1 Wednesday, 18 April 2012
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.
5 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, everyone.
6 Yes, good morning, Mr. Robinson. I was told that you have
7 something to raise.
8 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, thank you. Good morning, Mr. President. I'm
9 asking for some assistance from the Trial Chamber, sorry to bother you
10 with this. Last night when we went to the Detention Unit, myself and
11 General Radinovic, in order to prepare for the testimony of -- the
12 cross-examination of Dr. Butler, Dr. Karadzic wasn't allowed to meet us
13 in the privileged room where we have privileged visits. We went ahead
14 and had the visit anyway although we're concerned whether or not any
15 confidentiality was breached, but we went ahead and had the meeting so as
16 not to delay the cross-examination or seek to delay the
18 But Dr. Karadzic would like the Chamber to inquire or use its
19 good offices to inquire with the UNDF as to why he was unable to have a
20 privileged meeting with myself and his expert, and also part of that is
21 there's a room set aside for privileged meetings which has a telephone in
22 which Dr. Karadzic was hoping to contact our investigator during the
23 course of that meeting and get some information and was unable to do
24 that. So we would appreciate it if the Trial Chamber could inquire with
25 the UNDF -- UNDU to determine why we were unable to have a confidential
1 meeting and also to see that that doesn't occur in the future. Thank
3 JUDGE KWON: And you were not told about any reasons for that.
4 MR. ROBINSON: No, Mr. President. The personnel that were on
5 duty last night told us that they didn't have any discretion or
6 information as to the reason and they were unable to assist us any
8 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Thank you.
9 JUDGE MORRISON: I'm sorry. Can I just inquire, Mr. Robinson,
10 why did you think that confidentiality might have been breached? Because
11 of the presence of a third party?
12 MR. ROBINSON: No, because we were placed in a room that is
13 monitored or can be monitored. Normally we meet in the special room
14 where it is not monitored.
15 JUDGE MORRISON: Thank you.
16 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson, the Chamber will take a look into
17 the matter.
18 Shall we bring the witness in.
19 [The witness takes the stand]
20 WITNESS: RICHARD BUTLER [Resumed]
21 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, Mr. Butler.
22 THE WITNESS: Good morning, Your Honours.
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: Good morning, Your Honours. Thank you.
25 Could I have 23703, please. That's a 65 ter number.
1 Examination by Mr. Nicholls: [Continued]
2 Q. Mr. Butler, that's not in your binders. I'm going back now to a
3 question from His Honour Judge Kwon at 27485 yesterday about the meaning
4 of the name Barijera, which appeared in the conversation between
5 Mr. Karadzic and General Zivanovic which we saw, which for the record is
7 First let me ask you, did code-names change during the war, for
8 example, names like Badem, Palma, if you know?
9 A. They should have. What normally happens is that for a particular
10 operation, each relevant headquarters is assigned a new code-name, and
11 many documents that you will see, particularly when you're talking about
12 tactical communications, will show that. Having said that, while that is
13 the proper way in a communications security sense it should have been
14 done, in many cases individuals reverted back to code-names that they had
15 used before previously, so they did not exercise good communications
16 security. So while the correct answer is yes, they should have changed
17 every operation, in reality they did not.
18 Q. Okay. Thank you.
19 MR. NICHOLLS: This document is undated and, Your Honours, I did
20 provide it to my colleagues beforehand. It wasn't on the list but it
21 came up.
22 Q. We see on the top: National defence state secret, Drina. If you
23 could look at number 3 it states: Main Staff of the RS, command post
24 Barijera; number 4, Main Staff of the RS army rear command post
25 Barijera-1; and number 5, Main Staff of RS army or forward command post
2 Could you just -- it's pretty self-evident, but on this document
3 does it appear that Barijera is a code-name for the Main Staff?
4 A. Yes, sir, on this document it does.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender that, please, Your Honours.
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4938, Your Honours.
8 MR. NICHOLLS:
9 Q. Okay. Back to where we were, Mr. Butler, on 12 July. If I could
10 have 65 ter number 01945. That's in tab 60 of the first binder,
11 Mr. Butler. I'll tell you that just simply due to time constraints
12 I'm -- you please continue to give full, complete answers, but I'm going
13 to try to make mine shorter and move a little quicker.
14 So here we have another MUP report to Tomo Kovac and the head of
15 public security, again from Dragan Kijac, and it refers to various
16 topics, the liberation of rest of Srebrenica. At the bottom, agreement
17 to evacuate civilians from Potocari. And on page 2, at the top of the
19 "It should be noted that among the people staying in Potocari
20 there were hardly any men fit for fighting."
21 So again if you could just give us your view of the significance,
22 if any, of this report.
23 A. Yes, sir. Well, first of all, it reflects that the military and
24 the state security organs are continuing to talk with each other. You
25 can tell in particularly the second paragraph they are repeating
1 information which we know the military security sources have been talking
2 about as well. It reflects -- and again not only the military security,
3 Mr. Vasic is talked about.
4 The same situation with respect to the situation in Potocari.
5 They're continuing to collect against the various NGOs with respect to
6 other issues. So it does represent a continuum of reporting on the
7 pertinent situation that is occurring at that time that is being sent
8 from those individuals on the ground to the senior leadership of both the
9 army and the political organs of the RS.
10 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender that, Your Honours.
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4939, Your Honours.
13 MR. NICHOLLS:
14 Q. Could I have 2016, please. That's the next document in your
15 binder, Mr. Butler. This is sent from the Drina Corps intelligence
16 department on 12th [Realtime transcript read in error "4th"] of July.
17 It's from General Tolimir, chief of security and intelligence on the
18 Main Staff, and I'm interested in the distribution list of who it's going
19 to which includes the same theme we're on, RDB state security and the
20 Ministry of the Interior of the RS and MUP RS. So could you please just
21 comment on this document?
22 A. Sure. Which tab is it again, sir?
23 Q. Sorry, 61.
24 A. This particular document, while it originates from the command of
25 the Drina Corps, you note on the second page it's signed in the name of
1 General Tolimir. At this point this time, on the 12th of July, I
2 believe, General Tolimir is actually at the Drina Corps headquarters in
4 It reflects his awareness of the situation that is occurring on
5 the road on 12 July 1995. It reflects the fact that they are gaining
6 information from radio intercepts of what they believe the situation is
7 with the column and the objectives of the column. It talks about some
8 other issues related to, you know, their understanding of what they
9 believe the Muslim wishes to portray Srebrenica as. And then finally
10 looking at the distribution list, it reflects the fact that not only is
11 General Tolimir ensuring that key individuals such as General Krstic and
12 Colonel Popovic who are at other locations at this time receive this
13 message, the military and state security organs and the MUP are also
14 addressees on this message. So again reflecting that continued effort
15 between both the army, the MUP, and state security to ensure that each
16 has the most accurate picture of what is going on in the battle-field
17 area. It's an excellent example of how -- how all three parties are
18 working hard to ensure that all of the key decision-makers have the
19 appropriate situational awareness.
20 Q. Let me just ask you a follow-up question. Not necessarily
21 speaking just of this document but the ones we've looked at and all the
22 various reports you've reviewed in your work, the VRS, MUP, state
23 security. How quickly, how close to real time is this information being
24 shared between the various organs you've just described?
25 A. As quickly as possible. Now, obviously there are going to be
1 delays in passing the information as there is a required processing time
2 with respect to physically writing a report or physically transmitting
3 that report over the existing communications networks and dealing with
4 whatever slight malfunctions or retransmissions have to occur as part of
5 that chain, but when you dovetail this against the intercepted telephonic
6 communications, you see that in many cases even though they are writing
7 these reports, either before the report or as the report is being done,
8 they're also telephonically notifying many of these same correspondents
9 of the same information. So they're not strictly relying on written
10 reports in order to give everyone the appropriate situational awareness.
11 These individuals realise that this information is potentially time
12 sensitive and are making additional efforts to reach out via the
13 telephonic network to call and ensure that they have this information or
14 at least as much of the information as they can pass over the phone.
15 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE KWON: I think you can scroll back the transcript. Page 5,
17 line 10. It is recorded that you stated that this was sent from
18 Drina Corps intelligence department on the 4th of July.
19 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour. I hope I said 12th of
20 July, but it should be 12 July. Thank you.
21 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Butler, in your opinion, this is sent by
22 General Tolimir from Drina Corps?
23 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir. I believe at this time General Tolimir
24 is at the Drina Corps when he sends this, and this is why even though it
25 is from General Tolimir, it is sent using a Drina Corps message address
1 header. And in fact, it uses the number strictly confidential 17/897,
2 which --
3 JUDGE KWON: Shall we see that second page, page 2. Please
5 THE WITNESS: Which corresponds to other reports coming out of
6 the Drina Corps command intelligence department.
7 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. And this second page is consistent with
8 your observation.
9 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir.
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Yes. This will be admitted as Exhibit P4940.
11 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. Could I now have 65 ter number 23519.
12 That's the map book. I'd like to look at map E27, which is at e-court
13 page 34 it should be with the English.
14 Q. And I'll tell you while that's coming up, Mr. Butler, this is the
15 map you've seen before, a portion of it, which has notations on it
16 written by General Krstic. You see the top one is for 12 July.
17 "Srebrenica has been Serbian and remains Serbian, 12 July 1995,
18 Major-General Rad Krstic," and below, similar notation for 27 July 1995.
19 Can you just tell us the significance of the dates of these
20 two entries made by General Krstic in your view?
21 A. The 12 July 1995 entry was made at -- in a -- in a similar manner
22 I've testified in another case of a map with General Mladic at this
23 12 July 1995 planning meeting that occurred at the headquarters of the
24 Bratunac Brigade where the VRS began planning to undertake the next set
25 of military operations which were designed against Zepa. It was the
1 Stupcana 95 plan. My understanding of the signature on 27 July 1995 is
2 that on that particular date, that is when the VRS in their mind
3 designated the completion and the capture of the -- of the Zepa safe
4 area. So again, both of those things by General Krstic to note those
6 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. At this time, Your Honours, I would
7 tender the map book.
8 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Can I hear from you, Mr. Robinson.
9 MR. ROBINSON: We don't have any objection, Mr. President.
10 JUDGE KWON: In its entirety, Mr. Nicholls?
11 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour.
12 Thank you, Mr. Robinson.
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes. We'll admit it.
14 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4941, Your Honours.
15 MR. NICHOLLS:
16 Q. Okay, Mr. Butler, that was the last document I was going to show
17 for the events of 12 July. Now I'm moving on to a chapter of the
18 13th of July, events of that day and related documents.
19 So the first one I'd like to show you is 65 ter 1931. That's at
20 your tab 66, Mr. Butler. And it's the report by General Vasic -- sorry,
21 Chief Vasic referring to a meeting with General Mladic in which
22 Chief Vasic was informed about continuing operations towards Zepa, and he
23 says "leaving other work to the MUP," and it talks about removal of the
24 remaining civilian population from Srebrenica. And at paragraph 2:
25 "Killing of about 8.000 Muslim soldiers whom we blocked in the
1 woods near Konjevic Polje. Fighting is going on. This job is being done
2 solely by MUP units."
3 Could you comment on this document and what is going on at the
4 time on 13 July.
5 A. Just as in the evening of the 11th of July, when the first part
6 of the column managed to make it across the road between Nova Kasaba and
7 Konjevic Polje, on the evening of the 12th, large portions of the column
8 they hadn't come across yet were also trying to cross the road, the
9 difference, of course, being within the 24 hours that the Bosnian Serb
10 military and police forces had been able to reinforce that area, and by
11 the late evening hours of the 12th of July, the early morning hours of
12 13 jump, they were capturing at first hundreds and later that number
13 escalated into thousands of prisoners that were then being detained at
14 locations such as the Nova Kasaba football pitch, Konjevic Polje,
15 Sandici, and other locations. So there was a -- throughout the morning
16 hours, early morning hours of the 13th, a growing awareness of the
17 prisoners that were being taken, the fact -- the size of the numbers of
18 individuals who were still trapped behind the road and had not managed to
19 escape towards the Zvornik zone.
20 Now, Mr. Vasic is also being told by the army that the decision
21 has been made that the army is going to pull out most of their mobile
22 forces and begin military operations towards Zepa. So while he says that
23 the entire job is now being done by the MUP, in fact there are still some
24 army units that are participating, but the majority of the forces there,
25 certainly from his perspective, would be MUP forces. So he's not totally
1 inaccurate with that comment.
2 But, you know, in its totality, it is General Vasic doing the
3 same thing that he did the day before, which is being diligent in
4 ensuring that his particular chain of command is informed not about --
5 not only about the military situation that is occurring but even
6 reporting as to what decisions that the army has been taking and what the
7 impacts will be.
8 Q. And just very briefly, I don't want you to speculate, but the --
9 in your view, the killing of the 8.000 Muslims, is that about some kind
10 of crime or about combat or something else?
11 A. No, sir. I believe again I've testified to this particular
12 issue. In the context on the 12th, the morning hours of the 12th or the
13 morning hours of the 13th, the context that they're referring to is the
14 operation against the column. They're viewing it as a military
15 objective, and it's the fighting involved. It's not criminal activity
16 per se.
17 JUDGE KWON: What is your observation about the number, 8.000?
18 THE WITNESS: The general estimates of the size of the column
19 tend to range anywhere from 10- to 15.000. And along the same vein, the
20 general estimates of the part of the column that managed to cross the
21 road successfully from the Bratunac area to the Zvornik area, most people
22 generally refer to that as about a third of the column got through. So
23 if you're using a 15.000 number or even low 10- or 12.000 number, that
24 8.000 number gives you that two-thirds. So obviously they weren't in
25 there in direct contact with this column, and they were basing their
1 number estimates off of interrogations of prisoners as they captured
2 them, but it's not an unreasonable number.
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes, back to you, Mr. Nicholls.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour.
5 Q. And we'll get to it when we talk to some documents -- with some
6 documents specifically about the 16th and the opening of the corridor to
7 let the column through by Vinko Pandurevic, but if you could just tell us
8 briefly, at the beginning, was the VRS's -- or the Serb force -- Bosnian
9 Serb forces' estimate of the column strength and the threat posed by it,
10 did that evolve over time or did they have a clear understanding right
11 from the beginning?
12 A. It did evolve over time. The intercepts, particularly that begin
13 on the morning of the 12th, start to reflect reports by individuals who
14 were up along the road the evening of the 11th, the morning of the 12th,
15 where they're talking about seeing this massive number of soldiers,
16 members of the column. They are seeing these people in positions that no
17 one anticipated that they were going to be in. Those reports continue on
18 through the 12th and through the 13th, and they start to be picked up by
19 Major Obrenovic who is the Chief of Staff of the Zvornik Brigade who is
20 reporting these large numbers. The disconnect within the context of the
21 leadership of the Drina Corps and the Main Staff is that even though
22 they're hearing some of these numbers, they do not accept that the number
23 is as high as it is, and they do not accept the fact that the military
24 threat posed by the column is as grave as it is.
25 The views of the people on the ground facing the column and the
1 military leadership of the VRS actually don't come into alignment until
2 the 14th, when at that point even the Main Staff and the Drina Corps
3 command realise the significant threat to Zvornik, or the Zvornik
4 municipality, posed by the column in part because they had ignored
5 reports from the field which had accurately stated this.
6 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender this, Your Honour, 1931.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4942, Your Honours.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: Could I now have 65 ter number 23699.
10 Q. That's at tab 72, which is in the second binder, Mr. Butler.
11 Sorry you have to switch.
12 This is a MUP report from 13 July. You'd spoke earlier about
13 awareness of prisoners. That's what I want to focus on. We see some
14 comment about that in paragraph 2, speaking of the night of the 12th to
15 the 13th. Could you comment on this document and reporting on prisoner
17 A. Yes, sir. At this particular juncture, the evening of the 12th,
18 the morning of the 13th, the -- I believe this is RDB -- I'm sorry.
19 Yeah, this is -- no. This is just -- I'm trying to figure out. This
20 originates from the MUP and RDB third sector, so they're getting reports
21 of prisoners being captured along the road. As we know from multiple
22 sources of information that that process started in earnest the evening
23 of the 12th, by the morning of the 13th, initially hundreds, and then as
24 the day wore on rapidly, that number increased to thousands. We have
25 intercepts which talk about later that day at various areas where they're
1 designated for collection estimates from people on the ground that it's a
2 thousand in each location. There is overhead imagery that has been
3 available which will show clusters of hundreds of individuals at some of
4 these locations as well.
5 So as the day rolls on from, you know, the early morning hours of
6 the 13th through the day, the number of prisoners in the custody of both
7 the VRS forces and the MUP forces from Nova Kasaba, Konjevic Polje,
8 Sandici, and later towards Kravica, increases in a dramatic fashion.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4943, Your Honours.
12 MR. NICHOLLS:
13 Q. Now, let me just ask a follow-up to that. Speaking in general,
14 based on your expertise, not necessarily specific to the situation here
15 on the 13th, when armed forces, whether they're police or army or both,
16 start hearing reports of hundreds, thousands of prisoners being taken,
17 what does that implicate in terms of logistical needs in order to deal
18 with those now thousands of or large numbers of prisoners?
19 A. Within the context of the logistical support for those prisoners,
20 I mean, you can go down almost each branch of the military to kind of get
21 a feel for that. For example, for the security officials and military
22 police officials, the concerns are going to be assigning the necessary
23 soldiers or finding the necessary soldiers to ensure the safety and
24 security of the prisoners, to guard these individuals. For those people
25 in the rear services branch, there are going to be concerns related to
1 where are we going to find the necessary resources for food, water for
2 these prisoners? Many of the prisoners will be expected to have injuries
3 or need other medical care, so where would those medical provisions come
4 from? Ultimately there will be discussions that should take place as to
5 how to get prisoners from those initial collection points which are
6 exposed and vulnerable because there are still large numbers of Muslim
7 troops from the column floating around in those areas to areas where they
8 can be more easily guarded. And so when you're talking about a number of
9 prisoners that's starting in the hundreds and rapidly spiraling into the
10 thousands, it's dramatically increasing the difficulty of successfully
11 accomplishing all of those military tasks.
