1 Wednesday, 26 November 2008
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.08 a.m.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning to everyone.
7 Mr. Registrar would you please call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. Good morning to
9 everyone in the courtroom. This is case number IT-06-90-T, The
10 Prosecutor versus Ante Gotovina, et al.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
12 The Chamber would like to inform the parties that pursuant to
13 Rule 15 bis (a), today's hearing will take place in the absence of
14 Judge Kinis. Judge Kinis is away for urgent personal reasons, and
15 Judge Gwaunza and I have conclude that it is in the interests of justice
16 to continue the trial without Judge Kinis, who will be present again on
18 Mr. Misetic, are you ready to continue your cross-examination?
19 Then, Mr. Theunens, I would like to again remind you that you're
20 still bound by the solemn declaration you gave at the beginning of your
22 Please proceed.
23 MR. MISETIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
24 WITNESS: REYNAUD THEUNENS [Resumed]
25 Cross-examination by Mr. Misetic: [Continued]
1 Q. Good morning, Mr. Theunens.
2 A. Good morning, Mr. Misetic.
3 Q. Mr. Theunens, first let me go back to a point I made before we
4 paused for the second break yesterday. I had invited to you look through
5 your documents to see if in your report you had made reference to notice
6 to General Gotovina of murders committed by HV.
7 Could you please point me to those.
8 A. Your Honours, in the second part of the report at the English
9 page 326, I have included a report by the commander of the 3rd Company of
10 the 72nd Military Police Battalion, which is part of 65 ter 419. More
11 specifically the information I have included can be found on -- in the
12 English translations, pages 7 and 8 of 9 of 65 ter 419.
13 And the commander of the 3rd Military Police Company in his
14 report to Major Juric states:
15 "During the searches, i.e., this is upon the arrival of the HV
16 Split Military District units, more specifically the 134th and the 7th
17 Home Guard Regiments in Benkovac on the 5th and the taking control over
18 Benkovac as a whole on the 6th. So during the searches we found five,
19 six dead people, and then we informed the security services."
20 I now skip a part just to speed matters up, or I could read it
21 out entirely.
22 Q. Just the next sentence.
23 A. "During the searches we found five, six dead people, and then we
24 informed the security services, as well as the services in charge of the
25 clearing up of the terrain. Considering the shortness of time passed
1 since our entrance to the city, we assumed that these were people of
2 Croatian ethnicity who have been killed by Chetniks."
3 The reason, Your Honours, I used this information in response to
4 Mr. Misetic's question is that, as I have pointed out earlier, the
5 military police reporting is not the only source of reporting for the
6 operational commander.
7 In this particular case the commander of the Split Military
8 District will receive reports from the commanders -- from the commander
9 of OG Zadar, whereby the commander of OG Zadar will have received reports
10 from his subordinate units who were in Benkovac, namely the 134th and the
11 7th Home Guard Regiment, in addition, there is the reporting from the
12 department for political affairs, which goes through the chain of
13 command, i.e., from OG Zadar to the Split Military District, and I
14 mentioned this just to explain that the commander has several sources of
16 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Theunens, if I may stop you for a second there.
17 Do you say that this was reported through these chains, this
18 incident; or do you say, Here we see a report and one could expect,
19 although it could not be established, that that's what happened, that it
20 should be reported?
21 THE WITNESS: Your Honour, indeed it should be reported. But
22 again I wanted to draw your attention to HV doctrine, where it is stated
23 that the commander has to be familiar with this --
24 JUDGE ORIE: I think, as a matter of fact, that Mr. Misetic was
25 seeking your assistance in finding documents in which we find such
1 reports. And that's, I think, what he asked to you do, and I think he
2 will appreciate that you have done it.
3 Please proceed, Mr. Misetic.
4 MR. MISETIC:
5 Q. Yes. If could I just clarify this now, Mr. Theunens.
6 First, you will agree with me that this report that you're
7 referencing is not a report that goes to General Gotovina. It's a report
8 from the -- Mr. Gransavic [phoen] of the military police to Mr. Juric,
10 A. As far as this specific report is concerned, yes.
11 Q. And you have no evidence at all that this report was copied to
12 the Split Military District, sent to the Military District. I'm not
13 asking you now what you think the theory should have called for. I'm
14 saying you have no evidence that this was send to the Split Military
15 District Command?
16 A. That is correct. I would just like add one other document that
17 is 65 ter 4600, where the commander of the 134th Home Guard Regiment
18 reports to his commander, and I draw the conclusion that his commander is
19 General Gotovina. This is a report from the 23rd of August, and it
20 covers the situation in Benkovac and the problems that occurred in
21 Benkovac upon the 134th and the 7th Home Guard Regiments taking over
22 control, whereby commander of the 134th also refers to the presence of a
23 member of the Split Military District Command, i.e., Colonel Sundov, who
24 is the assistant commander for Home Guard, in Benkovac at the time of the
25 arrival of the Split Military District unit there.
1 Q. Okay. So again my question is, the answer is no, you don't have
2 evidence that General Gotovina was given notice of murders having been
3 committed by someone in the HV?
4 A. I haven't come across documents during my -- the preparation of
5 my reports that indicate notice of murders. But again I tried to explain
6 how militaries operate.
7 Q. Okay. Now, just while we're on this topic, when you were doing
8 your searches of the OTP's database, did you use word combinations such
9 as "Gotovina," "murder"?
10 A. No, Your Honours, I don't remember doing such a specific search.
11 As I explained earlier, I did searches "Gotovina" and "95," "Gotovina"
12 and "94" and other combinations but not specifically directed at murders.
13 Q. Okay. We will let's take that -- Gotovina and 95 is the broadest
14 possible search you could do in the database. Correct?
15 A. Exactly.
16 Q. Okay?
17 A. I mean the broadest would be Gotovina "tout court."
18 Q. Agreed. In terms what we're interested in this for this case for
19 the year 1995 and notice of murders, if you do a search and pull every
20 document that is -- has "Gotovina" and "1995," presumably - correct me if
21 I'm wrong - if there is an document referencing General Gotovina having
22 been put on notice of murders in 1995, that document would presumably
23 come up in your search?
24 A. Such a specific document would have come up in my search. And as
25 I mentioned, I have not come across such a specific document.
1 Q. Thank you, Mr. Theunens.
2 Now, if we could go back to where we left off yesterday. Let me
3 pull up P881.
4 MR. MISETIC: Mr. Registrar, if you would, please.
5 Q. Now I believe this is the order that you were referencing
6 yesterday which you indicated that you believe General Lausic had - and I
7 don't want to put words in your mouth but - something to the effect of
8 overstepped his authority under Article 8, and I think is the specific
9 document that you refer to, correct?
10 A. That is correct. And if you allow me, Yesterday I had no clear
11 recollection of the document. Now I mean I looked at the document again
12 yesterday afternoon. And when I see the contents of the document, and in
13 particular paragraph 7, which is -- which is visible on the second page,
14 I would like to retract what I said in connection to my initial comment
15 yesterday, that I considered that this order was an example of
16 General Lausic's overstepping his authority.
17 Based again on -- on the contents of this order, and in
18 particular because he orders to establish military police stations all
19 over the territories that have been recaptured, I consider that it is in
20 line with Article 8 of the 1994 rules as well as the document D35 that
21 was discussed here.
22 Q. Okay. Let's go to a different document then.
23 MR. MISETIC: Mr. Registrar, if could I have Exhibit D845 on the
24 screen, please.
25 Q. Mr. Theunens, this is a document. It's a report sent from the
1 commander of the 4th Company of the 72nd Military Police Battalion, sent
2 to Major Budimir, on the 7th of August, reporting on his oral order
3 received from General Lausic.
4 And if you look at it, on the 7th of August he says:
5 "Pursuant to the oral order of the chief of the military police
6 administration, Major-General Mate Lausic, received ..."
7 Are you following this?
8 A. Yeah, yeah.
9 Q. "Received 7 August 1995
10 security system be established urgently at the entries and exits of the
11 following warehouses ..."
12 And General Lausic orders three specific warehouses notice Knin
13 area and the wider Knin area, Krka, Senjak and the Golubic depots.
14 A. Mm-hm.
15 Q. Now it goes on to stay:
16 "When the security system is established, the aforementioned
17 senior officers are obliged to write a written report and send it
18 urgently to the MP administration indicating that the security system has
19 been established. The addressee of the report should be Major-General
20 Mate Lausic.
21 Now on the 7th of August, General Lausic is issuing specific
22 orders on specific warehouses that need to be secured with MP personnel.
23 Is this order issued by General Lausic consistent with his powers under
24 Article 8?
25 A. Well, when you consider this document in isolation, then the
1 initial reaction would be that it goes beyond what is stipulated in the
2 Article 8 because of its specificity.
3 As I tried to explain also during my examination, analysis or
4 intelligent analysis is about looking at individual documents but also
5 putting them in content, and yesterday afternoon I reviewed my report
6 again, and I made a list of the documents that relate to activities
7 including reports an orders of the 72nd Military Police Battalion, both
8 prior to and during Storm, and these documents indicated that indeed
9 there are instructions by Lausic, some of them like this one appear to be
10 more specific than what one would expect from Article 8 of P880, or from
11 D35, but taking context of all the other documents included in my report,
12 I do not see a reason to review my conclusions that Articles 8 and 9 are
13 abided by during Operation Storm, and actually they are also confirmed by
15 Q. You and I are going to go through the context of all of these
16 orders in a few minutes, but for right now I would like your specific
17 answer. You correct me if I'm wrong, but I understand your answer to be
18 taking this specific order, individually you would consider this order
19 individually to be outside the scope of General Lausic's powers under
20 Article 8. Am I right?
21 A. That is correct. And there may be reasons for that, but I did
22 not find, or I have not come across information which indicate which
23 reasons General Lausic had for this order.
24 Q. Okay.
25 MR. MISETIC: Mr. Registrar, if I could have Exhibit D795 on the
1 screen, please.
2 Q. Mr. Theunens, this is a document again dated 7 August 1995. It's
3 issued by General Lausic. It's sent to the forward command post Ugljan
4 sent to Major Juric on behalf of the 72nd MP Battalion and sent to the
5 67th Military Police Battalion Sisak. And in the introduction Mr. Lausic
6 calls upon his own pursuant under Article 8 and issues an order --
7 A. I think there's a problem with the English.
8 Q. Oh, yeah, sorry.
9 You see there on the 7th of August he sends this order to the
10 three address, and in the introductions he invokes his powers under
11 Article 8.
12 And then again they are to establish the location of every
13 warehouse facility within the entire liberated territory, evaluate a
14 method of physically securing all warehouse facilities, and establishing
15 physical security. They are to enter the warehouse facilities, and
16 issuing mechanical technical devices is not permitted without written
17 clearance from General Zagorac. They are to immediately establish
18 physical security and maintain it until the hand over.
19 And if we turn the page.
20 Paragraph 5 is, they are to submit reports on the implementation
21 of this order starting on the 7th of August and if need be orally to the
22 military police administration.
23 Now here again General Lausic is issuing an even broader order
24 concerning all warehouse facilities on the liberated territory, how they
25 are to do it, and they are to go and secure them. Do you consider that
1 order to be outside the scope of General Lausic's powers under Article 8?
2 A. No, Your Honours, and for the following reasons: First of all,
3 General Lausic acts upon an instruction from the minister of defence.
4 And also for the second reason is because the Croatian armed force have
5 an interest in having a uniform approach to -- or in dealing with former
6 enemy warehouses, and at that stage, the 7th of August, the military
7 police seemed to be the best suited force to take care of these
8 warehouses to secure them and to prevent people who are not authorised
9 from entering, and so on and so on.
10 And again, as you said yourself, the order explains how they
11 should do it. For me that is in line with Article 8 of the 1994 MP
13 Q. Well, let's follow up on that. In addition to having a uniform
14 approach to dealing with warehouses, you would agree with me that it was
15 in the interests of the Croatian armed forces and the Croatian government
16 to have a uniform approach to establishing and re-establishing security
17 in the liberated territory, right?
18 A. Indeed, yes.
19 Q. You would want a uniform approach in the entire liberated
20 territories on how the security plan is going to be implemented, correct?
21 A. I cannot answer that question because I have seen the security
22 plan for the Split Military District, i.e., we discuss the one for
23 OG North which was approved by General Gotovina. I have not been able to
24 review the security plans, i.e., the plans that are included in the order
25 for attack Kozjak for the other Military Districts.
1 Q. Well, if there was a plan worked out between the MUP and the
2 military police administration on how security was going to function, you
3 would agree with me that that plan -- it was in the interests of the
4 Croatian government that that plan be implemented in a uniform approach
5 on the liberated territory, correct?
6 A. That is correct. But I mean at the end we will state, Well,
7 everything was ordered by the chief of the Main Staff because you wanted
8 to have a uniform approach in all of the Military Districts in relation
9 to how to restore Croatian control over the Serb-held areas, and
10 obviously that was not the case.
11 So there are -- there are limits, but this is a very good
12 example. This particular order we're looking at of a specific matter
13 which falls within the professional capabilities of the military police
14 or within the professional tasks of the military police, and where, at a
15 stage when Operation Storm is not yet finished, i.e., with the 7th of
16 August, so the combat units are still needed to conduct military
17 operations, it is -- makes sense to have the military police secure
18 warehouses, and therefore to have a uniform approach in all of the
19 recaptured areas.
20 Q. Okay. Let explore this topic, and let's start from the
21 beginning, Mr. Theunens.
22 MR. MISETIC: Mr. Registrar, may I please have Exhibit D409.
23 Q. I think you have seen the document we're putting up right now.
24 These are General Lausic's notes from a meeting that was held on the 2nd
25 of August, 1995 at 10.00 a.m.
1 You are familiar with this, right?
2 A. Indeed, Your Honours, and I have mentioned them in part 2 of my
4 Q. And you see all the military people that are present at this
5 meeting. This includes basically every service, every Military District
6 Commander, the minister of defence, Mr. Lausic himself, Mr. Lausic's
7 assistants, like Marijan Biskic Muharem; the chief of the SIS is present,
8 Mr. Gugic at line 7; and intelligence services are present.
9 And if we turn to page 3 of the document, the note where minister
10 Susak begins to speak. The third entry under Minster Susak is "military
11 police must be more energetic in its actions and must prevent all
13 The next entry is "the Military District Commanders must be the
14 ones to pass on to the other commanders the prohibition of any kind of
15 uncontrolled conduct: Torching, looting, et cetera."
16 Next entry is "we must prevent having to take the heros of the
17 homeland war to court. And then PD, political affairs workers, must
18 carry out their tasks of appropriately briefing HV members."
19 And the last line is "the west has given a partial blessing, but
20 nothing must happen to UNPROFOR."
21 Now, and just as a side note, General Gotovina speaks after that,
22 in the fourth entry is "populated areas are included in the defence
24 But I want to get what Mr. Susak said. He is talking there about
25 a combination of different measures that need to be taken. Would you
1 agree with me? He says the Military District Commanders need to pass on
2 orders that illegal unlawful conduct, such as torching and looting is
3 banned, correct?
4 A. Indeed, and just I mean for the people maybe in a non-military
5 mind, passing on does not mean just push forward on an e-mail and say,
6 Well, look here's the order. It means that throughout the chain of
7 command, the orders have to be issued and also their implementation has
8 to be verified.
9 Q. I think we're all familiar with that, Mr. Theunens.
10 A. I apologise then.
11 Q. Now, let's get to the first line, which is "it is the military
12 police that must be energetic in its actions and must prevent all
14 That is the role of the military police according to
15 Minister Susak on the 2nd, correct?
16 A. Indeed, but again when we take the 1992 Code Of Military
17 Discipline, as well as regulations that define the tasks of commanders,
18 enforcing discipline is first and foremost a task the commander, and it
19 is only when he fails or is not able to enforce discipline or when there
20 are serious violations that the military police is called upon to
21 intervene and to assist.
22 Q. That is not correct, is it, Mr. Theunens? You read the military
23 police administration's regulations. Have you read them thoroughly?
24 A. I have read them, but I have also read the 1993 Law of Defence.
25 Q. Have you read the 1994 military police administration regulations
1 on what the tasks of the military police are?
2 A. Of course. But the military police does not act in isolation.
3 Q. Well, Mr. Theunens, no one acts in isolation in the military, do
5 A. No, but have I the impression that you try to depict the role of
6 the military police as like a civilian police force. Obviously if in
7 civilian life there is a problem between people, then you call the police
8 to solve it.
9 In the military it is first through the chain of command, whereby
10 the responsibility of the commanders at all command levels is involved,
11 to maintain discipline that's a basic principle.
