1 Monday, 3 December 2012
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.00 a.m.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Good morning to everyone in and around the
7 Mr. Registrar, could you call the case, please.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours.
9 This is the case IT-04-75-T, the Prosecutor versus Goran Hadzic.
10 Thank you.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
12 May we have the appearances, starting with the Prosecution,
14 MR. STRINGER: Good morning, Mr. President, Your Honours.
15 Douglas Stringer with Matthew Olmsted, Case Manager
16 Sebastiaan van Hooydonk for the Prosecution.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. Mr. Zivanovic, for the Defence.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Good morning, Your Honours. For the Defence of
19 Goran Hadzic, Zoran Zivanovic and Christopher Gosnell. Thank you.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
21 Could we go into private session for a minute, please.
22 [Private session]
17 [Open session]
18 THE REGISTRAR: We're in open session, Your Honours. Thank you.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes, Mr. Zivanovic.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I just want to inform you that one of Defence
21 exhibits, it is D16, was admitted into evidence just in English version,
22 in English translation. Somehow original -- B/C/S original was omitted.
23 It is a judgement of War Crime Chamber of the High Court in Belgrade from
24 the Lovas case and it could be found in e-court under doc ID 1D002203.
25 And I just like to -- to put it in the record so that the Trial Chamber
1 could instruct the Registrar to put the original of this document into
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: So of the English version already is --
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: -- and now we can have the B/C/S version.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. Thank you.
8 Mr. Stringer.
9 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
10 I'm not sure -- I believe that I have in mind the same document
11 or judgement that counsel has just referred to. Prosecution position --
12 I don't know if this is -- I believe this has not yet been admitted and
13 there was an issue as to whether it should be admitted.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: There is a Defence exhibit number. Is it MFI'd,
15 Mr. Registrar?
16 THE REGISTRAR: The document has been admitted into evidence as
17 Defence Exhibit D16 on 26th of November through Witness Cirba, Zeljko.
18 Thank you.
19 MR. STRINGER: I have another judgement in mind for which we will
20 be filing a submission.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. May the witness be brought in.
22 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: So the original can be admitted as well,
24 Mr. Registrar.
25 [The witness entered court]
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Good morning, Mr. Rendulic. Can you hear me in a
2 language you understand?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honour. I can
4 hear you very well.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you very much.
6 Now could you state your name and your date of birth for the
7 record, please. And give -- give your ethnicity.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Adam Rendulic, 19 November 1947.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. You will to make a solemn declaration
11 by which witnesses commit themselves to tell the truth. I need to point
12 out to you that making that declaration you expose yourself to the
13 penalties of perjury should you give false or untruthful information to
14 the Tribunal. Could you now read the solemn declaration, please.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
16 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you very much. You may be seated.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
19 WITNESS: ADAM RENDULIC
20 [Witness answered through interpreter]
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Is it your witness, Mr. Olmsted?
22 MR. OLMSTED: Yes, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed.
24 MR. OLMSTED: Thank you.
25 Examination by Mr. Olmsted:
1 Q. Good morning, Mr. Rendulic.
2 A. Good morning.
3 Q. I want to begin by asking you a few questions about your
5 Can you tell us, where do you currently live?
6 A. I live in Lovas, where I was born.
7 Q. And how are you employed?
8 A. I am still director of the agricultural co-operative in Lovas.
9 Q. And is it correct that after high school you received an
10 agricultural degree from Banja Luka university?
11 A. Yes. That's where I graduated from the higher school of
13 Q. And after completing university, did you return to Lovas in about
15 A. Yes, I returned to Lovas in 1968.
16 Q. And where did you begin working?
17 A. [No interpretation]. First I went to do my military service in
18 Pozarevac and then I returned from Pozarevac in 1968.
19 Q. Thank you for that clarification. And where did you begin
20 working when you returned to Lovas?
21 A. I started working immediately in the agricultural co-operative in
22 Lovas in December 1969.
23 Q. And when did you become director of that co-operative?
24 A. I became director in 1975.
25 Q. And I just want to check the date. You said 1975?
1 A. Oh, sorry, 1985. 1985 I became director.
2 Q. No problem. Can you tell -- oh, go ahead.
3 A. Yes, I became director in 1969.
4 Q. Let's make sure we just have this correct.
5 Is director the same as general manager?
6 A. Yes, something like that.
7 Q. And when you started in 1969, you were not the general manager?
8 A. No, no. I became general manager in 1985.
9 Q. I think that clarifies that.
10 Now, could you tell us a little bit about this co-operative back
11 in 1990, 1991, what it did, and how big it was.
12 A. The agricultural co-operative of Lovas was mainly engaged in
13 farming and organising our co-operators. We had about 1900 hectares and
14 we had about 82 staff members. We organised our co-operants by financing
15 and giving them loans; and, later on, we organised our own production,
16 including vineyards and orchards.
17 Q. And what were the ethnicities of the staff at the co-operative?
18 A. They were mainly Croats, plus a few Serbs.
19 Q. And have you ever held any political office?
20 A. No, never.
21 Q. And have you been a member of any political party?
22 A. Yes. I was a member of the League of Communists.
23 Q. Until when?
24 A. Until 1991.
25 Q. Were you ever a member of the HDZ party?
1 A. No, never.
2 MR. OLMSTED: May we bring up P233.140. This is tab 33.
3 Your Honours, I think this was originally tendered under seal but
4 I don't believe there is any reason for it to be under seal. So I think
5 we can go ahead and broadcast it. I don't know if we have removed that
7 It has been indicated to me that we have not removed that
8 designation, so the Prosecution would move at this time to remove the
9 under seal designation of this exhibit. There really is no reason, as we
10 can see.
11 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: We'll have to believe you on this one,
13 Mr. Olmsted, because we can't verify for the moment. But if you say
14 there is no problem, the -- the -- confidential status will be lifted.
15 Please do so, Mr. Registrar.
16 MR. OLMSTED: Thank you. If we could zoom in to the area that's
17 south-west -- or south-east of Vukovar. It's kind of the little bit that
18 sticks out to the east on the right-hand side of the map. Zoom in a
19 little bit more, into that area, that finger. Okay. Now if we scroll
20 down and scroll to the right. Thank you.
21 Q. Sir, can you tell us, generally speaking, what was the ethnic
22 majority in the villages in this area of Western Srem that's south-east
23 of Vukovar?
24 A. In this Srem triangle, as we call it, Lovas, Tovarnik and up to
25 Ilok from Vukovar, the majority population was exclusively Croat. And
1 that's why the border is so winding because when the border was drawn
2 after the Second World War, it was drawn alongside Croat villages. If it
3 had been straight, these Croat villages would have ended up in Serbia, in
4 Vojvodina. That's why the boundary is so meandering because of these
5 Croat villages.
6 Q. And can you just confirm, was this the case with regard to the
7 villages that are coloured in red, were they all ethnic majority of
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And you've given us a little bit about the historical
11 significance of the oddly shaped boundaries.
12 Can you tell us, what about the Serb population in this area?
13 Were they originally from this Western Srem triangle, as you called it?
14 A. Well, one smaller part is. The second part was populated,
15 settled by Serbian population from Banja and Kordun after the
16 Second World War.
17 MR. OLMSTED: And could we just scroll up a little bit. I just
18 want to -- we're missing a village in there. Okay, thank you. That's
20 Q. Could you please -- just so question put in context some of your
21 evidence, can you circle for us Lovas?
22 A. Here is Lovas.
23 Q. And could you tell us, prior to the conflict, how many people
24 lived in that village?
25 A. About 1700.
1 Q. And what was the ethnic makeup of that village?
2 A. The greatest majority were Croats. There was only 18 -- sorry,
3 8 per cent of Serbs; namely, 133 residents were Serb.
4 Q. Can you now circle Sotin?
5 A. Sotin is here.
6 Q. And what was the population of Sotin?
7 A. I don't know exactly, but I believe there were more Serbs in
8 Sotin than in Lovas.
9 Q. And how many people lived in Sotin ?
10 A. Also around 1700. Perhaps around 20 per cent were Serb.
11 Q. And can you circle Tovarnik for us.
12 A. Tovarnik ... wait a minute. Here it is. Tovarnik.
13 Q. And can you tell us what the population of Tovarnik was.
14 A. Again, the majority were Croats, but there were also Serbs. I
15 don't know exactly how many. But certainly fewer than Croats, a lot
17 Q. And can you give us a rough number of the total people -- number
18 of people who lived in Tovarnik?
19 A. About 3.000.
20 Q. Now could you circle for us Bapska?
21 A. Bapska is here.
22 Q. And can you tell us about the population in Bapska.
23 A. Bapska was exclusively Croat, in terms of population.
24 Q. And roughly how many people lived there?
25 A. Again, around 1700, the same as in Lovas.
1 Q. And, finally, could you circle Ilok.
2 A. Ilok is here.
3 Q. And what was the population in Ilok?
4 A. Again, it was a predominantly Croat population. There were some
5 Slovaks, more Slovaks than Serbs. Serbs were in a significantly smaller
7 Q. And what was the total population in Ilok before the conflict?
8 A. Around 6.000.
9 Q. Prior to May 1991 - I want to return to Lovas, where you lived -
10 prior to May 1991, how were the relations between the Croats and the
11 Serbs in your village?
12 A. Before and in the course of 1990 before the war escalated, the
13 relations between Serbs and Croats were very good.
14 Q. And can you tell us how many police officers were assigned to
16 A. Lovas did not have a police station of its own. There were a few
17 policemen from Lovas who worked in police stations in Vukovar and
19 Q. Let's clarify your last answer. You said there were a few
20 policemen from Lovas -- I understand, okay.
21 So the police officers who came to Lovas, where was their
23 A. In Tovarnik and in Vukovar.
24 Q. And you said there were a few police officers who were assigned
25 to Lovas. What were their ethnicities?
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes --
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was in 1991, they were mainly
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Witness already answered that question. Thank
7 MR. OLMSTED: I don't see where he answered the question.
8 Q. I -- my question is: You said there were three police officers
9 or a few police officers who came to Lovas regularly to patrol or to
10 perform duties in Lovas. And my question to you is: Those few police
11 officers, what were their ethnicities?
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Olmsted -- Mr. Witness, just one moment.
13 Where did the witness -- or when did the witness say that there
14 were police officers assigned to Lovas? I must have missed that.
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Line 17.
17 MR. OLMSTED: If I look at page 10, line 11 says: There were a
18 few policemen from Lovas.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yeah, there were a few policemen from -- from.
20 And I think the next line is a question. It's not an answer.
21 MR. OLMSTED: Then I'll clarify. I thought it was clarified but
22 let me clarify that matter.
23 Q. Sir, can you tell us how many police officers were assigned to
24 Lovas; in other words, they performed duties in Lovas prior to the
1 A. It all depends on whether you mean 1991 or before 1991. I
2 understood we were talking about the period before 1991. At that time,
3 police came from Tovarnik to Lovas on patrol, mainly two policemen. In
4 the earlier years, one was Muslim and one was Serb. They came from
6 Later on, two Serbs would come, one called Rudic, a native of
7 Lovas, and another one from Tovarnik. Before the war, they would do
8 police work in Lovas. Before 1991.
9 Q. And now can you tell us: In 1991, did that change?
10 A. In 1991, with the establishment of the Croatian state, things did
11 change. There was a police station in Tovarnik, and, at that time, from
12 Lovas, there were a few policemen who went to work to Tovarnik and
14 Q. What about in Lovas itself? Did the number of police officers
15 who would come to Lovas to perform duties, did that change in 1991?
16 A. Well, yes, that changed. Croats would mainly come, but also
17 Mica Devcic, for instance, was a Serb, a native of Lovas, who worked in
19 Q. And can you give us roughly in this period of 1991 - obviously
20 before October - how many police officers would be assigned to Lovas
22 A. Well, policemen did not work in Lovas. The station was in
23 Tovarnik, and they would come to Lovas from Tovarnik.
24 Q. All right. Now, were you aware of an armed skirmish that
25 occurred on the 2nd of May, 1991, in Borovo Selo?
1 A. Oh, yes, I know about that very well. That's when 13 policemen
2 got killed, I believe.
3 JUDGE HALL: If I might interrupt before we go on. I'm still
4 confused about this police coming to Lovas. We know that there was no
5 police station there. Could you get the witness do expand on how this
6 worked in terms of policemen coming to Lovas if there was no police
7 station? I mean, they passed through or what? What was going on?
8 MR. OLMSTED:
9 Q. Mr. Rendulic, did you understand the Judge's question? Could you
10 answer it, please.
11 A. Yes, I understood.
12 Police officers who were employed by the police worked at the
13 police station in Tovarnik. They lived in Lovas and they went to work in
14 Tovarnik. And they would come to Lovas only if required, just like
15 things worked before 1991, as I explained.
16 JUDGE HALL: So the -- if required, on average, say, in a month,
17 how many times would the police officers then have to come to Lovas?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The same as earlier. They would
19 come on a weekly basis, collect information, see if there were any
20 problems, any situations, any incidents, and then decisions would be
21 made. But they would come once a week, I suppose.
22 JUDGE HALL: Thank you, Mr. Rendulic.
23 [Microphone not activated].
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Olmsted just one -- just one moment, please.
25 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Yes, Prosecutor. Sorry.
1 Witness, we're still on this story about policemen.
2 On page 12 of the transcript, you said there were two police
3 officers, of which one was Serb and the other was a Muslim. These two
4 used to come to Lovas. And later, also two policemen came, and they were
5 Serb. And yet later, we have two Croat policemen.
6 Was there a particular reason for the ethnic composition of the
7 team of police who would come to Lovas?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I already said we had to
9 distinguish between 1991 and the period before.
10 These policemen, Serbs, came before 1991. With the establishment
11 of the Croatian state, things changed. And also there was no police
12 station in Lovas. The police came from Tovarnik as required.
13 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. It's clear
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Welcome.
16 MR. OLMSTED:
17 Q. All right. Now you've testified that you're familiar with the
18 incident on the 2nd of May, 1991 in Borovo Selo and we have evidence
19 already before this Trial Chamber about that incident.
20 But can you tell us what effect did this event have on the
21 citizens of Lovas?
22 A. It had a negative effect on people in Lovas and around it.
23 Thirteen police officers, Croats, were killed, and obviously this created
24 some tensions, problems, nervousness, among the villagers. And the
25 situation became a bit more complicated as of then on.
