1 Tuesday, 15 July 2014
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 8.59 a.m.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Good morning to everyone in and around the
8 Madam Registrar, could you call the case, please.
9 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours.
10 This is the case IT-04-75-T, The Prosecutor versus Goran Hadzic.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Can we have the appearances, please, starting
12 with the Prosecution.
13 MR. STRINGER: Good morning, Mr. President, Your Honours.
14 For the Prosecution, Douglas Stringer; Sarah Clanton;
15 Case Manager, Thomas Laugel; and legal interns, Moritz von Normann and
16 Sarah Munsch.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
18 Mr. Zivanovic, for the Defence.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Good morning, Your Honours. For the Defence of
20 Goran Hadzic, Zoran Zivanovic and Christopher Gosnell. Thank you.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
22 Please proceed, Mr. Zivanovic.
23 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
24 WITNESS: GORAN HADZIC [Resumed]
25 [Witness answered through interpreter]
1 Examination by Mr. Zivanovic: [Continued]
2 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Hadzic, I would like to ask you a little
3 even though you already said a few things about this, but in any case, I
4 wanted to ask you about the Vance Plan. If you can just briefly tell us
5 how the events followed one another and what were your positions with
6 regard to the Vance Plan, from the negotiations stage to the stage when
7 it was concluded.
8 A. As early as in late fall 1991, specific talks began about the
9 arrival of the UN peace forces. We have already talked about the
10 contacts I had with representatives of the European community,
11 Mr. Wijnaendts and Ahrens, and after that we established contact with
12 Mr. Goulding. I believe that he was an envoy of the Secretary-General,
13 and with Cyrus Vance. There were many problems because we were concerned
14 for the security of the population. Our goal, at least the goal of the
15 government and mine, and I was heading the government, was to achieve
16 peace and to end the killing. It's well-known that we had a series of
17 meetings and consultations, all of them held in Belgrade with federal
18 representatives or with mediators from the UN, and before that, the
19 European community, as I have said.
20 Q. Could you tell us what was the general position of the
21 Croatian Serbs towards the proposals contained in the Vance Plan
23 A. Well, the Vance Plan generally said that the peacekeeping forces
24 would be coming to Croatia. This was a problem for us, and I mentioned a
25 referendum that we had held and the decisions of the assembly which I had
1 to implement, I mean my assembly, and we believed that instead of Croatia
2 the notion of Yugoslavia or a part of Yugoslavia should be used or
3 something like that. Perhaps it was a rather formal problem but for us
4 it was a practical one too. And then Mr. Vance promised to us that
5 Croatia would be treated as a geographical notion without envisaging any
6 final political solution, and that satisfied more than 50 per cent of my
7 requests. When I say "my," I mean the requests of the government that I
8 was representing. The government of SAO Krajina which was headed by
9 Milan Babic was much tougher in its stance. It had greater demands and
10 problems arose because of this. Once again, I say that our position was
11 that the Blue Helmets would come to the demarcation line, that they
12 should guarantee that the Croatian forces would not be able to enter and
13 threaten us. It's known that they did come and that they were deployed
14 throughout the territory.
15 So these were the issues that we needed to agree about.
16 Q. And what were the views with regard to the deployment of the UN
17 forces in the territory of both SBWS and the SAO Krajina before that, in
18 terms of the places where these force were supposed to be deployed?
19 A. Well, as I just said, our view was that they should be deployed
20 along the demarcation line, the confrontation line, and according to
21 plan, they were supposed to be deployed throughout the territory and they
22 were to be in charge of the security of all the population, including the
23 population inside the territory. Very soon, it turned out that this was
24 bad because they did not then keep the border, nor the depth of the
25 territory, so this was a half-baked solution, but I didn't really know it
1 at that time. It just turned out to be like that later on.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see please P28. It is tab 15.
3 Q. [Interpretation] These are the minutes from one of the meetings
4 of the SFRY Presidency attended by a number of representatives of SBWS
5 and the Knin Krajina. I see that you were among them. Do you
6 remember -- or, rather, I will ask you to look at page 37 in the original
7 and in translation it's pages 27 and 28.
8 Have you refreshed your memory?
9 A. Yes, I have.
10 Q. Can you tell us whether your words are truly conveyed here.
11 A. Yes, I think so.
12 Q. Inter alia, what you say here is:
13 "I have to say what the position of our people and our assembly
14 is. The people believe that the suffering should stop."
15 It's on page 39. Do you see it?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. You also say that you advocate the deployment along the green
18 line. What was the green line?
19 A. The so-called green line was the separation line, the
20 confrontation line, or the demarcation line.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see now P29. It is tab number 16, please.
22 Q. [Interpretation] This is another meeting and the occasion is the
23 same. It was held on the 12th of December at 1330 hours. I see that
24 your name is not included among those present. Could you tell us what
25 was the reason for your absence from this meeting?
1 A. I can't remember. I can see that Babic is not there either. I
2 don't know why we were not there.
3 Q. I see on pages 32 and 33 of the original - pages 24, 25 in
4 English version - that Milosevic is asking the question why you and Babic
5 did not attend, and he says:
6 "Could anyone have any more urgent business than attending the
8 Can you remember any reasons why you were not there?
9 A. Well, there I remember in a way our conflict with Milosevic began
11 Q. Can you tell us what did the conflict consist of for you? What
12 was your grudge against Milosevic?
13 A. I did not have much choice at the time. I had to take into
14 account the positions of the assembly and the referendum and the
15 positions of the SAO Krajina. They were more numerous and that was a
16 greater territory than the SBWS. So I showed solidarity in a way with
17 the positions that I considered rational as long as I did. Once I
18 thought that they were no longer rational, then I, of course, defended
19 only the position of the government I was heading and the territory in
20 which I was at the time. Both Babic and I believed that Milosevic wanted
21 to resolve this issue quickly and at any cost, in such a way that our
22 requests wouldn't be taken into account.
23 Q. After the adoption of the Vance Plan, you gave an interview to
24 the newspapers.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Can we see document -- it is tab 1363. It is
1 actually the document 885 from the Prosecution Rule 65 terlist.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I remember.
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. It's an interview you gave on the 18th -- or, rather, it was
5 published on the 18th and the 19th of January, 1992. In it, you say, "We
6 have been cheated." Can you remember -- or, rather, you can remind
7 yourself from the text, why did you feel cheated at the time and who
8 cheated you?
9 A. Well, it was not in accordance what we had been arranging with
10 Mr. Vance when the plan was being adopted and also the guarantees
11 provided by our federal state and the Republic of Serbia which was one of
12 the participants and stakeholders in the negotiations. From my present
13 point of view, I think it was very brave and it was the strange and --
14 criticism of Milosevic the most stringent that was possible at the time.
15 I'm not sure how I dare to do it at the time, but it was the truth.
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honour, I would tender this document.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
18 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D139, Your Honours.
19 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, Mr. President. I have just been
20 informed this document was not on the Defence's list for use during the
21 direct. It is among those that fall within the pending motion to amend
22 his 65 ter list from the 1st of July. So I just wish to note that for
23 the record.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: As far as I recall, the Prosecution did not
1 object to this motion. And, as far as I recall, the Chamber decided
2 about it.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: I wouldn't know on the top of my head,
4 Mr. Zivanovic.
5 MR. STRINGER: I don't know either, Mr. President, to be honest.
6 [Trial Chamber and Legal Officer confer]
7 [Prosecution counsel confer]
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: We'll look into it, Mr. Stringer, Mr. Zivanovic.
9 Yeah, we keep it as it is for the moment and we'll come back to you.
10 Please continue, Mr. Zivanovic.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Mr. Hadzic, before the adoption of the plan, you had a meeting
13 with Mr. Goulding. I would now ask you to look at the document P32,
14 which is tab 19.
15 Do you remember this conversation? Did you agree all these items
16 from this report with Mr. Goulding or not?
17 A. Well, those were the views that we advocated as listed here by
18 Mr. Goulding from (a) to (f). And in particular, there was the position
19 on disarming that was emphasised because they requested that only one
20 side should be disarmed, and Croatia was free to arm itself on the other
21 hand and it was not disarmed literally 1 or 200 metres from this green
22 line, and they could choose and attack any point along the border with us
23 whenever they wanted to. And later on it really turned out that that was
24 so, without any consequences.
25 Q. And did Mr. Goulding give you the answers that are noted here in
1 this letter?
2 A. Yes, he said that. After his assurances, I said that I would
3 accept the plan.
4 Q. And this item (c) of his response, is that correctly phrased as
6 A. Well, I didn't understand him saying that, but -- which item did
7 you say again?
8 Q. [Microphone not activated]
9 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, for the Defence.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I thought you said (e) but you're
11 thinking of (c). Yes, this is correctly formulated and defined, and that
12 was one of the main reasons we accepted the plan. Because with the
13 withdrawal of the JNA, which was responsible for the territory and had
14 the control of the territory, they handed over that control to the
15 United Nations over a period of a month or two.
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Just for the purpose of clarification, we're now speaking about
18 the response of Mr. Goulding. So it's on page 2, both of the English and
19 the B/C/S text. I am just saying this for the transcript.
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. [Microphone not activated]
22 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
23 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Paragraph (c) from this response, was that implemented at all?