12 Q. We agree on that, Mr. Theunens. You are going to be together for
13 the next two days, so your answers will be much shorter if instead of
14 answering my questions trying to think through what I'm trying to depict,
15 what I'm trying to get at, et cetera, if you just answer and stick to the
16 basic question that I'm asking you and give me the basic answer without
17 the extra spin to try to defeat whatever you think I'm trying to prove,
18 we'll get through this a lot quicker. Okay.
19 Now, Mr. Susak on the 2nd said "military police must be more
20 energetic in its actions and must prevent all offences, right?
21 A. Yes, that's what the text says.
22 Q. Let's get to the part where it says "political affairs workers
23 must carry out their task of appropriately briefing HV members." That
24 might be as clear to the Trial Chamber as to what is referenced by that.
25 You having read the Military District orders to the political affairs
1 workers, what does that refer to?
2 A. One of the aspects which is, I believe, important in this context
3 is that the assistant commander for political affairs as well as through
4 the political affairs chain have to brief the military personnel about
5 the importance of abiding by the laws of armed conflict also about --
6 they brief them on morale issues, i.e., keep motivation high and explain
7 them why the upcoming operation important, and again as I pointed out why
8 they have to abide by rules, regulations, including the international
9 laws of war. And laws of armed conflict.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 MR. MISETIC: Mr. Registrar, if we could turn to page 5 of this
13 Q. We saw Mr. Lausic's notes on the 2nd at 10.00, and now we're
14 turning to page 5 of his notes which references the meeting -- I don't
15 think we're on the right page in the Croatian version. I think it's the
16 page prior in the Croatian. Actually it starts on the page prior.
17 It is a meeting at 1730 hours, meeting in the minister's office,
18 according to Mr. Lausic. The persons present at this meeting on the 2nd
19 at 5.30 p.m.
20 Josko Moric, and obviously Mr. Lausic himself.
21 Now they're discussing at the meeting at 5.30 the agreement on
22 two issues: On the check-points in the combat zone combat operations
23 zones on possible refugees, Minister Jarnjak makes comments, "it cannot
24 be the same model as Operation Flash as more places will be occupied.
25 The military police follow the front line and the civilian police enter
1 populated areas."
2 If we turn the page, the rest of the discussion about which
3 highways are going to be closed down, military police must announce
4 passage of military convoys, et cetera, et cetera.
5 So let's establish first of all there's a meeting between those
6 four individuals meaning two ministers and their top assistant ministers
7 on police issues at 5.30 on the 2nd of August, and now --
8 MR. MISETIC: Mr. Registrar, if I could have -- just a moment
9 please. Exhibit D794, please.
10 Q. In Exhibit D794 you see that the next day, after the meeting at
11 the top level, there's a working meeting held between the heads of the
12 Ministry of the Interior, as well as the heads of the military police
13 administration, and the SIS administration, on the 3rd of August.
14 Do you see that?
15 A. Yes, indeed, I see that.
16 Q. And it says it's a working meeting of the top officials held in
17 the MUP, devoted to coordinating the actions of the MUP, military police
18 and SIS in preparation of and during the planned offensive activities of
19 the HV in the coming herd.
20 "The meeting began at 1300 hours and the following persons were
22 If you look through you see who was present from the MUP, who was
23 present from the military police administration and SIS. You will not
24 that only is General Gotovina not present, but no one from the military
25 chain of command is present at this time meeting. Do you agree with
1 that? When I say "military chain of command," I mean from the Main Staff
2 down that line.
3 A. That is correct.
4 Q. Okay. You -- I have seen this document. Correct?
5 A. I believe, but I'm not 100 percent sure, and I have to cope with
6 the technical limitations that when have you a military document it is
7 nice to be able to flip through it and see who signed which is most of
8 the times indicated at the end and just to scan it, but I mean I accept
9 technical limitations. What I try to do is review the documents after my
10 cross-examination because I have the privilege of having access to them
11 via e-court in my office.
12 Q. Okay. Well, if you look through this when you get a chance, you
13 see that they discuss the details at the working meeting of all the
14 technical aspects of working out security traffic, those types of issues
15 that you would have in restoring security to a liberated area, okay?
16 Now, I ask you and I'm going to back now, but I wanted to point
17 that out to you that there's a follow-up meeting on the 3rd after the
18 meeting of the two ministers and their police assistants on the 2nd.
19 There's a working meeting held to implement the details of their
20 agreement. If you look at page 3 of this document, and this will be -- I
21 just want you to note it because I'm going to go back and discuss this.
22 Page 3 in the English and the section where Major-General
23 Mate Lausic is speaking he says in the second bullet point, he talks
24 about the main negative experiences in Operation Flash were the
25 following ...
1 And then the last sentence of the second bullet appointed is:
2 "He also emphasised that he now authorised UVP and military
3 police administration officers to replace the commanders of VP units on
4 the spot should they notice any irregularities in their work."
5 Does that indicate to you that these UVP officer have the power
6 -- do you agree that they have the power to replace, for example,
7 battalion -- military police battalion commanders on the spot if there
8 are any irregularities in their work?
9 A. Yes. That is, in my view, in line with the doctrine, because we
10 are talking about specialized units with specialized personal.
11 MR. MISETIC: Let's go to, Mr. Registrar, to Exhibit D267,
13 And if we could go to page 4 in the English, please.
14 Q. This is the order, just so yo usee it. It is the 2nd
15 August order issued by General Lausic to all of the subordinated military
16 police battalions and other military police assets regarding -- we'll get
17 the subject line, preparations of military police units to perform
18 military police tasks in the areas of responsibility of the Croatian army
19 Military Districts during upcoming operations.
20 And if we read page 10, second paragraph -- I'm paragraph 10, I
21 apologise, second paragraph:
22 "I appoint major Ivan Juric in a group of officers from the
23 regular VP section and the VP administration crime section to assist in
24 commanding and organizing the activities of the 72nd VP battalion and
25 73rd Split
1 responsibility and provide necessary civilian to the 72th VP battalion.
2 The commanders of the 72nd VP battalion and 73rd VP battalion shall be
3 subordinated to Major Ivan Juric."
4 Now, if we go to the next page in the English, the first bullet
5 point, he says what the reporting requirements are, and he says:
6 "The commanders of the 72nd VP Battalion and the 73rd VP
7 Battalion shall report to major Ivan Juric, who shall report to the VP
8 administration until 2000 hours every day starting from 4 August 1995."
9 Do you see that?
10 A. Indeed.
11 Q. So the 72nd Military Police Battalion commander, Major Budimir,
12 is to report to Major Juric, Major Juric is then to file a report with
13 General Lausic. Correct?
14 A. Indeed. But in this order, I -- because I discuss it on English
15 page 208 of part 2 of the report, Lausic also confirms the subordination
16 of the military police within the daily operational chain of command to
17 the operational commanders. So again it is confirmations of Articles 8
18 and 9 whereby to facilitate the command and control over 72nd and 73th.
19 General Lausic appoints Major Ivan Juric.
20 Q. Okay. Let's now turn to Exhibit D268, please.
21 While we are flipping to that, do you see and agree with me that
22 when you read the document I just showed you combined with the notes of
23 the meeting on the 3rd with the MUP officials where Mr. Lausic said that
24 these UVP administration officers had the power to replace commanders in
25 the field that Major Juric had the authority from General Lausic to
1 replace Major Budimir if he found that there were irregularities in his
3 A. Yes, as I said that was in line with Articles 8 and 9 of the 1994
4 military police regulations, as well as what is described in Croatian
5 armed forces doctrine as the professional line, whereby a distinction is
6 made between command and control along the professional line on the one
7 hand, and command and control along the direct or operational line on the
8 other hand. And that can be find on English page 130, part 1, of my
10 Q. Let me ask you a background question, Mr. Theunens.
11 Do you agree that General Lausic could not issue an order to
12 General Gotovina?
13 A. Not directly. However, I have seen an example and that is on the
14 9th of August, in his overview report on the activity of the military
15 police, General Lausic includes a sentence where he says, I please
16 request that the military police units be relieved of combat tasks and
17 can return or can turn to regular military police tasks.
18 This report by Lausic covers all military police units throughout
20 I remember well also the Military District Commanders. And the day after
21 he issues an order to the effect that military police units should be
22 relieved from combat tasks and should carry out regular military police
23 tasks, this order is based on an instruction of Mr. Susak, and it is send
24 to the Military District Commanders, all of them.
25 Subsequently to this order by Lausic, General Gotovina issues an
1 order to his Operational Group commanders, to implement Lausic's order,
2 i.e., to relieve the military police units of combat tasks and allow them
3 to carry out regular military police tasks.
4 Q. Well, I think we need to clarify some of your answers there.
5 A. And if you allow, I can just give you the references.
6 Q. I'm going to put it on the screen right now, okay.
7 A. All right.
8 Q. And we'll go back to the document that is on the screen now. But
9 while you've gone off on this topic now, let's cover it.
10 MR. MISETIC: D837, Mr. Registrar, please.
11 Q. This is -- oh, sorry.
12 This is an order, it's not issued to General Gotovina, as you
13 said. It's issued to the military police battalions about removing the
14 combat units, right? If you scroll down in the English?
15 A. Yes. But could can we see the end of the document.
16 Q. I'll show you the end. Hold on.
17 A. Okay.
18 Q. "With the aim of deploying the anti-sabotage units of the
19 military police ... in order to search, mop up the liberated territory of
20 the Republic of Croatia
21 MR. MISETIC: If we could turn the page, please.
22 Q. "... order all military police units engaged in combat activities
23 are to be disengaged from the areas of combat activities at 0700 hours on
24 the 10th of August."
25 And then talks about anti-tank battalions, et cetera being given.
1 If we go down to see "the delivery submitted to," and then the
2 last line is: "To the attention of."
3 If we could go to the Croatian version, please, signature line.
4 Meaning: For information. Right?
5 A. Indeed. And that is what I meant to say, and this is a referred
6 to in part 2 of my report, English page 226.
7 Q. Well, this is an important distinction though, because we got off
8 on this topic now because you wanted to such that General Lausic to
9 indirectly issue an order to General Gotovina which is not what this
10 document is doing.
11 A. What this document is doing is issuing an order to a unit that is
12 part of the units of General Gotovina, i.e., the military police unit of
13 General Gotovina, and that's why it is important.
14 Q. Well, this is sort of -- if I may use the expression putting the
15 cart before the horse, because you have already concluded that
16 General Gotovina's units, and therefore you're interpretations flow from
17 that. My -- my specific remember, this is a document that you and I
18 talked about yesterday. When I talked about what would happen now, you
19 have seen the order by General Lausic. It is given to General Gotovina
20 for information.
21 Ten minutes after General Gotovina receives this order, he issues
22 another order to Mr. Budimir that says, You are not to withdraw the
23 anti-terrorist platoons. You are to ignore the order by General Lausic,
24 and you are to continue doing the tasks that you have been doing until
1 I believe your answer to me was in that situation, General
2 Gotovina's order would prevail, right?
3 A. I would first like to address your comment where you state that
4 the 72nd Military Police Battalion is not a unit of the Split Military
6 Q. I didn't say that. Where did I say that?
7 A. You state in page 21, line 9, "if I may use the expression
8 putting the cart before the horse, because you have already concluded
9 that General Gotovina's units, and therefore your interpretation flows
10 from that," I understood that in the sense that you -- in your view the
11 72nd Military Police Battalion is not a unit of General Gotovina, whereas
12 based on my analysis and, for example, 65 ter 5768 is a table of manpower
13 which mentions the 72nd Military Police Battalion among the units of the
14 Split Military District. This is one prior to Operation Storm.
15 There are similar tables during Operation Storm. 10th of
16 August we have 65 ter 4584 --
17 Q. Mr. Theunens. Yes but I'm -- you're citing a bunch the documents
18 that we're going to have to enter into evidence. Your string-citing
19 documents and they are not in answer to my question, because you
20 misunderstood what I said in the first place. So if we could hold off on
21 the tangential issues that you find in my questions, and let's focus
22 again in on what I'm asking you.
23 A. Yes. But the key issue is to who does the 72nd Military Police
24 Battalion belong.
25 Q. And that's why I asked you the question quite specifically at the
1 end, which was it's your position -- it's your position that had
2 General Gotovina issued an order saying, Ignore this order by
3 General Lausic. Your position is because you believe this unit is a unit
4 of the Split Military District, that General Gotovina's order prevails.
5 I'm just trying to establish your position. I'm not so much worried that
6 you can try and figure out my position.
7 A. But yesterday you were asking a hypothetical question, and I
8 stated well, I give a hypothetical answer to a hypothetical question.
9 Referring to this -- to the document -- I mean the order by Lausic which
10 is sent for information to the Military District Commanders, there is a
11 response by Gotovina in a sense that he forwards the order to his
12 military police units, whereby he basically confirms what General Lausic
13 orders. And that is 65 ter 884, page 226 of my report.
14 Q. Okay. How does that answer my question?
15 A. Well, I mean I'm confused by the hypothetical question. So I'm
16 trying to give you a concrete question -- a concrete answer to a concrete
17 document. I mean, the concrete document being the document -- the order
18 by General Lausic.
19 Q. I'm trying to use a concrete example to try to figure out what
20 your understanding is of the interrelationship between General Lausic's
21 role with the military police and General Gotovina's role, which your
22 further answer and further cites the 65 ters doesn't help me.
23 So let's focus in on it, and say my hypothetical now is: Based
24 on this document that General Gotovina one hour later issued an order
25 saying, Ignore this order by General Lausic, your position is
1 General Gotovina's subsequent order prevails?
2 A. That was my position in relation to a hypothetical question. Now
3 we have a concrete situation, and I cannot deny a concrete document.
4 And, in my view, the answer to a concrete question whereby I can see
5 documents and draw conclusions from these documents is more relevant than
6 speculating about hypothetical questions and hypothetical answers.
7 Q. Well, part -- if I may say that part of what I believe the role
8 of the expert witness is is to help the Trial Chamber understand the
9 overall picture and the overall relationship between the two.
10 I am using this specific example so that you can assist all of us
11 in the courtroom, if you can, to explain that general relationship which
12 we're all going to having to figure out in this trial.
13 To let me focus in again. In this specific case what happens if
14 General Gotovina issues a counterorder? Is it your position that
15 General Gotovina's order prevails?
16 A. No. Your Honours, my position is that paragraph 5 of D35 would
17 apply, which means that General Lausic's order would prevail
18 theoretically, because I assume that General Gotovina would consult
19 General Cervenko, would consult Mr. Susak, and that on that level
20 agreement would be found, because I will also assume that
21 General Gotovina would have good reasons to say to General Lausic, Look,
22 I can't have my military police do what you order them to do by this
23 order, because this and this reason, and that then, as is done in the
24 military staff and a military environment, there is a dialogue between
25 all people concerned in order to come to a satisfactory solution.
1 This is not a quiz.
2 Q. But this is it also a military in realtime where seconds and
3 minutes matter. Do you agree with me? In a combat situation you need to
4 know whose order prevails, right? You don't have time to hold a
5 mediation session. You don't have time for consultations. You need to
6 know the hierarchy. That is how the military functions in all
7 militaries; doesn't it?
8 A. Indeed, but that is why there is paragraph 5 in D35 to deal with
9 these kind of issues, i.e., when there appears to be a conflict between
10 orders through the operational chain and orders through the professional
12 Q. So the answer is General Lausic wins. I'm not disagreeing with
14 A. I wouldn't call it that he wins, but based on D35, Lausic's order
15 would reveal.
16 Q. Thank you very much. Now if we could go back to the document I
17 had on the screen which is --
18 JUDGE ORIE: Just ask a question. I'm just verifying that I
19 understand what this issue is about, which is of a rather technical
21 Article 8, Article 9, they give not very precise, defined command
22 structures. Of course you say Article 8, Article 9 is clearly -- makes a
23 distinction between the two lines of command.
24 Now, what happened yesterday apparently was that you were asked
25 about whose orders would prevail, and you very much resisted to answer
1 that question, which was put to you in a rather abstract nature, and I
2 got the impression at that time, when you said, Give me a document and
3 I'll tell you that you were struggling with under what circumstances
4 exactly Article 8, and on what subjects or circumstances exactly
5 Article 9 would apply. I think you had difficulties in giving an
6 abstract answer on the orders of the one would prevail or the orders of
7 the other would prevail, because I understood your testimony that it
8 depended exactly on what was the content of the order, would it fit in
9 Article 8, would it fit in Article 9?
10 Now, today, apparently, you are given an example, a document,
11 where apparently there is the one claiming that the military police
12 should do what he has ordered, Lausic, and that apparently this is
13 challenged, or there is an competing claim of command on the specific
14 issue of this document. And the one issues an order under Article -- and
15 the other ones gives an order which is under the other Article, so there
16 are two competing claims, apparently in an area where it might not be
17 that easy, or perhaps it is easy, to define exactly whether they are
18 working within the scope of Article 8 or Article 9.
