1 Monday, 7 May 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.23 p.m.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Good afternoon to everyone in and around the
7 Madam Registrar, would you please call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. This is case number
9 IT-04-84-T, the Prosecutor versus Ramush Haradinaj et al.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. To inform the parties, the late start allowed
11 us to start in a fully-composed Bench rather than to rely on 15 bis.
12 I do understand that Mr. Emmerson is suffering a delay in arriving
13 in the Netherlands.
14 MR. DIXON: Yes, Your Honour, if I could offer sincere apologies
15 on his behalf.
16 JUDGE ORIE: I do not blame Mr. Emmerson himself for delays of
18 MR. DIXON: And also to apologise for him having to enter the
19 courtroom during the first session perhaps while the witness is already
20 testifying and wanted to express gratitude for the indication, I think,
21 Your Honours, that cross-examination of this witness will not commence
22 until tomorrow morning.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
24 MR. DIXON: Other matters could be dealt with at the end of the
25 day, time permitting.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. The Chamber intends to start with the witness's
2 examination-in-chief and then if there's any time left today that we'd
3 then perhaps already spend some time on the rather long list of exhibits
4 marked for identification, some of them for quite understandable reasons,
5 but to see whether we can clean that list a bit.
6 Mr. Re, are you ready to call your next witness?
7 MR. RE: Yes, we are.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, I do understand that the next witness there
9 are -- there is no application for protective measures, and your next
10 witness would be Rrustem Tetaj?
11 MR. RE: Yes, there is no application for protective measures from
12 the Prosecution, no.
13 JUDGE ORIE: No, no, just --
14 MR. RE: That's correct.
15 JUDGE ORIE: -- to be sure.
16 Then, Madam Usher, could you please escort the witness into the
18 MR. HARVEY: Your Honour.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Harvey.
20 MR. HARVEY: Mr. Brahimaj is not receiving the translation in
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then is he on the right channel? Then I ask
23 the assistance of the technicians.
24 MR. HARVEY: Thank you.
25 And is the volume such that -- does he receive it in any other
1 language. Of course, I should continue to speak to see whether ...
2 MR. HARVEY: Apparently it is coming through on a channel that he
3 hasn't previously been using, but he's got it now.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
5 MR. HARVEY: Thank you.
6 MR. RE: Your Honours, this is a witness in respect of whom the
7 Prosecution has foreshadowed making application under Rule 92 ter.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
9 MR. RE: And we provided the Trial Chamber and the Defence with a
10 copy of the proposed statement on the 19th of April giving notice of our
11 intention to use it. We've heard nothing from the Defence up until now as
12 to whether there was any opposition to that course. And we'd make the
13 formal application to rely upon those 38 paragraphs in that statement
14 signed on the 17th of April which are basically an extract of the 106, I
15 think, paragraphs of the consolidated statement of the same date.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
17 Is there any objection against admission of the 38-paragraph
18 witness statement where it says that it is the 13th and 17th of April of
19 this year statement, is that --
20 MR. RE: The date of signature, I think, is the 17th of April,
21 that's why I used that date.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Sometimes it is a bit confusing because on the
23 front page of the statement you find all kind of dates, but it is a
24 statement which on the second page starts with paragraph 1, "Since 1981
25 the regime in Belgrade," that's the first few -- the first line of page 2,
1 continuing up to and including what I would expect to be page 20 because
2 it follows page 19, although page 20 is not -- is not numbered. Then
3 there is a -- another signature on a page which is numbered 12, which is
4 quite surprising after 20, which is the certification of the interpreter.
5 Mr. Re, is that -- because that's dated also the 17th of April,
6 and the witness acknowledgement and the signatures on every page is also
7 17th of April.
8 MR. RE: Yes, it bears -- the signature date is the 17th of April,
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, yes. Just in order to avoid whatever further
11 confusion, the stamped number on the top is U1 -- U0160890 up to and --
12 yes. Yes, it says O1 -- U0160901 and I'm just now trying to reconcile
13 myself how 890 plus 20 makes 901. There must be something --
14 [The witness entered court]
15 MR. GUY-SMITH: If I might, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
17 MR. GUY-SMITH: I've just checked with Mr. Dixon and Mr. Harvey,
18 and we are operating off an entirely different document. We're operating
19 off a document with a number of U0160848. I've been through rapidly a
20 variety of places where I would find the document that has been referred
21 to and I don't seem to have a copy of that document.
22 JUDGE ORIE: And before we continue, Mr. Guy-Smith, perhaps it
23 would be more polite to say -- to ask the witness first to give his solemn
25 Good afternoon. Welcome in this courtroom. I apologise for
1 continuing our conversation where you entered the courtroom and we
2 apparently did not pay the appropriate attention to your arrival,
3 Mr. Tetaj, because I take it that you are Mr. Tetaj. Mr. Tetaj, before
4 you give evidence in this court, the Rules of Procedure and Evidence
5 require you to make a solemn declaration that you'll speak the truth, the
6 whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Before I invite you to make that
7 solemn declaration, do you hear me in a language you understand?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Then the text of the solemn declaration will be
10 handed out to you now by Madam Usher, and I would like to invite you to
11 make that solemn declaration.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
13 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. Please be seated.
15 Before we start your examination, Mr. Tetaj, I'd like to clarify a
16 matter with the parties. So if you would have one moment for us.
17 I do understand that the pages you're referring to, Mr. Guy-Smith,
18 are the pages of the full statement given by the witness and put on paper
19 on the 17th of April, which is a document containing 100 paragraphs and
20 that the Prosecution has selected 38 paragraphs, mainly coming from this
21 statement, Mr. Re, as far as I understand, and has sent that as the
22 proposed 92 ter statement to the parties on the 19th of April of 2007.
23 MR. GUY-SMITH: That's what I understand the representation of
24 being, and I have no reason to disbelieve it, but there seems to be some
25 slippage because we're not finding that document and I have been operating
1 off of the document that I referred to just now. I'm -- I'm having it
2 double-checked as we speak -- actually, it's triple-checked. Perhaps I
3 missed it, but I don't seem to find this document in any --
4 JUDGE ORIE: What I see, as a matter of fact, I see an e-mail by
5 Mr. Re to, among others, Gregor Guy-Smith, the 19th of April, 8.20 p.m.,
6 which starts with: "Witnesses for the week of the 23rd of April." And
7 then at the end it says: "Attached is a signed proposed Rule 92 ter
8 statement for part of Rrustem Tetaj's evidence. The witness signed a
9 larger consolidated statement on the 17th of April, which will be -- we
10 will forward to the Defence counsel tomorrow. The proposed 92 ter
11 statement is an extract from that larger statement."
12 Now, I see that attached to that e-mail was a 92 ter statement
13 which --
14 MR. GUY-SMITH: We also --
15 JUDGE ORIE: -- gives the numbers and -- U0160878 up to U0161 --
16 0901.tif. That's what I understand. That gives me the impression that it
17 was sent to you.
18 MR. GUY-SMITH: It has just been -- it has just been found.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
20 MR. GUY-SMITH: As I said, there might have been some slippage,
21 which is why I said I certainly didn't accuse Mr. Re of not doing
22 anything --
23 JUDGE ORIE: No.
24 MR. GUY-SMITH: -- they claim to have done. There seems to be
25 some slippage. If we could have a moment, we will be able to respond.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I do understand that one is just an extract of
2 the other with a lot of details and some elements not contained in the 92
3 ter statement. So I think if you prepared on the basis of the larger one,
4 then it would not cause you major problems.
5 Mr. Re -- but first, Mr. Tetaj, I again have to apologise, but we
6 had to clarify this issue before we could start your examination. You'll
7 first be examined by Mr. Re, who's -- yes, Mr. Dixon.
8 MR. DIXON: Your Honour, can I just clarify for the record that
9 there is no objection on the part of Mr. Haradinaj to this application
10 being made, but I would request that the full requirements of the rule,
11 Rule 92 ter, in particular subparagraph (a)(ii), be clarified with the
12 witness in the following way: That it is confirmed that the witness is
13 going to be available after the statement has been admitted for
14 questioning and cross-examination --
15 JUDGE ORIE: That's -- I mean, 92 ter is -- includes that.
16 MR. DIXON: I only raise that, Your Honour, because there was an
17 issue over his attendance and hence the need for a subpoena, which was
18 issued. So I'm just guarding against the situation where the statement
19 may be admitted and no further questions may be put to the witness because
20 he is right to introduce -- could that just be clarified. That's all I
21 ask, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
23 MR. DIXON: Thank you.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, are you ready to start your examination of the
1 MR. RE: Yes, I certainly am.
2 MR. GUY-SMITH: If I might?
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
4 MR. GUY-SMITH: I take a similar position, having just rapidly
5 reviewed the statement.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
7 Mr. Harvey.
8 MR. HARVEY: I'm in the same situation, Your Honour; I take the
9 same position.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Of course, we could not decide even on
11 admission until we have gone through the formalities of 92 ter. That's
12 the reason why I did not yet invite you at this stage to express yourself
13 because we still need the witness to attest to certain matters.
14 Mr. Re, please proceed.
15 WITNESS: RRUSTEM TETAJ
16 [Witness answered through interpreter]
17 Examination by Mr. Re:
18 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Tetaj. Your name is Rrustem Tetaj?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And were you born on the 27th of April, 1953, in Donja Luka in
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And were you a -- were you living in Strumica, Macedonia, from
24 1978 to 1998 -- sorry, 1999 as a member of the JNA, the JNA barracks in
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Did you graduate in 1978 from the military academy at the JNA in
3 Zadar as a second lieutenant?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And --
6 A. Yes, lieutenant.
7 Q. And from 1987 were you a deputy commander of artillery at the JNA
8 barracks in Strumica until you became a first-class captain in 1989?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, I do not fully remember what you said, but
12 looking at the transcript, page 8, line 20, you corrected 1998, but it now
13 reads 1999 where I suppose it should read 1989. Could you please verify
14 that with the witness.
15 MR. RE:
16 Q. Just to clarify, Mr. Tetaj, you were living in the JNA barracks
17 from 1978 to 1989. Is that correct?
18 A. Yes, yes.
19 Q. And to summarize, were -- did you leave the JNA in December, 1989
20 because you were forced to do so, in effect, because you were an ethnic
21 Albanian JNA officer and the JNA Supreme Command was eliminating ethnic
22 Albanian officers and soldiers from the JNA because of tensions the
23 Yugoslav authorities were encountering in Kosovo?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. I want to show you a statement. I'm going to hand it to you --
1 A. That's exactly so.
2 Q. Thank you. I'm going to hand you a handwritten statement of some
3 12 pages with your signature on it dated the 17th of April, 2007. And it
4 is 65 ter number 1328, for the record.
5 What I want you to do is just to read through that document,
6 please, and just read it -- read it through -- just read it through to
7 yourself for a moment, and I understand you have a copy of it -- or you
8 were given a copy of it after you signed it. You don't need to take your
9 copy out if you have it.
10 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Mr. Re, are you now referring to a document we
11 don't have before us, as you said "handwritten document."
12 MR. RE: Did I say "handwritten"? I apologise. I meant to
13 say "signed statement."
14 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Thank you.
15 MR. RE:
16 Q. Can you just look through the statement. Does it bear your
17 signature on each page? Is it the statement you made to the Prosecution
18 on the 17th of April, 2007?
19 A. Yes, this is it.
20 Q. And is it true and correct, what is written in the statement which
21 you signed?
22 A. I believe so. There are things which are exactly as said, there
23 are also things about which I have heard. So if I would be given the
24 possibility from the Judges here. At first I'd like to clarify my
25 position. Is that possible, honourable Judges?
1 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tetaj, at this very moment we are identifying
2 what your statement was, and the Chamber is aware that you have made --
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's -- I just would like to ask you
4 to clarify my position, just as you told me so. You didn't give me time.
5 Could I --
6 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tetaj, if at the end of your testimony there's
7 anything you would like to add or you think is important for us to know,
8 we'll give you an opportunity to add anything. But at this very moment
9 the only thing we are doing is that we look at your statement because we
10 are not going to ask you to repeat everything you said in that statement.
11 Then Mr. Re will ask you additional questions perhaps on matters which are
12 not contained in that statement or to clarify certain matters that are in
13 that statement. And if at the very end you think that there is some
14 important matter we have not heard of and which you think we should hear
15 about, then we'll give you an opportunity to do that so -- but we'll first
16 give an opportunity to Mr. Re to ask questions. And then at the end we'll
17 give you an opportunity to add.
18 Mr. Re.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Please, this has not to do with the
20 statement but with my coming here.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Well --
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was -- I was ordered to come here
23 by all means. I didn't know I should have come directly here; however,
24 there was pressure on the part of the Prosecutor office for me to come
25 here. This is -- this has been also sent to me in written form, so I've
1 come here to clarify the truth, to speak about the truth as much as I know
2 about it. A long time has passed since then, so I'll do my best to speak
3 about things. However, my coming here is against my desire and against my
4 personal will.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. That's -- you are here because you have been
6 ordered to appear before this Tribunal, Mr. Tetaj. Of course the Chamber
7 is aware because the Chamber issued that order, that's one; and second,
8 you are thus fulfilling your civil obligation to assist this Court in
9 trying to find the truth.
10 Mr. Re, you may proceed.
11 MR. RE:
12 Q. Mr. Tetaj, if we can just go back to the statement of the 17th of
13 April, and I just wish to get you to clarify for the Trial Chamber that
14 what is in there is true and correct and that you've signed every page of
15 that statement.
16 A. Yes.
17 MR. RE: On that basis, may I be received into evidence?
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
19 Any objection? I take it that it's a combined question that
20 it's -- that the witness has attested that the witness statement reflects
21 his declaration and that the witness would say, if examined the same, if
22 he says it's the truth, whereas he expected to tell us the truth, then we,
23 the Chamber, would be inclined to consider that to be the 92 ter (A)(iii)
25 MR. DIXON: Yes, Your Honour, there is no objection. I would
1 simply repeat the point I made earlier that the witness confirmed that he
2 will answer questions from all the parties and Your Honours after
3 questions and further questions have been put by Mr. Re.
