1 Monday, 8 April 2013
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.19 p.m.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Good afternoon to everyone in and around the
7 Madam Registrar, would you call the case, please.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. This is case
9 IT-04-75-T, the Prosecutor versus Goran Hadzic.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. May we have the appearances starting
11 with the Prosecution, please.
12 MR. STRINGER: Good afternoon, Mr. President, Your Honours.
13 Greetings to counsel and to everyone else in and around the courtroom.
14 For the Prosecution Douglas Stringer, Alexis Demirdjian, Case Manager
15 Thomas Laugel, our intern Ms. Marija Bukovac.
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
17 For the Defence, Mr. Zivanovic.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Good afternoon, Your Honours. For the Defence of
19 Goran Hadzic, Zoran Zivanovic and Christopher Gosnell. Thank you.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes, Mr. Hadzic.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm not receiving any
22 interpretation. I apologise.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. Let's try to take care of that.
24 It's okay now? Thank you.
25 Mr. Stringer, I think there are a few procedural issues or
1 matters you want to raise.
2 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. Demirdjian has those.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Demirdjian will take care of it. Okay.
5 Mr. Demirdjian.
6 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Good afternoon, Your Honours. You may have seen
7 some of the e-mail circulation in the last few days. Let me begin with
8 one of the oral applications that I wished to make, and I've consulted
9 with my learned friends from the Defence, and I believe they'll be able
10 to state their position.
11 First of all, in relation to a sketch or a layout of the
12 Vukovar Hospital which we've proposed as a 65 ter 6405, we wish to use
13 this image which was taken last year at the hospital, and it basically is
14 a sketch of the hospital showing what it was like in 1991. I spoke to my
15 learned friend Mr. Gosnell about the matter, and I believe he has no
16 objections provided that we lay the foundations in advance and ask the
17 witness to describe the hospital before displaying the image. So that's
18 the first application I have, to add the document to the 65 ter list.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Gosnell.
20 MR. GOSNELL: Good afternoon, Mr. President. No objection to
21 using the document provided that -- and the issue is annotations. As
22 long as any annotations that are on the document are first raised with
23 the witness and the witness attests to the information in the
24 annotations. Provided that's done, we wouldn't have any objection to the
25 document being admitted after.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: So we can -- we can add it to the exhibit list
2 and then see what happens and whether it can be tendered or not.
3 MR. GOSNELL: That's correct, Mr. President.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: I do understand you correctly. So granted as
5 prayed. The document can be added to the exhibit list.
6 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you, Your Honours.
7 You may also recall that on the 28th of March we filed our eighth
8 motion to amend the 65 ter list of exhibits. In that motion, there is a
9 document that I wish to use with the next witness, and that is
10 65 ter 6402. These are minutes of a joint commission for tracing missing
11 persons and mortal remains of the 2nd of April, 1992. There are similar
12 minutes of the joint commission meetings on our 65 ter list. This is one
13 of those that we obtained recently from Osijek I believe the county
14 court. We obtained those documents at the end of March and we filed a
15 motion on the 28th. I believe that the Defence has not had a moment yet
16 to respond to this issue. I spoke to Mr. Gosnell about the matter. I
17 think he wishes to take some time today to take a look at it, and in
18 principle I believe there are no objections but I believe he wants the
19 rest of the afternoon to take a look at this document. So that's one of
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: So this would mean that we would take a decision
22 tomorrow after having heard --
23 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Yes.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: -- Mr. Gosnell. Is that okay with you?
25 MR. GOSNELL: Yes. To put the matter shortly, we reserve our
1 position for the moment. Thank you, Mr. President.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes. Thank you.
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Very well. And -- great. There's also the
4 issue of the faxes and letters that the next witness had sent throughout
5 the time of the conflict, and essentially in relation to those, you may
6 have seen an e-mail I sent out this weekend proposing that we display a
7 number them and show them through the witness without having to go
8 through each and every one of them. I believe there's around 40 --
9 roughly around 40 of them. I would like to use perhaps about 15 to 20 of
10 them in court with the witness, and for the rest of them, considering
11 that the content is pretty much similar in substance except that it's
12 different dates, we wish to propose to tender them after having shown a
13 certain number of them. And again, I will leave Mr. Gosnell to state his
14 position, but I believe there's no objection to this.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Gosnell.
16 MR. GOSNELL: That's correct. There's no objection to that
17 procedure. Thank you, Mr. President.
18 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. Nothing to decide for the moment I would
20 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: That's correct, Your Honours. And there's one
21 last matter. During the course of the weekend as we were proofing
22 Dr. Bosanac, she provide us a DVD, and this DVD contains handwritten --
23 there are scans of handwritten notebooks. These notebooks were compiled
24 by one of the nurses at the Vukovar Hospital, and according to
25 Dr. Bosanac they were taken by the Yugoslav People's Army when they took
1 over the hospital on the 19th or 20th of November.
2 These documents were not available to the Vukovar Hospital until
3 last year. Apparently a meeting was held between the Serbian and
4 Croatian government in the fall of 2011, during which these notebooks
5 were hand over, and only a year later the Vukovar Hospital was able to
6 obtain these notebooks. So the DVD contains scanned versions of these
7 notebooks, and at this stage considering that we received it only a
8 couple of days before the witness testifies, I do not wish to get into
9 the substance. However, I would like to have your leave to show the
10 documents on the screen to the witness for her to identify them, simply
11 identify them, and later this week we will file a motion seeking leave to
12 add these documents to the list, and we could also hear from the Defence
13 at that stage, and perhaps we will tender them through a bar table
14 motion. So I'm kind of doing the opposite of MFIing a document. I'm
15 asking her to identify the material with are a view to adding it to the
16 list and having them tendered at a later stage.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Gosnell.
18 MR. GOSNELL: We do object to this. This is in effect trying to
19 MFI documents before they're even on the 65 ter list. We're dealing with
20 document -- there have been a great number of documents over the years of
21 this nature that have been disclosed. It's a great burden on the Defence
22 to go through these documents and now we have yet another iteration. I
23 don't know precisely why these documents would only have come to light
24 late in last year. There's been no explanation, no information about
1 So given the state of information at the moment, we object to --
2 we object to using it, first of all prior to it being on the 65 ter list,
3 and in due course, we probably will object to it being put on the 65 ter
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Demirdjian, why -- why would you like to show
6 them to the witness before a decision has been taken to add them to the
7 exhibit list?
8 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, I could ask questions to the
9 witness in abstract, asking her, "Did you provide us a CD? Does this CD
10 contain such-and-such material?" That could be done. I just thought
11 that for purposes of identification it might be relevant for Your Honours
12 to see the document and for her to identify this is what she provided us
13 over the weekend. That is all I wish to do at this stage. But if you
14 believe that identification is not necessary --
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: I'm just trying to -- I'm just trying to
16 understand your motion requesting the addition to the exhibit list would
17 come in when? Would the witness be away?
18 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, if -- I can try to get this done
19 before the witness leaves. I cannot promise this at this stage, but if
20 it would help in this matter, I can make an effort to file the motion
21 tomorrow afternoon perhaps. And I believe the witness will still be here
22 until Wednesday at least.
23 [Trial Chamber confers]
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Demirdjian, let's try to get this right and
25 have the request to add it to the exhibit list before the witness is
1 asked anything about the documents.
2 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Very well, Your Honours. Thank you.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Would that be all, Mr. Demirdjian?
4 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Yes. We can call our next witness, Dr. Bosanac,
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. The witness can be brought in.
7 While we are waiting for the witness, I would like to instruct
8 the OTP -- can you -- can you wait just one moment, please.
9 In the last few months the Trial Chamber has dealt with a variety
10 of motions of the Prosecution for the admission of various items of
11 documentary evidence. Too often the documents being tendered by the
12 Prosecution are either not available on e-court or otherwise not ready
13 for determination of the Trial Chamber. For example, missing
15 The Trial Chamber has had to expend an inordinate amount of time
16 identifying these problems, bringing them to the attention of the
17 Prosecution, and then monitoring the Prosecution response to the
18 identified deficiencies. The Chamber recalls that it requested the
19 Prosecution via e-mail in October last year to ensure that its standard
20 documents are translated and made available on e-court. However, this
21 situation still persists. It is not the responsibility of the
22 Trial Chamber to remedy the deficiencies of the Prosecution in this area.
23 The Trial Chamber again directs the Prosecution to ensure any document it
24 is tendering as evidence is uploaded to e-court, translated, and in all
25 respects ready for a determination on its admission. An e-mail
1 communication will follow shortly regarding the latest situation wherein
2 tendered documents are not ready for a determination of the
3 Trial Chamber. Thank you.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I'm sorry, Your Honours. I don't have access to
5 the e-court.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. Let's try to solve that problem.
7 [The witness entered court]
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic, in the meanwhile can I proceed
9 with the solemn declaration for this witness?
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, of course. I'll follow the transcript.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
12 Good afternoon, Madam Witness. Thank you for coming to The Hague
13 to assist the Tribunal. First of all, can you hear me in a language you
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Good afternoon.
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Could you please tell us your first name and
17 family name, your date of birth, and your ethnicity, please.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] My name is Vesna Bosanac. I was
19 born on the 9th of March, 1949. I am Croat by ethnicity.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. You are about to read the solemn
21 declaration by which witnesses commit themselves to tell the truth. I
22 must point out to you that by doing so you expose yourself to the penalty
23 of perjury should you give false or untruthful information to the
24 Tribunal. Could you now read the solemn declaration the usher will give
25 to you.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
2 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you very much.
4 WITNESS: VESNA BOSANAC
5 [Witness answered through interpreter]
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Demirdjian, your witness.
7 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you, Your Honours.
8 Examination by Mr. Demirdjian:
9 Q. Good afternoon, Dr. Bosanac. I see that the chair you're sitting
10 on doesn't seem to be very comfortable.
11 Could we have some assistance from the usher, please.
12 A. The chair is too high for me. It has to be lower down a little.
13 Q. Yes. Is that better?
14 A. Yes. Yes.
15 Q. Very well. Dr. Bosanac, I will start with my questions, and if
16 at any moment a question is not clear, please don't hesitate to ask me to
17 repeat it, and as I told you, we'll be going until 7.00 today, so if you
18 get tired or need any break you can tell us or you can address the
20 First of all, could you tell us what is your current occupation.
21 A. I am the CEO of the hospital in Vukovar, and I also treat
22 children. This is my profession. I'm a paediatrician.
23 Q. And could you give the Judges a brief description of your
24 educational background.
25 A. I completed grammar school in Vukovar, and I graduated from the
1 school of medicine in Zagreb. In 1981 I completed my residency in
2 paediatric medicine, and then in 1983 I obtained my master's degree.
3 From 1974, I worked in the medical centre in Vukovar, and in 1991, in the
4 month of July, I was appointed the CEO of the medical centre. From 1991
5 to 1997, I worked in exile. I was affiliated with the health care
6 ministry, and then after 1997, after the peaceful reintegration, I
7 returned to Vukovar, and I currently work there.
8 Q. Thank you. Could you tell the Judges a little bit about the
9 Vukovar Hospital. When was the hospital built, and when did it start
11 A. The Vukovar Hospital was built in 1849. That was the first time
12 it was developed. At that time, it was a very small hospital. It
13 occupied one part of the summer house of Count Eltz, and then it was
14 extended in 1939. It was operated by the Sisters of Mercy from Djakovo.
15 In its present form it was developed in 1974. During the war, it was
16 significantly damaged, practically destroyed. It was refurbished in
17 2011. It was redeveloped, and it has assumed its present shape and form.
18 Q. And just to be clear, the Vukovar Hospital, is that also referred
19 to as the Vukovar Medical Centre?
20 A. The Vukovar Medical Centre functioned up until 1993, and then the
21 reform of the health care system started in Croatia whereby hospitals
22 were separated from medical centres so that now the Vukovar Hospital is a
23 hospital, whereas the outpatient clinics which provide primary care all
24 belong to the Vukovar health centre.
25 Q. Thank you. Can you tell the Judges how many buildings were
1 located in the hospital's compound.
2 A. Within the compound there is a total of five buildings which
3 accommodate patients. Two of them are main hospital buildings featuring
4 beds and departments where the patients are treated. We call them the
5 new hospital building and the old building. Moreover, there is a
6 department for physical therapy, there is an outpatient clinic where the
7 patients are examined, there is a pathology and cytology department, as
8 well as the department which provides food for the patients.
9 Q. Thank you. Would I like to display an aerial image of this area.
10 It is 65 ter 6315, and that is at tab 109 of our list.
11 Doctor, in a moment I will ask you to annotate certain parts of
12 the image you'll see on the screen. First of all, do you recognise this
13 area on the screen?