19 Again, apparently the issue is whose orders prevail? And I
20 understand from your answers that, still, that is to be assessed on the
21 basis of the specific order, time, place, all circumstances, whether it
22 is the professional command as you said, or the other -- I think you
23 called it the direct command.
24 THE WITNESS: Or the operational command, just the same, Your
1 JUDGE ORIE: Just for my information, have I understood your
2 testimony correctly because a lot of questions have been put, a lot of
3 answer have been given, a lot of pushing, and a lot of resistance in
4 answering, I noticed, and I just wanted to be sure for myself that I
5 understood your testimony correctly, and if Mr. Misetic would think that
6 I need further details or further matters to know, he will certainly ask
7 you any additional questions.
8 But I just wanted to make a short stop and verify whether I had
9 lost track or not, or not yet.
10 THE WITNESS: No, Mr. President, you have provided correct
11 picture of my answers and of the issue at stake.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Mr. Misetic, not to say that this is the last.
13 I said I wanted to make a midway stop just to see whether I was on track,
14 totally different from where you and/or Mr. Theunens were.
15 MR. MISETIC: I think y ou were, so I'm going to go back into it
17 Q. Mr. Theunens, I asked about this specific order. If we go back
18 to the first page of this document, please I'm sorry, my mistake
19 [Overlapping speakers] ...
20 JUDGE ORIE: I said to see whether I was on track totally
21 different from where you and/or Mr. Theunens were. You said and
22 that's -- you were, so I'm on the wrong track. As far as Mr. Theunens
23 concerned, apparently I'm not, but I'm on the wrong track as far as you
24 are concerned, and I give you all opportunity to further clarify what you
25 think is the right track and which is apparently a different track from
1 what I understood Mr. Theunens track to be.
2 MR. MISETIC: I understood Mr. Theunens and I to be on the same
3 page at the end, which now I understand given his answer to your question
4 that he and I are not on the same page anymore, so we're going to go back
5 into it.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
7 MR. MISETIC: If I could go to the -- the subject is
8 Disengagement Of Combat Units, and the order says at the top:
9 "All military police units engaged in combat activities are to be
10 disengaged from the areas of combat activities at 0700 hours."
11 Combat activities, do you consider that professional activities
12 or operational activities?
13 A. Combat activities are operational activities.
14 Q. Now your answer when I put this order to you was that under
15 paragraph 5 of D35, your answer to me was General Lausic would prevail.
16 So I'm not confused because this is an order to remove combat units from
17 operational activity issued by General Lausic, right, and you answered
18 that D35, paragraph 5 meant that in the event of a conflict between
19 General Gotovina and General Lausic, General Lausic would reveal.
20 Now in response to the Presiding Judge's questions you have made
21 a distinction between whether the issue dealt with professional
22 activities or operational activities, and so I put it to you, and I'm
23 going put it to you, there is no distinction between professional
24 activities or operational activities in the event of any decision by
25 General Lausic and order with respect military police units, whether
1 they're engaged operationally or whether they are engaged in professional
2 tasks, his orders prevail under paragraph 5 of D35.
3 Do you agree?
4 A. Mr. President, I think we're mixing up things. Because what the
5 Presiding Judge described is my position in relation to the distinction
6 between the professional line and the operational line. And the
7 Presiding Judge also highlighted that it is very difficult or impossible
8 for me to give an answer to an abstract or a hypothetical question, and I
9 would prefer to see the document.
10 Independent of whether this specific document dealt with
11 professional issues or operational issues. Here we a have order by
12 General Lausic which follows, and I think it is important to mention a
13 request he has included in his report to the minister of defence, which
14 is also send to the Military District Commanders the day before, the
15 order here does not show whether there has been any consultation between
16 General Lausic, Mr. Susak, and the Military District Commanders as to
17 well, what do we do with that request of General Lausic, what we see is
18 that a day after his request, he issues this order which indeed it covers
19 operational matters because it's the operational use of military police
20 units who are being used for combat activities, and we see and I have
21 also included that in my report on page 226 that this order is abided by
22 or is implemented by General Gotovina and that he issues an order to his
23 OGs, 65 ter 2316, in order to implement Lausic's order and relieve the
24 military police units of combat tasks, and again it is a very specific
25 situation, and therefore I can answer that question.
1 In other situations the answer may be different, and that'd why,
2 as the Presiding Judge summarized, it is important to look at the
3 specifics and to look at the documents.
4 Q. Okay. But I want to make sure that we agree -- and this is an
5 example even -- in respect to military police in operational matters
6 General Lausic, at least in this example, under paragraph 5 of D35, his
7 order would prevail over General Gotovina's order.
8 A. That's correct, yeah.
9 Q. Okay. Thank you.
10 Now --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Just now for me to understand, is the specific issue
12 here that he did not issue an order on his own but that there was a
13 higher level communication about what to do under those circumstances?
14 Is that what you here say that the order prevails, or is it on the basis
15 of the structure itself?
16 THE WITNESS: Your Honour, I -- in my view this order has to be
17 seen notice context of the situation. This order dates from the 9th of
18 August. Certain patterns are visible throughout the areas that have been
19 recaptured by the Croatian forces. And these patterns of activities and
20 of incidents directly affect the role -- sorry, I rephrase it. Fall
21 within the competencies of the military police.
22 Now General Lausic sees that the military police units are mainly
23 used for combat tasks. He based on this order and the request he issued
24 a day before, has a different view on the use of military police in the
25 liberated areas, and considers that the military police should actually
1 be used for military police tasks.
2 Therefore, this order is issued to the military police units in
3 the Military Districts for the Military District Commanders. Now, the
4 fact that General Gotovina on his turn issues an order to his military
5 police -- to his OGs, I apologise, to his OGs, 65 ter 2316, in order to
6 relieve the military police units from combat tasks shows that
7 General Gotovina also plays a role in this chain of command, i.e., in the
8 command over the military police, and there is no -- it's not about an
9 academic interpretation or whether it is Article 8 or 9. I do agree with
10 Mr. Misetic that here in this order we actually deal with matters that
11 should be covered by Article 9, but in any event the order is issued.
12 Now, if you would use this order to generalise the situation --
13 and state or draw certain conclusions in relation to the role of General
14 Gotovina and/or General Lausic in the area of command and control over
15 the military police, well, there is lots of other documents which are
16 included in my report that actually show that also General Gotovina --
17 General Gotovina is in a position to issue orders to the military police,
18 and I emphasise that the 72nd Military Police Battalion is a unit of the
19 Split Military District.
20 And I apologise for being so long, but this is not a yes or no,
21 or a black or white situation. There is a lot of grey and I tried to
22 clarify that.
23 MR. MISETIC:
24 Q. Well, Mr. Theunens, I will get back to you later on there point
25 that you seem to think that this order by General Lausic required another
1 order by General Gotovina. I'll put to that you we'll deal with this
2 issue now that you have raised yet another issue, but can you explain to
3 me why General Lausic sends an order. It is clearly addressed amongst
4 others the 72nd Military Police Battalion VP Split. Are you saying now
5 that that order has no effect unwilling now General Gotovina gets
6 involved on issues his own order, or are you perhaps confusing the fact
7 that General Gotovina issues an act of defence order in which he reports
8 what is is now happening with the anti-terrorist units of the military
10 Correct me if I'm wrong, there is no need for a second order by
11 General Gotovina to the 72nd MPs once Mr. Lausic has issued an order, is
13 A. I stated that there is an order from General Gotovina to his OGs
14 in order to relieve the military police from combat tasks, and we would
15 benefit from seeing 65 ter 2316 on the monitor, and then we can see it
17 Q. Well, I'm going to back to you later on because I would like to
18 keep the tempo going, but we will certainly deal with at a later point.
19 But right now, let's go back to D268, please.
20 This is an order from the 2nd of August, reinforcement of the
21 72nd Military Police Battalion. If we turn to page 2 at the bottom. It
22 says, number one is a group number one is a group of UVP officers led by
23 Major Ivan Juric. It talks about others from the general VP department,
24 Ante Glavan who is from the crime police section of the military police
25 administration. That group is formed, and it says:
1 "Major Ivan Juric's task in the command system, he is superior to
2 the 72nd VP and 73rd VP commanders with regard to the 73rd VP extending
3 assistance to the 72nd VP."
4 And if we could turn the page:
5 "He is responsible for the implementation of all military police
6 tasks in the 72nd VP zone of responsibility."
7 Then the final two points:
8 "He is authorised to undertake all measures to ensure efficient
9 and effective implementation of military police tasks in the 72nd
10 military police and north OS zones of responsibility."
11 And finally:
12 "Reporting shall be pursuant to order of the chief of the UVP ...
13 dated 2 August 1995
14 And that is the order we have already seen which was D267 saying
15 that at 8.00 p.m.
16 having received reports from the 72nd and 73rd.
17 Now if we go to Exhibit D26 --
18 A. Yes, Your Honours there is also a paragraph that you didn't read
19 out where it states that in relation to Juric he shall cooperate and
20 coordinate the implementation of tasks with the workers of civilian
21 police or the police administration Ministry of Interior as well as the
22 Split Military District and the assistant commander for security an
23 information --
24 Q. That is an important point, isn't it?
25 A. Yeah, that is important.
1 Q. Yeah.
2 A. But I just wanted to -- mention it for the record that this is
3 also included that Juric indeed exercises the authorities as defined by
4 Lausic over the 72nd and 73rd, but he coordinated and cooperates with
5 civilian police, SIS, as well as the operational commanders.
6 Q. And I thank you actually for bringing that to my attention,
7 because that is relevant to a point that you raised on direct. It
8 doesn't say Juric is subordinated to the Split Military District; it says
9 he shall cooperate and coordinate with the Split Military District, and
10 there is no difference -- distinction made between his cooperation and
11 coordination with the Split Military District and MUP, right?
12 A. No, but the command and control arrangements for the military
13 police have not changed. And we have seen that D35 confirms the 1994
14 military police rules, so there is no need to emphasise it again.
15 Q. There is an immediate to emphasise it Mr. Theunens because
16 Major Juric is not part of the Split Military District. He is not
17 subordinated to the Split Military District, is he?
18 A. I --
19 Q. [Overlapping speakers] ... show me the order where Major Juric
20 is subordinated to the commander of the Split Military District.
21 A. I have seen no orders indicating that Major Juric is subordinated
22 to the Split Military District, but as I see his role as coordinator,
23 i.e., to facilitate command and control over 72nd and 73rd in the aspect
24 of 73rd providing assistant to the 72nd as is indicated in -- in the
25 order we see now, I don't think that that is of relevance for the command
1 and control over the Split Military District military police.
2 Q. Well, I do see it as relevant, and correct me if I'm wrong, but
3 we've now gone through the process where Major Juric -- it says that the
4 commanders of the 72nd and 73rd are subordinated to Major Juric.
5 Major Juric has the power to replace the commanders of the 72nd and 73rd
6 if he finds irregularities in their work. That is more than a
7 coordinator; isn't it?
8 A. If we see the first page of this order, or the second page,
10 So at he bottom we see Juric the task is to shall superior --
11 excuse me, superior to the 72nd and the 73rd with regard to the 73rd
12 extending assistant to the 72nd.
13 Q. Yes you ignore the next page.
14 A. No, I'm not ignoring it. I'm just trying to explain.
15 Q. Please take in the next sentence, as you are fond of saying, you
16 take one sentence out of isolation, so let's look at the next sentence.
17 A. Mm-hm.
18 Q. He is responsible for the implementation of all military police
19 tasks in the 72nd VP zone of responsibility.
21 A. Yes. But he can be responsible to General Lausic or to
22 General Gotovina.
23 Q. Well, have you found any evidence at all to indicate that he
24 either received an order from General Gotovina or issued one report to
25 General Gotovina?
1 A. Not to General Gotovina, but there are documents -- there is at
2 least one document included in my report, and if I remember well, it's 65
3 ter 419, where we see that Major Juric is in contact with -- he is
4 meeting and coordinating with an Operational Group commander.
5 Q. That is because he is meeting with MUP, SIS, Split Military
6 District, that is the point you just highlighted in this document, isn't
7 it? That's his job, to coordinate?
8 A. Yes. But there is no references to MUP or SIS in that particular
10 Q. Does it have to be in a particular document for you to know that
11 he is coordinating with the MUP? Do you disagree now that he was
12 coordinating with the MUP while he was there?
13 A. That is not what I'm saying, Your Honours. What I'm saying is
14 that in 65 ter 419, we see that Major Juric is in -- call it operational
15 contact with an operational commander and this commander is a subordinate
16 of General Gotovina.
17 Q. Okay. Now let's go back to the question that I asked, and if you
18 could again focus. Did you find a report either an order from
19 General Gotovina to Juric, or did you ever find Juric reporting to
20 General Gotovina in written form? Did you find any such documents?
21 A. I haven't found or I haven't come across such a document. The
22 closest document, if I can express myself that way, is the operational
23 diary, where a -- an unidentified representative of the military police,
24 sometimes he is identified as the commander of the 72nd Military Police
25 Battalion attends the working meetings of the Split Military District
1 Command and its subordinate commanders.
2 Q. Now, I'm glad you said that because what your answer now reveals
3 to me is that you actually went and looked for such orders to Juric or
4 reporting by Juric to General Gotovina. Right?
5 A. I don't remember that I did a specific search for any contact
6 between General Gotovina and Major Juric. What I did is searches on key
7 words, on numbers of orders. I did indeed searches and extensive
8 searches in order to determine how Articles 8 and 9 of the 1994 military
9 police regulations were implemented prior to, during, and after Storm,
10 and these searches would also have revealed any documents indicating
11 contacts between General Gotovina and Major Juric.
12 Q. Now, you're a military man. You want to assert that Juric was
13 subordinated to General Gotovina. Well --
14 A. Sorry, I haven't said that.
15 Q. Well, so who is he subordinated to?
16 A. Well, Juric is sent by General Lausic to facilitate the command
17 and control -- I mean, I would like to quote the document literally so
18 to -- if we could see the previous page again.
19 Q. I'm not -- I would think, Mr. Theunens, that it shouldn't be that
20 hard of a question. Mr. Juric is sent into the field, he is a military
21 man. Starting with President Tudjman on down, can he tell me who his
22 next superior officer is?
23 A. Well, he is sent by General Lausic.
24 Q. I know who he is sent by. Who is his -- who is he a subordinate
1 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Misetic, you say it should not be that difficult
2 to answer the question. Apparently the witness finds it difficult to
3 answer the question.
4 MR. MISETIC: No, I don't think he does, Judge. I think he knows
5 and just doesn't want to answer, which is my frustration is here because
6 he knows the answer to the question.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Let's --
8 MR. MISETIC: He just said he's not subordinated to General
9 Gotovina, Judge, so who -- who is left?
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, because you say it's a simple question and
11 apparently the witness considers it's a more complex question, and I
12 would invite you to allow him to explain if he disagrees with you on
13 certain matters.
14 Mr. Theunens.
15 THE WITNESS: Yes, Mr. President, I confirm that I have not come
16 across documents that indicate that Major Ivan Juric is subordinated to
17 General Gotovina. And therefore, based on this document, I conclude that
18 he is subordinated, at least according to the professional chain, to
19 General Lausic, chief of the military police administration.
20 MR. MISETIC: That is the answer I wanted to get to.
21 Q. Now, here is the question, and if you need more time we're coming
22 up on a break but I would like an answer to this question.
23 You have seen documents now on the 2nd of August there is a
24 meeting between two ministers, Jarnjak and Susak. Their two top aides
25 for police matters are also present at the meeting. On the 3rd there is
1 a working meeting between MUP and the military police and SIS to
2 implement the agreement reached the day before between the two ministers.
3 Do you agree with me that there is no person in the military
4 chain of command, meaning from the Main Staff on down, that is present at
5 this working meeting to create a plan?
6 A. I do.
7 Q. My question is this: From a military perspective, General Lausic
8 does not issue orders to General Gotovina. There is no one present at
9 this meeting who can issue an order to General Gotovina or any Military
10 District Commander. Let's not put this only on General Gotovina because
11 Operation Storm deals with the Split Military District, the Gospic
12 Military District, the Karlovac Military District. We have multiple
13 Military District commanders who take part in Operation Storm. My
14 question for you is this, and if can you help me with the logic of this:
15 Two ministers reach an agreement, their subordinates in the civilian
16 ministries implement a plan, and then this plan is left to be implemented
17 by people, military people, who aren't present at the meetings and who
18 have no obligation to implement this plan, do they, because there is no
19 order from anyone in the military line requiring them to implement
20 anything that is agreed upon at these meetings.
