1 Tuesday, 12 February 2013
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.05 a.m.
5 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, everyone. We were standing in front
6 of the Courtroom I until we were told it was not there.
7 Yes, Mr. Tieger.
8 MR. TIEGER: Oh, I'm just working with Mr. Reid. I'm sorry,
9 Mr. President, it's not a matter for the Court. I apologise.
10 JUDGE KWON: Microphone, please.
11 MS. GUSTAFSON: Sorry, Your Honour. We don't have any
12 submissions at this point. Mr. Tieger's just sorting something out with
13 Mr. Reid.
14 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
15 There are a couple of matters I would like to deal with before we
16 begin today. First matter is related to the Rule 92 ter statements of
17 the next two witnesses. First with respect to Mile Ujic. Having
18 reviewed the statement, the Chamber finds that the last sentence of
19 paragraph 15 and the whole of paragraph 26 and the 16 proposed exhibits
20 referred to therein are not relevant and, therefore, should be redacted.
21 And with respect to the Rule 92 ter statement of Vidomir Banduka, the
22 Chamber finds paragraphs 59, 60, 62, 63, 72 to 75, 77, and 78 are not
23 relevant in that they either refer to the detention facilities
24 established by Bosnian Muslim authorities or to crimes committed against
25 Bosnian Serbs. So these paragraphs should be redacted and will not admit
1 associated exhibits referred to therein.
2 That said, the Chamber will move into private session briefly.
3 [Private session]
11 Page 33426 redacted. Private session.
1 [Open session]
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Excellencies.
3 Good morning to everyone.
4 I have to say the following for the record and for the sake of
5 the truth. The events in Rogatica from paragraph 26 make an integral
6 part of the overall situation and the reason why the Serb forces entered
7 Rogatica. I believe once you said you would leave it until a later point
8 in time. I would kindly ask you to reconsider because this is not about
9 tu quoque. It deals with the reasons and the chaos that ensued and that
10 was caused by the actions of others, not Serbs. One cannot have a full
11 picture of events in Rogatica if such things are left out, otherwise one
12 can only conclude that it was the Serbs who committed crimes without any
13 reason and were incited to do so by the authorities. However, the
14 state -- there was a state of chaos in Rogatica and it was caused by
15 others. Unless we have a full picture, it will be to the detriment of
16 the Serbs if we leave that particular portion out.
17 JUDGE KWON: Please bear in mind, Mr. Karadzic, that we are not
18 writing history. What we are dealing with is a criminal proceedings that
19 deals with your individual criminal responsibility. You are indicted for
20 having committed some crimes. The fact that crimes were committed also
21 by some Bosnian Muslims has nothing to do with your indictment.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Excellencies, it was my
23 understanding that the Prosecution expressly stated that I did not commit
24 anything in person, but I instituted a policy which incited crimes. And
25 this goes contrary to what the Prosecution's position is. It was the
1 events which developed in that way. I was not accused of it per se, but
2 the Rogatica authorities are accused as the Serb authorities to have
3 caused it at all. However, one cannot view it outside context. Of
4 course I didn't make any crimes by myself, but this goes directly against
5 the conduct of Rogatica authorities. One needs to realise under what
6 conditions they operated.
7 [Trial Chamber confers]
8 JUDGE KWON: Please bear in mind what I told you, Mr. Karadzic,
9 and the Chamber will leave it at that.
10 Let us bring in the witness.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Page 5, line 1, the Rogatica
12 authorities were not accused of committing crimes by the Serbs. It was
13 actually the Rogatica authorities that were accused of having engaged in
14 activities as a result of the policy I instituted.
15 While we are waiting for the witness, I simply wanted to say the
16 following. There was a particular image created in the media and by way
17 of certain judgements as if these were peaceful places where Serbs
18 arrived and caused chaos. And it is of course detrimental to any kind of
19 Serb defence, whatever it may be.
20 [The witness entered court]
21 JUDGE KWON: Would the witness make the solemn declaration.
22 THE WITNESS: [Microphone not activated]
23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
24 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Microphone, please.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
1 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
2 WITNESS: MILE UJIC
3 [Witness answered through interpreter]
4 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Ujic. Please make yourself
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
7 [Trial Chamber and Legal Officer confer]
8 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Gustafson, if you could remind me whether the
9 Chamber needs to give him the Rule 90(E) advice?
10 MS. GUSTAFSON: Yes, please, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
12 Mr. Ujic, before you start giving evidence, I'd like to draw your
13 attention to a particular rule here at the Tribunal. Under this rule,
14 Rule 90(E), you may object to answering a question from the accused, the
15 Prosecution, or the Judges if you believe that your answer will
16 incriminate you. When I say "incriminate," I mean that something you say
17 may amount to an admission of your guilt for a criminal offence or could
18 provide evidence that you have committed an offence. However, even if
19 you think your answer will incriminate you and you do not wish to answer
20 the question, the Tribunal has the power to compel you to answer that
21 question. However, in such a case, the Tribunal will make sure that your
22 testimony compelled in such a way shall not be used as evidence in other
23 case against you for any offence other than false testimony. Do you
24 understand what I have just told you?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I do.
1 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
2 Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
3 Examination by Mr. Karadzic:
4 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Ujic.
5 A. Good morning, Mr. President.
6 Q. I would kindly ask you to keep in mind - actually, both of us
7 should - to pause between questions and answers for the sake of the
8 interpreters. We shouldn't utter our sentences too quickly because we
9 don't want to have portions missing from the transcript. Do you
10 understand that?
11 A. I do.
12 Q. Did you provide a statement to the Defence team?
13 A. I did.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have 1D8900 in e-court.
16 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. While waiting for it, Mr. Ujic, I wanted to tell you this: Due
18 to a rule that is in place here and the way this Tribunal works, you will
19 realise that some parts of your statement will be redacted, such as the
20 last sentence of paragraph 15. Do you have a hard copy before you?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. As well as the entire paragraph 26. Do not be confused by it.
23 Is this the statement you provided to the Defence?
24 A. Yes, it is.
25 Q. In the statement -- well, have you read it and signed it?
1 A. I have, both, in my own handwriting.
2 Q. Thank you. Does it accurately reflect what you stated?
3 A. Yes, it does. Everything was noted down the way I said it.
4 Q. Thank you. If I were to put the same questions today in the
5 courtroom, would your answers to the questions be essentially the same?
6 A. Perhaps I would use different words, but the essence would remain
7 the same. Whatever I stated in the statement is something I would say
8 here too.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we go to the last page so as to
11 identify the signature.
12 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Is this your signature?
14 A. It is.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I seek to tender the 92 ter
18 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson.
19 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, thank you, Mr. President. It looks like
20 we're now just tendering five documents, the first five that are --
21 JUDGE KWON: Could you identify the numbers?
22 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, 09398, 1D6734, 1D6837, 1D12004, and 1D12008.
23 And with respect to all but 1D12004, we're asking that they be allowed to
24 be added to our 65 ter list as we didn't -- we hadn't interviewed
25 Mr. Ujic at the time that list was prepared.
1 JUDGE KWON: 1D09398 and 1D6734 on 65 ter list?
2 MR. ROBINSON: According to our records they were not, but we're
3 also withdrawing those three so we're not offering 2000 -- or 12 --
4 12009, 12013, or 6735.
5 JUDGE KWON: But you are tendering 9398?
6 MR. ROBINSON: Yes.
7 JUDGE KWON: Which was not on 65 ter list?
8 MR. ROBINSON: Okay, then I misspoke. Yes, we would also ask
9 that that be added.
10 JUDGE KWON: With respect to 1D6837, if you look at the last
11 sentence in para 34, all the witness said about this document is that he
12 was shown this document, nothing further. So in order to tender this
13 document, Mr. Karadzic should lead live with respect to this document.
14 And with respect to 1D12004, I'm not sure if this paragraph deals
15 with this document at all. So what relevance it has? So in order to
16 tender this, Mr. Karadzic also needs to lead live on this issue.
17 I wonder whether you have any further objections, Ms. Gustafson?
18 MS. GUSTAFSON: Yes, just briefly. The exhibit 1D12008 --
19 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
20 MS. GUSTAFSON: -- referenced in paragraph 17. This is a map
21 apparently of Rogatica town with some markings on it. My objection is
22 simply that there is no -- again, there is just a parenthesis and
23 reference to the document. There's no foundation laid. We don't know
24 who made this map, who made the markings, when, why. I think this is
25 another document that should be led live; otherwise, there's just an
1 insufficient foundation and it doesn't meet the standard for associated
2 exhibits. The other -- I had the same observation as Your Honours about
3 1D12004 which does not seem to relate to the paragraph, and if
4 Mr. Karadzic wants to lead that live, that's fine. If he chooses not to,
5 I would ask that the words "which is evident from" be redacted from the
6 statement; otherwise, it suggests that there's some documentary support
7 for the proposition which, in my submission, there is not.
8 And my last just observation is the document 1D06837 referenced
9 in paragraph 34 that Your Honours directed the accused to deal with live
10 is in evidence as P4769. Thank you.
11 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Ms. Gustafson.
12 So at the moment we'll admit the Rule 92 ter statement of this
13 witness as well as 65 ter number 9398 and 1D6734.
