1 Thursday, 28 June 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let the witness make the declaration first.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
8 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
9 WITNESS: WITNESS T52
10 [Witness answered through interpreter].
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: I should say that today in Judge Mindua's absence
12 we sit pursuant to the provisions of Rule 15 bis.
13 Mr. Sachdeva.
14 MR. SACHDEVA: Good morning, Mr. President. Good morning, Your
15 Honour. I'm sorry to rise at this moment. However, I just have one very
16 small submission to make to you. During the cross-examination of Witness
17 T48 I tendered a UN document that was admitted, and I -- I realised
18 thereafter that the same document had been admitted in the Galic case
19 under seal and therefore pursuant to Rule 75 I ask that the exhibit P784
20 be similarly tendered under seal in this case. Thank you.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Request granted.
22 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, P 784 will be under seal.
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Tapuskovic.
24 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours.
25 Witness T52 is protected. He has voice and image distortion -- or,
1 rather, image distortion and a pseudonym. So could we have document
2 3D003986. Can it be shown all round, please, and to the witness.
3 I wish to tender this document under seal.
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
5 THE REGISTRAR: As D277 under seal, Your Honours.
6 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now go into private
7 session, please.
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: Private session.
9 [Private session]
11 Pages 7421-7424 redacted. Private session.
10 [Open session]
11 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're back in open session.
12 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Can you show the Judges this: During that period beginning with
14 1992, when there was combat, Nedzarici were attacked from what
15 directions? Perhaps you can draw a couple of arrows.
16 A. Like this. Then from this area, from Mojmilo. From Stup.
17 Q. First of all, do you know what Hladnjaca or the cold storage is?
18 A. I do. There was a slaughterhouse there as well. It was in Stup.
19 Q. Can you mark the spot where Hladnjaca was?
20 A. I think this is Hladnjaca. Should I put it in a circle?
21 Q. That's what I wanted you to do, yes.
22 A. This is the cold storage facility, this part here.
23 Q. Were there any attacks from the direction of the airport? I
24 suppose you can see it there.
25 A. Yes. This is the airport.
1 Q. Where were they attacking you from?
2 A. Towards Nedzarici there were attacks from Dobrinja V and this part
4 Q. Please mark it with an arrow.
5 A. [Marks].
6 Q. Thank you. At the beginning of the conflict, in terms of weapons
7 what was it that your unit had?
8 A. Infantry weapons, automatic and semi-automatic rifles,
10 Q. Thank you. I asked you about the beginning of the conflict,
11 whether you had any heavy weaponry.
12 A. No, not at the beginning.
13 Q. You had no mortars in 1992?
14 A. Not at first, but later, yes, there were mortars close to the
15 faculty of theology.
16 Q. How many?
17 A. Three or four, I think.
18 Q. Thank you. Which brigade did you belong to? What was your unit
19 in Nedzarici?
20 A. The Ilidza brigade.
21 Q. What battalion?
22 A. The 1st.
23 Q. Do you know who commanded the battalion?
24 A. Battalion commander was Colonel Radojcic. No. The battalion
25 commander was actually Svetozar Guzina.
1 Q. What about brigade commander?
2 A. That was Colonel Radojcic.
3 Q. What was your unit?
4 A. The 1st infantry unit. The 1st company.
5 Q. Who commanded the company?
6 A. At first until I got wounded I was the commander of the company at
7 Lukavica Road.
8 Q. When did you get wounded?
9 A. On the 28th of February, 1993.
10 Q. What was the time period during which you were absent from any
11 combat activities?
12 A. I did not participate until October 1993.
13 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I wish to tender
14 this map with its markings as a Defence exhibit.
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: It will it be an admitted.
16 THE REGISTRAR: As D278, Your Honours.
17 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Could we please show a 65 ter photograph to the witness, the
19 number being --
20 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel please repeat the number?
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: What's the number, Mr. Tapuskovic?
22 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] 65 ter 02862 [Realtime transcript
23 read in error "02860"] This is the photograph. However, in the
24 transcript we have 02860 whereas I said 02862. This is the photograph,
1 Q. Witness, on this photograph can you mark the separation line
2 between the army of Republika Srpska and the 1st Corps of the ABiH?
3 A. That would be the line.
4 Q. Where was the place where you had worked before the conflict?
5 A. Before the conflict I used to work here. Should I mark it?
6 Q. Witness, whenever I ask you about the photograph or any maps, you
7 have to mark.
8 A. [Marks].
9 Q. What was this?
10 A. This was the centre for the blind. This is where blind people
11 work who had completed their training and education.
12 I just wanted to add something else. The elementary school for
13 blind children was here. It is this set of buildings.
14 Upon completion of their primary education, they were able to stay
15 at the centre for the blind where they also attended high school. After
16 that, they would usually be employed by the centre for the blind.
17 Q. The set of buildings you marked with the large circle, the largest
18 building in the circle, what is it?
19 A. The elementary school.
20 Q. Mark it separately.
21 A. [Marks].
22 Q. This elementary school for who?
23 A. Blind children.
24 Q. Mark it with an "S".
25 A. [Marks].
1 Q. During the conflict what was that?
2 A. Our positions were in the school during the conflict, on the
3 ground floor. That's where we slept as well and held positions.
4 Q. What was that building made of?
5 A. It is a solid building.
6 Q. That's not what I had in mind. What was the height in terms of
8 A. It had the ground floor and two more floors.
9 Q. During the conflict what was its use?
10 A. During the conflict, on the ground floor we made trenches. We
11 opened fire from those positions during an attack.
12 Q. I'd like to know this, and maybe you can explain it to the Judges
13 as well: Later in the conflict, and I mean the last year of it, what did
14 things look like? Was the building in a somewhat different shape than
15 shown here? What did it look like?
16 A. That building --
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just a minute, please. Mr. Sachdeva is on his
19 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, that question was slightly leading,
20 in my submission. It would have been fine if -- if the counsel had just
21 asked what did it look like during the conflict.
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: I agree. It was leading.
23 You must avoid leading questions, Mr. Tapuskovic.
24 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] The English interpretation may be
25 leading. What I asked was what would -- the shape of the building in the
1 last year of the conflict. That's what I asked. It says here "Did it
2 appear any different."
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: If that's what you asked it isn't leading, but as
4 it appeared in the transcript it was. Let us proceed.
5 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] I will repeat my question.
6 Q. What was the shape of the building in the last year of the war?
7 A. It was destroyed in the last year of the war. The window --
8 windowpanes had burst. The roof was on fire, and it was riddled with
9 bullets. Mortar shells landed on the building. It was almost completely
10 destroyed, especially its upper parts.
11 Q. Thank you. In the last year of the conflict concerning that
12 building, where were you when you held positions?
13 A. There were troops in the building on the ground floor throughout
14 the war, including the last year. In the cellars, on the ground floor.
15 Q. Thank you. Tell me, can you describe what these buildings are
16 across the road from the separation line? If you can show them by
17 neighbourhood. And did it look the same at the time of the conflict?
18 Please, Witness, look at these high-rise buildings across the road
19 from the separation line. Did they exist? Were they there at the time of
20 the conflict from 1992 to 1995?
21 A. These buildings were there during the war. All these buildings
22 were there. If you want me to mark them, this part here -- do you want me
23 to mark them?
24 Q. Yes, please do.
25 A. This is Vojnicko Polje.
1 Q. And behind that?
2 A. That's Alipasino Polje, those buildings there.
3 Q. Can you mark what you have just circled with an "A"?
4 A. Alipasino.
5 Q. And what you circled before that, mark it with a "VP", the
7 A. [Marks].
8 Q. Was there a building there that was a special threat to you during
9 the conflict?
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Sorry, Mr. Tapuskovic. That is leading.
11 MR. SACHDEVA: That is leading.
12 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] I withdraw the question.
13 Q. Witness, you marked the separation line here. Right behind the
14 separation line, that area, what did it look like during the war?
15 A. During the war this area looked the same, because there were
16 garages here in this part which I haven't marked. Is that what you're
17 asking me about, the part that I haven't marked? These were garages, and
18 there was a sort of a market or shopping centre here.
19 Q. My question might seem superfluous to you, but Vojnicko Polje and
20 Alipasino Polje as you marked them, can you tell us who was in these
21 buildings? Whose positions were on these buildings?
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
23 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, in my submission that is also a
24 leading question, the suggestion being that there were positions in those
25 buildings. If that's the case, then it should be elicited without leading
1 the witness.
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: I don't consider that leading, Mr. Sachdeva.
3 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Well, I can rephrase.
4 Q. You said a little while ago, if I understood you correctly, that
5 they were constantly shooting at you from these high-rise buildings. Who
6 was doing the shooting?
7 A. It was the Muslim army that was shooting at us from these
8 high-rise buildings. The enemy army. And they overlooked us. They
9 dominated above us, because you can see that where we were there were just
10 ordinary houses.
11 Q. And across on the other side of the separation line there are also
12 some buildings there that are not very high. Who was in those houses?
13 A. The Muslim army, the enemy army. It was their positions there.
14 Q. Mark that, please.
15 A. [Marks].
16 Q. And to the right of that area right next to it, what was there?
17 A. There was a parking lot and a shopping centre or a market before
18 the war, and their positions were there also during the war.
19 Q. But please tell us what was there in terms of positions. What was
20 conspicuous? What do you remember?
21 A. There were paravan -- paravans [Realtime transcript read in
22 error "caravans"]. There were containers, obstacles of various sorts.
23 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: Your Honours, it says caravans whereas the witness
24 said paravans. He also said containers and this did not enter the
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm not familiar with the word. What does it
3 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] It's a screen to conceal people
4 from view.
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Okay. Thank you.
6 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Can you mark that area with a circle and put a "P" inside it.
8 A. [Marks].
9 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I wish to tender
10 this photograph.
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Admitted.
12 THE REGISTRAR: As D279, Your Honours.
13 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. Could we now show the
14 first photograph from the set labelled C, 00010.
15 Q. Witness, on this photograph what is there behind the car, this
16 light coloured car?
17 A. Behind this car is a passageway.
18 Q. Did you ever use that passageway before the conflict?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Do you remember how long it is approximately?
21 A. Ten or 12 metres.
22 Q. Thank you. At the time of the conflict the area in front of the
23 tunnel was under whose control? Whose army controlled it?
24 A. The area in front of the tunnel was controlled by the Muslim army.
25 Q. When you looked through the tunnel -- well, we have better
1 photographs, but at the other end of the tunnel do you recognise any
3 A. Well, as far as I can see, it's the primary school for blind
5 Q. Between that school for blind children, which you've already
6 mentioned, and the entrance to the tunnel, is that where these screens
8 A. Yes.
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Another leading?
10 MR. SACHDEVA: Actually, Mr. President, possibly, but my
11 objection -- not objection, was to clarify the time period that the
12 witness is speaking to. I mean, I can do that in cross-examination.
13 However --
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Mr. Tapuskovic, let the witness say what
15 time this was.
16 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. What time period are you referring to? Does this refer to the
18 last years of the war or -- well, please answer.