25 A. Unfortunately, it was not. UNPROFOR did not manage to protect
1 the line of separation. We had to do that ourselves. We had to mobilise
2 the population from the interior of the area and then there was nobody to
3 keep law and order and make sure that the citizens were secure, and
4 UNPROFOR didn't do that either. So this was a very difficult thing to
5 put into effect for our local leadership.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we please now look at these
7 stenographic minutes from the meeting of the Presidency of the
8 2nd of March, 1992. This is P37, tab 24.
9 Q. The session was held on the 2nd of March, 1992. I would like us
10 to clarify something that you said then. This is on page 92 of the
11 original and on page 68 of the English translation.
12 The text actually begins from page 88 of the B/C/S and page 66 in
13 the English translation. And the resettlement of the population from one
14 territory to another was discussed. Radovan Karadzic spoke about this.
15 When you addressed the meeting, after he said that it was just
16 ridiculous for people to move from one area to another, on page 92 of the
17 B/C/S and page 68 of the English translation, you said that this was not
18 a nebulous thing.
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And then you said Serbs from Zagreb should resettle, as well as
21 those from Belgrade, and now from this area; it's out of the question.
22 So just allow me to clarify two matters here, even though what
23 you said was very brief. Could you please tell us what you meant when
24 you said that this is not a nebulous matter. There's nothing nebulous in
25 it. This refers to the resettlement of the population?
1 A. Well, it was not nebulous. It already happened. The Serbs had
2 already moved from the bigger cities, either voluntarily or by being
3 forced out. So it was not nebulous. Whereas Croats from Belgrade had no
4 problems. They didn't have to move out and this is that difference. And
5 I said that at this point in time, this is out of the question, not in
6 this terrain. So this is an error.
7 Q. [Microphone not activated]
8 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, for the council.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. You said the following: The Serbs from Zagreb should resettle
11 and Serbs from Belgrade, and now, as far as this terrain is concerned,
12 this is out of the question.
13 So there are two options here. It is evident that the way the
14 sentence reads here doesn't make any sense. There are two options. I
15 don't want to suggest either one to you because I think the way it is
16 written is not accurate. I would like to see with you if you can clarify
18 A. Well, first let me explain this. When I said this is not
19 anything nebulous, these are my words. As for the rest of it, I was
20 quoting the position of some people from the international community that
21 Serbs from Zagreb should be resettled. That was normal. Nobody
22 questioned that. It was implied -- and Serbs from Belgrade. But nobody
23 talked about Croats. Had Croats been discussed then it would have been a
24 crime, but as for Serbs nobody was interested. This is what I meant.
25 And then what I meant was at this point in time that is out of the
1 question. That is what I meant to say. The way it's written here, it
2 doesn't make sense. It's nebulous.
3 Q. Could you please tell us what the sense of the sentence was when
4 you say:
5 "Serbs from Zagreb and Serbs from Belgrade should resettle but at
6 this point in time, this is out of the question."
7 Why was it out of the question at that particular moment but
8 yesterday it was possible as well as the following day?
9 A. Well, that was the position in the field and as far as
10 international policy was concerned. Serbs were being resettled or were
11 resettling, and this was not a problem for anyone. And at that point in
12 time, nobody would have listened to us. That's the sense of it.
13 There -- there was -- it was out of the question for us to talk about
14 this problem with anyone.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we look at 1D3292, please.
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Tab number, please.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] This is tab 1147.
18 Q. This is a report about talks conducted and, among other people,
19 you were also present.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please look at page 3.
21 Actually, page 4, please. Excuse me.
22 Q. In item 8, it states here:
23 [In English] "Hadzic, the so-called president of Serbian Krajina,
24 expressed surprise at my proposal, saying that he did not expect
25 pre-judgement of political decisions by the United Nations. He said
1 there are two options before the 50.000 Serbs living in the pink zones:
2 To be assured of protection, or to leave."
3 [Interpretation] Do you remember that meeting that you had with
4 international representatives on the topic of the pink zones and other
5 matters discussed in this matter?
6 A. Yes, I remember. The term "pink zones" had to do with the
7 SAO Krajina because in the SBWS there were no pink zones. The whole area
8 was a so-called blue area, under the United Nations. Pink zones were in
9 the western Krajina in areas populated by Serbs with Serb authority and
10 where the United Nations did not want to go there. They were not
11 supposed to be part of the UNPA zones, and I said that there were only
12 two options here: Either to provide protection for those people or they
13 would have to leave. Because once the Croatian authorities arrived, they
14 would not be assured of safety.
15 Q. And do you remember what happened to the pink zones after this?
16 What happened then?
17 A. The pink zones were periodically attacked and then taken over by
18 the Croat forces without any consequences for them in relation to the
19 international community. There were killings. The area was occupied.
20 And, as far as I know, no one has so far been charged with that, either
21 in Croatia or here. This question was never considered by any court.
22 Q. And what happened to the population in the pink zones? You said,
23 among other things, that some were killed. What happened to those who
24 were not killed?
25 A. They were expelled. They were second-class refugees. Nobody
1 really considered their status.
2 Q. Can you please tell us where those refugees went, as you said,
3 after they were expelled?
4 A. Most of them came to the territory under the control of the
5 Serbian Krajina. Perhaps some went to Serbia and Bosnia. I don't know
6 that, but it was not a very large number.
7 Q. Mr. Hadzic, I wanted to get an explanation from you about setting
8 up the military authority, particularly in the area of SBWS in 1991.
9 Yesterday, you said that on the 20th of November you received
10 notification from Lieutenant-Colonel Vojnovic that the civilian authority
11 cannot be saved or spared and that, actually, it cannot be set up and
12 that for a long time afterwards it could not be set up in Vukovar.
13 So I just briefly wanted to look at documents on this matter.
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see please P1994.1981. It is tab number
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I've looked at it.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Just before paragraph 4, there is a paragraph that said that:
19 "The town commanders in the OG JUG area of responsibility are to
20 take all necessary measures for the full functioning of the military
21 authorities pursuant to the order of the 9th of November."
22 Does this correspond to what you know and what you talked about,
23 about the setting up of the military authorities?
24 A. Yes. Let me just add about Lieutenant-Colonel Vojnovic. Not
25 only did he say that it was not possible to set up civilian authorities
1 but it was not even to be discussed. He was not prepared to even discuss
2 that topic.
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see now D20, please. It is tab number
5 Q. [Interpretation] Could you please look at paragraph 2 of this
6 order which is dated 22nd November, 1991. It says that:
7 "The staff of the Territorial Defence of Vukovar, in co-operation
8 with the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade, will establish organs of
9 authority in local communes and organise their functioning, set up police
10 station, regulate the movement of people returning to town and their
11 compulsory identification of the Velepromet reception centre."
12 Do you remember, was this done?
13 A. This is completely consistent with the actual situation at the
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see now P169 -- oh, sorry. P1996.1981.
16 Q. [Interpretation] This is another order from the command of the
17 80th Motorised Brigade dated 22nd November, 1991. Would you just look at
18 this sentence above paragraph 3:
19 "Prevent any form of harassment of the population and local
20 residents, as well as unauthorised entry and search of flats and houses."
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Is this consistent with what you knew in that period; namely,
23 that this order existed and that your authorities, the authorities of
24 SBWS, were supposed to informs -- this.
25 A. Yes, we were not able to do these things even before. This order
1 just confirms the actual situation. We didn't even have access to that
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please look at P200 --
4 sorry.P2000.1981, tab 86.
5 Q. This is a report dated 29 November, 1991. Among other things, it
6 says that following the liberation of Vukovar the command of the brigade
7 operating as the Town Command got the task of enforcing the powers of the
8 military authority -- military administration. Do you know if therewas
9 a military administration at the time?
10 A. Yes.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we look at
12 2007.1987 [as interpreted], tab 447.[In English] 2007.1981.
13 Q. [Interpretation] Can you see this order dated
14 30th December, 1991, where the TO Staff of Vukovar is resubordinated to
15 the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade which is, at the same time, the
16 Town Command?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And in paragraph 3, this unit is given the order to start
19 disarming Chetnik groups in populated areas.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we move to the next page.
21 Only in the original. The English text is here.
22 Q. Paragraph 5: The staff of the TO Vukovar is responsible for the
23 population and their property and in carrying out this task, the staff is
24 relying on the units of the 80th Motorised Brigade.
25 Does this reflect the situation in Vukovar at that time, as far
1 as you and the government knew?
2 A. Yes. Everything was under military rule; that is to say, under
3 this 80th Motorised Brigade.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see please P376. It is tab 1256.
5 Q. [Interpretation] This is a regular combat report dated
6 18 January, 1992, again from the Command of the 80th Motorised Brigade.
7 Could you please look at paragraph 2. It says:
8 "The staff of the Territorial Defence ofVukovar is not
9 functioning at all and its organisational structure has not been
10 established either."
11 Nobody knows how many units there are or who are the commanders
12 or commanding officers, and they don't have any communications.
13 Did you or the government have any contacts with the TO Staff
14 Vukovar? Did you have any jurisdiction over them?
15 A. We had neither.
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please look at P151,
17 tab 110.
18 Q. This is a decision that you signed that the government passed on
19 the 21st of January, 1992. Let's begin with paragraph 2. It says:
20 "The Command of the 1st Army District is given the authority to
21 enforce paragraph 1."