12 Q. Thank you. And we'll look at a document later on that deals more
13 with the numbers and what's going on with the prisoners.
14 MR. NICHOLLS: Could I have 23689, please. We'll start looking
15 at a couple of intercepts now.
16 Q. This is at your tab 73, Mr. Butler. And this is a short
17 intercept, but again speaking about the communication and sharing of
18 information issue, if you could tell us what we see here and I'll note
19 it's handwritten at the top. It's from the Drina Corps command, but it's
20 handwritten at the top: Tomo Kovac staff sent to Zvornik CJB public
21 security centre and Bijeljina staff for information, and then we can see
22 the distribution list of the original distribution from the Drina Corps
23 which includes the MUP.
24 If you could just comment on this document.
25 A. Yes, sir. As General Tolimir indicated on the previous day, the
1 radio intercept units of the VRS were being tasked to monitor the
2 Bosnian Muslim communications coming from the column. This is a report
3 on one of them. And not only is that information being shared to the
4 various army correspondents, but it is being shared with the MUP. And
5 the way that I read this, it has gone to the MUP headquarters, and then
6 they're retransmitting it in whole down -- or at least making sure that
7 the information contained in it has been sent down to the Zvornik CSB and
8 the Bijeljina staff for their information.
9 So continuing efforts by the intelligence people at all sides to
10 ensure everyone has the appropriate situational awareness.
11 Q. Thank you. And I'm sorry I misspoke. I referred to this as an
12 intercept. For the record, it's a report of an intercepted
14 And just briefly the description of the information that they're
15 passing on of a member of the column establishing contact and saying:
16 "Give me a reply. What the fuck do we do?"
17 And then the remark:
18 "The Turks are losing patience. They're seeking permission.
19 Their batteries are running low."
20 What does this tell us about the situation in the column?
21 A. The situation particularly in the front of the column, they're
22 becoming more desperate for guidance from their military leadership at
23 2 corps as to how they should proceed. It's just simply not a question
24 of the military column walking out and trying to penetrate the lines.
25 There is good deal of military planning and execution that has to be done
1 in order to make arrangements for other military units on the ABiH side
2 to attack, to create openings in the lines. That requires a good deal of
3 co-ordination. And what comes through in this particular vignette of an
4 intercept is that the individuals who are leading the column from a
5 military perspective still don't have an awareness as to what the plan is
6 for them. Where are they supposed to go? When are they supposed to be
7 there? What are their objectives in seeking to get out of what is then
8 deep from behind enemy territory?
9 Q. Thank you for that.
10 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this, Your Honour?
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4944, Your Honours.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: Now I'll go to an intercept that's actually an
14 intercept. 65 ter 31005, please.
15 Q. This is your tab 76, Mr. Butler. I'm skipping ahead a little
16 bit. This is the 13th July at 17.30. I won't go through it all.
17 There's quite a lot of information here, but could you comment on this
18 document, about what it says about the knowledge and the fact of taking
19 of prisoners, and if you can tell us what you -- what the three points
20 are that Y refers to a little bit down in the beginning.
21 A. Looking at this intercept, I mean the first number that is thrown
22 out is their awareness that there are roughly -- at this point in time at
23 17.30 hours on 13 July 1995, that there are at least 6.000 prisoners in
24 the custody of either the army or the MUP along these various roads, and
25 one of the correspondents talks about at each point roughly 1.500 to
2 As I discussed earlier, the main collection points were
3 Nova Kasaba, Konjevic Polje, Sandici, and of course at this time nearly a
4 thousand individuals from -- who had been previously collected at Sandici
5 had already been walked or moved south to the Kravica -- or not south,
6 but further to the west where they were now in the Kravica warehouse.
7 And of course at 17.30 hours, the Kravica warehouse massacre is just
8 beginning at this juncture, although it's unlikely at this point the
9 two correspondents know that.
10 So this intercept provides a snapshot of at least the awareness
11 of the various numbers of prisoners that are being -- falling in the
12 custody of the armed forces.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE KWON: At this time we can admit it in full?
15 MR. NICHOLLS: We -- I'm in your hands. Or we can admit it as
16 part of our large admission process which we will be doing shortly.
17 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Robinson.
18 MR. ROBINSON: Yes. I assume that this was already part of the
19 intercept testimony, so I don't see any problem to fully admit it at this
21 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
23 JUDGE KWON: We'll admit it in full.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
25 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4945, Your Honours.
1 MR. NICHOLLS:
2 Q. All right. If I could now have 30997, another intercept. This
3 is one you're familiar with, I believe, Mr. Butler. It's at 19.45 on the
4 13th. X calling from General Krstic's looking for Ljubisa who has gone
5 to Bratunac. And my first question will be -- well, I'll just ask you to
6 tell us what -- what does this intercept say to you, and if you could
7 remind us what "General Krstic's" would refer to at this point.
8 A. At this point in time on the 13th of July, General Krstic is back
9 at the headquarters of the Drina Corps in Vlasenica, and this -- what
10 happened shortly in a few minutes in this time, General Krstic will be
11 promoted to become the commander of the Drina Corps. So in this context,
12 it is somebody from the Drina Corps looking for Ljubisa Borovcanin, who
13 at this time we're also aware has gone to Bratunac. So this is
14 essentially somebody on behalf of General Krstic from the Drina Corps
15 calling to make contact with Ljubisa Borovcanin in order to get a
16 situation report as to what is happening, particularly asking questions,
17 locations from Bijeljina, Janja, Doboj. Those refer to locations where
18 police units have been dispatched to head south to the area in order to
19 reinforce the military situation that's going on there.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: I would tender this, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE KWON: Why is it of seven pages?
22 MR. NICHOLLS: I think --
23 JUDGE KWON: In English.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: It's the various versions, Your Honour. I think
25 from the printout, as well, in order to go back to the date. Otherwise,
1 I'm not -- to be honest, I'm not sure exactly what we have in e-court.
2 JUDGE KWON: While you're tendering only this page.
3 MR. NICHOLLS: Well, I would tender -- in fact, I won't tender it
4 at this time, Your Honour. Let me consult. I'll put this together in
5 the correct way.
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
7 MR. NICHOLLS:
8 Q. Let me ask you this, this might seem like an odd question, but
9 it's relevant for other evidence in this trial: As of the 13th of July,
10 1995, did General Krstic have any widely known physical disabilities or
11 any physical handicaps?
12 A. Yes, sir. Earlier in the war, I believe November of 1994 or
13 October of 1994, General Krstic stepped on a landmine while he was the
14 commander of the Romanija Light -- or Romanija Motorised Brigade, and I
15 believe he lost his -- he lost his foot. I'm not sure which side. At
16 least I think close to his knee. So ultimately, he was medically sent
17 back to Belgrade, had one of his -- foot and, you know, part of his leg
18 amputated, received a prosthetic device, was brought back onto active
19 duty again, and at that juncture this is where he assumed the role as the
20 Chief of Staff of the Drina Corps. So he was one of the few generals at
21 least that I'm aware of at least in the VRS who had a disability like
22 that and remained on active duty.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: I'd now like to look at 31008A, another intercept
25 from 13 July, this one from about roughly an hour later from the one we
1 just looked at. And it's between General Krstic and Mr. Borovcanin.
2 Q. And what I'm interested in here is if you can tell us your
3 analysis of the significance of this conversation, particularly in light
4 of the events at Kravica which you discussed a minute ago having started
5 that afternoon around 5.00 p.m. or so.
6 A. Well, sir, in this context, General Krstic is now the corps
7 commander. He is in this particular case reaching out to Mr. Borovcanin
8 in order to get a situation report of the situation along the road where
9 he knows that Borovcanin's police are located. General Krstic has driven
10 that road earlier, so he has his own personal awareness of the situation,
11 and he knows that Borovcanin is in command of the police forces there, so
12 he's calling for a situation update.
13 Now, on the side of Borovcanin, he was physically present at the
14 Kravica warehouse as the massacre in part was occurring. So Borovcanin
15 has the awareness of what is started and is continuing to some degree
16 later in the night, and so when they're talking about the military
17 situation, you know, Krstic is asking are there any problems? Borovcanin
18 is telling him not only no problems militarily, as far as Borovcanin is
19 concerned, you know, the fact that nearly a thousand individuals were
20 massacred at the Kravica warehouse hasn't presented any problem that he
21 thinks he needs to make General Krstic aware of either.
22 JUDGE KWON: Just -- just a second, Mr. Butler. You stated that
23 Mr. Borovcanin was physically present at the Kravica warehouse as the
24 massacre in part was occurring. What is your basis?
25 THE WITNESS: If I recall correctly from the various interviews
1 of Mr. Borovcanin, I am aware of one interview where he states that after
2 the beginning of the massacre when he received information that several
3 the police to include one of the officers were wounded, he rushed down to
4 the Kravica warehouse. He then took those officers, I believe Mr. Kudric
5 [phoen] being one of them, to the Bratunac medical centre for treatment.
6 So if Mr. Borovcanin's accounts of what he did when, he did it, and who
7 he took to the medical centre are accurate in that reflect, it indicates
8 that he would have been at the Kravica warehouse at the time the massacre
9 was occurring.
10 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
11 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, excuse me, Mr. President.
12 [Trial Chamber confers]
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson.
14 MR. ROBINSON: Yes. Mr. President, I'm going to ask the
15 Trial Chamber to disregard the information concerning Mr. Borovcanin's
16 knowledge or participation in this massacre as beyond the witness's
17 expertise and also by -- by eliciting evidence of what Mr. Borovcanin
18 said in an interview with the OTP. I believe that crosses the line of
19 proper expert testimony. Thank you.
20 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Nicholls, would you like to reply or just skip
21 that part?
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Well, I would reply that a -- just briefly,
23 Your Honour, that he, Mr. Butler, is interpreting this conversation, and
24 I think he can rely on the whole of his knowledge that he's gained
25 working in the case, and he -- he has reviewed that. I think the Chamber
1 can assign this the correct way without striking any part of the
3 JUDGE KWON: What Mr. Butler stated in response to my question
4 was from his interview with Borovcanin, not from his expertise as such.
5 So I would like you to skip that part.
6 MR. NICHOLLS:
7 Q. Let me just ask you one follow-up question on this. Are you
8 aware of video shot by Mr. Pirocanac, Petrovic-Pirocanac, a journalist,
9 while he was with Mr. Borovcanin?
10 A. Yes, sir. The Petrovic video, as it is known, was filmed by a
11 Belgrade news reporter. Much of the video that is described as the
12 Petrovic video takes place, you know, on the 13th of July and covers
13 going up and down that particular road. Now, on the 13th of July,
14 Mr. Petrovic was in the car with Mr. Borovcanin. He was driving with
15 him. That Petrovic video passes in front of the Kravica warehouse on the
16 13th of July at a point in time after the massacre started. So there
17 is -- I mean, if we have to take it to that next step, if one assumes
18 that Mr. Petrovic is still in the car with Mr. Borovcanin, and he is as
19 far as I know, that's video corroboration of Borovcanin's own statement
20 as to where he was at that time.
21 Q. I'll move on.
22 JUDGE KWON: Microphone, please.
23 MR. NICHOLLS: I'll move on now. Could I have P02987.
24 Q. That's at your tab 159, Mr. Butler. This is Mr. Borovcanin's
25 report of 13 July 1995.
1 A. I'm sorry, say again, sir?
2 Q. Tab 159. Mr. Borovcanin's report of 13 July. Could you just
3 take a look at this document, and again, tell us what it -- I'll ignore
4 for the moment the part about Potocari, but if we look at page 2 --
5 JUDGE KWON: Just a second, Mr. Nicholls.
6 In the meantime, Mr. Robinson, do you object to the admission of
7 the intercept between Borovcanin and Krstic?
8 MR. ROBINSON: No, Mr. President.
9 JUDGE KWON: So we'll admit that.
10 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour.
11 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4946, Your Honours.
12 MR. NICHOLLS:
13 Q. Again, I'll ask you your -- to explain the notice issue and the
14 logistics issue of Borovcanin's report that:
15 "... we captured or had surrendered to us around 1.500 Muslim
16 soldiers. The number increases by the hour."
17 A. Yes, sir, as I indicated earlier, there are a number of factors
18 that commanders need to start considering with respect to the life
19 support for numbers of prisoners of this nature. Again, he is using in
20 this particular context the number of 1.500, and I'm not sure if there
21 has ever been an exact time as assigned to when this report was drafted
22 by Mr. Borovcanin, but even -- just even using that as a static number
23 regardless of what point in time it is on the 13th of July, it's raising
24 those same issues that Borovcanin like other military commanders needs to
25 address: How do we secure these prisoners? Where do I get the forces to
1 secure these prisoners? How do I provide them food, water, and medical
2 support? How do I transport them from the initial location where they
3 are currently being detained to more secure locations where they can not
4 only be more easily guarded, but removed from where the effects of the
5 battle-field would be more likely to occur, which would be on those road
6 locations because there are still armed elements of the column seeking to
7 cross the road.
8 So these are the awareness issues that Mr. Borovcanin should have
9 been considering whilst noting the fact that he has that number of
11 Q. And when we're speaking of this large number of prisoners and it
12 says "increasing by the hour," Mr. Borovcanin is reporting it, but is
13 that something that would normally, just keeping in mind that you've
14 discussing how the army was now proceeding to Zepa for that stage of the
15 campaign, is this information that needs to be dealt at the higher levels
16 than the people on the road and in the brigades?
17 A. Yes, sir, and particularly for the police. The police do not
18 have their own logistical organs. They are entirely dependent upon the
19 army for even supporting themselves. So in that vein, they are also now
20 entirely dependent upon the army for supporting these number of prisoners
21 since they don't have the resources to do that. And the numbers of
22 prisoners that are being discussed in this context, I mean, when you look
23 at them in light of the numbers of friendly forces, those Bosnian Serb
24 police forces and VRS forces that are in those same areas, the number of
25 prisoners that they are taking are outnumbering their own friendly
1 forces. So that number in and of itself is setting up a security issue
2 that certainly is beyond Mr. Borovcanin's issue or his control to deal
3 with all by himself. So these are issues being raised that he needs
4 support from his higher staffs at the police level as well as the army
6 Q. Thank you.
7 MR. NICHOLLS: Could I now have P04618.
8 Q. That should be at your tab 78, Mr. Butler, going back. This is
9 an intercept at 8.10 p.m. on the 13th of July, and it's between
10 Miroslav Deronjic and President Karadzic via an intermediary.
11 JUDGE KWON: Since we haven't received the redacted version,
12 we'll not broadcast this. I was told that this is under seal. Probably
13 because of some name which is appearing.
14 MR. NICHOLLS: You're correct, Your Honour. Thank you.
15 Q. Just a couple questions on this, Mr. Butler. We see at one point
16 the intermediary says, "Deronjic, the president is asking how many
17 thousands." And the answer is: "About two for the time being." And
18 then the intermediary says, "Two, Mr. President." And Mr. Deronjic says,
19 "But there will be more during the night."
20 My only question on that is what is the situation in Bratunac
21 around 8.00 p.m. regarding prisoners being held there? And just wait a
22 second, please.
23 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. I'm going to object to the
24 witness attempting to interpret this conversation between a civilian
25 commissioner and President Karadzic. I don't believe that this is within
1 his expertise. He can certainly answer this particular question as to
2 what was going on in Bratunac at that time, but in terms of giving any
3 comment or interpretation as a military expert to this conversation, I
4 don't believe that it's within his expertise to do so and it would invade
5 the province of the Trial Chamber.
6 MR. NICHOLLS: Well, if I can just respond, Your Honour. As
7 Mr. Robinson said, this question wasn't objectionable and I was not going
8 to ask Mr. Butler to interpret this conversation. However, if I did, I
9 don't think it would invade your -- your sphere because, of course, you
10 can always decide what to take and leave from the testimony.
11 Q. So could you answer the question, please, Mr. Butler, just what's
12 the situation in Bratunac at this time regarding prisoners?
13 A. At this particular time, the able-bodied men who had been
14 separated out on both the 12th and the 13th of July in Potocari have for
15 the most part been transported and are being detained in a number of
16 facilities in Bratunac. We refer to those facilities as -- the hangar is
17 one of the first ones that they were detained in, later in the
18 Vuk Karadzic school. So in that particular respect -- as well as a
19 number of prisoners who had been earlier captured along the road and
20 brought into Bratunac. So in that particular respect, the number that
21 Mr. Deronjic notes of 2.000 is probably accurate.
22 There's certainly other information out there that talks about
23 the number of prisoners in Bratunac exceeding the number of soldiers and
24 the police available to guard them to a point where many Bosnian Serb
25 civilians who are of able body are being called forward and given weapons
1 and being instructed to guard prisoners, because as the situation
2 develops during the evening, there's very genuine fear that with
3 prisoners outnumbering people to guard them, there could be a significant
4 security situation in Bratunac.
5 As the evening wears on, additional thousands of prisoners are
6 brought in from places like Nova Kasaba and Konjevic Polje. So once the
7 fixed facilities are full to capacity, many of those prisoners are --
8 remain stranded on buses and trucks, and they're parked at various
9 locations where they can be more easily guarded, in some cases buses in
10 front of the Vuk Karadzic school and other places. They are just left in
11 buses and trucks at the Vihor transportation facility.
12 So where Deronjic notes the fact that about 2.000 for the time
13 being and notes that more will be coming in the evening is an accurate
14 reflection of exactly the situation as it unfolds that evening.
15 Q. Thank you. This intercept is timed at 0810 hours. Are there any
16 prisoner movements that take place from Bratunac on the 13th?
17 A. Yes, sir. My understanding is that the first convoy of prisoners
18 from the Bratunac municipality to the Zvornik municipality leaves the
19 hangar at approximately 2000 hours on 13 July and arrives at the school
20 in Grbavci, which is associated with the Orahovac killing fields,
21 approximately midnight on 13 July 1995, so they're there between 12.00
22 and 1.00 in the morning on the 14th of July. And that's the first convoy
23 that I am aware of that leaves.