19 A. If you are referring to the screens, the screens were there from
20 the beginning to the end of the war. From the beginning of the conflict
21 until the end of the war.
22 Q. I'm especially interested in the other side. If you said that
23 that house is the centre for the blind or the school for the blind, I'm
24 interested in that area. Do you remember how long that area was?
25 A. You mean how far it was between the primary school and this part?
1 Well, 200 or 300 metres, maybe more. I don't know. Around 200 or 300
2 metres, but I couldn't be precise.
3 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: Thank you. Thank you. This is an exhibit, and I
4 will not insist on tendering it now, or I won't deal with it any further.
5 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Tapuskovic, I could just ask for some
6 clarification of this before we leave this picture.
7 Witness, you said that -- that the area between this building and
8 the school for the blind was the area in which the screens had been set up
9 throughout the war, and my question to you would be do you know if the
10 screens that were set up in that area, if those screens would obstruct the
11 view from the passageway to the school of the blind? Were there any
12 screens in the line of sight from the passageway to the facade of the
13 school of the blind that would obstruct the direct view from one point to
14 the other? Do you know this? Or if you don't know, then just say so.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The screens were in this part, on
16 this there side -- this here side towards the primary school for blind
17 children. There was screens all the way there, and you couldn't see
18 anything because of those screens. You couldn't see anything inside.
19 JUDGE HARHOFF: So if you were standing where the photographer was
20 standing, looking through the passageway towards the school of the blind,
21 then what you're saying is that you would be unable to see the school; is
22 that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you very much.
25 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Witness T52, there's another question I'd like to put to you. Do
2 you know when General Dragomir Milosevic became the commander of the
3 Sarajevo-Romanija Corps?
4 A. I think in August 1994.
5 Q. And can you please tell me, in 1994 do you remember anything? How
6 was 1994 in terms of combat? Can you remember anything about that?
7 A. 1994 was the quietest year, up until June sometime. It was quiet
8 until mid-June. May, June, something like that. It was quiet.
9 Q. I'm asking you about 1994 when Dragomir Milosevic came to the
10 command post of the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps. Did anything happen in that
11 year in relation to heavy weapons?
12 A. That year the heavy weaponry was pulled back. There was an order
13 that all heavy weaponry should be pulled back to 20 kilometres from the
15 Q. And what happened with the mortars that you said you had in the
17 A. The mortars were taken from Nedzarici, from the theological
19 Q. And from the time that General Dragomir Milosevic arrived, how did
20 that period look from July, August, September, October, November,
22 A. August, September, and October, or, actually, until the new year
23 was a time of truce of a sort.
24 Q. When you say that, are you thinking of the area where you were
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Did you know in Nedzarici about the existence of the tunnel?
3 A. We knew that there was a tunnel that had been dug underneath the
5 Q. And were you able to see from Nedzarici the entrance or the exit
6 of the tunnel?
7 A. From Kasindolska Street you could mostly see the exit to the
9 Q. And what did you observe during those months until the end of
11 A. Until the end of 1994 we would see soldiers and civilians coming
12 out of the tunnel.
13 Q. I wouldn't want to suggest anything. Soldiers and civilians, does
14 that mean that they were coming out together?
15 A. Yes, precisely. They were coming out together.
16 Q. And from the places where you were, were you able to fire at them?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And did you fire?
19 A. No.
20 Q. Why not?
21 A. We didn't fire because there were always civilians together with
22 the soldiers.
23 Q. Can you please tell me how long -- well, you said that there were
24 no conflicts in Nedzarici in 1994. Can you please tell us what was the
25 quietest period?
1 A. The quietest period was in early 1995, up until May, June,
2 something like that. I don't know exactly, but that's approximately the
4 Q. And what happened then?
5 A. Then the Muslim attacks were carried out on our positions along
6 the whole length of the lines.
7 Q. When did this culminate and what was it like? Can you describe
8 that briefly?
9 A. It began in May, June. That's when the attacks at our positions
10 began. There was continuous fire at us.
11 Q. I would like to show you two or three documents, and then I would
12 more or less finish, but I want to see if you can tell us anything about
13 that after what I heard from you. We're talking about document D159.
14 Witness T52, can you please look -- well, we still don't have the
15 English version. Can you please read aloud the heading and what it says
16 below the heading, and can you please read items 1, 2, and 3 so that I
17 could ask you something.
18 A. "Command of the 12th Division --" should I read this "Strictly
19 confidential. 02/2-2-182, Sarajevo, 4th of July, 1995.
20 "Report on active combat actions." That's what BD means.
21 Delivered to the command of the 1st Corps.
22 "In regard to your --"
23 Q. Please. Thank you. I told you. Can you now please read item 1,
24 item 2, and item 3. Can you please read what it says in those three
1 A. "In the period from the 15th June to the 3rd of July, 1995, we
2 fired from all types of weapons and heavy weapons at our disposal at over
3 300 VT of the enemy, firing points of the enemy." This is article 1,
4 paragraph 1.
5 2: "Out of the firing at the firing positions, a large number
6 were directly hit, out of which 36 firing positions at the PK the
7 following things were destroyed: The firing points, bunkers where the
8 enemy manpower was, the PAMs, the PATs, the infantry weaponry,
9 preparations, dormitories and so on.
10 3: "During the past combat actions we estimate that we killed
11 about 50 Chetniks and a much larger number has been taken out of action by
12 being seriously or lightly wounded."
13 Q. Thank you. Does this correspond to the events that you described
14 earlier during that period in June?
15 A. Yes, it does.
16 Q. And when you read here that it said in Article -- in paragraph 3
17 that 50 Chetniks were killed, what can you say in relation to that?
18 A. Some soldiers were killed, but the majority of the casualties were
19 all civilians inside the neighbourhoods, the settlements.
20 Q. Thank you. Can you please look at the last paragraph of this
21 document. Can you please read it?
22 A. "We estimate that the number of destroyed damaged firing
23 positions, combat and non-combat MVs are greater because we fired at the
24 same in conditions of limited advisability, at night, so we were not able
25 to see everything absolutely."
1 Q. Well, when it says here that this was during the night, is that
2 how it was?
3 A. Yes. I said earlier that they fired at us during the day and
4 during the night.
5 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] I have no further questions, Your
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Are you tendering this document?
8 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this is Defence
9 Exhibit D159.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.
11 Mr. Sachdeva.
12 Cross-examination by Mr. Sachdeva:
13 Q. Good morning, T52. My name is Manoj Sachdeva and I'm a lawyer for
14 the Prosecution and I'm going to ask a you few questions today. Firstly
15 let me ask you, you were wounded in February 1993; is that right?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And did you go somewhere to convalesce, to recover?
18 A. It's true that I was wounded on the 28th of February, 1993. First
19 I was admitted to the Zica hospital in Blazuj, after which I was
20 transferred to the Zvezda hospital in Belgrade.
21 Q. And you were there for how long, can I ask you? Actually I
22 understand that you returned to Nedzarici in October 1993. Is that right?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And Blazuj and Belgrade [Realtime transcript read in
25 error "Nedzarici"] are far away from Nedzarici [Realtime transcript read
1 in error "Belgrade"]; is that right?
2 A. Blazuj is perhaps some six to seven kilometres from Nedzarici.
3 It's --
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Tapuskovic.
5 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Blazuj from Belgrade. That's
6 what it says in the transcript.
7 MR. SACHDEVA: I asked from Nedzarici.
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: That's noted.
9 MR. SACHDEVA:
10 Q. In any event those two locations Belgrade and Blazuj are far from
11 Nedzarici; isn't that right?
12 A. I've just said Blazuj is six, almost seven kilometres from
13 Nedzarici. Belgrade is in Serbia, and Blazuj is in Bosnia-Herzegovina, as
14 well as Nedzarici.
15 Q. Sir, you spent roughly eight months away from the area of
16 Nedzarici in 1993; is that right?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. So I take when you said to the Court that the screens were erected
19 throughout the conflict, that is 1992 to 1995, you clearly did not see the
20 screens in those eight months when you were away. Isn't that correct?
21 A. When I wasn't there I didn't see them, of course, but the screens
22 were there or curtains, as you say, they were there from May 1992 until
23 the 28th of February, 1993. I mean, they were there then, and I assume
24 that they were there throughout the war. When I came back, the screens
25 were still there.
1 Q. So it's an assumption on your part. Isn't that right?
2 A. Yes. I assume that, because when I left the screens were there.
3 When I came back the screens were still there. I don't know if they were
4 the same screens, but they were there.
5 Q. Now, you -- you were a company commander up until February 1993 in
6 the 1st Battalion; is that right?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And how many battalions were there in Nedzarici? And I'm talking
9 the period 1993 -- well, 1992 to 1995.
10 A. There was only one battalion in Nedzarici.
11 Q. Didn't the battalion amalgamate with the Kasindolska battalion and
12 become a larger battalion, is that right, sometime in 1993?
13 A. The Nedzarici battalion and the -- from the Kasindolska Street,
14 and the battalion from the Kasindolska Street joined together and it was
15 one battalion, because at the beginning of the war there was so much
16 manpower that the two battalions were created. As the war continued some
17 people left, some were killed, some were wounded, so the numbers went
18 down. So then from the two, one battalion was created.
19 Q. And within that battalion how many companies were there in
21 A. There were three companies.
22 Q. And the three companies contained roughly how many soldiers?
23 A. Three to 400 soldiers. I don't know the exact number, but that's
24 about the right number.
25 Q. And I apologise, maybe my question wasn't precise enough. Are you
1 saying that there were 300 soldiers per company or 300 soldiers in total?
2 A. In total, in all three companies.
3 Q. And apart from the barracks that you marked on the map -- you
4 remember marking the barracks on the map?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Was there not a former -- a former JNA barracks somewhere in the
7 centre of Nedzarici in addition to those barracks?
8 A. There was just one barracks in Nedzarici.
9 Q. And you've mentioned that the school of theology was also
10 controlled by the VRS in Nedzarici; is that right?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And there were SRK soldiers in that location; is that right?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. There were SRK soldiers in the school for blind children from 1992
15 to 1995; is that right?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. I take it there were no civilians in the school for the blind
18 children during the conflict, or at least 1994 to 1995, were there?
19 A. There were no civilians. That's right.
20 Q. And presumably your company or the companies in the Nedzarici
21 battalion had company headquarters in Nedzarici?
22 A. Each company had its own command in Nedzarici.
23 Q. And your company headquarters, shall I say, was -- was that
24 adjacent to the Lukavica-Cesta road; is that right?
25 A. Yes. That was about a hundred metres away from the line of
2 Q. And you mentioned that there were mortars positioned by the school
3 of theology. You remember talking about that?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And the mortars that you had or that the battalion had were
6 60-millimetre, 82-millimetre, and 120-millimetre mortars; isn't that
8 A. 60, 80, and 120.
9 Q. You also had howitzers and tanks at some time during the conflict
10 in Nedzarici?