1 Q. Did any of the Serbs in Lovas around this time leave Lovas?
2 A. No, nobody left Lovas.
3 Q. What about before May? Did any of the Serbs from Lovas leave?
4 A. Well, yes. Young men left Lovas. I asked their parents where
5 they went, and their interpretation was that they had gone to Vojvodina
6 to look for work. Later on, it turned out that they were not telling the
8 Q. And were these young Serb men under any pressure by the Croat
9 population to leave Lovas?
10 A. No. There were no pressures put on anybody in Lovas, including
12 Q. And you've testified that later on it turned out that they were
13 not telling the truth. What did you find out later on?
14 A. When I went to Sid to negotiate, I found them as members of the
15 paramilitary formations in Tovarnik.
16 Q. Now, at some point in 1991, was a Crisis Committee formed in
18 A. Well, yes. After the events in Borovo Selo, after the Croatian
19 police officers were killed, Crisis Staffs were formed everywhere in
20 several villages, including Lovas.
21 Q. And can you provide us with the names of some of the members of
22 the Crisis Committee, if you can recall them?
23 A. I can't remember all of them, but Jozo Milas was its president.
24 Then Djuka Pilic. I myself was a member. Ivo Madzarevic was another
25 one. There was some ten or so people. Zeljko Cirba was one of them. I
1 can't remember all of their names.
2 Q. That's fine. Can you tell us, when did you become a member of
3 this Crisis Committee?
4 A. I became a member sometime in the month of July. I was recruited
5 to join the Crisis Staff.
6 Q. And what was the purpose of this Crisis Committee, or Crisis
7 Staff, as you called it?
8 A. The purpose was to monitor the developments in the village and in
9 the other villages as well, to maintain contacts, because the situation
10 was compounded by the developments in Borovo Selo, and the situation
11 didn't bode well for the future.
12 Q. And were the meetings of the Crisis Staff public?
13 A. Yes, they were mostly public. Everybody could attend. Even some
14 Serbs attended.
15 Q. And can you tell us, what measures did the Crisis Staff implement
16 to increase security in Lovas?
17 A. Well, we mostly worked on contacts and communication with the
18 people in the village, with the Serbs. That's why we held meetings with
19 the Serbs, in order to agree on the ways to maintain the integrity and
20 the life as it was before 1991.
21 Q. Were check-points established around Lovas?
22 A. Yes, they were. After all the unfortunate events, check-points
23 were set up at perhaps seven or eight places around the village.
24 Q. And can you tell us the period during which these check-points
25 existed, roughly?
1 A. Well, sometime in June, or perhaps July, that's when they were
2 set up.
3 Q. And for how long did they exist for?
4 A. They existed until up to the 29th of November, 1991.
5 Q. We have the date 29th of November, 1991. Can you confirm that
6 that's correct?
7 A. Yes, I believe that I -- that's what I said.
8 Q. Let me ask you this: When did you leave Lovas?
9 A. I left Lovas on the 10th of October, which was the day when the
10 attack on Lovas was mounted.
11 Q. And did -- were these check-points still in existence when you
12 left in October?
13 A. No. I said that they stopped existing on the 29th of September,
14 which means that they were not in existence in the month of October.
15 Q. We just had to clarify that for the record because the record
16 reflected the month of November.
17 Now, can you tell us who manned these check-points?
18 A. Those check-points were manned by Croats. They were the
19 majority, but Serbs also did so. They were not on duty. They would
20 often come to the check-points. Sometimes they would even bring drinks
21 to the guys who regularly manned those check-points.
22 Q. And were the men who manned these check-points, were they members
23 of any armed forces?
24 A. No, there were no armed forces in Lovas.
25 Q. And were any of these persons from outside of Lovas?
1 A. I don't know that there were any military formations outside of
2 Lovas and that they belonged to them.
3 Q. No, let me rephrase my question.
4 These men who manned the check-points in Lovas, were they from
5 Lovas itself, or did they come from outside of Lovas?
6 A. They were our local guys from Lovas.
7 Q. And what were the duties of these men who manned these
9 A. One of their duties was to control who was coming to the village
10 and leaving it, to see what was going on. Because there were already
11 groups around the village who were on reconnaissance duty. My father was
12 approached by some troops who asked him what was going on in the village.
13 They asked him where the Serbian cemetery was, and my father answered,
14 There is no separate Serbian cemetery.
15 So the main task was to be vigilant, to make sure that no
16 incidents happened because the atmosphere was already boiling at the
18 Q. You mentioned their duty was to control who was coming and going
19 from the village. Were they stopping people and preventing people from
20 leaving or entering the village?
21 A. No, no. It was nothing like customs control, for example. It
22 was just a kind of visual inspection, to see what was going on around the
23 village. Nobody was stopped or searched or controlled in that sense.
24 Q. And how were these men who armed the -- the men who manned the
25 check-point, how were they armed?
1 A. They were on guard during the night. During the day, there was
2 no need for that because everybody could see everything. It happened
3 during the night, and they mostly carried hunting rifles. Those men who
4 manned the check-points during the night were given those arms by our
5 local hunters.
6 Q. And, to your knowledge, during the existence of these
7 check-points, were the weapons ever fired? Were these hunting rifles
8 ever fired?
9 A. No. Fire was never opened.
10 Q. And how did the local Serbs react to these check-points?
11 A. Well, nothing. We did everything with prior consultations with
12 them. They were happy that there were those check-points. They did not
13 want incidents to happen on any of the sides. They did not want any
14 problem to come from the outside. And they were happy. They were
15 satisfied. We talked to them a lot. I myself talked to them a lot.
16 They never expressed satisfaction [as interpreted], at least those Serbs,
17 those locals of Lovas that we lived with.
18 Q. The record says that you stated: "They never expressed
19 satisfaction." Can you clarify that for us?
20 A. What I meant was that there was dissatisfaction but for some
21 other reasons. But when it comes to people trying to maintain order in
22 the village, they were satisfied with that.
23 Q. Now, to your knowledge, was the Crisis Committee involved in the
24 creation of any armed formations in Lovas?
25 A. No. As I've already told you, there were no armed formations in
2 Q. And did the Crisis Committee acquire any explosives?
3 A. The Crisis Staff did not acquire any explosives, as far as I
5 Q. Can you tell us, was there a point in time when Lovas received
6 some mines from somewhere?
7 A. Oh, well, yes. Those were anti-armour mines, anti-tank mines,
8 that were delivered from Ilok and they were returned to Ilok in late
9 September. Those mines were from Ilok. We didn't want to use them.
10 They remained at the depot, and they were returned to Ilok on the
11 29th of September. And they came from Ilok, because, at one point in
12 time, there was a lot of military activity going on around Ilok,
13 including JNA tanks.
14 Q. And how many anti-tank mines were received?
15 A. I don't know exactly. Some 15 or so, I would say.
16 Q. And why weren't they used? Why weren't they planted anywhere?
17 A. They were not planted because the village functioned normally.
18 People would go into the fields with tractors to farm the land, and
19 that's why we thought that it would have been more of a problem if we had
20 planted those mines than if we hadn't.
21 Q. Now, did the Crisis Staff take any actions to dispel any concerns
22 of the Serb population?
23 A. I've already told you, I talked a lot with the Serbs. We had a
24 meeting in Mirko Lovric's house. He was a Serb. And they themselves
25 gathered and invited us to come, and it was not the other way around. We
1 did not want to always invite them. We didn't want those initiatives
2 always to come from us. We told them, Okay, whenever you want, you
3 gather wherever you want and invite us and we'll come and talk to you.
4 Q. Can you tell us approximately when this meeting at Mr. Lovric's
5 house occurred?
6 A. I believe that that was immediately after the incident in Borovo.
7 The end of May or perhaps the beginning of June 1991.
8 Q. Sometime in July 1991, do you recall an incident involving the
9 JNA at the Lovas co-operative?
10 JUDGE HALL: Sorry, Mr. Olmsted. There's a small point, nothing
11 may turn on it. But before you go into another area --
12 Mr. Rendulic, you mentioned earlier that you had been recruited
13 to the Crisis Staff. My question is in two parts. The first part is,
14 does it mean you didn't volunteer; and the second part is, who recruited
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, you see, I volunteered.
17 However, that was upon the invitation of my secretary who worked with me
18 in my company and he was the president of the Crisis Staff, so when he
19 asked me whether I would join, in view of the fact that I had a
20 possibility to influence people through the farm, although I was not an
21 HDZ member, he was of an opinion that I would make a great contribution
22 in calming the situation down between the Croats and the Serbs, which is
23 why he invited me to join.
24 JUDGE HALL: Thank you very much, sir.
25 Yes, Mr. Olmsted.
1 MR. OLMSTED: Thank you, Your Honour.
2 Q. Now, I want to turn to my question. Sometime in July 1991, do
3 you recall an incident involving the JNA soldiers at the Lovas
5 A. Well, yes, I remember there was a minor incident. The military
6 came. I don't know whether they were reservists or the regular JNA.
7 They came to the farm. They removed the Croatian flag from the building.
8 They made a guard do it. And then they forced Nikica Maric to climb a
9 silo, which is about 22 metres high, and to remove the flag from there.
10 Nobody wanted to do that so they forced Nikica Maric to do that. And
11 further on, they demanded from the guard the key to a cupboard where two
12 rifles were locked up. Those rifles belonged to the guards. Those were
13 M-48 old rifles. The troops took the key from the guard. They took the
14 rifles away. They promised that they would return them to us, but they
15 never did.
16 Q. In August 1991, did you attend a meeting with any members of the
18 A. Well, yes. There were a lot of contacts with the JNA. In the
19 month of August, the road between Tovarnik and Lovas or, rather, Sid was
20 blocked. At that time, we still used Sid which is in Serbia. People
21 went there for various things, for example, to buy medicines and other
22 things. Vukovar was already encircled. So we could no go to Vukovar so
23 we had to go to Sid. The reservists of the Novi Sad Corps blocked the
24 road and they no longer allowed the police officers to go to Tovarnik
25 where they worked. Myself, Djuro Prodanovic and Zeljko Cirba went to
1 talk to the reservist in order to ask him to lift the blockade of the
2 road to allow the free passage of our villagers and they did that.
3 Q. And do you remember the name of the JNA officer with whom you met
4 that day?
5 A. I -- they told us that they were reservist from the Novi Sad
6 Corps. There was a lieutenant-colonel, a younger man, whose name I don't
7 remember, and another one was a Major Radosavljevic who told us that he
8 was from Sid. He knew us. He was familiar with Lovas. He often came to
9 Lovas to do some business there, and he said that he was a familiar with
10 a lot of people from Lovas.
11 Q. And did this JNA major tell you -- tell the Lovas delegation
12 anything, as far as information he had about Lovas and Tovarnik?
13 A. He told us at the place where we were that he knew Lovas, that he
14 knew people, that it was a peaceful village, that there were no problems
15 in that village. He told us that they -- they had been sent from the
16 Novi Sad Corps with an instruction, according to which that there were
17 2.000 Ustasha there, and that was not true, which they finally realised
18 themselves. And at the end of that meeting he said, Don't touch us. We
19 won't touch you.
20 Q. Can you tell us how many armed men were there in Lovas at this
22 A. Armed people. I don't know. If you want to take into account
23 hunting rifles, I would say that some 35 men were armed, but the arms in
24 question were hunting rifles.
25 Q. Prior to the attack on Lovas, was there ever a ZNG unit in the
2 A. Before the attack at the beginning of May, there was a group of
3 some ten to 12 men who were ZNG. They were billeted in the old school.
4 They were there for perhaps ten or 15 days, after which they left.
5 Q. And while they were in Lovas for this short period of time, what
6 were they doing?
7 A. Nothing. They drove their cars around the village. They went
8 to -- to Tovarnik and back. Everything was calm. Nothing was happening,
9 and they left.
10 Q. Do you know why they left?
11 A. I don't know why they left.
12 Q. Now beside this is -- strike that question.
13 Now did you give this information regarding the number of armed
14 men in Lovas, as well as this information about this ZNG unit, to the
15 major at this meeting regarding the blockade?
16 A. I don't remember. We discussed things quite openly. He said
17 that he knew Lovas very well. I really don't remember whether we
18 mentioned the ZNG members. Our conversation was very open and very
20 Q. Setting aside the ZNG unit that was in Lovas temporarily, did you
21 inform the major that his information about the 2.000 Ustasha was
22 incorrect and that there was much fewer armed men in Lovas?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And did he verify the information you provided him?
25 A. I don't know whether he verified the information. There was no
1 need to verify anything because no information that they had was correct.
2 Q. Now, this meeting, did it -- where did it take place? Did it
3 take place at the blockade itself?
4 A. It was actually on the road between Tovarnik and Lovas. It was
5 in a field by that road.
6 Q. And during this meeting, did you have the opportunity to inspect
7 any of the JNA vehicles?
8 A. Well, as we were talking, I told that major I have never seen a
9 tank. And he told me, Do you want to see one? I said yes. He said,
10 Okay. Climb the tank. And then I climbed the tank. I saw a machine-gun
11 with live ammunition, and I said, Well, now I'm looking at a tank but
12 this is live ammunition. And even if it is, the most important thing is
13 that we -- you don't open fire. And then one of the soldiers who was
14 sitting on the tank said, Why shouldn't we be opening fire on you
15 Ustasha? And then the major said, You can't say that they are Ustasha.
16 They are from Lovas. They are people who are good. And then that
17 reservist attacked the major. He told him, Why did you allow the police
18 and those Ustasha to go to Tovarnik and I have to be on duty here?
19 I realised that the situation was not that good, and I went back
20 to my group with Cirba and the others. And the lieutenant-colonel who
21 was there, he says, He is a member of the Territorial Defence. He is a
22 bit exclusive in what he says and what he does, but we will see to him so
23 you don't have to be concerned.
24 Q. And you mentioned earlier that the JNA lifted the blockade. When
25 did that occur?
1 A. Well, it happened as we were talking to them.
2 Q. I want to turn to another topic now.
3 Were you --
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Just one moment, Mr. Olmsted.
5 Mr. Witness, you -- you told us that, more or less, 30 to
6 35 people in Lovas had hunting rifles; right?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: So meaning that they were hunters.
