1 Tuesday, 23 October 2012
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.00 a.m.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Registrar, could you call the case, please.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case number
7 IT-04-75-T, the Prosecutor versus Goran Hadzic. Thank you.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Can we have the appearances, starting with the
9 Prosecutor, please.
10 MR. STRINGER: Good morning, Mr. President, Your Honours,
11 counsel, and everyone else. Douglas Stringer appearing on behalf of the
12 Prosecution with Sarah Clanton, Uros Zigic, and our Case Manager,
13 Thomas Laugel.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. For Defence.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Good morning, Mr. President and Your Honours.
16 For the Defence of Goran Hadzic, Zoran Zivanovic and Christopher Gosnell.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. Good morning to everyone, too.
18 I think there is a preliminary question from the Prosecution.
19 MR. STRINGER: Yes - excuse me - Mr. President. We've had a
20 procedural question arise that I thought best to bring to the Chamber's
21 attention now. It's the first occasion. It probably won't be the last.
22 The Prosecution would like to use a couple items in the redirect
23 examination that are not on the specific list of documents that went
24 across to the Defence for this witness. The two weeks in advance list of
25 exhibits for use in the direct examination, one of the -- both, however,
1 I should say both of the items that we would like to use on redirect are
2 on the Prosecution's 65 ter list. One of them is a short video-clip
3 similar to the others the Chamber's already seen. We identified that for
4 Defence counsel last night and indicated we would like to use it in
5 redirect. It goes to a video that was shown to the witness about which
6 there's been some debate whether it was a particular meeting or not, and
7 it's possible that the other video we would like to show could shed some
8 light on that question.
9 We communicated that to counsel. Counsel's indicated they
10 don't -- if I can -- if I put it correctly, counsel does not see the need
11 to do that on redirect examination. It's our position that it is best to
12 do it with the witness while he's here.
13 The second item is a document that falls within the scope of
14 another matter that was raised on the cross-examination, the
15 demilitarisation issue of Western Slavonia. And that document is
16 65 ter 1664. So we would like to use 1664 and also a video-clip, 65 ter
17 4842.1 on redirect. However, they're not on the list of items that went
18 across for use as during the direct examination.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. The Defence -- does the Defence have a
20 position on this request?
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honours, the Defence opposes to the proposal
22 of the Prosecution to use in his redirect any documents not listed among
23 the documents which have to be used in the course of their direct
24 examination. We -- it is a matter of principle, and it departs,
25 considerably departs, from the order, guidelines that the Trial Chamber
1 adopted and ordered to the parties.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. I for myself, and I don't speak for
3 the Bench, I for myself would wonder how any party could foresee
4 everything that comes out of cross-examination two weeks before the
5 direct examination starts and put documents on -- about things that come
6 out of cross-examination without -- let's say, by surprise more or less.
7 But that's my personal -- my personal view-point. I think the best thing
8 to do is that we come back to you with a decision after the first break.
9 Mr. Usher, can we have the witness, please.
10 [The witness takes the stand]
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Good morning, Mr. Dzakula. As usual, I remind
12 you that you are still under oath, and we continue with your
13 cross-examination today, and we will finish -- well, we're pretty sure
14 that we'll finish by the end of this hearing.
15 WITNESS: VELJKO DZAKULA [Resumed]
16 [Witness answered through interpreter]
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic, please proceed.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honours.
19 Cross-examination by Mr. Zivanovic: [Continued]
20 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Dzakula.
21 A. Good morning.
22 Q. Yesterday, we discussed the return of Croatian refugees to
23 Benkovac. I just wanted to remind you of that. Let me ask you this
24 first: Benkovac was in the Serb Autonomous District of Krajina before
25 the SRK was created; correct?
1 A. Yes, you are -- that is correct. Benkovac was in the
2 SAO Krajina.
3 Q. The refugees left that area before the RSK was established?
4 A. Yes. They left during the war.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Just one moment, please. It seems that we have a
6 technical problem. It seems that Judge Hall's microphone is not working.
7 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
8 JUDGE HALL: [Microphone not activated]
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Good morning. Good morning. Is it enough?
10 Should I say anything else?
11 JUDGE HALL: [Microphone not activated] If you would say something
12 in B/C/S and see if I get translation.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Dzakula.
14 JUDGE HALL: [Microphone not activated] It's okay now.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Apologies. I only have the camera
16 shown on my screen. I don't have the transcript before me. I keep
17 having to look at myself.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. I will repeat. The refugees were moved out of Benkovac and the
20 SAO Krajina before the RSK was established?
21 A. Yes. Those refugees had left Benkovac during the war while the
22 SAO Krajina existed, before the RSK was created.
23 Q. We talked about Mr. Zecevic, deputy prime minister and some other
24 ministers on the government were against their return. You also said
25 that there was this standing apology or excuse that conditions had not
1 been created. In your view on the 2nd of March, 1992, did you believe
2 that such preconditions existed for the return of those 15.000 refugees
3 to Benkovac?
4 A. On the 2nd of March, 1992, there were no preconditions for
5 return, because the UN forces were still not there at the time.
6 Q. The Prosecutor showed you documents 41 and 42. The first
7 document, number 41 -- well, perhaps it's best to look at it now again so
8 as to remind ourselves. It is dated the 9th of July, 1992, when you,
9 Mr. Hadzic, and Mr. Fejzovic talked to Nambiar. He referred to what
10 Mr. Hadzic said and the need to punish those who caused incidents against
11 non-Serbs in Eastern Slavonia, but that's not what I'm interested in
12 right now. I'm interested in the issue of refugees and their return.
13 He said then that the problem of refugee return to
14 Eastern Slavonia, that is to say of non-Serbs to Eastern Slavonia, is
15 interlinked with the return of refugees to Western Slavonia. Hence, I
16 conclude that he wanted to say that there were no conditions necessary
17 for the refugees to return to either Eastern or Western Slavonia as well
18 as of Croats to Western Slavonia and Serbs to Eastern Slavonia. Did you
19 agree with what Mr. Hadzic said at the time?
20 A. When Mr. Hadzic said that, he explained it by saying that in such
21 houses in Eastern Slavonia where there were currently refugees from
22 Western Slavonia, that those houses were the house of -- houses of Croats
23 and that they could not return there because their houses were used to
24 accommodate the Serbs from Western Slavonia. That was an obstacle. At
25 that time there was still no conditions in existence, because the peace
1 plan was not only under its way and there were still incidents taking
2 place. That was directly linked to the issue of return. Serbs had to go
3 back to Western Slavonia for the Croats to go back to Eastern Slavonia.
4 Otherwise, the Croats could not return as their houses were occupied.
5 Q. Why were there no conditions met for the Serbs from
6 Eastern Slavonia to have them moved to Western Slavonia, thus freeing up
7 houses for the Croats to return to Eastern Slavonia?
8 A. As I have explained already and I will repeat, it was because the
9 then-government of the RSK was against the return of Serbs to
10 Western Slavonia, and they kept saying that there were no preconditions
11 for that, although we have actually put some such conditions in place for
12 the Serbs to start returning. Of course it was impossible for everyone
13 to go back at the same time, but we initiated the process while the RSK
14 government was against that.
15 I must say, though, that the Croatian government was not much in
16 favour of that either. It all resulted in no conditions having been
17 created. If there were no conditions for the Serbs to return to
18 Western Slavonia, then of course Croats could not return to Eastern
19 Slavonia as their houses were occupied.
20 Q. In other words, what prevented the return of Serbs to
21 Western Slavonia was purely administrative. In other words, it was based
22 on the decision of the RSK government and perhaps the government of
24 A. Yes. Both governments were against that kind of return. They
25 kept saying that there were no conditions, where, as a matter of fact,
1 there was no political will. They were against that. And the issue of
2 return could only be initiated in Western Slavonia first, because, as
3 I've said already, we had been demilitarised. There was no army there,
4 only the police, and the process could be set in motion. If that had
5 been allowed, the whole thing would have ended differently.
6 Q. Let's look at number 42 next. It is a report about your meeting
7 with Nambiar. So Mr. Hadzic was absent. I think you met on the
8 13th of November, 1992.
9 When you met with Mr. Nambiar, you repeated the same thing. You
10 said that it was first necessary for the Serbs from Eastern Slavonia to
11 return to Western Slavonia and then that the Croats be returned to
12 Eastern Slavonia.
13 A. Yes. I tried to explain that to Mr. Nambiar. I was trying to
14 tell him that the return should be reciprocal in order to protect the
15 process and the refugees. If you take a closer look, it says he had the
16 feeling that the issue of return was of great interest among his people.