14 A. Yes. This is the hospital compound with the buildings and the
16 Q. Very well. With the assistance of the usher, I will ask you to
17 make some markings now. Now, could you mark on this with the letter A
18 the new hospital building you mentioned earlier.
19 A. [Marks]
20 Q. And with the letter B the old one.
21 A. [Marks]
22 Q. Very well. Now, we see some streets here. Are you able to
23 situate them a little for us?
24 A. This is one of the main streets. It's called Zupanijska street.
25 Q. Can you put the letter C for that one.
1 A. [Marks]
2 Q. And what is the street below Zupanijska street?
3 A. This one here is called Gunduliceva street.
4 Q. Thank you. And for the record, you marked this with the letter
6 Now between the old building and the new building, what is it
7 that we see there? It looks like a parking lot; is that right?
8 A. Well, it's a green surface, and there's a monument now.
9 Q. Okay. Are there any buildings in here which belong to the
11 A. Yes, as I said before, there's this department for physical
12 therapy, and across the park there is the kitchen and the department of
13 pathology and cytology. And behind that is an atomic shelter where we
14 spent most of our time during war working.
15 Q. Would you mind marking these with individual letters following
16 the letter D. E, F, G, et cetera. Perhaps starting with the last one
17 you mentioned, the area where the atomic shelter was. If you can mark
18 that with the letter E.
19 A. There is an axis path from that yard which goes from the old
20 building to the new building. Subterranean passage, in fact.
21 Q. Very well. And I believe that is sufficient for the time being.
22 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, may I tender this image?
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 6315 as marked by the
25 witness will be Exhibit P1421.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
2 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
3 Q. If I take you back to 1991, Dr. Bosanac, how many floors did the
4 main building have at the time?
5 A. There was a basement, the ground floor, two floors, and a loft or
6 attic which was not used by the hospital.
7 Q. And in relation to your office as of July 1991 as a director of
8 the hospital, in which building was your office located?
9 A. For a while the administration building was outside the hospital
10 compound, across this street where the old hospital building is.
11 However, very early on in August, that building was completely destroyed
12 by the shelling, and then I moved my office to the underground floor of
13 the main hospital building.
14 Q. Now, at the time in 1991, could you tell the Court how many rooms
15 were there in the main building, and what was the maximum number of
16 patients the hospital could have taken during peacetime?
17 A. In the main building on those three floors that were in use, the
18 ground floor and the first and the second floor, there were 250 beds,
19 whereas in the old building we also had a high ground floor and two
20 storeys where we could put up in peacetime an additional 150 patients.
21 However, already back in August, the hospital was constantly targeted by
22 the shelling and bombing, so that from 15 August on, we were able to work
23 only in the basements. It was too dangerous even in the higher ground
25 Q. And could you tell the Court during peacetime how many staff
1 members were working at the hospital?
2 A. One thousand and forty employees, but at that time we were all
3 part of the medical centre. There were the physicians, the nurses who
4 worked in outpatient clinics, ambulances, et cetera. So in total there
5 were 1.040 employees.
6 Q. Now, you mentioned earlier that -- the shelling of mid-August.
7 How did that shelling affect, if in any way, the number of staff members
8 at the hospital?
9 A. Even before that, in June and in July, many employees left the
10 hospital. It was the normal vacation time, but it coincided with the
11 beginning of the war. Already on the 2nd of May, wartime began in
12 Vukovar. In June and July, shells were falling on Borovo Naselje and the
13 Borovo factory, and many employees left their jobs. Generally speaking,
14 there were many employees of all ethnicities in the hospital, Serbs,
15 Croats, Ruthenians. Vukovar was a multi-ethnic town. Nineteen
16 ethnicities were represented, but many, many left at that time. Many
17 Serbs left, going across the Danube to Serbia. A large number of Croats
18 left for other parts of Croatia where there was no war. So that in
19 August only about 350 of us remained in the hospital, including the
20 medical staff and auxiliary staff also of all ethnicities.
21 Q. You just mentioned that Vukovar had about what was 19 ethnic
22 groups. Could you tell the Court which groups were represented -- well,
23 had the highest representation?
24 A. According to the 1991 census, the city of Vukovar had a
25 population of 45.000, and the entire area around us, which is now the
1 eastern part of the Vukovar-Srem county, it was then called Vukovar, it
2 had 147.000 population. Forty-seven per cent were Croats, around 35 or
3 so per cent were Serbs, and the rest were different ethnicities,
4 Ruthenians, Ukrainians, Slovaks. There was also a group that declared
5 themselves as Yugoslavs, and those were mainly people who were in mixed
6 marriages or children of mixed marriages so that they declared themselves
7 as Yugoslavs, and there were about 5 per cent of them in Vukovar.
8 Q. Now, prior to the conflict, can you describe to the Trial Chamber
9 what was the relationship between those various ethnic groups?
10 A. I worked as a paediatrician for many years there by that time,
11 and I can say that as I saw it, there were no inter-ethnic conflicts,
12 neither in the population at large or among the staff of the medical
14 Q. Now, did that situation change at a certain point in time?
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Demirdjian --
16 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Yes, Your Honours?
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: -- if you would allow me just one little
19 Ms. Bosanac, how do you define one's ethnicity? I mean, what
20 makes someone to be a Croat and what makes someone to be a Serb or
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] According to our regulations,
23 everyone determines their own ethnicity. It's a matter of choice, and
24 it's usually linked to tradition. If your family, your father, mother,
25 and other relatives are all Croats, then you declare yourself as a Croat.
1 There are cases where the marriage was mixed between a Croat father and
2 Serb mother. The children of such a marriage would declare themselves as
3 Croat or Serb or Yugoslav. Other national minorities such as Ukrainians
4 and Ruthenians also declared themselves as they chose according to their
5 own tradition.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: So that's how people declare themselves. And how
7 about other people defining someone? Would you -- would you go to
8 someone and ask him whether he defines himself as a Croat or a Serb, or
9 are there other criteria that allows someone to determine the ethnicity
10 of someone else?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know if I'll be able to
12 give you a precise sense to this question, but I heard there was some
13 regulations in the former Yugoslavia whereby in the registers of
14 population of registers of voters, ethnicity would be entered according
15 to where their fathers happen to be in a certain year. That's something
16 I only heard about. But in every census you would get a blank, a form,
17 where you would write down your name, surname, date and place of birth,
18 your ethnicity, your confession. You can write all that, but you don't
19 have to.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: But that's still what you do yourself about your
21 own ethnicity. I mean, how -- how do you determine the ethnicity of your
22 neighbour, for instance? How do you know he is a Croat or a Serb,
23 because he told you, because of his religion, because of something else?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've already said that before the
25 war and even now after the war people in Vukovar do not look at each
1 other in terms of ethnicity. They don't judge each other by ethnicity.
2 Some people feel the need to say to what ethnic group they belong, others
3 don't. Throughout all my work, and now it's been 15 years that we
4 returned to Vukovar, in our archives where we have records of employees
5 we never write ethnicity. We just right down the name and surname, their
6 educational attainment, address of residence, et cetera. We do not write
7 down ethnicity or religion. That is, I suppose, written into the
8 registers of birth after censuses.
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. Just one minute, Mr. Demirdjian.
10 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Yes. Madam Witness, picking up on
11 the Presiding Judge's question. Yes, Ms. Witness, after hearing the
12 question of the President, when you -- [Overlapping interpretation]
13 ethnicity. It's a bit difficult for me to understand what that means,
14 that you have Croat nationality or that you are Croat even without the
15 nationality of that state. When you are Croat, you can be, for instance,
16 Serb by ethnicity or something else by ethnicity, or a national of
17 another country. How is one supposed to know that?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Where we live, ethnicity is one
19 thing and nationality is another. Those are two different concepts. You
20 can be Croat while being a national of Croatia or a national of Serbia or
21 a national of Bosnia-Herzegovina. If you are an ethnic Serb, you can
22 also be a national of Croatia, of Serbia, or of Bosnia-Herzegovina, or
23 some other country, Germany or the Netherlands.
24 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes, Mr. Delic.
1 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you, Your Honours.
2 Q. Doctor, we left off where we were asking about the relationship
3 between the ethnic communities, and my question to you was: Was there a
4 time where this relationship changed?
5 A. Certainly. As the war began, there occurred changes in the
6 ethnic structure. Although in the town of Vukovar where there were
7 45.000 inhabitants before the war, during the encirclement in the
8 aggression only 15.000 remained. In the encirclement, those people who
9 remained in town and in the hospital included all ethnicities, but when
10 Vukovar fell, when the Yugoslav Army entered Vukovar along with all sorts
11 of paramilitaries who came with the army, they divided people thoroughly
12 so that Serbs were free. They were free to go to Serbia or to remain in
13 Vukovar, whereas most of the Croats and other non-Serbs ended up in
15 During the so-called Republic of Serbian Krajina from 1991
16 through 1997, when the peaceful reintegration began, most of the
17 population in Vukovar and around the environs, which was called the
18 Croatian Danube valley, was part of the Osijek and Baranja counties, most
19 of the population was Serbs, although there were some remaining Croats,
20 Hungarians, and members of some other ethnic minorities. However, in
21 that period of 16 years, the national minorities and people in mixed
22 marriages were subjected to all sorts of torment and torture that I know
23 about from witnesses and some I -- I witnessed.
24 In 1997 when we returned, we found 25.000 residents -- in fact,
25 that's the number that required medical assistance. That's how I know
1 the number. And that's when returnees started to arrive. The past 15
2 years has been a time of restoration and return, and the area is again
3 multi-ethnic. The structure is slightly altered, but again members of
4 various ethnicities live in the area.
5 Q. Doctor, I'd like to take that answer you gave us and go back a
6 little bit in time. Was there a point before, because you talked about
7 the conflict and the fall of Vukovar, et cetera, was there a time before
8 the conflict start where there were indications of a change in the
9 relationship between the ethnic groups?
10 A. Well, yes, that's true. Practically from 1988, changes began in
11 the former Yugoslavia, changes that were supposed to lead to political
12 transformation in terms of making individual republics independent. The
13 former Yugoslavia was made up of Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina,
14 Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia with its two autonomous provinces,
15 Vojvodina and Kosovo.
16 After Tito's death, all sorts of changes began. I remember that.
17 I was a student at that time. Yugoslavia, as you know, was a socialist
18 country with a ruling Communist Party. All sorts of liberal ideas
19 started to sprout. Talk about liberalisation began. Croatia and
20 Slovenia were foremost in this, and very soon negotiations began about
21 the transformation of Yugoslavia. The presidents of Slovenia and Croatia
22 wanted the country to be transformed into a confederation. However, the
23 political forces in Serbia, which was headed by Mr. Milosevic, and some
24 other republics were against that, and at that time centralisation was
25 pervasive in Yugoslavia in every way, in payments, in the foreign
1 currency system, and the changes began in the late 1980s and early 1990s
2 that resulted in the independence of certain republics.
3 As for Vukovar, we could also feel those changes. Vukovar was at
4 that time a rather advanced city doing very well, very progressive. We
5 had a factory that employed over 10.000 people. Around Vukovar and in
6 the hospital and elsewhere, in Borovo, we had 15.000 people employed in a
7 rather well developed industry, but the socialist system was showing its
8 weaknesses. Money was running short. Many industries were unable to
9 deal with the new free market economy. Pay was late. Salaries were not
10 paid, and there were all sorts of changes that had nothing to do with
12 However, the Milosevic regime, at least this is how I see it,
13 took advantage of that moment to advance the idea of Serbian hegemony and
14 started spreading it through rallies beginning with Kosovo and Knin and
15 parts of Croatia. They were spreading constantly some ideas among the
16 Serbian people that they are threatened. They were spreading some myths
17 that they are in danger, that all of Yugoslavia has to be one great
18 Serbia, and that's when national rifts, divisions along ethnic lines
20 In our area as well. The settlements around Vukovar had a
21 majority Serb population, and Serb volunteers rushed in as if to
22 purportedly protect them. Roadblocks were put up under that pretext, and
23 the Yugoslav Army was arming those volunteers and the Serb population who
24 thought that under the leadership of Slobodan Milosevic they would
25 succeed in occupying the greatest part of Yugoslavia so as to make it one
1 big Serbia. That's how the war began in the former Yugoslavia, and we
2 were very hard hit by all that in Vukovar. All the more so because we
3 did not expect the heavy devastation that eventually happened. We were
4 hoping for a political solution and that the crisis would be resolved
5 peacefully. However, from August until November, hundreds of thousands
6 of bombs and projectiles and shells handed on the town. A lot of the
7 city was damaged. Many people were killed, so that very early on we felt
8 in our own skins the aggression that is difficult to imagine if you were
9 not in Vukovar at that time. Later on, the war spread to other parts of
10 Croatia, and in 1992 to Bosnia-Herzegovina, but those early days in
11 Vukovar, the very start, was really the heaviest, the fiercest.
12 Q. Doctor, I'd like to take you to a specific -- sorry. I'd like to
13 take you to a very specific event. It is an agreed fact between the
14 parties that there is an incident on the 2nd of May, 1991, in
15 Borovo Selo. Are you familiar with this incident?
16 A. Yes, I remember that, although at the time I was not the CEO of
17 the medical centre, but I do remember the incident.