22 Namely, to disband the unit led by a man known as Kameni and
23 based in Vukovar.
24 Can you remember how this decision came to be adopted and how did
25 you come to sign it?
1 A. I remember there was a session of the government where
2 Colonel Ristic came and said it would be a first step in the transition
3 from the military to civilian rule, and it would be good for us to adopt
4 this decision, the text of which he had already written, and the
5 secretary of the government was only supposed to add this heading. We
6 discussed it and accepted it. And he explained that it would be a good
7 idea for our local police, because they know most of the members of
8 Kameni's units, to help, to avoid casualties. But I didn't get any
9 follow-up information, whether this was really done, or how.
10 Q. When you said "Colonel Ristic," you meant Colonel Ratko Ristic, a
11 JNA colonel?
12 A. Yes, I see his name is Ratko now. I just knew his last name,
13 Ristic. He was a JNA colonel from the Novi Sad Corps.
14 Q. Did you -- in fact, did the government know the identity of this
15 person mentioned in paragraph 1 at that time because he is cited only by
17 A. As far as I understood, it was some kind of detachment commanded
18 by a person under that nickname. I didn't know him, but I'd heard of
19 him, and I knew he was a member of the Serbian Radical Party. But I
20 didn't know the man.
21 Q. In other words, you knew only his nickname. You didn't know his
22 first or last name. I'm asking you because only the nickname is given
23 here. It's just said this unit is led by so-called Kameni. I'm only
24 asking if you remember.
25 A. I think it's obvious that at that time we didn't know. I later
1 found out the man is called Milan Lancuzanin. But I didn't know it at
2 the time. We knew his nickname, Kameni. I found out later from media
3 reports that it's Milan Lancuzanin.
4 Q. In paragraph 1, reference is made to some plan and programme of
5 activities to implement tasks related to the establishment of civilian
6 authorities in the territory of Vukovar municipality.
7 What kind of plan and programme was it? Did you see it? Did you
8 participate in its creation?
9 A. I did not, and I don't believe anyone in our government did. If
10 that thing existed, I don't remember it.
11 Q. After this, did Colonel Ristic or anyone else inform you if this
12 decision was ever realised? Was anything really done? Were any steps
14 A. Nobody gave any follow-up information to me or anyone in the
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we look at D50.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Tab number, please.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Microphone not activated]
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Microphone, please.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Tab 1238. Sorry.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. This is an order dated 17 February, 1992, whereby the Command of
24 the 1st Military District is issuing certain orders regarding civilian
25 affairs, and I would like us to look at paragraph 2. I believe it's on
1 the second page of the English.
2 Can you see this?
3 A. Yes. This shows that this was complete military rule. They
4 appointed town commanders and all the other organs. They were able to
5 replace them as they pleased. And it was all done back in February 1992.
6 Q. When you say "they," who do you mean?
7 A. The Yugoslav People's Army.
8 Q. In paragraph 3, an order is given to protect loyal citizens of
9 Croatian, Hungarian, and other nationalities from terror, liquidation,
10 and all kinds of pressure. Are you able to tell us how you understood
11 this? But, first of all, tell me if you were aware of this order,
12 because it relates to civilian affairs.
13 A. I was not aware because they did not inform the government about
14 it. I knew that it was their obligation, as it was their zone of
15 responsibility, to take care of all affairs, including the civilian ones.
16 But the way it's formulated doesn't seem logical to me because, to me,
17 all the citizens were equal. I don't know what was the discretion on the
18 basis of which one was supposed to decide whether they were loyal or
19 unloyal. For me, whoever continued to live with us was a loyal citizen.
20 In my view, this allows the possibility of manipulation.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see please 1D365. It is tab number 749.
22 Q. [Interpretation] This is a statement by Colonel Vojnovic which he
23 gave on the 29th of November, 1991, in which he says that the main task
24 of the military authorities which have been established was to help in
25 setting up the civilian authorities. I'm interested in this: Since your
1 talks with Colonel Vojnovic on the 20th of November at Velepromet and
2 onwards, were you personally or the government in contact with him in
3 order to establish civilian authorities through the government of SBWS,
4 as we have already seen how the civilian authorities were set up through
5 the Vukovar TO Staff?
6 A. We did not have any contact with him, neither myself nor the
8 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honours, I would tendered this document into
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D140.
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, 1D2493. It is tab 1062.
14 Q. [Interpretation] I will now move to something else somewhat
15 further afield from Vukovar.
16 This is a document from January 1992 on the appointment of a
17 director of an enterprise there. Do you know whether the government was
18 consulted, for example, about the appointment not only of this director
19 but directors of other enterprises which had nothing to do with military
20 affairs? We are talking about Ilok at the moment.
21 A. The government was not consulted about such issues in Ilok.
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we -- I would tendered this document,
23 Your Honours.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
25 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D141.
1 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P379.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Tab number, please.
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Tab number 1259.
4 Q. [Interpretation] This is another report about the setting up of
5 TO Staffs in the territory of Ilok. It was submitted on the
6 26th of February, 1992, and it provides details -- a detailed analysis of
7 all this.
8 Could you please say whether your government, the government of
9 SBWS, took part in the setting up of units and staffs of
10 Territorial Defence in the territory of Ilok and its surroundings?
11 A. No, it didn't.
12 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, 3187. P3187. It is
13 tab 1331.
14 Q. [Interpretation] This is another document from the Command of the
15 1st Motorised Corps dated the 20th of March, 1992, and it has to do with
16 the action of populating the territory of Krajina. It is requested that
17 all the officers be informed about the possibilities and conditions of
18 populating the territory of Krajina and that information about those who
19 may be interested be urgently submitted.
20 Do you know whether people did, indeed, become settled in
21 accordance with this order of the JNA, and were there any consultations
22 with your government?
23 A. This is a period when the Republic of Serbian Krajina had already
24 been formed, and no one was consulted.
25 Q. I know that this is the period after you had been elected to the
1 position of the president of the Republic of Serbian Krajina. I'm
2 interested in the previous period. Did they consult the government of
3 Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem? So my question does not refer to
4 the government of the Republic of Serbian Krajina.
5 A. Nobody consulted the government of SBWS while I was the
6 prime minister. Not about this issue.
7 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see please P1692.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Tab number, please.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry. Tab number 1270.
10 Q. [Interpretation] We just looked at some documents dealing with
11 Vukovar and the surrounding area. I would now like us to look at some
12 other documents that also have to do with the setting up of the military
13 authorities in the same time-frame but in the zone of the 12th Corps.
14 This is why I'd like you to look at this document.
15 First of all, in this document dated the 22nd of November, 1991,
16 it says that the groups and units which are not under the command of the
17 JNA had to be removed.
18 From what you know, was this an ongoing JNA's task after the fall
19 of Vukovar in the area; namely, to have the territory under control and
20 all army forces and armed groups that there were?
21 A. Yes, I know that after the fall of Vukovar, in accordance with
22 the orders of the commander of the 1st Military District which I could
23 hear in the media, only the JNA and the forces that were under its
24 command were allowed to be in the territory. Whoever was outside their
25 command was to be expelled across the Danube.
1 Q. Paragraph 3 reads that:
2 "The command of the 12th Corps has the information that certain
3 officers take it upon themselves to pass judgement on prisoners on the
4 spot, which is impermissible."
5 I'd like to know whether the government ever received any
6 warnings that some of its members or organs were doing anything like
8 A. Members of the government were not doing anything like this and
9 I'm not even aware of this. I'm not familiar with this order. I saw for
10 the first time here that something like that was going on.
11 Q. Just to remind you of my question: Did the government ever
12 receive any information about the military authorities to the effect that
13 they had information that some people who were under civilian control or,
14 let's say, government employees or the employees of local authorities did
15 anything like this, as described under item 3?
16 A. No, we never received that sort of information from the army.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we please see P2972.2913. It is tab 1319.
18 Number is P2972.2913, and tab number 1319.
19 Q. [Interpretation] This is a document about a tour that a team from
20 the 1st Guards Motorised Brigade conducted in its zone of responsibility
21 on the 7th of December, 1991. It says that volunteer units are
22 integrated in the JNA and under its command with the exception of one
23 unit from the 24th -- I don't really understand this abbreviation. My
24 impression is that it's some artillery unit. And a TO Crnogorac
25 detachment, which is reportedly under the control of the government of
2 Do you know that at the time there were any other units that were
3 not under the control of the JNA?
4 A. No, I'm not aware of this.
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] I would like to go back to Ilok
6 for yet a while, and if we could please see 2746. It's tab 619.
7 Q. This is a report of the Command of the 1st Infantry Guards
8 Motorised Division which orders the setting up of military authorities in
9 Ilok and places to the south of it, in that area. The units which are to
10 discharge these duties are appointed.
11 Please tell me whether you know that military rule was introduced
12 in these places as stated in this report, in this order?
13 A. I knew that military rule was introduced. The people were
14 appointed by the army. It wasn't our civilian authority.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see please D30. It is tab 1232.
16 Q. [Interpretation] It's a letter which you wrote to the commander
17 of Ilok. You can see your signature on the following page.
18 Do you remember this letter?
19 A. Yes, I do.
20 Q. In the letter, among other things, you say that you were not
21 informed about the terms under which military authority was introduced.
22 What did you want to explain by that? What did you actually want to say
23 in this letter?