17 So there was a clear interest of Serbs to go to the villages in
18 Western Slavonia to see them and decide for themselves whether they
19 wanted to return. I always connected the return of Serbs from
20 Eastern Slavonia to Western Slavonia with the return of Croats, because I
21 knew that only such a process in parallel would be the guarantee of
22 cohabitation, safety of both populations en route to their homes. If
23 the -- were the process unilateral, it would not work because the other
24 side would be left out in the cold, thus objecting to it. That is why I
25 always connected it to returns to Eastern Slavonia and Western Slavonia.
1 They were like Siamese twins, if you will.
2 Q. In paragraph 2, if you take a look at it, he says, among other
3 things, that Mr. Nambiar is reporting you having said that they, i.e.,
4 the UN, should request Croatian authorities to create conditions for the
5 return of those Serbs to their homes.
6 Can you tell me what did you mean by this, that the Croatian
7 authorities should create conditions for the return of Serbs to their
9 A. The Croatian authorities were responsible for the territory that
10 they controlled, that is to say to create conditions for safety and
11 security and that all this burning and looting should be stopped. But
12 you see here that I'm also mentioning some major cities that Serbs have
13 fled such as Zagreb, Zadar, Gospic, et cetera. So if guarantees are
14 provided for the Serbs in those cities as well for them to return to
15 Croatia, then that would give boost to Serbs' desire to return to UNPA
17 Q. Mr. Dzakula, yesterday you spoke about that in October, November,
18 and December 1991, while the Croatian armed intervention in
19 Western Slavonia was in progress, that many villages and many houses were
20 torched or devastated and that that was done by the Croatian Army, and
21 I'm talking about Serb houses. Can you tell me now, when we speak about
22 the conditions for the return of refugees to Western Slavonia, was that
23 perhaps an impediment for their return, because practically they had no
24 place to go back to. All their houses were ruined or burnt.
25 A. That is correct. Their houses and their villages were
1 devastated, but in nearly every one of those villages it was possible in
2 a very short period of time to do some repairs in order to enable their
3 return. Since I was conducting talks with the international community,
4 they said they were ready to start all this repair work for all the
5 people who wished to return. So there can be no reparation of houses
6 unless people express their will to return. People lived in
7 Western Slavonia in very difficult conditions. They lived in a variety
8 of facilities such as in barns and stables, et cetera, and they really
9 wished to go back to their homes. Some of them said, We shall even put
10 plastic sheets on our houses. I just want to go back to my home; because
11 rural people are attached to their villages. And had that been done,
12 then the process would have been carried out as it should have been.
13 Q. You said that these villages were overpopulated, that people were
14 dwelling in stables and barns, if I understood you correctly. So
15 understand such conditions, where would these people from
16 Eastern Slavonia go back to? Is it true that at that time that was
17 discussed both by you and Mr. Hadzic, actually there were no proper
18 conditions for the return?
19 A. I perhaps wasn't quite clear and you didn't understand me well.
20 When I said that people were living in barns and stables, I was talking
21 about that part of Western Slavonia that was under Serb control, which
22 was an area that could accommodate about 20.000 people, whereas at the
23 time there were 50.000 people. So it was overpopulated, which forced
24 people to live in outbuildings that were not meant for habitation. But
25 they remained there hoping that they would leave once and go back to
1 their villages and the same would happen with the Serbs from
2 Eastern Slavonia and their villages.
3 I repeat that villages like Bastajic [phoen], Caralija and Bijela
4 were in intact, and these villages were later populated by Croats.
5 However, at that point in time, they were intact and they were empty.
6 Q. When you mentioned these villages that were later populated by
7 the Croats, what do you mean by "later"?
8 A. Well, that was sometime after 1994 or 1995.
9 Q. Well, it's only natural that in 1992 the Croatian authorities
10 were opposed to their return.
11 A. No, I'm not exonerating the Croatian authorities at all. I think
12 that they behaved in the identical manner as the Krajina authorities.
13 They don't -- didn't want the Serbs to return, and that's a fact. But we
14 wanted to implement the Vance Plan and to make it binding on everyone who
15 accepted the plan to implement it.
16 I have no illusions when I talk about the State of Croatia, but
17 that was our right, and I really resented the fact that the government
18 from the territory where I was living was obstructing the return. When
19 we agreed with the Canadian Battalion to have people returned to
20 15 villages, the Krajina authorities put a stop to that. I'm not saying
21 that perhaps the Croatian authorities wouldn't cause some incidents or
22 maybe even some killings, but this process had to start. But tell me,
23 they were not ready to do that. I'm not exonerating either of the two
24 authorities because they behaved in an identical manner.
25 Q. This intervention on the part of the Krajina authorities was the
1 purpose there of perhaps to prevent the return of the refugees.
2 A. No. They didn't bother to do that in order to prevent the
3 killing of Serbs. They just wanted to stop that process, because one
4 process would cause the other process and the return of the Croats in
5 Eastern Slavonia, et cetera. You can rest assured that that would have
6 been the case.
7 Q. One more thing regarding this issue. In your view, when were the
8 conditions met for the return of refugees?
9 A. As far as Western Slavonia is concerned, the conditions for the
10 return of refugees existed in early September when Mr. Marrack Goulding
11 came to Okucani and he congratulated us on the implementation of the
12 Vance Plan on demilitarisation which means that the process of the return
13 of refugees to Western Slavonia could begin. It was not possible to do
14 the same in Eastern Slavonia because there had been no demilitarisation
15 there. You must understand that no one can return to a place where you
16 had armed forces in addition to, and everybody was afraid of that. That
17 is why we asked for those ethnic areas, Serb villages, there shouldn't be
18 any Croatian police officers, only UN personnel. So I'm talking about
19 September 1999, which is a time when realistically it was possible to
20 start the process.
21 MR. STRINGER: [Microphone not activated] excuse me, counsel. We
22 just got in the --
23 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: September 1992.
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you.
25 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Dzakula, there was a mistake but it's been
1 corrected now.
2 Can we now talk about the decision L8 on the return of refugees.
3 The Prosecutor asked you about Article 2 of that decision, and it reads
5 "The Secretariat of Interior in charge is required to carry out a
6 background check of the requesting party within 90 days from the day of
7 receipt of the request for return to verify if the individual was
8 (directly or indirectly) involved with any enemy unit or nationalist and
9 fascist party."
10 And if you remember, you replied by saying that this probably
11 meant the ZNG, the Croatian Army and police, the HDZ, and maybe some
12 other parties involved.
13 My impression was that when you said probably, you didn't know
14 exactly to whom this referred, this decision, I mean, and what this
15 directly or indirectly involved in enemy formation meant and which
16 nationalist and fascist parties were they talking about specifically. Do
17 you agree with me?
18 A. As far as I can see, there are no specific designations about
19 what forces or parties were involved. That was probably left at the
20 discretion of those who were investigating those issues. But most
21 probably anyone who committed a crime should not return or, rather,
22 should be prosecuted. That was one of the decision passed under the
23 pressure of the international community for the government to adopt a
24 decision on the return, but this was not yet a true democratic decision,
25 because that was April 1992. The conditions were not ripe. But they
1 thought, nevertheless, then if they pass such a decision, that would be
2 sufficient to demonstrate their goodwill to the international community.
3 And as I said, the precondition for the return of refugees is
4 demilitarisation, and this decision was only one in the series of
5 decisions that should change people -- people's state of mind and that
6 things had to change. They still couldn't get over the fact that they
7 had to adopt democratic decisions, because the process of
8 demilitarisation was not yet finished, and any other effort to have
9 people returned would be pointless. How can you return people to an area
10 if you have armed forces walking around the whole territory?
11 Whether they were specifying referring to the ZNG or the HDZ, it
12 was not relevant at that point, but it demonstrated that the government
13 was imposing restrictions. And the same time was done by the Croatian
15 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please slow down.
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Witness.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These people will be prosecuted.