18 Q. How did you come to learn about it?
19 A. That I was on duty in the outpatients' clinic in the hospital.
20 My nurses spoke to some other nurses on the phone. They lived in
21 Borovo Selo. They said that they couldn't come to work because there was
22 shooting going on. The situation was very dramatic. Everybody was
23 afraid. In the afternoon they started bringing wounded and dead. They
24 were all police officers from Borovo Selo. I remember that.
25 Q. And following this, could you explain to the Judges what was the
1 security situation like during the month of May and June of 1991?
2 A. At that time, in the month of May, after that incident, the
3 situation in Vukovar was still calm. There was no shelling. However,
4 the roadblocks had already been put up. You could not take your
5 customary roads to go to Osijek or elsewhere. You had to pass through
6 the barricades or you had to use some roundabout ways. That caused us a
7 lot of problems with the transport of patients. I remember that. And
8 people from the villages who had to come to the hospital because they
9 worked there had to have passes. For a while they kept on coming to work
10 but then they stopped. In the month of June the situation became more
11 difficult. The first shells started falling on the Borovo factory and
12 Borovo village, especially in the month of July. And in August, the
13 shells started falling on the city of Vukovar itself on the central part
14 of the city.
15 Q. Now, you told us that in the month of July you were appointed as
16 the director of the medical centre in Vukovar. Could you tell us who was
17 the director before you?
18 A. The director of the Vukovar Medical Centre before me was an
19 elderly doctor. His name was Rade Popovic. At that time, he resigned.
20 I remember that very well. I was a member of the workers council. That
21 was the name of the management board of the medical centre. When he
22 resigned, he handed in his notice, and he said that he didn't want to
23 continue serving as a director. Later on I learned that the minister had
24 asked for his resignation because he tolerated the fact that many people
25 had stopped coming to work, especially from Borovo Selo. When I took
1 over his position, I realised that that was indeed true and that many
2 people had stopped coming to work from Borovo Selo.
3 Q. You learned that the minister had asked him to resign.
4 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: And on that note I would like us to display
5 65 ter 206, which is at tab 2.
6 Q. Do you see the document on the screen, Doctor?
7 A. Yes, I do.
8 Q. Now, the subject here says "Request to Dismiss the Director,
9 Dr. Rade Popovic." Could you tell the Court who sends this document and
10 who is it addressed to?
11 A. As you can see from the heading, it was the healthcare ministry
12 which sent this letter in July 1991 to the president of the workers
13 council of the medical centre. At that time, the president of the
14 workers council was Dr. Vojislav Stanimirovic. He was the one who called
15 the workers council meeting. I was a member of that body. But at that
16 time I was not aware of this document. I only saw it later. And at that
17 meeting, Dr. Popovic told us that he was handing in his resignation
18 because he no longer wanted to occupy that position.
19 Q. Okay. And if we scroll down to the bottom of page 1 in both
20 versions, does this document explain the reasons behind the request of
21 the Ministry of Health?
22 A. I learnt this letter only subsequently, and I realised that
23 Dr. Popovic was being asked to resign because he turned a blind eye to
24 the fact that many people did not come to work, and they did not have a
25 justification, and he didn't dismiss them. At that time in July, people
1 were on legitimate leaves, but they were supposed to return, which they
2 did not. I suppose that somebody advised the minister of that, and the
3 minister then asked for Dr. Popovic's resignation, and Dr. Popovic
5 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Can we turn page 2.
6 Q. Doctor, do you recognise the signature on this letter?
7 A. This is Professor Hebrang's signature. He was the health
8 minister at the time.
9 Q. Following his resignation, could you tell the Court what happened
10 to Dr. Popovic, the former director?
11 A. He remained working as the head of a department. I was then
12 appointed the acting director of the hospital. The workers council
13 actually elected me based on a proposal. There were three candidates
14 running. I gained the majority of the votes. I was then appointed the
15 acting director of the medical centre, and then Minister Hebrang,
16 complying with the rules, confirmed my appointment as the director of the
17 medical centre. Dr. Popovic told me that he would help me, that he would
18 remain working, that I could rely on him and his experience, and he
19 remained working despite the hardships and the war activities. Later on
20 he went to Montenegro, and he could not come back.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, may I make an application to
23 tender this document.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
25 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 00206 will be Exhibit P1422.
1 Thank you.
2 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
3 Q. Doctor -- sorry. Thank you. Doctor, you explained the situation
4 was increasingly tense during the months of June and July. I'd like to
5 take you to the month of August and describe what was the situation in
6 the town of Vukovar itself.
7 A. Shells started falling on the city centre in August. I remember
8 that during the first week of August two shells fell near the market
9 where a doctor of ours resided. His house was there. He came to tell us
10 that and he said that he was packing to go to Germany. Many people left
11 Vukovar at the time.
12 In the hospital we established our own Crisis Staff. My
13 assistant were Dr. Ivankovic, the head of surgical department;
14 Dr. Kuzmanovic, the head of the outpatients' clinics; Mr. Krstic who was
15 the assistant director for finances. We held our meetings every two or
16 three days. We organised the supply of medicines and medical equipment.
17 I would go to Zagreb to talk to Professor Hebrang. I would talk to him
18 about the situation and how much medical equipment and supplies were need
19 because our storages were completely empty. I learned later on that some
20 nurses had taken all those from the hospital and that they later on set
21 up their own outpatients' clinics in Serbian villages.
22 In any case, we tried to gather as much assistance as we could.
23 We organised ourselves so that everybody worked all the time. A decree
24 came from the main medical staff to the effect that nobody could leave
25 their posts, and if they did and if they did not report to work for five
1 days, they would be dismissed from work. That was a war decree that was
2 signed by the head of that medical staff, Ivo Prodan, and that was
3 cosigned by Minister Hebrang. That's how we organised ourselves. We
4 drafted an evacuation plan so that all the patients who were at the
5 hospital at the time could be lowered down into the basement within 15
6 minutes. And all the chronical patients who did not require constant
7 medical care were evacuated from Vukovar. For example, the patients who
8 were on dialysis for -- because of the renal failure were sent to Rovinj
9 in Istria. All patients had to be sent to various hospital departments
10 we did, and those that we could treat were treated in our hospital. We
11 set some rules that we all complied with, and we managed to organise work
12 even in the direst of circumstances. From the 15th of August we could
13 not leave the basement at all because there was daily shelling and shells
14 kept on falling on the hospital day in and day out.
15 Q. And, Doctor, you mentioned the shelling --
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Demirdjian, it is that time.
17 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Are we going until quarter to or? We started at
18 quarter past 2.00.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Quarter to? Okay. My mistake.
20 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: No problem.
21 Q. So, Doctor, you're talking about shelling. Can you tell the
22 Court if you know who was doing the shelling?
23 A. At that time, Vukovar was already encircled and shells were
24 launched from the left bank the Danube from the eastern and southern
25 parts of the city. There were air-strikes, and all those were bombs and
1 shells launched by the JNA, or, actually, they all belonged to the JNA,
2 but I don't know exactly who launched those shells and bombs.
3 Q. Now, Doctor, are you familiar with events at the post office in
4 August of 1991?
5 A. I remember that. We learned that the post office had been hit,
6 that people were wounded there. Military transporters were roaming the
7 city all the time. They then arrived at that hospital. I don't know
8 why. I remember an event when a military APC arrived in the hospital to
9 fetch a newborn baby and the parents had been left behind a roadblock. I
10 don't know where they were, either in Bobanja [phoen] or Trpeta [phoen].
11 The baby was small. We tried to explain to them that the baby should be
12 kept in hospital until it reached a certain weight. However, one day an
13 APC arrived and a military doctor was with them. They came to fetch the
14 baby to my great astonishment. They could have used a normal car, but,
15 no, they did not. They used an APC. Then we realised that we were in a
16 war zone and that things could only get worse from there.
17 Q. I'd like to show you a video-clip which is 65 ter 4798.6. That's
18 at tab 90 of our list.
19 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: And for our interpreters, you may have a bundle.
20 It's at tab A of your bundle.
21 [Video-clip played]
22 THE INTERPRETER: "[Voiceover] The army caused another incident
23 in the Vukovar post office on August the 20th. Three civilians were
24 killed in the gunfire and the investigation by the joint commission
25 established that apart from the Yugo-soldiers, nobody else shot a bullet.
1 That day the Croatian children started to return from their summer
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
4 Q. Doctor, on this image do you recognise any of the medical staff
5 by any chance?
6 A. This is our ambulance which was sent to the spot in August. We
7 already had 20 people who had been brought in for war injuries. Some of
8 them were civilians and the others were Croatian policemen who were
10 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Okay. We'll keep playing, please.
11 [Video-clip played]
12 THE INTERPRETER: "[Voiceover] The first returnees are already
13 exposed to the terrorist attacks of the Vukovar's fifth-columnists."
14 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
15 Q. Doctor, you were mentioning earlier that military vehicles were
16 in the streets. What do you see here on the screen?
17 A. I can see an APC of that -- of the kind that used to roam the
18 streets of Vukovar. One of them arrived at the hospital as I already
19 told you.
20 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Okay. We can play the rest.
21 [Video-clip played]
22 THE INTERPRETER: "[Voiceover] On the --"
23 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Okay. You can shut it down. Thank you.
24 Your Honours, may I make an application to tender this
25 video-clip, please.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
2 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 4798.6 will be P1423.
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
4 Q. Now, in the midst of all this, Dr. Bosanac, you were explaining
5 to us that people were leaving the town. Can you tell us specifically if
6 anything specific was done with the children in Vukovar?
7 A. Of course I remember. As I say, it was the time of summer
8 holidays. Children were on holidays at the seaside. I remember that
9 Serbian children left Serbian villages. I couldn't believe my eyes when
10 I saw them leaving. I didn't know why they were leaving. I remember a
11 nurse who was from Negoslavci who used to work with us. She was on
12 night-shift. Her husband called her to tell her to come home immediately
13 because buses had arrived from Sid to take the women and children to Sid.
14 She had just come to work. She couldn't believe what she heard. He --
15 she told him not to send her children anywhere before she came.
16 The following day she went home and she never returned. I
17 suppose she was taken to Sid. I remember some of my patients from
18 Borovo Selo who phoned in to arrange a check-up and they could not come
19 for their check-ups because they wouldn't allow them. They forced them
20 to go to Vojvodina. And I remember those children who were returned from
21 their holidays hoping that they would start school on the 1st of
22 September or in any case at the beginning of September. I remember that
23 Mr. Vlatko Pavletic was the minister of education. He held a press
24 conference. He said that the situation would calm down, that the
25 negotiations were underway, and that school would start.
1 The situation was very confusing. A lot of children returned to
2 Vukovar, whereas many children left, predominantly of Serbian ethnicity.
3 Children of both ethnicities stayed in Vukovar. I remember because I
4 lived there. And we kept on expecting that the situation would calm
5 down. Of the 15.000 people who remained in Vukovar, there were about
6 1.500 children under the age of 15. Later on that was a big problem.
7 When shells started falling, we had to protect those children. We had to
8 keep them under lock in atomic shelters and basements in order to save
9 their lives.
10 Q. Now, Doctor, you mentioned earlier the issue of the shelling of
11 the hospital. Did the hospital take any measures to indicate or
12 demonstrate that this building was indeed a hospital?
13 A. I've already testified about that on a number of occasions. On
14 the roof of one of its buildings which housed the infectious disease
15 department there was a huge red cross, and the green area between the new
16 and the old hospital buildings we also spread a large piece of white
17 cloth depicting a red cross. Later on it turned out it was a good
18 target, because shells kept on falling close to that red cross. And then
19 people kept telling me why don't you remove that red cross? Maybe they
20 would not go on shelling us that much if the cross wasn't there.
21 No rules were observed during that war. It was aggression by the
22 so-called JNA and all the paramilitaries that accompanied it. It was
23 just inconceivable what happened to us, what we suffered at their hands.
