So I'm asking you: Why didn't you resign earlier than
14 that if you had some disagreement with the Serb
15 National Council? Why did you wait until there was
16 criticism from the other side before you acted?
17 A. As regards his work and what he did, the
18 President reported at sessions of the assembly. What
19 happened at that point in time was reported on the next
20 day. And within two or three days, different kinds of
21 criticism were levelled. And within the time framework
22 allowed, I convened the assembly. I cannot convene an
23 assembly meeting on the phone. Invitations had to be
25 So although this was an extraordinary meeting
1 of the assembly, it still took a bit of time to
2 organise it, to convene it, and also to send in all the
3 papers, as was done when regular sessions of the
4 assembly were held too.
5 Q. And it was necessary for you to do this in
6 front of the assembly? You couldn't have gone down to
7 the newspaper or the radio station in Vukovar the day
8 you got back and said, "Yes, this has been reported.
9 I'm resigning immediately"? Why was it necessary to do
10 this in front of the assembly?
11 A. The fact that I went there was publicly
12 announced because at that time I was a member of the
13 Municipal Assembly and I wished to inform the other
14 members of the assembly so that they would be informed
15 and that a solution would be found in that way.
16 Why I did it that way and not go to the radio
17 station and broadcast this; I thought at that time that
18 this was the right way to proceed.
19 Q. Did you actually resign from the Serb
20 National Council or was this just done for public
21 consumption, as Mr. Petrovic says in his history of the
23 A. All the media reported on my leaving the Serb
24 National Council, and I said yesterday that I did not
25 take part in the work of a single session of this
1 council, and I don't know whether any sessions were
2 held, nor am I informed in any way as to what the Serb
3 National Council did.
4 Q. What about participating in this meeting in
5 Belgrade that Mr. Petrovic reports in his book where he
6 states that you argued that there should be a separate
7 Serb National Council for Slavonia, Baranja, and
8 Western Srem; was this true?
9 A. No. I don't know that that is what is
10 written in Mr. Petrovic's book. If you read it out to
11 me, perhaps I could comment on it because I only took a
12 superficial glance at the book.
13 MR. WILLIAMSON: Okay. I would ask that this
14 exhibit be brought out -- I'll have to check the
15 number. I believe it's 196. It's going to be --
16 MR. FILA: Your Honour, at this point, may I
17 just ask that the former assertion made by the
18 Prosecutor, that Petrovic'S book states that he only
19 formally resigned. Would you read out both passages?
20 MR. WILLIAMSON: I'm happy to put both of
21 them to him exactly. There were translations -- for
22 the assistance of the Registrar, it could be anywhere
23 between 196 and 202. So if I could perhaps see all of
24 those exhibits and I'll obtain the correct one?
25 Mr. Bos, we have a copy over here, so perhaps
1 I can look through it just a moment and find exactly
2 which ones I'm talking about.
3 Well, the quote in relation to you leaving
4 the Serb National Council in Knin, this appears in
5 Exhibit 196A. Perhaps this can be shown to
6 Mr. Dokmanovic? I believe this is on page 40 of the
8 Q. And this is about midway down in the first
9 paragraph, Mr. Dokmanovic, right before the reference
10 to Mr. Dzakula from Pakrac, and it says --
11 A. I apologise. What page did you say that was
13 Q. I'm sorry, it's on page 40.
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And about halfway down, it says: "The latter
16 two are not members of the council," talking of Caslav
17 Ocic and Slavko Dokmanovic. "However, Dokmanovic still
18 considers himself a member of the council in Knin
19 despite the fact that he left it because of the
21 You would disagree with that statement?
22 A. I said that I did not take part in the work
23 of the Serbian National Council and I am repeating this
24 for the third or fourth time.
25 Q. And then a couple of pages later, where it is
1 talking about discussions for setting up another Serb
2 National Council, it says: "After a long argument
3 about the words 'board' and 'committee' and after, at a
4 unpropitious moment, Dokmanovic started insisting on
5 the differences between Vukovar and Knin. Babic
6 finally agreed to the Serb National Council of
7 Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem being renamed the
8 Regional Board of the Serbian National Council."
9 But it's your testimony that you were not
10 even present at this meeting; is that correct?
11 MR. FILA: Your Honour, objection, please.
12 The Prosecutor, a moment ago, said that Dokmanovic was
13 in favour of creating the Serbian National Council.
14 That quotation was about Babic. I don't know who Babic
15 is until you bring him here.
16 The Prosecutor is duty-bound to read where
17 that is stated in Petrovic's book, that Dokmanovic
18 advocated the creation of the Serbian National Council,
19 because that is what he said. Can we look at the
20 transcript? May we have a look and see what he said?
21 If there is a quotation of that kind, please let him
22 supply us with it. If not, may we go on to the next
24 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, I thought that
25 this was a fair paraphrasing of what it said in the
1 book. I put it to Mr. Dokmanovic. He has indicated
2 that he wasn't even present at the meeting. So I'll
3 accept his answer.
4 MR. FILA: One other objection. He did not
5 paraphrase, he maintained. Paraphrasing is when you
6 retell something. But Mr. Williamson, the Prosecutor,
7 maintained that Dokmanovic advocated the formation of
8 the Serbian National Council for Slavonia, Baranja, and
9 Western Srem. That is not a paraphrase, it is an
10 assertion, and that is incorrect.
11 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, if I might?
12 The question was put to Mr. Dokmanovic. He said that
13 that was not fair, what I had said, and then he denied
14 even being there. All I can do is put questions to
15 him, and I think it's fair cross-examination to ask him
16 certain things and it's up to him to answer it. I
17 mean, he answered it, and he --
18 MR. FILA: Your Honour, but in the
19 cross-examination, you cannot raise incorrect
20 questions, incorrect assertions, in order to get an
21 answer which provides the possibility for a subsequent
23 So will the Prosecutor state that he has
24 quoted incorrectly and then everything will be all
1 JUDGE CASSESE: He did not quote, actually,
2 there was not a quotation. At your request,
3 the two citations were read out, but --
4 MR. FILA: But he did not quote what he said.
5 JUDGE CASSESE: Yes. I mean, it was not a
6 citation, he calls it a paraphrase of what the book by
7 Petrovic says. But I think the question has become
8 moot because, in any case, we have the answer from the
9 witness who said that he was not even there.
10 So let us now stop here. You can move on.
11 However, please, Mr. Williamson, whenever you make a
12 statement or you attribute a statement to a book, a
13 document, could you please read out the relevant
15 MR. WILLIAMSON: Certainly. I will be happy
16 to, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you.
18 MR. WILLIAMSON:
19 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, if you were not present at
20 this meeting, why would --
21 A. I did not say that.
22 Q. I'm sorry. I thought I had understood you to
23 say that you weren't there. You were present at this
25 A. I was at the meeting.
1 Q. And can you tell us what you discussed and
2 exactly what you proposed?
3 A. I can't say exactly, but quite certainly it
4 is not what Ilija Petrovic has written. I was not
5 along the same course as Ilija Petrovic, of the same
6 orientation. And I was invited to go there, I did not
7 know who would be at the meeting, at the Association of
8 Serbs from Croatia, because already at that time a
9 large number of Serbs had begun to leave Croatia,
10 principally from the large towns, and went in the
11 direction of Serbia toward Belgrade and would contact
12 the Association of Serbs from Croatia asking aid and
13 assistance in the solution of their problems, and some
14 political topics cropped up there which Ilija Petrovic
15 is now retelling.
16 Ilija Petrovic lived in Novi Sad. I lived in
17 Vukovar. That is the same as if I had proposed
18 solutions for what should be done in Novi Sad while
19 living in Vukovar.
20 Q. Well, going to this book, it's very clear
21 that Mr. Petrovic is quite proud of the Serb National
22 Council and what it accomplished. I mean, he treats it
23 almost like it's his child. It's pretty clear that he
24 doesn't like you and doesn't have a very good opinion
25 of you, so why would he possibly want to give you a
1 bigger role and involvement in the council than you
2 actually had?
3 A. I don't know what council you're talking
4 about now. If you're talking about the council that
5 Ilija Petrovic considers to be his own baby, that is to
6 say, the Serbian Council of Slavonia, Baranja, and
7 Western Srem, I was not a member of that council and
8 had no role there, either large or small.
9 Q. Now, you indicated that in the period between
10 May and June 1991, you were stopped a number of times,
11 taken out of your car, and searched. How many times
12 did this happen?
13 A. Sixty-three times.
14 Q. And you were taken out at gun point?
15 A. Those who stopped me were very frequently
16 armed, which was unusual for the police, with long
17 weapons, which was unusual for the police who were
18 there to keep law and order, to use long arms, long
19 rifles in moving about town.
20 Q. And this must have made you extremely angry,
21 did it not?
22 A. I was not angry. My esteem was hurt. It was
23 humiliating for the President of the Municipal Assembly
24 to be stopped in the centre of town, to be made to
25 leave his car, to be made to place his hands on the
1 car, and to search him in front of a crowd of people
2 looking at this. That way of work had a very clear
3 message. If they were able to behave like that towards
4 the President of the Municipal Assembly, what could
5 other citizens expect?
6 Q. But you weren't angry about this?
7 A. I was humiliated, offended.
8 Q. But not angry?
9 A. Why do you insist? If I have given you an
10 answer, I have given you an answer.
11 Q. Well, you indicated yesterday that you got
12 quite angry when the soldier wouldn't let you pass at
13 Orolik and had pointed a gun at you. You said you
14 became very angry. I'm just asking what's different
15 about this? This seems like actually a worse situation
16 and that it would be natural for you to get very angry
17 about someone dragging you out of your car at gun point.
18 A. I said yesterday that I was offended by the
19 way in which the soldier reacted. He said, "Who fucks
20 you and who fucks the government?" So I was offended
21 with his behaviour, with his conduct. I don't remember
22 saying that I was angry. It is quite usual that I was
23 not in a good mood at the answer of this
24 whipper-snapper to a serious man.
25 Q. Now, is it true that you travelled to work
1 for some time in an armoured personnel carrier?
2 A. It is not true that I went to work in an
3 armoured personnel carrier. They brought me from work
4 in an armoured personnel carrier.
5 Q. And there were three other armoured personnel
6 carriers escorting you, were there not?
7 A. I don't remember the exact number. I think
8 there were two or three.
9 Q. And these were provided by the JNA?
10 A. Yes, from the barracks in Vukovar.
11 Q. In the period between July and September
12 1991, you said that you had helped with the wheat
13 harvest around Trpinja and that you had to take it
14 across the Danube by boat because there were Croatian
15 police checkpoints on the bridges; is that correct?
16 A. The roads were blocked. The only
17 communication left open and via which we could reach
18 other parts of the world was via the Danube, to
19 Yugoslavia, to Vojvodina, Serbia. Vukovar was closed
20 off by the members of the police and armed members of
21 the Croatian Democratic Union, and we could not
22 transport the wheat in silos to Vukovar. The only way
23 to save what could have been saved was to go -- to use
24 the Danube. We had no access to any town.
25 Q. But you don't have to pass through Vukovar to
1 go to Erdut and the Erdut bridge from Trpinja, do you?
2 My question is: Why was it necessary to go in boats?
3 Why did you not cross over a bridge into Serbia?
4 A. Which bridge? When I said that everything
5 was controlled by the Croatian side, tell me which
6 bridge I could have used. Perhaps you know the area
7 better than I do.
8 Q. Well, you just indicated that you could not
9 go into Vukovar. But there's not a bridge in Vukovar,
10 there is a bridge in Erdut, and I'm putting it to you
11 that it was possible for you to get from Trpinja to
12 Erdut without going through Vukovar, and I'm just
13 asking -- I'm just trying to clarify why it was
14 impossible to use the bridges at that time and why it
15 was necessary to go by boat.
16 A. The bridge in Erdut was controlled by the
17 Croatian forces and no passage was possible across it.
18 Q. So it was at that time impossible to cross
19 out of Croatia into Serbia without going through a
20 Croatian checkpoint; correct?
21 A. It was not a checkpoint, it was more of a
22 barricade, I would say, which prevented passage. It
23 was not an ordinary checkpoint where you would show
24 your documents and then were able to proceed.
25 Q. But there was a Croatian position on the
1 Croatian side of the bridge which prevented you from
2 crossing into Serbia, be it a checkpoint or a barricade
3 or whatever.
4 A. The bridge was blocked by the Croatian police
5 and armed members of the Croatian Democratic Union, and
6 it was not passable.
7 Q. How did it come about that you joined the
8 government of the Serbian district?
9 A. I said yesterday that I was proposed by the
10 Prime Minister designate, Mr. Hadzic, for Minister of
11 Agriculture, for the post of Minister of Agriculture.
12 Q. Now, when you spoke with Mr. Milner in the
13 interview at the prison, you seemed to be somewhat
14 reluctant to talk about the fact that you were Minister
15 of Agriculture. He asked you what was your position,
16 and he said "Minister," and then you just said, "I was
17 in charge of agricultural affairs." This is indicated
18 on page 77 of the English transcript.