18 The -- the way was not to impose administrative obstacles, and the same
19 was being done by the Croatian authorities. There was no political will,
20 because the authorities didn't want that. Croatia could not face the
21 fact that Croatia would not be an ethnically cleansed state, and the same
22 applied to the Serb territories. And that was the policy that had been
23 pursued for years by Franjo Tudjman, and that could not be overcome
24 overnight. That is why Zecevic spoke as he did. How can one explain
25 that Croats were going to return to Benkovac if those people were
1 expelled from their villages and their houses were ruined? So what was
2 the point of the fighting?
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Dzakula, I totally understand your state of
4 mind, but still the interpreters have to be able to follow you. If they
5 can't, then we'll have a problem with the transcript. So please slow
6 down. Thank you.
7 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Mr. Dzakula, I wanted to ask you about this decision which is
9 rather ambiguous, but it does indicate which kind of people would be free
10 to return. I understand your critical views about this decision and the
11 policies pursued in general.
12 At the time, you were deputy prime minister. Why didn't you
13 propose a different wording to this decision and ask for these enemy
14 forces to be specified in more exact terms as well as who these
15 extremists and fascist parties were? That is what I was asking you
16 about, so kindly answer my question.
17 A. I discussed the issue of return with the prime minister, and I
18 provided a lot of explanations too. Another time he said, No way. This
19 is not feasible. We are not ready yet. Therefore, what can I do? Even
20 if I made some proposals, and I did speak at sessions that we had to
21 create conditions for the people to return. You can maybe find it in
22 some minutes of the meeting, but believe me, I did address this issue on
23 many occasions, and my views at the government meetings of the RSK were
24 quite clear, because eventually the same person, Mr. Zecevic, because
25 even then in 1991 and 1992, he was a moderate person. What happened to
1 him in the meantime and why he changed, I don't know.
2 If I felt that I wouldn't be able to address this issue with him,
3 I wouldn't have raised it at all. However, having in mind the mind-set
4 of the government at the time, there was no way that any different
5 decision could be adopted.
6 Q. Let us now go back now to the discussions about the Vance Plan
7 and the meeting of the 9th of December. You were there, as were
8 representatives of the SAO SBWS. I'm going to read out to you only a
9 portion of Ilija Koncarevic's address. You said that he was the
10 president of the Assembly of the SAO SBWS, and that is on page 215.
11 That's P29. Page 215 in Serbo-Croatian and page 58 in English.
12 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Mr. Zivanovic needs to
13 approach the microphone. We can't hear him.
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Ilija Koncarevic says the following:
16 "I feel like calling you all my brothers right now, and I'll tell
17 you why.
18 "If anyone were to listen to us, it would seem like the
19 Yugoslav Presidency, the dear Bosnian Krajina and Western Slavonia are
20 trying to convince these two Krajinas to accept something. However,
21 gentlemen, we've already agreed to it.
22 "No one among us is any longer considering the option of war. I
23 did not hear anyone during the discussion who wanted to go to war.
24 "Secondly, nobody said that they did not want the UN troops.
25 Mr. Jovic told us that this is the most we can achieve at this moment.
1 But he also said that we will try to exert influence in the drafting of
2 this document to the extent possible in order to have it improved to
3 receive additional guarantees. Could we please discuss that further
4 rather than lamenting on our position. I know that Karadzic and Dzakula
5 wish all the best for me. Hence there is no need for them to try to
6 persuade me any further."
7 Based on what we can see, I'm interested in this --
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Oh, there it is. I'm was waiting for the
9 second -- for the next page. Thank you.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. One would conclude from this that the SBWS accepted the plan
12 along the guidelines of Mr. Jovic pronounced here. He was a member of
13 the Presidency. They wanted to make use of any possibility to have the
14 plan improved and to secure some additional guarantees, if possible. Do
15 you agree with this assertion of mine?
16 A. In my view -- when was this meeting, on the 9th?
17 Q. Yes, I think the 9th.
18 A. Since the Vance Plan was not improved and it was not changed --
19 Q. Sorry, the 12th of December.
20 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speakers not overlap, please.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Let me ask you this: What would be
22 the point of that meeting, to speak out this way if the Vance Plan had
23 been accepted? It was just a tug-of-war along the lines of, Well, in
24 principle we are for that. Like Babic said, we are in favour of the
25 peace option but provided the forces are deployed here and there at
1 specific locations. Whereas myself and some others were trying to
2 explain that that was possible and acceptable. Had they said clearly, We
3 accept the Vance Plan. Let's move along and implement it, it would have
4 been done differently.
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Why does Koncarevic say then that no one said that we do not want
7 any UN forces? This is the maximum that can be achieved at this moment.
8 But he also said that we would try to influence this document to the
9 extent possible, to have it improved and additional assurances received.
10 Could we continue discussing along these lines? So to discuss
11 such proposals in order to receive additional assurances in order to have
12 the document improved, as he put it. The issue was not whether the plan
13 would be accepted. It was clearly said that this was the most that can
14 be achieved at that point in time on the 12th of December.
15 A. Yes. That's what Mr. Koncarevic said at the time it seems.
16 Q. Thank you. The Prosecutor showed you some footage with Hadzic
17 speaking and Martic and Djukic in attendance. It was when they were
18 promoted to the rank of general. Do you know why they were promoted to
19 the rank of general?
20 A. It happened immediately after the breakthrough in the corridor
21 area between Banja Luka and Bijeljina; that is to say in
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina, in the area of Bosanska Posavina. I think there was
23 a month-long combat there. Following that operation, they were awarded
24 the rank of general for their conduct by the president of the republic,
25 both Martic and -- what was the other person's name? I can't recall it.
1 Q. Now that you mention the corridor, can you explain what it was?
2 First of all, where was it located? Second of all, what was its
4 A. The corridor was the only passage to the SAO Krajina and that
5 part of Bosanska Krajina around Banja Luka in order to have them linked
6 with Serbia and Belgrade. Around early May, I think, or perhaps June,
7 maybe in mid-May, Croatian forces entered Bosnia and Herzegovina. They
8 crossed the River Sava near Brcko or Plehan, and at the stormed a Serbian
9 village, massacring civilians. The passage, the corridor, was then cut
11 A decision was made in Banja Luka and Knin to attempt a
12 breakthrough in order to free up the passage. Apparently there was no
13 medication in the hospitals in Banja Luka, in Knin, and in
14 Bosanska Gradiska. They went ahead with that operation, liberating the
15 area of the corridor. As a consequence, all non-Serbs were driven out of
16 that area, both Croats and Muslims. No one remained.
17 Q. The breakthrough, as far as I understood your words, was executed
18 by the army of the SRK, or perhaps the police, and from Republika Srpska,
19 the Serb part of Bosnia. Did I understand you well?
20 A. Yes, it was a joint operation of the two armed forces.
21 Q. You mentioned that the corridor was the only connection between
22 Krajina and Serbia. Was it also the only way to reach Western Slavonia?
23 A. It was the only connection between Western Slavonia and Serbia.
24 We could go to Banja Luka and the SAO Krajina even without the corridor,
25 but we could not reach Serbia without it.
1 Q. Was the corridor important in terms of securing humanitarian
2 assistance and secure supplies for the RSK, including Western Slavonia
3 from the then-Yugoslavia?
4 A. Yes. Without that corridor, no humanitarian or any other kind of
5 supplies could come from Yugoslavia.
6 Q. The Prosecutor showed you a piece of text, an article from
7 "Borba" as well as some footage. It concerns a press conference from
8 September 1991. If you recall that, perhaps I don't need to replay the
10 Can you perhaps answer the following question, since you read the
11 text and saw the video: Is it the same press conference, or are those
12 two separate events?
13 A. I saw many things in the past few days. I don't remember exactly
14 which conference you have in mind.
15 Q. I'll try to assist you concerning the article in "Borba." It
16 refers to borders, stating that borders were being created by force, and
17 it covers a number of questions put to Mr. Hadzic by the journalists
19 You commented on a certain portion of the text which has to do
20 with some kind of genetic hatred harboured by some Croats against Serbs.
21 Do you recall that?
22 A. I do. I remember the text.
23 Q. I'm asking you this, because we believe that it was the same
24 press conference and that the text is simply a report of the footage. We
25 believe that the text does not, however, reflect faithfully what was
1 truly said at the press conference. That is why I asked you whether you
2 believed it to be one and the same press conference, because it seems
3 that the same things were discussed such as borders, or do you believe it
4 to be two separate events?