11 A. We never had howitzers.
12 Q. Tanks? Did you have tanks?
13 A. There was one tank.
14 Q. And you had direct fire weapons such as anti-aircraft artillery?
15 Did you have that in Nedzarici during the conflict?
16 A. You mean the PATs. We didn't have them.
17 Q. So in Nedzarici, which you've already testified earlier today,
18 which is a small area, we can agree that there with the school of
19 theology, with the institute for blind children, with the three -- the
20 companies that you mentioned, the three company headquarters, the
21 barracks, the former barracks, and the military weaponry that you
22 described, we can agree at least that there were a considerable amount of
23 military facilities in that small area. Do you agree with that?
24 A. The barracks, and then there was the faculty of theology, the home
25 for blind children. There was -- there were soldiers on duty at the
1 school for the blind, the school for blind children, the same as ...
2 Q. I'm not sure if you finished your answer, Witness. The same as?
3 A. Yes, I did. Soldiers were on duty at the school for the blind in
4 the same way as they were on duty at other places along the line of
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Tapuskovic.
7 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I of course have
8 nothing against all these questions being put, and of course questions can
9 be put relating to matters throughout the entire war and conflict, but if
10 a question is put to the witness, we need to have a specific time frame,
11 time reference. Then the questions can be put once it is established
12 exactly what time period they relate to.
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: This appears to be a complaint common to both
15 What is the time frame? What time frame is this, Witness?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was speaking generally now in
17 terms of the time about the home for the blind. The Prosecutor asked me
18 about the home for the blind, and I answered.
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Sachdeva, you'd better try to get the witness
20 to speak about a specific time.
21 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, my questions -- I prefaced my
22 questions with the time frame of the conflict, and when I want to ask for
23 specific time periods I will, with your leave.
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Very well, yes.
25 MR. SACHDEVA:
1 Q. Witness, when you came back after you were wounded, you told --
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Tapuskovic.
3 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] I believe that it should be
4 mentioned every time we're talking about key things, just like all the
5 questions that were put regarding the heavy weapons.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: [Previous translation continues] ... The
8 MR. SACHDEVA:
9 Q. Witness, you told the Court earlier that you returned to combat in
10 October 1993; is that right?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And for some reason I wasn't clear what you did when you returned.
13 Were you -- did you take over the company command? Did you, in other
14 words, return to your former position or did you take up another position?
15 A. When I returned, I was in the rear command of the battalion.
16 Q. And where were you positioned for that period? In other words,
17 1993 until the end of the war, where were you mostly positioned?
18 A. In Kasindolska Street, the rear command of the 1st Battalion.
19 Q. And I take it you were there constantly from 1993 until 1995?
20 Well, let me ask you this: Did you go to the front lines in that period?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And how often would you go to the front lines?
23 A. Not very often. I went there because I had my compatriots there,
24 fighters, cousins, neighbours. I would go and see them sometimes.
25 Q. And when you say that you were working in the rear of the
1 battalion, what exactly was your role, your military role?
2 A. My duties in the rear battalion service consisted mostly of
3 procuring petrol. We didn't have electricity, so we were getting candles
4 and fuel for burning, for the soldiers.
5 Q. When you say you went to the front lines, I take it that you used
6 to visit the school for blind children. You used to visit your
7 compatriots there; is that right?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And how often would you go, once a week, once every couple of
10 days? From 1993 to 1995.
11 A. Well, I cannot be specific. Sometimes I would go once a week.
12 Sometimes I wouldn't go for 15, 20 days. Sometimes I wouldn't go for a
14 Q. Now, you told the Court that the SRK, in other words, your
15 colleagues, were on the ground floor of the school for the blind
16 children. Do you remember saying that?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And I take it that on top of the ground floor there was a first
19 and a second floor. So in other words, there were three floors in that
20 building; is that right?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And on the ground floor of the -- on the ground floor of the
23 school for the blind you mentioned to the Court that the SRK soldiers
24 would fire from that location; is that correct?
25 A. In case of an attack, there would be firing from the basement.
1 There would be firing at the enemy.
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Sachdeva, we'll take the break now.
3 --- Recess taken at 10.31 a.m.
4 --- On resuming at 10.53 a.m.
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Sachdeva.
6 MR. SACHDEVA: Thank you, Mr. President.
7 Q. T52, before the break we were talking about the school for the
8 blind children, and you told the Court that the SRK would fire from the
9 ground floor. You remember that?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. I take it they would fire into the area controlled by the ABiH.
12 Is that right?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And it's also correct, is it not, that the SRK were on the first
15 and the second floor? They were also located on those two floors in the
16 school for the blind children?
17 A. No.
18 Q. Isn't it correct that the first floor and the second floor were
19 used by the SRK for observation purposes? Isn't that right?
20 A. The first and the second floor, well, we didn't dare go up there
21 since there were large windows there. As you could see for yourself in
22 the photograph, you can see what the height of the buildings in Vojnicko
23 Polje and Alipasino Polje are. They are far taller than that building.
24 Q. Sir, your evidence is that the first and second floor were not
25 used by the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps to observe into ABiH territory. Is
1 that what you're saying?
2 A. Sometimes on occasion, but we didn't dare. We tried not to get
3 killed. Therefore, we didn't move about the first and the second floor.
4 People were not even thinking about that.
5 Q. So sometimes on occasion the SRK would go up to the first and
6 second floors to observe territory of the ABiH. Do you agree with that?
7 A. Never on the second floor. No one dared to go there. On the
8 first floor maybe somebody occasionally would go.
9 Q. Witness, are you sure about that answer, that the second floor was
10 never used - and I'm talking the period 1993 to 1995 - that the second
11 floor was never used by the SRK to observe enemy territory? Are you sure
12 about that answer?
13 A. Yes. I am sure that people did not dare go up to the second
14 floor. I'm telling you for the third time. No one dared go up there
15 because of their safety. The other buildings surrounding it were far
16 higher and they didn't go -- they didn't dare go there, otherwise they
17 would be seen from those tall buildings.
18 Q. Witness, it's correct that you testified for the Galic case in
19 October 2002; is that right?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And I take it that when you commenced your testimony you read or
22 you gave a declaration to tell the truth. Do you remember doing that.
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And do you remember being questioned by Defence counsel and then
25 cross-examined by Prosecution counsel at that time?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And you also recall that the -- the organisation or the set-up of
3 the courtroom were as we see here. In other words, your answers were
4 recorded by an official court reporter and translated by an official
5 interpreter. Isn't that also right?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And I want to bring your attention to the cross-examination by the
8 lawyer, Mr. Mark Ierace, and Mr. Ierace, at page 14070 on the 21st of
9 October, asked you the question whether the SRK would use the first and
10 second floor, and I'm going to quote your answer.
11 You answered: "I also and likewise claim that the fire was opened
12 from the ground floor and that the upper floors mostly were used to
13 observe. I've just explained why we couldn't fire from the upper floors
14 because there were tall buildings dominating and one could see everything
15 through the windows."
16 That was your answer. So what I'm suggesting to you is, Witness,
17 is that the SRK did use -- or at least your answer in the Galic case was
18 that the SRK used the second floor to observe enemy territory. Now, what
19 do you say to that? What is your answer?
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just a minute, Witness. Just a minute.
21 [Trial Chamber confers]
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, please answer, Witness.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As I said an a minute ago, sometimes
24 people went up to the first floor. As for the second floor, they didn't
25 dare. They tried to stay alive. I think that last time in the Galic case
1 I said that the upper floor was used but maybe it turned out to be the
2 upper floors.
3 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours.
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: In any event, Mr. Sachdeva, in the quotation from
5 Galic it says the upper floors were used mostly, mostly, to observe.
6 MR. SACHDEVA: Yes, Mr. President, and what I'm suggesting to the
7 witness, and my questions have been limited to the -- the activity of
8 observation, and so I'm not suggesting -- I'm not putting the question
9 about firing at this point, but I'm simply suggesting to the witness that
10 the upper floors, that includes the first and the second floors, were used
11 by the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps to observe into enemy territory.
12 Q. This is what you said in the Galic case, and I want to ask you --
13 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours.
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: I spoke when the -- I was not switched on. I was
15 indicating that Mr. Sachdeva should yield to you since you're on your
16 feet. What is it you have to say?
17 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, since we are
18 putting this to the witness, it would be fair to mention page 13919, and
19 the answer he provided upon Judge Riad's question. It is that page, lines
20 13 to 17. It would be fair to put that to the witness as well, in
21 addition to the part referred to by my learned friend so as to put the
22 question in its proper form and in order to gain an answer.
23 In answering Judge Riad's question, I think this witness should be
24 referred to the answer he gave at that time.
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: That of course would be something that you could
1 do in re-examination, but let us hear what that question was from Judge
2 Riad, Mr. Sachdeva, and what the answer is.
3 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, my recollection on being on the
4 Galic case was that there was -- Judge Riad was not a Judge on that case.
5 It was Judge -- His Honour Judge El Madhi, His Honour Judge -- Presiding
6 Judge Orie and His Honour Judge Nieto-Navia.
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, let us attend to the line rather than the
8 Judge. What's the line that you wish to refer to in the transcript?
9 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] I know very well who presided. I
10 said Judge Orie, and the page is 13919, lines 13 to 17 in the English
11 transcript. If need be, my colleague can read that aloud, read it out
13 [Trial Chamber confers]
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Are you ready, Mr. Sachdeva?
15 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I have the -- I have the part of the
16 transcript that my learned counsel refers to, and my submission is that
17 learned counsel can put that this to the witness in re-examination.
18 Mr. Ierace, in my submission, established in cross-examination that there
19 were three floors, that is, the ground floor and two other floors, the
20 first and second floor, and the answer the witness gave to Mr. Ierace, in
21 my submission, is what I've read out, that the upper floors are used to
22 observe enemy territory.
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Very well. You put it in re-examination,
24 Mr. Tapuskovic.
25 MR. SACHDEVA:
1 Q. Witness, let's start this way: Do you agree that the school for
2 the blind children had three floors? In other words, a ground floor, a
3 first floor, and a second floor?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And when you refer to the upper floors, the upper floors refer to
6 the first and second floor, isn't that right?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. So in your answer to Mr. Ierace as to whether the SRK used the
9 upper floors, that is the first and second floor, to observe enemy
10 territory, you were referring to the upper floors when you said they used
11 those floors to observe, the first and second floor. I'm not talking
12 about firing. I'm talking about observation. Did the SRK use the second
13 floor to observe enemy territory?
14 A. As I said, the uppermost -- no. The upper floor, the first floor,
15 was used to observe. The second floor -- well, maybe one of our people
16 would go up there on occasion to observe. Otherwise, we didn't dare go up
17 there for the reasons of safety. Maybe some people may have gone up there
18 in the evening or when there was a lull, but as for the second floor being
19 used, very few people dared to go up there.
20 Well, I said the upper floor because I know what was happening in
21 that part of the building.
22 Q. Very well. So you accept that on occasion and sometimes the
23 second floor would be used by soldiers of the SRK to observe. You accept
24 that possibility, don't you?
