1 Wednesday, 25 November 2009
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 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 Mr. Carrier, before we continue, I would like to -- I'd like to
13 briefly raise today and tomorrow as far as scheduling is concerned.
14 First of all, the Chamber, looking at the improvement of avoiding
15 repetition, et cetera, which you showed et cetera, the Chamber is quite
16 confident that you would be able, with similar improvement, be able to
17 finish in approximately 40, 45 minutes today.
18 Then, could I ask the other parties how much time they would need
19 for re-examination?
20 Mr. Mikulicic.
21 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honour, as things stand now, I would use
22 half a session.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Half a session.
24 MR. MIKULICIC: Yes.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. So let's then try to see whether we could
1 conclude the testimony of this witness at the end of the first session.
2 Mr. Mikulicic, for the next witness how much time would you need?
3 MR. MIKULICIC: The next witness will be Mr. Kuzmanovic, and he
4 needs two sessions at least.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Two sessions --
6 MR. MIKULICIC: Two to three.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Two to three.
8 MR. MIKULICIC: Right.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Could I hear from the other parties for Witness MM-5
10 is the next ...
11 MR. KEHOE: At this point, Mr. President, on behalf of the
12 Gotovina Defence, I would anticipate half an hour to 45 minutes at most.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
14 Mr. Kay.
15 MR. KAY: I can see nothing arising for my part.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Which -- Mr. Waespi.
17 MR. WAESPI: I think we had two sessions, and based on the
18 witness statement, that's certainly enough. But I don't know what the
19 oral examination will reveal.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Which means that there's a reasonable
21 expectation that we could finish the next witness by tomorrow, the end of
22 the morning. I urge the parties all to strictly adhere to the estimates,
23 of course, to the extent possible, but to try to do our utmost best.
24 Mr. Carrier, then -- I'll first, Mr. Pejkovic, sorry for
25 discussing matters which have only partly to do with you. Mr. Pejkovic,
1 I would like to remind you that the solemn declaration that you gave at
2 the beginning of your testimony that you'll speak the truth, the whole
3 truth, and nothing but the truth is still binding. Mr. Carrier will now
4 continue his cross-examination.
5 Mr. Carrier.
6 MR. CARRIER: Thank you, Mr. President.
7 Mr. Registrar, could we have Exhibit D428 on the screen.
8 WITNESS: LOVRE PEJKOVIC [Resumed]
9 [Witness answered through interpreter]
10 Cross-examination by Mr. Carrier: [Continued]
11 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, what is coming up on the screen is what we were
12 looking at yesterday, the Programme for Return.
13 MR. CARRIER: Mr. Registrar, if you could turn to page 8 in the
14 English, 5 in the B/C/S.
15 Q. And, Mr. Pejkovic, looking at number 13 enumerated in this
16 programme, it starts at the bottom of the page in English and goes on to
17 the next page where it says that:
18 "All categories of persons defined under the Geneva Conventions
19 from 1951 as stated in paragraph 1 of the basic principles of this
20 programme who do not have Croatian documents may return after special
21 approval by the office for expelled persons and refugees and following
22 checks made by the Ministry of the Interior."
23 And then it goes on.
24 Yesterday, you did talk a little bit about some of the Croatian
25 document issues. This -- number 13 in this list, this indicates that all
1 refugees now can -- that don't have Croatian documents, there's a new
2 process - isn't that right - for obtaining those documents?
3 A. Article 13 of the return programme defines the category of all
4 those people who are considered refugees who can return following a
5 special approval of the office if they do not have Croatian documents.
6 Once back, they can regulate their status with the Ministry of the
7 Interior, they can obtain residence and be issued with IDs. And if they
8 apply for them, they will receive their passports as well.
9 Mention is made of the Ministry of the Interior because once a
10 return application is submitted, the Ministry of the Interior ran checks
11 on the citizenship of the person involved. If the person is found to be
12 a Croatian citizen, such a person would receive a certificate of the
13 return programme with which it could return to the Republic of Croatia
14 Such a person could also go to the nearest Croatian mission to be issued
15 with a travel document which in turn could be used for the person's
16 return to the Republic of Croatia
17 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, the -- before this programme which was instituted
18 in 1998, the Serbs that had fled didn't have any Croatian documents
19 before they fled Croatia
20 documents and return to Croatia
21 A. It is not. They could rely on the consular services of the
22 various Croatian missions abroad and ask for travel documents which would
23 enable them to return to the Republic of Croatia
24 MR. CARRIER: Mr. Registrar, could we please have 65 ter 847 on
25 the screen.
1 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, I want to review a few documents with you and then
2 ask you some questions. The document that's coming up on the screen is a
3 report on the situation of human rights in Croatia. It's to the
4 commission on human rights. It's dated 31 October 1997 from the UN
5 Special Rapporteur Elisabeth Rehn.
6 MR. CARRIER: And if we could, please, turn to paragraph 52,
7 which is -- should be page 13 in the English, 14 and 15 in the B/C/S.
8 Q. And I'll just read this to you, Mr. Pejkovic. Paragraph 52 says:
9 "The special rapporteur is concerned about restrictive conditions
10 imposed on return to the country by Croatian Serb refugees in possession
11 of valid citizenship certificates. The" --
12 MR. KEHOE: Excuse me, counsel, could we just put that on the
13 screen, please, paragraph 52.
14 MR. CARRIER:
15 Q. "The domovnica refugees who" --
16 JUDGE ORIE: If you are reading from paragraph 52, then perhaps
17 the previous page would serve us better, in English.
18 Please proceed.
19 MR. CARRIER: Thank you.
20 Q. "Refugees who intend to" --
21 JUDGE ORIE: I still have 53 on my -- you are quoting from 52,
22 isn't it?
23 MR. CARRIER: Yes.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
25 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, while we're waiting for this to come
1 up, this document is Exhibit D684 that's in evidence already. That would
2 be 65 ter 847.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
4 MR. CARRIER: Thank you.
5 Q. Continuing:
6 "Refugees who intend to repatriate, whether with the help of the
7 UNHCR or spontaneously on the basis of the domovnica are no longer able
8 to cross the border without first obtaining additional travel documents
9 from a Croatian embassy abroad. However, there is no established
10 procedure for Croatian citizens to obtain valid passports or travel
11 documents from Croatian embassies in neighbouring countries. In
12 addition, Croatian embassies do not accept applications for a
13 domovnica" -- and if we turn over into paragraph 53, there's a further
14 discussion about a special category of people.
15 MR. CARRIER: And if we could now have document 65 ter 7503 on
16 the screen, please.
17 And, Mr. President, I'm informed that D684 does not have a B/C/S
18 translation, so if the translation for the 65 ter number I just referred
19 to could be --
20 JUDGE ORIE: We'll have a look at it, and then the question is
21 whether we need a new exhibit number or whether the B/C/S translation
22 should be uploaded.
23 Please proceed.
24 MR. CARRIER: Thank you.
25 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, this is a document, 31st March, 1998. It's a
1 Reuters report entitled "Zagreb
2 I just want to go through the first six paragraphs with you. It
4 "The Croatian government said on Tuesday it was cutting some of
5 the red tape preventing the return of Serb refugees, but a comprehensive
6 plan - demanded by the West - would not be complete before mid-June.
7 "The government adopted a document specifying a new legal
8 procedure for the individual return of all refugees including Serbs,
9 government spokesman Neven Jurica told a news conference."
10 And then you're quoted here, Mr. Pejkovic:
11 "'The aim of this document is to express our will to allow the
12 return of all of those who wish to do so,' said Lovre Pejkovic, head of
13 the Croatian office for refugees and displaced persons."
14 And then the report goes on:
15 "The main novelty in the nine-point document is that those who
16 fled the country during the 1991-1995 war and now want to come back can
17 apply for the necessary papers in Croatia's representative offices
19 Next paragraph:
20 "Until now, Serb refugees sheltering in Yugoslavia and the
21 Serb-controlled Bosnia had to find their way around a 'catch-22'
22 situation, where they could not enter Croatia without identity documents
23 which could only be obtained in Croatia
24 And it says -- there's a quote:
25 "'This is a major step forward,' this is said by Zeljko Trkanjac,
1 spokesman for the foreign ministry, which drafted the document."
2 And, for the benefit of my friends, Exhibit P2594 has similar
3 information and Mr. Pejkovic talking about this new programme in 1998.
4 Mr. Pejkovic, my question for you is: Given these documents and
5 this report, is it not the case that in 1998 the situation changed and
6 there is a new procedure for people outside of Croatia that made it
7 easier for them to get citizenship documents in Croatian, official
8 documents, in order to re-enter the country?
9 A. The return programme that you are referring to that was adopted
10 in 1998, and as you referred to it in the documents shown, was a mere
11 continuation of all the processes which had begun earlier on the basis of
12 the documents which had been accepted pursuant to the agreement on the
13 normalisation of relations between the FRY and Croatia, as well as by the
14 signing of the protocol on organised return concluded between the
15 Republic of Croatia
16 a Croatian mission and consulate in the territory of the former FRY. As
17 of the moment they were set up, the Serb refugees from Croatia could ask
18 for travel documents so as to be able to return to the Republic of
20 JUDGE ORIE: Could I just try to find out whether there's a
21 confusion between the one who puts the questions and the one who answers
22 the questions. I got the impression that Mr. Carrier wants to compare
23 the situation which existed -- well, let's say in the first two years
24 approximately, and then there was an agreement, and then this resulted in
25 a plan which was then in 1998 completed and -- now, I understand from
1 your answer you said: Well, everything that happened as a result of the
2 agreement, so you apparently are talking about 1997 and onwards, where in
3 1998 some new matters were implemented. Whereas I understand that
4 Mr. Carrier wants to understand what the step forward is in relation to
5 what happened until this agreement, end of 1995, 1996, part of 1997. So
6 let's try to talk about the same thing.
7 Did I understand you well, Mr. Carrier?
8 MR. CARRIER: Yes, and --
9 JUDGE ORIE: Did I understand your answer well? You said:
10 "A mere continuation of all the processes which had begun earlier
11 on the basis of the documents which had been accepted pursuant to the
12 agreement on the normalisation ..."
13 That's 1997, isn't it? So you're talking from 1997 onwards and
14 Mr. Carrier is talking about 1995, 1997, 1998. So it doesn't make --
15 you're talking about different things. Could you tell us whether this
16 was a major step forward in relation to the time-period Mr. Carrier was
17 referring to, that is, before the time this agreement had been
18 established, that it was difficult then to get your papers.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, you basically said
20 what I wanted to say, although I may not have been as precise. I wanted
21 to say that the process was initiated in late 1995. It picked up speed
22 once the normalisation of relations agreement was signed, and legally
23 speaking, it was complete with this new refugee return programme of 1998.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Now, let's get back to -- on from 1995, was it
25 experienced as difficult to get the papers up to the moment where this
1 agreement and the implementation of the agreement in 1997/1998 took
2 place? During these first two years was it considered to be difficult,
3 because that's what most of these reports are talking about?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the FRY between 1995 and the
5 opening of our consulate, one could not be issued with any documents
6 because there was no body which could issue them --
7 JUDGE ORIE: So it was difficult at that time? Yes. Well,
8 that's what Mr. Carrier apparently wanted to ask you. If you say, We've
9 taken away some of the red - what was it? - the red tape, et cetera, that
10 means there was quite a difference in the situation where it was
11 impossible as reported to obtain the documents at an earlier stage. That
12 was the catch-22 situation which was described. So do I understand that
13 this was the case until the Croatian mission in Belgrade was opened, your
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. If you would make an effort to try to
17 understand what Mr. Carrier is exactly asking you and then we get quicker
18 to what appears to be the answer to the question.
19 Please proceed.
20 MR. CARRIER: Thank you.
21 If we could have that 65 ter document tendered, the Reuters
23 JUDGE ORIE: No objections.
24 Mr. Registrar.
25 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that becomes Exhibit P2677.
1 JUDGE ORIE: P2677 is admitted into evidence.
2 The translation of the earlier report - what was it? - it was a
3 D document, if that could be uploaded, it's now available. So if the
4 party that tendered - what was it --
5 MR. KEHOE: 684 --
6 JUDGE ORIE: 684 which is in e-court without translation, whether
7 that could be uploaded.
8 And I take it that you'll make the translation available so you
9 can get it from the e-court.
10 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Mr. President, we'll get it from e-court. We'll
11 have our court officer take a look at that now.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
13 Please proceed.
14 MR. CARRIER: Thank you, Mr. President.
15 Mr. Registrar, could we please have 65 ter 5003 on the screen,
17 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, in paragraph 5 of your statement, you mentioned
18 after the occupied Croatian territory was liberated during
19 Operations Flash and Storm, many of the people that had been accommodated
20 in the free parts of Croatia
21 residence, which entailed, you say, enormous organisational and financial
22 effort. Mr. Pejkovic, the vast majority of the people that you're
23 referring to here are Croats that had been accommodated in the free parts
24 of Croatia
25 around 93 per cent during your testimony. Is that right? That it was
1 the Croats that were returning into the occupied -- or formally occupied
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And, Mr. Pejkovic, the Croats that were moving into the newly
5 liberated areas were not necessarily returning to their pre-war
6 residences. Some of the people moving into these areas also included
7 Croats that had taken refuge in the free parts of Croatia, fleeing such
8 places as Bosnia
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And during your testimony you mentioned that Croatia was under
11 pressure from these displaced Croats, and you mentioned the associations
12 that were formed to return, the pressures because of the people being
13 accommodated in hotels, the associated costs, et cetera. Is that fair?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, on Monday you were shown a draft decree on the
16 return of expelled persons and refugees to the liberated areas which was
17 an item on the agenda of the 277th Closed Session of government on
18 October 5th, 1995
19 the first page.