19 Was there a reason for this? And I can read
20 it out to you verbatim, if you wish. It says,
21 "Listen. I've got to say this. We've got to be
22 honest and forthright here. You were, I think,
23 Minister of Agriculture for a while for the area; is
24 that right?" You replied: "I was in charge of
25 agricultural affairs." He then asked: "What is the
1 title? The person in charge of agricultural affairs?"
2 And then he moves on to another question. But you
3 never reply.
4 Was there a reason why you were reluctant to
5 indicate that you were a Minister in the government?
6 A. The function that I performed had no traits,
7 features of Minister. The job that I did was the job
8 of a sort of assistant, at the level of an assistant.
9 So none of the Ministers, in fact, had the competencies
10 or did the title of Minister correspond to the actual
11 jobs they did, and that is why I said that this has
12 nothing to do with Minister.
13 "Minister" is a big title, a big word. What
14 I did was to help people. First of all, to help the
15 peasants, the farmers, because they were the most
16 numerous. As far as possible, to save their harvest,
17 their crops, and to sow new crops, new surface areas
18 with crops, with wheat, and that was my basic job.
19 Q. Well, we've seen the Defence Exhibit -- I'm
20 not sure of the number offhand -- where it lists you
21 and names you, in fact, as someone who was holding the
22 position of Minister of Agriculture, and at all of the
23 government meetings where we've seen the minutes from,
24 you're referred to as "Minister." So, I mean, why was
25 there a reluctance to say this to Mr. Milner?
1 A. I don't think that is essential.
2 MR. FILA: Objection. The accused has never
3 said that he was reluctant to tell Mr. Milner. Had he
4 not wanted to say this to Mr. Milner, we wouldn't have
5 talked to Mr. Milner. Nobody beat Mr. Dokmanovic and
6 made him talk to Mr. Milner. So do not quote
7 incorrectly that he did not wish to talk to Mr. Milner.
8 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Fila, sorry, but
9 Mr. Williamson did not say that the accused had said
10 that he was reluctant to talk to Mr. Milner, he's just
11 asking whether he was reluctant. So it's for the
12 witness to say "Yes" or "No," "I was reluctant," "I was
13 not reluctant," and to explain why.
14 MR. FILA: Then there's a change in the
15 translation. All right. Very well. Sorry. I
16 apologise. The translation was, what I heard, that he
17 said that he did not want to speak, and that is not
18 true, that he did not want to talk to Mr. Milner.
19 JUDGE CASSESE: Can you rephrase your
20 question and then we will move on?
21 MR. WILLIAMSON:
22 Q. Yes, Your Honour. I think I was taking it
23 from what was stated in the interview.
24 These questions were put to you and he asked
25 you specifically, "Were you Minister of Agriculture?"
1 And you said, "No, I was in charge of agricultural
3 My question to you is: Why were you
4 reluctant to say "I was Minister"? What was the
5 problem in indicating that you were a Minister?
6 A. I don't remember that it was something -- a
7 matter that the Defence would not wish to have that I
8 was a Minister in the government and that everybody who
9 was in the government called themselves Ministers.
10 Those were the way in which the jobs were divided up.
11 Q. How often did you meet with other members of
12 the government?
13 A. With some, more frequently; with some, less
14 frequently. Not all the Ministers were in the same
15 place. There wasn't enough space for that.
16 Q. How often were military officers present at
17 meetings of the government?
18 A. Very rarely. I don't recall them ever having
19 been present.
20 Q. Did you go to Erdut on a daily basis?
21 A. I went to Erdut every day, almost every day.
22 I can't quite tell you precisely in those four months
23 whether I was prevented from going two or three times
24 in the course of that time.
25 Q. And did you encounter military checkpoints
1 en route from Trpinja to Erdut?
2 A. Several checkpoints.
3 Q. And from your testimony this morning, it
4 seems that wearing this hunting uniform that you had,
5 that it helped you to pass through these checkpoints;
6 is that correct?
7 A. Those who were at the checkpoints had a
8 greater aversion -- that was my impression -- towards
9 civilians than they did if somebody was dressed similar
10 to them, so to speak. But I explained why I wore the
11 clothing I wore, and I see no reason to repeat that.
12 Q. Well, in fact, members of the Territorial
13 Defence and paramilitary groups wore any mixture of
14 uniforms, did they not? We've seen this videotape from
15 VELEPROMET. There is quite a variety of uniforms
16 present there, many of which the JNA officer yesterday
17 did not recognise.
18 A. Everybody wore what they had, I suppose. It
19 was wartime. Don't look at the situation from these
20 positions when you can change your tie and suit -- your
21 shirt and suit every day.
22 Q. But, in fact, you found it helpful to wear
23 the uniform as well, not only for reasons of not having
24 water, not having electricity, but you found it helpful
25 when you encountered military personnel at checkpoints
1 because they viewed you as someone who was in the
2 military and not as a civilian; correct?
3 A. If we all wore military uniforms in this
4 courtroom and you were wearing a suit, shirt, and tie,
5 who would be the odd man out? I have explained to you,
6 those were the times, and I have explained why that was
7 the case.
8 The first reason was that it was easy to
9 maintain. It was very difficult to put on a clean
10 shirt every morning, and it was not -- it was out of
11 context because this region was cut off from the
12 world. There was no large town to rely upon for
13 supplies. People had nothing to eat. So this would
14 have been out of place. How could you wear a suit and
15 tie under conditions of this kind? This would lead to
16 great aversion with those who find themselves in a very
17 difficult situation.
18 The second point, the second reason is that
19 there were thousands of refugees in the area that were
20 made to leave Vinkovci and Osijek and other towns in
21 Croatia, and these people came wearing what they had,
22 what they were wearing or what they got, what they
23 received. So I could not behave in a way as in -- and
24 dress with a tie and suit because I had a tie and suit
25 whereas they were mostly wearing sweaters and
2 You're looking at this from the wrong angle
3 of vision, from the wrong aspect, from a position which
4 is far removed from wartime and in a space of time
5 seven years later, and you're trying to impart -- say
6 that I wore this to show that I was a great soldier or
7 something else of the kind.
8 Yesterday we were shown exhibits that I was
9 not mobilised, and today I state again that I wore what
10 I was able to wear, what was at hand at that particular
12 Q. Now, the uniform that you have indicated was
13 yours, this Defence Exhibit 48, when and where did you
14 purchase this?
15 A. I don't remember. And is it vital? It is my
16 personal property. I did not receive it from the army
17 or the paramilitary, as you call it.
18 Q. Were you a member of the Territorial Defence
19 during the war in 1991?
20 A. No, I was not a member.
21 Q. Now, on the flight back to The Hague after
22 your arrest, I asked you if you were part of the
23 Territorial Defence, and you initially said "No." You
24 then added, and I quote: "Everyone was with the
25 Territorial Defence during war operations but just in
1 my village where I lived."
2 I then asked you your rank in the Territorial
3 Defence and you said "None." This appears at page 21,
4 22 of the transcript from the interview on the
5 aeroplane, which is Prosecutor's Exhibit 127.
6 So I would ask you now, Mr. Dokmanovic, what
7 you said on the aeroplane then was incorrect? That's
9 MR. FILA: Would you please read what you are
11 Your Honour, you drew the Prosecutor's
12 attention to reading when he was saying something. So
13 don't do it from your head, please read the text.
14 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Williamson, just read out
15 the passage which is on the transcript --
16 MR. FILA: But he must give Mr. Dokmanovic a
17 copy to see what is being read. That is the essential
18 point. Dokmanovic must be able to see what he is
19 reading from. Is that a lot to ask?
20 JUDGE CASSESE: All right. So,
21 Mr. Williamson, could you please tell the witness on
22 what page of the transcript this passage --
23 MR. WILLIAMSON: Very well, Your Honour.
24 This appears on page 21, and it's about halfway down.
25 Q. And I put the question to Mr. Dokmanovic:
1 "Did you do service with the Territorial Defence or in
2 the Yugoslav Reserve Forces?" The response was "No."
3 I then said "Never"? He said "Never." And then
4 Mr. Dokmanovic volunteered: "Everyone was with the
5 Territorial Defence during war operations, but just in
6 my village where I -- where I lived." And I then
7 asked: "What was your rank in the Territorial
8 Defence?" And you said "None."
9 MR. FILA: Objection.
10 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, this is a fair
11 question to Mr. Dokmanovic.
12 MR. FILA: No, it's okay. I have no
13 objection to the validity of the question. That is not
14 what I wanted to say. I should like to ask that it be
15 read out in Serbian as well. During the war -- this is
16 the text in Serbian. It has been translated here
17 that -- I would like that passage to be quite clear.
18 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, this appears
19 both in Serbian and in English.
20 MR. FILA: There is the word "with," "'with'
21 the Territorial Defence."
22 MR. WILLIAMSON: At any point where it's in
23 Serbian, it was also translated so that there was an
24 exact translation into English of what he said, not
25 relying on what the translator had said.
1 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Dokmanovic, have you
2 found the relevant passage, the passage which we are
3 discussing now in the transcript which is in front of
4 you? Yes? Could you please read it out in Serbian?
5 A. "During the war operations, everybody was the
6 Territorial Defence, but only in my village where I
8 JUDGE CASSESE: Could you please go on?
9 "Only my village where I lived." And ...
10 A. "What was your rank in the Territorial
11 Defence?" "No rank."
12 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you. Could you please
13 now answer the questions put by the Prosecutor?
14 A. Would you repeat the question, please?
15 MR. WILLIAMSON:
16 Q. Certainly. You initially said "No," that you
17 weren't in the Territorial Defence, and then you
18 volunteered this information that everyone was in the
19 Territorial Defence, everyone was mobilised, you said
20 "Just in my village." Why did you add this, that you
21 were in the Territorial Defence but just in your
23 A. Every village was organised -- organised its
24 defence, the defence of the village, and there were
25 moments when there was a threat of danger from attack
1 by Croatian forces in my village. My village was very
2 close to Vukovar, and the village was closed off then
3 and nobody could leave the village. None of the men.
4 And at that time -- that is what I had in mind. At
5 that time, we were all members of the village's
6 defence, not the formation of Territorial Defence.
7 Just the defence of the village, in defending the
8 village, not as Territorial Defence.
9 MR. WILLIAMSON: Now, I just have a couple of
10 more questions, Your Honour, and then perhaps we can
11 take a break -- a couple of questions before the
12 break. I'll have some afterward as well.
13 Q. During 1991, did you ever wear any other type
14 of military uniform, perhaps a JNA reserve officer's
16 A. After 1991 or before -- when? When? I
17 didn't understand it.
18 Q. During 1991, at any point.
19 A. I wore what has been displayed here.
20 Q. You don't recall wearing a JNA reserve
21 officer's uniform in Trpinja in August of 1991?
22 A. In August 1991? I don't recall. But I do
23 not preclude that possibility if those were the orders
24 of the commander of the defence of the village, that
25 everyone should wear a military uniform. Perhaps that
1 could have happened. I do not recall that it happened,
2 but perhaps it could have happened one day. But I did
3 not wear a military uniform. Perhaps there were orders
4 to that effect.
5 Q. So you were in some type of organisation
6 where you were subject to orders, and when you received
7 these orders, you'd put on a military uniform; is that
9 A. I said that every village had a defence staff
10 for defending the village, and the decisions of that
11 staff had to be observed. I had no role there
12 whatsoever except for an ordinary citizen, except that
13 of an ordinary citizen.
14 Q. And you're saying you don't recall, but there
15 is the possibility that you might have had on a uniform
16 during this period, a reserve officer's uniform?
17 A. No, no. I never had the uniform of a reserve
18 officer. I never said that, and please don't put words
19 into my mouth.
20 Q. Well, that was the question that I asked you,
21 and you said that there was a possibility. My question
22 exactly was: "You don't recall wearing a JNA reserve
23 officer's uniform in Trpinja in August of 1991?" Your
24 answer was: "In August 1991? I don't recall. But I
25 do not preclude that possibility if those were the
1 orders of the commander of the village."
2 So I'm not putting words into your mouth.
3 That was the direct question I asked you and that was
4 your response.
5 A. I was never a reserve officer nor did I ever
6 have the uniform of a reserve officer. Please, that is
7 quite clear, and that has been said several times. So
8 why do you insist all the time when there is less
9 attention on my part and you're trying to put words
10 into my mouth? I never said that I wore a reserve
11 officer's uniform because I never was a reserve
13 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, I'm not trying to put words
14 in your mouth. I quoted that. If you misunderstood me
15 or you weren't clear on what I was saying, you should
16 let me know, but I'm quoting directly what you said.
17 I'm not trying to put words in your mouth.
18 Did you wear any other uniform other than
19 this hunting uniform at any time, and if so, what kind
20 of uniform was that?