5 A. We have footage on the one hand where we could hear what the
6 president of the republic said. As for the "Borba" article, I understood
7 it as a journalist interpretation of the press conference. Journalists
8 have a certain freedom what to write about. They can skip words. They
9 don't do verbatims. So I don't know whether the journalists copied
10 exactly with a Mr. Hadzic said. The context, however, is identical, the
11 borders, certain issues. So we have the footage, and we have the
13 Q. Mr. Dzakula, I will now show you a document from our list, in
14 English. It is document 2814 in e-court. We haven't received a
15 translation into Serbian. It's a letter drafted by deputy commander of
16 the 5th Military District, Lieutenant-General Andrija Raseta. It has to
17 do with certain crimes or genocide, as he termed it, against the Serb
18 people. I will translate for you the part that we believe to be
19 relevant. It is the second paragraph:
20 [In English] "Starting from November the 1st, 1991, the armed
21 forces of the Republic of Croatia have carried out an all-out assault on
22 the territories of West Slavonia and Moslavina. The target" --
23 A. Apologies. I can barely hear you. The interpretation I'm
24 receiving is very low. Sorry, I can't hear you.
25 Q. [Interpretation] Can you hear me better now?
1 [In English] "Starting from November the 1st, 1991, the armed
2 forces of the Republic of Croatia have carried out an all-out assault on
3 the territories of West Slavonia and Moslavina. The target of this
4 assault are the inhabitants of Serbian nationality who make up the
5 majority of the inhabitants in the wider region of Grubisno Polje.
6 "It has been established beyond dispute that the following
7 villages have been demolished and burned: Velika and Mala Peratovica,
8 Miokovicevo, Veliki and Mali Grdevac, Velika Dapcevica, Sibenik, Gakovo."
9 A. Sibenik, Sibenik.
10 Q. Sibenik, sorry:
11 "According the claims of the refugees, the same fate came to the
12 villages of Velika and Mala Barna, Topolovica, Kovacica, Donja Rasenica,
13 and six others.
14 "In the region of Gakovo, the Croatian armed forces have burnt a
15 forest (630 hectares) in which there were in refugee some -- in refuge
16 some thousand people and it is presumed that they had burnt to death.
17 "Due to danger of genocide, the inhabitants of Serbian
18 nationality from the areas of Moslavina and Western Slavonia have left
19 into refuge. Apart from the refugees in the greater region of
20 Banja Luka, some 4.000, there are around 10.000 more Serbs in refuge on
21 the mountains of Psunj and Papuk, mostly the sick, elderly, women and
22 children. Due to the lack of food and medicaments and extremely cold
23 weather, these people are in a very critical position."
24 [Interpretation] I think this suffices. I won't read it to the
1 Does this accurately reflect the situation you testified to about
2 the operation in November 1991 in Grubisno Polje?
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic, could you clarify? This is a
4 letter from whom to whom?
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, Your Honours. It is a letter of deputy
6 commander Lieutenant-Colonel General Andrija Raseta, deputy commander of
7 JNA, to the command of the 5th Army district of JNA.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It was sent to the head of the EC monitor mission
10 for Yugoslavia in Zagreb.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
12 A. The text that you have translated for me is accurate save for the
13 630 hectares and several thousand people, which is incorrect. That was
14 an expectation until the refugees actually emerged.
15 As for the 10.000 at Psunj and Papuk, that is not correct. There
16 was over 25.000 refugees. There was a large concentration of Serbs who
17 fled the nearby towns and were located in these villages, and as they
18 were withdrawing from these villages, primarily Grubisno Polje, there was
19 torching, explosives were laid, and the remaining civilians were killed.
20 That much is true.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honours, I will tender this document into
22 evidence. It is --
23 MR. STRINGER: The Prosecution objects, Mr. President. We've
24 heard a lot of evidence and testimony from the witness, and rightfully
25 so, about the incidents, the crimes against Serb populations in Western
1 Slavonia. We haven't objected because it does relate to relevant
2 context, but the Prosecution's position is that we're moving across now
3 into tu quoque. It's not clearly precisely what this document adds to
4 what the witness -- and by the way, the witness has indicated that
5 significant portions of this are not correct, but it's not clear what the
6 document adds beyond tu quoque on top of the context that has been fully
7 developed during the cross-examination. So the Prosecution is going to
8 start objecting -- raising objections on the grounds of tu quoque such as
9 to this exhibit.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: We do not have tu quoque defence. We do not
12 tender this document to prove that the acts or the conduct of the accused
13 are justified with such -- such acts of the opposing side. It just
14 should corroborate the witness testimony.
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Stringer, the possibility of sliding into
17 tu quoque apart, isn't this document of assistance inasmuch as it being
18 addressed to the head of the EC monitor mission memorialises a particular
19 concern that a relevant party had?
20 MR. STRINGER: Yes - excuse me - yes, Your Honour. It does
21 memorialise a concern that this JNA officer had, but the concern that
22 he's expressing is, in our respectful submission -- doesn't add anything
23 to the testimony given by the witness, and really in terms of the purpose
24 of its being tendered into evidence can only really go to tu quoque,
25 because, again, in terms of the -- the events, the concerns, the crimes
1 being committed against Serb populations, there is ample evidence now,
2 and it's come in without objection. It just seemed to the Prosecution,
3 Your Honour, that we're crossing the line now and just going into
4 gratuitous, if you will, tu quoque and it doesn't add anything to what
5 we've already got.
6 [Trial Chamber confers]
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Objection overruled. Admit and marked.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter document 2814 shall be
9 assigned Exhibit D3. Thank you.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Mr. Dzakula, I will show you another very short document. It's
13 65 ter 1428. It's a letter. Cyrus Vance sent it to President Milosevic
14 on the 22nd of January, 1993, Witness. Tudjman -- this document is being
15 translated as well. It is very short, and I will read it out for you:
16 [In English] "I must talk to you immediately. As you know,
17 fighting has broken out between Tudjman's people and armed forces in the
18 area of Maslenica. About an hour ago, Tudjman committed to me that he
19 had given the order to stop fighting. It is urgent that you and I talk
20 about how to get word to the other side to stop fighting.
21 "Please call me immediately."
22 [Interpretation] You testified, among other things, about various
23 Croatian operations, including Operation Maslenica. Based on your
24 evidence, it followed that the operations came about because the
25 Republic of the Serbian Krajina had not been demilitarised and that this
1 was the reason that led to these operations.
2 A. I have difficulty hearing you. You should speak to the
4 Q. Yesterday, you said that the operations such as the
5 Miljevac Plateau, Medak pocket, Maslenica, were brought about by the fact
6 that the Republic of the Serbian Krajina had not been demilitarised.
7 Hence my question: Nowhere in this letter did I observe that Tudjman or
8 anyone else justified the operations by the Croatian forces by the fact
9 that the RSK had not been demilitarised. Quite the contrary. Tudjman
10 issued the order that the filing between the Croatian and Serbian forces
11 should cease. Do you agree with that?
12 A. You've obviously failed to understand my yesterday's testimony
13 concerning the Miljevac Plateau, Maslenica, and Medak pocket. You can
14 see that this letter, too, refers to a war between Tudjman's forces and
15 other forces - I suppose, I don't see the translation - that there were
16 two armed forces clashing. I spoke of these incidents in these terms.
17 The UN forces that were present there did not get involved in the
18 protection of the area when the Croatian Army or the police, I think it
19 was the army, launched an attack on the Miljevac Plateau and Maslenica
20 and, let me add, the Medak pocket. Because of the fact that the UN
21 forces did not want to constitute a buffer zone between two armies,
22 that's why I emphasised the issue of demilitarisation. And I said that
23 had the area been demilitarised, the UN forces would have had an
24 obligation to defend the area which would have averted a conflict between
25 the Croatian Army and the Serbian Army, because we are talking about two
1 armed forces clashing. In other words, I did not say as you termed it
2 now that the fact that the area had not been demilitarised, that moved
3 the Croatian forces to react and attack. No, it is the issue of the fact
4 that the Croatian forces fought the Serbian forces simply because the UN
5 forces did not intervene and assume the duty of defending the area. Have
6 you understood me now?
7 Q. I have. However, based on my observation of this text, Tudjman
8 ordered that all these operations be brought to a stop exactly because
9 the areas were under the protection of the UN forces, quite apart from
10 the fact that there was some other armed force present there as well.