14 Shall we give the numbers for now.
15 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honours. The statement which is 65 ter
16 number 1D8900 will be Exhibit D2909, 65 ter number 09398 will be
17 Exhibit D2910, and 65 ter number 1D06734 will be Exhibit D2911.
18 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic, please proceed.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
20 I will read out a summary of Mr. Mile Ujic's statement in the
21 English language.
22 [In English] Mile Ujic was born on 25th of May, 1951, and lived
23 in Rogatica. Shortly after the multi-party elections in 1990 he was
24 elected president of the Rogatica Executive Board. He was later
25 appointed as department head of the Rogatica defence ministry and acting
1 chief of the Rogatica Brigade.
2 According to Mile Ujic, nationalist provocations began to
3 manifest themselves in early 1991. People felt that something unknown
4 and strange was coming, but nobody knew what it was. This was confirmed
5 in June 1991 when the Rogatica secretary for National Defence mobilised
6 the reserve forces to assist with the crisis. Of the reserve members of
7 the Rogatica Brigade, 60 per cent had been Muslims. However, a great
8 number of Muslims did not respond to the mobilisation, and those who were
9 mobilised to Han Pijesak and Zaluzani were later returned by bus at the
10 initiative of the SDA party.
11 While all military-fit Serbs were mobilised into the
12 216th Brigade, Muslim men filled the reserve police and received weapons.
13 In late 1990 and early 1991, Mile Ujic is aware that the SDA sent
14 a significant number of Muslim youth to military training in Croatia.
15 While mobilisation was underway, these young men returned to Rogatica
16 from Croatia and started organising paramilitary units in settlements
17 where Muslims were the majority. The SDA activists were arming these
18 illegal formations and gun-fire could be heard from these neighbourhoods
19 in the evenings.
20 As the president of the Executive Committee, Mile Ujic was not
21 able to influence any decisions because three out of the five Executive
22 Committee members were Muslims. Despite his demands to avoid conflict,
23 it was apparent that Muslims were not seeking a peaceful solution to the
24 problems. Instead, many Muslims approved of extremists and their
25 inflammatory speeches. Further, the Rogatica SDA appointed a radical
1 Sandzak Muslim instead of appointing a local Muslim who was suitable for
2 the job.
3 By the end of 1991 and early 1992, the Green Berets and
4 Patriotic League acted more openly, conducting searches at barricades.
5 Serbs set up roadblocks in response, but never in the centre of the city.
6 On one occasion weapons were found in the car of the Rogatica Katastra
7 director and as well as a list of prominent Serbs to be liquidated.
8 Mile Ujic saw his name on this list and immediately relocated his family.
9 It was clear that from early 1992 onwards there was no unity in Rogatica.
10 First the police were divided, then in May 1992 the Assembly unanimously
11 voted for the division of Rogatica into Muslim and Serb territories.
12 The war in Rogatica began with the murder of Mihajlovic,
13 Drazenko, on 22nd of May, 1992, after which the Muslims refused to return
14 his body. Following this the city was not safe to walk around. Many
15 Serb families moved to the country-side and Muslim families moved to
16 Sarajevo and Gorazde. At this point, Rogatica became a meeting place for
17 Muslim extremists.
18 Mile Ujic was aware that Muslim extremists burned down many
19 houses of Serbs who had left the town. They also set fire to Serbian
20 bars, a hotel, synagogue, and the power station, leaving Rogatica without
21 electricity for a long time.
22 The Rogatica municipality Territorial Defence warned Muslim
23 citizens to surrender weapons. Some Muslims did surrender weapons and
24 those who did took refuge in the high school, together with Serbian and
25 Croatian families and others who were afraid of the war. Mile Ujic
1 visited the high school where these people were staying and saw that they
2 were being treated correctly by the army that was protecting them.
3 Most people in Muslim villages were armed and ambushes were often
4 carried out on Serbian civilians using the roads. The municipality
5 Crisis Staff and the Territorial Defence command asked these Muslims to
6 peacefully surrender weapons in exchange for security, but they did not
7 accept this. Those villages who were reluctant to join the conflict
8 surrendered weapons and enjoyed full protection.
9 Mile Ujic disagrees with the claim that Rogatica was handed to
10 Chetniks without any struggle. During the liberation of Rogatica, the
11 Rogatica Brigade suffered heavy losses.
12 Carsija mosque was the place where the SDA carried out a military
13 organisation. At the beginning of the conflict, it served as a sniper
14 nest and snipers were shooting from the minaret. During the period
15 April-June 1992, there was no contact with the leadership in Pale.
16 Paramilitaries appeared in Rogatica and were a problem for the
17 civilian government. They found out that among the civilians placed in
18 the collection centre at the school, there was a lawyer whom they wanted
19 to abduct for their own purposes but the two or three policemen, guards
20 with automatic rifles chased the paramilitaries away.
21 A Croat lady who was teaching biology, was also housed in the
22 Veljko Vlahovic school. Mile Ujic personally told her that as soon as
23 the situation calms down she would immediately return to her apartment to
24 live normally and would continue to teach at the school. The lady
25 returned to her home soon after the dissolution of the collection centre
1 at the school.
2 [Interpretation] Now, this was the summary.
3 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. And now I would like to ask you a few questions about the
5 documents that you indicated. Mr. Ujic, speaking about the map and the
6 agreements relating to the division of the municipality, how was this
7 whole affair agreed? What kind of division was at stake and what would
8 have been the benefit if two municipalities were to be set up as opposed
9 to other towns where there was as many as 10 municipalities?
10 A. If you look at the statement given here as well as other
11 documents used by the negotiating team, the Serb team and the Muslim
12 team, we said that if we indeed were not able to live together, then we
13 should live peacefully next to one another. That was the point and that
14 raised the question of dividing the municipality in that sense. It
15 should be divided into the Serbian part, where the Serb villages were,
16 and the Muslim authorities would cover the territory mostly populated by
17 Muslims. I think this agreement was reached on the 2nd of May, 1992,
18 when the joint Assembly, the original one that was the only legitimate
19 Assembly, adopted this decision unanimously. So nobody was against it
20 and the result was that it was decided to avoid the war. After that,
21 Mr. Mihajlovic was murdered and that led to a division of territory. We
22 all wanted to know which specific territory belonged to each community
23 and we decided to live peacefully as neighbours. They denied our request
24 to be handed over the body of the man who was killed.
25 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please slow down. Thank you.
1 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Ujic, could you slow down. The interpreters
2 were not able to catch up with your speed, so could you repeat your
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] So on the negotiating team on the
5 Muslim team, were Adnan Suljagic, the judge of the lower court in
6 Rogatica; the deputy commander of the police --
7 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters didn't catch the name.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- and in response to our request
9 they said: As soon as we kill more Serbs, 10 or 100 more Serbs, then we
10 are going to give them over your bodies to be buried. As of that moment,
11 every negotiations were halted because the Muslim side violated every
12 agreement about the division of the territory and they were expecting to
13 see what the Serbs' response would be.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation].
15 Q. Thank you. You mentioned that that murder took place on the 22nd
16 of May. How was it possible for you to preserve peace in the period
17 between the 6th of April and the 26th -- 22 May? The war broke out in
18 Sarajevo on the 6th of April. Do you have any explanation for that?
19 A. I do. As a member of the Executive Committee, who was in charge
20 of the economic affairs - and I was responsible for that - we decided
21 that we did not want war. We wanted to negotiate because we thought it
22 was better to negotiate for 15 days rather than to resort to shooting for
23 five minutes. That was my vision and that was my aspiration. We had
24 information that conflicts already had broken out in Foca, Gorazde, and
25 Visegrad. Those were all municipalities that were on the border with
1 Rogatica. In one of the meetings of the Executive Committee,
2 Mr. Adil Lukic told me: The best thing would be to follow the model of
3 Gorazde and Visegrad in Rogatica. I said: No, that would be wrong. Let
4 us take care of our own affairs and let's avoid those situations. So all
5 these negotiations and the process of seeking a peaceful solution, that
6 was our decision in order to avoid conflict rather than follow the
7 example of Visegrad and other towns. I can say that that was the straw
8 that broke the camel's back and that was when things went wrong. So
9 after 22nd of May, 1992, the conflict broke out in Rogatica.
10 Q. Thank you. If you had managed to divide the municipality into
11 two parts, would you be able or did you have any plan of expelling
12 Muslims from the Serb part of Rogatica?
13 A. No, no. The point of the division was for us to live together,
14 next to one another. We even divided the municipality building. One
15 wing of the building was given to the Serbs and the other was given to
16 the Muslims. At the beginning we had a joint entrance and then we had
17 two entrances, but I can tell you that during these negotiations nobody
18 had an intention of making two municipalities and then pushing the
19 Muslims out. Why should anyone resort to that if the Muslims had their
20 own authorities, their own territory, their own population? Our aim was
21 not to expel the Muslims from the territory of our municipality. Nobody
22 ever thought of that.