21 A. I do not recall, but I do not preclude the
22 possibility that there were orders, if there was a
23 threat of danger, and if that was the assessment of the
24 defence of the village, that there was danger of
25 attack, that we should all come there and put on
2 According to the previous rules and
3 regulations of the JNA, all members of the reserve had
4 JNA uniforms at home, which they kept at home. Not in
5 1990. My uniform of a reserve soldier I obtained when
6 I came back after having done my regular military
7 service, so it is possible that I could have obtained
8 it sometime in 1976, 1977, or 1978. So I kept it at
9 home, and everyone's duty was to do that. But now I
10 cannot recall -- I don't think so, but I cannot say for
11 sure 100 percent whether something like that happened
12 because at that time there were -- there was danger,
13 and the Croatian side tried to attack the village or
14 there was a threat of that kind of danger of that
15 having happened.
16 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, perhaps we
17 could take the break now?
18 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Fila, yes, please.
19 MR. FILA: I did not want to interrupt
20 Mr. Williamson, so I didn't want to influence the
21 answers of the witness, but since you now said that we
22 are on break, perhaps I could explain why there's this
24 When Mr. Williamson asked whether he wore a
25 uniform of the reserve officer, this was part of the
1 transcript. But it was translated into the Serb
2 language whether he wore the uniform of a reservist,
3 not a reserve officer.
4 So the officer, the word "officer"
5 disappeared in the Serbian translation, and that is the
6 source of this misunderstanding. Thank you.
7 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you. So we will take a
8 20-minute break.
9 --- Recess taken at 11.08 a.m.
10 --- Upon commencing at 11.30 a.m.
11 (The accused entered court)
12 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Williamson.
13 MR. WILLIAMSON: Thank you, Your Honour.
14 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, when you went to Ilok on
15 October 16th of 1991, did you go to a meeting where
16 Professor Magovac was present as one of the negotiators
17 for the people of Ilok?
18 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone isn't on. I'm
20 Q. I'm sorry, could you repeat what you said,
22 A. I was not one of the negotiators. I simply
23 happened to see Magovac there.
24 Q. But you did go to the meeting? You were
25 present at the meeting?
1 A. It was not a meeting. I was present. I told
2 you why I went there and that is where I saw
3 Mr. Magovac.
4 Q. And do you recall telling Mr. Magovac that
5 peoples courts would be set up at the end of all of
6 this to determine who was guilty?
7 A. I never said that, nor was it within my
8 competence to set up any kind of courts. I told
9 Mr. Magovac then -- I mean, I asked him, "Why are you
10 doing that?" Something to that effect. And he said it
11 was decided that way.
12 Q. When you asked him, "Why are you doing that?"
13 what were you referring to?
14 A. I meant, why was such great tensions being
15 created that lead to such situations.
16 Q. And it was your belief that this was the
17 fault of the Croats, if you were asking Professor
18 Magovac, "Why are you doing that?"
19 A. I did not say, "Why are you doing that?"
20 I said, "Why are you doing that?" And I didn't say it
21 was only -- I wasn't saying that it was only the fault
22 of the Croats. There were people to be blamed on all
23 sides. But when I was talking to him, why could I ask
24 him why somebody else was doing it? I was saying this
25 to him because I was talking to him. But I never
1 mentioned any kind of peoples courts. I said that this
2 was not within my competence. At that time I was
3 involved in organising agriculture, and I did not have
4 any reason to mention this, nor would I have ever
5 mentioned something like that.
6 Q. But when you addressed Professor Magovac and
7 said "you", were you indicating this in the singular,
8 indicating Mr. Magovac alone as being responsible, or
9 were you indicating "you" in the plural form, meaning a
10 group of people, and if so, what group of people?
11 A. I was referring to the general situation. I
12 knew Mr. Magovac from before. We weren't any great
13 friends, but I think that we would be relatively -- in
14 relatively good relations even today, had the situation
15 been different. So I was saying this as a friend to a
16 friend. I meant well, and I was referring to the
17 general situation, why all of that was happening. I
18 was not blaming any particular side for that.
19 Q. When you posed this question to him, do you
20 recall him answering you and saying, "Slavko, what did
21 I do?"
22 A. No, I don't think it was that way. This was
23 a long time ago and this conversation took five
24 minutes, or three minutes. I can't really say. And I
25 think that he said that is the way it was decided. I
1 did not ask him anything more about that. We just
2 shook hands, and he went to one side and I went
4 Q. You didn't go to Ilok because you felt it was
5 part of your area of responsibility as the President or
6 past President of Vukovar Municipality?
7 A. I did not have any authority, any powers
8 then. I was no longer performing the duties of the
9 President, and I already said that after the 6th of
10 June I was no longer President, and I didn't behave
11 like President, therefore.
12 Q. Did you talk regularly with Ljubo Novakovic
13 about what was going on in Ilok, where Mr. Novakovic
14 was briefing you, more or less, as one Municipality
15 President to another?
16 A. I said that I was not President. With Ljubo
17 Novakovic I maintained relations which primarily had to
18 do with agricultural affairs. He was in a border
19 municipality, and since he was my acquaintance, I could
20 get certain assistance that was needed at that point in
21 time, that is to say, mechanisation, reproduction
22 materials, but also basic supplies for the population.
23 Q. On the morning of the 20th of November -- I'm
24 sorry, let me go back just a moment. Strike that.
25 Now, on the 19th of November, what occurred at the
1 government meeting that you attended in Erdut?
2 A. Nothing occurred. It was a regular
3 government meeting.
4 Q. And you had a chance to review the minutes of
5 that meeting yesterday. Did those accurately reflect
6 your recollection of what did occur there and what was
8 A. I took a look at the minutes and they seemed
9 to be reliable.
10 Q. What plans were made for the meeting the
11 following day in Vukovar?
12 A. As far as I can remember, no plans were being
13 made. This was a statement made by the Prime Minister
14 that one should go to Vukovar the next day without any
15 plans and without special duties involved for anyone.
16 Q. And you felt it important to be there; did
17 you not? This was the first meeting to be held in
19 A. I was a member of the government. Mr. Hadzic
20 was Prime Minister. Therefore, what the Prime Minister
21 asked individual members to do was something that they
22 were supposed to do. But I said yesterday that I think
23 it was decisive that the members of the delegation from
24 Kladovo wanted to see the town.
25 Q. And, once again, can you just tell us what
1 was the purpose of the meeting, the 20th; what was the
2 reason for having the meeting in Vukovar?
3 A. The fighting around Vukovar was over, and
4 that has been said several times now. Again, you are
5 pre-judging the status of the government here. It was
6 not something that constituted a real government. It
7 was probably an assessment of the Prime Minister that it
8 would be necessary for the members of the government to
9 appear in Vukovar.
10 Q. On the morning of the 20th of November, what
11 time did you get up?
12 A. As usual, sometime around 7.00, perhaps a bit
14 Q. And what did you do that morning, before
15 leaving your home in Trpinja?
16 A. Probably as usual. I did certain things
17 related to my hygiene, and then I had breakfast, and I
18 think that we headed off towards Palanka around 8.00.
19 Q. Do you remember if you had a shower and a
20 shave like Mr. Cvetkovic?
21 A. I don't remember. I didn't know that I would
22 be in The Hague and that I'd have to remember what I
23 did on the morning of the 20th. I probably shaved. I
24 did that regularly.
25 Q. And what time did you leave to go to Backa
2 A. I think it was around 8.00 in the morning.
3 Q. And who did you go with to Backa Palanka?
4 A. With Mr. Cvetkovic.
5 Q. Do you recall telling Mr. Milner in the
6 interview at the prison that Rade Leskovac drove you to
7 Backa Palanka? And it is page 44 of the English
8 transcript, and I believe it is page 32 of the Serbian
10 A. I don't remember having said that. Leskovac
11 was with us, so we arrived together in Backa Palanka,
12 somehow at the same time.
13 Q. I'll read to you exactly what was said.
14 "I went through Trpinja, Dalj, Erdut, the bridge of
15 Bogojevo, Odzaci, Bac and Backa Palanka." They are
16 small places, but that's the main road. "Question:
17 Okay. But this is around how many kilometres? Fifty?"
18 Your answer: "About 100, between 80 and 100."
19 Question: "And someone drove you?" Answer:
21 So that would be incorrect?
22 A. Jovan Cvetkovic spent the night at my place, so
23 I went in his car.
24 Q. Now, Mr. Cvetkovic was the President of
25 Jagodina, Mr. Lazarevic was the President of Kladovo,
1 and you all started out with this meeting with the
2 President of Backa Palanka municipality. Was it just a
3 coincidence that you ended up in this group with all of
4 these municipality presidents? Were you included in
5 this delegation because of the position you held?
6 A. It just so happened that we met in that
7 composition. It's not that it was planned that three
8 presidents of municipalities should meet with me. I
9 said what was of special significance. The delegation
10 from Kladovo came, brought humanitarian aid, and that
11 is where the venue of the meeting was. And I was not
12 the one to set the venue for this meeting.
13 Q. Now, you have made somewhat of an issue
14 about being addressed as Mayor, is that correct; and
15 saying that that's an incorrect term and is inaccurate?
16 A. A Mayor did not exist. The post of Mayor did
17 not exist. The Office of Mayor did not exist at that
18 time. The Office of President of the Municipal
19 Assembly did exist.
20 Q. But most of your own witnesses have used,
21 repeatedly, the Serb term for mayor, Gradonacelnik,
22 as opposed to Predsjednik, the term president, when
23 they are referring to themselves. Mr. Cvetkovic and
24 Mr. Lazarevic used the term Gradonacelnik repeatedly.
25 Why is it that you have a problem with this word, when
1 apparently it was very common usage?
2 A. It is an incorrect name. I don't have a
3 problem with that word, but it is incorrect. The post,
4 the Office of Mayor, did not exist at that time. What
5 did exist was the Office of President of the Municipal
6 Assembly. And whether someone used the wrong name for
7 that particular post is his problem, his own affair.
8 And I cannot go into that now, how people used
9 different terms.
10 Q. Now, while you were in Backa Palanka, the
11 decision was taken that the people from Kladovo,
12 carrying the aid, would go to Bogojevo, to Erdut, and
13 that you, Cvetkovic, Lazarevic and Jevtovic, would go
14 onto Vukovar, correct?
15 A. It wasn't a special decision, really. It was
16 simply agreed to do so, because the other part of the
17 delegation went to see their fellow citizens, who --
18 reservists at the time. I mean, they went in another
20 Q. And the purpose of them going there was to
21 take aid to these reservists, correct?
22 A. I imagine that it is so.
23 Q. Did the four of you bring any aid along for
25 A. I think that there were some parcels that
1 represented something. I can't say precisely now.
2 They were unloaded from this truck and put into the
3 vehicle of the Municipal Assembly of Kladovo.
4 Q. What was the route that you took from Backa
6 A. We went via Ilok, Sid, Tovarnik, Ilaca,
7 Sidski Banovci, Orolik, and then we turned towards
8 Negoslavci there and entered Vukovar.
9 Q. Who was in the car with you?
10 A. Mr. Cvetkovic was driving when we left Backa
11 Palanka. It was I, Mr. Lazarevic and Mr. Jevtovic too.
12 Q. And at some point Mr. Leskovac's car broke
13 down en route, correct?
14 A. It seems to me that Leskovac had a flat tire,
15 but, anyway, he was supposed to leave his car in Sidski
16 Banovci, because this vehicle was supposed to be used
17 by the two of us to go back to our home in Trpinja.
18 Q. How long did this delay you?
19 A. Where do you think that we stayed on, that we
20 were delayed? Perhaps it took us about ten minutes to
21 get Leskovac into our car; I mean, into the vehicle
22 that we were in.
23 Q. And this was in Sidski Banovci, correct?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Now, was there a certain time when you were
1 trying to reach Vukovar?
2 A. We left Sidski Banovci for Vukovar and
3 arrived in Vukovar sometime before 2 p.m.
4 Q. And you wanted to be there for 2 p.m. in
5 order to attend this session of the government,
6 correct, this meeting?
7 A. We headed for Vukovar and I said that we
8 arrived at VELEPROMET sometime before 2.00 p.m. One of
9 the reasons was, that since we were going there anyway,
10 the meeting could be attended too.
11 Q. You had indicated a few moments ago that your
12 Prime Minister had told you that you needed to be
13 there, and so, as a minister, you felt it was your duty
14 or your obligation to go. So, I mean, this was really
15 one of your main reasons for going to Vukovar, was it
16 not? It wasn't just incidental to being there?
17 A. It was not an order issued by Mr. Hadzic. It
18 was more of a recommendation that we should be there,
19 that we should show up there.
20 Q. Now, how many Serbs had stayed in Vukovar
21 during the course of the battle, to your knowledge,
23 A. I cannot tell exactly. Over 15.000 left
24 Vukovar, that is a more exact figure, by the end of
25 August, 1991. So perhaps 1.000 or 2.000 people had
1 remained. I don't know exactly. It is hard to tell.
2 Q. And had the government had any contact with
3 those people during the course of the battle?
4 A. Hardly any whatsoever.
5 Q. So you did not know much about their
6 situation at that point in time?
