1 Wednesday, 16 July 2014
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 10.31 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: Thank you.
12 May we have the appearances, please, starting with the
14 MR. STRINGER: Good morning, Mr. President, Your Honours.
15 For the Prosecution, Douglas Stringer; Sarah Clanton; Case
16 Manager, Indah Susanti; and legal interns, Katherine Davis; Max Dalton.
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,
21 Negosava Smiljanic, and Milan Jovancevic.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
23 Before we proceed with Mr. Hadzic's testimony, there is the
24 little issue about lifting the private session designation in the
25 transcript not from yesterday but from the day before. I understand that
1 parties agree upon three of the suggestions Mr. Stringer made. And for
2 the fourth, Mr. Zivanovic, do you have a position?
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour. We have the position. Our
4 position is that this part of transcript should be keep in -- in the --
5 in the private session.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. We will check that. And, in the meantime,
7 if parties could provide the Registrar with the exact reference in the
8 French transcript, please. Thank you.
9 Mr. Zivanovic, you may proceed.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
11 WITNESS: GORAN HADZIC [Resumed]
12 [Witness answered through interpreter]
13 Examination by Mr. Zivanovic: [Continued]
14 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Hadzic, in 1992, was Zeljko Raznjatovic,
15 Arkan, part of your core of body-guards or your security detail?
16 A. No.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see please P1845. It is tab 1282.
18 Q. [Interpretation] These are conclusions of the Presidency of the
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Next page, please.
21 Q. You see the session was held on 16 April, 1992.
22 A. Yes.
23 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry, I see that it is strictly confidential. I
24 don't know whether it should be -- it -- maybe it should not be
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: [Microphone not activated]
2 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: I'm sorry. It's a public exhibit, Mr. Zivanovic.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Okay. In that case, it could be broadcasted, of
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thanks.
7 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. You see, Mr. Hadzic, this session discussed various matters, but
9 I should like you to focus on a passage where you are mentioned in the
10 same context as Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] In e-court, it's page 65 in the
12 original and 68 in English. In fact, it's page 63 of the record itself.
13 In e-court, it's 65.
14 Can we turn back two pages just to see who is speaking here.
15 That means page 63 of the original and page 66 of the translation. Yes.
16 Q. These are the words of General Zivota Panic at this session of
17 the Presidency.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] And now we can go back to pages
19 65 and 68 in Serbian and in English respectively.
20 Q. He says, among other things:
21 "Arkan is managed about Hadzic, or led by Hadzic. I was in Knin
22 yesterday and they were all wondering, in one way or another, what Arkan
23 was doing in the area. He is taking him around as some sort of
24 body-guard. Somebody should call President Hadzic to tell him to remove
25 Arkan from this area."
1 Considering that he is referred to here as a member of your corps
2 of body-guards, I'd like to know did anyone call you in 1992 to ask you
3 to remove from your area Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan?
4 A. No. And this is the first time I see this. I mean, I saw it for
5 the first time after I came here.
6 Q. It follows from this that, at that time, Zeljko Raznjatovic,
7 Arkan, was in Knin, and it was a problem that he was there. I'd like to
8 know where you were generally in that period. I'm not asking about a
9 specific date. Where did you spend most of your time in April 1992?
10 A. I was, for the most part, in Eastern Slavonia, where I was born,
11 or in Serbia, where my family was. And in April, I even travelled to
12 Russia to take my son to a doctor. I didn't go frequently to Knin.
13 Q. Considering that he's referred to here as a member of your
14 body-guard detail, did he follow you? Did he accompany you when you went
15 to -- from Knin to Novi Sad, or -- did he travel around with you?
16 A. He was never a member of my body-guard detail. And he didn't
17 travel around with me. He always went where he pleased. I was never
18 informed what he was doing or where he was going.
19 Q. Generally, at this time, when you were either president of the
20 government of -- or, rather, prime minister of Slavonia, Baranja, and
21 Western Srem or the president of RSK, did you have any capacity to issue
22 him orders, to arrest him, to remove him?
23 A. I certainly didn't. Moreover, I had the feeling that it could be
24 the contrary, the other way around, as far as arrest is concerned.
25 Q. What do you mean, "the other way around"? Could you be more
2 A. I couldn't have him arrested because I did not have much
3 personnel. His personnel was ten times larger than mine. He was
4 stronger than I. That's why I thought he could arrest me, rather than I
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we move to page 67 of the original and the
7 page 70 in English.
8 Maybe we should go one extra -- before that it is page 66 and --
9 in B/C/S and 69 in English just to see who spoke.
10 Q. [Interpretation] Now Borisav Jovic took the floor.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Now we can go back to page 67 in
12 B/C/S and 70 in English.
13 Q. [Interpretation] He says -- no, that's not a starting point --
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Oh, sorry. It is -- Borisav Jovic is on the next
15 page of English translation. No, no. No. That's correct page, sorry.
16 It was correct page. Sorry.
17 Q. [Interpretation] It says:
18 "As far as these Eagles and Arkan are concerned, I think the army
19 should arrest them pursuant to our instructions."
20 To the best of your knowledge, was the army able to do that on
21 the instructions of the Presidency of the SFRY?
22 A. The Presidency was the Supreme Command of the
23 Yugoslav People's Army, and if they had issued such an order, I believe
24 they would have been able to carry it out.
25 Q. Then Zivota Panic speaks and says:
1 "No. The MUP, it's Ministry of Interior, should do that."
2 And then Borisav Jovic speaks again and says:
3 "No. That's not a starting point for us."
4 And then he explains why.
5 In your estimate, was the Ministry of the Interior able to
6 achieve that? I suppose they meant the MUP of Yugoslavia or Serbia.
7 A. I believe the MUP could have done it, as well as the army.
8 Q. Then Borisav Jovic speaks again.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: If we can move to the next page in English.
10 Q. [Interpretation] It's at the bottom of the page, the last
11 paragraph in English. He says:
12 "So if the army can take up this task, I would gladly give them
13 this task, and if they catch them in the act, they should dismiss them
14 and arrest them."
15 Correction, "... they should disarm and arrest them."
16 Then let's move to the next page in the original and in English.
17 Zivota Panic replies:
18 "There is no task that the army cannot execute, as long as the
19 Supreme Command orders it. If the Supreme Command orders us to move out
20 of Bosnia tomorrow, we will do it very simply, et cetera."
21 Tell me, in April 1992, when this session of the Presidency took
22 place, were the authorities of the SFRY capable of carrying out such an
23 operation outside of Serbia, let's say, in the Republic of
24 Serbian Krajina?
25 A. Yes. Because, officially, it was still a single state of
2 Q. And then Zivota Panic speaks again and he says:
3 "I consider it an order: We will arrest all paramilitary
4 organisations appearing in this area."
5 According to your knowledge, was this order implemented?
6 A. No, it wasn't, and I never heard that. No one spoke about this.
7 This information never reached me.
8 Q. Immediately after that, Jugoslav Kostic says:
9 "Zivota, at a session here once I asked what was the relationship
10 between Arkan and the JNA and you personally told me that it was good."