23 Q. You mentioned Ramiz Alajbegovic. Can you tell the Chamber what
24 he did and what his role was in the organising and secret arming of the
25 Muslims and what role he played in the conflict, briefly, please?
1 A. Mr. Ramiz Alajbegovic was a professional police officer who
2 finished the academy in Belgrade. He came to Rogatica to work at the
3 police station. When we discussed the division of the police force, the
4 rule was if the commander of the station was a Muslim or a Serb, then the
5 chief of the police station should be from the other community. However,
6 after we divided the authorities, the Muslims took over the police
7 stations because they were the first to elect those officials. And then
8 for almost a year they did not allow the decision to have a Serb as the
9 commander to be implemented. So during that period Mr. Alajbegovic
10 filled the position of the commander of the station and the other person,
11 Muslim, was chief of the police station. At the same time he was in
12 charge of the police force, he recruited reserve police officers,
13 distributed weapons, and in that way he set up an illegal formation.
14 During the war he was also involved in the arming. There are
15 some records that say that two vehicles, a Lada Njiva and a Mos [phoen]
16 which was stopped full of weapons, ammunition, explosives, et cetera.
17 However, we let them go through. We did not confiscate that. But we
18 said let's stop this practice. On the other hand, when I called Ramiz to
19 come to the Executive Committee, before the war broke out in order that
20 we all do our best and make an effort in our position to avoid war, the
21 answer I got was devastating. Ramiz said, "President, if war breaks out,
22 Zaganovici and Donje Polje," these are the southern parts of the town,
23 "we will have it for breakfast. The centre of the town, we'll have it
24 for lunch. And the Serb part called Karanfil towards Sokolac would be
25 our supper." In other words, they intended to capture Rogatica in one
1 day, take it over, kill people, and those they failed to kill they would
2 expel. I said that we pray to God that war would not happen because none
3 of us need it and we should really do our best to avoid it. And if the
4 war breaks out, we are going really to wonder who is going to have
5 breakfast, lunch, and supper. So this is how it all happened.
6 Q. Thank you. 22 on page 17, it is said that the Serb suburbs would
7 be eaten for breakfast and the town itself for lunch, which was not
8 properly recorded. So please slow down when you speak.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can I please have 1D6837 in
10 e-court. It seems that it's already been admitted, so can I please have
11 1D10 -- 12004. Can we please zoom in. No, no, I'm sorry. This is the
12 wrong map. 12008. I'm sorry.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Do you recognise this layout of the town?
15 A. Yes, I do.
16 Q. Can you tell us what this red line indicates, surrounding one
17 portion of the town?
18 A. This red line on the red along with the dotted line, in the
19 legend it says that that was the separation line prior to 22nd May 1992.
20 On the opposite side you can see another red line and a dotted red line,
21 which indicates the separation line on the north-west part of the town,
22 which was the Serb part, where the Serbs living in those neighbourhoods
23 organised their own guards in order to protect themselves. On the other
24 side of this line we see the Muslim barricades. There are how many?
25 Three, four, five, six, seven, eight, I think there were even more than
1 that, especially the top three ones next to the word "Rogatica," those
2 had been erected as early as in January 1992 when the president of the
3 municipality and I personally went there to see that those barricades
4 were removed because that was the road leading to other places.
5 Why did we do that? Quite simply, the bus service between
6 Rogatica and those places were transporting workers and students.
7 However, due to those barricades, this service was suspended. The red
8 short line was a Serb barricade and the Serbs treated the Muslims in the
9 same way they were treated by the Muslims. They sent people back. For
10 example, if you have five Muslims and three Serbs working in a factory,
11 if you only have five Muslims or only five Serbs, the factory cannot
12 operate. Our intention was to remove those barricades, to free the
13 communications from both sides, and to grant the freedom of movement for
14 all residents of Rogatica, both Muslims and Serbs, in order to be able to
15 take care of their business. I must say that we were threatened when we
16 went there with the intention of removing the barricades. And after
17 the -- this warning, believe me, we were not very willing to go any more
18 to the barricades in order not to exacerbate the problems. We only
19 wanted to talk and see how we can find a way of living together.
20 Q. Thank you. If the municipality was divided into two parts, were
21 the Serbs going to be given urban parts and would it be similar to the
22 map that we are looking at?
23 A. Probably not because it is obvious that this northern line
24 indicates a Serbian neighbourhood, and there is no doubt that in any kind
25 of division there would be no Muslims. Down there, in the middle of the
1 map, you see a barricade near the Standard factory. These were
2 predominantly Muslim parts, and of course Serbs had no place there
3 either. When we divided the town and decided and agreed on the division,
4 we said let's first divide local communes and villages along ethnic
5 lines. I cannot anticipate how the division of town would have looked
6 like, how the final solution would be, because this does not -- not
7 happened, this is has not materialised because the Muslims stopped the
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Excellency, do we need a date
10 and initials on this map in order for it to be admitted into evidence?
11 JUDGE KWON: Do you remember Ms. Gustafson's observation as to
12 provenance of this map, who drew it?
13 Could you repeat it, Ms. Gustafson?
14 MS. GUSTAFSON: Yes, Your Honour. Just some basic foundation to
15 how this map came to be created I think should be elicited before it's
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. That's what I'm going
18 to ask now.
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Did you take part in marking this map together with the Defence
22 A. Yes. Because this map was taken from the cadastre, that is to
23 say by legal means. All of this had been recorded. The only thing that
24 we did on the basis of my memory was marking what things were like at
25 that time in different neighbourhoods and in these streets.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Would that be satisfactory now?
3 MS. GUSTAFSON: Well --
4 JUDGE KWON: I'm not sure if we -- yes, Ms. Gustafson.
5 MS. GUSTAFSON: That's fine, Your Honour. I was just going to
6 observe that it could have been asked in a less-leading way, but it's up
7 to Your Honours at this point.
8 JUDGE KWON: Do we need to put it marked for identification
9 pending translation? Or are you happy with this?
10 Ms. Gustafson.
11 MS. GUSTAFSON: I think there is a translation.
12 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Very well.
13 We'll admit it.
14 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D2912, Your Honours.
15 JUDGE KWON: And I take it you are not tendering 1D12004,
16 Mr. Karadzic, the blurry map?
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Just a moment, please. Just a bit
18 of patience. We've confused something. There is some confusion with
19 numbers. I'm not going to deal with this any longer, Excellencies. No
20 other questions on that.
21 JUDGE KWON: Since you are to produce a redacted version of this
22 statement, are you also minded to delete the last part of para 32, as
23 suggested by Ms. Gustafson, i.e., "which is evident in document 1D12004"?
24 MR. ROBINSON: We can do that, Mr. President.
25 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Robinson. Very well.
1 Mr. Ujic, as you have noted, your evidence in chief in this case
2 has been admitted in most part in writing, i.e., through your witness
3 statement. Now you'll be further cross-examined by the representative of
4 the Office of the Prosecutor, Ms. Gustafson.
6 MS. GUSTAFSON: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Cross-examination by Ms. Gustafson:
8 Q. And good morning, Mr. --
9 A. Good morning.
10 Q. Ujic. I have very limited time this morning, so I'm going to ask
11 you to listen very carefully to my questions and answer them and provide
12 the most focused answer as possible. The first question is very simple.
13 This is not in your statement anywhere, but you were an SDS member;
14 that's right?
15 A. Yes, yes.
16 Q. Thank you. And at paragraph 4 of your statement you said that
17 you were appointed acting Chief of Staff of the Rogatica Brigade in June
18 of 1992 and that you carried out that function until September 1992. I'm
19 going to suggest to you that that's not true, that you were appointed
20 Chief of Staff of the Rogatica Brigade in May of 1992, not June; that you
21 maintained that position until the end of 1992; during the same period of
22 time you were also the artillery co-ordinator of the Rogatica Brigade;
23 and you continued to hold that position until the end of 1993; and that
24 even before May of 1992 you commanded the Gucevo company of the Rogatica
25 Serb TO. Do you agree or disagree with that summary of your positions in
1 the Bosnian Serb forces?
2 A. Honourable Prosecution, I never said that I was not involved in
3 the war in Rogatica, first as a reserve officer, captain, I led the
4 Gucevo company of the Territorial Defence and I was its organiser in
5 part, where my village was. I got my family out of Rogatica because I
6 had received threats. I got them out. So as I protected my own family,
7 I felt it was necessary to protect other families too from criminals. I
8 led that company and I'm not concealing that in any way. Now, was that
9 May or June? Well, in May I was appointed by the Crisis Staff as
10 secretary of the Secretariat for National Defence. However, in June a
11 decision arrived on my appointment from the minister of defence. So
12 perhaps that's where we have this issue, May/June.
13 But I admit before this Court the following: How do we put this?
14 Either due to a lack of courage or willingness or wisdom, if you will,
15 many officers did not want to assume duties at the brigade command. They
16 simply didn't want to. Some officers, as a matter of fact, tore off
17 their epaulettes in my presence and threw them away and said --
18 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not understand what they
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Indeed, I as an artillery man did
21 my military service in Zadar as a reserve officer, and then I was sent to
22 Lukavica and --
23 MS. GUSTAFSON:
24 Q. I think we're straying far from the question now, so I'm going to
25 break it down and ask you: Were you or were you not Chief of Staff of
1 the Rogatica Brigade from early May 1992 until the end of 1992?
2 A. Well, this is the way it was: Again, if you take a look at what
3 I said --
4 Q. Mr. Ujic --
5 A. -- my apartment --
6 Q. -- it's a very simple question. Yes or no?
7 A. Oh, please. In order to give an adequate answer, I have to say a
8 few other things. Since my apartment was torched on the 22nd of July, I
9 did not have any proper accommodation. I stayed at the brigade command
10 so that I'd have a place to sleep and a place to eat. I stayed with the
11 command. And when necessary, I worked either at the ministry or the
12 brigade command, wherever it was necessary, that's where I worked because
13 I had two parallel functions. Perhaps they are slightly incompatible,
14 but that's the way it was. So I was at the Main Staff of the brigade,
15 yes, in addition to the other function.
