1 Thursday, 6 November 2008
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning to everyone.
6 Mr. Registrar, would you please call the case.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. Good morning to
8 everyone in the courtroom. This is case number IT-06-90-T, the
9 Prosecutor versus Ante Gotovina, et al.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
11 Mr. Kay, are you ready to continue the cross-examination of
12 Mr. Liborius.
13 MR. KAY: I am, Your Honour, thank you.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then could the witness be brought into the
16 Meanwhile, I take the opportunity to inquire into the following
17 matter. A motion has filed for admission of evidence under Rule 92 bis
18 by the Defence which is at least unusual that a 92 bis motion is filed
19 when the Prosecution still presents its case. Since I do understand that
20 the 92 bis evidence is relevant for a witness who will appear next week
21 we'd like it know when the Prosecution will respond.
22 [Prosecution counsel confer]
23 MR. WAESPI: Good morning, Your Honours. By tomorrow.
24 JUDGE ORIE: By tomorrow. So that we have time to consider it
25 over the weekend.
1 [The witness entered court]
2 MR. KAY: On that matter, for our part, we won't be objecting,
3 Your Honour, on behalf of the Cermak Defence. If that saves me having to
4 do a written filing.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I think it's now on the record.
6 MR. KAY: Yes. Thank you very much.
7 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Your Honour, just for the record the Markac
8 Defence also joins with Mr. Kay.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
10 Good morning, Mr. Liborius.
11 THE WITNESS: Good morning.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Please be seated.
13 THE WITNESS: Good morning.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Liborius, you were with us quite sometime in
15 September. At the beginning of your testimony, you made a solemn
16 declaration that you would speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing
17 but the truth. I would like to remind you that that solemn declaration
18 still binds you when giving testimony now.
19 Mr. Kay will now continue his cross-examination.
20 Mr. Kay, You may proceed.
21 And, Mr. Liborius, could I ask you to focus your answers very
22 much on the questions that are put to you.
23 MR. KAY: Thank you, Your Honour.
24 WITNESS: SOREN LIBORIUS [Resumed]
25 Cross-examination by Mr. Kay: [Continued]
1 Q. Good morning, Mr. Liborius.
2 A. Good morning.
3 Q. I'm going to ask you some questions about a topic today which
4 arises from your statement.
5 If we could just see the original language used. That's Exhibit
6 P801. It's your second statement of -- dated 2005. We're going to be
7 looking at page 5, and it's the third full paragraph down; and it
8 concerns the interviewing of the refugees in the UN barracks.
9 MR. KAY: If we could have page 5 of the English on the screen.
10 That's the Croatian language one there. It's page 5 of the English.
11 Q. If you look on the screen, it will be magnified for you, I hope.
12 The third full paragraph down.
13 MR. KAY: Perhaps we can have it a little bigger. Those at a
14 distance ... there you are.
15 Q. Can you see that, Mr. Liborius? It concerns your statement here
16 about the interviewing of refugees in the UN barracks. You say
17 Mr. Cermak was very much control -- in control of this issue on the
18 ground. You don't doubt he was taking advice from Zagreb. And you
19 conclude by saying you don't feel that:
20 "Cermak was acting in good faith and that his only aim was to get
21 as many Serbs from the UN compound as possible. To him, I felt it was a
23 First of all, in relation to this matter, did you have direct
24 dealings with Mr. Cermak on this issue, yourself?
25 A. The issue of the handling of the refugees or the persons in the
1 UN barracks was mainly dealt with by my humanitarian officer,
2 Mrs. Chelsea Renton. I remember, however, that from time to time we
3 would have conversations with colleagues, and it was also one of the
4 issues dealt with in meetings, I believe, with the EU ambassadors. But I
5 will have to check with that.
6 Q. What we're going to do now is look at various documents, most of
7 which are exhibits in the case, about 90 per cent of them, which give the
8 dealings and involvement of Mr. Cermak with this matter from those who
9 were dealing with him directly, all right?
10 The first document I'd like us to look at which is where this
11 matter comes from is Exhibit D28, looking at paragraph 3 in the English,
12 which is also paragraph 3 in the Croatian.
13 MR. KAY: If we could put the English documents up first, please,
14 because the witness is an English speaker, and it might be quicker.
15 Q. Were you aware that the agreement between the Republic of Croatia
16 and the UN UNCRO dealt with those who were suspects who had committed
17 violations of international criminal law? Were you aware of that?
18 You see paragraph 3 in this document states that people are able
19 to leave the Republic of Croatia
20 except those who committed violations of international criminal law.
21 Were you aware that this issue here is the main spring for the matter
22 concerning the interviewing of people suspected of war crimes who were
23 within the UN compound?
24 A. My recollection of the --
25 Q. Could you just answer whether you were aware of this document.
1 A. My recollection of the agreement between UNCRO and the Croatian
2 government was to address all the issues that was pertaining to the
3 persons in the UN compound. As part of that, as part of that, the issue
4 of interviewing and subsequent following the issues of persons who had
5 committed crimes, it was one of those issues dealt with.
6 Q. I'll repeat the question, and it will be much better if you
7 answer the question, because we'll proceed much more quickly.
8 Were you aware of this matter within the UN/Croatia agreement.
9 It's yes or no.
10 A. The matter was in the agreements.
11 Q. Were you aware?
12 A. That it being a fact of the agreement, yes.
13 Q. You had read this agreement, had you?
14 A. I don't recall it in the form it has on the screen now.
15 Q. Did you read this agreement at the time.
16 A. I don't know at this point in time.
17 Q. Thank you.
18 MR. KAY: Let us go now to a transcript of a video-clip Exhibit
19 D509. This is a press conference given on the 8th of August by the
20 minister of the interior, Ivan Jarnjak.
21 Q. During this press conference, he finished his statement by
23 "We have been monitoring the events and the crimes that have been
24 committed in the occupied area, that we have a mass of evidence we handed
25 over to the Tribunal in The Hague
1 collected and we are now conducting interviews with those persons and
2 those persons that could possibly be accused of committing certain crimes
3 in that area."
4 Were you aware that the Ministry of Interior, which had
5 established the collection centres described in here, was dealing with
6 the issue of the interviews of people in such centres?
7 A. I'm not fully sure I understand the question. The interviews in
8 the centres located at the coast-line or where?
9 Q. No. Let's just take the liberated area. The Ministry of
10 Interior established collection centres by various orders; we know of
11 that in this courtroom, Mr. Liborius.
12 A. Yeah.
13 Q. And I'm asking whether you were aware of the fact that this was
14 an issue that was headed up by the Ministry of Interior concerning
15 interviews at the collection centres. Yes or no?
16 A. It was clear to me that there were Ministry of Interior police
17 personnel at these centres so that they were a part of it; yes, it was
18 pretty clear.
19 Q. Thank you. Can we go to Exhibit P388.
20 This is a letter dated 8th of August, 1995, from General Cermak,
21 sent to General Forand concerning the refugees in the camp, asking for a
22 list, referring to the conditions of normal life, and in the last --
23 second-to-last paragraph:
24 "It is necessary to make a list of men aged between 18 and 60 who
25 will have to be interviewed by representatives of the civilian police of
1 the Republic of Croatia
2 provided with health care, access by the Red Cross and other humanitarian
3 organisations. All those who have not committed crimes also be allowed
4 back to Knin while those who do not want this, may be given transport to
6 authorities of the Republic of Croatia
7 Were you aware that General Forand and General Cermak were
8 dealing directly with each other upon this issue?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Were you aware that it was General Cermak who said that
11 interviews by the MUP could be in cooperation with your people, meaning
12 the UN?
13 A. I recall that the General Forand said that he had conversations
14 with General Cermak about the procedure under which these interviews and
15 the whole handling of the refugee group inside the UN compound would be
16 carried out. I recall that it was the subject of quite a few
17 conversations. So whether General Cermak said, It will be your people,
18 or General Forand said it, I'm simply not in a position to say yes or no.
19 Q. We will go and look at the documents then and see how this
20 unfolded because you have given your views on the matter in the
22 If we turn now to Exhibit D619, paragraph 3, which is on page 2.
23 And in paragraph 3, in the third sentence we can see in this report from
24 Mr. Akashi to Mr. Annan on the 9th of August the report that he gave
25 concerning the issue to the UN as recorded by him, and we see there:
1 "CIVPOL have conducted one patrol with a HV escort in Knin and
2 have attended a meeting between a committee representing refugees, and
3 General Cermak during which it was agreed that they will be allowed to
4 attend interviews of refugees intended to screen out war criminals."
5 So another report on what General Cermak was seeking to achieve
6 in relation to the interviews of these people. Is there any comment you
7 want to make on that?
8 A. My comment is the issue of the interviewing and the whole
9 handling of the group of persons was one that went on for quite a
10 protracted -- quite a protracted time. And it was an issue where
11 General Forand felt particular responsibility because it was people who
12 happened inside his camp for reasons that, no doubt, will be clear to the
13 Court; and that it involved a lot of discussions and that, so to speak,
14 the positions as I recall it today, the Croatian authorities, including
15 General Cermak, from the start of these discussions were a little bit
16 different from where they ended, once the agreement was reached how to
17 handle these people.
18 I also want to comment that my impression was the issue of how
19 the interviews to identify persons who had committed crimes was going to
20 be conducted was particularly sensitive and that the Croatian side, from
21 the start, wanted to do that themselves on Croatian-controlled territory,
22 and that later on it was established that it would be also monitored by
23 CIVPOL; it would inside containers, and there will be various procedures
24 guiding that so as to secure some sort of orderly conduct of that
1 Q. Thank you. Shall we go to Exhibit P359 now, and page 3 of this
2 document. Well, we'll do it much more quicker by going to page 4 and
3 paragraph (C) 8.
4 This is a document that is dated the 8th of August, 1995, it's an
5 UNCRO sitrep released by General Forand; and, again, it is a report of
6 General Cermak meeting the detained people in the camp and describing
7 measures which the Croatian government was prepared to take to allow them
8 to get on with their lives.
9 Did you ever see that document yourself that was handed out by
10 General Cermak concerning those people in.
11 It's not a trick question. It's just --
12 A. I was asked to -- to look at a paper being brought up to me. I
13 want to read it. Thank you.
14 Yes, and what was your question, please?
15 Q. Were you aware of the document that was issued by General Cermak
16 concerning the measures the Croatian government was prepared to take to
17 allow those refugees to get on with their lives? Were you aware of that?
18 A. Yes, I was aware of that.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 If we go to Exhibit D300, this is that document dated the 9th of
21 August, 1995, headed: Information. And you can see it there in the
22 English that various rights and liberties were set out which
23 General Cermak had written on this document on that matter.
24 Did you see this?
25 A. I remember having seen and heard the General having this list of
1 promises and provisions made.
2 Q. Yes. And did you -- were you there when he publicly stated them
3 as much in terms to the DPs in the camp?
4 A. No, I don't recall that.
5 Q. Right. If we go to Exhibit D62 --
6 A. But I want to add that the paper you present me here was being
7 widely discussed also in town and -- and it was the subject of a lot of
8 conversations in those days, all these provisions and guarantees that
9 would be provided.
10 Q. Can we --
11 A. And then I'm prepared later on how we monitored the
12 implementation of them. But we can get back it that.
13 MR. KEHOE: Can we go to Exhibit D620.
14 Q. This is a Human Rights Action Team daily report of the 10th of
16 If we go to the second page where we have the heading: Refugees,
17 displaced persons. Paragraph 5, paragraph 5 blown up, thank you. This
18 tells us about General Cermak having a meeting with, in fact, Mr. Al-Alfi
19 and General Forand separately and separately with the committee of the
20 displaced persons, as well as a deputy minister. And it concerns the
21 issue of the agreement about the interviewing of detained persons of
22 draft age at the Sector South headquarters, which UNCRO and international
23 organisations will monitor as appropriate.
24 And can you see General Cermak said the interviewing process will
25 start tomorrow; and Colonel Cermak, written here, reiterated the Croatian
1 authorities availability in transporting detained persons to check their
2 houses and in order to freely decide whether they want to Croatia
3 remain. And it says in a few cases the practice had been implemented.
4 But can you see that here, that there was General Cermak, in
5 fact, at a very early stage wanting these interviews to take place as
6 well as agreeing on his part that they could be monitored by UNCRO and
7 international organisations, and they could take place in Sector South.
8 Do you see that?
9 A. I read -- I read the words "the results" -- the words on the
10 screen, I think was a -- the conclusion of, as I referred to earlier,
11 these conversations. So if you want to say that I will here, now decide
12 whether Cermak had that initiative at the start of that conversation, I
13 repeat, I'm not in a position to say yes or no because I was not at that
15 Q. No, but you've made your view in a statement. You can change
16 that point of view if you want to now and say --
17 A. I certainly don't intend to that. Because I rely on my
18 monitoring observations and what I gathered from my humanitarian officers
19 from my own experience in the field and from my conversations with
21 So what I'm referring to in my statement is my consolidated
22 opinion. If I'm asked to comment on papers where I was not participating
23 in meetings, I'm afraid that I will adopt the same approach as last time
24 we discussed how I could comment on a lot of other papers. You can
25 present a lot of papers where the result of a long meeting or negotiation
1 process; but I'm still not in a position to say yes or no or who took
2 that initiate. I think that you should ask General Forand.
3 Q. We have. But you're not to ask me questions.
4 A. Thank you very much.
5 Q. And you're to answer my questions in the courtroom. And what I'm
6 asking you is: Were you aware from your monitoring that General Cermak
7 at the start, his position was fully in line with the UNCRO and UN
9 Were you aware of that before you gave your opinion in your
11 A. What I am aware of and what was in my statement was a result of
12 my conversations with General Forand and the UN staff at that time and my
13 other staff that followed that issue closely.