11 Can you tell us who was Jugoslav Kostic at that time?
12 A. Jugoslav Kostic was a member of the Presidency of the SFRY on
13 behalf of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina, so he was on equal
14 footing with Borisav Jovic and everyone else.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we move to the next page of translation,
17 Q. [Interpretation] In the further text, Zivota Panic says the
19 "Arkan carried out tasks very well in this area. At one point he
20 broke away but they brought him back, et cetera. However, he is doing
21 Yugoslavia a disservice."
22 And can we move to the following page of the original, please:
23 "He should be called and given a task. Those who sent him there
24 should call him. I don't know who sent him. However, Arkan happened to
25 be in Bijeljina, in Zvornik, around Sarajevo, and Knin, and so on.
1 Someone is leading him and giving him tasks. We should see who is doing
2 this. It is certain that we are not giving him any tasks. However,
3 there is a difference between Arkan and Jovic. Jovic's men should be
4 arrested immediately. They are mostly the worst kind. They were sort of
6 Can you tell us which Jovic is referred to here?
7 A. I suppose that it's Mirko Jovic from Pazova.
8 Q. General Panic then continued by saying:
9 "Arkan is very disciplined when he performs tasks. However, his
10 patrons should be the ones to call him. I will complete my task
11 honourably because this is in the interests of Serbia and the new
13 From what you know, did Arkan carry out the tasks he was given by
14 the army?
15 A. I think he did, even though I have no direct knowledge. I did
16 not take part in their agreements.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry, I have the technical problems. My screen
18 is black.
19 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
20 [Trial Chamber confers]
21 [Defence counsel confer]
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: We're waiting for a technician to come,
23 Mr. Zivanovic. Perhaps it's a good idea to close your microphone in the
25 Is it okay now, Mr. Zivanovic?
1 MR. ZIVANOVIC: No, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: No? Okay. We had the same problem, but here
3 it's solved.
4 Back in business, Mr. Zivanovic.
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, that's okay.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed.
7 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Judging by what you could observe about the relations between
9 Arkan and the officers, especially the high-ranking officers of the
10 former JNA, could you tell us if this accurately reflects the situation;
11 namely, that he was disciplined when executing tasks and that he was on
12 good terms with the JNA?
13 A. Well, I understood that he was a part of the JNA and that he did
14 carry out tasks he got from them.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P2715.
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Tab number, please.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry. Tab number 742. However, it is -- we put
18 on our list as 1D328. And, meanwhile, we established that it was already
19 admitted into evidence.
20 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Hadzic, I think that you have already had an
21 opportunity to see this document. It is an interview of General Panic
22 given to the media in 1994.
23 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we move to page 32, English translation.
24 [Defence counsel confer]
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] We'll return to this document
1 later because the page numbers that I have are not correct.
2 [In English] May we see, please, P2649. It is tab 599.
3 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Hadzic, can you see that this is a document
4 issued from the General Staff of the SFRY armed forces on the
5 12th of March, 1992. It has to do with the work of the staffs and units
6 of the TO units in the course of mobilisation and demobilisation.
7 A. Yes, I can see that.
8 Q. As you were the president of the Republic of Serbian Krajina at
9 the time and, as we saw yesterday, you had certain duties with regard to
10 the army or, rather, the Territorial Defence at the time. I'd like to
11 know whether you received this document.
12 A. No, I didn't, nor was I familiar with it.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now move to P2650,
14 please. It's tab 1298.
15 Q. This is a document from the Federal Secretariat of
16 National Defence and it deals with the establishing of the forming of
17 rear bases of TO in the Republic of Serbian Krajina.
18 Now, as you were discharging the duty as the president of the
19 Republic of Serbian Krajina at the time, I wanted to ask you whether you
20 knew about the forming of these TO rear bases in the Republic of Serbian
21 Krajina. Were you informed about that?
22 A. No, I didn't know about it, nor was I informed.
23 Q. The names of five military personnel are listed here, of which
24 two, I think, are from the Federal Secretariat of National Defence -- or,
25 rather, three of them, or even four. Could you tell me whether you knew
1 anyone of them? Did you have a chance to see them?
2 A. I didn't know them. I never saw them. And this is the first
3 time I hear these names.
4 Q. Mr. Hadzic, could you tell us whether, during 1991 or 1992 while
5 you were the prime minister of the Serbian area of Slavonia, Baranja, and
6 Western Srem, was there a security service within your government or one
7 of its ministries?
8 A. No. While the government of SAO SBWS had its term in office, it
9 did not.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, P1834. It is tab 418.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Could you repeat the document number
12 Mr. Zivanovic, please. It's not on the record.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry. It is P1834, tab 418.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thanks.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. This is a report dated 5th March 1992 and relates to January and
17 February that year.
18 First of all, are you familiar with this document? Were you
19 aware of it while you were prime minister of the Serbian district; and,
20 if so, when did you see it for the first time?
21 A. No, I was not aware of it. I saw it for the first time here.
22 Q. Can you infer from this report, although it's not written in so
23 many words, to whom it was sent.
24 MR. STRINGER: Objection.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Stringer.
1 MR. STRINGER: He's asking the witness to simply speculate here.
2 I think if the witness doesn't know anything about the report, it's just
3 asking for speculation. It's not helpful.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It is not speculation because it is -- he could
5 conclude from the text of this document if he knows the organ or where
6 this document was sent.
7 [Trial Chamber confers]
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: It would still be guessing, Mr. Zivanovic.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. It says here that in the beginning of that year - that is to say,
11 1992 we don't have a date - the Ministry of Interior of Slavonia,
12 Baranja, and Western Srem established a State Security Service based in
13 Vukovar with a temporary base in Dalj.
14 Tell me, who controlled the Ministry of Interior of Slavonia,
15 Baranja, and Western Srem in 1992?
16 A. Formally the minister was Predrag Radlovic at the suggestion of
17 Badza, but it was actually controlled by Badza and his men who had, by
18 that time, arrived.
19 Q. Did the Ministry of the Interior or anyone else inform the
20 government that the State Security Service had been established?
21 A. Nobody did.
22 Q. In paragraph 3, we read that this department operated for a short
23 time within the SUP of Vukovar but then it was decided after joint
24 consultations that the service was not fully operative in that form and
25 the Ministry of the Interior decided that the State Security Service
1 should continue to work independently with the proviso that co-operation
2 with the SJB - that is to say, the public security service - be promoted
3 to the maximum.
4 It says here that after joint consultation, a joint estimate was
5 made. Whose joint estimate was it?
6 A. I don't know who made that estimate jointly.
7 Q. It goes on to say afterwards, taking upon themselves full
8 responsibility for possible consequences that could ensue from such work
9 and operation, the employees of the department, with the approval of the
10 MUP, organised themselves and used the working potential and experience
11 to formulate thrusts of their work.
12 Was there any such self-organisation, to the best of your
13 knowledge, of the employees of that department?
14 A. I don't know that. And from my very modest knowledge about these
15 things, it sounds illogical to me. I would have understood it if they
16 had organised themselves in the area of public security to preserve law
17 and order, prevent robberies, et cetera. But I don't know how the state
18 security can organise themselves, the interests of which state would they
19 be protecting and what positions would they have defended, I really can't
21 Q. On the next page of this document, reference is made to thrusts
22 of activity or operation. And, among other things, it says that they had
23 established a series of contacts with Town Commands, with
24 Territorial Defence Staffs, with the public security service, the court,
25 the prosecutor's office, and the security service of the JNA.
1 Were you aware of the contacts that this service had? Did any of
2 the persons in Town Commands, the TO, or the other services mentioned
3 here, ever tell that you that they had contacts with this service?