7 A. No.
8 Q. Now, you've testified yesterday, and so has
9 Mr. Hadzic, that your government was not popular in
10 Vukovar, and this was the reason a meeting was needed
11 there. Now, I assume that you were talking about being
12 unpopular with the Serbs, because the Croats were being
13 shipped out that day, but how do you know that you were
14 unpopular, if you had had no contact with the Serbs who
15 were there?
16 A. There was certain information that the
17 government was not really wanted in Vukovar, and I had
18 received information that I was personally being
20 Q. People had gotten this information out
21 through the siege and communicated to you that you were
22 threatened for going to Vukovar?
23 A. Yes, I did receive that kind of information,
24 that my life was in danger if I would show up in
1 Q. If you would, would you describe exactly what
2 happened when you arrived at VELEPROMET?
3 A. We found a rather chaotic situation there.
4 The yard of VELEPROMET was full of people who intended
5 to leave the town. We met some people we knew there.
6 I stayed in that yard for about 15 or 20 minutes,
8 Q. And at that point you went inside to the
9 meeting, correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Once inside the building, where was the
12 meeting held; if you can describe how the building is
13 laid out and which room the meeting was held in?
14 A. The building is a low building. There is a
15 hallway through which we went, and then I entered into
16 a room through a door. The room was not very big and
17 there were quite a few people in there, and I think
18 that I was one of the last to arrive.
19 Q. Approximately how many people were present
20 for the meeting?
21 A. There were over 20 people.
22 Q. And you talked yesterday about the only
23 thing, I think, that you could remember particularly
24 discussing was the issue about feeding the people, and
25 how that was going to be accomplished. And you said
1 that there were -- people were talking in circles, so
2 you weren't really -- you couldn't really recall what
3 was said in the meeting. Is that a fair statement?
4 A. It was not a meeting that understood that
5 someone would be speaking and others would be
6 listening, but -- and it was rare for one person to
7 talk while the others all listened to him, so that I
8 can't say precisely what anybody said at any particular
9 moment. There were different discussions going on, but
10 most people were flabbergasted at what they had seen.
11 Most of us were in a state of stress or shock.
12 Q. How long did the meeting last altogether?
13 A. I think that it lasted about one hour.
14 Q. Did you talk to Major Sljivancanin at
16 A. No.
17 Q. Do you recall him saying anything at this
19 A. As far as I know, Mr. Sljivancanin did not
20 attend the meeting, as far as I was able to notice.
21 Q. What about Arkan? Was he in the meeting?
22 A. I think he was, yes.
23 Q. Do you recall what, if anything, he said?
24 A. I don't remember Arkan taking the floor or
25 saying anything. I was standing apart along -- near
1 the wall. I think that he was standing in front of me,
2 so I didn't hear what he was saying, if he was saying
3 anything at all.
4 Q. When you came out of the meeting, what did
5 you do?
6 A. We went out into the courtyard where the
7 people who had come with us were waiting for us. After
8 a few minutes, we started off. The vehicles were
9 waiting for us in front of the VELEPROMET compound
10 parked in the street outside. We got into the cars and
11 went towards town.
12 Q. As you are driving to the centre, someone
13 says, and I quote, "I mean, I didn't hit with anything
14 else other than my fists." Do you recall who said
15 this, and what this was in relation to?
16 A. What did he say?
17 Q. "I mean, I didn't hit with anything else other
18 than my fists."
19 JUDGE CASSESE: Can we may be show the tape?
20 A. Nobody said that.
21 MR. WILLIAMSON: Yes, perhaps it can be shown
22 on the tape. I believe this is shortly after leaving
23 VELEPROMET and -- I am taking this from the transcript
24 that was supplied by the Defence.
25 MR. FILA: Then it was somewhere after 3.00
1 p.m. Fifteen something.
2 MR. WILLIAMSON: It's on the bottom of page 6
3 of the English translation, so I'm not sure exactly
4 where that will appear on the Serbian translation. I
5 think it's also at the bottom of page 6 where it talks
6 about Boro's house. It's the question right -- or the
7 statement which appears right above that.
8 JUDGE MAY: The time, according to my note,
9 is about 15.19, 3.19.
10 MR. WILLIAMSON: So if this can be played,
12 (Videotape played)
13 MR. FILA: Mr. Williamson, may we rewind?
14 MR. WILLIAMSON: If that can be replayed
15 again, that's fine, yes.
16 MR. FILA: But from the beginning, rewind
17 even further towards the beginning. Because the tape,
18 the section of the tape we saw, came afterwards. So it
19 has to be rewound further back. I apologise for
20 interrupting you. I just wanted to assist in that
22 JUDGE CASSESE: 15.13.
23 MR. WILLIAMSON: Perhaps. That's fine.
24 (Videotape played)
25 Q. Did you hear that statement, Mr. Dokmanovic?
1 A. I hear that for the first time on the tape.
2 Would you rewind the tape so I can try and see whose
3 voice it was, recognise the voice, if it was one of
5 (Videotape played)
6 Q. Do you recall who said that?
7 A. I am hearing this for the first time on that
8 tape. I have listened to the tape several times, but
9 this is the first time that I hear this. It is not my
10 voice. I cannot recognise whose it is, but it quite
11 definitely isn't my voice.
12 Q. So you don't recall who had said that, that
13 "I didn't hit with anything else other than my
15 A. I can't recognise the voice, but it quite
16 certainly isn't my voice.
17 Q. As you drive around the city, and then when
18 you get to the centre, everywhere seems to be rather
19 upset by what they see; no?
20 A. We were surprised with the destruction that
21 we saw.
22 Q. Were you angry about it?
23 A. I wasn't angry. I was -- the feeling was
24 more of -- I was aghast, flabbergasted at what I had
1 Q. Certainly some of the people in your group
2 were angry. Mr. Leskovac curses their Ustasha mothers
3 several times, and everyone seems to assume that the
4 bodies are those of Serbs killed by Croats.
5 So there was some anger, wouldn't you say?
6 A. Well, I can't say who was in what -- feeling
7 what sentiments there, somebody's private feelings. I
8 said that I was surprised with what I had seen because
9 I could not have ever supposed that it was -- looked as
10 it did. It was a terrible feeling.
11 Q. Now, at one point, according to the voices
12 identified by Mr. Cvetkovic, you say, "And this is the
13 Serb church. They burned it and they destroyed it."
14 And then Mr. Leskovac replies, "Fuck their Ustasha
15 mother a thousand times, them and Tudjman."
16 How do you know that the Croats burned and
17 destroyed the church? This is on page 8 of the English
19 A. The Serbian church in Vukovar was shelled
20 before -- mined before the beginning of the war
22 Q. When was that?
23 A. I think it happened sometime at the end of
24 July and the beginning of August, that an explosive was
25 planted, at least according to the information that I
1 had, because I was not in Vukovar at the time.
2 Q. Now, I've spent quite a bit of time in
3 Vukovar, and you are from there, you know the city very
4 well. As you go up and down that street, every single
5 building has been destroyed by shelling, every building
6 on that street. What made you think that the Serbian
7 church was different and had not, in fact, been
8 destroyed by the shelling by the JNA?
9 A. It is quite certain that the Orthodox church
10 had suffered grenading, but before that, it was mined
11 and set fire to, at least according to the knowledge
12 that I had, the information I had.
13 Q. But it seemed like you and your companions
14 were blaming the Croats for all of the death and
15 destruction that had occurred, weren't you?
16 A. Well, at that time, I do not know whom I
17 blamed, because when you find yourself for the first
18 time in a situation of that kind, something that
19 surprises you and astounds you, what usually happens is
20 that you blame somebody else for what has happened.
21 And from those positions, that is how it
22 appeared. When you have other information and other
23 knowledge as to what actually took place, what actually
24 happened, then you correct yourself in your initial
1 Q. When you got to the centre, you gave an
2 interview to Mr. Tomasevic in which you say: "From
3 this day to eternity, Vukovar will be Serbian." For
4 you, there was no place for Croats in Vukovar?
5 A. No. Croatian propaganda, over a longer
6 period of time, gave Croatian prefix to everything.
7 Everything had to be Croatian. I felt that I had the
8 right to the town, at least an equal right as everybody
9 else, and my statement can be explained within that
10 context. You have extracted that segment which at the
11 time was perhaps a little overemotional, stated
12 over emotionally, but I did not say that it would only
13 be a Serbian town. In fact, it was a town of all the
14 citizens living in it. Never only Serbs, Croats or
15 Ruthenians or Hungarians took it in their mind to say
16 that it was their town.
17 But suddenly everything changed, and at that
18 particular moment, when I heard that Vukovar was
19 proclaimed a Croatian town -- not that it was in
20 Croatia. Nobody questioned that -- then most of us
21 considered that it had lost its own town, that we had
22 lost our own town; and in that context, you can explain
23 the sentence that I said. Not in the context that the
24 town would be in Serbia. It will remain where it was.
25 And I had -- what I meant was that the Serbs would have
1 a right to live in the town as well.
2 MR. FILA: Your Honours, I apologise to
3 Mr. Williamson. I have no objections to make, but I
4 would like once again that this whole sequence be read
5 out to Mr. Dokmanovic and not just to pinpoint one
6 sentence, because the text is a lengthy one.
7 So may we have it together, a whole segment,
8 and then we'll be better able to understand what is
9 being said? If possible.
10 I apologise, Mr. Williamson.
11 MR. WILLIAMSON: That's fine. We can play
12 the whole thing. We've heard all of this a number of
13 times, and so I was trying to expedite things by going
14 to specific points. But we can play it in its entirety
15 with this portion. That's fine.
16 JUDGE CASSESE: Yes. Thank you.
17 MR. WILLIAMSON: I'm sorry. Perhaps, Judge
18 May, if you have a time reference as to exactly when
19 this is, it might ...
20 JUDGE MAY: 3.25.
21 MR. WILLIAMSON: So if we can start at 15.25?
22 MR. FILA: No. I wanted Mr. Dokmanovic to
23 read the text. Not the tape, the transcript. Can he
24 read everything that was said on paper in the
25 transcript, not to show the tape again?
1 JUDGE CASSESE: All right.
2 MR. FILA: Could you read it out, please?
3 The transcript is not controversial. Just the portion
4 relating to the interview.
5 JUDGE CASSESE: Could you give Mr. Dokmanovic
6 the relevant page number?
7 MR. FILA: It is three pages from the back at
8 the bottom, after the sentence on page 8. Read it out
9 in whole. It begins with "A great sorrow not only as
10 regards the town."
11 A. It is the last line on that particular page
12 and what the camera succeeded in filming. "A great
13 sorrow, not only over the town, but over the thousands
14 of dead and innocent people who ..."
15 (No translation, technical difficulties)
16 "... a great sorrow not only over the town
17 but over the thousands of dead and innocent people who
18 experienced the fate as they did 50 years previously to
19 be, without any reason, killed and slaughtered and to
20 be corpses. Everything is terrible. The most
21 difficult thing is those who have lost their nearest
22 and dearest. And the others will only have their
23 recollections of this. But people recuperate from
24 everything. I hope that Vukovar and the people of
25 Vukovar 50 years later will never allow anything else
1 like this to happen again anywhere. In Vukovar it
2 won't, because today and for time eternal, it will be
3 Serbian. From this day to eternity it will be
5 MR. WILLIAMSON:
6 Q. So, Mr. Dokmanovic, having read the entire
7 thing, does that in any way change the answer you gave
8 a moment ago?
9 A. I said -- I mentioned the people of Vukovar
10 here. My -- what I noticed, essentially, and my
11 feelings, essentially, were of the atrocities that I
12 had seen and I felt with the people who had lost their
13 nearest and dearest. I never say that it is the Croats
14 to blame for this or the Serbs or who was to blame. It
15 was -- I had in mind both sides at that particular
17 And the point you are insisting upon, that I
18 said that Vukovar would be Serbian, I explained why I
19 said this. As a Serb, as an inhabitant of Vukovar, as
20 somebody who spent half his life and more than half his
21 life living in Vukovar, I felt that I had been expelled
22 from my own town, and that I had the right, but not
23 only that I had the right but that the other 15.000 or
24 20.000 inhabitants who had been expelled from the town
25 had the same right as the right enjoyed by others to
1 live in that town.
2 And in that context, this can be explained.
3 Not in the context of the fact that Vukovar was only a
4 Serbian town or that Vukovar would be in another state
5 altogether. That was the essence, the crux of what I
6 was trying to say.
7 Q. What about the Croats that were being
8 expelled that very day from Vukovar? How did they fit
9 into this?
10 A. Before that, thousands of Croats had left
11 Vukovar who did not agree with the policies that were
12 being waged there, particularly in July and August.
13 And those who remained, I don't want to say that they
14 were expelled, they did not have the basic means of
15 livelihood, basic conditions of living, as the Serbs
16 did who left. Because we don't see only Croats in the
17 buses; in the courtyard, it was not only Croats. There
18 were Serbs there too who were leaving because winter
19 was setting in and there were no conditions to spend
20 the winter in Vukovar. There were no -- living
21 conditions either, let alone food for the population,
22 particularly heating as well.
23 Q. You give another interview on the 21st of
24 November, which I would like to show at this time,
25 which I believe is marked as Prosecutor's Exhibit 75
1 which you have indicated was an interview from Erdut.