20 A. This is the first time that I see this document, but I do
21 remember the decree on the return of persons that was adopted by the
23 Q. Well, during your testimony on Monday you were shown D214, I
24 believe, and that's this -- the beginning of this document, including
25 this page, and the decree is attached. But we'll --
1 MR. CARRIER: If you perhaps just scroll through, Mr. Registrar,
2 to page 5 in the English. I'm not sure what the B/C/S is.
3 Q. It's coming up now, Mr. Pejkovic, but just so that you recognise
4 that. That's the decree you were looking at the other day.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe.
6 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Mr. President, this is Exhibit D214.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes -- well, the witness just told us that, "This is
8 the first time that I see this document," whereas on Monday he testified
9 that he's familiar with the document so --
10 MR. KEHOE: I'm just talking about this for the record. It was
11 identified as 65 ter 5003, and I'm just -- I'm clarifying it for the
12 record --
13 JUDGE ORIE: I thought that D --
14 MR. CARRIER: If I could help --
15 JUDGE ORIE:
16 "Q. Well, during your testimony on Monday you were shown D214.
17 I believe that's this, the beginning of this document ..."
18 So D214 was referred to by Mr. Carrier.
19 Please proceed.
20 MR. CARRIER: Thank you. And just -- I'm sure it will become
21 apparent in a second.
22 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, if we could actually turn to --
23 MR. CARRIER: Sorry, Mr. Registrar, if you could turn to page 4
24 in the English and page 3 in the B/C/S.
25 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, looking at the minutes of this 277th Closed
1 Session, your name's not on the people that attended, the list. Am I
2 correct in assuming that you were not present at this closed session?
3 A. I wasn't. I wasn't at the meeting, no.
4 Q. And did you know that during this closed session that this draft
5 decree, which you talked about before, was discussed by senior members of
6 the Croatian government, including Vice Prime Minister Radic, who was the
7 minister of development and reconstruction?
8 A. Mr. Prosecutor, I never had access to documents -- government
9 documents which were marked as strictly confidential or secret. I was
10 the representative of the office and I read regulations and decrees in
11 the Official Gazette, and as such, that was when they were -- became
12 official, when they were published in the Official Gazette.
13 JUDGE ORIE: The answer is simply: No, you were not aware.
14 Please proceed.
15 MR. CARRIER:
16 Q. And I take it from your last answer that not only were you not
17 given access to confidential documents or secret documents, is it fair
18 to -- is it fair to --
19 A. I didn't have access to them, no, to no secret documents.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Let's first wait what the question will be.
21 Is it fair to ...
22 MR. CARRIER:
23 Q. Is it fair to say that you weren't included in things like closed
24 sessions of government and private meetings with President Tudjman or
25 anything like that either, to discuss policy or anything like that in
1 terms of passing laws, et cetera?
2 A. I wasn't included, no.
3 Q. And during your testimony you explained that this decree
4 cancelled the status of certain displaced persons' status; however, did
5 you know that this decree was also discussed and viewed as a means of
6 encouraging Croats, both from Croatia
7 previous occupied territories?
8 A. All I know is the contents of the decree. Now, what you're
9 saying now, I don't know about that.
10 MR. CARRIER: Mr. Registrar, if we could please turn to page 11
11 in the English and 9 in the B/C/S. And perhaps if we could just turn
12 back one page in the B/C/S, please.
13 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, you can see that these are minutes of a discussion
14 about this decree that was held that day, and item 1 on the agenda is
15 this decree and Mr. Radic is invited by the prime minister to present the
16 chronology and the dilemmas regarding the subject as well as to propose
17 the conclusions on this matter.
18 MR. CARRIER: And if we could please turn the page in the B/C/S,
19 please, and scroll down -- or on to the next page as well, actually, in
20 the English.
21 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, I just want to review a few of the parts of this
22 discussion where your boss, Minister Radic, is talking. And in the
23 English part way down the page - and it's at the very bottom of the B/C/S
24 and it turns on to the next page after that - Mr. Radic says:
25 "... and on the other hand, since it is in our best national
1 interest that these people return to their homes, in our primary national
2 interest, not only that they go back but also that we colonise the
3 vacated Croatian" --
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. --
5 MR. KEHOE: If I may turn the floor to Mr. Misetic on the
6 translation here, and if I may.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, you may.
8 MR. MISETIC: Mr. President, I would object on the basis of the
9 translation of the word.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Let's see what word is bothering you and let's see
11 what ...
12 Could we invite the witness to read or you to read the original
13 of the line where apparently you have some problem with the translation.
14 MR. MISETIC: It's a long sentence, Mr. President, so I'll just
15 read the relevant clause.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
17 MR. MISETIC: [Interpretation] "The great national interest and
18 not only the return, but also the settlement of void Croatian areas or
19 empty Croatian areas."
20 [In English] That's it, that's how I would have translated it
21 myself, Mr. President.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Carrier, could you invite the witness to answer
23 any question you may put to him in relation to this text on the basis of
24 his understanding of the Croatian original.
25 MR. CARRIER: Yes.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
2 Please proceed.
3 MR. CARRIER: Thank you.
4 Q. Just to be clear, Mr. Pejkovic, you'll have to do a little work
5 and read along so that you can base your answers on what you're reading
6 and I'll continue with what it says here.
7 "We ought to define a number of stimulating measures" --
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Pejkovic, if you could just follow what
9 Mr. Carrier reads to you in your own language. So of course it will be
10 translated to you, but at the same time you'll be able to see on the
11 screen what the text of the transcript exactly is.
12 MR. MISETIC: Mr. President, if we could just check, because what
13 I'm looking at in e-court is not the page in B/C/S, so I'm not sure that
14 the right page in B/C/S is there --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, then we first have to find the right page.
16 MR. MISETIC: That's the one.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, and that starts, I think, in the top: "Veliki
18 nacionalni interes" --
19 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honour, I think it will be much easier to
20 provide the witness with a hard copy of this document.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, if there is one, it's fine. If not, then we'll
22 do with -- is -- if anyone has a hard copy, but we're not going to
23 produce it now. And that will take at least a couple of minutes.
24 Mr. Carrier, if you can -- that's great -- Mr. Usher.
25 MR. CARRIER: I'm not sure if my friends want to have a chance to
1 look at it --
2 JUDGE ORIE: I take it that --
3 MR. CARRIER: I've marked it with letters and there's bars next
4 to it, but there's nothing written.
5 JUDGE ORIE: If you would please open it on the page you're
6 looking at now. Yes, I can't see from here whether that's the page --
7 but I take it it's the page starting with "povratak, veliki nacionelni
8 interes" --
9 MR. CARRIER: If my friends want to flip through it, they're
10 marked with tabs --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Well, they apparently have no problems with you, Mr.
12 Carrier, so be happy.
13 MR. CARRIER: Well, at least with this.
14 JUDGE ORIE: At least with this, yes. No, but I thought you open
15 it on the page the witness has to look at, so that he knows -- that he
16 doesn't have to find his way through it at this moment.
17 MR. CARRIER: Because they're tabbed and they're lettered, I can
18 just say: Go to tab A on the bottom --
19 JUDGE ORIE: Okay, fine.
20 MR. CARRIER:
21 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, if you could try to find tab B, and you'll see that
22 tab B, there's a mark at the bottom and then it goes on to the next page.
23 I'll continue this broken-up quote now.
24 "We ought to define a number of stimulating measures which would
25 motivate people to go and live in the areas where living is not so easy,
1 or we should offer these people some other opportunities not available to
2 people in other parts of Croatia
3 which enables the creation of opportunities which is meant to help these
4 people who suffered a lot, et cetera ..."
5 And, Mr. Pejkovic, if you could turn to part D, which is on
6 page 15 in the English and it should be 15 of the B/C/S as well. And at
7 the bottom - I'm sorry I don't have that in front of me anymore - but at
8 the bottom of the English it says, this is Mr. Radic continuing to talk
9 about this decree:
10 "I would like to draw the attention to another important decree
11 or an important decision or an important category of this decree which is
12 directed to settling the deserted areas of Croatia ..."
13 And on to the next page in English:
14 "... yet I am speaking at the closed session of government. The
15 Croats who have been expelled from Bosnia and Herzegovina - the part of
16 Bosnia and Herzegovina under the Serbian occupation, those expelled from
17 Vojvodina, inner Serbia
18 simply come from the part where the Serbian rifle in that area we are
19 settling now in a sense of this decree - Vrginmost, Vojnic, Lapac, et
20 cetera, we give them all the rights that returnees in Croatia have,
21 therefore that particular category, not all the refugees from Bosnia
23 so those whom we have given homes, houses, space, we want to put them to
24 survive in that area. Therefore, they are not returnees but they get all
25 the rights as returnees in that area."
1 And finally if you just go to part E which is on page 17 in the
2 English and it should be page 45 in the B/C/S, but you'll see the tab.
3 Mr. Radic says:
4 "We have defined population areas of strategic interest to the
5 Croats and said that the soft under-belly of Croatia, Vojnic, and
6 Vrginmost are more important than any spot in Bosnia and Herzegovina
7 Therefore, that the first priority of the Croatian people's survival and
8 populating is the Croatian soft under-belly and that is why we have
9 agreed, mindful of all this, to move a portion of expelled persons from
10 Banja Luka to Glamoc despite heavy pressure, et cetera. But the first
11 priority of the overall national entity is currently to accommodate where
13 we cannot discuss this in open session, but it was thinnest in the area
14 south of Karlovac and up to the Slovenian border, where there was just
15 14 kilometres of ethnically pure Croatian territory. And that is why we
16 have accepted and agreed, as I said, to go for populating such areas of
17 great strategic importance, even to the detriment of the overall number
18 of Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina."
19 And then he goes on about some data. Now, Mr. Pejkovic --
20 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Mikulicic.
21 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honour, I object to the question and to the
22 method. I think it's not fair to the witness to read him from a very
23 large document certain parts only in a situation that witness from the
24 very beginning stressed that he was not present at that meeting and that
25 he was not having an access to that minutes. So combining couple of
1 parts of that large document, putting it in front of the witness, and
2 asking him to comment that, I think it's not fair to the witness,
3 Your Honour.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
5 Is there anything you would like to bring to his attention in
6 relation to this, Mr. Mikulicic, which would complete the picture?
7 Because the witness explained to us Monday what the basis and what the --
8 what the intentions with this decree were. Now, Mr. Carrier puts to him
9 parts of a document in which the interlocutors say that this is not to be
10 discussed openly but only in this context. If there's any part of this
11 discussion which you would say would create a balance which you would
12 like to be put to the witness as well, then please tell us so that we
13 have an opportunity to give some more context to the witness.
14 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honour, with all due respect, the witness
15 said that he was familiar with the decree itself, not with the motives
16 that were discussed in the closed session of the government. So what he
17 can comment is the subject of the decree, which was publicly announced in
18 the public newspapers in Croatia
19 has been published at the time. And so I think without going through all
20 the document --
21 JUDGE ORIE: Well, Mr. Mikulicic --
22 MR. MIKULICIC: -- and to --
23 JUDGE ORIE: Well, the basic idea behind this document was to
24 stimulate the return of displaced persons. The witness gave his ideas on
25 what the basic background was. We can't now say that he hasn't seen
1 this. Something is put to him by Mr. Carrier which may change or may not
2 change his views on the matter, but the witness told us about the basic
3 ideas behind it, and that is apparently what Mr. Carrier is testing and
4 challenging. And he's entitled to do that. And if you have anything you
5 would like to add to that -- if the witness says: Well, if they said
6 that, I wasn't aware of that, I have no explanation for that, then it's
7 fine. Then we have the testimony of the witness, we have the decree, we
8 have the minutes, and then the Chamber will have to find its way through
9 all of that. If there's anything you think the witness should be -- or
10 if you say: Well, let the witness read over the next break pages so and
11 so, then we'll ask him to do that.
12 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honour, I understand. But my position was
13 that the witness could comment only the text of the decree and in that
14 sense what was the purpose of that decree, but not the conversation that
15 has been put on on the closed meeting of the government. That was my
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I see that. Nevertheless, when he commented on
18 this you didn't stop him and say: I'm not interested in backgrounds, but
19 we see -- if the witness hasn't seen this before, it's just put to him
20 and we do understand that he had not seen this document any earlier when
21 he said: I'm familiar with it, I take it he was referring to the decree
22 which also appears in this document and therefore not with the whole
24 If there's any suggestion as to what context should be given to
25 the witness, you are invited to give it.
1 Mr. Kehoe.
2 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Mr. President, my objection is an
3 89(C) objection as to the relevance of this line of inquiry. What is
4 being described here as far as movements within their own borders of
5 population is perfectly legal in international humanitarian law. What's
6 the relevance of this? So my objection under 89(C) is a request for an
7 offer of proof.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Well, first of all, the witness testified about what
9 the basic idea behind this document was and Mr. Carrier is fully able to
10 test that part of the testimony. If it was relevant --
11 MR. KEHOE: If --
12 JUDGE ORIE: -- if it was relevant in chief, then it is just as
13 relevant now.
14 MR. KEHOE: Well, I take Your Honour's point, if it is an issue
15 of credibility, then --
16 JUDGE ORIE: We'll see what comes out. We do not know yet.
17 MR. KEHOE: On my point with regard to if there is some
18 substantive issue here legally, I would ask for an offer of proof. If
19 not, I would object under 89(C).
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, that's on the record.
21 Mr. Carrier, any wish to respond to that?
22 [Prosecution counsel confer]
23 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Carrier.
24 MR. CARRIER: No, Your Honour. I think it's clear what the point
25 is. This is about a -- a discussion about what the purpose of the decree
1 was in addition to what Mr. --
2 MR. KEHOE: Well, the point is not clear --
3 MR. CARRIER: I'm sorry, I was talking.
4 MR. KEHOE: I'm sorry, my apologies.
5 JUDGE ORIE: But what is legal and not legal, we'll first have to
6 look at what the witness tells us. And if you say: Well, this kind
7 of -- on face value, ethnic considerations of settling refugees in areas
8 which were ethnically thin Croatian, if you say that is totally
9 irrelevant to the matter, ethnic considerations for -- for decrees for
10 which the apparent reasons discussed here could not be openly
11 discussed -- if you say that's all irrelevant, then if that's your point.