24 Q. Thank you. And based on your study, what was the knowledge of
25 NGOs or international organisations about whether there were any
1 prisoners in Bratunac during this period?
2 A. Clearly the Dutch had significant knowledge of this insomuch as
3 there were many Dutch soldiers in Bratunac, and in fact the Dutch were
4 still dealing with and with wounded Bosnian Muslims who were at
5 various -- at least one facility in Bratunac. Along the same vein,
6 there's additional information, some of it captured in the Petrovic
7 video, of various international organisation relief convoys that are
8 stopped at the international border at Ljubovija and even north, you
9 know, across from Zvornik that are trying to get in there to provide
10 relief to what they believe the humanitarian situation is with respect to
11 Srebrenica and Potocari and are being blocked by the Republika Srpska
12 authorities from crossing the river in part because once they cross the
13 river through Bratunac, what is awaiting them in Bratunac cannot be
14 hidden. They're going to see that scene and presumably report back to
15 their superiors on it.
16 Q. And if you know, when did those convoys gain access? Do you know
17 when they began to come in?
18 A. I believe that sometime by the late afternoon of the 14th and I
19 think they're rolling certainly on the 15th. So at some point on the
20 14th of July there was a decision to begin to allow some of these NGO
21 convoys into the area.
22 Q. All right. Thank you.
23 MR. NICHOLLS: I'm done with that. I now want to move on to
24 65 ter 2150, please.
25 Q. This is -- this is at your tab 17, Mr. Butler, in the -- I'm
1 sorry, in the first binder. And this is headed -- it's from the
2 Zvornik Brigade. It's headed "Delivery book Kp6." You refer to this in
3 your revised narrative at footnote 381.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: If we could have page 8 of the English, and I
5 think it will be 116 of the Serbian. Yes.
6 Q. And can you just tell us why did you note this in your report,
7 and what does this log-book tell you?
8 A. The log-book is simply a log of a general delivery vehicle that
9 is employed in the -- by the Zvornik Brigade for general delivery
10 purposes. Why I noted this in my particular report was that it is one of
11 several documents which reflects the presence of police, and in this
12 particular case military police, at a facility known as Orahovac. So as
13 part of my doing analysis to understand the overall military situation in
14 Grbavci and Orahovac and who was there based on the documents, this is
15 one of the documents that I rely on that notes a police presence at
17 When you look at the timing, this is the last entry related to
18 the period of 13 July, and I think it's a little bit clearer on the
19 Serbo-Croatian version, because it notes 0100. So I take that as 0100 on
20 14 July, which corresponds with my understanding of when the military
21 police roughly arrived, as well as when the first bus convoys from
22 Bratunac arrived in Orahovac.
23 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I -- do you have a question,
24 Your Honour?
25 JUDGE KWON: I'm just wondering what part is being tendered.
1 MR. NICHOLLS: I would tender just the pages for 13 July and the
2 cover sheet.
3 JUDGE KWON: So that's -- very well. I have no problem admitting
4 that. The cover page and the sheet for 13th of July, yes.
5 MR. NICHOLLS:
6 Q. And just briefly let me ask you --
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we just clarify something.
8 Is it the whole page where it says the 13th -- where the says the 13th,
9 or should the entry where it says the 14th of July also be included?
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll admit this page.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] In that case, could the translation
12 be revised again, because under the 14th, it refers to a funeral vehicle.
13 Loznica-Sekovic, and then it refers to a funeral vehicle, which doesn't
14 appear in the translation.
15 MR. NICHOLLS: I will send it for a revised translation. Thank
17 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Shall we give the number for this.
18 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4947, Your Honours.
19 MR. NICHOLLS:
20 Q. One follow-up question. You explained it quite well, but just to
21 make it clear, how -- how do you arrive at the conclusion that this is
22 military police rather than regular or MUP police being referred to?
23 A. Well, in part it's constructive analysis because one of the other
24 documents that I have reviewed is the military police roster for the
25 Zvornik Infantry Brigade for July of 1995, and on that particular
1 document - and I think we're going to get to it at some juncture - there
2 were notations on that document that reflected a number of military
3 police at Orahovac on the 14th of July. Those were subsequently altered
4 at some juncture in an effort by somebody to hide the fact that a number
5 of military police people were in Orahovac on the 14th.
6 Q. In that case, let's -- let's bring that up.
7 MR. NICHOLLS: That's 65 ter 2211.
8 Q. It's at your tab 19, Mr. Butler. And if we go to -- this is a
9 little bit difficult to go through and I don't want to spent a long time
10 on it, but can you just tell us: Is this the document you were referring
12 A. Yes, sir, it is.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: Now, unfortunately the English translation we have
14 doesn't include all the headings, but if we go to -- if I could have one
15 moment. Well, if we could go to, for example, entry 37, which should be
16 on page 3, I think, of the Serbian.
17 Q. Well, really, simply in the interests of time, is this a document
18 that you were referring to that had Os and Rs erased and replaced with
20 JUDGE KWON: I don't think we need the English translation at
21 this time.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Yeah. I agree.
23 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir, it was.
24 MR. NICHOLLS:
25 Q. Okay. Well, actually this is fine right here. We have
1 Stanoje Bireakovic [phoen] as number 17, and if we look across at the
2 dates for 14th and 15th, we see these large Ts written in. Is that one
3 of the entries you're referring to?
4 A. Yes, sir. I believe what I have done as a component of my report
5 is I listed the names of the individuals who had the corresponding eraser
6 marks from this document in my report and noted whether they had either
7 an O or an R next to their name and on what corresponding date.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: And I'll note, Your Honours, that can be found in
10 the Srebrenica narratives at footnotes 370, 372, 373, 379, 394, and 396,
11 discussions of this issue. And also I do have the original if any party
12 wishes to see it. It's very clear on the original.
13 May I tender that, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
15 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4948, Your Honours.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] The Defence would like to have the
17 original, because we're not certain that an unequivocal conclusion can be
18 drawn on these deletions. Only a handwriting expert, a graphologist,
19 could establish this. To say -- to be quite frank, I don't see that
20 anything has been deleted on this page.
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: I have the copy, and perhaps during the break or I
23 can give it to Mr. ...
24 JUDGE KWON: What Mr. Karadzic said was that he wanted to see an
25 original of this.
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes. I have the original in the courtroom, which
2 in my submission would be you don't need any expert analysis to see that
3 there's been some erasures and written over, but my submission would be
4 it's quite clear on the original log seized from the Zvornik Brigade
5 which I can provide to him to review.
6 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
7 MR. NICHOLLS: Could I now have P04464.
8 Q. That's at your tab 86, Mr. Butler. This is the Main Staff report
9 to President Karadzic from 13 July. If we could go to page 3 of the
10 English as well as the Serbian original. I'd like you to comment on the
11 information receiving President Karadzic in the report for 13 July
12 regarding the Drina Corps zone. We see it under number 6.
13 A. Essentially subparagraph (a) talks about the general military
14 situation, specifically noting that the enemy from the former enclave of
15 Srebrenica are in a state of total disarray. Troops are surrendering in
16 large numbers to the VRS. It also notes in the next sentence a 200- to
17 300-strong group of soldiers managed to make it through the sector at
18 Mount Udrc and are trying to break through to the territory under Muslim
20 As I noted in some of my earlier testimony, this is where you see
21 this disconnect between what the people on the ground believed to be much
22 larger numbers of individuals who broke through as the first part of a
23 column versus what is actually being acknowledged and reported up to the
24 higher level. They just, frankly, don't believe the numbers that they're
25 hearing as to the threat of the column or the size of the column at this
1 juncture, and of course by discounting those numbers, that leads to the
2 military threat that occurs starting the 14th and 15th and 16th of July.
3 It also notes the situation in the corps under subparagraph (b),
4 that various military units are engaged in scouring the terrain of the
5 municipality, and also talks about the fact that other corps units are in
6 the final stages of -- for preparations to begin, or as they say here,
7 settle the issue at Zepa.
8 Q. Thank you. All right. That's the last document, I think, now,
9 from the 13th of July. Moving on to the 14th, events of that day, which
10 we already began talking about with Orahovac in the early hours of the
12 MR. NICHOLLS: Could I have 65 ter 4057.
13 Q. That's at your tab 90, Mr. Butler. This is a 14 July report from
14 the Zvornik chief, Vasic, up to the RS minister of the MUP and his
15 Bijeljina centre.
16 What I'd like you to talk about is the areas of combat that they
17 talk about in paragraph 1, and then the paragraph after paragraph 8,
18 which talks about, again, large numbers of enemy soldiers surrendering.
19 A. Yes, sir. To belabour the point, just like he was doing on the
20 12th and the 13th of July, on the 14th Mr. Vasic is still, to the best of
21 his ability, diligently reporting on the situation as he is aware of it
22 to his higher headquarters. He talks about the general military
23 situation, where enemy forces are believed to be and what combat has
24 occurred. The -- the size of the enemy column which he talks about is
25 3 kilometres through the day. He talks about the specific tasks that
1 each of the PJP companies under his control are engaged in, as well as
2 what the task of some of the other PJP companies that have come into the
3 area are doing.
4 He notes that during combat operations the previous day, which
5 would be 13 July, the enemy suffered serious losses in manpower, and
6 again notes the phrase "larger numbers of enemy soldiers surrendered to
7 our units."
8 Q. Now, in the top paragraph speaking of the areas of combat, main
9 combat activities in the general areas of Sandici, Bratunac municipality,
10 Konjevic Polje, et cetera, would Kravica be in that same general area?
11 Combat was thought to have occurred there?
12 A. Kravica is in the same general area, but there was no combat
13 operations occurring at Kravica on any of those days.
14 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender this, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
16 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4949, Your Honours.
17 MR. NICHOLLS: All right. Could I have 31050, and I think C is
18 the best one.
19 Q. This is at your tab 92, Mr. Butler. It's an intercept between
20 Palma, which is Zvornik; correct?
21 A. Yes, sir, that is correct.
22 Q. Duty officer Major Jokic, and Badem, which is Bratunac; correct?
23 A. Yes, sir, that is correct.
24 Q. And could you just again remind us, we're now on the 14th of July
25 at 9.00 p.m., when it refers to Palma duty officer Major Jokic, who is
1 that in your view?
2 A. Major Jokic by position is the engineering officer of the
3 Zvornik Infantry Brigade. He is also performing the functions as the
4 brigade duty officer in the duty operations centre on 14 July 1995.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. We are not to broadcast this. As
7 far as the original is concerned.
8 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes. I think the translation may be, Your Honour.
9 Q. Thank you. Now we can see from this intercept that on the
10 14th of July at this time, Beara is in Bratunac, Major Jokic is calling
11 from Zvornik.
12 First when we see it down the page -- I'll try to go through this
13 quite quickly. Major Jokic says, "We were together, Colonel, sir, number
14 155 called you and asked you to call him urgently."
15 What extension is 155?
16 A. My understanding is that extension 155 is the phone line that is
17 in the operations centre of the Main Staff of the VRS.
18 Q. Thank you. Now I'm not going to ask you to say what Major Jokic
19 means exactly, but Jokic says, "Yes, hey, we have huge problems over
20 here. There are big problems, well, with the people -- I mean with the
21 parcel." And then he says, "Drago is nowhere around."
22 And earlier on he says that it's urgent that he talk to Beara.
23 So the question is: At 9.00 p.m. in Zvornik, what is the
24 situation for the Zvornik Brigade? What is going on that -- that could
25 be considered urgent?
1 A. In this particular context, by 9.00 p.m. on the 14th of July,
2 there -- you know, from a military perspective, the column has already
3 broken through the initial ambush positions of the Zvornik Brigade that
4 were set previously that day and is now believed to be working its way
5 towards the north-west, towards what they would call free territory, but
6 the brigade has no real contact with them because they've got no forces
7 in that area at the time.
8 From the perspective of prisoners who had been brought into the
9 Zvornik Brigade zone, at that particular time the prisoners who had
10 previously been brought and were held at the Grbavci school are still
11 being executed in Orahovac. I don't believe that those executions are
12 concluded until midnight on the 14th of July, 1995.
13 You have roughly a thousand prisoners who are already in the old
14 school at Petkovci. You have prisoners that are in the school at
15 Rocevic, and you have prisoners being brought up to the school facility
16 at Pilica. I don't believe at this juncture they've reached that
17 overflow point at Pilica where they're putting them in the Dom of Culture
19 Q. And when you say the school at Grbavci is that the same as the
20 school at Orahovac associated with the Orahovac execution site?
21 A. Yes, sir.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this document, Your Honour, this
24 JUDGE KWON: This is also part of a bunch of exhibits which have
25 been, so to speak, authenticated by the witnesses.
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes.
2 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Robinson.
3 MR. ROBINSON: No objection.
4 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. This will be admitted.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honours. Thank you, Mr. Robinson.
6 I --
7 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. We'll put it under seal.
8 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes. I -- yes, Your Honour.
9 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4950, under seal, Your Honours.
10 JUDGE KWON: But I would like you to produce a redacted version
11 later on.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour, of course. I think this would
13 be a good time.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes. What you're going to do is replace the
15 original one with the redacted version.
16 MR. NICHOLLS: I think -- yes, Your Honour --
17 JUDGE KWON: We don't need to give a separate --
18 MR. NICHOLLS: Yeah --
19 JUDGE KWON: -- exhibit number. Unless Defence has any objection
20 to that.
21 MR. ROBINSON: No, we don't, Mr. President.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
23 JUDGE KWON: We'll take a break for half an hour and resume at
25 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
1 --- On resuming at 11.02 a.m.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Nicholls, please continue.
3 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 Q. If you could go to tab 94, Mr. Butler.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: This is 31072, and that is the 65 ter number. It
6 is an intercept. Your Honour, I think we can broadcast the English
7 completely although, unfortunately, the B/C/S still has names on it.
8 Q. Still on the 14 July, Mr. Butler, this intercept's at 22.27, and
9 it states it's between General Vilotic and Jokic who we just talked
10 about, who Jokic is. There are again discussions of problems in the
11 field blocking the large group coming towards the asphalt and it being
12 blocked, where are the blues. And first of all, can you tell us who you
13 think the General Vilotic referred to is here?
14 A. I believe in this particular context General Vilotic as referred
15 here is, in fact, General Miletic, who is the Chief of Operations for the
16 VRS Main Staff.
17 Q. Okay. How do you arrive at that?
18 A. Well, the first thing is there is no General Vilotic in either
19 the VRS or, as far as we checked, within the VJ forces. It sounds -- I
20 mean, and clearly there is a General Miletic who is with the Main Staff
21 of the VRS. So potentially a slightly garbled identification of the
22 name. Clearly Major Jokic knows who he's talking to. So it only makes
23 sense in that regard that it could be General Miletic or that it is, in
24 fact, General Miletic who is having this discussion with the duty officer
25 of the Zvornik Infantry Brigade at this time.
1 Q. Okay. And what about the line where Jokic says:
2 "Understood" -- starts to say "Col" and then says, "General,
4 A. General Milovanovic was one of the number of generals who had
5 been recently promoted I believe in June of 1995, either late May or
6 early June 1995. So it would make sense that Major Jokic would have made
7 that type of a slip still referring to him back as his former rank since
8 he had only been a general for probably less than 60 days at this point.
9 Q. Sorry, did you mean --
10 JUDGE KWON: Miletic.
11 MR. NICHOLLS:
12 Q. Sorry, speaking of slips. Milovanovic or Miletic --
13 A. I'm sorry, Miletic.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 A. I've got generals on the brain.
16 Q. And could you just tell me, please, then, your knowledge of the
17 situation in Zvornik, what this is about, specifically where Vilotic or,
18 you believe, Miletic says, We'll see about it with that Vasic, everything
19 available should be gathered. You must raise them all, Jokic, sound the
20 alert down in the town. Everyone who can carry a rifle should go up."
21 What's going on at that time in Zvornik? You've already talked
22 about that a bit.
23 A. Again talking about that from before, we're now at a point
24 chronologically in time with respect to the Srebrenica operation that the
25 highest levels of the VRS now understand the threat that the column poses
1 to the Zvornik municipality in general and the Zvornik Infantry Brigade
2 in particular.
3 Vasic is the head of the CSB, and you know, in this particular
4 issue he's talking about, you know, make sure that Vasic understands
5 this. The implied task is that, you know, Vasic needs to bring more
6 police in or reallocate his police forces to be able to assist in the
7 combat operations. The fact -- raising the alert, ensure all units are
8 fully mobilised. Anyone who can carry a rifle needs to be at the
9 defensive positions.
10 Q. All right. And then there's a section about -- a little bit
11 below: "Obrenovic is really engaged to the maximum. We are all, believe
12 me. This packet has done the most to ruin us. We've been reporting on
13 the number of people, well, so --"
14 And the general of the Main Staff says, "Okay, don't talk to me
15 about that."
16 Again, since this is 14th July, evening hours, around 10.30, this
17 is when there were executions continuing at Orahovac; is that right?
18 A. Correct, sir.
19 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this document, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE KWON: This is also part of intercept that were
21 authenticated. Mr. Robinson.
22 MR. ROBINSON: No objection, Mr. President.
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes. That will be admitted.
24 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4951, provisionally under seal,
25 Your Honours.
1 JUDGE KWON: The reason why we should put this under seal is
2 because of initial.
3 MR. NICHOLLS: Correct, Your Honour. And we need to redact and
4 come up with a copy that doesn't have the names that we've -- it's been
5 the practice not to broadcast.
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
7 Q. If you could go to tab 95, Mr. Butler. This is the last document
8 from the 14th of July that I want to look at. P04457. This is the
9 Main Staff report to the president, dated 14 July, which again covers all
10 the different corps but I want to look at the Drina Corps, number 6,
11 which is on page 3 of both English and Serbian, and ask you to comment on
12 section 6(b).