21 Now, I'm just going to put it to you that my position is that
22 General Lausic is the one at the meeting with the power to implement the
23 plan through the military police units. I'd like to know from you, since
24 it's your -- as I understand your position, it is not General Lausic's
25 job on a daily operational level or it's not his job that he can
1 implement the plans for security, that that is left to the zone
2 commanders. How is it from a military perspective that plans can be
3 drawn up and then not given to, for example, General Cervenko to pass an
4 order to all the Military District Commanders that this is how the plan
5 is supposed to function? Why is it left, in your view, to just
6 apparently -- if General Gotovina wants to implement it, he can; if
7 General Norac in Gospic wants to implement it, he can, maybe they can a
8 la carte chose different parts of the plan that they like, that they
9 don't like. Who -- what is the authority that, in your view, required
10 Military District Commanders to implement a plan that was agreed upon
11 between two ministries?
12 A. When I was referring to the security plan, I referred to the
13 security plan of, I believe it was OG Zadar which was 65 ter 171. I'm
14 not sure about which plan you're talking now --
15 Q. Let me clarify right there. You're talking about the security
16 plans within the Split Military District for Operation Oluja/Kozjak that
17 are done by the 2nd of August; correct? Those orders are issued 1st and
18 2nd of August; right?
19 A. Indeed.
20 Q. Subsequent to that, those orders, I have taken you through
21 documents now to show there is another meeting at the ministerial level,
22 a working meeting that takes place, this is what we are going to do, this
23 is how MUP and the military police are going to coordinate their
24 activities, et cetera, et cetera. There's no presence of military,
25 meaning military chain of command, and I don't mean Mr. Lausic here --
1 A. No, no.
2 Q. -- at the meeting, yet you want to suggest that operationally
3 they're subordinated to General Gotovina so presumably your position
4 would be that if that is the plan reached between Jarnjak and Susak and
5 worked out by their subordinates, that that plan had to be implemented by
6 the district commanders, Norac, Basarac, Gotovina, et cetera?
7 My question to you is, how do you jump from essentially what is
8 civilian government plan to restore security, coordinate activities,
9 et cetera, and then just leave it to people who have no legal obligation
10 to implement the plan? Because it hasn't been given to General Cervenko
11 to say we're now going to coordinate with MUP, zone commanders this is
12 what you are supposed to do, this is the agreement between Susak and
13 Jarnjak, I sign off on the agreement as your commander and here is what
14 you are going to do, and here is how you are going to coordinate, and
15 here is where the check-points are going to be set up.
16 I -- okay. Let me hear your answer.
17 A. The meeting you refer to with -- between the ministers of
18 interior and including also Mr. Moric and General Lausic, if I remember
19 the document well, we saw had two major topics, check-points and
20 refugees, and it is logical that at the highest level one agrees about a
21 uniform approach, i.e., in the manner how shall we organise check-points,
22 how will the military police and the civilian police cooperate, how will
23 we organise this. Not only in relation to check-points but also in the
24 treatment of refugees. And then subsequently, there is an agreement
25 about the common approach by the entire territory that is to be
1 recaptured whereby the specific measures, I mean, for example, the
2 specific location of check-points, obviously the military -- the local
3 military police commander will make a proposal to his operational
4 commander as to where they are to be located, but we have discussed
5 documents - and I have included those in my report - that the operational
6 commander, be it General Gotovina or his Chief of Staff Brigadier Ademi,
7 or even OG commanders, can order the military police to organise
8 check-points in particular locations.
9 Q. Okay. This is my final question, Your Honour, before the break.
10 Is it not more logical to you, Mr. Theunens, that the agreement
11 was reached between the two ministers, a plan was worked out between
12 General Lausic and his subordinates and Mr. Moric and his subordinates on
13 the 3rd, Mr. Lausic then appoints Mr. Juric from his administration in
15 MPs to implement what he had agreed at a meeting on the 2nd and 3rd to do
16 and that that's the chain of command as to how these security measures
17 were to be implemented? Is that also a logical interpretation to you as
18 to how this was supposed to work?
19 A. Well, theoretically it is a logical interpretation, but from the
20 documents we have discussed, and, for example, the earlier request by
21 Mr. Lausic on the 9th of August where he states, please relieve the
22 military police units from combat tasks, that is, for me, one of several
23 indicators. And the other indicators are the documents showing that the
24 operational commanders are issuing orders to the military police in their
25 zone of responsibility, that this logic, the theoretical logic you have
1 described is not implemented in practice.
2 MR. MISETIC: I'm going continue on this topic, so I think it
3 might be a good time for a break, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE ORIE: It certainly is time for a break.
5 We will resume, five minutes past 11.00.
6 --- Recess taken at 10.38 a.m.
7 --- On resuming at 11.10 a.m.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Misetic, you may continue, but perhaps I make
9 again a short stop --
10 MR. MISETIC: Okay.
11 JUDGE ORIE: -- to see whether ...
12 Thinking about the evidence and your questions and trying to
13 follow and to understand, it came to my mind at one moment that the
14 command structures, as we find them in 8 and 9, which may create some
15 problems in defining what is exactly in 8 and what is in 9, et cetera,
16 that another element, what is apparently introduced through your
17 questions, is not precisely who is in command on the professional or the
18 operational -- but that there's a higher level, which is availability.
19 Availability to focus on the police tasks, even when performing police
20 tasks, 8 and the would still be in place, so as where to put
21 check-points, what to do, et cetera, at the same time, of course, the
22 professional aspects, for example, uniforms all other kinds of
23 organisational issues. But it seems that the issues about 8 and 9 and
24 how to resolve conflicts there, that there is an another level, that is
25 not who is in command and on what aspects of the performance of tasks but
1 also who decides that rather than to focus on police tasks with all the
2 structures of -- of command and what kind of command, command on what
3 aspects, who is in charge, also will the military police, primarily, be
4 put at the disposal of those who are responsible for combat operations;
5 or will they be, primarily, be at the disposal of those who primarily
6 deal with the performance of what I would say specific police tasks.
7 That is an element which, as I said before, came to my mind, and
8 whether, in terms of command and looking at Article 8 and 9, this
9 question about, could I say availability or primary focus on one task or
10 the other, whether that would is covered by 8 and 9 is a question, and
11 whether that would be resolved in every respect by conflicts, how to --
12 what the procedure would be if there are conflicts. If we're talking
13 about conflicts, I can imagine conflicts between -- drawing a line
14 between 8 and 9, but I also can imagine that there may be conflicts on
15 that higher level of availability, primary focus on combat tasks, that's
16 some thoughts that came into my mind and which I briefly discussed with
17 Judge Gwaunza and similar thoughts came to her mind, and sometimes it's
18 -- at least the Chamber considers it wise to share with you what comes
19 into our mind that. It is not final conclusions but, rather, an
20 understanding or a provisional understanding or analysis and what
21 thoughts are then developed so that you can address that you know what is
22 on our minds, and that you better are in a position to address the
23 matters that came into our mind.
24 Mr. Misetic, I --
25 MR. MISETIC: I have to confess I'm not sure what the issue is,
1 but if you allow me, I think I do. First just let me in terms of
2 terminology state that we don't accept - and you'll get that later in
3 cross - Mr. Theunens's creation of professional and operational lines.
4 That doesn't appear in the rules, and he is referring to something from
5 1992 which was cancelled by the order of Mr. Susak on D35. Although
6 there is a professional line, that has nothing to do with command and
7 control. I think we established, first of all, command and control rests
8 only with the military police administration. And command and control as
9 a military matter, as you are well familiar and you yourself brought it
10 up in this trial, there is an difference between operational command and
11 operational control. That is going to be the issue in this case.
12 With respect to tasks, I think you also need to keep in mind,
13 Your Honour, Article 10 of the regulations, Article 10 spells out what
14 are the, if I can use the term "permanent tasks" of the military police
15 which when a later witness comes, who will be more familiar with it than
16 Mr. Theunens is, and I don't want to reveal his name now. There will be
17 a later witness who will explain to you the difference between the
18 permanent tasks of the military police, and if we -- I can bring up P880,
19 if necessary --
20 JUDGE ORIE: No, I don't think, Mr. Misetic -- I appreciate, of
21 course, that you -- that you respond to this. At the same time, of
22 course, I was not aiming at triggering a further debate on the matter,
23 but I expressed that these thoughts had come into our minds. Again, I
24 emphasise, not conclusions but mere thoughts and an attempt to try to
25 understand the issue. And if you are aware of our thoughts, you also
1 know better what needs to be corrected or what needs to be clarified, and
2 I see that you started already clarifying the issue, but it would be no
3 problem if you do that in the further cross-examination.
4 MR. MISETIC: Just so that I don't waste any time addressing your
5 issue, if could specifically tell me what issue you would like to have
6 addressed. Are you saying you think it may be who is available to
7 implement these tasks.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Who decides on availability for certain tasks?
9 MR. MISETIC:
10 Q. Mr. Theunens, let's go through this and let's talk about --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Just to give an example, if today I say, You're not
12 available for combat tasks anymore, and someone else claims that a person
13 should be available for combat tasks, that is a matter a decision on
14 apparently on availability for different --
15 MR. MISETIC: When we're talking about combat tasks, I think --
16 and if I may, it's an in-house witness, so I don't feel as uncomfortable
17 saying it front of him. I think Mr. Theunens was incorrect on that
18 point, but I would like now like to go right into it.
20 THE WITNESS: Your Honours, I don't want to be argumentative, but
21 it's not me who created or invented the professional and the direct line.
22 JUDGE ORIE: You describe it. You're not blamed for inventing.
23 Mr. Misetic disagrees with your analysis, which is he doesn't disagree
24 because you invented but because he thinks it's wrong. So there's no
25 need to defend yourself. Just answer the questions, Mr. Theunens.
1 MR. MISETIC: Thank you.
2 Mr. Registrar, if we could go to Article 10, which is, I believe,
3 page 5. If we scroll to the bottom it says:
4 "The military police perform jobs and tasks relating to the: 1,
5 protection of life and personal security of military personnel ..."
6 If we can go to the next page, please.
7 "Prevention and uncovering of crimes, identification and arrest
8 of perpetrators of crimes, ... Safety of military traffic ... security of
9 protected features ..."
10 Q. Now you raise this point about how Mr. Lausic complained to
11 Mr. Susak, and my understanding of your answer was that somehow he was
12 trying to -- use Mr. Susak to influence General Gotovina so he could get
13 those troops back.
14 A. Mr. President, as I pointed out, the report by General Lausic
15 addressed the use of the military police all over Croatia, i.e., I have
16 not -- there is no mention specifically of the Split Military District in
17 that document, and that Mr. Lausic reports to Mr. Susak is quite logical
18 because Mr. Lausic is the chief of the military police administration at
19 the Ministry of Defence.
20 So his next superior is Mr. Susak.
21 Q. Yes. But that whole issue arose in the context of me asking you
22 a question of whether Mr. Lausic could issue an order to General
23 Gotovina, and you answered not directly, meaning indirectly, and then you
24 said, for example, he contacted Minister Susak, and then subsequently
25 General Lausic issued an order, and then General Gotovina issued an
1 order. And implicit, as I understood it - and you correct me if I'm
2 wrong - implicit in your answer was that he could indirectly issue an
3 order by appealing to the Ministry of Defence, and then somehow from that
4 chain it would get to General Gotovina.
5 Was that your suggestion?
6 A. No. My conclusion is that the commander -- the chief of the
7 military police administration reports to the Minister of Defence, and
8 then it is up to the minister of Defence to do or to act upon the
9 reporting he receives of the chief of the military police administration
10 and to give instructions to the chief of the Main Staff who then gives
11 instructions to his subordinates. And I only gave the example to answer
12 your question in relation to General Lausic issuing orders to
13 General Gotovina or not, but I didn't suggest or that -- it was an issue
14 of Mr. Susak using his influence over General Gotovina, yes or no.
15 Q. Okay. Now if I could turn your attention to subpart 9 in Article
16 10. It says:
17 "Participation in carrying out combat tasks on the front line,
18 pursuant to orders by the minister of defence of the Republic of
20 Now, do you see that the reason Mr. Lausic appealed to
21 Minister Susak first is because it's Minister Susak's order that orders
22 the military police combat units to go participate in combat,
23 particularly here in the Split Military District, and that General Lausic
24 needed his superior's authorisation to then remove them the next day.
25 A. I have quoted a number of orders from the commander of the Split
1 Military District in relation to subordination as well as the use of
2 elements of the 72nd Military Police Battalion as well as reports on the
3 use of elements of the 73rd Military Police Battalion during Storm for
4 combat operations, and there is no systematic reference to an order by or
5 an authorisation given by Mr. Susak.
6 It would be the easiest if you see these orders. I think, for
7 example --
8 Q. Mr. --
9 A. Excuse me, yeah.
10 Q. Again I'm focussed on the order of the 9th which is an order that
11 you raised. So without going into now a long discussion about what you
12 didn't find, I'm asking you specifically in the context of you -- you
13 raising the point that Mr. Lausic wrote to Minister Susak about the
14 combat units, isn't it a fact at that Mr. Lausic, under the existing
15 regulations, needed the authorisation of the Minister Of Defence under
16 Article 10, subpart 9, to remove those units from combat activity?
17 A. To be precise, General Lausic reports regularly to
18 Minister Susak, but it is correct that the order he issues on the 10th of
19 August refers to a decision of the minister.
20 Q. Okay. So now, in this situation, you would agree with me, I hope
21 that we're in a situation where the minister of defence is authorised
22 alone in the rules to authorise use of combat units of the military
23 police, where he revokes that authorisation through an order of the chief
24 of the military police administration. General Gotovina has no authority
25 to overrule General Lausic or the Minister Of Defence; does he?
1 A. Theoretically, he hasn't.
2 Q. Theoretically and in practice, right? You have never seen in
3 practice General Gotovina overriding an order of the Minister Of Defence;
4 have you?
5 A. No I have seen -- that is another aspect, but I have seen that he
6 in direct contact with Minister Susak, whereas I would expect him to --
7 discussing operational matters, where would I would expect him to discuss
8 these matters with the chief of the Main Staff.
9 Q. So the answer is no, you haven't seen him overriding an answer of
10 the Minister Of Defence, correct?
11 A. That's correct, yeah.
12 Q. You haven't seen him overriding an order of the chief of the
13 military police administration, correct?
14 A. You mean an order from the chief military police administration
15 to him or ...
16 Q. No.
17 A. Or an order of the chief military police administration to a
18 military police unit of the Split Military District?
19 Q. First of all, let's take the second, which an order of the chief
20 of the military police administration to the 72nd MP Battalion.
21 A. No, I have not come across such a document.
22 Q. And with respect to the first part of your initial request for
23 clarification, he didn't override an order from Mr. Lausic to him because
24 there is no such order from Mr. Lausic to General Gotovina, correct?
25 Meaning ordering General Gotovina to do something, correct?
1 A. The 10th of August order we discussed, which goes from
2 General Lausic to the military police battalions puts the Military
3 District Commanders for information, so it is not a direct order to
4 Gotovina, but because it concerns General Gotovina's units, as well as
5 the units ever other Military District Commanders, he is informed of --
6 of General Lausic's order.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Let me try to understand, because apparently there
8 is an -- some fear to use the wrong words.
9 Decisions for the engagement - and I add to that then for
10 disengagement as well - of police forces of the military police. In
11 combat operations on the front line are the competence of the minister of
12 defence to decide is that --
13 THE WITNESS: That is what Article 9 says, Mr. President, in
14 general terms. But he is not going to get involved with each and every
15 decision once he has given that authorisation.
16 JUDGE ORIE: No. I mean the level of detail with which the
17 orders deal with the engagement or disagreement is another matter. But
18 is it clear that that's the exclusive competence of the Minister Of
20 To that extent, if Mr. Gotovina is informed about that, he just
21 has to accept that as a decision. I mean, whether he tries behind the
22 scenes to -- whatever -- but in formal terms, that is a decision binding
23 upon him.
24 THE WITNESS: When you mean -- yeah, the disengagement, that's
25 often, yes.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I that I was the issue you wanted to --
2 MR. MISETIC: Yes, Your Honour. Thank you.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
4 MR. MISETIC:
5 Q. Now with respect to these other tasks that are enumerated in
6 Article 10, these are -- these are not -- and this may be an issue of
7 language, so bear with me here. These are not daily operational tasks.