4 Thank you, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Any objections on behalf of Mr. Guy-Smith and
6 Mr. Harvey?
7 MR. GUY-SMITH: None on behalf of Mr. Balaj.
8 MR. HARVEY: None.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Then, Madam Registrar, would you please assign a
10 number to the 92 ter statement.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, this will be Exhibit Number P265.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
13 Mr. Re, I take it that you gave the -- you gave the original to
14 Tetaj. Has he received a translation in his own language?
15 MR. RE: [Microphone not activated]
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, that's what he's reading off, yes, because I
17 don't think as a matter of fact from this statement the Chamber received a
18 translation. But original English translation looked at by the witness.
19 Please proceed.
20 MR. RE: I have a short summary prepared of this. Does Your
21 Honours wish me to read it on the record now?
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
23 Also for Mr. Tetaj to know.
24 Mr. Tetaj, from the statement we just spoke about, a summary has
25 been made, because we are not going through all these facts anew, and
1 therefore for the public to know what is in your statement, Mr. Re will
2 read a short summary of what is in the statement.
3 Mr. Re, please proceed.
4 MR. RE: I have a copy of the summary to distribute to --
5 JUDGE ORIE: I take it that the Defence has --
6 MR. DIXON: Your Honour, we haven't seen a copy of this statement
8 JUDGE ORIE: That's -- usually a copy of the summary is presented
9 to the other party. It's not the evidence to that extent.
10 MR. DIXON: No, Your Honour, and if there are any points arising,
11 they can always be corrected at a later point.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
13 THE INTERPRETER: Could the interpreters kindly ask for a copy of
14 the summary.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We'll provide you with a copy.
16 Yes, you need more than one copy to serve more than one
18 It seems that a copy has arrived in each of the four booths,
19 Mr. Re. Therefore please proceed.
20 MR. RE: The witness is a Kosovar Albanian former JNA officer who
21 left the JNA in 1989. After leaving the JNA, he worked as a teacher in a
22 secondary school until 1992, when he left because of systematic
23 discrimination by the Serbian authorities against Albanian teachers.
24 In 1993 he was arrested and tried by the Serbian authorities for
25 subversive activities. He spent two years in prison.
1 He first heard of the KLA or UCK in 1996 or 1997 through the
2 media. His first encounter with the KLA was at a funeral in late 1997 in
3 Lausa. The witness first found out about the presence of the KLA in the
4 Dukagjin area when the MUP attacked the Haradinaj family compound at the
5 end of March, 1998; before this, some MUP officers had been killed in
6 Ratis and Gllogjan.
7 The witness was in Donja Luka, about 6 kilometres from Gllogjan,
8 when the MUP attacked the Haradinaj compound. He saw air attacks carried
9 out by MUP helicopters. The witness considered his life to be in danger
10 after this because of his former involvement in the JNA, and he left his
11 village. He went to Gllogjan several days after the attack and attended
12 the funeral of some of those killed in the attack.
13 After the MUP withdrew from Gllogjan, local Albanian men
14 controlled the village. Several days after the funeral, he learnt that
15 the KLA had established an organised defence and guard duty in that
16 village. His brother told him of seeing armed soldiers with KLA insignia
17 and of a check-point manned by KLA soldiers from the village.
18 The witness saw a KLA check-point in Gllogjan about a week after
19 the funeral, manned by armed KLA soldiers in camouflage uniform. He went
20 there because it had become known as the epicentre of the KLA.
21 By the beginning of April, 1998 Dubrava, Babaloc, Gramocelj,
22 Shaptej, and Lumbardh had started to form their own KLA village
23 headquarters. The KLA was using doubtful methods to recruit volunteers,
24 such as their soldiers going at night to the houses of those who had not
25 yet joined the KLA and firing rounds after leaving.
1 Mr. Tetaj went to Gllogjan to join the KLA and to discuss the
2 situation because people in his village were awaiting his decision to join
3 the KLA before they would organise themselves. A lot of people were black
4 listed by Faton Mehemetaj and Fitnete Ramosaj for not being loyal to the
5 KLA or for sympathising with the opposition, LDK, or for not having worked
6 for the MUP or other authorities. Lists of their names were circulated
7 among KLA guards, who were to refuse access to the village of those whose
8 names were on the list.
9 Mr. Tetaj's name was on such a list, and at the beginning of May
10 1998 he was interrogated for two hours by Faton Mehemetaj in Pozar and
11 accused of being a MUP informer before being released. He had not yet
12 joined the KLA then. The witness heard of the kidnapping of several Serbs
13 in the Dukagjin area in May 1998.
14 The FARK had about 500 soldiers in three brigades. It operated
15 separately to the KLA. Each organisation had its own military structure.
16 The brigade commanders were: Nazif Ramabaja in Barane, Shemsedin Cekaj in
17 Zebelj, and Tahir Zemaj in Prapaqan, who was the FARK commander.
18 That completes the summary of what is contained in the 92 ter
20 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Re.
21 MR. RE:
22 Q. I'm now going to ask you some further questions about other things
23 which were in your large statement to the Office of the Prosecutor but are
24 not in that statement or the summary I've just read out, Mr. Tetaj. The
25 first thing I'm going to ask you about is your visit to the KLA
1 headquarters in Gllogjan in April, 1998. In your 92 ter statement,
2 paragraphs 19 to 20, you refer to going to KLA headquarters to see the KLA
3 in Gllogjan. Who did you go there with?
4 A. I was interested to know after what happened, after the attack on
5 Haradinaj in Gllogjan so due to the situation created in the surrounding
6 villages around Gllogjan. I was interested and curious to go to Gllogjan
7 and to meet with people there, people who might know something or -- our
8 intention was to join the UCK for self-defence; that is, for protecting
9 the people where we lived and the surrounding areas. So I decided to go
10 there. I went there with my brother and my cousin. We were in a car and
11 we travelled during the day.
12 Q. Was there a check-point in the village when you got there?
13 A. Yes, it was an improvised check-point, very simple kind of
14 check-point. There were three people. One was wearing uniform, the other
15 were not wearing uniform, so that was what we saw there.
16 Q. Were they KLA uniforms?
17 A. One of them was wearing a uniform, the others -- I'm not sure.
18 Somebody had some kind of uniform, but I'm not sure what kind of uniform
19 was there -- was that.
20 Q. Which military organisation did they belong to?
21 A. It was at the beginning. I didn't know anything about what kind
22 of organisation; however, judging on the place, they were people from the
24 Q. Why did they stop you?
25 A. They stopped us -- I told them -- them that I wanted to meet some
1 people who were competent for the defence of the village. So they stopped
2 us. They asked us, Where do you come from? I told them that I was
3 determined to meet people and talk to them about the situation.
4 Q. Do you remember --
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, may I just ask one additional question.
6 Mr. Re asked you, Mr. Tetaj, whether at the check-point --
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 JUDGE ORIE: -- whether KLA uniforms -- whether the soldiers were
9 dressed in the KLA uniforms. You said: "One of them was wearing a
10 uniform." Could you tell us what kind of a uniform?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was a camouflage uniform.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Any insignia on it, any --
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Military uniform. It had an
14 insignia of Kosovo Liberation Army on the arm.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
16 Please proceed, Mr. Re.
17 MR. RE:
18 Q. Do you remember whether any of those soldiers were armed?
19 A. Yes. They had an automatic rifle. Each of them had an automatic
21 MR. GUY-SMITH: Yes.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Guy-Smith.
23 MR. GUY-SMITH: If I might, I believe that the question asked by
24 Mr. Re at this point may be somewhat inaccurate or misleading. He
25 says: "Do you remember whether any of those soldiers were armed?"
1 The evidence we have at present is that one individual was in a
2 uniform and the other two individuals were not in uniform. So I'm not
3 sure that we're in a position yet to make a determination whether anybody
4 other than the one soldier, one individual in a uniform was, in fact, a
6 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Guy-Smith, Mr. Re has drawn our attention to
7 paragraph 19 of the 92 ter statement which is in evidence which says it
8 was manned by armed soldiers. So therefore, I think we have sufficient
9 basis in the evidence to put that question to the witness.
10 Please proceed, Mr. Re.
11 MR. RE:
12 Q. Did they have any communications equipment?
13 A. Yes, they had a communication equipment. It was a simple kind of
14 equipment with which they could communicate, yes, they had one.
15 Q. What do you mean by that? What did they have?
16 A. We call them walkie-talkies, small kind of --
17 Q. Did they use that --
18 A. A small kind of equipment. They used it. They used -- they
19 talked on it, then after some minutes they allowed us to move further
21 Q. Did they check your identification before allowing you to go
23 A. Yes, they asked for my ID, to check my identity. They looked at
24 it. Some of them knew me already, so they allowed me to proceed.
25 Q. Did you know who any of the people who stopped you were at the
1 time when you stopped you?
2 A. Personally, I didn't know any of them, but I heard later that one
3 of them was Daut Haradinaj.
4 Q. Tell the Court about the circumstances in which you heard that one
5 of them was Daut Haradinaj.
6 A. The moment when I saw them, I couldn't recognise any of them. I
7 asked me [as interpreted] but they told me that they knew me. But later I
8 learned that the person who was there was Daut Haradinaj.
9 Q. How did you learn that it was Daut Haradinaj? Tell the Court
10 about how you found out it was him.
11 A. Later I inquired. I had also my contacts.
12 Q. When did you see this person again, if at all, Daut Haradinaj?
13 A. I don't remember. That's a long time ago, however. Later I saw
14 him. I don't remember where. I'm sure I saw him at a meeting or probably
15 in the streets. I don't remember exactly.
16 Q. When you saw him again, was he wearing a KLA uniform?
17 A. Often he did not wear uniform. Sometimes he wore uniform,
18 sometimes he didn't wear a uniform.
19 Q. Where were you allowed to go in the village after you went through
20 this check-point?
21 A. I went to the centre of the village. I was received there by
22 somebody, and then he took us to a certain place.
23 Q. Was the person who received you a civilian or a soldier?
24 A. He was a civilian. As far as I remember, he had nothing on
25 [as interpreted].
1 Q. Where did he take you to?
2 A. He took us through a door. There was a two-storey house. There
3 was a chair inside the house. We sat down and then we waited until we
4 were called.
5 Q. Whose house was it?
6 A. Later, I learned that it was the house of Ismail Haradinaj, that
7 was his name.
8 Q. You said you waited until you were called. Who called you?
9 A. Later we were told to enter inside. There I saw the father of
10 Ramush Haradinaj, Hilmi. I knew him before. We were told to wait more,
11 and then after some time I was called, I don't remember who, then we went
12 up to the second floor and there we met with Ramush and with
13 [indiscernible]. That was the first time we met him.
14 Q. When you say "Ramush," do you mean Ramush Haradinaj?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. You said you were told to wait. What were you told to wait -- or
17 who were you told to wait for when you were waiting on the chair?
18 A. Then the commander came and he took us in.
19 Q. I'll just go back to what I was asking you a moment ago. Who were
20 you told that you were -- or what were you told was the reason why you
21 were waiting there?
22 A. We were told to wait until the commander would come. I don't know
23 exactly what more. I don't know who told us this.
24 Q. Were you aware as of that moment who the commander was; that is,
25 when you were sitting there waiting for the commander?
1 A. No, no. No, absolutely nothing.
2 Q. You said you were --
3 A. I thought I would meet somebody who was -- who would be
4 well-informed. I would talk to him, but I didn't know exactly who this
5 person would be. We were told he would be the commander; that's how he
6 was addressed to us. I didn't know exactly who the person was. I had no
7 idea who the person would be.
8 Q. You said after waiting for the commander you were taken upstairs
9 and you met with Ramush Haradinaj. Who was he with?
10 A. We entered the room. We waited a few minutes, then two persons
11 came in afterwards. I did not know any of them before. We greeted each
12 other. We -- I told them that my name was Rrustem Tetaj, that I was a
13 military man, that I had graduated from the army, and that I had come here
14 to discuss about the UCK.
15 Q. The two people with Ramush Haradinaj, were they KLA soldiers?
16 A. No. The -- there were two persons. It was Ramush and Togeri.
17 These were the people who came. I didn't know them before. That's what I
18 want to say.
19 Q. What were they wearing?
20 A. They were wearing military uniforms, camouflage ones, with boots.
21 One of them carried a cap. They were armed. We talked very briefly. He
22 heard my opinion, then they suggested us what we should do later.
23 Q. Which one was wearing the cap, Ramush or Togeri?
24 A. As far as I remember, Ramush carried a cap. Togeri spoke -- did
25 not say anything at all.
1 Q. Did the uniforms have the KLA insignia you referred to earlier?
2 A. No. I did not hear anything about it. They were just present
4 Q. I'll make my question clearer. You referred earlier to KLA
5 insignia, that's patches. Do you remember whether either Ramush or Togeri
6 were wearing KLA patches or insignia on their uniforms?
7 A. I can't remember.
8 Q. What arms were they bearing?
9 A. 7.62 automatic weapon, short; an ammunition carrier in the belt;
10 they were wearing military boots.
11 Q. What was Ramush Haradinaj's reaction when you told him that you
12 were a military man, that you had graduated from the army, and that you
13 were there to discuss about the UCK with him, what did he say?
14 A. My wish was to be in contact with them and to be engaged with the
15 Kosovo Liberation Army, willingly, so that I could help. But I asked them
16 if -- if there was the headquarters where my colleagues were engaged.
17 Ramush said that we -- we know that there is some headquarter existing,
18 but we do not recognise them, we don't much about them. And that's it.
19 Q. Can you explain to the Trial Chamber what that's about, what you
20 just said about your colleagues and headquarters and Ramush saying, There
21 is some existing but we don't recognise it. What was all that about?
22 A. I was thinking that there should be a general headquarters for the
23 Kosovo Liberation Army with all the powers which would be directly engaged
24 with the operations, but from the impression that I got there, there was
25 no such headquarters. And there were colleagues of mine who were
1 interested to help the war effort, and I thought that I wanted to meet
2 them so that they could come and get in touch with me.
3 Q. What was your impression when you were meeting Ramush Haradinaj as
4 to whether or not you were at KLA headquarters that first time you met
6 A. My impression -- my first impression was that there was the -- the
7 only place where people got together, but it was not a genuine
8 headquarters in the real sense of the word. But Ramush informed me and
9 introduced me to Togeri, who was an experienced person, he said. I did
10 not know then that he was called Toger, but I thought that was a military
11 title and I thought he was one of the military people there.