9 Now my question is: At that time, did you consider them as armed
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. We considered them to be
12 civilians who were only using hunting rifles given to them by our local
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: My question -- my question, in fact, is: The
15 local hunters, you -- you would not consider them to be armed men, would
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. No, we didn't. It's sports
18 organisation. A sports association.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
20 MR. OLMSTED:
21 Q. And, sir, if I may just clarify a little bit further
22 Judge Delvoie's question.
23 These 30 men, are you referring to the men who are manning these
25 A. Those were men not on the barricades but men who stood guard
1 around the village. We did not have any barricades around our village.
2 Q. Yes. I didn't use the word "barricades." I meant the
4 You've mentioned that there were seven or so check-points
5 around --
6 A. Yes, those were the men who manned the check-points. But
7 overnight, for them to feel safer not completely without weapons,
8 huntsmen lent their weapons to other people. I, for instance, was at a
9 check-point, and when I left, I handed over my weapon to another person.
10 Q. Now I want to move onto another topic.
11 Were you in Sotin on the 28th [Realtime transcript read in error
12 "22nd"] of August, 1991?
13 A. On the 22nd of August, I was in Sotin. I went to Sotin quite
14 often because my half-brother and his family lived there. So I was there
15 often. I was there on the 22nd but also on the 26th when my nephew got
16 killed in Vukovar.
17 Q. And perhaps I misspoke. I meant to say the 28th of August. I
18 want to talk about events on the 28th of August in Sotin.
19 A. On the 28th of August, I was there for the funeral of my nephew
20 who got killed in Borovo.
21 Q. And how many people attended that funeral?
22 A. More than 100. Between 100 and 150 people, both from Lovas and
23 from Sotin. My brother was from Lovas.
24 Q. Were there any women and children at the funeral?
25 A. Very many. Women and children too.
1 Q. And can you tell us what happened during the course of that
2 funeral that day.
3 A. When the religious rites were performed in the yard of the house
4 where my nephew had lived, we walked from the yard up to a small park and
5 then two planes arrived, planes of the Galeb type, and we thought they
6 were flying to Vukovar because Vukovar was under a blockade since 19 --
7 since the 28th. Somebody said, Watch out, planes. And then the whole
8 procession scattered while my daughter and I just threw ourselves on the
9 ground and that's when the planes started firing from machine-guns. One
10 of the planes took a U-turn and dropped a bomb just outside the house of
11 my nephew. Our good fortune was that we had started with the funeral
12 15 minutes earlier than scheduled. The funeral was scheduled for
13 1600 hours, and we listened to the priest and started earlier because
14 exactly at a quarter past 4.00 p.m. that bomb was dropped outside the
15 house of my nephew, and if we had still been there, as planned before, it
16 would have killed a lot of people, hundreds of people. And when we
17 returned finally, we found the -- the fence and the walls bullet ridden.
18 Q. Were you able to determine who the planes belonged to?
19 A. We knew that. Those were JNA planes.
20 Q. And did you suspect that the Serbs in Sotin played any role in
21 this attack; and, if so, why you believed that?
22 A. We believed so. Because it was widely known that funeral was
23 scheduled for 4.00 p.m. so somebody must have told them about it. And
24 they treated it as an Ustasha funeral.
25 It was even said that we had to watch out because there would be
1 an attack on Sotin.
2 Q. Now, after this attack on the funeral, what happened later that
3 night in Sotin?
4 A. Unfortunately, that funeral could not take place until that
5 evening. They took the body of my nephew to the cemetery by night. The
6 next morning, one or two armoured vehicles entered and started firing
7 from heavy machine-guns at the houses in Sotin. And during that night,
8 one busload of Sotin residents fled to Lovas.
9 Q. Now, in the days that followed this attack, did you have
10 opportunity to see any of the destruction in Sotin?
11 A. Yes. The very next morning, I went to Sotin, taking my
12 sister-in-law and her colleagues to take their things because they had
13 fled to Lovas the night before, and then I could see houses striped with
14 bullets and holes in facades and many shattered windows.
15 Q. To your knowledge, did the population in Sotin offer any armed
16 resistance to this attack?
17 A. No. There was no resistance certainly.
18 Q. You mentioned that a busload of Croat civilians from -- or
19 citizens from Sotin came to Lovas. Roughly how many were in there bus?
20 A. About 50 people. It was that double bus driven by Boro from the
21 Vupik company. He drove that bus. Some 50, 60 people fled in that bus,
22 whereas some arrived in their own cars.
23 Q. And these Sotin citizens who arrived in Lovas, were they carrying
24 any weapons or wearing any military uniforms?
25 A. No, certainly not. Those were civilians, including women and
1 children, who went the next day via Lipovac to Zagreb.
2 Q. Now, after the night of the 28th/29th of August, was Sotin
3 attacked again?
4 A. It was the night of the 28th, and after that, I think there were
5 no more attacks.
6 Q. What about after Lovas was attacked? Was Sotin ever attacked
8 A. Sotin was attacked later, after Lovas.
9 Q. And what was the nature of that attack?
10 A. The usual kind. First of all, an attack by JNA artillery; then
11 the military troops would -- came in. The pattern was the same, for
12 Bapska, Sotin and Lovas. Artillery first followed by infantry.
13 Q. I want to move into September of 1991 --
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: Just one moment, Mr. Olmsted.
15 Mr. Witness, you said that the funeral was considered -- the
16 funeral of your nephew was considered an Ustasha funeral. Why was that?
17 Had that anything to do with what your nephew was doing when killed?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, let me try to make it
20 The boy went with a group after being called up. The report was
21 that Chetniks had occupied an important building in Borovo. Those who
22 were then in Vukovar went to liberate that building, and when their group
23 arrived, the paramilitary forces and the Chetniks were already inside the
24 building. The hall of engineers it was called. And as they were
25 approaching the hall of engineers, one Zolja hand-held rocket was fired.
1 It hit the wall. A piece of the wall hit my nephew. He was the last in
2 the group to enter the building. The others could not be hurt. And then
3 they saw a Chetnik hit the boy on the head, almost took his scalp off.
4 That's what we were told later when he arrived at the hospital.
5 So from Borovo village, those paramilitaries and
6 Territorial Defence members raided the village, and in comparison with
7 those paramilitary forces, he was treated as an Ustasha.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
9 Please proceed. Mr. Olmsted.
10 MR. OLMSTED:
11 Q. And just to clarify your last answer, was your nephew a member of
12 the ZNG?
13 A. No, no. They were also civilians.
14 Q. Can you tell us what organisation he was with? Was it the local
16 A. No. The local one, just as in Lovas. There were those
17 territorial guards. They were called in to help, to get those Chetniks
18 out of the hall of engineers in Borovo.
19 Q. I want to move to September 1991. What happened in Tovarnik that
21 A. In September 1991 is the month where a holiday is celebrated in
22 Tovarnik, a patron saint of the church. That's when the JNA and
23 paramilitary forces attacked Tovarnik according to the same pattern:
24 First an artillery attack, followed by a raid by infantry. Most of the
25 population fled to Lovas and, of course, they said there were a lot of
1 casualties. Towers on the churches were also destroyed, and many
2 buildings were damaged, and half of them practically came to Lovas.
3 Q. Can you give us the approximate date of this attack?
4 A. I think it was on the 22nd. It was Saint Matthew's. That's the
5 church holiday in Tovarnik.
6 Q. To your knowledge, were there any ZNG or other Croat armed forces
7 in Tovarnik at the time?
8 A. No. There was just the Croatian police and there were no armed
9 units whatsoever.
10 Q. And did the Croat population in Tovarnik offer any armed
11 resistance to this attack?
12 A. No, there was no armed resistance because everybody fled to
13 Lovas, more or less.
14 Q. And those who fled to Lovas, were they wearing any military
15 uniforms or carrying any arms?
16 A. No way. Those were mainly civilians. From what I saw in my
17 street and in my village, and the people who came to the Crisis Staff,
18 all of them were civilians.
19 Q. And did you have the opportunity to witness the destruction in
20 Tovarnik first-hand?
21 A. Yes, I had the opportunity to see that when I went to Sid for
22 negotiations on the 27th and the 28th. Negotiations with the JNA.
23 Q. Given the level of destruction that you observed in Tovarnik,
24 were you able to conclude who engaged in that attack?
25 A. It was not my conclusion. I saw who was there. Because when we
1 travelled to Sid for those negotiations on the 27th September, in the
2 afternoon, we were led by a JNA officer and we saw there a lot of JNA
3 troops and paramilitary units.
4 From Tovarnik until outside Sid, there were a lot of vehicles,
5 armoured vehicles, tanks and trucks, and we saw a lot of troops. It was
6 a warm summer day. They were standing outside their vehicles. Some were
7 even shaving in the field. Apart from the JNA, there were paramilitary
8 forces, many disheveled men with long beards, something that would not
9 tolerated in the JNA. There was a lot of destruction around,
10 transmission lines brought down, a lot of dead cattle. The towers on the
11 Catholic church burned down. But the main impression was the great
12 numbers of JNA troops and paramilitary unit members. Everything
13 almost -- everything in sight was full of troops.
14 Q. Did you see any houses in Tovarnik destroyed?
15 A. I told you, I saw many burnt-down and destroyed houses. The
16 roofs had burnt, and you could see holes from shells, and there were no
17 more towers on the churches, and one church was still burning.
18 Q. Now, what were the circumstances that brought you to Tovarnik on
19 that date?
20 A. We came because the priest, late Ivan Burik, had come to Lovas to
21 see our parish priest while I was there with a colleague to pay for the
22 funeral service for my nephew, and he said, You have to go quickly to
23 negotiate with the army in Tovarnik because Lovas will be attacked. The
24 Howitzers and mortars are already in place. Lovas will be attacked
25 tomorrow unless you come to Tovarnik to negotiate with the army. So the
1 three of us got ready. Zeljko Cirba, Milan Tepavac, I, and we also took
2 one Serb representative. The group of us went to Tovarnik to negotiate.
3 Q. What ethnicity was Milan Tepavac?
4 A. He was a Serb. I said we took a Serb representative.
5 Q. And why did a Serb attend this meeting?
6 A. Well, I said that we in the Crisis Staff did not conceal
7 anything. All the information was open to the Serbs too. We did not
8 want to have any exclusively Croat groups, and we always co-opted Serb
9 representatives for negotiations.
10 Q. So at the time of this meeting, were there Serbs who were members
11 of the Crisis Staff?
12 A. As far as I know, there were no official members but they were
13 almost regularly invited to attend meetings of the Crisis Staff because
14 there were no secrets. All the talk was about keeping good, peaceful
15 relations in the village that we used to have.
16 Q. And where did the meeting with the JNA ultimately take place?
17 A. We thought it would be a meeting in Tovarnik. However, when we
18 came, outside Tovarnik at a place called Vezic [phoen], a soldier came
19 out of an armoured vehicle. It turned out later he was
20 Lieutenant-Colonel Savkic [as interpreted]. He brought out a blanket.
21 We had brought some drinks. We sat down. He accepted the drinks. We
22 talked a little. He told us some things that took us by surprise. He
23 said, among other things, Brothers, look at what is going on. Why is so
24 much property destroyed in Tovarnik? Why is there no reaction? How long
25 will this last? How long will it go on?
1 And then he said, We have no way of talking here in Tovarnik. We
2 have to go to the command in Sid to continue.
3 Q. Okay. And in what building in Sid did that meeting take place?
4 A. After the police inspection in Tovarnik, we had to go on. We had
5 no [indiscernible]. Then the officer didn't know who we were. We
6 couldn't get passes, and then we ended up in the schoolhouse.
7 Q. And from what you could observe at the schoolhouse in Sid, what
8 was based there?
9 A. In Sid, we also saw a lot of troops at the fair-grounds, a high
10 concentration of military vehicles and troops, a lot of soldiers also
11 around the school. Sid was crawling with army troops, JNA and I don't
12 know who else.
13 We went into a classroom in that school, and we were met by JNA
14 officers. We thought those would be talks around a table. However, we
15 had to sit down in places where students sit, whereas they sat on the
16 other side and started questioning us.
17 Q. Now before we get to the substance of this meeting, on the road
18 from Tovarnik to Sid, what did you see?
19 A. I've said already we saw a lot of troops and a large number of
20 military vehicles, tanks and trucks, and many troops were outside their
21 vehicles. It was a very nice day. They were standing along the road.
22 From Tovarnik all the way up to Sid, you could see large columns.
23 The area around the road was completely green from those vehicles and
25 Q. Now, do you recall who from the JNA was present at this meeting
1 at the school in Sid?
2 A. Those were all high-ranking officers. One of them,
3 Zelimir Petrovic talked most of the time. He was from KOS, the military
4 intelligence service. That's how he introduced himself. There was also
5 an older man, Milic Jovic. And the rest were majors, JNA majors who kept
6 records, took notes, and were mainly observers of the questioning led by
7 Zelimir Petrovic, a member of the KOS, which is the counter-intelligence
8 service from Belgrade.
9 Q. And during this meeting, did the JNA officers make any claims
10 about the number of weapons in Lovas?
11 A. They, too, had the same kind of reports we heard about when we
12 met with the Novi Sad Corps. This one was also from Novi Sad Corps.
13 They had reports that there were many armed men in Lovas, many Ustashas,
14 that kind of report. Although they had very precise information what
15 exactly is going on in Lovas, we said that was not true. We said we have
16 this, this, and that. The situation is calm. There are no problems, and
17 what they are telling us is not true.
18 Q. Did you have the impression that these JNA officers already were
19 aware of the number of weapons, the actual number of weapons, in Lovas?
20 A. They do -- they -- they knew not only that. They knew
21 everything. He -- one of them told me, Is it true that at such and such
22 an hour on that day the lights were on at night in our school? And he
23 told me, What was that about? And I said, A wounded person was brought
24 on that night and we had called in Dr. Kacar, a Serb, to treat the man.
25 So they had information that a light was on at the precise hour on a
1 particular day. Of course, they knew everything else.
2 Q. Now did the JNA officers issue any demands on the population of
4 A. Yes. At the end of that conversation, Zelimir Petrovic said that
5 Lovas must hand back weapons in the amount they mentioned. We said, We
6 don't have that many. And then they said, Okay. Hand over what you
7 have. The very next morning, a certain colonel would come together with
8 an officer who had brought us there, and then army troops would come to
9 collect the weapons and to check whether anything else remained in
11 Q. And could you tell us the name of the officer that brought you
12 there? I don't know if we got that on the record. JNA officer that
13 brought you to Sid that day.