24 A. What I said, that nobody notified us about any conditions of the
25 military authority: Under which conditions it was set up, what was the
1 purpose of it, how long it would last.
2 Q. Among other things, you said that Vojin Susa was assigned as the
3 government representative to liaise with the JNA organs, particularly
4 regarding the setting up of civilian authority.
5 Could you please tell us what specific tasks did Mr. Susa receive
6 from the civilian government.
7 A. After the tragic events in Western Slavonia and after the
8 refugees arrived in a disorganised manner to Eastern Slavonia, after we
9 were informed about this and with a delay of about a month or so, the
10 government formed a commission headed by Vojin Susa, who was supposed to
11 base himself in Ilok and help as much as possible to organise things. I
12 think that this was in late 1991. We asked that -- the military
13 authorities to co-operate, if possible, there, to find them accommodation
14 and things like that because we didn't have any powers in Ilok.
15 Q. You also asked that the finance minister be given an overview of
16 the situation in Ilok. What was meant by that?
17 A. If you remember, yesterday I said that the military authorities
18 completely sealed off Ilok and the area around it, that they took over
19 all the private companies, all the goods, and we had no overview. So we
20 wanted the finance ministry to be able to look into the funds, the
21 invoices, the number of supplies in Ilok, but our request was not
23 Q. [Microphone not activated]
24 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] I think that we can move to the
1 next page.Page 3 in the English text.
2 Q. You said, among other things, that you wanted some information
3 about the Ilok police station because you said that you didn't know
4 whether it was under military police.
5 Could you please tell me if you had civilian police in Ilokat
6 all at that time?
7 A. Well, I asked the Ilok town commander about the police. We knew
8 that there was some sort of police force there, but we didn't know who
9 set it up and who was in control and command.
10 Q. In the letter, you said that the government had been told that
11 the process of repopulation went on -- went on rather well. Did you have
12 any information in the meantime that people were moving in to Ilok and
13 who organised and led this whole operation?
14 A. We had information that this was managed by the military
15 administration. They didn't ask for our approval in that, nor did they
16 need it.
17 Q. I can see that you were not even aware of the criteria for this
19 A. We didn't know anything.
20 Q. Can you please tell us what this letter -- in your letter where
21 you say: Our agreement is not required.
22 A. Well, I didn't say that directly. I believe that it was implied
23 that we were not asked for our opinion, and that's what I said. This
24 means that we were not responsible for anything. Nothing was in our
1 Q. Does that mean that you were not required to give your approval
2 for the things that they had already done?
3 A. Everything that they did, they did of their own accord. They
4 didn't ask us about anything, and they didn't think that they needed to
5 do that. And this is precisely why I wrote that.
6 Q. [Microphone not activated]
7 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Microphone, Mr. Zivanovic.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry.
10 Q. [Interpretation] Vojin Susa conveyed the town commander's request
11 to give an approval for the temporary resettlement in the area of Ilok.
12 Are you -- do you remember this?
13 A. I think that they told Susa that we didn't do anything about
14 that, that they criticised him, and that they asked us about it
15 ultimately, but I don't remember anything about it.
16 Q. Just one more question on this document.
17 In this document, you noted that with the resettlement you had no
18 intention of prejudging the solution of military issues in
19 Western Slavonia.
20 Could you please explain what you meant to say about that in the
22 A. This is easy to explain. When I say that the government had
23 exclusively humanitarian goals, we did not interfere or get involved in
24 any ethnic matters. These people found themselves on the Danube, on the
25 border. They had no houses and they simply occupied or moved into those
1 houses. We considered this to be a temporary move. Whether it would be
2 a year or less, or longer, this is something that we did not deal with.
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Mr. President, I think it is time for our break.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Before taking the break, I would like to try to
5 settle the problem about document number 885 on the OTP Rule 65 ter list,
6 the document we admitted as D139. It seems -- as far as we could check,
7 Mr. Zivanovic, it seems that this document is not part of one of your
8 motions to add documents to the -- to your 65 ter list. There's one of
9 those motions, I think, still pending for which the OTP answer is due
10 today, but this document is not on that list.
11 If you could please check and in -- in the -- during the break.
12 And in the meantime, the OTP could perhaps say whether they -- what their
13 position is with regard to this document.
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I will, Mr. President, thank you.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Stringer.
16 MR. STRINGER: We don't have an objection, Mr. President, to the
17 document. We can -- if the Chamber is minded to allow it to be added to
18 the list, we don't object to it's being then tendered into evidence.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: If -- the document will be added to the 65 ter
20 list and stays admitted and marked, as it is.
21 Court adjourned.
22 --- Recess taken at 10.31 a.m.
23 --- On resuming at 11.03 a.m.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed, Mr. Zivanovic.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
1 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Hadzic, do you remember receiving an answer
2 from the Ilok town commander to this letter which we were discussing just
3 before the break?
4 A. Yes, I do.
5 Q. [Microphone not activated]
6 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Microphone.
8 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P1962. It is tab 468.
9 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Hadzic, did you find one answer at least to
10 the questions that you put in the letter?
11 A. No, I did not.
12 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P369. It is tab 250.
13 Q. [Interpretation] This is a letter, or a telegram, sent by the
14 Command of the 1st Guards Division to the Command of the
15 1st Military District requesting instructions about what to do about the
16 resettlement and how to bring back members of other ethnic groups to the
17 area and also to get people who left the area to return.
18 Did you know that the military authorities at the time had
19 dilemmas that are stated here in paragraphs 1 and 4 of the letter?
20 A. No, I wasn't aware of that.
21 Q. And were you consulted about your position on these issues on
22 which they were seeking instructions from their superior command?
23 A. No, I was not consulted. No one asked me anything about these
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P370.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Tab number, please.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It's tab number 251.
3 Q. [Interpretation] This is the answer that was received --
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Can we see the next page, please. Thanks.
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. This answer of the 23rd of December, 1991, mentions -- or,
7 rather, certain instructions are provided and the letter, among other
8 things, says that:
9 "The questions put should be most closely connected to the
10 requests of Serbs from other areas to move into abandoned houses."
11 Could you please tell me, were you aware of this position of the
12 JNA at the time?
13 A. No, I wasn't.
14 Q. It goes on to say that the leasing of abandoned houses should be
15 left to the extent possible to the civilian authorities, wherever they
16 exist, and if they don't exist, the Town Command should seek the opinion
17 of the commissioner for Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem, and if there
18 is no commissioner, then they should seek the opinion of the government.
19 I want to know did anyone approach the government of the SBWS
20 after these instructions were issued?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Do you know if any commissioners appointed by the government were
23 asked for their opinion?
24 A. If I remember well, the government did not appoint any
25 commissioners, and I don't know how you would call this group that
1 included Vojo Susa. In any case, they were formed after this letter. I
2 don't know. I don't have any information that anyone was consulted.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Sorry, Mr. Zivanovic.
4 Mr. Hadzic, I -- Mr. Hadzic, I noticed that you stopping paying
5 attention to the little cross on the screen that indicates when
6 interpretation -- has finished interpreting the question. It is very
7 helpful if you could do that. Thank you.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you. I will do that.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. In the next paragraph, it says that no matter who makes the
11 decision for people to move in, their houses that were abandoned by
12 people who are certain not to return because of the crimes they had
13 committed should be the first on the list to be given, to be made
15 Were you aware of this? Were you informed about this?
16 A. No, we were not.
17 Q. It goes on to say that it's natural that efforts should be made
18 in co-operation with the authorities to enable the return of persons who
19 had been loyal and who had not comprised themselves in any way.
20 Were you informed of this position?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Further below, we read that all cases of illegal eviction should
23 be registered and resolved in co-operation with the security organs of
24 the JNA and the public security authorities of the district and towns.
25 Did the government know that the military security and the public
1 security were instructed to proceed in this way?
2 A. Nobody informed us about the activities of the military security
3 or the public security, for that matter.
4 Q. In the end, it says that Town Commands are especially responsible
5 for securing law and order, the security and safety of citizens. Any
6 harassment and mistreatment of citizens must not be allowed and the
7 authorities are to prevent any such incidents.
8 As far as you knew, were the Town Commands responsible for this,
9 and did they really enforce it?
10 A. The Town Commands were responsible, and they were supposed to
11 enforce it, but I did not get any reports whether they really did.
12 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please look at P2750,
13 tab 623.
14 Q. This is a report that the Command of the 1st Guards Division sent
15 out covering capacities for accommodating refugees. It relates to Ilok
16 and the surrounding area.
17 I see here that they provide a specific number of housing units
18 available to refugees. Did the government have an exact list of housing
19 units available at the time?
20 A. No, we didn't know that. And the government did not deal with
21 these issues.
22 Q. I believe we should move to the next page in English.
23 It says, among other things, that it was on the
24 19th of December, 1991, that the refugees began to receive accommodation
25 and the person who authored this report says that it would be natural for
1 some ministry of the government of Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem to
2 form a subcommittee for immigration, a regional council for resettlement,
3 and in populated areas, there should be commissions, and that it would be
4 natural for the government to have exact data, to monitor convoys, make
5 lists of requirements, collect lists of registered housing in order to
6 implement the provision of accommodation and the resettlement of
8 How would you comment on this report?
9 A. All that follows very clearly from this report. I'm not really
10 interested in what a JNA officer considers natural, but we see from this
11 report that the government did not deal with any of these matters that he
12 criticises us over. We did not have these commissions, and we did not
13 effect resettlement the way this officer would have wanted us to do. All
14 this simply took us by surprise as a whirlwind, and we did not organise a
15 resettlement in any planned way.