25 A. Sometimes and briefly only. To go up there quickly, have a look
1 around, and immediately go back down since it wasn't safe to be up there.
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Tapuskovic.
3 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have an objection
4 in the sense that this is irrelevant. Even if someone did go up there,
5 and we will go back to the transcript to see whether there was anyone on
6 the second floor at all, in our view even if it was so, it is still
7 irrelevant in our position, because there was no mention of any firing
8 from the roof.
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: What do you say to that?
10 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I -- I submit that it is extremely
11 relevant as to whether the SRK were on the second floor of the school for
12 the blind children and my --
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, I would think so myself.
14 MR. SACHDEVA:
15 Q. So, witness, let's just go back to where we agree. You accept
16 that there was a possibility, there was a possibility that the SRK would
17 sometimes go up to the second floor to observe enemy territory. You
18 accept that as a possibility, don't you?
19 A. As I said, maybe someone went up there seldom because they didn't
20 go up and there stay there. It was very seldom.
21 Q. And they were to go up there to the second floor because the
22 vantage point or the observation from that second floor was -- how should
23 I put it? It was an effective place to observe enemy territory being that
24 it was the highest floor in the building. You agree with that?
25 A. One could go and have a short look, but to efficiently observe
1 enemy territory among all those buildings, given their size that was no
2 use. But still I maintain that no one dared to stay there for a long time
3 but if they did go up there, they would return very quickly.
4 Q. Witness, please just try and answer the question I'm asking you.
5 I'm not asking you as to whether it was a useful purpose, a useful thing
6 to do or not. I'm simply putting to you that from the second floor of the
7 school for the blind children the view to those buildings that you speak
8 about, the view to enemy territory was superior on the second floor than
9 it would have been on the first floor. Do you agree with that?
10 A. Yes, I do. That's understandable.
11 Q. And it's also correct, is it not, that because of the superior
12 view or the superior observation point of the second floor, the SRK
13 soldiers would fire from that floor into enemy territory. Do you agree
14 with that?
15 A. No, I do not agree with that.
16 Q. But you tell the Court that the SRK were firing from the ground
17 floor. You remember saying that?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Sir, I suggest to you that it is absurd to say that the SRK would
20 fire solely from the ground floor and not from the second floor where the
21 commanding view was superior. What do you say to that?
22 A. This is what I have to say to that: How can anyone open fire from
23 the second floor when surrounding that building were the buildings at
24 Vojnicko Polje and Alipasino Polje? And the windows were facing Alipasino
25 Polje. How can anyone open fire, because it can be observed easily. You
1 can see every shot being fired.
2 Q. The building would have been observed by the surrounding buildings
3 whether you were on the second or the ground floor. Isn't that right?
4 A. It could have been observed, but there is a great difference being
5 on the second floor and on the ground floor.
6 Q. Now, you spoke about the firing coming from these apartment
7 blocks, and I will move to that photograph in a moment. I take it that
8 when there was firing the SRK would return fire. Is that right?
9 A. Yes, it is.
10 Q. And the SRK would return fire by the use of mortars and infantry
11 weapons; that is right?
12 A. Mortars. I don't know when. It must have been in consultation
13 with the higher command as to when mortars would be used. As for infantry
14 weapons, when the Muslims would open fire, we fired back.
15 Q. But mortars were used against apartment blocks, were they not?
16 A. Mortars were used in case of attack and in agreement with our
17 superior command.
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Tapuskovic.
19 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] With a question like this, the
20 witness should be asked as to when that happened, having in mind the
21 indictment and the time encompassed in it.
22 [Trial Chamber confers]
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. He's already said he didn't know when.
24 MR. SACHDEVA:
25 Q. Sir, I suggest to you that the launching of mortars or the
1 deployment of mortars at these apartment blocks is an ineffective use of
2 military weaponry. Do you agree with that?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And you also agree that the -- the apartment blocks that you --
5 remember you marked on the photograph the apartment blocks in Vojnicko
6 Polje and Alipasino Polje. Do you remember marking those apartment
8 A. Yes, I do.
9 Q. And in 1994 and 1995, civilians lived in those apartment blocks,
10 did they not?
11 A. I don't know whether any civilians were living there at the time.
12 I wasn't there.
13 Q. But you accept --
14 A. In Vojnicko Polje, the buildings that were close were not
15 inhabited by civilians, and we couldn't see any. As for the rear, well, I
16 don't know.
17 Q. Let's have this photograph up on the screen. I think it's Defence
18 Exhibit 279.
19 Sir, let's concentrate on the apartment blocks where you have in
20 the circle that says VP, and the -- the apartment blocks towards the
21 left-hand side, you see those apartment blocks there?
22 A. Just a moment. These ones here?
23 Q. It's just the apartment blocks just to the left of the letters
24 VP. Those are the blocks I'm talking about.
25 A. Yes, I see them.
1 Q. Now, civilians lived there, didn't they, from 1994 to 1995?
2 A. Most likely, but I didn't see them. Most likely they did. They
3 had to live somewhere.
4 Q. And, sir, you would agree with me that -- well, let's first -- do
5 you have any knowledge about mortars?
6 A. Do you -- do you mean the mortars that were down there --
7 Q. Well, I apologise --
8 A. -- by the monastery in Nedzarici?
9 Q. No, I apologise. My question wasn't precise enough. I'm
10 suggesting to you that -- well, you agree with me that mortars are -- the
11 primary purpose of mortars is to kill and maim personnel? Do you agree
12 with that?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And, sir, you would agree with me that the firing of mortars at
15 these buildings would cause civilian casualties, would they not?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Now --
18 A. If there were people there, then, yes, there would have been
20 Q. And you also agree that where the -- where you have placed the
21 letter "A", in other words, Alipasino Polje, you agree with me that from
22 1994, 1995, civilians lived in those apartment blocks, did they not?
23 A. Most likely, yes.
24 Q. And it's correct that the SRK from Nedzarici in 1994, 1995, would
25 fire mortars into that area, wouldn't they?
1 A. In 1994, 1995 from Nedzarici? Well, when the heavy weapons were
2 withdrawn, they were withdrawn from Nedzarici. That was when the mortars
3 were withdrawn from Nedzarici at the monastery when the order arrived, and
4 they left Nedzarici.
5 Q. Witness, are you aware that in this case we have evidence that --
6 that after the total exclusion zone agreement was signed that the -- that
7 General Milosevic attempted to defeat or to deviate from that agreement by
8 concealing the heavy weapons and not handing them over to UNPROFOR? Are
9 you aware of that?
10 A. No.
11 Q. You are -- well, let's talk about the commander of Ilidza brigade,
12 Vladimir Radojcic. He was a commander, was he not, from 1993 -- well,
13 1992 to 1995?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Are you aware that in the summer of 1995 the commander of Ilidza
16 brigade frequently requested the supply of heavy weaponry, including
17 120-millimetre mortars, 82-millimetre mortars and modified air bombs? Are
18 you aware of that?
19 A. No, no.
20 Q. Sir, I put it to you that in 1994, 1995, in Nedzarici there were
21 indeed mortars positioned there, and they were indeed used and fired into
22 enemy territory. What do you say to that?
23 A. I'm telling you there weren't any mortars in Nedzarici.
24 Q. Now, you spoke about the screens. Do you remember talking about
25 the screens and the containers?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And I take it that you accept that the screens and containers were
3 set up in order to prevent civilians from being hit by sniper fire. Do
4 you agree with that?
5 A. I agree that containers and screens were set up to protect
7 Q. And they were set up to protect -- and they --
8 A. [No interpretation].
9 Q. I'm sorry, I actually interrupted your answer. What was the last
10 thing you said, please?
11 A. That screens were set up and containers were set up to protect
12 civilians from bullets and from being seen, so that they couldn't be seen
13 passing by.
14 Q. Because if they were seen, they would be fired at, wouldn't they?
15 A. The screens and containers were set up both because of the
16 civilians and also because of the soldiers, so they could pass by. That's
17 how it was everywhere. Of course if one saw a soldier passing by, one
18 would have to shoot.
19 Q. And what I'm putting to you, sir, is that if a civilian was not
20 protected and if a civilian could be seen, that civilian would be shot at,
21 wouldn't he?
22 A. No. I have just said -- I said when Mr. Tapuskovic was
23 questioning me about the tunnel, the passage. It was both civilians and
24 soldiers who went there, and we didn't shoot at all because there were
25 civilians among the soldiers, and now you're asking me the same thing
1 again. It was an order from the command, and also it was what people
2 thought. Why would they shoot at civilians? Civilians weren't to blame
3 for anything. Women, little children, old people.
4 Q. When you say the tunnel, the passage, I presume you're talking
5 about the tunnel under the airport.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Sir, you're saying that because there were soldiers and civilians,
8 no fire would be targeted at that location. That's what you're saying?
9 A. Yes, that's what I'm saying, and that's true.
10 Q. But at the same time, at the same time you have testified that
11 mortar fire and infantry fire would be fired at those apartment blocks
12 where civilians were living. Didn't you just say that?
13 A. When did I say that? I didn't say that at all that mortar fire
14 was opened on the blocks of houses where civilians lived. It was only at
15 the separation lines that fire was opened. Why would anyone fire into the
17 Q. Did you --
18 A. At least our soldiers.
19 Q. Did you not testify in chief, in examination-in-chief that the
20 ABiH would be firing from those apartment blocks?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And did you --
23 A. From the first blocks fire was opened. And what was deeper
24 inside, you say shells, but who would be crazy enough to fire shells into
25 the settlement? Why?
1 Q. You also said that if the order came down from the command that
2 mortar fire would be used to retaliate at those locations. Do you
3 remember saying that?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Now -- well, let me just ask you one question. Actually, I'm
6 going to move on to a photograph. If we could have the photograph that
7 was - the photograph of the passageway. I can't remember the exhibit
8 number offhand. It's the one of the passageway from the site visit. I
9 think it's the Chamber's Exhibit number 10.
10 Witness, you remember seeing this photograph in
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And I want you to look -- well, you told the Court that the
14 building that you can see through the passageway, that that building is
15 the school for the blind children. That's right, is it?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And, sir, you would agree with me that from where this photograph
18 is taken, in other words, from where the car is, there is a line of sight
19 from the school of the blind into the passageway. Do you agree with that?
20 A. Yes, I agree.
21 Q. Witness, I take it that you -- you don't remember what you were
22 doing on the 24th of October, 1994?
23 A. No, I don't remember.
24 Q. And so I take it that you don't remember whether there was a
25 screen or not at that location on the 24th of October. That's not
1 something that you can remember, is it?
2 A. Listen, in every passage, on every street there was screens and
3 obstacles. That's a hundred per cent certain. Wherever people passed
4 from 1992, and I'm talking about the period I was there, from October
5 there were always screens there until the end of the war. Screens and
6 obstacles and containers in the streets.
7 Q. Witness, I appreciate your answer but you're not answering my
8 question. I'm suggesting to you that you do not remember seeing a screen
9 on the 24th of October at that location, do you?