11 A. I am not justifying Tudjman's operations at all. I condemn them.
12 This was area under protection, but the UN did not take upon themselves
13 in military terms the obligation to defend the area, because the area had
14 not been demilitarised. And this led to the two armies clashing. I do
15 condemn the fact that Tudjman launched this action and this was an
16 area -- Maslenica was not used for several years to come. Had the area
17 however been demilitarised, it would have been the obligation of UN
18 soldiers to guard the area. It turned out, and I said so, that the army
19 of Republic of Serbian Krajina which was at Maslenica did not have the
20 force to defend the area. So what was the point of demilitarisation
21 then? We had an army that was unable to defend it, and had the UN
22 assumed their obligations, they would have defended the area, and Tudjman
23 would have been accused of having attacked the UN forces. This was the
24 context of my words, so please view them within that context.
25 Q. Thank you.
1 A. You're welcome.
2 Q. Mr. Dzakula, we have certain information concerning the action
3 directed toward Pakrac.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: This is Exhibit 5868. It should not be presented
5 at the screen, and relevant paragraphs are 49 to 61. It is on the list,
6 21st item.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Zivanovic, they are telling me
8 that you should switch both of your microphones on as you keep moving and
9 they can't hear you.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed, Mr. Zivanovic.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
12 Q. You see, we have information, and I cannot give you the sources
13 under the rules before the Tribunal. We have information about the
14 action launched at Pakrac, and based on the information we have, the
15 action had been pre-planned by the Serbian side, and based on the
16 information we have, you took part in the planning of the action. Since
17 the version of the events you related was different, can you tell us if
18 the information we have is correct?
19 A. What sort of plan is this? What is the date?
20 Q. I'm talking about the action against Pakrac which you said was
21 carried out on the 1st of March, 1991.
22 A. I didn't lead the action, but I was present there. It was led by
23 the police chief who, on the orders of the president of the
24 Municipal Assembly and the president of the Executive Board, was told in
25 writing to disarm the active duty corps of the newly arrived Croatian
1 police and to call up the reserve police force. In response, a special
2 Croatian police unit was sent to the Pakrac area to capture the Pakrac
3 police station. I don't see how I was able to take part in this action
4 since it was undertaken by the Croatian Ministry of the Interior, and
5 if -- on the other side it was arranged by the chief of police on the
6 orders of these two individuals. So I don't see how I could have taken
7 any part in that context. I was present there, and I was present in the
8 negotiations after the action concerning demilitarisation.
9 Q. And you did not take part in the preparations either?
10 A. No, I didn't. I didn't have any powers that would enable me to
11 make any plans. Nobody expected Croatia to send Special Police forces
12 against the Pakrac police, and -- and had the newly arrived Croatian
13 police not taken out of the police station the long-barrelled weapons and
14 had this not been seen by the local policemen who reported it to the
15 chief of police, this would not have happened. Otherwise, it would have
16 been impossible for me to persuade anyone to sign anything. These are
17 mere imputations against me.
18 Q. Mr. Dzakula, we are nearing the end of your cross-examination.
19 The last topic I wanted to discuss with you was the Daruvar Agreement.
20 You testified about it here. We know what it was about.
21 When you were deputy prime minister of the Republic of the
22 Serbian Krajina, did you inform the government of the ongoing
23 negotiations with the Croatian side and that such an agreement would be
25 A. No, I did not inform the government, and I will tell you why I
1 didn't do so. If several days earlier Mr. Hadzic had ordered the
2 commander of the RSK army that we in Western Slavonia should take out the
3 heavy weaponry and tanks out of the warehouses and attack Novska and
4 Nova Gradiska where civilians lived, thereby engaging us in a war without
5 any reason in an area that was demilitarised - let me stress this again -
6 we were being pushed into committing a crime so that we would come in
7 harm's way. We ourselves did not want to get involved in any such
8 conflicts, but then we had to commit to writing our obligation that we
9 would be considered responsible if the Croatian forces attacked the area
10 because we refused to take out heavy weaponry. At that point we realised
11 that we had to wage our own policy so that our area would not fare the
12 way Maslenica and Medak Pocket fared. If Goran Hadzic took upon himself
13 the right to command from Belgrade the RSK commander that we should
14 attack these place - and he couldn't know what the situation was like
15 there, we knew that there was no danger - that meant that we had to take
16 things into our own hands. We had to take charge of things. We saw that
17 they wanted to create an equilibrium. If the Croatians attacked
18 Maslenica, let us open up a front at this end. But this wasn't about
19 opening up fronts. It was about the peace process. However, I didn't
20 have any like-minded people. But we had the Assembly of Western Slavonia
21 which meant that we had the ride to negotiate, we had the right to sign
22 documents, and we had the right to present this before the Assembly. We
23 had that right, and we had that legitimacy. And that was the reason that
24 prompted me to act as I did.
25 Q. In my view, it would have been only natural for you to have
1 informed them of it. Our case is that there was no order coming from
2 Hadzic of that sort. But let me tell you something else: In that event,
3 if you wanted to wage your own policy, would it not have been logical for
4 you to have told the government members that you no longer wanted to have
5 any part in this and that you wanted to pursue a separate policy quite
6 apart from the policy of the RSK and that you would be entering into
7 negotiations with the Croatian side independently?
8 A. Had we been able to say as much without incurring any
9 consequences, we would have. However, it turned out that the
10 consequences were grave. They would not allow you the right to take
11 charge of your own life and freedom. That right was only granted to them
12 to take decisions when and how they wished. We didn't have an
13 interlocutor, and there were lives at stake. You have to understand,
14 600 children 100 metres from the separation line, and these children were
15 aged up to 15 years of age, and somebody wanted to play war. Come on,
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: I have a clarification to ask.
20 Mr. Dzakula, you say, "They would not allow you the right to take
21 charge of your own life and freedom. We didn't have ..." Now, I mean
22 "they." Who do you mean by "they"? "They would not allow you the
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I mean the Krajina
25 authorities, Mr. Hadzic, Mr. Martic, Mr. Zecevic.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you very much.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. There's another thing I'm interested in, Mr. Dzakula. You said
4 that you did not inform them of this because you didn't want to incur any
5 consequences. I suppose that you knew that if you concluded the
6 agreement, consequences would be forthcoming. So I can't understand
7 this. I suppose you could have incurred consequences that would not have
8 been as grave had you informed them of your dealings rather than allow
9 them to hear of it themselves?
10 A. Well, they heard of it indirectly. It did not come as a
11 surprise. As for consequences, well, they did not dare to incur -- to
12 impose any, because the Assembly was the legitimate organ above
13 Mr. Hadzic or Mr. Martic. In this case, they did not have the
14 jurisdiction that was necessary. But it turned out that arresting people
15 came easy to them, and it turned out also that killing people came easy
16 to them, and I thought that I would be protected by the United Nations
17 from the terror that they inflicted upon those of us who wanted to
18 preserve peace and freedom in our area.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Private session, please.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Can we go into private session.
21 [Private session]
21 [Open session]
22 THE REGISTRAR: We're in open session, Your Honours.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Dzakula. This
25 concludes my cross-examination.
1 [In English] Sorry, I will use the break. Maybe we shall have --
2 maybe we will have some more questions. I think that we -- that some
3 time was left.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: I was just going to say that that's the perfect
5 timing, Mr. Zivanovic, but it still is.
6 So we take the break, Mr. Dzakula.
7 [The witness stands down]
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: We will return at 11.00. Court adjourned.
9 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
10 --- On resuming at 11.00 a.m.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: The witness may be brought in.
12 Mr. Zivanovic, do you have anything further in cross?
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour. I just confront the witness
14 with a document. I tried to do that yesterday, but --
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: That's okay. Thank you.
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: -- for some technical reason I didn't manage to
18 [The witness takes the stand]
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed, Mr. Zivanovic.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Mr. Dzakula, I will ask you only one question that I attempted to
22 put to you yesterday, but I had some technical problems with that. Let
23 us look at your statement, which is 65 ter 5595. It's number 12 in our
24 list. Page 13 in English. We need two penultimate lines. In B/C/S,
25 it's page 15, the first two paragraphs.