16 Q. Could you clarify this, because I don't think the explanation on
17 the record is very clear.
18 You used two terms: "Moving out" and "moving in," or
19 "evacuation" and "immigration."
20 A. When I said "resettlement," I meant the problem of refugees from
21 Western Slavonia. That literally befell us unexpectedly. We could never
22 have anticipated it.
23 And when I said "moving out," or "evacuation," we didn't either
24 plan it or implement it in any way. And from the critique addressed to
25 us by this officer, it is clear that what I just explained is true.
1 Q. My next question would be then: Why didn't you? What was in
2 your way?
3 A. All the territory was under the control of the
4 Yugoslav People's Army. We did not have civilian authorities in order to
5 be able to implement this, or to enforce it.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please look at P3178.
7 That's tab 716.
8 Q. This is a dispatch from the Chief of Staff of the 1st Military
9 District sent to the 1st Mechanised Corps and the 12th Corps, and it says
10 that you, the prime minister of the Serbian District of Slavonia,
11 Baranja, and Western Srem, approached their command asking for property,
12 vehicles and such, to be returned in order to be made available to the
13 Serbian district.
14 Can you tell me how you approached the Command of the
15 1st Military District, considering that we don't have your original
17 A. Well, we addressed this military command in Ilok several times
18 with regard to these problems, but we never received an answer to our
19 previous requests, and then we tried this way. But this didn't bring
20 about any solutions either.
21 Q. I can see that there are two different matters here: Vehicles
22 that had belonged to enemy units; and vehicles that the JNA had
23 unlawfully seized from civilians and others.
24 What was all this about?
25 A. I don't know. It's a qualification they made. We asked to see
1 what happened with various vehicles that had been seized from
2 agricultural organisations, from the winery and its director, various
3 other officials, because we were supposed to reappoint these officials,
4 and they were supposed to have cars, and the cars had been seized by the
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P3179. It is tab 717.
7 Q. [Interpretation] I see from this letter that later the
8 1st Motorised Corps addressed the same request to a whole series of units
9 under its command.
10 I am curious: Did you ever receive an answer from any of these
11 units or from this corps or from the 1st Military District?
12 A. Never.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P2943. It is tab 658.
14 Q. [Interpretation] This is an instruction on conducting civilian
15 affairs sent by the Federal Secretariat for National Defence to JNA units
16 on 25 November, 1991.
17 I want to review it briefly and then ask you a couple of
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we move on to page 4,
20 item 6.
21 Q. Under item 6 of this instruction, it is said that the civilian
22 affairs organs are to undertake and carry out certain investigative
23 actions and press criminal charges against the perpetrators of criminal
25 Were you informed that this was part of their jurisdiction?
1 A. I was not informed about the document that I am looking at now,
2 but I did know that this was their jurisdiction, and only theirs. It
3 couldn't have been anyone else's.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please move to page 5,
5 item 11.
6 Q. Here it also reads that they're responsible for conducting
7 administrative duties with regard to procurement, holding and carrying
8 weapons and ammunition and issues approvals in that regard.
9 Did you know that this was also their exclusive jurisdiction?
10 A. Yes, I did.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please now have a look
12 at item 18. It's the following page in B/C/S and in English. I think
13 that it's still on the screen.
14 Q. It says there that in the civilian affairs organs, the commands
15 of places are to take measures, both preventive and repressive, to
16 present sabotage activities, the spreading of defeatism, and so on.
17 Did you know that this was also within their jurisdiction?
18 A. I didn't know all the details, but generally I did know this,
19 because it was a jurisdiction within the JNA's zone of responsibility and
20 also the military administration's jurisdiction.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now please look at
22 page 9, item 8. I think that it is on page 9. Yes.
23 Q. The last sentence of item 8 reads that the order of superior
24 commanders, should the execution of it not constitute a criminal act, is
25 legally binding.
1 Were you aware of this?
2 A. No, I didn't know that.
3 Q. And another thing, Mr. Hadzic, as this document often mentions
4 co-operation with civilian authorities, I'm interested in knowing whether
5 you or the government were familiarised with the contents in any way
6 whatsoever, not just by receiving such military instructions but verbally
7 or in writing or in any way?
8 A. No, we were not informed about this.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P3163. It is tab number 714.
10 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
12 Mr. Zivanovic, this document is under seal. We are not
13 broadcasting it.
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, it should not be broadcasted. Sorry.
15 Q. [Interpretation] It is a document about talks held on
16 8 April, 1992, between representatives of the international community and
17 General Pujic, who is the author of the previous document that we looked
18 at. Let us not quote the whole document because it's quite long. They
19 complained a lot about the situation and the lack of protection of the
20 civilians in the SBWS territory, and they addressed him. In view of the
21 date, the 7th of April, 1992, I'd like to know whether you think that it
22 was precisely the JNA, the Federal Secretariat of National Defence, that
23 was the correct address where they ought to have raised this issue and
24 who was able to resolve such an issue?
25 MR. STRINGER: I object to the leading question, Mr. President.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I rephrase the question.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please do.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Could you tell us what were the responsibilities that the JNA had
6 in April 1992 with regard to protecting the population in the SBWS
8 A. I think that the JNA had the sole responsibility. It was on the
9 side which had signed the Vance Plan. The Serbs and their leadership in
10 Slavonia and Baranja only accepted it, but those who signed it and took
11 on themselves the obligation to implement it were the federal state on
12 the one hand and the Republic of Croatia on the other. So that those who
13 had come from the UN knew who was responsible and who they should
15 Q. I will read out to you one paragraph from page 3 of this
16 document. Or, rather, I won't read it out to you but I will just
17 summarise it so that we wouldn't take up too much time.
15 [Private session]
21 [Open session]
22 THE REGISTRAR: We're in open session, Your Honours.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now please have P2751.
25 It's tab 624.
1 Q. This is another order from the Command of the 1st Military
2 District dated the 7th of January, 1992. I will ask you to focus on
3 item 2, which reads that:
4 "The Town Commands of BeliManastir, Vukovar, Dalj, Osijek, based
5 in Tenja and Vinkovci, based in Mirkovci, shall be responsible for
6 carrying out civil affairs throughout the territory of the municipality
7 in whose centre they are located."
8 Please tell me whether the civil affairs organs were responsible
9 for carrying out civil affairs throughout the municipalities where they
10 were located.
11 A. Yes, obviously it was.
12 Q. And other and than these municipalities, was there any other
13 territory in Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem?
14 A. No. This was 100 per cent coverage of SBWS of the five
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P1717.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Tab number, please.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Oh, sorry. Sorry. Tab number 385.
19 Q. [Interpretation] This is an order by the Command of the
20 1st Mechanised Corps of the 18th of February, 1992, and it's an analysis
21 of the work of Military Districts. It also appoints a commission and
22 other matters. I would like to ask you to look at item 3, please.
23 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] I think that this is on page 3 of
24 the English translation of the document and on page 2 of the original.
25 Q. The order here is to "examine the work of the local commanders
1 and authorities in the rural local communes." The order also states
2 that, "All comprised officials are to be removed and that -- tested and
3 trusted people ought to be appointed."
4 Are you able to tell us how you understand this point on
5 appointing tested and trusted people?
6 A. I understand it just as it's written, but also according to the
7 situation in the field, and that meant tested and trusted people from the
8 perspective of the Yugoslav People's Army and its policies.
9 Q. Paragraph 4 here which talks about the protection from threats of
10 liquidation and terror of loyal non-Serb citizens, I think that we
11 already discussed this on the basis of a different document which was
12 issued by its superior command.
13 What I'm interested here, however, is item 6, which orders that
14 all measures should be taken in order to prevent paramilitary units from
15 organising and from spending time in the area of responsibility.
16 According to what you know about the situation in late
17 February 1992, this attempt to prevent paramilitary units from forming,
18 was that in the jurisdiction of the authorities?
19 A. This was exclusively in the jurisdiction of the JNA.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see document 2950, tab 661.
21 Sorry, is it 2950?
22 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, counsel. This is a 65 ter number or
23 a --
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: No, P.
25 MR. STRINGER: A P number?
1 MR. ZIVANOVIC: A P number.
2 MR. STRINGER: Thank you.
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. This is another report from the Command of the
5 1st Mechanised Corps, dated 25th of February, 1992. In brief, the
6 document states that the work of the Town Command and the president of
7 the local commune has improved even though there are certain problems
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: If we could go to the next page of English
10 translation, please.
11 Q. And it says that the problems are expressed in the difficulties
12 to elect organs of civilian authorities in the field and the -- their
14 After that, it says that the election of those organs is in the
15 jurisdiction of the Executive Board of the government of Slavonia,
16 Baranja, and Western Srem and the municipalities, and that these are most
17 often their people and that if the military authorities interfered in
18 this, that would cause the dissatisfaction on the part of the government
19 and the people.
20 First of all, could you please tell us what this vetting was or
21 verification of their suitability to be elected into the organs of
22 civilian authority? Was this something that was done officially by the
23 government, or was it an unofficial procedure?
