1 Thursday, 12 July 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.03 a.m.
6 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] The hearing is open. Good morning,
7 ladies and gentlemen.
8 Good morning to the Office of the Prosecutor.
9 Good morning to the Defence.
10 Good morning to the witness and to all the staff members assisting
11 the Court. The Court is going to sit in compliance with Article 15 bis of
12 the Rules of Procedure and Evidence, so we're going to proceed with the
13 cross-examination which was started yesterday by Ms. Edgerton.
14 So, Ms. Edgerton, you have the floor.
15 MS. EDGERTON: Thank you, Your Honour.
16 WITNESS: SIMO TUSEVLJAK [Resumed]
17 [Witness answered through interpreter]
18 Cross-examination by Ms. Edgerton: [Continued]
19 Q. Good morning, Mr. Tusevljak. Did you rest well overnight?
20 A. Good morning. Yes, thank you for asking.
21 Q. I'd like to go back largely today to matters that were discussed
22 in both your testimony in chief and when we were speaking yesterday. To
23 begin with, at pages 8043 and 8044 of your testimony yesterday, you were
24 asked whether you were able to deal with the civilian victims of the war
25 in the part of Sarajevo which was under the control of the Bosnian army,
1 and you said: "No, because the security services centre of Serb Sarajevo
2 did not cover that territory."
3 Do you recall that?
4 A. Yes, I do.
5 Q. Now, you also said: "If there had been an incident, we were often
6 willing and ready to intervene through UNPROFOR and other international
7 organisations that were active in the area. We were willing to extend our
8 assistance to the other side, but the other side was never interested."
9 Do you recall that?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Now, can I take from this that you're saying you actually did
12 extend offers of assistance?
13 A. Yes. Through international organisations, mainly UNPROFOR.
14 Q. Do you recall any occasions where you did that, when they took
15 place, what they related to?
16 A. I believe that this was at the Markale II when this happened.
17 Q. Do you recall at any other time from 1992 right through to 1995,
18 when you made that offer?
19 A. In 1992, on the occasion of the murder of the vice prime minister
20 of the government of Bosnia and Herzegovina, we investigated that crime.
21 Q. That was actually in 1993, I think, wasn't it?
22 A. Yes, 1993.
23 Q. You're talking about the killing of Hakija Turajlic?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Apart from these two occasions, can you recall any other times at
1 which you offered your assistance to the other side in the investigation
2 of shelling or sniping incidents?
3 A. The other side never approached us for assistance. I can't
5 Q. So to the best of your recollection there were two occasions and
6 only two over the course of 44 months where you offered assistance to the
7 other side?
8 A. I personally, yes, but maybe there were others. I was not the
9 only person involved in these tasks in the territory of eastern Sarajevo,
10 the Serbian Sarajevo.
11 Q. Now, then, yesterday do you recall when I asked you whether you
12 knew about the fact that civilians in the city were falling victim to
13 various types of gun-fire, you said you had no knowledge of that. But now
14 based on your answer and your reference to Markale II, it sounds like you
15 did have knowledge that there was some shelling and sniping of civilians
16 in Sarajevo. Is that correct?
17 A. I repeat, there were victims on both sides. There were victims in
18 the territory under the control of the VRS as well as in the territory
19 under the control of the BH army. However, I personally, as I've already
20 told you, I'm not familiar with the sniping victims in Sarajevo because we
21 were not in a position to check and control whether this was happening.
22 It is only to be assumed that there were victims on both sides. There
23 were victims on our sides and there must have been victims on the other as
24 well. It was wartime.
25 JUDGE HARHOFF: Ms. Edgerton, my question was if at the two
1 occasions which the witness mentioned, was there ever any investigation
2 done from your side on these two incidents. I understand that you offered
3 your assistance to the other side, but did you do anything else than just
4 offering your assistance? Was any steps taken -- were any steps taken to
5 -- to actually investigate these two incidents from your side?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In 1993 we carried out an
7 investigation independently, that was in the first case; and in the second
8 case, we were not in a position to investigate because we did not have an
9 insight into the investigation material and everything else that was found
10 at Markale II. What we could see in the media and what was presented from
11 Sarajevo drew us to conclude - and I'm speaking from the experience
12 because I often attended sites where shells were falling and people were
13 being killed - it was impossible that one 120-millimetre shell resulted in
14 so many victims. In 1992 I was in a position to see a shell falling some
15 15 metres away from me. I was in a car with a colleague who was in the
16 other car. Two colleagues were next to the car. One colleague died from
17 that shelling, and those of us who were in the vehicles, we didn't even
18 suffer a scratch. We just suffered consequences of detonation. We were
19 listening to what UNPROFOR was saying. We wanted to go to the site of the
20 incident but --
21 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you. Was any information on what had
22 happened on the other side offered to you through UNPROFOR? In other
23 words, did UNPROFOR provide you with information that would have enabled
24 you to investigate those incidents?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Not to me personally. I don't know
1 whether any of the representatives of the VRS were given such information.
2 I don't know.
3 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you very much.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The civilian police did not receive
5 any such information.
6 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you.
7 MS. EDGERTON:
8 Q. Now, just to follow-up on the answer you gave to Judge Harhoff, I
9 note that you said with respect to Markale II, what you could see in the
10 media and what was presented from Sarajevo drew you to make some
11 conclusions. But, sir, yesterday when I asked you about the siege of the
12 centre of Sarajevo, you said you could only talk about what you saw with
13 your own eyes and the investigations you participated in or in the
14 investigations that your personnel conducted.
15 So the assertion that you've just made about the shell that fell
16 on Markale II is actually something that you didn't see with your own eyes
17 and was not investigated by any of your team. Isn't that right?
18 A. I did not see the shell falling with my own eyes, but I had an
19 occasion to follow the media and media conveyed the image from the site on
20 the first day, and I also have other experience, not only the experience
21 from 1992 or 1995. I had my own police experience from 2006 and 2007 when
22 my team got hold of some more material relative to the
23 event in Markale. So I had an occasion to more attentively observe all
24 the video material that was accessible to me at the time. When I was
25 watching that video material, I could spot some illogical things. That's
1 one thing. And second of all, we got hold of some expert analysis
2 provided by medical forensic experts, ballistic experts, analysed the
3 case, and based on what I perused, I have given you my opinion. So my
4 opinion is not based only on what I knew in 1995, but also on the
5 experience that I have gathered in the meantime.
6 Q. But, sir, yesterday you said you found the media and media
7 coverage unreliable when I asked you about what it portrayed about the
8 siege. So why now today are you saying you placed some measure of faith
9 in what the media was reporting?
10 A. I did not say that I trusted media. I said that I trusted the
11 image. The camera that recorded things on the spot. I don't trust the
12 comments, but I trust the facts, the pictures that you can see, the images
13 that you can see if you look and watch carefully the video footage that
14 was taken at Markale.
15 Q. With respect, sir, that's not what you said yesterday. Would you
16 agree with me?
17 JUDGE MINDUA: [No interpretation].
18 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, with all due
19 respect, this is not what you said yesterday," said my learned friend. I
20 believe that she should be more specific and say what she was referring
21 to. My learned friend, with all due respect, this is not what you said
22 yesterday. Could my learned friend be more specific and tell the witness
23 what is it that she is specifically referring to in order to avoid
24 confusing the witness.
25 JUDGE MINDUA: [No interpretation]
1 MS. EDGERTON: I will, Your Honour.
2 Q. At page 8085, Witness, you said: "I know that the media covered
3 the events in a very biased manner, even including the incidents I myself
4 investigated. So, really as a professional, I could not credit the
5 reports that were published in the media at all."
6 Sir, would you agree with me that's what you said yesterday?
7 A. Yes, this is what I did say yesterday, but today I am not talking
8 about media reports. I'm talking about the images that I had an occasion
9 to see, and the analysis that were provided by forensic experts on
10 medicine, ballistics, and explosives. I am not talking about what the
11 journalists said. I'm talking about what the experts had to say.
12 Q. Are you -- do you have any kind of forensic expertise, sir? Are
13 you a ballistics expert?
14 A. I completed police academy, and one of my courses was crime
15 prevention, crime tactics, crime methodology, crime operations. I
16 completed courses for crime technician, for operative. I completed
17 ICITAP school and I am an instructor for investigations.
18 Q. So you have no ballistics expertise? You're not a ballistician,
19 are you, sir?
20 A. No, I never said that today, although I have some basic knowledge
21 in ballistics that are applied in the crime prevention technology.
22 Q. So with respect to some aspects of the siege of Sarajevo, even
23 though you weren't there and you didn't receive reports on those incidents
24 from any members of your team and you have no expertise, it seems as
25 though, sir --
1 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Tapuskovic.
2 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this is a complex
3 question. First of all, the witness has never mentioned "siege." This is
4 happening for the third time. I did not react before. The question
5 contains the issue of the siege. Neither in the information in chief nor
6 in the cross did the witness mention the word "siege." The Prosecutor may
7 follow that course, but first he has to ask the witness to provide his
8 explanation of this notion. This is a very important word and very
9 important for the entire case. Not for a single moment has the witness
10 mentioned the word "siege" in his testimony.
11 [Trial Chamber confers]
12 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Ms. Edgerton, the Defence is
13 raising the issue of the siege of Sarajevo, which had not been covered in
14 the examination-in-chief. Now, what have you got to say about this?
15 MS. EDGERTON: With respect, Your Honours, I would suggest that
16 the siege of Sarajevo is at the heart of the Prosecution's case and I'm
17 entitled to put my case to the witness in cross-examination.
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Well, the Court authorises you to
20 put your question.
21 MS. EDGERTON: Thank you.
22 Q. So, sir, with respect to some aspects of the siege of Sarajevo,
23 even though you weren't there on site, you didn't receive reports on those
24 incidents from any members of your team, and you have no expertise --
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Tapuskovic.
1 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, can the witness
2 please first be asked to explain the notion of "siege" before any other
3 questions are asked. You are right. This question should be permitted,
4 but let's start from the notion of "siege." Why isn't the witness asked
5 to explain his idea of that notion, and everything else can follow from
6 there. The -- my learned friend cannot just go straight into the word
7 "siege" and put her questions from that.
8 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Tapuskovic, I suggest you raise this issue in
9 your re-examination if you wish to put questions to the witness about the
10 siege. And I must also say that it would be good if we could proceed with
11 the examination and the cross-examination and the re-examination without
12 too many interruptions because it's better if we can get a good flow of
13 the proceedings here. So you should put your questions about the siege to
14 the witness when you have the chance to re-examine.
15 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, Judge Harhoff, I
16 don't intend to put any questions about the siege. In my opinion, there
17 was no siege during the time of the indictment and it has never been my
18 intention to put any questions to the witness about the siege.
19 JUDGE HARHOFF: Please proceed.
20 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] All right. Now we're going to
21 listen to the Prosecutor. She's going to put her question and the witness
22 will answer.
23 MS. EDGERTON: Thank you, Your Honours. I'll try again slightly
25 Q. Sir, with respect to some aspects of the continued shelling and
1 sniping of Bosnian-held Sarajevo over the course of 44 months, from 1992
2 to 1995, even though you weren't there, you didn't receive reports on
3 those incidents from any members of your team, and you have no ballistic
4 expertise, it seems as though you are prepared to offer opinions. Isn't
5 that correct?
6 A. I don't agree with you. I don't agree that during that period
7 between 1992 and 1995, like you are trying to put it to me and you are
8 trying to make me say it, there was no systematic shelling and sniping in
9 Sarajevo, especially when we're talking about the period between 1994, the
10 second half of 1994, and the beginning of the Muslim offensive in the
11 territory that was inhabited by the Serbs, which is also part of the town
12 of Sarajevo. It's not somewhere on the hills or in the mountains because
13 Grbavica, Dobrinja, Hadzici, Vogosca, Rajlovac, Trnovo, all those were
14 Sarajevo municipalities --
15 Q. Thank you, thank you, Mr. Tusevljak. With respect, that wasn't
16 the answer to the question I put to you at all, but I'm going to move on.
17 Yesterday when we were talking about whether your service ever
18 referred allegations of war crimes against civilians perpetrated by a
19 member of the SRK to the military Prosecutor's office and to the military
20 investigating judge, you talked at page 8098 and 8099 about what
21 effectively was a cooperative arrangement between your service and the
23 For example, you stated, in addition to yourself as head of the
24 service, there were also departments, each of which had a head that could
25 have had cooperation with these organs of the SRK. You said any one of
1 your associates could have handed over an investigation into an SRK war
2 crimes perpetrator without it having to reach you. Do you remember that?
3 A. Yes. When I'm testifying, I'm not only talking about war crimes,
4 but about all crimes because there were crimes pertaining to the area of
5 general crimes --
6 Q. Sir --
7 A. -- Which were most grievous and which means that a member of
8 the --
9 Q. Sir, I'm talking about war crimes and I think I've made that clear
10 both yesterday and today. You just indicated you recalled that, so I'd
11 like to ask you this: In light of this cooperative relationship, were you
12 ever asked by the SRK to provide assistance in any of their police
14 A. Some parts of my crime technology were put at the disposal of the
15 military prosecutors and investigating judges of the Romanija-Sarajevo
16 Corps. I'm talking about equipment, not personnel.
17 Q. Was that for the investigation of allegations of war crimes
18 against members of the SRK?
19 A. No.
20 Q. Sir, do you recall between 1992 and 1995, one single instance in
21 which you came upon or undertook an investigation of war crimes against a
22 member of the SRK that you had to refer to the military prosecutor?
23 A. No. As far as war crimes go, no.
24 Q. I'd like to move on now to two of the incidents you testified
25 about yesterday, three in fact. The first one being with respect to
1 shelling in the Ilidza area in which two young boys were killed --
2 MS. EDGERTON: And perhaps in that regard, I could ask for D299 to
3 be brought up on the screen.
4 Q. Now, sir, this document which you talked about yesterday, if I'm
5 not mistaken, is an official report into a shelling that occurred in
6 Rakovica area in Ilidza around the 18th of June, 1995, and I'd like to
7 direct you to what I think is the second page of this report in B/C/S,
8 also the second page of the English translation.