8 These are permanent tasks of the military police. These are the constant
9 duties of the military police that don't change from day to day, correct?
10 A. Article 9, Your Honour, uses the language regular military police
11 tasks. For me the tasks that are enumerated in Article 9 are regular
12 military police tasks.
13 JUDGE ORIE: And you mean enumerated in Article 10, I take it.
14 THE WITNESS: I apologise, Article 10 of P880.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
16 MR. MISETIC:
17 Q. Now my question next question because the orders of
18 General Lausic beginning on the 3rd, including his summary of -- in
19 September of 1995 and his year 1995 assessment from January of 1996, use
20 the phrase "daily operational command." And what I'd like first to
21 establish with you is these tasks are what we would call the constant
22 duties of the military police, correct? They don't change from day to
24 A. These tasks can change because there may not everyday, for
25 example, a requirement to protect a feature.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Let try to get the question clear.
2 The tasks in the abstract will be the same everyday, but require
3 concrete decisions as to what features, persons, and areas would be in
4 need of security, what crimes are there to be uncovered, et cetera.
5 Is that --
6 MR. MISETIC: Yes, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Okay.
8 THE WITNESS: Exactly, Your Honours.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Misetic.
10 MR. MISETIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
11 Q. Now, will you agree with me that, for example, in paragraph 2,
12 the crime police of the military police administration at the level of
13 the 72nd MP Battalion, they had a vertical line that went and reported,
14 for example, on the progress of any criminal investigation in the
15 military police, the daily reporting on the progress of the investigation
16 went to the military police administration, correct?
17 A. Yes. But I'm thinking now of the document we discussed in
18 relation to the illegal occupation of apartments in Split where also the
19 operational commander was kept informed of the progress of an
21 Q. Mr. Theunens, once again you're giving what you know to be the --
22 the exception to the rule. What I'm asking you is give me the general
23 practice. General practice is the crime investigation section of the
24 72nd MP Battalion on a daily basis reports to the MP administration,
1 A. Yes, according to the professional line. Now, whether the
2 example I gave is an exception or not, I -- I don't share that conclusion
3 with you.
4 Q. Okay, how many other such situations did you find, 10, 20, 50?
5 A. Your Honours, I would need time to review my report. I cannot
6 say that here immediately. But I don't see anything irregular in the
7 document we discussed, I mean the document about the illegal --
8 JUDGE ORIE: That's another matter. Whether it's routinely done
9 or whether it is irregular, of course, is not the same question.
10 MR. MISETIC:
11 Q. But I --
12 JUDGE ORIE: And you said whether the example you gave is an
13 exception or not, you don't share that conclusion. At this moment, if
14 there's any reason for you that -- to tell us that it was not an
15 exception which was more or less suggested by Mr. Misetic, please, on the
16 basis of perhaps a further analysis, inform us about that.
17 Please proceed.
18 MR. MISETIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
19 Now, while we have this document on the screen, Mr. Registrar,
20 if we could turn to Article 15 to address a matter that Mr. Theunens
21 raised this morning, which is page 7, I believe.
22 Q. Now you said that it wasn't part of the regular duties of the
23 military police on monitoring discipline.
24 A. Your Honours, that is not what I said.
25 JUDGE ORIE: I think Mr. Theunens is right. It's not what you
1 said. Could you please literally quote.
2 MR. MISETIC: I will quote him then. Let's just take them
3 through Article 15, Article 15, subparts 2, 3, and 4.
4 Q. It says:
5 "While performing their tasks, the members of the military police
6 apply the following powers," number 2 is identification.
7 And it says:
8 "It is applied for the purpose of verifying the identity of
9 persons in all cases when identity information can be used for uncovering
10 crimes and identifying the perpetrators uncovering perpetrators of
11 military discipline and misdemeanours."
12 And if we go to subpart 3, please. It talks about the reporting
13 by the military police and it says:
14 "Members of the military police submit a disciplinary report
15 against military personnel who violate military discipline and a criminal
16 report against persons who commit a crime that falls within the
17 jurisdiction of a military court."
18 Subpart 4 says:
19 "Bringing in ..." talks about ability to bring perpetrators in.
20 "Individuals -- sorry members it says:
21 Members of the military police bring in military personnel
22 when ..."
23 And then amongst other things "...military personnel and
24 civilians in the service of the RH armed forces because of violations of
25 military discipline. Individuals are brought in."
1 And then part 3 is:
2 "If the person was caught in an act of serious violation of
3 military discipline and the circumstances indicate that the violation of
4 military discipline would continue."
5 So it's clear that the duties of the military police include
6 identifying a violator of military discipline, filing a report against a
7 violator of military discipline. And in situations where it is a serious
8 violation concerning ongoing violations of military discipline, they
9 bring that person in, correct?
10 A. Yes, these are duties of the military police.
11 Q. And one of the things that a commander is entitled to reply on,
12 wouldn't you agree, is that the military police, in addition to
13 uncovering crime, is also filing those reports with the appropriate
14 commanders of the units of the violator of military discipline so that
15 commander with then act and issue military discipline against that
16 violator, correct? It is one of the tools of a commander.
17 A. Indeed, and we remember that we discussed the report on a traffic
18 violation by a member of the 7th Guards Brigade at a time when the
19 7th Guards Brigade was subordinated to the Split Military District,
20 whereby General Gotovina forwarded the report on the traffic violation
21 that had been compiled by the 72nd Military Police Battalion to the
22 commander of the 7th Guards Brigade and invited him to take disciplinary
23 measures in order to act against the perpetrators.
24 Q. Okay. If you -- you want to raise that issue as well, so while
25 I'm here and while we're in this context, let's talk about that specific
2 You claimed in direct examination that that was an exercise of
3 powers under Article 26. My question to you is: If the 7th Guards
4 Brigade is subordinated to the Split Military District when this traffic
5 violation occurred, why didn't the military police just directly send the
6 report to General Korade of the 7th Guards Brigade to take discipline?
7 Why does it have to go from the military police up to the
8 commander of the Split Military District then down to the 7th Guards
9 Brigade commander if they're all in the same Military District?
10 A. No. Well, because Article -- I mean, it's an application of
11 Article 26. The violation has been observed in the zone of
12 responsibility of the Split Military District. The 72nd Military Police
13 Battalion is the military police battalion of the Split Military
14 District. If we -- in accordance with Article 26, the 72nd Military
15 Police Battalion, when they report the violation to General Gotovina, do
16 not what measures General Gotovina will take.
17 Q. Well --
18 A. Based on Article 26 General Gotovina can take measures himself,
19 if he considers that it is it a serious violation. If General Gotovina
20 considers that it is it not a serious matter, in accordance with Article
21 26 he then refers the matter to the commander of the 7th Guards Brigade.
22 So I don't see anything irregular in -- in the fact that the 72nd
23 Military Police Battalion reported the violation to General Gotovina.
24 Q. Again if I could get you focus back in on my question, okay.
25 The 72nd MP Battalion knows that there's a traffic violation
1 committed by the 7th Guards Brigade. Why didn't they just go straight to
2 General Korade and ask him to take measures? Article 26 does not say
3 only the Military District Commander has powers under Article 26, does
4 it? It goes all the way down to at least the brigade level, in terms of
5 the power of a commander to act. General Korade is a brigade commander.
6 Why didn't the 72nd MP just go to General Korade who, in your theory,
7 also has powers under Article 26 and just ask him to take measures
8 against his own unit?
9 A. I have given an answer to the question, Your Honour.
10 Q. You'll help me along. I'm not sure what your answer is. Why
11 didn't they go straight to General Korade?
12 JUDGE ORIE: I think your answer was there was nothing irregular.
13 The question put to you by Mr. Misetic, however, is why not, to say so
14 the easy way, was followed and why go up that high if the matter could
15 have been dealt with at a lower level? If you know tell us if not, tell
16 us as well.
17 THE WITNESS: For me it an implementation of command and control
18 at the most basic level.
19 The forces or the members of the 7th Guards Brigade who commit
20 the violation, commit the violation while they are subordinated to
21 General Gotovina, and they commit the violation in Split.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. The issue, I think, is whether every violation
23 against discipline would have to be reported that high up. That, I
24 think, is the question Mr. Misetic tries to seek an answer to.
25 THE WITNESS: Your Honours, it is not a question of that high up.
1 And we can discuss that -- that aspect also.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Well, that is the aspect Mr. Misetic is asking you
4 THE WITNESS: Well, General Gotovina takes several -- I mean,
5 prior to Operation Storm, confirms or takes disciplinary measures on
6 several issues or several violations and minor -- including also minor
7 breaches of military discipline. That is how the procedure is applied.
8 But the issue with the 7th and General Gotovina is actually that
10 Brigade. So you have a -- an (alien) unit or members of an alien unit
11 who commit a violation in Split
12 subordinated to the Split Military District. The information I had did
13 not allow me to conclude whether there is a command level between these
14 members of the 7 Guards Brigade and the command of the Split Military
15 District while these members of the 7 Guards Brigade are subordinated to
16 General Gotovina.
17 JUDGE ORIE: So your explanation is that it is due to the
18 specific circumstances where the 7th Guards Brigade is subordinated but
19 not usually within the --
20 THE WITNESS: Yes. And also because the violation takes place in
21 the zone of responsibility of the Split Military District.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And that causes this rather high-up procedure.
23 There is not much higher up, is there?
24 THE WITNESS: I don't think it is a question of just higher up.
25 It's a question of following the structure and command and control as it
1 is organised. That is, that the 72nd Military Police Battalion is a
2 battalion of the Split Military District subordinated to
3 General Gotovina, for the regular military police tasks. As we saw in
4 Article 10 traffic control is a regular police task. So it wouldn't make
5 sense at least from the military point of view to have the 72nd contact
6 Colonel Korade directly in Varazdin for a matter that happened while the
7 violators were actually subordinated to General Gotovina in a totally
8 different area.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Your answer is --
10 MR. MISETIC: I have to follow up this, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
12 MR. MISETIC:
13 Q. Mr. Theunens let's forget it's the 7th Guard's Brigade. It's the
14 4th Guards Brigade. It's the 113th Home Guards. Are you saying that
15 every soldier got into a traffic accident had his matter reported to
16 General Gotovina for disciplinary measures to be taken? If we go through
17 the statistics, do you expect that we're going to find General Gotovina
18 issues disciplinary measures for traffic violations?
19 A. I would like to draw your attention to the analysis of
20 disciplinary violations we discussed during my examination and the
21 document is P1121 where among the 15 measures that are ordered by
22 General4k Gotovina in order to increase discipline, approximately ten
23 directly deal with traffic violations and traffic accidents.
24 Q. Now -- Mr. Theunens let me stop you, okay. Because I need to you
25 focus on the question. That is not an example of General Gotovina
1 issuing discipline directly, is it? He is not issuing discipline against
2 specific soldiers in that analysis, is he?
3 A. Well, Your Honour, that was the first part of my answer, but it
4 shows that General Gotovina considers traffic security and the behaviour
5 of his subordinates in traffic as a -- a key matter. Because otherwise
6 he himself would not issue these instructions. Coming back now to the
7 traffic accidents well, or to whether Gotovina, yes or no, directly
8 intervenes, well, it will depend on the nature of the accident. If it is
9 just an accident as an accident, I don't expect him to intervene, but if
10 there are serious disciplinary implications, i.e., drunk driving, several
11 victims, and so on, and so on, whereby the person who investigates the
12 matter decides that this is actually a serious violation of discipline --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Theunens, I think we are losing ourselves at
14 this moment in details.
15 Your answer is clear. You say seriousness may play a role in
16 whether it will be reported. That's --
17 MR. MISETIC: Let me explore it again, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I'm not saying that you shouldn't explore it.
19 Let me also try to understand what we're dealing with at this
20 moment. This was all triggered apparently by where you said would
21 further explore the matter and not quote Mr. Theunens. I think
22 Mr. Theunens testified that, although the military police has a specific
23 task in disciplinary matters, that I think what he tried to explain to
24 us, that this was not an exclusive task for the military police but that
25 a commander had a -- had his own responsibility, and that's apparently
1 what we are talking about.
2 MR. MISETIC: [Overlapping speakers] ...
3 JUDGE ORIE: That's not disputed.
4 It's good to establish that, that -- then --
5 MR. MISETIC: [Overlapping speakers] ...
6 JUDGE ORIE: Next yes.
7 MR. MISETIC: As I said earlier this morning, I'm not averse if
8 Mr. Theunens wants to go off on a tangent. At certain points I will
9 follow him, but let's get to the issue of the 7th Guards Brigade because
10 this is an issue highlighted in the direct examination, which is why I
11 wanted to follow up with it anyway, but I'm prepared to follow this up.
12 Q. Mr. Theunens, here is what I want to know based often your last
13 answer now.
14 Show me in the code of military discipline the principle that the
15 military police, for example, can say well, this is one looks like it's a
16 serious violation. More serious than other serious violations. I think
17 this one should go up to General Gotovina, forget the intermediate
18 commanders all up the chain, and this one should just straight to
19 General Gotovina, because this one is a traffic violation that is it not
20 blowing through a red light, this is drunk driving, and so this one needs
21 to go all the way to the top. Where does it say that?
22 A. Is the question now whether the matter should go straight to
23 General Gotovina or whether the chain of command should be followed?
24 Q. Straight to General Gotovina. Because that's your supposition
25 that depending upon the seriousness of the disciplinary violation, it
1 would go straight to General Gotovina.
2 A. I don't think so, Your Honours. My answer in relation to the 7th
3 Guards was --
4 Q. I asked you about the 4th Guards and the natural units of the
5 Split Military District. Let's establish this first.
6 A member of a squad goes through a red light. The military
7 police happens to get the report. They file a disciplinary report with
8 whom in the Croatian disciplinary system?
9 A. With the commander of -- of 4th Guards Brigade. But it's logical
10 because the 4th Guards Brigade or the battalion commander of this squad
11 leader. Why? Because the 4th Guards Brigade is a unit of the Split
12 Military District.
13 Q. Now let take it to the next step.
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. A member of a squad of the 7th Guard's Brigade blows through a
16 red light, and the military police is advised and files a disciplinary
17 report with whom, and we're talking about 72nd military police?
18 A. It all depends on the position of that squad. If that squad that
19 is the only component of the 7th Guards Brigade subordinated to the Split
20 Military District at a time it commits this traffic violation, then the
21 report will go to the commander of the Split Military District.
22 Q. No. Let take to what really happened, which is the entire 7th
23 Guards Brigade with General Korade also is subordinated to the Split
24 Military District. In that circumstance a member of a squad of the 7th
25 Guards Brigade goes through a red light. Who does the 72nd MP Battalion
1 file a disciplinary report with?
2 A. Well, in the example we discussed, it is brought to the attention
3 of General Gotovina, and it is General Gotovina who sends it is to the
4 commander of the 7 Guards Brigade.
5 Q. Now you're talking the specific instances. I'm saying your
6 understanding of the Code of Military Discipline is that it should have
7 been sent to whom?
8 A. Well, I have no reason to change my -- my view in relation to --
9 to the fact that what happened to the traffic violators of the 7th Guards
10 Brigade is in line with the Code of Discipline.
11 Q. Let me consult to the ultimate point and see if you agree or
12 disagree and we'll move on.
13 The reason that it was sent to General Gotovina by the 72nd MP is
14 that, as you said, normally if it were the 4th Guards Brigade, they would
15 send it to General Krsticevic of the th Guards Brigade.
16 Because the 7th Guards Brigade is not a situated in the Split
17 Military District, it was sent to the Split MD command to be delivered to
18 General Korade to take appropriate measures. It has nothing to do with
19 the Article 26. It is the Split Military District basically acting as a
20 postal service to deliver the measure to be department with by the
21 appropriate commander. Isn't that all that happened there?
22 A. I gave my answer. I mean, I would wonder if it is so crystal
23 clear as you put it, then I really wonder where the person who received
24 the mail at the Split Military District Command had to bother
25 General Gotovina with the matter. If it is like you explained.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Let's -- let's -- let's try to keep matters
2 relatively simple.
3 Mr. Misetic puts to you that sending the report to
4 General Gotovina was not done because he was supposed to exercise any
5 disciplinary power, but it was a matter of routing that this is the
6 appropriate way of finally sending this report to the authority that was
7 supposed to consider any disciplinary measures. That's what Mr. Misetic
8 meant by a post office, apparently for formal reasons, to be there, not
9 to -- not with an expectation that General Gotovina under those
10 circumstances would do anything else than to send it to the command of
11 the 7th Guards Brigade and not in an expectation to exercise disciplinary
13 That's what is put to you, and you're invited to tell us whether
14 you agree with that or for what reasons you would disagree.