16 Q. Okay. You have not answered my question. I'm going to move on
17 to the next question. Were you or were you not the artillery
18 co-ordinator for the Rogatica Brigade from early May 1992 until the end
19 of 1993?
20 A. Not until the end of 1993, but from May, yes, yes. And trained
21 those soldiers. There weren't any artillery men. Also I taught them
22 targeting so that they could engage targets.
23 Q. Okay. You gave very straightforward answers to these questions
24 in 2004, so I'd like to go to 65 ter 24424. And, Mr. Ujic, you're about
25 to see a statement that you gave to the Rogatica police in 2004. You can
1 see there's identifying information on the front cover and your signature
2 appears twice. And if we could go to page 4 of the English and page 3 of
3 the B/C/S. And starting in the first full paragraph in the English and
4 the third paragraph in the B/C/S, in the second sentence of that
5 paragraph you say that:
6 "At the time local Territorial Defence was being established,"
7 and you say as you did today that you were in charge of the Gucevo
8 company, "until sometime in early May when the brigade command reassigned
9 me to the position of the brigade chief. I held this position throughout
10 the entire 1992. I worked on defence plans for these territories ..."
11 et cetera. And then a few sentences down you say:
12 "In the beginning I was the main artillery co-ordinator which I
13 remained until the end of 1993 when I stopped doing this too ..."
14 Now, Mr. Ujic, what you said, that's correct, right, what you
15 said in 2004?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Okay. And you were also present at a meeting with your brigade
18 commander, Rajko Kusic, and General Mladic on the 30th of May, 1992. Do
19 you remember that?
20 A. Well, those dates, given the time distance, well really -- but if
21 I hear the question perhaps that will jog my memory in terms of what the
22 answer would be. I probably was there and --
23 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not understand the rest of
24 the sentence.
25 MS. GUSTAFSON:
1 Q. If you could just repeat your last sentence, Mr. Ujic. The
2 interpreter didn't catch it.
3 A. Well, I'm saying if that was at the level of the brigade command
4 and if General Mladic was there, then I was probably invited. And then I
5 might have attended. But I don't remember the date because this time
6 distance is considerable.
7 Q. Okay. For the record, I'll just point the parties to P1478, page
8 28, which records you present at a meeting with General Mladic. And I
9 will move on. I'll be coming back to this 2004 interview, so I can
10 either tender it now or wait until the end?
11 MR. ROBINSON: We don't have any objection.
12 JUDGE KWON: So the first page and this page?
13 MS. GUSTAFSON: Well, Your Honours, I'll be returning to it, so
14 perhaps the whole thing should be given a number. It's not -- it's a
15 brief statement.
16 JUDGE KWON: Very well. We'll admit it.
17 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6104, Your Honours.
18 MS. GUSTAFSON:
19 Q. Now, Mr. Ujic, as far as you know, during the war - between 1992
20 and 1995 - was anyone, any member of the Rogatica Brigade, ever punished
21 for committing crimes against non-Serbs?
22 A. As far as I know, yes, in two or three cases. Two persons were
23 sent to prison for a month because at their own initiative, without
24 involving the command, they killed -- well, one person. And that person
25 was a prisoner of war. And they both received one-month prison
1 sentences. They immediately said that they did that in combat, in
2 combat. They said that he had fired at them; he wasn't a civilian. So
3 that was the circumstance involved. And then next to that body, a rifle
4 was found, and I cannot guarantee whether that rifle had been fired or
5 not or whether that person was actually fighting or not. I cannot say.
6 But they were at the investigation prison in Rogatica and they did
7 receive these prison sentences, yes.
8 Q. Okay. Do you know of any other cases?
9 A. Believe me, I don't know.
10 Q. Okay. At paragraph 39 of your statement you said:
11 "To my knowledge, in the period April to June 1992, there was no
12 contact with the leadership in Pale."
13 Now, although you don't say this anywhere in your Defence
14 statement, you were a member of the Rogatica Crisis Staff, weren't you?
15 A. Yes, but only a member of the Crisis Staff, which does not mean
16 that I was the contact person. There was the president of the
17 Crisis Staff for contacts, and if he had any contacts then at meetings of
18 the Crisis Staff he would convey information to us. If there was
19 anything new, then he would tell us about it; but then if he wouldn't
20 tell us about it, I had no way of knowing about it.
21 Q. And the president of the Crisis Staff, who was that?
22 A. The president of the Crisis Staff was Mr. Milorad Sokolovic --
23 sorry, I beg your pardon. First it was Sveto Veselinovic. And then
24 because of this clash with this -- well, let me put it this way,
25 commander of the brigade, and Mr. Veselinovic was trying to bring this
1 into a more realistic, normal, peacetime framework. Because of all that,
2 Sveto Veselinovic was replaced by Predrag Malovic, his deputy who was
3 appointed. That staff functioned for a very short period of time. After
4 Milorad Sokolovic was chosen as president of the Crisis Staff sometime in
5 March or April 1992, this staff under his leadership went on until
6 sometime in June 1992 and then the situation was quite different, there
7 was a war going on, there was a shortage of goods, food, equipment,
8 everything, money included. So the Crisis Staff really did its best and
9 I was a member of that Crisis Staff.
10 Q. Okay. And going back to the contacts with the leadership in
11 Pale, if I understand you correctly it was the president of the
12 Crisis Staff who had contacts with the leadership in Pale and the
13 president of the Crisis Staff would convey that information to the other
14 members; is that right?
15 A. Yes, yes. I repeat, the president was the one who had contacts,
16 if any. If anyone travelled to Pale, then he would be the person to
17 travel. We from the Crisis Staff would find out only from him at the
18 session if the session was held in the first place. And then he would
19 tell us what had been agreed upon. I really don't know anything else.
20 In terms of whether there were any contacts or not; and if so, how many,
21 I really don't know.
22 Q. Okay. Now, your statement contains numerous assertions about the
23 arming and organisational activities of the Muslims in Rogatica, but you
24 don't discuss anywhere in your statement the creation of the Serb TO in
25 Rogatica, although you've mentioned in one of your earlier answers that
1 you were, in fact, a company commander in that TO. It's true, is it not,
2 that by the 24th of March, 1992, the Serb TO in Rogatica numbered around
3 3.000 men and they were threatening to attack Rogatica town unless the
4 municipal organs were immediately divided?
5 A. That was taken out of context. That's not exactly the way it
6 was. When I said in my statement -- well, I did say that and I signed
7 that and I sent it to the republican authorities. These barricades,
8 Muslim and Serb barricades, and these troops around Rogatica were Serb
9 troops and Muslim troops, that is to say armed men, the TO of one side
10 and the other side. So the town was literally under a blockade. If we
11 look at that map that we saw a moment ago, we will see that the Serb TO
12 could not have been there. If you look at this part of the map, but then
13 also the Muslim TO could not have been there. So the town was under
14 siege by both. Both were threatening to attack the town if it was not
15 divided. I asked the higher institutions of the republic to have someone
16 come during the night into town so that there would not be bloodshed.
17 That is what I sent on the -- by -- on behalf of the board and that's how
18 it was. According to my information, there were 3.000 armed men around
20 Q. Okay. Let's look at what you actually said at the time. And
21 that's 65 ter 24417. Now, in your answer you alluded to something that
22 you signed and sent to the republican authorities, and I believe this is
23 what you're referring to. And this is a letter that you sent --
24 A. No, no, no, no, and no. This is a different document from
25 earlier on, March 1992, when Sveto Veselinovic resigned and Tomo Batinic
1 and I as president of the Municipal Assembly. So this is a different
2 document, but that's not the other one that I signed. This document says
3 that because of the situation -- I beg your pardon, in Rogatica that was
4 really very tense, that we could not --
5 Q. Mr. Ujic --
6 A. -- manage the situation and we were about to resign collectively.
7 Q. I'd like -- I'm going to point you to some specific language in
8 this letter and ask you a question. Now, this is a letter that you and
9 Mr. Veselinovic and Mr. Batinic signed and sent personally to
10 Dr. Karadzic on the 25th of March, 1992. And you state that:
11 "The Crisis Staff is not able to carry out its decisions due to a
12 group of armed Serbs, headed by a member of the Main Board SDS,
13 Rajko Kusic, who was ruthlessly rushing with threats to attack the town
14 in case the municipality and the public security station are not
15 unconditionally divided into Serbian and Muslim parts within two hours'
17 Now, contrary to what you just said a moment ago about both
18 Muslims and Serbs surrounding the town, on the 25th of March your concern
19 was that the Serb TO headed by Rajko Kusic was ruthlessly rushing with
20 threats to attack the town; right?