12 Q. What did Ramush tell you about Togeri when -- on that time when
13 you first met him?
14 A. He said, This is Togeri, an experienced person in warfare, and
15 that was it. It was a very short meeting.
16 Q. Did he tell you anything about Togeri's war experience, like where
17 he had fought and for who?
18 A. As I said earlier, he told me that his experience -- he's
19 experienced in warfare from Croatia, from the war in Croatia.
20 Q. Who did he fight for?
21 A. He had fought on the side of the Croats.
22 Q. Was that against the Serbs?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Did you notice any rank of -- military rank on Toger's uniform?
25 A. No, he wasn't carrying any ranks, but the word itself "Toger" made
1 me understand that he was a career military officer; that was my
2 impression, at least.
3 Q. What questions did Ramush Haradinaj ask you about yourself at that
4 first meeting and your experience?
5 A. He asked me where I had studied in the military academy, and I
6 explained that I had graduated from the military academy in Belgrade and I
7 had studied artillery.
8 Q. What was Ramush Haradinaj's overall reaction to your coming to
9 Gllogjan and seeing him?
10 A. Very modest. It was good. That was my impression. I can't
11 remember any further than that.
12 Q. What about further organisational military activity. Did you
13 discuss anything about what your role might be with Ramush on that
15 A. No. I was interested to find out what I could do, and he said I
16 could return to my village and try to organise people there. But the
17 thing was that my village and the surrounding villages were not engaged
18 yet. And I said that I could deal with the military organisation, but I
19 had no weapons at my disposal. I was lacking in weaponry.
20 Q. Did Ramush give you any -- I'll withdraw that.
21 What did he say when you told him you were lacking in weaponry?
22 What was his response to your saying that?
23 A. He said I should go back to my village and organise people there,
24 get together some young people who could come and could go to Gllogjan,
25 and from there they could go to Albania to get weapons. And that's what I
2 Q. When you're saying "that's what I did," do you mean you went back
3 to your village or you went to Albania? That's a little unclear.
4 A. I went back to my village. I organised the village, that's what
5 happened. I appointed some emergency staff. Some young people, young
6 men, turned up and reported, and I told them to go to Gllogjan, and later
7 they went to carry some light weapons.
8 Q. You referred a little earlier to Ramush telling you the young
9 people could go to Gllogjan and from there go to Albania to get weapons.
10 Did any of those young men you sent go to Gllogjan go to Albania to bring
11 back weapons?
12 A. Yes, they did.
13 Q. Can you tell the Trial Chamber about that? When did they go to
14 Albania, in what circumstances? How did they get the weapons back, where
15 did they take them to?
16 A. As I said earlier, there was a group of young people who we
17 appointed from the village. They went to Gllogjan. From Gllogjan, they
18 went towards the border with Albania. They stayed for a few days. They
19 brought back some light weapons and brought it back with them in very
20 inconvenient circumstances at the time.
21 Q. How did they pay for the weapons?
22 A. Yes, they paid, as they told me, about 300 Deutschemarks for a
23 light weapon.
24 Q. What about mortars? Were there any mortars brought back?
25 A. Later on. That happened later on. In the village then, it was
1 only the beginning, and at the beginning it was only three, four people
2 and they brought back some -- some weaponry. And they had a hand-held
3 mortar, I think. As far as I can remember, it was 300-millimetre.
4 Q. When they came back from Albania, did they go via Gllogjan back to
5 your village with these light automatic weapons?
6 A. No. They went to Albania and they came back from different
7 direction, from wherever they could, because the Serb forces were lined up
8 along the border. So they chose a different route, they chose a different
9 route into the village.
10 Q. You described light automatic weapons. Did they have any
11 ammunition or other types of weapons such as grenades?
12 A. They had some ammunition, some grenades, very few. It was an
13 outdated ammunition and weapons.
14 Q. Do you know where they got it from in Albania or under what
15 circumstances they were able to get these weapons in Albania?
16 A. No, I don't know, but all I know is that they crossed the border
17 into Albania. But I don't know any more than that.
18 Q. I want --
19 A. It was from the people that I heard about this.
20 Q. Do you mean the people who went there?
21 A. It was the people who went across the border into Albania, met
22 some people on the other side, and it was them who provided the weapons
23 for them. They had to get in touch with these people in Albania to get
24 hold of the weapons that they bought.
25 Q. I'd like you to give the Trial Chamber a bit more detail about
1 your organisation of the young men in the village after your first meeting
2 with Ramush Haradinaj. What did you do and how did you organise them?
3 A. But that was the first phase, so these young people, they
4 travelled across to Albania to bring the weapons. And they were very
5 daring young men who decided to join the effort in the village, and the
6 village agreed to provide them with some money. And they also gave them
7 some light weapons to protect themselves, and that's what happened. But
8 that happened later.
9 Q. What was the connection with the KLA at the point when these young
10 men from the village went to Albania and you were organising them in the
11 village after your meeting with Ramush?
12 A. No, we were not connected, but later the situation got worse. The
13 Serbian forces had their positions set up closer and the people were in a
14 very poor situation and surrounded. So each and every person in one form
15 or another was trying to protect their house, the village, and the
16 surrounding area with all they could. So after some time, the surrounding
17 villages were organised in a similar way, so there was a new organisation
18 in Gllogjan, and the regional staff was established in Gllogjan.
19 Q. Are you referring to the KLA when you say "regional staff"?
20 A. Yes, for the KLA. It was being established there.
21 Q. I want you to tell the Trial Chamber about a person called Faik
22 Gecaj from Donja Luka.
23 A. Yes, Faik Gecaj was a village -- a villager from my village. He
24 lived abroad, he came back. In the first meeting that we had in the
25 village, Faik Gecaj declared that he could travel to Albania and could
1 bring back weapons to the villages, and that's what happened. He left
2 there, after two weeks he came back. He only knows how he organised that
3 with the mules and horses, and he brought weapons to the village. They
4 were simple weapons, unsophisticated, rusty.
5 Q. How much money did he take with him?
6 A. He did not have money, but it was organised from Albania. There
7 were people from the village who collected money. He had a meeting with
8 people in Albania, and we are talking about 25.000 Deutschemarks. The
9 village agreed.
10 Q. How long was it after your first meeting with Ramush Haradinaj
11 that Faik Gecaj went to Albania to collect these weapons?
12 A. It was a long time, because in the first phase there were four
13 people who went and they brought back a small quantity of weapons. But
14 Faik Gecaj went there -- he went there sometime -- a month after the
15 meeting that I had with Ramush.
16 Q. So that would make it mid-May, is that correct, mid-May 1998?
17 A. Yes. I can't remember the exact date.
18 Q. I want you to --
19 A. It was around about that time.
20 Q. Okay. Now, I want you to describe to the Trial Chamber the level
21 of organisation of the villages surrounding yours and Gllogjan by the end
22 of May, 1998.
23 A. Look, it was the beginning then. The surrounding villages were
24 being every day harassed by the Serb forces. A part of the villages were
25 not engaged with the KLA, but each and every village had its own
1 organisation. As I said earlier, in the similar way that I did it in the
2 village and it's -- it expanded from then, and it was the will of the
3 young people, in other villages some small cells were established other
4 villages. And that brought about an expansion of the Kosovo Liberation
5 Army in Dukagjin.
6 Q. Describe to the Trial Chamber the harassment by the Serb forces.
7 Who were these forces and what were they doing?
8 A. It was the police who could come up to the villages, and they
9 interrogated people, and there were many people who were politically
10 involved with political parties or other things. This was the kind of
11 harassment that the people were being subjected to. And looking at all
12 that was going on in this respect, the village decided to get organised.
13 Q. What did your village do to get organised?
14 A. As I said, we had a meeting. We decided to appoint some guards,
15 night guards, and they had no weapons initially. For everything -- I told
16 them to report to me for everything. We improvised a system through which
17 the road -- the roads leading into and out of the village be guarded.
18 Q. Did you have check-points or organised check-points on the road
19 leading into your village?
20 A. Yes, that was what I said. A check-point is a big word for what
21 we did. It was a very simple operation. There was one guard. It wasn't
22 a check-point in the real sense, in the real military sense of the word.
23 Q. Was this guard stopping people coming into the village or checking
24 them or what was he doing?
25 A. The people who we knew, there was no need to stop them because
1 people knew each other in the villages. But if there was any suspicious
2 person approaching, we would stop him and would check his identity.
3 Q. Was the guard armed or uniformed?
4 A. No. At the beginning they were not, but later, yes. However,
5 they were not wearing uniforms. It -- there was not enough uniforms
7 Q. Were they armed?
8 A. I said at the beginning some of them were not, but later on, yes.
9 Q. When was later?
10 A. For example, in my village at the beginning in the first month we
11 had nothing. After a month, we had some weapons and the weapons that we
12 got hold of we -- were passed on to the guards, but there were no
13 uniforms. The guards were civilians.
14 Q. Okay. Two things here. Which month are you talking about and
15 what weapons are you referring to?
16 A. Look, at the beginning, the first month when we got organised, we
17 had no weapons. We had no uniforms. Later on we got light weapons,
18 semi-automatic rifles, some hand-grenades. There was a 20-millimetre gun,
19 and so on.
20 Q. In terms of the month you're referring to at the beginning, the
21 first month, we've heard evidence about March, April, and May, 1998 so
22 far. Which is the first month you're referring to when you got organised?
23 A. As you are asking me, I'm talking about right from the start of
24 the organisation of the village. That's the -- that's the first month. I
25 can't remember the date, but I'm referring to the point when I first
1 organised the village.
2 Q. How long after the attack by the MUP on the Haradinaj family
3 compound did you start to organise the village?
4 A. As far as I remember, in the village we had no weapons. It was
5 about two weeks, two weeks after that and it took a little bit longer for
6 the weapons to arrive, so it was probably mid-May.
7 Q. A little earlier you referred to small cells being established in
8 other villages, and then you said, And that brought about an expansion of
9 the Kosovo Liberation Army in Dukagjin. I want you to tell the Court what
10 you mean by "an expansion of the KLA" in Dukagjin. What happened? How
11 did it begin to expand?
12 A. Look, the situation in Gllogjan and the surrounding villages was
13 very serious. The Serbian forces and the Yugoslav Army forces, they were
14 establishing their positions in key points. So almost all the villages
15 there were surrounded and they were under the supervision of the Serb
16 forces. And the population was in a very dire situation. So with --
17 based on the will of the people, every village started to form their own
18 staffs, who joined the Kosovo Liberation Army.
19 Q. Was there a meeting organised by Ramush Haradinaj for
20 representatives of the villages?
21 A. Yes, that happened sometime at the end of May. I do not remember
22 the exact date. We had an invitation, all the representatives of the
23 villages of the Dukagjin area, but it was more specific. It was the
24 representatives of the villages around Gllogjan. So that we had an
25 invitation to get together and we met to discuss further action.
1 MR. RE: Could the witness please be shown P123.
2 Q. I appreciate that's not the clearest thing on the screen. I have
3 a print-out which may assist you, if you want to have a look at that.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Is the print-out clearer, Mr. -- could I just have a
5 look at the print-out to see whether -- Madam Usher, could you -- could we
6 just have a look at the print-out.
7 One second.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, this is it.
9 MR. RE:
10 Q. Being the invitation that Mr. Haradinaj sent to you to attend that
12 A. Yes.
13 MR. RE: Has that been tendered? I think it had an MFI number.
14 JUDGE ORIE: I think it is on the long list of MFI numbers. We'll
15 deal with that soon.
16 MR. RE:
17 Q. What did you find out about who had prepared that particular
19 A. Later I heard that Faton Mehemetaj, who lived in Pozhare, had
20 prepared this invitation because he had a typing machine and he had
21 written such kind of invitation.
22 Q. Did he have a position within the KLA?
23 A. I didn't know what kind of position he had then, but later,
24 following the -- following this meeting on that date, I learnt about the
25 post he held.
1 Q. And what post --
2 A. He was in charge of information. He was in charge of contacts
3 with the media.
4 Q. Where was he based?
5 A. He was based in his house, in Pozhare.
6 Q. What about Fitnete Ramosaj, who was that?
7 A. Ramosaj, Ramosaj. Fitnete Ramosaj was a woman from a village
8 called Carrabreg. She always lived at that time in Pozhare. I had no
9 knowledge about the family links she had with Faton Mehemetaj.
10 Q. Did she have anything to do, as far as you were aware, with the
11 issuing of the invitations to attend that meeting?
12 A. Yes, surely she had.
13 Q. What was her position?
14 A. Together with Faton, they worked together, and they dealt with
15 contacts and information with various media for information.
16 Q. Are you saying that she was also in the KLA?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Did you go to the meeting?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Where was the meeting held?
21 A. The meeting took place in the village of Gllogjan, in the house of
22 Mehemetaj, in a room. It took place at about -- in the evening, at about
23 8.00 in the evening.
24 Q. How many people were there?
25 A. It was a great number of people. I don't know exactly the
1 number. They were all representatives from surrounding villages.
2 Probably one to three representatives from each village, but I don't
3 remember the exact number. It was a big room which was full of people.
4 Very few of them carried uniforms. Most of them were in civilian
5 clothes. They did not carry any weapons.
6 Q. Were there more than 50? Less than 50? More than a hundred?
7 Less than a hundred? Can you give an approximation of how many people
8 were there?
9 A. To tell you the truth, they were probably more than 50 but less
10 than 100. I don't know exactly the number.
11 Q. Who chaired the meeting?
12 A. The meeting was chaired by Ramush Haradinaj.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, soon I take it you'll come to the content of
14 the meeting. I'm looking at the clock. Perhaps it would be a better idea
15 to start that, but if there's any other introductory -- then, Mr. Tetaj,
16 we'll have a break for 25 minutes. So we'll resume at 20 minutes past
17 4.00. Before we do so, Mr. Re, I received a message that the original
18 estimate of three and a half hours would be reduced to one and a half
19 hours in view of 92 ter. Is that correctly understood?
20 MR. RE: The message didn't come from me.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Then I'll verify where it comes from. How much --
22 MR. RE: I think it comes via a conversation I had with
23 Mr. Emmerson this morning. I would think probably another hour. I think
24 I've been going for an hour and ten minutes or so.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, fine.
1 We'll resume at 20 minutes past 4.00.
2 MR. EMMERSON: May I --
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Emmerson.