4 A. Nobody told me. To be honest, I had no particular contact with
5 all the people you enumerated.
6 Q. On page 3, we read, among other things as follows: Based on the
7 information jointly collected so far, a register of pursuits has been
8 made, copied, and made available to all organisational units.
9 Do you know about this register?
10 A. No.
11 Q. And can you tell me what kind of organisational units are
12 mentioned here? Because this department had eight employees, including
13 only five operatives, as we see in paragraph 2 on page 1.
14 A. I know nothing about this. My inference is that they wanted to
15 introduce themselves to somebody, but not to me and not the government.
16 I think they may have tried to present their credentials to the MUP in
17 Knin, to the MUP of the RSK in Knin. That document was written when the
18 Republic of Serbian Krajina had already been established in March.
19 Q. On -- at the end of page 3, straddling page 4, there is talk
20 about a certain co-operation with the security service of the JNA. It
21 says that this security service offered them some rolling stock, proper
22 equipment. And, on the next page, it says that these organs had duly
23 informed the Secretariat for National Defence.
24 Did you know anything about this? Did the security service of
25 the JNA or somebody from the JNA or the National Defence Secretariat
1 inform you of any -- of this?
2 A. I know nothing about this, and they were not required to keep me
3 informed. It was still part of the SFRY territory, and they had agencies
4 there still that were independent of the government of Slavonia, Baranja,
5 and Western Srem. It was all within the area covered by the JNA, and now
6 I see it was also agreed with the security service of the JNA.
7 Q. On the next page, page number 5, in the middle of the page, we
8 read the following:
9 "Namely, at this time of disrupted values and general mistrust
10 and aware of the advantages they have and without trusting the public
11 security service or the State Security Service, the
12 State Security Service established security services like the Serbian
13 National Security and the security services in the TO Staffs.
14 Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan's, unit is also used for this purpose."
15 Could you comment on this passage.
16 A. As for the Serbian National Security, I've already explained. It
17 didn't exist. It was just misinformation spread among the people.
18 As for the security services of TO Staffs and that
19 Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, was used for these purposes, I hear of this
20 for the first time now. I don't think it's true, but I don't know
21 anything about it.
22 Q. Further below, it says:
23 "Here we primarily mean the illegal creation of positions within
24 the public security service by the Serbian National Security which has
25 been proven without a doubt."
1 Do you know anything about this? Any of these people who guarded
2 the government building, did they have any positions in the public
3 security service?
4 A. I didn't know these men until they started guarding the
5 government. But from what I know, none of them were former policemen or
6 had ever worked for the police force or had any connection to the police,
7 but I cannot be sure.
8 Q. Below, we read that dissatisfaction culminated when it became
9 known that the session of the Assembly of Krajina on the
10 25th of February, 1992, was guarded by the Serbian National Security and
11 the unit of Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan.
12 You were at that assembly session. Do you know who organised the
13 security detail and who was on that security detail, if you know?
14 A. The main security was organised by the Yugoslav People's Army, as
15 there were guests from the federal state present. Whenever they came,
16 since the time of Borovo Selo in 1991 and then in 1992, it was always the
17 JNA that did it independently.
18 As for those that he calls the Serbian National Security, there
19 were a couple of them there, but they brought some ministers and they
20 came as the escorts. So, in total, perhaps ten of them may have been
21 there, and five may have stayed on in Erdut to watch over the empty
22 building, so maybe there were three, or four or five. Arkan was doing it
23 as part of the JNA but he wasn't present inside. As far as I remember,
24 he didn't attend the session. It is possible that his men provided
25 security in the street, together with the JNA. But I didn't know the
1 protocol. The main part of it was defined in co-operation with the
2 federal government which provided some resources and technical
3 assistance. We were still a part of the federal state at the time. So
4 administration documents, photocopying machines, that was all provided by
5 the federal institutions which I only accidentally heard. I didn't think
6 that somebody from the federal protocol had been there and assisted with
7 organising it, but that was done independently from me, without
8 consulting me at any point.
9 Q. Could you just repeat about this last issue you told us about.
10 Who came to organise all this?
11 A. I know that some people from the federal protocol of the federal
12 state in Belgrade helped Ilija Koncarevic to organise it all. I met a
13 man. They introduced him to me. I knew his name, but I can't remember
14 it at the moment. I remember now. His last name was Simendic [phoen].
15 I think it was Bogdan Simendic. There were some others whose names I
16 didn't know, but they were, I think, employees of the federal Executive
18 Q. Mr. Hadzic, could you tell us as there is a signature, or,
19 rather, just a typed name at the end of the document of the chief of the
20 SDB department, Slobodan Pezikovic [phoen], so it's not handwritten. But
21 do you know who this person is; and, if so, can you give us some more
22 details about him?
23 A. I know who that is. I didn't know him personally at the time.
24 He was employed by the Croatian State Security Service. I think that he
25 was working in Osijek before the war. As I was on good terms with this
1 service in Vinkovci, I had heard his name but I had never met him. I
2 only met him later. The government of the Republic of Serbian Krajina
3 later appointed him as the chief of the RDB of all of Krajina. But it
4 may have been later, perhaps in 1993, though I don't remember exactly
6 Q. Mr. Hadzic, yesterday you talked about the action on the Miljevic
7 plateau. I would now show you -- we won't play the video that was shown
8 on TV, but we'll just look at the surrogate sheet. It's 1D467, tab 764.
9 Do you remember the details described herein in this report, with
10 regard to the way this action developed and when the action at the
11 Miljevici plateau took place. In a word, does this correspond with the
12 information you had about this action. Is it a true report?
13 A. Yes. The date corresponds. It was the 21st of June, 1992. Some
14 details are left out, but everything that's unfavourable for the Croatian
15 side, and whatever could be positive, they mention it. But, more or
16 less, it was so.
17 Q. Could you tell us what are the details that have been left out
18 and that you believe are also important for this action.
19 A. I'm not sure how important they are, but I received information
20 that, on the previous day, before the action was launched, some women on
21 the Croatian side brought wine and distributed it to the Serbian fighters
22 so that they got drunk. But it was a mistake on part of these people to
23 have accepted that and that they were sleeping at the moment when the
24 action began. I heard it in an informal conversation with some of those
25 who survived.
1 Q. Do you remember if there were any casualties, civilians, in
2 particular, during this Croatian offensive?
3 A. Yes, I remember that there were casualties, both civilians and
5 Q. What happened with the civilian population which was present in
6 the area where the Croatian forces carried out these combat operations?
7 A. Well, unfortunately, all of those civilians were expelled from
8 this territory. Likewise, unfortunately again, no one else seemed to be
10 Q. What do you imply by nobody else? Who do you imply by that?
11 A. Well, generally the international community. I wouldn't name
12 anyone in particular.
13 Q. As, in a way, Yugoslavia guaranteed the Vance Plan to you, did
14 you or the organs of the government of the Republic of Serbian Krajina
15 complain to the Yugoslav authorities so that they would take any steps to
16 prevent such attacks?
17 A. I don't remember any specific steps. We did everything that we
18 could. At the time, the so-called Zabljak constitution had already been
19 adopted and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia had been established and
20 one could already see that we were completely abandoned in a way.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honours, I would tendered this document into
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D142, Your Honours.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
1 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. You also told us about operations conducted in 1993 around the
3 Medak pocket. I would like to show you some documents relating to these
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, 1D737. It is tab 781.