14 Q. Let's go to another document there, as the Bench can see it.
15 Let's go to Exhibit D310. This, again, is from General Forand, a sitrep
16 of the 14th of August; and it's his commander's assessment we see on
17 page 2.
18 Commander's assessment, you'll see in the second sentence:
19 "Despite negotiations with General Cermak and the apparent
20 establishment of procedures to enable progress to be made, no real
21 progress has been achieved to date, nor does it appear that any will be
22 soon. Indeed, this is an suggestion that General Cermak will shortly not
23 have any say in this matter. It is it ambiguous at this time as to who
24 would assume real responsibility and decision-making powers."
25 And down in paragraph 2, we can see the urgency of the matter:
1 "Pressure must be brought to bear at UNCRO and UNPF levels to
2 relocate refugee who is are in the Sector South compound."
3 So what had happened, Mr. Liborius, was this, that General Cermak
4 had proceeded with negotiations and said that there would be various
5 safeguards but obstacles were being put in his way. Were you aware of
7 A. My recollection was that the -- on one side, the declaration of
8 measures and rights, as you referred to in the 9 August statement, and
9 the realities seen on the ground reflected two different worlds; and I
10 think that that is illustrated in the first paragraph of General Forand's
11 statement. Whether that included -- or whether that means that the
12 pressure in Zagreb
13 that. I think the pressure throughout the chain of command down to the
14 very last individual military police officer in the field was to be
15 increased because what was the situation was that there was a lot of nice
16 words issued; and, on the other hand, you saw those words not being
17 implemented in practice throughout the whole chain of command from the
18 top to the bottom.
19 Q. Well, on the face of it you will agree that we have looked at
20 General Forand and General Cermak quite clearly coming to agreement; and
21 General Cermak giving rights that the UN found acceptable. Would you
22 agree with that?
23 A. We can agree a lot on the face of it. That is the whole problem.
24 When you look on the face of it, the problem is those who had power
25 didn't follow the words.
1 Q. It could also --
2 A. Where that could be, from top to bottom, it's not for me it
4 Q. And would you accept this issue, that this could also demonstrate
5 that, in fact, General Cermak had no power.
6 A. Then we're back to the issue of how far does his power extend. I
7 felt; and I discovered in my monitoring activities and so did my teams
8 that his name gave increased access throughout the month of August, that
9 his frequent reference in papers, Croatian newspapers, media, his
10 meetings with all sorts of officials we have just looked at some UN
11 officials meant that his authorities was broadening. I saw his authority
12 broadening throughout the sector.
13 And on the other side, you say on the face of it, it appears that
14 he has no power and I think last time we met you, you portrayed him as
15 basically being in charge of municipal garbage collection. Then I asked
16 myself the question why on earth didn't he tell us so? And told that to
17 all other persons he met. He kept meeting people, and I saw that his
18 authority was broadening in the sector.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kay, it seems that Mr. Liborius doesn't share
20 the suggested conclusions.
21 Please proceed.
22 MR. KAY: I will, Your Honour.
23 Perhaps we can look at Exhibit D301.
24 Q. And this is a document, you'll be aware of the fact that
25 Mr. Cermak had met the detained persons in the camp. He'd had meetings
1 with them. He'd had much discussion with them about staying in Croatia
2 guarantees of rights, and this was a document sent to him, headed: The
3 refugees from Sector -- South Sector camp in Knin express their thanks to
4 Mr. Cermak, 15th August, 1995, and signed by a man called Branko Pupovac
5 and saying for helping them in these hard times as refugees, "And we want
6 you to know how much we appreciate your help and concern you showed us."
7 So that was certainly an expression there of what was happening
8 there on the ground, don't you agree?
9 A. That touches on one of the issues during my present occupation
10 actually. If you look at the card on the right-hand side. It is one of
11 these standard issues. You will in my trade always introduce a letter
12 saying we very much respect and thank you and so on and will end with a
13 lot of niceties. When you say certainly, I don't share that "certainly.
14 We also had an issue last time we met that was a letter of
15 Claudio Dei where you have on the one hand you have all the diplomatic
16 niceties, and on the other hand you don't see the underlying concerns
17 because that is not -- it's is not common simply to express that. And I
18 see that it's one of these standard cards you would issue to almost
19 everybody who had been concerned or introduced to the matter as a
20 forward-looking measure of trying to improve your situation.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 MR. KAY: Can we go to Exhibit P40.
23 Q. What I'm doing, Mr. Liborius, is taking us on a journey through
24 all the UN documents that ended up with the interviews an ended up with
25 the eventually lease of the people in set in a step by step basis from
1 all the records.
2 So Exhibit P40 if we turn to page 2, in the numerical form. It's
3 page 3, in actual numbers, and go to paragraph 5.
4 This document is from the 17th of August, events dated 18th of
5 August, by Mr. Al-Alfi -- no, next page, please, and paragraph 5 under
6 the heading: Refugees and displaced persons.
7 And at this stage of the 17th of August, we can see from the
8 Human Rights Action Team in Knin there was a tentative meeting scheduled
9 with General Cermak the next day to discuss final arrangement for the
10 departure of the great majority of DPs from UN HQ Knin, to Yugoslavia
12 viewpoint, urgently required solution; and it's also urgent is that DPs
13 and other UN compounds in the sector three UN companies reported Croatian
14 policemen showing up, demanding war criminals be handed over.
15 So the headquarters in Knin was preparing a written request to
16 General Cermak for a Croatian escort to bring those people promptly to
17 Knin from outlying camps.
18 Were you aware of that problem, that some displaced persons had
19 gone to other UN bases outside Sector South where they'd taken refuge and
20 that was causing a problem; and the UN wanted to bring those people to
21 Knin so that they were in the Sector South camp? Were you aware of that?
22 A. I was reading on the screen, did that reflect what you were
23 talking about?
24 Q. Yes.
25 A. Okay. I was aware that there was a group of people, yeah.
1 Q. And did you know the UN were asking General Cermak's request for
2 help in that?
3 A. No, I don't know that.
4 Q. Right.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kay, you said that these people were outside
6 Sector South. Reading
7 MR. KAY: I didn't mean that, Your Honour. I didn't mean outside
8 Sector South camp, I think that's what I said, in fact.
9 JUDGE ORIE: I heard you say a different thing, and it is
10 reflected on the record.
11 MR. KAY: All right, yeah.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Because the document reads "in the sector."
13 Please proceed.
14 MR. KAY: It's not part of the issue, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE ORIE: I just want to know whether I miss something.
16 Please proceed.
17 MR. KAY: Can we go now to Exhibit D56, which is the follow-up
18 from that last document we were looking at. This is a document from
19 Mr. Al-Alfi dated the 18th of August, and we need to go to page three of
20 this document, second paragraph.
21 Q. And can you see there that at a meeting with General Cermak,
22 Mr. Al-Alfi, with others, handed over a formal letter asking
23 General Cermak to facilitate moving all the displaced persons, numbering
24 55, accommodated inside UNCRO battalion locations, to move them to
25 Sector South headquarters; and General Cermak gave his approval and --
1 for such movement to take place that afternoon under escort.
2 Further down in the page, in the third paragraph, the
3 Sector South issue is discussed, with General Cermak asking for a list of
4 those who made a final decision to leave Croatia. The list was to be
5 submitted in that evening by the UN, and there was consultation that he
6 was informed about the ongoing efforts at UNPF headquarters level, in
7 consultation with the government of Croatia
8 regarding the transportation of those displaced persons who opt to leave
10 "We also understood from General Cermak that the idea of carrying
11 out investigations with the displaced persons may be limited to a very
12 small number of the displaced persons, probably between 10 and 20 and
13 that that they would ask for the handing over of those persons. It was
14 said by Mr. Al-Alfi that the investigation should be carried out inside
15 Sector South headquarters and then the individual cases shall be
16 discussed between the UN headquarters and government of Croatia."
17 Again, were you aware of that, that in fact, at this meeting
18 here, General Cermak was putting forward very small numbers of people
19 that would be needed for interview? Were you ever informed of that?
20 A. I recall that the number of persons wanted for close interviewing
21 decreased throughout the days and the weeks, and I think that the paper
22 we have in front of us here, you say from the 18th of August is an
23 indication that, as I illustrated before, the two quite different
24 positions coming to a merging point; and I understand from Mr. Al-Alfi's
25 position and the words he spoke at that time that the insistence that it
1 be carried out under orderly fashion inside the Sector South headquarters
2 was contributing to the fact that the number decreased.
3 Q. Let us look now at the next stage in what happened, and bearing
4 in mind what you have said there, let us go now to Exhibit P369.
5 This is a sitrep from headquarters, Sector South. The part that
6 we need to look at is page 3 and paragraph 8, under the heading:
7 Humanitarian aid:
8 "After a meeting between General Cermak and Senior Liaison
9 Officer Sector South, it was agreed all refugees in unit locations should
10 be relocated to Knin. General Cermak showed a great deal of flexibility
11 and cooperation in compromising to finally resolve this long-standing and
12 difficult issue. Once agreement was reached, rapid action followed."
13 If we go to the last sentence:
14 "All refugees also be offered the option of moving to Knin under
15 UN protection or returning to their homes. This operation is ongoing at
16 this time."
17 Well, were you aware of General Cermak being described as showing
18 great flexibility and cooperation in compromising this long-standing and
19 difficult issue?
20 A. Yeah, I think that the issue was -- was dealt with finally in a
21 prudent fashion.
22 MR. KAY: Can we go to Exhibit D311.
23 Q. This is a letter dated the 19th of August, 1995 from
24 General Forand to General Cermak, and it's a letter of appreciation -
25 assistance in moving displaced persons.
1 Were you aware that General Forand had sent a letter of
2 appreciation in these terms to General Cermak for his help, cooperation,
3 and what he did?
4 A. He did verbally share the information with us.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 MR. KAY: Let us go to 65 ter 4123. This is one of the few
7 documents not previously exhibited before, Your Honour.
8 It's a document dated the 20th of August from Mr. Al-Alfi and
9 confirms, if we can to page 2, top of the page:
10 "General Cermak is expected to discuss details of the departure
11 of the displaced persons as early as tomorrow. He is also expected to
12 submit a list of names whom he would ask to be handed over to Croatian
13 authority for war crimes.
14 "On the 18th of August, 51 more displaced persons were brought
15 from the various locations of battalions to Sector South headquarters.
16 Once the procedure for the departure of the displaced persons out of
18 villages to ask for the same."
19 What we have looked at there is the successful completion of one
20 issue, the displaced persons moving to UN headquarters at Sector South in
21 Knin, and also still the outstanding issue of the whole refugees and
22 those suspected of war crimes who were in Sector South headquarters.
23 That's where we've come to so far at this date, Mr. Liborius.
24 And you will remember that until this time, General Cermak had
25 been talking about small numbers of people being interviewed and under
1 circumstances where the UN had a role to play. Would you agree? That's
2 what we've looked at.
3 A. We have looked at that.
4 Q. Thank you.
5 MR. KAY: Can that document be admitted as an Exhibit, please,
6 Your Honour.
7 MR. WAESPI: No objection, Mr. President.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
9 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that becomes Exhibit number D894.
10 JUDGE ORIE: D894 is admitted into evidence.
11 MR. KAY: Exhibit D621, I've included for historical purposes in
12 this narrative that it is important that we see every stage. Exhibit
13 D621 was a letter by Mr. Al-Alfi to General Cermak on the 21st of August,
14 1995, in which he provides a list of persons who wished to leave
15 Sector South camp and leave Croatia
16 ensuring or suggesting that there will be additional names of people not
17 on the list.
18 Q. Were you aware of the list of people - we're not to go through it
19 in detail - but it's on the second page of this document of names from
20 the camp?
21 A. I was aware that a list -- lists were being drawn up.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 MR. KAY: We can now progress from this document as there's no
24 point in looking at all the names, Your Honour; and there's no point in
25 broadcasting it, and move to Exhibit D312.
1 Exhibit D312, I would like us to take particular care and
2 attention as to where it comes from.
3 Q. At the top of the page you can see when it comes on the screen
4 security an information service, Knin garrison, dated the 21st of August,
5 1995, and it's sent to General Cermak. Can you see that, Mr. Liborius?
6 A. If it is enlarged, probably.
7 Q. I saw you were taking notes then when I was introducing the
8 document, but I'll repeat it, security and information service send this
9 document on the 21st of August to General Cermak; and it's a list of
10 names, list of persons at UNCRO camp in Knin against whom criminal
11 reports have been filed for crimes against the Republic of Croatia
12 And, in fact, this document was greater than the numbers that
13 General Cermak had been speaking about, which you'll recollect we noted.
14 This actually goes up to 72 names, if we go to the last -- go to page 4.
15 See, 72 names. So the security services had sent Mr. Cermak this
16 document, telling him that these people, 72 names, were those wanted,
17 suspected of war crimes.
18 Were you aware of that?
19 A. I have not seen the Croatian service letter to General Cermak
20 before. I was, however, aware of the general discussion that was in the
21 area at that time, that a number of Croatians felt that the UN garrison
22 was one big safe haven for war criminals and that they wanted to lay
23 their hand on them. I haven't seen that -- that for obvious reasons,
24 that particular document before.
25 Q. You see, pertinent to this issue that we've just looked at
1 Mr. Cermak was talking about far fewer numbers of people, 10 or 20, and
2 then there comes about a change caused by the security services. Were
3 you aware that, in fact, it was others and not Mr. Cermak who sought
4 increased numbers of people for questioning?