9 The bottom of the first paragraph of this second page which
10 says --
11 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Could you speak closer to the
12 microphone, Mr. Witness, otherwise the interpreters find it difficult to
13 hear you.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] [Previous translation continues]...
15 On the page --
16 MS. EDGERTON:
17 Q. See the page on the screen in front of you, please look at the
18 bottom of the first paragraph where it says, that this incident related to
19 an exploding artillery shell of undetermined calibre fired by members of
20 the so-called BH army from the direction of Godusa village, Visoko
21 municipality. Do you see that?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. How far is Visoko from Sarajevo and in what direction?
24 A. Visoko is about 30 kilometres away from Sarajevo. However, from
25 this location, Ilidza municipality borders on Visoko municipality.
1 Q. So this shell, according to reports of your service, did not
2 originate from the centre of Sarajevo at all, did it?
3 A. No. It came from the area of Visoko, or rather, from the area of
4 Visoko municipality, as stated here, from the direction of village Godusa
5 in Visoko municipality.
6 Q. How was that determination made? How was it determined that the
7 shell came from Godusa village in Visoko municipality?
8 A. Most likely we received that information from the SRK since their
9 scouts who were on the lines probably knew what direction the firing came
11 Q. When you say "most likely," that's because you actually had no
12 involvement in this investigation at all, did you?
13 A. No. I participated personally because Dusko Obradovic is my crime
14 investigator as well as the other men mentioned here. They were members
15 of my team, I was their immediate superior and I sent them to the scene.
16 I waited for them when they returned, and I was sent their report the very
17 same day.
18 Q. If you participated personally, why isn't your name on any of the
19 reports? Is that because you only acted in a supervisory capacity and
20 weren't directly involved in the investigations?
21 A. Apart from being their superior, I also often took part in on-site
22 investigations. This on-site investigation record is an essential part of
23 the overall crime report that was submitted to the prosecutor. My
24 signature must be underneath the conclusions of the entire file, and I
25 repeat, this record is a part of that file.
1 Q. Sir, how was it determined that this shell was fired by members of
2 the so-called BH army?
3 A. I would have to read it again. It is clear that it could have
4 only come from the BH side and fired by members of the BH army, not from
5 the Serb side. This is the shell who -- which killed the two boys. It
6 wasn't the only shell that landed that day in that area.
7 Q. Why do you feel you're able to say that this shell doesn't come
8 from the Serb side? What conclusive evidence have you got?
9 A. As I said, this was not the only shell to land in that area that
10 day. Many more fell. I think this was on the 17th, the second or the
11 third day into the offensive, when the artillery activity on these areas
12 was of such intensity that basically you couldn't even peek out. That's
13 why the on-site investigation was not conducted the first day when the
14 event took place, but rather on the 17th -- no, the event was on the 17th,
15 and we carried out the investigation the next day, once the shelling had
16 stopped. As you can see, the date says that it was drafted on the 18th,
17 whereas it mentions the event of the 17th. We waited for one whole day
18 because of the shelling. We couldn't have conducted the investigation any
19 sooner than that.
20 Q. So because of the circumstances, by the time you got to the
21 scene -- between the time of the incident and the time you got to the
22 scene, the scene wasn't actually secured, was it, because of the
24 A. It is absolutely clear that there was no interference, that no one
25 tried to move the bodies. Since even if you arrive on the scene late, one
1 of the basic questions to be put is to ask the witness who found the
2 bodies whether he moved anything or changed anything. This is also easily
3 confirmed by the investigation itself to see whether bodies were moved or
4 not. If there were, there would be blood traces on the ground and the
5 scene would be contaminated.
6 Q. Sir, you're saying all this without even having gone to the scene
7 in this case, aren't you?
8 A. Yes, but I have the report of my operatives who were on the scene.
9 MS. EDGERTON: Let's move on, please, to D300.
10 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Ms. Edgerton, based on the
11 registry's calculation, you have used an hour and a 20 minutes for this
12 cross-examination, which was supposed to last for an hour and a half. So
13 you have about ten minutes left. So please do try to do your best.
14 MS. EDGERTON: I will, Your Honour, and I suspect I will run a
15 risk of outlasting my ten minutes probably by an additional ten minutes,
16 with Your Honour's leave. But I will be as expeditious as I possibly
17 can. In any case.
18 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Yes, please do proceed.
19 MS. EDGERTON:
20 Q. D300 is now on the screen. Sir, you weren't involved in this
21 investigation either, were you?
22 A. Not on the scene; however, I participated in the forwarding of the
23 report. The on-site investigation was headed by an investigating judge,
24 in this case Vladimir Jankovic. My operatives assisted him during the
25 investigation, as you can see from the composition of the investigative
1 team. All the people enumerated here, the inspectors and technicians, are
2 my operatives, my technicians, who I sent to the scene. The event
3 itself --
4 Q. Thank you. What's the basis of the determination in this case
5 that the fire came from ABiH forces?
6 A. I think that in addition to the official report there are
7 photographs explaining it, and could you please show them to me.
8 MS. EDGERTON: I think they were admitted as parted of this
9 exhibit, if we could scroll through.
10 Q. So you're unable to answer the question as to the determination of
11 the origin of fire without referring to photographs?
12 A. I can do it even without photographs, but it would be far easier
13 if we could have a look at the photographs, since it's been 12 years since
14 the event.
15 Q. Do you see the photograph on the top of the -- in the centre of
16 your screen?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Perhaps you could answer the question now.
19 A. This is the entrance to the sports hall. The boy was hit on the
20 stairs. Can we go on? What is shown here is the exact location where the
21 boy had been hit and blood traces.
22 Q. How does that --
23 A. Perhaps we can move on.
24 Q. How does that go to establish origin of fire?
25 A. There will be the last photograph at which you will see the origin
1 of fire or its direction. The boy was seated at the staircase. This is
2 another image of the scene. You can go on. What you can see here is the
3 direction from which the bullet had come.
4 Q. And ...?
5 A. As can be seen, this is the most likely location from which the
6 enemy sniper fired.
7 If you move on, you will see --
8 Q. Sorry, sorry, let me ask you a question now, sir. What's the
9 basis of the determination that the fire came from BiH forces then?
10 A. Based on the entry wound.
11 Q. I think I'm going to leave that and move on. Let's go, sir, to
12 the shooting of the two girls which you talked about at page 8071 of your
13 testimony. You seem to have some familiarity with that investigation, and
14 I'd like to ask you a couple of questions about it. You wouldn't know,
15 would you, sir, that the day after the incident on 12 March 1995, Bosnian
16 authorities stated to UN officials that their government had formed a
17 commission to investigate the incident?
18 A. No.
19 Q. You wouldn't know that shortly after --
20 MS. EDGERTON: And for the record, that evidence is found in P24.
21 Q. You wouldn't know that shortly after the shooting the General
22 Staff of the Bosnian army confirmed that a Muslim sniper was responsible
23 and stated that the soldier who had killed the girls had been arrested and
24 would stand trial?
25 A. Since a lot of time has passed between 1995 and today, perhaps we
1 could see the judgement issued in that case. If they knew who the person
2 was who had killed the girls, until now the judgement must have been
3 rendered but I know of no such case in Sarajevo.
4 MS. EDGERTON: And the source of that information, Your Honours,
5 is P26.
6 Q. You wouldn't know that General Milosevic himself was aware that
7 the Bosnian authorities had said they were taking measures with the
8 perpetrator of the incident, would you?
9 A. I don't know. General Milosevic was in no way my superior at that
10 time. We had no such communication. We were under no obligation to
11 inform each other of anything.
12 Q. You wouldn't -- you asked for the record of conviction, so then I
13 take it from that you wouldn't know that the perpetrator, one
14 Senad Piskic, was prosecuted, convicted, and sentenced to a term of
15 imprisonment for the event doctor for the incident?
16 A. I never saw the document and this is the first time I hear of it
17 and the first time that I've heard of Senad Piskic.
18 MS. EDGERTON: Could I have ter number 03419 brought up on the
19 screen, please, and I should say page -- I've seen these yesterday in
20 e-court, so I know they exist in e-court. And page 2 of this same
21 document, Mr. Registrar, should be the B/C/S version.
22 Q. Sir, do you see on the screen in front of you a letter from the
23 acting minister of defence -- a letter from the acting minister of defence
24 of Bosnia and Herzegovina referring to a military card for one
25 Senad Piskic, and noting that the person in question was prosecuted and
1 sentenced to a year's-long imprisonment?
2 A. I'm sorry, but I think this document you received is incomplete.
3 What is lacking -- well, it says based on the information available we can
4 inform you the person was prosecuted and sentenced to year's-long
5 imprisonment. First of all, they should have forwarded the exact file
6 number of the case and they should have specified what was the term of
7 imprisonment. When we forward such documents, we always specify the exact
8 reference number, we specify the imprisonment term, and according to my
9 knowledge, because I also deal with such issues today, I don't think he
10 was ever sentenced and sent to jail. I know of many others graver crimes
11 committed by members of the ABiH --
12 Q. Sir, thank you --
13 A. -- And those persons were not prosecuted for war crimes but for
14 general crimes --
15 Q. Thank you, thank you. I take it from the first part of your
16 answer that you're disputing the veracity of the information contained in
17 this document. You're saying that this document forwarded by the acting
18 minister of defence is untrue. Is that correct?
19 A. I am not stating that. Based on what they forwarded to you, one
20 cannot see whether this person was indeed sent to prison and for how long.
21 There's no reference file number. They only sent his card and the daily
22 combat report of the command, and that's it. And my apologies, but I also
23 wanted to say that the documentation on the -- these proceedings might
24 exist in the archives of the military court, which means that this lady --
25 Q. Sir --
1 A. -- Had no access so it --
2 Q. Sir --
3 A. -- She only said there may be documentation. The question is
4 whether there is any.
5 Q. -- My question to you required a yes or no answer. Are you
6 agreeing or disagreeing with the veracity of the document?
7 A. It is my opinion that it is incorrect.
8 MS. EDGERTON: Your indulgence for a moment, Your Honours.
9 [Prosecution counsel confer]
10 MS. EDGERTON: Could I have this document tendered as a
11 Prosecution exhibit, please?
12 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] The document is admitted.
13 Mr. Tapuskovic.
14 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] I object the tendering of this
15 document and its being admitted as a Prosecution exhibit. It doesn't
16 contain even the basic elements necessary to establish whether there was a
17 proceedings conducted against anyone. If it contains no judgement,
18 perhaps they could have at least mentioned the number of the file of the
19 proceedings and the prison term imposed, and then it might be a relatively
20 reliable document. As such, this document contains nothing that would
21 confirm to us that this person, indeed, was held responsible, that he
22 stood trial, and was issued with a judgement, and no one can check that
24 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Tapuskovic, I believe that the test for
25 admitting a document into evidence through a witness is not whether the
1 information in it is correct or incorrect. The test is rather whether
2 there is any bearable relation between the document and the witness. And
3 I must admit that it is perhaps difficult to establish the relation
4 between the witness and this document because he says that he has no
5 knowledge of it and he cannot confirm or otherwise have any opinion about
6 the contents. So I don't know.
7 What do you say, Ms. Edgerton?
8 MS. EDGERTON: I tendered it because it goes to the witness's
9 credibility, Your Honours.
10 [Trial Chamber confers]
11 JUDGE HARHOFF: The document has been admitted and we accept your
13 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, excuse me for the interruption, that
14 will go in as P813.
15 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] [Previous translation continues]...
16 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours.
17 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Tapuskovic, do not talk to us,
18 please, about the document. The document is already admitted into
20 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Then there's nothing for me to
21 say. I cannot understand how this has anything to do with the reliability
22 and credibility of this witness, and it has nothing to do with him since
23 he said that he knows nothing of this and he pointed out the lacking
24 information. How can that go to the credibility of this witness?
25 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] The Chamber heard your comments,
1 and we will deliberate on it.
2 Ms. Edgerton, I believe that you have two more minutes.
3 MS. EDGERTON: Then I'll ask, with your permission, one more
4 question, Your Honours.
5 Q. Mr. Tusevljak, do you recall speaking to a reporter from the New
6 York Times during the time of the re-integration in 1996 --
7 MS. EDGERTON: Pardon me, Your Honours, it will be three more
8 brief questions related to the same topic.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I do.
10 MS. EDGERTON:
11 Q. Do you recall during the discussion with that reporter about
12 aspects of the re-integration saying to him: "My loyalty is to the
13 Serbian leadership in Pale. The Muslims have no interest in professional
14 police work. They only want to create an Islamic state. They can't
15 expect us to help them do that"?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Did you know at the time you made this statement that Radovan
18 Karadzic, the head of the Serbian leadership in Pale, had been indicted by
19 this Tribunal for genocide?
20 A. Radovan Karadzic is not the only representative of the Serb
21 people, and he wasn't the only person in the Serbian leadership. When I
22 said this, I did not want to say that he was my boss. What I had in mind
23 was completely different. I had no Radovan Karadzic in mind when saying
24 that. He's not the only person who can represent or speak on behalf of
25 the Serb people.
1 Q. Did you know at the time you made this statement that he had been
2 indicted for genocide?
3 A. I think I did, but when I uttered these words I did not have
4 Radovan Karadzic in mind.
5 Q. You said you recalled saying: "The Muslims have no interest in
6 professional police work. They only want to create an Islamic state."
7 Do you also recall referring to those Muslims in -- as fanatics
8 during the course of that interview?
9 A. Muslims as fanatics, well I have 40 videotapes --
10 Q. Sir --
11 A. -- with three hours of material each about the --
12 Q. Sir, that was a yes or no question.
13 A. I don't think so.
14 MS. EDGERTON: Could we have 03407 brought up on the screen,
16 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours.
17 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Tapuskovic.
18 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Before the document is brought up
19 on the screen and before the witness, I have to say that my learned friend
20 is incorrectly quoting the contents of the article. He said -- actually,
21 the journalist wrote that Mr. Tusevljak was sitting under the large photo
22 of Radovan Karadzic, but he himself never mentioned Radovan Karadzic. The
23 journalist himself mentioned that the interviewee was sitting under
24 Radovan Karadzic's photograph during the interview, whereas the
25 interviewee himself never mentioned Radovan Karadzic.