6 Q. [Interpretation] This is the indictment issued by this Tribunal
7 against the Croatian General Janko Bobetko. I would like us to look at
8 paragraph 28. It's on page 5.
9 It reads that during the Medak pocket operation, at least 100
10 Serbs, including 29 local Serb civilians, were unlawfully killed while
11 others sustained serious injuries. Many of the civilians who were killed
12 and wounded were women and elderly people. The murder of five Serbian
13 soldiers who had been taken prisoner, or hors de combat, are also
14 mentioned. Their names are included in the schedule to the indictment,
15 and it's not necessary for us to see that right now.
16 My question is whether these allegations correspond to the
17 information you had about the operation in the Medak pocket.
18 A. Yes, indeed.
19 Q. If you could please look at paragraph 29 as well, which reads
20 that: Approximately 164 homes and 146 [as interpreted] barns and
21 outbuildings were destroyed in the villages within the Medak pocket,
22 mostly by fire and explosives, after the Croatian forces had already
23 taken control of the area.
24 Does that correspond with some of the information you had about
25 the events which took place at the time?
1 A. Yes, it does correspond. I remember that General Novakovic told
2 me because I was a layman when it came to military issues, so I remember
3 that. He said that they had such artillery preparation that they would
4 hit practically every metre and that was a signal for us that the Croats
5 were well armed. They practically plowed all this area with their
7 Q. Paragraph 30 reads that in the same period property of the Serb
8 civilians was plundered by the Croatian forces, or by persons in civilian
9 clothes supervised by the Croatian forces and that these included
10 personal belongings, household goods, building materials, furniture, farm
11 animals, that is to say, livestock, agricultural machinery and other
13 Does that correspond with the information you had?
14 A. Yes, I had such information.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honours, I would tender this document.
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Stringer.
17 MR. STRINGER: We object to that, Mr. President. If indictments
18 were admissible to prove the allegations contained inside them, then why
19 have a trial? Mr. Hadzic was the president of the RSK at the time of the
20 events described. He's -- says that he knows about these things
21 happening. It's his belief that these things happened. The Chamber has
22 that evidence in the form of his testimony. And so the indictment in a
23 case in which -- never resulted in a trial or a judgement really doesn't
24 have any probative value. We object to it.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: The indictment is a legal act and it would be
1 adduced into evidence too, and it doesn't prove the guilt of the accused
2 but just some facts alleged in this indictment.
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: The objection -- the objection is sustained.
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Mr. Hadzic, could you look at 1D732, tab 594.
7 It's a report from a meeting in Geneva on the
8 16th of June, 1993 -- no, it's 14 June, 1993. Or 16. I'm slightly
9 confused by these dates.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Would you scroll down, please.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic, I'm a little bit confused with the
12 tab number. You said 594; right? And then the document number would --
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I said 5 -- 594 -- 594, yes.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: And the tab number would be 1D732 on -- the
15 document number.
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry. It is -- it must be my error. Sorry.
17 Tab 779.
18 JUDGE DELVOIE: 779. That would be better, indeed.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. This relates to a meeting scheduled to take place in Geneva on
21 16 June and it provides a certain appraisal. I'd like to quote to you
22 one passage from paragraph 2.
23 It says:
24 [In English] "One hears a great deal in Knin, at present, of not
25 a square inch of Krajina, et cetera, and of the rejection by one of their
1 assemblies at Okucani of the 802 draft agreement on 6 April. All those
2 associated with the 6 April agreement are held in suspicion by the RSK
3 military, including President Hadzic, and any mention of Misa Milosevic
4 provokes nasty and dismissive remarks."
5 [Interpretation] I'd like to ask you: Do you remember that
6 agreement of 6th April that gave rise to such suspicions and your name is
7 specifically mentioned in the context of these suspicions?
8 A. I remember that those talks followed the Croatian operation
9 Maslenica and they were supposed to diffuse tensions. I was faced with
10 that kind of problem from the very beginning, from my arrest at Plitvice
11 almost to this day, that somebody is working for the other side,
12 et cetera. Such comments could often be heard from extremists and that
13 happened again when I advocated the release of the Maslenica bridge which
14 would connect the north of Croatia with the south of Croatia.
15 First of all, it was Babic's followers who attacked me, and there
16 were some people who thought the same within the army. Yes, I -- I know
17 what this is about.
18 Q. Would you tell us how these suspicions about you, spread by Babic
19 and his followers, developed later? Did they diminish, or did they grow?
20 A. It was not only Babic's followers. There were also some services
21 in Serbia who spread this, and it escalated with time, sometimes
22 resulting in open clashes.
23 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honour, I think it is time for the break.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you, Mr. Zivanovic.
25 We'll take the first break. Court adjourned.
1 --- Recess taken at 11.58 a.m.
2 --- On resuming at 12.31 p.m.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: A short oral ruling.
4 On the 1st of July, the Defence filed a motion to amend its
5 Rule 65 ter exhibit list. The Defence indicated that it intended to uses
6 47 documents included in the motion with Mr. Hadzic during his testimony
7 and requested that they be dealt with on an expedited basis.
8 On 3 July, the Chamber gave an oral ruling in which it allowed 14
9 of the 47 documents to be added to the exhibit list.
10 Included in the remaining 32 documents are -- sorry, included in
11 the remaining 33 documents are 32 documents which were provided to the
12 Defence by Serbia on the 3rd of January, 2014. At the time of the
13 motion, 25 of these documents had not been translated into English. The
14 Chamber noted that it would consider the addition of these documents
15 after all the translations had been provided and it had received a full
16 response from the Prosecution.
17 With the exception of one document, Rule 65 ter number 1D01935,
18 the English translation for each of the 32 documents has now been
19 uploaded and released in e-court. The Prosecution filed a written
20 response to the motion on 15 July, 2014.
21 After considering -- I'm sorry. After considering the
22 submissions of the parties, the Chamber is satisfied that, taking into
23 account the specific circumstances of this case, good cause has been
24 shown for amending the Defence's exhibit list to include the 31 documents
25 provided by Serbia for which an English translation has been provided.
1 While the Chamber considers that the Defence has not demonstrated due
2 diligence in adding the documents to its Rule 65 ter exhibit list, the
3 documents are relevant and of sufficient importance to justify addition
4 at this stage of the trial. The Chamber is satisfied that the addition
5 of the documents will not result in undue prejudice to the Prosecution.
6 The Trial Chamber remains seized of the motion in all other
8 Please proceed, Mr. Zivanovic.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
10 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Hadzic, we still have on the screen the
11 document we discussed before the break, and I wanted to ask you this:
12 Since you said this distrust towards you escalated, could you tell us in
13 what way? What happened? What was done against you?
14 A. As I said before, all this lasted a long time, and fear was
15 spread among the people that I might betray the interests of the people
16 of Krajina, that I was close to the Croatian side, and they even went so
17 far to call me a Croatian spy, which, of course, was untrue. And that
18 caused me great problems, distracting me from dedicating myself to my
19 work and the negotiations. And whatever my opponents did not like in my
20 work, they would say, That's what Hadzic agreed with Croatia but it's in
21 Croatian interests, not ours. And the same happened at the signing of
22 the Erdut Agreement, although it was accepted by Babic and by the
23 deputies of the Serbian Radical Party. Their main argument was that I
24 betrayed the interests of Krajina and violated the constitution because I
25 had agreed to an agreement whereby, in a village in Dalmatia, which the
1 Croatians, by the way, had occupied in the Maslenica operation and which
2 should have been returned to us, I had agreed that only five Serb
3 policemen remain there.