2 I believe Mr. Fila has indicated that.
3 Can this be shown now, please?
4 (Videotape played)
5 Q. When you said that "Vukovar will never again
6 be a city of Ustashas, it will be a real Serbian city
7 in which all of its citizens will live freely," when
8 you used term "Ustasha" there, were you referring to
9 all Croats?
10 A. No. I never considered that all Croats were
11 Ustashas, but what had led to the destruction of
12 Vukovar was that portion of people -- perhaps that is
13 not the correct term in comparison to 1941. Perhaps it
14 would be a better word to have used "extremists" on
15 both sides which had led to the destruction of the
16 town. There was no reason for that.
17 Q. Do you recall telling Mr. Milner in the
18 interview at the prison, and I'll refer to page 63 of
19 the English transcript, I believe it's page 48 of the
20 Serbian transcript, do you recall telling him, and I'll
21 quote it directly. A question was put to you: "What
22 does the term "Ustasha" mean to you? You replied: "It
23 was a term for the Croats. Croats called everybody on
24 the Serb side Chetniks, and the Serb side called
25 everybody on the other side Ustasha. At that time it
1 was a usual form of communication."
2 Do you remember saying that?
3 A. I don't remember saying all Croats. I'm sure
4 that I did not say that. But it was the usual term
5 used at that time, that was true, that was the
6 practice. And the information media as well and people
7 in general. It was a time when we considered each
8 other blood enemies, and so we would refer to them in
9 that way. Serbs were equated with Chetniks, and this
10 was probably equal to equating the Croats with the
12 But when I said that it would not be an
13 Ustasha town, meant that it would never be an extremist
14 town, that there would never be extremists who would
15 allow the town to be destroyed in that way.
16 What I want to say here, as I said earlier
17 on, was that I spent half my life living in the town.
18 It was one of the loveliest towns in the former
19 Yugoslavia. It was a town on two rivers. It was the
20 safest town in Yugoslavia. You could leave your car
21 without any problems, with keys in the lock, and you
22 would know that nobody would touch your car. You could
23 stroll along the streets of Vukovar at 2.00 in the
24 morning or 4.00 in the morning or any time of the day
25 and night without being bothered. There was no day, no
1 early morning that the streets of the town were not
2 cleaned and washed.
3 It resembled a town in the most cultivated
4 countries of Europe. You couldn't see a piece of paper
5 lying around in the streets. And then you come across
6 the devastation that we saw.
7 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honours, might I
8 suggest we break for lunch now? This is a good
9 breaking point in terms of my questions before I move
10 on to a new area.
11 JUDGE CASSESE: All right. We will break now
12 and we will reconvene at 2.00 sharp.
13 --- Luncheon recess at 12.28 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 2.00 p.m.
2 (The accused entered court)
3 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Williamson?
4 MR. WILLIAMSON:
5 Q. Now, Mr. Dokmanovic, when we left off at the
6 lunch break, we had just discussed these interviews
7 that you had given. One of them was given in the
8 centre of town.
9 Now, when you departed from the centre of
10 Vukovar, what route did you take leaving the town?
11 A. You mean on the 20th, on the 20th of
12 November, 1991?
13 Q. That's correct, yes, which is seen on the
15 A. From the place where we were, and I said that
16 that is by Ivoandric Street, we turned our vehicles and
17 we went back the same way we went there. That is to
18 say, towards VELEPROMET and towards the exit from
19 town. We didn't stop anywhere.
20 Q. You didn't stop at the church?
21 A. Perhaps we slowed down a bit, but we didn't
22 stop. One had to drive slowly anyway.
23 Q. And you didn't stop at VELEPROMET?
24 A. No.
25 Q. Between the time that you left the centre of
1 Vukovar and when you stopped for the buses, did you or
2 your travelling companions make any stops, turns, or
3 changes of direction?
4 A. We did not.
5 Q. So you continued on a straight path in the
6 direction of Negoslavci, which I believe is due south
7 of Vukovar; is that correct?
8 A. We were moving in the direction of Negoslavci
9 and we entered Negoslavci, and there we caught up with
10 the column of buses.
11 Q. Now, you came up on the buses from behind?
12 They were ahead of you?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. How was it possible then for you all to get
15 in front of the buses and film them coming toward you?
16 A. I don't understand. That is impossible. The
17 buses are not coming towards us.
18 MR. WILLIAMSON: Well, perhaps if we can see
19 the tape at 15.42, please?
20 MR. FILA: Mr. Williamson, there is no such
21 time as 15.42.
22 MR. WILLIAMSON: I believe that's the time
23 that's reflected at the --
24 MR. FILA: Forty-two, yes.
25 JUDGE CASSESE: Judge May is the supreme
2 MR. WILLIAMSON: I believe 15.42 is the time.
3 JUDGE MAY: It is. 15.42 I have.
4 MR. WILLIAMSON: So if we can see that,
6 (Videotape played)
7 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, these buses are headed in
8 your direction. You are in front of the buses, are you
9 not? How is this possible if you caught up with the
10 buses from behind?
11 A. That is where we were stopped. We tried to
12 overtake the buses. We overtook some of them, but we
13 were stopped in Negoslavci by the army.
14 Q. And where was this in Negoslavci, if you
16 A. It was in the village. I cannot say exactly
17 now where, but it was in the village of Negoslavci.
18 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, I'm going to put it to you
19 that this is not in Negoslavci and that this tape has
20 been altered to include this portion at that spot.
21 A. That is not true.
22 Q. Well, at 15.36 we see the last houses at the
23 southern end of Vukovar on the way to Negoslavci. I'm
24 going to tell you that this portion of the tape which
25 is shown at 15.42 is 370 metres north of that location
1 back toward the centre of Vukovar, and I want to ask
2 you how it is possible that this is reflected at the
3 end of the tape unless you and your travelling
4 companions made a 180-degree turn and went back in the
5 direction from which you came.
6 A. That is not true. We did not stop. We did
7 not turn back. We did not go back.
8 Q. And it is your testimony that when you left
9 the centre of town, you continued in a straight line
10 until Negoslavci, and this is where these photographs
11 were taken?
12 A. That's right. That's right.
13 Q. When you stopped for the buses, did you get
14 out of the vehicle?
15 A. I don't think we did.
16 Q. How is it possible for us to hear your voice?
17 A. Because it was being recorded from the
18 vehicle, I assume, because I don't think we got out of
19 the vehicle.
20 Q. Well, if we can see this portion again at
21 15.42, and I would suggest to you that this is being
22 filmed from outside the vehicle.
23 (Videotape played)
24 Q. Would you agree that that was filmed outside
25 the vehicle?
1 A. I cannot remember exactly. We were stopped
2 there by the army and we had to wait. The person who
3 was filming this was with us. This is Negoslavci. You
4 can see that this is the village. So there is no doubt
5 about that.
6 Q. Do you know Emil Cakalic?
7 A. Superficially.
8 Q. In what capacity? How do you know him?
9 A. I said that from '84 to '88, I worked in the
10 administration of the Municipality of Vukovar in the
11 Secretariat for Economics as a councillor for
12 Agriculture. Emil Cakalic also worked as an inspector
13 for the municipal authorities, but we did not work in
14 the same Secretariat. We only met from time to time as
15 we were coming to work or leaving from work.
16 Q. What about Dragutin Berghofer; did you know
18 A. No.
19 Q. Now, it is your testimony that after you
20 stopped for the buses, you went on to Orolik; correct?
21 A. Yes, yes.
22 Q. And how long did it take you to get from
23 Negoslavci to Orolik?
24 A. That is a distance that is not longer than 10
25 kilometres, but we were in a column and we were moving
1 rather slowly, so sometime before 5.00 we arrived in
3 Q. And how long were you stopped there
5 A. Over there, we actually overtook the column,
6 and the column was stopped at the entrance to Orolik,
7 there was a long column of buses, and the people on the
8 buses were being given something to drink or something
9 like that. I can't exactly tell because I didn't see
10 it. I didn't see it from nearby.
11 We overtook the column and we arrived at this
12 barrier. I got out of the vehicle there. I showed my
13 pass, and I already talked about that. A soldier was
14 very rude to me there, and he started insulting me.
15 Q. Now, when you left from there, you continued
16 straight to Sidski Banovci?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. What did you do in Sidski Banovci after you
19 arrived there?
20 A. We stopped there by the house where
21 Mr. Cvetkovic was staying. We entered the house, and
22 we stayed there for a certain period of time. We
23 talked. We talked about our impressions and what we
24 had experienced.
25 Q. How long did you remain there?
1 A. Well, approximately until 6.30 p.m.
2 Q. Were your travelling companions with you the
3 entire time that you were there?
4 A. They left earlier, Mr. Jevtovic and
5 Mr. Tomasevic. And Mr. Lazarevic, Professor Mirko, and
6 Ivezic stayed on, and Leskovac and I stayed on.
7 Sometime after they stayed there, I can't tell exactly
8 for how long, but not very long.
9 Q. And so Mr. Leskovac was there the entire time
10 you were; correct?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And he was with you the entire time?
13 A. Well, he was with us in the vehicle. We went
14 together and we came back together, if that's what
15 you're referring to. He was with me all the time. I
16 cannot exactly say that we were at the very same place
17 all the time -- I mean, two or three steps away from
18 one another -- but we were together.
19 Q. I'm asking you in Sidski Banovci, were the
20 two of you together at that time?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. You testified yesterday that you went back to
23 Trpinja with Mr. Leskovac in his car. Can you tell us
24 how that was accomplished if his car had been disabled
25 earlier in the day?
1 A. I think that Mr. Leskovac had a flat tyre
2 somewhere in Sidski Banovci and he left his car in
3 front of the house where Jova Cvetkovic was staying.
4 So it's not that the car was disabled permanently. So
5 that is how Leskovac and I went back home via Palanka.
6 Q. So somebody had repaired this flat tyre for
7 you in the time while you were away?
8 A. I do not remember now who changed the tyre,
9 whether it was us or someone else, but -- I cannot tell
10 exactly now whether we were the ones who changed the
11 tyre or not or whether somebody else had changed it.
12 That is a detail I can't remember now.
13 Q. In the interview on the aeroplane returning to
14 The Hague and at the prison with Mr. Milner, you failed
15 to include Mr. Leskovac when naming the persons you
16 were with in Vukovar. On all occasions you say that
17 Cvetkovic, Lazarevic, and Jevtovic were with you, but
18 you don't mention Mr. Leskovac. And I will make
19 reference to pages 45 and 49 of the English
20 transcript. Page 45 corresponds to page 33 of the
21 Serbian transcript, and page 59 corresponds to pages 44
22 and 45 of the Serbian transcript.
23 Now, Mr. Dokmanovic, would you like for me to
24 read the specific things that you said, or do you
25 recall why you didn't indicate Mr. Leskovac in these
2 A. Mr. Prosecutor, I am not a criminal and I did
3 not kill anyone. I have been in custody, and you
4 expect me to have everything prepared for you and you
5 expect me to tell you everything that happened seven
6 years ago. For eleven months, I have been thinking
7 about all of this. You are accusing me here of a grave
8 crime. I did not hit a man ever in my life. And you
9 expect me to remember everything.
10 You're asking me why I didn't mention
11 Leskovac. Probably at that point in time, I did not
12 remember. All of this had to be analysed, what had
13 happened. Every day and every night I think about
15 You are trying to catch me with these
16 details. You're asking me whether I wash my face or
17 brush my teeth in the morning when I got up as if it
18 were yesterday.
19 Q. Let me ask you, Mr. Dokmanovic, then about
20 another issue that was put to you a number of times.
21 Both in the interview on the aeroplane and at the prison
22 with Mr. Milner, you were asked about what you did in
24 On the aeroplane you made no mention
25 whatsoever of VELEPROMET. In the course of the
1 interview with Mr. Milner, he asked you a number of
2 questions about VELEPROMET, and you give the very clear
3 impression that you were there solely to drop off aid
4 and that you just spoke with some friends outside, and
5 I will go through these in detail.
6 Now, I'm wondering if you can tell me --
7 well, perhaps I'll just go through them each as we get
9 On page 46 --
10 JUDGE CASSESE: Sorry, I wonder whether the
11 accused could be given a copy of the transcript in
12 Serbian so that he can follow closely the wording.
13 MR. BOS: Would this be Prosecution Exhibit
14 128 or 127?
15 MR. WILLIAMSON: It's 128.
16 Q. I would start on page 46 of the English
17 transcript, and I refer you, Mr. Dokmanovic, to page 34
18 on the Serbian transcript, I believe is the correct
20 The first question was put to you, it says
21 midway down:
22 I: When you, did you travel around Vukovar
23 there, did you drive around to see what
24 the devastation was or did you go to a
25 particular spot?
1 A: We came from the direction of
2 Negoslavci, that was the only way you
3 could go into Vukovar.
4 JUDGE CASSESE: So sorry, Mr. Williamson.
5 Mr. Dokmanovic, do you want to say anything?
6 A. I do. I got the English version. I don't
7 understand English.