1 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] It's very strange. I was under the
2 impression that the witness was saying yes to the question put by the
3 Prosecutor, but the Prosecutor may always put the question again just to
4 make sure that we're talking about the same thing. Would you like the
5 witness to be asked the same question again?
6 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I understand -- I
7 would understand that the witness would have been able to answer if he had
8 the document in front of him while he was answering the question. Maybe
9 the witness can say something about this now. The journalist wrote that
10 while he spoke to him, he was sitting under Radovan Karadzic's photo. He,
11 himself, never mentioned Radovan Karadzic's name in the interview.
12 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Ms. Edgerton, would you be able to
13 clarify this point with the witness, please.
14 MS. EDGERTON: Your Honour, with respect -- with respect, if we go
15 back to page 22, line 19, you will see that I quoted the article almost
16 verbatim, and when quoting the article I did not refer to Radovan
17 Karadzic. My question at line 25 was: "Did you know at the time you made
18 this statement that Radovan Karadzic, the head of the Serb leadership in
19 Pale, had been indicted by this Tribunal for genocide?"
20 With respect, Your Honours, my question was absolutely not a
21 mis-characterization or a misquoting of the article. I -- my question was
22 simply whether he knew that at the time he made that statement, Karadzic
23 had been indicted for genocide. I didn't even mention that he was sitting
24 under a picture of Karadzic at the time; my friend brought that up in
1 If I may, Your Honours, I'd like to continue so that I can finish
3 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Very well.
4 Mr. Tapuskovic, while Ms. Edgerton was talking we were able to
5 check what was said, and it seems to me that what you were mentioning was
6 not said here. The text on the transcript is different from what you are
7 saying to us.
8 So you may continue, please, Ms. Edgerton.
9 MS. EDGERTON: Thank you.
10 Q. Now, sir, do you see the translation of this article in your
11 language on the screen in front of you?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And the first paragraph, would you agree with me, says: "Simo
14 Tusevljak, the chief of the criminal division for the Serbian police in
15 this suburb of Sarajevo, is required to uphold the laws and constitution
16 of what he calls 'those Muslim fanatics' in his more diplomatic moments."
17 Does that refresh your memory as to what you said during the
18 course of the interview?
19 A. I'm standing by these words. Muslims are not interested in the
20 professional police work. They only want their Islamic state and they
21 can't expect us to help them with that. Everything above that are the
22 journalists comments rather than my words. Also, as far as I can
23 remember, I did not receive this journalist in my own office, so I don't
24 know what was on the wall of that office at the time. As for what the
25 journalist wrote, I don't know; I only know what I stated. He came to me
1 and said that there was a plan for the time-period to be extended, the 45
2 [as interpreted] time-period, but as far as I know, there was never such a
3 plan in place. Nobody ever offered us to stay on in the police on the
4 Bosnian side. And you know only too well that over 120.000 Serbs --
5 Q. Sir --
6 A. -- were moved from that area during that time.
7 Q. [Microphone not activated] --
8 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
9 MS. EDGERTON:
10 Q. My question was: "Does that refresh your memory of what you said
11 during the course of that interview?" And your answer was: "I'm standing
12 by these words," being the following: "Muslims are not interested in
13 professional police work, they only want their Islamic state, and they
14 can't expect us to help them with that." Those are the words you're
15 standing by?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Thank you.
18 MS. EDGERTON: I have no further questions.
19 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Ms. Edgerton.
20 MS. EDGERTON: I've forgotten to tender this newspaper article,
21 please, Your Honours. My apologies.
22 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Very well. It is admitted.
23 Mr. Registrar.
24 THE REGISTRAR: As P814, Your Honours.
25 JUDGE HARHOFF: Ms. Edgerton, please refresh my --
1 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
2 JUDGE HARHOFF: -- my memory about where was this published. I
3 can't see it.
4 MS. EDGERTON: The New York Times, Your Honour, and it was
5 recovered from the internet.
6 JUDGE HARHOFF: On the 5th of February, 1996. Thank you very
7 much. Thanks.
8 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Tapuskovic, do you have any
10 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] I did have a few questions, but
11 due to the time constraints I will have to reduce their number. But since
12 we're talking about the document that is still on the screen and in front
13 of the witness -- or maybe not.
14 Re-examination by Mr. Tapuskovic:
15 Q. [Interpretation] In the first paragraph of this document it is
16 stated this, only two words under the quotation mark as having been
17 uttered by Witness Simo Tusevljak, "Muslim fanatics," nothing else has
18 been added and nor can one see in what context were these words uttered,
19 if he uttered them at all. He has just started explaining what kind of
20 documentation he has, but I would like to ask him what was the context in
21 which these words were uttered.
22 Do you remember, did you ever reflect on these words? Did you
23 ever utter the words "Muslim fanatics" --
24 MS. EDGERTON: Before the witness answers --
25 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Ms. Edgerton --
1 MS. EDGERTON: -- Your Honour, that's an incredibly leading
2 question, I would submit, and ask that it be rephrased.
3 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Tapuskovic, please rephrase
4 your question.
5 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have absolutely
6 not been leading the witness. In the first paragraph there are two words
7 between the quotation marks, and those are "the Muslim fanatics," and I'm
8 only asking the witness to try and remember. I'm not leading the witness.
9 I'm only asking him to try and remember what the context was when the
10 "Muslim fanatics" were mentioned. This is a document that was put to the
11 witness by the Prosecution, and if the Prosecutor insisted on these two
12 words, I suppose that the witness should be allowed to explain what he
13 meant by these two words, because taken out of the context these two words
14 don't mean a thing, do they?
15 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Witness, please answer the
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I believe that this was taken out of
18 the context. I suppose that we must have been talking about the
19 Mujahedin, which were actively involved in the war in Bosnia and
20 Herzegovina and whose number was huge at the time.
21 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Tapuskovic.
22 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I have
23 no further questions for this witness.
24 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Mr.
1 Witness, this concludes your testimony. On behalf of this Trial
2 Chamber, I would like to thank you for coming to The Hague to bring your
3 contribution to international justice with your testimony. On my behalf
4 and on behalf of all the people who were present here in this courtroom, I
5 would like to wish you a safe trip. Thank you very much. You may leave
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
8 [The witness withdrew]
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Tapuskovic, we still have 15 minutes, and we
10 better make good use of them. Who is the next witness and is it a
11 protected witness or not?
12 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the following
13 witness is not protected. This is T-35, Mr. Ljuban Mrkovic --
14 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: T-38 is the witness's
16 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Usher, could you please bring
17 the witness.
18 [The witness entered court]
19 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Ljuban Mrkovic.
20 On behalf of this Trial Chamber I would like to thank you for coming to
21 The Hague, and I just want to make sure that you understand me in your own
22 language. If you do, please say you do.
23 THE WITNESS: [No interpretation]
24 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Very well. You will now make a
25 solemn declaration. The usher will give you the text of the solemn
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
3 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
4 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Witness. You
5 may be seated.
6 According to the procedure and to the practice of this Trial
7 Chamber, I will ask the Defence counsel to identify you by asking you some
8 usual questions, after which he will start his examination-in-chief.
9 Mr. Tapuskovic, you have the floor.
10 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
11 WITNESS: LJUBAN MRKOVIC
12 [Witness answered through interpreter]
13 Examination by Mr. Tapuskovic:
14 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Mrkovic. You know that I
15 represent Dragomir Milosevic. We have talked at length these days. I'm
16 going to try and be as efficient as possible, and I'm going to try and
17 bring the examination-in-chief to a speedy end because I understand you
18 have to be back home in Serbia because of your previous commitments.
19 Therefore, I'll try and be as efficient as possible.
20 Sir, can you tell us your name for the Judges.
21 A. Ljuban Mrkovic.
22 Q. You were born on the 28th of December, 1953?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. In Ljubinje in Bosnia and Herzegovina?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. You completed elementary school in Ljubinje?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. You completed the high school for officers in Rajlovac, in
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. You completed military academy in Sarajevo?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. The command staff academy that you completed was in Belgrade?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Before the outbreak of the conflict, you worked at military
11 academy as an officer and a teacher?
12 A. Yes, that was in Rajlovac, in the aeronautical academy.
13 Q. Before the conflict you were captain first class?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Can you tell the Judges what you did on the 19th of May, 1992?
16 A. On the 19th of May, 1992, pursuant to a decision of the Supreme
17 Command, together with the former JNA, I withdrew from territory of Bosnia
18 and Herzegovina and went to Belgrade.
19 Q. I am duty-bound to draw your attention to the transcript. Please
20 make a pause after my question and try to speak slowly, so as every word
21 you say can be recorded.
22 After you did what you did on the 19th of May, 1992, and since you
23 were in Sarajevo, can you tell us what was happening in Sarajevo and in
24 Rajlovac where you were before the JNA withdrew from Bosnia and
1 A. While the JNA was functioning in the territory of Bosnia and
2 Herzegovina, which means up to the 19th of May, 1992, the army was engaged
3 in its business. One could feel ethnic tensions among the members of the
4 army. We in Rajlovac, on our strength had Serbs, Muslims, and Croats.
5 Life was normal, the way it had always been, but a moment came when some
6 of the Muslim officers went to the BiH army side. The others remained
7 with us. The same happened to the Croats. Some of them stayed with us.
8 There were constant attacks on Rajlovac, where I worked, from the place
9 called Sokolje.
10 Q. Sir, Witness, can we take these things slowly. When the problems
11 arose, what was your engagement before you left Sarajevo? What was
12 connected to your rank? What did you do at the time? What was your duty?
13 A. I was engaged at the airport of Butmir, and I was working on the
14 evacuation of the population of Sarajevo. I organised flights at the
15 airport of Butmir, from which the largest number of the population was
16 evacuated from the town of Sarajevo.
17 Q. Can you tell the Judges briefly how many people were evacuated and
18 what was the situation like during those times. Can you give us an
19 approximate number of the people who left Sarajevo with your assistance?
20 A. I can say that we organised daily take-offs of some ten transport
21 aeroplanes AN-26 that could hold up to 35 people, and the aeroplane known
22 as Kikas, Boeing 737, which flew the Belgrade-Sarajevo route almost every
23 day and could hold up to 400 people. On average, nearly 1.000 citizens of
24 Sarajevo were evacuated every day from that airport. I would like to
25 emphasise that at that airport nobody paid attention to the ethnicity.
1 Whoever presented themselves at the airport would be flown to Belgrade and
2 elsewhere. I wasn't in Belgrade. I was in Sarajevo, but I can vouch for
3 the fact that nobody paid any attention to the ethnicity. Everybody was
4 transported, whoever wanted to be evacuated from Sarajevo.
5 Q. Can you give us an approximate duration of the time when you were
6 doing that?
7 A. I was doing this from April to June.
8 Q. Can you please wait. Can you repeat?
9 A. This lasted from the first take-off, which was on the 9th of
10 April. I can remember this very well. It was a passenger plane by Air
11 Bosna. We asked for this plane to be removed for security reasons, and it
12 lasted up to the end of April.
13 Q. You said that on the 19th of May you withdrew pursuant to an
14 order, just like every other soldier did. Did you ever return to Sarajevo
15 after that?
16 A. Yes. I arrived in Belgrade. I spent some ten days there, and
17 then I wanted to go back to Sarajevo, to the place where I had resided, to
18 where my family was, to the place where I was born. It was my decision to
19 go back and to stay there. I thought this was the right thing to do, to
20 go back to the place where I had lived all my life.
21 Q. Can you tell the honourable Judges, in the place where you were,
22 were there any other professional career officers who had returned?
23 A. Very few. At that moment, the moment when I returned to Rajlovac
24 and in the territory of the Sarajevo region, there were very few career
25 officers who had returned immediately after the outbreak of conflict.
1 Within the ten next days, maybe two or three officers returned to the
2 territory of Sarajevo after me.
3 Q. Were there any foot soldiers of the JNA who did not hail from
4 Sarajevo who remained in the territory after the withdrawal of the JNA?
5 A. What do you mean by foot soldiers? I didn't quite understand your
7 Q. When the JNA withdrew on the 19th of May, not only officers
9 A. The active troops left.
10 Q. Where did they go?
11 A. In the direction of Serbia.
12 Q. When you returned, as you say you did, who did you join?
13 A. I joined the units that had already been organised, the
14 Territorial Defence of the Serbian people who had organised those units.
15 Q. Who were the combatants in that army that you joined at that
17 A. This was people, volunteers, who volunteered to make the troops.
18 The reserve officers of the former Territorial Defence which automatically
19 became active-duty officers.
20 Q. Tell me, please, what happened to the heavy weaponry of the JNA
21 that had been in the territory where you were before you withdrew?
22 A. Some of the weaponry that could be pulled out within such a short
23 deadline and was transported towards Serbia, more specifically, the unit
24 that I was attached to which was the air force academy, we pulled out some
25 of the weaponry, some of the arms that we thought might be necessary in
1 some other location for the training of our students. And some of the
2 equipment and weapons remained in Rajlovac because we had not been in a
3 position to transport them to wherever we were going. It was impossible
4 for us to do that, to transport everything.
5 Q. Can you please tell us, if you remember, what pieces remained in
7 A. I eye-witnessed the moment when we were withdrawing from Rajlovac;
8 I'm talking about the organised, regular army. As soon as we left
9 Rajlovac, different formations broke into the barracks in Rajlovac, either
10 Serbs or Muslims, and they were taking whatever they deemed necessary. A
11 lot of food was left behind, a lot of ammunition. There was very little
12 weapons anyway because this was a training centre, a school. They also
13 took some mock weapons that we used in training, but this could not be
14 used in combat. Those were just training, teaching aids.
15 Q. Thank you. Okay so this was in Rajlovac, the place where you
16 worked with students. However, did you notice that the army that you
17 joined subsequently did have a certain quantity of heavy weaponry in the
18 place where you served?
19 A. Yes, they did have. In any case, they did have maybe not heavy
20 weaponry, but they had infantry weaponry. In Rajlovac, we had never had
21 heavy weaponry, and the situation continued. During the war after I
22 returned from Serbia, we never had any heavy weaponry in Rajlovac.