5 A. The issue of 10 or 20, as we looked at before on the 18th of
6 August, I think was the result of intense discussion, as I said
7 previously, and the -- from a starting point where the numbers were quite
9 I don't know if that satisfies your question.
10 Q. I think we've seen that the starting point was numbers lower and
11 this has now been increased by another agency.
12 A. I recall the atmosphere on the, so to speak, on the Croatian side
13 of the table from the very start of the issue was, as I said, the UN
14 compound was a safe haven for criminals. We have to have them all. We
15 will have to conduct our own interviews. We will decide ourself how and
16 where; and then through intense discussions and mainly through insistence
17 on the side of General Forand and his staff that a compromise was reached
18 where both the procedure was different to that of the Croatian intention
19 from the start and the number was lowered.
20 Now, the inner deliberations between the Croatian authorities,
21 the documents you present me here, I would just expect as natural. I
22 haven't seen the paper before but it comes as no surprise to me.
23 Q. Let us now lock at another document in this chain because we're
24 in fact looking at these negotiations, Mr. Liborius, as to what was said
25 and done at the time.
1 That is exhibit 65 ter 1220. And it is a Sector South sitrep
2 report of the 26th of -- of the 21st of August from General Forand. And
3 you can see in paragraph 3 on the first page:
4 "Meeting with Croatian authorities. The military governor of
5 Knin asked to meet commander Sector South, at HQ Sector South. Discuss
6 issues including displaced persons."
7 We see the main topic of discussion was the departure of the
8 displaced persons under UN protection at headquarters Sector South and
9 the question of when the Croatian authorities would be willing to allow
10 them to leave. Mr. Cermak had been provided with a list of the 687
11 persons, we've seen that, out of a total population of 731 who wished to
12 leave, including people at the hospital. And, at this point, Mr. Cermak
13 indicated he now had a list of 74 persons under suspicion of war crimes:
14 "He said he thought the list was too long and could be shortened.
15 He also said that once he provided the list of persons for who there was
16 proof of war crimes, then these persons must be handed over to the
17 Croatian authorities."
18 Well, from that statement there, doesn't that contradict your
19 statement that you gave in Exhibit P801:
20 "I did not feel Cermak was acting in good faith, and his only aim
21 was to get as many Serbs from the UN compound as possible."
22 Doesn't this contradict what you have asserted there,
23 Mr. Liborius?
24 A. Well, not necessarily, because, you see, I just happen to have a
25 glimpse at the last page there with the list of the names; and I saw one
1 of the ladies named Renata somebody with a remark saying, Maybe she was
2 the sister of some minister.
3 And you arrive at a different conclusion because I think you
4 failed to realize or illustrate the first discussions that went on in
5 which, as it was told to me by UN staff who conducted that, it was quite
6 tough talks about how you handle this issue and you cannot just -- where
7 their position was you cannot just throw a number saying everybody who
8 would be in the camp would be liable for blanco [sic], claims that they
9 were war criminals, and we have to interview them.
10 And during such negotiations I would call them gloves-off talks.
11 There comes a point where it was brought to General Cermak that have you
12 to present some sustainable information what you want these persons for,
13 what you allege that they have done, and in that process you grind down
14 the numbers.
15 Of course 20, 21st August the General would be perfectly aware
16 that coming forward with a list saying again one of the names, just as an
17 example, if you bring that previous display up, having that particular
18 lady, Renata, why would you want to interview her because you suspect her
19 to be a war criminal; she may be the sister of a minister. We have a
20 process under which or during which the General is perfectly aware that
21 such a thing would never fly that the issue having attracted
22 international attention was a burning hot potato and that some resort
23 would have to be achieved and you have to sacrifice your initial, quite
24 overambitious approach.
25 Whether that was the good, well, and honest intention of
1 General Cermak from the very start, my monitoring activities did not
2 suggest that and I think that one of the issues procedural issues that
3 may, as I said -- we failed to see the complete picture, that when you
4 have for example the letter from General Cermak thanking General
5 Forand -- from General Forand to General Cermak thanking him for the
6 assistance in bringing refugees from the UN camps outside Sector South
7 headquarters, it is one of those typical letters you send to your
8 opposite number when you want to hammer done your conclusion, I realize
9 that you have accepted my point I want to thank you for being so
10 cooperative; it is a standard diplomatic procedure and you fail to
11 portray the full picture, that this is a true indicator that you have a
12 very, very forward-leaning and constructive approach from the start of
13 the negotiations. Had we had that forward dealing approach, I'm sure
14 that we would have resolved that question very, very sooner.
15 Q. Haven't you contradicted yourself in relation to the evidence we
16 were looking at because General Cermak started at 10. He didn't start
17 high and work down. This is the point, Mr. Liborius, that you are
18 failing to see, and don't you accept that, that by your very own
19 statement you contradicted yourself. He started at 10 but then it was
20 taken out of his hands and made greater.
21 If you don't accept it, very well, we'll move on.
22 A. If you look at the -- the Al-Alfi paper from the 18th of
23 August ...
24 MR. KAY: Your Honour, might this document be made an exhibit.
25 MR. WAESPI: No objections.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
2 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that becomes Exhibit number D895.
3 JUDGE ORIE: D895 is admitted into evidence.
4 MR. KEHOE: Sorry, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
6 MR. KAY: We'll look at Exhibit D622 now, please, which is from
7 Mr. Al-Alfi. It's dated the 21st of August.
8 Q. And for a complete picture, we've included this although it's his
9 report of the same meeting. And as he saw it Cermak informed the
10 meeting, in paragraph 2, about the list of 74 names. He further informed
11 us he is continuing his contact with Zagreb
12 he puts here, to 15 names or so, a figure that was missed out of the last
13 report of the meeting:
14 "General Cermak ruled out the basic idea of carrying out the
15 interviews with all those names between the ages of 18 and 60 or any
16 possibility of accepting that the interviews be carried out inside
17 Sector South HQ."
18 So, again, what he had greed to originally was now being ruled.
19 He had agreed that that could take place in Sector South HQ, but now that
20 was being changed. Did you appreciate that, that Mr. Cermak, in fact,
21 was being overruled on matters?
22 A. As you indicate, timing is crucial to understand the picture,
23 that as the matter had been burning up until 18, 19, 20, 21st August,
24 General Cermak was fully realizing that you had to arrive at a conclusion
25 as you indicate in your previous -- one of your displaced Al-Alfi paper
1 from 18 August where he mentioned the figure 10 to 20.
2 So you see, so to speak from a high point you see a decrease in
3 numbers and then we are now at 18, 20, 21st August, and then suddenly
4 comes up further instructions from headquarters.
5 I do not doubt that the papers you presented from -- from the
6 Croatian service is accurate, but it is just an illustration that you
7 will have had a process in the Knin area where intense discussions with
8 General Forand and his staff arriving at a sensible way to handle this
9 issue. Then this becomes, of course, evident to other agencies and then
10 they try to bring back the situation as it was before this compromise was
11 reached. To reach a compromise, you have to work on your opposite number
12 and of course that was the result of many, many days but to suggest that
13 you're -- the General Cermak originally had such, so to speak, low
14 ambition, I think is actually contradicted in the display you show.
15 So I do not feel an urge to change my statement. Thank you.
16 Q. Let's then turn to page 2 of this document because you gave us
17 your views on negotiations, and it seems that Mr. Cermak is giving away
18 all his cards, then, according to your argument because he pointed out
19 that UN CIVPOL should be involved in the negotiations to be carried out
20 by CRO
21 position and giving away bits. He's actually said they can be
22 interviewed in the camp, as we know at the start, you can be there,
23 international organisations can be there, CRO POL can be involved in the
24 investigations and UN CIVPOL as well.
25 Don't you see that?
1 A. Yes, on the 20th, 21st August.
2 Q. No, that was fright the beginning. That was right as we saw on
3 the 10th of August. 9th of August.
4 So he is taking a remarkably liberal position with his
5 negotiations, isn't he, giving away all these things. He is not playing
6 the hard-ball game that you were saying that you might have done. Isn't
7 that right?
8 A. I think this is going a bit in circles.
9 Q. Very well.
10 A. I think that the interpretation of all my monitoring activity and
11 that of my fellow colleagues is reflected in the -- in the brief
12 paragraph. If we want to go on this in circles we can do so but I'm not
13 sure it serves a purpose.
14 MR. KAY: Let us go to Exhibit P45 now, Exhibit P45. And that is
15 the HRAT report of the same meeting that we've just been looking at,
16 Exhibit D622. If we turn to page 3 here. And again I do this out of
17 completeness so that it is followed.
18 Q. General Cermak said:
19 "The UN can organise the convoy for the DPs accommodated in UN
20 Sector South headquarters who wish to depart to FRY and Bosnia. However,
21 he requested UNCRO hand over to the Croatian authorities 75 draft-age
22 males currently in the UN compound. General Cermak stated those men
23 would have be interviewed outside UN premises. UN CIVPOL will be
24 authorised to monitor the interviews and UNCRO representatives reiterated
25 their position. The meeting was adjourned. General Cermak promised to
1 provide a shorter list, 15 names, including the males that are suspected
2 of war crimes and for this reason have to be under Croatian custody.
3 This matter is becoming more and more urgent and requires solution at a
4 higher level."
5 We've just looked at that, said that we've seen everyone's report
6 of the meeting, Mr. Liborius.
7 If we now go to Exhibit D624, this is another UN Sector South HQ
8 sitrep report. If we turn to page 2, and it is heads: UNCRO meetings.
9 And the ECMM is referred to this as being in addition to
10 Sector South escort. So can you see General Forand chaired a meeting to
11 discuss the movement of the IDPs. You can see who it was attended by,
12 all the senior people, including the Red Cross. It was agreed that UNHCR
13 would order buses for 800 persons, that it would be a departure on the
14 26th of August, convoy command will be the Senior Liaison Officer for
15 Sector South, various agencies who will be escorts, approached to be
17 A major issue remained to be addressed at a high level is the UN
18 oversight of review of charges expected to be levelled shortly by the
19 government of Croatia
20 camp. And an answer to the question was urgently required.
21 If we go to the next document, which is Exhibit D313 --
22 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kay, we give the French translators an
23 opportunity to --
24 MR. KAY: Oh, sorry, Your Honour. Thank you.
25 Q. Exhibit D313, which is a letter dated 23rd of August, and comes
1 from the officer who was the Senior Liaison Officer we've seen referred
2 to in this matter, Lieutenant-Colonel Tymchuk, who wrote to the Croatian
3 army liaison office in Knin and responding to a request for a meeting on
4 that day:
5 "I have passed to commander Sector South your request for a
6 meeting to deliver on the instructions of General Cermak a list of those
7 persons under UN protection."
8 It goes into the detail we've looked at.
9 If we can go to the last six lines:
10 "The disposition of those accused of war crime will be agreed on
11 a case-by-case basis between the UN and the government of Croatia. If
12 General Cermak is unable to proceed in this way, as we have agreed then
13 the commander of Sector South would like to be informed in writing of the
14 position of the government of Croatia
15 negotiations may begin to resolve this issue."
16 MR. KAY: It's Exhibit D313, we should be looking at.
17 THE WITNESS: Your Honour, I have a question.
18 MR. KAY: I think we're looking at a different document here. I
19 don't understand how it happened. But it should be page 3 of this
20 document, is it?
21 JUDGE ORIE: Your question, Mr. Liborius.
22 THE WITNESS: My question was, as I am, I believe, asked to refer
23 to two documents on the screen, I started to read, actually that
24 particular document, and my question is: Some of these documents are
25 best seen in their entirety, so if I could have time to read them.
1 JUDGE ORIE: If you feel any need to read portions of the
2 document, but I don't think the Chamber will allow to you read the
3 entirety of the hundreds and hundreds of documents.
4 THE WITNESS: No, no, it was just the Tymchuk report we had in
5 front of us.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. As a matter of fact, that appeared to be not
7 the right document. So, therefore, Mr. Liborius, forget about that
8 document. As Mr. Kay indicated, the wrong document was on the screen.
9 MR. KAY: Yeah.
10 Q. This is a letter from Colonel Tymchuk on the 23rd of August.
11 Again, it's just put in as part of the picture, Mr. Liborius, so that all
12 the documents are laid out as to what happened and who said what, what
13 their positions were so that it is fully indicated. And you can see
14 there in paragraph 2:
15 "The disposition of those accused of war crimes will be agreed on
16 a case-by-case basis between the UN government and the government of
18 of Sector South would like to be informed of writing of the position of
19 the government of Croatia
20 begin to be resolved."
21 MR. KAY: Thank you. We can move on from there to the next
22 document, which is 2D03-0058.
23 Q. This is an document dated the 23rd of August from General Cermak
24 to General Forand; and it's the list of people against whom criminal
25 charges were filed, it says in the document, regarding crimes against the
1 Republic of Croatia
2 If we just go to page 2, we can see it was sent by
3 General Cermak, to General Forand. And this time it is 62 names.
4 So that was the position at this date, on the 23rd of August. In
5 relation to that matter, were you aware of the names being reduced during
6 the period that the UN and Croatian government were negotiating?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Thank you. Given these slight reductions in number, according to
9 your position, General Cermak would have been undermining the
10 negotiations of the Croatian government, because he was suggesting 10 to
11 20 or 15 people. Isn't that right?
12 A. No. The -- and I am afraid that we have to say that we're going
13 in circles.