24 A. I never heard of it officially. Nobody informed us about
25 anything like that.
1 As for the unofficial part, I already said that this was an
2 official thing from the aspect of the policy of the JNA.
3 Q. And is this assertion correct that the election of these organs
4 under the jurisdiction of the Executive Board of the SBWS -- are you
5 aware that these Executive Boards or the government was responsible for
6 the election of these organs?
7 A. The bodies that we discussed earlier were appointed by the army.
8 Only once civilian authorities are set up, then the civilian authorities
9 would be responsible once they assumed power. But what is not clear to
10 me with this document is that the heading is the 25th of February, but
11 the -- the document actually refers to the 27th of February, a couple of
12 days later. So it's not clear to me how this exactly happens.
13 Q. [Microphone not activated]
14 THE INTERPRETER: The Defence counsel microphone was switched
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, on the first page.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. You're talking about the first page. Can we first go back to the
19 first page of the English text.
20 Yes, what you mean to say is that the date of the letter, which
21 is the answer to the request of the superior command, was written before
22 the command actually requested it.
23 A. Yes, that's correct. I noticed that because now suddenly the
24 government is being talked about, whereas, the entire time they worked
25 without any sort of agreement with the government or without any
1 reference to it at all.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, D37.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Tab number, please.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Microphone not activated]
5 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Microphone, please.
7 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It is tab 1234.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thanks.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Microphone not activated]
10 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. You cannot really see the document very well, the original, but
13 the translation is legible. Among other things, it is stated in the
14 document that the local communes even -- that the local communes provided
15 a list of persons whose safety is not being guaranteed.
16 Can you please tell me, did you know about this? Do you know who
17 drafted the list? At whose request? Why did the local communes make
18 such lists and sends them to the army?
19 A. I didn't know about this. These local communes sent this to the
20 army in a kind of personal way because these were local communes that
21 were actually formed by the army.
22 Q. When you say "local communes formed by the army," are you
23 thinking of the local commune organs, the leadership of the local
25 A. Yes, I'm thinking of the leadership. Leadership that they
1 referred to as being suitable. Suitable, as far as they were concerned.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see P1715. Sorry, it is tab 383.
3 Q. [Interpretation] This is a daily report of the organ for civilian
4 affairs dated the 22nd of February about a meeting that was held the day
5 before in Mirkovci. Attendees were mentioned, those who attended the
6 meeting. I note that - and I'm asking you as well - whether anybody from
7 the government, you or somebody else, did anybody attend this meeting?
8 A. Nobody from the government attended the meeting. I wasn't even
9 informed about it.
10 Q. In item 2, it is stated that the meeting was conducted by
11 Major-General MicoDelic. I don't see him mentioned among those
12 attending, but I don't doubt that that was so.
13 I would like to know: Were you informed about the meeting later,
14 or the results of the meeting? I'm not thinking only of you but of the
15 government as a whole.
16 A. I personally was not informed about it. Because after the
17 26th of February, I was no longer carrying out those duties. I don't
18 think that the government was informed either, but I'm not sure.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we look at item 5, please.
20 This is on the following page of the English translation.
21 Q. There are proposals here by the civilian affairs organ. Under
22 article -- item 5 (a) which states:
23 "Measures are to be taken at the level of the government of the
24 Eastern Slavonia, Western Srem, and Baranja to quickly resolve the issue
25 of settlement in areas that were hitherto unsettled, those being the
1 villages of Nijemci, Apsevci, Podgradje, Lipovac, Slakovci, and to more
2 effectively change the national makeup in places that are already
4 Were you and the government informed that a JNA organ put forward
5 such a solution? Did you receive such a proposal from any JNA organ to
6 this effect?
7 A. We never received such a proposal, and so far I've never heard
8 even that something like that existed.
9 Q. We see under (b) another proposal from the same person:
10 "For all displaced persons, regardless of their nationality, if
11 they have participated in Ustasha units in any way, to be prohibited from
12 returning to this area."
13 Were you aware of such a proposal from the JNA?
14 A. No, I wasn't.
15 Q. Let us look at item (d):
16 "It is our opinion that Ceric village should be completely
17 evacuated ..."
18 Was this notified to you or the government?
19 A. Neither I nor the government were informed of this.
20 Q. We'll look at one more document from this batch. P167, tab 126.
21 It's a document authored by the same person only three days later
22 sent directly to the Federal Secretary for National Defence, and if we
23 look at item (b) -- I believe it's on page 3 in English. The text in
24 English actually begins on page 2. The author lists major problems that
25 make the work of civilian authorities difficult.
1 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] And we can now move to the next
2 page in English.
3 Q. Right at the beginning it says:
4 "One of the problems is the emergence and existence of
5 self-proclaimed governments and their ministers who arrogate the right to
6 meddle in the work and organisation of civilian authorities."
7 Looking at this reference to self-proclaimed governments, would
8 you say that the government of Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem was
9 called self-proclaimed?
10 A. Yes, more than once. Both Serbia and Croatia and the
11 international community labelled us that way.
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic, it is that time. Would that be
13 convenient for you or ...
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: We can -- we can break now, Your Honours. I put
15 this question after break.
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
17 Court adjourned.
18 --- Recess taken at 12.16 p.m.
19 --- On resuming at 12.45 p.m.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed, Mr. Zivanovic.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
22 Q. [Interpretation] We still have on the screen the same document.
23 We should now move to page 2 of the original and the English remains on
24 the same page.
25 I'm interested in the first paragraph you see in the original,
1 just before paragraph 2, referring to the intolerance between the Serbs
2 who have moved in and the local Croats. It refers also to pressure
3 exerted on people to move out and even physical clashes and liquidations
4 in secret.
5 Is this true, to the best of your knowledge? It refers to the
6 same things as the previous document.
7 A. No, it is not true. And if I hadn't seen both documents here, I
8 wouldn't even believe that somebody would be capable of such conflation
9 and ascribing to the government various directives and instructions that
10 were actually issued by somebody entirely different.
11 Q. Mr. Hadzic, would you kindly tell us how did it come about that
12 you were elected president of the Republic of Serbian Krajina?
13 A. When Milan Babic rejected the Vance Plan and when the political
14 preconditions were met for various districts within Croatia to unite, it
15 was necessary for somebody to accept to become the president of the
16 Serbian Krajina. It never crossed my mind before that it should be me,
17 but Milan Paspalj, president of the assembly, and some more of my
18 associates of mine, talked me into it, saying that it would be a
19 temporary solution, that the situation requires it, that it can be only
20 me because I am able to reconcile all the different parties, and that I
21 am the only acceptable solution.
22 Q. Were you accepted - and, if so, to what extent - in the part of
23 the Serbian Krajina that was called the Knin Krajina?
24 A. Among the people in that part of Krajina, I was not really known.
25 I was perhaps known to the SDS leadership, but the people didn't know me,
1 and the elections later showed that I was never very well accepted there.
2 When I say "elections," I mean those in 1993.
3 Q. Considering that the Republic of Serbian Krajina was made up of
4 three then separate units, can you tell us to what extent their political
5 and other interests coincided? Did they enable them to form one integral
6 whole and carry on with the harmonised policy?
7 A. I'm not sure whether I've spoken about this here before, whether
8 I'll be repeating myself, the interests of Serbs from Slavonia, Baranja,
9 and Western Srem were not really such that they would justify unification
10 with Serbs who were 600 kilometres away from us in the Knin Krajina. We
11 saw it as a temporary and a formal arrangement because the recognition of
12 former Yugoslav republics was on the agenda at the time, and we thought
13 that those republics that had been formed within what we called Communist
14 borders do not have real statehood, or basis, for recognition so that if
15 they are recognised, the Serbian Krajina could also be recognised because
16 it had a basis in history within the former Austro-Hungarian empire, they
17 were recognised before as the so-called military Krajina. That's why I
18 accepted this post in its temporary and formal dimension.
19 Later on, it assumed a very serious practical dimension as well,
20 where all the resources from Eastern Slavonia were appropriated by the
21 western parts for the whole thing later to escalate and the military
22 personnel from Eastern Slavonia later had to be mobilised to defend
23 Western Slavonia, and that was intolerable.
24 Q. You have seen and you probably know the constitution of the
25 Republic of Serbian Krajina --
1 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, L3. It is tab 1178.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: And the document number for the record, please,
3 Mr. Zivanovic.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: The document number is L3.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we move on to page 7,
7 Article 78. In English, it's page 23. We can move to the previous page,
8 just to see who is responsible for this.
9 Q. Under the constitution that was in force at the time when you
10 were elected, you had certain responsibilities. And let us now look at
11 point 5 of this article. It's on the next page.
12 Paragraph 5: Controls armed forces in peace and in war and
13 people's resistance in wartime, you order general and partial
14 mobilisation, organise preparations for defence, et cetera.
15 How did you understand this particular responsibility?
16 A. Before I answer your specific question, I should only like to say
17 that this constitution of 19 December, 1991, was adopted when Milan Babic
18 was president and, in gest, my friends and I called it Babic's
19 constitution. And in this part that relates to the responsibilities of
20 the president, only Babic's picture was missing. In my own exercise of
21 the duties of president, I did not want the duties and powers of the
22 president of the republic to be so great.