12 MR. KEHOE: My --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Or would you say that if you move from one place to
14 another place on Croatian territory, that that is not illegal.
15 MR. KEHOE: It's not illegal whatsoever --
16 JUDGE ORIE: No.
17 MR. KEHOE: -- for a country to say: We want to populate a
18 particular area. This is our country. My -- what I'm concerned with
19 under 89(C) is some inference coming from the Prosecution that moves by
20 the Republic of Croatia
21 under international humanitarian law, and it is not.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Well, "their own areas," it's far more complex than
23 you present it at this moment because it's also the way in how they were
24 moved into the territory, their -- that's not -- the decree also talks
25 about giving the --
1 MR. KEHOE: Well, I --
2 JUDGE ORIE: -- Serb property which was left by the Serbs. It's
3 a rather complex picture, Mr. Kehoe, and I cannot follow you and
4 therefore deny the objection that it is irrelevant.
5 MR. KEHOE: Well, Your Honour, if I may, if Your Honour can't
6 follow me --
7 JUDGE ORIE: Well --
8 MR. KEHOE: -- then let me just go to one point that was brought
9 up by the Prosecution, which is using the term "colonise" --
10 JUDGE ORIE: No, we're not going to discuss that. I'm aware that
11 the word "colonising," settling, where to settle, what areas, what
12 territories, and whose houses you would live, how people left those
13 houses, how easy or how difficult it was to return to those houses gives
14 a rather complex picture and this is maybe a part of that picture, and to
15 that extent it cannot be denied relevance on the basis of what you said.
16 And therefore Mr. Carrier may proceed.
17 MR. KEHOE: Well, my objection is on the record. Thank you.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
19 MR. CARRIER: Also just for the record, the Prosecution's
20 position is it does show intent in terms of the JCE and intention to put
21 people in a place where Serbs had been living.
22 MR. KEHOE: That's precisely the point --
23 JUDGE ORIE: Let's -- let's hear from this witness what he can
24 tell us about what is put to him. I do understand, Mr. Kehoe, that your
25 understanding of colonisation, deserted areas, et cetera, might be a
1 different one from the way in which Mr. Carrier interprets these terms,
2 that the context which is relevant for you might not be exactly the same
3 context as it is for Mr. Carrier. Both parties have an opportunity to
4 create their context, to put questions to witnesses on the basis of their
5 understanding - right or wrong - of the situation as long as it's fairly
6 done, and up to this moment there's no unfairness in the questioning.
7 Please proceed, Mr. Carrier --
8 MR. KEHOE: Well, Mr. President, just on the use of the word
9 "colonisation," if I would ask for precision on the use --
10 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe, there comes a point where there is a
11 ruling and then that is the starting point for further debate, but is if
12 you have any further thing you would like to submit, then you can do that
13 at a later stage. At this moment, Mr. Carrier is allowed to proceed.
14 Please proceed.
15 MR. CARRIER: Thank you, Mr. President.
16 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, did you know or were you ever aware of the fact
17 that the Croatian government was discussing means, which included this
18 decree apparently, to motivate Croats to colonise or settle the
19 territories that had been liberated for strategic purposes?
20 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe.
21 MR. KEHOE: I object to the use of colonisation. Without the
22 precision for that word under international law. I object. And it's not
23 in the transcript as well.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Carrier.
25 MR. CARRIER: I'm sorry, I said colonise or settle to cover both
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but if you use two words then each of these
3 words should have been justifiable. So to say: Well, I used five words
4 so if one of them is not correct, that's no problem because there were
5 four others, that is not the way to proceed.
6 Could you please rephrase your question.
7 MR. CARRIER: Certainly.
8 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, were you aware that members of the Croatian
9 government were discussing ways, which included this decree, to motivate
10 Croats to settle in the liberated territories after Storm for strategic
12 A. I claim with full responsibility before this Tribunal that I was
13 not familiar with the topics discussed by the Croatian government. I'm
14 only familiar with the decree on the return of IDPs and refugees to the
15 newly liberated territories.
16 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, in paragraph 19 you state that the entire
17 repatriation process -- project was open to both the domestic and
18 international public. You said that press conferences were constantly
19 being convened and that problems in the field were not covered up even
20 though they were huge, and that the Serbs' returned to Croatia was
21 followed by practically the entire Croatian press, together with
22 representatives of the international community. And in paragraph 20 you
23 say that the entire repatriation carried out through the ODPR and the
24 Working Group was done in agreement with the international community.
25 Mr. Pejkovic, my question is: Given this openness on the part of
1 the Croatian government and the fact that international observers were
2 following the return of process for Serbs, is it fair to say that
3 internationals, diplomats, and observers on the ground, were given free
4 access to monitor the return process and how Croatia carried out that
5 process? Is that fair?
6 A. The entire process was transparent and open. As for the
7 government, the office employed 250 employees, as I've already mentioned.
8 There were also -- there were several times more different kinds of
9 monitors. Each individual return that took place was followed by several
10 international or NGOs which were active in Croatia, which were active in
11 the liberated areas of the Republic of Croatia
12 Q. So I take it that internationals were given free access to
13 monitor the return process?
14 A. There was fully free access without any obstacles. As I have
15 said already, a copy of the certificate to return for each and every
16 refugee was sent to the UNHCR. Once the OSCE came in and established
17 itself in the newly liberated territory, we provided information to them
18 as well on each individual return.
19 MR. CARRIER: Mr. Registrar, could we please have Exhibit D1829
20 on the screen, please.
21 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, what's coming up on the screen is a document that
22 Mr. Mikulicic reviewed with you during your testimony. There's no B/C/S
23 version of the document, so I'll have to read you a portion of it, which
24 is on page 1 in the English. It was referred to by His Honour Judge Orie
25 at the time you were shown it. The fourth paragraph down, this is a
1 statement by the President of the Security Council.
2 "'The Security Council" -- sorry, just to be clear it's dated the
3 2nd of July, 1998.
4 "'The Security Council expresses its grave concern that a large
5 number of Serb residents and displaced persons have emigrated from the
6 Republic of Croatia
7 incidents, ethnically related intimidation, a dire economic situation,
8 bureaucratic hurdles, discriminatory legislation, and a stalled return
9 programme. A continuation of this trend could have a seriously negative
10 effect on the restoration of the multi-ethnic society in the
11 Republic of Croatia
12 And my question, Mr. Pejkovic --
13 MR. CARRIER: I apologise, Mr. President.
14 Q. My question for you, Mr. Pejkovic, is: Given your testimony that
15 internationals were basically given free access to monitor the return of
16 Serbs, are you able to offer any explanation for why members of the
17 international community were reporting that the Croatian government was
18 purposely erecting legal and bureaucratic impediments to the return of
19 Croatian Serbs after Operation Storm?
20 A. The document itself shows that there were representatives of the
21 international community who were present in the field; they followed the
22 process of return and pointed out certain difficulties in terms of
23 degrees of discrimination, if there was any. They also pointed out
24 bureaucratic hurdles which existed in Croatia. It is still an ongoing
25 problem of the bureaucratic system in Croatia. It is inefficient, it
1 functions poorly, and needs to be changed.
2 However, if one takes it out of the context, one would think that
3 the bureaucratic treated only the Serb refugees that way; it did not. It
4 was quite uniform in its behaviour. It applied to everyone simply
5 because that system is not efficient and works poorly.
6 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, you were appointed by President Tudjman on
7 9 October 1997
8 programme for establishment of trust, rapid return, and normalisation of
9 life in the war-affected areas of Croatia; isn't that right?
10 A. Yes, that is correct. I was appointed a member of that
12 Q. And, Mr. Pejkovic, on that 12-person committee, one of the other
13 members was Professor Pupovac - isn't that right - he was a member of the
14 house of representatives of the Croatian parliament?
15 A. Yes, he still is an MP.
16 Q. And are you familiar with a woman named Jelka Glumicic She was a
17 founder of the Karlovac human rights committee, and she was nominated for
18 the Nobel Peace Prize in 2005. Do you know who she is?
19 A. I know her personally.
20 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, are you also aware that you were -- are
21 specifically named in the press by both Professor Pupovac and
22 Ms. Glumicic as one of the people involved in the process of return that
23 in fact impeded the return of Serbs to Croatia?
24 A. Yes, I read such press reports.
25 Q. And in those press reports, they were actually calling for your
1 removal from the ODPR, and you were named as basically one of the old
2 guard and the right-hand man of Jure Radic; is that fair?
3 A. When such requests appeared, Mr. Pupovac and his party were
4 members of the governing coalition that was in power at the time.
5 Ms. Glumicic, as a Nobel prize candidate, did not receive an important
6 position in the government; therefore, I became the target of her anger
7 as the head of the department for refugees and displaced persons.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Carrier -- yes, please finish your answer.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] At that time, in Croatia
10 coalition government, including many Serbian MPs in senior positions.
11 They basically assumed power in certain sectors of the executive branch
12 in the Republic of Croatia
13 years of the coalition government being in place, submitted my
14 resignation for personal reasons. I abandoned the position I had held,
15 and although I worked through the period of time in which three different
16 governments were in power.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Carrier, I'm looking at the clock. We inspired
18 you with -- said that the Chamber was confident that you would finish in
19 45 minutes. There was some disturbed examination, but would you please
20 now come to conclude.
21 MR. CARRIER: Thank you. I just -- I have one more question.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, please.
23 MR. CARRIER:
24 Q. Just in light of these articles and what you said before,
25 Mr. Pejkovic, about how the Croatian bureaucracy was -- just generally
1 was a problem, can you explain how these two people, at least with
2 respect to Mr. Pupovac, was part of that bureaucracy? Wasn't
3 it saying --
4 MR. KAY: Perhaps we should have some preciseness, Your Honour.
5 When was Croatian bureaucracy a problem? We're dealing with a lot of
6 material - if I go back to paragraph 12 of this indictment - that I
7 personally fail to reconcile with the issues in this case.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Let's first see what exactly the question is to
10 The question again, Mr. Carrier, and phrase it in such a way that
11 we do not end up in generalities rather than in a precise, focused
12 question, which would be your last question anyhow. So take your chance.
13 MR. CARRIER:
14 Q. Mr. Pupovac -- sorry, Mr. Pejkovic, given what these people are
15 saying and specifically in terms of what you said before about the
16 bureaucracy, the Croatian bureaucracy generally being an issue, treating
17 everyone, regardless, basically -- your point was -- regardless of
18 ethnicity, the same, can you explain how someone like Mr. Pupovac who was
19 part of the bureaucracy was specifically naming you as a problem?
20 JUDGE ORIE: Before you answer the question, one second.
21 [Trial Chamber confers]
22 JUDGE ORIE: You've put your last question to the witness. The
23 witness is not required to answer that question because you didn't follow
24 the guidance given by the Chamber. So therefore this concludes your
25 cross-examination, Mr. Carrier.
1 MR. CARRIER: Thank you, Mr. President.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Mikulicic.
3 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 Re-examination by Mr. Mikulicic:
5 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Pejkovic. Concerning the
6 cross-examination led by my learned friend Mr. Prosecutor, I wanted to
7 ask you a number of questions to clarify certain matters. Let us start
8 with the -- yesterday's transcript. For reference, it is page 79,
9 line 24. You were discussing the return programme with the Prosecutor.
10 He told you that there was certain obstacles at the time. I would like
11 to discuss those obstacles with you as they existed in the period before
12 the programme took place and afterwards. You mentioned that these
13 obstacles were objective in nature. Can you tell us which were those
14 objective obstacles which impeded an unhindered return of refugees to
16 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Carrier.
17 MR. CARRIER: Sorry, can I have a reference for the -- what he's
18 putting to the witness about objective obstacles?
19 JUDGE ORIE: Page 79, I think -- is that what you gave us,
20 Mr. Mikulicic?
21 MR. MIKULICIC: I did, Your Honour.
22 "Q. And, Mr. Pejkovic, would it be fair to say that the purpose
23 of this programme demonstrates that at least up until June 1998, almost
24 three years after Operation Storm, there were obstacles in place for the
25 return of Serbs then they had been put in place or there were at least
1 sufficient government support for the return of these people?"
2 And the answer was:
3 "A. There were certainly some obstacles."
4 And what I was interesting is just to point out what were the
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Speaking of the obstacles that
7 existed, I provided a simple answer without any further explications.
8 There were houses to which returnees were supposed to go back. Many of
9 them were damaged or destroyed. In a certain number of such houses,
10 other people lived at the time. Some areas were still mined, other areas
11 lacked any infrastructure in terms of utilities. And certain settlements
12 were inaccessible because there were no roads or bridges because those
13 had been destroyed. All those were objective obstacles for people to
14 return and live there in normal conditions.
15 MR. MIKULICIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, in this category of obstacles, would you also
17 include the issue of diplomatic and consular relations with the FRY?
18 A. Mr. Mikulicic, one of the obstacles in any case was the absence
19 of diplomatic relations or the fact that there were no diplomatic
20 missions of Croatia
21 additional obstacle which we have been discussing during my testimony was
22 that the Serbs, once they left the area liberated in Operation Storm,
23 took away registry books with data on citizenships, dates of birth,
24 deaths, land registers, and so on and so forth.
25 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, what about the required financial resources in
1 order to finance such a return operation?
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Carrier.
3 MR. CARRIER: Well, two objections: One, it's leading; and
4 secondly, it didn't arise during cross-examination. The whole -- the
5 witness's whole statement is about this thing.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
7 Mr. Mikulicic, the passage you're referring to in
8 examination-in-chief was about --
9 MR. MIKULICIC: Obstacles --
10 JUDGE ORIE: -- no, legal and bureaucratic obstacles. That was
11 what the question was about. And the witness said also that they existed
12 up till the end of the programme. So I can't imagine that houses
13 certainly were not destroyed anymore once the programme was put in place.