14 The issue of the convoy departure at that point in time we are
15 now into the 20s of August was as it was illustrated in Colonel Tymchuk's
16 letter from the 24th of August. That the first list as it said in the
17 paper was deadlined by the Senior Liaison Officer accepted -- he did not
18 accept that, and again gave the position that the convoy cannot leave
19 before these persons are handed over. So if you look at the procedure,
20 the departure of the convoy was, to the best of my observations at that
21 time, being obstructed, until a solution satisfactory to the Croatian
22 side was found regarding the issue of the detained. I do not question -
23 and that's important for you to understand - I do not question there was
24 a need to find people who, no doubt, had, if you wish to say, blood on
25 their hands.
1 The procedure under which that is done, and the evidence that is
2 brought forward of course was the centre of discussion; and I do not want
3 you to portray that this issue of the detainees in my eyes was a matter
4 of just getting everyone on the buses, out of there, that everybody on
5 the buses who would be quite bad people get away with it.
6 The issue was to get an orderly procedure.
7 MR. KAY: Your Honour, may this document be made an exhibit, and
8 I note the time for the adjournment.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Waespi.
10 MR. WAESPI: No objections.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D896, Your Honours.
13 JUDGE ORIE: D896 is admitted into evidence.
14 If the usher could escort Mr. Liborius out of the courtroom. We
15 will have a break, Mr. Liborius.
16 THE WITNESS: When should I be ready?
17 JUDGE ORIE: Approximately 25 minutes, so we resume at
18 approximately 11.00.
19 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
20 [The witness stands down]
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kay, the last question was a relevant one, not
22 about the break, but when will I be ready.
23 Could you give us any further -- microphone, please.
24 MR. KAY: Your Honour, I have just got 14 documents to go
25 through. I have decided rather than dealing with other topics with this
1 witness, I'm just dealing with this matter. It's entirety -- from our
2 point of view, we feel it is important that the Trial Chamber doesn't get
3 bits of information, that we have to go through it in a process so that
4 the whole story is before the Court.
5 JUDGE ORIE: I didn't keep a record on your efforts on one
6 document, but in time that would be mean approximately?
7 MR. KAY: 45 minutes.
8 JUDGE ORIE: 45 minutes.
9 Then Mr. Kuzmanovic.
10 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Your Honour, I don't anticipate more than an
12 JUDGE ORIE: If the parties could endeavour to see whether in one
13 session we -- of course the estimate is now 1 hour 45 minutes to see
14 whether in one and a half hour if you, Mr. Kuzmanovic, could save ten
15 minutes and Mr. Kay another five minutes, because testimony of this
16 witness takes quite a bit of time. I'm not blaming anyone for that, but
17 it is of some concern.
18 Mr. Waespi, how much time you anticipate at this moment you would
20 MR. WAESPI: At this point, ten to 15 minutes.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Ten to 15 minutes.
22 Which mens that we should try to finish with this witness before
23 the end of this morning's session.
24 We have a break, and we'll resume at 11.00.
25 --- Recess taken at 10.36 a.m.
1 [The witness takes the stand]
2 --- On resuming at 11.03 a.m.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kay, you may proceed.
4 MR. KAY: Thank you, Your Honour.
5 Can we look at Exhibit D626, and it's just a brief letter, dated
6 the 24th of August from General Cermak to General Forand, asking to meet
7 him with Mr. Al-Alfi.
8 Q. And, again, this is just put in for completeness, Mr. Liborius,
9 as I'm sure you'd appreciate, which is part of the narrative. We have it
10 there. On the 24th of August, a meeting was arranged.
11 And we now move to D627, we can see another letter dated the 24th
12 of August, 1995; Exhibit D627.
13 And Mr. Al-Alfi sent to General Cermak an update on the displaced
14 persons and with that, there was a list of further names as had been
15 forecast might happen by Mr. Al-Alfi when he sent the original list.
16 Do you remember that, Mr. Liborius?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Yes. We won't look at the name there, but it's just part of the
19 narrative, and then we can get back to the meetings.
20 MR. KAY: Exhibit D151, please.
21 Q. This is a document, again from Mr. Al-Alfi. As the contents of
22 the message show, this was a report on that meeting that was requested on
23 the 24th of August, and we can see that General Forand was there. The
24 matters that were discussed were these:
25 "General Forand ... informed that the position of the government
1 of Croatia
2 departure of the displaced persons presently accommodated inside
3 Sector South headquarters until 62 persons wanted for war crimes are
4 handed to the Croatian authorities. General Cermak repeated clearly that
5 this is the last order he received reflecting the official position of
6 the government of Croatia
7 Just on that matter there, did you appreciate that in fact
8 General Cermak had been acting on instructions on this matter from higher
9 authorities in Zagreb
10 A. The procedure up until that time, I'm sure, would entail
11 discussions with higher authorities.
12 Q. We can see in paragraph 2 that the list was handed over. It
13 didn't include the types of charges against persons. Page 2 of the
14 document, and General Cermak was told that this was contrary to what was
15 agreed upon earlier, on the 21st of August. And he replied that such
16 information can be obtained from the courts in Croatian -- Croatia:
17 "He informed us that his efforts to reduce the numbers of those
18 included in the list were not successful," and this was the response he
19 received from the government of Croatia
20 would be sent. And the note here is:
21 "According, this matter cannot be resolved at our level. It
22 needs to be taken up at the higher level with the government of Croatia
23 This view is also shared by General Cermak himself."
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kay, you're reading.
25 MR. KAY: Yes, I'm sorry, Your Honour.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
2 MR. KAY: I'm sorry for going so fast for the interpreters.
3 Q. Do you see here, do you agree that this is an indication that you
4 have actually wrongly blamed General Cermak here for the obstacles and
5 problems that were caused in these negotiations? It wasn't his fault
6 that the position the UN wanted was not agreed by the government of
8 A. If I understand your question right, saying that I wrongly blamed
9 General Cermak, then I will reflect my impressions from the time in
10 August; and my statement is the consolidated view of the whole process --
11 Q. Can I just stop you there.
12 A. To do what?
13 Q. It's not your impressions I want. I have pointed out to you
14 facts from the UN contemporaneous documents at the time, and I'm asking
15 you the question; and that's all I want answered, is whether you accept
16 you have wrongly blamed General Cermak for the problems concerning the
17 displaced persons in the UNCRO camp and the issue of the alleged war
18 criminals. And you can just say whether you agree or disagree. I don't
19 want your impressions because I am putting facts to you.
20 A. I disagree with your way of painting things, because I think that
21 you fail to see them in the order that I did.
22 Q. Thank you very much. We will look at the next document, which is
23 Exhibit P374.
24 This is the report of General Forand concerning that meeting on
25 the 24th of August, so we're looking at it for completeness. And if we
1 go to page 3 of that document, paragraph 2, where we see General Forand's
2 note on the same meeting:
3 "The military governor emphasised that the position of his
4 government is that the first 62 persons must be handed over ..."
5 And pointing out, in paragraph 3, that General Forand and
6 General Cermak had a gentlemen's agreement on the 21st of August and
7 pointing out in 4, that this matter "cannot be resolved at the
8 Sector South level. It must be pursued between higher level UN
9 authorities and the government of Croatia."
10 So that is General Forand's same assessment of that meeting,
11 Mr. Liborius. Will you agree or disagree with my last question I put to
13 A. I think that I have, at earlier occasions, expressed my opinions.
14 But it is bit like good cop/bad cop situation. Have you a situation
15 where as I have described before and issue is becoming a burning hot
16 potato; and some sense has been finally reached at a local level, and
17 then of course there is inside discussions on the Croatian side, I don't
18 doubt that.
19 The issue of how this is it being tackled. I think that if we
20 followed the line of argumentation that you're putting forward that
21 General Cermak would have indicated from the start, we would have solved
22 that earlier; but I said that before.
23 Q. Thank you. We will just now look at another document, Exhibit 65
24 ter 4604 --
25 JUDGE ORIE: Before we continue, Mr. Kay, Mr. Liborius, your last
1 answer, could I understand that to be that you disagree with Mr. Kay that
2 on the basis of the information we have in front of us and which
3 apparently led General Forand to the conclusion that the matter should be
4 resolved at a higher level that you disagree with Mr. Kay that, on the
5 basis of this material, to incorrectly blamed General Cermak for the
6 obstacles and difficulties?
7 THE WITNESS: I really to have read your question, Your Honour.
8 I think it contained various elements.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Well, of course, I'm asking the question since
10 you didn't answer the question put to you by Mr. Kay; that's my problem.
11 THE WITNESS: I understood Mr. Kay's question whether I -- in my
12 statement --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Let's not discuss at this moment whether or not you
14 answered the question. I got the impression you didn't. But let's -- if
15 you answer my question, then that would be good enough.
16 THE WITNESS: Part one of my answer, yes, I realized that it was
17 going to be discussed -- resolved at higher level. Part two --
18 JUDGE ORIE: If you read my question.
19 Mr. Kay puts to you the report by General Forand in which he
20 expresses, as his view, that the matter should be resolved at a higher
21 level. That's information that is presented to you by Mr. Kay.
22 Mr. Kay could like to know from you whether, on the basis of this
23 information, and the information he earlier has put to you, whether you
24 do agree or disagree with his suggestion that you incorrectly blamed
25 General Cermak for the obstacles and difficulties that were encountered
1 in relation to this issue.
2 Do you disagree or do you agree?
3 THE WITNESS: I disagree when I described Mr. Cermak's activities
4 throughout the month of August.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
6 MR. KAY: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 I can give an exhibit number to the next document as it has been
8 in already. Exhibit D628. Exhibit D628.
9 Q. And this is where General Cermak, on the 24th of August, that
10 same day, sent the letter to General Forand about the official position
11 of the government of Croatia
12 handing over of the people and until they are handed over, those at the
13 camp cannot be moved and that that was the official standpoint.
14 Did you see that letter at the time?
15 A. I didn't see the letter. I know of its existence. It was
16 referred to.
17 Q. Thank you. We've no need to look at that any further.
18 MR. KAY: Exhibit D314, please.
19 Q. This is a cable from Mr. Akashi in Zagreb dated the 25th of
20 August, 1995 to Mr. Annan, Secretary-General, concerning the displaced
21 persons in Knin. And that Mr. Sarinic -- did you know who he was?
22 A. To my recollection, Hrvoje Sarinic was the present Chief of Staff
23 or something like that.
24 Q. And he been in consultation with the Croatian Ministry of
25 Justice. The Croatian government would not allow interviews with persons
1 suspected of war crimes on the UN premises, and because of that the
2 displaced persons could not leave the camp until the 65 were handed over.
3 In paragraph 2, Mr. Sarinic refers to visits of suspects being
4 arranged with investigating judges. Full documents would be made
6 Paragraph 3, position of the UN concerning the 6th of
7 August agreement and referring to the oral agreement between Croatia
8 General Cermak, and the UN, General Forand being pertinent.
9 So did you appreciate that the government of Croatia
10 overruled General Cermak or any position he had made with General Forand
11 was in fact not going to be followed by them?
12 Did you appreciate that, that it was at a high government level
13 that General Cermak's agreements with General Forand had been decided not
14 to be followed? Did you know that?
15 A. It's a little bit like when we play the good-guy/bad-guy game in
16 our diplomatic service.
17 JUDGE ORIE: [Microphone not activated]
18 THE WITNESS: And I'm not going to speculations about this --
19 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Liborius, you're not invited to give your
20 comments. The question simply was whether you knew, whether you
21 appreciated that Mr. Cermak was overruled by the government in this
23 THE WITNESS: On the face of the papers here, there would be a
24 suggestion, yes.
25 MR. KAY: Thank you. We've no need to look at the rest of the
1 document, but for the assistance of the Court, there was a legal opinion
2 that was sought by the UN. Your Honours may recollect that. It's been
3 looked at in court when General Forand gave evidence. That's further on
4 in the document, and I won't repeat evidence.
5 Can we go to Exhibit D629, please. This is a document dated the
6 27th of August from General Forand, sent to General Cermak, saying:
7 "It now appears our higher headquarters have been unable to make
8 much progress ... I believe it is important to remind you that I do not
9 have nor I do wish to have a copy of the list you offered on 24th of
11 That was the list of 64 people or 65 people, which General Cermak
13 "Until such time as I am provided a list of the accused that
14 specifies the charges against individuals and clearance for the departure
15 of all those not accused ..." He says he feels no obligation to enforce
16 heightened security measures in the camp.
17 Q. Did you appreciate that there developed an issue between the
18 Croatian government and the UN over the differences between the legal
19 systems as envisaged by the UN of the Croatian system and the Croatian
20 government as to how their legal system worked? Did you appreciate that
21 the word "charges" caused -- was causing a problem as well between the
23 A. I recall that there developed a bunch of issues, one of them
24 being how these charges were interpreted.
25 Q. Did you appreciate that the Croatian justice system did not have
1 the charges system which was envisaged by those working within the UN?
2 Did you appreciate that at the time?
3 A. I did in my conversations with various police officials and other
4 legal actors discuss the Croatian legal system from time to time. This
5 issue here was, of course, a burning one in the weeks in August. I
6 recall that there was differences in how these charges were -- were being
7 interpreted, as I said.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 MR. KAY: Exhibit D632, please.
10 Q. This is a document dated the 30th of August, 1995. It's by the
11 security information service, can you see that, on the top left corner?
12 Sent to General Cermak. We saw the earlier document sent by them, list
13 of people against whom criminal reports were filed because of criminal
14 acts against the Republic of Croatia
16 Did you appreciate, again, that General Cermak was receiving
17 details about these people from the security service?
18 A. I would expect that.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 MR. KAY: We have no need to look at the whole document, Your
21 Honour, but it contains those details in similar form on the first page
22 against the remaining 60, 62 people in all.
23 Can we move to Exhibit D633, please.
24 Q. This exhibit is dated the 31st of August, 1995, a letter from
25 Mr. Al-Alfi to General Cermak, in which he sent to him lists of the
1 various categories of people under protection. This is included just for
2 the full narrative on the matter and to show what was taking place.