10 A. No, I don't, but I'm telling you there was screens everywhere. Of
11 course I can't remember. How many years have elapsed.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just a minute, please. Mr. Tapuskovic.
13 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, he said he didn't
14 remember whether it was the 24th of October, but he did say from October
15 onwards. So I don't know why the same questions are being asked again and
16 again. He said up to 1993 -- or from 1993, and from October until the end
17 of the war. He's already said that. If he has to repeat it several
18 times, all right.
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Sachdeva, what's the next question?
20 MR. SACHDEVA: May I just respond? That's -- the question that --
21 I asked a very specific question, whether the witness remembers or not,
22 and his answer was he doesn't remember. And I'm satisfied with that.
23 Q. Witness -- Witness, are you aware that in this case a civilian
24 came and testified under oath in this court about the targeting of one of
25 his friends in that passageway from the school for the blind, are you
1 aware of that, on the 24th of October 1994?
2 A. I'm not aware of that.
3 Q. In fact, this person who testified was a civilian living in those
4 apartment blocks. Are you aware of that?
5 A. No.
6 Q. And, sir, I suggest to you that after that incident it was then
7 that screens were erected, because the SRK were firing at civilians in
8 that area. Isn't that why the screens were erected?
9 A. When was that incident, the 24th of October? What year?
10 Q. 1994.
11 A. And that the screens were erected only after that? No, they were
12 erected in 1992, and they were there until the end of the war, not after
13 that incident where that person, I don't know who, was killed. It wasn't
14 after that. I keep telling you. The screens were there all the time
15 throughout the war.
16 Q. So, Witness, is it your evidence that the SRK did not fire from
17 the school for the blind into ABiH territory at civilians in 1994, 1995?
18 Is that what you're saying?
19 A. The orders from the higher command, the brigade command, were that
20 there was to be no shooting at civilians, and there was no shooting at
21 civilians. There was no shooting at civilians. People didn't want to
22 kill women, children, elderly people. There was no question of that.
23 Q. Witness, you testified that you would visit the school for the
24 blind once a week; is that right?
25 A. I said once a week or sometimes once a fortnight or once a month.
1 That's what I said. I didn't say only once a week. I remember what I
2 said very well.
3 Q. Very well. Very well. And therefore you don't know, do you,
4 during the times that you weren't there, you don't know if the SRK would
5 fire from the school for the blind into civilians -- at civilians in ABih
6 territory. You don't know that, do you?
7 A. Well, listen, I just said there were orders. If I wasn't there,
8 how could I know, but I doubt it because there was strict orders that
9 there was to be no shooting at civilians. It was not allowed to shoot at
11 Q. Sir, it's an assumption on your part that civilians were not
12 targeted. That's all I'm asking you to agree with.
13 A. Well, that's my assumption and I know that, because there was an
14 order. I'm telling you again there was an order from the brigade command
15 that there was to be no shooting at civilians.
16 Q. Witness --
17 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I would like to go into private
18 session, with your leave.
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Private session.
20 [Private session]
6 [Open session]
7 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're back in open session.
8 MR. SACHDEVA:
9 Q. And, Witness, I'm going to ask you some questions about this
10 person, but please don't mention his name because he is, like you,
12 Now, he gave testimony in this case and also in the Galic case
13 that there would be -- that the international community would make
14 allegations against the SRK in Nedzarici for things, for things that were
15 done. Are you aware of those allegations?
16 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours.
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Tapuskovic.
18 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] This identifies the witness.
19 First the identity of the witness was revealed to this witness, and then
20 the protected witness, he was protected, and now he is no longer a
21 protected witness because this witness now knows that.
22 [Trial Chamber confers]
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. I think that was done inadvertently. So we
24 have to ensure -- Witness, Witness, are you hearing me?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: You are not reveal the name that has just been
2 given. Do you understand that?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand.
4 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I apologise. It was indeed
5 inadvertent, and I -- in an attempt to be fair to put the name to the
6 witness, I asked that question. So I apologise.
7 Q. Witness, let me ask you, when you were in Nedzarici in 1993 to
8 1995, were you aware of allegations by the international community and by
9 the United Nations that the Bosnian Serb army in Nedzarici would be firing
10 at civilians within the ABiH confrontation line? Are you aware of those
12 A. I don't know what the international community said. I'm not aware
13 of that. When I listened to the radio, we usually switched on the radio
14 using generators, and very often they would say that civilians had been
15 killed by a shell from Nedzarici when no shell had been fired nor did
16 anyone hear a shell being fired.
17 Q. Are you aware that your battalion, in other words, the 1st
18 Battalion, your battalion commander, at least it was recorded by the
19 United Nations that he admitted to United Nations personnel in July 1994
20 that there was indeed sniping from the school for the blind?
21 A. I'm not aware of that. As far as I know, there was no sniper
22 activity from the centre for the blind or the school for the blind. This
23 is the first time I've heard of such a thing. And I don't know about the
24 commander of the 1st Battalion admitting that there were such activities.
25 This is the first time I've heard that.
1 Q. You're saying to the Court that today is the first time that
2 allegations were put -- that you have heard of allegations that the SRK
3 was firing, sniping from the school for the blind? Is today the first
4 time you're hearing that?
5 A. Never was there a sniper in the centre for the blind. We didn't
6 have snipers there. We had rifles, and that was all. It was all just
7 small arms.
8 Q. With respect, Witness, that's not the answer to my question. I'm
9 asking you is today the first time that you are hearing of allegations
10 that the SRK would fire, whether by rifles or other weapons, at civilians
11 from the school for the blind. Is today the first time you're hearing
12 that, yes or no?
13 A. No, it wasn't the first time, but certainly no shots were fired
14 from a sniper from the centre for blind children. I never said that no
15 shots were fired from the centre for blind children, because if there was
16 an attack, we would have to respond.
17 Q. And the shots that you're talking about firing from the centre for
18 the blind, those shots were fired from the ground floor. Is that what
19 you're saying?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Witness, you were aware, are you, of an anti-sniping agreement
22 that was signed in August 1994, in fact, signed by General Milosevic?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And you agree with me that the anti-sniping agreement was
25 promulgated because civilians were being killed within ABiH territory by
1 the SRK. You agree that was the reason for the anti-sniping agreement?
2 A. The agreement was signed. I suppose it was signed by both sides,
3 the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the army of Republika Srpska. It
4 wasn't signed just by General Milosevic. It was signed by both sides.
5 Q. Very well. That's what an agreement entails. So with respect to
6 General Milosevic and with respect to the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps, it was
7 signed, it was promulgated because the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps were firing
8 at civilians inside the city, were they not?
9 A. In my opinion that agreement was signed so that neither the army
10 of Republika Srpska nor the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina would fire.
11 You keep telling me that the reason the agreement was signed was because
12 the army of Republika Srpska was firing at civilians of Muslim ethnicity.
13 Q. Okay. Very well then. So you would agree with me then that the
14 agreement was signed because -- in other words, to prevent the
15 Sarajevo-Romanija Corps from firing at civilians, and similarly, to
16 prevent the ABiH from firing at civilians on the other side. Do you agree
17 with that?
18 A. Most probably the agreement was signed because both sides were
19 firing at civilians, but who was shooting, I'm telling you only about the
20 area I was in. I don't know about areas where I wasn't present.
21 Q. So you agree with me that the agreement was signed because the SRK
22 were firing at civilians in ABiH territory, and the ABiH were firing at
23 civilians on SRK territory? You agree with that, don't you?
24 A. Most probably that's why the agreement was signed.
25 Q. And you also agree, do you not, that after the agreement was
1 signed it was routinely violated by members of the Sarajevo-Romanija
2 Corps? In other words, the sniping of civilians inside the city
3 continued, didn't it?
4 A. I don't know, but I can assert that in the area where I was there
5 was no sniper activity. And how could we violate an agreement if it was
6 signed and if we had orders? We were soldiers. We obeyed our superior
8 Q. And so after August 1994, it's your testimony that there was never
9 firing from Nedzarici into the city where civilians were targeted. That's
10 what you're saying?
11 A. Well, you were just talking about snipers. Are you now referring
12 to snipers --
13 Q. I'm referring to --
14 A. Because then you talked about the agreement. As far as I know,
15 no, never.
16 Q. Yes. Just for the record, I was referring to snipers or fire from
17 small-arms fire.
18 And your answer is no; is that right?
19 A. As far as snipers are concerned, my answer is no. And I'm saying
20 that there was no firing on civilians, because there were orders from the
21 brigade command, the battalion command that there was to be no shooting on
22 civilians. And I repeat, we were soldiers and we obeyed all the orders of
23 our superiors.
24 Q. Witness, you're aware that --
25 A. I'm not saying that, but 90 per cent orders were respected.
1 Q. Witness, you -- in 1994 and 1994, you were aware that the United
2 Nations had a protection force in Sarajevo? You were aware of that?
3 A. No [as translated].
4 Q. I understand that you said yes. The transcript -- although the
5 interpretation was no. Are you aware of that?
6 A. Yes, yes.
7 Q. And you are similarly aware that the -- the United Nations
8 Protection Force also had a subdivision known as United Nations Military
9 Observers. You must have come across United Nations Military Observers.
10 Is that right?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And you are aware that the main goal or the main purpose of the
13 United Nations Military Observers were to monitor the cease-fires, to
14 ensure that the -- the agreements such as the TEZ were adhered to and to
15 investigate civilian casualties by sniper fire and mortar fire?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And are you also aware that within -- at least in the vicinity of
18 Nedzarici there was a UN presence, wasn't there, in the vicinity of
20 A. Yes, it was down there on the road, on the Kasindol Road.
21 Q. And I've already put it to you that the battalion commander had,
22 in July 1994 admitted to a United Nations Military Observer that sniping
23 took place from the school for the blind children. So in other words,
24 your commander or colleagues in Nedzarici would meet with the United
25 Nations Military Observers. Isn't that right?
1 A. They probably did.
2 Q. If I could ask for 65 ter 02002 to be brought up, please.
3 In a moment, Witness, you're going to see a document on your
4 screen. I understand there is a -- oh, yes. Excellent.
5 Now, Witness, if you look at the screen on your -- on the
6 right-hand side, you will see that this is a United Nations document from
7 the 8th of September, 1994. Do you see that?
8 A. Yes, on the right, yes.
9 Q. And if the right-hand side could be scrolled down, please, or
10 perhaps it goes down to the next page, but for now if it could be scrolled
12 Actually, no, it needs to go on the next page.
13 So, Witness, this is the next page of that document, and it
14 corresponds to the English version which is on the left-hand side, and you
15 will see -- you will see that the subject matter is violations of the
16 Sarajevo anti-sniping agreement. Did you see that on the first page or do
17 I need to go back to that?
18 A. We need to go back.
19 Q. Sir, if you look where it says Predmet, you would agree with me
20 that this subject matter is entitled violations of the Sarajevo
21 anti-sniping agreement, yes?