24 Q. Doctor, I would like to show you a video now which is at
25 65 ter 4970.1. This is at tab 26.
1 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: And for the interpreters, you will find the
2 transcript under tab C.
3 [Video-clip played]
4 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Can you rewind it just a little bit. Right
5 there. We'll get it.
6 Q. Doctor, what do you see on this image?
7 A. I can see one of those APCs belonging to the JNA. It arrived
8 within the hospital compound.
9 Q. And what's the building in the background?
10 A. This is the May hospital -- the main hospital building.
11 Q. For the record, this is 7 seconds into this clip. We can keep
12 playing it, please.
13 [Video-clip played]
14 THE INTERPRETER: "[Voiceover] This is how the Yugoslav Army
15 treats the facilities which are so clearly marked with a red cross."
16 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
17 Q. Doctor, do you recognise this image?
18 A. That's the sheet that we spread. One of them was on the roof and
19 the other one was on the ground between the old and the new hospital
20 buildings. It was spread on the green surface between those two
22 Q. And how large was it, if you remember?
23 A. I don't remember, but it was large. Perhaps 7 metres by 9
24 metres. It covered the entire green surface.
25 Q. Okay. Thank you. We can keep playing, please.
1 [Video-clip played]
2 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Can you freeze here.
3 Q. Are you able to see the date on this clip, Doctor? Maybe we can
4 play it a little bit more?
5 A. Not really, no. I know it's 1991.
6 [Video-clip played]
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Now, I can see it. 28 August,
8 1991, or perhaps 26th August, 1991, at 9.54.
9 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Okay. Let's keep playing.
10 [Video-clip played]
11 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you.
12 Q. Doctor, we heard the shelling on this clip. Is this
13 representative of the situation at the time?
14 A. Fully. It lasted the whole day from morning 'til night. I
15 counted the shells and bombs. There were over a hundred that fell into
16 the hospital compound every day. Thousands of them fell in the city.
17 Vukovar is on the right bank of the Danube and it spreads over
18 10 kilometres, and it was completely encircled and shells kept on falling
19 on us all day. Only from time to time we had a calm night. I would go
20 to work every morning at 6.00, and no sooner did I arrive a new casualty
21 started arriving, and then around noon I would go home when it was calm,
22 and incendiary flares could be seen during the night from across the
23 Danube or from Negoslavci. In any case, the whole sky was ablaze. It
24 was like a fireworks display.
25 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you. Your Honours, I would make an
1 application to tender this video-clip, please.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
3 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, 65 ter 4970.1 will be Exhibit P1424.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
5 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: I notice the time.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Madam Bosanac, we'll take the first break now.
7 We will come back at 15 -- sorry, at 16.45 -- yes, of course, 16.15.
8 Thank you. The court usher will escort you out of the courtroom now.
9 [The witness stands down]
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Court adjourned.
11 --- Recess taken at 3.47 p.m.
12 --- On resuming at 4.17 p.m.
13 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Demirdjian, your motion for that video that
14 the witness provided you with, could you file that by, let's say, 1.00
15 tomorrow, and then we would ask the Defence to give a response by the end
16 of the day.
17 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, we're working on it, and I believe
18 we are in a position to do it by 1.00 tomorrow.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you very much.
20 Would that be okay with you as well, Mr. Gosnell?
21 MR. GOSNELL: Yes, Mr. President. Thank you.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you very much.
23 [The witness takes the stand]
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed, Mr. Demirdjian.
25 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you, Your Honours.
1 Q. Welcome back, Doctor. You explained to us before the break that
2 you had placed a red cross flag on the hospital compound and that some of
3 your colleagues suggested to remove it because it was becoming the target
4 of shelling. I would like to show you a short clip which is
5 65 ter 4970.2. This is at tab 26. There is no transcript for this one.
6 It's a very short two-second clip. We can play it now, just pause right
8 [Video-clip played]
9 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
10 Q. Doctor, are you familiar with this image?
11 A. Yes. That happened within the hospital compound. The bomb fell
12 just next to the canvas with the red cross on it.
13 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Very well. Your Honours, would I ask to tender
14 this document -- this clip.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
16 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 4970.2 will be
17 Exhibit P1425. Thank you.
18 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you.
19 Q. Doctor, earlier you explained that the shelling was coming from
20 across the Danube and from the area of Borovo. Could you tell us whether
21 the shelling was also coming from other parts of town?
22 A. Yes. As I've said already, shells were coming in from the left
23 bank of the Danube where tanks or cannons were entrenched. You could see
24 them from our side of the river. They also came from the south, from the
25 direction of Negoslavci, and after they encircled us, they came from
1 Bogdanovci and Marinci, even stronger where the Yugoslav Army had cut off
2 the roads. So we were being shelled from all sides.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Demirdjian.
4 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Yes, Your Honours.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Just to avoid a little confusion, in your
6 question you asked the witness:
7 "Could you tell us whether the shelling was also coming from
8 other parts of town?"
9 Do you mean other directions or other parts of town? What town
10 are you referring to?
11 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: From other directions into --
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Into the town.
13 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Into the town, sorry. Yes.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
15 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
16 Q. And on that you mentioned to us the left bank of the Danube. I
17 would like you to take a look at an image which is 65 ter 6316 at
18 tab 110. Thank you.
19 Doctor, could you -- are you, first of all, familiar with this
20 image, what we're seeing on the image?
21 A. Yes. On this image which is an aerial photograph you can see the
22 city of Vukovar. This part here is the River Danube flowing this way,
23 which makes Vukovar on the right bank of the Danube. On the left bank
24 where the cannons and the tanks that were targeting us. This here is the
25 flow of the Vuka river which flows into the Danube. Here you can see the
1 hospital compound.
2 Q. Perhaps with the help of the usher you could mark everything
3 you've indicated to us. First of all, could you put an arrow to show the
4 flow of the River Danube. Maybe in the middle of the river itself just
5 put an arrow.
6 A. [Marks]
7 Q. Very well. Now, when you meant the left bank of the Danube where
8 you saw the tanks, where would that be? You could put the letter A in
9 that area?
10 A. [Marks]
11 Q. And when you saw the hospital compound, could you put a letter B
12 around that area.
13 A. [Marks]
14 Q. You also mentioned there a river, Vuka, I believe. If you could
15 put the letter C in that area.
16 A. [Marks]
17 Q. Thank you. Now, when you mentioned earlier that on the left bank
18 where the cannons and the tanks were targeting us, this is where you
19 indicated the letter A; is that right? Thank you.
20 A. Yes.
21 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, if I may make an application to
22 tender this image.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, the marked photograph will be
25 Exhibit P1426.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
2 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
3 Q. Now, could you tell the Judges about the frequency of the
4 shelling from mid-August onwards.
5 A. On a daily basis, ever more and more, it was especially intensive
6 in October and November. Every day over a hundred different projectiles
7 fell on the hospital, shells, tank shells, and projectiles from
8 multiple-rocket launchers, as well as air bombs. Every day. There was
9 not a single day without shelling.
10 Q. You told us about the multiple-rocket launchers. How do you know
11 that these were used at the time?
12 A. I know because I saw it. I felt it. I went out from the
13 hospital when 16, 20 projectiles were fired from one and the same weapon
14 within a very short time. It was a horrendous thing. You could not not
15 see it.
16 Q. Now, could you explain to the Judges how this shelling of the
17 hospital impacted your work and that of the staff members at the
19 A. The conditions were very hard indeed, because we were forced to
20 operate only in the basement, underground. We put up sandbags against
21 windows and boarded them up to be able to work, but under very difficult
22 circumstances. When those armoured projectiles and air bombs fell, they
23 would drill through the ground and disperse fragments. People ran away
24 trying to find shelter in the deepest parts of the basement. There was
25 no water. We had to collect water from wells around. We had several
1 generators, and we brought some fuel oil to have power from -- for basic
2 medical procedures such as X-ray, lab equipment, light for the operating
3 room. The conditions were very hard, especially water shortages, and
4 there were ever more and more wounded people.
5 In the early days we were able to evacuate those more seriously
6 injured to Vinkovci up to the end of September. However, in October and
7 November we were completely besieged, so we could not evacuate anyone any
8 more. We put up the less seriously injured in shelters in Borovo Komerc
9 and other business premises to be able to accommodate serious patients.
10 Gangrene cases were evermore frequent, and there were evermore problems.
11 Q. Doctor, I'd like you to take a look at this next clip which is
12 65 ter 4970.3. This is at tab 97. There's no need for sound and there's
13 to transcript for this. We'll just be looking at the image. And --
14 right. Yes, we can start playing it.
15 [Video-clip played]
16 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Can we pause here for a second.
17 Q. Doctor, are you able to see the date on this video?
18 A. Yes, 5th October.
19 Q. And so far what have we seen? Do you recognise the compound?
20 A. As we could see, this is the entrance into the hospital. This is
21 the road between the new hospital building and the department of physical
22 therapy which used to house the emergency room before. These are
24 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: We can keep playing.
25 [Video-clip played]
1 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Can we pause here for a second.
2 Q. Which building were we looking at just now?
3 A. This is the main building of the hospital, the surgical
4 department. This is the time and the date when two air bombs fell on the
5 hospital simultaneously. One of them exploded here on the second floor
6 in the surgical ward. There were no patients there because the patients
7 were all in the basement, but the damage was considerable. The entire
8 building was shaking and trembling. Whereas, the second bomb penetrated
9 all the five storeys from the roof down to the subterranean passage
10 leading to the atomic shelter, and it fell exactly on a bed where a
11 patient was lying. However, it didn't explode, so apart from terror and
12 shock and the damage to all the floors above, it did not cause any
13 casualties, only material damage.
14 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: For the record, this is the 22nd -- no, 25
15 seconds mark on the clip. Let's keep playing it, please.
16 [Video-clip played]
17 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Can we pause right here.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These are the sandbags and the logs
19 that protected the entrance to the underground floor, because the shells
20 were falling from all directions all the time. So we were constantly
21 trying to better protect this basement.
22 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Okay. Let's keep playing, please.
23 [Video-clip played]
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Here you can see a doctor
1 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: And stop. Thank you.
2 Q. Doctor, I'd like you to look at another clip -- well, just before
3 I do that, Your Honours, can I tender this video-clip, please.
4 MR. GOSNELL: Mr. President, just before it's admitted, could we
5 ask the Prosecution whether they have any confirmation of the date
6 counter on these videos? It may not matter at all, but if they do have
7 any information that would assist on whether or not that's accurate --
8 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Yes.
9 MR. GOSNELL: -- that would be of assistance.
10 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: No problems.
11 Q. Dr. Bosanac, would you happen to know who recorded this footage?
12 A. This was filmed by one of our employees who had a video camera.
13 He still works at the hospital. It's sure that this was filmed on the
14 dates indicated. The time and date is correct.
15 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, I don't have any indications that
16 the time is incorrect, or date.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
18 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 4970.3 will be
19 Exhibit P1427. Thank you.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
21 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you.
22 Q. And I'd like you to look at the next clip which is 65 ter 4970.4,
23 at tab 97. And this one we don't need the sound. There is no transcript
25 [Video-clip played]
1 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Can we pause here.
2 Q. Doctor, are you familiar with what we are looking at at this
4 A. We see the inside of the hospital and the patients, the ill and
5 wounded people, underground where everything was going on.
6 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: For the record, this is the 4 second mark.
7 Let's keep playing, please.
8 [Video-clip played]
9 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
10 Q. Is this representative of the conditions that were prevalent at
11 the time?
12 A. Yes. It was overcrowded. Here where you see a large number of
13 patients, it's the corridor of the underground floor where patients were
14 placed because in a way it was the safest place. What you see here are
15 the empty rooms on the upper storeys, the first floor and the second
16 floor. Nobody was there. We had moved everyone down back in August, in
17 the basement. Here is the view from the upper floor of the area where
18 the air bomb exploded.
19 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Very well. May I make an application to tender
20 that clip, Your Honours.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
22 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 4970.4 will be
23 Exhibit P1428.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
25 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
1 Q. You mentioned a moment ago that an aeroplane bomb fell on the
2 hospital, and it broke through several grounds, I believe. Could you
3 look at this next clip, which is 4798.8, at tab 90.
4 [Video-clip played]
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Here you see the hole in the roof
6 where the bomb fell.
7 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
8 Q. And here what do we see?
9 A. This is the hole created by the bomb that fell through the roof
10 and on through all the floors until the subterranean passage leading to
11 the atomic shelter.
12 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: We can keep playing.
13 [Video-clip played]
14 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Very well. We can stop. Thank you.