4 That was a minor point, but they interpreted it by saying, It's
5 against the constitution. We should have been able to put there as many
6 policemen as we want to, which was nonsense because no more than five
7 policemen were needed there, in the first place. But, anyway, it gave
8 them a reason to attack me and to have the agreement dismissed by the
9 assembly; whereas, I spent all my time explaining that this agreement was
10 good for us, that it brings peace, and renewed peaceful co-existence with
11 other people. But it was all in vein.
12 Q. You just mentioned the Erdut Agreement. Can you tell us what
13 kind of agreement it was, when was it concluded, and what were its main
15 A. If I remember well, it was in the middle of July 1993. I think
16 it was the 16th of July, but I'm not quite sure. Our delegation
17 negotiated separately with international negotiators and mediators who
18 then negotiated with the Croatian side and shuttled between us. So we
19 came to an agreement with a lot of mediation, agreeing ultimately on
20 almost all issues. Croatia was supposed to finally implement the
21 resolution of the Security Council, I think the number was 802, and
22 return to their positions before the Maslenica operation. In other
23 words, to go back from the Perusa dam and all the other points it had
24 occupied in operation Maslenica. That agreement was signed
25 unconditionally by the Croatian side, and President Tudjman authorised
1 his delegation to sign it. And on the Serbian side, it was signed by our
2 foreign minister, Slobodan Jarcevic. And our signature was conditional
3 because it had to be ratified by the assembly, since both Jarcevic and I
4 were elected by the assembly. I managed to conduct consultations with
5 deputies to the assembly from Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem who
6 realised that this agreement would bring about peace and they were in
7 favour of the agreement; whereas, deputies from the Knin area listened to
8 Babic and rejected the agreement, and that led to the development that
9 culminated in 1995.
10 Q. In the document that is still on the screen, a name is mentioned,
11 Misa Milosevic, at the very beginning. Could you tell us who was this
12 person and what connections did he have, both with you and with the
13 Republic of Serbian Krajina in general, or SBWS?
14 A. Dr. Misa Milosevic was and maybe still is - I don't know as I'm
15 not in touch with him anymore - the general secretary of the
16 International Serbian Organisation, which has a seat in Geneva. He used
17 to know Mr. Babic and the members of their delegation, and I met him at
18 some of the negotiations that we went to in the month of October.
19 Mr. Babic engaged him to represent the interests of the SAO Krajina
20 before our meetings when I still did not know him, and they had known
21 each other from before.
22 In later negotiations, both in Geneva and in New York,
23 Mr. Milosevic was a kind of a technical person for us who was in charge
24 of the protocol and assisted us, and he did a lot for us in that sense,
25 but he did not influence the policy of the government or the president.
1 Q. Can you please just repeat his function and the organisation that
2 he belonged to.
3 A. He was the secretary-general of the World Serbian Community
4 seated in Geneva. It was an organisation that represented the Serbs from
5 the diaspora. This position of secretary-general was a permanent one,
6 and the president was elected for a specific term, a year or two. It was
7 a well known person from Serbia. At the time when I co-operated with
8 Mr. Milosevic, the president of this organisation was the Academician,
9 Antonije Isakovic, the late Antonije Isakovic.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] I would now go back to 1D328,
11 tab 742. It's been admitted as P2715.
12 It's an interview from 1994 which General Zivota Panic gave to
13 the media. In it, he talked a lot about the war events from 1991, 1992,
14 and 1993. We'll look at page 26 of the original, which corresponds to
15 page 25 of the English translation.
16 Q. If you could look at the last sentence at the bottom of the page
17 in B/C/S. Yes. If you can look at that, please, where it reads:
18 "They included Arkan's Tigers and Seselj's Chetniks. They were
19 not big groups, say, in Arkan's case say between 80 and 120 persons and
20 in Seselj's case between 90 and 120 men. All these formations" --
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we please turn to the
22 following page in the original:
23 Q. "However, all these formations were under my command, where I
24 placed them. They performed the tasks of the unit to which they were
25 attached. But the units who wanted to act independently were removed
1 from that area. We disarmed them immediately and sent them away."
2 Please tell me, according to the information you had - if you had
3 any - whether this corresponds to the situation which existed in SBWS in
5 A. Yes, it does reflect the situation. When I got here, I received
6 documents and orders which confirmed that. There was a direct order
7 issued by Panic to the effect that everyone who was not a member of the
8 JNA should be expelled back to Serbia and disarmed, and whoever was not
9 disarmed meant that they were part of the JNA.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now please move to
11 page 36 in B/C/S, which corresponds to page 34 of the English
13 Q. In this segment of the text, the general -- the journalist asks a
14 question about Arkan's Tigers. He asked General Panic what the
15 co-operation with them was like. And General Panic says:
16 "Arkan came to that area before the army was engaged. I suppose
17 he had some arrangements with the local leaders in the area. I don't
18 know what kind of arrangements, but he formed his only units which
19 controlled and observed the area around Dalj to the north of Vukovar,
20 just like that."
21 Could you tell me whether according to the information you had
22 this is correct or not. First of all, that Arkan had come to the area
23 when the JNA was not yet there.
24 A. No, that's not true. It seems improbable to me that Zivota Panic
25 didn't have true information. It seems to me that he wanted to avoid
1 telling the truth on purpose here. From what I learned later, Arkan
2 first came to Tenja. That was close to Osijek rather than Vukovar. And
3 the JNA was already in Tenja at the time. Because after the
4 7th of July and the Croatian attack on Tenja, the JNA separated the
5 warring parties and stayed on in Tenja. So the JNA had already been
6 there then just as it had been in Borovo Selo from the
7 2nd of May onwards. In the Dalj area, Arkan appeared after the
8 1st of August, much later than the time when the JNA arrived there, and
9 it arrived on the 1st of August.
10 So what Panic said is not true.
11 Q. He further says:
12 "Since we came here, we could see that he had his own units and
13 did his own business," and so on, "I then called the commander from the
14 area. I ordered that he be summoned, that he should place him under his
15 command and he would then appoint them. If he didn't want to do it, he
16 would have to leave the area. He accepted that immediately. When I did
17 a tour of duty of units north of Vukovar towards Osijek, in some
18 populated places, I could see his units, his troops. He lined them up
19 immediately and he gave me a report. It was a brief report."
20 Can you tell me whether this reflected the actual situation on
21 the ground and, in particular, do you know whether General Panic ever
22 came to SBWS or that part of it and did a tour of duty of the units which
23 were deployed so that they were facing Osijek?
24 A. Yes, this is true what the situation on the ground was like and
25 that Arkan acted in co-ordinated action and was under full control of the
1 Yugoslav People's Army. As for General Panic's visit, he didn't inform
2 me about this, and I didn't know that. But he didn't inform me at the
3 time. I didn't know that, nor did he consider that he ought to report to
5 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, counsel. I apologise for the
6 interruption. Mr. President, I was going to ask whether it might be
7 necessary to clarify what was said at page 29, line 19. I don't know
8 whether the witness misspoke or whether there was an interpretation
10 He said:
11 "In the Dalj area, Arkan appeared after the 1st of August, much
12 later than the time when the JNA arrived there, and it arrived on the
13 1st of August."