15 THE WITNESS: Your Honours, I do not agree with that theory.
16 Why? Because it is also -- it is General Gotovina who signs the document
17 that is sent or at least whose name is on the document that is sent to
18 the commander of the 7 Guards Brigade.
19 If indeed the 72nd didn't know very well where to send it to and
20 then just sent it to the Split Military District Command, and this was
21 not in accordance with the procedures, then the appropriate person at the
22 Split Military District Command would have sent the report back to the
23 72nd Military Police Battalion, and instructed them to send the document
24 directly to General Korade.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. That's why you say that this is not just a
1 post office function.
2 Please proceed.
3 MR. MISETIC:
4 Q. Yes. And can you give me the basis for that interpretation?
5 A. Well, in my view it was an example of the implementation of
6 Article 26 of the 1992 Code of Discipline.
7 Q. Yes. But do you have any other examples such as this of
8 General Gotovina taking disciplinary measures against a member of the 7th
9 Guards Brigade, for example?
10 A. No. But we have documents we discussed dealing with one or two
11 members of the 2nd Battalion of the 9 Guards Brigade who entered into the
12 zone of separation and where again, in my view, in application of Article
13 26, it is General Gotovina who takes the disciplinary measure or who
14 orders the disciplinary measure against these two members, even though
15 the 9 Guards Brigade is not an organic unit of the Split Military
17 Q. Okay. So why doesn't General Gotovina issue a disciplinary
18 measure in this instance of a traffic violation?
19 A. Because Article 26 leaves the commander the freedom to decide
20 whether he considers it a serious incident or not. If he considers it a
21 serious incident, and, again, we have discussed the aims or the
22 objectives of military discipline, a serious incident could also affect
23 the behaviour of other soldiers, so in that case the commander has an
24 interest in acting himself. If he doesn't consider this a serious
25 incident, he can defer the matter to the establishment or the organic
1 commander of the violator.
2 Q. Mr. Theunens, let's turn to D844, please.
3 This is a document from the 4th of August. We can tell not by
4 the top but at the stamp lines of when it was transmitted and received on
5 the back of this page. It's, again, an order by General Lausic. You
6 will note that he issues this order, skipping various persons in the
7 chain of command and sends it directly to the 3rd Company of the 72nd
8 MPs; the 4th Company, Sibenik, and the 6th Company, Dubrovnik telling
9 them how they are to report matters, and if you look at the introduction
10 he says:
11 "With a view of the uniform contents of reports on tasks
12 performance in the areas of responsibility, it says the report is to be
13 submitted directly to the MP administration by using code system."
14 If we turn the page please.
15 Point 2: "Amongst the things they are to report, the status of
16 public law and order in a zone of combat operations and in newly
17 liberated areas, stating events when the MP had to act and results of
19 Number 4: "The status of crime in liberated areas and in zones
20 of combat operations. Number of crimes, crime reports filed, and escort
21 of HV members who committed a crime."
22 Number 6 is: "Search results of territory and facilities."
24 What is significant about the fact that General Lausic issues
25 orders directly to the companies of the 72nd MP Battalion on the 4th of
2 A. Could we maybe see the first page again.
3 This document is discussed on English page 215, part 2, of the
4 report. I noticed -- I mean, the same issue as Mr. Misetic highlights, I
5 found it unusual that the chief of the military police administration
6 would issue an order directly to military police companies, because the
7 normal command and control along professional and operational chain,
8 would imply or would mean that he, that Lausic would send the order to
9 the commander of the 72nd Military Police Battalion, and I have not been
10 able to find a plausible explanation for what appears to be a
11 non-application of the procedure.
12 Q. Well, I'm looking at your report right now at page 215,
13 subparagraph F. You just referenced that a report -- sorry.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Misetic, I think it is under 7, because it is
15 475 and not 474, last three digits, yes.
16 MR. MISETIC: Yes.
17 Q. You didn't note, though, that you found something unusual about
18 this order.
19 A. No, I did not put that in writing in my report. That's correct.
20 Q. Is there a reason you didn't put in writing that you found this
21 order to be unusual?
22 A. No. Because the only think I would be able to say is well, look
23 this is unusual in my view, but I haven't been able to -- as I said to --
24 haven't been able to determine what the reason was for this, and I don't
25 -- I didn't that the reader would have much benefit from me saying, Well,
1 this is unusual.
2 Q. Well, does it, now as we're looking at the overall context of
3 documents, do you think this is a factor to consider in evaluating your
4 overall opinion about who had operational control over certain matters in
5 the zone of the 72nd Military Police Battalion? Is this an important
6 document in that regard?
7 A. It is -- it is important in light of the aspect to whom are the
8 military police units, and more specifically, the military police units
9 of the Split Military District reporting. And whether they keep the
10 commander of the Split Military District, or when we are talking about
11 the military police units operating in the OGs, whether they keep the OGs
12 informed of their activities and their observations.
13 Now, it is correct that this document only refers to reporting to
14 the military police administration. However, I would also like to draw
15 your attention to the minutes or reporting that is included in P71, the
16 operational diary, where we do notice that the commander or his
17 representative of the military police in the Split Military District
18 informs the operational commanders of their observations and the problems
19 and their activities during the working meeting.
20 Q. Mr. Theunens, again, let's try to focus again. Okay? The issue
21 here is the reporting on issues such as status of crime, number of
22 crimes, crime reports filed, and escort of HV members who committed a
23 crime, that information, according to this order, is supposed to go to
24 the MP administration, right?
25 A. Yes, that is correct.
1 Q. You did not find -- or did you find any written reports being
2 submitted by the 72nd MP Battalion or Major Juric to General Gotovina on
3 these topics?
4 A. I have not seen such documents being submitted during Operation
5 Storm, but there are statistical reports included -- included in my
6 report which were compiled by the military police on -- on these issues
7 but they date from much later.
8 Q. Okay. So in terms of when we're looking at the period of 4
9 August to, let's say, 30 August, these reports are being sent to the MP
10 administration. Correct?
11 A. I wouldn't be sure about the end date, but indeed such reports --
12 I mean, reports on the activities of the military police units including
13 information that is pointed out in -- in this document are indeed sent by
14 the military police units of the Split Military District to the military
15 police administration.
16 MR. MISETIC: Mr. Registrar, if we could have D732 on the screen.
17 Q. This is a report for the 9th of August by Major Juric. It goes
18 to General Lausic. It does not go to the Split Military District even
19 for information. This is his daily report for the 9th. He talks about
20 the execution of MP tasks in OG North; appliances being seized; case of
21 seizing items, seized at check-points anyway. Next page talks about
22 someone having a tractor seized from them.
23 MR. MISETIC: If we could go to, Mr. Registrar, Exhibit D733,
25 Q. This is Mr. Juric's report for the 10th of August. Again, it
1 goes to Mr. Lausic directly. It's not copied to the Split Military
2 District. He is again reporting on military police tasks carried out in
3 OG North. "No violations of public law and order were registered in the
4 observed period."
5 MR. MISETIC: Mr. Registrar, if we could go to Exhibit D734,
7 Q. He is reporting on -- for example, 4th Company what check-points
8 its holding. "We expect that members of the MUP will take over security
9 in Kistanje. Check-points and security in Drnis remained unchanged."
10 The 5th Company in Sinj, talks about their check-points, regular police
11 duties. The 3rd Company in Benkovac talks about being engaged at nine
12 check-points and control duty in beat duty sectors. Coordination meeting
13 on 11th of August with the Obrovac police station.
14 MR. MISETIC: If we turn to the next page.
15 Q. He states that the Benkovac VP platoon can no longer secure the
16 Krka monastery, and that police were informed of that. Securing the
17 Glinica factory. If you go through this, number 4 says: "In the VP
18 military police section perpetrators of crimes, misappropriation of
19 property from liberated areas are being processed daily."
20 Mr. Theunens, Mr. Juric is providing pretty specific details
21 about what features are being secured how many check-points are in a
22 particular location, what the status of crime processing is, et cetera,
23 and he is only reporting it to Mr. Lausic. Do you agree?
24 A. Your Honours, this document does not allow -- or these type of
25 documents only allow to conclude that indeed Juric sends the information
1 to Lausic but does not allow to conclude as to whether he shares
2 information included in the report or a similar report with anybody else.
3 Q. That is your job, isn't it, Mr. Theunens? Why don't you tell us
4 if you found such documents?
5 A. Well, it is correct that I have not come across documents by
6 Major Juric to General Gotovina, but, again, I emphasise the importance
7 of the presence of the commander of the military police of the Split
8 Military District at the working meetings. As we can see from P71,
9 written reporting is one way of reporting. There can also be oral
10 reporting. When we look at the document that is now on the monitor,
11 there is information included under number 2 provided by the -- it is
12 listed as the 142nd Brigade, but it should be the 142nd Home Guard
13 Regiment, indicating that the military police and the operational units
14 or the combat units are in contact and exchange information. But, again,
15 this document or these type of documents only allows to conclude that
16 indeed information is being sent by Juric to -- to Lausic, and without
17 further conclusions being able to be drawn.
18 Q. Let me ask you this, Mr. Theunens: Speaking generally now,
19 wouldn't a neutral analyst in trying to determine who has certain
20 responsibilities in a chain of command, wouldn't a neutral analyst first
21 look at who is being -- who is issuing the orders to a specific unit, and
22 who is filing written reports, written reports, to whom is that unit
23 filing written reports? Wouldn't a neutral analyst first fundamentally
24 start from that proposition and build his analysis from there, but isn't
25 that the first place that a neutral analyst should look?
1 A. The concept of neutral analyst is new to me, but I have explained
2 my methodology and I have --
3 JUDGE ORIE: Neutrality, of course, might be of great importance
4 for an expert witness. You will understand that.
5 Yes, please proceed.
6 THE WITNESS: I understand the concept of neutrality as well as
7 the concept of objectivity. I have explained the methodology. I have
8 reviewed documents and drawn conclusions on these documents. If I were
9 not neutral, I would certainly not have included -- I will rephrase that.
10 There are many documents included in my report which are in the meanwhile
11 Defence exhibits. I have drawn conclusions on groups of documents, these
12 conclusions can be found in the executive summary. I also explain why I
13 draw these conclusions.
14 Now, whether somebody else would draw other conclusions from
15 these documents is something I do not control. The conclusions I have
16 drawn from the documents I reviewed are based on my training, my
17 education, and my understanding of the documents.
18 MR. MISETIC:
19 Q. Okay. I again asked you a specific question and with all due
20 respect -- and again you're someone who works in the building so I will
21 put this to you. I posed that question to you first as a specific
22 question, but also because every answer thus far has to have a spin on it
23 because you don't want to address the fundamental matter first, which is,
24 let's deal with the issue first. I think you know full well, as someone
25 who worked in the military, that the first step you would take to
1 determine who a particular unit is subordinated to is to look to who is
2 issuing orders to them and who is that unit reporting to. I don't think
3 that is a difficult concept for you to agree with. Do you agree with me
4 on that?
5 A. I agree but it's a different question from what you asked
7 Of course, one of the things you --
8 JUDGE ORIE: You agree, and you say that question was different.
9 MR. MISETIC: Okay.
10 Q. Now, if we start from that fundamental concept or principle and
11 we agree on it, let's take it the next step, which is Major Juric neither
12 receives an order from General Gotovina nor sends a report to General
13 Gotovina on what he is doing. Do we agree on that?
14 A. Based on the documents that I have reviewed, I agree with you.
15 Q. I would like to take you back to your direct examination and take
16 you to the transcript for the 21st of November 2008. It is page --
17 beginning at page 12340, line 22, and it continues on to the next page.
18 You said: "Your Honours, as explained earlier, the 73rd Military
19 Police Battalion even though it is located in Split is not an organic
20 unit of the Split Military District. It belongings normally to the navy.
21 However, for operational reasons, the 73rd Military Police Battalion had
22 been ordered to assist the 72nd Military Police Battalion, i.e., it
23 becomes a unit of the Split Military District. And in order to facility
24 command and control over these two units, a coordinator or -- yeah, a
25 coordinator has been appointed, namely Major Juric."
1 And here is the sentence: "This makes it easier both for the
2 military police administration as well as for the command of the Split
3 Military District to give instructions to the military police as they
4 only have to speak to one person, i.e., Ivan Juric."
5 Do you recall giving that testimony on direct?
6 A. Yes, I do.
7 Q. Okay. You say there that he is appointed in order to make it
8 easier for, not only the military police administration, but the command
9 of the Split Military District to give instructions to the military
10 police as they only have to speak to one person, Ivan Juric. But you
11 acknowledge, do you not, that there are no instructions from the Split
12 Military District that ever went to Major Juric; right? And you have
13 acknowledged this morning that Major Juric was subordinated to
14 General Lausic and not General Gotovina. So I'm asking now to reconcile
15 what you said today with what you said on Friday.
16 A. Well, 65 ter 419 includes a document signed by the command of the
17 3rd Company of the 72nd Military Police Battalion showing that when that
18 company is operating or participating in -- among other things, in combat
19 tasks with units of OG Zadar, that Major Juric is there to facilitate
20 relations between that company and OG Zadar. When I say "facilitate
21 relations" I mean ensure a smooth implementation of command control,
22 coordination, and related aspects.
23 Q. Okay. Let's put 65 ter --
24 MR. MISETIC: Mr. Registrar, if I may ask for your assistance, 65
25 ter 419 on the screen.
1 Q. And then if you could use this document to please tell me how
2 this document means that the Split Military District is facilitating
3 command and control over these units by issuing instructions to
4 Major Juric?
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Misetic, am I wrong that 65 ter 419 has been
6 mentioned before today?
7 MR. MISETIC: Yes.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Is not in evidence, is it?
9 MR. MISETIC: No. He mentioned it today, I believe. I don't
10 recall before today.
11 JUDGE ORIE: No, no, I'm saying today. Before, today, but it is
12 not in evidence if I'm -- my recollection is well.
13 MR. MISETIC: Yes, that is why I think it is a good idea to bring
14 it up and move it into evidence.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Then let's ...
16 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
17 JUDGE ORIE: I do understand that is already on the list provided
18 by Mr. Waespi, so no additional exercise is needed to get it.
19 Yes, we have it.
20 MR. MISETIC:
21 Q. Now, Mr. Theunens, you're using this document to explain how the
22 Split Military District gave instructions to the military police as they
23 only have to speak to one person, i.e. -- I'm sorry, the command of the
24 Split Military District gave instructions to the military police as they
25 only have to speak to one person, Ivan Juric.
1 So I would like you to point out to me the instructions in this
2 document that are being issued by the Split Military District Command to
3 Major Juric?
4 A. Your Honours, when I addressed the role of Major Juric on Friday,
5 I think that I used the term "if." So I don't see the transcript anymore
6 here, but what I -- my recollection is, and also what I wanted to say is
7 that if the military police administration or the Split Military District
8 want to give instructions to the military police, it is easier if they
9 only have to speak to one person.
10 JUDGE ORIE: I read to you literally what you said.
11 After you had explained that it was for the purpose of
12 facilitating command and control over the two units, that Major Juric was
13 appointed, you said: "This makes it easier both for the military police
14 administration, as well as for the command of the Split Military District
15 to give instructions to the military police as they only have to speak to
16 one person, i.e., Ivan Juric."
17 That's what you said.
18 THE WITNESS: Yeah. Thank you, Mr. President.
19 In my view, that doesn't necessarily mean that the Split Military
20 District issued instructions to Juric, yes or no. From the written
21 documents I have reviewed and the documents I had access to, I haven't
22 seen any document showing that the Split Military District Command issues
23 instructions to Mr. Juric.
24 MR. MISETIC:
25 Q. Well -- sorry, go ahead. I thought you were finished.
1 A. 65 ter 419, the first page, shows the role -- is a document that
2 gives information on the role of Major Ivan Juric in relation to his
3 position between the 72nd Military Police Battalion and, as this document
4 shows, the commander of OG Zadar, Colonel Fuzul.
5 Q. Now, let's take this step by step.
6 What you said on Friday, therefore was not based on any documents
7 -- any analysis of documents that you had seen in this case, right?
8 A. It was based on -- there's one order we discussed also today by
9 General Lausic where he clarifies the role of Major Juric, stating that
10 he is superior over the 72nd -- over the 73rd Military Police Battalion
11 for issues related to the support of the 73rd to the 72nd Military Police
12 Battalion. And I can find the correct phrasing.
13 Q. That's okay, because I'm more particularly interested in the
14 opinion that you gave that says:
15 "It made it easier for the command of the Split Military District
16 to give instructions to the military police as they only have to speak to
17 one person, i.e., Ivan Juric."