15 Q. Now, you explained earlier that the bomb pierced through but did
16 not explode. But it fell, you told us, on the bed of a patient; is that
18 A. Yes. In that subterranean passage beds had been placed, lined
19 up, and the bomb fell onto the feet of the patient, crushing the bed, and
20 he was practically glued to the bomb, and everybody was terrorised
21 because they thought it was -- would explode. So I called the police,
22 somebody from the bomb squad to inspect it, and they did and realised
23 that the fuse was defective and it wouldn't explode. First of all, they
24 detached the patient from the bomb, put him on a stretcher, and took him
25 outside, and luckily the patient suffered only shock but no serious
2 After the fall of Vukovar, that man stayed in Vukovar and later
3 on when we returned in 1997, he looked me up. I saw him again, and I
4 wrote him a certificate about that incident, because he needed it for his
5 own purposes as a civilian victim of war.
6 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: I believe there's a question from the
7 Trial Chamber, but may I just clarify with the witness if she remembers
8 the name of the patient and his ethnic background.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I remember it, but I would not like
10 to tell his name in public considering that I'm not a protected witness.
11 If you want his name, according to the law on the rights of patients,
12 then I would like to be given the opportunity to do so in private to
13 respect his rights as a patient.
14 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, please, may we go in private
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Private session, please.
17 [Private session]
10 [Open session]
11 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're back in open session.
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
13 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: I apologise, Your Honour. I believe
14 Judge Mindua had a question.
15 JUDGE MINDUA: Yes, he did have a question. [Interpretation] My
16 question is to you, Mr. Prosecutor, because I have the impression that
17 there was a slight misunderstanding. On transcript page 36, lines 3
18 through 6, the witness spoke about air bombs. On page 38, she speaks of
19 two air bombs that fell on the hospital. But you, Prosecutor, on page
20 40, speak of aeroplane bombs. I think it's different, because air bomb
21 is a projectile that cannot be guided and hits randomly, whereas
22 aeroplane bombs are dropped from planes during combat and can be guided.
23 So what are we talking about, guided missiles or bombs that fell randomly
24 on the hospital?
25 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: [Interpretation] Perhaps it would be better to
1 ask the witness herself to give us an explanation.
2 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Yes, you're right.
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
4 Q. Dr. Bosanac, could you explain to the Trial Chamber again the
5 types of bombs that were targeting the hospital -- or sorry, that were
6 hitting the hospital?
7 A. In this case those were air bombs. Those were bombs were
8 launched from aeroplanes. I know what they looked like. They were big.
9 It weighed over 250 kilos. It was almost the size of a patient -- a
10 patient's bed. And that's, at least, what the experts from the police
11 told us.
12 Q. And in addition to aeroplane bombs, you also described earlier
13 different types of bombs; is that right?
14 A. As I've told you, on a daily basis all sorts of projectiles fell
15 on the hospital, all sorts of bombs, and they incapacitated us almost
16 incompletely. There was an armoured projectile that was launched from an
17 aeroplane, and when it hit the ground, it exploded only then. So it
18 completely filled in our subterranean corridor with concrete and soil.
19 Almost a tonne of the material fell on a patient who was in a bed. We
20 dug him out. We thought that he would be dead, but he survived. He was
21 buried under the debris that weighed over a tonne. That patient had
22 been -- was tetraplegic from before the war. He was brought to the
23 hospital because he could not be looked after at home, and he almost got
24 killed by that bomb, but he did survive and then after the fall of
25 Vukovar, he was transported to Zagreb, and they gave him accommodation in
1 a home. I know his name as well, but again I would not mention it in
2 open session. I don't want to violate anybody's right.
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: [Interpretation] Judge, I believe that the
4 witness answered that they were air bombs which were launched from
5 aeroplanes. Does this clarify the matter sufficiently?
6 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Yes. Now it's absolutely clear.
7 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, may I tender this video-clip which
8 was 4798.8?
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
10 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 4798.8 will be
11 Exhibit P1429. Thank you.
12 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
13 Q. Now, earlier, Doctor, you told us that you were not using the
14 upper floors of the hospitals as of the month of August or September, I
15 believe. Could you tell the Court which parts exactly of the hospital
16 you were using.
17 A. We could use only the basement where we had organised our
18 Emergency admission, the OR. First we had one and then two. Those were
19 all both makeshift operating theatres. All of the basement rooms were
20 redesigned and used as hospital rooms so that our patients lie on the
21 floors in all of our basement rooms.
22 There were some smaller rooms which were used to accommodate the
23 staff during night. It was only rarely that the personnel could rest.
24 Everybody was on duty all the time. All of the basement rooms in the
25 main hospital room and in the old hospital building were occupied by
1 patients. The same was true of the basement -- basement of the
2 infectious diseases department which was in Vilaknolj [phoen] where
3 patients were in all the basement rooms. We also had a makeshift
4 kitchenette in the basement as well as a laboratory. The laundry room
5 was there as well.
6 The most important area was our atomic shelter, because that's
7 where we could guarantee our patients almost a hundred per cent safety,
8 and when shelling was the hardest, patients were safe in the atomic
9 shelter. That's where our most serious cases were accommodated. It was
10 an intensive-care unit. We also had a room for pregnant women and
11 newborns, little babies in incubators. We had a room for wounded
12 children. Currently those rooms house a museum, and if at all possible I
13 would like to invite you to come visit that area to see what it looks
14 like now and also there is a reflection on what it looked like at the
16 Q. Now, Doctor, you told us also earlier that your office moved from
17 one building to the main building, I believe. On which floor was your
18 office as of the month of September?
19 A. Again, in the basement. The basement.
20 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: At this time, Your Honours, I would like to use
21 the sketch of the hospital which was added to the 65 ter list this
22 morning. It is at tab 118 and it's 65 ter 6405. And there is an English
23 version as well. However, for the purposes of the witness, I'm wondering
24 if it would be more useful to zoom on the B/C/S version. Thank you.
25 Q. Doctor, are you familiar with this image?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And can you tell us exactly what we are looking at here?
3 A. We are looking at the floor plan of the basement, of the main
4 hospital building. This was drafted by our matron. She organised a
5 lecture. Actually, there was a lecture organised by the organisation of
6 war nurses, and she was one of the speakers.
7 Q. And approximately can you tell us when this sketch was prepared?
8 A. She did it sometime in 1993, when we were already in Zagreb.
9 That's where she was preparing her lecture. I don't know when exactly
10 that was. It was in 1993. Here you can see the entrance into the
11 emergency room. There was an outpatients' clinic where we did the triage
12 of the wounded. There were two such rooms. This is the first OR. You
13 could see a doctor operating here behind those wooden trunks. And this
14 is a room for our Crisis Staff, and here behind that room there is a big
15 window, and on the right-hand side where you can see beds this is the
17 Q. Doctor, just a second. I think it would assist us if the usher
18 could help you mark it, and perhaps if we zoomed out a little bit. Yes.
19 The usher will assist you in marking this image. And if you could start
20 again. You were first of all explaining to us --
21 A. This is the entrance into the emergency room.
22 Q. Yes.
23 A. On the right-hand side and on the left-hand side these are the
24 two outpatients' clinics of the emergency department, and here you can
25 see my office. Do you want me to mark all those things?
1 Q. Yes, you can mark them with letters just to help us guide
3 A. A would stand for the outpatients' or reception rooms. B stands
4 for my office.
5 What you see here is the operating theatre. This is the plaster
6 room. O2 is the second OR which used to be the X-ray room, X-ray room.
7 And where you can see beds, this is where all our patients were, like you
8 saw it in the image. And all these rooms were used by patients. And
9 here you can't see it very well, but through this corridor you would go
10 into the subterranean passage and in this area here you can see the
11 atomic shelter here.
12 Q. You've placed the letters A and S for the atomic shelter; is that
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Can I ask you to go back. You earlier told us about, I believe,
16 the plaster room. You put a sign there. What is that sign?
17 A. Yes. You can see a G.
18 Q. A G?
19 A. Letter G. And here, this is OR 1, and G stands for the room
20 where patients with fractures and those who came out of the OR had their
21 fractures plastered.
22 Q. You told us that we could see beds on this sketch. Could you
23 just tell us which -- which symbol we should be looking for?
24 A. For example, we used to call this a hall. It was a corridor, a
25 passage, a hallway that connected all the other rooms. So hence the
1 letter H.
2 Q. Okay. And what are all these little rectangles with a line, a
3 diagonal line through them?
4 A. Hospital beds for our patients.
5 Q. Now, on the right-hand side of this image where it's a little bit
6 darker, we see a number of rooms and it looks like a letter N. Can you
7 tell us what that is?
8 A. This is the boiler room. This is not part of our hospital
9 premises. Actually, it is. Before the war that used to house our boiler
10 room, but that was no longer in use. And this here is the so-called
11 sterilisation for clean laundry, and this is a laboratory, and letters TR
12 denote transfusion. All of this was a laboratory here. This was our
13 X-ray room. And this was our staff room. And the rooms here were also
14 for our patients.
15 During the war, this was dentistry, and here you could see that
16 dentist. When that shell hit, there was a lot of debris that fell right
17 over the heads. So it was by sheer fortune that they stayed alive when
18 that happened.
19 Q. Now, let's go back to those letters you indicated. At the bottom
20 right I see a KOT. That's what you said was the boiler room; is that
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Above that you put STR for sterilisation room; is that right?
24 A. Yes. Yes.
25 Q. Then we see a number of Ls and the word "lab." You described
1 that's where the laboratory?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And there's a small room with what seems to be an O and a S.
4 What would that be?
5 A. Staff. Emergency room staff. That was for their rest. It's a
6 very small room, perhaps 2 by 2. There were a couple of beds there where
7 they could rest. And here you can see another laboratory, but all the
8 windowpanes were shattered on that room, so we could not use it. All of
9 that was so badly damaged it was totally unusable.
10 Q. Now, while you were marking the two letter Ps you explain that
11 there was a shell hit, the dentistry room. What kind of patients were
12 held there?
13 A. Those patients who were soldiers of the JNA, you could see their
14 names on my appeals, Sasa Jovic, Mirkovic, and somebody called Srdjan.
15 There was somebody else whose name I can't remember. They were in these
16 rooms, but when that shell hit and when everything was destroyed there,
17 they were moved inside, so we actually put them in beds next to all of
18 the other patients.
19 Q. Very well. Now, to the right of the picture where you wrote the
20 letters A and S, there's also a large arrow going up. Where is that
21 leading to?
22 A. That arrow shows the path to the subterranean passage which was
23 even lower than the basement. You can see those two ORs, and those who
24 were operated upon were taken down that way into the atomic shelter where
25 it was the safest for them. And that armoured shell that I spoke about
1 that fell on the ground and filled in that passage with debris, this is
2 where it happened. So we had to basically dig a tunnel in order to be
3 able to enter the atomic shelter. And that corridor led from the
4 basement to the basement of the old building under that green surface
5 where that red cross was displayed.
6 Q. You drew an arrow going to the left where the shell hit. Can you
7 put the letter S next to that arrow, please.
8 A. I'd rather put letters PB standing for armored shell. And up
9 here along that way, this is where that air bomb pierced all the floors
10 and landed on a patient's bed. This is where it landed. Do you remember
11 that bomb that pierced the floors of all the five floors and landed on a
12 patient's beds?
13 Q. And you've place the letter AB next to the arrow pointing to that
14 area; is that correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, may I apply to -- yes.
17 MR. GOSNELL: Sorry, I think it was PB.
18 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: We had PB earlier, just a little bit above, and
19 now we have AB.
20 MR. GOSNELL: Sorry. Thank you very much.
21 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: May I make an application to tender this
22 document, Your Honours.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, the marked B/C/S image of
25 65 ter 6405 will now be Exhibit P1430.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
2 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
3 Q. Now, Doctor, I would like to ask you in relation to the hospital,
4 was it guarded in any way?
5 A. The commander of the -- the commander of the town's defence,
6 whose name was Milorad Dedakovic, Jastreb, appointed men who were members
7 of the guard and who were supposed to guard the hospital. They did guard
8 the hospital, but they couldn't guard it from shells, so their lives were
9 at risk as were ours. In addition to that, the police commander
10 appointed two police officers who were in charge of the hospital. One of
11 them was Branko Lukenda, whose task was to make a list of all the wounded
12 and take those lists to the police. He was also supposed to collect
13 weapons from all of the wounded who had been brought to the hospital and
14 take those to the police. The other one was Tomislav Hegedus, who was
15 also a police officer, and he was in charge of compiling the lists of
16 those who died and collect their belongings and take them to the police.
17 And this is all about the guard service and co-operation with the army
18 and the police and the defence of the hospital.