22 A. I agree.
23 Q. And now we can go on to the next page. And if you see this
24 document lists violations of this agreement, and the first one you'll see
25 on the 14th of August, there was a violation of the agreement where there
1 was sniping near the Holiday Inn. Do you see that there?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And on the 22nd of August, 1994, it says: "Bosnian wounded by
4 Serb [Translation read in error "sniper"] sniper from the BSA [Translation
5 read in error "Serbian"] side in Nedzarici."
6 A. I see that.
7 Q. And so is it still your evidence that there was no firing from the
8 Nedzarici into ABiH territory?
9 A. Not with a sniper.
10 Q. So this official report by the United Nations in your view is
11 incorrect; is that right?
12 A. Yes. Not with a sniper.
13 Q. And when you say not with a sniper, do you also mean not with
14 small-arms fire? Is that what you also mean?
15 A. What I mean are snipers. You're speaking about a sniper, and it
16 says here in August civilian wounded by Serb sniper.
17 Q. Well, maybe we're now misunderstanding each other, but --
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Is that -- Mr. Tapuskovic -- just a moment,
19 please. Mr. Tapuskovic.
20 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the translation is
21 not clear. Perhaps the translation from English is ambiguous. I don't
22 know how it is in English. Perhaps that is confusing the witness, because
23 it says "Serb sniper wounded Bosnian on the side of the army of Bosnian
24 Serbs." So it can mean that somebody on the side of the Bosnian Serb army
25 was injured. That's what it says in the Bosnian translation, and that it
1 was -- that somebody was injured on the Serbian side. There were Bosnians
2 here on that side and on the other side there were Serbs.
3 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, the translation appears to be wrong,
4 and actually the -- the exhibit in its original language English is
5 instructive, so I can read what it says.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
7 MR. SACHDEVA: Perhaps that can be translated.
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Read what it says.
9 MR. SACHDEVA: The timing is the same, 221830 B August: "Bosnian
10 wounded by Serb sniper from the BSA side at Nedzarici," and then it gives
11 a grid reference. That's what it says in the original language.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: So Mr. Tapuskovic.
13 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] The translation is not clear. In
14 Nedzarici. Somebody was wounded in Nedzarici. That is what it comes out
15 as and that is how the witness understands it and that's how it's stated.
16 I would need the help of the interpreters to clear that up.
17 Where is that point? Let us discuss that. Where is that
18 elevation, please? Where is that elevation? If that elevation is in
19 Nedzarici then there is no dispute that it is somebody who was a casualty
20 in Nedzarici.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Tapuskovic, the English, which is the
22 original, says "at Nedzarici."
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It says here "in Nedzarici," too.
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, I don't see the significant difference.
25 Mr. Sachdeva.
1 MR. SACHDEVA:
2 Q. Witness, what the English document says is that a Bosnian was
3 wounded by a Serb sniper from the BSA, that is the Bosnian Serb army, I
4 suggest to you, at Nedzarici. So my question still stands. Is it still
5 your evidence that there was no sniping or small-arms fire from Nedzarici
6 at civilians in ABiH territory?
7 A. I assert that there were no snipers at that time. That is what I
8 assert. Infantry weapons at civilians, that I don't know because there
9 was a ban on firing at civilians. I cannot assert that 100 per cent, but
10 I assert regarding snipers 100 per cent that there was no firing from
11 Nedzarici at civilians.
12 Q. Sir, you accept the possibility that there was firing at civilians
13 from infantry weapons, in other words, rifles, M-48s? You accept that
14 possibility, do you not?
15 A. It's possible that somebody did fire, but there was a strict order
16 not to fire at civilians, and believe me that we really did listen to our
17 command. We had to listen to them. And this is the tenth time that I'm
18 repeating that we obeyed our command that there was an order not to fire,
19 and there was no fire. I don't know. Perhaps there were exceptions. I
20 cannot claim that there weren't right now, but I am telling you how it
22 Q. Witness, when you returned -- when you returned to Nedzarici I
23 understand you were in the rear services?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And for the preponderance of the time you spent in Nedzarici that
1 was at the rear. In other words, not on the front lines. Is that right?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And -- and when you went to the front lines, in other words, when
4 you went to visit the school for the blind children once every 15 days, as
5 you said, I take it you were not involved in combat activity. Is that
6 also right?
7 A. No. I went there to see friends, colleagues, cousins.
8 Q. So it is correct that you were not involved in combat activity?
9 A. Yes.
10 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I'd like to tender this document
11 into evidence.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: We admit it.
13 THE REGISTRAR: As P793, Your Honours.
14 MR. SACHDEVA: And may I just have a moment to confer with my
15 colleague, please?
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
17 [Prosecution counsel confer].
18 MR. SACHDEVA:
19 Q. Witness, my last -- my last topic, which won't take very long.
20 You have -- in your evidence you've referred to the army on the other side
21 as the Muslim army. Do you remember saying that?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. You know, do you not, that the -- the army on the other side of
24 the confrontation lines had -- at some point during the conflict had as
25 its chief of staff somebody called Stjepan Siber, who was a Bosnian Croat.
1 You know that, do you not?
2 A. I had heard of that, but to tell you the truth I wasn't really
3 that interested.
4 Q. And you must have heard that Jovan Divjak was at some point the
5 commander of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina. You must have heard that.
6 A. I know that.
7 Q. And it's not correct, then, is it that the army of
8 Bosnia-Herzegovina was a Muslim army. That's not right, is it?
9 A. The army of Bosnia and Herzegovina was 90 per cent Muslim.
10 Q. The army of Bosnia-Herzegovina was an amalgamation of all
11 ethnicities. All ethnicities participated in that army; is that right?
12 Yes or no?
13 A. There were members if you count the HVO. That was the Croatian
14 army, the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Croat army comprised of Croats,
15 and the Bosnian army was 90 per cent Muslim, and there were the odd Serbs,
16 Croats, or others.
17 Q. And you also are aware that within the confrontation lines in
18 Sarajevo, in other words, within the city, all ethnicities remained there
19 during the war. In other words, Bosnian Muslims, Bosniaks, Croats, and
20 Serbs remained inside the city of Sarajevo, did they not?
21 A. I didn't understand the question. What do you mean the pre-war
22 people who lived there?
23 Q. What I'm suggesting to you, sir, is that during the conflict, in
24 other words, from 1992 through to 1995, inside the city of Sarajevo, in
25 other words, inside the area controlled by the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina,
1 there were Bosnian Serbs, Bosnian Croats, and Bosnian Muslims living there
2 during the conflict.
3 A. Yes, there were, but --
4 Q. And you --
5 A. -- it is sure, for sure -- may I finish? For sure that there
6 weren't more than 5 or 6 per cent of Serbs, and there were those who
7 didn't get out in time. They were unable to leave. And the Croats joined
8 their own HVO, because there was an HVO in Sarajevo as well. Practically
9 all Croats were in their HVO. The army of Bosnia and Herzegovina was 90
10 per cent plus comprising Muslims.
11 Q. Witness -- Witness, I appreciate your information, but in fact
12 it's not what I have asked you. You just -- I just want you to agree with
13 me, for whatever reason and for whatever percentage, there were Serbs,
14 Croats, and Bosniaks living in Sarajevo, inside the city during the
15 conflict. That is right, is it not?
16 A. Yes, yes, yes.
17 Q. And therefore, you also agree that whether you or Serb or a Croat
18 or a Bosniak, if you were a civilian living in Sarajevo, you were
19 subjected to artillery fire, mortar fire, sniper fire on a regular basis,
20 especially in the period 1994 to 1995 from the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps?
21 A. Let me tell you. If you're thinking of the centre of town and
22 what happened in the centre of town, if there was snipers, mortars, what
23 I'm telling you now is about the area where I was. There were no snipers
24 or mortars there.
25 It's another thing what the propaganda and TV did in Sarajevo and
1 how they presented this and that, including from Nedzarici, from here,
2 from there. There was firing from everywhere, according to them.
3 Q. Just one last question. The UN document that I showed you --
4 remember the UN document a moment ago?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Is it your view that this UN document is also propaganda?
7 A. I'm not sure about that. If the UN wrote that, but that document
8 is not clear to me. Serbs, non-Serbs, I don't know.
9 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I have no further questions.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. Any re-examination?
11 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Thank you.
12 Re-examination by Mr. Tapuskovic:
13 Q. [Interpretation] At the end of the cross you were asked about what
14 was happening to the people in Sarajevo under the control of the army of
15 Bosnia-Herzegovina, but all right. Please tell me, Nedzarici, where are
17 A. Nedzarici is located at the foot of Mojmilo hill.
18 Q. And where is Grbavica?
19 A. Grbavica is below Trebevic, at the foot the Trebevic.
20 Q. And the Prosecutor asked you about how a lot of Serbs stayed
21 behind in Sarajevo. First of all, do you know if they were able to leave
22 Sarajevo at all?
23 A. The Serbs who left in time left. Those who didn't leave in time,
24 up until June or May 1992 they had to stay in the town of Sarajevo because
25 they were not allowed to leave. And then on television they would say how
1 Serbs are living there, but a small number stayed behind.
2 Q. And can you please explain to us what was happening in Nedzarici?
3 Was it known what was happening to the Serbs in Sarajevo in the area under
4 the control of the Bosnian army?
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Sachdeva.
6 May I remind counsel that the practice to be followed is that if a
7 counsel is questioning and the other counsel stands up to make a point,
8 then the counsel questioning should stop immediately and hear the point
9 which the other counsel wishes to make.
10 Mr. Sachdeva.
11 MR. SACHDEVA: Actually, Your Honour, upon listening to the
12 question, I withdraw the objection.
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Very well. Proceed, Mr. Tapuskovic.
14 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. And did you find out in Nedzarici what was happening to Serbs who
16 had stayed in Sarajevo, in the parts that were under the control of the
17 army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, because you were in Nedzarici and in Sarajevo
18 but in areas under the control of the army of Republika Srpska. What
19 happened to Serbs that were in the areas of Sarajevo that were under the
20 control of the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina?
21 A. Yes, I understood your question. Some Serbs who left early --
22 later, using some connections or who managed to get across, would speak
23 about how Serbs in the Muslim parts under the control of the army of
24 Bosnia and Herzegovina had a hard time of it, that they had to go to dig
25 trenches. Wherever it was difficult they were put forward. They had to
1 go to areas where there was combat, that civilians, men and women, had to
2 go in for interrogations, that they were left in prisons, that they were
3 beaten and mistreated and so on.
4 Q. Did anything worse happen to them?
5 A. They were beaten. Some said that they didn't get any humanitarian
6 aid or ...
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Sachdeva.
8 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, two -- two points on this line of
9 questioning. Firstly, in my submission it does not strictly arise out of
10 cross-examination. My question to the witness was with respect to the --
11 the suffering of all ethnicities, in other words, civilians in Sarajevo
12 from artillery fire and sniper fire, number one.
13 Number two, in my respectful submission, counsel has to provide a
14 basis for the witness's knowledge. Again of course I accept that hearsay
15 evidence is admissible; however there is no time period reflected here.