14 And I don't know if that is perhaps something to clarify.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I'll ask the witness to clarify it.
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Mr. Hadzic, can you please clarify. When did the JNA arrive in
19 Dalj and when did Arkan appear in Dalj, from what you know?
20 A. The JNA arrived in Dalj on the 1st of August, 1991, which is
21 general knowledge. And I perhaps made a mistake. I think
22 mathematically, so I said quite some time after. I thought it was
23 mathematically clear. I believe that it was certain that he did not
24 arrive together with the army and especially not before them. Much later
25 means ten or 15 days at least, perhaps more. In my view, it is much time
1 because he didn't come on the 1st of August when the army did arrive.
2 He may have come in late August and then he stayed on, because he
3 showed up once in Dalj in mid-August. But it was only in
4 mid-September that he settled there. So that's what I meant. It wasn't
5 a matter of years but perhaps weeks or months.
6 Q. Can we also clarify another thing, please. You told us when you
7 saw him first. Could you tell us who did he arrive with and when was
9 A. That was around mid-August or in the first half of August. He
10 came together with Badza. I have already said who was with them, and I
11 later remembered when we discussed the certificates signed by Milanovic
12 when he assigned the TO commander, that Zika Trajkovic was also with them
13 then. I hadn't known him at the time. I learned later who he was. He
14 also held a high position within the police.
15 Q. In which police force did he occupy a high position, if you know?
16 A. The MUP of Serbia.
17 Q. Further below in the document, we see that General Panic saw
18 immediately that the members of his unit were disciplined, well equipped,
19 well trained, and that they "listen only to Arkan." And he says, "At
20 that time, there were 83 of them. Later on, the number increased."
21 Now, from what you were able to see there, did you have the same
22 impression in terms of the discipline of that unit and their obedience to
23 Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan?
24 A. Yes, that was my conclusion, from my experience.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we move on to the next
2 Q. We will skip over one bit until the reference to the fact that he
3 did go into populated areas but only after the army.
4 It says:
5 "The army would take it. Then he would go into that populated
6 area and because the army is the army, the army goes through, finishes
7 the business normally, whereas the units which come later, they do the
8 business in populated areas. He sometimes played that role, the role of
9 those other units who are supposed to go into populated areas. It's
10 certain that they did carry out tasks, everything that the army gave
11 them, until the moment when the army no longer needed them."
12 Do you know how the unit of Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, functioned
13 in that role in those operations with the army?
14 A. I don't know about these technical matters. I was never present
15 when they agreed these things, but I understood that they were working
16 together. I'm not saying this is not true, but it is not the same as my
17 thinking. If we look at what Panic says, it turns out that Arkan was
18 some sort of logistical unit holding already occupied territory. My
19 understanding was that his units were going ahead, but I wasn't ever a
20 witness, nor did anyone ever officially tell me this.
21 Q. At the end of that sentence, it says:
22 "However, Goran Hadzic was the president of that Serbian Krajina.
23 He kept him as his own body-guard."
24 Is this true?
25 A. I am saying this for at least the third time before this Court:
1 It's not true.
2 Q. Further below, the journalist says that somebody told him that
3 Arkan was very arrogant in his treatment of lower-ranking officers, and
4 he asks General Panic:
5 "Did you ever receive a report about this? Did you hear these
6 stories? And what was it really like?"
7 And General Panic answers:
8 "While I was in command and during the Vukovar operation, that
9 did not happen. But I heard that in Knin, I believe in the Knin Krajina,
10 now after all these things are over, that there were some differences and
12 Could you please comment on this, especially in the light of
13 those security reports that were sent precisely to the Command of the
14 1st Military District and specifically General Panic. Do you know
15 anything about this?
16 A. I do. I had occasion to read those reports since I've come here,
17 and it's obvious from them that Panic is not telling the truth. But I
18 had first-hand information, as I said at the beginning of my testimony.
19 Dragomir Lastavica, who was a reserve captain first class in charge of
20 supplies in Erdut told me that Arkan slapped around this
21 lieutenant-colonel in Erdut and kicked him in the butt. He was there at
22 the time and he knew that. Now, I don't know what Zivota Panic heard and
23 from whom, but this incident happened.
24 Q. In other words, you cannot confirm that those reports from
25 security organs ever reached him.
1 A. I suppose they did, but I don't really know.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we move to the next page.
3 Q. On this page, the journalist asks General Panic if he discussed
4 these problems with Kadijevic, with Cosic. And Panic answers that when
5 he became the chief, the Supreme Defence Council discussed it and he
6 mentioned Milosevic, the then-president of Yugoslavia Cosic, Bulatovic,
7 and Adzic saying that this problem was raised. Out of all these people
8 who are listed - Kadijevic, Milosevic, Cosic, Bulatovic, Adzic - did any
9 of them either tell you this directly or let you know about this through
10 some other channels? Did they in any way give you the information about
11 this problem that exists on the ground that is caused by Arkan and his
12 units, and did they ever ask you to do something about it?
13 A. No, I never heard anybody discussing it, and I even didn't know
14 about these complaints against Arkan and his actions.
15 I was once confronted with a case that I didn't mention during
16 proofing because I only now remember it. Arkan caused a problem in a
17 village close to mine, Trpinja. He started trading in spirits. And in
18 Trpinja, he barged into a house where people were making rakija. He
19 overturned their caldron and beat them up. I heard about this because it
20 is a neighbouring village, and I heard about it in the local cafe. And
21 at a discussion in Belgrade in President Milosevic's office, we were
22 discussing something related to the UNPROFOR. I told him about the
23 problem we were facing there, but President Milosevic did not give me a
24 sympathetic ear. He said he will inquire into it with some people,
25 without naming them, and he said, Well, he has his own members of
1 parliament, I don't know what to do about him, and I realised he wasn't
2 going to do anything. But that's all about -- that's all I know about
3 these activity, such as they were.
4 Q. Could you just clarify this for the record: What was this about
5 making rakija, the local brandy, that Arkan didn't like?
6 A. Well, almost every household in our parts makes plum brandy.
7 Plums are left to ripen and then it's all distilled in this caldron.
8 It's called the Slivovitz, the plum brandy.
9 Q. Did these people explain why he did that, or maybe some other
10 people who told you about the incident? Was there any particular reason
11 why he went into that house and did that?
12 A. Friends from my own village told me about it. They heard that
13 Arkan had banned this in our area because he himself had started a
14 business in Erdut, selling the final product, factory-made, not homemade.
15 I didn't get any details, but that's what I understood from those friends
16 who told me. But I neither dared, nor wanted to, nor intended to discuss
17 it with him. Instead, I went to the highest possible place.
18 Q. Can you explain when you met with Milosevic and complained to him
19 about it, what exactly did he mean when he mentioned those members of
21 A. Well, I think that I understood him well. I understood what he
22 meant. Perhaps I didn't quote him precisely, but now I will.