14 A. That was Lieutenant-Colonel Radisavkic from Valjevo.
15 Q. And what did the JNA officers tell you would happen if the Lovas
16 population did not comply with their demands?
17 A. They said, If you don't surrender the weapons, and in the event
18 that a single bullet is fired at the army, be it in the village or in the
19 field, they would raze Lovas to the ground.
20 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, perhaps this is a good time for the
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Indeed it is, Mr. Olmsted.
23 Mr. Witness, we'll take the first break now. We'll come back at
24 11.00. The court usher will escort you out of the courtroom. Thank you.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
1 [The witness stands down]
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Court adjourned.
3 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
4 --- On resuming at 10.59 a.m.
5 MR. OLMSTED: I would just like to announce that the Prosecution
6 has been joined by one of our interns, Francois Braun. And --
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Microphone, please.
8 MR. OLMSTED: It was on.
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: It was on. I didn't have my headphones on.
10 Sorry about that.
11 MR. OLMSTED: And also, I have been asked by the Registrar to say
12 on the record that the map that I showed the witness, we're not
13 interested in tendering that. That has already been admitted and he just
14 circled a few villages. So that can be --
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
16 [The witness takes the stand]
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed, Mr. Olmsted.
18 MR. OLMSTED: Thank you, Mr. President.
19 Q. Welcome back, Mr. Rendulic.
20 I just want to return very quickly to this meeting with the JNA
21 on the 27th of September. After the JNA officers issued these demands on
22 the population of Lovas, what did you tell them you would do with those
24 A. We told them that what they were asking us to do is impossible to
25 comply with. That we didn't have those weapons, that we would talk to
1 the locals, that we would have a meeting that same evening, and that
2 he -- that we would convey the message given to us by them in Sid.
3 Q. And did you, in fact, hold that meeting in Lovas?
4 A. Yes. That same evening, when we returned, we held the meeting
5 with the locals. We told them what the situation was like. I told them
6 whey saw in Tovarnik and in Sid. A lot of troops, namely. I told them
7 that we had to endeavour to keep peace to avoid any conflict, that we
8 should endeavour for all the weapons to be surrendered.
9 Q. And how did the Lovas population respond to this information?
10 A. Well, their reactions differed. Most of them were afraid as to
11 what would happen because they were told that the troops would arrive in
12 the village the following morning. They knew what had happened in
13 Tovarnik when the JNA and paramilitaries entered, that there were a lot
14 of dead and wounded people and destroyed houses. Of course, people were
15 afraid, and during the night a lot of them left and went to Ilok.
16 Q. And what were the age groups and genders that left that night?
17 A. Women and children, including my own wife and children. Mostly
18 civilians who went to Tovarnik that night. They were afraid. They
19 feared the arrival of the JNA and paramilitaries. That's why almost half
20 the village left that night.
21 Q. And did anyone in Lovas turn in their weapons?
22 A. A certain number of people did bring the weapons. Three
23 Kalashnikovs and the rest were hunting rifles and pistols. Obviously
24 those pistols belonged to the hunters who had licences to carry them.
25 Q. Could you give us roughly a number of fire-arms that were turned
2 A. All in all, up to 20 pieces were handed over.
3 Q. And why were some of the fire-arms kept by people?
4 A. Well, some kept the weapons. They didn't want to hand them over.
5 They said, This belongs to me. I paid for it. If the army wants to take
6 it away from me, they can come and take it away themselves. Because the
7 military was aware of who had weapons. All of those weapons were
8 licensed by the police, so it was not a problem at all to know who had
9 weapons, because all of those weapons were purchased against licences
10 issued by the police, as sports weapons and hunting rifles.
11 Q. Was there any discussion about offering armed resistance to the
13 A. No, nobody mentioned that. After what we saw in Tovarnik, I and
14 others said that we really could not resist anybody, that nothing should
15 be done, that the JNA and the paramilitary units should not be provoked
16 at all.
17 Q. Now, what happened the next day, on the 28th of September?
18 A. On the 28th of September, in the morning, Priest Burik came from
19 Tovarnik together with that same officer, Radisavkic. We had a brief
20 conversation there. We showed them the weapons that we had collected,
21 and then the officer said that that was not enough, that that's not what
22 we had discussed, that we had to come back to Sid for another round of
24 Q. And who from Lovas went for that second round of talks?
25 A. Again, myself, a Lieutenant-Colonel Antun Lovric,
1 Franjo Krizmanic and a representative of the Serbs, Milan Tepavac.
2 Q. You mentioned a Lieutenant-Colonel Antun Lovric. Was he an
3 active member of any unit?
4 A. No. He was actually a retired colonel of the JNA who resided in
6 Q. And was this second meeting at the same location in Sid?
7 A. Yes. On the way, we stopped by in Tovarnik where we talked to
8 some former residents of Lovas who were Serbs and who were members of
9 paramilitary formations. And then we went to the elementary school to
10 talk to Zelimir Petrovic that time around.
11 Q. You mentioned that on the way to Sid that day you encountered
12 some Serbs who were from Lovas. Could you tell us the names of those
14 A. Well, in the police station that they allegedly ran, there was
15 Zeljko Krnjaic, a man called Grkovic, and there were some other men
16 unknown to me. And on the road, I bumped into Milan Devcic. I have
17 already told you that he had been a Croatian police officer. And we were
18 discussing the situation in Lovas. Those in front of the police station
19 and Vorkapic was there, Grkovic was with them, as well as Krnjaic who was
20 allegedly the head of that police station in Tovarnik. They told me,
21 Aco, which is my nickname, Aco, make sure that nothing happens in Lovas
22 because we will raze it to the ground. I told them, Nothing happened so
23 far, nothing will probably happen in the future. I bumped into
24 Milan Devcic on the road and he asked me, Aco, where is my father? I
25 said, I saw him a half an hour ago. He drove through the village on his
1 motorbike. He also told me, Make sure that nothing happens in the
2 village. And my answer was the same: Nothing has happened so far and we
3 will make sure that, on our side, nothing happens in the future.
4 Q. Just to clarify the record, you mentioned that Krnjaic was head
5 of a police station. What station was that?
6 A. It was the newly established police station, the one that was
7 established after the fall of Tovarnik. Either the JNA or the Serbian
8 paramilitary formations set it up in Tovarnik.
9 Q. I want to now go to this meeting, this second meeting in Sid.
10 You mentioned that Colonel Petrovic was there. What did you tell
11 Colonel Petrovic about the situation in Lovas?
12 A. We told him that we had held that meeting the day before in
13 Lovas. We explained to everybody what was requested from us, and that it
14 was impossible to fulfil those requests because we did not have that many
16 We said that half the population had fled to Ilok during the
17 night and they asked us why they had fled. I told them that after having
18 seen what was going on in Tovarnik, the killings, the setting houses on
19 fire, people were afraid and they fled to Ilok during the night. And
20 then he responded that he had just arrived from Belgrade, from the KOS
21 organisation, as a KOS colonel, and he was supposed to place
22 paramilitaries under the JNA control to curb the crimes because that is
23 not what the JNA did. That's why he had been sent to put those
24 paramilitaries under the control of JNA units in order to stop their
25 wilful behaviour.
1 That's what he told us.
2 THE INTERPRETER: Could you please instruct the witness to slow
3 down a little. Thank you.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Witness, the interpreters are asking whether
5 you could speak a little bit more slowly so that they can follow.
6 And I have a question of you about your meeting, the previous
7 one. What exactly was requested from you? From Lovas, I mean.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] To surrender the weapons that we
9 had, to hand it over to the military on the following day.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: On the second meeting, you -- you told the JNA
11 officer that you couldn't meet their requirements. Was there a quotum?
12 Did you have to give them a certain amount of weapons?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. They said that we had a lot of
14 weaponry, that there were as many as 2.000 soldiers who had a lot of
15 weapons. And that was not correct. We told them that we probably had up
16 to 35 pieces of mostly hunting rifles. That that's all that we could
17 hand over, that we could not meet their request because it was simply
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: So their request would have been, then, the
20 weapons of about 2.000 men.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I suppose so. But, in
22 practical terms, it was not possible. Because we told them that the
23 number was nearly -- not nearly as much.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
25 MR. OLMSTED:
1 Q. You mentioned that Colonel Petrovic was with an organisation
2 called KOS. I don't know if we've heard that before. Can you tell us
3 what that is?
4 A. It's the counter-intelligence service of the then-JNA. To be
5 honest, I really don't know what that service did, what its main task
7 Q. During this meeting with Colonel Petrovic, did you tell him
8 anything about how the Serb population was being treated in Lovas?
9 A. Well, I told him that in Lovas nothing extraordinary was
10 happening, no pressure was put on the Serbian population, the Serbian
11 population was not provoked. I told him that everything had been calm
12 and in good order up to then. And then I asked him, Colonel, what is
13 this? How long is this going to go on for? And he told me, For as long
14 as the people told us, whether what Milosevic and Tudjman were plotting
15 was, indeed, what we wanted.
16 Q. Was Milan Tepavac at this meeting?
17 A. Yes, Milan was with us during the first and the second meetings.
18 He mostly kept quiet. He did not say much.
19 Q. When you were talking about how the Serbs were being treated in
20 Lovas, did he disagree with your assessment?
21 A. No, no. He basically, if anything, he supported our words. He
22 supported us in what we were saying.
23 Q. Now what did Colonel Petrovic instruct the Lovas delegation to do
24 with regard to weapons at that point, at that second meeting?
25 A. At that second meeting, he said the army never even wanted their
1 weapons that had been handed over. He told us to try and persuade the
2 population to return from Ilok to Lovas. And later Father Burik asked,
3 What about Tovarnik? And Petrovic told him the same, Try and persuade
4 the population to come back, those people from Tovarnik who had fled.
5 And when the population eventually returned, and when the weapons were
6 collected in Lovas, they would come to verify the situation and may it --
7 and that they would make sure that all the weapons had, indeed, been
8 handed over. However, they never reappeared in Lovas after that.
9 Q. So they never came to conduct those searches for weapons.
10 A. No, they never came back.
11 Q. And did -- they never collected the weapons that you had managed
12 to gather from the Lovas population?
13 A. No, never. They never came to pick up the weapons that had been
14 collected previously or to check whether more was collected after that.
15 Q. Did Colonel Petrovic issue any additional warnings at this second
17 A. Save for what I have already told you about the return of the
18 population and about collecting weapons, nothing. When we got out of the
19 house, he told the troops, These men did not do what we had agreed
20 yesterday, so there's no need for us to go to Lovas today. The troops
21 were already line -- lined up ready to search the houses.
22 Q. What happened to -- you mentioned the late priest Burik. What
23 happened to him after this meeting?
24 A. He returned to Tovarnik, and after the fall of Lovas on the
25 10th of October, when paramilitaries stormed Lovas, some seven or
1 eight days later, he was killed in Tovarnik.
2 Q. Was his body ever found?
3 A. Yes. His body was found. It was exhumed and eventually buried
4 in the Tovarnik cemetery.
5 Q. And what did the Lovas delegation do when it returned from this
6 second meeting to Lovas?
7 A. We told the locals that the military would not come to the
8 village at that point in time but that didn't mean that they would never
9 come. Petrovic told us that no fire should be opened on the military
10 because if one single bullet was fired, they would raze Lovas to the
12 During the second meeting, when we spoke to Petrovic, we told him
13 that we could not be held responsible for what was -- what was happening
14 outside of the village in the field, that we can only guarantee the
15 security situation and the safety of the military in the village itself,
16 in Lovas, not outside of it.
17 Q. Now, what happened on the 1st of October?
18 A. On the 1st of October, there was the first attack on Lovas. Not
19 Lovas itself but on the perimeter of our company, including silos. The
20 JNA that had been stationed in the Sid forest in Serbia arrived with
21 tanks close to the silos, some 3 kilometres away, and around 11.00 that
22 morning, tanks opened fire on our silos.
23 I was in my office, together with my colleagues. We heard
24 explosions. We thought that the centre of village was targeted, but it
25 was not the centre of village but the perimeter of the company and the
1 silos. Some ten shells all together were fired on that occasion.
2 Q. Were you aware of any reasons why the JNA would shell the Lovas
3 agricultural co-op?
4 A. After all the talks, after all the negotiations with the army in
5 Sid, and based on their behaviour, there was really no reason whatsoever
6 for their attack on our facilities in Lovas.
7 Q. Were any Croat houses destroyed on this occasion?
8 A. Only one belonging to Tadija Bekcevic, who was our employee.
9 That was the only house that was hit on that occasion.
10 Q. And what happened on the 3rd of October?
11 A. On the 3rd of October, there was another attack. I sent out men
12 to collect the grains that spilled out from the silos. And we had a
13 warehouse with apples. The roof was destroyed. I sent my men out to
14 protect the apples and to collect the grains from the silos. And I went
15 to Ilok. When I returned, I bumped into a villager and he told me that
16 there was another attack. A tank attack from the same direction, from
17 the direction of Sid, and, again, the main target was our company.
18 Q. Now can you tell us what happened on the 5th of October in Lovas?
19 A. On the 5th of October, there was an attack on the village, i.e.,
20 on our church, and the church tower was set on fire by Maljutka shells
21 that were fired from tanks. And those Maljutkas set the church tower on
22 fire on the 5th of October.
23 Q. Were there any armed units in that church?
24 A. No, no, never.
25 Q. Now during this period that we've been discussing - let's call it
1 the -- between 28 September through the 5th or 6th of October - did any
2 of the Croat population who had left Lovas return to it?
3 A. Between the 5th and the 10th October, there was a -- a period of
4 calm of sorts. Nothing was happening. Some people went to Ilok; some
5 returned. They had cattle in Lovas. That's why they returned, to feed
6 the cattle. So there was a lot of movement between Ilok and Lovas.
7 Q. And now if you could tell us what happened on the morning of the
8 10th of October.
9 A. In the morning on the 10th of October, there was an attack on
10 Lovas. It started with an artillery attack, by tank shelling and mortar
11 fire which was opened on the part of the village that belonged
12 exclusively to Croats. There were no Serb houses there. This is the
13 eastern area in the direction of cemetery.