14 So you are expanding on what was asked at the time.
15 And I take it that there would not be that much dispute that in
16 the situations at the time financial considerations may have been
17 important. I mean, if there's a lot of destruction, and if there's not a
18 lot of production, you'll get into financial problems, I would say,
20 Now, before we go into the whole of the budget and all the
21 details of that, which was certainly not touched upon by Mr. Carrier, I
22 would like to give, as guidance, that you should go back to what was
23 discussed, what was asked by Mr. Carrier, and that was legal and
24 bureaucratic obstacles, and that was what the answers were about.
25 Please proceed.
1 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
2 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Pejkovic, you worked for the office for a
3 number of years as of the moment of its foundation until the moment you
4 resigned. Was there an institution that the ODPR could have relied on in
5 terms of previous experience in order to do its work? And I mean in
6 particular methods of work, methods of data collection, and so on and so
8 A. No. We were pioneers in that field. We are thankful to the
9 various UN agencies which assisted; however, the entire IDP and refugee
10 situation we had was something new to Europe. It was quite different
11 from other refugee crisis in the various parts of the world, and, as
12 such, needed different monitoring.
13 We kept going back to the statistics during my testimony. When
14 we were creating the database, we were actually doing the encountering,
15 rather than data processing, because we needed to identify each and every
16 person. Of course, it required time and equipment as well as financial
17 resources to do that.
18 Thanks mainly to the UNHCR, after only one or two years we were
19 quite well equipped, we established sound procedures; and basically the
20 UNHCR began using our know-how to supply the neighbouring countries with
21 similar knowledge so that they would be able to rely on our system.
22 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, what about the legal basis for the existence of the
23 office and the work it undertook during that period of time, which
24 regulation existed detailing the work of the office, and did that
25 regulation exist prior to the office being established, and was it being
1 kept up-to-date?
2 A. There was no regulation in existence. It was -- the office was
3 created by a governmental decree of the 20th of December, 199 --
4 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not catch the year. We
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In any case, no one had the
7 knowledge or possibility to deal with such an en masse population
8 fluctuations which took place involving refugees and displaced persons.
9 It was partly covered by the foreign ministry, but only to the extent of
10 those who sought asylum, if there were any such applications at the time
11 in Croatia
12 When speaking of the regulation as it is now, in Croatia it would
13 be completely impossible for one to attain any status under this
14 programme. It can only be attained via an asylum law and provisions.
15 Should there be another crisis tomorrow, we would have to rely on that.
16 What I'm trying to say that there were no previous institutions
17 covering that topic. Everything was done ad hoc, including the
18 legislative framework. It was lagging behind. The legislators simply
19 followed the developments in the field.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Could you tell us 20th of December of what year
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The 25th of --
23 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction:
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The 21st of December, 1991
25 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
1 Please proceed.
2 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
3 Q. [Interpretation] On several occasions, you mentioned the
4 agreement on normalisation, which is D412, dated August 1996, as one of
5 the key moments in the resolution of this issue. What is the importance
6 of cooperation of all the states of the former Yugoslavia that were
7 affected by the refugee crisis?
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Carrier.
9 MR. CARRIER: Number one, I don't know that it's actually D412;
10 and number two, I object because this is something that Mr. Mikulicic
11 already went through in his examination-in-chief with this witness about
12 the normalisation, et cetera.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Mikulicic.
14 MR. MIKULICIC: I would say that I touched this topic but in a
15 different sense. Now what I'm interested in was provoked by the
16 cross-examination of my learned colleague.
17 JUDGE ORIE: On what subject exactly?
18 MR. MIKULICIC: On the subject of cooperation, whether states on
19 a territory of former Yugoslavia
20 cooperation because of the huge movement of population through that area.
21 JUDGE ORIE: One or two questions fine, but it's really not
22 something that could be said to have been triggered by the
23 cross-examination. So if you would keep it short.
24 MR. MIKULICIC: I will, Your Honour.
25 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Pejkovic, I have a short and direct question
1 for you, and I would kindly ask for a like answer. What is the
2 importance of cooperation with all those countries which were affected by
3 the refugee and IDP problem in order to resolve this issue? To be more
4 precise, can that issue be resolved by initiative of only one state in
5 that territory?
6 A. Cooperation is essential because as Croatia accepted to do in
7 this case unilaterally, a state can organise the process of return and
8 reconstruction. However, this has negative consequences in the field
9 because those people who had to go the other way, to the other states,
10 unless this is enabled for them to do, become opposed to their
11 government's effort. And the government needs to invest additional time
12 and resources to appease the dissatisfied population. I'm trying to say
13 that the return should take place both ways.
14 Q. A UN document was quoted this morning mentioning the so-called
15 catch-22. The context was that it was impossible for those who were
16 outside Croatia
17 yesterday, Mr. Pejkovic, there was a go-and-see programme in place. Can
18 you tell us what the relationship of that programme is to the catch-22
19 situation as referred to in the UN document?
20 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Mikulicic, before we receive an answer to this
21 question, I would like to have clear time context to be given.
22 So this go-and-see visits, when was that?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, that was in 1998.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
25 Mr. Mikulicic, isn't it true that the catch-22 situation was
1 before 1998, it was before a consulate was established in Belgrade. So,
2 therefore, I think that the go-and-see visit could not explain what
3 happened two years before that.
4 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honour, I will rephrase, then, questions.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, please do so.
6 MR. MIKULICIC: -- on other topic.
7 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Pejkovic, since, in the United Nations
8 document, the difficulties in obtaining Croatian documents is mentioned,
9 because there weren't any places in the FRY where they could be obtained,
10 you mentioned the role of the UNHCR in this whole process. Could you be
11 so kind as to tell us what the UNHCR role was just briefly and what
12 possibilities existed.
13 A. The UNHCR was and remains the leading United Nations agency for
14 the assistance in the return of refugees and the care and welfare of
15 refugees. The UNHCR also provided, either independently or through a
16 network of its partners of non-government organisations, lots of
17 possibilities, and they were active in all the states that emerged after
18 the disintegration of Yugoslavia
19 documents they needed.
20 And if a person could not physically obtain the documents
21 themselves on the territory of Serbia
22 non-governmental organisation would do this in some other office where it
23 was registered in Croatia
24 However, the fact remains that until diplomatic offices were opened and
25 consulates were opened in Serbia
1 obtained on that territory.
2 But to put things in context, at that time in 1997, before the
3 return programme was implemented, we were developing a process of return
4 from Eastern Slavonia. And based on the report by Mr. Klein, 150.000
5 passports were issued and ID cards as well, citizenship certificates,
6 et cetera, and we know that there were only 78.000 Serbs living there,
7 which means that the difference between those two figures were Serb
8 refugees who came in from Serbia
9 obtained their documents there. And that is why we have a significant,
10 spontaneous, non-registered return over all those years.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Carrier.
12 MR. CARRIER: I apologise. I'm not sure if we're taking a break,
13 but I just wanted to alert the Chamber to an oversight on my part. I
14 meant to tender 65 ter 5003. There was some back and forth, and it
15 was -- it -- part of it was D412, I think, but it's -- if I could tender
16 that now. And I apologise, I --
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, perhaps you better wait until I would have
18 announced the break and then -- but, Mr. Mikulicic, we have now heard a
19 very long answer. We now know what, in general, the role of the UNHCR
20 is, something which I couldn't say comes as new and very important
21 information. Then we know that some NGOs would go to some offices to
22 settle a matter. And now we see what happened in the Croatian Danubian
23 region, all of it not of great assistance to the Chamber. Could you
24 please try to focus your answer.
25 And if the witness goes in different directions, then to take
1 care that you guide him into the right direction again. And could you
2 tell us how much time you would still need approximately.
3 MR. MIKULICIC: Five minutes, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Oh, then you even stay well within -- if it would be
5 five minutes, then I think it would be wiser to have the break after
6 those five minutes. Again, you asked for more, and you are entitled to
7 more, but if you think you can finish in minutes, that's, of course,
9 Please proceed.
10 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
11 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Pejkovic, you told us that your office had a
12 large database on displaced persons and refugees on the territory in
13 which you were active. Do you happen to know whether, in similar fashion
14 to your organisation on the territory of Yugoslavia
15 office or institution, a kindred one?
16 A. Yes, there were similar offices on the territory of Serbia
18 didn't have the kind of database that we had.
19 Q. On the territory of Croatia
20 institution or international one, active in collecting a database, just
21 like your organisation?
22 A. As far as I know, there was no other, no.
23 Q. Mr. Pejkovic, you said that you cooperated closely with the
24 UNHCR, that is to say your office did, and I think you even said that at
25 one point the UNHCR made use of your database. Now, from the UNHCR some
1 other institution or organisation, did you ever receive complaints,
2 criticisms, of your methodology or the results that your office had and
3 informed others the figures you arrived at?
4 A. No, we never received any criticisms or complaints.
5 Q. Now, your office compiled two reports, one in 1995 and the other
6 in 2000, which are exhibits in this trial, and we've been through them.
7 Now, did you ever receive any complaints or criticisms to those reports
8 in the sense that the facts were not correct or the methodology used was
9 not valid or any other complaints or criticisms of that nature?
10 A. Never, we were never criticised, either by the domestic or
11 foreign institutions.
12 Q. Thank you for your answers, Mr. Pejkovic.
13 MR. MIKULICIC: [Previous translation continues]... direct
15 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. We'll first have a break. We'll resume
16 at five minutes past 11.00.
17 --- Recess taken at 10.38 a.m.
18 --- On resuming at 11.12 a.m.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Has the re-examination by Mr. Mikulicic triggered
20 any need for cross by any of the other Defence teams?
21 MR. KAY: No, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE ORIE: And I see the same position from Mr. Kehoe.
23 [Trial Chamber confers]
24 Questioned by the Court:
25 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Pejkovic, Judge Gwaunza has one or more
1 questions for you.
2 JUDGE GWAUNZA: Yes, I have one question, and it relates to
3 something that is in your statement, paragraph 10. You mentioned in that
4 paragraph that - and I'm quoting:
5 "In principle, the potential returnees to the liberated areas
6 fell into three categories ..."
7 And I'm interested in the middle category where you say:
8 "Humanitarian cases, persons whose return was requested by
9 members of their families in the RH or particularly sensitive cases."
10 And my question is: Could you give us an example of what you are
11 referring to here as particularly sensitive cases?
12 A. Your Honour, those are cases where the remaining members of the
13 family were old and infirm and who had asked for the return of their
14 family members so that they could take care of them in their old age.
15 Then we have other cases where people were sick. We had people suffering
16 from mental diseases, for example, children who were left without their
17 parents. So all those were the difficult particular cases to which we
18 gave priority to enable the family members to join up as soon as possible
19 and thus be able to care for each other.
20 JUDGE GWAUNZA: Thank you.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Judge Kinis has also one or more questions for you.
22 JUDGE KINIS: Mr. Pejkovic, I wanted to ask you two questions.
23 The first is: During examination, there was touched on a question
24 regarding Croatians obstacles for crossing borders, and even in
25 situations were persons were obtained their certificates, they were not
1 allowed to cross borders. My question is: Were you aware of any
2 situations when displaced -- where persons, in order to justify return
3 process, had been used false documents, passports, certificates issued by
4 your organisation or Croatian authorities?
5 A. Your Honour, certainly there were some such cases, whereby
6 Croatian documents were forged, whether they be passports or ID cards or
8 JUDGE KINIS: Was such situations in mass scale, or it was just a
9 few or occasional and did not create for you big problems?
10 A. I think, Your Honour - and this was shown to be the case - that,
11 among the displaced persons and refugees, there wasn't too much of that.
12 It was more within the criminal section.
13 JUDGE KINIS: And the next question is -- my question is related
14 to your statement, paragraph 20, and I will quote just one portion from
15 this statement:
16 "However, the question of Serbs' return to the RH has been used
17 as a constant political pressure on the Republic of Croatia
18 without objective assessment of many problems ..."
19 What are you referring to regarding this lack of objective
20 assessments, and how do you respond in such situations?
21 A. Your Honour, I mean first of all that what was asked for was that
22 everybody return in the space of one day practically, and all the
23 criticisms that were made were directed in that direction, that is to
24 say, not to allow the speedy en masse return because that wasn't
25 possible. It wasn't possible to organise this because of the problems
1 that existed that we've raised earlier during this testimony.
2 JUDGE KINIS: Thank you very much for those answers.
3 JUDGE ORIE: I have a few questions for you as well. Could we
4 have a look at your statement. Do you have a hard copy of your statement
5 with you? If not, could it be provided to the witness.
6 May I take you to paragraph 7 to start with. You're giving a
7 picture there of Serbs leaving during Operations Flash and Storm, and you
8 give the numbers. Now, in paragraph 8 the first line reads:
9 "Immediately after Operation Storm, and after they had left
11 started requesting to return to Croatia
12 Would that include or would that not include Serbs who had left
13 during Operation Flash?
14 A. Your Honour, yes, if they were located in Serbia.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. So we have to understand immediately after
16 Operation Storm rather as a reference to the time than as to persons who
17 had fled during Operation Storm, because it would cover also those in
19 Now, paragraph 9 refers to the period May 1995 to May 1996,
20 requests from 30.000 persons who had left the Republic of Croatia
21 take it that it also covers those who had left during Operation Flash and
22 Operation Storm?
23 A. [No verbal response]
24 JUDGE ORIE: I see you're nodding "yes." That's now on the
1 Now I take you to paragraph 11 which reads that:
2 "Until May 1996, the ODPR resolved 5.895 repatriation
3 requests ... who had left ... during Flash and Storm."