21 A. Well, look, please. It's very hard to give just a yes or no
22 answer. That would be a laconic answer, yes or no, and then I could make
23 a mistake. That is why I cannot provide a yes or no answer if I cannot
24 give an explanation in terms of what. If I can give an explanation, then
25 I'm going to answer your question. That's no problem whatsoever. You
1 have to understand that both sides - I've already said here that I would
2 speak the truth and nothing but the truth, and I am telling you the
3 truth. It is only natural that one side cannot be involved in a war if
4 it doesn't have another side that it's waging war against. So if one
5 side says: I'm going to attack you, then the other one is not just
6 sitting there. They are getting ready for attack or defence. So I
7 repeat, there were two armed entities from the two ethnic groups.
8 Now, who was louder? Who issued more threats? Then perhaps in
9 some periods would be slightly more successful, but that's not the way it
10 was always. But I claim that both attacked -- both threatened to attack
11 town. And I felt responsible because of the posts I had that -- in terms
12 of something being done, but then I could not do everything on my own
13 because I did not have such powers.
14 Q. Okay. And you also say in this letter:
15 "We believe it is dangerous to be the originator of the war
16 situation when the Serbian people are not sufficiently prepared and
18 So your concern about starting a war at this point - and
19 Rajko Kusic's threats to that effect - were because the Serbian people in
20 your view were not sufficiently prepared for war at that point; is that
22 A. It's not that that's what I think. I know that they weren't
23 sufficiently prepared. When we discussed the statement a moment ago, the
24 Muslim side already had automatic weapons, automatic rifles given to
25 their police force. So they had this advantage in terms of the amount of
1 weapons they had and the personnel levels they had. In contrast, the
2 Serb people who had quite a few their reservists mobilised in Han Pijesak
3 and Zaluzani had been decimated on that score as well. So the question
4 was how to fight, with what kind of weapons, with what kind of army? At
5 first these were just hunting guns and you're supposed to fight against
6 automatic rifles with hunting guns? I think there's no point in
7 discussing that. We said we could not go to war, we could not bear that
8 responsibility, and that is why we wrote this letter of resignation --
9 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not interpret the last two
10 sentences because the pace is too fast for interpretation.
11 MS. GUSTAFSON:
12 Q. Mr. Ujic, could you repeat your last two sentences because you
13 spoke too quickly for the interpreters, and could you generally please
14 slow down.
15 A. Well, that is one of my shortcomings or one of my virtues, if you
16 will, that I really speak quite fast about the things that I know. When
17 I know I'm right, I speak very fast, but I'll repeat this: We were not
18 sure, we who held these positions, we were not sure that the Serb people
19 were sufficiently prepared for war, to follow Rajko Kusic's group, if you
20 will, because we did not have enough weapons, enough fire-arms, that is
21 one reason. The second reason was that most of the military-aged
22 able-bodied men had been mobilised in the brigade and --
23 Q. Mr. Ujic, I think you're now more or less repeating your answer.
24 I'd really like you to focus on answering the question as concisely as
25 possible. My time is very limited. I'm going to move on to my next
2 MS. GUSTAFSON: I'd like to tender this document, please.
3 JUDGE KWON: Before doing so, Mr. Ujic, could you kindly read out
4 the last paragraph of this letter.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You mean 708?
6 JUDGE KWON: "We are forced ..."
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, okay.
8 "We are forced by this group and part of the people standing
9 behind them, it is our duty to perform our moral obligation, to submit
10 our resignations on all positions in the Serb Democratic Party and the
11 municipality, and as real Serbs liberated from all party and other
12 obligations, to put ourselves at the disposal of the Yugoslav National
13 Army ..." as the only regular army, armed force, at the time.
14 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Ujic.
15 Who did you refer to by this group and part of the people
16 standing behind them when you said you were forced by these people to
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I meant what was mentioned
19 beforehand. This group, this part of the TO, it wasn't really a very big
20 group, like 100 persons. But a small number of them, about 100 is a
21 small number. However, if they are armed, well armed, then they were
22 stronger than a thousand or 2.000 Serbs who were bare-handed. Then these
23 gullible Serbs who saw them as some kind of protection, then they were
24 forcing me and the rest to do something to bring all of this to an end.
25 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
1 We'll admit this.
2 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6105, Your Honours.
3 JUDGE KWON: We'll take a break for half an hour.
4 MS. GUSTAFSON: Your Honours, I'd like to make some very brief
5 submissions about my cross-examination time. Perhaps the witness can be
6 excused and I can have one minute to do that.
7 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
8 Yes, we are going to have a break for half an hour, Mr. Ujic. If
9 you could excuse yourself now.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
11 [The witness stands down]
12 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Gustafson.
13 MS. GUSTAFSON: Thank you, Your Honour. Just so I'm able to
14 plan, I note that I was granted 45 minutes for this witness. I think
15 there are some pretty strong reasons why I should be given some more
16 time. I know, firstly, that there was extensive new information put into
17 the statement after the 45-minute determination was made, including a
18 number of points that I feel I need to deal with. One was the no
19 contacts with the authorities in Pale that I spent some time on. The
20 second thing is I think it's pretty clear from the witness's answers that
21 he wasn't entirely candid in his statement about the full extent of his
22 positions, that he was actually Chief of Staff of the brigade in May,
23 when Rogatica, as we know, is attacked; that he was the artillery
24 co-ordinator for the brigade, which will become relevant later in the
25 cross-examination; that he was a member of the Crisis Staff, that's not
1 in his Defence statement; and I believe if that information had been in
2 the statement I probably would have been given more time. And lastly,
3 I'm trying my hardest to keep the witness focused on answering the
4 question, but he does tend to give very long answers. I believe I need
5 another approximately 45 minutes, perhaps a bit longer, to do a proper
6 cross-examination of this witness. Thank you.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Perhaps I can answer briefly?
8 JUDGE KWON: Although it was not a question for you, but yes,
9 Mr. Karadzic.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I wouldn't agree with everything
11 Ms. Gustafson said. Just look at the last sentence of paragraph 4.
12 There was no need to put the questions about the paragraph because in the
13 last sentence the man -- he said that he was in different places, where
14 it was necessary for him to be.
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 JUDGE KWON: Your request is granted, Ms. Gustafson, but try to
17 conclude as soon as possible.
18 We'll take a break for half an hour and resume at five past
20 --- Recess taken at 10.33 a.m.
21 [The witness takes the stand]
22 --- On resuming at 11.07 a.m.
23 JUDGE KWON: Please continue, Ms. Gustafson.
24 MS. GUSTAFSON: Thank you, Your Honour.
25 Q. Mr. Ujic, at paragraph 24 of your statement you asserted that the
1 killing of Drazenko Mihajlovic was considered the start of the war in
2 Rogatica, a killing that you claim occurred on the 22nd of May. And
3 earlier today at page 16, line 7, you said:
4 "After the 22nd of May, 1992, the conflict broke out in
5 Rogatica ..."
6 But it is true, is it not, that on the 22nd of May Bosnian Serb
7 forces in Rogatica led by Rajko Kusic launched a major assault on
8 Muslim-populated areas of the municipality, and that included shelling
9 Rogatica town and shelling a number of Muslim villages in Rogatica.
11 A. Your Honours, it is true that the war in Rogatica began on the
12 22nd of May, 1992. The reason was as described earlier, the killing of
13 Mr. Mihajlovic in the municipality territory, and provided there was a
14 separation line between the Muslim and the Serb side, he was killed on
15 the Serbian side -- on the Muslim side. And the Muslim side would not
16 allow for his body to be pulled out, and then a corridor was created by
17 force to extract his body. Artillery was used as part of that activity,
18 although I was not in command of it at the time. Mortars were used by
19 the TO group which attempted to reach the late man's body. In certain
20 parts of town that were populated by Muslims -- well, they had to be
21 taken over by force in order to reach the body. Of course there was an
22 exchange of fire and the war was on its way.
23 Q. Well, let's look at P3265. The document that's about to come up
24 on your screen, Mr. Ujic, is Rajko Kusic's report about the events on the
25 22nd of May, 1992. And he reports that on the 22nd of May in the area
1 above the Serbian municipality of Rogatica "we opened fire on the enemy
2 strongholds of Dub, Pokrivenik, Kopljevici, Kozici, and Cadovi, as well
3 as on Pasic Kula, Rajs Laze, and Rudo 2 settlement. In the town an
4 infantry attack was carried out on the area of Rajs Laze and Rudo 2."
5 Now, this reference to opening fire on these locations, that's a
6 reference to a shelling attack; right?
7 A. Well, shelling as well as an infantry attack. It was a combined
9 Q. And, Mr. Kusic also refers to keeping the Zakomo-Radus-Kalimanici
10 road closed for the next 24 hours in order to prevent the enemy
11 withdrawal from Oskoplje because the Rogatica TO will carry out an attack
12 on Oskoplje. So we have -- just to get back to the attack that he
13 describes. Dub, Pokrivenik, Kopljevici, Kozici, and Cadovi, those were
14 Muslim villages; right?
15 A. Yes.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Intervention for the transcript.
17 In line 23 on the previous page, the witness received an interpretation
18 to the effect that there was firing at the positions and he responded
19 with locations, whereas in the document we have "strongholds." I believe
20 it might be wise to be precise. The witness was asked about enemy
21 positions, which is different from the transcript; and yet the transcript
22 is different from the telegram message.
23 MS. GUSTAFSON:
24 Q. Now, Mr. Ujic, is it your position that the Rogatica TO,
25 Rogatica Brigade, whatever you want to call it, shelled five Muslims
1 villages and parts of the town and carried out an infantry attack all in
2 order to create a corridor to remove the body of one killed Serb? Is
3 that your position?