23 He said, Arkan has five members of parliament, my parliament. I
24 don't want him to cause problems to my party. He didn't want to confront
25 him. That's what I understood. But I paraphrased it; it's not an exact
2 Q. Further below in this document, General Panic mentions that
3 several meetings were held to discuss this in 1992 and in 1993. He says
4 Milosevic decided that such groups from Serbia be pulled out from
5 Republika Srpska and Republika Srpska Krajina.
6 We have looked only at one meeting, and perhaps there are
7 documents from other meetings as well, but I'd like to know whether after
8 16 of April, 1992, or perhaps in 1993, anybody asked you to do something
9 about Arkan and to have him withdrawn from the Republic of
10 Serbian Krajina?
11 A. Nobody asked me to do that because every normal person knew it
12 would make absolutely no sense to ask me to do that. I was not capable
13 of such a thing, and there was no reason to go to me.
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we turn the page again in the
16 Q. The journalist asks him to go back to 1990-something and then
17 it's not clear. He says:
18 "Is it true that the volunteers had either to place themselves
19 under your command or to leave the area? "
20 The journalist says:
21 "You said you ordered it."
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] And now we need to move to the
23 next page in English.
24 Q. He says that they were given a choice to join the JNA or to
25 leave. He said that they were formed at the initiative of some political
1 groups. According to your knowledge, was this specific volunteer unit
2 led by Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, formed at the initiative of a political
3 party or group?
4 A. According to what I knew, I can say with full responsibility that
5 no one from the territory where I was formed them. So not in Slavonia,
6 Baranja, or Western Srem, not from any political groups or any other
7 groups. And apart from that, whatever I were to say, I would be
8 speculating. I don't have any certain information about who formed them,
9 even though there were rumours that Arkan was a colonel in the federal
10 MUP, but that was just something I heard in the media and elsewhere.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please move one page
12 forward in the original text.
13 Q. The White Eagles and Seselj's Chetniks are also mentioned here.
14 Please tell me, while you were the prime minister of SBWS did you have a
15 chance to see these White Eagles, or Seselj's Chetniks?
16 A. I didn't have a chance to see them. From what I knew, they
17 arrived in Slavonia and Baranja as parts of the JNA already. Whether
18 that was the Serbian TO or the Yugoslav People's Army or, rather, the
19 reservists from Serbia, but they were already uniformed and armed, that
20 is to say uniformed, and then they were distributed arms by the JNA once
21 they arrived. But that was what I learned indirectly. The same goes for
22 the White Eagles. I didn't meet any of them, even though I heard that in
23 my village, Pacetin, there were several of those volunteers but as part
24 of the JNA under Mirko Jovic. They were his sympathisers. They were all
25 the JNA. And they did not stay there long, just a couple of days. They
1 were not undisciplined as it's claimed here. They were completely
2 normal, and they didn't carry out any negative activities. That's what I
3 heard from my neighbours later on.
4 Q. General Panic says here that he placed all the volunteer
5 formations under his control and that it was only this group, the
6 White Eagles, who had refused that but that then they expelled them. Do
7 you know that by any chance?
8 A. No, I don't know that. I don't know under whose control they
9 were, but I know under whose control they weren't. They were not under
10 my control, nor did I have anything to do with them.
11 Q. I would now move to a different topic, Mr. Hadzic.
12 Could you tell us something about the contents -- the contacts
13 you had with regard to exhumations at Ovcara and the talks you had about
14 that. Can you briefly tell us how, according to your knowledge and
15 recollection, you got involved in the talks that had to do with this?
16 A. When the talks reached my level, I then realised that I had heard
17 how it all had developed, so I can tell you that.
18 Q. Please go ahead.
19 A. The commission - I would call it an international one - those who
20 requested that the possible mass grave be investigated, they contacted
21 the government of the Republic of Serbian Krajina. I was not involved in
22 that, nor did I know about those contacts at the time. No one informed
23 me. I later heard that there was not much opposition in Knin but that
24 someone from the government proposed that this should be done
25 reciprocally. And there may have been some logic to it. But from the
1 humanitarian point of view, I wouldn't be in favour of that. The idea
2 was that some mass graves where Serbs were should be investigated as
3 well. That slowed down the negotiations and arrangements. Judging by
4 the information I received later, some structures from the former JNA had
5 attempted to impede that or slow it down. When the request reached me, I
6 accepted, but I have explained and I have said that, as the president, I
7 had nothing against it but that technically those next to me needed to
8 give their approval - the government and everyone else - because I
9 couldn't order them in anything. And I signed the agreement as soon as
10 the request had reached me.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, 1D469. It is tab - sorry -
13 Q. [Interpretation] What is provided here is the timeline of events
14 with regard to Ovcara. We can see here that the first talks on this
15 issue were -- began in March 1993.
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we see the next page, please.
17 Q. Please tell me whether you knew at the time in March 1993 that
18 the talks had begun. Did anyone address you at the time in connection
19 with those talks?
20 A. No. No one addressed me at the time, not yet, nor did I hear
21 about this from my associates.
22 Q. It follows from this that Prime Minister Bjegovic verbally
23 confirmed the promises he had given earlier with regard to exhumations at
24 Ovcara but that Mr. Milanovic opposed this. He set two conditions. As
25 Mr. Milanovic was from SBWS, from the area, did you have any contacts
1 with him about this? Did he tell you anything? Did he consult you about
2 the position which he took at the time?
3 A. Well, Mr. Milanovic was the assistant minister of defence, and I
4 didn't have any special contacts with him. He didn't tell me anything
5 about that at the time but I see that the date is the month of July when
6 I was involved about the Erdut Agreement. I went to Geneva. I'm not
7 sure about the exact dates, but I was often in Geneva during 1993.
8 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we please move one page
10 Q. It says here that there was an opposition against -- again in
11 October on part of Milan Milanovic who said that he wasn't aware that the
12 exhumation had been approved by Knin.
13 But before that, let's clarify just one issue. It says here that
14 he was a colonel. Is it an error or did he really hold the rank of
16 A. As far as I know, he did not have this rank at the time. But I
17 heard that when he moved to Serbia after reintegration that he was given
18 the rank of colonel. He was awarded that rank by the Serbian police. He
19 had close contacts with Badza.
20 Q. [Microphone not activated]
21 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please move one page
23 forward again. On the 20th of October, we can see again that the
24 opposition by Sector East authorities was continued, particularly by
25 Colonel Milanovic.
1 Q. Were you aware of this continued resistance coming from his part
2 at this time?
3 A. As far as I remember, no one asked my assistance with regard to
4 this at the time. Not yet. As soon I was involved, I gave my support to
5 it. Minister Jarcevic informed me about this and asked me.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please move to page 5 of
7 this document. Page 5, please.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Please just take into account that
9 in September 1993 the Medak pocket operation was conducted and we were
10 practically in a state of war, so all the talks and negotiations and
11 everything else was postponed.
12 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. At the top of the page, we can read -- though the
14 Medak [indiscernible] is discussed on the previous page. But on the
15 following page, the 3rd of November, 1993, reads that the commission has
16 decided to circulate a press release because it did not receive any
17 feedback from Minister Bjegovic after his talks with you. And
18 Mr. Bjegovic had previously said that he would talk with you because
19 supposedly there was some opposition from the Supreme Defence Council.
20 So what I'd like to know is this: This issue of exhumation at
21 Ovcara, was it ever raised before the Supreme Defence Council?
22 A. Never in my presence. As far as I know, I think that it was not
23 an issue that the Supreme Defence Council was supposed to discuss. I
24 don't think it would come within military issues. For me, this was a
25 humanitarian issue, and, of course, a criminal one, if the perpetrators
1 were known.