3 MR. KAY: We don't seem to have it on the screen in English. Oh,
4 it's gone high up the page. No problem.
5 We can move on from that document because it is just the list of
6 names, and the Court can appreciate the terms of the document.
7 Can we move now to Exhibit D636.
8 Q. This is a report from Mr. Akashi again to Secretary-General
9 Kofi Annan on the 8th of September, 1995; and it concerns the
10 negotiations with the Croatian authorities over the displaced persons and
11 that they were at an impasse. It explains what was taking place at his
13 And on page 2, if we go to paragraph 3, we come to the reason for
14 what was described as the impasse on the first page, and Mr. Akashi
16 "The crux of the dispute at this point is the Croatian
17 authorities' insistence ... about documentation to support the
18 surrender ... of the men. There's a warrant signed by a judge requiring
19 the person to appear before the investigating judge, and the UN wanted to
20 review the details of charges and supporting evidence in each case."
21 Did you appreciate that this matter came to become part of the
22 blockage between the two groups in September, approximately a month after
23 the problems started?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Thank you. And the letter ends, referring in paragraph 7 on the
1 next page to a meeting with Mr. Sarinic and wanting Mr. Annan's views on
2 that matter.
3 MR. KAY: The next series of documents, Your Honour, are
4 documents from the office of the Special Representative of the
5 Secretary-General for the former Yugoslavia
6 Mrs. Skare Osbolt and if we look at Exhibit D637, Your Honour, these are
7 documents that are outside the Mr. Cermak's involvement which I'm
8 suggesting to the Court they can be dealt with as a collective on the
9 issue, if that meets with the Court' favour without going into the
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Waespi would you object to such --
12 MR. WAESPI: No, Mr. President. Thank you.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
14 MR. KAY: And the document I'm referring to are Exhibit D637,
15 Exhibit D638, Exhibit D639, and Exhibit D640; if we turn to page 2 of
16 637, we see the date of the letter sent to Mrs. Skare Osbolt by
17 Mr. Harston of the UN concerning the issue of the charge seats and the
18 legal issues that the UN was now raising concerning the interviewing of
19 these people.
20 Q. Did you appreciate, Mr. Liborius, that at a very late stage, not
21 at the beginning of this matter, that legal officers within the UN were
22 raising legal issues and international legal provisions concerning the
23 interviewing of the suspected war criminals?
24 A. I do remember that, as the issue became more and more
25 complicated, that legal issues, legal details, became, so to speak, the
1 position from which the -- the trench war was being waged. So, yes, I do
2 remember the legal discussions although I did not follow it in this
3 particular detail.
4 Q. Do you know any reason why all these legal matters were raised at
5 a late stage by the United Nations and weren't raised at the first
6 opportunity down there on the 8th of August in Knin?
7 A. That actually brings us to the interpretation of how the whole
8 issue of the people inside the UN Sector South headquarters was handled.
9 My recollection is that the legal issues, how to conduct the interviews,
10 how charges was to be interpreted, what is the charge, how should it be
11 running, according to which set-up legislation and so on, was used as an
12 instrument to get back and get, you know, as much out of the deal that
13 you could.
14 MR. KAY: Thank you.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Liborius, may I interrupt you there. The
16 question was about timing. Why at a late stage rather than at an early
18 THE WITNESS: Because it was a failure to resolve the issue from
19 the first time. Had there been a will to get the issue solved then we
20 could have solved it quite fast. Because that failure to --
21 JUDGE ORIE: Let me interrupt you again. Mr. Kay says all these
22 legal issues came up at a rather late stage. Do you have any explanation
23 why it wasn't done at the early stages whereas, as you explained the
24 matter, it is that whatever could you find to obstruct you would use it,
25 that -- now, Mr. Kay is asking why this, what you might consider to be an
1 obstructive attitude or approach why it was only taken at the late stage
2 and not the early stages by Mr. Cermak.
3 Mr. Kay if I --
4 MR. KAY: Absolutely, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: That's the question.
6 THE WITNESS: The way I interpreted the situation was that, as
7 the issue developed during the weeks of August, it attracted
8 international attention. We saw -- asked to be referred to the Security
9 Council. The legal issue was introduced lately -- later in the process,
10 because it has an air of -- it does take -- it is appreciated that it
11 takes more time, and you can develop your discussion from, so to speak,
12 to the moral high ground; and therefore, you have good explanations as to
13 why you cannot get the issue solved.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes that seems to be not an answer why it was
15 invoked at a late stage.
16 We've heard your explanation.
17 Please proceed, Mr. Kay.
18 MR. KAY: Thank you. I'm endeavouring to finish on time. I will
19 move very rapidly now because we're coming to the finish of the matter.
20 Can we have Exhibit P387.
21 Q. In the documents that I referred to, Mr. Liborius, at Exhibit 640
22 the number of people suspected of crimes was reduced to 34, and we can
23 see that part of the story taken up in Exhibit P387.
24 Colonel Leslie and Colonel Blahna met with General Cermak and
25 confirmed an agreement reached on the 13th of September for the departure
1 of the people, the arrangements to be made, the time. Colonel Leslie was
2 briefing the people in the compound, and the Croatian deputy minister of
3 justice would be delivering the charges at 1300; and in the succeeded
4 papers we have the various lists of names which we don't need to go into
5 in any further detail. But what had happened by this stage was that it
6 was 34 individuals had now been agreed between the parties, if the
7 documents were supplied.
8 MR. KAY: If we move to Exhibit D641, dated the 14th of
9 September, 1995
10 referring to the meeting with Mr. Sarinic on the 9th of September. And
11 that paragraph 7 of the report that we looked at concerning discussions
12 with Mr. Sarinic on the handling of Serb persons in the UN compound they
13 may wish to investigate for alleged war crimes, and saying:
14 "I agreed in principle to Sarinic's proposal but added that
15 General Cermak and General Forand would have to agree on detail."
16 And his direction to UNCRO is for Forand to ensure international
17 standards are complied with prior to agreeing to detailed procedures to
18 be proposed by Cermak.
19 So that's where it was in UN headquarters. And D315, Exhibit
20 D315, takes up the end of the matter.
21 Q. Because as you will see from this document from the Chief of
22 Staff, UNCRO, to the commander, various senior officials about the
23 movement of the IDPs crossed -- crossing Serbia, details on what happened
24 at Lipovac. What I'm concerned about is paragraph 2:
25 "The initial cooperation of the Croatian military appeared to be
1 outstanding. Colonel General Cermak, the military governor of Knin, was
2 very friendly and helpful when we met with him on Wednesday, 14th of
3 September, 1995
4 of clothing, arranged for food, juices for the DPs during the trip. The
5 cooperation of the Croat police also appeared good, and they deployed a
6 large number of police to supervise the movement of the convoy."
7 Were you aware that the Chief of Staff of UNCRO held those views
8 concerning Mr. Cermak's role in the matter --
9 A. No.
10 Q. -- of the movement of these people?
11 A. No.
12 Q. Thank you.
13 MR. KAY: And the last document to go to is 2D05-0090.
14 Q. That last document was an internal UN document and not written to
15 Mr. Cermak. This document, dated the 20th of September, 1995, was from
16 acting Sector South Commander Colonel Blahna. We know that
17 General Forand was away at this date and sent to the Ministry of Defence
18 of the Republic of Croatia
19 and 17th of September, 1995, in accordance with UNCRO and Sector South
20 commander's plan, and he refers to the transport there, the type of
21 people. And in the second paragraph:
22 "As the mentioned the humanitarian mission, various international
23 organisations from Sector South and other agencies took part. Ones of
24 key persons of success of this mission was Colonel Cermak, General Cermak
25 and his liaison officers, Captain Lukovic, Lieutenant Mercer,
1 Ensign Dondo. Thanks to their initiate and responsible actions, this
2 mission was done successfully. Please relay my personal gratitude and
3 thanks to General Cermak for the quick and professional arrangements."
4 May this letter be made an exhibit, please, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Waespi.
6 MR. WAESPI: No objection. I kind of recall seeing the letter
7 before but I still have no objections.
8 MR. KAY: I asked Colonel Leslie, I think it was about it; I
9 asked someone, and it wasn't traced. It may have gone in as an exhibit
10 with General Forand. I might have made a mistake, but ...
11 JUDGE ORIE: I can neither confirm nor deny whether you made a
12 mistake, Mr. Kay.
13 MR. KAY: Yes.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Perhaps proper attention would be given to it.
15 MR. KAY: I have information now, it is similar to
16 Colonel Leslie's letter. It's not the same. Colonel Leslie wrote one
17 that I put to him -- I suggested to him and he -- he didn't have it --
18 JUDGE ORIE: So apparently it is not yet in evidence.
19 MR. KAY: No, it's another letter.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Good always to see that you didn't make a
21 mistake. Please proceed.
22 MR. KAY: Thank you. If this could be given an exhibit number.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, this becomes Exhibit number D897.
25 JUDGE ORIE: D897 is admitted into evidence.
1 MR. KAY:
2 Q. Well, there it is, that is the story of the displaced persons,
3 Mr. Liborius, and the people alleged to have committed war crimes from
4 the documents at the time.
5 Don't you agree they show a very different picture from your
6 assessment some years later that this was a game to General Cermak, and
7 he wanted to get out as many people from the UN camp as he could.
8 Don't you agree you have been unfair on him?
9 A. I think I will be repeating myself, but I think it is worth
10 that --
11 Q. Can you just answer the question.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Liborius, there is no need to repeat yourself.
13 The question simply was whether, having looked at all this
14 material you now consider your assessment a couple of years after the
15 events unfair or not.
16 That's a simple question.
17 THE WITNESS: No.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
19 Please proceed.
20 MR. KAY: Thank you, Your Honour. I have no further questions.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kuzmanovic, are you ready to cross-examine
22 Mr. Liborius?
23 Mr. Liborius, Mr. Kuzmanovic is Defence counsel for Mr. Markac,
24 and he will now cross-examine you.
25 Cross-examination by Mr. Kuzmanovic:
1 Q. Still good morning, Mr. Liborius. Five more minutes.
2 A. Good morning.
3 Q. Mr. Liborius, I'm going to concentrate my questions on two areas,
4 and hopefully we'll be done in rather short order.
5 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we could please call up 3D01-0053.
6 Q. And while that is coming up, Mr. Liborius, you had, through the
7 course of your work, done assessments of damages to buildings, including
8 religious buildings in Sector South; correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And I noted at least in the documentation that you put together
11 that you did not delineate whether or not, for example, to religious
12 buildings in Sector South there was damage to Catholic churches. Is that
13 a correct assessment on my part?
14 A. Please explain delineate whether or --
15 Q. Sure. When you would put together your list of damages to
16 religious buildings you did not make a separate category for, for example
17 orthodox churches or Catholic church correct?
18 A. Partly correct, party correct. If we happened in our monitoring
19 activity to be in the position to establish whether it was an orthodox
20 church we would do so. As I said earlier, the compilation of the ECMM
21 database was not done by me in the final version. I think that -- does
22 that satisfy your question?
23 Q. Sure you played a role there it but you played more of a
24 reporting role; correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Now, in that role of reporting, did you -- is it fair to say that
2 did you not refer to any Croatian governmental information on destruction
3 that occurred before Operation Storm began?
4 A. I don't understand your question.
5 Q. Did you rely on any information that would have been provided by
6 the Croatian government on destruction to buildings whether they're
7 religious or other buildings in Sector South before Operation Storm.
8 A. I would as a monitor gather as much information I could on
9 beforehand. Should that information also happen to have Croatian
10 government source that will only be a further ground on which you could
11 conduct your monitoring, so I did not exclude it. I'm not sure I fully
12 understand your question.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Liborius, the question simply is whether you
14 relied on any government information about the destruction which stemmed
15 from before Operation Storm.
16 THE WITNESS: I did take in as much information as I could.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Did that include government information?
18 THE WITNESS: Yes, I believe so.
19 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
20 Q. Do you recall anyone within the Croatian government that you
21 spoke to specifically about war damages to Sector South before Operation
23 A. From time to time in conversations with the Croatian army liaison
24 officers, it would also be one of the topics we would deal with.
25 Q. As far as a name or a member of what ministry other than a
1 Croatian liaison officer you cannot tell us specifically. Is that fair?
2 A. I think some of the names that were mentioned before by Mr. Kay I
3 did discuss that issue from time to time.
4 Q. Before you --
5 A. Lukovic and Dondo and so on.
6 Q. Before you is a letter dated September 1st signed by
7 Dr. Ivan Simonovic, at the time the assistant minister of foreign affairs
8 enclosing some statistical information in particular about damage and
9 population before and after Operation Storm?
10 Did you ever meet or speak with Dr. Simonovic at any point in
12 A. I don't recall that.
13 Q. Do you know who Dr. Simonovic is?
14 A. No.
15 Q. Are you aware that he is currently the minister of justice of the
16 Republic of Croatia
17 A. No.
18 Q. If we look at the second page. In the second paragraph of
19 page 2, the paragraph begins --
20 A. It's quite small, I would say.
21 Q. The document begins:
22 "Prior to the onset of Serb aggression in 1991, there were
23 581.633 ethnic Serbs (or 12.2 per cent of the population) in Croatian."
24 Were you aware of that figure?
25 A. The 12 per cent or so would correspondence basically to my prior
1 knowledge, yeah.
2 Q. Now the next sentence states:
3 "Serbs made up a majority in only 11 municipalities." And then
4 I'll skip the parenthetical:
5 "In which they made up 144.200 of the 195.000 residents or less
6 than one quarter of all Croatian Serbs."