4 A. No, I need to explain that. The aforementioned villages of
5 Pokrivenik and others, Cadovi, and others, parts of Kozici and Cadovina
6 were mixed, although there were more Muslims than Serbs there. The
7 village of Trnovo is in the area too, where the Serbs were 100 per cent
8 of the population. On the other hand, there was the village of
9 Pokrivenik which was 100 per cent Muslims. From such villages there were
10 attacks on the other villages where there were many civilian casualties.
11 For example, the Obradovic family from Trnovo was killed, all of them,
12 the husband, the wife, and underaged daughter who had also been raped.
13 And in order to extract their bodies we had to engage and neutralise the
14 fire coming from such villages that was directed at us. It was similar
15 in this case too. In other words, the shelling was focused on such
16 locations from which we received fire. It was not random and aimed at
17 all of the villages; far from it.
18 Q. Okay. At paragraph 27 of your statement, I'm moving on to
19 another topic, you describe the Rogatica secondary school as a safe house
20 where Muslims took shelter from war operations. In reality, Mr. Ujic,
21 the Rogatica Brigade was rounding up Muslims and taking them to the
22 secondary school, where they were detained; and from there, they were
23 expelled to ABiH-held territory for transfer to other prisons?
24 A. That needs to be clarified. When I stated so in the statement, I
25 said that he was a safe house, and I stand by it. It was for all
1 civilians, Muslim, Croat, and Serb. In the school building there were
2 neighbours from my building and they were of all three ethnicities.
3 There were also other citizens there. There were some 1100 people in the
4 school as I could read in the documents, but that's far from the truth.
5 So many people could not be fit there. We wanted all civilians that were
6 unarmed and we had victims and casualties daily. We wanted to shelter
7 civilians so that they wouldn't be harmed. They told them that they
8 could go to the school which was under our control. They could come to
9 the school, surrender, and stay there safely until their return home.
10 I also visited them at the school once and some of my friends,
11 Muslims, were there whom I knew. I shared cigarettes with them and I
12 told them, "As soon as this is over, you'll be able to go home." Some
13 people told us, "Our family members are in Sarajevo, Gorazde, and Tuzla,
14 and we wanted to reunite." In such cases, we provided the paperwork,
15 asking that they state where they wanted to go if they wanted to leave
16 Rogatica. Those who wanted to remain there did. Others said they wanted
17 to go to Sarajevo, and we escorted them to the demarcation line, handing
18 them over to the Muslim side. Their fate from that point on is not
19 something I'm aware of. I can only speak about such people who remained
20 in Rogatica until the end of the war. The school could not and was not a
21 camp, especially not a concentration camp. Ultimately the building, the
22 collection centre, was disbanded in late August 1992, because in
23 September the school was returned to its original purpose, that is to say
24 children were taught there.
25 Q. So do you accept or deny that Rogatica Brigade members were
1 taking Muslim civilians from their villages and -- to the school where
2 they were detained?
3 A. From such villages that were loyal and who handed over their
4 weapons, well, because of certain assumptions that some surviving Serbs
5 who lost their families or saw their villages torched would take revenge
6 on those people. And we took those people to the school if they wanted
7 to. In such villages as Satorovici, they handed over their weapons and
8 they remained there until the end of the war and were protected --
9 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat his last two
11 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Ujic, could you slow down again, sir. So could
12 you start again from "in such villages as Satorovici ..."
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Satorovici, certainly,
14 Your Honours. The villages of Satorovici, Okruglo, Osovo, and Tmurni Do
15 in the direction of Borike were loyal to Republika Srpska and its
16 authorities. They handed over their weapons and they did not want to go
17 to the school building. They wanted to remain in their homes, as indeed
18 they did. I went to the retired general, Mr. Hodzic, some medication for
19 the sick. I was there on a number of occasions. Also when the
20 Crisis Staff -- when the shops were empty, it distributed goods to
21 Muslims and Serbs per capita. The same quota was received by a Serb in
22 Rogatica and a Muslim loyal to the authorities in any village of the
23 municipality, as opposed to such people, those who were in the safe
24 house, in the collection centre in the school, received three meals a day
25 which was prepared together for the army, the refugees, and the people at
1 the school.
2 MS. GUSTAFSON:
3 Q. Mr. Ujic, thank you. Radosav Ljubinac was an officer in the
4 Rogatica Brigade; right?
5 A. Radosav Ljubinac, he was not an officer. He was a plain soldier.
6 He was not even a squad leader, which is a soldier's rank. He was just a
7 plain soldier. I'd rather not discuss him. He was tried and sentenced.
8 He did some things and it was proven before a court and he received an
9 appropriate sentence.
10 MS. GUSTAFSON: Could we have 65 ter 1D04186, please.
11 Q. And while that's coming up, Mr. Ujic, one of the things he was
12 convicted for was forcibly transferring Muslim women, children, and men
13 from Seljani village to the Rogatica secondary school. And after
14 separating the women and children from the men, forcibly transferring
15 those women and children to Hresa in Sarajevo; right?
16 A. Not Preso, Hresa. You see, it was a predominantly Serb village,
17 Seljani. There may have been five or six Muslim houses there all
18 together. The unit in question that I was not in control of at the time,
19 it was actually a local TO unit, did what they did. This is what I can
20 say about that. That kind of procedure for women and children to be
21 transferred to the school so that they wouldn't be killed or mistreated,
22 well I would dare say that it saved their lives. Later on when they
23 wanted to go to Sarajevo, they were taken to Hresa to the separation and
24 handed over to the Muslim side. They were escorted en route so as to
25 avoid any unwanted incidents.
1 Q. If we could go to page 2 of this document and under point 1, this
2 is only in English, Mr. Ujic, so I'm going to read it to you, one of the
3 things that Mr. Ljubinac was convicted for was:
4 [As read] "On the 3rd and 4th of August ... taking part of the
5 forcible transfer of women, children, and a small number of remaining
6 adult men from the villages and settlements of the ... Seljani local
7 community to the camp which was based in the secondary school centre
8 'Veljko Vlahovic' in Rogatica. And on 5 August 1992, after among the
9 civilians detained at the secondary school centre ... men had been
10 separated from women and children, he took part in the forcible transfer
11 of women and children to Hresa ..."
12 That's what he was convicted for and that's what he did; right?
13 A. Well, we see what happened. As a human being, I cannot accept
14 such assertions that the high school building was a camp. I deny that.
15 I deny that here too. It was never in anyone's mind to turn the school
16 building into a camp. I stand by it. It was only a safe house, to avoid
17 murders, mistreatment, and torture. The unprotected civilians could take
18 shelter there until they wanted to move elsewhere. I'm not discussing
19 the judgement itself. It's clear to me. If that's what he was convicted
20 for, then so be it.
21 MS. GUSTAFSON: I'd like to tender this judgement.
22 [Trial Chamber confers]
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson.
24 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. We wouldn't object to the
25 first two pages being tendered.
1 MS. GUSTAFSON: That's fine with me. Although, Your Honours, at
2 page 25 --
3 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
4 MS. GUSTAFSON: Sorry.
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we will receive it.
7 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6106, Your Honours.
8 MS. GUSTAFSON:
9 Q. Mr. Ujic, I'd like to move on now to the attacks on the villages
10 of Kozadre and Kremer Selo that you talk about at paragraph 30 of your
11 statement. You say that because Muslims of those villages did not hand
12 over those weapons, the villages were attacked by the TO unit from Socice
13 . Now, you were actually personally involved in this attack; right?
14 A. One could say so -- well, however, after a string of attempts and
15 asking that the villages near the road --
16 Q. Mr. Ujic --
17 A. -- between Rogatica and Sarajevo --
18 Q. -- my question was simply whether you were involved in the attack
19 or not and you said "one could say so." Was that a "yes, you were
20 involved"? I see you nodding.
21 A. Please, I can't laconically say "yes," but just in a few words.
22 I co-ordinated the artillery, as you know, so that the targets could be
23 engaged from which we received fire. Only they were neutralised. That's
24 the extent of my participation.
25 Q. Okay. And when those villages were shelled, this resulted in the
1 Muslims from those villages fleeing and it also wounded children, and
2 those children who were wounded by shrapnel were left behind the column
3 of fleeing Muslims; right?
4 A. Let's rewind. The point of our offer was: You hand over your
5 weapons, you live peacefully and normally. If there's fire coming from a
6 village, it's not a village anymore, it's a military target, a legitimate
7 military target, especially after the killings which happened on that
8 road. On the other side, I know that there were three children wounded
9 by shrapnel. When we received information that they were found, I
10 personally ordered that they be carried on their arms, on the soldiers'
11 arms, to the hospital. We treated them and took them also to the
12 military hospital in Podravanje. They received the full treatment there
13 and later on they went to Sarajevo to reunite with their families.
14 Q. And those children had been left behind the column of Muslims
15 fleeing those villages; right?