4 It then continues:
5 "Also, the border police were issued recommendations, so-called
6 approval for the repatriation and entry into the Croatian republic of
7 8.022 persons on the basis of family reunification on humanitarian
9 Now, are the 5.895 included in the 8.022? Because the one is
10 dealing with requests and the other apparently is giving instructions to
11 the border police. It's not entirely clear to me whether, if a
12 repatriation request was resolved, whether that would resolve also in an
13 instruction to the border police whom to allow entry into the
14 Republic of Croatia
15 A. Those are two figures which are independent of each other,
16 because in the Croatian text it says also the police were issued
17 so-called approval for -- so we have that connective word "also." And --
18 so there should be a plus sign between the two figures, one plus the
20 JUDGE ORIE: So all together, therefore, it was approved that
21 some almost 14.000 persons could return.
22 Now, I'll take you to paragraph 12 where it says that 7.000
23 persons returned, which means that only 50 per cent would have used their
24 permission to return to Croatia
25 A. Yes, Your Honour.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Now, close to 6.000 had asked for repatriation, and
2 is there any explanation as to why they first asked to return to Croatia
3 and then do not use the opportunity to do so?
4 A. Your Honour, the whole process of return, repatriation, took
5 place over a long period of time. So these facts and figures were true
6 at a certain date. So on the one hand we had how many approvals were
7 issued for repatriation, that figure, and then how many were consumed,
8 that is to say, taken up on and used. The figure shows that about
9 50 per cent were used, which does not mean that over the next period of
10 time the rest didn't use the approvals they were given. But there was
11 always a certain time gap and lagging behind between the time that the
12 papers were issued and obtained, the approval for repatriation given, to
13 the actual physical return of the persons in question and recording that
14 same repatriation.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, now I see that there will be some time gap, but
16 if 8.000 people are seeking family reunification and got permission to
17 return by May 1996, only 450 - or to be more precise - 447 would have
18 used that, that is approximately 5 per cent of those -- and, I take it,
19 were desperately seeking to be reunited with their families. Now, I can
20 see that if you issue permission that it may take one month or two months
21 before you're ready to travel to your family and to return or perhaps
22 three months, but only 5 per cent of the border laissez-passer people
23 comes as -- well, as a surprise. And looking at this percentage, would
24 this still be fully explained by some time gap?
25 A. Your Honour, 5.192 persons did return on the basis of the
1 approval given --
2 JUDGE ORIE: You mean that the 5.000 -- I have to relate the
3 8.000 to the 5.192. Yes. Now -- but then the next question is when
4 5.895 repatriation requests were resolved - and I think your testimony
5 was that they, of course, got permission - then it comes -- but that's a
6 different surprise, it comes as a surprise that less than 2.000 would
7 have used that. Where I take it that if you file a request and if it has
8 been resolved, that you receive notice of the decision taken. That's a
9 very small number relatively, far less than the third, that would use
10 that. Any explanation for that apart from -- I mean, I can imagine that
11 if on day X you have granted 10.000 requests, that on that same day
12 perhaps only 7- or 8.000 have used the permission given to them prior to
13 that date and that some are still to follow. But these numbers are
14 relatively low in relation to what was apparently granted to those who
15 had specifically requested to be repatriated.
16 A. Your Honour, we're talking about the period of 1995 to 1996, and
17 that was the time when we still did not have an agreement on the
18 normalisation of relations with the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
19 There was still strong propaganda going on towards the Serbs, potential
20 returnees, telling them not to go back because Croatia, they said, would
21 not guarantee their return or their safety and security or their property
22 or their other rights.
23 Now, given this kind of propaganda from the Serb side and in fact
24 in all Croatian environments they were not taken back with any joy, we
25 could not expect that the 100 per cent who had requested -- requested
1 approval and received approval would take them up on that and consume
2 that right, that is to say, go back.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Could a reason have been that houses of Serbs were
4 given to Croats and that they were hesitant to go back and find their
5 houses being given to Croatian citizens?
6 A. Your Honour, what this was about was to reunite, for humanitarian
7 purposes, families and family members, which means that the bulk of the
8 family was in Croatia
9 first, cases there were no obstacles of that nature.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you for those answers. One last question:
11 The numbers in paragraph 12 of your statement, that is the return of
12 7.000 persons, that covers all areas of Croatia where Serbs returned,
13 that is, not just the Sector South, but also other parts from where Serbs
14 had fled. Is that correctly understood?
15 A. Yes, Your Honour. Our reports always refer to all areas covered
16 in Croatia
17 had control.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Now you said it was due to Serb propaganda to
19 say that it was not safe to go back to Croatia. Was there ever any
20 experience in any of the areas, whether Sector South or elsewhere, that,
21 upon return, that what you said was propaganda turned out to have some
22 level of realism, that is, that people were harassed or were not welcome,
23 very frankly?
24 A. Your Honour, in my testimony I did say that those returnees were
25 not always welcome everywhere they went. There were incidents, and they
1 did take place; however, not to the extent at which one could say that
2 this was a general rule that would be valid across Croatia.
3 There were areas to which it was more difficult to organise the
4 process of return; then there were areas in which it was easier. It all
5 depended on the local authorities on the ground and their position
6 towards the returnees, that is to say, to the implementation of the
7 national programme of establishing trust --
8 JUDGE ORIE: Let me stop you there. We were talking about the
9 percentage which were allowed to return but did not return. So we're
10 talking about May 1996, not what happened after 1998. So could you
11 please focus your answer on that early period. Was it the same, that
12 there were incidents in these early periods as well; were they stronger,
13 these incidents; were they more frequent; were they not?
14 A. In any case, immediately after the process of return began, there
15 were many more verbal incidents. There was a number of physical
16 incidents involved as well. But, gradually, the number of incidents
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. So you'd say this was what was reported,
19 although the reports exaggerated and that's where propaganda comes into
20 play. Thank you for those answers.
21 Mr. Carrier, do you have any further questions?
22 MR. CARRIER: No, I don't.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Have the questions of the Bench triggered any --
24 MR. MIKULICIC: No, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE ORIE: I see --
1 MR. KEHOE: Just briefly, Mr. President, if I could ask two minor
2 questions based on the questions that Your Honour asked.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
4 Mr. Carrier.
5 MR. CARRIER: I'm sorry, I'm sure Your Honour hasn't forgotten,
6 but I raised the issue of 5003.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, yes. I have not forgotten.
8 MR. CARRIER: Thank you.
9 Further Cross-examination by Mr. Kehoe:
10 Q. Just a couple of questions, sir, concerning -- just a follow-up
11 on some questions asked by the President concerning a discrepancy between
12 documents that were requested by Serbs in Serbia and the actual numbers
13 of people that came in. And, again, we're talking about the numbers that
14 you were discussing with the President in paragraphs 11 and 12.
15 Now, concerning the desirability of getting Croatian documents,
16 passports, et cetera, at this time in 1996, someone with a Croatian
17 passport and travel documents was permitted to travel to European Union
18 countries based on those documents, whereas somebody that had a passport
19 only from the FRY, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, needed a visa to
20 travel to European Union countries, didn't they?
21 A. That is correct.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Carrier.
23 MR. CARRIER: It is leading.
24 JUDGE ORIE: It is leading. It is cross --
25 MR. CARRIER: I apologise, it just -- I apologise.
1 JUDGE ORIE: I don't know -- well, I wouldn't call my questions
2 to be examination-in-chief, but at least Mr. Kehoe did not call this
3 witness, and he's - as far as I'm aware of - not prevented from leading,
4 apart from whether the leading would do any harm in relation to this
6 Please proceed.
7 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Mr. President, I think the witness responded
8 "yes" --
9 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
10 MR. KEHOE: Okay.
11 Q. My next topic has to go with the comments that you made, sir,
12 concerning propaganda by the Serbs during 1995 and 1996, which you noted
13 prevented their return or tried to tell people not to return.
14 And if I could turn to D1610. As you note from this article,
15 this is an article that's dated 7 March 1996, and it deals with a
16 multitude of issues concerning the return of Serbs to Croatia
17 MR. KEHOE: But if we could go to the bottom of page 2, I know
18 that's page 2 in the English, if we could scroll down to the bottom of
19 page 2 and I am referring -- yes. It's the comments beginning with
20 Dr. Babic, and it is in the bottom of page 2 in the B/C/S as well.
21 Q. And if you could take a look at this, sir, and, if I may, it
22 reads that:
23 "Dr. Milan Babic who claims that he has not met Borislav Mikelic
24 since the exodus of the Serbs from Krajina and that he therefore knew
25 nothing about the intentions of the committee but what he was told by
1 third parties says the following:
2 "I am not in favour of individual solutions of the problem of
3 returns, because it would mean" -- if we can turn the page in English and
4 stay on the page in B/C/S -- "'Croatisation' of the Serb returnees which
5 would jeopardise collective rights of the refugees and blur the problem
6 of the Serb people in exile. I am in favour of collective return,
7 collective security, and collective rights of the Serbs which implies a
8 resolution of their political status."
9 And it goes on through some additional discussions. And if I can
10 just read the next part:
11 "Because the Serbs from Krajina," Dr. Babic continues, "have the
12 political right to the territory of Krajina
13 Now, that is an item that's in the record, sir, at this point,
14 but is this the type of media and/or propaganda that you were thinking
15 about when you referred to some of the difficulties being presented by
16 the Serb authorities in trying to convince people not to come back?
17 A. Counsel, those who led the Serbian people out of Croatia founded
18 their government in exile. They also controlled certain organisations
19 and associations of those Serbs, which campaigned among the refugee Serbs
20 to put forth political requests which would have -- first have to be
21 implemented before a collective return of Serbs to Croatia could take
22 place. In such a way, they practically tried to talk the refugee Serbs
23 into not going back, because they knew that if they wanted to go back,
24 they would have to become Croatian citizens who recognise the Croatian
25 authority and its institutions.
1 Q. Thank you, sir.
2 MR. KEHOE: Mr. President, I have no further questions.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Kehoe.
4 Is there any objection against admission of 65 ter 5003?
5 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Mr. President. That is the document that
6 Mr. Misetic raised a question concerning the translation. If we could
9 JUDGE ORIE: So you would say if there is an accurate
10 translation, there are no other objections?
11 MR. KEHOE: That's correct, Mr. President.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
13 Mr. Registrar.
14 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will become Exhibit P2678,
15 marked for identification.
16 JUDGE ORIE: And keeps that status.
17 Mr. Carrier, when do you think that you could report to the
18 Chamber that the translation has been verified?
19 [Prosecution counsel confer].
20 MR. CARRIER: By the end of next week if that's --
21 JUDGE ORIE: By the end of next week. I don't think there's any
22 more urgent -- the most important is that we have an accurate record.
23 This then concludes your testimony, Mr. Pejkovic. You've been
24 here with us for a couple of days. You've answered all the questions put
25 to you by the parties, by the Bench. I would like to thank you for
1 coming, and I wish you a safe return home again.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. Could I
3 only ask you to be allowed, at the close of my testimony, to greet the
5 JUDGE ORIE: Well, my usual answer to that is - and that's for
6 you today as well - that the mere fact that you expressed your wish to
7 greet them has reached them, and they've heard that. And that could be
8 considered as a greeting. But usually there's no room for a witness to
9 greet accused persons. But it's on the record, they've understood it,
10 they've heard it. So to that extent, your wish is communicated to them.
11 Could you please follow the Usher and ...
12 THE WITNESS: [No interpretation]
13 [The witness withdrew]
14 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Mikulicic.
16 MR. MIKULICIC: Yes, Your Honour. I wonder whether this is an
17 appropriate moment to decide upon D1825 and D1826 MFI, which is a
18 statement and supplemental statement of the witness Pejkovic.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
20 Let's first ask Mr. Carrier whether he wants to add anything to
21 the objections that were filed, whether you still adhere to them or
22 whether you withdraw or withdraw some of them.
23 MR. CARRIER: The objections still stand I think, given the
24 testimony as well. You will recall his reference to him putting
25 algorithms, et cetera, in terms of producing numbers. Again, it's the
1 same objection. It's difficult to test that and know whether they're
2 accurate or how they've been produced so.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Carrier.
4 Any of the other parties who would like to add anything to a
5 discussion on admission?
6 MR. KEHOE: If I may, Mr. President. On this score, I don't see
7 the difference in this issue of a gentleman coming in and giving a list
8 of numbers that he took from a system, how that's any different from the
9 system that the Prosecution put forth in the documents concerning UNMO
10 burning of villages. In fact, it would -- I submit to the Chamber that
11 the document -- the numbers that were offered by this witness were
12 significantly more accurate.
13 And I can use as an example some of the more recent comments that
14 have been raised, and that has to do with this 200.000 number that
15 Mr. Carrier used from the UN document. Those types of numbers have been
16 used routinely in this case, and we simply have been unable to get behind
17 them. And I submit to the Chamber that when we have been able to get
18 behind them, we have called those numbers into serious question.
19 This gentleman's testimony was simply that: Conveying to the
20 Chamber a list of numbers and statistics that they have compiled over a
21 significant period of time from 1991 through over -- well past 2000. It
22 is nothing more than that. And I think that not -- taking these numbers
23 as they are and accepting the numbers as been presented by the OTP in
24 their case is, I submit to the Chamber, a distinction that shouldn't be
1 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Kehoe.
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE ORIE: As far as the 92 ter statement of the witness is
4 concerned, the Chamber admits it into evidence with the exception of
5 paragraphs 18, 19, and 21, partly due to the witness presenting opinions
6 and partly due to the fact that matters have been covered by oral
7 testimony and that the Chamber uses its discretion not to admit, in this
8 respect, portions of paragraphs 18, 19, and 21.
9 As far as the statistics are concerned, one of the objections was
10 that it would need expert knowledge to present that kind of evidence.
11 The Chamber noticed that the statistics are not -- first of all, that the
12 statistics just represent what was gathered as numbers, whether correct
13 or wrong, but the witness has given these numbers as registered.
14 During the examination of the witness, quite a lot of attention
15 has been paid to what the numbers do tell us, what explains certainly
16 falling or rising numbers, or what were estimates, 120.000 against
17 200.000, on what they were based exactly. The factual bottom line here
18 is that this is how the numbers were compiled.