1 I'm going to read to you, because it's very short, and you say:
2 "As I already said, on the 26th of February, 1992, the
3 SAO Slavonia joined the SAO Krajina and the SAO Slavonia, Baranja and
4 Western Srem in order to form the Republic of Serbian Krajina. We in
5 Western Slavonia heard that the Sarajevo agreement was signed on the
6 2nd of January, 1992, and that the Vance Peace Plan was accepted. As the
7 situation in Slavonia was very chaotic, a few of us who were
8 representatives of the civilian authorities of the SAO Western Slavonia,
9 namely Dusan Ecimovic, Veljko Vukic, Obrad Ivanovic, Milenko Miletic and
10 several others, were interested in implementing the Vance Plan. Our
11 position did not allow us to play a solo game and we saw that the
12 Yugoslav policies was in --"
13 THE INTERPRETER: Can we have the next page in English, please.
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] "The Yugoslavia policy was in
15 favour of the peace plan."
16 [In English] It is further on, page 14 of the English, just
17 to ...
18 [Interpretation] "In addition, we heard that Milan Babic would
19 not be allowed to be the leading political figure in the region, which
20 was an additional reason to decide and realise that it is in our interest
21 to join our forces and implement the Vance Peace Plan. The only
22 objection that we had was that Podravska Slatina was not included in the
23 territories covered by the peace plan. The idea that Hadzic would be
24 president of the Republic of Serbian Krajina encouraged us as he was in
25 favour of the plan."
1 Q. You remember this statement of yours, don't you?
2 A. Yes, I remember that written statement of mine.
3 Q. The inference that one can draw from this statement is that one
4 of the reasons, the motives for your joining the Republic of Serbian
5 Krajina, and I'm talking about Western Slavonia, was the fact that
6 Milan Babic was no longer to be the leading political figure and that you
7 were encouraged by the fact that Goran Hadzic, who was in favour of the
8 peace plan, was to become the president.
9 A. Yes. That is what I stated.
10 Q. I couldn't find anywhere in our statement that you said that
11 Hadzic was against the plan.
12 A. He wasn't against the plan, but later on he failed to implement
13 it. I made mention of this major meeting of the Presidency, and at the
14 end I said that Goran Hadzic was in favour of the Vance Plan. However,
15 at a later stage when the government was formed, they, including Hadzic,
16 did not implement the plan to the full, but believe me, it would have
17 been better for all of us if they had done so.
18 Q. You know that the constitution of the RSK provides that the
19 policy in the RSK is to be implemented by the government and not the
20 president. Would you agree with me with that? I think it's Article 84
21 of the constitution, and the document is L3.
22 A. Yes. That is what the constitution stipulates, but it also
23 stipulates all the duties of the president of the republic are.
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Dzakula. I have
25 no further questions.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, too.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. Before redirect, we would like to
3 rule on Mr. Zivanovic's objection and Mr. Stringer's request regarding
4 the new documents to be used in redirect, documents we understand that
5 are on the 65 ter list.
6 We don't think that Mr. Zivanovic's objection is justified, and
7 his objection therefore is overruled and the documents may be used
8 insofar they are used to redirect and to address issues that came out of
9 cross-examination, of course.
10 Mr. Stringer.
11 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President. I do not have too much,
12 I don't think, in terms of redirect.
13 Re-examination by Mr. Stringer:
14 Q. Mr. Dzakula, hopefully we'll be done in half an hour or so. The
15 first item, actually, is one of the last ones that counsel just took you
16 to. He showed you a part of your OTP witness statement from May of 2002,
17 and he read to you the passage about the proposal on the Vance Plan, and
18 I had wanted to come back to this as well. Page 478 from yesterday's
19 transcript, at the bottom, counsel asked you, Mr. Dzakula, about whether
20 the Vance Plan was -- was signed or agreed on the 2nd of December or the
21 2nd of January. I should say 2nd of December, 1991, or the
22 2nd of January, 1992. And at the time you testified yesterday,
23 Mr. Dzakula, you indicated that you weren't -- you couldn't recall for
24 sure whether it was the 2nd of December or the 2nd of January. Do you
25 remember that? You were referring to the Sarajevo Agreement.
1 A. Yes, I do remember.
2 Q. And if I may, I'll take you back briefly and quickly to the same
3 passage that counsel just read to you which in your witness statement you
5 "We in Western Slavonia heard that the Sarajevo Agreement was
6 signed on 2 January, the 2nd of January, 1992, and that the
7 Vance Peace Plan was accepted."
8 So my question, Mr. Dzakula, is simply whether that refreshes
9 your recollection, that it was in fact on the 2nd of January when the
10 Sarajevo Agreement was signed that you had referred to.
11 A. I know that we discussed the Vance Plan in -- during December,
12 and I still think that it was on the 2nd of December, although the
13 statement says that it's the 2nd of January. However, if this date is
14 officially known, I don't know why you're asking me to remember that.
15 Everybody knows when this document was signed. So I'm a bit confused. I
16 know that we debated it on the 9th and the 12th of December, so if we
17 already discussed it, it just tells me that it had already been accepted,
18 and we continued our discussion throughout January. I still think that
19 that was the 2nd of December.
20 Q. I'd like to ask you to clarify one part of your testimony from
21 yesterday, which is at page 480 of the transcript. You were talking
22 again about the Vance Plan, and you were asked:
23 "When did you learn for the first time that Goran Hadzic was
24 against the plan?"
25 And then this is 470, line -- 479, line 22. And then,
1 Mr. Dzakula, you said that Mr. Hadzic had attended one session, one SFRY
2 Presidency session. He did not attend another. And then skipping over,
3 you said:
4 "I don't want to repeat the entire minutes, but later on as it
5 turned out, Mr. Hadzic accepted the Vance Plan, and he backed it up."
6 Do you recall that?
7 A. Yes, I do.
8 Q. In English they gave us the words "he backed it up," and I wanted
9 to ask you to clarify that, because it could be that someone reading the
10 transcript concludes that Mr. Hadzic accepted the plan and that he fully
11 supported it or implemented it, and I want to ask you whether that is a
12 correct interpretation of your answer here, that he backed it up.
13 A. Mr. Goran Hadzic, one can say positively, publicly accepted in
14 mid-January, that is when Hadzic and Dzakula accepted it, but Babic
15 didn't. He said that he was favour at this important meeting that we
16 kept coming back, but you heard a minute ago that on the
17 12th of December, Koncarevic and I were trying to persuade the people of
18 Western Slavonia with regard to accept the Vance Plan. If it had been
19 accepted, there wouldn't be such a long debate. As I said, it was just a
20 declaratory statement of acceptance, but later on it was not implemented
21 in practice.
22 Q. Were the provisions on demilitarisation implemented by the RSK
24 A. No. The provisions on demilitarisation were not implemented in
25 either SBWS or in the Krajina. The only area where it was implemented
1 was Western Slavonia.
2 Q. And again in terms of Mr. Hadzic's acceptance of the plan, did
3 Mr. Hadzic accept demilitarisation?
4 A. No. Mr. Hadzic did not accept demilitarisation, because it was
5 never implemented.
6 Q. And you've been asked a couple times this morning, there was one
7 passage at page 5 of today's transcript in which a distinction was drawn
8 between RSK government policy or an administrative position of the RSK
9 government in respect of refugees. Do you remember that?
10 A. Yes, I do.
11 Q. The question from my learned friend was that -- he said:
12 "In other words, what prevented the return of Serbs to
13 Western Slavonia was purely administrative. In other words, it was based
14 on the decision of the RSK government and perhaps the government of
16 And you answered:
18 Now, my question is this: Goran Hadzic, the individual, the man
19 Goran Hadzic, if you know, what was his position on the question of
20 return both of Serbs to Western Slavonia as well as Croats to places such
21 as Ilok in the SBWS?
22 A. Mr. Goran Hadzic was not in favour of the return of Croats to
23 Eastern Slavonia because he always linked it with the return of Serbs to
24 Western Slavonia, and he indicated that the conditions were not yet ripe
25 for that to happen.
1 Q. And what was the first condition that had to be overcome?
2 A. The first and the most important precondition was
3 demilitarisation. You cannot start the return of refugees before the UN
4 took over the responsibility for the protection and only demilitarisation
5 was carried through and only after that could the refugees return to
6 Western Slavonia.
7 Q. Mr. Dzakula, we looked at -- you were shown a video first by the
8 Prosecution and then by the Defence during your cross-examination, and
9 you were asked questions about whether it was a meeting in Beli Manastir
10 or Borovo Selo. Do you remember that?
11 A. Yes, I do.
12 Q. Now, we would like to show you a different video, and we'll play
13 it now and you can watch and listen, and tell us whether this, whether
14 you have any comments about this video, the location and the events
15 taking place.