23 Q. I understand your answer, but I'm asking you not only about
24 Rajlovac because Ilidza is close by and so is Hadzici. Did you notice in
25 these areas that there was heavy weaponry there?
1 A. Yes, there was some heavy weaponry there. There were, I believe,
2 two tanks, T-55 tanks and there were a few howitzers, as far as I can
3 remember. The Republika Srpska army in the territory did have some heavy
4 weaponry, and also there was some heavy weaponry on the side of the BiH
5 army. Those weapons had been taken away from the Marsal Tito barracks,
6 and there was a lot more of them because what could be taken from Rajlovac
7 was just teaching aids, whereas in the barracks there had been a lot more
8 weaponry and that's why they had a lot more than we did.
9 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I believe this is a
10 good time for our first break.
11 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Yes, you're perfectly right. So
12 we're going to take the break now, and we're going to resume in 20
13 minutes' time. The hearing is closed.
14 --- Recess taken at 10.33 a.m.
15 --- On resuming at 10.56 a.m.
16 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Tapuskovic.
17 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
18 Q. Let us continue, Mr. Mrkovic. In order for us to keep discussing
19 the topic further, I wanted to show you a map. It is 2829, from the 65
20 ter list, and perhaps we can indicate a few things on it for the Judges.
21 Can you see the map?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Can you find the place you returned to, the place where you had
24 been before the withdrawal of the JNA?
25 A. This map is quite small, but I think Rajlovac is here.
1 Q. Please put a circle there.
2 A. Here it is.
3 Q. First, you have to be given a pen.
4 A. This is the part.
5 Q. Thank you. Mark it with an R.
6 A. [Marks]
7 Q. Do you know what the yellow and red lines represent?
8 A. The two lines represent the lines of separation between the
9 territory held by the VRS and the Army of BiH.
10 Q. Until when were you at that place?
11 A. After I returned from Belgrade until the Dayton Peace Accords in
12 January 1996 -- no, December 1995.
13 Q. Please tell Their Honours what exactly was there.
14 A. I returned to the aeronautical institute ORAO, next to the
15 barracks in Rajlovac.
16 Q. Thank you. Put a circle where the barracks was.
17 A. It is difficult to have it located. This is where the barracks
18 was, and next to it there was the institute, adjacent to the barracks.
19 That's where the ORAO facility was.
20 Q. Can you tell us something about its geographical location
21 concerning the environs of the buildings?
22 A. The aeronautical institute ORAO and the Rajlovac barracks were at
23 the foot of Sokolje and Zuc, which was constantly under the control of the
24 ABiH. ORAO itself, and the place where I slept at the time, was perhaps
25 800 metres away from the trenches controlled by the ABiH throughout the
1 conflict. The situation was such, the lines of separation did not move.
2 They were established in 1992, and preserved until the end of the war.
3 Q. Thank you. Tell Their Honours what was done within the institute
4 called ORAO at the time. Was it in operation?
5 A. Yes. Throughout the conflict it kept repairing jet engines; jet
6 engines, not aeroplane engines. These engines were intended for Serbia
7 and Banja Luka and also for export. We worked for other clients, those
8 who wanted their jet engines maintained or fixed.
9 Q. The production of those jet engines survived throughout the war.
10 You had a production line, did you not?
11 A. Yes. Should I add another thing about the institute. The
12 institute was at the foot of Zuc and Sokolje. In my unit where I was the
13 head of security, 24 members of the aeronautical institute were killed and
14 70 wounded.
15 Q. Let us discuss something else before that.
16 A. Very well.
17 Q. Since you're already on the topic, tell me this: During the
18 combat activities was the institute itself in any danger, as such?
19 A. I can tell you that it was attacked from infantry weapons, but
20 never from artillery. The reason for this was that it was very valuable
21 and profitable. The equipment that was there was of great value, both
22 sides considered it a great achievement to have it under its control. We
23 had security information showing that the ABiH kept insisting in its
24 orders not to target the institute with heavy weaponry because it had
25 nothing to do with the combat readiness of the VRS. These were merely jet
1 engines for planes sent to various Arab countries and all over the world.
2 Q. What was the reason for such behaviour of the ABiH to try and keep
3 the institute safe?
4 A. The reason was clear. They were hoping that one day they were
5 going to be there.
6 Q. Which weapons did they use then? Please wait for my question to
7 be complete. Which weapons did they use?
8 A. Solely from infantry weapons and snipers, because then in that
9 case there was no damage to the institute itself.
10 Q. And now, please continue what you began saying. Were there any
11 casualties of such firing?
12 A. Facts are that we had 24 killed and around 70 wounded in the
13 institute during the war.
14 Q. Were these people soldiers or the workers of the institute?
15 A. These were our workers from the institute.
16 Q. While we are still on the map and to conclude with it, I wanted to
17 ask you if you know something about certain elevations dominating in the
18 area of Sarajevo. Do you know who -- whose forces were at those
20 A. In the area of Rajlovac and its environs, as well as in Ilidza and
21 Vogosca, the main elevations that were there were controlled by the ABiH,
22 starting with Zuc, Sokolje, Rajlovac, and the Rajlovac barracks. They had
23 all those in the palm of their hand. Hum was another important elevation
24 for the city of Sarajevo and it was also controlled by the forces of the
25 ABiH. Igman as well, Trebevic or parts of Trebevic. We only had the
1 territory up to the road, and it was very difficult to move about there.
2 And moving from Vogosca and Rajlovac to Pale was difficult. We always
3 moved along the separation line, and we sustained many losses en route,
4 many people killed or wounded.
5 Q. Thank you. Please tell Their Honours something about when you
6 returned to Rajlovac. Besides working in the factory, as you said, what
7 other jobs did you have in terms of military events?
8 A. Since the aeronautical institute was part of the former JNA and
9 then the VRS, I was engaged in security and intelligence efforts in the
10 area of the institute and in the territory around it, including Rajlovac
11 and it environs. I was the security organ chief.
12 Q. Did you belong to any particular brigade?
13 A. No. Territorially speaking, we were within the AOR of the command
14 of the SRK. We were not attached to any brigades. We were one of the
15 units of the General Staff of the VRS.
16 Q. What was your job as a security officer?
17 A. My job as the security officer in the institute was to protect,
18 preserve, the property and personnel of the institute itself, gathering
19 intelligence information and forwarding those up the chain of command and
20 control so that they could make their decisions properly. There was
21 another aspect of activity aimed at preserving the documentation that
22 existed in the aeronautical institute concerning the maintenance of such
24 Q. What was the work of your service? What did it look like, if you
25 can explain?
1 A. The service worked like any other service. We were organised as
2 part of the security service of the VRS, and for a while I personally was
3 subordinated to the command along the expert line of the SRK.
4 Q. Thank you. Thank you. I just wanted to know about the actual
5 work. When you say intelligence security work, what does that mean?
6 A. I don't know what you mean.
7 Q. For example, tell us about your service.
8 A. You would have to take all possible measures, all available
9 measures, in order to protect the aeronautical institute.
10 Q. What is the characteristic of the intelligence work?
11 A. Well, the gist of it was that we could not permit the other side
12 to have its people within the institute and to get their hands on
13 information or data of the aeronautical institute.
14 Q. Thank you. I wanted to ask you if you knew if any other
15 intelligence services were operating there?
16 A. The Sarajevo area was very interesting for all intelligence
17 services, the Croatian one, the intelligence service of the B&H army, and
18 the majority of other intelligence services in that area were interested
19 and were present in that area.
20 Q. Do you know when General Dragomir Milosevic assumed the duty of
21 commander of the SRK?
22 A. In 1994.
23 Q. You said that at the beginning of the conflict there were heavy
24 weapons left behind by the JNA. Do you know what happened to these heavy
25 weapons in 1994?
1 A. In 1994, all the heavy weapons from the Sarajevo area were
2 withdrawn in accordance to an agreement out of an exclusion zone around
3 Sarajevo of some 20 kilometres. I know all the heavy weapons were pulled
4 out and placed under the control of UNPROFOR.
5 Q. And can you please say something about that, since you were there
6 in the area from 1992 until 1995. Can you tell us whether during that
7 time-period there were periods when it was easier to live, when the
8 intensity of the combat was lower?
9 A. I can say that the summer, starting from May 1994 until the summer
10 May 1995, in the Sarajevo theatre, was very quiet in terms of armed
11 clashes. This was a period that was characteristic by very, very few
12 combat actions.
13 Q. And what about after May 1995?
14 A. Since we did a lot of intelligence work in that area in order to
15 protect ourselves and preserve ourselves, the people, the property, we had
16 information that in that period, forces under the control of Army of
17 Bosnia and Herzegovina carried out intensive training and preparations,
18 and all of this indicated to us that one day there will be a major
19 offensive in the Sarajevo area.
20 Q. Thank you. I would now like to ask you this: Did you receive
21 information about things that were happening in that part of Sarajevo that
22 was under the control of the B&H army relating to combat actions?
23 A. Yes, we received information in various ways with the departure of
24 a certain number of the population from Sarajevo, areas that were under
25 the control of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina. We received
1 information that the communications -- from communications also of the
2 Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina. So we were quite, quite aware of the
3 situation in the town itself. Also, the other side was aware of what we
4 were doing.
5 Q. I wasn't just thinking of that. Were you able to receive
6 information through the media or in some other way about the consequences
7 of the combat actions in Sarajevo that was under the control of the Army
8 of Bosnia and Herzegovina and in the area that was under the control of
9 the -- and where the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina was situated? Were
10 there any consequences in that area as a result of combat between the two
11 sides, as a result of mutual firing?
12 A. We had regular analysis about what was going on and what the
13 effects were in the town itself. This was an activity that was carried
14 out routinely, and the media propaganda had a lot to do with everything.
15 I, myself, frequently heard on the media already in the papers, which we
16 got in different ways, that such and such a person was killed on their way
17 out of Sarajevo, whereas in that location not even a shell fell nor was
18 there any firing.
19 Q. Thank you. You as the security service or anyone from the Army of
20 Republika Srpska, did you do anything to check these reports, to find out
21 what happened, to investigate? Was this possible?
22 A. We received instructions many times about how to behave in a
23 situation like that. We reported to the Main Staff of the Army of
24 Republika Srpska several times that the shells that were dropping in the
25 Sarajevo area, we would ask them to form joint commissions to check if
1 they fell where they fell and so on, but this was never granted.
2 Q. Thank you. Witness, I'm going to show you document DD002492.
3 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Before that, can we just save
4 this map as an exhibit, please.
5 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] You want to tender this or you want
6 to save it on the registrar list?
7 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] We would like to have that
8 admitted as an exhibit, Your Honour, please.
9 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] It is being tendered.
10 Mr. Registrar.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, this becomes D302.
12 MR. WAESPI: Maybe I'm missing something --
13 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] I see that the Prosecutor is on his
14 feet. What's going on?
15 MR. WAESPI: It says here: "I'm going to show you a document --"
16 I see, I see, the admission refers to the previous admission of map. I'm
17 sorry, I have no objection, of course, to that.
18 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] All right. Fine. Thank you.
19 Please proceed, Mr. Tapuskovic.
20 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] I didn't hear that the exhibit
21 was given a number, but it doesn't matter. If it wasn't given a number,
22 I'm not going to insist on this in order not to burden the Court anymore.
23 Q. Now we have the document. Mr. Mrkovic, could you please read the
24 heading, the date of the document, and read up until the actual text
25 begins, and then I'm going to tell you what you need to pay attention to.
1 A. It's a bit hard for me to see, but the top I can see better.
2 "The Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, General Staff of the
3 Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kakanj, strictly confidential number
4 01-1/17-1, dated January 1st, 1995."
5 "Agreement on the cessation of hostilities with guide-lines, to:"
6 Q. Thank you. Can you now look at paragraph 2, please, the third
7 passage of that section.
8 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this is very hard
9 to see. Some things have been crossed out, but perhaps we can place a
10 cleaner page on the ELMO, and then the witness would be able to read what
11 it says. And perhaps we could zoom in a little bit on the text.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's something like: I forbid ...
13 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Where it begins: "I forbid ..."
15 Please read from there.
16 A. "I forbid, and UNPROFOR is to be informed of this, Chetnik
17 officers -- Chetnik liaison officers to be located in UNPROFOR barracks on
18 our territory."
19 Q. And at the end of paragraph 2, the very last passage, where it
20 says: "There can be no backing away ... "
21 And then further down.
22 A. You cannot see very well.
23 "There can be no backing down and talk," I guess.
24 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can I please read
25 this to the witness and I am able to read this. There is a translation in
1 English. The interpreters are unable to see that on the screen.
2 Q. All right. So after the first part that you read it says: "There
3 can be no backing away from that -- there may be no departure from this
4 because I do not want UNPROFOR to legalise in that way the stay of Chetnik
5 liaison officers on our territory, and thereby also their intelligence
7 Well, I have shown you this, you can see that for yourself. Did
8 that have anything to do with your attempts to do something in order to
9 find out about the matters that you spoke about?
10 A. Yes. In any case, we did know that the Army of Bosnia and
11 Herzegovina did not want us to come and to investigate anything or to see
13 Q. And now I'm asking you to look at page 2, and to see who issued
14 this order.
15 A. This order was issued by commander army general Rasim Delic.
16 Q. And now that we're speaking about the document, can you please
17 look at the paragraph just above the signature and can you please read it,
18 I think that you can read it, it's possible. It's on page 2 right above
19 the -- or right below where it says, "commander army general Rasim Delic."
20 A. "Corps commander will continue to maintain the full level of
21 combat-readiness and they must not permit any surprises."
22 Q. And continue, please.
23 A. "If the agreement is respected, use the time to train troops,
24 units, and commands to transform the army, and to prepare to continue
25 combat actions."
1 Q. Thank you. So this is what you talked about earlier. Is that
3 A. Yes.
4 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can this document
5 DD002492 be tendered as an exhibit?
6 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] This being admitted.
7 Mr. Registrar.
8 THE REGISTRAR: As D303, Your Honours.
9 JUDGE MINDUA: [No interpretation]
10 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Witness, could you now please tell me if you knew anything about
12 there being a tunnel beneath the Butmir airport; and if you do, can you
13 please tell me what you know about that?