19 The Chamber further notes that no complex statistical analysis
20 was made with them; there are no correlation issues; there's no -- there
21 are no analysis made in order to establish correlations. It's rather
22 plain information. In view of the explanations given by the witness, the
23 Chamber considers these paragraphs. These were, I would say, the lower
24 and the earlier paragraphs to which the Prosecution objected, that they
25 can be among the paragraphs that are admitted into evidence.
1 As far as the supplemental information sheet is concerned, there
2 were no specific objections to that, Mr. Carrier, were there?
3 MR. CARRIER: No.
4 JUDGE ORIE: The supplemental information sheet can therefore be
5 admitted into evidence.
6 Mr. Registrar, could you please assign numbers to the
7 92 ter statement and the -- no, they have been assigned numbers already.
8 Could you please repeat the numbers.
9 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, I believe the 92 ter statement was
10 marked for identification as D1825, and the supplemental information
11 sheet was D1826.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. D1826 is admitted into evidence. D1825 is
13 admitted into evidence with the exceptions -- exception of
14 paragraphs 18, 19, and 21. And the Markac Defence is instructed to
15 upload a version of this document in which paragraphs 18, 19, and 21 are
17 MR. MIKULICIC: We'll act accordingly, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Mikulicic.
19 I don't think that anything remains in relation to
20 Witness Pejkovic.
21 Are you ready to call your next witness, Mr. Mikulicic?
22 MR. MIKULICIC: That will be Mr. Kuzmanovic's job, so I will
23 leave him in my place.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
25 Yes, Mr. Kuzmanovic, your next witness will be ...
1 [The witness entered court]
2 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning. It's still morning, three minutes.
3 Mr. Pavlovic?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Pavlovic.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Pavlovic, the Rules require that you make a
6 solemn declaration before you give evidence. May I invite you to make
7 the solemn declaration, of which the text is now handed out to you by
8 Mr. Usher.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
10 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
11 WITNESS: DAVORIN PAVLOVIC
12 [Witness answered through interpreter]
13 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. Please be seated, Mr. Pavlovic.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Pavlovic, you will first be examined by
16 Mr. Kuzmanovic. Mr. Kuzmanovic is counsel for Mr. Markac.
17 Please proceed, Mr. Kuzmanovic.
18 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour. Before I proceed, I
19 just had a discussion, before this session began, with Mr. Waespi about
20 adding two documents to our 65 ter list, they are a map which is
21 3D06-0603 and a report, 3D04-1011.
22 JUDGE ORIE: May I take it that the result of this discussion was
23 that there was no objection, Mr. Waespi?
24 MR. WAESPI: That's correct, Mr. President.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Leave is granted to add them to your 65 ter list,
1 Mr. Kuzmanovic.
2 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
3 I would ask the Usher, please -- Your Honour, with Your Honour's
4 permission, we have a binder and with the witness's statement to make
5 things a little bit easier to follow along, if he may have those.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
7 Could the binder be given to the witness.
8 Mr. Pavlovic, you can consult the binder, but you cannot consult
9 any other documents. So wait for instructions where to go in the binder,
10 and your statement is available to you.
11 Please proceed.
12 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Examination by Mr. Kuzmanovic:
14 Q. Good morning, Mr. Pavlovic.
15 A. [No interpretation]
16 Q. Could you please state your full name.
17 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please be asked to approach
18 the microphone. Thank you.
19 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
20 Q. If you could please sit a little bit closer to the microphone.
21 Thank you.
22 Could you please tell us what your current occupation is.
23 A. I am retired, but I am also the manager of a security consulting
24 and intelligence agency.
25 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Mr. Registrar, could we please have 3D04-1854 up
1 on the screen. The English version is 3D05-0644.
2 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, on the screen is a witness statement that you gave
3 to the Defence of General Markac; is that correct?
4 A. Yes, it is.
5 Q. You have a hard copy of that in front of you as well?
6 A. I do.
7 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, you recall, do you not, giving a statement to the
8 Defence of Mr. Markac dated May 11th of 2009?
9 A. Yes, I do.
10 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we could go to the last page of the
11 statement, please.
12 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, on the last page of this statement, which is
13 page 7, that is your signature at the bottom?
14 A. Yes, it is.
15 Q. And you recall being interviewed on May 11th, 2009?
16 A. Yes, I do.
17 Q. Have you had a chance to review your statement that's up here on
18 the screen before testifying today?
19 A. Yes, I have.
20 Q. Does that statement accurately reflect what you told the members
21 of the Markac Defence?
22 A. Yes, it does.
23 Q. At the time that you gave this statement, Mr. Pavlovic, did you
24 give it to the best of your knowledge and in accordance with the truth?
25 A. The whole statement was made according to what I can recall and
1 is true in its entirety.
2 Q. If I asked you the same questions today in court that you were
3 asked prior to signing the witness statement that you have in front of
4 you and that's on the screen, would you provide the same answers today in
5 court as you did to the questions that were posed to you during the
6 course of the interview that led to the statement?
7 A. I would provide the same answers.
8 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Your Honour, I would ask that this statement be
9 tendered in evidence.
10 MR. WAESPI: No objections.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that becomes Exhibit Number D1830.
13 JUDGE ORIE: D1830 is admitted into evidence.
14 Please proceed.
15 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
16 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, in paragraph 2 of your statement you discuss your
17 work for the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Croatia
18 please tell the Chamber when you began your work with the
19 Ministry of Interior and what kind of work you did.
20 A. I began working with the former republican interior secretariat
21 in 1977 in the communications department. I worked on telecommunications
22 and IT network. I took care of the IT network of the former republican
23 secretariat of the interior, which today is the Ministry of the Interior
24 of Croatia
25 Q. That's good for now, Mr. Pavlovic. I'll ask you to further
1 elaborate on that with the following question: When and how did you get
2 involved in working for the special police?
3 A. In early 1990, I was assigned to the post of chief of the sector
4 for special communications equipment; and as of day one of the creation
5 of the special police, I was assistant commander of the special police
6 for communications. Later on, I was also in charge of the entire
7 operations equipment department.
8 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, how long did you work with the special police? You
9 said you had retired. Was that retiring from the special police or from
10 the Ministry of Interior?
11 A. That is correct. I was retired in 2000, and I left the Ministry
12 of the Interior.
13 Q. From the year 2000 until today, could you please describe for the
14 Chamber the nature of what your work is.
15 A. For the first two years, I worked, although I was retired; and
16 after that, I began working in this company I referred to which deals
17 with business intelligence and security information.
18 Q. Does that position keep you in Croatia, or does it take you all
19 around the world?
20 A. For the most part, I am in Croatia
21 types of educational events, congresses, seminars, et cetera, all over
23 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, you, in working with the special police, have had a
24 chance to work with General Markac for quite some time; correct?
25 A. Yes, in the course of planning for any operation, I was
1 constantly with General Markac.
2 Q. I'd like to talk to you now in general about some of the
3 discussion you have in your statement in paragraphs 19 through 22
4 relating to your function in communications. Your nickname is Antenna,
5 is it not?
6 A. Yes, that is correct.
7 Q. A function of your communications role?
8 A. Well, I was given that nickname by General Markac because I
9 always had two to three radio stations with antennas. One radio station
10 has a prolonged antenna, and that's when General Markac gave me this
11 nickname of Antenna.
12 Q. Could you describe, generally, without going into much detail, as
13 much detail as you do in paragraphs 19 through 22, which the Chamber has
14 and I'm sure has read, just give us an indication of what kind of
15 communications set-up you were involved in before Operation Storm began
16 for the special police.
17 A. I was responsible for the communications system as the most
18 important component of communication between the commander of the
19 operation and every other soldier, because the security of the soldiers
20 themselves depended on it and their ability to report back, saying which
21 positions they were in, whether they needed reinforcements, whether they
22 were perhaps wounded and needed assistance generally, as well as
23 reporting on their positions, as I said, and additional involvement, the
24 additional involvement of either other units or the artillery and things
25 like that.
1 Now, for us to be able to ensure that that was possible, we had
2 to secure the radio communication which was based on the analogue system,
3 which meant that the enemy could listen in to such communications. And
4 we had to devise a secure means of communication which the enemy could
5 not tap into. So we had to use various code words in order to protect
6 our communication, communication between the Main Staff, the commander,
7 the axis commanders, and so on and so forth, everybody else involved in
8 the operation.
9 Q. Now, before Operation Storm, where were you located,
10 Mr. Pavlovic?
11 A. We were at the headquarters set up in Seline near Zadar.
12 Q. And you also had a communications in and around the Velebit;
14 A. Yes, that is correct. We had a forward command post, in fact, at
15 Veliki Golic on Mount Velebit
16 Q. Could you just briefly describe for the Chamber what conditions
17 were like up on Veliki Golic.
18 A. The conditions at Veliki Golic were such -- well, I don't know if
19 you know or don't know, there's no electricity, no water there. There
20 was a sort of makeshift barracks, or rather, makeshift shed, in which we
21 put up a number of radio stations, a wire communication between the
22 headquarters in Seline and the forward command post. We had a fax
23 device, and these were powered by generators. These generators created
24 the necessary electricity.
25 Q. What was the elevation in terms of the Velebit and where the
1 forward command post was located?
2 A. I don't know exactly, but it was over a thousand metres; I think
3 at about 1300 metres above sea level, but I'm not quite sure.
4 Q. Could you please explain to the Chamber not only during
5 Operation Storm but subsequent to Operation Storm what effect the terrain
6 had on communications, the nature of the terrain that the special police
7 were operating in.
8 A. The terrain itself was hilly, and certain areas had a dense
9 forest. There were great indentations or gorges. It was very
10 inaccessible and generally a difficult terrain to move around in, mostly
11 rocky terrain, so difficult to walk around.
12 Q. And how would that affect the ability to communicate?
13 A. Well, it was very difficult because we had to ensure
14 communication even when you were in a dense forest and when the forces
15 were in a gorge. So we had to set up various devices in order to ensure
16 that communication was -- existed.
17 Q. Now, Mr. Markac's command was in communication with the
18 Main Staff of the Croatian army, both before and during Operation Storm;
20 A. Yes, that is correct.
21 Q. How would one communicate -- the Main Staff's located in Zagreb
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. How would one then communicate with the Main Staff in Zagreb
24 Would you have to be in the headquarters or would you -- could you be out
25 in the field and speak with Zagreb
1 A. You had to be in the main -- at headquarters to ensure
2 communication, because there were fixed telephone lines using protective
3 communication -- protected communication, and the second one was a modem
4 link by computer.
5 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, I'd like to take you now to a review of activities
6 roughly from the end of July 1995 until the beginning of Operation Storm.
7 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we could please call up D543.
8 Q. And, Mr. Pavlovic, that is tab number 13 in your green binder, if
9 you could open it up. Mr. Pavlovic, D543 is dated July 29th of 1995 and
10 it's an order from the Main Staff of the Croatian army to General Markac,
11 essentially explaining what the special police's role will be in
12 Operation Storm. Is that correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Now, in the explanation section of the order in the -- underneath
15 where it's entitled "order," the four main objectives of the MUP special
16 forces are listed; correct?
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Waespi.
18 MR. WAESPI: Yes, can a foundation be laid first between the
19 witness's testimony and this order.
20 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
21 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, you were aware, were you not, of this order and the
22 contents of this order?
23 A. Yes, that is correct.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Waespi.
25 MR. WAESPI: Yes, that was certainly leading. It could be asked:
1 Have you seen the document at that time? Where were it seen? I see he's
2 not listed as an addressee.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, let's -- since when are you aware of this
4 document, Mr. Pavlovic?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As for the contents of the
6 document, I became aware of them on the 31st in Stari Grad, or rather,
7 30th of January [as interpreted], when Mr. Sacic informed all the
8 commanders with the plan of action.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Let me just try to fully understand. So you didn't
10 see the document at that time, but you were informed about the content;
11 is that ...
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Kuzmanovic.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
15 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
16 I think the transcript says the 30th of January.
17 JUDGE ORIE: It should be July then. Yes.
18 Please proceed.
19 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you.
20 JUDGE ORIE: I must say, we gave our transcriber a very hard time
21 today, so I'm surprised that it's only this small mistake that we notice
22 at this moment. Please proceed.
23 MR. KUZMANOVIC: No problems, Your Honour.
24 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, the -- you were advised of what the four main
25 responsibilities, at least initially, in Operation Storm were for the
1 special police; correct, as listed in the order D543?
2 A. Yes, we were informed with the assignment given the special
3 police. And in this document, you can see that those assignments were
4 the ones that we were presented with.
5 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, one of the main objectives of the four here was the
6 communications tower at Celavac. Can you please explain the significance
7 of that target.
8 A. Celavac was a enemy communications stronghold, from which they
9 were able to intercept our conversations. And very often while we were
10 at Velebit, they jammed our communication. Now, strategically speaking,
11 it was a position which covered the entire Mount Velebit
12 is why one of the tasks was that we should take control of that radio
13 relay facility as soon as possible because we expected them to jam our
14 communication from that point.
15 Q. Could you explain the effect of neutralising that communication
16 facility for the ARSK and the Serb forces?
17 A. The RSK used these -- this feature for their own communications,
18 and from that area they were able to cover the area of Gracac, Obrovac,
19 having good communication and secure communication. So as far as they
20 were concerned, that facility was very important to them. And when we
21 were given our assignment, we were informed about the strong resistance
22 that they could set up and that we could encounter at that elevation
24 Q. Were you aware what the effect was on the ARSK in terms of being
25 able to communicate was after the Celavac relay station was captured; and
1 if so, what was that effect?
2 A. An attack on Celavac meant that their signalsmen and
3 communicationsmen had to withdraw. And after that, they no longer had
4 secure communication. All they could do was to communicate using the
5 simplex system, which is highly restricted in terms of space and area.