13 A. Yes, sir. With respect to 6(b), another of the accumulating
14 comments speaking about although not in a numerical form, even at this
15 point on the 14th they are scouring the terrain and receiving a large
16 number of Muslim fugitives who are surrendering to them. So they're
17 still reporting on, although unspecified, large numbers of Muslims who
18 are surrendering to the military and the police forces that are operating
19 in the Milici, and Bratunac and Skelani Brigade areas in the terrain.
20 Q. And again this very urgent report of 14 July doesn't go just to
21 the president but to the commands of all the corps; is that right? And
22 the various IKMs?
23 A. Yes, sir. That was the custom. Not only did you keep your
24 superior informed, in this context the president of the Republika Srpska,
25 it was also sent to all of the corps commands as well. So the senior
1 leadership of the army had a broad situational awareness as well.
2 Q. Thank you. Now moving on to the 15th of July. I'll try to move
3 quickly through some relevant documents.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: If I could have 31091A.
5 Q. That's at your tab 96, Mr. Butler. I'm going to look now at a --
6 at just a couple of intercepts which mention Colonel Beara. And this
7 one, 15 July, in the morning, 0952, Colonel Beara looking for
8 General Zivanovic, he was to call him at 139.
9 What is 139? Which extension is that?
10 A. Extension 139 is the phone extension for the security office of
11 the Zvornik Infantry Brigade. It is what we refer to as -- that is
12 Drago Nikolic's phone number.
13 Q. And so where, based on your analysis and all the documentation,
14 is Colonel Beara that morning on the 15th?
15 A. That morning he is at the Zvornik Brigade headquarters.
16 MR. NICHOLLS: I would tender that, Your Honour, which I -- it's
17 complicated. I think this one does not need to be under seal from what I
18 can see.
19 JUDGE KWON: But I see a signature --
20 MR. NICHOLLS: Actually, it should be, yeah. I was looking at
21 the bottom.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes. We'll admit it.
23 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4952, provisionally under seal,
24 Your Honours.
25 MR. NICHOLLS:
1 Q. Okay. If you could go to tab 97 now, Mr. Butler.
2 MR. NICHOLLS: And if I could have 31096C.
3 Q. This is just a short while later in the morning on 15 July. It's
4 9.54 now, a couple minutes later. And it's General Zivanovic and
5 Colonel Beara, who we saw mentioned in the previous intercept. I won't
6 go through this -- this entire document, but can you tell me what this is
7 about based on the situation at the time faced by the VRS and MUP that
9 A. This particular intercept, particularly when you couple it with
10 an intercept that comes several minutes later, reflects a conversation
11 between General Zivanovic and Colonel Beara relating to the failure of
12 one of the brigade commanders, Colonel Furtula, Lieutenant-Colonel
13 Furtula, to send soldiers from his particular unit to a specified
14 location in accordance with the boss's orders. This particular part of
15 the conversation is somewhat cryptic, but it reflects that both
16 General Zivanovic and Colonel Beara at least understand what the boss's
17 orders are in this particular context, and that instead of having a
18 platoon of the roughly 60 men, he has only two or three.
19 Q. And which brigade did Furtula -- which was his brigade, if you
21 A. His brigade was the Visegrad Light Infantry Brigade.
22 Q. Thank you. And that's a mention of Lukic is waiting at
23 Blagoje -- is waiting at Blagojevic and "Lukic is here with me." Do you
24 have any insight from your research on who this Lukic is?
25 A. Yes, sir, it is Milan Lukic.
1 Q. And where is he from?
2 A. Milan Lukic is from Visegrad. At this particular point in time
3 he was a subordinate -- one of the subordinate unit commanders in the
4 Visegrad Brigade, and various individuals have talked about the fact that
5 him and his unit had been ordered to come up in part to participate in
6 executions of prisoners.
7 Q. Now, at one point Beara says, "Have him send at least half," and
8 I won't go through it all, and Zivanovic says, "I can't order that
10 Why can't -- why is it on the 15th that Zivanovic can't order
11 something anymore?
12 A. General Zivanovic, while still being a general in the VRS, is no
13 longer at this point in time the commander of the Drina Corps. So what
14 he is doing, you know, quite properly from a military command context, is
15 letting, you know, Colonel Beara know that, you know, I'm no longer
16 authorised to give those commands. And if you read further into this
17 particular intercept, he provides Colonel Beara the extension number to
18 call for the person who could, in fact, give those orders.
19 Q. And could you just point us to that in the -- in the intercept.
20 A. Towards the bottom of the first page he talks about telephone
21 exchange 385.
22 Q. And it states "Zlatar," and again Zlatar is which unit?
23 A. Zlatar is the telephonic code-name used by the Drina Corps.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. Your Honours, I would tender this
25 intercept which would need to be under seal at this point.
1 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Robinson.
2 MR. ROBINSON: No objection, Mr. President.
3 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Yes. That will be admitted as
4 Exhibit P4953, provisionally under seal.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
6 Q. If you go to the next tab, Mr. Butler, and if I could have 31086.
7 Again in this series of conversations featuring Colonel Beara, we now
8 have an intercept at 10.00 in the morning between General -- between
9 Colonel Beara and General Krstic, now that Colonel Beara has gotten the
10 direction from Zivanovic. And the first thing I'll ask you is who is
11 Boban Indjic, if you know?
12 A. My understanding is that Boban Indic is again also from the
13 Visegrad area, and at this point in time he is a deputy to Milan Lukic.
14 Q. And can you just tell us, again based on the previous intercepts
15 and the situation on 15 July, military, what's going on in the
16 Zvornik Brigade area, what is this conversation about?
17 A. Well, militarily in the Zvornik Brigade area, the column is
18 continuing to move to the north-west, starting to make preparations for
19 what would later be an attack to try and break through the lines. This
20 particular conversation, however, has nothing to do with the overall
21 military situation. This particular conversation has to do with the fact
22 that on the 15th of July, or I should say more accurately continuing on
23 the 15th of July, they're engaged in executing thousands of prisoners and
24 that they are having difficulty getting enough individuals to participate
25 in order to get all of these prisoners killed within whatever the
1 required time-frame is.
2 Q. Now, when we see here Krstic says, "I'll see what I can do," as
3 Beara is asking for men, Beara says, "Check it out and have him go to
4 Drago's." What would that be a reference to? It's about a little over
5 halfway down the first page.
6 A. Well, in this particular context with Beara saying, "Have them go
7 to Drago's," he's basically directing that they go to Drago Nikolic's or
8 report to Drago Nikolic who is the security officer of the Zvornik
9 Infantry Brigade, and that is where Beara is right now.
10 Q. Thank you. Now, when Krstic says, "Ljubo, then take those MUP
11 guys from up there," and Beara says, "No, they won't do anything. I
12 talked to them and there's no other solution but for those 15 to 30 men
13 with Indjic that were supposed to arrive on the 13th but didn't."
14 Do you have any more information about - and it's in your report
15 as well, I believe - the failure of a group of men to arrive at this time
16 in the area?
17 A. Yes, sir. My understanding and from the documents that I've been
18 able to look at, it's not a question of Furtula deliberately not
19 following the order. There is, I believe, an intercept which discusses
20 the fact that the bus that these individuals were travelling on broke
21 down, so it was as a result of a mechanical issue why these particular
22 soldiers did not or were not able to arrive to do the jobs that they were
23 supposed to do.
24 Q. Thank you. And finally at the bottom Beara is saying, "I don't
25 know what to do. I mean it, Krle. There are still 3,500 parcels," and
1 the operatives put it in quotes, "that I have to distribute and I have no
3 I'm not asking you to say what he meant by that, but the morning
4 the 15th of July, 1995, what is the situation in regards to prisoners
5 being held in schools in the Zvornik Brigade area of responsibility?
6 A. By the morning of the 15th, Colonel Beara, particularly being in
7 Zvornik, should be aware that the prisoners are already being killed at
8 both Orahovac and at the Petkovci school. He is aware that there are
9 still prisoners at the Rocevic school, there are prisoners at Pilica, and
10 there are -- at this point in time they'll be putting prisoners who can't
11 fit into the school at Pilica into the Dom of Culture.
12 Q. Also in Pilica?
13 A. Yes, sir.
14 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE KWON: Also under seal provisionally?
16 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
18 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4954, provisionally under seal,
19 Your Honours.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: Could I have P00108, please.
21 Q. I'd like to go through this quite quickly. This is referred to
22 in footnote 414 -- excuse me, 399 and 412, and actually quite a few
23 places in your narrative. It's the -- it's a daily orders log entry for
24 15/16 July of the Zvornik Brigade Engineering Company.
25 Could you just tell us why you included this in your report and
1 what its significance was to you. It's -- I'm sorry, it's at tab 99.
2 A. I've got it. Yes, I've got it. The -- the forensics of the
3 investigation as well as witness testimony from survivors outlines
4 locations of where the initial mass graves were. One of the
5 investigative questions pursued was who was responsible for burying the
6 bodies of the individuals. This particular document from the
7 Engineer Company of the Zvornik Infantry Brigade reflects equipment at
8 locations on the 15th of July in Orahovac and Petkovci which could only
9 be engaged in that activity, and the fact that they are listed in the
10 orders book, the daily orders book for the Engineer Company reflects in
11 my mind the fact that they're operating there under military control. So
12 in fact it is member of -- it is members of the Engineer Company who are
13 engaged in burying those bodies.
14 Q. Just a quick follow-up. Why do you say that's the only activity
15 that they could be engaged in at these places on those dates?
16 A. Well, from a military perspective, there is no combat activity
17 occurring at the location of Orahovac or Petkovci on those dates. Both
18 of those locations are far from the front lines, and there is no logical
19 reason for that equipment to be working there for a military purpose,
20 i.e., digging defensive positions or things of that nature. So once you
21 exclude all of those things out and corresponding to where the locations
22 of the mass graves are, it leaves you the only logical conclusion.
23 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. If we could go to P00138.
24 Q. That's at tab 101, Mr. Butler. This is Vinko Pandurevic's
25 interim combat report from 15 July. It's got a lot of information in it.
1 You cite this - I won't go through all the footnotes - quite heavily in
2 your narrative. Could you just tell us the significance of this
3 document. If you could just quickly go through it for us.
4 A. Well, starting from the back, perhaps, and moving forward for an
5 appreciation, you can see that there is a sent stamp on this particular
6 document of 15 July 1995 at 1925 hours. So it reflects the awareness of
7 the brigade and specifically in this case with the signature of the
8 brigade commander on the original B/C/S version of that. The -- the
9 awareness of the brigade commander, Colonel Pandurevic, at or before this
10 particular time when this report is sent, that part is important because
11 it has to be realised that Colonel Pandurevic, when the day began on the
12 15th of July, was with his forces in the Zepa enclave, and only in the
13 early morning hours of the 15th, I think somewhere around the line of
14 8.00 or 9.00, those forces were disengaged and Colonel Pandurevic was
15 directed to return to the Zvornik Brigade area in order to deal with the
16 military situation. So Colonel Pandurevic is now coming into the brigade
17 zone for the first time since he's left it on the 4th of July, I believe.
18 So while he generally has an awareness of what's going on, this
19 particular document by him reflects the detailed understanding he has of
20 the situation throughout his brigade at this time.
21 So the first paragraph discusses his understanding of the column
22 and talks about, you know, 3.000 armed and unarmed enemy soldiers. It
23 gives you an appreciation of the gravity of the threat of the column that
24 Colonel Pandurevic recognises, as well as noting that the brigade forces
25 are sealing off and searching the area and that several hundred -- few
1 hundred is the word he uses, have already been killed, and those would be
2 enemy soldiers from the column.
3 It gives, the next paragraph, his appreciation of the situation
4 from the 2 Corps and what he believes that the 2 Corps is doing in order
5 to attempt to link up with the column and where he believes that main
6 attack is coming from.
7 It talks about, in the third paragraph, other military-related
8 events that are occurring in the -- in the brigade zone, which would
9 include artillery attacks. It would -- other smaller attacks. It notes
10 his awareness of what his casualties are at that time, which are -- at
11 least is reported four dead and a dozen or so wounded. And continuing on
12 in that paragraph, again noting that they're sealing off various areas
13 and that ultimately all the brigade forces are engaged and they have no
14 reserve forces.
15 The next paragraph is where Colonel Pandurevic notes his
16 awareness of the prisoners that are in the Zvornik Brigade zone. He
17 notes that:
18 "An additional burden for us is the large number of prisoners
19 distributed throughout schools in the brigade area, as well as
20 obligations of security and restoration of the terrain," which in the
21 Serbo-Croatian language translates as "asanacija."
22 In this particular context, what he's talking about is an
23 awareness, in my opinion, of the number of prisoners in the school, the
24 security obligations at a minimum related to guarding them, and further,
25 I believe the knowledge that they're being executed. And at the last
1 part of the phrase, the "asanacija," an awareness that Zvornik Brigade
2 military formations are being used to bury the bodies.
3 The next paragraph talks about the command can no longer take
4 care of these problems any longer, and it is neither the material or
5 resources, and further notes:
6 "If no one takes on this responsibility, I will be forced to let
7 them go."
8 In previous testimony I have been asked whether I believe in that
9 context of letting them go, whether we're referring to the prisoners or
10 the column. My answer was at that time and remains that in the context
11 of where this particular statement is, I believe that Colonel Pandurevic
12 is referring to the prisoners in the schools that he would be prepared to
13 let go, not the column.
14 The next paragraph is that he notes that he has been in some
15 communication with his opposite number in the 2nd Corps, where he talks
16 about making an offer on the other side to separate out civilians and
17 have others surrender, but that his opposite number, the 28th Infantry --
18 the 24th Infantry Division person he's discussing this with has refused
19 and they want the entire column to be released or let go.
20 His last -- or his next sentence, "The situation is complicated
21 but still under control," and at this particular point in time, he's
22 correct. It is complicated but it is still under control. A lot of the
23 major combat which occurs has yet to happen during the late evening hours
24 of the 15th and the early morning hours of 16 July 1995.
25 And he ends his report with a request once again reiterating his
1 previous requests for additional reinforcements.
2 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. Now, in line with this report that we
3 see talks about a large number of prisoners, I'd like to go to P04460.
4 Q. That's your tab 102. The same day, the Main Staff again report
5 to the president. And again if we could look at page 3, the Drina Corps
6 zone. And I just want to get your comment again about the reporting
7 chain up through these various bodies which we see here in the report to
8 the president, specifically as it refers to the situation in the former
9 Srebrenica enclave and prisoners.
10 A. It discusses, again, as part of the column, the remainder of
11 scattered Muslim formations from the former Srebrenica enclave are moving
12 towards Kravica and Konjevic Polje. It talks about several enemy groups
13 having surrendered to VRS members and then starts going into the
14 situation related to Zvornik. So as in other days, there are reports
15 going up by the Main Staff to the president of the republic as well as
16 the other corps commands noting that the Drina Corps units are still
17 capturing prisoners on these days.
18 Q. Thank you. With that, I'd like to now move to the 16th of July
19 and go through some documents concerning the situation on that day, again
20 speaking about the military situation in the Zvornik area --
21 Zvornik Brigade area and the situation with the prisoners.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Could I have 31128A. Excuse me one moment. Yes,
23 31128A, please.
24 Q. Which is at your tab 103, Mr. Butler. This is a conversation on
25 16 July 1995 at 11.11 in the morning, between Colonel Beara and Cerovic.
1 Do you know who Cerovic would be?
2 A. Yes, sir. This is Colonel Cerovic, who is the assistant
3 commander for morale, legal, and religious affairs at the Drina Corps.
4 Q. Thank you. And the conversation concerns something called triage
5 to be done on the prisoners, and Beara comes on the line and speaks with
6 Cerovic. And Cerovic eventually says, "So he told me he got instructions
7 from above, yes, to do triage on those." And Beara says, "I don't want
8 to talk about it on the phone."
9 What I want to ask you is: On the 16th of July, having looked
10 through logs of the Zvornik Brigade for vehicle logs, rear services logs,
11 hospital logs, the type of material you said would need to be mobilised
12 quickly when thousands of prisoners are taken in order to feed them, care
13 for their medical needs, transport them to other exchange centres, things
14 of that nature, did you find any documents supporting triage of that
15 nature on the 16th of July in Zvornik?
16 A. No, sir. The only references related to anything that could be
17 medically remotely related to Zvornik and prisoners on 16th July is
18 related to the prisoners who were -- wounded prisoners who started in
19 Milici, were moved to the Zvornik medical centre, and ultimately from
20 there moved to the Standard facility. That numbered at -- was a total of
21 13 prisoners. So in this particular context where you're talking about
22 triage over a thousand prisoners, there are no documents or anything else
23 that even would potentially relate to that as a medical context.
24 Q. What is, if you know, Beara's involvement with prisoners on the
25 16th of July?
1 A. Colonel Beara's involvement is related to the execution of the
2 prisoners at Pilica and Dom of Culture and Branjevo on that day, and in
3 fact, there are documents that will reflect -- both documents and
4 intercepts reflect having to deal with particular logistics issues that
5 will come up due to a lack of fuel in order to complete the full
7 Q. Thank you. We will get to some of those in a moment. And just
8 if I can ask you again, it mentions, "Trkulja was here just with me --
9 was here with me just now -- was looking for you."
10 Can you tell us who Trkulja is again?
11 A. Colonel Trkulja is an operations officer from the Main Staff.
12 He's -- by position he's technically the chief of armour services. In
13 this particular context where Cerovic is talking about "Trkulja being
14 here with me looking for you," Cerovic is at the Drina Corps
15 headquarters. So he's referring to the fact that Colonel Trkulja was
16 physically at the Drina Corps headquarters looking for Beara, assuming
17 that he might be there at that time.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender that provisionally under
19 seal, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Mr. Robinson.
21 MR. ROBINSON: No objection, Mr. President.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
23 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4955, provisionally under seal,
24 Your Honours.
25 MR. NICHOLLS:
1 Q. Thank you. Now simply to save time I won't bring it up, but can
2 you recall whether there was an entry in the Zvornik Brigade duty officer
3 notebook for 16 July, stating that it was reported from Zlatar that
4 triage of wounded and prisoners must be carried out? It was reported to
5 Beara. If you don't remember that, I can bring it up.
6 A. Yes, sir, I do recall that.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 A. I believe I've testified that in previous cases.