14 A. I don't have the translation here, so I don't see -- oh, all
15 right, very well. When the tunnel began -- well, when the excavations for
16 the tunnel began, we knew about it. We knew when that was completed and
17 when the tunnel began to be used. It was used for regrouping of the Army
18 of Bosnia and Herzegovina, also it was used as an exit from the area that
19 was under the control of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina. It was also
20 used for food and the supply of other items. It was very much used. We
21 were informed that it operated continuously 24 hours a day.
22 Q. Did you have information that had to do with the tunnel and
24 A. Yes, according to the data we had, there was specific times when
25 civilians were able to use the tunnel, that was for a very short period of
1 time, and the rest of the time was for the needs of the military. The
2 tunnel was used to bring in and take out troops, so troops came in and
3 left Sarajevo via the tunnel. And weapons in any case --
4 Q. My question was not written down. I didn't turn my microphone on.
5 What about the weapons?
6 A. Weapons, too. Yes, the tunnel was definitely used for the traffic
7 of weapons.
8 Q. I'm going to show you document DD002743, and when you have the
9 document in front of you can you please look at the heading of the
10 document and then further down. And can you please then give me an answer
11 to a question. I believe this is more legible. Please read out the
13 A. "Command of the 102nd Brigade, strictly confidential number
14 16/1-52, 27 April, 1995.
15 "Relief of units in the zone of responsibility of the 16th Land
16 Army Division order.
17 "On the basis of the planned use of the units in the area of
18 responsibility of the 16th DKOV and the order for the relief of units
19 issued by the command of the 12th division, strictly confidential number
20 02/2-11-20, dated 25 April 1995, and in order to prepare the units in due
21 course for carrying out combat tasks outside the Sarajevo theatre, I
23 "Prepare forces out of the 3rd bb, the strength of a battalion
24 (400 soldiers and officers) to relieve the 1/102nd bbr in the area of
25 responsibility of the 16th Division and take the position and its area of
1 defence. Relieve the units on the 3rd of May 1995 by 1600 hours.
2 "Out of the 3rd bb, use: 280 soldiers, including three squads for
3 the 60-millimetre MB and one squad for the 82-millimetre MB" --
4 Q. Thank you. Is this something you had information on? Did you
5 refer to it a while ago?
6 A. Yes, this was a regular activity which often took place. I
7 specified how the tunnel was designated primarily for military purposes
8 and there was only a short window for the movement of civilians.
9 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would kindly ask
10 that DD002743 be admitted into evidence.
11 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] It's being admitted into evidence.
12 Mr. Registrar.
13 THE REGISTRAR: As D304, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you, registrar.
15 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Mr. Mrkovic, you mentioned the weapons transported through the
17 tunnel. What was your information on the arming of the BiH?
18 A. The Army of BiH had large quantities of weapons left behind by the
19 former JNA, primarily those from the Marsal Tito barracks in the area
20 where I was. Then there was another large warehouse at Busovaca, then
21 from Zenica, Busovaca, and so on and so forth. During the war we had
22 information that the Army of BiH through various channels got its supplies
23 from abroad, from various Arab countries, and that weapons were being
24 brought in on planes, as well as in humanitarian convoys which made their
25 way through to Sarajevo.
1 MR. TAPUSKOVIC; [Intepretation] Let us show DD003643 to the
2 witness, please. It reflects a session of the Presidency of the Republic
3 Bosnia and Herzegovina, chaired by Alija Izetbegovic on the 10th of
4 August, 1995; i.e., in the period pertaining to the indictment. The
5 document is DD003643. Your Honours, I had a portion of these minutes
6 translated, and I wanted to show the witness parts of it. Once it is on
7 the screen, I would ask the witness to read out the heading and the time
8 when -- and date when the session began.
9 Q. Please try and make the effort.
10 A. "Session of the Presidency of the Republic of Bosnia and
11 Herzegovina held on 10 August 1995."
12 "The session commenced at 1200 hours."
13 "The session was chaired by President of the Presidency of the
14 RBH, Alija Izetbegovic."
15 Q. Thank you.
16 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Let us go to page 6 of the B/C/S
17 and page 5 of the English, please. That has been translated. The
18 paragraph beginning with the words: "You see ..."
19 Q. I would kindly ask you to start reading from the bottom of the
20 page, saying: "In the last 15 days, we ..."
21 A. Let me find it.
22 Q. At the bottom of the page, almost the last sentence.
23 A. "In the past 15 days, we brought in 26 aircraft-loads of weapons."
24 I transferred them. "Does anyone know who brought them in? Do the people
25 know who did that? These are completely unknown people. 26
1 aircraft-loads of weapons. The man who came was in Germany, the wounded
2 one, he was wounded for two years."
3 Q. Thank you.
4 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Let us move on to the next page.
5 It is page 7 in the B/C/S and still page 5 in the English.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This thing beginning with Catic?
7 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Yes.
9 A. "Catic, he saw the army in 1992. He's now back and says: You can
10 no longer recognise this army, this one is a real army, the one before was
11 not. Those were just groups of unarmed men. Now it is a well-armed and
12 trained army. We did it all. This was not done by the government. A
13 part of it was done by the government, but a lot ..."
14 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Let us go back to page 5. Let's
15 see who the person who said this is.
16 Q. What does it say at the top?
17 A. "President."
18 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Let us go to page 10, and in the
19 English it is page 7.
20 Q. The first paragraph towards the bottom. It says: "Bace" [phoen]
21 in B/C/S?
22 A. "There is a mention of 26 planes which arrived in the last few
23 days if it has to do with 10.000 VBR rockets, 10.000 AR rockets," I don't
24 know what it means, "800 air-bombs, et cetera, then I can say" --
25 Q. Thank you. Let us go back to page 9 to see whose words these are.
1 Towards the bottom, do you see it?
2 A. It says "President."
3 Q. And then after that?
4 A. Can we zoom in, please?
5 Q. The last paragraph.
6 A. "Silajdzic."
7 Q. Thank you.
8 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Now, to make things complete, let
9 us go to page 11, which is page 8 in the English, the words uttered by
10 Silajdzic, the beginning of that portion. Page 11 in the B/C/S.
11 Q. The words of Silajdzic: "If the ratio ..."
12 A. "If the ratio is 90:10, it means that we have received a billion
13 and a half or 2 billion weapons. Then I don't know. If this is the
14 ratio. Because I can openly say that I initiated and asked for it at a
15 time when you reproached me for it, asked me why I needed these weapons,
16 when they were transported to Turkey on my request, if you remember. And
17 we both said: We might need weapons. Including this. I can safely say
18 between $70 and $80 million. Later on this was sent here from Turkey."
19 Q. Thank you. And another thing on page 13, beginning with
20 Silajdzic's words.
21 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] It is page 9 in the English.
22 Q. Can you read out loud Silajdzic's words, please.
23 A. From the beginning?
24 Q. Yes.
25 A. "Let us say who the people are who work and believe me, they
1 aren't, either" -- I'm having difficulty reading this.
2 Q. Do your best, please.
3 A. "I know more or less who these people are. More power to them. I
4 know these men and you don't. I can tell you about men who didn't sleep
5 for nights on end, loading cargo on ships in far-away countries. Their
6 names will never be known. They were both our citizens and so on, and
7 when you talk about the 26 latest planes, with those 26 planes, if you
8 please" --
9 Q. That is good enough, since you are having some difficulty reading.
10 Is this the information that reached you during the war as well?
11 A. Yes.
12 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] I wish to --
13 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Waespi.
14 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President. I've no objection to this
15 document coming in because we have had so many documents with the same
16 very, very tiny foundation linked to this witness. All he did was reading
17 out large portions of what other people said in other meetings he didn't
18 attend, and at the end the normal question: Does that correspond to what
19 you have seen? What I'd love to see was this gentleman's analysis,
20 perhaps, an intelligence report of that time which would confirm his
21 intrinsic knowledge, I'm sure, he had of the ABiH. But anyway, that's the
22 way it is. I've no objection to the document being admitted.
23 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Tapuskovic.
24 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, as any intelligence
25 person, he knew of this. I know of no intelligence service in the world
1 that would have within its system the possibility of putting all the
2 information they receive on paper and reporting on it all. They only do
3 it in a most delicate, subtle way, as explained by the witness. He can
4 explain to us how an intelligence service works. He explained about this,
5 and he mentioned these facts discussed by the Presidency of the -- of
6 Bosnia-Herzegovina, by the president, by Silajdzic, and by the supreme
7 commander of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Alija Izetbegovic. I did
8 not want to bother you with Delic's statements in this document as well as
9 the statements of others. But from that you would be able to see the
10 pride they were taking in their well-armed army by that time. After all
11 the intelligence information this witness has gathered, I see no reason to
12 refuse the tendering of this document because he had all that information
13 at his disposal at the time.
14 [Trial Chamber confers]
15 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] The Chamber will admit the
17 THE REGISTRAR: As D305, Your Honours.
18 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
19 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. I have to rush, Witness, and I wanted to ask you this: Concerning
21 combat activities of both parties, of course you can tell us about things
22 happening on both sides, but I'm interested in knowing whether you as
23 intelligence people had some information on the weaknesses or poor state
24 of -- or the poor state of maintenance of weaponry on the ABiH side?
25 A. There were on both sides, since the Army of BiH as well as the VRS
1 will organise the way they were because of the lack of training on both
2 sides. There were often occurrences in which people inflicted wounds on
3 themselves because they were poorly trained and then ordnance would
4 explode, and then sometimes there was friendly fire.
5 Q. I wanted to show you a document, this being DD002659, it is a very
6 short document. I'd like to ask you to read out the whole thing and then
7 provide an answer to a question of mine.
8 Can you read what it says here so that I can ask you questions
9 about what you have just mentioned.
10 A. "B&H army, 12th Division command, logistics section.
11 "Strictly confidential 07/24-3-605.
12 "Sarajevo, 17th of June 1995," and it's being sent to the command
13 of the 1st Corps technical service.
14 "Pursuant to the document of the 101st Mountain Brigade command
15 number 5138, dated 16th of June 1995, two 120-millimetre shells marked
16 UP 01/94 7SF09 were fired. The firing was executed in 1140 and 1540
17 hours. Immediately after being fired from the mortar barrel, the shell
18 dropped in front on the ground some 4 to 5 metres away and did not
19 explode. They have another nine shells with the same marking. Besides
20 these, they also have some 120-millimetre mortar shells marked 95-03-4
21 whose charges are damp.
22 "Please take the necessary measures to repair them at the
23 authorised Pretis workshop.
24 "Commander Fikret Prevljak."
25 Q. Is this what you said earlier about how you found out about these
1 things, about mines dropping on one's own positions?
2 A. Yes, that is correct. Whether because of the human factor or some
3 technical glitches, but this did used to happen.
4 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Can I please tender this
5 document, DD002659 as a Defence exhibit, please.
6 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] The document is admitted.
7 Mr. Registrar, please.
8 THE REGISTRAR: As D306, Your Honours.
9 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
10 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Your security intelligence services, did they sometimes find out
12 perhaps even more sensitive and unpleasant information that would be
13 facing the Army of Republika Srpska?
14 A. I didn't understand the question very well.
15 Q. You know that in Sarajevo - when I say "Sarajevo," I also mean the
16 areas held both by the Army of Republika Srpska and the Army of Bosnia and
17 Herzegovina, and we're talking about Sarajevo and there were different
18 happenings there. Primarily, I'm thinking about some things that were
19 covered by the media. Did you have any information in that sense in
20 relation to those media events which were particularly emphasised by the
22 A. I said before that the media very frequently published items about
23 shells falling and killing people, whereas later we would find out through
24 the intelligence sources we had within town that none of that had
1 Q. Were any events announced sometimes?
2 A. Yes, yes, they were. Frequently, they would announce their
3 attacks to us. I can openly say that in 90 per cent of the cases we knew
4 about all the offensives and attacks that were going to be carried out by
5 the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina in Sarajevo. Unfortunately, they also
6 knew about ours, but that's how the system functioned.
7 Q. And now I would like you to pay particular attention to the
8 following document: DD001825. And can you carefully read again here the
9 heading and a good part of the text on that page, and then I could draw
10 your attention to a few sentences. This is in quite large letters. If
11 you are able to, can you, please, carefully read everything that is on
12 this page.
13 A. "General Staff of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina --
14 Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, General Staff of the army headquarters
15 of the army number 1-1/1120-1, Kakanj, the 26th of August, 1995.
16 "Special information to the command of the 1st Corps.
17 "We are forwarding herewith a document of the office of security
18 services with new data on the intentions of the command of the
19 Sarajevo-Romanija Corps. In regard to the above, take immediate measures,
20 all measures that are required, operations and procedures in regard to
21 command number 1/1116-1, dated 25th of August, 1995.
22 "Chief of Staff, General Enver Hadzihasanovic."
23 And then below it says: "Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina,
24 Ministry of Internal Affairs, office of security services, Sarajevo,
25 special information, number 95, dated 25th of August, 1995.
1 "Official secret, strictly confidential, copy number 2.
2 "Command of the so-called Sarajevo-Romanija Corps has issued a
3 command on full combat-readiness and the undertaking of planned counter
4 measures in the next two days for the purpose of breaking the blockade by
5 the Army of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina." I don't know if it says
6 here -- "to break the blockade of Sarajevo," exactly.
7 Q. Now I would like you to look at page 2. We don't need to read
8 everything; there is no time for that.
9 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we look at page 2, please,
10 this part beginning with: "In connection with that ..."
11 Q. Can you please read that.
12 A. Can you please help me where that is because I do not see it.
13 Q. It's the second sentence, Mr. Mrkovic.
14 A. "In connection with the stated command relating also to the use of
15 artillery weapons according to the already-marked and pre-determined
16 points in the depth because when it is put in place it will stop, based on
17 which we have established that in the coming two days the Chetniks intend
18 to shell civilian buildings in Sarajevo."
19 Q. Thank you. Can you now look at the last sentence of that text on
20 that part of the page. No, no, the last sentence, Mr. Mrkovic, begins
21 with: "Based on ..."