18 That opinion was not based on any document that you had seen. In
19 fact, was contradicted by the documents you had seen. Do you agree with
21 A. Just to clarify, I said it makes -- which is an indeed a
22 theoretical observation. It makes it easier to implement command and
23 control. I didn't say "it made," because "it made" would indeed imply
24 that I documents from the Split Military District Command or orders from
25 the Split
1 don't have these documents.
2 So there a little nuance in it, which I consider important.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Misetic, since we go in such detail as far as
4 the specific lines are concerned, I'd like, which I would have otherwise
5 refrained of, put on the record that where you earlier said that this was
6 the purpose for appointing Mr. Juric, that that's not what the text says.
7 The first time you put this to the witness, you phrased it a
8 little bit different from what we just read.
9 MR. MISETIC: I don't know how I phrased it, Your Honour, but I
10 believe I raid the entire answer that he gave in order to make it as
11 specific as possible.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Perhaps you would wind up in the next two or three
14 MR. MISETIC: Yes.
15 Q. The reason this issue is important to me is, in fact, what you
16 said on Friday and what you now concede was the reality of how it
17 actually unfolded, i.e., Mr. Juric reported -- received his orders from
18 Mr. Lausic, reported to Mr. Lausic. You have no evidence that he
19 received orders from General Gotovina or that he reported to General
20 Gotovina. This, in fact, now violates the principle of unit of command,
21 doesn't it, because now you have an actor in the field in Mr. Juric who
22 is receiving instructions on day to day matters from Mr. Lausic and also
23 implementing his own orders in the field on day to day matters, while at
24 the same time you say that General Gotovina also is exercising command
25 over day-to-day matters in the zone of the 72nd MP Battalion. Does that
1 note violate the principle of unity of command?
2 A. Not necessarily. Because we would have to analyse the specific
3 instructions Generals Lausic and Gotovina are giving to -- to Juric or to
4 the military police of the Split Military District in general, and then
5 see whether they fall under the professional line or the operational
6 line, and then we could draw conclusions as to the principle of unity of
7 command and control is being violated or not.
8 Q. We're going into a break now, so during the break, I'm going to
9 follow up on that question. And I would ask you during the break to then
10 breakdown further for me what tasks fall under the professional line,
11 your word, that would have been something that Major Juric was taking
12 care of and what tasks fell under the operational line, which would have
13 been tasks that General Gotovina would have been issuing orders on. You
14 will have time on the break to consider your answer.
15 MR. MISETIC: Thank you, Your Honour. I think it's a good time
16 for a break.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
18 We will have a break until ten minutes to 1.00.
19 --- Recess taken at 12.32 p.m.
20 --- On resuming at 12.55 p.m.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Just to check, Mr. Waespi, is 65 ter 4600 on your
22 list as well, because that was another exhibit mentioned.
23 MR. WAESPI: Not yet, Mr. President.
24 JUDGE ORIE: And because we have to -- specific exhibits to which
25 reference is made, we should receive them in evidence.
1 Please proceed, Mr. Misetic.
2 MR. MISETIC:
3 Q. Mr. Theunens, let me repeat --
4 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
5 MR. MISETIC:
6 Q. Mr. Theunens let me repeat now and follow up on your last
7 response. What were the quote/unquote "professional line tasks" that
8 Mr. Juric was dealing with, and what were the quote/unquote "operational
9 tasks" that General Gotovina was dealing with?
10 A. The reports we have seen, I mean, the reports complied by
11 Mr. Juric and which he sent to General Lausic referred to the
12 implementation of the tasks by the military police, whereby it is not
13 always clear to determine who has imposed these tasks. The fact that he
14 informs General Lausic about the implementation of a particular task
15 doesn't have to mean at it has been imposed by Lausic, because I recall
16 that some of these reports also address the participation in combat
17 operations by units of the Split Military District military police.
18 In general terms, the tasks along the professional line are, for
19 example, the ones included in P881, i.e., the establishment of the -- of
20 a permanent military police presence in the recently recaptured area.
21 There's also tasks in relation to actually the follow-up order from the
22 meeting between Messrs. Jarnjak and Susak involving Moric and Lausic, and
23 I believe that is D47, where specific tasks are given as to how refugees
24 or prisoners of war are to be escorted and also how check-points are to
25 be established.
1 There is also -- it is not D47. I will find the correct
2 reference. Because D47 is not a document. D47 actually -- is an order
3 by General Lausic for the reduction of combat readiness in the military
4 police units, whereby in paragraph 14 of that order, D47, General Lausic
5 confirms that the military police is subordinated to the most senior HV
6 commander in the zone of responsibility and sent the daily report to him.
7 Q. Mr. Theunens, if I could interrupt you, because I want to get
8 back to the question.
9 Your answer is:
10 "We have reports about tasks that Mr. Juric was dealing with, but
11 it is not always clear to determine who imposed these tasks?"
12 Now it is clear that have you no evidence that you have seen that
13 General Gotovina was imposing those tasks upon Mr. Juric, right?
14 A. Mr. President, I have not answered the second part of the
15 previous question.
16 Q. Well, because we go off on D47 and what is in D47, et cetera, and
17 I'm trying to you back to concentrate on my question.
18 Let answer the first part of the question, which is: Major Juric
19 is doing certain tasks. What we know is that have you not seen any
20 evidence that General Gotovina was issuing orders to Mr. Juric concerning
21 what tasks he should undertake. I think we have established that,
23 A. Yes, we did.
24 Q. Okay. Now, can we also, by means of your review of the documents
25 that and the fact that you indicated that Mr. Juric was subordinated to
1 General Lausic, would your logical conclusion be that the tasks he is
2 implementing, he is implementing pursuant to orders of his superior,
3 General Lausic?
4 A. It's a bit -- I mean, you mentioned the cart and the horse
5 earlier. We can conclude that if General Lausic issues him -- gives him
6 a task that he implements it. But the fact that he carries out a task
7 does not necessarily mean that it comes from General Lausic, even though
8 it is General Lausic who sends Juric to the zone of responsibility of the
9 Split Military District, and even though General Lausic establishes the
10 general taskings or the role of Major Juric.
11 Q. Completely agree, Mr. Theunens, because, as we know, every
12 commander then has to make -- or every officer in the chain then has to
13 implement his tasks by making his own decisions and issuing his own
14 orders to his subordinates. That is understood. But my question is,
15 Mr. Juric is acting on the basis of orders that he has received from his
16 superior, Mr. Lausic, on what his tasks are. How he is going to
17 implement them, et cetera, that's something for Mr. Juric to determine as
18 he -- as matters transpire in the field.
19 Do you agree with me on that?
20 A. Yes, based on the documents I was able -- I had access to and I
21 could review.
22 Q. Okay. That leads me now to the next question, which is: What
23 types of tasks, according to your review of the documents, is Mr. Juric
24 dealing with? And I will -- for example, if we can look at D732 to make
25 things a bit -- actually, hold on before we get there. D734.
1 Now, in this report by Major Juric, he is reporting back to
2 Mr. Lausic. For example, securing facilities -- sorry, check-points is
3 point 1.
4 "The 4th OVP company Sibenik is no longer holding the
5 check-points at certain locations. We expect that members of the MUP
6 will take over security in Kistanje during the day. The check-points and
7 security in Drnis remain unchanged."
8 Do you agree with me that one of the tasks that Major Juric was
9 dealing was check-points in the newly liberated territories in the zone
10 of responsibility of the 72nd Military Police and the 73rd Military
12 A. That is correct. And I just want to clarify that, based on the
13 documents I reviewed, the manning or the organising of check-points was
14 ordered both -- I mean, in general terms, by the military police
15 administration through -- from General Lausic to Major Juric, as well as
16 by the operational commanders, and we have in that context, for example,
17 we discussed P1129.
18 Q. P1129, is that the order of General Ademi?
19 A. We can show it. It is signed by Brigadier Ademi or
20 General Gotovina.
21 Q. But that's to establish a check-point on the Strmica Knin, Gracac
22 cross-road. Is that the one?
23 A. Yes, yes.
24 Q. Okay. We'll get into that a little bit later on my
1 As a general matter, Mr. Lausic [sic], would you agree with me
2 that the command of the Split Military District is issuing orders for
3 check-points, it is in the context of movement of troops or securing
4 convoys, those types of matters. Let's first speak generally.
5 A. I think we would be -- we would benefit from showing -- if we
6 want to go into the P1129 or the matters addressed in P1129, it would be
7 helpful to see it.
8 Q. Well, I have to show you the entire context of P1129, and we're
9 going get into why that check-point was established, so I don't want to
10 take a half an hour to do that right now.
11 Putting that document aside and looking at the all the documents
12 as a whole which you have done, do you agree with me that when the
13 Military District establishes a check-point -- and let me stop and tell
14 what you my distinction is here.
15 Mr. Juric is establishing check-points pursuant to the agreement
16 with MUP in terms of providing general security in the area; whereas,
17 when Brigadier Ademi or General Gotovina issue an order, it is generally
18 in the context of a combat zone and securing entry and exit into a combat
19 zone or a military escort of -- of troop movements or something in that
20 context, generally speaking. Let's put aside the exceptions to the
21 rules. Generally speaking, that is what those orders relate to, correct?
22 A. I wouldn't be able to make such a distinction.
23 Q. Well --
24 A. The particular order -- that instructs the addresses to establish
25 a check-point also determines what the role is of the check-point, and
1 the -- the mean, the orders issued by General Gotovina or Brigadier
2 Ademi, in my view, also deal with what you describe as a military police
3 check-point or a purely military police task, even though in both cases,
4 be it military police administration or General Gotovina or Ademi, the
5 military police of the Split Military District is ordered to establish a
7 Q. First we'll go off on this digression now if you want to talk
8 about that order, I believe it is the 18th of August.
9 But first Major Juric is setting up check-points pursuant to the
10 agreement with MUP, wouldn't you agree, on the joint military police MUP
11 check-points? Isn't that what is really is being talked about here?
12 A. Initially I agree with you. At the start of Operation Storm,
13 when the military police follows the combat units and then establishes
14 check-points to prevent, for example, civilians from entering or also to
15 -- in the framework of securing the area, that is correct.
16 Q. Now -- and those check-points and that control is being commanded
17 by Major Juric in the field as one of his tasks. Correct?
18 A. I'm not able to draw that conclusion. I mean, the military
19 police reports, i.e., the reports I have seen from -- for example
20 General Lausic, where he informs the addressees of his report about the
21 activity of the military police, it is not always clear who actually had
22 ordered what at that very moment. He talks about the activities of
23 military police manning check-points, escorting prisoners of war,
24 receiving the prisoners of war and other military police tasks, including
25 also participating in combat tasks. But as I mentioned, based on my
1 understanding of these reports, it is not always clear who has imposed or
2 issued that particular task to the military police unit.
3 Q. Let's take it to the next step. If is not clear to you, then
4 let's work this way.
5 Reports about where check-points are established in towns like
6 Sibenik, Benkovac, Kistanje, Drnis, et cetera, speaking now about the
7 wider liberated territory, from everything you have seen, those reports
8 about check-points go to the military police administration in Zagreb
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And you have not seen any document where a report is being sent
12 to General Gotovina that says, There are the check-points here in Drnis
13 that have been set up with MUP and Sibenik. They have been et up at
14 these locations in Benkovac. They have been set up in these locations,
15 correct? There is no such report to General Gotovina about specific
16 check-points in the wider -- in the wider area.
17 A. Applying -- I mean, following military system of command and
18 control and also the chain of command, I do not rule out that such
19 reports could have been sent to Gotovina, but I haven't seen any. But it
20 would make more sense that there is direct cooperation and coordination
21 between the operational commander in the area, at the lowest level, that
22 would be battalion level, for example, if we talk about a --
23 check-points. The military police, together with the civilian police is
24 to establish check-points in Benkovac. That they notify the operational
25 commander of the existence or the intention to establish such
1 check-points. When I say "they," to the military police, i.e., Juric. I
2 would expect him to coordinate with the operational commander in the area
3 to state -- to determine where the check-points should be established.
4 Q. Okay. I -- I absolutely respect your assessment of what you
5 would expect in such situations. I'm more interested, however, in what
6 you found.
7 A. Mm-hm.
8 Q. And correct me if I'm wrong, what you found was that reports
9 about check-points and where they're being set up were not going to the
10 Split Military District Command, right? That is actually what you found,
11 even if it is against what you would expect to find?
12 A. We are talking about check-points established or manned by the
13 military and civilian police.
14 Q. Correct.
15 A. And their exact location.
16 Q. And then when they are being moved, or example, Juric in this
17 report talks about the military police is no longer at certain
18 check-points but is at a different check-point now, et cetera, as things
19 transpired on a day to day basis. This type of information about these
20 joint check-points was not being send to the Split Military District
21 Command, right, as far as you know from the documents?
22 A. From the documents I have reviewed, I have not come across a
23 document that indicates that indeed such information was sent to the
24 Split Military District Command.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Theunens, a simple no would have been exactly
1 the same answer, isn't it? In view of the questions which already
2 includes all the reservations, Mr. Misetic, by now, expects you to make.
3 Please proceed.
4 MR. MISETIC: Okay. Thank you, Mr. President.
5 Q. Now, based -- we can only work on the evidence that's before us,
6 whether it is us in the courtroom or you as an expert witness, correct?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Okay. Do you agree with me that with respect to the evidence
9 that is before you, the conclusion that you would draw, based on the
10 evidence that is before you, is that the issue of the joint check-points
11 their implementation, locations, when they would be changed, those types
12 of questions, were under the command of Major Juric, and his line was to
13 General Lausic?
14 A. I have answered the question already, whereby I stated that --
15 and this is also referred to on page 213 in my report, using P915 that
16 indeed initially it is the military police who decide about the
17 establishment of the check-points, when -- I mean, during the advance of
18 the HV units.
19 As to what happens later, especially after Storm, in my view, the
20 reports, both by Lausic -- by Juric as well by Lausic do not always allow
21 to conclude who ordered to establish the check-point where. There is no
22 doubt that some check-points or that the check-points were established
23 following orders by the military police administration, but, again, as
24 the reports do not clearly indicate who ordered what, I cannot draw a --
25 an overall conclusion.
1 Q. But to follow up on that, there's also the fact that -- you said
2 you can't conclude, but you also -- even after Operation Storm, as events
3 transpired, you didn't find an order from General Gotovina at any time
4 regarding joint MUP military police check-points, correct?
5 A. No, I have not come across such a document.
6 Q. Thank you.
7 MR. MISETIC: Yes, it's on the screen now --
8 Q. For example, this is it dated 11 August, and it talks about the
9 third paragraph :
10 "The Benkovac platoon of the 3rd military police Company Zadar is
11 engaged at nine check-points ... on 11 August 1995 a coordination meeting
12 was held with the members of the Obrovac police station."
13 That would be MUP police, correct?
14 A. Yes, I agree.
15 Q. "And we informed them about our evaluation of public law and
16 order situation in that municipality and that at 0600 hours on that day
17 the Benkovac VP platoon could no longer secure the Krka monastery."
18 Then it goes on.
19 Now my question is it is it also a fact that MUP and the military
20 police were coordinating their activities on the ground. Correct? We
21 agree that?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Or I should say attempting as best they could to coordinate their
25 And the reports by joint meetings about what they were doing to
1 coordinate, at least through August 11 in this report, were again being
2 sent through major Juric to General Lausic, correct?
3 A. Yes, indeed. That is that what document shows.
4 Q. And you did not find any reports about the results of joint
5 coordination meetings between MUP and the military police being sent to
6 the Split
7 A. There is an document from General Lausic which he sends to the
8 military police units all over Croatia
9 with Mr. Moric, where the -- the difficulties in -- in coordination of
10 the tasks between civilian police and military police are addressed, and
11 to my recollection, that document is also being sent to -- sent info to
12 the Military District Commanders and this is P877, dated the 18th of
14 Q. Okay. Well, maybe I should have been more precise. I'm not
15 referring to General Lausic at his level, then sending things for
16 information to the Split Military District. I'm talking about these
17 subordinate military police personnel that in the field are having these
18 coordination meetings with the MUP. These subordinate personnel in the
19 field are reporting the results of their coordination activities to
20 Mr. Lausic through Major Juric, correct?
21 A. Yes, that's correct. We have a example on the screen here.
22 Q. And in your review of the OTP documents, you do not find a report
23 where subordinate -- subordinate military police in the 72nd MPs were
24 sending reports of coordination meetings with the MUP to the Split
25 Military District command, correct?
1 A. That's correct.
2 Q. Number 4, status of crime, processing of crime. In terms of the
3 work of the crime police of the military police on a daily basis, those
4 reports were being sent to the military police administration on a daily
5 basis, correct?