16 A. Yes, yes. They were literally left at the mercy of, as they
17 called it, Chetniks. We were not Chetniks. We were humane soldiers who
18 administered help to those who were wounded, as was the case in this
20 Q. Okay. I'd like to move on now to another topic. In paragraph 42
21 of your statement you said that paramilitaries appeared in Rogatica and
22 they were a problem. They wanted to abduct a lawyer who was at the
23 school, but two to three policemen chased them away. In fact,
24 paramilitaries were purposely engaged in order to conduct operations in
25 Rogatica town, weren't they?
1 A. I do know, however not from the brigade, but simply as part of my
2 stay there, that in Rogatica for a while there were Arkan's men,
3 Seselj's radicals, the Knindzas, and White Eagles, and whatnot. However,
4 there were people in such groups that were honourable soldiers. There
5 were also such people that went on their own to loot and mistreat people.
6 We tried to fight against such men and we frequently told the brigade
7 commander: Do away with such men. No one invited them. They should go
8 out of the town. We don't need them. They are committing crimes. And
9 then once they withdraw, it is ascribed to our side. They indeed were
10 dogs of war. I can't call them by any other name. They wanted Kapo
11 Muhidin, the lawyer, he's still in Sarajevo these days, they heard he was
12 at the school and they wanted to kidnap him for some reasons of their
13 own. We didn't allow anyone to take anyone from the high school
14 building. It was not a camp. It was a collection centre. We didn't
15 allow them to take anyone anywhere. The police put a stop to it.
16 Q. Okay. I'd like to look at what you said in 2004 on this topic,
17 and that's at P6104, page 5 in English and page 4 in the B/C/S. We're
18 going back to the statement you gave to the Rogatica police in 2004 that
19 we looked at earlier.
20 A. Yes, yes.
21 Q. And it is the first full paragraph on both pages -- in both
22 languages, sorry. And you talk about how at the beginning of the war
23 there were volunteers who came back to defend their villages, and you
24 said, "... they were followed by groups or individuals under the guise of
25 'Arkan's men,' 'Jovic's men,' 'Seselj's men '" ...
1 And in the next sentence you say:
2 "I have no knowledge of who engaged them or brought them or was
3 bringing them, but I know that all they wanted was to clean up the town
4 and we were told that town clashes were dangerous and needed to be dealt
5 with by people specifically trained for that.
6 "I cannot claim that none of those listed above, who did not fall
7 under the influence of our command, committed any murders."
8 Who told you, Mr. Ujic, that town clashes were dangerous and
9 needed to be dealt with by people specially trained for that?
10 A. Well, let me put it this way, when I was in the army I learned
11 that urban warfare is very difficult, it's totally unpredictable because
12 danger comes from all directions. They said that they were specialists
13 and that they were used to urban warfare --
14 Q. Mr. Ujic --
15 A. -- later on I realised that they were not interested in the
16 villages --
17 Q. -- who said -- who told you that they were specialists and they
18 were used to urban warfare?
19 A. I partially answered this. I learned about this at the school in
20 Zadar. And we wanted on top of that to avoid sending our lads to the
21 town and instead send those who were specialised in that. They wanted to
22 fight in the town because they thought there was more wealth in urban
23 parts. Because their motive was looting. But that was an arduous
24 process for us to deal with.
25 Q. Okay. I'd like to move on now to another topic. At paragraph 29
1 of your statement you say that approximately 25 people, as far as you
2 know, who were subjects for prosecution, were transferred to -- from the
3 school to the Rasadnik detention facility. And you said that you do not
4 know whether the prisoners at Rasadnik were tortured. But you do know
5 and you did know at the time that on the 15th of August, 1992, a group of
6 Muslim prisoners from Rasadnik were taken out of the prison. They were
7 used as human shields in the Duvljevac area, and then they were executed
8 resulting in the death of 24 prisoners. You knew about that at the time,
9 didn't you?
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Line 18, it hasn't been recorded
11 what the witness said: Until such time as we managed to remove them.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You are referring to the
13 paramilitary formations? Yes, I know that 25 people, 25 men, were taken
14 from the school who on account of being involved in the commission of
15 various crimes were convicted. Unfortunately, it was not only Muslims
16 who were subject of these convictions. One of my relatives was among
17 them. So it was not done indiscriminately. Everyone who committed a
18 crime was tried and all those people had work obligation. I also know
19 that a group of those people from Rasadnik were taken away, maybe on the
20 15th of August, I'm not sure, to the area of Kozici. They wanted to
21 repair the Serb lines. However, due to this operation being unsuccessful
22 and because a man named Spiro was unhappy about that, the commander of
23 that unit, he sent them back to the valley on his own accord and had them
24 shot. And for that deed, he was convicted.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] The transcript does not reflect the
1 names of the Muslim -- of the Serbs who were in detention.
2 THE WITNESS: [No interpretation]
3 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please slowly tell us the
5 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
6 MS. GUSTAFSON: I think that's in his statement.
7 JUDGE KWON: You are overlapping.
8 Yes, Ms. Gustafson.
9 MS. GUSTAFSON: That information's in the witness statement. I'd
10 prefer to move on.
11 Now, if we could have 65 ter 24438, please.
12 Q. Now, you said that Spiro was convicted for this crime --
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. -- was the commander of that unit. That was a Rogatica Brigade
15 unit that he commanded; right?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Okay. Now, what you'll see on the screen here is the 2006
18 Bosnian state court judgement against Dragoje Paunovic, also known as
19 Spiro, and I note that the appellate judgement confirming this trial
20 judgement is Exhibit D1666. And if we look at the bottom of page 1 and
21 the top of page 2, it's clear Mr. Paunovic was found guilty of ordering
22 27 Muslim civilians who had been illegally detained at Rasadnik to serve
23 as human shields. He ordered their killing and he personally
24 participated in their execution. And if we could go to page 11 of the
25 English and page 10 of the B/C/S. At the bottom of the page and in the
1 middle of the page in the B/C/S it refers to a failed alibi defence and
2 there's a reference to you. It says:
3 "Only witness Mile Ujic said that he had heard about the crime on
4 the same day or the following day and added that it had been committed by
5 some extremists."
6 Now, you testified as a defence witness in that case and you told
7 the court that you knew about the crime either the day it happened or the
8 next day; right?
9 A. It's correct, I was a defence witness and that is what I said,
10 that I learned about it either on the same day or on the following day.
11 Q. Okay.
12 MS. GUSTAFSON: I'd like to tender this judgement, please.
13 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President, pages 1, 2, and this page 11
14 would be fine.
15 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Gustafson.
16 MS. GUSTAFSON: Well, I note that in the past the accused has
17 tendered such judgements and they have gone in in their entirety, and we
18 do have the entire appellate judgement in this case in evidence as a
19 Defence exhibit. I don't see any reason not to admit the entire
20 judgement of the -- [overlapping speakers] --
21 JUDGE KWON: I think pages 1, 2, and 11 is sufficient for your
23 MS. GUSTAFSON: That's fine.
24 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
25 We'll admit three pages.
1 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6107, Your Honours.
2 MS. GUSTAFSON:
3 Q. Mr. Ujic, you said that Rasadnik prison was a military detention
4 facility and the prisoners were subjects for prosecution. But three of
5 the Muslims who were executed in this incident and one of the survivors
6 of that execution were under age at the time and, in fact, Armin Bazdar
7 who survived the killing was only just 15. These people weren't subjects
8 for prosecution. These were just Muslim children; right?
9 A. Well, 15 years or 150 years, if somebody was suspected of having
10 committed crimes, they were brought in regardless of their age. I'm
11 sorry that little Armin Bazdar was among them. And of course it turned
12 out that he was innocent and he survived, and I am delighted at that. As
13 for the rest, I really cannot say anything more because I was not in
14 charge of the prison. There were other people responsible for that. I
15 just dropped by on three occasions. I spent half an hour there,
16 Vujic Mirko, my relative, was among the detainees. I just wanted to see
17 how they were faring. I did not know that anyone was killed before they
18 were transferred by truck. So you should not ask me to confirm something
19 that I really don't know about. All I can speak of under oath is
20 something that I'm aware of.
21 Q. Sorry, Mr. Ujic, just to be clear you told the Bosnian court that
22 you knew about this execution either the day it happened or the next day.
23 That's true, isn't it?
24 A. Yes, that is exactly true. The same day or the next day I heard
25 that it had happened, and I was shocked. I asked myself: Why? Why?
1 Why? And I'm still wondering: Why? For whose benefit was that? On
2 whose order was that? That was done on someone's own initiative, and I
3 don't know whether the command brigade is responsible or the individual
4 who was convicted for that and is now serving a sentence.
5 Q. Okay. I'd like to go now to 65 ter 24462. While that's coming
6 up, Mr. Ujic, the Rogatica Brigade was generally commended by the
7 superior command for its activities during 1992; right?
8 A. Probably, yes, because it managed to preserve the territory, it
9 managed to prevent the announced genocide and killings; and in that
10 period very bad things were happening in Rogatica. So there was no
11 exodus, there were no mass killings, and probably that was the reason why
12 they were commended by the corps command.
13 Q. Okay. And we can see here a 26 December 1992 commendation from
14 the SRK commander Stanislav Galic to the 2nd Romanija Motorised Brigade
15 command and the Rogatica Brigade command, referring to the "great and
16 immeasurable contribution of your fighters and units and "the Army of
17 Republika Srpska's magnificent successes in 1992. Congratulating you on
18 what has been achieved, let these successes be a stimulus for you to
19 continue with the successes in 1993, until the realisation of the just
20 goals of our struggle - freedom and a life worthy of man in
21 Republika Srpska."
22 This is a reflection of the superior command's approval of the
23 Rogatica Brigade's activity in 1992; right?
24 A. If I were to deny that, it would be irresponsible and ridiculous.
25 If the corps command phrased it that way, then it must be like that.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 MS. GUSTAFSON: I'd like to tender this document and I have no
3 further questions.