19 Q. While at the hospital, what weapons, if any, did these MUP police
20 officer have?
21 A. While they were in hospital, they didn't have any weapons.
22 Nobody could bring weapons into the hospital. At the very entrance into
23 the hospital on the left-hand side, they had to deposit all of their
24 weapons, and then those people from the police would take all those
25 weapons to the police. Those who were on the security detail, they were
1 outside, they had some weapons, but I don't know what kind of weapons
2 they had. I didn't pay too much attention to that in view of the
3 situation. There was no fighting at close range, so they could not
4 really protect us from anybody who would come close to the hospital. Our
5 biggest problems were -- problem were those shells that fell on the
7 Q. Well, after -- earlier, if you remember, you told us that you
8 would arrive at 6.00 in the morning at the hospital and the first
9 patients would arrive. Could you tell the Trial Chamber a little bit
10 about the number of casualties which were brought to the hospital between
11 September and November?
12 A. New casualties arrived every day. The fewest number that arrived
13 in one day were 12 and the biggest 92. On average there were 50 to 60
14 every day. There were sometimes 16, sometimes 18, sometimes 80. I
15 described all that in my appeals that I sent daily together with my
16 requests to those who did it to stop shelling the hospital and to call
17 off aggression against Vukovar.
18 Q. And are you able to tell us what were the proportions between
19 civilian and non-civilian casualties brought to the hospital?
20 A. Seventy to eighty per cent of all the casualties were civilians.
21 The city was full of people, and those civilians walked around. They
22 repaired their roofs. They would go out to fetch water so that 70 to 80
23 per cent of those were civilians. In my previous testimonies I provided
24 the exact information. A fewer number were members of the guard. They
25 were Vukovar's defenders. They were not all members of the professional
1 army, because the professional army did not exist at the time. And there
2 were also some police force members, but the highest number of our
3 casualties were civilians, elderly, women, children. It was particularly
4 terrible when the old pensioners' home was destroyed on that day. They
5 brought us casualties from that old pensioners' home, many of them dead,
6 the rest of them very seriously wounded.
7 Q. Now, Doctor, you mentioned a moment ago your appeals which you
8 sent out to stop the shelling of the hospital. Could you tell us first
9 which organisations or institutions you sought assistance from?
10 A. From many organisations. From many organisations. I addressed
11 UNICEF, the European Monitoring Mission, the ministry of health care. On
12 several occasions I even called the command of the Yugoslav People's
13 Army. Medecins sans Frontieres responded. They organised a convoy to
14 evacuate the wounded. I kept on writing those appeals, hoping that
15 somebody would hear me and take action.
16 Njavro told me this is in vain. You will only get killed while
17 you go to the post office to send them and nobody will hear you, but I
18 persisted. Today these appeals served to help us reconstruct the events,
19 although unfortunately nobody really helped us.
20 Q. Just for the purposes of the Trial Chamber, you mentioned the
21 word Njavro. Who would that be?
22 A. Dr. Njavro was the chief war surgeon in the hospital. He was the
23 head of the surgical team. There were seven other doctors working
24 alongside with him. They worked all the time, 24/7. There were some
25 volunteer doctors from Zagreb and Osijek, some anaesthesiologists. There
1 were some of our own doctors from Vukovar who stayed behind together with
2 us. They worked from dawn to dusk, and they helped as much as they could
3 under extremely dire conditions. Three thousand four hundred and seventy
4 wounded were treated at the Vukovar Hospital in 1991, and two thousand
5 two hundred and fifty were operated upon. Every day we had minor or
6 major surgeries, at least seven or eight of them, at least seven or eight
7 major surgical procedures.
8 War wounds are terrible. They're mutalising. They destroy one's
9 body, limbs. And those who were wounded in the head, we couldn't help
10 them. We could only send them to Osijek while that was possible. And as
11 for those who were wounded in the body, who were wounded in the
12 extremities, we helped them as much as we could. One of the doctors whom
13 you seen here, he created fixators. They were produced in the Borovo
14 factory. They were made of steel. They were tailor-made. We sterilised
15 them in the morning, and then apply them onto the patients later in the
16 day. So we had very few amputations unlike other war hospitals where
17 amputations are common place. Our surgeons worked very professionally,
18 respecting the ethical principles of their work. They worked diligently.
19 They tried to protect and preserve everybody's extremities and fingers
20 and toes. We did as best as we could.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Demirdjian.
22 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Yes, Your Honours?
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: This is about one page of transcript just to
24 answer your question who Mr. Njavro was.
25 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Yes, your Honours. I'll focus my questions as
1 much as I can.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
4 Q. Doctor, you also mentioned that Dr. Njavro told you you would get
5 killed while you would go to the post office. Could you explain to the
6 Judges the mode of transmission of your appeals, and could I ask you to
7 be as concise and focused as possible, please.
8 A. I wrote those appeals every day, dictating them to my secretary,
9 and I carried them to the police station which was a hundred metres away
10 from the hospital, because they had a working fax machine. In the early
11 days we had our own fax machine in the hospital. However, communications
12 broke down very soon, and it was impossible to send faxes from our
14 Q. Thank you. You mentioned a moment ago you even contacted the
15 Yugoslav People's Army. Could you tell the Court who in the JNA you
17 A. Through the post office clerk I asked to be connected with the
18 General Staff, the staff of General Panic who was the main man for the
19 5th Military District or Admiral Brovet. I did reach someone in Belgrade
20 and in Sarajevo. I didn't know who they were because they didn't
21 introduce themselves. I protested the bombing of the hospital. They
22 replied they did not believe me that the hospital was being shelled or
23 bombed. I told them to come and see for themselves. I did manage to
24 make a connection, but there was no response. I asked to speak to the
25 office of the prime minister of Yugoslavia, Mr. Ante Markovic, but I
1 didn't manage to reach him, only some of his secretaries. So I really
2 looked for help everywhere.
3 Most of my appeals were addressed to the European mission
4 headquartered at the hotel. I had the greatest expectations from them,
5 but in the end they didn't really help.
6 Q. Doctor, I'm going to refer now to a series of these appeals that
7 you sent at the time. The first one I would like us to look at is
8 65 ter 467-1 at tab 4, please. Thank you.
9 Doctor, do you recognise this document?
10 A. Yes. That's one of those appeals like that I've sent on a daily
12 Q. And who did you send this one?
13 A. I had the fax number of that office at the hotel and that
14 international European mission that was housed there, the EC monitors.
15 Q. And just to be clear, you said it was the European -- a few lines
16 above you talked about the European mission headquartered at the hotel.
17 Where -- or in which city were they headquartered?
18 A. Zagreb. And the head of that mission was
19 George Maria Shani [phoen], who was later cosignatory of the agreement on
20 evacuation, and through him I also sent a letter to the ambassador of
21 France to Croatia.
22 Q. And just to complete the -- this, is this the letterhead of the
23 medical centre in Vukovar, on the B/C/S version?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Could you explain to us also about the translation that we see
1 here in English.
2 A. There was a lady who worked at that hotel who translated this
3 into English and sent it all over the world, to the International Red
4 Cross and the top politicians at that time. I got hold of that fax
5 number through the media and the people who were working at that time at
6 that European mission. So I sent all my appeals to them.
7 Q. So the translation was done at the time?
8 A. Yes, at that time in Zagreb, on that day. I sent a new appeal
9 every day.
10 Q. Now, here we can see that you are requesting the lifting of the
11 blockade of Vukovar. Could you clarify for the Trial Chamber why you
12 used the word "blockade"?
13 A. Because all access roads to Vukovar were blocked, and it was
14 important for us to lift the blockade off those roads in order to
15 evacuate the wounded and to be able to get some medical supplies which
16 were running out.
17 Q. Now, this appeal here is dated the 20th of October, 1991. I
18 believe it is one of the first ones in your book appeal. Could you tell
19 the Trial Chamber if you had sent any appeals prior to this date?
20 A. Yes, but I was unable to take any of those appeals with me. I
21 had a few last ones when I went to prison and everything remained behind,
22 but those appeals that had been faxed before were found later by a
23 journalist in the war history museum and asked my permission to publish
24 them. So the book contains only some of the appeals, not all of them.
25 All of them are probably still in the archive of the military court in
1 Belgrade, because they all remained behind in Vukovar when we were
3 Q. Thank you.
4 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, may I apply to tender this appeal,
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 467.1 will be Exhibit P1431.
8 Q. I'd like to turn to the next appeal, which is 65 ter 5070 at tab
9 103. Thank you.
10 Doctor, is this another one of your appeals?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. You can see here this one is dated the 21st of October and that
13 it's sent to the European mission at the Hotel I in Zagreb. First I'd
14 like to ask you, in the first sentence you are thanking them for their
15 efforts to help Vukovar during the blockade "... but you have to lodge a
16 protest concerning the following: First, the cease-fire has not been
17 honoured ...," what cease-fire are you referring to here?
18 A. It was actually two days after the Doctors Without Borders convoy
19 had been organised, and on at that day, the day of the convoy, the 19th,
20 there was a cease-fire, and from then on every other day the
21 Doctors Without Borders were supposed to evacuate new patients and the
22 cease-fire was supposed to hold; however, when the Doctors Without
23 Borders left, everything went on as before and got even worse.
24 Q. Further down in this appeal you refer to a six months' old dead
25 baby who was brought to the hospital along with a grandmother whose arm
1 was amputated. Are you aware of the specific circumstances of these two
3 A. That happened somewhere in the southern part of the city where a
4 shell pierced the roof over the basement where they were hiding, and it
5 was especially dramatic because the baby was killed and the grandmother
6 was seriously wounded. That was horrendous. The nurses were crying. It
7 was very difficult. Everybody was already frustrated and overwrought.
8 I tried to depict this atmosphere to those I believed could help
9 us, and I tried as much as I could to keep up the morale of the
10 personnel, because another month of great difficulties followed.
11 Q. Now, Doctor, you refer here also to the brutality of the Yugoslav
12 Army and paramilitary troops. What did you know at the time in relation
13 to paramilitary troops?
14 A. Well, at that time what I was able to learn living in Vukovar
15 when those irregular troops and volunteers had already arrived at the
16 Serb villages around Vukovar, and whatever I could see on the media, and
17 what I could see for myself was the brutality of the Yugoslav People's
18 Army that was destroying the city, the hospital, everything.
19 Q. Had you seen any paramilitary troops in Vukovar at the time?
20 A. At the time when I was still there in encirclement, no. Only
21 when Vukovar fell.
22 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Very well. Your Honours, may I apply to tender
23 this appeal.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
25 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 5070 will be P1432.
1 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, what time are we stopping?
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: This is the time.
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: This is the time?
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes.
5 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Okay.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I ask for a break?
7 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: We're taking --
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: We're taking one right now, Ms. Bosanac. The
9 court usher will escort you out of court.
10 [The witness stands down]
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Court adjourned.
12 --- Recess taken at 5.31 p.m.
13 --- On resuming at 5.59 p.m.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Gosnell.
15 MR. GOSNELL: Mr. President, just to take care of one matter that
16 was raised at the outset. The Defence will not object to the addition of
17 65 ter -- well, 0640 to the 65 ter list. That was one of the documents
18 that was suggested could be added.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Is that the one from the eighth motion,
20 Mr. Demirdjian?
21 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: That's correct, Your Honours.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you very much.
23 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you.
24 MR. GOSNELL: Well, just to be clear. There's two different
25 things. One is the additional CD or DVD, and that's the motion I think
1 that's still going to be filed. This is just a single document.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes. This is -- this is the one document from a
3 motion with more documents, but this is the one you intend to use with
4 this witness, so you needed a decision as soon as possible, and now the
5 Defence says there's no objection, so you may add this to your exhibit
6 list, Mr. Demirdjian.
7 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Much obliged, Your Honours, and I appreciate
8 Mr. Gosnell's quick response on this matter.
9 [The witness takes the stand]
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Madam Bosanac, we are continuing now until 7.00.
11 I take it has been explained to you that whenever you need an extra break
12 or pause, you just let us know and we will deal with that. Okay?
13 Mr. Demirdjian, please continue.
14 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you, Your Honours.
15 Q. Dr. Bosanac, I would like you to look at another one of our
16 appeals which is 65 ter 467.2, and that is at tab 12 of our list. Yes.
17 Thank you.
18 Doctor, do you recognise this as one of your appeals?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Now, in this fax you repeat your request for the JNA's
21 withdrawal, and you provide the number of 267 dead persons in Vukovar
22 since the 25th of August, and you give a breakdown between civilians,
23 children, members of the MUP, and members of the Croatian Army. Now,
24 could you explain to the Chamber how you obtained these numbers.