23 As for your question, especially as far as military aspects are
24 concerned, I understood my position as president of the republic in a
25 very realistic way, in the sense that I was aware of my lack of knowledge
1 and experience. And when you read this point "controls armed forces," to
2 me, it meant a political function because command required professional
3 skills, and I didn't have them.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please look at
5 Article 102 of the constitution. It is on page 9 of the original and
6 page 31 of the English translation.
7 Q. At the time when you were elected to the post of the president of
8 the republic, I see that the armed forces of the Republic of
9 Serbian Krajina were made only of the Territorial Defence.
10 Do you remember that?
11 A. Yes, I remember. The Territorial Defence had already been
12 established before I came to this position. I think that it was
13 established in accordance with the federal law and that General Torbica
14 was in charge of it, as far as I remember.
15 Q. And do you remember whether at the time when you were elected the
16 JNA was still present in the Republic of Serbian Krajina?
17 A. I do. The JNA was present up until the end of May or early June.
18 It was there parallelly. When I say "parallelly," I mean that it was
19 completely independent from the organs of the
20 Republic of Serbian Krajina.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P2637. It is tab 597.
22 Q. [Interpretation] If you could please look at the screen, do you
23 see this order on organisational and establishment changes in the units
24 of the Republic of Serbian Krajina Territorial Defence?
25 A. Yes.
1 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we please move one page
3 Q. Can you see who adopted this order and when?
4 A. I can see, as everyone present, that it was issued by the
5 Federal Secretariat for National Defence on the 27th of February, 1992.
6 Q. Under A, under Roman numeral I, the setting up of staffs and
7 units of Territorial Defence of the Republic of Serbian Krajina is
8 ordered, the time needed for mobilisation, and so on.
9 If we go through the document, we will see that other units and
10 staffs of Territorial Defence are being formed as well. What I'm
11 interested in is whether you participated in any way in the drawing up of
12 this order. Did you play any role in this?
13 A. I did not play any role, and I did not take part in it.
14 Q. And was such an order submitted to you as the president of the
15 Republic of Serbian Krajina, though you had been elected just a day
16 before. But did you ever receive it?
17 A. No, I never received it.
18 Q. Did you know that some organisational changes were underway, that
19 some staffs and units were being set up, and so on?
20 A. No, I didn't know. Because I only came to Knin later. Perhaps
21 it was in March. I don't remember when.
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see please 1D3563. It is tab 1416.
23 Q. [Interpretation] Here you can see the materials from the
24 Federal Secretariat of the Interior dated the 24th of February, 1992,
25 sent to the MUP of the Republic of Serbia.
1 It says here that basics of the organisation of the internal
2 affairs service in the Republic of Serbian Krajina are hereby submitted.
3 And also an outline of the proposed organisation of the internal affairs
4 service and the Law on Internal Affairs of the Republic of
5 Serbian Krajina. Though you had not yet been elected at the time, did
6 you know that something like this was being prepared; that is to say,
7 that the Federal Secretariat of the Interior was preparing these
8 materials and the future organisation of internal affairs in the
9 Republic of Serbian Krajina?
10 A. I didn't know.
11 Q. Were you later informed about this document?
12 A. No. I saw it first here in The Hague.
13 Q. And did you later possibly participate in any way whatsoever or
14 were informed about the preparation of the Law on Internal Affairs, or
15 did you know that the organs of the interior were being organised?
16 A. No, never.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honours, I would tender this document.
18 MR. STRINGER: Objection. The witness has not laid a sufficient
19 foundation. He doesn't know anything about it. Thank you.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I'll not -- I withdraw my request. Thank you.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
23 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Microphone not activated]
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Microphone, please.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. During your term in office, were the armed forces of the
2 Republic of Serbian Krajina ever used, to the best of your knowledge and
4 A. Yes, several times. If I remember well, the first occasion was
5 at Miljevacki Plateau, then there was the Croatian action Maslenica, and
6 in September 1993, theMedak pocket. So these were the major uses when
7 we were more fiercely attacked. And there were many other individual
8 instances of lesser intensity.
9 Q. Do you, by any chance, remember when this action at the
10 Miljevacki Plateau took place?
11 A. I remember that was in June 1992, as soon as the UN took over the
12 zone of responsibility from the JNA and the JNA withdrew.
13 Q. Do you remember -- or, rather, can you tell us anything about an
14 action that was carried out in the corridor. This was not in the
15 territory of the Republic of Serbian Krajina but in another territory.
16 But if you could tell us what was happening and when?
17 A. Yes, the Croatian forces cut through the corridor which linked us
18 with the eastern and western parts in the area of Brcko. Some of the
19 forces of the Republic of Serbian Krajina then participated in breaking
20 through the corridor, together with the forces of RepublikaSrpska.
21 Q. What was the importance of this corridor for the
22 Republic of Serbian Krajina or at least for the former SAO Krajina or the
23 Knin Krajina?
24 A. It was vitally important, essentially important, not just for the
25 former SAO Krajina but all of Bosnian Krajina as well, the whole area
1 that included Banja Luka, Doboj, and so on, because otherwise we would
2 have been cut off, as if you cut off the root of the plant. Including
3 Banja Luka and Doboj, not Dobrinja, yes.
4 Q. And what was the threat? What could not take place if the
5 corridor was cut off?
6 A. Well, most simply put, any sort of communication had been cut
7 off, so the movement of people and goods.
8 Q. Do you remember when this happened?
9 A. I think it was in spring 1992. I don't know if it was May or
10 not. I can't remember right now.
11 Q. And could you tell us, was that after the JNA had withdrawn or
12 before it withdrew, while the JNA was still there?
13 A. It's a generally known fact. I could have checked up, but I
14 think it may have been around this time, but I can't say whether it was
15 before or after.
16 Q. And do you remember whether the JNA units participated in the
17 liberation of the corridor, or was it just the troops you mentioned?
18 A. I remember well that the JNA units did not participate. It was
19 the forces of the RSK and the forces of RepublikaSrpska which took part
20 in this.
21 Q. At that time you had frequent contacts with international
22 representatives. Let me not show you any documents. I don't think it is
23 necessary because I suppose that you remember that one of their requests,
24 one that was often voiced, was that all Territorial Defence units and
25 even the police should be disarmed.
1 How did you perceive this request and how did everyone perceive
2 that, especially in the context of the attacks on the corridor that you
3 just talked about and also the attack on the Miljevac Plateau?
4 A. We discussed the problem with Mr. Goulding and Mr. Vance when the
5 Vance Plan was being adopted. For us, for me, for the leadership and for
6 most of the people, it was not logical to disarm only one side while
7 leaving the other side practically with full combat equipment on the
8 other side of the line of demarcation. And the mediators primarily
9 guaranteed that the United Nations forces would be able to provide
10 security for us. However, once it was agreed and the United Nations did
11 come, it turned out that this was not possible. And I think that that
12 position was not a fair one: To disarm one side while allowing the other
13 side to attack wherever and whenever they wanted, without any
15 Q. In view of those demands, what was your own position in relation
16 to those demands during the talks?
17 A. At first, I believed those people who provided those guarantees,
18 but as time went by, I became more and more skeptical and began to lose
20 Q. And what was the position of other organs of authority in the
21 Republic of the Serbian Krajina; for example, of the government, the
22 Territorial Defence, and the people also who lived there, in relation to
23 these demands?
24 A. I think that most of them were a bit more hard-line than I was.
25 I was a bit more naive and more trusting. But because of the bad
1 experiences that we had had in World War II and in general, there was a
2 lot of fear among the people. They didn't have a lot of confidence in
3 what was being said.
4 Q. And who was it that they were not confident about?
5 A. First of all, they did not trust that the Croatian side would
6 respect the agreement. All the weapons were left with the Croats. They
7 were just a couple of kilometres away from the -- their houses.
8 Q. Are you able to tell us anything about the position -- well, we
9 can see that by law and by constitution, you were in charge of the armed
10 forces. So what was your practical position throughout the entire
11 period, not only when you were elected in 1992 but throughout your term
12 of office as the president of the Serbian Republic of the Krajina till
13 1993? What was your position regarding the armed forces, because this
14 changed so it was not just the TO that was making them up?
15 A. I've already said that I was aware that I didn't have any
16 military training and that I was only in charge in the formal extent,
17 whereas, all the other decision-making was entrusted to the people who
18 were capable of making such decisions. Everything that I signed and all
19 the decisions that I made were a result of things that were proposed by
20 those people. None of that was something that came from me. Basically I
21 was just carrying out the formal aspect of my duties.
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, L49. It is tab 1214. We can
23 move on next page of English translation.
24 Q. [Interpretation] In April 1993, the constitution was amended, the
25 constitution of the Republic of the Serbian Krajina, when it was declared
1 that the Republic of the Serbian Krajina had an army, that it had its
2 permanent and reserve forces.
3 First of all, are you able to tell us whether this establishment
4 of the Army of the Serbian Krajina in April 1993 had anything to do with
5 earlier events in the military area, anything to do with confrontations
6 that occurred in the area?
7 A. Well, I believed that this was a forced move, that we had to do
8 this, because there were constant threats and attacks coming from
10 Q. Do you recall any particular event that preceded this amendment?
11 A. I already referred to it. It was the so-called Maslenica action
12 in January of 1992. Sorry, 1993.