22 Is it possible that you cannot see it?
23 A. I cannot see it. It's very hard for me to find it.
24 Q. It's the last sentence, begins with: "Based on these and
25 previous ..."
1 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Perhaps we can zoom in on that.
2 This is very important for the Defence.
3 MR. WAESPI: Mr. President, I have no problem if the Defence would
4 like to read the sentence out.
5 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if you permit me.
6 Had I known that you don't see to such an extent, Mr. Mrkovic, I would
7 have provided some glasses for you. I'm going to read --
8 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] [Previous translation continues]...
9 Mr. Tapuskovic, that's better.
10 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] "Based on these and prior
11 information, we believe that the Serb terrorists will over the next few
12 days fire from artillery projectiles of major destructive power at the
13 town of Sarajevo."
14 Q. You said that this was the 25th of August when this document was
15 drafted. At the time, did you have any indications that anything was
16 being prepared and were you more cautious because of that?
17 A. At the beginning of my testimony I said that this was a period of
18 truce, but that throughout the time the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina was
19 conducting preparations, training to continue combat actions. We received
20 much, much information from the town of Sarajevo, how and in which way
21 this training was being conducted.
22 Q. Again, I'm saying this is the 25th of August, 1995. What happened
23 on the 26th of August, 1995, and what happened on the 28th of August,
24 1995, Witness?
25 A. Markale.
1 Q. And was that what was being indicated here?
2 A. All this information indicated that something along those lines
3 would happen to us.
4 Q. Who signed this?
5 A. This was signed by Nedzad Ugljen, and it was dispatched to the
6 president, Mr. Alija Izetbegovic; the command of the Main Staff,
7 Mr. Rasim Delic; and to the minister of the Ministry of Internal Affairs,
8 Mr. Bakir Alispahic.
9 Q. Did you find out over that time over those few days if
10 Alija Izetbegovic was in Sarajevo?
11 A. We found out from the media that Alija -- or we were receiving
12 information that Alija was going to leave Sarajevo. And I can say that
13 care was always taken care. Igman was never fired at because that's where
14 they passed, and that is when Alija appeared, according to all
15 indications, in Mostar, some two or three days before Markale. The
16 president was in Mostar two or three days before Markale.
17 Q. Thank you. And did this concern you a bit?
18 A. Just like any analysts, we did carry out a lot of analyses about
19 the events, events in Sarajevo. Something terrible would always happen
20 when the leadership was not in Sarajevo. Large attacks would take place
21 when the leadership was not in Sarajevo.
22 Q. All right. Thank you. Could you please look and tell us who
23 signed this.
24 A. Nedzad Ugljen.
25 Q. Do you know who Nedzad Ugljen is?
1 A. He was the chief of State Security in Sarajevo.
2 Q. And do you know to which units he belonged to? Was there a
3 special unit that he belonged to?
4 A. He was in the State Security Service of the Republic of Bosnia and
5 Herzegovina. This was a document that the army took from the State
6 Security Service.
7 Q. Is he still alive?
8 A. I couldn't really say.
9 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we please have this document
10 tendered as a Defence exhibit, Your Honours.
11 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Very well. The document is
13 Mr. Registrar.
14 THE REGISTRAR: As D307, Your Honours.
15 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
16 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I don't know how
17 much time I have in order to be able to keep track. I'm not really
18 keeping control here.
19 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] We have 15 minutes before the
21 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
22 Q. Your intelligence service, did it have information about any
23 irregular actions undertaken by the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina at any
25 A. Just like any service, sometimes we would receive accurate and
1 sometimes we would receive false information. Extraordinary situations
2 were happening all the time. Practically every situation for us was an
3 extraordinary situation.
4 Q. And were there any unusual actions in such conditions? I'm not
5 permitted to suggest anything.
6 A. Yes. Very frequently it would happen that various shells were
7 fired at our positions, shells of contents unknown to us that dropped on
8 our positions. I don't know exactly which part to mention, for example,
9 which section.
10 Q. Well, if you didn't understand my question, I'm not permitted to
11 suggest anything to you.
12 A. No.
13 Q. At the time, you said that there was a year of -- there was a lull
14 for a year.
15 A. From May 1994 to May 1995.
16 Q. And so what started to happen in May 1995? Do you know of any
17 events, incidents in May 1995? Was any combat conducted then that you can
19 A. Specifically in the area where I was there were many provocations
20 that already started from May 1995. All the information indicated that
21 the forces of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina were preparing to lift
22 the blockade of the town, that they were preparing to attack along all the
23 lines of the front, and we were also preparing for that throughout the
24 summer of 1995.
25 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] The witness said "the so-called
1 lifting of the siege," and it was not registered like that in the
3 Q. And do you remember that anything happened in May around a
5 A. There was an attack on the Bosut barracks, I think, up there on
6 Trebevic. Many, many shells landed on that barracks then. There were a
7 number of our soldiers killed and wounded. I know that that barracks was
8 often attacked and particularly fiercely so in May.
9 Q. I want to show you another document now, which is DD002681.
10 Please have a look at the document. Have a look at the date, and after
11 some cursory reading I want to ask you if what is mentioned here is the
12 same thing you were referring to.
13 A. Very well. Yes, this is the amount of ammunition spent, fired at
14 Bosut on Trebevic.
15 Q. What was the date?
16 A. The 24th of May.
17 Q. Concerning the amount of ammunition spent, can you have a look at
18 the last three items?
19 A. Mine 60-millimetre, 516 pieces; 82-millimetre shells, 507;
20 120-millimetre shells, 74 pieces.
21 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I wish to tender
22 this document as well.
23 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Could you please explain to us why
24 you would like this document to be admitted. What are you trying to
25 establish by this?
1 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we have discussed
2 this on many occasions before, and you have admitted similar documents.
3 The intensity of combat activities on the part of the ABiH is the very
4 reason for the mutual actions at that time. I already explained my
5 arguments. I can do it yet again, but until now we have admitted at least
6 ten such documents which have never been disputed. This is a document
7 reflecting the beginning of that offensive with the intensive activities
8 on the ABiH side. The number of casualties following such activities is a
9 good indication of the intensity of combat actions by the ABiH.
10 Therefore, one cannot speak of a campaign or terror that was supposed to
11 have result; rather, it was an unavoidable answer to combat activities in
12 the course of fighting.
13 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] [Previous translation continues]...
14 Is in the transcript and the Chamber will admit this document.
15 Mr. Registrar.
16 THE REGISTRAR: As D308, Your Honours.
17 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
18 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I intended to use
19 another few documents, but I don't want to repeat myself. I wish to thank
20 you for the time allotted to me, and I have no further questions for this
21 witness. I would like to thank Mr. Mrkovic and Their Honours.
22 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Mr.
23 Tapuskovic. You finished before the break. According to my calculations,
24 you had 20 more minutes, so I congratulate you.
25 And in order not to waste any more time, Mr. Waespi has the floor.
1 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President, and if the Defence agrees,
2 I will take their 20 minutes and add them to my time.
3 JUDGE HARHOFF: [Microphone not activated]
4 MR. WAESPI: No, I'm sorry, I tried to be funny. I will try to be
5 as brief as I can.
6 Cross-examination by Mr. Waespi:
7 Q. Good morning, Witness. I'm still not quite sure what your
8 association was within the chain of command of either the SRK or the VRS.
9 I believe at one time you said you were for a period of time within the
10 professional chain of command of the SRK security, and at other times you
11 told us that you were working for the VRS Main Staff. So please tell us,
12 for the period of time you came back to Belgrade -- to Rajlovac from
13 Belgrade, which I take it is somewhere end of May 1992, to the end of the
14 war, November 1995, who was your superior at any time? Can you please let
15 us know in as much detail as you can.
16 A. Upon my return to the aeronautical institute at Rajlovac, my
17 direct superior in all matters was the general manager of the institute.
18 I was his security assistant in terms of the institute. The aeronautical
19 institute ORAO was a unit of the VRS subordinated to the Main Staff of the
20 VRS, directly under it. However, since we were within the AOR of the SRK,
21 in terms of professional subordination concerning logistics and support,
22 we relied on the SRK. That is what the system was like in the VRS at the
23 time. I believe I was as clear in my first explanation as now -- as I am
25 Q. Do you know who Marko Lugonja is?
1 A. Yes, I do, chief of security of the SRK.
2 Q. Were you working with him during the relevant period, 1992, 1993,
3 1994, 1995?
4 A. Yes, I did. I worked with him on issues of security at the
5 institute and in Rajlovac, and most of the information I forwarded was
6 through or to Marko Lugonja. That was because, as I mentioned, we were
7 within the AOR where he was chief of security.
8 Q. But I understand you correctly, you were not formally subordinated
9 to Marko Lugonja or the SRK?
10 A. No, no.
11 Q. But you exchanged information with him in a professional sense,
12 like intelligence --
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. -- And other relevant information for the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps
15 and the VRS Main Staff?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Thank you, Witness. Now, let's very briefly talk about 1992. I
18 guess we disagree forever who started the war in -- around Sarajevo, and
19 there were experts -- there will be experts from the Defence side on this
20 issue. But the reason why civilians, the population, part of the
21 population, left Sarajevo in April, May, June 1992, and you explained how
22 you helped organising that, was the relentless bombardment of the city of
23 Sarajevo by JNA and, indeed, the VRS once a transformation has been
24 executed. Could we agree on that?
25 A. We cannot. I don't think that the bombardment was so relentless.
1 In April 1992, there was infantry combat, and as far as I know and as far
2 as I could hear in 1992, there was no use of heavy weaponry. To be
3 specific, in Rajlovac and at the airport where we were, what was there was
4 infantry weapons. As for any heavy weapons in April 1992, I don't think
5 there were any -- at least I don't know of any.
6 Q. In May, mid-May 1992, 14th of May, the situation was so bad inside
7 the city that UNHCR had to pull out of the city. Do you remember that?
8 A. At that time, I was at the Butmir airport. We were trying to pull
9 out the planes from there. I don't know whether it was so indeed. We
10 heard of people leaving Sarajevo, of some panic, firing. Well, everyone
11 tried to flee; that is the truth. As for any shelling, I cannot say there
12 was none but I cannot say there was either. I wasn't the person who
13 observed it or headed the whole thing, but I think the shelling was -- was
14 made to sound too important than it actually was.
15 Q. It was certainly important enough and painful enough, the
16 shelling, that Slobodan Milosevic in Belgrade was telling French UNPROFOR
17 General Morillon that the bombardment of Sarajevo was, and I quote him:
18 "Bloody common criminal" and that there was no "justification for the
19 continued bombardment of the civilian population of Sarajevo." That was
20 the 30th of May, 1992. Do you think that's an accurate description of
21 what was happening in Sarajevo at that time?
22 A. As a professional soldier, I would call any shelling of anyone a
23 crime. I would be very much against it. But by that time the front lines
24 had been established. We were all trying to save our hides. I was always
25 against illegal use of fire-power, and we always insisted on not
1 responding too strongly. However, there is a fact that needs to be
2 recognised, and I'm trying to cut things short since I have many
3 obligations to attend to in Belgrade. Both the VRS and the Army of the
4 Federation were very untrained. The only army that knew anything
5 about waging wars had withdrawn by that time. The Muslim officers did not
6 want to go to the front. I knew some of the colleagues of mine, we would
7 hug and kiss and he would go back to Sarajevo and I went to Belgrade
8 crying. We were all fleeing the same war, but once there we realised that
9 there was nowhere to go, that we had to go back. Both those in the Army
10 of Bosnia and Herzegovina and we in the VRS were poorly trained for such
11 events. And it caused certain results on both sides. In any case, I
12 condemn any shelling.
13 As an air force officer, I was in charge of organising the
14 withdrawal of people from Sarajevo. At no moment did we pay any heed to
15 who was what, Muslims, Serbs, or Croat, we were pulling them out as they
16 came. People used to give them their cars just so they would be able to
17 flee, and everyone fled. That is a fact.
18 Q. Yes. My question was whether the description of General Morillon
19 and, indeed, President Milosevic, when they condemned the bombardment, the
20 continued bombardment of the civilian population of Sarajevo in May 1992,
21 whether that was correct or whether you disagree that there was heavy
22 bombardment of the civilian population in Sarajevo from Serb forces around
23 Sarajevo, whether you disagree with that or whether you accept that
24 description. I'm happy to show you the document which records very
25 briefly the conversation between General Morillon and Slobodan Milosevic.
1 A. If you're asking me to say that there was shelling, I don't
2 know --
3 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Tapuskovic, yes.
4 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, whoever this has to
5 do with, I'm not trying to exaggerate on anyone's importance, but this
6 witness cannot speak on anything someone else said, be it Milosevic or
7 Morillon. I think it would only be fair to ask the witness what he knows,
8 what he saw, what he experienced. It is far more important than any of
9 Milosevic's statements or anyone else.
10 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Mr. Waespi.
11 MR. WAESPI: Yes. The witness is an intelligence officer and he
12 was there at that time, and he is -- I'm --
13 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours --
14 JUDGE MINDUA: [No interpretation]
15 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] As I said, Slobodan Milosevic,
16 who is now in Belgrade --
17 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: Who was in Belgrade.
18 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] He was not in Sarajevo. This
19 gentleman, however, was.
20 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] I would like it to be written in
21 the transcript verbatim as the Defence counsel just mentioned it. Very
23 I notice that it is time to take a break. We will stop now, and
24 we'll take a 20-minute break. A 20-minute break. The hearing is
1 --- Recess taken at 12.28 p.m.
2 --- On resuming at 12.50 p.m.
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: You may be surprised to see me, but -- but why
4 should a little cold and flu keep me away from -- from company and the
5 setting that I find so agreeable.
6 Mr. Waespi.
7 MR. WAESPI: Yes.
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: I understand you're cross-examining, and there
9 was to be a ruling on an objection.