25 A. In that period, all those killed were brought in to the
1 Vukovar Hospital where experts examined dead bodies, and as I said, that
2 officer of the Ministry of the Interior, in fact, the police officer
3 Tomislav Hegedus made lists of those killed so that I had daily insight
4 into the number of killed in Vukovar in that period. And I have to note
5 that from some peripheral parts of the town, especially in the month of
6 November, the dead and the wounded could no longer be transported to the
7 Vukovar Hospital. Instead, those who were cut off from Vukovar and
8 wounded were taken to the premises of Borovo Komerc in Borovo Naselje.
9 These are details of the people killed and wounded for the town of
11 Q. Thank you, Doctor. And in the -- somewhere in the middle of this
12 page you also list three wounded JNA soldiers. Earlier when we were
13 looking at the sketch of the hospital, you indicated that there were JNA
14 soldiers who were moved from the office next to the dentistry. Are these
15 the wounded JNA soldiers that you were referring to?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Can you tell the Trial Chamber how these JNA soldiers were
18 treated at the hospital?
19 A. They were treated like all the other wounded people under the
20 circumstances. We gave them the best medical assistance and care that we
21 could provide. In the period when they were in a separate room, they
22 even had better conditions because they had more space and better
23 treatment. However, after a shell hit that room, they were moved and
24 then they were in the same position as everyone else.
25 Q. And did these wounded JNA soldiers survive?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Thank you.
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, I would propose to tender this
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 467.2 will be Exhibit P1433.
7 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Can we now look at the next fax which is
8 65 ter 467.9 at tab 19.
9 Q. Now, Doctor, this is not one of your faxes here. Could you
10 explain to the Court what we're looking at here?
11 A. We're looking at a letter that one member of the armed forces of
12 the Croatian Army wrote and signed as Milan Macek, because on that day --
13 in fact, not only that day but on other days as well, apart from my fax
14 and telephone communications, I called anyone I could reach to describe
15 the situation that day and that hour, and after my telephone call this
16 man, Milan Macek, forwarded this information to the European mission as I
17 had asked him.
18 Q. Could you explain something to the Trial Chamber, because earlier
19 you were telling us that at the time there wasn't really a Croatian Army
20 per se, and here we have a document signed by Milan Macek and it's from
21 the headquarters of the Croatian Army. Could you explain to us at the
22 time what was the state of the Croatian Army?
23 A. What I told you before referred to the time when the defence of
24 the town of Vukovar was being established in August and September, and
25 this relates to a later period when the Croatian Army had already been
1 established in Zagreb with its Main Staff headquartered there. Formerly,
2 the 204th Vukovar Brigade was set up in September 1991.
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you. Your Honours, may I tender this fax,
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 467.9 will be Exhibit P1434.
7 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
8 Q. Doctor, a moment ago you told us that you would also make
9 telephone calls to various institutions, so we're going to take a short
10 break from the faxes and appeals and I would like you to look at the
11 following video-clip, which is 65 ter 4798.9, at tab 90. For the
12 interpreters, this is tab D of your bundle. And on this video it starts
13 at the 1 hour 40 minutes mark.
14 [Video-clip played]
15 THE INTERPRETER: "[Voiceover] Every day between 20 and 60 new
16 wounded people arrive at the hospital, mainly civilians because Vukovar
17 is full of women, children, and people. People live in basements.
18 Shells hit basements and injure and kill people. The hospital was the
19 one worst hit in the latest raid. The roof was penetrated in three
20 places. The left part of the hospital building has partially collapsed.
21 The whole of the hospital functions in the shelter and at the level of
22 the cellar, the basement, and the ground floor. The conditions are
23 horrific. There are no hospital rooms any more nor the intensive care
24 rooms; that is, the field hospital level of functioning. Beds are next
25 to each other, crammed. The care is given in very poor quality,
1 administering therapies and procedures is made more difficult. There is
2 a lack of medicine. There are no blood derivatives. Only volunteers
3 gladly give fresh blood for the wounded. The wounded children, women,
4 civilians. We had hoped that the Europeans would help us."
5 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
6 Q. Doctor, do you recognise the voice on that telephone call?
7 A. I was giving this report by telephone to the Croatian
8 Radio Vukovar, and I tried in every possible way to show the situation as
9 it was at the time.
10 Q. Very well. We saw at the beginning that the clip -- well, the
11 clip said the 16th of October, 1991. Could you tell a little bit about
12 Croatian Vukovar, the radio in Vukovar itself, what was it doing at the
14 A. At the Croatian Radio Vukovar, there were people who sent out
15 reports day and night. Sinisa Glavasevic was at the head, then
16 Mr. Polovina, Josip Esterajher, Vesna Vukovic, Alinka Mirkovic, and
17 Zvjezdana Polovina. The six of them took turns in shifts and sent out
18 reports nonstop. Most of them, and especially Sinisa Glavasevic, visited
19 the hospital every day and put out reports on the radio wherever he
20 could. They were located in the basement of the radio offices, but when
21 that was damaged, they moved to a basement below the road where the
22 museum is, the town museum housed in the castle of the Eltz Count. On
23 the day when we were expecting to be evacuated they came to the hospital
24 again. Some of them left attempting a breakthrough, some of them
25 returned. Sinisa Glavasevic and Branimir Polovina also ended up at
1 Ovcara. Sinisa Glavasevic was wounded. He had shrapnel in his face, and
2 he was registered as a wounded person who like many others was taken to
3 Ovcara and killed there.
4 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, may I apply for this video 4798.9
5 to be admitted.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 4798.9 will be Exhibit P1435.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
9 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you.
10 Q. I'd like to move to another fax you sent Dr. Bosanac at
11 65 ter 493, which is at tab 23. Just for the record, Dr. Bosanac,
12 earlier you mentioned Sinisa Glavasevic and you mentioned Branimir, but
13 his last name was not recorded in the transcript at page 66, line 5. Can
14 you tell us his last name again?
15 A. Branimir Polovina.
16 Q. Thank you. Now looking at this do you recognise this as one of
17 your faxes?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. This one is dated the 27th of October, 1991, and you're updated
20 the European mission on the number of wounded, and here you state that 70
21 per cent are civilians. Earlier today you told us that between 70 and 80
22 per cent of the wounded brought at the hospital were civilians. Did you
23 get any reaction to this appeal?
24 A. No.
25 Q. In the last paragraph you mention that there are also JNA
1 soldiers. Now, we saw three JNA soldiers in the previous fax. Were
2 there other JNA soldiers brought to the hospital?
3 A. Yes, a few of them. I remember a soldier who was injured by a
4 shell at the entrance to the police station and he lost a leg. I saw him
5 with my own two eyes. Actually, he had surrendered. He was in a tank.
6 He surrendered. He was brought to the police station, to the basement
7 there like everybody else. On that day I went there to send my faxes and
8 I saw him. He was sitting on the stairs when that shell hit and blew off
9 his leg. There was another lad whose name was Boban Gacic. I remember
10 him very well. He also got gas gangrene. He was treated. He was
11 operated upon. Unfortunately, he succumbed to his wounds. He was very
12 young. It was a terrible sight for all of us. I remember that the
13 nurses cried when he died. We were all devastated basically. So it was
14 really a terrible experience for all of us. And irrespective of who they
15 were, everybody was in a grave life situation. Everybody suffered
17 Q. Thank you, Doctor.
18 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: May I tender this document, Your Honours.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
20 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 493 will be Exhibit P1436.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
22 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Can we display 65 ter 467.6, which is at tab 16.
24 Q. Doctor, this one is dated the 1st of November. Do you recognise
25 this as one of your faxes?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. In the middle of the page you mention that:
3 "In the night a grenade shell fell in front of the Emergency Ward
4 and three ambulances burned so that now we only have a partially usable
5 one left."
6 Could you tell the Court what impact did the destruction of your
7 ambulances have on your work?
8 A. Well, the situation was compounded by that, because we could not
9 take ambulances to fetch the wounded. We could only use civilian cars,
10 the few that were left after so many had been destroyed. There was a lot
11 of debris on the roads and fallen tree trunks. The tyres would explode.
12 It was really very difficult.
13 Q. And -- I mean, now we're at the beginning of November, and you
14 had been sending faxes through the month of October as you explained
15 earlier. Had this situation improved in any way by the end of October?
16 A. No. Actually, just the opposite happened. Things were getting
17 worse by the day.
18 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: May I tender this document, Your Honours?
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
20 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 467.6 will be Exhibit P1437.
21 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
22 Q. I'd like you to look at a report dated the 2nd of November. This
23 one is 65 ter 514, at tab 26, please. Yes. And in the B/C/S version, if
24 we could scroll down to the bottom part, please. Yes. Thank you.
25 Doctor, do you recognise this as one of your faxes?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. I see that this fax is addressed to a host of addressees. We see
3 Admiral Brovet, et cetera. Could you tell us in what -- in what context
4 this fax was sent?
5 A. Just like before, within that context we described our situation,
6 and we sought to have a cease-fire to help all the wounded. I suppose
7 that that morning I had more peace and quiet to send the faxes to
8 everybody, not only the European mission but also to everybody else. I
9 tried to send one to the command of the JNA, the ministry,
10 President Tudjman, General Tus was the commander of the Main Staff of the
11 Croatian Army.
12 Q. Now, you also inform here that you're treating another JNA
13 wounded soldier by the name of Aleksandar Markovic. First of all, are
14 you aware as to whether the JNA did receive this letter?
15 A. I don't know.
16 Q. And here in the last paragraph you were asking that this is sent
17 most urgently to the command of the JNA for a cease-fire. Were there any
18 cease-fires in the month of October and early November?
19 A. Only when the convoy arrived with Medecins sans Frontieres. That
20 was on the 19th of October and on that day there was no shooting or fire
22 Q. We'll get to that in a moment.
23 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: In the meantime, Your Honours, may I ask to
24 tender this fax as well.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
1 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 514 will be Exhibit P1438.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, I will show a couple of more faxes
4 and then I have an application to make in relation to the remaining ones.
5 I've discussed this with my learned friend from the Defence.
6 Could we display 65 ter 467.11, which is at tab 5. Yes.
7 Q. This one is of the 3rd of November. Do you recognise this as one
8 of your faxes?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. This one does not have an addressee from what I could see. Do
11 you remember who this was sent to?
12 A. Just like the previous time, to the Croatian office of the
13 European mission.
14 Q. Now, you explain here that on the previous day, on the 2nd of
15 November, 87 wounded persons were brought to the hospital, and that that
16 morning alone there was another 18, and that the total number of the
17 wounded, mostly civilians, including women and children, increased to
18 350. Is this an accurate reflection of the situation at the time?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, I tender this fax as well.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
23 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 467.11 will be Exhibit P1439.
24 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
25 Q. I'd like you to look at now at 65 ter 537, which is at tab 29.
1 Yes. This one's from the 7th of November. Is this again one of your
2 faxes, Dr. Bosanac?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Now, on this one, towards the bottom you're asking for the
5 verification of the truthfulness of the information contained in this
6 fax. You asked the wounded JNA soldiers to confirm with their signature.
7 Now, is -- what do we see? We see some signatures next to the names
8 here. Could you explain the context of this, please?
9 A. Those JNA soldiers, this man asked them whether he could do
10 something, whether he could talk to General Raseta. When I got hold of
11 him, he wanted to explain the situation, and I told him that that was
12 possible, and if they wanted to do so they could cosign my appeals. They
13 wanted to do that, so I drafted my appeals and I gave them to cosign, and
14 the following name -- day in a telephone conversation when I managed to
15 get hold of Raseta, that man spoke to him in order to describe the
16 situation that we were in. That was immediately after that shell hit
17 their room. So that man, Sasa, described the incident to General Raseta.
18 Q. In your conversations with General Raseta, what was his reaction
19 to your reports?
20 A. My impression was that he didn't believe me. That's why I
21 suggested that they should also talk to him and confirm what I said. I
22 was present when he talked to him, and I realised that he questioned him
23 about the conditions, whether there were any Croatian soldiers there. At
24 that time, I still believe that Raseta was influential and that he could
25 do something in order to protect the hospital and the people in it, and
1 later on I realised that he did not have any say in what happened next.
2 Q. Now, this fax here is sent to the European mission. Are you
3 aware of whether this information was transmitted to General Raseta?
4 A. I believe so. At that time, there were ongoing negotiations in
5 the European mission between the Croatian government on the one side and
6 General Raseta on the other side. The latter represented the JNA. The
7 Red Cross was present as well as the leaders of the European Monitoring
9 Q. Now, you told us in a previous answer that later you realised
10 that he did not have a say in what happened next. Did General Raseta
11 ever tell you to speak to someone else?