2 Q. In paragraph 1, it says precisely that the government had given
3 its authorisation for the exhumation at Ovcara:
4 "However, the Supreme Defence Council of the RSK had a different
6 That's the reason why I'm asking you.
7 A. I've already replied, that it wasn't so. There were three
8 members of the government on the Supreme Defence Council. They could
9 have voted differently and made a different decision, outvoted the
10 others, had they wanted to.
11 Q. Did Mr. Bjegovic ask for your co-operation as indicated here?
12 A. Which date?
13 Q. Before the 3rd of November. The upper part of the text. Did he
14 ask for your approval?
15 A. I'm not sure that he put it exactly in those words. He didn't
16 ask for approval. When we had these talks, those were just
17 consultations. He was not asking for my approval. But I don't think
18 that between 30th October and 3rd November we would have been able to
19 meet and discuss it. I think it could have been a bit later.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we see the bottom of this
22 Q. It follows from this that on the 11th of November, 1993, you
23 addressed Mr. Fenrick for the first time. In fact, Mr. Jarcevic
24 approached him saying that you would like to see him on 16 November in
1 And the text goes on -- on to the following page.
2 Did you, indeed, let him know through Mr. Jarcevic that you
3 wanted to see him?
4 A. Yes, I did. It was after my consultations with Bjegovic, which
5 would have been a day or two before. It was a delicate matter because it
6 wasn't very well received by the Serbs who were saying, And where are our
7 graves? Who's going to look after them? So it was a problem. And
8 that's why, I suppose, Bjegovic wanted to consult me so that we can take
9 a unified position, to avoid problems later. And I accepted it. I
10 believed the humanitarian aspect is more important than anything else,
11 and the most important thing is to see what actually happened there.
12 I discussed similar issues with the ambassador of the European
13 community, Mr. -- Mr. Ahrens. He said, Of course, it's not all right
14 that people were killed but we have to find out what happened. There are
15 wives of these men who still cannot get any benefits or exercise any
16 rights before they get death certificates. I took it very seriously and,
17 to the best of my ability, I worked for these matters to be settled. Of
18 course, my ability was not great in this matter because most of these
19 things had happened even before the Republic of Serbian Krajina was
20 established and before I became its president.
21 Q. Follows a description of that meeting held on 16 of November. We
22 see that alongside you, there were Mr. Niksic, vice-chairman of the
23 regional council, and Colonel Milanovic. It then lists your statements.
24 Under (a), you say that the authorities of the
25 Republic of Serbian Krajina agree to co-operate and give their approval
1 for the excavations on the site of Ovcara; is that correct?
2 A. Yes. Because Bjegovic told me that they agree, and then I was
3 able to make this statement.
4 Q. It goes on to say that the excavation activities would start in
5 March or April when the weather improves and that you would appoint one
6 member to observe the activities of the commission. And also that you
7 approved all that is stated above and are willing to co-operate fully
8 with the commission.
9 Is all of this correct and faithfully reflected?
10 A. It's all correct, but I have to say at this point that, after
11 that, there were elections where I lost, as everybody knows, and it all
12 could not happen until I became the president of Slavonia, Baranja, after
13 the Operation Storm. And I appointed a representative to attend the
14 excavations that took place in 1996.
15 So it didn't happen in the spring of 1994 as planned. But that
16 proposal for spring 1994 came from Mr. Fenrick, who said that it simply
17 couldn't be done in the current weather. He said, March or April next
19 Q. After this -- after this conversation on the 16 of November,
20 1993, and before 1996, as you explained now, were you ever contacted
21 again on the issue of Ovcara and the excavation of victims?
22 A. No, I was not. After I lost the elections, my status was very
23 thankless. The police seized my car, and I was subjected to harassment.
24 Q. We'll discuss this a bit later.
25 You know that, among other things, you are charged under this
1 indictment because the crimes against non-Serbs and other crimes in the
2 Republic of Serbian Krajina were not adequately prosecuted and you
3 allegedly did not do enough for perpetrators to be found and tried, so
4 I'm going to ask you a few questions about that.
5 First of all, when were courts established in Slavonia, Baranja,
6 and Western Srem after the beginning of hostilities and after the courts
7 that existed until 25th June ceased to exist? When did the courts start
8 working again?
9 A. Although in 1991 there was military rule in the whole territory
10 of Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem, our government started
11 establishing courts towards the end of 1991, and I think they began to
12 operate very soon afterwards; in the beginning of 1992, let's say. But I
13 had no competencies in the area of the judiciary. As to your other point
14 that one of the charges against me is that crimes were not prosecuted,
15 that is not true. I have facts to prove it, and I will do so now.
16 Q. Did you have any powers to order courts or other judiciary bodies
17 to take a certain action or to make a certain decision? Were you able to
18 tell them what to decide?
19 A. I had no such powers, and I didn't interfere with the work of the
20 judiciary at all. Everybody knows how authority and power are divided in
21 a democracy. There is the executive, the judicial, and the law-making
22 branch. I was in the executive branch of authority, and I did not
23 interfere with the work of the judiciary in any way, and I had nothing do
24 with any prosecutions of any general crime or other crimes.
25 Q. Were you able, did you have legal powers or practical ability to
1 appoint whom you chose as prosecutors, presidents of courts, et cetera?
2 A. No, I did not. And I never tried to. We just left in those
3 positions people who occupied them before the war. I didn't interfere in
4 that sphere at all.
5 Q. From what you know, were these judges professionally qualified
6 for their job; namely, the qualifications stipulated by the earlier law
7 for being appointment [as interpreted] to those positions?
8 A. They did. They were qualified.
9 Q. From what you personally know - and we're not going to go into
10 any detail - did the judiciary function at all? The police, the
11 prosecutor's office, and the courts, did they operate during the
12 existence of Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem? Were perpetrators of
13 crimes prosecuted?
14 A. Do you mean 1991 or later?
15 Q. Well, tell us about both.
16 A. In 1991, it was military rule, and military security, military
17 prosecutors, and military courts were in charge. That's at least how I
18 understood it. Later on, there were courts, and they worked to the best
19 of their ability.
20 Q. Do you know if these courts and prosecutor's offices prosecuted
21 the Serbs who had committed crimes against Croats and other non-Serbs?
22 A. They did. In every case where perpetrators were identified, they
23 were prosecuted. And investigations continued to be carried out even
24 when perpetrators were not identified. In some case, we still can't know
25 to this day who committed a particular murder. And I want to stress
1 again: It was a thorn in the side for the policies that I was trying to
2 carry through. Attacks against Croats, looting, robberies, murders. It
3 was just undermining us politically. It went completely against all our
4 political interests.
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Oh, sorry.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: It is that time.
8 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour.
9 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Tomorrow, Mr. Zivanovic, how long will you take?
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Mr. President, I don't know how much time I have.
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: You have theoretically -- you have five minutes
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I will need maybe one to two hours more. I
15 would -- I will do my best to finish by the first break.
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you.
18 JUDGE DELVOIE: We'll try to do that.
19 Mr. Hadzic, you're still a witness under oath.
20 Court adjourned. We'll see each other at 9.00 tomorrow.
21 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.00 p.m.,
22 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 17th day of July,
23 2014, at 9.00 a.m.