14 My house, which is a one-storey house, was what they targeted,
15 and some six or seven shells fell around my house. It was prominent, and
16 they set their aims around my house which was in the Croatian part of the
18 Q. Prior to this attack on the 10th of October, did the JNA or
19 anyone else issue any warnings that an attack was imminent?
20 A. No, nobody said anything. There were no warnings, announcements
21 of any sort.
22 Q. And you mentioned around six shells fell in the immediate
23 vicinity of your house. Can you tell us, if you can, the total number of
24 shells that you recall falling that day?
25 A. I know what happened around my house. In subsequent
1 conversations, I learned that some 15 to 20 shells - not more than that -
2 fell on that day.
3 MR. OLMSTED: If we could have on the screen 65 ter 2961. This
4 is tab 21.
5 Q. Sir, what we have in front of us is a map of Lovas. You
6 mentioned that the shelling occurred in an area that was exclusively
7 Croat. Could you circle on this map that area that you're referring to?
8 A. You can see the church in the eastern part of the village. And
9 my street is very close to the cemetery.
10 This is the part of the village where the shells fell on that
11 day. Nothing happened in the north-western part of the village because
12 there were some Serbian houses there.
13 In this part here, however, there were no Serbian houses at all,
14 and this is where the shells mostly fell.
15 Q. And in that area, were there any military installations or
17 A. No, no. There were no factories or anything.
18 This is a residential area with civilian properties. There were
19 no military there either.
20 Q. And could you mark - maybe draw an arrow - from the direction
21 from which the shells came?
22 A. Those shells came from the southern part of the region, from the
23 Sid-Tovarnik road, or from what we knew as Jelas forest. This is where
24 you enter the village and this is the road leading towards Tovarnik and
25 from that direction, the shells came.
1 Q. Can you mark that arrow with an A so we can identify it later.
2 A. This is it.
3 Q. Now, you mentioned that the attack started with artillery. What
4 followed the attack by artillery?
5 A. The artillery attack -- the situation became calm for a while.
6 We started talking. My neighbour with two young children came to my
7 house. We spent some time in the cellar, and then they we went to the
8 house of my parents-in-law, who were in the cellar in that house. And
9 then, while we were in that cellar, we heard infantry fire, both bursts
10 of fire and individual shots, and all of a sudden -- actually we thought
11 that it was close to our house but, no, those were dum-dum bullets that
12 exploded with a lot of noise. I was afraid that those paramilitary units
13 reached our own houses. However, they set out from the north-western
14 part, the same area where I already drew an arrow. We thought that they
15 would come from Sid, but, no, they came from the direction of Vukovar,
16 from the north-west of the region.
17 Q. And we see that you created a arrow indicating the direction in
18 which the armed forces entered Lovas. Could you mark that with a B.
19 A. Here.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, may this be admitted into evidence.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
23 THE REGISTRAR: It shall be assigned Exhibit Number P314. Thank
25 MR. OLMSTED:
1 Q. Mr. Rendulic, were any Croat homes seriously damaged during the
2 shelling part of the attack on the 10th of October?
3 A. Yes, there was damage. What I saw in my part of the street is
4 that the house across from me was hit, killing a certain gentleman,
5 Milan Latas, who was a Serb. To the left of his house, again facing
6 mine, the house was completely destroyed because it was hit directly.
7 On my side of the street, the house of my father-in-law next door
8 was hit by a shell, which wounded a woman, and another shell hit my
9 father-in-law's house.
10 Q. And after the shelling occurred and the armed units entered your
11 neighbourhood, were additional homes destroyed; and, if so, can you tell
12 us how many?
13 A. As I said, the shelling was around 7.20. That was damage done by
14 shells. And when the paramilitary units entered the village, other
15 houses were damaged by infantry fire. Soldiers went from one house to
16 another down the street, and it must have been some sort of system for
17 them. These paramilitary units were led by Serbs, burning houses down,
18 and that's how my house was burnt down too.
19 Q. How many houses were burnt down that day; if you know?
20 A. About 20 to 30 houses. I can't be more precise.
21 Q. And can you tell us, how many Croats were killed during this
23 A. That first day, we got a report from the European observers that
24 21 Croats were killed.
25 Q. Did the European observers go to Lovas?
1 A. Yes. From Ilok, they went to Lovas. We had told them about the
2 situation and they went. I was supposed to go with them. However, they
3 could not guarantee my safety there, so I did not accompany them.
4 MR. OLMSTED: May we have 65 ter 5062 on the screen. This is
5 tab 29. And I ask that this not be broadcast because it's protected.
6 Now what we have in front of us is a report dated
7 18 October 1991. And if we could turn to page 3 of the original. For
8 the translation, I'm interested in 03041190.
9 Q. This document lists 22 Croat civilians. Can you confirm, were
10 these among the individuals that were killed on the 10th of October?
11 A. Yes. These people were killed on the 10th of October.
12 Q. And did you see the corpses or the corpse of any of these persons
13 on this list?
14 A. I saw one body when I was fleeing from my yard. There was one
15 body. I later found out it was the body of Zivan Antolovic, who lived
16 not far for me.
17 Q. And all right. For the record we see that name under number 21.
18 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, may this be admitted --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
20 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, may this be admitted into evidence.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
22 THE REGISTRAR: It shall be assigned Exhibit Number P315, under
23 seal. Thank you.
24 MR. OLMSTED: Thank you, Mr. Registrar. That's correct, it
25 should be under seal.
1 Q. Mr. Rendulic, did the Croat population in Lovas offer any armed
2 resistance during the attack on the 10th of October?
3 A. No, there was no resistance whatsoever. Because, as I said, from
4 the north-west, there were refugees, Serbs, displaced people, and from
5 the other side, there was no opportunity to offer any resistance. There
6 were no weapons. Nobody. We, from that side of the village, also fled.
7 Q. And you mentioned that you had the opportunity to observe some of
8 the Serb armed units that came into Lovas that day. Can you tell us,
9 what kind of uniforms were they wearing?
10 A. All sorts. There were military uniforms, camouflage uniforms,
11 and pieces of civilian clothing. For instance, blue workers' overalls.
12 Q. And you mentioned that they were obviously shooting their weapons
13 but in addition burning some of the houses. Did you hear them saying
14 anything when they were in your area?
15 A. Yes. I overheard a lot. When they came to my house, luckily
16 they passed by my father-in-law's house where I was in the basement with
17 my in-laws and two girls. It's just 10 metres away from my house. I
18 heard them open the door of my garage, enter my house. I heard them
19 shouting, He's not at home. The car is gone. And one of them said, He
20 is an HDZ man. And a neighbour of mine, Kata Gordic [as interpreted],
21 who overheard it said, trying to mollify them, No, he is not HDZ. He is
22 a Communist. And another one of them said, Milan, look at this, look at
23 that. It was a Lika cap, at least I supposed so. I heard one of the
24 paramilitary men wore a Lika cap.
25 Q. You mentioned that you left Lovas. Did you leave Lovas on that
1 day of that attack, after you made these observations?
2 A. Yes. That day I left around 12.00. My in-laws and that woman
3 with two children said they were going to surrender. I said, I'm not
4 going to surrender, I'm staying in the basement.
5 However, a few minutes later, that neighbour woman came and said,
6 Aca, look, your house is burning. And before that, I heard two
7 explosions. They had some phosphate bombs that would turn the house into
8 a blaze in a second.
9 Instinctively, I ran out of the basement and I saw my house
10 burning. I saw the curtains burning upstairs, and smoke was billowing
11 from the door. Then somebody said to me, Aco, let's go into the yard.
12 You have this 10-metre-long yard that leads to the backyard, and when we
13 got there I entered the stable and I heard at that moment the
14 paramilitaries open the door between me and the backyard, shouting, Is
15 there anyone in the basement? Get out. And at that moment, I told my
16 in-laws and that woman, I am going to make a run for it. And I did. And
17 I ran eventually into a house that was at the end of the village. I
18 looked back and my entire house was in flames by that time.
19 From that cornfield, I ran on until I met up with some other
20 people who had fled on the same day.
21 Q. And where did you end up that day?
22 A. That day, we talked, trying to decide what to do. Some people
23 said they would stay in huts on the periphery. I said it made no sense,
24 we should go to Ilok. So a group of us went towards Mohovo. In Mohovo
25 we stayed in a local office where we found some more of Lovas residents
1 who had fled. And that evening, Marin Balic from Mohovo and another man
2 from my village went to Ilok and told them in Ilok what had happened.
3 Whereas most of us from Lovas remained in Mohovo.
4 Q. Thank you, Mr. Rendulic. But given our time, I will ask you to
5 just try to keep your answers a little bit shorter.
6 While you were in Mohovo, did you learn which Serb forces had
7 entered Lovas that day?
8 A. I found out that it was the Vorkapics and Krnjaics we discussed
9 before who came with the paramilitaries. In fact, it was not the JNA.
10 Q. And who led this group, this paramilitary group?
11 A. That paramilitary group, as we heard from Lisac who led them, the
12 Croat who had been captured in Tovarnik, was led by our local resident, a
13 Serb, Milan [as interpreted] Devetak. And that group had about 180
15 Q. And after you were in Mohovo, where did you go to? What village?
16 A. I see here it says Milan Devetak I said, in fact, Ljuban.
17 Ljuban Devetak was his name.
18 Q. Thank you for that correction. After you were in Mohovo, what
19 village did you go to?
20 A. After Mohovo we went to town, to Ilok. Overnight, those two
21 friends of mine and I went to Ilok.
22 Q. And when you arrived in Ilok, what was the situation in that
23 village at the time?
24 A. You mean in the town of Ilok?
25 The situation there was rather turbulent too. People already
1 knew what was going on in Tovarnik. Many people had come from Ilaca that
2 was attacked, Tovarnik as well, and from Bapska. There had been an
3 artillery attack in Bapska and the situation was very volatile.
4 Q. And how many refugees were in Ilok at this time?
5 A. I think there were 6.000 or so residents and about 6.000 refugees
6 from the surrounding villages.
7 Q. And were these refugees Croats?
8 A. Yes. Only Croats.
9 Q. And why -- why Ilok? Why were they all coming to Ilok?
10 A. That was the only place it was possible to go. Vukovar was under
11 siege. The area on the -- in the south was also controlled by military
12 units. The only place you could go was Ilok. Ilok is a place on the
13 Danube river and you couldn't go any further.
14 Q. And while you were in Ilok, were you able to observe any of the
15 JNA forces in the area?
16 A. Yes, we saw a large concentration of JNA forces, including
17 armoured vehicles, machine-gun nests around Ilok. Because a good part of
18 Ilok is in a depression, surrounded by elevations, so you could see very
20 Q. Did you see any artillery cannons or anything like that around
21 the area?
22 A. We saw mortars, machine-gun nests, armoured vehicles on the road
23 overlooking Ilok, and that was the road from Backa Palanka to Sid.
24 Q. And in which direction were their weapons aimed?
25 A. All the weapons were trained at the town of Ilok.
1 Q. All right. Now you've testified that you arrived Ilok on the
2 10th of October. Can you tell us what happened on the morning of the
3 11th of October?
4 A. On the morning of the 11th, I was invited by the residents of
5 Ilok, by Petar Cobankovic to come there, and join them for negotiations
6 with the JNA.
7 Q. And do you know what position Mr. Cobankovic held at the time?
8 A. He was president of the Crisis Staff in Ilok?
9 Q. And did he tell you why they were inviting you to the meeting
10 with the JNA?
11 A. They invited me to come and describe what had happened the day
12 before in Lovas.
13 Q. And did Mr. Cobankovic explain to you the situation with the JNA
14 in Ilok up to that point in time?
15 A. Well, the situation was calm in Ilok, except for the fact that
16 the JNA encircled Ilok from the eastern side, and it was very difficult
17 with the number of people in Ilok. The mill was operating, and there was
18 still power at the time when the refugees came, but later on, the power
19 supply was cut off from Palanka, so the situation became more difficult.
20 Q. Now, prior to the meeting with the JNA on the 11th of October,
21 did you learning anything about what had happened in Bapska?
22 A. The people from Bapska said that they had also suffered an
23 artillery attack on the 5th of October, I believe, and on that occasion,
24 one of my friends, veterinarian Josip, was wounded and later succumbed to
25 that wound.
1 Josip Vulic is the name, I now remember.
2 MR. OLMSTED: May we have 65 ter 418 on the screen, please.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Just one moment, please.
4 Mr. Rendulic, the report we have in front of us for the moment
5 gives a list of buried civilians killed in the battle to liberate Lovas
6 and then a list of combatants killed in the liberation of Lovas and there
7 is one name mentioned, Djordjevic, volunteer from Serbia. Do you see
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: You told us no resistance was mounted in Lovas.
11 Do you know what happened to this man?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There was no fighting in Lovas and
13 these were not combatants. These were civilians who did not get killed.
14 They were executed, taken away from their homes and executed.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Just one moment, Mr. Rendulic. It's not about
16 the 22 persons in the first part of the document. It's about the next
17 name under list of combatants, and there is a name Djordjevic which would
18 be a volunteer from Serbia. So I presume that's somebody from the other
20 So do you know what happened to him? How did he -- how did he
21 get killed?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I wanted to explain
23 this. It says: "Fighting for the liberation of Lovas."
24 Those were not combatants. Those were civilians and I want to
25 correct that. As for this Djordjevic who got killed in Lovas, this was
1 the matter. The first of our natives who got out of Lovas was killed on
2 the way to Opatovac, that's the side from which paramilitaries came.
3 That man was hit by a bullet but he wasn't killed. He was still alive
4 when this Djordjevic man approached him and shot him dead with a pistol
5 while he was lying wounded.
6 That's the explanation about this Djordjevic.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: But this document says that this -- this
8 Djordjevic himself got killed. Perhaps you don't know about it. Then
9 just say so.
10 Do you know that this man, Djordjevic, was killed?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I know that one of the
12 paramilitaries got killed just after sunrise. But the explanation we
13 heard was that he approached the wounded man, who, while wounded, managed
14 to kill him by shooting his pistol.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. Thank you.
16 Just one moment.
17 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Yes, Witness. Picking up on the
18 question from the President, we are still on the day of the
19 10th of October. You said on that day, if I understood you correctly,
20 that the attack on Lovas began with an artillery attack, followed by fire
21 from tanks and mortars.
22 Tell me, while this attack was underway with artillery, tanks and
23 mortars, was there any response from the other side? Was it an exchange
24 of fire? Or was it just the JNA that fired at the village without any
25 firing in response?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, there was no return fire.