9 JUDGE KWON: It has been already admitted.
10 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour. I just didn't -- I was trying
11 to -- not to bring it up again.
12 Could I have 65 ter 31143, please.
13 Q. This is at your tab 106, Mr. Butler. This is a brief intercept.
14 If you could just tell me what this is about. It's between Zlatar, which
15 we now know is Drina Corps, and Palma, Zvornik Brigade.
16 A. In this particular context, they're looking for -- Zlatar's
17 asking: "Give me the 01." Normally when you hear intercept
18 conversations like this, the 01 refers to the commander. In this
19 particular case it notes that the commander is listening but they can't
20 make a direct link, and Zlatar is asking, you know, give -- just have him
21 brief me on what's knew for Zlatar 1. In this particular context, the
22 communications or operations people are saying what does Colonel
23 Pandurevic have for General Krstic so he's aware of the situation. And
24 Palma is saying, "We made a small corridor so the civilians could pull
25 out." And their words are illegible there. And then Zlatar says,
1 "Nothing. Good luck and good-bye to you," and so that ends the
2 conversation essentially.
3 Q. Thank you. And we see the time, it's 13.55. Is that significant
4 for what's going on on the 16th with the column?
5 A. Yes, sir. As I -- there's been a good deal of information that
6 discusses this. Sometime in the early afternoon of the 16th of July and
7 times vary between roughly, you know, 1.00 to maybe as late as 3.00 or
8 4.00. Colonel Pandurevic talking with his counterpart in the 28th -- or
9 the 24th Division concluded a temporary battle-field truce which would
10 allow for the column to depart the territory of the Republika Srpska and
11 head towards what the Bosnian Muslims consider friendly lines. There
12 were -- as I noted earlier, there were drastic changes in the military
13 situation in the Zvornik Brigade from the 19.25 interim report that
14 Colonel Pandurevic drafted on the 15th to what is now happening on the
15 afternoon of the 16th. Many of those Colonel Pandurevic will actually
16 lay out himself in his interim combat report, but there was a significant
17 amount of combat, a number of VRS positions to include the
18 4th Infantry Battalion's command posts were overrun by the column, and in
19 light of the rapidly deteriorating military situation, Colonel Pandurevic
20 made a determination that he needed to allow the column to go through,
21 that there was no point in attacking it anymore for the -- for the
22 military gain that he was receiving or he was getting, which was now
23 minimal at best.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. Could I tender that, Your Honour. It
25 would need to be provisionally under seal. Or perhaps the version we
1 have up there is fine, actually. Sorry, I was looking at a different one
2 in my ...
3 JUDGE KWON: But it's of six pages.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: Oh. I withdraw it. I'll -- I'll tender it
5 separately later, Your Honour, if it's not in complete order.
6 JUDGE KWON: Let me just check it. But English is of three
7 pages, and B/C/S is of six pages. Yes. If you could tender it --
8 MR. NICHOLLS: I'll fix that, Your Honour.
9 JUDGE KWON: -- after tidying it up. Yes, let's proceed.
10 MR. NICHOLLS:
11 Q. Could you go to tab 110, Mr. Butler. This is D02002. And we'll
12 look at a couple of intercepts now, not directly in chronological order.
13 This one is between the Main Staff and General Mladic, although
14 General Mladic cannot be heard. To save time I won't go through it all,
15 but the Main Staff office -- duty officer says:
16 "Good day, General, sir, well, it's like this. I just sent a
17 telegram to Toso while the president called a short while ago and said
18 that he had been informed by Karisik that Pandurevic had arranged passage
19 for the Muslims over to that territory," and then he continues talking
20 about not having communication with Pandurevic.
21 Can you just tell us what this intercept is about in relation to
22 the situation in Zvornik you've just been describing and what it tells us
23 about General -- President Karadzic's ability to communicate with the
24 Main Staff and receive information through the MUP about army
25 developments, military developments?
1 A. Yes, sir. I mean, first off, just as in previous cases,
2 President Karadzic, when significant issues that affected the state came
3 up, was not particularly shy about picking up the phone and directly
4 trying to call the Main Staff or others in order to ascertain what was
5 happening and what the impacts would be. At its face, this document
6 reflects the fact that they're aware that President Karadzic has been
7 calling down, asking information about this, and also noting that he's
8 receiving information on this situation from Karisik, who is the head of
9 the MUP -- or of the police forces of the MUP at this time.
10 So in the sense that where I've discussed previously the multiple
11 reporting chains that were existing and reporting all the way back up to
12 the chain of command, this is an excellent opportunity of even though --
13 to demonstrate that even though President Karadzic is not receiving
14 information about this yet from the military, he has an entirely
15 different chain of information in reporting from the MUP side that he is
16 hearing about this information. So he is well informed as to what is
17 going on, and at this juncture asking the army to clarify and to provide
18 additional information.
19 Clearly he's caught the army by surprise, because even though
20 General Krstic may be aware of Pandurevic's decision to open the column,
21 as noted in the previous intercept, the Main Staff still hasn't been
22 fully apprised of what is happening and is caught a little bit flatfooted
23 as they're now trying to deal with answering the request from the
24 president about this and their own subordinate military formation hasn't
25 yet informed them of what the situation was.
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. If we could go quickly now then to
3 Q. That's at your tab 109, Mr. Butler, before. As I said, we're
4 going a bit out of order, because the intercept we just looked at was at
5 16.15 on the 16th, and now we're looking at one at 15.29 from the
6 Main Staff to Palma, Zvornik Brigade. And could you just tell us how
7 this intercept, the information here fits in to what you've just been
8 discussing with us about this information on the corridor being opened?
9 A. What this particular document is related to the Main Staff in
10 Palma is that they're also hearing information and receiving it -- like I
11 said, they make it a point that they didn't get any information from the
12 MUP, but they -- they got it from this other individual, from
13 Novi Karakaj, and what they want is they want to hear from
14 Colonel Pandurevic what is going on. They want him to dictate a report
15 as to what is happening and send it to the Main Staff as soon as
17 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. Now let me -- this is going slightly
18 out of order, but if I could have 65 ter 31139, please.
19 Q. That's at your tab 107. Still on 16 July at 4.00 p.m.
20 JUDGE KWON: Were you minded to tender that into --
21 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour. I apologise. It has been --
22 no, it was not. I'm sorry. Yes, I do intend to tender that, Your
24 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Robinson.
25 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President, I don't have any objection. I
1 noticed that this intercept and a few others seem to have two copies of
2 the same intercept and the same 65 ter number. I'm wondering if there's
3 a particular reason for that.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: The reason is, Your Honour, and Mr. Robinson,
5 is -- I believe these have been put together to show the intercept from
6 the different versions we have, from the notebook and from the printout.
7 That's why there are two. And because they are sometimes, as we've seen
8 in the testimony here, slightly different, and with the printout and the
9 original, it is easily to roll back and see the date sometimes from the
10 notebook. So it may be a little bit messy and we'll clean it up, but
11 that is the idea.
12 JUDGE KWON: And that should be put provisionally under seal,
13 Mr. Nicholls?
14 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, I think so, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
16 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4956, provisionally under seal,
17 Your Honours.
18 MR. NICHOLLS:
19 Q. Now, 31139 at your tab 107, Mr. Butler, the Chamber has actually
20 seen this intercept before and seen the fuel log which we say is related
21 to it and the duty officer notebook entry related to it with a different
22 witness so I don't want to go through all that, but what I would like you
23 to explain to us is on the 16th of July in the afternoon, what is -- you
24 referred to this earlier. What is Colonel Popovic involved in where he
25 needs 500 litres of D2 diesel fuel doing?
1 A. Like Colonel Beara, at this time Colonel Popovic, who was the
2 chief of security for the Drina Corps, is up in the Pilica area, and they
3 are dealing with the issues of the transportation of the prisoners from
4 Pilica to Branjevo and their execution, and so as part of that process,
5 you know, Colonel Popovic is having to deal with the issue of a lack of
6 fuel for the transports of the prisoners from the Pilica school to
7 Branjevo, and this whole chain of events noting all of the people who
8 have to be called and who are ultimately involved in requisitioning the
9 fuel through the proper sources so it could be used for this purpose.
10 Q. And as you say, requisitioning the fuel through proper sources.
11 Forgetting for the moment that this fuel is being used to assist in a --
12 what we say is a murder operation, is the way the fuel is obtained, as we
13 see in these intercepts and the fuel log, according to the way fuel would
14 be attained for any military operation?
15 A. Yes, sir.
16 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender this, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE KWON: No objection, Mr. Robinson?
18 MR. ROBINSON: That's correct, Mr. President.
19 JUDGE KWON: Yes. That will be admitted.
20 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4957, provisionally under seal,
21 Your Honours.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
23 Q. Now, that was an intercept with Mr. Popovic on the 16th at around
24 2.00 p.m. I want to look now at 31145A. That's at your tab 111,
25 Mr. Butler. 16th of July still, 16.43 now. Duty officer from Zlatar is
1 calling, looking for Popovic, and says, "Listen, the boss wants one to --
2 of the two of them to Vinko to see what's going on."
3 Speaking of Popovic or Drago Nikolic, to see what's going there.
4 What is this about?
5 A. Well, in the context of what's happening in Zvornik, you know,
6 first is Zlatar duty officer referring to his boss. His boss is
7 General Krstic, the corps commander. So he wants either his chief of
8 security, Popovic, or Drago Nikolic, the Zvornik Brigade chief of
9 security, to go to where Colonel Pandurevic is, which is -- at this point
10 in time Colonel Pandurevic is at the brigade forward command post and
11 getting report as to what is going on with respect to the column. For
12 whatever reason, at this juncture still nobody has heard from
13 Colonel Pandurevic as to the circumstances surrounding, first, the column
14 and, second, what motivated his decision to authorise the column to pass
15 through the lines as well as whatever else with respect to the broader
16 situation related to the Zvornik military. So people are frantically
17 trying to instruct others: Go to Colonel Popovic. Find out what's going
18 on and report back. I'm sorry, Colonel Pandurevic, and report back.
19 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this, Your Honour.
20 MR. ROBINSON: No objection, Mr. President.
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes. That will be admitted.
22 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4958, provisionally under seal,
23 Your Honours.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: All right. Now, two more documents on this same
25 topic. If I could have P00180.
1 Q. Mr. Butler, this should be one of two documents you have in
2 tab 112. It's Vinko Pandurevic's interim combat report from
3 16 July 1995. And if you can briefly link up this interim combat report
4 Pandurevic is sending to the topic we're going through at the moment.
5 A. Well, sir, finally at this juncture and depending on whether you
6 look at the date stamp of the report as in 1810 hours or 2000 hours, I
7 mean somewhere between 6.00 and 8.00 p.m. on the 16th of July,
8 Colonel Pandurevic's interim report about the situation finally gets sent
9 to the Drina Corps headquarters where it lays out Colonel Pandurevic's
10 assessment of the overall situation. He talks about the attacks that
11 started at 0400 hours right where he predicted they would be, the 4th,
12 7th and 6th Infantry Battalion areas. Notes that the 4th Battalion was
13 completely surrounded, and as he says in his column -- or in his number,
14 counting the soldiers and civilians, armed and unarmed, I mean, they were
15 surrounded by over 7.000 people. Talks about the viciousness or ferocity
16 of the attack and noting that part of their -- not only part of the
17 brigade forces are surrounded at Baljkovica, but that the enemy has
18 suffered major losses and notes hundreds of dead. But even in fact --
19 even despite the casualties that they are incurring, they are still
20 pushing out towards the north-west in order to break through.
21 It notes what their forces are doing in paragraph 2. What the
22 friendly situation is. Notes the dozens of wounded, ten dead,
23 five missing in action, and also reflects the fact that he doesn't even
24 have full reporting yet, that there are additional reports that will be
25 sent, and that he's having difficulties getting his supplies and
1 evacuating the wounded because the main road into that area has been cut
3 Paragraph 3, imparting -- he's venting his frustration about the
4 fact that the brigade is in this situation, that he's not been able to
5 really defeat the column as he wanted to do, and, you know, noting the
6 fact that the Muslims, you know, have done everything that they can to
7 save members of the column to at least whatever degree they can. Now
8 Pandurevic basically lays out his justification for why he has decided to
9 open a corridor. And in this particular context, then -- now he's noting
10 the col -- you know, the corridor is in his mind, I'm only letting the
11 500 civilians -- or 5.000 civilians out. So at this point in time he's
12 now justifying his decisions related to why he let the column go.
13 He notes at the back end of paragraph 3, which is page 2 of the
14 English language translation, you know, the truce to allow the column to
15 go out will succeed. He's still trying to push the issue of it's
16 civilians, but he notes that a certain number of soldiers are likely
17 getting out, but he's then claiming at the end, "Although those who
18 passed, passed through unarmed."
19 He notes that armed units have separated into smaller groups and
20 are making their way separately.
21 Paragraph 5, he's noted that despite everything that's happened,
22 the overall front line from the Zvornik Brigade has not moved. They've
23 not had to surrender territory, but you know, they've given up the line.
24 And he notes that at some juncture he's going to seal off that area with
25 new additional forces and again start sweeping the terrain, looking to
1 engage whatever forces are not successfully let out.
2 Q. And what about the last line?
3 A. Again he's venting his frustration here. He understands that the
4 rest of the Drina Corps is focused on Zepa and Stupcana 95. He's
5 basically reminding the corps command, "I consider Krivaja 95 is not
6 complete so long as there's a single enemy soldier or civilian behind the
7 front line," you know, specific to him in -- in the Zvornik municipality.
8 And at this point in time, even though he's let a large chunk of the
9 column through, there are still hundreds, you know, maybe even over a
10 thousand Bosnian Muslims from the column who were not able to make it out
11 and who are going to be trapped behind the lines.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. If I could now have 65 ter 31137.
13 Q. This is an intercept from 21.16, the same day, 16 July, again
14 related to the column being allowed through the corridor that
15 Vinko Pandurevic opened. And if you could just take us through this,
16 keeping in mind that we saw earlier the intercept from Drina Corps
17 requesting that Popovic go check on Vinko and see what the situation is.
18 This should be also in your tab 112.
19 A. Yes, sir, I have it. Here this conversation relates to the fact
20 that initially Colonel Popovic tried to make contact directly with
21 General Krstic and wasn't able to. So he is essentially briefing someone
22 in the operations centre of the Drina Corps as to the situation. He
23 notes that, "Do you know where I am," and they say, "Yes." "Did you get
24 the interim report," and in this context they're referring to the interim
25 report we've just discussed, the one for 16 July 1995.
1 Popovic is basically acknowledging that, you know, the situation
2 that he understand it is as Colonel Pandurevic wrote it. There's -- at
3 the back end of it a phrase is part of the same conversation where all of
4 a sudden Popovic says, "I finished the job," and the conversation is
5 about "you finished everything." And it goes later that Popovic says,
6 "I'll come up there tomorrow when I'm sure it's all been taken care of."
7 You know, in this particular context you've got two issues being
8 discussed. Most of the conversation has to do with the roles and actions
9 of Pandurevic, but at the last part of the conversation it's my
10 assessment that Popovic is letting the people of the Drina Corps to be
11 passed to General Krstic, no, that the killing operation is concluded now
12 as well, and in fact, this does correspond to the time of the last
13 execution -- or mass executions in the Zvornik Brigade area.
14 Q. Let me just ask you which -- where were those on the 16th, the
15 last ones that you're referring to?
16 A. After the executions were completed at Branjevo, they still had,
17 I think, the number is somewhere between 3- or 500 at the Pilica Dom of
18 Culture, and so ultimately the last mass execution occurred in the
19 village of Pilica where those Muslim prisoners being held at the Dom of
20 Culture were actually executed at the site.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'd like to ask kindly to have the
23 rest of the Serbian version displayed, because I see that in English
24 Popovic is saying that things were horrible, so I would like to see what
25 it was that was horrible.
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes. If we could then show that to Mr. Karadzic.
2 Q. I can read this part out here and ask you, Mr. Butler. Popovic
3 says, "Well, in general there weren't any major problems, but up there,
4 there were horrible problems up there. And that thing the commander sent
5 it was just the right thing," so -- and then he says, "Just the thing.
6 Horrible, it was horrible."
7 So if you can, since Mr. Karadzic has raised it, what do you
8 believe the horrible problems and horrible thing is being referred to,
9 the executions or the conditions with the -- the situation with the
10 column that Commander Pandurevic described in his interim combat report?
11 A. In this context I believe that they are discussing the situation
12 with the column.
13 Q. And why is that? Why do you believe that that is the topic --
14 JUDGE KWON: Previous page in English.
15 THE WITNESS: In this particular context, they are they talking
16 about all through the day of the 16th of July, additional units are being
17 brought into the Zvornik Brigade as reinforcements and it's talking about
18 they're being sent up there. Well, in the context of the
19 Zvornik Infantry Brigade as described to me by various officers of the
20 Zvornik Brigade, up and down does not correspond to north and south. Up
21 and down corresponds to -- the further west you go from the Drina River,
22 you're going uphill. So when they talk about up there, what they are
23 talking about in their vernacular is you're getting up there towards the
24 front lines versus down there by the river. So military people
25 generally, you know, they talk in the same vernacular. So I mean, the
1 general appreciation is we're talking up there in the hills on the front
2 line area when we're talking about, "They sent them all up there" and
3 "the situation up there." It's not up there, geographically Pilica is
4 north and Orahovac is south, something of that nature.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I? May I just suggest the
7 following: Popovic says, "Horrible, it was horrible." "Horror" would be
8 a better translation. Horror.
9 JUDGE KWON: Well, the proper way to deal with it is to ask the
10 CLSS to take a look into the matter by written filing.
11 Mr. Robinson, would you agree?
12 MR. ROBINSON: I would agree, but I wonder if it's easier and
13 maybe more accurate if the interpreters could just interpret what
14 Dr. Karadzic read from the text and see if that concurs with -- maybe
15 there will be no need for an official correction.