16 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel please give a 65 ter
18 MR. STRINGER: My apologies. 65 ter reference is 4842.1.
19 [Video-clip played]
20 THE INTERPRETER: "[Voiceover] Anchor: The session of all three
21 Assemblies of Serbian region ended last night in Borovo Selo. All 236
22 MPs who attended the session showed notably high level of unity.
23 Djordje Gajdosevic reports:
24 "Reporter: The new president of the Republic of Krajina,
25 Goran Hadzic, who stated he was taking this position wishing only to
1 contribute to the unity of Serbian people. All present expressed their
2 hope to the coming multi-party elections where new capable people would
3 surface, would contribute to this. New amendments, especially the ones
4 referring to the term autonomous region were mostly discussed. Any
5 mention of the word autonomy strikes fear of Croatian authorities
6 returning to these territories, so it was said at the end that the
7 Republic of Srpska Krajina was made up of Serbian regions. The entire
8 session proceeded in desire to avoid schism within Serbian people. A
9 communique signed by the president Mile Paspalj called on unit of Serbian
10 people and urged the Serbs not to take part at a rally scheduled for 9th
11 March in Belgrade and other places. Only a couple of years ago, the
12 communique reads Serbian people believed that times when every event was
13 history and every date reminder of significant historical mistakes were
14 gone for ever. This is how it was in Borovo Selo yesterday, the place
15 that a year ago made it clear to secessionists that Serbian people in
16 these territories recognise only Serbian and Yugoslav laws. Similar
17 things were said at yesterday's session as well, proof that these are
18 people who are true to themselves.
19 "Anchor: We hereby send our best wishes for success with your
20 work --"
21 MR. STRINGER: I think that's enough.
22 Q. Mr. Dzakula, now having seen this video footage, does it affect
23 in any way your testimony about the meetings, the February 1992 meeting,
24 26th of February, whether the various video footages, any of them,
25 correspond to that?
1 A. This footage has reminded me that the Assembly was held in
2 Borovo Selo and that the RSK was established there on the
3 26th of February, and it fully corresponds to the events of that day. By
4 looking at this footage and the people present there refreshed my memory
6 Q. Thank you. If we could please pull up Exhibit P42. And this
7 relates -- I'm looking at page 516 of yesterday's transcript, at the
8 bottom of -- you were talking about your efforts and dealings with
9 Mr. Goulding on the refugee issues in Western Slavonia, and counsel made
10 a reference to your position in the RSK government as being involved in
11 forestry, and I just wanted to come back to that, because to clarify,
12 your dealings with the UN and your involved in refugee issues for
13 Western Slavonia, was that beyond your remit as a minister or
14 vice-president of the RSK?
15 A. No, it did not go beyond my authorities, because you will
16 remember that together with Mr. Zdravko Zecevic, the prime minister of
17 the RSK, I went to New York to discuss the Vance Plan. So if I was
18 authorised at that time and if there was a need that I join the
19 prime minister and the minister of defence for me to go to New York and
20 discuss the importance of the Vance Plan and everything else, then I
21 think that I had every right, that all the activities that I was involved
22 and advocated in New York, I should do the same in Western Slavonia. The
23 UN always made references to my name as well, and this is a confirmation,
24 this trip, of how important my role was.
25 Q. And in P42, we can come back to it if you need to look at it, but
1 you refer to a visitation programme. I should say not you, but
2 Mr. Nambiar who is writing this document refers to a visitation
3 programme. Could you just very briefly describe what is the programme.
4 In terms of your dealing with the UN people, were you hiding this from
5 the RSK authorities? Was this something that you were concealing, or was
6 this something that you were doing openly?
7 A. I was openly involved in these activities. It could not have
8 been implemented without the knowledge of the local police that was
9 directly under the command of Mr. Martic, the minister of police in Knin.
10 These visits were of such nature that Serbs wanted to go to their
11 villages alongside UN forces and only after that would they decide
12 whether to return. We mentioned this check-point where people used to
13 meet and discuss these issues. All of that was done with the approval
14 and blessing of the police, and that could not have been done without the
15 knowledge of the minister, because that was such a critical issue. So
16 nothing was done in secrecy. Everybody was quite aware of every move
17 that we made, including the eventual signing.
18 Q. And it's indicated in this document, but did the visitation
19 programme enjoy the support of the RSK government?
20 A. They were not opposed, but they were not impressed with our move
22 Q. Today, Mr. Dzakula, you were shown Exhibit 65 ter 5516.
23 MR. STRINGER: If we could just put that back up.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Stringer, should we use this document in
25 private session?
1 MR. STRINGER: Oh, apologies. Yes, if we could please go into
2 private session.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Private session, please. Thank you,
4 Mr. Registrar.
5 [Private session]
11 Pages 562-563 redacted. Private session.
10 [Open session]
11 THE REGISTRAR: We're back in open session, Your Honours. Thank
13 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
14 MR. STRINGER:
15 Q. Mr. Dzakula, you were asked earlier today about your knowledge of
16 an operation to take the region of the Bosanska Posavina or the Posavina
17 corridor in summer of 1992. Do you remember that?
18 A. I do.
19 Q. And you said this was a joint military operation. And I just
20 wanted to clarify, who were the armed forces on the Serb side that
21 participated jointly in this operation?
22 A. The police force of the RSK headed by Mr. Martic and the
23 Banja Luka Corps of the VRS.
24 Q. And for the record, the -- the VRS, and the references in the
25 transcript on this, to Banja Luka, those are all based in
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina; is that correct?
2 A. Yes, that is correct. They were in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
3 Q. Now, on page 18 of today's transcript, line 3, Mr. Dzakula, you
4 said on this that:
5 "A decision was made in Banja Luka and Knin to attempt a
6 breakthrough in order to free up the passage."
7 Do you remember that?
8 A. I do.
9 MR. STRINGER: And with Your Honours' permission, I'd like to
10 show one video-clip that relates to this issue. It is 65 ter 4945.2.
11 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could we have the time
12 reference, please?
13 MR. STRINGER: The time reference is 41 minutes, 40 seconds.
14 [Video-clip played]
15 THE INTERPRETER: "[Voiceover] Milan Martic: Before I say
16 anything, let us hold a minute of silence in honour of all our killed
17 soldiers, the Serbian heroes who fell at this corridor and the soldiers
18 who fell at the Miljevacka Plateau. May they rest in peace.
19 "All: May they rest in peace.
20 "Milan Martic: Dear fellow citizens, let me thank you first for
21 your magnificent welcome. I know these are not the times of
22 celebrations, because we are living in a very unfortunate times. Trouble
23 and misfortune forced us to follow this path. You were all witnesses
24 when we were closed off and attacked, when all roads towards the
25 Republic of Srpska Krajina were closed off and when it was made
1 impossible for us to have the most basic means of living, no medicine,
2 our sick were dying, our wives were forced to ask foreign soldiers for
3 cigarettes. We suffered the ultimate misfortune. We addressed our
4 requests to UNPROFOR to make that passage and corridor available to us.