2 That's why I underlined there was no fighting for the liberation of
3 Lovas. There was just an attack on Lovas and no response from our side.
4 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Olmsted.
6 MR. OLMSTED: Thank you, Mr. President.
7 If we could have 65 ter 418 - this is tab 16 - on the screen.
8 Q. This document is dated 28 September 1991. Do you recognise this
10 A. I see the document. I have not seen it before. But I saw
11 similar writing in both Lovas and Ilok.
12 Q. Well, this document pertains to Bapska. During this time when
13 you were in Ilok, were you presented with any documents from Bapska?
14 A. I don't remember seeing any documents from Bapska, but I saw a
15 similar document, also handwritten, about the surrendering of weapons.
16 Lovas was given that demand verbally.
17 Q. And when you say you think you saw a similar document, was that
18 document related to Bapska or some other village?
19 A. Ilok.
20 Q. All right.
21 MR. OLMSTED: If we could have 65 ter 365 on the screen. This is
22 tab 5.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: This document is not tendered, Mr. Olmsted, the
24 one on the screen -- still on the screen now.
25 MR. OLMSTED: Well, I would like to tender it. Let me ask him
1 one more question. Maybe we can have at least some foundation on it.
2 Since he doesn't, at this time, recognise this one, per se.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: I see. Please do.
4 MR. OLMSTED:
5 Q. It mentions in the first paragraph that ZNG, Croatian MUP, and
6 armed civilians in Bapska were in the area. To your knowledge, did
7 Bapska have any Croat armed forces at that time?
8 A. As far as I know, no. There were just civilians and civilian
9 guards in our place.
10 Q. Now, you've mentioned that you were issued with an ultimatum or
11 demands in Lovas and I think you mentioned other places. What happened
12 in Bapska? Were they also issued with an ultimatum?
13 A. Well, yes. The pattern of behaviour was the same. First, there
14 were obligations and ultimatums given that could not be met, and that was
15 a pretext for the JNA and/or paramilitaries to attack that place.
16 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, may this be tendered at this time.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I would object to admitting of this document
18 because there is no nexus between the witness statement and this
19 document. The witness said that he hasn't seen this document, and he
20 doesn't know the elements contained in this document.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Olmsted, when I asked you whether you wanted
22 to tender this, I didn't mean that as a trap. But, indeed, in -- in --
23 at first sight, there seems to be a nexus problem. You were asking for
24 another document before I -- I -- I asked you whether you would tender
25 this one. Is that a similar one, the one you wanted to have on the
1 screen after this one?
2 MR. OLMSTED: No, Your Honours. It's something completely
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Completely different. And what is your response
5 to the objection?
6 MR. OLMSTED: Well, I assume that the Defence is not taking the
7 position that every document shown a witness, the witness must have seen
8 that document at a particular time, as they've certainly shown a number
9 of documents to witnesses that they've never seen.
10 Our position is this witness was aware there was an ultimatum.
11 He was aware of the situation. As far as armed Croats in Bapska, he was
12 speaking to people from Bapska in Ilok, and so this gives enough of a
13 nexus for it to be admitted.
14 [Trial Chamber confers]
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: The objection -- the objection is overruled;
16 Judge Mindua dissenting.
17 So the document may be admitted and marked.
18 THE REGISTRAR: Shall be assigned Exhibit Number P316. Thank
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
21 MR. OLMSTED: May we have 65 ter 365 on the screen. This is
22 tab 5.
23 Q. Mr. Rendulic, this is an order issued by the command of the JNA
24 1st Infantry Mechanised Guards Division, dated 4 October 1991.
25 If we could just go to the last page.
1 We can see that these orders are issued by Major-General
2 Dragoljub Arandjelovac. Now, I don't want you to go into any details
3 right now, but did you meet this General in 1991?
4 A. I did. On the 11th, in Sid.
5 Q. And was that the 11th of October?
6 A. Yes, the 11th of October.
7 MR. OLMSTED: If we can go to page 1 of the original; page 2 of
8 the English version.
9 Q. Now, if we look under item number 4 of this order, the General
10 orders the 2nd Infantry Motorised Guards Brigade to take control of the
11 villages of Bapska and Sarengrad by engaging one armoured battalion, a
12 122-millimetre Howitzer battalion and anti-aircraft defence, light
13 self-propelled artillery rocket battalion in co-ordination with the
14 Territorial Defence special forces.
15 Can you tell us, how does this type of artillery listed here
16 compare to that which was used on Lovas in early October?
17 A. I believe that an identical artillery force attacked Lovas and
18 the neighbouring villages as well.
19 Q. And it mentions Territorial Defence special forces. Can you give
20 us any insights into what kind of forces those were?
21 A. Those were the forces that I referred to as paramilitaries. They
22 called them territorials and we called them paramilitaries. They were
23 supposed to be linked to the JNA. They said that they were not, but I
24 think that they were. I'm sure that they were linked to the JNA.
25 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, may this be admitted into evidence.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
2 THE REGISTRAR: It shall assigned Exhibit Number P317. Thank
4 MR. OLMSTED:
5 Q. I now want to move onto this meeting that you attended on the
6 11th of October with the JNA.
7 Can you tell us, who from Ilok attended that meeting with you?
8 A. Well, we were headed by a JNA officer, Grahovac. There was
9 myself, Katica Coric, Stjepan Kraljevic, Mayor Mrsic, Boro Magovac, there
10 must have been somebody else, but this is all I can remember.
11 Q. And where in Sid did this meeting take place?
12 A. In Sid, in the school near the park, in the centre of Sid.
13 Q. Was that the same school that you attended meetings with the JNA
14 over Lovas?
15 A. No, no, no. That was a different school. The first one was
16 close to the fair-grounds, in the western part of Sid, whereas the latter
17 was in the centre of Sid, very close to the church.
18 Q. Now, you mentioned that General Arandjelovac was present at that
19 meeting. Who else from the JNA was present?
20 A. There were some other officers and the JNA troops that escorted
21 us and kept guard in the very room where the meeting took place.
22 Q. And at this meeting did General Arandjelovic make any demands on
23 the residents of Ilok?
24 A. Yes. Just like Petrovic told us, Arandjelovic told them that
25 they should hand over weapons, that they shouldn't open fire on the
1 military because they were capable of razing Ilok to the ground within
2 the scope of a couple of hours.
3 Q. And what did the General say would happen if Ilok refused to
4 surrender its weapons?
5 A. As I've already told you, they threatened to attack Ilok and
6 level it with the ground.
7 Q. And how did the Croat delegation -- delegation from Ilok respond
8 to this threat?
9 A. I believe that the mayor of Ilok, Mrsic, said that there were
10 some 12.000 people in Ilok, including a lot of women and children, and
11 that if something like that should happen, it would result in a major
12 massacre for which, sooner or later, somebody would be held responsible.
13 To which the General responded, I am a soldier, and all -- all I do is
14 carry out my military tasks.
15 Q. Did you ask the General anything about Lovas?
16 A. At the end of that meeting, I asked him about Lovas. I told him,
17 General, sir, and he said, No, I'm not a sir, I'm a comrade. I told him
18 Lovas had been attacked the day before, 21 people were killed, and some
19 20 people -- houses were set on fire. And he said, The military didn't
20 do that. And I said how -- what do you mean? I saw them wearing
21 military uniforms, and at the end of the day, paramilitary units did not
22 have that kind of artillery weapons. And then he said that we had killed
23 a member of the Territorial Defence. I suppose he meant Djordjevic, and
24 then I said -- or, rather, he said that a member of the Territorial
25 Defence was killed in the field, and then I told him that
1 Zelimir Petrovic knew very well, because we had agreed to that, that
2 whatever might have happened outside of the village, in the field, that
3 we shouldn't be held responsible for that.
4 Q. And --
5 A. And then he called the meeting off abruptly and said, We're done.
6 MR. OLMSTED: Let's look at 65 ter 403. This is tab 11. This is
7 agreement dated 11 October 1991.
8 Q. Sir, are you familiar with this agreement?
9 A. Yes, I'm familiar with it because I attended that meeting.
10 Q. And who drafted this agreement?
11 A. The agreement was drafted by JNA representatives.
12 Q. And I take it from your earlier answer that the JNA presented you
13 with this agreement at that meeting in Sid?
14 A. Not to me personally, but they showed it to the representatives
15 of Ilok who then, in their turn, showed it to me later.
16 Q. Now, in -- item 1 mentions paramilitary organisations. Were
17 there any such organisations in Ilok at the time?
18 A. In Ilok? On the Croatian side? No.
19 Q. Were there any Croat armed forces in Ilok?
20 A. The Croatian police was in Ilok because there was a Croatian --
21 there was a police station in -- in Ilok.
22 Q. Was there a local TO as well?
23 A. There was a Crisis Staff in Ilok and there were also people who
24 were on the guard detail, just like in Lovas.
25 Q. What kind of weapons were in Ilok?
1 A. In Ilok, people mostly had hunting rifles, and there were a few
2 Kalashnikovs, or automatic rifles. The Ilok police had them.
3 MR. OLMSTED: I see the time, Mr. President. I'm not quite done
4 with this document, but maybe we should break.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Rendulic, we take the second break. Come
6 back at 12.45. You will be escorted out of the courtroom. Thank you.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
8 [The witness stands down]
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Court adjourned.
10 --- Recess taken at 12.14 p.m.
11 --- On resuming at 12.45 p.m.
12 [The witness takes the stand]
13 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Olmsted.
14 MR. OLMSTED: Thank you, Mr. President.
15 Q. Mr. Rendulic, I'd like to return to this document that we were
16 talking about before the break.
17 And if you could look under item number 6, it states that:
18 "A JNA unit will occupy the town and establish a town command,
19 thus securing peace until the situation becomes stable."
20 Given about what you knew about the situation in Ilok at the
21 time, was it necessary for the JNA to come in to establish peace and
22 stability in Ilok?
23 A. There was no need for that. It was peaceful and stable. Nobody
24 had to establish anything. Nobody had to come and do that.
25 Q. At this stage, after this meeting with the JNA in Sid, what level
1 of trust did the Ilok delegation have that the JNA would comply with this
2 agreement or any other agreement?
3 A. Well, there was very little trust that things would be honoured,
4 given what had happened in Tovarnik, Bapska. It was a signal that
5 similar things would happen in Ilok as well.
6 Q. And how was it decided whether or not to sign this agreement?
7 A. It was agreed that a referendum should be organised to enable the
8 citizens to express their will as to how things should be done.
9 Q. And do you recall what date that referendum took place?
10 A. I believe that that was on the 13th of October.
11 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honour, may this be admitted into evidence?
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
13 THE REGISTRAR: It shall be assigned Exhibit Number P318. Thank
15 MR. OLMSTED: May we have up 65 ter 404. This is tab 12.
16 Q. What we have in front of us is a voting slip. Do you recognise
17 what this is?
18 A. Yes, I recognise this slip.
19 Q. And what is it?
20 A. This is about collectively moving away due to the crisis
21 situation, whether we are in favour or against, and whether we were in
22 favour of handing over all weapons and signing an agreement with the JNA.
23 Q. So were these the two questions that were put to the Ilok
25 A. Yes, this concerns Ilok.
1 Q. And we see that the alternative to signing the agreement with the
2 JNA to surrender weapons was to move out of Ilok.
3 Other than these two options, were any other options discussed?
4 A. It was either/or. Either to stay, or to leave.
5 Q. But there was no third option?
6 A. No.
7 MR. OLMSTED: May this be admitted into evidence, Your Honours.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
9 THE REGISTRAR: It shall assigned Exhibit Number 319. Thank you.
10 MR. OLMSTED: May we have 65 ter 413 on the screen. This is
11 tab 14.
12 Q. This is a report on the 13 October referendum. And we see on
13 page 1 that the Ilok population voted against turning in their weapons.
14 And if we turn to page 2, we see that they also voted to move out
15 of Ilok.
16 Does this accurately reflect the outcome of that referendum?
17 A. The result reflected here is correct.
18 Q. What did you and the other Croats in Ilok believe would happen in
19 you remained in Ilok and did not move out?
20 A. Well, based on the previous developments in Lovas, Bapska, and
21 Tovarnik, when paramilitary units entered those villages and terrorised
22 the population and even killed people, those of us who were in Ilok,
23 including the citizens of Ilok, and those of us who found shelter in
24 Ilok, decided that the best thing for us would be to leave.
25 MR. OLMSTED: May this be admitted into evidence, Your Honours.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
2 THE REGISTRAR: It shall be assigned Exhibit Number P320. Thank
4 MR. OLMSTED:
5 Q. After this referendum, did a part of the Ilok population leave
6 the region?
7 A. Yes. A majority. Almost all refugees and a lot of the Ilok
8 population left the area on the 17th of October.
9 Q. And what about you?
10 A. Me too.
11 Q. And where did you all go?
12 A. We formed a column. We left around 10.00. The column was
13 several kilometres long. We went along the bridge in Backa Palanka --
14 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness repeat the names of all the
15 places, once again, slowly.
16 MR. OLMSTED:
17 Q. I'm sorry. If could you repeat the names of the places, the
18 villages that you mentioned. The translators did not get them.
19 A. Very well. We set out from Ilok at 10.00. In front of the
20 bridge near Backa Palanka we were controlled by the JNA. We proceeded
21 towards Sid. From Sid, we went to Adasevci, and from Adasevci we went to
22 the Zagreb-Belgrade highway. And then in the village of Lipovac, we
23 crossed over to the territory of Croatia.
24 Q. And what were you allowed to bring with you, you and the other
25 refugees allowed to bring with you, or able to bring with you, when you
1 left Ilok?
2 A. We were allowed to bring our personal belongings, or those who
3 had vehicles could drive their own vehicles away, and they could load
4 those vehicles with their personal belongings.
5 Q. Given the situation, how much personal belongings was an average
6 person able to bring?
7 A. What you could fit into nylon shopping bags. Some clothes, some
8 footwear. That's what we all had.
9 MR. OLMSTED: If we could have 65 ter 2214 on the screen. This
10 is tab 20.
11 These are excerpts from a book of minutes of the Ilok Municipal
12 Assembly from 1991. If we could turn to page 3 in the original; page 5
13 of the English.