16 There is no information as to how the witness has come about this
17 information, who told him certain things, and in my submission this --
18 this evidence is not only to be accorded little weight but also
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: How does it arise, Mr. Tapuskovic?
21 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Mr. Sachdeva wanted to say that
22 the town of Sarajevo in the parts that were under the control of the army
23 of Bosnia and Herzegovina, that was his question, that that is where
24 Serbs, Croats, and Muslims remained there voluntarily to live together,
25 but I think that it is logical to seek an explanation about the
1 circumstances in which the Serbs who stayed out of a hundred-plus
2 thousand, the ones that stayed, what these people experienced and what the
3 witness knows about that. So this directly arises from the questions by
4 my learned friend Mr. Sachdeva because it seemed that they stayed there to
5 continue living there because that is what they wanted, but actually they
6 couldn't leave Sarajevo.
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Sachdeva.
8 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, my questions in my submission were
9 very clear and there was no suggestion as to the reasons why they stayed.
10 I simply wanted the witness to confirm that there were members of all
11 ethnicities in Sarajevo, and he did, and that's all there is to it. I
12 didn't go into the reasons why they stayed there. I didn't go into the
13 reasons why they allegedly could not leave, and so in my submission this
14 material could have been elicited in examination-in-chief if indeed
15 counsel wanted to do this.
16 [Trial Chamber confers]
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: All right. You may ask the question,
18 Mr. Tapuskovic, but let us move on quickly.
19 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation].
20 Q. Did you find out what was happening to people other than what
21 you've said, who stayed in Sarajevo and did that have any significance as
22 far as you were concerned in Nedzarici?
23 A. The people I left, I mentioned earlier what they told us. There
24 were killings there too. I am going to give you an example. Rade
25 Grahovac, he was killed and his sons left, they came to Serb territory in
1 1994. Immediately after --
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: We don't need that. We have had enough evidence
3 on this. What's your other point now, Mr. Tapuskovic?
4 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] The other point, Your Honours, is
5 what the witness found out, was that of any significance as regards the
6 positions where you were.
7 Q. Why was that important in terms of your actions and the steps that
8 you took, this information that came to you from Sarajevo?
9 A. It was important precisely because we would never do what they
10 did. Second, the people when they left, all of them would leave with
11 bruises, beaten up. We would be waiting for them there to give them some
13 Q. Thank you. Witness, when you talked about this firing from the
14 weapons that you had, when you were there what were your activities on the
15 front line? How did things proceed there? What did you do using your
16 weapons that you had, and what did your people do when you were the
17 company commander?
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Sachdeva.
19 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, the same objection. I don't see how
20 this arises from cross-examination.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: I agree. [Microphone not activated].
22 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, there was talk
23 about sniper actions, permanent sniper actions.
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: I have ruled. Move on.
25 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. How did you fire from your weapons?
2 A. We fired infantry weapons during combat, during attacks.
3 Q. And were the screens on your side?
4 A. Yes, there were screens on our side, too, because these were
5 passages that we used to -- to move around, in order to protect us from
6 getting killed and wounded.
7 Q. Now, the building where the blind children centre was, in the last
8 years of the war you said it was damaged. Can you describe in more detail
9 what the damage was on the building and if anything in particular was
10 damaged on it?
11 A. There were --
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Sachdeva.
13 MR. SACHDEVA: I'm sorry, and I apologise for being a nuisance,
14 but Mr. Tapuskovic asked this very question in his examination-in-chief
15 about the damage, and now he's --
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Mr. Tapuskovic, you know the purpose of
17 re-examination. It's not to reopen your case. If you have nothing more
18 to re-examine on, I will close, I will terminate the re-examination.
19 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Since a tank was mentioned during the cross-examination and the
21 60, 80, and 120-millimetre howitzers were mentioned, too, after the
22 assuming of the command by Dragomir Milosevic were these weapons at
23 Nedzarici at all?
24 A. No. That was pulled back and it wasn't in Nedzarici anymore.
25 That's what I told the Prosecutor also.
1 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Witness. That concludes your
3 evidence. We thank you for coming to the Tribunal.
4 Just a minute. Just a minute. The -- we'll have to ask you to
5 come back because Judge Harhoff has some questions for you.
6 Now, this morning we received the Defence response to the
7 Prosecution's motion to exclude the testimony of a particular witness. It
8 would be best if the Trial Chamber were to give its ruling on this during
9 the next session, because as I understand it, the witness whose evidence
10 may be excluded is to testify on Tuesday.
11 We received it in the French. Regrettably, I do not speak French,
12 but I have had made efforts to have it translated and I'm going to utilise
13 this break with my colleague to examine the response and to deliberate on
14 the decision that we'll give. For that reason, we'll take a longer
15 break. We'll break for 30 minutes.
16 JUDGE HARHOFF: [Interpretation] Before we have the break I want to
17 ask the Defence whether the witness T13 will be called to testify this
19 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes.
20 JUDGE HARHOFF: [Interpretation] Thank you.
21 --- Recess taken at 12.22 p.m.
22 --- On resuming at 1.03 p.m.
23 Questioned by the Court:
24 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you for coming back, Witness. You explained
25 to me this morning when we were speaking about the line of sight from the
1 passageway towards the school for the blind that it would be impossible to
2 see the school from the passageway and vice versa because there would be
4 A. Yes.
5 JUDGE HARHOFF: But your subsequent testimony left some doubt in
6 my mind as to what was actually the substance of your earlier testimony,
7 because I'm sure that you have discovered by now that the passageway is
8 interesting, because at this location one of the incidents took place
9 which are covered by the indictment against the accused in this case.
10 This is why a number of questions have related exactly to the
11 possibility of seeing through the passageway from the school of the blind,
12 and therefore, I wanted to ask you a more precise question to clarify the
13 answer that you gave to me this morning, because you said that there were
14 blankets in front of every passage so as to cover the -- to exclude the
15 sight and thereby to cover the civilians from -- from the shooting. And
16 therefore, my question would be do you remember for sure if there were
17 blankets to cover, in particular, this particular passageway during the
18 war? If you have doubts about which passageway it was exactly, I suggest
19 that we have a look at -- at 65 ter 2860, if that might assist you in
20 answering my question.
21 Could we please ask the registrar to give us this picture again.
22 I think it was Exhibit D279. Thank you.
23 Witness, you see from the building which you have marked with "S,"
24 which I understand was the school for the blind. If you follow a straight
25 line upwards from that building, you will see a marking consisting of one
1 or two small red circles. Do you see that area? Do you see that mark?
2 It's just to the left of your letter -- exactly. If the usher could
3 put --
4 A. Yes, I see it.
5 JUDGE HARHOFF: So this is the passageway that we're talking
6 about. And my question to you, do you know for sure if there were screens
7 set up also to cover that particular passage, or was that just something
8 you assumed because you said that there were screens in front of all the
9 passageways? If you don't remember anything particular about this
10 passageway, then please just tell me.
11 A. I recall that each passageway had covers of sorts, be it screens,
12 containers, or anything else. Each of the passageways were covered by
13 some means. I am certain of that.
14 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you. Do you recall if these screens were
15 replaced from time to time?
16 A. Well, to tell you the truth, of course such screens were changed
17 and replaced, because usually these were blankets or curtains. After a
18 while they had to be changed. As to whether this one specifically was
19 changed or not, I don't know.
20 JUDGE HARHOFF: And why would they have to be changed?
21 A. Those were usually blankets. They would be worn out because of
22 the sun, the rain. They would rot away. We were doing the same thing in
23 Nedzarici, and we had to replace them regularly. They simply rot away.
24 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you. My other question was about the school
25 of the blind, which is shown on the bottom of the picture.
1 You see that turning towards us is the facade of the building, and
2 my question is --
3 A. Yes.
4 JUDGE HARHOFF: -- whether you recall that any changes were made
5 to the other facade, that is to say the facade that we cannot see from
6 here because it is behind the building, the facade there. Do you remember
7 if anything was changed on that facade?
8 A. That facade? Well, this what we can see here is probably the new
9 facade, because the old one was riddled with bullets.
10 JUDGE HARHOFF: Sure. Sure. But my question is to the other
11 facade, that is to say the facade that we cannot see on this picture, my
12 question is do you recall if during the war any changes were made in that
14 A. I do not remember. They were full of holes from bullets, and part
15 of the facades fell down, but other than that I don't remember any
16 alterations. I'm not sure what you have in mind. I know only that it was
17 damaged by bullets. It was full of holes. I don't know of any other
19 JUDGE HARHOFF: Very good. Do you know if any of those holes
20 penetrated the facade?
21 A. As far as I know, it was full of holes, but I don't remember any
22 large holes though. I don't know what you mean exactly.
23 JUDGE HARHOFF: What I mean exactly, if you recall if there were
24 any holes that penetrated the wall so as to enable you to look out from
25 the inside to the outside. If you were, for instance, on the roof and
1 there was a hole that penetrated the wall, then that would enable you to
2 look out through that hole from the roof of the building into the open
3 area. That's what I'm asking you.
4 A. The roof was also full of bullet holes. But as for anyone
5 climbing up there to observe, I strongly doubt that. They didn't dare,
6 and they tried to stay safe.
7 JUDGE HARHOFF: Do you know if it was possible to access the roof
8 of the building from inside without being seen from the outside? That is
9 to say, were the staircases inside the building located in such a way as
10 to enable you to get to the roof without being exposed to the window
12 A. There were stairs, but anyone could be seen. If someone was going
13 from the lower floors to the upper floors one could be seen from the
14 outside, as the windows faced that way. One would be seen on the stairs.
15 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you very much.
16 A. Thank you.
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Sachdeva.
18 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I'm very sorry, but I would ask your
19 leave to ask further questions of this witness in light of Judge -- His
20 Honour Judge Harhoff's questions.
21 [Trial Chamber confers]
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, briefly.
23 MR. SACHDEVA: Thank you very much, Mr. President.
24 Further cross-examination by Mr. Sachdeva:
25 Q. Witness, the questions from His Honour Judge Harhoff about the
1 screens and the blankets, do you remember those questions?
2 A. I do.
3 Q. And His Honour Judge Harhoff asked you whether these blankets and
4 screens were replaced from time to time. You remember that?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And I suggest to you that these screens and these blankets were --
7 and curtains were changed from time to time because they were fired at
8 from the school for the blind and therefore became ineffective. What do
9 you say to that?
10 A. Listen, as I said a moment ago to the Judge, the blankets were
11 changed because they were run down, exposed to the sun and the rain. And
12 it might have been because of the bullets, too, but largely it was due to
13 the weather conditions. There was no reason for me to, for example, fire
14 at them if I couldn't see anything.
15 Q. So you accept the possibility that it could have been because of
16 the bullets coming from the SRK side. You accept that possibility?
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Sorry, Mr. Tapuskovic is on his feet.
18 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I think the amount
19 of speculation is problematic as always. The witness tried to be as clear
20 as possible when answering Judge Harhoff's questions. What we have now is
21 an attempt to extract something from the witness whereby he is asked to
22 speculate. He already stated --
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, I agree. I agree, Mr. Sachdeva.