10 MR. WAESPI: Yes. I was referring to a conversation between
11 Slobodan Milosevic and General Morillon.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
13 MR. WAESPI: The UNPROFOR general where they talk about the
14 bombardment of the city of Sarajevo in May 1992, and this was in response
15 to the witness's answer who said he can neither confirm nor deny that
16 there was bombardment in Sarajevo. And my learned friend Tapuskovic said
17 how can this witness, you know, talk about something -- a meeting in
18 Belgrade. But my point is because the witness gave his answer not
19 responsive about the situation in Sarajevo and he was in Sarajevo and he
20 talked about the situation. I should be entitled to put my case to the
21 witness, famous paragraph 7, where we talk about bombardment of the city
22 in 1992. And this document, I'm sure, assists Your Honours and perhaps
23 might refresh the witness's recollection of what was happening in Sarajevo
24 in 1992.
25 [Trial Chamber confers]
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Waespi, what are you seeking from this
2 witness? What is this witness to do or to say in relation to the
3 conversation between Mr. Milosevic and the other person about the
4 bombardment of Sarajevo?
5 MR. WAESPI: The witness was asked in chief about his involvement
6 of getting the civilian population out of Sarajevo, and I asked the
7 witness why. And he didn't really give an answer, so I was putting to him
8 that one of the reasons why the civilian population was fleeing Sarajevo
9 was because of the shelling by the VRS, JNA, before they pulled out of
10 Sarajevo. And then the witness gave the answer: "I cannot say there was
11 none and I cannot say there was either."
12 So in order to, number one, refresh his recollection of what was
13 happening before his eyes in Sarajevo; and number two, about his
14 credibility. I would like to show him this brief document which is very,
15 very straight to the point.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, what does the document say?
17 MR. WAESPI: It says -- in fact, you see it in front of you. It
18 says that General Morillon complained to General Milosevic about the
19 shelling of Sarajevo and said he should use his influence with General
20 Mladic to stop the bombardment of Sarajevo. And then he said, Milosevic
21 said, while he could: "... understand fighting in self-defence, there was
22 no justification for the continued bombardment of the civilian population
23 of Sarajevo. This was, moreover, not in the interests of Yugoslavia nor
24 the Bosnian Serbs."
25 This is Milosevic saying that. So that shows that not only the
1 leading UNPROFOR general in Sarajevo says there was a bombardment of
2 civilian population in May 1992, but also Slobodan Milosevic in Belgrade.
3 The witness was there and I would like to know whether he accepts that
4 there was bombardment of civilian population in Sarajevo or not. That's
5 my question to the witness.
6 [Trial Chamber confers]
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I be allowed to answer?
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: We'll admit it.
9 MR. WAESPI: Yes, Mr. President, that's almost a step ahead
10 because I haven't shown the document yet to the witness.
11 Q. But, Witness, if you could read the second paragraph of this
12 document which you see on your screen. The Serbian version is on the
13 right side. You see it's a communication from UNPROFOR General Nambiar to
14 New York, and he talks about a meeting held on the 30th May 1992, between
15 President Slobodan Milosevic and, among others, Generals Morillon,
16 MacKenzie, and Auger. And the second part, the second paragraph, talks
17 about, and I've quoted that two or three times, about the "continued
18 bombardment of civilian population of Sarajevo."
19 And later in paragraph 3, it talks -- it's an assessment of
20 Slobodan Milosevic and he calls it a "bloody, criminal bombardment."
21 So my question to you, Witness, is: Do you accept that there was
22 shelling of the civilian population in Sarajevo by forces under General
23 Mladic? If you can answer, yes or no, please.
24 A. Mr. Prosecutor, before this Trial Chamber I have made a solemn
25 declaration to speak the truth and nothing but the truth. I'm saying that
1 there was no shelling in Butmir and Rajlovac airports where I was. War
2 was going on within the town and in other locations. I can only
3 speculate. What I'm saying here is only the truth; where I was, there was
4 no shelling. Whatever else I might say, if I said there was or wasn't,
5 this would be very arbitrary on my part. I did not command any units. I
6 did not issue any orders. Please do not ask me whether there was any
7 shelling elsewhere because I was not involved. My wife was in Sarajevo as
8 well as my children in the town --
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you --
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- And I know that --
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. We have heard. Your answer is that
12 you can speak to Butmir and Rajlovac and you can say there was no shelling
13 in those areas in the airports.
14 MR. WAESPI:
15 Q. But you told us you were involved in helping civilians from the
16 city of Sarajevo boarding aeroplanes. Didn't these people tell you what
17 they endured in the city of Sarajevo?
18 A. If all hundred civilians pass by you and they all look disturbed
19 and if your task is to organise their exit from Sarajevo, to organise
20 planes to put them on, then you don't have the time to talk to them. I
21 was in a very difficult position, but you could see on their faces that
22 something was going on and that is a fact, I admit.
23 Q. Very well.
24 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President. If the document could be
25 admitted now.
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, we'll admit it.
2 THE REGISTRAR: As P815, Your Honours.
3 MR. WAESPI:
4 Q. Witness, do you know who Biljana Plavsic is?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And do you know that even she was complaining that there was
7 shelling of civilian areas in Sarajevo in May 1992. Would that surprise
9 A. This is what -- something said and nothing surprises me. Why
10 should it surprise me? What I am saying is that I am telling you about
11 the things I know. As for what Biljana said, what Milosevic said, that's
12 an entirely different matter. Maybe they were privy to some other
13 information. I really wouldn't know.
14 Q. Thank you for your answer. Let's move away from 1992, in a few
15 other areas you discussed. If we could pull up Defence Exhibit 303,
16 please. I'm sure you recall the -- I think the first document you were --
17 or one of the first documents you were shown. This was a document
18 generated by the BH General Staff, and it dates of the 1st of January,
19 1995, and that's a copy which was not very well legible. So let me read
20 just a part you were asked about by Defence. For your convenience it
21 said, and this is on the first point -- on the first page in the middle:
22 "I forbid, and UNPROFOR is to be informed of this, Chetnik liaison
23 officers to be located in UNPROFOR bases on our territory."
24 And it goes on to say: "Let UNPROFOR deploy on their territories
25 or send its liaison officers to both us and them."
1 For whatever reason, you seem to link it to a joint commission to
2 investigate incidents. Nowhere in this document does it say anything
3 about investigation of some incidents. It talks about liaison officers.
4 Is that correct?
5 A. I understand this document as a ban on the part of the command of
6 the BiH army, on the presence of any officers in the area, which is
7 corroborated by the document. I've also said that we never shied away
8 from any investigation of any shells, where they came from, how they came
9 from, but throughout the war we were not in a position to investigate.
10 And let me tell you this: The other side was not really keen on proving
11 what was going on in the territory under the control of the Army of
12 Republika Srpska. We had just one case that was Markale where we had a
13 joint commission. Two of our officers escorted by UNPROFOR went there,
14 and they returned within two hours. What could they see in two hours? I
15 leave it to you to be the judge of that. So that was just one joint
16 mission and a very short-lived one.
17 Q. Two points. The first one, the document does not talk about
18 offering investigative resources; it talks about the presence of liaison
19 officers on the ABiH territory. Is that correct?
20 A. Our liaison officers were never there as far as I know. They were
21 not allowed to go there.
22 Q. Yes, but my question was: It talks about liaison officers. It
23 does not talk about any investigative steps being carried out. Is that
25 A. Our liaison officers were not in the territory of BiH army, not
1 that I know of. They were not.
2 Q. Very well. Don't answer this question. Let's move on to these
3 investigative commissions then. Give me, apart from Markale, an example,
4 if you can recall, that a joint --
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just a minute. Mr. Tapuskovic is on his feet.
6 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, let us just be
7 clear what Markale we are talking about. Was it Markale I or Markale II?
8 When was it allowed for the officers to go there and inspect?
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Waespi.
10 MR. WAESPI: Yes, that's a fair point. Thanks, Mr. Tapuskovic.
11 Q. We'll come to this Markale I and II in a moment. But apart from
12 those Markale incidents, can you give me an example, if you recall, an
13 example you know first-hand that you offered to UNPROFOR or the ABiH to
14 investigate any incident. Do you remember any such example?
15 A. I gave you the -- that one example, and I don't know which Markale
16 was in question. I only know that I often received information about a
17 shell that killed civilians, that a request was made that this should be
18 investigated through UNPROFOR, through liaison officers, but it was simply
19 not possible. They were not allowed to do that. I am sure of that
20 because that's the information that I received. Why was this not allowed?
21 Because very many times the number of victims was exaggerated. For
22 example, news would say a shell fell at Bascarsija, a number of victims
23 was given, and it turned out eventually there was none. I don't know of
24 any cases save for Markale. Maybe one or two more cases were in which our
25 officers went there. I know that requests were made quite often through
1 our liaison officers; that I know for sure.
2 Q. Yes, and it's important for me to know at least of one example of
3 these many occasions that you received information about a shell that
4 killed civilians, to quote you. Can you give me, aside from these two
5 Markale incidents, an example when somebody asked you that an incident
6 should be investigated. If you can tell me who the person was that asked
7 you, or somebody else from your office, when it was in relation to what
9 A. I personally never requested that in the territory of Rajlovac
10 because there were very few shells that fell over there. We were such
11 units that did not have any artillery pieces, and I can't tell you who it
12 was who requested that. But I know for sure through conversations,
13 through information that I received, that the liaison officers did ask for
14 the truth to be established. But I'm sure that the liaison officers who
15 was a member of the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps could tell you more about
16 that. He was the one who communicated directly with UNPROFOR and with the
17 command of the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps.
18 Q. And that was Major Indjic?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. But you don't know more -- you don't know anything more about this
21 subject. You suggest that we should --
22 A. No.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 A. It was not within my purview.
25 Q. Another issue you talked about was in relation to Defence
1 Exhibit D306, and you were asked about friendly fire. And I think you
2 volunteered the word that friendly fire occurred on, if I quote you
3 directly, on the ABiH side and on the SRK side. Is that correct?
4 A. Are you referring to the shells being fired as a result of the
5 lack of training or bad ammunition, and for example, people intended to
6 target something and instead of targeting that, they would fire at their
7 own side. That was a very common occurrence, both in our army and in the
8 Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina, according to the information that we had.
9 Q. Yes. That was what I was referring to, friendly fire at their own
10 people. Can you give me an example, since you say that it happened on
11 both sides, one example each for the SRK and one example for the ABiH?
12 A. Very specifically, in my unit during the war at least five people
13 were wounded from fire-arms because of a lack of training. Some shells
14 that fell in the vicinity of our ORAO, those incidents were investigated.
15 They happened in 1994, and they came from our positions. Those shells
16 were fired from our positions and our soldiers were wounded.
17 Q. So these incidents were investigated; that's what you're saying?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Can you enlighten us a little bit how this -- if you have any
20 knowledge about that, how such an investigation would look like?
21 A. The matter of fact was that we would investigate the origin of
22 every shell that fell. We would look at their serial numbers and if we
23 realised that those were our serial numbers and they fell on our
24 positions, that would mean that they had been fired from our positions.
25 This is what happened in our army, but this happened on the other side as
1 well. All the shells are registered under serial numbers. For example,
2 in the BiH army and in the Serbian army, this happened very often because
3 there was a clear lack of training on both sides. People were not very
4 well trained in using those weapons.
5 Q. And then you would go and find out where the artillery or mortar
6 piece was, who the gunners were, identify these people, talk to them,
7 interrogate them, offer more training, these kind of steps would normally
8 be initiated. Is that correct?
9 A. Yes, that is correct and this was done regularly.
10 Q. You said also that you have recently received information, and I
11 think your source of information was publication in the media. And you
12 say that you had then your intelligence sources within the city who would
13 say that none of it has really happened. Do you remember saying that?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Can you give us an example of such an incident that occurred,
16 perhaps a date, perhaps a casualty alleged in the media, and so we can
17 have a detailed picture of your evidence, please?
18 A. A concrete example. In 1994, it was published in the media that
19 some ten people were killed in front of a tunnel, including some children.
20 Five days later, a person came with the assistance of UNPROFOR who
21 resided nearby, in the building nearby, who didn't know anything about
22 that. He said that nothing of that sort had happened. This was just
23 propaganda. We did want to know what was going on. We wanted to have
24 accurate information. Not a single professional officer who was there
25 could find justification in anybody firing a shell at civilians. All of
1 us who were there who were professional soldiers would never have ordered
2 that. None of us did, and we would do everything in our power to make
3 sure that such things did not happen. At the end of the day, the
4 international humanitarian war was binding upon us, and all of us officers
5 had to comply with it. Unfortunately, both in the ABiH army and in the
6 Army of Republika Srpska there were very, very few educated officers. And
7 one of the problems in both cases was the fact there were few educated
9 Q. Now, let's go back to that example, and I would really like to
10 insist in you giving more details, if you can. I know it's a long time
11 ago, but I would like to back up your information with some substance.
12 This incident that you referred to about the killing of some ten people in
13 front of the tunnel, including children, can you tell us the date and also
14 a little bit more about the person, the person who came to you and said:
15 This all didn't happen. Are you able to tell us more about that?
16 A. I can't give you the date, but quite a few people confirmed that
17 from the area of Dobrinja, from the vicinity of that tunnel. But I've
18 told you that this was not an isolated case. There were many such cases
19 that we stopped paying attention to. We just put it down to propaganda,
20 and it was proven, subsequently, that this was all down to the propaganda.
21 That is not forbidden, mind you.
22 Q. And that's what I'm interested in proving. It's not helpful at
23 least for me, I don't know how other people in this courtroom look at it,
24 that you say it happened often. I would like to focus on this one
25 incident in Butmir where people are killed, including children, a very,
1 very seriously allegation. So you can't really help us more about that
3 A. No, no.
4 Q. Was that perhaps the incident where NATO later threatened
6 A. I can't remember any such thing.
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Tapuskovic.
8 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, my learned friend
9 has put a question which contains a reference to the incident where
10 children were killed, and the witness said that, subsequently, it was
11 established that nobody had been killed. In other words, my learned
12 friend is saying something that the witness did not confirm. The witness
13 said that the first piece of information was that children had been
14 killed, and that later, subsequently, it had been proven that they were
15 able to establish through some channels of theirs that nobody had been
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, thank you for that lesson in logic, but
18 counsel is allowed to probe a little. And for my part, I don't see
19 anything improper in the question.