8 JUDGE CASSESE: Sorry, Mr. Dokmanovic. This
9 was a mistake.
10 MR. WILLIAMSON: Here's one, if this ...
11 MR. BOS: We don't have a Serbian version.
12 MR. WILLIAMSON:
13 Q. It's on page 34, and the question is put to
15 I: When you, did you travel around Vukovar
16 there, did you drive around to see what
17 the devastation was or did you go to a
18 particular spot?
19 You replied:
20 A: We came from the direction of
21 Negoslavci, that was the only way you
22 could go into Vukovar. We stopped at
23 VELEPROMET because there was a number of
24 people there. Then we moved on to about
25 10 kilometres towards the city to a
2 And I'll move to the next question.
3 I: It says here that, without disputing
4 what you're saying at the moment but,
5 around 14:00 hours you went to the yard
6 of VELEPROMET.
7 A: Yes, that's the first stop we made.
8 It's on the entrance of Vukovar from the
9 direction of Negoslavci. This is where
10 a number of people were.
11 I: You said you could see that there were
12 hundreds of people being detained
14 A: Yes, they were in the yard. We just
15 came to the entrance to the yard, we
16 didn't go in, there were several hundred
17 people ...
18 Now I'll move on to the next page. I will go
19 through all of these and then I will just ask you if
20 there was a reason why you did not mention the meeting
22 It's on page 64 of the English version, I
23 believe it's pages 48 and 49 of the Serbian version.
24 Question was put to you:
25 I: So what were you going to do with these
1 medical supplies, I mean you must have
2 had something in mind ...
3 A: We handed over to the supplies to the
4 people who were in charge of supplies.
5 I: Who was that?
6 A: We reported at VELEPROMET to the local
7 territorial defence and they took it
8 over, somebody who was in charge.
9 Then on page 66 of the English version, which
10 is page 50 of the Serbian version, the question:
11 I: Negoslavci that way. VELEPROMET ...
12 A: We stayed in VELEPROMET for about an
13 hour, I suppose that's VELEPROMET.
14 So I think at this point he was showing you a
16 Then on page 67, and that corresponds to page
17 50 and 51 of the Serbian version:
18 I: And around 14:00 hours you arrived --
19 JUDGE CASSESE: Sorry. Can you wait,
20 please? I would like to make sure that Mr. Dokmanovic
21 can find the right place.
22 MR. WILLIAMSON: I apologise. I'm sorry.
23 JUDGE CASSESE: What page in Serbian?
24 MR. WILLIAMSON: It would be that same page
25 and onto the next page. Page 67 in the English version
1 and pages 50, 51, I believe, in the Serbian version.
3 I: And around 14:00 hours you arrive in the
4 yard of VELEPROMET.
5 A: Yes, we stopped on the way and looked
7 I: What was going on in VELEPROMET?
8 A: There were many people there, several
9 hundred people. I saw many people there
10 at that time and I had not seen them
11 since the beginning of the war. I spoke
12 to them ... A convoy of people was
13 being prepared towards Croatia and
14 towards Serbia. People from the
15 International Red Cross were there.
16 They took part in organising the
17 convoy. That's what it looked like,
18 because I saw these people going around
19 there, walking around.
20 I: Okay. Can you remember ...?
21 A: I did not contact them. We didn't know
22 each other and they did not address me,
23 I did not address them. The evacuation
24 was in the hands of the army.
25 And then on page 68 of the English version,
1 pages 51 and 52 of the Serbian:
2 I: I'm not talking about you contacting any
3 of them, I've just said what you saw,
4 what met your, your eyes, I mean 'cause
5 there was hundreds of people there.
6 A: People were waiting.
7 I: Unguarded.
8 A: It was in the premises, in the yard of
10 I: And you spent an hour and a half there
11 according to your statement?
12 A: Yes, an hour, an hour and a half.
13 I: Well, were you just standing around,
14 looking at all these people?
15 A: I talked to people I knew. In the
16 premises there were there many people I
17 knew and I hadn't seen them for several
19 And then on page 69 of the English version
20 and 52 and 53.
21 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Williamson, can you
22 wait? Can you wait?
23 MR. WILLIAMSON: I apologise.
24 JUDGE CASSESE: Can you find the page,
25 Mr. Dokmanovic?
1 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry. I didn't understand
2 what you told me, sir.
3 JUDGE CASSESE: I was wondering whether you
4 have been able to find the page mentioned by the
5 Prosecutor. It was what? 51, 52?
6 MR. WILLIAMSON: 52 and 53.
7 JUDGE CASSESE: 52 and 53. Sorry, I
8 apologise. 52 and 53. So that you can follow what the
9 Prosecutor is saying and you can follow it in Serbian.
10 MR. WILLIAMSON: And this is the last segment
11 that I'll read from this.
12 JUDGE CASSESE: If you could read slowly so
13 that Mr. Dokmanovic can follow you?
14 MR. WILLIAMSON: Sorry.
16 I: So you were there, according to this an
17 hour and a half, and you talked to
18 several people. And during that period
19 of time this aid that you had taken with
20 you is distributed to someone ...
21 A: You keep going back to the aid. I don't
22 know /inaudible/, I don't know what the
23 people did with it, I suppose that they
24 handed it over to someone.
25 I: Well, I mean that was the purpose of the
1 visit, wasn't it?
2 A: The aid arrived in Backa Palanka and
3 that's where it was distributed from. I
4 don't know how much of it was intended
5 for Vukovar or Trpinja or other places.
6 And the purpose of the visit was, people
7 from Kladovo wanted to see Vukovar after
8 the war, that was the purpose of the
9 visit, for them to see Vukovar. We
10 stopped in VELEPROMET because this is
11 where the territorial defence command
12 was and the Red Cross was also there or
13 someone who was in charge of supplies.
14 I suppose that the aid was also handed
15 in there. But it was not much of aid,
16 especially since it had been divided
17 into two parts already.
18 So the question that I have for you,
19 Mr. Dokmanovic, in relation to all of these is: Was
20 there a reason that you did not mention the fact that
21 you met other members of the government at VELEPROMET
22 and that, in fact, that was the primary purpose of you
23 going there --
24 A. I do not have a translation of what the
25 Prosecutor is saying right now.
1 MR. WILLIAMSON: I will repeat the question.
2 JUDGE CASSESE: Yes, please.
3 MR. WILLIAMSON:
4 Q. So the question that I'm asking you,
5 Mr. Dokmanovic, in relation to all of this is: Was
6 there a reason that you did not mention the fact that
7 you met other members of the government at VELEPROMET
8 and that, in fact, that was the primary purpose of your
9 visit there?
10 A. I don't understand your question. What do
11 you want to know? What do you mean by, "is there any
12 reason why I didn't mention?" What?
13 Q. Is there a reason why you did not mention the
14 meeting? Reference was made to VELEPROMET about seven
15 or eight times there, and Mr. Milner asked you at least
16 two times very pointed questions about what was your
17 purpose in going there, and all along you indicated
18 that it was to drop off aid.
19 I am asking you: Why didn't you mention the
20 fact that you were going there for a meeting and
21 meeting other members of the government? Was there a
22 reason that you wanted to conceal that?
23 A. I said that it was not really a meeting. At
24 that time, I didn't even know certain details. I
25 didn't remember. I said that we came to VELEPROMET. I
1 mentioned the people who were with me. I said that I
2 needed time to recollect everything that was
4 You think that I am concealing certain
5 facts. I am not concealing anything. Simply, as time
6 goes by, I remember, in the meantime, some of the
7 things that happened. I am not concealing anything. I
8 am telling you the truth, and you don't believe that.
9 And you persistently are trying to portray me here as a
10 murderer of 200 people, and I'm telling you that I
11 wasn't there and I didn't even know it happened. The
12 cooperation that I had with you from the very outset is
13 something that you are abusing, and you are trying to
14 catch me with these details.
15 If you believe me, you believe me. If you
16 don't believe me, then don't believe me. But I swear
17 to you by God, in whom I trust, and by my two children,
18 whom I love dearest of all, that I had nothing to do
19 with the crime that happened. You can leaf through
20 various minutes. I don't even remember this. I don't
21 even remember having said this. You can leaf through
22 this, but the truth is that I didn't do this.
23 Q. I'll move on to something else then,
24 Mr. Dokmanovic. On the flight back from The Hague, I
25 asked you several questions about your whereabouts on
1 the 20th of November, and you said you did not recall
2 where you were but that these movements were recorded
3 in a diary, in an agenda, and that at the proper time,
4 you would make this available to us if we looked at it
5 together. Do you recall saying that?
6 A. I remember having said that I wrote down in
7 an agenda what was happening or what were the
8 engagements I had, et cetera. But if I show you a tape
9 or, rather, if you were shown a tape which
10 unequivocally shows what happened, you don't believe
11 this and you are trying to put it to me that this was
12 edited, then you certainly won't believe other things I
13 show you.
14 Q. Now, you were asked again at the prison by
15 Mr. Milner -- and this was the addendum to the
16 statement that we have provided this morning, so
17 perhaps this can be shown to Mr. Dokmanovic as well?
18 In the English version, a question was put to
19 you by Mr. Milner: Just one other point with
20 Mr. Dokmanovic. When you were arrested, at the time of
21 your arrest, you made some reference to the diaries
22 which cover the period of time which is relevant to the
23 charges against you. Answer: Yes. I did mention it.
24 Question: Are you prepared to make those diaries
25 available? It is an agenda, not a diary but an
1 agenda. I wrote my whereabouts, where I went, daily
2 schedules, but it is all in the statements given to
3 you. Question: Are you prepared to make those diaries
4 available? Answer: No.
5 Now, my question to you is: Will you now
6 make that diary available to the court.
7 MR. FILA: Would you quote exactly, please?
8 There seem to be some exactitude. Are you prepared to
9 give us those diaries. No, there is nothing there,
10 there is nothing in there. It was not a simple no, it
11 appears. You should get that from the Prosecutor who
12 gave it this morning. I saw it -- I'm looking at it
13 now. So go back to those who give documents five
14 minutes before the trial. I provide the documents
15 seven days in advance.
16 JUDGE CASSESE: Sorry, Mr. Fila, you're
17 quoting from where because I can't find in the --
18 MR. WILLIAMSON: I believe it's under the
19 part TF advises him in Serbo Croat.
20 MR. FILA: What I got this morning in Serbo
21 Croat. Are you prepared to give us that diary? No,
22 there's nothing there. There's nothing there. There
23 isn't anything there that isn't already down here where
24 I went on the 19th and those days. It is an agenda,
25 not a diary but an agenda. I wrote my whereabouts,
1 where I went, daily schedules, et cetera. When you
2 were in the plane, you said that I could look at the
3 diary in the presence of your lawyer, et cetera. The
4 text as follows.
5 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, it was an
6 inadvertent error on my part because it says TF advises
7 him in Serbo Croat. I thought that was the end of
8 the answer, so I certainly was not trying to mislead
9 him and I have no problem in including the entire
10 statement that was made. But looking at it at first
11 glance it appeared that his answer was just no.
12 Q. My question again, Mr. Dokmanovic, is: Are
13 you prepared now to make those diaries available?
14 MR. FILA: The man told you -- sorry.
15 A. That is not a point to be contested, but,
16 Mr. Prosecutor, you don't believe your own eyes, you
17 don't believe the tape that was filmed. How are you
18 going to believe in something written there? It is not
19 a question of whether I'm going to give you -- place at
20 your disposal what I wrote. That is not contested. I
21 don't contest that. Of course, if the diary, the
22 agenda, that is, is still -- still exists. But,
23 Mr. Prosecutor, you insist upon having my head. It
24 will not save my head.
25 JUDGE CASSESE: So sorry to interrupt, but
1 Mr. Dokmanovic, try to understand the position -- the
2 Court, of course, is different from the Prosecutor. So
3 it would be useful for the Court if you had this agenda
4 or diary available and if you could make it available
5 to the Court. Of course, the Prosecutor would have a
6 right to take a look but it would be for the Court to
7 decide whether or not it is authentic, whether it has
8 any value as a piece of evidence, whether it is
9 credible and so on, so you should trust the Court.
10 Whatever you may think of the Prosecutor, it is up to
11 the Court to decide whether or not you are innocent.
12 So if you have this agenda available and you are
13 prepared to give it in evidence, this would -- might
14 assist the court.
15 A. Yes, I am ready to present it as evidence, to
16 hand it over.
17 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you.
18 MR. WILLIAMSON:
19 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, did you visit the prison at
20 Sremska Mitrovica in the weeks period following the
21 fall of Vukovar?
22 A. No.
23 Q. Did you visit the prison camp at Stajicevo?
24 A. No.
25 Q. So it would be untrue that you went to that
1 facility wearing a JNA uniform and were accompanied by
2 JNA soldiers serving as an escort for you?
3 A. I was never in -- I don't know what you have
4 said, Stajicevo. I don't know what Stajicevo is or
5 where it is. And I was not at the prison in Sremska
6 Mitrovica either. I was never in the uniform of a JNA
7 officer, nor was I escorted by the JNA anywhere or at
8 any time.