4 MR. EMMERSON: I first will apologise.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. The apologies have already been accepted.
6 MR. EMMERSON: Had received the message, and provisionally the
7 message that had come back was that Your Honour had been kind enough to
8 indicate that I could begin my cross-examination in the morning, which I'm
9 grateful for.
10 JUDGE ORIE: You'll have an opportunity to read the transcript and
11 start your cross-examination in the morning.
12 We'll resume until 20 minutes past 4.00.
13 --- Recess taken at 3.54 p.m.
14 --- On resuming at 4.23 p.m.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, you may proceed.
16 But I'd first like to address you, Mr. Tetaj. I see that you've
17 got some papers in front of you. If at any moment you'd like to consult
18 these papers, would you, please, first address me and tell me what the
19 papers are and why you'd like to consult them at that moment.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the same, the same thing
21 which you gave to me, and this was the invitation you sent to me to come
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This was written here. You can ask
25 me any question you want. I'll try to answer them as well as possible.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, you may proceed.
2 MR. RE: When I indicated an hour before, I might have been
3 slightly optimistic, but I'll certainly finish well within the time
5 Q. Mr. Tetaj, just before the break we were talking about the meeting
6 that Mr. Haradinaj chaired, held at the house of Mehemetaj in Gllogjan.
7 My first question to you is: Why was it held in that particular house?
8 A. Look, I don't know the reason why. I only know that -- the main
9 reason was that the Serb forces -- the Serb forces had reached up to
10 Gllogjan. So Gllogjan was in a sort of -- in a circle surrounded by the
11 Serb forces. I don't know if there is any particular reason why.
12 Q. Why did Mr. Haradinaj chair the meeting?
13 A. Mr. Haradinaj was from Gllogjan. He -- his compound was once
14 attacked. His family was attacked. He protected his compound, and then
15 his village was also attacked. So probably these were the reasons why.
16 This is my opinion.
17 Q. Do you know who organised the meeting?
18 A. According to the invitation, the meeting was considered necessary
19 so that all the leaders of the villages could sit down and discuss some of
20 the current situation as well as the current developments at the time.
21 Therefore, this meeting was called to take place in Gllogjan.
22 Q. Do you know who was the person responsible for organising or
23 calling the meeting?
24 A. This was initiative of everybody who was present there, according
25 to the invitation Ramush and Mehemetaj were indeed the people who had
1 initiated the meeting.
2 Q. Were minutes taken of the my colleague?
3 A. Yes, yes. First Ramush addressed the meeting. He talked about
4 the current situation at the time in Gllogjan and in surrounding areas.
5 He talked about Dukagjin in the narrow sense of the region. Then also --
6 and also the minutes were written down at the time.
7 Q. Was there a person there called Kompjuteri.
8 A. Yes, there was a person nicknamed Kompjuteri. He was the person
9 who took the minutes. I have not seen the minutes. I don't know what was
10 written there. I don't know the content of the minutes.
11 Q. What's Kompjuteri's name? Where is he from?
12 A. Very late I learned about that, after a very long period of time.
13 I learned that Kompjuteri was Emrush Xhemajli.
14 Q. From where? Where is he from?
15 A. From Ferizaj.
16 Q. What was he wearing at the meeting?
17 A. He was wearing a uniform, a camouflage uniform.
18 Q. Was Togeri there?
19 A. Togeri took part. He disappeared once and then I didn't see him
20 any further.
21 Q. What was he wearing?
22 A. He was present very, very briefly. I saw him only once and then I
23 didn't see him any longer.
24 Q. What was he wearing?
25 A. Probably civilian clothes in dark colour, not camouflaged uniform.
1 Q. What about Ramush, what was he wearing?
2 A. Ramush was wearing camouflage uniform.
3 Q. What did he tell the meeting about the current situation at the
4 time in Gllogjan and the surrounding areas?
5 A. He informed everybody that the situation was difficult. The
6 situation was, indeed, very difficult. He told the participants that we
7 were all surrounded by the Serbs and that all the roads which linked this
8 area to Decane and Gjakove, they were roads on which there was big
9 movement of columns with heavy equipment of the Serbian army. The Serbs
10 had taken positions on most of the key positions in the region, Suka and
11 Baballoq. So the situation was difficult. Therefore, Ramush, speaking in
12 cold-bloodedness, asked the participants to defend their villages, to be
13 aware of the situation, to be mature, and to know what they should do. So
14 this is the things about which he talked to the meeting.
15 Q. How long did he speak for?
16 A. He spoke for a very long time, and then -- we also waited, in
17 fact, for a long time until everybody came together, but I don't remember
18 exactly how long he talked.
19 Q. When you say "a long time," are you measuring it in hours?
20 A. Yes, yes, in terms of hours. So that began after 8.00, 9.00 in
21 the evening. Yes, yes, I'm talking about hours.
22 Q. Did he tell the meeting about the KLA?
23 A. Yes, he talked about the founding of the army. He said it was
24 time to coordinate all the villages at that particular moment. He said
25 that -- that everybody -- that we should set up a kind of structure, a
1 kind of something which would command the situation.
2 Q. Who was proposed to be the overall commander?
3 A. Look, the idea was that Gllogjan should be a subordinate area. So
4 I proposed at the meeting that the area should be divided into subareas on
5 basis of village. So I proposed that four subareas should be set up.
6 Ramush and the others accepted this proposal.
7 Q. What was your proposal?
8 A. I couldn't understand your question, please.
9 Q. You proposed four subareas being set up. What were those four
10 subareas that you proposed being set up?
11 A. Yes. I was present and I proposed that the area in Dukagjin
12 should be divided into subareas. I also said that people of military
13 experience should be put in command. I proposed the establishment of zone
14 number 1 with Gllogjan; then zone number 2 should be Irzniq; zone number 3
15 should be Pozhare; and zone 4 should be the area which was divided by
16 river of Bistrica as well as the villages of Isniq.
17 Q. Let's go to zone number 1, who was to be the commander of zone
18 number 1, which was Gllogjan? Just the name, please.
19 A. It was decided that zone number 1, since this was Gllogjan, Ramush
20 Haradinaj, the commander of this zone, should be the commander. Then
21 Shemsedin Ceku was proposed to be the commander of zone 2, somebody -- he
22 was a person with military experience. Zone number 3 should be under my
23 command. And then zone number 4, which was more extensive, should be
24 placed under the command of Skender Rexhahmetaj and Gani Gjukaj.
25 Q. Can you -- Mr. Tetaj, please listen carefully to the question. I
1 just want to take you to each zone one by one. The first one was zone 1,
2 Gllogjan and Ramush Haradinaj --
3 A. Yes, subdivision, subarea, that's how we called it. The whole
4 zone was considered Dukagjini Plain. The proposal was that this place
5 should be decided into subzones, subareas.
6 Q. What were the physical boundaries of the Dukagjini Plain area?
7 A. Dukagjin area?
8 Q. Yes.
9 A. You're talking about Dukagjin or about the subareas and the
10 villages which belong to these subareas?
11 MR. EMMERSON: I'm sorry to interrupt. I wonder whether if Mr. Re
12 is going to invite the witness to indicate the boundaries of the
13 collection of territory covered by these four subzones, whether it might
14 assist us all to have a map in front of us so the witness can give an
15 indication exactly what it is he's talking about, given the precise
16 territorial issue may be of some importance.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Also, perhaps, Mr. Re, we could be very precise on
18 what I think was at one moment called the Dukagjin Plain or -- well, at
19 least there was another word which we find already in the statements of
20 the witness. So the -- that there's no confusion whatsoever about what
21 you asked him as far as the Dukagjin Zone is concerned -- I see it's the
22 Dukagjin Plain in 41, line 7.
23 Perhaps map 10 would do and then ask the witness perhaps to draw a
24 line around the whole of the area.
25 MR. RE: It's actually the larger one I require --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Okay.
2 MR. RE: -- and we could take an exact of that area. D32.
3 JUDGE ORIE: D32.
4 Madam Registrar, could you please put D32 on the screen.
5 Nevertheless, I take it that some zooming-in could be done, Mr. Re,
6 because otherwise, it's very large and it might be not so easy. You know
7 that zooming it later is not possible under the same number anymore.
8 MR. RE: It may be safer to give him A3 print-out and have him
9 mark on that, although I do understand e-court.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Is this -- would this do as we have it here or
11 would a more limited area do as well, Mr. Re?
12 MR. RE: I'll ask the witness.
13 Q. Mr. Tetaj, can you see the map clearly on the screen in front of
15 A. Yes, I can see it, but it's very small. Nevertheless, I will
16 indicate the boundaries.
17 Q. Is that map big enough to show the entirety of the Dukagjin Plain
18 or area or do you need a larger map?
19 MR. EMMERSON: I'm sorry, again, Mr. Re what the issue is here,
20 and the question that the witness needs to be invited to address his mind
21 to is the territory covered by the four subzones that came together, and
22 if we keep slipping between that territory and concept about the Dukagjin
23 Plain, knowing what we know about the witness's evidence as to what took
24 place later on, it's bound to confuse.
25 MR. RE: I don't understand the objection. I'm asking the witness
1 to look at the four subzones, which are in the larger ones, as I
3 JUDGE ORIE: Perhaps if we start with the four subzones and ask
4 the witness to mark the subzones on the map and then you could ask him or
5 in cross-examination you could ask him whether these four subzones,
6 whether -- what that would be taken together.
7 Witness, is the map clear enough for you at this moment to
8 identify the four subzones?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can see only a part, not the
10 whole. It's interrupted exactly at my village. Gllogjan is not here. It
11 should have been here.
12 JUDGE ORIE: No. We have to zoom out. We have certainly to zoom
13 out. Now to zoom in a bit. Move a bit up to the north.
14 Can you orient yourself on this part of the map as it is now and
15 just to -- just to assist you -- one second, please.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's very weak.
17 MR. GUY-SMITH: If I could be of some assistance, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
19 MR. GUY-SMITH: If we take Peje and move it as far up as we can, I
20 think it may be of some assistance in terms of the area that the witness
21 is speaking about.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We have to identify the exact portion of the
23 map. We can't move that later on, move -- zooming in, zooming out as the
24 witness marks the map.
25 MR. RE: I can't read it myself, Your Honour. We have some hard
1 copies being printed --
2 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Let's then --
3 MR. RE: -- and brought down, maybe if I come back to it later.
4 JUDGE ORIE: -- ask the witness to -- how many hard copy do you
5 have, Mr. --
6 MR. RE: We have four coming down, but he only needs one.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And then I take it that we'll invite the
8 witness to mark it on the ELMO?
9 MR. RE: Yes, that's correct. I'll come back to it.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
11 MR. GUY-SMITH: If I could make another suggestion, because I
12 myself on my personal map dealing with this same issue, I marked each of
13 the subzones in a different colour and it may be some assistance to the
14 Chamber at a later point in time.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. You even could suggest to Mr. Re that if your
16 subzones are the same as his subzones, to show it to him and if you would
17 agree on the matter, ask the witness to confirm that. That might be a
18 practical way of doing that.
19 MR. GUY-SMITH: I would be happy to do that.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
21 Then, Madam Usher, can you please assist Mr. Guy-Smith in ...
22 MR. RE: It's fairly rough. I'd actually prefer to show the
23 witness and ask him just to draw on the map. I'm not in any way disputing
24 what Mr. Guy-Smith is saying are the areas, but it's colour-coded in a way
25 which may not necessarily be of assistance to the Court as opposed to --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then I take it if Madam Usher returns the map
2 to Mr. Guy-Smith and let's hope that we get a less-rough marking.
3 Then, Madam Usher, could you put the map on the ELMO so that
4 everyone can follow.
5 Mr. Emmerson.
6 MR. EMMERSON: If it's of any assistance, certainly I would have
7 no objection if Mr. Re were to lead the villages that the witness has
8 referred to in paragraphs 44 and 45 of the consolidated witness
9 statement. I'm not sure which paragraphs they are in the 92 ter.
10 JUDGE ORIE: I'm afraid they're not --
11 MR. EMMERSON: They're not in the 92 ter.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
13 MR. EMMERSON: But the villages are there spelled out for each
14 subzone. Paragraph 44 deals with subzone 1 --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. You mean that Mr. Re leads the witness in that
17 MR. EMMERSON: And put those villages to the witness specifically
18 and then -- and that will help us to mark up the boundaries of the zones.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, a lot of help from many Defence teams. Take
20 advantage if you can have any advantage from it.
21 MR. RE: I'm indebted.
22 Q. Mr. Tetaj, zone 1, according to your statement, was the village of
23 Gllogjan, Shaptej, Gramocelj, Dubrava, Babaloc, Prilep, and Rastavica, can
24 you please mark those villages on as number -- those within zone number
1 A. So we're talking about the subzone, subzone number 1, because you
2 mentioned the word "zone." Zone is something bigger.
3 Q. Okay.
4 A. These were all four subzones.
5 Q. I'd just like you to mark them on the map, please.
6 A. Subzone number 1 of Gllogjan, it included Gllogjan, Shaptej,
7 Dubrava, Baballoq, Prilep, Rastovice --
8 Q. Mr. Tetaj --
9 A. These were the areas.
10 Q. I want you to mark them, physically mark them on the map. Can you
11 draw a circle around the area which is subzone 1 and just put a cross on
12 the villages, please.
13 A. Oh, oh, yeah.
14 Q. Just do a circle around the subzone, put a 1 in it --
15 A. Okay, okay, I understood you now.
16 I did it.
17 Q. Okay. Next one is number 2, which according to your statement,
18 was Rznic, Gornji, Donji Ratis, Beleg, and Kodralija.
19 A. Irzniq, Ratishe, yes.
20 Q. Subzone 3, according to your statement, comprising Gornja/Donja
21 Luka, Pozar, Ljumbarda, Dasinovac, and Vranoc, under your command.
22 A. This was subzone number 3.
23 MR. EMMERSON: Again just --
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. --
25 MR. EMMERSON: -- pausing briefly, Mr. Re may wish also to have
1 regard to paragraph 48 where the witness refers to Carrabreg and Lluka e
2 Eperme as also falling in subzone 3.
3 MR. RE: Again, I'm indebted to Mr. Emmerson for his assistance
5 Q. Carrabreg and Lluka e Eperme, were they also part of subzone 3;
6 and if so, can you mark them.