7 Were you aware at all of that population break down in those
8 municipalities, until now?
9 A. If this develops into a statistical exercise, let me also with
10 reference to your previous question refer to what I said when we last
11 met, that --
12 Q. Sir I'm sorry --
13 A. No, hang on, please.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Liborius, Mr. Liborius.
15 THE WITNESS: Yes, we did use the information that was provided
16 for instance in the statistical book that the government of Croatia
17 issued prior. I think I called it the big blue book earlier, and
18 whenever there was a need to see some statistics I would most often
19 solicit information from that source.
20 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
21 Q. So the answer to my question was yes?
22 A. To which question?
23 Q. Were you aware at all of that population break down in those
24 municipalities until now as I read them to you. I'm not asking you for
25 an exact quote but your recollection was that the blue book contained
1 this type of population break down. Is that a fair statement?
2 A. The statistical information I had at the time was that there was
3 municipalities prior to the war in 1991 where Serbs made up the majority,
4 there were some areas where ethnic Croatians -- ethnic Croats were in the
5 majority, but the population figure was roughly about 15 per cent or so.
6 That's you say here 12.2. I used sometimes as a rule of thumb around 15
7 per cent but I don't think that makes a dig difference here.
8 Q. Well, it's not my number it's the number contained in what the
9 Croatian government has provided in this particular document.
10 A. Okay.
11 Q. In paragraph 3 of this document --
12 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we can scroll down please the sentence is the
13 third from the bottom beginning: "As a consequence."
14 "As a consequence and the consequence is what happened between
15 1991 and 1995, it is estimated that only 184.000 Serbs remained in the
16 occupied territories in 1994. It is interesting to note that less than
17 three per cent of the overall population in Croatia controlled over one
18 quarter of the country."
19 Now, Mr. Liborius, in your review of the population numbers and
20 in preparing your report were you aware of that figure of 184.000 Serbs
21 remaining in the occupied territories in 1994.
22 A. I did recall that I considered the official population figure
23 given by the so-called government of the Republic of Serbian Krajina
24 was -- I considered that inflated and that there were less people. Now I
25 always treated exact figures or alleged exact figures with some caution.
1 Q. Okay. Well, this number of 184.000 Serbs would you agree or
2 disagree with that number as provided by the government of the Republic
3 of Croatia
4 A. If you ask me today a number I would adopt the same pattern of --
5 of work as I did, that I like to see some of my notes and I like to go
6 through some of the papers. I'm not in the business of saying now
7 several years later whether 184 or 150 or 200 is the exact number; and I
8 don't think that is fair if I have to give an exact answer.
9 Q. Well, the fair to state that you can't agree and you can't
10 disagree you don't know?
11 A. It is fair to say that if I'm asked a specific question about
12 some of these details I'll have to return to papers.
13 Q. What papers would you need to return to?
14 A. Oh, provided that I'm given the time by my government, I will
15 return to the blue book, return to the documents I produced myself. I
16 return to UNHCR figures. I'll return to ICRC figures they were quite
17 accurate sometimes. But --
18 Q. Let's assume for a minute that this 184.000 Serbs is that within
19 the range of population that you would think would have been in that area
20 as of 1994?
21 A. It doesn't sound out wild. I don't think so.
22 Q. How about the three per cent of the population controlling other
23 one quarter of the country. Is there any disagreement that you would
24 have with that? You would agree that one quarter of Croatia was occupied
25 by the Serbs. Correct?
1 A. Yeah, yeah. The general picture that the occupied territories
2 were quite scarcely populated as opposed to the coastal area, Zagreb
3 the larger Croatian towns in Slovenia
4 how I saw the situation at the time.
5 Q. Okay. Would you agree with me, Mr. Liborius, that most of the
6 Serbs in Croatia
7 cities rather than in Sector South before the war broke out, if you know?
8 A. I think the ethnic composition as I recall it was that there were
9 many Serbs living in the larger Croatian towns, including Zagreb
10 that -- I don't know the exact number, I should say, I have to look that
11 up, and that the Krajina areas from having a majority Serb population at
12 the onset of the war and very brutally Krajina Serb military and police
13 and all the people expelled ethnic Croats and that reduced the number of
14 population inside the -- inside the -- the Krajina areas, that some of
15 the Serbs that had lived in cities in Croatia like Zagreb
16 other areas, that they -- during the war years, so to speak, filtered
17 out, left the area. They may have still had legal registration there,
18 but from time to time you would come across stories and information and
19 evidence suggesting that they felt it more secure to leave that, going
20 via either Hungary
21 these statistical issues you would have to take into consideration when
22 you dealt with population figures, because they were always used for a
23 political purpose.
24 Q. I'm not trying to use them for political purpose here. I'm just
25 using this particular document and asking you that if we look at the
1 184.000 Serbs that are listed in this document as remaining in the
2 occupied territories and you compare them with the 580.000 or so ethnic
3 Serbs of the population of Croatia
4 majority of Serbs lived in Croatia
5 occupied but in areas outside the occupied parts of Croatia. If you look
6 at purely the numbers.
7 A. I don't have the numbers for Sector East and I think that also
8 contained a couple of -- of towns with a considerable population.
9 Q. But generally you would you agree with me, would you not? Using
10 the numbers that -- assuming that the numbers here in that aide-memoire
11 are correct?
12 A. What did you say?
13 Q. Mean that the majority of the Serbs that lived in Croatia
14 the time lived not in Sector South or Sector North, in what were termed
15 the occupied territories or in Sector East and West for that matter but
16 in unoccupied parts of Croatia
17 A. I think at that time there was a bit of inflate of statistics
18 when it came to Serbs living or having at least registered as residents
19 in the Croatian towns but in fact not living there.
20 Q. So you can't agree with me or you can agree?
21 A. It's not a matter of agreeing or disagreeing. I think the
22 general accepted fact was that the Krajina area had during the war years
23 become an area where only very, very small pockets of ethnic Croats lived
24 under the observation of among others ECMM. I visited some of the
25 hamlets, and UNPROFOR forces; but it was an area where previously there
1 had been more people and that also part of the Serbs, the Krajina Serbs,
2 who lived there before the war as a consequence of the general insecurity
3 they themselves also left. I know many who left for Banja Luka for
5 Q. Sure. I do understand that, Mr. Liborius. I guess my question
6 and I will ask it one more time and then we will move on.
7 Using the figures in the aide-memoire if have you have 581.000 or
8 so ethnic Serbs that live in Croatia
9 remained in the occupied territories would you agree with me using these
10 numbers that the majority, the vast majority of ethnic Serbs lived
11 outside of the occupied areas.
12 A. If you use the figures here 597 -- what is it 597, is certainly
13 more than 184.
14 Q. I'll move on. Thank you, Mr. Liborius.
15 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we go to the next page of this document,
16 please, at the topic.
17 Q. The destruction of churches is discussed in the -- beginning at
18 the end of the second line. It says:
19 "For example, of the 164 Catholic churches in the recently
20 liberated territories, 154 or 94 per cent had been damaged or destroyed.
21 In comparison of the 114 Serbian orthodox churches, 97 or 85 per cent are
22 undamaged and are presently being looked after by Croatian civil
23 authorities. Added to this is the complete destruction of many Croatian
24 towns and villages, amounting to direct material damages of over 23
25 billion USD."
1 Now, Mr. Liborius, I want to ask you specifically because you did
2 at least in terms your reporting an analysis of the damages done to
3 buildings, particularly in some cases churches were you aware of the
4 statistical differences in, for example, religious destruction when you
5 compiled your report?
6 A. I should perhaps underline that the area I worked in did have
7 more Serb majority areas as opposed to other areas of the occupied
8 territories, in particular Sector West, of course, and that of course the
9 damage to Catholic churches, for example the -- the church in Knin, was
10 also a factor.
11 It was clear to us at that time in 1995 that as the Serb forces
12 would have had control over the Krajina area for many years they would
13 certainly not have destroyed Serbian orthodox churches. I did not recall
14 that many Catholic churches; but I of course know of, as I said some of
15 them being destroyed. And of course Serbia orthodox churches would be by
16 the Krajina leaders considered their own churches.
17 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we could go to page 5 of this document,
19 Q. Contained in this document, Mr. Liborius, are -- starting on page
20 5, six pages worth of description of destruction of particular Catholic
21 churches and it does combine Sectors North and South; for example, you
22 are familiar with the area of Drnis, correct?
23 A. Mm-hm, yeah.
24 Q. And obviously there are tens of churches or religious buildings
25 here that were damaged or destroyed.
1 Can you tell me, when you conducted your analysis of damage were
2 you including any of these buildings for example that you observed in
4 A. The -- I think we have to distinguish between two things.
5 Q. Sure.
6 A. The assessments that we were instructed to start compiling on a
7 more systematic fashion shortly after Operation Storm had ended focussed
8 mainly on residential accommodations, houses an apartments, and so on.
9 Of course, from time to time we would also include references to
10 religious sites, and for example, in the areas where if a large burnings
11 of a hamlet was going on and one particular church was being guarded and
12 spared, we would of course notice that. You ask about Drnis and whether
13 I'm familiar with that, of course I think my recollection was that in
14 particular in the pink zones where the fighting had been going on also,
15 the -- the destruction of churches of course did take place, most
16 deplorable I would say.
17 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we go to the next page, Mr. Liborius.
18 Q. And under Knin, Knin was not in a pink zone. Correct?
19 A. That's very correct.
20 Q. And there are eight religious buildings there that were --
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. -- destroyed. The city of Benkovac
24 A. Certainly not.
25 MR. KUZMANOVIC: And if we could go to the next page.
1 Q. And Obrovac was not in a pink zone?
2 A. Certainly not.
3 Q. Now I'll skip over the next few pages because they involve Sector
5 MR. KUZMANOVIC: But if we go to page 11, please. If we could go
6 all the way so we see the top, please.
7 Q. This lists the state of orthodox churches and monasteries in the
8 liberated areas of former Sectors North and South and obviously the first
9 three areas are in Sector North, correct? Drnis or Sector South?
10 A. No, that is in Sector South.
11 Q. And can you see at least what is documented here is that the vast
12 majority of these almost all of these buildings are undamaged and secured
13 by police patrols. Correct?
14 A. I only see the first page.
15 Q. Sure.
16 A. I mean --
17 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we can go to the second page.
18 A. I think that I at frequent occasions mentioned also in my reports
19 that the orthodox churches monasteries and so on were being guarded by
20 military personnel. I talked with the guards from time to time and that
21 spared them destruction at least for sometime. I did come back later
22 once the guards had been removed and then some of them had been burned
23 down but that's another story.
24 Q. Well, you don't have listed that in any report, do you?
25 A. Oh I did.
1 Q. That the churches were burned down some later time when you came
3 A. At the end of my tenure in Sector South, I think, yeah.
4 Q. Well, this is it September 1st, this report is dated September
5 1st. If you look at the second page here, for example, under Knin there
6 are 17 buildings of religious Serbian religious -- 17 Serbian religious
7 buildings all of which are undamaged other than the last one where there
8 is it damage, and it is being secured?
9 A. Yeah. I talked with the guy at the Krka monastery one time.
10 Q. And the same thing with Benkovac and Gracac on the following
11 page. And again Obrovac which is also Sector South. Right?
12 A. Mm-hm.
13 Q. Yes?
14 A. Yeah.
15 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Your Honour, I'd like to tender this document.
16 MR. WAESPI: No objection, Mr. President.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
18 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Kay, I'm sorry to inform you that you did
20 make a mistake.
21 MR. KAY: Yes.
22 JUDGE ORIE: You tendered the letter in which received number
23 D897 but it is D316 already.
24 So therefore, D897 is now -- can now be used for the last
25 document tendered by Mr. Kuzmanovic.
1 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE ORIE: D897 is now again admitted into evidence. But it's
3 a different number. It's 3D -- if you could help me out --
4 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Sure, Your Honour, 3D01-0053.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. That document is now admitted under
7 Please proceed.
8 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
9 Q. Mr. Liborius, I'm going to move to a different topic now and this
10 is my last topic which has some more documents involved with it.
11 During the course of the summary of your testimony that was
12 written out -- read during your direct examination, and I'll read a
13 portion of and ask you some questions about it.
14 Part of the summary of the 92 ter submission states --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kuzmanovic, necessary to remind you that the
16 summary is just to inform the public.
17 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Yes it is, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE ORIE: So if there's any -- if it speeds up matters then
19 it's fine but it would lead to discussion whether the summary reflects
20 what ask in the statement then of course we lose time. I'll leave it to
21 you --
22 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour, I'll be very brief and it's
23 not going to be a big read, it is only two sentences, three.
24 Q. I am going to ask you some questions about it so keep it in mind,
25 Mr. Liborius:
1 "It's described that during Operation Storm he witnessed the
2 shelling of Knin and observed the firing of multiple rocket systems.
3 Witness 127," which is you, "Personally observed crime incidents within
4 Sector South during the weeks following the shelling. They included
5 looting, burning of houses, farms and property as well as destruction of
6 livestock by HV troops and special police."
7 Now the last two words special police that's what I want to focus
8 on with you, Mr. Liborius.
9 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we go to P815, please.
10 Q. Mr. Liborius, this is your report dated August 26th of 1995 which
11 you wrote entitled the consequences in former RSK of Operation Storm?
12 A. Initial consequences.
13 Q. Yes. While the report says the subject: The consequences and in
14 the report it is titled the initial consequences?
15 A. Yeah.
16 Q. We're both correct on that one.
17 On the very last page of this document, unfortunately, my
18 document itself isn't numbered except for the stamps. It's 5933 is the
19 last page. Annex B.