20 MR. WAESPI:
21 Q. Witness, you talked about a lull in what was happening in May 1994
22 to 1995. Do you remember saying that?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. But that only relates to combat activities. There was lots going
25 on at that time. There was hostage-taking, there was shelling and
1 sniping, there was cutting electricity of the population, there was lots
2 of suffering happening by the civilian population during that lull, as you
3 call it, in combat activity. Is that correct?
4 A. Mr. Prosecutor, again you're asking me to tell you something
5 without any documents, something that I did not eye-witness. If you are
6 saying that civilians suffered, I'm sure that they did because every war
7 brings suffering. However, when it comes to the army and the period of
8 lull that I mentioned, for us that was a good period. After the fighting,
9 the fierce combat, after many dead and wounded, all of a sudden there is a
10 period of lull where nothing is going on. I can't talk about the
11 electricity, water, and things like that because I was not involved in
12 that. We did have information that the other side was getting ready for
13 defence, and we did the same. When you mention suffering, I agree with
14 you, there was a lot of suffering but it's not up to me to talk about the
15 suffering and the causes of the suffering. I'm not competent to talk
16 about that. What I'm competent to say is that during that period we did
17 an overhaul of 25 aeroplanes, which cost a lot of money. I was involved
18 heavily in that. I collected information that helped me do that part of
19 job as best as I could.
20 Q. Yes, I accept that. I just want to make sure that I understand
21 you. When you say that the period was good for you, you don't exclude the
22 possibility that for the civilians inside the city, trapped - and that's
23 the word I use, Defence might disagree - the life was not that good as it
24 was for you in Rajlovac?
25 A. There is very little difference, to be honest. In order for me to
1 go from Rajlovac to Pale to buy some food, I had to walk 11 kilometres by
2 the fire -- firing line, and I could be killed at any moment from a stray
3 bullet. We did not have any other route. I don't know how familiar you
4 are with the map - in order to leave Sarajevo we could only go through
5 Mrkonjic and Poljine on a market road and we were always at their side.
6 Whenever we did that, we would go during the night. We dimmed our lights,
7 we drove in the dark. We also suffered -- I'm not saying the people in
8 Sarajevo did not suffer, but we also suffered at the same time. It was
9 war -- wartime. We all suffered.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just the as a matter of interest, how often did
11 you have to do that walk of 11 kilometres?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not see my wife and children
13 for three and a half months because I didn't dare take that road. I was
14 afraid I might get killed. Every time we wanted to go from Sarajevo to
15 Pale, we took a great risk. And if you're referring to how long it took
16 by car, it took more than an hour to negotiate the 11 kilometres of that
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Waespi.
19 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President.
20 Q. Do you accept that the VRS leadership, the leadership of the
21 Republika Srpska, used utilities or threatened to use utilities as a means
22 of war? Do you have any information about that, cutting off electricity,
23 gas, water, as a means of war?
24 A. I am not aware of the leadership of Republika Srpska doing that.
25 I don't remember. I only know that we did not have electricity in
1 Rajlovac. So, when the town had electricity, we had it as well. And as
2 for water, I don't know whether a tap could be turned off somewhere.
3 Electricity outages were common on both sides; that's a fact.
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Waespi, does the indictment make that
5 allegation, that utilities were used as a means of war?
6 MR. WAESPI: Mr. President, that's part of the Prosecution's case,
7 that part of the terror count was that it was within the ability of the
8 VRS and the SRK and, indeed, the political leadership to stop humanitarian
9 aid into the city by firing at UNHCR/UNPROFOR convoys to cut utilities
10 whenever they wanted. That's part of the Prosecution's case.
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: I was asking whether it was in the indictment, or
12 is it just something that you're eliciting through evidence?
13 MR. WAESPI: Exactly. The indictment is fairly short on that.
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
15 MR. WAESPI: But it's clearly within the terror count.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: No, I'm not seeking to prevent you. I just want
17 to be clear about it.
18 Mr. Tapuskovic.
19 MR. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Just briefly, if I may be heard,
20 Your Honours. This is not worded expressly anywhere as a count in the
22 MR. WAESPI: Paragraph 18, Mr. President, of the indictment, and I
23 read it out: "Because of the shelling and sniping against civilians, the
24 life of virtually every Sarajevo inhabitant became a daily struggle to
25 survive. Without gas, electricity, or running water, people were forced
1 to venture outside to find basic living necessities, often risking death."
2 And it goes on. So that's a clear indication, Mr. President, that
3 because electricity, gas, water was often cut-off, people had to venture
4 outside their homes, thus risking their lives.
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Waespi.
7 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President. If Exhibit 03420 could be
8 brought up, please.
9 Q. And this, Witness, is a communication from Viktor Andreev, a UN
10 representative in Sarajevo, to Sergio de Mello who was in Zagreb, and he
11 talks about a meeting between General Rose and the Serb leadership in --
12 on 20th September 1994. That's during the time you talked about there was
13 a lull in activities. And if I can direct you to the third paragraph
14 which is in the English version right at the end of the page. I can read
15 it slowly for you, perhaps you could follow it also on the B/C/S version,
16 if that could be pulled down a little bit.
17 It says here, and he talks about Karadzic saying something. I
18 quote: "In his words, if the international community treats us like a
19 beast, then we will behave like a beast. He specifically mentioned in
20 this regard, the use of utilities as a means of war. As the afternoon
21 progressed, he mellowed somewhat, indicating that he might consider
22 restoring electricity, water, and gas to Sarajevo if these were done in
23 the context of repairs to utilities in Bosnia as a whole."
24 Now, that suggests that, indeed, the VRS leadership -- the RS
25 leadership was capable of influencing the utilities in Sarajevo. Do you
1 accept that?
2 A. I wasn't in charge of the electricity. I wouldn't know how to
3 turn it on and off, so I'm not familiar with the decisions governing that
4 aspect of everything. All I know is that when we had electricity, parts
5 of Sarajevo or Sarajevo also had electricity. But I'm unable to comment
6 on what Karadzic discussed with somebody, whether electricity could be
7 cut-off or switched on and the water is something I don't know anything
9 Q. But you would accept that because of what we see here, what we
10 read here, the civilian population who had no utilities at times because
11 of action of the Republika Srpska, VRS, was suffering, despite the lull
12 described by you in the conflict between May 1994 and 1995. Do you accept
14 A. I can agree to the extent that the population in Ilidza, Vogosca,
15 and Sarajevo suffered the same thing. I was not in any better position
16 than the soldier at Zuc. We were in the same position, except he had a
17 way out through the tunnel and I had a way out 12 kilometres along the
18 sniper line of fire. I cannot confirm that somebody had an intention to
19 do that, to cut-off electricity. I don't know about that. But that I had
20 a hard time without water, that is true. Every man in town without water
21 had the same difficulties anywhere. As for if this was done or not, I
22 don't know. For a while there was talk that the Russians were cutting off
23 the gas, but sometimes there was gas and sometimes there wasn't gas. So
24 if we happened to have gas -- Sarajevo also had gas. I think that gas
25 began to arrive in Sarajevo in 1991 or 1992.
1 Excuse me. Just one thing. I agree in one thing. All of us
2 together in the Sarajevo valley suffered, the civilian population, one
3 army, and the other army. We suffered in this way or that way, depends,
4 but we all suffered. I was on the side of the Army of Republika Srpska.
5 I very infrequently went out to Pale or went anywhere, afraid that I would
6 get killed, moving around was difficult --
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you --
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- And I also acknowledge that it
9 was very difficult for everyone else.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Witness.
11 Mr. Waespi, please move on.
12 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President.
13 Q. Now, you said that you cannot confirm that somebody had an
14 intention to do that, "cut-off electricity."
15 But this document says that Karadzic, indeed, had the intention to
16 use electricity, utilities, as a means of war --
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Waespi, I intended that you should move on to
18 another point.
19 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Move away from that document. The witness has
21 already said he can't comment on the basis of that document.
22 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President. If it could be admitted,
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
25 THE REGISTRAR: As 816, Your Honours -- P816.
1 MR. WAESPI:
2 Q. Another point you mentioned in answer to my question. You said
3 that the people inside Sarajevo could have left Sarajevo through the
4 tunnel. But earlier in answering a question from Defence, you said that
5 mostly the tunnel was used by the military and there was only a small
6 window for civilians. You're not suggesting that every person, every
7 civilian in Sarajevo could have easily moved out of Sarajevo?
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: You mean that every civilian could have easily
9 moved out of Sarajevo through the tunnel?
10 MR. WAESPI: Yes, Mr. President.
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Okay.
12 What do you say to that, Witness?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I stand by my previous statement.
14 The exact schedule of when the military could go through and when the
15 civilians could go through. They waited in line to -- for their turn to
16 go out or to come back. It took -- these were two-hour blocks, two hours
17 to go out of Sarajevo, two hours to come in to Sarajevo. And it was a
18 question of what had to be done, priorities, and so on and so forth. And
19 now it's a question of whether everybody wanted to leave Sarajevo.
20 Probably those who wanted to leave were able to leave. Now when I meet
21 with those who were in town, and we were in the Serbian part of Sarajevo,
22 they would say left, went in and out, five or ten times. So it was
23 possible to do that often, and those who wished to leave were able to do
25 MR. WAESPI:
1 Q. And what's your basis for information that everybody who wanted to
2 leave Sarajevo through the tunnel could leave the tunnel?
3 A. I'm providing the information on the basis of data we received
4 from Sarajevo, and at the end of the war when it all stopped. And many,
5 many our colleagues who had remained in Sarajevo talked about how they
6 went out, about the routes they took to come out. So I don't see any
7 reason that this would be information that was not accurate. It's
8 accurate because there's a whole bunch of people, and from conversations
9 even recently, I have information that, for example, there was frequently
10 water at a specific location and so on.
11 Q. So now you're able to talk about Sarajevo. Previously, you kind
12 of confined your experience to Rajlovac. But why didn't --
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let the witness comment on that, Mr. Waespi.
14 MR. WAESPI: Mm-hmm. Very well.
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Counsel is saying that apparently you are now
16 able to talk about Sarajevo, whereas previously you had confined yourself
17 to Rajlovac. What do you say to that?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The Prosecutor asked me about the
19 tunnel. After the end of the war, after my meetings with a bunch of
20 people from Sarajevo, I am hearing stories about how they went out through
21 the tunnel. I'm talking about the tunnel, not about Sarajevo, that people
22 were leaving Sarajevo through the tunnel --
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Very well, tanks --
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- I'm --
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thanks. It was only right that you should be
1 able to answer that comment from counsel.
2 Yes, Mr. Waespi, move on.
3 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President.
4 Q. Just the last point of that. Why, if you have any information to
5 that extent, did the civilians inside Sarajevo not leave through the
6 tunnel if they were free to do? Why did they stay inside the city,
7 suffering, trapped inside the city? Do you have any comment, any
8 explanation about that? If it was so easy to leave, why didn't they
10 A. It's very difficult to say why someone did not leave. I can give
11 you my own example. My mother-in-law - I don't know how you will
12 interpret that - left Sarajevo in 1994. She probably could have left
13 earlier. People were coming in and people were going out. And I can say
14 how many people were brought to us to Ilidza via UNPROFOR from Sarajevo
15 and went out through Kiseljak. And then probably they returned again.
16 There was some police reports referring to these things, and it was said
17 that this was something that was done quite frequently.
18 Q. Okay. Let's now move on a couple of weeks further in the period
19 you describe as a lull. Are you aware that in December of 1994, UNPROFOR
20 assessed the situation that the Serbs made it almost impossible to have
21 pushed UNPROFOR to the brink of withdrawal; for instance, by not allowing
22 any humanitarian convoys into the city, again almost no gas in the city,
23 and the Serbs firing small guided missiles and anti-tank rockets into
24 the --
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm sorry, Mr. Waespi, I'm sorry. The
1 explanation that the witness gave is not in the transcript at all, but
2 when I allowed him to offer an explanation in relation to the question you
3 asked as to why he was now able to speak about Sarajevo. So I hope it
4 will be put in the transcript when the transcript is corrected.
5 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President.
6 Q. Going back to my next point, the next set of facts relating to the
7 period that you described as a lull, is an assessment by UNPROFOR --
8 MR. WAESPI: Contained, Mr. President, Your Honours, in Exhibit
9 P10, Prosecution Exhibit 10 --
10 Q. -- Where it says the Serbs made the UNPROFOR task almost
11 impossible: "Having pushed UNPROFOR to the brink of withdrawal by not
12 allowing any humanitarian convoys into the city, again almost no gas in
13 the city, and the Serbs firing small guided missiles and anti-tank rockets
14 into the down-town area causing a number of civilian casualties."
15 That's on page 1 and 6 of Prosecution Exhibit 10.
16 Is that something you would also have information about, you're an
17 intelligence officer, you were stationed in Rajlovac, occasionally in
18 Butmir, was that also the assessment you made about the situation in
19 December 1994, a couple of months into the tenure of the accused?
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: After the witness answers, we'll take the
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All I can say is that UNPROFOR did
23 not really move around a lot through Rajlovac. UNPROFOR mostly moved
24 through Kiseljak, Blazuj, Ilidza, and Sarajevo. Those were the routes
25 they used. UNPROFOR would go, there would be humanitarian aid, I cannot
1 recall the date when either the military or civilian police stopped a
2 convoy and found some bullet-proof jackets. We received information that
3 there was some weapons there. Also I don't know if that was the reason, I
4 do not remember, but I remember that that caused tension in relations
5 between the VRS and UNPROFOR. And I know through information we received
6 later whether the bullet-proof vests were returned or not. Perhaps they
7 were kept at Ilidza. I don't know if it was intended for the Army of
8 Bosnia and Herzegovina or to UNPROFOR. I don't know about that, but it
9 does say there that it was stopped at Ilidza. There was also a convoy of
10 humanitarian aid that was moving from Kiseljak towards Sarajevo. I know
11 that things like that did happen, yes.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. On that note we'll take the adjournment
13 until tomorrow.
14 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.47 p.m.,
15 to be reconvened on Friday, the 13th day of
16 July, 2007, at 9.00 a.m.