14 And what we have in front of us are minutes from a meeting held
15 on 11 October 1991 of the Expanded Session of the Ilok Assembly. And in
16 it, we see that they discussed an earlier meeting with General
18 Q. Now you've had a chance to look at these minutes during proofing.
19 Can you confirm, the information contained here about the meeting that
20 you attended on 11 October in Sid, is this information consistent with
21 what was discussed at that meeting in Sid?
22 A. Yes. This is what we discussed and agreed on.
23 MR. OLMSTED: Now, if we could go to page 4 of the original;
24 page 6 of the English.
25 Q. And this is a portion of minutes from a 12 October meeting of the
1 Ilok Assembly and the minutes reflect that someone by the name of
2 Salihovic said that it was "out of the question for anyone to leave Ilok
3 with weapons."
4 It says:
5 "The General said this explicitly yesterday. What's more, he
6 said if anyone or anybody was to shoot from the column, they will target
7 the column."
8 Who was Salihovic?
9 A. Salihovic was a local, a local and a member of the municipal
10 assembly of the town of Ilok.
11 Q. And do you recall whether General Arandjelovic issued this
12 warning at the 11 October meeting in Sid?
13 A. He said that if anything happened, if anybody opened fire on the
14 military at any point in time, if fire came from the column, the military
15 would retaliate.
16 Q. And just to clarify, what is meant by "column" here? Column of
18 A. The column of refugees who left Ilok and proceeded towards Sid
19 and then further on.
20 MR. OLMSTED: If we could turn to page 5 of the original; page 7
21 of the English.
22 Q. And we see these are minutes from a 12 October 1991 assembly
23 meeting in Ilok. And we see that D. Bosnjak noted that Rendulic from
24 Lovas passed on a message that there were -- are around 1.000 persons for
25 the moving out.
1 Which Rendulic is he referring to?
2 A. Me. I said that all the refugees from Lovas who were at that
3 point in time in Ilok wanted to leave.
4 Q. And just to clarify, the thousand persons that are referenced
5 here, those are citizens of Lovas who came to Ilok?
6 A. Yes. Mainly the residents of Lovas who came to Ilok and wanted
7 to get out of Ilok.
8 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, may this be admitted into evidence.
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, I would object to -- to it because there is
11 no complete minutes from these meetings but just extracts prepared by
12 Stjepan Kraljevic and some other person. I think that it should be
13 provided -- that whole -- the entire minutes from these meetings should
14 be provided.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Do they exist, the entire minutes?
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I don't know.
17 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, this is what we have. Of course, if
18 we had the entire minutes, we would certainly not only have disclosed
19 them to Defence but we would probably be using them here today. They are
20 what they are. They are extracts. The Trial Chamber is aware that
21 they're extracts, and the witness was able to speak to a number of
22 entries in it.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Objection overruled.
24 Admitted and marked.
25 THE REGISTRAR: Shall be assigned Exhibit Number P321. Thank
2 MR. OLMSTED: I now would like to play a video for you. This is
3 65 ter 4874.1. We'll bring it up on Sanction and we have a transcript
4 for it. So we'll let that play.
5 [Video-clip played]
6 MR. OLMSTED: Can we pause it. I don't hear a translation. At
7 least the English.
8 [Video-clip played]
9 "[Voiceover]: Anchor: We are moving to Slovenia and
10 Western Srem.
11 "Reporter: After the press conference, dear viewers, which was
12 held in Erdut today, we asked Goran Hadzic, president of the Serb region
13 of Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem, to answer some questions for the
14 viewers of Television Belgrade. Mr. Hadzic, to what extent is the
15 fighting going on in this theatre of war, serious and fierce? What are
16 the prospects?
17 "Goran Hadzic: The fighting is intense. This first operation,
18 the first part, meaning the liberation of Western Srem, is in its final
19 stage. As I said, fighting for Vukovar is ongoing. We can say that our
20 units control nearly 50 per cent of the city. We have secure positions
21 and are advancing house by house. The action of mopping up Ustasha
22 villages was also carried out in the last two days. Following the
23 mopping up of Sid-Vinkovci section, a couple of Ustasha villages in this
24 section of the central part of our region were mopped up three days ago.
25 Bogdanovci and the villages over there. Some villages are surrendering.
1 In Ilok, specifically, one wing offers to surrender, while the other
2 extreme wing will not let them. I will have talks regarding this today
3 so they can surrender their weapons and perpetrators can be held
4 responsible before the law, whereas the innocent can stay and live with
6 "Reporter: Is the territorial army, the defenders of the
7 villages, the Yugoslav People's Army, going to launch a stronger
8 offensive because, as you are aware, there is talk about a great number
9 of complaints with regard to intensive war operations, especially by the
11 "Goran Hadzic: Well, yes, there are complaints. They are
12 relatively justified, I would say, given the attitude and the
13 possibilities. Our goal is not the mass killing of Croats but punishing
14 individuals in their midst. This means we have tried everything through
15 democratic and other peaceful means to prevent this. However, even after
16 the signing of the truce, agreements, and negotiations, the Ustasha
17 continue disregarding what they signed. It means that everyone with
18 this -- I mean, I don't trust them at all. This is clear to me. There
19 can be no negotiating with them and the situation has to be resolved
20 militarily. The communique of the Supreme Command speaks to this effect,
21 but we have to be aware that the army cannot carry this out without the
22 people. So we will have to have some co-ordinated action, real
23 co-ordinated action between the people and the army.
24 "Ratko Jerman, a volunteer for Donji Radici village, was killed.
25 We are moving to Slavonia and Western Srem ..."
1 MR. OLMSTED:
2 Q. Sir, can you identify the man wearing the camouflage uniform in
3 this interview?
4 A. Yes, I recognise him. That's Goran Hadzic.
5 Q. Do you recognise the building he is standing in front of?
6 A. I recognise the building. That's a building in Erdut, near the
8 Q. And in this interview, Mr. Hadzic states that:
9 "The action of mopping up Ustasha villages was also carried out
10 in the last two days. Following the mopping up of Sid-Vinkovci section,
11 a couple of Ustasha villages in the section of the central part of our
12 region were mopped up three days ago."
13 What region is he referring to?
14 A. He is talking about the area that includes these villages that
15 had been occupied by the JNA and the paramilitaries, Lovas, Bapska, and
16 further on, and from these villages, Croats were mainly driven out.
17 Q. He mentions that:
18 "In Ilok, one wing offers to surrender while the other extreme
19 wing will not allow it."
20 Were there two wings, or factions in Ilok on this issue?
21 A. I believe there were no two factions. You could see from the
22 referendum that most of the population was in favour of moving out.
23 There were really no two opposing factions. There was nobody who was
24 preventing people, trying to stop them from leaving.
25 Q. Was there any faction that was in favour of armed conflict or of
1 entering armed resistance against the JNA?
2 A. No way. We knew much in advance, looking at the forces that
3 occupied Ilok, that we did not stand a chance. Nobody had enough
4 strength to oppose the JNA and the paramilitaries.
5 Q. Mr. Hadzic then states:
6 "I will have talks regarding this issue," referring to Ilok,
7 "today, so they can surrender their weapons and perpetrators can be held
8 responsible before the law ..."
9 What perpetrators is he referring to there, if you know?
10 A. I have no idea whom he had talked to, whether he talked to
11 anyone. But there were no forces there, there was no need to talk to
12 anyone about their moving out. I think it was posturing. They needed to
13 paint this false picture, that those were Ustasha villages, and that they
14 needed to drive out the Croats because they were Ustashas.
15 Q. Did you, while you were in Ilok or leaving Ilok, did you learn
16 about the presence of any members of the Croat/Serb leadership who were
17 in the area during these events?
18 A. No. No.
19 Q. What about -- what about on the bridge leading out of Ilok on the
20 day of the evacuation?
21 A. At the exit, there were JNA troops, and I was told there was a --
22 the mayor of Vukovar, Slavko Dokmanovic, but I didn't see him myself.
23 Other people told me, How could you fail to see Slavko? And in fact, I
24 knew Slavko from before but I did not recognise him. There were too many
25 people in uniform. Whereas other people did see him.
1 Q. And when you say other people saw him, what other people saw him?
2 A. People from Ilok who knew him well. He occupied a prominent
3 position once in our municipality. He was the agricultural inspector and
4 later he was president of the municipality.
5 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, may this video-clip be admitted into
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Should be assigned Exhibit Number P322. Thank
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
11 MR. OLMSTED: And finally, I want to call up on the screen
12 65 ter 5085. This is tab 32. And if we could not broadcast this one as
13 it is subject to protective measures.
14 Q. Sir, while this is coming up on the screen, if you could just
15 answer this question I have. You told us, Mr. Rendulic, about the events
16 in Sotin, Tovarnik, Lovas, Bapska, and Ilok. Did you observe any
17 patterns in the way that events unfolded in all of these villages?
18 A. Well, I said a moment ago and earlier in my evidence that I
19 believe it was all the same pattern, the same scenario. To put pressure
20 on these Croatian villages, to so panic with an initial artillery attack,
21 and then allow the paramilitaries to enter these villages, to go on a
22 rampage, to burn houses, kill people, instilling even more fear. And the
23 pressure from the JNA and the paramilitaries was intentionally so strong
24 with one objective only: That Croats leave those villages.
25 MR. OLMSTED: And if we could turn to page 3 of the English
1 version of this document; page 5 of the translation.
2 Q. And we see under Roman numeral II there are conclusions in this
3 report about a JNA scenario, how it often evolved along the following
4 lines. And then it gives six points, sub-points, the first being tension
5 and confusion and fear is built up. Secondly, there's artillery or
6 mortar shelling. Third, there's an ultimatum by the JNA regarding the
7 collection of weapons. And, fourth, without waiting for the results of
8 the results of ultimatum there is a military attack. Fifth, at the same
9 time, or shortly thereafter the attack, Chetniks enter the village and
10 finish the job.
11 Is this description provided in this report consistent with what
12 you observed?
13 A. Yes. It is almost 100 per cent consistent.
14 Q. Under item 5 it states that the Chetniks enter the village to
15 finish the job. Did you arrive at any conclusions why the JNA did not
16 itself go in as an infantry into these villages after the artillery
17 attack? Why did they send in paramilitaries?
18 A. The JNA was supposed to play a milder role, to keep a low
19 profile, to refrain from directly participating in the expulsions and
20 attacks on those villages, to protect its own image. However, they were
21 in cahoots with paramilitary units to provide artillery support first and
22 launch the initial attack because, of course, the paramilitaries did not
23 have artillery, and then after the artillery attacks, the paramilitaries,
24 Chetniks, and Seselj's Men and others would be allowed to go in to go on
25 a rampage, to create havoc, and kill and burn. And that's how the panic
1 was sowed and people were intimidated and made to flee.
2 Q. Under item 6 of the report it mentions that:
3 "Ilok was not destroyed; as in this stage, it represents an asset
4 with a fundamental value."
5 Could you tell us, what would the fundamental value of an
6 undestroyed Ilok have been for the JNA or the Serb forces?
7 A. I think that the JNA, the Serb forces, needed one town to remain
8 standing. Vukovar was destroyed. There were too many destroyed cities
9 and towns already, and if they destroyed everything, they would be simply
10 left without any accommodation. That's one reason.
11 And, second, Ilok is on the juncture between Vukovar and
12 Backa Palanka one way and another way towards Sid. So they needed one
13 town to remain standing but vacated.
14 MR. OLMSTED: If we could just turn quickly to page 12 of the
15 English; page 14 of the translation.
16 Q. And we can see this is an account of the attack on Lovas given by
17 refugees to this international organisation.
18 And it mentions in it, 15 machine-guns were collected in response
19 to the JNA's demands.
20 Were there any machine-guns in Lovas?
21 A. No, there were no machine-guns whatsoever. All there was, was
22 light weaponry. Machine-guns are infantry weapons, as I understand.
23 Q. And I think had you an opportunity to look at this report. Other
24 than that, is the rest of the information provided by these refugees
25 generally consistent with events in Lovas?
1 A. Just a moment. Let me look at this.
2 Yes, that's mainly true.
3 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, may this be admitted under seal.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
5 THE REGISTRAR: It shall be assigned Exhibit Number P323,
6 admitted under seal. Thank you.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
8 MR. OLMSTED: Your Honours, that concludes my direct examination.
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
10 Mr. Zivanovic, cross-examination?
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour. Mr. President.
12 Cross-examination by Mr. Zivanovic:
13 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Mr. Rendulic. My name is
14 Zoran Zivanovic. I represent Mr. Goran Hadzic in these proceedings.
15 A. Good afternoon.
16 Q. Mr. Rendulic, first of all, I want to make a correction to
17 certain errors in the record. One of them is on page 33, where you
18 discussed the attack on Tovarnik by the JNA. And, as far as I heard you,
19 you said that, among other things, both churches were hit. You meant the
20 Orthodox church and the Catholic church.
21 A. That's what I said.
22 Q. Because only the Catholic church is on the record. It must be a
23 mistake. Because truth to be told, you spoke very fast.
24 The other thing is on page 34. It concerns your conversation
25 with Major Radisavkic. I think at one point he told you, complaining
1 about the general devastation and destruction, he said, Why is Europe
2 silent? Why don't they do something?
3 Did he say that?
4 A. Yes, he did say that.
5 Q. You've told us before that for many years you had worked at the
6 co-operative in Lovas before the war, and the last five years before the
7 war started, you were the director, the general manager of that
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. That co-operative must have wielded great influence in a small
11 place like Lovas. It must have been very important.
12 A. To its economy, of course.
13 Q. You were on good terms with all the residents of Lovas, weren't
14 you, regardless of ethnicity.
15 A. Absolutely with everyone.
16 Q. And you said that, up to 1991, you were a member of the League of
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. There were many other members of the same League of Communists in
20 Lovas at the time, I suppose.
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Can you tell me about your reasons for leaving the League of
23 Communists in 1991. Was it of your own free will or not?
24 A. You see, at that time in 1991, the activity of the League of
25 Communists was petering out. It all moved to the SDP, the
1 Social Democrat Party. There was no League of Communists anymore, for
2 all practical purposes. So I decided to simply quit. I did not make any
3 grand moves to quit. I just stopped being involved. There was no
4 activity anymore.
5 Q. You did not see the SDP as some sort of successor to the policy
6 of the League of Communists.
7 A. I did not want to join the SDP or the HDZ. I simply wanted to
8 get out of politics altogether.