20 Now I will submit to that you in your -- in this entire document,
21 Mr. Liborius, including your overview where you describe living
22 conditions, factors behind destruction, conclusions, and including the
23 Annex A, which are certain day-to-day observations there is no one
24 mention of special police in your report. Do you have any reason to
25 disagree with me? I guess if you need -- go ahead, sorry.
1 A. How should I interpret your question here?
2 Q. Well, let's go -- I'll go to the last page on Annex B. Where you
4 "This annex is an account of the personnel and the groups
5 observed by ECMM either doing looting or burning, the ECMM teams are
6 operating in the southern part of Sector South."
7 And you highlight in capital letters, "THE UNITS INVOLVED" and
8 then you list the ECMM have witnessed the following type of people of
9 groups involved in burning and looting, and this list does not include
10 anywhere in it special police. Correct?
11 A. This list here with numbers 1, 2, 3, and 4, the purpose of that
12 was to describe faces in the appearance and what went on. It does not
13 distinguish HV Home Guard units. The distinction that was underlying
14 these faces here was -- was that military police, was it military police
15 and civilians, was it mainly civilians. So the purpose of this here was
16 not to say in this particular it was Home Guard, it was Guards Brigade,
17 this was special police, this was ordinary police, that was not the
18 purpose here.
19 Q. Did I ask you, sir, what the purpose was?
20 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kuzmanovic, your question was unclear. Your
21 question was unclear whether this includes -- we should make a
22 distinction between whether the report mentions specifically or whether
23 it could include in any of the categories mentioned. That question is
24 unspecific; and therefore, I think your last response was not the best.
25 Please proceed.
1 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
2 Q. Special police is not included anywhere in Annex B. Is that
3 correct, Mr. Liborius? You say: Croatian civil police you say HV
4 military personnel, but do you not include special police on annex B. Is
5 that correct?
6 A. It is it correct that special police is not mentioned on the
7 paper in front of us. It is my recollection that the special police
8 issue that is reflected in the -- in the resume became more relevant
9 after this annex was drafted.
10 Q. All right. Well, we're going to get into that.
11 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Let's go to P799, please.
12 Q. P799, sir, is your statement of November 2nd, 1995.
13 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we go to the -- the Bates number is on the
14 bottom, it's 9360.
15 Q. You specifically discuss at the very top of this document
16 check-points manned by HV MP. That's Croatian military and military
17 police. Correct?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Or Croatian army military police and CRO policija that's the
20 Croatian police, correct?
21 A. Yes. It was meant when I say Croatian policija, I
22 distinguished -- I did distinction between army and police.
23 Q. Okay. Now, nowhere --
24 A. Having various elements of the police covered in that expression.
25 Q. Nowhere here is special police mentioned, correct, of the word
1 special police or the description of a unit called special police.
3 A. That's correct.
4 Q. Now you know -- do you know what the special police was?
5 A. To my recollection, special police, and it was told to me it was
6 used sometimes to do mopping up operations. It was used to conduct
7 operations in certain specified areas. We would, from time to time, be
8 informed that the unit operated in a certain area we could not access was
9 because it was special police.
10 Q. Activity?
11 A. Activity, what?
12 Q. Because there was special police activities going on?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Did you ever see the special police?
15 A. From time to time we would come across them. I think the -- the
16 interim garrisons that they used, mainly they were looking a bit like --
17 like army facilities, high in number. They would all of course have the
18 police cars with the police insignia, that type of thing.
19 Q. What kind of cars did they have?
20 A. They would have four-wheel drives. They would have various other
22 Q. And where did you see them? You said from time to time you would
23 see them. Where?
24 A. I recall we saw an area around Gracac. I think coming out of
25 Donji Lapac area.
1 Q. What did the soldiers look like, the special police soldiers?
2 A. What do you mean --
3 Q. What kind of uniform did they have?
4 A. Some of them I saw would have -- I say more combat-type police
6 Q. Which is what? What colour?
7 A. Some of them would be as blueish thing.
8 Q. Blueish?
9 A. Some of those I saw, yes.
10 Q. Silver?
11 A. Silver what?
12 Q. Uniforms. Grey or silver uniforms?
13 A. Grey, what do you call it? I'm not good at colours in English.
14 Dusk grey-blue.
15 Q. Sort of a blueish colour?
16 A. The kind of -- the.
17 Q. Would it be kind of like the colour of this grey?
18 A. Yes, sometimes sprinkled with a bit more blue but sometimes.
19 Sometimes also just blue.
20 Q. Okay.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kuzmanovic, for the record would you describe
22 the colour.
23 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Sure I was use the grey of the mouse pad.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, a grey mouse.
25 THE WITNESS: Some would have fatigue.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I don't know whether it was on the video. Of
2 course, for later instances.
3 MR. KUZMANOVIC: To have a laugh about it, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE ORIE: No, I'm not trying to make jokes. In order to
5 enable them to follow the proceedings.
6 MR. KUZMANOVIC: I'll look for the video camera.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Just see whether this could be on the video. I do
8 not dare to describe it. The problem is that this is an instruction if
9 the Presiding Judge speaks he should be on the screen, so I'll keep my
10 mouth shut for a second so that the cameras can cover the colour of
11 your --
12 MR. KUZMANOVIC: And I will model the colour of the uniform as
13 described by Mr. Liborius by pointing with my pen here.
14 JUDGE ORIE: It's on the record.
15 Please proceed.
16 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we could go to P8303, please.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kuzmanovic I'm also looking at the clock.
18 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Your Honour, I do have about three more of the
19 statements to go through.
20 JUDGE ORIE: How much time would it take approximately?
21 MR. KUZMANOVIC: 20 minutes.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Then we first need to have a break for various
24 Mr. Kay you're on your foot.
25 MR. KAY: Your Honour, for personal reasons I can't be here, and
1 I have to leave straight away, now. Ms. Higgins and Mr. Cayley will be
2 in charge of matters in my absence.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you for this information.
4 We will have a break first and we will resume at 1.00, and I'm
5 confident that we will be able to release Mr. Liborius by quarter to
7 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour. Thank you.
8 --- Recess taken at 12.39 p.m.
9 --- On resuming at 1.04 p.m.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kuzmanovic, please proceed.
11 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 I had a quick discussion with Mr. Waespi and P803 which is the
13 statement of September 2008 of the supplementary witness statement. He's
14 agreed there is no mention of the special police in this particular
15 statement so will not go through it.
16 Am I right, Mr. Waespi?
17 MR. WAESPI: Yes, that's what you told me, that there is no
18 mention of the special police.
19 JUDGE ORIE: And you agreed Mr. Waespi. That's what
20 Mr. Kuzmanovic presented. And you have now -- you know what's said at
21 weddings open your mouth now or never do it again, just on this matter,
22 of course.
23 Please proceed.
24 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
25 If we could go to P801, please. And page 3 of P801.
1 Q. And while it's coming up, Mr. Liborius, this is your statement of
2 October 2005. And at the top of this page, you mention that there was
3 special police headquarters in Gracac and that you had two meetings with
4 the special police in Donji Lapac. I will take those two separately.
5 First the special police headquarters in Gracac, that was
6 something that you observed?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Okay. And you say you had two meetings with the special police
9 in Donji Lapac. You recall who you met with?
10 A. I'll have to look into the notes.
11 Q. Okay. Let's go to D?
12 JUDGE ORIE: The meeting -- was at least two meetings.
13 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
15 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we could go to D743, please.
16 Q. That's your notebook, Mr. Liborius. And if we could go the last
17 four numbers of the page are 3541.
18 Mr. Liborius, I don't know if you're are similarly marked but the
19 Bates numbers of your original is on the upper right-hand corner. There
20 is a Bate stamp number 06353541. If not, can I give you the date. It's
21 29 September of 1995.
22 Do you have that in front of you, Mr. Liborius?
23 A. Yeah.
24 Q. Okay. And here it's -- you note: "Police vehicle," something
25 "D. Lapac."
1 Can you read that what is the word in between VEH for vehicle and
2 D. Lapac. Can you read that in your original?
3 A. It's not so clear in my own original.
4 Q. We'll move further down. Two lines below that you have CRO
5 special police is sighted in Dubrovnik
6 Donji Lapac is it?
7 A. No, this is under the heading, UNMO sit brief, 29 September.
8 Q. And then below have you CP, and I assume that is COP or CP?
9 A. The entry COP
10 Q. Okay. So you met with the chief of police in Donji Lapac. There
11 is it no mention of special police. Correct?
12 A. This one here, Donji Lapac was an area that we visited from time
13 to time. So if your question suggests what was going on on the 29th
14 September; is that right?
15 Q. Yes. I'm -- your statement said that you had at least two
16 meetings with the special police in Donji Lapac and what I'm submit to go
17 you is I have gone through your notes which is the particular exhibit,
18 743 and I -- other than the designation of special police being cited in
20 Donji Lapac," that to me is the chief of the regular police, is it not?
21 You met with them frequently in your visit?
22 A. Yeah if we could go to the team report on that particular date,
23 we can solve the uncertainties.
24 Q. I do that in a minute. But at least as far as your handwritten
25 notes are concerned there is no notation that you met on this date with
1 the special police in Donji Lapac. Correct?
2 A. Not on that particular date.
3 Q. Let's go to 3543 of your notes, which is, I think, Mr. Liborius,
4 two pages on in your original.
5 If we could go to the top. Again you've got COP, chief of police
6 on the upper left, Donji Lapac, correct.
7 A. Yeah.
8 Q. And Mr. Piplica was the person who was the chief of police there
9 Donji Lapac, was he not?
10 A. Again I would assume that from my notes but if we go to the team
11 report then we can sort out the question.
12 Q. Okay. Below that there's another entry of Piplica with an arrow
13 pointing down if we could scroll down right there; "COP," something
14 "contact," correct?
15 A. Establishes contact, escape of contact, yeah.
16 Q. Again, in this particular document, again there is no mention of
17 a meeting with the special police in Donji Lapac in this note. Correct?
18 A. Not on this page, no.
19 Q. And then if we could go to 3558. The very top of the document.
20 If we could move the document -- there we go, 6 of October 1995.
21 Again, handwritten: Meet with Mr. Piplica, D. Lapac.
22 A. Where are we?
23 Q. When you get to the original, Mr. Liborius, let me know.
24 A. Yeah, I'm here.
25 Q. At the very top, meeting with Mr. Piplica, D. Lapac do you see
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Another mention of Donji Lapac but no mention in your notes of
4 meeting with the special police, correct? At least not on this page?
5 A. Not on this page.
6 Q. If we could go to the next page, 3559. And the bottom third of
7 the page. Again, chief of police, D. Lapac. No mention of the special
8 police. Correct?
9 A. Not on this page.
10 Q. Could you be mistaken your meetings with the chiefs of police,
11 Mr. Liborius? Is that fair?
12 A. Donji Lapac was a place we visited from time to time, and it was
13 a -- the short answer to your question is I don't think; and I will
14 explain you why.
15 Donji Lapac was a place we visited from time to time. It was in
16 our patrol area. Donji Lapac was, as you will recall the geography, the
17 area that was to the north of Knin, and it was important to the -- to the
18 access to the -- to the mountains regions, to Bosnia; and it was an area
19 where, of course as the mountains region suggested, it was a hilly area
20 and therefore from time to time it was used as, if you wish, an area
21 where you would hold larger number of -- of police, special police also
22 from time to time.
23 Q. Nonetheless, at least not in your handwritten diary of the areas
24 that we've covered for Donji Lapac -- strike that question. I will
25 rephrase it.
1 This handwritten diary you made contemporaneous with your day,
2 correct, normally?
3 A. My handwritten diary here as you can see it is the notes taken to
4 the particular meeting. Now, I did not always do the note-taking. Some
5 of my monitoring colleagues would do that from time to time. We would
6 split that between us. So to suggest that the fact that there's no
7 mention of a special police suggests that there is it no --
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Liborius, Mr. Liborius. If you would stop
9 asking yourself what is suggested or what is in the mind of the one who
10 puts the question and if you just answer the question, that is whether
11 the handwritten diary you made contemporaneous with your day, whether
12 that's correct.
13 THE WITNESS: Contemporaneous ...
14 JUDGE ORIE: Did you write it down at the time you experienced
15 these meetings, events?
16 THE WITNESS: Yes.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
18 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you. If we could go to 3579, at the very
19 top, please.
20 Q. That's the 13th of October, 1995, Mr. Liborius, for your
22 Again, at the top it's noted in your diary 13 October 1995,
23 Donji Lapac, new COP
25 Again, at least as of this date, 13 October 1995, there is no
1 specific mention of meeting with the special police. Correct?
2 A. Not on this page.
3 Q. I will submit to you, Mr. Liborius, that through your entire
4 diary other than the one entry where you mentioned on page 3541 that the
5 Croatian special police is sighted in Dubrovnik. There is no mention of
6 meetings with special police in your handwritten diary, D743.
7 Would you agree with that?
8 A. It touches on the question, what is in this diary? Is this
9 [Realtime transcript read in error "this is"] the only true reflection of
10 my monitoring activity? It is not. So in order to -- part of one
11 question is yes. Part two is, this is not everything that happened.
12 Q. Okay. Let's go to D741.
13 D741 --
14 A. Can I just correct the transcript in my answer? I said, "is this
15 the only true reflection," not "this is." It's a question.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Transcript, Mr. Liborius, is worked on after
17 we have left this courtroom and then with great precision as we are aware
18 of transcribers and those assisting outside this courtroom take care that
19 we have the best transcript that could be possibly with us.
20 Please proceed.
21 THE WITNESS: Thank you, Your Honour.
22 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
23 Q. The D741, Mr. Liborius, is you calendar which is another document
24 in which you put handwritten notes on. Correct?