24 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, might I respond to that?
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: No. I've made my determination.
1 MR. SACHDEVA:
2 Q. Witness, you also told His Honour Judge Harhoff that these --
3 these screens were set up in all passageways and including this
4 passageway. Do you remember that?
5 A. I do.
6 Q. And you've told the Court that when you --
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just a minute. Mr. Tapuskovic.
8 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this was never
9 allowed to Defence during the Prosecution case. It was rejected by this
10 very Bench on several occasions because this is cross-examination in
11 relation to the questions asked by one of the -- one of the Judges.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, but I have every intention of allowing you
13 to ask further questions, too, if you wish.
14 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] That is not the matter at hand.
15 I am talking about the principle. So far it has never been allowed. I
16 wasn't thinking of posing some additional questions. I might have some,
17 but I wasn't referring to that. This is a matter of principle. It is
18 moving far more ahead than what the usual practice of this Bench was.
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Sachdeva, one more question and then we'll
21 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, may I just recall that in the
22 Prosecution case on occasion -- on several occasions I and my colleagues
23 sought leave to ask questions arising from Your Honour's questions, and in
24 that fashion the Defence was similarly allowed to cross-examine on my
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. That's entirely true. That's entirely
2 true, but we are not reopening the cross-examination. That's not the
3 purpose of this exercise. Just ask one or two questions to follow up on
4 what Judge Harhoff raised.
5 MR. SACHDEVA: And then that's exactly what I intend to do.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: So one more question.
7 MR. SACHDEVA:
8 Q. Witness, I had asked you a question prior to my learned friend
9 arising, and that was: You accept therefore the possibility that the
10 curtains and the blankets could have been replaced because of the firing
11 and the bullets, as you said, and I'm putting to you coming from the SRK
12 side. Do you accept that possibility?
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Tapuskovic.
14 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Judge Robinson, again we are in
15 the domain of speculation. I thought that there would be something new in
16 my learned friend's question, but Mr. Sachdeva is again asking for
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm not allowing the question, Mr. Sachdeva. I
19 believe that should end your recross-examination.
20 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I apologise, and you have ruled. I
21 would just, with your leave and with the greatest respect, persist in --
22 when Judge Harhoff asked -- His Honour Judge Harhoff asked the questions
23 about the replacement of the curtains and the blankets, it is also
24 therefore -- the witness had given evidence that they were replaced
25 because of weather and because of other factors, and therefore I, in my
1 submission, do not see it's calling for speculation if I ask the
2 witness -- if I put to the witness that there were other factors which led
3 to the removal of the screens. I mean either than his testimony with
4 respect to all of the reasons for removing the screens is speculation.
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: I think that's a matter that the Chamber will
6 have to make up its mind about.
7 Yes, Mr. Sachdeva.
8 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, with your leave, one last question.
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: One last question. I think this is --
10 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Sachdeva, we have evidence given to us by
11 other witnesses, and we will evaluate the totality of the evidence that
12 there's been offered to us, and that's it. I don't think there's any
13 reason to any further in this.
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Mr. Tapuskovic, do you have any questions
15 arising from Judge Harhoff's questions or from the questions raised by
16 Mr. Sachdeva?
17 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] It has to do with the questions
18 posed by the Prosecutor. His Honour Judge Harhoff received his answers.
19 I wanted to follow up on Mr. Sachdeva's question, just one question.
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, go ahead.
21 Further re-examination by Mr. Tapuskovic:
22 Q. [Interpretation] Witness, can you tell us this: I have to go back
23 to some of the questions I had already posed, but it has to do with this:
24 Were you only firing from snipers or what did it look like? What sort of
25 activity was there in your trenches?
1 A. From the trenches we opened fire from our rifles. In the case
2 there was an attack and we were trying to defend, we fired from rifles.
3 What sniper? We had no snipers then, and we were not allowed to fire from
5 Q. Thank you. I won't insist no any further. I believe this is
6 sufficiently clear.
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Sachdeva, not another question, I hope.
8 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, no, not another question but with
9 respect, another submission. His Honour Judge Harhoff asked about the --
10 the damage or the restructuring of the building, the school for the blind,
11 and on that specific issue I have one photograph and one question to put
12 to the witness, with your leave. Specifically on that issue, and I submit
13 that it does arise out of His Honour's questions.
14 [Trial Chamber confers]
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: As much as we admire your persistence and your
16 combative style, not overly combative, Mr. Sachdeva, we will not allow any
17 further questions.
18 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President.
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Witness, that concludes your evidence and the
20 Chamber is grateful for you coming to the Tribunal to give it. You may
21 now leave.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I ...
23 [The witness withdrew]
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: The Chamber will now give its decision on the
25 Prosecution's motion to exclude the testimony of Witness T22, dated the
1 25th of June. The Defence filed their response this morning, the 28th of
3 It is the Prosecution's argument that Witness T22, who was a
4 policeman from Trnovo and worked in the police station in Kula, will
5 testify about events in locations that are "well beyond," the geographical
6 scope of the amended indictment and that his testimony is irrelevant to
7 the charges in the indictment and has no probative value. The Prosecution
8 argues that pursuant to Rules 89(C) and (D) and 90(F) the witness's
9 evidence should be excluded.
10 The Defence argues that the charges against the accused are based
11 on military activities taking place within the area of responsibility of
12 the SRK, including the municipalities of Trnovo and Novo Sarajevo, and
13 that it is the Defence case that the intensity and geographical scope of
14 the military activities of the ABiH precludes the existence of a campaign
15 of shelling and sniping against civilians in Sarajevo. The Defence
16 submits that Witness T22 is an eyewitness to military activities that took
17 place in Trnovo and at Novo Sarajevo, and that he will testify about the
18 military activity between the SRK and the ABiH in those municipalities.
19 The Trial Chamber disagrees with the Prosecution's submission as
20 to the geographical scope of the indictment. The way the case has
21 proceeded and indeed of the evidence that has been presented indicate that
22 Trnovo and Novo Sarajevo are within the geographical scope of the
23 indictment. The Prosecution's motion has not satisfied the Chamber that
24 this witness's evidence should be excluded on the ground that it is
25 irrelevant. The Chamber will dismiss the motion, but that of course is
1 without prejudice to the consideration that the Chamber will give to the
2 relevance of any specific piece of evidence sought to be adduced, whether
3 in response to an objection from the Prosecution or to a point that the
4 Chamber takes proprio motu.
5 The motion is dismissed.
6 May we have the next witness.
7 [The witness entered court]
8 WITNESS: STJEPAN DJUKIC [Resumed]
9 [Witness answered through interpreter]
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let me just say to the witness, Witness, you
11 remain subject to the declaration that you made previously.
12 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] May I begin, Your Honour?
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, you may.
14 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 Cross-examination by Mr. Tapuskovic: [Continued]
16 Q. Witness, last time we began this examination-in-chief, and you
17 started your testimony. Could you now, as briefly as possible, summarise
18 what happened to you and what this looked like until you returned to your
20 A. I think you're talking about the time I spent in the JNA, if I
21 understood you correctly.
22 Q. Well, you started testifying about that, and then you started
23 giving certain explanations, as is your right, but could you now take up
24 your testimony where you left off and tell us as briefly as possible what
25 all this looked like until you returned to your home?
1 A. All right. The situation was difficult. The Croatian forces, the
2 National Guard Corps, and the HVO attacked the barracks, the Kalnicki
3 Partizani barracks in September or October. I think it was September, in
4 the second half of September. They attacked from all sides. Two days
5 later, when they had been attacking us for two days, the JNA did not allow
6 them to enter the barracks. Negotiations began between General Trifunovic
7 and Colonel Popov, and a peaceful hand-over of the barracks was agreed
8 on. The soldiers and officers were promised that nothing would happen to
10 Q. Thank you. Please, can you tell us what happened to you, but
11 please be very brief.
12 A. We were taken prisoner on the 21st of September in the Kalnicki
13 Partizani barracks, and when the HVO soldiers entered the barracks they
14 took all our clothes off. They gave us civilian clothing, they said nasty
15 things to us and, to be brief, as agreed they exchanged us at Sid where
16 the border point was and then we went to the Viktor Bubanj barracks in
17 Belgrade in Serbia and from there we were sent to our local departments
18 from where we had been sent to the JNA.
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Ms. Edgerton.
20 MS. EDGERTON: I realise we're constrained for time right now,
21 Your Honour, but really this is very far reaching from anything to do with
22 the case at hand.
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. What does it have to do with the case at
24 hand, Mr. Tapuskovic?
25 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I thought the
1 witness would be very brief and just say that --
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: We rule it irrelevant. We rule it irrelevant.
3 Move and to something that is germane and pertinent.
4 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. And where did you arrive after being demobilised?
6 A. I arrived in Sarajevo. I reported to the municipality of Ilijas,
7 my home municipality, and I was there when the conflicts in Sarajevo
9 Q. Was your status then that of a civilian?
10 A. Yes, I was a civilian. The Territorial Defence, and this was in
11 May 1992.
12 Q. Can you say very briefly what happened in May 1992?
13 A. In the second half of May 1992 I happened to be in my native area
14 with the other population when the Territorial Defence was arming people
15 and organising village guards, and I joined. I joined in. This went on
16 until August 1994.
17 Q. Thank you. Tell us, what happened that brought about these events
18 and your becoming part of those village guards, and what was happening at
19 the time?
20 A. Well, as in 1992, inter-ethnic conflicts began. There were some
21 clashes in which Muslim forces mounted intensive attacks on Serb areas
22 inhabited by Serbs.
23 Q. Witness, let's be brief.
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Ms. Edgerton.
25 MS. EDGERTON: I wonder if I could ask whether the witness is
1 talking about his own area or is he talking about a wider geographical
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, let me ask him.
4 Witness, are you speaking about the -- your area, or is it a wider
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am aware of events in the wider
7 area but also my area where I spent the whole time.
8 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. When did you join the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps?
10 A. I joined the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps, or we did, in the second
11 half of 1994. Sorry, I made an error.
12 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the Victims and
13 Witnesses Unit has informed us that this witness is still not well. He
14 decided to come here at his own risk, but he had a fever. I didn't want
15 to insist on the witness starting his testimony today, but we were
16 informed half an hour ago that he still wasn't feeling well. It seems to
17 me that his situation, he's evidently a little bit confused. I think this
18 shows that he may not be able to answer properly.
19 We're approaching the end of today's session in any case, so can
20 we adjourn now, because I can't believe that the witness would not be able
21 to understand a simple question. He's speaking now of 1994, and I was
22 asking him about 1992.
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Anybody could make a mistake like that.
24 However, in view of the representations that you have made about the
25 witness's health, and also in few of the fact that we are just two or
1 three minutes away from the close, we will adjourn now, and we will resume
2 on Tuesday at 2.15.
3 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.41 p.m.,
4 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 3rd day
5 of July, 2007, at 2.15 p.m.