12 A. No. On the 19th of November when the evacuation of the hospital
13 should have been organised, he told me that he had spoken to
14 Colonel Mile Mrksic.
15 Q. Very well. We'll get to that point a little later.
16 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, may I tender this fax as well,
18 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
19 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 537 will be Exhibit P1440.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
21 MR. DEMIRDJIAN:
22 Q. Finally I'd like to get to a fax of the 15th of November which is
23 at tab 34. That's 65 ter 583. Doctor, can you explain to the
24 Trial Chamber what this letter is? Is this one of your letters?
25 A. Yes, but that was actually a few days before the fall, and I
1 could not fax this. I actually read the message over the telephone.
2 Q. Now --
3 A. I could not send it in the regular way. Everything was destroyed
4 by then. The police building had burnt down and they moved to another
5 building. They no longer had a fax machine themselves.
6 Q. And who did you -- who did you transmit this message to over the
8 A. I sent a message through the Croatian radio station in Vukovar
9 and through the health care ministry.
10 Q. Now, in the second paragraph you're describing the difficult
11 situation which is due to the arrival of civilians from surrounding
12 buildings. Can you explain to the Trial Chamber why civilians were
13 coming to the hospital?
14 A. At that time, negotiations were underway to evacuate people from
15 Vukovar. We heard that the hospital would also be evacuated as well as
16 all the civilians from the city. That's why the civilians from all the
17 surrounding buildings started arriving in the hospital. At that time,
18 the Yugoslav Army advanced and split the town into three parts. You
19 could no longer go to Borovo Naselje or to Mitnica. They occupied
20 positions on the right bank of the Vuka River, which is why the civilians
21 started arriving in the hospital from the inner city in order to be
22 closer to the nearest point of the evacuation.
23 Q. Now, here you explain at the bottom of this message that you are
24 now treating 480 wounded on 200 square metres of space in bad conditions.
25 Having regard to what you said earlier, in the earlier paragraph about
1 the arrival of civilians from the surrounding areas, could you tell the
2 Court approximately how many people were in the hospital by mid-November?
3 In your numbers, please include the wounded, as we can see here, and the
4 civilians as well as the staff.
5 A. About 3.000 people.
6 Q. Thank you.
7 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, may I ask to tender this fax,
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
10 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter 583 will be Exhibit P1441.
11 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, as I've explained earlier, there
12 are a number of other faxes in Dr. Bosanac's book. At this stage I would
13 like to tender them. However, I do have quite a number. Should I read
14 in the tab numbers or the 65 ter numbers?
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Let's first see what the Defence's position is.
16 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Yes.
17 MR. GOSNELL: Mr. President, we won't object subject to the
18 understanding that some of the descriptions on the 65 ter list may not be
19 precisely accurate, but we don't object to the admission of these various
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
22 Now, what was your next question, Mr. Demirdjian?
23 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: I've got my headphone stuck here. Perhaps I
24 could read the tab numbers I have here or would you prefer the 65 ter --
25 the 65 ter number? All right. Let's get to it.
1 The first -- I have a very useful suggestion here, to do this at
2 the end of the day once the witness has been excused and not waste any
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Is that okay with you, Madam Registrar? Okay.
5 We'll do that.
6 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: I'll stop five minutes before 7.00.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay.
8 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you, Your Honours.
9 MR. GOSNELL: Could I make another -- a different proposal?
10 Perhaps to save time even more, it would be an idea to give the witness
11 the bundle that seeks to be tendered, have the witness review them, and
12 then come to court in the morning and saying: "I've reviewed these
13 various documents. I confirm that they reflect telephone communications
14 or faxes that I've sent," and then we can admit them in that way.
15 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: I would hate to burden Dr. Bosanac beyond this
16 time, but if that is the position. All the faxes that I am proposing are
17 in her book called which is called "Apeli [phoen]." It is also on our
18 65 ter list separately. I do see where my friend's suggestion is coming
19 from, but I'll leave it in Your Honours' hands.
20 MR. GOSNELL: Just to add to that, I'm not sure it's a huge
21 burden. I don't think the numbers are that great in terms of documents.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: It's something like 38, 38 documents, Mr. --
23 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Let me just count them here. I have 19 here.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Nineteen you're not showing for the moment.
25 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Yes.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: And they're all one-page documents. So it
2 wouldn't be that much of a burden to ask the witness to --
3 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: To look at them and --
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: -- by tomorrow morning and to tell us by tomorrow
5 morning that indeed these are all --
6 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: These are here faxes.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: -- her faxes.
8 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: That's fine, Your Honours. I'll organise that.
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. Thank you.
10 MR. GOSNELL: Sorry, just an additional comment. They keep being
11 referred to now as faxes. Not all of them are faxes, just in order for
12 that to be clear on the record.
13 JUDGE DELVOIE: I said documents to be on the safe side.
14 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Thank you, Your Honours.
15 Q. Dr. Bosanac, in relation to communications being sent from
16 Vukovar, you were not the only one sending faxes or messages; is that
18 A. No. No. Those messages were dispatched by the journalists of
19 the Croatian radio station in Vukovar. Marin Vidic as well, he was the
20 government's commissioner for the city of Vukovar. The reports were sent
21 by the police station members to their centres, and the Croatian Red
22 Cross constantly dispatched the lists of wounded and dead, and those
23 dispatches were sent to the Croatian Red Cross in Zagreb.
24 Q. Now, you mentioned that the police station members also sent
25 messages to their centres. How do you know this? How are you aware of
2 A. I know because when I wanted to send my faxes, I would go to
3 their building, and I saw that they sent their own reports to Zagreb or
4 to some other police stations. They sent their faxes. Every day they
5 received information about the dead and the wounded from us, and they
6 would include that information into their own reports.
7 Q. Very well. I'd like to show you a -- I suppose it's a fax, from
8 the police station. It is at 65 ter 87.1. In the English version --
9 [Prosecution counsel and Case Manager confer]
10 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: We did upload it earlier at 00087.1. Still not
11 there? Okay. I can move on. I'll get back to this tomorrow.
12 Q. Doctor, earlier you mentioned the evacuation in the middle of
13 October. I believe you said it was on the 19th of October; is that
15 A. Yes. That should have been organised on the 11th of October.
16 We're talking about Medecins sans Frontieres, a humanitarian association
17 of doctors who promised us that they would bring medicines and medical
18 equipment and that they would come twice a week to the hospital and that
19 they would evacuate the wounded. The first attempt was made on the 11th
20 October. That's when they tried to come, but they were held in the
21 Vukovar barracks of the JNA. They spent an entire night there. They
22 left all the medicines and medical equipment there in their hands, and
23 they never arrived in the hospital. They arrived eight days later, on
24 the 19th of October. They arrived with empty lorries, without any drugs,
25 without any medical supplies. However, with their help we managed to
1 evacuate 108 wounded people.
2 Many civilians arrived at the hospital on that occasion because
3 they hoped that they would be able to leave the town with them. The
4 rules, however, were strict, and only the wounded could be evacuated.
5 Q. Thank you, Doctor. Now, where was in convoy supposed to go after
6 the wounded were collected from the hospital?
7 A. That convoy was supposed to take the agreed route across Luzac,
8 Bogdanovac, Nustar, and on to the free territory of Croatia. However,
9 the convoy was made to take some other roads and travel to Djakovo from
10 1.00 p.m. until midnight. We barely managed to find out where they were
11 by telephone. The convoy ran into an antitank mine. Two nurses from
12 that international organisation were wounded, and after that they excused
13 themselves, said it was too dangerous, and they could not come again to
14 help us, and that was the end of their assistance.
15 Q. And when this convoy left the hospital, was it escorted by any of
16 the institutions at the time?
17 A. I learned only later that it was an agreed escort made up of
18 representatives of the Yugoslav People's Army and the Croatian Army who
19 accompanied the convoy. I only saw the truck drivers whom I knew from
20 before because they had come to the hospital earlier in similar
21 humanitarian convoys, but I did not see any of their commanders. I don't
22 know if the defence commander Branko Borkovic perhaps met any of them.
23 In any case, I did not see any of them in the hospital.
24 Q. Very well. And how did this event impact the future assistance
25 from Medecins sans Frontieres?
1 A. I don't know how it impacted their later actions. All I know is
2 that we were very disappointed that they hadn't brought any medicines or
3 any medical supplies because they were unable to come again and take the
4 rest of the wounded. They had taken only a number of them. After they
5 left, the attacks on the hospital and the town became even stronger.
6 Q. Did you send a letter to Medecins sans Frontieres after this
8 A. Yes. I sent a letter, although I was sorry those nurses were
9 wounded. And after they telephoned saying they couldn't come any more, I
10 sent them a letter of gratitude and expressing my regret that they had
11 experienced such problems, and I also begged them to exert their
12 influence if they could help us in any way.
13 Q. Now, earlier you mentioned the name of Marin Vidic. Could you
14 tell the Court what was his role in Vukovar?
15 A. Marin Vidic was the government's commissioner for the city of
16 Vukovar, considering that in that time of war a Crisis Staff for the
17 defence of the town had been set up and a Crisis Staff for the protection
18 of civilian structures, and Marin Vidic was at the head of them. He was
19 like a mayor for wartime Vukovar.
20 Q. What efforts, if any, did he make in relation to the situation in
21 the town?
22 A. He organised the Crisis Staff at town level, and our
23 representative on that staff was our colleague Ivica Martus [phoen]. He
24 represented the hospital. They organised as far as they were able to the
25 protection of cultural heritage, museum artefacts. They organised
1 civilian protection, the burial of the dead, but all that happened in
2 August and September. As the destruction and devastation intensified,
3 they were able to do less and less, so that until the end of the month of
4 November or perhaps the later half of November the town of Vukovar was
5 completely destroyed. The fire brigade headquarters were devastated, so
6 it was difficult to organise anything.
7 Q. Now, towards the end of the conflict, did Marin Vidic make any
8 attempts to meet with members of the Serbian side?
9 MR. GOSNELL: Objection, leading.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Demirdjian.
11 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Well, I'm not sure I see any other way of
12 dealing with this. I don't see how it is leading.
13 JUDGE DELVOIE: Overruled. Please continue.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Marin Vidic tried in every possible
15 way to achieve an end to the shelling and bombing of the town. He would
16 occasionally visit me and the wounded at the hospital, and two days
17 before the evacuation he came from the municipal building where the
18 Crisis Staff was headquartered and told me that he had to take some
19 measures to establish some communications to organise the evacuation. He
20 mentioned, talking to me, that he had to make contact with Goran Hadzic
21 and come to some sort of agreement with him.
22 I was surprised. In fact, it was not within my competence, and I
23 don't know why he mentioned that he had to make an agreement with
24 Goran Hadzic and turn over to him the keys to the city. I didn't discuss
25 it or ask for any details.
1 But I have a comment if I can tell you this, Prosecutor. You
2 said in your question at the end of the conflict. It was not a conflict.
3 It was total destruction visited upon us by the Yugoslav People's Army
4 and their paramilitary troops. Total destruction of all of us in the
5 city. It was not a conflict. I'm sorry, but I had to say this.
6 Marin Vidic said that he was trying to find ways to make contact
7 with Goran Hadzic. Now, whether he succeeded or not, I don't know.
8 Q. You don't know whether he succeeded in meeting with Goran Hadzic?
9 A. I don't know. I know that in the end he ended up, together with me,
10 in prison, first the military barracks and after that in Sremska Mitrovica.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Your Honours, I believe this is a convenient
13 time for today.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: One little detail. Did I hear the witness answer
15 "no" to your question and then give the extended answer "I know that in
16 the end," et cetera?
17 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Absolutely.
18 JUDGE DELVOIE: So it would be good that the record reflects that
19 "no" answer.
20 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Yes.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Dr. Bosanac, this is the end of the hearing for
22 today. We will continue tomorrow morning at 9.00. You are still under
23 oath. That implies that you cannot discuss with anyone your testimony
24 and that you're not allowed to talk to any of the parties. Do you
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] [No interpretation]
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you very much. The court usher will escort
3 you out of court now.
4 [The witness stands down]
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes, Mr. Demirdjian.
6 MR. DEMIRDJIAN: Just in terms of the technical aspect of things,
7 we will provide to the registry the bundle of 19 documents that I intend
8 to tender without showing Dr. Bosanac, and perhaps that could be then
9 provided to the VWS. Yes.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: I think that will work. Thank you.
11 Court adjourned.
12 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.59 p.m.,
13 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 9th day
14 of April, 2013, at 9.00 a.m.