9 MR. WILLIAMSON: I have no further questions,
10 Your Honour. Thank you.
11 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Williamson, there was
12 something that I wanted to raise with you.
13 MR. WILLIAMSON: Yes, sir.
14 JUDGE MAY: Your case, presumably, for the
15 Prosecution is that at some stage after leaving the
16 centre of Vukovar, this accused went to Ovcara; is that
18 MR. WILLIAMSON: That is correct, Your
20 JUDGE MAY: Is it accepted by the Prosecution
21 that he was in the middle of Vukovar as the tape
23 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, we would accept
24 that he was in the centre of the Vukovar. We are not
25 sure if the times are exactly correct but, yes, we
1 would agree that he was in the centre of Vukovar on
2 that date.
3 JUDGE MAY: And your case is that thereafter
4 he did not go direct to Negoslavci.
5 MR. WILLIAMSON: That's correct, Your Honour,
6 and we will present extensive evidence in our rebuttal
7 case to establish that the location depicted at 15.42
8 is actually north of the spot which is depicted at
9 15.36 and is, in fact, further away from Negoslavci
10 than the point that is depicted at 15.36.
11 JUDGE MAY: You put to him the place that you
12 say it is on the film, but what you haven't put to the
13 witness is how it is suggested he got to Ovcara, if
14 that is the suggestion, how he got there, by what
15 route, and at what time, and I think in fairness to
16 him, if that is your case, that you should put it to
17 him so that he's got a chance to deal with it.
18 MR. WILLIAMSON: Very well.
19 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, isn't it a fact that after
20 you left the centre of town that, in fact, your car
21 turned off the road between Vukovar and Negoslavci and
22 went to Ovcara?
23 A. That is not true. That is something that you
24 have thought up. You are trying to attribute something
25 to me for which I do not know even happened. If you
1 are an honest man, imagine yourself in my position. If
2 you bring a man who can affirm that I slapped him, I am
3 ready to do time to the end of my life. And what you
4 are doing is, you are -- towards a serious man, an
5 intellectual, a parent that I am, you wish to ascribe
6 to me that I killed 200 people. Are you normal?
7 Q. Mr. Dokmanovic, most of the people that were
8 at Ovcara are dead today. We are not in a position to
9 bring people in here to testify other than those people
10 that we have brought forward. I have nothing personal
11 against you, but I am putting forward the evidence that
12 we have, which we believe indicates that you committed
13 these crimes.
14 I have nothing further, Your Honour.
15 THE WITNESS: It's not true.
16 JUDGE CASSESE: I wonder whether the Defence
17 counsel has any question to put in re-examination.
18 MR. FILA: Your Honours, perhaps we could
19 clarify certain details that aren't essential, but were
20 popular courts ever formed on the territory of Serbia
21 Srpska Krajina at all, the ones that you allegedly
22 spoke about in Ilok? Were they formed at any time?
23 Could you answer, please?
24 A. You're asking me that question? No. There
25 was never any mention of that. We had, as far as was
1 possible under those conditions, we had a Ministry of
2 Justice which set up the courts, but it never actually
3 came into practice, it was never implemented.
4 Q. I have another question for you. You said
5 that the Vodickas had a house in Vukovar. Why didn't
6 they go back to their house?
7 A. Well, the house was destroyed like most of
8 the houses in Vukovar during the war.
9 Q. Could they live in a house like that?
10 A. No, it had to be rebuilt and for that
11 resources were needed and they did not have the
12 necessary resources to do that.
13 MR. FILA: No further questions.
14 It's illusory.
15 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Dokmanovic, I have a few
16 questions because I am sure that you can assist us in
17 our search for truth and you must believe that, of
18 course, this is our mission, to try to find out where
19 the truth lies.
20 I will start with a small point, small but
21 rather horrible, I'm afraid.
22 A few years ago -- let me start by saying
23 that a few years ago, I had a chance of talking to an
24 Italian Colonel who had been in Croatia during the
25 Second World War and you know that the Italians sided
1 with the allies of the Croats fighting against Tito's
2 partisans, and he told me that the Italian military,
3 military personnel, in particular this Colonel, had
4 been horrified by what he saw because one day some
5 Croats brought him a bowl full of eyes, because
6 their habit was to gouge out the eyes of their enemies
7 and, of course, that's why, since we were discussing
8 the rules of warfare and so on, he mentioned this in
10 I saw on the tape the corpse at Vukovar, the
11 corpse of a man and somebody says one -- one of the
12 team in which you participated, I mean the team which
13 went around Vukovar just to see the destruction and so
14 on, pointed out that actually there was one man lying
15 there and his eyes had been gouged out.
16 Now, I may be naive, but I established a link
17 between my recollection of what the Italian Colonel
18 fighting in Croatia in the Second World War had told me
19 and the remark made in the tape, and I wondered whether
20 the inference would be warranted that that man was a
21 Serb killed by Croats, whether this was your inference,
22 whether those bodies lying there were bodies of Serbs
23 who had been killed and, in a rather horrible way, by
24 enemy, by combatants, enemy people.
25 A. Your Honour, I can't give you a precise
1 answer to that question. I was horrified by what I saw
2 as well. What we saw was terrible. Slaughtered
3 people, people with their eyes gouged out. But to what
4 nationality those people belonged and who perpetrated
5 those crimes, I really can't say. It is a fact that
6 they were civilians, at least they were dressed in
7 civilian clothing. I don't know whether they had
8 previously been soldiers and had changed clothing, but
9 they were wearing civilian clothes.
10 I apologise, I can't tell you whether it was
11 a Serb or a Croat, that is to say, whether they were
12 Serbs or Croats, I just can't say.
13 JUDGE CASSESE: Yes, all right. I do
14 understand, yes, your position, but my question is: So
15 did you ask yourself who killed those poor people who
16 were lying there, even civilians in civilian clothes.
17 The immediate reaction of any human being: Who
18 committed those atrocities? You didn't ask yourself
19 who had committed those atrocities?
20 A. Yes, I did. I did indeed. But I had no
22 JUDGE CASSESE: All right. Mr. Dokmanovic,
23 you know that in court we have seen many times the
24 hunting uniform you were wearing. I wonder whether you
25 could be so kind -- I hope this is not taxing you too
1 much -- as to put on the jacket, the hunting jacket
2 which has been produced as evidence. It's D48. If you
3 don't mind putting on the jacket?
4 A. No, I have nothing against it. It is my
6 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you. You may be
7 seated. Now, could we see again this famous tape?
8 It's at 15.22, 15.23, to see whether the jacket you
9 were wearing then matches the one you are now wearing.
10 THE WITNESS: Your Honours, if I may say
12 JUDGE CASSESE: Yes, please.
13 THE WITNESS: It is not a problem to put the
14 shirt on, if you want me to wear the shirt as well, if
15 it will contribute to the identification process.
16 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you. It's very kind of
17 you. If you could maybe go out for a few minutes so
18 that you can change in private? Thank you.
19 Since you are going to change -- why don't
20 you put on also your trousers?
21 (Accused retires to holding cell)
22 (The accused entered court)
23 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you, Mr. Dokmanovic.
24 We will now show the tape, starting at 3.24, 3.25.
25 (Videotape played)
1 JUDGE CASSESE: Can you stop here? Can you
2 go back, please?
3 (Videotape played)
4 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Dokmanovic, was this the
5 jacket you were wearing that -- you are wearing now,
6 the same one you were wearing on the 20th of November?
7 Is it the same one?
8 A. Apart from what I'm wearing now, I had a
9 jacket which has not been brought here as evidence, but
10 it can be brought. I thought that what I have on me
11 now was enough. You can see the shirt and part of the
12 jacket -- the vest, part of the vest, I'm sorry, but
13 the jacket isn't in The Hague.
14 JUDGE CASSESE: We were told that you were
15 wearing -- I mean, Defence counsel told us this is what
16 you were wearing all the time, a shirt and a jacket, a
18 MR. FILA: Yes.
19 JUDGE CASSESE: And a jacket. Because on the
20 tape we have seen a jacket.
21 MR. FILA: I'll bring it tomorrow. But on
22 the tape, this is what can be seen. I brought what is
23 on the tape. His wife will bring the jacket tomorrow
24 and you'll have it tomorrow afternoon. It's no
1 JUDGE CASSESE: Sorry, what we are seeing on
2 the tape is a jacket, is a jacket.
3 MR. FILA: It's a jacket.
4 JUDGE CASSESE: It's a jacket.
5 MR. FILA: Yes.
6 JUDGE CASSESE: It's not what Mr. Dokmanovic
7 is wearing now. I see he is wearing a shirt --
8 MR. FILA: Everything's all right, but I
9 didn't know why you needed it. If you need it, we'll
10 bring in the jacket tomorrow. No problem. I have the
11 photograph here with me, which was not supplied by the
13 JUDGE CASSESE: Could we go on with the tape,
15 MR. FILA: Your Honours, we presented these
16 pictures as evidence. Here they are. We saw those
17 through witness Tomasevic. You have the photographs
18 from our tape. It is D81, Exhibit D81. Take a look,
19 please. And in it he is in the jacket. But it is
20 outside, and my alibi -- I'm proving his alibi that he
21 was inside. But there's no problem. His wife is
22 coming tomorrow. I'll ring her this afternoon, and you
23 will have the jacket here tomorrow and the diaries as
24 well-- agenda, I'm sorry.
25 JUDGE CASSESE: Could we go on,
1 Mr. Dokmanovic?
2 A. I apologise. I apologise, Your Honour. On
3 the same tape, a little before, while we were in Backa
4 Palanka sitting down at the table, I think you can see
5 me wearing the clothes that I am wearing now, as I am
6 dressed now. I could not change in the meantime. It
7 is 100 kilometres away from my house.
8 JUDGE CASSESE: No, no. I'm not saying that
9 you changed. I'm saying that you were wearing -- on
10 top of what you are wearing now -- a jacket. A
11 greenish -- what is it? Greenish?
12 A. Yes, yes, that's right.
13 MR. FILA: Your Honour, maybe it's my fault,
14 but the witnesses of the Prosecution spoke about sky
15 blue, the colour sky blue, a sky blue uniform of a
16 pilot, officer pilot, with a shirt, a tie, and a
17 jacket. Look at Berghofer's and Cakalic's statement.
18 I proved -- was intent on proving that that is not so,
19 that everything that he was wearing did not correspond
20 to that description. That's it. But I will bring the
21 jacket, if you need it.
22 JUDGE CASSESE: I want to see it to determine
23 whether what we see in this tape was a gentleman,
24 Mr. Dokmanovic, wearing a camouflage uniform or a
25 jacket which was of one particular colour, greenish or
1 blue or whatever. In this case, of course, it is
2 green, greenish. So therefore, we may go on. We may
3 start back as requested by Mr. Dokmanovic, look at
4 what --
5 MR. FILA: No problem whatsoever. So
6 Mr. Dokmanovic, Your Honour, can tell you what he is
7 wearing and I'll bring the rest in tomorrow, I can tell
8 you, because I've seen it. No problem there.
9 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you. So could we
10 rewind the tape, please, and start 10.38? Thank you.
12 (Videotape played)
13 JUDGE CASSESE: So Mr. Dokmanovic, this is
14 what you were wearing there and what you are wearing
15 now. So the shirt and the vest.
16 A. That's right, Your Honour.
17 MR. FILA: A bit further on, 10.30, shows it
18 better. At 10.40 perhaps.
19 JUDGE CASSESE: Yes. Could we go to 10.30,
20 10.40, please?
21 MR. FILA: 10.40, please, 10.40. It says 30
22 in the transcript and 10.40 is what I meant.
23 JUDGE CASSESE: 10.40, please.
24 (Videotape played)
25 JUDGE CASSESE: All right. Could we please
1 move on to 3.23.25.
2 (Videotape played)
3 JUDGE CASSESE: Can you stop here? Back. Go
4 back and -- yes, here. So here Mr. Dokmanovic, what
5 were you wearing? A shirt?
6 A. I had this shirt, this vest, and a greenish
7 jacket, which is not a military jacket, it is not a
8 military jacket. It is a jacket that we got as
9 equipment while I worked in Vupik Vukovar.
10 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you. I have one
11 question, again I'm sorry to insist on this point, but
12 it's about the military uniform. You said at one point
13 in time, you said that you were used to wearing -- in
14 that period, you used to wear hunting clothes, those
15 you are now wearing, because, and I'm quoting you,
16 "Because these helped you cross checkpoints." It was
17 easier for you if you were wearing those clothes
18 instead of civilian clothes to cross checkpoints. Now,
19 I understand everybody knows in Yugoslavia that this is
20 a hunting suit, I mean these are hunting clothes
21 normally used by hunters.