7 A. Carrabreg, no; Lluka e Eperme, yes.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Could the usher perhaps adjust the mirror a bit so we
9 have better light.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Number 3?
11 MR. RE:
12 Q. Yes, number 3.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Could I seek verification. In what you have drawn as
14 subzone number 3, is -- Lluka e Eperme is already included?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, it's here.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Thank you.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This one here.
18 MR. RE:
19 Q. It's within the circle in which you've circled 3. Is that
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Okay. Let's move to subzone 4 comprising Istinic, Papracani,
23 Gornji and Donji Streoc, Dubovik, Krusevac, and Rasic, under the command
24 of Skender Rexhahmetaj.
25 A. And also Gani Gjukaj.
1 Q. Gani Gjukaj is within that area you've just circled, 4. Is that
3 MR. EMMERSON: Gani Gjukaj, I think the witness's evidence is the
4 commander of that area. It's not a place but a person.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, both of them.
6 MR. RE: Okay. Could the map be marked for the moment?
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
8 Madam Registrar, that would be ...?
9 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, this will be Exhibit Number P266,
10 marked for identification.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
12 I take it that the marked original will now be given to the
13 registrar so that she keeps it and that it will be uploaded soon.
14 Now, the witness in zone 1 makes an additional marking. Could the
15 witness tell us what he was actually doing at that moment.
16 Could you tell us where you - how do you say it? - you -- I don't
17 know the word in English for that, Mr. Re.
18 MR. RE: Hached.
19 MR. EMMERSON: Hached.
20 JUDGE ORIE: What that means, this area which is -- perhaps, Madam
21 Usher, could you zoom in a little bit so we know exactly what area the
22 witness was -- I think you can do it from there. Please move in a bit.
23 That is the area just east of Dubrava and Shaptej. Yes. Could you tell
24 us what you just marked.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Can I --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Listen, all the zones, all the
3 subzones were aimed at having more specific areas where the tasks could
4 specifically be asked for implementation. The subzone 1 had its
5 headquarters in Gllogjan, and it includes Gllogjan, Shaptej, Gramaqel,
6 Dubrave, Baballoq, Prilep, but not in Bektesh [as interpreted], because in
7 Bektesh it was the Serb forces who were -- had taken position there. I
8 made a small mistake, and this area which I've hached is outside the zone
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, that's perfectly clear now.
11 Do you need the map further, Mr. Re or can --
12 Then, Madam Usher, could you please give the map to -- so the
13 hached area is excluded from subzone 1.
14 MR. EMMERSON: Again, I apologise, I'll stop interrupting, but
15 just to be clear, my understanding of the witness's testimony is that the
16 etched area or the hached area represents an area in which there was Serb
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I think he also said that it -- he said it
19 includes Gllogjan, Shaptej, Gramaqel, Dubrave, Baballoq, Prilep, but not
20 in Bektesh. I understand that as Bektesh not being --
21 MR. EMMERSON: I think may be --
22 JUDGE ORIE: -- but that might be Bitesh.
23 MR. EMMERSON: I think maybe Bitesh.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
25 MR. EMMERSON: And he goes on to say because it was Serb forces
1 who had taken position there.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. That's --
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I make a further clarification
4 here? Listen, in Bitesh there were Serb forces.
5 JUDGE ORIE: And what you call "Bektesh," is that sometimes --
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The summit of Baballoq was also
7 occupied by Serbs. Baballoq -- Baballoq is a village, but on the summit
8 of Baballoq there were Serb forces concentrated. So we must not mix the
9 summit of Baballoq with Baballoq village. Bektesh was the point where the
10 Serb artillery was deployed, and the same, I've seen for myself with my
11 own eyes in the Suka of Baballoq. So the village of Baballoq is further
12 down, whereas the Suka of Baballoq, the summit of Baballoq, is where the
13 Serb forces were concentrated, the peak of Baballoq. So we must not mix
14 the village of Baballoq with the peak of Baballoq. The village is the
15 village and the peak is the peak.
16 JUDGE ORIE: We heard evidence, similar evidence, from other
17 witnesses that on some elevations, there were Serb forces, and now my
18 question to you would be: Would you consider these elevations, these --
19 as you said, the Baballoq hill or mountain, to be part of the subzone or
20 did you just exclude that and say since this was occupied by Serb forces,
21 we did not consider this to be part of the subzone over there we had
22 control or which -- in which the territory was divided as far as your
23 forces were concerned?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Of course. There is no doubt about
25 it, because that's where the Serb forces were concentrated. They were on
1 high ground and they -- that's where they posed the greatest danger.
2 The -- the peak of Baballoq and Gllogjan in aerial distance were very
3 close, and there was a con -- a high concentration of Serb artillery up
4 there and there is no more than a kilometre in aerial distance from the
5 centre of Gllogjan. And that peak was dominated by the Serbian forces.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Do you happen to know a name of that peak or--
7 the peak less than 1 kilometre from Gllogjan?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it's called Bektesh, and are
9 you asking about which direction that is?
10 JUDGE ORIE: From what you just marked, I take it it was an
11 easterly direction, the east -- most eastern part of subzone 1. The
12 question I would have is whether that would be called, perhaps not in your
13 own language, Bitesh?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Thank you.
16 Please proceed, Mr. Re.
17 It's clear for us. We have heard earlier evidence.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that is Bektesh.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Re.
20 And has Madam Registrar already assigned a -- yes.
21 Please proceed.
22 MR. RE:
23 Q. Let's go back to the meeting which Ramush Haradinaj chaired which
24 the four subzone commanders were assigned. What did the meeting decide
25 about who was to be the overall commander of the four subzones?
1 A. It was decided that we would adopt this proposal and the
2 commanders of the subzones were the ones I mentioned, but it was also said
3 that the first subzone commander would be the overall commander and that
4 was a theoretical idea. But in practical terms for the time that things
5 were being discussed, that was impossible, because there were many things
6 missing, which I will properly elaborate on later.
7 Q. The first subzone -- the first subzone commander was Ramush
8 Haradinaj. What was meant by him being the overall commander?
9 A. No. I wanted to say that it was decided that the commander of the
10 first subzone be the representative, a representative and the one to
11 supervise all the other subzones. It was agreed that Ramush Haradinaj
12 would be the head of the regional staff of Gllogjan.
13 Q. Who were the subzone --
14 A. This was the first stage.
15 Q. Who were the subzone commanders to report to?
16 A. All the villages included under one subzone, they would report to
17 the subzone commander. And the subzone commander, depending on the
18 possibilities, report to the first subzone commander, who was the head of
19 the regional staff of Gllogjan. This was in theory, and that was agreed
20 for the moment then.
21 Q. Did that include consulting with Ramush Haradinaj before actions
22 were taken?
23 A. On the one hand you could say that, but that depended on the
24 possibilities and the circumstances. It was written on paper like that,
25 but the practical -- in practical terms it was impossible. We did not
1 have enough communication means. It was impossible then. That's why it
2 was decided unanimously that we would have these subzones under one
3 commander each so that they could handle the situation in their respective
5 Q. How did you communicate with the village commanders in your
6 subzone? Please make your answer as brief as possible.
7 A. By courier, by courier.
8 Q. What sort of courier?
9 A. People who were assigned. Each village had its own local staff,
10 as it were, and it -- depending on the circumstances, those people were
11 asked to carry out the task.
12 Q. Now, from that meeting that you've referred to in May, 1998, were
13 you within the KLA and an organised structure within the KLA, as a subzone
15 A. From the moment that I came back from the meeting and set up my
16 own staff, I knew that I was in the ranks of the KLA. From that moment
17 that the subzones were agreed with their last meeting towards the end of
18 May, I was part of the Kosovo Liberation Army as a commander of the
19 subzone number 3.
20 Q. What was the subordination line within the subzones and the --
21 underneath Ramush Haradinaj as the zone commander of subzone 1?
22 A. We -- depending on the situation, we organised meetings to discuss
23 what we would do further, and that always depended on the situation and
24 the circumstances, because the situation was very tense and the people
25 wanted to know what was going on. So all the villages reported through
1 their commanders, and depending on the situation, we met with Ramush to
2 discuss on how to defend and protect the population within our own zones.
3 This was, in simple terms, how it worked, how the subordination worked.
4 Q. Who had the final decision when you went back to discuss the
5 situation with Ramush?
6 A. We appreciated Ramush as zone commander, and we also took into
7 account his opinion and decisions, but all the decisions were taken at
8 zone -- subzone level; and we referred -- if the circumstances allowed us
9 to do, we referred upwards to what we did and how -- how we performed.
10 If you allow me, Your Honours, I would like to add something
11 here. May I?
12 JUDGE ORIE: Please do so.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We on -- we on paper had the powers
14 to re-organise at a military level, but the -- the circumstances were not
15 very convenient. But there are many terms being mixed up here like the
16 headquarters, the commander. Let me explain that the headquarters is a
17 military body, but you cannot call this -- you cannot use this term when
18 we did not have the appropriate structure. When we were discussing these
19 issues, we -- we had the moral authority to do this, but we -- we cannot
20 speak about the headquarters in the real military term of the word,
21 because it was just the rudimentary and I'm saying this that this was the
22 beginnings, I'm sincerely saying this.
23 I'm not trying to reduce or depreciate the role of Ramush as a
24 commander. But the word "commander" is a big word. To be commander of
25 forces, with which forces, with what weapons? We wanted to organise -- to
1 make an organisation which could help the population deal with the
2 circumstances. The headquarters or the staff that we're talking about,
3 they could not control the situation because the circumstances did not
4 allow them to do it. I had difficulties in going to Dashinoc. I was a
5 commander, in fact, but it was "commander." A proper commander should
6 have a proper organisation, a proper structure. Please understand the
7 situation. It's the first steps of what we intended to set up to -- not
8 to allow the situation to get out of hand, to avoid any unexpected
10 Look at the map. The areas like Suka or Baballoq, Bektesh, they
11 were all under the control of the Serb forces with very heavy artillery.
12 They had a very well-organised army and they had paramilitary units, they
13 had police units, in the -- we tried to control as much as we could, but
14 we were surrounded. And in these very difficult circumstances we chose
15 this method of doing things. And the word "headquarters" and "staff" and
16 "commander," they are very big words to apply to our circumstances.
17 Let's not confuse the situation and these terms.
18 So the word "commander" and "headquarters" and "staff," they are
19 big words. We wanted to have the situation under control, but it was
20 impossible to control it because we did not have the means at our disposal
21 to do that.
22 This is what I wanted to add.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Then please proceed, Mr. Re.
24 MR. RE:
25 Q. I want to take you to another meeting in about mid-June in
1 Jablanica about the 21st or 23rd of June and I want to show you the
2 minutes of that meeting which is Exhibit P140. And I want you to confirm
3 when you see the exhibit whether you were actually at that meeting.
4 MR. EMMERSON: I'm sorry, I think Mr. Re is under the
5 misapprehension. I'm happy for the witness to take off his earphones just
6 for a moment.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tetaj, could you take off your earphones just for
8 a while?
9 Mr. Tetaj, could you take off your earphones for a while. First
10 of all, do you understand English?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am not understanding what's going
13 JUDGE ORIE: First of all --
14 MR. EMMERSON: They've come off now.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. But nevertheless, I would like to know whether
16 the witness understands any English.
17 Do you understand the English language?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Should I remove the headphones?
19 JUDGE ORIE: Wait for one second. Do you understand the English
20 language, Mr. Tetaj?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Not much, a little.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Emmerson, I do not know what you had in mind --
23 MR. EMMERSON: Well, I --
24 JUDGE ORIE: -- if it's enough --
25 MR. EMMERSON: I'm sure it will be.
1 JUDGE ORIE: I don't -- Mr. Tetaj, you're invited to take off your
2 earphones for a second.
3 MR. RE: If it's Rznic versus Jablanica --
4 MR. EMMERSON: Well --
5 MR. RE: -- I'm aware of it and I will correct --
6 MR. EMMERSON: Well, it is, with respect, important to be
7 accurate. The leading question put at line 11 on page 55 confuses two
8 dates and two places: A meeting on the 21st and a meeting on the 23rd.
9 There are two meetings. And Jablanica with Rznic. There's a meeting
10 which the witness is now being shown the minutes of, which according to
11 his own statements, took place in Rznic on the 21st, and quite separate
12 meeting which took place on the 23rd, according to his evidence and indeed
13 according to the minutes that Your Honours have already seen in
14 Jablanica. And as I say, I've no objection to leading questions, but I do
15 object to questions put in a leading form which potentially mislead the
16 witness as to what he is looking at. I'm sure it is unintentional, but it
17 is important to be accurate.
18 MR. RE: It's entirely unintentional. I'm just -- it's just
19 eating into my time.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Emmerson already admitted that, if -- that there
21 may be no intent, but keeping in mind what Mr. Emmerson said, could you
22 please put --
23 MR. RE:
24 Q. Please have a look at the minutes of this meeting which --
25 JUDGE HOEPFEL: The witness needs to take on his headphones,
2 MR. RE: I'm sorry.
3 Q. Mr. Tetaj, can you please have a look at the minutes of that
4 meeting. Was that meeting that you attended, where was it?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. What was the meeting about?
7 A. I took part in that meeting. It's true that following the
8 engagement of many surrounding villages and the expansion of the
9 territory, so the idea propped up to set up a more-involving
10 [as interpreted] staff. So the idea was to set up the original staff of
11 Dukagjin. I took part personally in that meeting. It took place in
12 Jablanica. That was where the meeting took place.
13 Q. Whereabouts in Jablanica?
14 MR. EMMERSON: I'm sorry. This is the consequence of the
15 misleading question that was put in the first place. It's perfectly
16 clear, with respect, that this meeting -- and if the witness had had an
17 opportunity to read both sets of minutes as he had been making his witness
18 statements, it would be clear to him. This meeting that he's being shown
19 is a meeting which took place in Irzniq, according to his own testimony,
20 and a subsequent meeting took place two days later in Jablanica. And
21 this, as I submit, is the danger of putting things inaccurately in the
22 first place. The witness is now answering questions about a meeting in
23 Jablanica which took place two days after the meeting that Your Honours
24 are looking at.