25 A. I didn't make notes in my calendar, yes.
1 Q. And if we go to the entry for Tuesday, 29 August, you're
2 discussing Plavno-Gracac. And if we move to the -- in the type written
3 version, fifth line. It's actually 29, there we go.
4 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
5 Q. You're speaking about the town of Gracac and you mention:
6 "Special police are using the city as a support point."
7 And you put in quotation marks "special police."
8 You observed that. Correct?
9 A. Yeah.
10 Q. Earlier in that same entry you put COP, chief of police. That's
11 something that you use very frequently that abbreviation. Correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And that COP
14 station? Correct.
15 A. In most instances, correct.
16 Q. Now if we go to your diary or your same exhibit calendar entry:
17 Friday, 1 September. At the very top you note:
18 "Meeting, Donji Lapac, close to Bihac, with chief of police?"
19 Now again the meeting you have in Donji Lapac does not mention
20 that you had a meeting with the special police. Correct?
21 A. Correct.
22 Q. And if we go to your entry on Friday, 6 October. And while we're
23 waiting for the English to come up, here we go:
24 "Forward control basis we patrol in Donji Lapac municipality."
25 There's no mention in there of meeting with anyone object that
1 particular day. Correct?
2 A. It's patrol base, for what patrol base in the diary.
3 Q. So the translation is not correct. It should say, Forward patrol
4 base, we patrol in Donji Lapac municipality.
5 A. In such a patrol we would usual stop and try to have a talk about
6 the people we would encounter, especially during at Donji Lapac patrol
7 where there was very little number of civilians.
8 Q. Okay. So at least --
9 A. So if we would try to portray what happened on 6th of October,
10 shouldn't we go to the documents.
11 Q. We could do that. I'm using this, Mr. Liborius, your underlying
12 personal documents, your diary and your calendar, to try to discover
13 evidence of whether or not you met with the special police. And at least
14 as of Friday, 6 October, there is no mention of chief of police or
15 special police. Correct?
16 A. There is no mention on page -- Friday, 6 October.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Of course, Mr. Kuzmanovic it is it asked again and
18 again if the word "special police" appears. Of course, that could be
19 done in a bit more efficient way. I mean, of course, the Chamber can
20 read the words "special police" would not remain unnoticed if we see
21 so ...
22 Please proceed. And, of course, I take that you give an
23 opportunity to the witness to -- to correct when our reading is wrong or
24 to explain. At the same time it ends up always in the same is ...
25 Please proceed.
1 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
2 Q. Mr. Liborius, if we could go to P801, page 5 at the very bottom.
3 Second -- the single sentence that is above the last paragraph.
4 This statement you gave, Mr. Liborius, in October 2005, which is
5 ten years after Operation Storm, this sentence is the one and only
6 sentence in all of your statements where you say something about the
7 special police and crimes.
8 You say:
9 "I also witnessed special police vehicles in the vicinity where
10 crimes had just been committed."
11 Now, I'd like to ask you, you don't describe what kind of crimes
12 have just been committed where special police vehicles were in the
13 vicinity. Correct?
14 A. I don't understand your question. In that particular sentence,
15 no that is not described.
16 Q. What places or villages or towns were there in which you
17 witnessed special police vehicles in the vicinity where crimes had just
18 been committed.
19 A. As I said in the area of Donji Lapac and the long stretch up to
20 that particular area, you travel through, travel through a village called
21 Srb and Donji Srb; and you travel through areas where there was very,
22 very little civil activity, so to speak. And I remember one particular
23 instances where we were blocked from entering I think it was Srb or
24 Donji Srb on the way north and once we had or one of my team members had
25 made a call back to headquarters in Knin and we had lifted this
1 restriction of movement we entered through the area and we saw a lot of
2 destruction recently been done, and the only vehicles we encountered in
3 that, so to speak, restricted box was special police vehicles.
4 That suggested to me that there was no other people that we had
5 been blocked access, we were perhaps unexpected guests at that particular
6 time, and that once we gained access insisting on our freedom of movement
7 that had been promised to us earlier that we came across an area where
8 the only vehicles that was special police.
9 Q. Okay. I understand you say you saw vehicles, but what crimes had
10 just been committed?
11 A. Arson and destruction.
12 Q. And you attributed that to the special police?
13 A. Well, there were nobody else.
14 Q. Did you actually see the special police allegedly committing
15 these crimes?
16 A. As I write: "In the vicinity where crimes had just been
18 We all perfectly well know why at certain times, these boxes of
19 restriction of movement was imposed and once you get in there and you see
20 special police in the vicinity --
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Liborius.
22 THE WITNESS: That's what I write.
23 JUDGE ORIE: The question simply was whether you observed it,
24 personally. I think the circumstances are clear and apparently what you
25 conclude out of that is maybe clear as well. Of course it is for the
1 Chamber to draw conclusions, and it is for you to answer the question.
2 You did not personally observe the commission of these crimes? And you
3 described the circumstances under which you wrote down that they recently
4 had been committed.
5 THE WITNESS: Yeah.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
7 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
8 Q. Do you not gives us a date here anywhere in this statement ten
9 years after the events. Can you give me a date?
10 A. A specific date would require me to go through a lot of
11 documentations. But I remember the Donji Srb and the Srb incident. But
12 a specific date I have to peruse through the notes.
13 Q. How many days after Operation Storm?
14 A. Long after.
15 Q. Can you describe the vehicles for me?
16 JUDGE ORIE: When you say long after.
17 THE WITNESS: Weeks after.
18 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
19 Q. Can you describe the vehicles?
20 A. Four-wheel drive vehicles, police insignia.
21 Q. What colour?
22 A. Blue and white and different insignias, different types of
24 Q. Did you see any people next to the vehicles?
25 A. The -- in the Srb and Donji Srb indent we saw people walking
1 around in the forest and field areas. I did not see them close by.
2 Q. Were these the same people with the silvery-blue uniforms?
3 A. Some had this blueish fatigue as well. I think the fatigue was
4 omitted once we had the overlapping speakers, but that is not the issue.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kuzmanovic, I'm looking at the clock.
6 MR. KUZMANOVIC: I'm just about done, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
8 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
9 Q. Mr. Liborius, had you ever spoken to anybody about your
10 witnessing the special police vehicles in the vicinity where crimes had
11 been just committed, like the local police, like any military personnel?
12 A. I brought up at a number of meetings with the Croatian officials
13 that they should actually do more to control the episodes that were going
14 on in the area. It was a frequent topic, if not in every meeting then in
15 every second meeting or so. The level of lack of proper activity was
16 obvious, and I think the Croatian authorities once we mentioned it again
17 and again and again got tired because they would ask the question. We
18 knew what they would say; there were rogue elements. But I mentioned it
20 Q. I'm just asking about the specific incident when you were in Srb
21 or Donji Srb wherever the place was regarding you impression that his was
22 the special police. Did you report this to anyone?
23 A. Once I got to Donji Lapac at a later meeting having just gone
24 through one of these areas that had been -- were burning was takes place,
25 I made that a point in one of the meetings saying, You have been telling
1 me that you will control the episodes for weeks and why do I still
2 encounter them when I go through the country?
3 Q. Mr. Liborius, last question. Would you agree with me --
4 A. And no answer was given by the way for completion.
5 Q. Would you agree with me that when you refer to the special police
6 that you may be confusing the special police with the regular police?
7 A. If people tell me that you cannot enter this certain area because
8 this is an special police operating going on; and we go through an area,
9 and we clearly see that it is not HV/Croatian army units and it is police
10 units, not just a check-point or traffic police, then I would say -- I
11 tend to believe when people tell me, Oh there is an special police unit
12 there, there that is a special police unit.
13 Q. You can't tell me who told you. It is just your impression?
14 A. Also we had the Srb and Donji Srb episode. I was informed -- I
15 think my teammate made the telephone call to the Knin headquarters there
16 and the reply was there was a special police operation going on, and that
17 was told to me.
18 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Your Honour, I'm through. Thank you.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Kuzmanovic.
20 Mr. Liborius to very short follow-up questions.
21 You said once I got to Donji Lapac at a later meeting, having
22 just gone through one of these area, a meeting with whom in Donji Lapac?
23 THE WITNESS: In the meeting with not both of chief of police and
24 the local governor, then the chief of police.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Did you specifically, when you, so to say,
1 reported this or mentioned this, did you specifically say that the
2 special police was involved?
3 THE WITNESS: I said we had just passed through an area where we
4 were told that a special police operation was going on and we saw police
5 vehicles on the way.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you for those answers.
7 Mr. Waespi.
8 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President, one very brief topic.
9 Re-examination by Mr. Waespi:
10 Q. Mr. Liborius, when you testified last time in your
11 cross-examination with Mr. Misetic, you were asked about a meeting with
12 General Gotovina on the 27th of October, and your daily report from the
13 28th of October, and there is P822.
14 MR. WAESPI: Perhaps if it could be brought up.
15 Q. Do you remember being cross-examined and indeed examined about
16 that meeting with General Gotovina?
17 A. Last time, yes.
18 Q. Just have a look again at the document, and in particular at the
19 second page of the English version.
20 Do you recall the topic and you drafting this document as a
21 report of this meeting?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Now let me ask you, first of all did you report -- did your
24 report from that date, 28th of October, include every single -- single
25 thing that happened during that meeting?
1 A. No. I think we have been through that in quite detail. And as I
2 said at that time it was a meeting where the HRC Gambotti also had a say.
3 Q. Yes. We don't neat to rehash it. If can you just focus on
4 whether you reported every single thing or not.
5 A. Yeah. So --
6 Q. Your answer is did you report every single word that was spoken?
7 A. No.
8 Q. My next question is that you told Mr. Misetic at pages 8428 to
9 8430 that you wrote in the daily report of 28th October 1995 was not the
10 whole truth.
11 Now my question to you is: Did you ever write anything in your
12 report that you knew was false?
13 A. No.
14 Q. So when you said that it may not have been the whole truth, what
15 did you mean by that, if you can be as brief as you can.
16 A. I'll try to be brief.
17 It was, as I said, a report that also reflected the way
18 Colonel Gambotti wanted the meeting to be reported, and my notes from the
19 meeting illustrates that there was a -- an acceptance on the side of
20 General Gotovina of the issue put to him by Colonel Gambotti that it was
21 in fact a lack of control. There was extraordinary events as he called
22 it that was going on, and he failed to control that.
23 Q. Yes, as you rightly observed, we have covered that. Just your
24 notion that the report didn't contain the whole truth. Can you explain
1 A. The explanation is there was a certain rapport between
2 Mr. Gambotti and the General, and perhaps Mr. Gambotti felt that he had
3 obtained sufficient information for his future function as HRC but that
4 in this particular daily report, which he asked me to sign off on, that
5 he would, so to speak suppress that particular element.
6 Q. Okay. Thank you, Mr. Liborius.
7 MR. WAESPI: No further questions, Mr. President.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Waespi.
9 Mr. Misetic.
10 MR. MISETIC: I will have less than five minutes, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Less than five minutes. Could I ask other counsel.
12 MR. CAYLEY: Nothing arises, Your Honour. Thank you.
13 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Nothing, Your Honour. Thank you.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Kuzmanovic.
15 Please proceed.
16 MR. MISETIC: Your Honour, if we could just have a moment, my
17 case manager just needs to switch places with the Markac case manager.
18 Further Cross-examination by Mr. Misetic:
19 Q. Mr. Liborius, good afternoon.
20 A. Good afternoon.
2 [Private session]
11 Pages 11303-11310 redacted. Private session.
1 [Open session]
2 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're in open session.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar. It's now on the record
4 that I made the same mistake twice yesterday by not finishing our session
5 in open session. And now again this morning by not moving from private
6 session to open session when we are at the point of adjourning.
7 I thanked in private session Mr. Liborius so that is on record
8 for the public as well that I thank you in the usual way. I would like
9 to add to this, that I want to apologise to interpreters, transcribers
10 for not having sought their consent in taking 15 more minutes than was
12 We will therefore, also, start this afternoon 15 minutes later.
13 That is, that is we will start at 3.00 so as to give everyone at least
14 some time for lunch. We'll then hear the witness who testified in closed
16 Could the parties give me an indication as whether there would be
17 a fair chance also looking at the schedule that was distributed whether
18 there's a chance that we could finish that witness today.
19 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honour, I passed through my notes and I
20 believe I wouldn't take more than an hour and a half, maybe even less, an
21 hour. I will try to do my best.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Mr. Kehoe.
23 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour. I believe we can finish him today.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Also for planning and scheduling purposes,
25 let's assume that we will finish that witness today.
1 Mr. Liborius, again, a good journey home.
2 We will resume at 3.00 this afternoon.
3 [The witness withdrew]
4 --- Luncheon recess taken at 2.02 p.m.
5 --- On resuming at 3.03 p.m.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Could the witness be escorted into the courtroom.
7 Meanwhile, we'll move into closed session.
8 [Closed session]
11 Pages 11313-11390 redacted. Closed session.
3 [Open session]
4 THE REGISTRAR: We're back in open session, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
6 So even with the curtains down I announce that we'll adjourn for
7 the day and that we'll resume tomorrow, Friday, the 7th of November, at
8 quarter past 2.00 in Courtroom I. And if there would be anyone in the
9 public gallery at this time, he has to live with this shortage of his
10 rights to observe this court proceedings.
11 We stand adjourned but not until after I have thanked
12 interpreters and all those assisting us, including security, for having
13 again stolen seven minutes of your time.
14 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.07 p.m.
15 to be reconvened on Friday, the 7th day of
16 November, 2008, at 2.15 p.m.