16 JUDGE KWON: The only person at the moment that can read that
17 part seems to be Mr. Karadzic.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: I think, just in the savings of time, there is no
19 reason not to do this and he can, of course, put whatever he likes in
20 cross-examination on this.
21 JUDGE KWON: Well, why don't we take this opportunity. Could you
22 read that passage, Mr. Karadzic? Do you have that passage?
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, Excellency. It's the first
24 line -- or, rather, the second line in the Serbian version. "Horror.
25 There was horror," or "it was horrible." I would like to ask the
1 interpreters to do a verbatim translation of this.
2 JUDGE KWON: No. Why don't you just read slowly so that the
3 interpreters can interpret.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honours, the interpreters may be able to --
5 JUDGE KWON: They don't read for themselves.
6 MR. NICHOLLS: Okay.
7 JUDGE KWON: So why don't you read from: "Well, in general,
8 there weren't any major problems."
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] That's the previous page in
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Then why you don't read from: "Good," by
12 Rasic. Do you have it, Mr. Karadzic?
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, yes. I think so. Could I --
14 no, no. Here it is. Rasic says, "Good," or "all right," and then
15 Popovic says something unclear, the first word. And then after the ...
16 he says, "Horror ... there was horror."
17 THE INTERPRETER: Or "it was horrible," interpreter's note.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] "Listen, Vujadin." Everybody can
19 read this. Everyone can see that what this is is: "Horror."
20 JUDGE KWON: Very well. We have noted that. Let's proceed.
21 MR. NICHOLLS: I'll check it, Your Honour, although the ...
22 May I tender this, Your Honour?
23 MR. ROBINSON: No objection, Mr. President.
24 JUDGE KWON: Yes. That will be admitted.
25 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4959, provisionally under seal,
1 Your Honours.
2 MR. NICHOLLS:
3 Q. If you could go to tab 19, Mr. Butler.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: If I could have 65 ter 1962, English page 3,
5 Serbian page 3.
6 Q. This is Commander Ljubisa Borovcanin's report from 10 to 20 July
8 A. Sorry, could you repeat the tab number, sir.
9 Q. Yeah, it should be one of two documents - probably the second
10 document - in tab 119.
11 A. Oh, 119. I apologise.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry, page 4 of the English. My mistake. Let me
13 see which -- yes, page 4. Yeah, I'm looking for the entry of 16 July,
14 which -- page 3 of the Serbian.
15 Q. Now, here the part I'm interested in is if you could tell us
16 about the paragraph which begins, "At 1300 hours," where Mr. Borovcanin
17 in his report writes Vinko Pandurevic and the commander of the Muslim
18 side, Semso Muminovic, agreed to open a 1-kilometre-wide corridor in the
19 areas of Parlog and Baljkovica to allow Muslim soldiers to get out,
20 because that's different from the parts you highlighted in
21 Vinko Pandurevic's report where he stresses civilians. If you could just
22 give us your view?
23 A. Yes, sir. I mean, that is correct. Colonel -- this time it's
24 still Mr. Borovcanin. Their forces were also engaged in military
25 operations up at the Zvornik Brigade area and were part of this process
1 and they were part of the forces that Vinko Pandurevic was using to fight
2 the column. So as you can tell from -- if you look up one paragraph and
3 look at the last line, at about 1500 hours, the bulk of the enemy column
4 (his understanding about 2.500 soldiers) managed to break through to
5 Nezuk. So Colonel Borovcanin has a different characterization of what
6 the character of the column was or the composition of the column was than
7 Colonel Pandurevic is reporting up his chain of command.
8 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. Might I tender that, Your Honours?
9 MR. ROBINSON: No objection.
10 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Yes, that will be admitted.
11 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4960, Your Honours.
12 MR. NICHOLLS:
13 Q. All right. That was the -- I'm now moving to the 17th of July,
14 Mr. Butler.
15 MR. NICHOLLS: If we could have 65 ter 31265.
16 Q. That's your tab 115, Mr. Butler. Again I'll try to really quite
17 quickly go through a series of documents again relating to Mr. --
18 command -- Lieutenant-Colonel Vujadin Popovic's activities now on the
20 So very quickly this first one. Can you tell us briefly what is
21 going on here on the 17th of July at 12.42?
22 A. At this juncture, somebody from the Zlatar command post either --
23 says "Zlatar 1," so it's either General Krstic personally or somebody
24 saying Zlatar 1 wants to know where Popovic is. And Major Golic, who was
25 at the Drina Corps headquarters, is reporting back that no, he's not
1 returned back from Zvornik yet. He's still up there. And then the
2 message is relayed. General Krstic ultimately gets on the line, as he's
3 recognised by General Golic, says, "Listen, Golic, find Popovic, have him
4 report to the IKM." At this particular juncture, the IKM that they're
5 referring to is the Drina Corps IKM which is down by the Zepa area as
6 part of Stupcana 95, and noting that, you know, "I want him here
8 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender that, Your Honour, and
9 then we'll go quickly to another.
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4961, Your Honours.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: If I could have 31234. We have a conversation two
13 minutes later, approximately, on the same day between X and Trbic.
14 Q. This is your tab 116, Mr. Butler. Could you quickly tell us who
15 Trbic was in terms of the Zvornik Brigade?
16 A. Trbic, Milorad Trbic was a captain and he is the deputy security
17 officer for the Zvornik Infantry Brigade at this point in time.
18 Q. Now, here they are still -- X is still looking for Pop, or
19 Popovic. And Trbic says, "He went -- well, he went there toward that
20 task north of you. Yes."
21 And can you just tell us what this intercept is about, what is
22 going on here that day?
23 A. This is an intercept between somebody relaying the message from
24 the Drina Corps to the next lower level, which is the Zvornik Brigade,
25 and they're asking where Popovic is. In this particular case, they
1 specifically note the geographical reference "north of you." In this
2 case, clearly Pilica, Branjevo, and the Dom of Culture are to the north
3 of the headquarters of the Zvornik Brigade. And they pass on the
4 message, "Leave right away for here for Zlatar 1," he says. And the
5 complaint that goes back later is, "I don't know how fast we can get to
6 him because he's kind of isolated up where he is."
7 Q. And we'll get to that, but what is the situation north, Branjevo,
8 Pilica, that area, on 17 July as it relates to Vujadin Popovic as well?
9 A. At this point on the 17th, they're essentially burying the bodies
10 of the individuals who were killed on site at the Branjevo Farm, and they
11 are also using military trucks to empty the bodies of those who were
12 killed in the Pilica Dom and bringing those over to Branjevo so they can
13 be killed [sic] as well. So there is a considerable clean-up operation
14 going on in Pilica and at Branjevo for the killings that took place the
15 day before.
16 MR. NICHOLLS: I'm going to tender this, Your Honour.
17 MR. ROBINSON: No objection, Mr. President.
18 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Yes. We'll admit it provisionally under
20 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
21 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4962, provisionally under seal,
22 Your Honours.
23 MR. NICHOLLS: All right. I think before the break we can get
24 through hopefully the next two related. If I could have 31191.
25 Q. That's at your tab 117, Mr. Butler. Now five minutes later. X
1 and Trbic again. X says, "It's changed again." "Yes," says Trbic. "If
2 you get in touch with him, let him finish that work and then have him
3 come here immediately. So let him finish that work he's doing and have
4 him report immediately here at Golic's."
5 What's happened here?
6 A. For some reason that's not explained in the intercept, somebody
7 made the decision that given what Popovic is engaged in, that someone in
8 this context -- given that the order was given by General Krstic, I mean,
9 he's not going to be countermanded by a lower authority, they've changed
10 their mind and said, "No, I don't need to see him right now. Let's go
11 ahead and let him finish what he was doing. When he's done, he needs to
12 report here." The phrase "at Golac," I take to be Golic, Major Golic,
13 who at that time is at the Drina Corps headquarters in Vlasenica.
14 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender that, Your Honour?
15 MR. ROBINSON: No objection.
16 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Yes.
17 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4963, provisionally under seal,
18 Your Honours.
19 MR. NICHOLLS:
20 Q. Now, if you go to tab 118, Mr. Butler.
21 MR. NICHOLLS: If I could have 31223A, another intercept,
22 17 July, now at 16.22. Finally Popovic on the line. We can't hear the
23 other person although Popovic refers to him as "boss." "Everything's
24 okay. That job is done. Everything's okay." Skip a bit. "Basically
25 that all gets an A, an A, the grade is an A. Everything's okay. That's
1 it. Bye. Take care."
2 So based on your understanding of what was happening at that
3 time, being this time in the Zvornik Brigade area, what does this refer
5 A. Well, by this time the clean-up and the burial, I mean, it --
6 well, parts of it are still ongoing. Most of it's done. And this is
7 Popovic reporting back -- in the context of this discussion, Popovic's
8 boss is General Krstic, and reporting back on the situation. He's
9 talking about, "I'm at the base." I believe in this context, I mean, the
10 base that both Popovic and General Krstic would recognise as such would
11 be the Drina Corps headquarters. So Popovic at this time is now back at
12 the Drina Corps headquarters and he is telephonically reporting to
13 General Krstic that they're completed with what they have to do.
14 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender that, please,
15 Your Honours.
16 MR. ROBINSON: No objection.
17 JUDGE KWON: Are we looking at the correct B/C/S version?
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I don't think so. I don't think
19 that this is that version.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: No, Your Honours, it's not. I don't -- the ERN
21 should be 0080-1468 for the handwritten. So we must have a problem in
22 e-court that we'll fix.
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes. The wrong one --
24 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes. The wrong page has been uploaded.
25 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, while we're doing that, it maybe
1 would save time on cross-examination, I wonder if it would be possible if
2 Mr. Butler could just indicate to us what he makes of the note: "French
3 is heard in the background." That's something we may ask on cross but
4 since it's here in front of us, it might be easier if he could ask
5 that -- answer that now.
6 MR. NICHOLLS: I have no objection to that.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Butler.
8 THE WITNESS: That question has come up before, and I have no
9 explanation for that particular line. I don't know what it's about.
10 JUDGE KWON: Why don't we take a break now.
11 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
12 JUDGE KWON: We'll have a break for an hour and resume at 1.30.
13 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.30 p.m.
14 --- On resuming at 1.34 p.m.
15 JUDGE KWON: Where where we, Mr. Nicholls?
16 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honour, thank you. We've now fixed the
17 problem with 31223, so I would seek to tender that. We have the correct
18 B/C/S page I'm told.
19 JUDGE KWON: And French appears in this B/C/S as well.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: That I don't know.
21 JUDGE KWON: Why don't we upload the correct one now. Probably
22 next page. Yes. Yes, next page.
23 We can admit it publicly, Mr. Nicholls?
24 MR. NICHOLLS: I think so, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll admit it.
1 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4964, Your Honours.
2 JUDGE KWON: Before we continue, could the Chamber move into
3 private session very briefly.
4 [Private session]
5 [Open session]
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Nicholls. Please continue.
7 MR. NICHOLLS:
8 Q. Mr. Butler, before we continue, I just want to ask you about one
9 answer you gave in the last session. This is at page 71, at line 17, and
10 I just want to check if it's right. This had to do with Vujadin Popovic
11 and the events at Branjevo on the 17th of July. What I asked you was:
12 And we'll get to that, but is the situation north at Branjevo,
13 Pilica, that area, on 17 July -- what is the situation, sorry, in that
14 area on 17th July as it relates to Vujadin Popovic as well?
15 And you answered:
16 "At this point on the 17th, they're essentially burying the
17 bodies of the individuals who were killed on site at the Branjevo Farm,
18 and they are also using military trucks to empty the bodies of those who
19 were killed in the Pilica Dom and bringing those over to Branjevo so they
20 could be killed there."
21 And -- I see you nod. Is it killed there or something else that
22 would happen there to those bodies from Pilica Dom going to Branjevo on
23 the 17th?
24 A. That should be buried there. All of the individuals that we're
25 talking about were killed on the 16th, and they were subsequently buried
1 on the 17th.
2 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. On the 17th now still, could I have
4 Q. That's at your tab 114, Mr. Butler.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: This is the republican communications centre log.
6 And if I could have e-court page 16 in English, 7 in Serbian.
7 Q. And I'm really going to try to move quickly this session,
8 Mr. Butler. So while it's coming up, I'll tell you what my question's
10 On the page that's coming up, we'll see that on the 16th of July,
11 from the RS army Main Staff security organ there were reports sent to the
12 Republika Srpska president, the Republika Srpska minister of the
13 interior, State Security Service, sometimes attention Mr. Kijac, and
14 Republika Srpska Ministry of Defence Pereula, which is probably
15 Spiro Pereula.
16 Now, I'm going to represent to you that for the 13th, 14th, 15th,
17 16th, 17th, every day, if we were to flip through this book we would see
18 that this VRS security organ is sending reports to these same three
19 principals. I want to ask you two questions about that.
20 One, what can you tell us about that as an additional reporting
22 JUDGE KWON: Just -- can we see the B/C/S part?
23 MR. NICHOLLS: Yeah. It should be page 7.
24 Q. One example would be the number 2351 in the left-hand column, for
25 example. But my question, Mr. Butler, is: What can you -- what does
1 that tell you about this additional reporting directly from the security
2 of VRS Main Staff, in other words, Tolimir, Beara, Salapura, to the
3 president of these other bodies? I'll just ask that first.
4 A. It reflects that even though they were getting a comprehensive
5 picture from the battle-field areas as a result of combat reporting from
6 the various corps, the Main Staff intelligence and security department
7 was also doing their own information and intelligence collection that was
8 going up to the highest level of the government as well, the president of
9 the Republika Srpska. So even within the army reporting chain, not only
10 did he know about battle-field issues, but they were reporting to him on
11 a regular basis, mostly it's once a day at least, intelligence
12 information that the army intelligence and security people were able to
13 derive themselves.
14 Q. My second question is: When you were working here and working on
15 the Srebrenica case, were you ever able to find any of those security
16 intel reports that went directly to the president?
17 A. No, sir, not with respect to any time during July 1995.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. I'd like to go now to 65 ter 02601.
19 Q. This is at your tab 120, Mr. Butler. This is from the
20 19th of July now. We're now moving on past the 17th. A MUP report from
21 Dragomir Vasic. And I just want to ask you to comment on what this tells
22 us about whether the forces of the MUP and VRS are continuing to take
23 prisoners after the mass executions you've talked about.
24 A. Yes, sir. Not only that, but as noted earlier, the column which
25 was allowed to pass through once that 24-hour period was completed and
1 the lines were --
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I ask for -- for interpretation
3 into Serbian. I can't hear it in my headset.
4 JUDGE KWON: All right. Could you repeat your answer,
5 Mr. Butler.
6 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir.
7 JUDGE KWON: Do you hear in B/C/S, Mr. Karadzic, now?
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, now I can.
9 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
10 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir. I'll repeat. Even though the column was
11 allowed to pass between the 16th and the 17th of July, once the lines
12 were reclosed, it was recognised by the army and the police that there
13 were hundreds, if not potentially more, individuals from the column who
14 would be trapped behind the closed lines and that there would be
15 requirement for various police and military forces to continue to sweep
16 through the area in order to engage these individuals. This particular
17 report on 19 July 1995 reflects that.
18 MR. NICHOLLS:
19 Q. Thank you. And just before we move on, based on your work, what
20 happened to Muslim men caught in these sweeps in the days just following
21 the 17th of July, when the major executions you've described concluded?
22 A. The first time that the Zvornik Brigade begins to account for
23 these prisoners officially is on, I believe, the 22nd of July, 1995.
24 22nd or 23rd, in one of those days' combat reports. There are reports of
25 prisoners being taken on the 18th, 19th, 20th, 21st. None of those
1 prisoners were ever accounted for. I believe that the answer on why they
2 are not accounted for is that somewhere within close proximity of where
3 those prisoners were captured, they were summarily executed by either the
4 soldiers or the police who captured them.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender this document?
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes. We will admit it.
7 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4965, Your Honours.
8 MR. NICHOLLS: Could I have 13618, please.
9 Q. This is at your tab 126, Mr. Butler. And I'll just look at this
10 quickly and then we'll look at another document.
11 This is dated the 23rd of July. It's a MUP report from
12 Dragomir Vasic -- excuse me, from Radenko Milicevic from the Srebrenica
13 station, the new Srebrenica station, to the Zvornik CJB speaking about
14 the 22nd of July. And it states -- it describes some problems with the
15 army and states:
16 "Deronjic has been informed of these problems. During the day he
17 was in touch with President Karadzic about the problem with the VRS
19 If we look at page 2 in the English. In the middle we see:
20 "At last night 's meeting, Deronjic took it upon himself to
21 obtain an order from the President of the country which will be sent to
22 the local VRS command and will ban the theft of any property and putting
23 of UNPROFOR bases under the control of our police forces."
24 Now, before I ask you about that, could we look now at 13617.
25 That's at your tab 125, Mr. Butler. An order from President Karadzic
1 from 22nd July that appears to be about the same topics. And it's to the
2 Main Staff, the MUP, and the War Presidency of Srebrenica, banning
3 appropriation of property, et cetera.
4 The question is: Looking at these two documents, putting them
5 together, what does it tell you, one, about this other ability of
6 President Karadzic to achieve information through a civilian channel,
7 and, two, whether it shows that problems with the army can be resolved in
8 this manner or as well?
9 A. Yes, sir. I mean, these two documents reflect exactly that
10 proposition that local municipal authorities have an ability to reach
11 directly up and contact the highest levels of the government, raise
12 issues that are of significant importance, in this particular case the
13 looting of the -- the abandoned UN supplies at Potocari, things of that
14 nature, were deemed to be significant, and the president of the republic
15 through his own orders process was able to issue relevant orders to all
16 of the parties concerned, in this case the Main Staff, the police, and
17 the municipality, regulating how that would occur and who would
18 ultimately be in charge of it.
19 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender these two documents.
20 Thank you. I tender these two documents, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes. They will be all admitted.