6 That means that they could only communicate within a range of optical
8 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, let's take us back to July 30th, when you were
9 informed -- you testified you were informed about the operation and what
10 was to take place. What kind of discussions did you have -- were
11 instructed to you at that time about what you needed to do about what
12 your fellow officers and soldiers needed to do in preparation?
13 A. I don't think it was the 30th; it was the 31st of July, I
14 believe. And all the commanders were informed of the axis of operations.
15 Commander Sacic and myself, a few days prior to that, set up a
16 communications system which was to be used. We devised a plan of
17 communication for all participants in the operation, and we also compiled
18 a plan of deployment for the mobile and fixed repeater stations in order
19 to ensure good-quality radio communication. And at the meeting, we also
20 informed all the commanders of a radio directory, a pager directory, and
21 the code system, coded documents such as the conversation device and a
22 code document for map reading.
23 Q. What instructions, if any, were there in terms of how to treat
24 non-combatants or others that you encountered along the axis of attack?
25 A. With your permission, I can explain briefly how Commander Sacic
1 informed us about the operation, the overall operation, what -- how he
2 informed us. He told us of our axes, the directions in which we were to
3 operate, how we were to secure our left and right flank or wing, which
4 individuals we would come across from the Croatian army on our left wing
5 and our right wing, where we would have meetings with them. And we were
6 explained procedure, procedural matters, that is to say, what to do if we
7 took enemy prisoners, what we should do if we came across civilians, and
8 things of that kind.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Pavlovic, may I invite you to focus your answer
10 on the question, because you've now explained to us what instructions you
11 got, but the question was specifically as to instructions, if any, how to
12 treat civilians. Could you please answer that question.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. Yes. If
14 we encountered civilians, those civilians had to be sent to the basic
15 police force. They were to report to the police in order to ensure their
16 documents and accommodation, food and water.
17 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
18 Q. And with respect to treating non-combatants, what were you
19 advised of that -- I mean -- I'm sorry, treating combatants that you came
20 across, what were the instructions that you received?
21 A. If we were to encounter enemy soldiers, we were told to disarm
22 them, depending on their number; to leave sufficient people to guard over
23 them; to call in the police, who would then take them over.
24 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, this was not -- was this the first time that you or
25 any of the people you were with at that briefing received any
1 instructions on how to deal with either non-combatants or combatants?
2 A. In all the previous operations, we were always informed and
3 acquainted with the manner in which we were to take the persons prisoner
4 and how and whom to hand them over to. So this wasn't the first time
5 that we heard about this, but the same thing was repeated again and
6 again, the manner in which we were to behave, our conduct.
7 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Your Honour, I think this might be a good time
8 for a break.
9 JUDGE ORIE: It is, Mr. Kuzmanovic.
10 We'll have a break, and we'll resume at ten minutes to 1.00.
11 --- Recess taken at 12.30 p.m.
12 --- On resuming at 12.54 p.m.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kuzmanovic, please proceed. And could you
14 conclude five minutes before quarter to 2.00, because I'd like to raise a
15 procedural issue. Please proceed.
16 MR. KUZMANOVIC: I will, Your Honour. Thank you.
17 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, I wanted to ask you a question, before we go on, to
18 your route that you took during Operation Storm about the number of
19 people that you had working under you. Could you please tell the Chamber
20 how many people you had working for you.
21 A. Directly under me, about 60 in the field.
22 Q. Could you describe for the Chamber, was this an exclusively
23 Croatian group that worked for you or were there other nationalities as
25 A. In my sector and in the field, I had a mixed team. So most of
1 them weren't Croats. I had five Serbs, one Macedonian -- or most of them
2 were Croats, with the exception of these others, but they weren't
3 exclusively Croats.
4 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, if you could look back at the order D543, the first
5 part of the order there where it says "cut the Gospic-Gracac road between
6 Sveti Rok and Stikada. Stikada was the location. What was in Stikada at
7 the time?
8 A. Stikada was the base --
9 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness repeat which one.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Could you please repeat what base there was in
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] UN base and the Jordanian Battalion
13 was there.
14 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
15 Q. That was -- could you explain to the Chamber in terms of its
16 proximity to Gracac, Stikada.
17 A. About 20 kilometres away, unless I'm very much mistaken.
18 Q. Now, on the first day of Operation Storm, it's true, is it not,
19 that you went through several towns on your way and ended up in Lovinac,
21 the Chamber, as you went into those towns, what you observed?
22 A. A correction: On the first day, we were in Seline. On the
23 second day, we set off from Seline across Mali Alan then going down to
24 Sveti Rok and then to Lovinac. In Lovinac, we waited for the Minister of
25 the Interior, Mr. Jarnjak, to arrive; and then in the place itself which
1 was a Croatian place before the war and which had been completely
2 destroyed, there was just a chimney on a destroyed house, and we put up
3 the sign "police station." And after that, we moved on towards Gracac.
4 When we passed through Sveti Rok on through Lovinac and Ricice
5 later on, we saw that all the houses had been destroyed. They were all
6 Croatian villages by the way.
7 Q. As you were coming down from Mali Alan on the way through Gracac,
8 could you describe the nature and extent of whether or not the area was
9 heavily populated, sparsely populated?
10 A. It was sparsely populated. And up to Gracac, there was no larger
11 place, larger town or village along that road.
12 Q. Before we get into your observations as you entered Gracac,
13 Mr. Pavlovic, could you describe, in general, both during before and
14 Operation Storm, whether or not the special police had any territorial or
15 area responsibilities?
16 A. No. The task of the special police was to act speedily and
17 advance forward and to establish combat contact with the enemy, to rout
18 the enemy, and continue its action. Now, behind us or after us, you
19 would have the regular police force coming in which would take over the
20 tasks that they were in charge of, that is to say, to secure the
21 territory and to prevent crimes, to uncover the perpetrators if crimes
22 were committed. That wasn't the task of the special police in
23 Operation Storm.
24 Q. In other words, just to make things clear, as opposed to the
25 Gospic Military District or the Split Military District, the special
1 police didn't have a specific territory that it covered; correct?
2 A. Yes, you're right.
3 Q. Now, Mr. Pavlovic, as the person in charge of communications,
4 could you describe for me whether you or your subordinates were generally
5 in the front to try to establish front communications along the way,
6 along your axis?
7 A. Certain people working in communications in the mobile vehicles
8 had repeater stations as mobile devices, and they went either behind the
9 unit, immediately behind the unit that was launching an attack, or there
10 were some dominant features, dominant elevations, and maintained the
11 system to see that it was working. Very often we were very close to the
12 lines of combat in order to ensure good communication with the special
13 and for the special units.
14 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, before we get into Gracac, can you please describe
15 for us any briefings that you had before Operation Storm, what
16 information you had about the opposition you were about to face as
17 Operation Storm was launched.
18 A. According to the available information that we received from the
19 Main Staff and the information that we had in the field itself, one could
20 conclude that the enemy forces were strong, that we were facing strong
21 enemy forces. And apart from the fact that on the 31st we held the
22 meeting with the commanders of the special units that I mentioned,
23 General Markac, myself, the assistant for internal control, Mr. Soljic,
24 and two other individuals from the headquarters in Seline -- a day before
25 the operation, we went on foot to Veliki Golic and the forward command
1 post there so that General Markac could tell the commanders once again
2 that there could be -- they could come across strong resistance and
3 repeated his instructions and guide-lines as to what our conduct should
4 be with any prisoners of war and civilians that we might come across
5 during our operation.
6 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, in your statement in paragraph 12 you talk about
8 "The afternoon of 5 August 1995, a special police operation staff
9 was established in Gracac."
10 Now, if we look at D550 --
11 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we could bring that up, please.
12 Q. And as we're waiting to get it up, Mr. Pavlovic, it's tab 17 in
13 your book. I should have told that to you already. I'm sorry. D550 is
14 an August 5th, 1995
15 order, in section 3.5, MUP special units are ordered to seize control
16 over Gracac. Now, you were familiar with that order, were you not?
17 A. Yes, I was because that order reached the headquarters at Seline,
18 and Mr. Markac conveyed the order to Mr. Sacic.
19 Q. Now, upon your entry into Gracac on August 5th, can you describe
20 what you observed as you entered Gracac.
21 A. On the second day, we started from Lovinac for Gracac. Just
22 before we entered Gracac, we came upon a house burning. I don't know who
23 set fire to it, but, in any case, it was burning. There were some
24 damaged houses lying ahead, although I couldn't tell whether it was due
25 to shelling. We entered Gracac itself by passing next to the former
1 police station, which used to be their police station while they were in
2 Gracac. We went further to the centre and the municipal court building,
3 where we established the new headquarters to further command the
5 Q. Now, when you arrived in Gracac, could you describe whether or
6 not there were any abandoned vehicles or other items lying about in the
8 A. In the town itself, as well as on the outskirts, I noticed
9 several civilian vehicles. Some vehicles had their engine compartments
10 visible because of the raised hood. I presume they were --
11 malfunctioned. There was some agricultural machinery such as tractors
12 and cultivators. Later on, we concluded that some vehicles were simply
13 left without fuel, while others did not function. We came upon such
14 vehicles along the roads.
15 Q. What was done with regard to those vehicles?
16 A. In principle, pursuant to the order, all vehicles and
17 agricultural machinery should be taken to a collection point which had
18 been predetermined.
19 Q. We have been shown or the Chamber's been shown a picture of a
20 special police member in a vehicle appearing to jump-start a vehicle.
21 Are those the kinds of things that the special police would do, get into
22 a vehicle and get it out of the way and move it?
23 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Waespi.
24 MR. WAESPI: Yes, I'd like a linkage between the witness,
25 whether, you know, he remembers this situation. That's certainly
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, well linkage and leading is not exactly the
3 same, but it's certainly is leading, Mr. Kuzmanovic.
4 MR. KUZMANOVIC: I'll rephrase it, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
6 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
7 Q. What did you observe, if anything, Mr. Pavlovic, about special
8 police members and abandoned vehicles?
9 A. We needed to remove some of the vehicles from the roads. Some
10 vehicles were jump-started by certain special police members. Since we
11 faced a shortage in our carpool, certain units made use of some of those
12 vehicles in the area of operations. Some even wrote names of the units
13 on the vehicle doors so as to prevent anyone shooting at them, since
14 those vehicles no longer had registration plates. Therefore, one could
15 not know, otherwise, who was in the vehicles.
16 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, there is an exhibit - and I won't call it up now,
17 and I'll just refer the Trial Chamber P111 - that describes that after
18 the special police arrived in Gracac there was freedom of movement
19 between Gracac and Gospic. Could you please describe for the Chamber
20 what the significance of the opening of that road meant as far as Croatia
21 was concerned.
22 A. I didn't understand the question. Which part of the road?
23 Q. The road between Gracac and Gospic.
24 A. On the second day of operation, we liberated the axis between
25 Gospic and Gracac. On day three, there was free travel between the two
1 towns. There were no longer any reasons not to use the road.
2 Q. And in terms of distance, what was the distance, roughly, between
3 Gracac and Gospic, if you know, in kilometres?
4 A. Approximately 60 kilometres.
5 Q. Now, after you were in Gracac --
6 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we could move to D552, which is tab 21 --
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Waespi.
8 MR. WAESPI: Yes, can I have from counsel a page reference in
9 P111 where it says there was free travel between the two towns.
10 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Yes, I can read it for you. The third page.
11 "UNMO team Gracac reported UNMO team enjoyed freedom of movement
12 between Gracac and Gospic," which is in the middle of the page.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Waespi.
14 MR. WAESPI: Yes, that's fine. Of course, it's a difference
15 between the UNMO team having movement and the way it was described.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Kuzmanovic, if you would be --
17 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Sure --
18 JUDGE ORIE: -- precise.
19 MR. KUZMANOVIC: -- I can be even more precise.
20 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, was there any restriction of movement as far as you
21 were concerned for any vehicles that you knew of between Gracac and
22 Gospic after the special police captured Gracac?
23 A. As far as I know, there were no restrictions. There were not
24 even any check-points that were set up along that route by the
25 regular-duty police.
1 Q. As far as you're aware, Mr. Pavlovic, with your work within the
2 special police, were there ever any preventions of freedom of movement of
3 UNMO or UN personnel as far as the special police were concerned?
4 A. As far as I know, there was never an order to hinder the work of
5 UNMO or UN personnel. Quite the contrary. On the second evening
6 we - and I mean Mr. Markac, Mr. Sacic, Mr. Cvrk, and I - had a dinner
7 with the Jordanian Battalion commander in their base.
8 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we could please pull up D552. Oh, I'm sorry,
9 it's already up there. I didn't have it on my screen. I'm sorry about
10 that. Thank you.
11 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, do you have that in front of you, tab 21 in your
12 book? And just let me know when you have it.
13 A. I have it.
14 Q. This is an order dated the 6th of August, 1995, at 1000 hours.
15 And on the second page the special police, special units of the MUP, are
16 ordered to move on and continue on an axis toward Donji Lapac. Is that,
17 in fact, what had happened?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And then there's another order, D322, which is tab 19, the same
20 date, the 6th of August, 1995, at 2100 hours, which discusses essentially
21 coordinating the attacks between the military districts of Split
22 and the special units of the special police "to take control," in
23 paragraph 1 it says, "of the entire territory and get to the state
25 Mr. Pavlovic, is that what, in fact, ended up happening, that the
1 special police ended up going to the state border?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Now, please describe for the Chamber as you went from Gracac
4 toward Donji Lapac what your observations were.
5 A. Before the beginning of the operation, I issued an order to the
6 communications department employees to establish a forward command post
7 in Bruvno which was along the axis towards Lapac and Mazin. During the
8 night, between the 6th and the 7th, they went there and established that
9 communication post. On the 7th, we set off in the direction of Bruvno.
10 When Mr. Markac and Sacic concluded that we could go on even further
11 afield and that Mazin was liberated, we went on. Therefore, we never
12 made any use of that forward command post.