5 But UNPROFOR did not meet that request and made that passage available.
6 This should not be a surprise when it is known that the US, Germany, and
7 other countries which most certainly are not well-intentioned toward the
8 Serbian people are directing UNPROFOR. All credit to the Kenyans who are
9 definitely for us, but the majority ... but the majority of the
10 representatives of UNPROFOR are most certainly not well-intentioned
11 towards us and do not have our best interest at heart and that is why we
12 decided not to beg anyone for mercy, not even UNPROFOR, not Genscher, not
13 Kohl, not Bush, and not that wretched Yeltsin. We had set off to
14 penetrate the corridor with our Serbian heroes, aware that it could cost
15 us our lives. Unfortunately, it did indeed happen. And 25 of our heroes
16 from the Krajina police brigade died in that bloody battle for the
17 corridor. Those men were certainly not killed or to be erased from our
18 memory. Those are the Serbian Obilics, rest assured. Commander Raso,
19 one of the biggest heroes ever known to the Serbian people, will go down
20 in history of the Serbian people and that is where he belongs. All
21 others who fell in glory at that corridor, in order to secure a better
22 future for you, deserve that place. They were also not killed in vain,
23 and it is up to us who stayed behind not to forget their families and we
24 will never do that. We will never forget them, rest assured. I am
25 confident that when we had set off we had a blessing of 99 per cent of
1 you, and that you were convinced that we would complete our task assigned
2 to us by our president of the Republic of Serbian Krajina,
3 Mr. Goran Hadzic, and by the government of the Republic of
4 Serbian Krajina to open up this corridor. You were convinced that we
5 would complete the task. You knew that these heroes, who participated in
6 many battles, and had never lost a battle nor would they lose the battle
7 with Ustashas and their scum, the Green Berets. I thank you for that
8 from my heart, for the trust, and after all, I say: 'We completed our
9 task.' On a number of occasions, we sent messages about the heroic
10 combat of our men, fighting hand -- side by side with the enemy and
11 leaving the trace, and they lived up to the famous image of the
12 'Knindzas' soldiers at the front line. But we will also not forgive
13 those pathetic ones who were hoping for our return in caskets, that our
14 action would fail, and they are punished enough by their thinking alone
15 and they should not be judged. And this whole situation, this bloody
16 combat for our better future, we must give our thanks to all the soldiers
17 who took part in that heroic battle. That is to say, the soldiers of the
18 Republic of Serbian Krajina led by General Momir Talic and all his
19 troops, and the fighters who joined us on arrival in Banja Luka,
20 Prnjavor, Doboj. We were met there with such enthusiasm by the people
21 since we knew -- they knew we were coming with good intentions, to
22 penetrate the corridor. They were in a situation similar to ours. At
23 that place, in this combat, I think the Serbian unit had never shone so
24 bright as now, a brother giving life for a brother. That can only be
25 seen at the corridor and nowhere else. The corridor which was over 120
1 kilometres in length at the front line, it had been mopped up for us for
2 the full 38 days. We said we would not come back until we achieved the
3 final victory, until we forced the enemy across the Sava. Our task was
4 to push them back across the Sava River, and we succeeded."
5 MR. STRINGER: I know it's lengthy, Your Honours. I apologise.
6 I thought for completeness, we could play the entire transcript. We're
7 reaching the end, but we have already covered the point I wanted to raise
8 with Mr. Dzakula, so I'm in your hands. We can play the remainder or if
9 Your Honours wish to move to the main point, I can do that.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: We would prefer you move to the main point,
11 Mr. Stringer.
12 MR. STRINGER:
13 Q. Mr. Dzakula, going back to your testimony from today where you
14 said a decision -- well, first of all, let me ask, this speech that we've
15 just seen part of, do you know what this relates to?
16 A. It relates to a celebration held upon the breakthrough of the
17 corridor, and the two generals were promoted that day by the president of
18 the republic, Goran Hadzic.
19 Q. And you just said promoted by President Hadzic. Do you know if
20 this video relates to an earlier video shown during your direct
22 A. What you have shown me when we discussed their promotions by
23 Goran Hadzic, I think it was the same situation.
24 Q. Now, in this -- in this video, we see Martic say that:
25 "We had a blessing from 99 per cent of you and that you were
1 convinced that we could complete our task given to us by our president of
2 the Republic of Srpska Krajina, Mr. Goran Hadzic, and by the government
3 of Republika Srpska Krajina."
4 Now, my question is, coming back now, you said a decision was
5 made to attempt this breakthrough. Who made decision in Knin on that
6 point, if you know?
7 A. That decision was made by the president of the republic, as well
8 as the government of the RSK, I believe.
9 Q. Thank you. Now, my last couple of questions, Mr. Dzakula,
10 relates to something you testified about yesterday at page 513 of the
11 transcript. You were talking about your conversations with Mr. Zecevic
12 when you were travelling to and from New York, your conversations about
13 the refugee issue. Do you remember that?
14 A. I do.
15 Q. And this is page 513, line 6. Yesterday you said:
16 "After our conversations to New York and back, he told
17 Goran Hadzic that I was in favour of cohabitation with the Croats. No
18 one else could have. So I was closely observed in terms of what I was to
20 Do you remember that testimony?
21 A. Yes, I do recall that.
22 Q. Now, my question is: Why did you conclude that it was
23 Mr. Zecevic who said this, who told this to Goran Hadzic?
24 A. Because he disagreed with my position. He denied it. He said
25 that he understood it to be the wish of the people but that he was unable
1 and unwilling to accept it. If he was unable to accept my words as such,
2 it would be realistic of me to expect that it -- he was the only person
3 who could say such a thing. My colleagues in Western Slavonia did not
4 have such an opportunity, and their position was similar to mine. At
5 that time, I had not spoken with anyone from the government on that
7 Q. And what was the time-frame of these trips to New York with
8 Mr. Zecevic you're talking about, month and year?
9 A. I think it was in late March 1992.
10 Q. And you've said here that he told Goran Hadzic that you were in
11 favour of cohabitation with the Croats. Did you ever get any reaction
12 from Mr. Hadzic about that?
13 A. When he summoned me to discuss things with me and when he asked
14 me about it, I could feel in his voice --
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Just a moment.
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It was not subject of cross-examination in the
17 last question.
18 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Stringer.
19 MR. STRINGER: Well, I think this falls within the scope of the
20 cross-examination. These are -- this all -- I'm looking at again
21 page 513 of yesterday's transcript. Counsel was asking the witness about
22 these conversations. He raised the conversations with Mr. Zecevic in his
23 cross-examination, that these conversations occurred during their trips
24 to New York. And then during that, the witness said that he told
25 Goran Hadzic, Mr. Zecevic. I think it's a fair and logical next question
1 to ask whether that resulted in any reaction. It's --
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Objection overruled.
3 MR. STRINGER:
4 Q. Would you like me to repeat the question, Mr. Dzakula?
5 A. No. I remember the question. When Mr. Hadzic asked me about
6 whether I was in favour of cohabitation with Croats, he put a stress on
7 it, something along the lines: How can you even think of such situation?
8 Could you even have said that? And I'm asking you, because I will
9 believe what you tell me.
10 From that, I understood that he did not support that thesis.
11 Q. Now, this conversation with Mr. Hadzic, when did this -- when did
12 this occur? Is this something you've testified about before?
13 A. Yes, I have, in some previous cases. I think it was in late
14 April or early May 1992.
15 Q. Do you know where that conversation occurred?
16 A. There was a government session in Erdut. There I was summoned to
17 his office.
18 Q. Was anyone else present?
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May I have any reference in my cross-examination
21 about this subject, please.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: I seem to remember that I overruled your
23 objection. Aren't you repeating the objection?
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: No, Your Honours. I cannot follow this part of
25 my cross-examination. There is no -- I cannot find it.
1 MR. STRINGER: Well --
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I'd just like to see a reference. It is not an
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: All right. Sorry. Mr. Stringer.
5 MR. STRINGER: Our position, Mr. President, is that this flows
6 logically from the question raised in cross-examination, the answers that
7 were given in cross about conversations with Zecevic that were then
8 conveyed to Mr. Hadzic. I think it's a fair continuation of what was
9 raised during the cross.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Within limits, Mr. Stringer.
11 MR. STRINGER: I'll just -- yes, Your Honour.
12 Q. You mentioned the government session in Erdut where you were
13 summoned to his office, and I asked whether anyone else was present. If
14 you can just answer that question and then we'll see whether that's
16 A. It -- next to Goran Hadzic, there was Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan.
17 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, that completes my redirect. We
18 would tender into evidence the video 4945.2, which was just shown.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
20 THE REGISTRAR: It shall be assigned Exhibit P48. Thank you.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: The other -- the other documents tendered.
22 MR. STRINGER: The Croatian intelligence report we are not
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. Thank you very much.
25 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Two videos. Two videos, Mr. Stringer, were
2 shown, and only one tendered.
3 MR. STRINGER: My apologies. Both being tendered, 4842.1 and
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter document 4842.1 shall be
7 assigned Exhibit P49. Thank you.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Anything coming out of redirect from Defence?
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: No, Your Honour. Thank you.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
11 [Trial Chamber confers]
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Dzakula, this brings us to the end of your
13 testimony. I thank you for coming to the Tribunal to assist us with your
14 testimony. You are now released as a witness. The usher will escort you
15 out of the courtroom, and we wish you a safe journey home. Thank you.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour, and I wish
17 you a pleasant stay here.
18 [The witness withdrew]
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: We take the adjournment to Tuesday afternoon,
20 1.30, in this courtroom. I wish all of you a good weekend.
21 Court adjourned.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 12.01 p.m.,
23 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 30th day
24 of October, 2012, at 1.30 p.m.