22 I assume the checkpoints were manned by
23 soldiers. I wonder whether they were -- how can you
24 explain that they were not surprised -- by the
25 fact that you were not wearing a military uniform? Why
1 should they not stop you at checkpoints only because
2 you were wearing the uniform of a hunter? Could you
3 help me understand what seemingly is an
5 A. I said, Your Honour, that I wore these
6 clothes that I'm wearing now for two reasons: The
7 first is that it is easier to take care of these
8 clothes than of civilian shirts, et cetera, you don't
9 have to iron it, it's not like civilian trousers.
10 And secondly, at that time over there, there
11 were indeed many checkpoints, a lot of army people, and
12 civilian clothes, at these points, was treated a bit
13 differently. I was stopped. I would never pass there
14 without being stopped.
15 But the times were such I wore this so that I
16 would fit into the rest who were, in a way, dressed
17 like that.
18 I'm sorry, I don't know if someone managed to
19 recognise whether this was a hunting uniform or a
20 military uniform, but I wore it at that time.
21 JUDGE CASSESE: Do you mean to say that -- so
22 therefore the soldiers at checkpoints did not
23 distinguish between a military uniform, whether JNA
24 uniform or a uniform of a paramilitary group, and a
25 hunting suit, so in a way you could be taken for
1 somebody belonging to some sort of military group.
2 Otherwise, they would have stopped you
3 saying; "Look, what are you doing here? You are a
4 civilian dressed up as a hunter, but actually you are a
5 civilian." So if they didn't stop you, they took you
6 for a military man. Am I right in drawing this
8 A. Your Honour, I was stopped. I did not say
9 that I was not stopped, but I cannot explain now, in a
10 different way, why I was dressed the way I was
11 dressed. The times were such, Your Honour, very
12 difficult. Please understand that if you live under
13 conditions when there is no electricity for eight
14 months that a shirt cannot be ironed, trousers cannot
15 be ironed. I was not mobilised. I couldn't wear a
16 military uniform because I was not mobilised and I
17 didn't have any other uniform. I had this. And that
18 is what I wore.
19 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you. Mr. Fila?
20 MR. FILA: There is a book that was written
21 by Korisa Melaparte (phoen). Thank you.
22 THE ACCUSED: Your Honour, with your
23 permission, I would like to say two or three words
25 JUDGE CASSESE: Yes, please do so.
1 THE ACCUSED: You will decide my fate and the
2 fate of my family. Once again, I swear to you that I
3 had nothing to do with the crime that happened, and I
4 did not know that it would happen, I did not know that
5 it happened, and I did not take part in it.
6 If you believe me as a man, as an
7 intellectual, as a parent, I will swear to you by my
8 children -- I'm sorry -- that I have nothing to do with
9 what happened. This is a big mistake.
10 Thank you.
11 JUDGE CASSESE: Thank you, Mr. Dokmanovic,
12 for giving evidence. We will probably have a break so
13 that you can change, you may change, and then after the
14 break, we will resume with the evidence -- with the
15 expert witness, I assume.
16 Let us have a 20-minute break.
17 --- Recess taken at 3.14 p.m.
18 --- On resuming at 3.40 p.m.
19 (The accused entered court)
20 (The witness entered court)
21 JUDGE CASSESE: Before we move on to our next
22 witness, -- let me raise two small points. First
23 of all, about the evidence, the diary we requested --
24 actually, Mr. Dokmanovic kindly offered to produce it, and
25 I understand from Mr. Fila that Mr. Dokmanovic's wife
1 would be prepared to bring this piece of evidence
3 MR. FILA: Your Honour, this is the way
4 things stand. As far as these agendas are concerned,
5 they are in my office. The problem is that there is
6 nothing about the 20th of November in them. I am going
7 to bring them to you so that you can see that there is
8 nothing about this in his agendas. Because, had there
9 been something about the 20th of November, I would have
10 submitted that myself.
11 And as regards his wife bringing this, she is
12 going to bring the jacket. My people are calling her
13 now so that she could find it.
14 May I explain this once again? I have denied
15 the evidence presented by the Prosecution, that it was
16 not sky blue, et cetera. I would have brought this
17 jacket. It doesn't mean a thing to me, really.
18 Secondly, the time that they mention is
19 relevant is from 2.00 to 3.00, Berghofer, on the basis
20 of which he was arrested, and then he did not have a
22 JUDGE CASSESE: Well, we were requesting the
23 diary under Rule 98, which states, and I read: "The
24 Trial Chamber may order either party to produce
25 additional evidence. It may proprio motu summon
1 witnesses and order their attendance." However, if
2 Mr. Fila asserts that there is no -- there is nothing
3 on the 20th --
4 MR. FILA: I am going to bring them.
5 JUDGE CASSESE: If it is, I mean, easy for
6 you, but of course the court is not interested in --
7 because we are very keen to respect the privacy of
8 Mr. Dokmanovic, we would never look into other matters,
9 except for the 20th. But if you say there is nothing
10 on the 20th, there is no point in getting this
12 MR. FILA: Your Honour, the last that is in
13 there is that on the 19th a meeting of the government
14 was held in Erdut. Mr. Milner asked me about this when
15 we had that conversation. I went there and took it and
16 I said there was nothing there. And I am going to
17 bring it to you so that you could see it, if it makes
18 it any easier for you. But there is nothing in there,
20 JUDGE CASSESE: All right. Now, before we
21 hear our next witness, let me ask Mr. Fila another
22 question, again arising out of our concern for privacy
23 -- for the privacy of Mr. Dokmanovic.
24 Mr. Fila, do you think we should hold this
25 hearing now in closed session? It's not even
1 broadcasted, and as we are going to touch upon matters which are
2 delicate, and I don't for Mr. Dokmanovic to be
3 exposed to the public.
4 MR. FILA: All right. That is precisely what
5 I wished to suggest, but I wanted to ask the Chamber
6 for something else. At the moment, when we were
7 discussing the legitimacy of Mr. Dokmanovic's arrest,
8 there was a different Chamber, Judge Kirk MacDonald was
9 presiding, a tape was shown on Mr. Dokmanovic's
10 arrest. I would like that part of the tape, that is to
11 say, only that part when he was taken out of the car,
12 and when he is told that he is under arrest, et cetera,
13 to show that part of the tape to the expert witness
14 before she presents her findings.
15 And that is why it has to be a closed
16 session, because that is an exhibit that the
17 Prosecution asked not to be shown to the public.
18 Therefore, I request that this be shown. It's a
19 minute. It's less than a minute, really. A minute, I
21 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Williamson, Mr. Niemann?
22 MR. NIEMANN: No objection, Your Honour.
23 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, there was one
24 other housekeeping matter that Mr. Bos pointed out to
25 me after Mr. Dokmanovic finished testifying. And that
1 was the translation of the statement that was given in
2 the prison, in Serbo-Croatian that was referred to by
3 Mr. Dokmanovic. I failed to tender that into
4 evidence. So at this time I would seek to tender that
5 as Prosecutor's Exhibit 128B.
6 Is that correct, Mr. Bos?
7 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, that is correct.
8 (Closed session)
13 Pages 3527 to 3561 redacted - in closed session
24 (Open session)
25 Judge Cassese: So we have come to the end of
1 our hearing. Tomorrow, we will, first of all,
2 introduce evidence -- thank you. We will finish
3 with -- probably you will come with a jacket.
4 MR. FILA: Believe it or not, I have
5 finished. Tomorrow afternoon, I am going to bring you
6 the jacket, but I only reserve the right for certain
7 written documents that I received and that are not
8 related to Dokmanovic but the international conflict,
9 et cetera, that I take a look (sic) at that. So
10 perhaps I will give that to you tomorrow.
11 But I kindly ask you now -- you know, it's
12 become a rule already that I'm surprised by the
13 Prosecution every day, they surprise me with something
14 every day. Can I find out today, now that I have
15 finished everything, who am I going to hear tomorrow?
16 Or am I supposed to be surprised again by that?
17 JUDGE CASSESE: Mr. Williamson?
18 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, first of all,
19 just to respond to this about surprising him.
20 During the course of cross-examination of our
21 witnesses, Mr. Fila presented documents to all of these
22 witnesses, he presented newspaper articles that he did
23 not show to us beforehand. That's the nature of
24 cross-examination. We did not object to that at any
25 point. And we have followed the same practice during
1 the course of cross-examining witnesses. It is a
2 different matter when we are presenting evidence as
3 part of our case in chief or as part of our rebuttal,
4 and in that situation, we have tried to provide it to
5 him in advance on all occasions.
6 The witness that we would call tomorrow would
7 be Mr. Curtis as our first rebuttal witness in
8 reference to two issues: The issue of the testimony of
9 Mr. Novakovic and the statement that was given by
10 Mr. Dokmanovic to Mr. Curtis in Sombor. This was
11 previously provided to Mr. Fila along with the tapes,
12 and at that time we had indicated that we had no
13 intention to lead this evidence. However, if Mr. Fila
14 asked questions to Mr. Dokmanovic during the course of
15 his examination-in-chief, we would then feel that it
16 was open for us to cross-examine on those issues.
17 So we would present Mr. Curtis on those two
18 limited issues.
19 JUDGE CASSESE: Only Mr. Curtis tomorrow.
20 MR. WILLIAMSON: Yes, Your Honour. Might we
21 ask that if Mr. Fila is bringing this jacket tomorrow
22 afternoon, would it be possible to just have the
23 session in the afternoon?
24 JUDGE CASSESE: Sorry, I didn't hear you.
25 MR. WILLIAMSON: As I understand it, Mr. Fila
1 is going to be bringing this overcoat in the
2 afternoon. We have been very involved in preparing for
3 cross-examination, so if we might have the morning to
4 prepare and then present this tomorrow afternoon? I
5 think it will be relatively brief. I think that we can
6 finish in an hour and a half perhaps.
7 MR. FILA: Your Honour, this is the way it
8 is. The aeroplane from Belgrade arrives somewhere
9 around 2.00. Before 3.00, I cannot receive this.
10 As far as the notes of Mr. Curtis are
11 concerned, I did not mention during the examination
12 whether Mr. Dokmanovic talked to Mr. Curtis and what he
13 said, et cetera.
14 Let me be quite clear. Everything that
15 happened after the event of 1991 I used this only in
16 terms of the proceedings because you, when determining
17 the sentence, you have to see the extent to which the
18 accused cooperated with the Tribunal, that is to say,
19 with the Prosecutor, and that is what I asked him
20 about, whether he talked to the authorities of the
22 I did not ask him about the contents of these
23 discussions. I did not ask about that, and I'm not
24 interested in that. And that is why I oppose the
25 questioning of Mr. Curtis in that direction. And I
1 cannot have this enter the transcript -- I mean that he
2 talked to Mr. Curtis and others -- if I do not pose
3 that question. And I did not ask what they talked
5 Please take a look at the transcript. I
6 never asked that.
7 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, my
8 recollection --
9 MR. FILA: Mr. Williamson asked that, I
11 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, my recollection
12 is a little bit different, that some questions were
13 posed to him about the substance of what was said. I
14 don't want to get into an argument with Mr. Fila on
15 this issue --
16 MR. FILA: Why is that?
17 MR. WILLIAMSON: -- But I believe that I am
18 correct on this issue. Certainly the notes that I took
19 during the course of his testimony indicated that some
20 questions were asked about the substance of what was
21 said when Mr. Dokmanovic spoke with Mr. Curtis. I
22 never would have posed the question to him otherwise.
23 But it's something that we can leave and review the
24 transcript and go from there.
25 MR. FILA: Didn't ask trait. Please take a
1 look at that. It is only important for me before this
2 Honourable Court to say that Mr. Dokmanovic talked and
3 nothing else. I'm not interested in anything else.
4 JUDGE CASSESE: All right. We will take a
5 look at the transcripts and see what to do.
6 In any case, tomorrow afternoon at 3.30 we
7 have a Status Conference in a different case and -- I
8 wonder whether we can bring it forward?
9 We could hold the status conference at 3.00,
10 from 3.00 to 4.00, and I wonder whether it is too late
11 to start at 4.00 with this particular case.
12 MR. FILA: No, it's not. But, Your Honour, I
13 don't think you have a status conference, I think you
14 have a telephone over here -- Celebici is here
15 tomorrow, I think. That is what I was told. Oh,
16 sorry, sorry, sorry. There's the man who knows.
17 Sorry, sorry, sir.
18 MR. NIEMANN: I will be in Celebici and I'm
19 sure it's going to --
20 JUDGE CASSESE: No, it's a status conference,
21 and counsel is coming here.
22 We would like to suggest that we should hold
23 a hearing tomorrow at 11.00. Would that suit you --
24 MR. WILLIAMSON: Your Honour, 11.00 is fine.
25 It would just help us to have a little bit of time.
1 JUDGE CASSESE: And then we will continue in
2 the afternoon after the status conference.
3 MR. FILA: I agree to everything. But
4 tomorrow I just need to see Mr. Curtis. I mean, not to
5 see someone else who happened to be passing by and to
6 come tomorrow.
7 JUDGE CASSESE: All right. So we adjourn
8 now, and we will reconvene tomorrow at 11.00.
9 --- Whereupon proceedings adjourned at
10 5.00 p.m., to be reconvened Friday,
11 29 May, 1998, at 11.00 a.m.