25 MR. RE: I understand the objection. The difficulty I have, if I
1 can state it quite frankly, is e-court, in getting the documents up on the
2 screen, it's easier to give the two documents to the witness and show it
3 to him; otherwise, time is spent scroll through different --
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, I do understand that sometimes it's good to
5 have two documents next to each other, but we are at this moment asking
6 questions about P140, and whatever happens, if that is on the screen and
7 if you put questions, they should be about the meeting that is reflected
8 in P140. But if you want to proceed in another way to avoid -- but to
9 blame e-court for this is not something I could immediately follow.
10 Please proceed.
11 MR. RE: It's just a time issue, Your Honour.
12 If I could give the witness the two documents, P140 and P141.
13 Q. They're the minutes of two meetings, one on the 21st of June and
14 one on the 23rd of June, 1998. Firstly go to the document on the 21st of
15 June, 1998.
16 JUDGE ORIE: And just to assist us, Mr. Re, that would be number
18 MR. RE: 140, yes.
19 JUDGE ORIE: 140, yes.
20 MR. RE:
21 Q. Just so there's no confusion, Mr. Tetaj, is that a meeting that
22 you attended?
23 A. It's the first time I'm looking at this document in Irzniq;
24 nevertheless, I took part in that meeting. It was a working meeting. It
25 was not a meeting that set up staff. I'm not sure that all the people
1 whose names are mentioned here took really part. It is the first time I
2 am looking at such document. I haven't seen this document. On the other
3 hand, I've seen the other one, that's a meeting of Dukagjin staff, it's
4 the working meeting of the Dukagjin staff, where the staff was set up.
5 Q. And that's the one on the 23rd of June, 1998?
6 A. Yes. This other one took place on 21st of June, but as far as I
7 remember, on 21st -- on 22nd of June, the Jablanica meeting took place as
8 well. So these were two meetings which were very, very close to each
9 other. A long time has passed since then. I don't remember taking --
10 having all these activities taking part so close. Probably there is a
11 mistake with the date, probably it should not be 21, probably it was on
12 21st, but I don't remember well.
13 Q. That was the one in Rznic. Whereabouts was it held?
14 A. The working meetings took place in the school building, the
15 elementary school in Irzniq. Now, however, this document which I have in
16 my hand, I don't remember seeing it before. However, I remember that all
17 the meetings which took place on the situation were, indeed, held in
18 the -- in the building of the school.
19 MR. EMMERSON: For the record, the comment I made earlier about
20 the witness having given an account of this document is to be found at
21 paragraph 50 of the consolidated witness statement where he apparently was
22 shown this document on an earlier occasion.
23 MR. RE: Is that cross-examination?
24 JUDGE ORIE: No. It's assisting, as far as I understand. But
25 let's move on, Mr. Re.
1 MR. RE:
2 Q. The meeting -- was Ramush Haradinaj at that meeting? That's the
3 one in Rznic.
4 A. Yes, but I'm still not sure. It is the first time I'm looking at
5 this document. Yes, sure, he was there. I was there too -- some of the
6 names I'm seeing here, I don't remember them being present, like Cina
7 [phoen] major, I don't know who these people were. Ramush, Shemsedin,
8 Faton, yes, everybody knew them. This -- I see the names here. For
9 example, Lahi, he was never present there.
10 Q. Okay, Mr. Tetaj --
11 A. I haven't seen them.
12 Q. Mr. Tetaj, what I want you to do is listen carefully to the
13 question. The question I asked you was whether Mr. Haradinaj was there.
14 Will you please just confine yourself to the question asked; we'll finish
15 much more quickly. Okay.
16 Now let's move to the second document, which is the meeting of the
17 23rd of June, 1998.
18 A. Yes, yes.
19 Q. What can you say about the accuracy of the minutes which are in
20 your hand?
21 A. Yes. I see the date here. It was held by the end of June. This
22 was a working meeting --
23 Q. Mr. Tetaj, what can you say about the accuracy of the minutes of
24 the meeting? Please read it to yourself and comment on the accuracy of
25 what's recorded there.
1 A. Yes, I understood you now.
2 MR. EMMERSON: For the record, given that it's not showing on
3 e-court, may the record show that Mr. Re's showing the witness P141. Your
4 Honours will recall that there's a typed minute of the same meeting which
5 is P142.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] On the basis of this document, I
8 could say that this was a document on this meeting. The original staff
9 of -- original was transformed into the original staff of Dukagjin;
10 however, the -- as far as the presence of people are concerned, most of
11 them here, I could say -- tell you with certain confidence that they were
12 not there. For example, Daut Haradinaj, he was not there at this
13 meeting. Here you can see Daut in two places. Shemsedin Tolaj [phoen]
14 and Cekaj. So I'm sure that Daut was not there, so the meeting really
15 took place, and at that meeting the original staff of the region of
16 Dukagjin was set up.
17 MR. RE:
18 Q. Where was the meeting held?
19 A. Meeting was held in the village of Jablanica.
20 Q. Where?
21 A. In a private house.
22 Q. Whose house?
23 A. As far as I remember, in the house of Lahi Brahimaj.
24 Q. Did you know him before then?
25 A. Lahi Brahimaj?
1 Q. Yes.
2 A. I had seen him only once before, passing -- in passing.
3 Q. Did Mr. Haradinaj preside over this meeting?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Was there a person there called Major Sali Veseli?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Who was he and why was he there?
8 A. He is an officer of military career. He had come there to
9 contribute to the war. He had come -- he came two or three days before,
10 and then he joined the UCK. I know him. We were in the military academy
11 together in the artillery branch.
12 Q. What about Rexhep Selimi, Selimi, was -- who was he and was he
14 A. The first time I heard Rexhep Selimi was there. I hadn't seen him
15 before the meeting. He took part in the meeting, but I'm not sure in what
16 capacity he was there in the meeting. It's true that Rexhep Selimi was
17 present, but as I said, I'm not sure about the capacity, in what capacity
18 he was there in -- at the meeting.
19 Q. Was he a member of the KLA General Staff or headquarters?
20 A. All the time, since I joined the army, throughout the contacts I
21 had with Ramush Haradinaj, I never saw with my eye the -- a General Staff
22 of the UCK. I heard about the existence, but I didn't see the people
23 belonging to the staff. Now, after so many years, I can say now that
24 Rexhep Selimi was a member of the General Staff of the KLA. But if you go
25 back to that day, he did not declare that he was member of that staff. So
1 I didn't know, so that's why I'm telling you that I didn't know in what
2 capacity he was present at that meeting.
3 Q. Was there a name change of the regional area at that meeting,
4 regional headquarters, I mean?
5 A. Before we had the original headquarters of Gllogjan, and at that
6 meeting it was decided that this would be transformed into the original
7 headquarters of Dukagjin Plain.
8 Q. Were commanders appointed or elected at this meeting?
9 A. Yes. Different proposals were made at the meeting. It was
10 proposed that the commander of the staff of Dukagjin Plain, it was
11 proposed by Veseli that Ramush Haradinaj would be the head. Then Selimi
12 proposed that Lahi should be the head of this staff. Then later,
13 unanimously it was decided that the commander of Dukagjin staff should be
14 Ramush Haradinaj, based on his experience, based on what he had done, and
15 all the arguments for that were given by Veseli, by Sali Veseli.
16 Q. Was Sali Veseli given a position?
17 A. Yes, true. Sali Veseli was appointed commander of the staff.
18 Q. What about Faton Mehemetaj?
19 A. Operational staff. Yes, Faton Mehemetaj was appointed as
20 intelligence chief.
21 Q. Who was the deputy commander?
22 A. A deputy commander was Lahi Brahimaj at that meeting. It was
23 first proposed that Lahi would -- should become commander of the General
24 Staff, but this was not accepted and he was then appointed to the task of
25 deputy commander of the staff.
1 Q. Where was this new headquarters to be based?
2 A. It was decided that the new headquarters should be again stationed
3 in Gllogjan.
4 Q. Was there a military action in -- on about the 28th of May, 1998,
5 in Vranoc involving the MUP and the VJ coming from the direction of Pec?
6 A. Yes, there was an attack. It's true. By the end of -- at the end
7 of May, so this meeting took place later, but at the end of May, on 28th
8 of May, at the end of May probably, I don't remember exactly the date,
9 there was an attack in the early hours of the morning. It was an attack
10 coming from Baran against the village of Vranoc. Vranoc belonged to my
11 subzone. I was informed about that attack from a messenger. He told me
12 that the village had been -- had been surrounded from all quarters. I
13 took measures in order to get people mobilised and sent people to
14 assistance by sending people to Vranoc. The attacks continued from early
15 hours in the morning until 6.00 in the evening.
16 We had people injured, we had people -- civilians who were
17 killed. The Serbs used all kind of heavy artillery. They used also
18 shelling. The village mosque was ruined. Many houses were ruined, and
19 then the village came to a halt at about 6.00 in the evening. The Serbian
20 forces retreated. They went back for where they came from. And then they
21 attacked Dubovik and then they went and attacked Irzniq. So there were
22 heavy attacks. Then I remembered that a soldier of my subzone was killed,
23 his name was Avni Poduxhaj [phoen].
24 Q. How many soldiers did you have under your command at that point?
25 A. We didn't have exact numbers. Each village had its own
1 organisation. It was difficult for me to know the number of the soldiers
2 in each village. In Vranoc, with the military structure they had, they
3 put up some resistance. They organised some resistance from --
4 Q. I'm not asking you that. Please listen to the question I'm asking
5 you. The question I asked you is how many soldiers you had under your
6 command. What I'm trying to get from you is how many people you sent to
7 Vranoc. Can you answer that?
8 MR. EMMERSON: Sorry, with the greatest of respect, the witness
9 seemed to have been right in the middle of answering a question: "How
10 many soldiers did you have under your command?" To which he
11 responded: "We didn't have exact numbers," and was explaining why that
12 was. It doesn't, with respect, seem an entirely fair criticism.
13 MR. RE: It's not a criticism. I'm just trying to direct him so I
14 can get through this more quickly.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Perhaps, Mr. Re, it's known from many behaviourial
16 sciences that positive guidance sometimes serves the purpose better than a
17 negative remark. Please proceed.
18 MR. RE:
19 Q. Mr. Tetaj, to assist the Trial Chamber and to enable us to
20 complete your testimony as quickly as possible, I'd really appreciate it
21 if you could assist us all by answering the question as directly as
22 possible. Now, what I'm interested in just here is how many people you
23 sent to Vranoc. Are you able to answer that?
24 A. I'm ready to answer, but it was very difficult for us to know the
25 exact numbers, because they were volunteers. I can give you an example.
1 For example, by means of a lorry of a private owner, who I met at the
2 bridge of Pozhare, when I told him that Vranoc had been attacked, people
3 voluntarily turned up. It was not that I had a barracks full of
4 soldiers. We hadn't reached that stage. We got people from other
5 villages, so we're talking about 20, 30 soldiers, volunteers, and we went
6 there to help.
7 Q. Okay. Thanks. That was --
8 A. Not to say they were soldiers; they were not.
9 Q. All right. The 20 to 30 was the figure I was after from you,
10 Mr. Tetaj, if you can just take that as positive encouragement to shorten
11 your answers in that respect. The next --
12 A. They were volunteers. They were volunteers.
13 Q. Were they armed volunteers?
14 A. Yes, armed to the extent that their possibilities allowed them
15 to. But the people were willing to come and help in difficult moments
16 when assistance was required.
17 Q. What were they armed with?
18 A. Somewhat -- someone had a hunting rifle, someone had a
19 semi-automatic weapon, someone had a grenade, a hand-grenade. This was
21 Q. Were they uniformed?
22 A. At that time when I went there, no one had a uniform because they
23 didn't have it.
24 Q. When they participated in action against the Serbs, the MUP and
25 the VJ, were they uniformed -- were they wearing uniforms, that is, in the
1 attack in Vranoc?
2 A. Who? Are you talking about our side?
3 Q. Yes.
4 A. There is no translation.
5 Q. We missed your answer. Were --
6 A. There is no translation.
7 Q. Were these --
8 JUDGE ORIE: You did not hear the question or there's even no
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not hear the question.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Would you please repeat the question, Mr. Re.
12 MR. RE:
13 Q. Were the 20 to 30 volunteers wearing uniforms when they went to
14 Vranoc and the Serbs were there?
15 A. No.
16 Q. I'm going to ask you about military actions you undertook. When
17 you undertook military actions, did Ramush Haradinaj ever order you to
18 undertake military actions?
19 A. When Vranoc was attacked, all day I had no contact with him. I
20 wanted to get in touch with him, I wanted to contact him, but I had no
21 possibility because time did not allow me to try and do that.
22 Q. In general in the period from May 1998 onwards, when you were
23 commanding the subzone, did Ramush Haradinaj ever order you to undertake
24 any military actions?
25 A. In our working meetings, because we risked being attacked by the
1 Serb forces, we agreed to undertake certain operations on the road, for
2 example, leading to Decane and so on. I can't remember.
3 Q. Did you undertake military or order military actions on your own?
4 A. Yes, I have. That's true. In upper Luka and in Vranoc, as I
5 said, without Ramush knowing that I was doing it.
6 Q. When you undertook other military actions, did you consult Ramush
7 Haradinaj before you did so?
8 A. Sometimes probably yes, but the possibilities were very few. So
9 when we undertook any action, at the end probably we informed him and he
10 also made suggestions. But we did not wait to hear from him before we
11 acted. Time was very precious.
12 Q. Did Mr. Haradinaj ever order you to attack every military convoy
13 or police patrol that you noticed on a road?
14 A. The communication between Peje and Decane was more frequent and it
15 was used by the Serb forces. That road was used by the Serb forces, and
16 we had to decide what we were going to do. And because of the
17 consequences of any such attack, we decided not to act.
18 Q. What I was asking you was whether Mr. Haradinaj had ever ordered
19 you to attack every military convoy or police patrol that came on the
21 A. I can't remember, I can't remember. I cannot remember. Maybe.
22 But it's a long time and I cannot remember.
23 Q. When you say "maybe," do you remember making a statement to the
24 Office of the Prosecutor in 2002 in which you referred to that -- those
25 particular orders?
1 A. Maybe, because then there was a shorter period of time from the
2 time that action had taken place, so maybe, yes.