13 Q. Before the amendment was made, was there an attempt made to reach
14 a peaceful solution, to achieve a peaceful withdrawal from the territory
15 in question, or was this measure immediately resorted to?
16 A. Of course we did not immediately resort to this measure. We
17 tried everything to find a peaceful solution. I took part in
18 negotiations to implement an UN resolution requesting Croatia to return
19 to its pre-aggression positions. The talks were conducted in New York on
20 two occasions.
21 Q. And what was the outcome of these negotiations?
22 A. It didn't come to much. If we keep in mind that Croatia did not
23 implement the resolution, they didn't withdraw, and they didn't accept
24 anything. UN troops did not protect us either. I even had information
25 that they actually were helping the Croatian side with some intelligence
1 matters. More specifically, it was the French Battalion. I had the
2 opportunity this year in a TV programme on Croatian television to hear
3 this from one of the commanders of their units in person.
4 Q. Amendment 12 also states that the commander of the
5 Army of RepublikaSrpska Krajina is appointed by the assembly upon the
6 proposal of the Supreme Defence Council.
7 Do you know who was appointed commander of the Serbian
8 Army of the Krajina?
9 A. Yes, it was Mile Novakovic.
10 Q. The next amendment, Amendment 13 - it's on the next page of the
11 English translation - changes your powers, the powers of the president of
12 the republic. Now it says that you are at the head of the
13 Army of the Serbian Krajina pursuant to the constitution and decisions of
14 the Supreme Defence Council and that you preside over the
15 Supreme Defence Council.
16 Are you able to tell us how you understood this role of presiding
17 over the Supreme Defence Council?
18 A. I understood it for what it was; that is, that I was first among
19 equals, everybody was there on an equal footing, and I was just the
20 person who was chairing the body.
21 Q. Are you able to tell us who were other members of this body, as
22 far as you can recall?
23 A. There was also the commander of the army. There were three
24 government members: The prime minister, the defence minister, and the
25 minister of the interior. And, of course, I, myself.
1 Q. Would you be able to make a comparison between your own knowledge
2 of military affairs and the knowledge of military affairs of any other
3 member of the Supreme Defence Council?
4 A. The prime minister and I were in an inferior position in such
5 terms in relation to the other three. The commander of the army and the
6 defence minister were the most knowledgeable among us in this area.
7 Q. Amendment 13 also states that you were also authorised to make
8 decisions on the setting up, the seat, and the competence of military
9 courts and prosecutor's offices and to appoint and dismiss the president
10 and judges of the military court and prosecutor's office.
11 Are you able to tell us if this decision was actually implemented
12 during your term of office? Were military courts and prosecutor's
13 offices actually set up from April 1993 until the end of the year? I'm
14 talking about that period.
15 A. I cannot really be sure about that now, so I cannot state that
16 with any degree of certainty. However, I understood this constitutional
17 amendment in general terms, because I didn't have an expert team in the
18 president's office, so I would have had to sign the formal decision based
19 on recommendations of a government expert team.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we look at Amendment 14,
22 Q. I'm only going to ask you about the powers of the
23 Supreme Defence Council. I can see that, amongst other things, the
24 Supreme Defence Council was in charge of declaring the possibility of an
25 imminent threat of war and dealt with mobilisation. Could you please
1 tell me whether this was actually part of your powers originally as
2 president of the republic before these an amendments were made?
3 A. Yes, that is correct.
4 Q. Do you remember after the Maslenica action by Croatian forces you
5 did declare a state of war and -- and mobilisation?
6 A. Yes, I do remember that.
7 Q. And what was your position towards the government of the
8 Republic of the Serbian Krajina? What were your powers in relation to
9 that body?
10 A. Well, to put it in the clearest terms, I thought that they were
11 like a parallel body. I and the government were responsible to the
13 Q. When you say "parallel body," you mean to the extent that you
14 were elected by the assembly and were responsible to the assembly.
15 A. Yes. I never saw the government as a body that was under me,
16 controlled by me, a body on which I could impose my own will.
17 Q. Were your powers separated?
18 A. I believe the constitution has dealt with that. They were
20 Q. Did the government submit to you any reports, like work progress
21 reports, what measures it should take? Did they consult you on the steps
22 to be taken?
23 A. To the best of my recollection, it never did. In fact, I don't
24 remember that the government ever consulted me.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, L54.
1 Q. [Interpretation] Could you explain to us Article 3.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] It's on the next page in English.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Could we zoom in a bit? I can't
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. I'd just like to clear this up considering that it is written in
7 the constitution that the president controls armed forces and that the
8 army is commanded by the commander of the Serbian Army of Krajina. And
9 here in the law, we see that the army is under the command of the
10 president of the republic. Is it because the law was passed a few days
11 before the amendments?
12 A. Obviously. Because, otherwise, the law would be
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we go back to the first
15 page just to see the date.
16 Q. My impression is that this law was passed before those amendments
17 that were enacted on the 22nd, that is, two days later. Do you agree?
18 MR. STRINGER: Objection to the leading question about what
19 counsel's impression is.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I rephrase my question.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please do.
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Would you tell me on what date the Law on the Army
24 of the Republic of Serbian Krajina was passed.
25 A. As we can all see, it was on 20th April, 1993. That's two days
1 before those amendments.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see the next page of this document in
4 Q. [Interpretation] Can you see Article 6 which reads:
5 "The army commander shall command the army in keeping with the
6 decisions of the Supreme Defence Council."
7 A. Yes, I can see that.
8 Q. Was this provision enforced during the rest of your term of
9 office, that the army commander commands the Army of the Serbian Krajina?
10 A. Yes, that's the only way it worked.
11 Q. Did you ever command the Army of the Republic of Serbian Krajina?
12 A. Never, and I wasn't able to.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, L55. It is tab 1218.
14 Q. [Interpretation] This is the 8th amendment, enacted in May 1992,
15 which stipulates that the president of the republic shall appoint the
16 commander of the Territorial Defence and also assess judges, or
17 judge/jurors. The powers that the president here -- are phrased in such
18 a way that the president appoints the TO commander but is not able to
19 dismiss him.
20 A. Yes, he can only appoint and dismiss presidents of courts, but
21 not the TO commander. He cannot dismiss the TO commander.
22 Q. At the time when you were elected president of the RSK, who was
23 the commander of the Territorial Defence of the Serbian
24 Army of Krajina -- sorry, Territorial Defence. And who appointed him?
25 A. At that time the commander was General Milan Torbica, and I
1 believe he was appointed by the federal secretary.
2 Q. Does it mean that, in accordance with this provision, you were
3 not able to replace him or to dismiss him from that position, if you saw
5 A. It's obvious from this amendment.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, L8. It is tab 1183.
7 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
8 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. This is a decision on the return of refugees.
10 In the original, it's on the left.
11 You are probably familiar with this decision. It was discussed
12 also during the examination-in-chief. What can you tell us about this
13 decision? Do you know when it was passed? Was it the subject of debate?
14 Or discussion with representatives of the international community?
15 A. I see it was passed on the 21st of April, 1992. I don't know
16 specifically whether it was discussed with representatives of the
17 international community, considering that it's a decision of the
18 government. But I know we discussed with the international community the
19 general issue of the return of refugees, and I suppose that this decision
20 isin line with those discussions.
21 Q. Can you tell us, speaking of the return of refugees, which
22 refugees did you discuss with the international representatives?
23 A. Our side wanted those discussions to cover Serb refugees as well,
24 but representatives of the international community were only interested
25 in Croat refugees. They were not interested in Serb refugees.
1 Q. Did a problem occur about the return of Croat refugees; and, if
2 so, what was the problem?
3 A. There was more than one problem, but the main one was that those
4 Croat houses were now occupied by Serb refugees, and we had to find some
5 way to provide accommodation. There were no specific proposals. There
6 was just the demand for Croats to return, and I had a feeling that Serb
7 refugees were second-class citizens. Nobody even mentioned them.
8 Q. Did negotiators offer some mediation with the Croat authorities
9 to enable Serb refugees to return to their homes at the same time as the
10 Croats would return to theirs?
11 A. That was our first and principal demand, but we did not meet with
12 any understanding. The negotiators did try, but they were not very firm
13 in their attempts, whereas, Croatia did not even want to discuss it.
14 But there were more problems. Croat refugees did not want to
15 return into an area that was under our authority. So, at the time, it
16 was practically impossible to solve the problem.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic, I would need a few minutes for
18 administrative matters. So if it is convenient for you to do that now.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Okay.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
21 First thing is the private or public session and lifting
22 eventually some parts of the private designation we gave yesterday.
23 You've probably seen Mr. Stringer's suggestions in this regard. Do you
24 have a position on them or would you need to look into them further?
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I apologise, but I -- I'd like to have some --
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay.
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: -- to see.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: We hear from you; right?
5 Then how long -- how long would you still have with this witness,
6 Mr. Zivanovic?
7 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I -- I don't know at the moment how much time I
8 have, but --
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Some time ago you -- pardon? Three hours.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honour, I'll do my best to finish tomorrow,
11 but --
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: -- maybe some time would be needed, additional
14 time would be needed.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
16 Mr. Hadzic, we'll adjourn for the day. You're still a witness
17 under oath.
18 Court adjourned.
19 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.00 p.m.,
20 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 16th day of
21 July, 2014, at 9.00 a.m.