13 On a plateau just above Mazin, we used several vehicles to
14 establish a mobile headquarters. We used it for mutual communication and
15 observed the advancement of special forces to Mazin, followed it on the
16 maps. Therefore, we did it all out in the open.
17 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Just to interrupt for a minute, it's Bruvno,
18 B-r-u-v-n-o, on line 20 of page 80. Thank you.
19 Q. Now, Mr. Pavlovic, as you got to Mazin, that's -- Bruvno and
20 Mazin, that's on the way to Donji Lapac, is it not?
21 A. Yes, Bruvno is along the road between Gracac and Plitvice. At
22 Bruvno you turn right to eventually get to Mazin. Via Mazin, one arrives
23 first at Gornji and then Donji Lapac.
24 Q. Before getting to Gornji and Donji Lapac, is there a place that
25 you go through called Dobro Selo?
1 A. On the Mazin plateau, we remain until noon. After that, we
2 followed the line of fighters that were ahead of us to eventually reach
3 Mazin and follow the asphalt road towards Lapac. We arrived in a village
4 called Dobro Selo. It is a mountain pass just before one reaches the
5 road between Lapac and Srb.
6 Q. Now, you had an occasion, did you not, to lose two communications
7 personnel along that road; correct?
8 A. Yes, but not at that time. If I may, I will explain. We were
9 moving towards Donji Lapac. We stopped in Dobro Selo because the
10 fighters who were ahead of us reported that there was a large column of
11 civilians between Lapac and Martin Brod. They also presumed there was
12 some enemy fighters in that column. At the same time, we also noticed
13 another column from Srb to Martin Brod of civilians and enemy fighters.
14 From that point, from that vantage point, we could see both columns.
15 General Markac issued an order to stop, so as to have the column from
16 Lapac pull out towards Martin Brod and the border. In the Srb column,
17 there were also tanks and heavy weaponry. When they noticed our column,
18 the tanks stopped and trained their guns at us.
19 General Markac ordered that we should be still and not train our
20 guns on them, although we were in no position to undertake any major
21 activity anyhow. We only had armoured combat vehicles with machine-guns
22 and a couple of mortars. Irrespective of that, we were ordered not to
23 open fire at the enemy but to allow them to freely pull out of our range.
24 When the civilian and enemy soldiers column from Lapac went
25 through the intersection that we were going to, we continued our movement
1 towards Lapac. Two of my personnel remained behind at Mazin with the
2 task of ensuring -- securing communication. They followed us in the
3 evening. Having reached the intersection following Dobro Selo, at the
4 intersection to the left you go to Lapac and to the right you go to Srb,
5 they got confused and turned towards Srb. They entered the column from
6 Srb to Martin Brod, which was still there. According to our information,
7 they drove with the column for a while when the enemy soldiers detected
8 them since they were in a 4 by 4 vehicle, a Puch, which was not a vehicle
9 the enemy had. They were then captured and taken to some Republika
10 Srpska camps.
11 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Mr. Registrar, could you please bring up
13 Q. Before we get to this document, which is tab 25, Mr. Pavlovic, in
14 your book, on August 7th, then, you and the special police entered
15 Donji Lapac; correct?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, in front of you is a letter from General Markac.
18 It appears as though it's from the Seline headquarters dated
19 9, illegible, it says 1995. It does -- this letter relates to the
20 missing members of your communications personnel; correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And the letter says:
23 "On Monday ..." it says "illegible," but we can presume it's the
24 7th of 1995, 7th of August?
25 A. Yes, that is correct. We sent the letter on the 9th because we
1 simply didn't know where they were. We could not get in touch with them.
2 We searched for them in the field where we had left them, trying to find
3 out whether they withdrew to another location or went elsewhere. We
4 simply could not think of a reason why they went missing. After this
5 letter and after the third or fourth day as we were tapping in on enemy
6 communications, we concluded that they were actually there. During a
7 conversation, it was mentioned that a green 4-by-4 vehicle was left
8 without fuel, and we presumed that it was our vehicle driven by the two
10 Q. Do you know what ended up happening that -- these two
11 communications persons from your staff ever get returned?
12 A. It was only after 30-odd days that we received the first
13 information to the effect that they were alive and that they were in a
14 camp -- were camped somewhere in Republika Srpska. And some two months
15 later, with the exchange in the village of Davor
16 sent back to the Republic of Croatia
17 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Your Honour, if we could please -- I'd like to
18 tender this document in evidence.
19 MR. WAESPI: No objections.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
21 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that becomes Exhibit D1831.
22 JUDGE ORIE: D1831 is admitted into evidence.
23 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
24 Q. Now, I'd like to go to your observations of Donji Lapac on
25 the 7th, Mr. Pavlovic. Can you please explain to the Trial Chamber your
1 observations as you went in to Donji Lapac with the special police.
2 A. As we entered Donji Lapac, the first thing I observed was a
3 heavy-duty vehicle, army vehicle, which had been hit by an artillery
4 shell of ours. Most probably they used it to transport shells. But the
5 vehicle had been completely destroyed. After that, from Gornji to
6 Donji Lapac, I did not notice any destruction done to houses or anything
7 of that kind.
8 In Lapac itself, when I entered Lapac itself, two buildings were
9 burning. And as I had been to Lapac before the war, the first thing I
10 did was to go to the police station, which had been hit by a rocket. But
11 only the building next door was on fire, whereas the police building had
12 just been damaged. But the entire -- in the entire village -- well,
13 there were no other buildings that had been set fire to -- by us or by
14 anybody else through artillery action.
15 Now, when I arrived in Lapac -- when we arrived in Lapac,
16 General Markac went to the base, the UN base there, because in the
17 evening we had been to the Jordanian Battalion, as I told you earlier on,
18 and we had talked to the commander, and we told him on that occasion that
19 he should tell his soldiers who were in Donji Lapac that they shouldn't
20 move out of the area in which they were in, out of their facility. And
21 that they should wait there until we entered Lapac. And that's why
22 General Markac went to the base straight away, to meet their commander
23 and tell him that, to inform him that we had entered Lapac.
24 Q. Okay. What happened, then, next with General Markac, how long of
25 a visit with -- of that -- strike that question.
1 How long of a visit was it, and where did he go that same day?
2 A. General Markac stayed there for a very short time, that is, in
3 Lapac. And he returned by the same road, moving towards the state border
4 via Boricevci, I think the place was called. Now, I remained in
5 Donji Lapac for some time after that, and I waited for the communications
6 men and left a number of them to set up a mobile repeater station in the
7 primary school there. And I also ordered them to pull out the encryption
8 devices and all the documents from the police station which might be of
9 use to us later on when we came to analyse everything that had taken
10 place at the police station.
11 Q. Now, as far as the special police units in Donji Lapac after
12 arrival on August 7th, did those units stay in Donji Lapac, or did they
13 go to Boricevac?
14 A. Part of the unit, the majority continued towards Boricevci;
15 whereas in Donji Lapac, I think it was Commander Janjic who stayed on
16 there with his unit. Part of the logistics stayed on and part of the
17 communications stayed on too. I myself, towards afternoon - I can't
18 remember the exact time but between 2.00 and 3.00 p.m. - I was still in
19 the area, and that's when the shelling started from -- coming from an
20 unknown direction -- or rather, from unknown units. And so I left Lapac
21 immediately after that.
22 Q. And where did you go?
23 A. I set out towards Boricevci as well.
24 MR. KUZMANOVIC: If we could please call up P586.
25 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, that's tab 1 in your book, if you want to follow it
1 there. P586, while you're looking for it --
2 MR. WAESPI: Yes, I don't know what the next question will be but
3 if a foundation be established that the witness has seen the document.
4 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
5 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, why don't you look at the document briefly and then
6 we can ask you some questions about it.
7 MR. KUZMANOVIC: With all due respect to my colleague, before
8 Mr. Pavlovic answers any questions about it, I don't think it's
9 necessarily -- it's necessary for the witness to have either read or
10 known the document to be asked questions about it. I think the entire
11 trial has been conducted in such a fashion.
12 JUDGE ORIE: It depends on what kind of questions you're putting
13 to him. Sometimes it needs to be established that he has seen it.
14 MR. KUZMANOVIC: I will do that, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Sometimes it's not necessary.
16 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you.
17 Q. Mr. Pavlovic, are you aware of this document and the contents
18 within this document?
19 A. I've never seen this document before now, but I do now about its
20 contents because, through radio communications, I was informed with the
21 details of this.
22 Q. Now, the second paragraph of this document, Mr. Pavlovic, says --
23 actually, I'll start at the beginning:
24 "On August 7th, during the liberation of Donji Lapac of the -- by
25 the joint forces of the special police" I'm just saying that to establish
1 that the document states that the special police arrived on August 7th.
2 The second paragraph discusses:
3 "... although in the town of Donji Lapac there were no greater
4 battles. In the town centre, two houses were burning as a consequence of
5 artillery rocket support actions."
6 If you could look at page 2 of that document, the last paragraph.
7 On the Croatian it can stay the way it is, on the first page. The last
8 paragraph says:
9 "The special police forces did not take part in fire-starting in
10 Donji Lapac. Merely by the fact that except for the staff and logistics,
11 all other units were at positions outside of the town and were going
12 towards Kulen Vakuf and the units on leave were stationed and
13 accommodated either out of town or at the edge of town."
14 Mr. Pavlovic, does this letter by -- report by Mr. Bole of
15 2 October 1995
16 Donji Lapac?
17 A. It does tally in the part where it says that two houses were
18 burning; however, the knowledge that I had, the awareness I had, about
19 what was actually going on and after my departure from Lapac, in
20 communication between Commander Janjic and Commander Sacic, which was
21 conducted through a radio station device, on my way to Boricevac I
22 learned what was actually going on, what was happening there after my
23 departure from Lapac. So the event itself that followed and that is
24 described here further, that is to say, the arrival of the 118th Regiment
25 and the guards tanks, et cetera, was something communicated between radio
1 communication between Janjic and Sacic.
2 Q. With respect to the last paragraph, from your observations, did
3 or did not the special police take part in fire-starting in Donji Lapac?
4 A. No, no, it didn't, absolutely not. When the artillery attack
5 started from the direction of Udbina on Gracac, the commander -- or
6 rather, I heard several shells and left Lapac, whereas Janjic called
7 Sacic and informed him that an unknown military unit was targeting, using
8 these weapons, and he was told to try and establish contact as soon as
9 possible with that particular unit.
10 After that, after their entry in Gracac itself, we realised that
11 that was the Croatian army which had come in from the direction of
12 Udbina. Now, during the conversations, I learned that it was the
13 118th Regiment, which had lost a commander and 15 of its soldiers along
14 the way, command staff, and that they were left without any means of
15 communication. So without knowing that the special police was, in fact,
16 in Lapac, they opened fire on Lapac. And when they entered Lapac, that
17 same 118th Regiment opened fire from infantry weapons and the other
18 weapons they had, and Janjic was conveyed an order according to which the
19 units of the special units who were holidaying in Lapac, who were on
20 holiday in Lapac, should be relocated to the surrounding parts, so that
21 in Lapac only the communications men and the logistics men, ten of them
22 in all, remain there.
23 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Your Honour, I think we're beyond the time that
24 you wanted to use; there's just one short question I wanted to ask
25 relating to this answer and I'll ask for a short answer.
1 JUDGE ORIE: One short question would do.
2 MR. KUZMANOVIC:
3 Q. These forces from the 118th, were they coming from the north of
5 A. They were coming from the direction of Udbina. Now, is that the
6 north? It's difficult for me to say. But they weren't coming from the
7 direction from which we entered Lapac. It was on the opposite side, and
8 it could have been the north.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 JUDGE ORIE: As the crow flies, I see Udbina seems to be west of
12 MR. KUZMANOVIC: North and west, Your Honour, roughly.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Well, perhaps we could discuss this not with you,
14 but on maps it looks as if it is west but --
15 MR. KUZMANOVIC: We'll deal with that tomorrow, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
17 Mr. Pavlovic, we'll conclude for the day. We would like to see
18 you back tomorrow morning at 9.00 in this same courtroom. Since we have
19 to deal with a procedural matter, could you please follow the Usher. But
20 I would first like to instruct you that you should not speak with anyone
21 about your testimony. That covers both testimony already given or
22 testimony still to be given tomorrow.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand, yes.
24 MR. KUZMANOVIC: You can just leave the papers there. That's
1 [The witness stands down]
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kuzmanovic, the issue I'd like to raise is the
3 following one: We see your list of witnesses, and we see that sometimes
4 some are taken off, some others are added. Could you -- we also saw that
5 you asked for more time than you actually intend to use at this moment.
6 This whole picture, could you give us any clue as to when the Chamber
7 could expect approximately that you think you would conclude your Defence
9 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Your Honour, we were discussing this, and it's
10 our -- we thought we would get done by the holiday break, and
11 unfortunately we're not going to be able to. I think it would be the
12 first week or the first week and a half after the holiday break that we
13 would be done.
14 JUDGE ORIE: So you would say seven to ten days after we resume
15 after the recess?
16 MR. KUZMANOVIC: That's correct.
17 JUDGE ORIE: That's when you expect, more or less, to conclude
18 the presentation of your case?
19 MR. KUZMANOVIC: That's correct, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you for that answer.
21 Yes, Mr. Waespi.
22 MR. WAESPI: Yes, while we're on the topic, we would appreciate
23 if Defence could give us the names of the witnesses who will testify in
24 the week after next. We know the two witnesses for next week, and I
25 guess we know the witnesses, the expert, just before Christmas. And if
1 we could be given the names, that would be appreciated.
2 MR. KUZMANOVIC: We will do so before the end of the day.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Then we'll adjourn for the day, and we'll resume
4 tomorrow, Thursday, the 26th of November, at 9.00, in Courtroom II.
5 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.46 p.m.
6 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 26th day of
7 November, 2009, at 9.00 a.m.