3 Q. Was your memory fresher of the events in 2002 when you made the
4 statement than it is now?
5 A. Of course. Now it's about ten years.
6 Q. Did any of your soldiers or units attack any MUP or VJ patrols on
7 that road?
8 A. We had our main points from where we defended our subzone from
9 attacks. The main point was the upper Luka, and the soldiers in our
10 positions -- so the Serb soldiers were just a hundred metres away from our
11 positions, and we had exchanged fire. But I don't remember such an attack
12 having taken place. They have attacked -- they attacked us and we
13 responded, and we did that from our own positions, which we had
14 fortified. We had fortified our positions in through there it all
16 Q. Did soldiers under the command of Mr. Haradinaj attack MUP or VJ
17 patrols or convoy on the road?
18 A. That happened in the village of Rastovice where -- Rastovice,
19 Rastovice is the name of the village where we took control. That's where
20 we cut off the road, and it was for a long time in our control.
21 Q. I'm asking about Mr. Haradinaj's soldiers. Is that what you're
23 A. That -- that -- the road was cut off and I was in -- told that it
24 was attacked, but the road was cut off, yes.
25 Q. Was there a difference in approach between you and Mr. Haradinaj
1 about attacking VJ and MUP patrols or convoys on the road? If you could
2 answer that yes or no, I would be very grateful, and depending on the
3 answer, I'll move to the next question.
4 A. Yes, yes. The time it was the same, same opinion, same approach.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, you announced that you would move to your
6 next question, but looking at the clock, I would first like to have a
8 Before the break I would like to ask Madam Usher to escort the
9 witness out of the courtroom.
10 Mr. Tetaj, we'll have a break for approximately 20 minutes. We'll
11 have a break for approximately 20 minutes. Madam Usher will escort you
12 out of the courtroom.
13 Before we have that break, Mr. Re, I -- I was really lost a bit
14 about the two meetings, 21st of June and 23rd of June, the first one in
15 Rznic and the other one in Jablanica. I had no problems with the second
16 one. I -- on P140 I desperately was looking for the date of that
17 meeting. It took me a while to find out that where there is handwritten
18 place and date mentioned in the original, that the draft translation which
19 we find in the system does not translate place and date of this meeting.
20 [The witness stands down]
21 JUDGE ORIE: So then I finally understood why I was lost. Could
22 you take care that we have a full translation, although I like personally
23 to reduce that to the absolute necessary. Then there was -- yes.
24 There was another matter. You asked the witness whether he had a
25 better memory in 2002 when he gave his statement in which something was
1 referred to. That is not in evidence, I take it that you're aware of
2 that, so that we now know that the witness's memory in 2002 was better and
3 that he made some reference to something at that time. If you would
4 intend us to take that portion of the 2002 statement as the basis for a
5 refreshed memory to which he now -- then I had a problem, because the
6 Appeals Chamber later will not find any 2002 statement admitted into
8 MR. RE: No. I intend to get the Albanian of the original and
9 show it to the witness.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, or --
11 MR. RE: Subject to --
12 JUDGE ORIE: Or read the relevant portion to him. But you then
13 moved on, so I wondered --
14 MR. RE: Yes.
15 JUDGE ORIE: -- what exactly you had in mind at that moment.
16 MR. RE: No.
17 JUDGE ORIE: But I see that you have --
18 MR. RE: Yeah. I didn't have it with me; that was the issue.
19 JUDGE ORIE: That was the issue.
20 Then we'll have a break and resume at quarter past 6.00.
21 --- Recess taken at 5.55 p.m.
22 [The witness entered court]
23 --- On resuming at 6.17 p.m.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, please proceed.
25 MR. RE:
1 Q. Mr. Tetaj, I'm going to ask you now about Toger. What was your
2 understanding about Toger's activities in the Dukagjin area?
3 A. First of all I would like to clarify one thing. I heard that
4 Toger from other people and I read it in books, I never knew that he was
5 called Toger at the time. We used -- we had contacts, but I never knew
6 his name. I learnt about that after the war. Second, I met him when I
7 met Ramush Haradinaj. Third, Toger was never present in the meetings we
8 had with Ramush. From the moment when the headquarters, original
9 headquarters in Gllogjan was established, Togeri was there only for a few
10 minutes and then he disappeared. He was in Irzniq.
11 Q. Okay. I'll stop you there --
12 A. This is all I knew about him.
13 Q. Okay. I'm going to ask you some questions. Now, were you aware
14 of a unit called the Black Eagles? Just yes or no.
15 A. Yes, yes.
16 Q. Were they based in Rznic?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Who was their commander?
19 A. Togeri.
20 Q. What did they wear?
21 A. Black civilian clothes.
22 Q. Civilian clothes or uniforms?
23 A. They were kind of civilian clothes. They were not military
24 uniforms. They were black civilian clothes.
25 Q. Did they have KLA insignia?
1 A. Yes, they did, on the right side. They had the insignia of the
3 Q. How many were there?
4 A. At first they were few, maybe 30, 35. They were a unit.
5 Q. Did you hear yourself about the kidnapping or killing of Albanian
6 Serbs in Roma in the Dukagjin area in 1998?
7 A. I haven't seen them. I heard about that. It was like a secret, a
8 public secret, everything which happened in Dukagjin. If it was not
9 proved, then everybody said that this was done by Togeri; however, this is
10 only hearsay and there is nothing confirmed. This is what we heard, and
11 that was how it happened. Everything bad that happened, it was attributed
12 to the Toger.
13 And I would like also -- I would like to say something else, that
14 Toger was not somebody who was known to the population. He came to assist
15 in the war, so people mentioned his name but they did [as interpreted]
16 know him personally.
17 Q. Why were people blaming Toger were these activities?
18 MR. GUY-SMITH: Objection. That calls for speculation on the part
19 of this witness, unless he has personal knowledge.
20 MR. RE: I'll rephrase the question.
21 Q. What led you to understand were the reasons why people were
22 blaming Toger for all these activities?
23 A. As I said before, and I'm confirming this now in the courthouse, I
24 do not want to speak about this; however, you insisted asking me what I
25 heard from other people. I heard about the uniform, the black uniform,
1 and then everything which happened, as I said, was attributed to the
2 Toger. But this is what I heard.
3 Q. Did Toger have a notebook?
4 A. Yes, he had one. I had one. There was some names in the
5 notebook. There was also the name of Faik Gecaj in the notebook, who was
6 in charge of getting supplies. I saw the name. Togeri talked to me. He
7 asked me -- I saw also other names, this was by chance, however I cannot
8 confirm it.
9 Q. Whose names were in Toger's notebook?
10 A. I saw two or three names by chance at a spontaneous meeting. When
11 we talked about Faik I saw the names of Zek Senani [phoen] and Njeta
12 [phoen], Musa Berisha, that's normal, Faik, he is still alive, and these
13 were the names which I could see, as far as I remember.
14 Q. Why were their names in Toger's notebook?
15 A. I didn't ask him, but before the Toger came there was some lists
16 drawn up in some villages. These were lists drawn up for personal
17 reasons. These were lists drawn up to compromise people, but these were
18 not the lists drawn up by the Toger. These were lists drawn up by other
19 people but they were attributed to the Toger. I'm not saying that this
20 was done by Ramush; however, in some villages there were some people who
21 belonged to political parties, they had political differences among each
22 other. So probably this could be the reason for the lists.
23 Q. Well, did Toger have a notebook in which he recorded the names of
24 people he was looking for?
25 A. Yes, he had a notebook, I saw it, but I don't know whether the
1 names of the people were in this notebook for that reason which I
2 mentioned or for some other reason or whether they were people who
3 belonged to the unit, to his unit. I don't know the reason exactly why
4 the names were there.
5 Q. Why did --
6 A. But I saw the notebook and I also saw the names I mentioned. But
7 I don't know the reason. Probably they were the people who belonged to
8 his unit, the Black Eagles.
9 Q. All right. Why was Faik Gecaj in that list, in that book that
10 he -- that you saw when you met him spontaneously?
11 A. Faik Gecaj was from my village. He was someone who came from
12 abroad. Faik went several times to Albania and came back, so I don't
13 know. I -- when I talked to him about this, he explained me something but
14 I don't remember. It was a long time before.
15 Q. You've made two statements to the Office of the Prosecutor in
16 which you've gave us reasons why the name was in the book. I'd just like
17 you to cast your mind back to the reasons you gave the Prosecutors when
18 you signed the two statements. Why did Toger tell you that Faik Gecaj's
19 name was in that book?
20 A. Toger said nothing. I was there and I saw the name and then we
21 had this conversation. The Toger asked me about this person.
22 Q. What was --
23 A. And then I explained to him. I told him that it's a good, capable
25 Q. Does it jog your memory if I tell you that you told us and signed
1 the statement saying that he told you that Faik Gecaj was on the list of
2 wanted persons because he was dealing with smuggling weapons for himself
3 and not for the UCK?
4 A. Probably I said so, but this was the name in the notebook, not in
5 the list that -- anyway, I don't remember exactly.
6 Q. And do you remember telling the Prosecution and signing two
7 statements saying that you knew that Togeri had a notebook in which the
8 names were recorded of people he was looking for?
9 A. I know that the Prosecutor office asked me about the Toger. I
10 explained to them many things. Nevertheless, I don't know really about
11 the -- the way I was asked. I -- so we are -- they asked me about Faik, I
12 explained to them what I knew about him, and also I explained to them
13 about other names which I saw accidentally in the notebook.
14 Q. Tell the Trial Chamber about someone called Hulaj, H-u-l-a-j, a
15 villager from Prilep --
16 A. Hulaj, yes, yes.
17 Q. Tell the Trial Chamber what you know about Hulaj and Toger.
18 A. It's a fact that there was an incident in the village of Irzniq
19 [Realtime transcript read in error "Isniq"]. A peasant who was going with
20 his car from Prilep to Irzniq. There was an incident. Hulaj was injured
21 with a fire-arm by Toger. I haven't seen it with my own eyes. I was told
22 about them. I informed Ramush about this. Ramush said that he should
23 talk to Toger about this, how it happened.
24 Q. What did you hear about how Toger injured this man with his
1 A. So I heard that he was stopped, he was asked about his identity.
2 Then there was a confrontation. This incident then happened as Hulaj
3 tried to come out of the car. He was injured. There were some other
4 people of his village in his car. This is what I know. I don't remember
5 the name.
6 Q. Do you recall telling the Prosecution and signing a statement to
7 the effect that: "They were stopped by Toger in the village of Rznic.
8 When Hulaj got out of the car, Toger immediately shot him in the leg"?
9 A. As I said, I said the same thing a few moments ago, the same
10 thing, no different. So I don't know how -- why do you ask me the same
11 question? I said -- I told you what I heard, not things which have not --
12 which I've seen with my eyes, no.
13 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Pardon. May I interrupt. For the name of this
14 village, was this Rznic or Isniq?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Irzniq, not Isniq.
16 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Thank you. So it was a peasant who was going with
17 his car from Prilep to Rznic, was that already the same name?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From Prilep to Irzniq because Prilep
19 is close and then there were also Serbian forces in the main road. So
20 many families had displaced from Prilep and they lived in Irzniq.
21 However, after they came to the centre, I mean this car came to the centre
22 of Irzniq. This is what I heard. I was not there. So this incident
23 happened, this -- I confirmed this is an incident which happened against
24 our desire. It was a very bad thing which happened. However, how it
25 happened, I don't know whether he came out of the car or at another
1 particular moment, this I don't know. Whether this was done deliberately
2 or not, this is also something else which I don't know, but I remember
3 that I talked with Ramush on this incident and then Ramush told me that he
4 would talk to the Toger about what happened.
5 So the reason really I don't know -- I don't know whether it was
6 deliberate or not. There was -- there were also -- as far as I heard,
7 there was some old people in the car. So there was no real reason for the
8 Toger to go and kill old Albanian people. However, this incident
9 occurred, that's for sure.
10 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Very well.
11 Mr. Re, please.
12 MR. RE:
13 Q. I'll ask you about another incident involving Toger, this time
14 with Musa Berisha who was the president of the Council for the Protection
15 of Human Rights and Freedom in Decani around the same period, that is
16 around June, 1998. Tell the Trial Chamber what you know about --
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. -- Mr. Berisha being stopped in Rznic by Toger and his soldiers.
19 A. Again, this is something about which I heard. Berisha told me
20 that he went to Irzniq with his car. He wanted to go to Gllogjan. Then
21 there was this incident there, nobody was killed. However, some -- there
22 was an exchange of fire. I cannot confirm that this was done by the
23 Toger, so this case also occurred. Nobody was injured as a matter of
24 fact. Musa Berisha turned back his car. The tires were flat, the tires
25 of the car were flat, that's it.
1 Q. You just said there was an exchange of fire. Did Mr. Berisha tell
2 you that people in his car fired or it was only Toger and his soldiers who
4 A. I don't want -- I didn't want to say there was an exchange of
5 fire. In fact, Berisha had no weapon. He was a civilian. He went
6 there. And then Berisha returned and he came to my house. We met there,
7 and very briefly he explained to me what had happened. I did not consider
8 it so tragic because there was no casualty. But Berisha had nothing, had
9 no weapon. He was only a civilian.
10 Q. Were there villages in the third and fourth subzone in which Toger
11 and his unit were not allowed access?
12 A. Yes, it's true, especially in Irzniq and in Bistrica, there were
13 some people for whom the Toger was not very welcome. So he is not welcome
14 to go to these places. This happened because they were afraid because
15 they thought that if the Toger would come and the Serb forces would come
16 later, and then the population would become a target.
17 Q. Were Toger and his men entering villages looking for people who
18 were "wanted"?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Was that why villagers prevented them -- tried to prevent them
21 from entering the villages?
22 A. Look, I must explain something else. Before Togeri there was
23 another person, Uku -- Uka, he was before Togeri, and he left. Togeri
24 came a bit later. And when you asked me about who was in -- who
25 interrogated me, there was another person by the name of Uka and there are
1 many things which we -- was involved in and they are now be attributed to
3 Q. Were Toger and his men known for their brutality?
4 MR. GUY-SMITH: Well, I'm not clear as to whether or not he's
5 asking for personal knowledge or rumour, gossip, at this point were they
6 known for their brutality, that's --
7 JUDGE ORIE: The question is --
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He was more dynamic.