6 A. There were regularly sent. I'm not sure anymore whether these
7 were compiled on a daily basis, but indeed there was a procedure to
8 inform the military police administration of this aspect.
9 Q. And the regular reports of the crime police in the 72nd MP were
10 not sent to the Split Military District Command, correct?
11 A. I can only answer based on the documents I have reviewed, and
12 indeed, I have not seen such a document.
13 Q. Okay. Now, in the -- so let's stop here and go back to the
14 distinction you made before the break, which is Major Juric is dealing
15 with what you call tasks in the professional line, and General Gotovina
16 dealing with tasks in the operational line.
17 If we see that -- I'm Major Juric is dealing with the issue of
18 these joint check-points with the MUP, if we see that Major Juric is
19 dealing with the issue of crime processing in the zone of the 72nd of
20 MUP, are those, in fact, then tasks that fall within the professional
21 line of the military police?
22 A. I think we -- when you mean "crime processing," do you also mean
23 actually to -- do note -- or to observe that a crime has happened and
24 then to start investigation afterwards, or do you only mean by that the
25 -- the investigative activities? Once the military police has been
1 notified of a crime.
2 Q. Once it has been notified of a crime. So the regular -- what was
3 in Article 10 -- part of regular duties to investigate and process crime,
4 and if necessary, bring a criminal complaint, and all the things you
5 would expect a military police crime unit to do. The reports -- it is
6 daily activities or every other day or whatever the frequency of the
7 reports is, what I'm asking you is: Major Juric is dealing with
8 reporting those types of issues, meaning crime processing as I have
9 described it, and setting up these MUP -- military police check-points.
10 Given your answer before the break, doesn't that -- are you -- I would
11 then logically follow you're saying that those tasks fall within the
12 professional line?
13 A. I think we have -- we have to make a distinction between what he
14 is reporting on and who is ordering the issues he is reporting on.
15 There's no doubt that Juric reports to Lausic or to General Lausic about
16 the activities of the military police which cover both professional as
17 well as operational aspects.
18 However, as I mentioned earlier, on the -- these reports, in my
19 view, do not always allow to conclude who ordered to conduct these
20 activities. The reason why I mention this is that that was a second
21 aspect of your initial question.
22 In addition to the instructions given by Lausic and/or Juric,
23 there are also instructions an orders issued by the operational
24 commanders dealing with similar matters, for example, the establishment
25 of check-points. And that's why on the basis of a report, which does not
1 indicate who issued a task, it is difficult to draw a clear conclusion on
2 that aspect.
3 Q. Well, without going over the last hour that we've gone through,
4 and I will tell what you my understanding is of your testimony thus far
5 so we don't have to repeat it.
6 Major Juric is under the command of General Lausic. He is not
7 under the command or not subordinated to General Gotovina. He is not
8 receiving orders from General Gotovina. He is not issuing reports to
9 General Gotovina. He is issuing reports to General Lausic. He is
10 completing tasks which he has been charged with from General Lausic. I'm
11 trying -- we see the types of tasks that you acknowledge that he is
12 dealing with are joint check-points with the MUP, crime processing or the
13 work of the crime police of the 72nd MP Battalion.
14 Looking at it from the perspective of what Major Juric is doing
15 -- and you were the one who made this distinction before the break that
16 well, Major Juric is dealing with professional line tasks and General
17 Gotovina is dealing with operational tasks. My question to you is: Now
18 since we have now established that Major Juric is dealing with tasks such
19 as joint MUP check-points and crime processing, given your answer before
20 the break, is my conclusion wrong, that you mean that Major Juric, when
21 he is dealing with joint check-points with MUP and crime processing, is
22 dealing with "professional line tasks"?
23 A. I can't see the transcript from prior to the break, but I
24 remember that you asked me whether the principle of unit of command was
25 violated because of the fact that both Juric and General Gotovina were
1 issuing orders, and I replied that we would have to analyse the specific
2 orders and then to see whether they address tasks that fall under the
3 professional line or whether they concerned tasks that fall under the
4 operational line.
5 Again, Juric reports here on certain activities. I have
6 testified that certainly initially the plan or the instructions given by
7 General Lausic to the military police battalions include the
8 establishment of check-points. Subsequently there is coordination
9 cooperation between the civilian police and the military police in order
10 to set up joint check-points. I have not seen documents issued or orders
11 issued by General Gotovina on the location of such joint check-points,
12 but it is very important to keep in mind that I've seen shall - and we
13 have discussed some of them - several orders by General Gotovina during
14 and after Operation Storm, indicating that he can use his military police
15 to carry out tasks he has determined.
16 Q. Let's start from your proposition now or your answer that you
17 acknowledge that General Lausic issued orders on the establishment of
18 check-points. Major Juric implemented those orders in the field. The
19 issue of check-points, is that a professional line task or an operational
21 A. It covers both aspects. Because there will be procedures as to
22 how a check-point has to be organised, about -- there will be procedures
23 as to what the general duties or function is of a check-point and where
24 to locate them and so on and so on, than would be -- and we were to
25 locate them in general terms. Like, you're not going to put a
1 check-point in a particular location because of the fact that it wouldn't
2 stop anything, and so on, those aspects would be covered by the
3 professional line.
4 Then the exact physical location of a check-point in location X,
5 Y, or Z, for a particular duration of time, it may be a very specific
6 mission or not, would in my view fall under the operational line.
7 Q. Okay now let's talk specifics. We're talking 4 August, 5 August,
8 6 August. We're talking about Major Juric's implementation of
9 check-points in the field his reporting back to General Lausic about
10 where the check-points are, where those check-points have been
11 discontinued. Where those check-points have been moved. Those are
12 operational issues that are being implemented by Major Juric and reported
13 on back to General Lausic, correct?
14 A. He reports about it to General Lausic, but I cannot conclude
15 whether -- who orders that a check-point be set up in a particular
16 location at that very moment. I assume or my conclusion is that this
17 follows from the plan that has been agreed between Mr. Lausic --
18 General Lausic and Mr. Moric, that, okay, the military police will in the
19 framework of its duties to maintain law and order, establish
20 check-points. But from the military practical point of view, there
21 should be and that is a theoretical answer there should be coordination
22 with the operational units or the combat units in the area as to who will
23 set up which check-point where and how they will handle cooperate and
24 coordinate the activities. I cannot be more price because I haven't seen
25 more prices documents.
1 Q. Well, I agree with where I think you said your conclusion is that
2 this follows from the plan that had been agreed upon between Mr. Lausic,
3 General Lausic and Mr. Moric. I agree with that conclusion.
4 My -- furthermore would you agree with me that when
5 General Lausic then sends Major Juric into the field, it is with the
6 authority to establish the check-points that he deems necessary in
7 cooperation with the MUP as per the agreement that had been reached on
8 the 3rd of August?
9 I specifically call your attention to the document we referenced
10 earlier which said that Major Juric has the authority to implement all
11 military police tasks in the zone of the 72nd Military Police Battalion.
12 A. I cannot draw the conclusion that it the establishment of the
13 check-points, i.e., physically in the terrain at a particular location,
14 fell exclusively under the authority of Major Juric because I haven't
15 seen a document or documents indicating that.
16 And based on my military background, it would be logical - and
17 that's again theoretical - answer that such activities would be
18 coordinated with the operational commander in the area, i.e., the
19 commander of the combat unit in the area, in order to have the most
20 efficient use of all assets available because combat troops, once they
21 have captured the objective, can also be used to establish check-points.
22 Q. Let me try it a different way.
23 Based on the fact that we have now established that the issue of
24 these joint check-points was not being reported in terms of their
25 location, their movement, their discontinuance, was not being reported as
1 far as you can tell from the documents that you have reviewed to the
2 Split Military District Command, isn't it -- isn't your conclusion based
3 on the evidence in front you that the fact that this is getting reported
4 up the chain to Juric and Lausic that this must be a task that's being
5 implemented pursuant to that line?
6 A. If we're talking about the joint MUP military police
7 check-points, I think there's a slight distinction with the check-points
8 that are established initially, but, still, as I mentioned in my previous
9 answer, there would have been coordination with the operational commander
10 in the area, in order to ensure that these check-points are located in
11 the most efficient or the most appropriate location and are organised in
12 the most efficient manner, irrespective of who had the initial proposal
13 or idea to set up the check-points.
14 The establishment of these check-points is indeed, based on
15 documents I reviewed, a consequence or a result of the initial plan that
16 is -- has been agreed by general Lausic and Mr. Moric. Now, as to the
17 actual implementation, it would seem plausible that major Juric suggested
18 to the local police official, civilian police official, and, in my view,
19 also the local military commander, that well, we will establish or we
20 want to establish a check-point in location X, Y, or Z, and that is the
21 manner -- according to which the plan is implemented.
22 I cannot imagine that the military police and civilian police
23 would set up their check-points in isolation or disregard of military
24 realities in the area they are without any consultation or cooperation
25 coordination with the operational commander in that area.
1 Q. Once again, Mr. Theunens, you have given us an answer about what
2 would you expect, and I keep wanting to get back to what you found. So
3 let me take you back to what you found.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Misetic, Mr. Theunens apparently combines his
5 military experience and the knowledge he gains from that with what he
6 found in documents, and he has explained to us in different wordings
7 several times that what I see in the documents -- there must be other
8 mechanisms as well. That's what he explained in many different lines.
9 Now, to say, I only want your conclusions on the basis of those
10 documents, if an expert is convinced that on the basis of his experience
11 and his knowledge, that this is most likely incomplete information, the
12 written information, compared to what must have been there to make
13 everything function, that is it not something I would expect you to
14 require from an expert witness.
15 MR. MISETIC: Judge.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
17 MR. MISETIC: With all due respect, the witness when he is
18 pushed, uses the expression based on my military experience, which to me,
19 I mean, if I were to say to you in closing argument, based on my legal
20 experience, my client is not guilty. You would say, It is an interesting
21 opinion. Is there any evidence to support to you? And I would say,
22 judge, there is all sorts of exculpatory documents based on my experience
23 that have not been shown to you.
24 I'm trying get to conclusions that we can deal with on the basis
25 of what the documents are. And I think that is one conclusion that would
1 be drawn on the basis of documents. The fact that he thinks that it was
2 something else based on his experience in the Belgian army is a different
3 issue can he with address, but I'm primarily interested in, based on the
4 evidence, that this person has been tendered as an expert witness, and I
5 think is he basically testified to that to this point.
6 I don't think it is that controversial to say --
7 JUDGE ORIE: No. The expert witness -- if the expert is
8 hesitating to go draw conclusions because on the basis of his experience,
9 he feels that he has not the complete information, that -- of course I
10 can imagine that that would be heavily criticised by you drawing
11 conclusions on incomplete information. I leave that entirely open. But
12 to say I want you to draw conclusions on the basis of documents alone, if
13 the expert feels that, based again on his experience, that he should not
14 do so, then we should respect that.
15 I do not mind at all you've done that over the past one or two
16 hours to very much push him to tell us what the documents tell us. And
17 you have in your questioning clearly explained that if there are vague
18 notions elsewhere, that that should not take -- that he should still
19 should focus on what he investigated. I have no problem with that. But
20 to say, I want you to draw conclusions on the basis of what have you
21 seen, even if that is incomplete, then where the witness has explained
22 various times that he considers there must be more. And of course he has
23 explained it to some extent. He has not just said, there must be more.
24 He has explained that in various respects. I leave it at this point to
25 comments on questions and answers.
1 Please proceed.
2 MR. MISETIC: Yes, Mr. President. If I may just respond briefly
3 to say that I think I speak -- I'm sure I speak on behalf of our defence,
4 and I probably speak on behalf of the other two, that we don't accept
5 that hesitation most often results from military experience. I've
6 alluded to certain issues thus far, and I can, I think, establish a
7 pattern of when his hesitation to answer questions appears. And for that
8 reason, I push him because I don't want do give him the opportunity to
9 give me the spin instead of getting to the heart of the matter, and
10 that's why I'm --
11 JUDGE ORIE: First of all, I would not expect you just to accept
12 that the hesitation comes from what the witnesses says. You are there to
13 challenge that. And if you say, We want to push him, that has become
14 perfectly clear. However, pushing to what point? That is the issue.
15 Please proceed.
16 MR. MISETIC:
17 Q. Let me continue then. Mr. Theunens, these are operational
18 matters, in terms of establishment of check-points. Now, you cannot be
19 sure is the conclusion that you've left at that in terms of who was
20 telling Juric and the members of the military police to establish
21 specific check-points where, although you acknowledge that there is no --
22 no evidence that you have seen that General Gotovina or the Split
23 Military District Command was issuing orders or receiving reports on
24 where these joint check-points were to be located or were located.
25 My question now goes back to the question that I asked you before
1 the break. If in fact, if in fact, we can logically conclude that
2 Mr. Lausic was there on the 2nd, with the two ministers. He is there at
3 the working meeting on the 3rd with the MUP to work out the details of
4 this plan. He sends out someone from Zagreb, namely, Mr. Juric, into the
5 field with the authority and responsibility to implement all military
6 police tasks in the zone of responsibility. And if, in fact, Major Juric
7 then did, pursuant to his instructions work with the MUP and establish
8 joint check-points at specific locations in the liberated territories,
9 those are operational matters, according to your testimony, in terms of
10 the specific locations.
11 My question to you -- do you disagree with that?
12 A. No, no, I'm just trying to follow your question.
13 Q. Those operational matters, and that takes me back to the question
14 before the break.
15 Based on these documents, based on what transpired on th 2nd,
16 3rd, 4th, is there not a violation of principle of unit of command, if,
17 in fact, Major Juric as someone who is not answerable to the Split
18 Military District Command, is issuing orders on things such as
19 check-points in the field while General Gotovina, in your theory, also
20 has the same ability to issue orders concerning those same check-points?
21 A. Your Honours, in light of my previous answer to similar
22 questions, I think I can very clear now.
23 I have not seen specific orders by General Juric to establish a
24 specific check-point in a specific location. On the other hand, I have
25 seen and we have discussed some of those orders by General Gotovina to
1 establish a check-point in a very particular location, whereby a
2 check-point -- excuse me, manned by members of the 72nd Military Police
3 Battalion, whereby General Gotovina or his Deputy Commander, Brigadier
4 Ademi, clearly states what the role of this check-point is.
5 If I had seen such an order by Mr. Juric, I would obviously have
6 drawn a conclusion from those orders. But I haven't seen such orders. I
7 haven't seen any orders indicating where these joint MUP/MP check-points
8 are to be established. All I can say is that there has been indeed been
9 a meeting on the 2nd or 3rd August at the highest level where this
10 procedure or method of ensuring security and safety in the recaptured
11 area is discussed at the highest level.
12 Q. Mr. Theunens, we're coming up on the end of the day, so let me
13 ask it again.
14 I think I know what I'm saying to you is to assume that Mr. Juric
15 based on the sequence of events, in fact, was issuing orders where those
16 check-points go. Take it for granted. It's a hypothetical. Take it for
17 granted. Does that violate the principle of unit of command?
18 A. If the operational commander -- I mean, again hypothetically, if
19 the operational commander in the area agrees that Juric decides on his
20 own or with the MUP, but without consulting the operational commander or
21 coordinating with the operational commander, to establish a check-point
22 in -- in a particular location, there is no problem because the
23 operational commander seems to accept it, even though it does not
24 correspond to with doctrine.
25 Q. And if he doesn't accept it?
1 A. If he doesn't accept it, he will raise it with the superior and
2 then through the chain of command --
3 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Theunens, you're now describing how he would
4 resolve that. The question was now how it would be resolved, but the
5 question was whether it would be a violation of the -- of the one command
6 structure, the --
7 MR. MISETIC: [Overlapping speakers] ...
8 THE WITNESS: Yeah, unit of command. There is only violation if
9 somebody -- I mean the operational commander makes a problem of it. If
10 the operational commander accepts it, in theory it is a violation but in
11 practice, it is not. Because the operational commander, if he accepts
12 it, he agrees that he is not consulted in this area and -- so there is
13 there is, in practical terms, no violation.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Misetic, it's time to adjourn for the day.
15 We'll not sit tomorrow.
16 Mr. Theunens, he'd like to see you back on Friday, at 9.00 in the
17 morning. I give the same instructions to you as I did the other days;
18 that is, not to speak about the testimony, whether already given or still
19 to be given.
20 We adjourn until Friday, the 28th of November, 9.00 in the
21 morning, Courtroom I.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.47 p.m.
23 to be reconvened on Friday, the 28th day of
24 November, 2008, at 9.00 a.m.