22 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4966 and 4967 respectively,
23 Your Honours.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: Still now on communication in the later days. If
25 I could have 65 ter 7586.
1 Q. That's at your tab 127, Mr. Butler. That's an urgent
2 notification on convoys from Drina Corps Commander Krstic referring to a
3 call from President Karadzic, a personal call. Can you comment on this
5 A. It is similar to others that we've noted and intercepts that
6 we've noted. When a particular issue arose that was of significant
7 importance to the state, in this particular case dealing with convoy
8 issues and the consequences of not allowing convoys to proceed unimpeded,
9 President Karadzic, as the Supreme Commander of the armed forces, again
10 would not hesitate to call directly down to the relevant army commanders
11 in order to ensure that the proper instructions were given and that they
12 were complied with.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: I tender that, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Yes, Exhibit P4967 -- 68. Thank you.
15 MR. NICHOLLS: All right. I'll jump ahead a bit now. If I could
16 have - excuse me - 65 ter 1908.
17 Q. This is at your tab 133, Mr. Butler. Another order from
18 President Karadzic to the Main Staff. If I could have your comment on it
19 and also perhaps quickly on what the military/political situation is
20 around 26 July 1995?
21 A. At this particular time within Eastern Bosnia, we're looking at
22 the end state of the Zepa enclave. Most of the military forces have been
23 pushed back to the point where the enclave is no longer defendable. The
24 negotiations have been underway for some period with respect to the
25 ultimate disposition of the population. And in this context,
1 President Karadzic is issuing an order to the Main Staff of the Army of
2 the Republika Srpska directing, you know, which authority is going to be
3 in charge of the evacuation of the civilian population and explaining
5 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. If I could tender that, please,
6 Your Honour.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4969, Your Honours.
9 MR. NICHOLLS:
10 Q. If you go to tab 134, Mr. Butler.
11 MR. NICHOLLS: I've got 65 ter 1935.
12 Q. Two days later, 28th July, a document from Zvornik Chief Dragomir
13 Vasic. And if you could just comment on this document, what it shows
14 about the continuing tasks of the MUP units and PJP units regarding
15 the -- the military situation. And also on the second page, when we get
16 to it, subparagraph (a), if you could tell us what you -- what that means
17 to you.
18 A. Excuse me. First part of the paragraph or first part of page 1,
19 Dragan Vasic is recounting all of the tasks that his various MUP
20 companies have been engaged in. Most of these run through the entire
21 month of July 1995. And that they've been assigned all of these various
22 combat tasks. And further noting that they're still having to deal with
23 issues related to the Srebrenica problem where they're engaged in
24 searching, laying down ambushes, and tracking Muslim groups that now at
25 the 28th of July are still trying to make it across either the
1 battle-field lines to make it to free territory or, as he notes,
2 sometimes across the Drina River and to go to Mali Zvornik. And in this
3 particular context, he is now complaining that he's just been told by the
4 head of the police, Mr. Karisik, that he needs to deploy a company to
5 another location for a seven-day period, and as part of that now he's
6 recounting these are all the things our people have done and they're
7 exhausted, and now I'm starting to have problems with, you know, issues
8 related to desertion and things of that nature.
9 The last part referenced in, I think, the last paragraph,
10 subparagraph (a), he also uses this as an opportunity to note the
11 particularly heavy toll that has been taken on the 1st PJP Company during
12 the period, noting six men killed and 18 wounded, and also, you know,
13 that they should be exempt from a number of tasks, and it also notes that
14 because of its job at Konjevic Polje, this company needs a longer period
15 of rest or it will fall apart.
16 Q. Now, I see that the job Mr. Vasic - and it's in the original -
17 has put in quotation marks, what was the PJP doing in Konjevic Polje?
18 A. I don't know that the 1st Company was in Konjevic Polje. The job
19 in this particular context, I mean, there were one of two MUP units that
20 were involved in the Kravica warehouse. One of them was the 2nd Sekovici
21 Company and the second one was the 1st PJP Company.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4970, Your Honours.
25 MR. NICHOLLS:
1 Q. All right. Now we're going to move into August, Mr. Butler, and
2 discuss some issues which touch on prisoner exchange and topics like
4 MR. NICHOLLS: So if I could have 31569, please.
5 Q. That's at your tab 136. This is an intercept dated 1st August.
6 I should have 31596B, actually. Intercept from 1st of August with one of
7 the speakers being Beara from the Main Staff.
8 And we saw in the Vasic report about some Muslims going across
9 the Drina to Serbia. And we see here in the middle, "Listen, the men
10 that you catch, hand them over alive to our men. We have nobody to
11 exchange, fuck it. They've killed the Serbs and we are moving people out
12 there and accommodating them across Serbia. That's what I've been doing
13 so far, I handed over everyone I caught."
14 And then the next speaker says, "And keep -- and do keep in
15 touch. Beara is going to call you. Be connected all the time, and when
16 you catch someone, they will immediately be taken over." And then later
17 on, which is on the second page of the English, Beara comes on the line.
18 Can you just tell us what the situation is now, this conversation
19 about Beara and getting prisoners back?
20 A. At this particular date and time, the Zepa enclave has fallen.
21 The women and children who were in Zepa have been -- are being evacuated
22 out, but the men, the military-aged men, for the most part are seeking to
23 cross over the Drina River, the recognised international boundary,
24 between Republika Srpska and Serbia proper. And what -- this particular
25 conversation notes the fact is that the VRS is aware that several hundred
1 so far have crossed the Drina River, more are following, and as they are
2 being taken into custody on the other side of the Drina River, they're
3 being handed over to the Serbian MUP, and the Serbian MUP is placing them
4 under their control. So it's the VRS recognising that hundreds and
5 later, you know, several thousand individuals from the former
6 28th Division who were at Zepa are crossing the Drina River and they're
7 surrendering to the Serbian border forces or MUP.
8 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this intercept, Your Honour.
9 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, we previously indicated that we
10 object to Zepa-related materials on the ground of relevance, so I think
11 we'll object to this on that same basis.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: Well, Your Honour, if I can respond to that. The
13 relevance, I can make a proffer, is that at this time there's other
14 evidence and documentation that the word of the mass murders in
15 Srebrenica has started -- has been spread out. We saw that through all
16 of Mr. Block's evidence. There are other documents I will get to and
17 further documents, intercepts, in which it makes clear that Beara is
18 seeking to get prisoners from Serbia, Muslim prisoners, to exchange.
19 There were further documents where the VRS is complaining, "We have
20 nobody to exchange."
21 So the talk of the mass murders has gotten out to the
22 international community. International organisations and the Red Cross
23 are demanding access to prisoners and saying, "Thousands of Muslim men
24 from Srebrenica are unaccounted for. You must have them prisoner. We
25 want to visit them," and are being rebuffed. And at the same time, the
1 VRS has nobody to exchange, where they should, if they hadn't killed them
2 all, have thousands of people to exchange. So it is relevant to a --
3 one, to show what happened in Srebrenica, that all these people were
4 killed; two, to show efforts to cover up the crime by desperately getting
5 prisoners from other areas so that you at least have some prisoners you
6 can point to to exchange; and three, it's the same actors, Beara, in
7 charge of the murder operation, now seeking to find prisoners for the
8 purposes I've just talked about. And we'll see in one of the intercepts,
9 if I'm allowed to get it, Beara says, Look, why we can't we get these
10 people - I'm paraphrasing - we weren't going to kill them, we're going to
11 exchange them. So it is relevant.
12 And the Zepa -- I don't have the cite with me but the Chamber has
13 previously found that Zepa evidence is relevant to the pattern, plan.
14 Zepa is part and parcel of Krivaja 95. It's part and parcel of
15 directive 7, and so it's relevant evidence.
16 JUDGE KWON: And further, although they were talking about people
17 from Zepa, the topic itself is not directly related to Zepa operation as
18 such. I will consult my colleagues.
19 [Trial Chamber confers]
20 JUDGE KWON: The Chamber agrees with Mr. Nicholls' observation.
21 We will admit this.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
23 JUDGE KWON: We'll give the number.
24 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P4971, Your Honours.
25 MR. NICHOLLS: If I could have 31572A, another intercept from
1 1st of August, dated 22.45. Again, one of the speakers is chief of
2 security, Colonel Beara. If we can quickly skip to the second page in
3 the English.
4 Q. This is at your tab 136, Mr. Butler. I'm sorry.
5 On the second page, S from the Main Staff after -- they're
6 talking about how UNHCR are registering the Muslim prisoners in Serbia --
7 JUDGE KWON: I don't think there is an English version for this.
8 MR. ROBINSON: It's under 31572 without the A.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Mr. Robinson. Yes. Thank you.
10 Q. On the second page, and I'll ask you about the whole document,
11 Mr. Butler, but S, Stevo from the Main Staff, says -- speaking about
12 UNHCR registering the prisoners, says, "How can there be a decision when
13 they're registering them? Beara --"
14 THE ACCUSED: Serbian page, please.
15 MR. NICHOLLS: It should be page 2 of the Serbian.
16 Q. Beara says:
17 "They're taking their names, but that doesn't matter. We can,
18 you know how, request that the ICRC escort them to us and they can be
19 exchanged here as written in the contract. We had no plans to kill them,
20 the motherfuckers, but to exchange them."
21 And then it continues and there's a mention of Karadzic.
22 So that's a part I would like to focus you on, but having read
23 the document, can you give us your analysis of it, including the part I
25 A. Yes, sir. Back on the first page of this document, this
1 particular intercept, this is where they start having a numerical
2 appreciation of the number of people that are ultimately making their way
3 across the Drina River and talking about the fact that they're being
4 filmed and that they are already under the observation of the ICRC, which
5 leads you to the second page where they're talking about the issue of
7 In the vein of trying to camouflage where prisoners have come
8 from and their origins for the numbers, they're already starting to worry
9 about the fact that if prisoners are being registered in Serbia as coming
10 from Zepa, you know, the role of being able to claim that these are
11 Srebrenica prisoners is going to be more difficult for them. At this
12 point Beara is not making it sound like it's going to be a problem
13 because we're going to exchange them anyway, but it kind of makes it more
14 difficult. What their hope was that without registering them in any way,
15 the Serbian police and the Serbian border police would just essentially
16 turn them back over to the custody of the VRS.
17 JUDGE KWON: Just to be sure, how did you come to the conclusion
18 that they tried to camouflage those prisoners coming from Srebrenica
19 instead of Zepa?
20 THE WITNESS: I'm ahead of myself a little bit, Your Honour,
21 having read the whole body of documents. One of the things that will
22 come out of that is that there will be continuing pressure down the line
23 from various officials on visiting or where are the prisoners from
24 Srebrenica, and there's a whole bunch of mechanics involved explaining --
25 or trying to explain to these people why they're not available at the
1 moment or things of that nature. So I've had the -- to be able to look
2 at these in the full context. I guess I'm a little bit ahead of myself
3 on what that ultimately will mean, so I apologise, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Thank you.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: And may I tender the document, Your Honour?
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4972, Your Honours.
8 MR. NICHOLLS: Now, could I have 31577, please, an intercept from
9 2nd of August.
10 Q. That's at your tab 138, Mr. Butler. And this one features
11 General Krstic now the next day. Can you just give us your comment on
12 this intercept.
13 A. In this particular document -- and I don't know who Mandzuka is
14 in context. I'm not sure whether I ever knew that or whether I knew it
15 at one point and forgot, but certainly General Krstic is talking about
16 the numbers of individuals. The context of the conversation discusses
17 the fact that there's a concern about letting them cross over into
18 Serbia, and that Beara himself at some juncture is going over to Serbia
19 in an attempt to take care of things.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I admit that, Your Honour?
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could something be clarified? I
22 think the witness said "individuals," not "kids." I heard the word
23 "individuals," and according to the transcript, it seems to be kids that
24 are in question.
25 MR. NICHOLLS: I don't see it in the transcript, but I'm -- I
1 don't think Mr. Butler was referring to children.
2 JUDGE KWON: No, some part is missing from the transcript
3 certainly. If you take a look at --
4 MR. NICHOLLS: I see that.
5 JUDGE KWON: -- line 1 on page 90, something is missing. But
6 certainly Mr. Karadzic is talking about the number of -- yes, something
7 is missing.
8 MR. NICHOLLS:
9 Q. I'll ask you to just repeat your answer. That might be the
10 easiest, Mr. Butler. And you were just giving us your analysis of this
12 A. Yes, sir. Again to repeat, General Krstic is discussing with
13 this individual Mandzuka. They're noticing in this one particular case
14 there's over a thousand of them. The concern about getting -- letting
15 them go to the other state. I think at one juncture Mandzuka notes that
16 there are 2.000 altogether and it's noted that Beara was going to Serbia.
17 So we're talking about the number of individuals who are crossing the
18 Drina River from the former Zepa enclave and putting themselves in the
19 custody of either the Serbian police or border police.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender this, Your Honour?
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
22 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4973, Your Honours.
23 MR. NICHOLLS: Now could I have 31579, please.
24 Q. This is at your tab 140, Mr. Butler, 2nd of August conversation
25 between General Krstic and Colonel Popovic. And if you could just tell
1 us, you've testified about this document before, what is going on here?
2 A. Well, I mean they're talking about essentially contact that in
3 this case Colonel Popovic has had with Beara. Popovic notes that he's
4 also reporting -- that he, Beara in this case, is reporting to Miletic,
5 General Miletic from the Main Staff. They're talking about numbers of
6 them, and one of the issues that is coming up is that the Serbian MUP is
7 not allowing the VRS access to any of these prisoners that are now in
8 their custody, and that is upsetting General Krstic, at least, who has
9 expressed the desire that he as the Drina Corps commander wants those
10 prisoners back.
11 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. And I would turn -- tender that
12 document, please, Your Honour.
13 JUDGE KWON: This one has been marked for identification --
14 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE KWON: -- as P4613.
16 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE KWON: Then shall we just leave it at that?
18 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour. Thank you.
19 Could I have 65 ter 23195, please.
20 Q. That's at your tab 143, Mr. Butler. This is slightly out of
21 topic, but going chronologically, 7th of August now. RS MUP to the
22 deputy minister proposing that the following members of the RDB Bijeljina
23 security department are rewarded money for their extraordinary
24 contribution and engagement during the liberation of Srebrenica and Zepa.
25 From Kijac, head of RDB.
1 Can you just -- we've seen a lot of RDB documents, reporting
2 documents, et cetera, and the information provided by the RDB. Can you
3 just comment on what this document tells you.
4 A. It is a recommendation from Mr. Kijac. It's his recognition that
5 the services provided primarily in collecting intelligence information
6 and reporting that up by the listed individuals, he considers that to be
7 of extraordinary value during the Srebrenica operations and is looking to
8 see about rewarding them.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender that, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4974, Your Honours.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could I just intervene briefly.
13 This was signed on behalf of Kijac. I think that we can agree on that.
14 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes. It says "za."
15 JUDGE KWON: Yes, it's written -- it's translated as well, "For."
16 MR. NICHOLLS: Could I have 22827, please.
17 Q. This is at your tab 144, Mr. Butler. It's dated 12th August.
18 RS government State Commission for Exchange of Prisoners of War. It's
19 brought to the attention, we can see, to Radovan Karadzic, the president,
20 and some other senior members of the government. And the subject is the
21 concept for the solution of the issues with Serbs detain at the Muslim
22 prisons. Because of time I won't go through this whole document, but
23 could you tell us what it says to you in the context of the situation in
24 early -- in mid-August nearly now.
25 A. Yes, sir. I believe this document is dated 12 August of 1995.
1 At this particular juncture, the Republika Srpska military and political
2 leaders have come to the realisation that those Bosnian Muslims who
3 managed to flee Zepa are not going to be turned back over to the custody
4 of the Republika Srpska, especially those who had been registered by the
5 ICRC or were being registered by the ICRC. There were cases where
6 individual prisoners were captured, not registered and then turned back
7 over, but this is a recounting from the State Commission exchanging for
8 war crimes where they are talking about, one, their knowledge of how many
9 Serbs are in various prisons in Tuzla and other locations in Bosnia and
10 Herzegovina versus the number of prisoners that they have or recognise
11 that they have in their custody and discussing modalities of exchange.
12 And the striking thing about these particular numbers is the fact
13 that they're talking in tens and twenties, or maybe a hundred, when in
14 fact they know or at least significant portions of the army and the MUP
15 were aware that prisoners being captured from the 12th of July, 1995,
16 until the 22nd of July, 1995, are being categorised in their reporting in
17 hundreds and in thousands. So what is striking about this particular
18 document is when they're talking about prisoner exchange issues, is what
19 they are not saying, essentially the elephant in the room is what about
20 the 3- to 5- to 8.000 that we had in custody after the fall of
21 Srebrenica, and where would they have fit into this process?
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. May I tender this, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4975, Your Honours.
25 MR. NICHOLLS:
1 Q. All right. I'm close to concluding Mr. Butler. If you could go
2 to the next tab. This is a simple question I've got, but I want to clear
3 up this document.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: 22828, please. That's a 65 ter number.
5 Q. That's the death certificate of Gojko Simic, dated 18 August
7 Now, can you just tell us, based on your work on this case and
8 knowledge of the Srebrenica investigation, who Gojko Simic was, what
9 battalion he was in, and what -- where he was and what he was doing on
10 the 14th of July, 1995? I'm sorry, that's a big question.
11 A. It may be the easiest way just to answer it in reverse. One the
12 survivors in the Orahovac massacre in his statement to I think -- I'm not
13 sure whether it was first the ICTY or whether it was the Bosnian MUP and
14 later to the ICTY talked about the fact that he recognised the name of
15 one of his execution -- not the name, but recognised the voice of one of
16 his executioners at Orahovac and identified that individual as
17 Gojko Simic. He provided background information which reflected the fact
18 that he had worked with Gojko Simic in Belgrade years before the war. He
19 knew the individual, and that is why he was able, even though he was
20 blindfolded, to recognise the voice of that man.
21 As part of the OTP search of the Zvornik Infantry Brigade, a lot
22 of the records that we were coming across dealing with 1995, one
23 particular stack of records that we came across were certificates for
24 individuals who had been killed in combat from the 4th Infantry Battalion
25 in July of 1995. One of the names that we noted was Gojko Simic.