9 Q. Since you mentioned the HDZ, you must know that it was founded as
10 a political party in 1989.
11 A. I know that.
12 Q. Can you tell us what kind of influence that party had in Lovas.
13 A. It did have influence, mainly in achieving independence for the
14 Republic of Croatia.
15 Q. Did it have many sympathisers in Lovas?
16 A. Yes, quite a few.
17 Q. When you say there were many HDZ followers in Lovas, my
18 information and my understanding is that everyone there was Croat.
19 A. Yes, for the most part.
20 Q. Since you were aware of the circumstances in Lovas, you knew that
21 place well, did you ever wonder why the Serbs were not joining the HDZ?
22 Was it prohibited or did they just not want to?
23 A. It was not prohibited. I often talked to them about it. What
24 they minded is that the HDZ advocated Croatia's independence and
25 secession from Yugoslavia.
1 Q. Were you able to understand why it mattered to them so much, the
2 people to whom you talked? Why did it matter to them whether they were
3 going to live in Yugoslavia or independent Croatia?
4 A. I don't know the real reasons. All I know is that they withdrew
5 at a certain point completely. Even the Serbs who were in the highest
6 bodies of administration at the co-operative, they just quit. They
7 stopped coming to meetings. When I asked why, they pleaded illness or
8 other reasons. They excluded themselves from all the developments, at
9 the co-operative and in the village itself.
10 Q. When approximately did you notice that?
11 A. Practically the moment when the HDZ came into power and when the
12 Croatian state was established. That caused widespread discontent among
13 them. But in Lovas specifically, they had absolutely no reason to fear.
14 Q. You say when the HDZ came into power. That means just after the
16 A. Yes, when the HDZ won the elections.
17 Q. And I suppose that they won by a majority in Lovas as well.
18 A. Yes, they did.
19 Q. Did you have the impression that the Serbs who lived in Lovas at
20 that time were fearful that Croatia would secede, that Yugoslavia would
21 be no more?
22 A. In my view, there was no reason for them to fear that, but some
23 of them did say it in so many words. They said they wanted to go on
24 living in Yugoslavia. It would make them feel better. Old and young
25 said the same. I was not surprised to hear it from older people, but I
1 was surprised to hear it from the younger people. It showed to me that
2 they had been indoctrinated against an independent Croatian state.
3 Q. You say you were not surprised to hear it from older people. To
4 hear what?
5 A. You know the stories from the Second World War. Older people
6 knew about the Second World War, and what happened and what the situation
7 was then, but younger people did not know these things.
8 Q. When you know that older people knew that, you mean they were
9 contemporaries. They knew first-hand about the crimes committed in the
10 Second World War by Ustashas against the Serbs.
11 A. There were other crimes. There were crimes by Chetniks and
12 partisans against those who were not partisans.
13 Q. Could you explain a little? Were the older Serb people afraid
14 that Ustasha crimes would be repeated or other crimes, such as partisan
16 A. I don't know. Maybe they were thinking that something like that
17 might happen again when the Ustashas come into power. Maybe that's what
18 they said to themselves.
19 Q. Why did you not expect the younger people to know that? They
20 must have heard it from their parents, their fathers.
21 A. Because I believe that younger people were brought up in a
22 different spirit, in a different culture, with a different world view.
23 Q. They were brought up also in a Yugoslav spirit, you will admit.
24 A. Yes. But they were taught different things at school. They were
25 supposed to look at life and the world with different eyes.
1 Q. You made a distinction a moment ago - that's on page 8 of today's
2 LiveNote - you said that the majority of the Serb population in Lovas
3 were people who were resettled from Banja and Kordun after the
4 Second World War.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. In your view, did it have any influence on their attitude?
7 A. I don't think why it should have.
8 Q. Do you know, Banja and Kordun were part of the independent state
9 of Croatia in World War II, you will agree?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. There were concentration camps nearby, such as Jasenovac?
12 A. We all know that. We learnt our history.
13 Q. We have had occasion to hear in this courtroom that there was not
14 a single Serb family in Croatia that did not have close family perish in
15 those camps.
16 A. I cannot talk about that. I don't know whether every Serb family
17 had lost people. Everybody lost something. My father told me how the
18 Croats faired at Kordun.
19 Q. Do you know that a committee of the Croatian Democratic Union was
20 founded in Lovas in March 1991?
21 A. Yes, I know that, but I don't know when exactly. I was not a
22 member, so I don't know.
23 Q. Do you know who members were?
24 A. Yes. The -- Lovas is not a big place.
25 Q. Can you tell us who the members of the Executive Committee of the
1 HDZ in Lovas were?
2 A. I know that Jozo Milas was the president of the HDZ board. I
3 know that Mujic was a member. His first name was either Ivan or Franjo.
4 I don't know. At that time I did not know much about the policies of the
5 HDZ or its Executive Board. I didn't get involved much.
6 Q. Who was elected as the president of the municipal assembly in
7 Lovas after the HDZ victory?
8 A. Up to then it was a Croat, Jakob Poljak. I can't remember who
9 was elected as president. I know that it was Jakob Poljak before that,
10 and thereafter, I really ... the municipal assembly, is that what you're
11 asking me? The assembly of the local commune?
12 Q. Yes.
13 A. It was Jakob Poljak before that, and after that, I don't know who
14 was appointed.
15 Q. Let me try and jog your memory. Does Zeljko Cirba's name ring a
17 A. Of course, it does. He was employed in my company. I really
18 don't know that he was appointed as the president of the local commune.
19 I really don't know.
20 Q. We have heard that in the second half of April 1990, the HDZ
21 started setting up a military organisation. Do you know anything about
23 A. I don't know anything about that, but I don't think it did. How
24 the HDZ could have formed a military organisation at that time? Are you
25 referring to the Lovas HDZ? I don't know anything about that, and I
1 don't think so.
2 Q. You -- you know, however, that the president of the HDZ board in
3 Lovas was Milas, right, Jozo Milas?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Do you know that the vice-presidents were Marin Vidic Bili and
6 Josip Grcanac?
7 A. I know that they were HDZ members. I don't know what their
8 positions were. I was not a member, as I've already told you, and I
9 repeat it now.
10 Q. Do you know that Josip Grcanac was the chief of the police
11 administration in Vinkovci for a while?
12 A. Yes, after the war he was the chief of the police administration
13 in Vinkovci. I know that.
14 Q. And before the war?
15 A. Before the war, he was in Vukovar. But I don't know whether he
16 was chief there. I know that he was a police employee in Vukovar, but I
17 don't know what his position was there.
18 Q. Do you know that when it comes to the HDZ board in Lovas, Mijo
19 Kolic was a member?
20 A. I know he was an HDZ member but I don't know whether he was a
21 member of the Executive Board.
22 Q. What about Franjo Krizmanic?
23 A. Yes. He was a member as well.
24 Q. Branko Krizmanic?
25 A. I don't know that he was a member. He is Franjo's son and it is
1 possible that he was also an HDZ member.
2 Q. Josip Badanjak?
3 A. He was a member. I don't know what his position was. I haven't
4 a clue.
5 Q. Josip Filic?
6 A. He was an HDZ member as well.
7 Q. And was his nickname Duka?
8 A. No. Nobody was known by that nickname in Lovas.
9 Q. Ivo Madzarevic, what about him?
10 A. He was an HDZ member as well.
11 Q. Tomislav Rendulic?
12 A. Yes. Him as well.
13 Q. Franjo Mujic?
14 A. Him as well. He was also an HDZ member.
15 Q. Keser known as Braca?
16 A. Keser, Braca. I believe his first name was Mile and he was also
17 an HDZ member.
18 Q. Do you know that, starting with 1990, people in Lovas started
19 arming themselves?
20 A. In 1990?
21 Q. Yes, in 1990.
22 A. No. I don't know about that. I don't know that people started
23 getting armed in 1990. If anything was happening on a large scale, I'm
24 sure I would have known that.
25 Q. According to the information that I have - maybe you know
1 something about that - that in 1990, on the border crossing with Hungary,
2 certain people were arrested, Mile Jovanovic, Josip Mirkovic,
3 Mustafa Mumin, due to the illegal import of weapons and their sale in
5 A. I've heard stories but I don't know whether that really happened
6 or not. I just heard rumours.
7 Q. Do you know that training was organised for HDZ members from
8 Vukovar municipality including Lovas?
9 A. No, that didn't happen in Lovas. I'm sure of that.
10 Q. And elsewhere?
11 A. I don't know. I wouldn't know that at all.
12 Q. Do you know anything about the Federal Youth Work Campaign?
13 A. Yes. That's what happened at the Vupik farm.
14 Q. Do you know that there was some sort of military training
15 organised there?
16 A. Yes. I know that the ZNG members were there, when they had
17 already become a legal Croatian military unit.
18 Q. Do you know that they were trained there?
19 A. They were there. I don't know whether they were also trained
20 there, that there was some sort of training organised there. I don't
21 know that.
22 Q. According to the information that we have, the military
23 organisation of the HDZ, that started in the second half of 1990 -- or,
24 rather, in the second half of April 1990, when a decision to that effect
25 was taken. That decision was taken at a meeting in the village of
1 Bogdanovci. Do you know anything about that?
2 A. No, I don't know anything about it. I was not at all familiar
3 with that village. I hardly knew it.
4 Q. According to the information that we have, furthermore, it was
5 decided to set up three services within that military organisation. One
6 would be a technical service; the second would be a military service; and
7 the third would be a medical service.
8 A. Again, I don't know that. I don't know whether that was decided
9 there or not.
10 Q. According to some other information that we have, people -- the
11 people who attended and represented Lovas at that meeting subsequently
12 implemented the decision that were taken at that meeting and organised
13 those same services in the village of Lovas.
14 A. Again, I don't know that. That may well have been the case.
15 However, at that time, no activities to that effect took place in Lovas.
16 Nothing that could be tied to any such services.
17 Q. According to the same information that we have, the head of the
18 technical service in Lovas was Ivo Madzarevic. And the task of the
19 technical service was to arm HDZ members.
20 A. I don't know whether Ivo was in that position or not. I only
21 know that there was no arming going on at that time. Where would the
22 arms come from in the first place? Nobody had weapons at that time.
23 Q. Were some measures taken in order to obtain weapons?
24 A. In 1990? No. Not in 1990.
25 Q. And in 1991?
1 A. In 1991, when the situation surrounding Borovo Naselje escalated,
2 we were thinking that we needed security and we could not get that
3 security if we could not defend ourselves.
4 Q. How was that done, how were weapons obtained?
5 A. I know that individuals would go to Sid. They would buy hunting
6 rifles and pistols there, legally, against a licence. I believe that the
7 HDZ in 1991, after the May event, they received three or five
8 Kalashnikovs from the police. But the army gave that to the HDZ and the
9 HDZ then was allowed to distribute those weapons. But that was a
10 different time, and some unpleasant events had already started by then.
11 That was in May.
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic --
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: I would like to have a few minutes before 2.00 to
15 address a procedural matter. So whenever you are about to change to
16 another topic ...
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I can interrupt here, Your Honour, if you --
18 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. That will be good.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Rendulic --
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: -- we'll end the hearing now. You will come back
23 tomorrow morning. Tomorrow morning the hearing starts at 8.45, not at
24 9.00, at 8.45, but you will be informed by the services.
25 I remind you that you are still under oath, which means that you
1 are not allowed to discuss with anybody your testimony -- your testimony,
2 and that implies also that you cannot speak to any of the parties.
3 Do you understand?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do, Your Honours.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. The court usher will escort you out
6 of the courtroom now. Thank you very much.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
8 [The witness stands down]
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic, the issue I would like to raise is
10 your request to have additional time for the videolink witness on Friday.
11 It's 056, I think; is that right? It's a -- it's a closed session
12 witness so we don't --
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, it is. Yes, it is.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: -- so we don't use his name. Okay.
15 Mr. Stringer, are you aware of that and have you a view on the
16 matter? Because as it is a videolink witness, we should take a decision
17 in due course, so that's why I'm asking.
18 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President. In fact, we just -- I was
19 putting together some notes and we were going to propose that the
20 Prosecution could make its response orally in order to expedite the
21 Chamber's consideration.
22 We've taken a look at the Defence application. The Prosecution
23 opposes it. Certainly based on the record that we have before us at the
24 moment. The witness is a crime-base witness, if I can put it that way.
25 There are two areas. One relates to Klisa, which is paragraph 29 of the
1 indictment. The witness was also himself present and interrogated at the
2 Erdut training centre.
3 He -- the Prosecution will present his evidence pursuant to 92 --
4 Rule 92 ter and we'll be doing a 30-minute direct examination at the most
5 with the witness. We think that on that basis, a doubling of the default
6 time that would normally be available is not justified. It may be that
7 when we see how much time is left, because we are somewhat mindful of
8 wanting to finish the videolink witnesses in particular this week before
9 we go into the extended period of non-sitting. It may be that if there's
10 time and if the Defence is -- is in a position to persuade the Chamber
11 that additional time is justified, perhaps it could be considered then at
12 that point.
13 JUDGE DELVOIE: Just to know, Mr. Stringer, the next witness,
14 which is GH-100, is that a videolink witness as well? That's an
15 open-session witness, I see.
16 MR. STRINGER: No. The next witness is present in --
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Is in The Hague.
18 Mr. Zivanovic, do you want to --
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I understood that your question was related to
20 the witness -- Witness GH-100. Not for the next --
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: No.
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: No. Sorry.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Your request. We're talking about your request
24 which is --
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: 056.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: -- about 56. And now my question was whether
2 Witness 100 was also a videolink witness to which the answer is no.
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yeah. I understood that he is -- I think he is
4 videolink witness.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay.
6 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I don't have that information right
7 in front of my eyes at the moment. Actually, I might. I'm just ...
8 I'm sorry, GH-100 is indeed a videolink witness, Mr. President.
9 I apologise.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: He is also a videolink witness. Okay.
11 So, Mr. Zivanovic you wanted to --
12 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour, I'm in position to reduce my
13 time for GH-056 to one hour. So the motion is moot.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: So the request is moot.
15 Okay. Thank you. That is settled, then.
16 We convene tomorrow at 8.45. Please do not forget that we are
17 15 minutes early.
18 Thank you very much. Court adjourned.
19 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.55 p.m.,
20 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 4th day of
21 December, 2012, at 8.45 a.m.