9 JUDGE ORIE: The objection is denied. We'll further find out what
10 the witness will tell us.
11 The question was whether Toger and his men were known for their
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Togeri was described as such at the
14 time. Everything that was happening, the worst things that were happening
15 there -- then were attributed to Togeri, although he may not have been at
16 that site. So there is nothing specific which I have seen with my own
17 eyes. So I'm -- I'm just asking both Your Honours and the Prosecution to
18 ask me about things which I have seen with my own eyes.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Could you tell us -- you said Togeri was
20 described as such. Could you tell us by whom.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In all villages, rumours were spread
22 that it was Togeri who was the source of this and that. But I cannot
23 confirm anything because I haven't seen anything like that. It was being
24 commented on like that, but as to the reality I don't know. It's true
25 that he was more dynamic and he was more serious in his tone and that is
1 probably why people reached that conclusion. There was a lot of rumours
2 going around that he did this and he did that, but I have not seen
3 anything and do not know exactly anything of the sort. So I cannot
4 confirm it.
5 JUDGE ORIE: You said he was more dynamic. Could you tell us what
6 you exactly meant by that.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He was more enthusiastic. He was
8 cool, but he was, by nature and his looks, like that. The image that
9 people were talking about, it was something which they had created in
10 their heads - I don't know how.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, please proceed.
12 MR. RE:
13 Q. I'm going to ask you now about Jablanica and Skender Kuci. First
14 of all, were you aware or had you heard about there being a KLA prison
15 camp in Jablanica in mid-1998?
16 A. I know one thing which I want to explain --
17 Q. No, no.
18 A. The term "prison" needs to be explained. Please.
19 Q. What I'm asking you is if you had heard about there being a prison
20 camp there first. I will then move to something else.
21 A. A prison, what prison?
22 Q. Had you heard that there was a place in Jablanica where prisoners
23 of the KLA were being detained?
24 A. Look, I have not seen things with my own eyes --
25 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tetaj, Mr. Tetaj, let me stop you. It's clear if
1 Mr. Re asks you about what you heard, you're invited to tell us what you
2 did hear and you're invited, to the extent you know or still remember how
3 you heard about it. There's no need to repeat that you didn't see
4 something with your own eyes. If you're not asked whether you saw
5 anything but what you heard about -- what you heard others telling you.
6 So the question was whether you heard that there was a place in Jablanica
7 where prisoners of the KLA were being detained, where it is --
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've heard but I have not seen it.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Re.
10 Mr. Emmerson.
11 MR. EMMERSON: I wonder whether Your Honours have the statement --
12 the consolidated witness statement --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
14 MR. EMMERSON: -- at hand.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
16 MR. EMMERSON: I think that Mr. Re is asking in respect of the
17 first line of paragraph 80. It's -- it may be important in this respect
18 for he -- for him and perhaps for Your Honours also to note paragraph 82,
19 where in three lines up from the bottom of that paragraph a slightly
20 somewhat contradictory answer is given.
21 MR. RE: Surely that's a matter for cross-examination --
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I --
23 MR. RE: -- if we don't have time.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I agree with Mr. Re, Mr. Emmerson, that this
25 would have been a matter for cross-examination.
1 Mr. Re, please proceed.
2 MR. RE:
3 Q. I'll take you to Skender Kuci. Did you know Skender Kuci?
4 A. Never known in my life a person by that name, and I cannot -- I
5 can explain what happened.
6 Q. Okay.
7 A. I don't know him.
8 Q. I want to ask you the questions, short ones, one after the other.
9 Do you know someone called Imer Jusaj? Was there an answer?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. All right. Is he from Donji Streoc?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Was Skender Kuci a friend of his?
14 A. A friend, yes, that's what he told me he was.
15 Q. In July, 1998 did he come and tell you something about Skender
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. What did he tell you?
19 A. He came to my place and told me that Skender Kuci had -- has been
20 abducted by the KLA and he's being held in Jablanica. I haven't seen such
21 a thing, but I took note of what he said and I contacted Faton Mehemetaj
22 about this.
23 Q. What did Faton Mehemetaj say?
24 A. Faton Mehemetaj told me that I need to talk to Ramush Haradinaj.
25 I went to Ramush and told him what I was told, and he had no knowledge of
1 what I told him. And together we went to Jablanica.
2 Q. Where did you go and see Ramush before you went to Jablanica?
3 A. To Jablanica, we went to the house of Nazmi Brahimaj.
4 Q. Was that the local KLA headquarters or a different location?
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, I'm a bit surprised by just your next
6 question. Your previous question was: "Where did you go and see Ramush
7 before you went to Jablanica?" And then the answer is: "To Jablanica, we
8 went to the house of Nazmi Brahimaj." And --
9 MR. RE: It was for time considerations I didn't pursue it. It's
10 not of great importance. That's why I didn't pursue it, but if Your
11 Honours want me to, I can go back and ask him where he saw --
12 JUDGE ORIE: No, but I'm a bit surprised -- okay. Then now I
13 better understand that it was not of such relevance to pursue the matter.
14 Please proceed.
15 MR. RE:
16 Q. Was that the KLA headquarters you went to in Jablanica?
17 A. With Ramush we went there. It was a house. It's called a fort
18 from our people there. It was the local staff which was based there.
19 Q. Who did you see there, you and Ramush?
20 A. Both with Ramush we met Nazmi Brahimaj.
21 Q. Did you speak to him?
22 A. Yes, we spoke with him. We didn't have much time because the
23 situation on the ground was very serious and Ramush told him that this
24 person should be released immediately and we returned.
25 Q. Did Nazmi Brahimaj tell you and Ramush why this person was in --
1 why Skender Kuci was being detained?
2 A. Ramush Haradinaj knew nothing about it until the moment that I
3 told him, and immediately after that Ramush gave the ultimatum that this
4 person should be immediately released and he said no such thing should
5 happen anymore because this is damaging our cause.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tetaj, could you please carefully listen to the
7 question. The question was whether Nazmi Brahimaj told you and Ramush why
8 Skender Kuci was being detained. So what Brahimaj told you about that,
9 reason for detention.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
11 JUDGE ORIE: What did he tell you?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He told us that he tried to escape
13 when one of the soldiers had injured him slightly, and he said that he
14 would be released as soon as he's [indiscernible] well.
15 MR. RE:
16 Q. Was he released?
17 A. We waited three, four days and we met with Ramush [as interpreted]
18 and his uncle came and said that Kuci has not come back home. And then,
19 together with Ramiz we went to Jablanica and we met Ibrahimaj again.
20 Q. Who is Ramiz?
21 A. Ramiz Berisha.
22 Q. Is that Skender Kuci's uncle?
23 A. No, I don't know whether Skender is his uncle or is it on the
24 mother's side or on the father's side? I don't know. They are related.
25 MR. EMMERSON: I'm sorry to rise, but I'm slightly concerned about
1 line 8, page 85, line 8, as to whether there may have been a mishearing or
2 a mistranslation and whether the witness intended to use the name that
3 appears there on the transcript, because I see just a couple of lines
4 later he uses a name that sounds very similar.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
6 MR. EMMERSON: Some clarity on that, if I may.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, you answered on a question whether Skender
8 Kuci was released, you started your answer by saying: "We waited three,
9 four days and we met ..."
10 Could you please repeat what you then said. You met with whom?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] After three, four days, Ramiz
12 Berisha came to my house and me and Ramush, after we came back from the
13 first meeting, we knew that he was going to be released. But Ramiz
14 Berisha came to tell me that he hadn't been released.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. That sufficiently clarifies the issue.
16 Please proceed, Mr. Re.
17 MR. RE:
18 Q. How many times did you go back to see Nazmi Brahimaj about Skender
20 A. The first time after we went there with Ramush, when Ramush knew
21 nothing about the case, then we went with Ramiz and Nazmi Brahimaj
22 confirmed that Kuci had been sent to the make-shift hospital in Irzniq.
23 But because of the lack of medical means, they had not succeeded in saving
24 his life. So they have buried him near a forest in Jablanica.
25 Q. Did you go to the grave?
1 A. Then together with Ramiz Berisha, we went and he confirmed it to
2 Kuci's family. And then we discussed with Brahimaj to unter
3 [as interpreted] the corpse in order to pass it on to the family, but it
4 was very difficult to take the corpse to the family because of the
5 military situation on the ground. But we decided to take the corpse for
6 reburial in Dobrin [phoen]. This was the second time that I went there
7 after the one with Ramush.
8 Q. Did you assist in exhuming his body from the forest in Jablanica?
9 A. No, I did not help but I was present. They said that I helped but
10 I was present. I did not help. I was present when the grave was re --
11 was opened.
12 Q. Whereabouts was the grave in relation to the UCK headquarters in
13 Jablanica, how far from it was it?
14 A. If you've gone from Zhabel to Jablanica, it's on the right-hand
15 side on the edge of a forest. It's a kilometre or so.
16 Q. How did you know where the grave was?
17 A. We were told on the day when we went there. The people were
18 prepared and people signalled, because it was night, that they were going
19 to be there. They used a torch to signal to us where they were.
20 Q. Why did you go there at night?
21 A. Because we agreed to unbury the corpse to take it to the family.
22 Q. Why did you go there at night as opposed to during the day and why
23 did people have to signal a torch for you?
24 A. We went there during the day but there was a lot of pressure from
25 the attacks on us on the ground, and then we agreed that we were going to
1 do that later in the evening.
2 Q. What do you mean by "attacks on us on the ground"? Who was
3 attacking and who is "us"?
4 A. The Serbian forces were shelling all day, and it was very
5 unpleasant and unenviable situation on the ground and it was not easy to
6 move around freely.
7 MR. RE: Can the witness please be shown 65 ter Exhibit --
8 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
9 MR. RE: -- 1330.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, I'm looking at the clock, it's one minute to
11 7.00. I tried to find out at earlier moments how much time you would
12 need, and it's -- you're just going on as if time, apart from the one
13 question you withdrew, show it to the witness, but we have to stop in the
14 next three or four minutes.
15 MR. RE: I appreciate that. I think I realistically need a leeway
16 of maybe 15 minutes in the morning, which should allow me to complete it.
17 I mean, I'm almost there. There are a couple -- that exhibit, two
18 photographs, and just a couple of other things from his earlier statement
19 and I'll be finished.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
21 MR. RE: I think 15 minutes should do it.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Try to do whatever you can do in the next five
23 minutes and the Chamber will consider whether there's any time left. I
24 mean, I think that the Chamber has been clear enough that it expected you
25 to finish the witness today, and the time would be considerably reduced
1 from the three and a half hours, whether it was one hour and a half or
2 once you had used one hour and 20 minutes, you said "I need another hour."
3 That's two hour and 20 minutes. You've had now the whole afternoon, I
4 mean, and if this would be the first time that the assessment of the time
5 you would need would be inadequate, then it might be easier for us to
6 grant another 15 minutes. Please proceed for the next four minutes.
7 MR. RE: 65 ter 1330.
8 Q. Do you recognise that on the screen in front of you as a
9 photograph of Jablanica in which you've premarked before we came to court
10 where the KLA staff headquarters were?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Are you able to --
13 A. It was -- it was a private home and it was the local staff, only
14 for Jablanica.
15 Q. Okay. Are you able to see on that map where it was that the body
16 of Skender Kuci was buried and you were present when it was dug up for
18 A. You can see -- it wasn't here where this little arrow is. It --
19 near the mosque. He was buried somewhere in the area near the mosque,
20 although things have changed because there are many new houses which have
21 been built. So it's a bit difficult to spot. But it's -- it -- it's not
22 where the arrow is, that's for sure. It was somewhere near the mosque at
23 the entrance of the village on the right-hand side.
24 Q. Could you assist us or could the usher assist us by -- if you
25 could get a large -- if you get a pen and draw a large arrow --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, isn't the relevance of these questions that
2 the body was buried in Jablanica rather than close to Rznic and do we have
3 to know exactly whether it was 10 metres -- I mean, what's the relevance
4 of that?
5 MR. RE: The relevance is for the Prosecution case that the person
6 died in KLA custody or was taken to a hospital or was taken back and
7 temporarily buried close to the KLA headquarters in Jablanica.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
9 MR. RE: That's the relevance of it.
10 JUDGE ORIE: We have that already. Without any further markings
11 we see the headquarters are there, the mosque is clearly visible on the
12 photograph. Do we have to know exactly close to what tree? I mean, but
13 if you want to demonstrate that, what does the exact location if the
14 witness says it was close to the -- close to the mosque, what would that?
15 MR. RE: The exact location -- the exact location, I'm not after.
16 It's just that when you go to look at the exhibits afterwards, if it's
17 marked on it it's a lot easier to link it back to the transcript and if
18 you have to read the transcript and look at the exhibit. That's the only
19 reason why I want an approximation on the exhibit, just for convenience.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, convenience of the Appeals Chamber. The
21 Chamber, of course, has heard the witness's testimony, but if you want to
22 use your time in that way that -- yes, could you -- then of course, the
23 marker should be given to the witness. Has the witness the marker? Yes.
24 Could you please mark on this photograph where the body was
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Approximately here. Somewhere here.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. The witness made a mark by a red dot close to
3 the mosque on the photograph.
4 MR. RE: Could -- just so we can all see it.
5 Q. Can you just make a large arrow, Mr. Tetaj, can you look at me for
6 a moment, just make a large arrow.
7 A. [Marks]
8 Q. Okay. Thank you.
9 MR. RE: May that be received into evidence.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar, that would be, the marked
11 photograph, premarked in black and marked during the testimony in red.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, this would be P267, marked for
14 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
15 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
16 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, it's five minutes past 7.00.
17 Mr. Tetaj, we'll finish for the day. We'd like to see you back
18 tomorrow morning, 9.00 in this same courtroom. I want to instruct you
19 that you should not speak with anyone about the testimony you have given
20 or you're still about to give, and tomorrow you'll be cross-examined
21 perhaps after a few more questions to be put to you by Mr. Re, but at
22 least whether or not after another few minutes of questioning by Mr. Re,
23 you'll then be cross-examined by counsel for the three defendants.
24 We stand adjourned until tomorrow, 9.00, same courtroom.
25 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.06 p.m.,
1 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 8th day of
2 May, 2007, at 9.00 a.m.