1 So this particular document reflects the military particulars of
2 Gojko Simic, where he was living in the Zvornik municipality, what
3 military unit he was assigned to, and where and when he was killed. And
4 there are supplemental information on page 2 and page 3 to include, you
5 know, where he was employed in Belgrade.
6 So this particular document, the significance of it is in effect
7 it helps to corroborate the story of that particular survivor about the
8 circumstances by which he would recognise Gojko Simic's voice and create
9 his identity, and it further serves to put Gojko Simic in a military
10 unit, specifically the Zvornik Infantry Brigade 4th Battalion, on the day
11 of the massacre, which would be 14 July 1995, and then further serves to
12 substantiate him being killed two days later in the battle at Baljkovica.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. I tender that, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes. That will be admitted.
15 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P4976, Your Honours -- 4975. I
17 JUDGE KWON: 76. Exhibit P4976.
18 THE REGISTRAR: 4976. I'm sorry.
19 MR. NICHOLLS:
20 Q. All right. Last topic, Mr. Butler, jumping now to September
22 MR. NICHOLLS: If I could have 65 ter 1911. Which I -- sorry, I
23 see is also P04592. It's been admitted.
24 Q. This is your tab 146, Mr. Butler. This is from the Main Staff,
25 signed by General Mladic, to the Drina Corps logistics, approving
1 five tonnes of D2 diesel fuel for carrying out "engineering works" in the
2 zone of responsibility of the Drina Corps, and the fuel's going to
3 Captain Trbic. It says Trpic. Sorry, I couldn't have said that. This
4 is going to what it says is Captain Milorad Trpic.
5 Can you tell us about this document, what's going on in
6 September 1995?
7 A. First what's going on in September 1995 and in through October of
8 1995, is that the VRS after -- after the international community has
9 publicly laid out the evidence that it has regarding the mass executions
10 that occurred in the Zvornik Brigade area, the VRS -- and in the
11 Bratunac Brigade area, too, the VRS undertakes a significant effort to go
12 to those mass grave sites, to exhume them, to remove the bodies from
13 those sites, and to bury them in remote locations in the Zvornik and
14 Bratunac municipality in an effort to hide the evidence of those
16 Unlike the July 1995 executions and [indiscernible] of the
17 logistics behind that where the troops were cataloguing fuel, vehicle
18 miles, and those types of things in a normal manner, the reburial
19 operation was done in a much more discreet manner. One part of that,
20 obviously, would be to provide fuel to the various trucks and the various
21 engineer equipment that would have to dig up those bodies which were dug
22 up during evening hours.
23 In this case, General Mladic is issuing an order to his logistics
24 staff as well as the command of the Drina Corps, designating that
25 five tonnes of diesel fuel be sent down to the Standard barracks in
1 Zvornik and turned over to the custody of Captain Milorad Trpic. And
2 that's the name that's used. In fact, the individual that it's going to
3 is Captain Milorad Trbic, who is, as discussed earlier, the deputy
4 security officer for the Zvornik Infantry Brigade. So right off the bat
5 here, the fuel is -- it's not going to the chief of logistics of the
6 Drina Corps. It's not going to the chief of logistics of the Zvornik
7 Brigade. This fuel is already going to a security officer and it will be
8 his job to make sure that the fuel is properly allotted for these jobs,
9 and in this way, a lot of the evidence behind the reburial operation
10 doesn't make it onto the normal books.
11 MR. NICHOLLS: May I tender this, Your Honour.
12 JUDGE KWON: You stated that --
13 MR. NICHOLLS: Or -- it's admitted. Sorry. If I could have
15 Q. That's at tab 147, Mr. Butler. Also 14 September 1992.
16 Main Staff of the VRS logistics sector, 14 September, diesel D2,
17 5.000 litres. Could you explain this document for us. Same time period
18 as the one we just looked at.
19 A. Yes, sir. It is related to the first document. It is the
20 authorisation by the chief of the Main Staff logistics sector, saying
21 that the fuel is made available for the engineering works and telling the
22 Drina Corps and Zvornik Brigade that they need -- or in this case the
23 Drina Corps representative needs to come up and collect the fuel and
24 provide the transportation. Essentially letting them know that the fuel
25 is now available. You know, bring a truck to bring it back with.
1 Q. Thank you. And I misspoke at line 12 of this page. It's
2 September 1995, obviously.
3 Mr. Butler, we obviously weren't able to go through everything
4 that's contained in your military narrative report and your other reports
5 that we were admitted -- that we've admitted in this case now, but we've
6 gone through some vehicle logs, some intercepts, referred to fuel orders.
7 The -- and you talked about the logistics required for -- that would be
8 required for taking care of prisoners.
9 When you look at the orders, the evidence in terms of fuel,
10 requisition orders, vehicle logs that were in your report, military
11 rosters and the intercepts and orders, how, if it does at all, does the
12 murder operation, I'll call it, resemble a legal military operation in
13 the way it was executed?
14 A. In that particular context, it doesn't differ at all. Soldiers,
15 their officers, and the plans and procedures that the military,
16 specifically the VRS, put in place, the military bureaucracy, if you
17 will, that dealt with the legitimate aspects of the military attack with
18 Krivaja 95 and Stupcana 95 were the exact same ones that were also used
19 with respect to the executions. There are numerous cases where vehicle
20 drivers, because they recognised that they had to fully account for the
21 miles of their vehicles and what cargo was taken, are listing such
22 notations as: Buses full of prisoners or a vehicle carrying prisoners on
23 a certain day.
24 Fuel being dispersed. Like I said, the scenario or the vignette
25 that we talk about with respect to them needing an additional 500 litres
1 of fuel in Pilica to complete the killing and burial operation up there
2 on 16th and the 17th, even men as powerful in the security branch as
3 Colonel Beara and Colonel Popovic had to go through proper channels in
4 order to requisition fuel.
5 There are notations in the log-book of the Zvornik Infantry
6 Brigade where there are requests that is made for ammunition. This
7 ammunition in some cases is used for these executions, because you have
8 to have that done in a proper order. It has to be issued out from the
9 armory, it has to be sent, it has to be accounted for.
10 The fact that people who are driving the engineer vehicles that
11 are involved in burying the bodies in Orahovac and Petkovci and Rocevic
12 are accurately accounting for their time and the fuel that those vehicles
13 are using, as well as the fact that the Engineer Company is accurately
14 accounting for where those vehicles are used and where they are.
15 So in that particular context, the same process and procedures
16 that the Drina Corps, the Zvornik Brigade, and the Bratunac Brigade for
17 the most part would use as part of their everyday military operations
18 were also followed for their role in the conduct of the crimes.
19 JUDGE KWON: Then do you mean to say that the killing order in
20 the murder operation, so to speak, was conveyed or ordered through the
21 chain of command in the VRS?
22 THE WITNESS: It would have had to have been. Certainly within
23 the senior leadership of the VRS, which would be the Main Staff officers,
24 the Drina Corps officers, their commanders, of course, and the key
25 officers of the brigades, the Zvornik and the Bratunac Brigade.
1 JUDGE KWON: So in this case, the killing order must have been
2 conveyed from Mladic, General Krstic, and Colonel Pandurevic, or
3 Major Obrenovic, and to the military police.
4 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir. I mean, not in the sense that we can say
5 that General Mladic personally called Krstic who then personally called
6 Pandurevic, but through their staffs the relevant people were informed of
7 what the orders were, what had to be accomplished, almost in a normal
8 army commanding staff process. The people who were receiving those
9 orders received what they believed were the relative assurances that the
10 orders that they were given were the orders that needed to be carried
11 out. Despite the fact that they were overtly illegal from a legal sense
12 and while there were questions about carrying them out, the fact is that
13 by and large people did not overly question the orders that they were
14 given, whether they agreed with them or not, and in fact did so.
15 So in that particular context, the military chain of command in
16 that regard worked as it's supposed to.
17 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Mr. Butler. I don't have any more
19 questions at this time.
20 JUDGE KWON: There were a couple of intercepts you would come
21 back -- you will deal with it at a later stage?
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Mr. Karadzic, are you ready to start your
25 THE ACCUSED: Yes, Your Excellency, if you think that it is
1 worthwhile these last 20 minutes.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes, please.
3 Cross-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
4 Q. [Interpretation] Good day, Mr. Butler.
5 A. Good afternoon, sir.
6 JUDGE KWON: I'm sorry, Mr. Karadzic. One further question for
7 Mr. Nicholls. Were you minded to tender that sheet of paper referring to
8 Mr. Butler's -- witness referred to in Mr. Butler's report, pseudonyms
9 or --
10 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour. I didn't necessarily know
11 whether we should formally tender it as an exhibit or just as an aide but
12 I think it could be useful. Let me just --
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes. I think we need to admit, albeit under seal.
14 MR. NICHOLLS: Exactly, Your Honour. Thank you.
15 JUDGE KWON: Shall we give the number for that.
16 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit 4977, under seal, Your Honours.
17 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
18 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Mr. Butler, since we have very little time left, I would like to
20 start from 1992 as well, just as the learned Mr. Nicholls did.
21 Do you remember - I think you actually wrote about
22 that - Podrinje, General Morillon? Do you remember that civilians were
23 bringing pressure to bear in order to be allowed to leave, so there was
24 even commotion on different UNHCR trucks so that they could leave
1 A. I take it you're discussing the situation, roughly April of 1993,
2 where various UN and other civilian agencies were seeking to evacuate the
3 Bosnian population that had fallen in on Srebrenica. Yes, sir, in that
4 particular sense there was a lot of confusion. I believe a lot of that
5 is documented in the United Nations own report with respect to the events
6 that led up to the creation of the enclave.
7 Q. Thank you. Are you aware of similar occurrences elsewhere in
8 Bosnia-Herzegovina, namely that as the enemy forces, if you will, were
9 getting closer, the civilians were doing their best to try to go
10 elsewhere? Also that there were even negotiations with the Muslim armed
11 forces in order to have the Serbian side allow the civilians to get
13 A. I -- I can -- while not getting into specifics, generally
14 speaking, there were a number of situations that I'm aware of where
15 because of military combat operations, accommodations were made trying to
16 get some parts of the civilian population out of an immediate combat zone
17 and normally the United Nations played a key role in that, negotiating
18 with various parts -- you know, the various warring factions. I don't
19 know a lot of details about those types of things, but I am aware
20 generally that the UN was -- was primarily involved in working with those
21 warring factions to try and get civilians out of areas where they were
22 perceived to be at risk from ongoing military operations.
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Could the witness now
24 please be shown D1323 in e-court.
25 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Mr. Butler, this was resolved two weeks before directive
2 number 4, and it has to do with Kotor Varos.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have the penultimate page?
4 I think that that would be the right order. So could we please have the
5 penultimate page. The 23rd of October. The last two pages, please.
6 Maybe the 25th. Well, yes. Could we have that in Serbian, please. Oh,
7 yes, we do have it there now.
8 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Now, could you please focus on what the Presidency is doing, the
10 War Presidency, or the municipality of Kotor Varos. They are in session
11 every day, and every day they have minutes recorded. And item 2 says
12 that Captain Slobodan Zupljanin pointed out that there had been no
13 operations and that regular activities were ongoing. Contact had been
14 established with Vecici, and a proposal was made to them to send a letter
15 on behalf of the War Presidency offering the evacuation of their women
16 and children to avoid their getting killed.
17 In connection with this proposal, all the members of the
18 War Presidency stated their individual opinions and the conclusion was
19 adopted to issue a last call for the release of women and children and
20 all our prisoners and then to deal with this military -- with this issue
21 in a military manner.
22 So, did you know that deep in our territory there were Muslim
23 villages that had not surrendered weapons and that wanted to go on
24 fighting and that Vecici was a village like that?
25 A. I can tell you that I was aware generally that there were at this
1 point in time pockets like that as you've described, although I don't
2 know this particular place or the circumstances behind it.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can we have the next
4 page now. I mean, the session that was held on the 26th of October.
5 JUDGE KWON: The previous page.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Page 11 in English in this
7 document. Yes. We have the Serbian. Yes. Yes.
8 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Please take a look at item 3 now. Sub-item 3:
10 "The final text of the call to the paramilitary formations of the
11 village of Vecici for the evacuation of their women and children on the
12 condition that the Serbian hostages be released."
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have the previous page now,
14 the one before this one. Thank you.
15 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. This is the 27th. Now look at item 2 -- paragraph 2. I see.
17 "Lieutenant-Colonel Novakovic and Aleksandar Petrovic briefed the
18 War Presidency on the situation in the field.
19 "Zarko Mikic informed the War Presidency of the text of the call
20 to the paramilitary formations of the village of Vecici and the same was
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have the previous one now of
23 the 28th of November.
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Again item 2, there is a reference to the situation on the
1 ground, and paragraph 2 says:
2 "Zdravko Pejic informed the War Presidency about the results of
3 the negotiations with the villagers of Vecici and proposed a solution.
4 The proposed solution was adopted, i.e., to accept the evacuation of the
5 civilian population on the condition that the hostages be released and
6 then for the remaining part to be blocked by the army and destroyed. All
7 the members of the War Presidency supported the proposed solution to the
8 issue of the village of Vecici."
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have the previous one now.
10 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. The 29th, again item 2:
12 "Zdravko Pejic informed the War Presidency that agreement had
13 been reached with the villagers of Vecici to evacuate the women and
14 children and Serbian hostages on Sunday."
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have the previous one now.
16 The 30th of October. Again it is item 2:
17 "Zdravko Pejic informed the War Presidency about the talks that
18 had been held with the villagers of Vecici, as well as that two bodies
19 had been pulled out."
20 Can we have the previous one.
21 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. Is this too fast to you, Mr. Butler? No?
23 A. I'm following along fine, sir.
24 Q. Thank you. Can we see this now, the 1st of November. And it
25 says Zdravko Pejic, it's underlined here:
1 "Zdravko Pejic informed the War Presidency in detail about the
2 course of events and the details of the negotiations with the villagers
3 of Vecici. The inhabitants of Vecici. As well as the particulars of the
4 agreement with Karadzic and General Talic."
5 Then there is some discussion on this -- or, rather, some
6 solution was adopted, but Major Trivic, please look further down, noted
7 that things were clear and also that he was abreast of events that he had
8 issued a written order and informed the corps commander accordingly. He
9 believed that a mistake had been made somewhere along the way and that if
10 President Karadzic has his own position as regards a solution to this
11 problem, he should issue an order through Mladic and Talic which we would
12 execute. He asked that nothing be done until he checked how things stood
13 on the following day and informed the War Presidency accordingly and for
14 the time being we were to prevent the armed forces from pulling out of
15 Vecici until we received orders.
16 Then it says further on -- I mean, there was this other
17 discussion that ensued but that doesn't really matter.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have the previous one now.
19 The 2nd of November. I don't think this is the previous one in English.
20 Another page back in English. No, it was fine in Serbian. Page 3 in
21 e-court in English. It's fine in Serbian now.
22 I believe that this is good now. No, it's not. No, this is
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Please take a look at this. It says "Extraordinary session of
1 the War Presidency continued." With "... Colonel Blagojevic informing
2 all present that he had received explicit orders from General Mladic that
3 no one was to be allowed to leave Vecici until the unconditional
4 surrender of weapons was completed.
5 "President Djekanovic concluded that there were differences
6 between Karadzic's position and Mladic's order with respect to this
7 problem. Major Trivic declared the position of the corps command that
8 nobody was to be allowed to leave Vecici until the unconditional
9 surrender of arms was completed and he proposed that this -- that they be
10 told once again so that they might give thought to idea of unconditional
11 surrender. He also remarked that President Djekanovic when talking to
12 Karadzic should not tell him that his instructions were not being heeded
13 but to try and convince him that the only right way to solve the issue of
14 Vecici was unconditional surrender, and in that spirit he asked
15 Djekanovic to help resolve this problem."
16 And further on it says that they brought two Muslims from Vecici
17 to negotiate and they sent them back to Vecici as well.
18 And the first page is something we most probably don't need
19 because there is no reference to this problem.
20 So can you reconstruct this? Do you see that my position was to
21 have them released, to have civilians released? Mladic's position was
22 that they should not be released. Talic's position was also that they
23 should not be released. And then in other documents we see that Mladic
24 ultimately did agree to my proposal. Talic carried it out but stated his
25 reservations that he disagreed, namely, and that this Muslim paramilitary
1 armed group would remain behind.
2 A. I take it from the series of documents that, one, it seems that
3 the War Presidency and the 1st Krajina Corps had a difference of opinion
4 as to how the issue should be resolved. There was some confusion with
5 respect to what the various negotiating positions were, but ultimately as
6 described by this and in your own statement, once the issue of conflict
7 between what General Mladic and General Talic wanted and the
8 War Presidency brought their position to you, you ultimately made the
9 decision, and as noted, even though General Talic did not want to carry
10 it out, he did carry out the order. So in that particular context, even
11 though it was November 1992, I take it that, you know, that is the way
12 that this process was supposed to work, with ultimately the
13 Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces, you, making the final call and
14 the military personnel, whether they agreed with it or not, following
15 your order.
16 Q. Thank you. But the fact remains, and if necessary we're going to
17 show a document tomorrow, the fact remains that the civilians did leave
18 and that an armed force stayed behind, an armed force from this village.
19 Can we see that?
20 A. Again, I don't know whether that did or did not occur. I'm just
21 not familiar with that particular area. If you say that that is the
22 case, I -- I will believe you in the sense that the civilians were
23 evacuated. That is something that obviously can be verified. So, again
24 I don't know the details specifically, but it says what it says.
25 Q. Thank you. Tomorrow we're going to show another document as
1 well, and then perhaps we can move on to directive 4, which has to do
2 with these events. Thank you very much.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I think that it's time now, isn't
4 it, Excellencies?
5 JUDGE KWON: Yes, correct. We'll rise for today and resume
6 tomorrow at 9.00.
7 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.59 p.m.,
8 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 19th day
9 of April, 2012, at 9.00 a.m.