4 Q. Thank you, Mr. Ujic.
5 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll receive it.
6 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6108, Your Honours.
7 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Excellency. I have a
9 few questions. Let me start with the latest one.
10 Re-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
11 Q. [Interpretation] On page 50 you said that you had learned about
12 the event on that very same day or the following day. How did you learn
13 about that? Did you receive any official report or in what way?
14 A. Mr. President, as a brigade officer I had a hand-held radio set
15 and an RUP-12 radio station in my vehicle. Through these communications
16 devices, I heard a conversation between the local Kozici unit commander
17 and that is how I learned about it. When I went to the scene, I saw that
18 and I returned totally disappointed in war and in everything because that
19 was completely contrary to all my visions and ideas. And we were trained
20 and these instructions came from you as well, that we should treat
21 soldiers according to international conventions. But it was impossible
22 to persuade certain individuals to abide by these rules, and everybody
23 should be responsible for their own acts.
24 Q. Who suggested that this was done by extremists and when did you
25 learn the real name of the perpetrator?
1 A. I did not know his name for a long time. Initially I was told
2 that that was done by the White Eagles, Arkan's men, Seselj's men,
3 et cetera. After some investigation a few days later, we did find out
4 that Mr. Paunovic, aka Spiro, was the perpetrator who was the platoon
5 commander and his task was to unblock this passage.
6 Q. Thank you. Did you or anyone else, if you know, inform me or
7 anyone else at Pale about this incident?
8 A. As far as I know, I did not. Whether somebody else reported this
9 to you, I really don't know. If they did, I would like to know who it
10 was. If not, I don't know.
11 Q. Thank you. On page 38 of today's transcript you were asked about
12 the civilian population, about the secondary school centre. So can we
13 briefly look at -- and you said that that was a reception centre for
14 civilian population. So can we please look at P5485, that's a
15 Prosecution exhibit and that's a regular combat report compiled by
16 Mr. Kusic.
17 Mr. Ujic, please look at the second sentence, where it says that
18 a lot of Muslims are arriving in the town every day, mostly women and
19 children, and they are being accommodated in the secondary school centre.
20 Is this consistent with what you knew?
21 A. Yes, that is what I knew, and I keep saying here in this
22 courtroom that the secondary school was not a concentration camp. It
23 was, I reiterate, a safe house for people to find shelter and avoid
24 becoming casualties unnecessarily. So whoever wrote this should stand by
25 it and that was the truth. The Muslims themselves wanted us to provide
1 them safe haven where they would feel secure.
2 Q. Thank you. What do you say about this where he says that they
3 are arriving? Does that mean that somebody was bringing them in or did
4 they arrive of their own volition?
5 A. Most of them arrived of their own volition. I only noticed two
6 armed soldiers who escorted them safely to the school. However, I did
7 see columns without any military escort whatsoever heading for the
9 Q. Today you said that the leadership requested and the leadership
10 made the same request to abide by international conventions. In that
11 respect I need document 1D04177. I'm not sure if it's been translated,
12 albeit it's being sent for translation a long time ago.
13 Today when asked about the SRK command approving the actions of
14 Rogatica Brigade, can you tell me did the SRK command approve this
16 A. I can categorically ascertain that they didn't, not the brigade
17 command, not the corps command, nor the Supreme Command, nobody
18 officially approved of this.
19 Q. Thank you. Please look at this letter that was sent by the
20 president of Rogatica municipality on the 25th of November, 1992, I'm
21 talking about Mr. Tomislav Batinic, commander of Rogatica Brigade. And
22 he says here, I'm going to read the first paragraph:
23 "The Presidency of Republika Srpska sent a telex to the Municipal
24 Assembly of Rogatica on the 9th of November, in 1999 [as interpreted], in
25 which they reminded them of their responsibility for the events taking
1 place in the territory of their municipality with respect to possible
2 breaches of international humanitarian law, with regard to treatment of
3 war prisoners.
4 "It has been pointed out that civilians cannot be detained
5 against their will, the civilians who hadn't committed any crimes, and
6 that they had to be safely released and escorted to the territory that
7 they wished to go. This does not pertain only to the women, children,
8 and the elderly, but also to the sick enemy soldiers ..." et cetera.
9 Do you remember this instruction?
10 A. I remember it clearly, and as I said you yourself - as the
11 president and the Commander-in-Chief - issued warnings that we should
12 respect all the international conventions governing warfare and that we
13 should treat prisoners of war in a proper manner. This letter is a
14 confirmation of that because I kept saying here that we really wanted to
15 avoid any casualty that was unnecessary. Of course, in any war people
16 get killed. It's quite clear. However, if you manage to reduce the
17 number of victims or casualties is a success in itself, and we did our
18 best to reduce that number as much as possible. But as I said, there are
19 victims in every war.
20 I already said that the civilians were given forms to fill out to
21 say where they wanted to go. Some of them wanted to go and reunite with
22 their families in Tuzla, some wanted to go to Skopje and other places and
23 towns. I also know that buses were secured to transport them to their
24 destinations under the police escort. Another example, one of those
25 people named Katica Musan, who was detained at Rasadnik from
1 Bujata [phoen] village, the village was loyal, because of fear of revenge
2 and with their consent we transferred them to the school. Later on, the
3 same person, Katica Musan, begged us not to be sent to Sarajevo because
4 he was going to be killed by his own people. Unfortunately, he had to be
5 exchanged, to go to Sarajevo, and his own son killed him. This is what I
6 heard three days after his departure. He was alive and well while he was
7 with us. As soon as he went to Sarajevo, his own son killed him on his
9 Q. Thank you. What does it say here further on? Is there again a
10 reference to the Geneva Conventions that the Red Cross should have access
11 to everything, and it also says that the president of the
12 Municipal Assembly has to provide information to the Presidency of the
13 republic on the existence of prisons and collection centres in the area
14 of the municipality?
15 A. Yes, precisely. That's what the document says.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be admitted into evidence?
18 JUDGE KWON: We'll mark it for identification.
19 THE REGISTRAR: As MFI D2913, Your Honours.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. 7435 would be the
21 65 ter number that I'd like to have called up now, please.
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Let us see what then Captain Kusic responded to the president of
24 the municipality. Let us take a look at the first paragraph. It says
25 that this is a reply to the letter sent on the 25th of November, 1992.
1 It says:
2 "Since the first day of combat activities, the members of the
3 Rogatica Brigade have treated the civilian population according to the
4 Geneva Conventions. We have separated civilian population from extreme
5 combatants we have fought against. With your approval, we have gathered
6 civilians at the secondary school, the church centre, and the DP 'Ergela'
7 in Rogatica building. In accordance with the circumstances involved, we
8 were providing them with the same food our soldiers on the front line
9 received three times a day."
10 Is this correct, what the first paragraph says?
11 A. All of this is correct, each and every letter written here.
12 Q. Thank you. Now, the third paragraph, the last sentence, says:
13 "With a view to protecting their lives from Muslim extremists
14 because they expressed their loyalty to the Serb municipality of
16 What can you tell us about that? What was the attitude taken
17 towards Muslims who did not want to fight and who stayed in the villages?
18 What was the attitude of the extremists, the Muslim extremists?
19 A. Well, the extremists Muslims who were warriors, if I can put it
20 that way, who engaged in combat - I state this with full
21 responsibility - they hated those loyal Muslims more than Serbs because
22 they considered them to be their own national traitors. We had to
23 protect these loyal Muslims more from their extremists than from our own
25 Q. Thank you. Did they do anything in these villages, in these
1 loyal villages or around these loyal villages, these Muslim extremists do
3 A. Yes, yes, they tried through incursions, threats, intimidation,
4 looting; however, when we moved the defence lines from those villages
5 then they couldn't reach those households any longer. So later on these
6 people managed to live in peace.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this document be admitted?
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
10 Yes, Ms. Gustafson.
11 MS. GUSTAFSON: No, no objection. Thank you.
12 JUDGE KWON: Okay.
13 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D2914, Your Honours.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. On page 25 you were asked about the Territorial Defence and local
17 communes. Can you tell us in terms of the organisation and mobilisation
18 of the Territorial Defence in all socio-political communities, local
19 communes included, was there anything done then that was in contravention
20 of the laws that were then in force?
21 A. I claim with full responsibility to the best of my knowledge that
22 not in a single local commune, regardless of whether there was Muslim
23 population there or not, nothing was done in contravention of the laws
24 prescribed by the then-government of BH, especially because the
25 republican staff of the TO established its own bylaws and then the TOs in
1 the municipalities sent this down further to the local communes. So all
2 of this was tied up in a system on the basis of this law, from top to
4 Q. Thank you. On page 27 Mr. Sokolovic was mentioned. After your
5 resignations he was the president of the Crisis Staff. Can you tell us
6 from which party Mr. Sokolovic came?
7 A. I think that that was an opposition party, something like the
8 Democratic People's Party or something like that. At any rate, it was an
9 opposition party close to the league of communists. He had his own
10 members of the assembly and the SDP had their own. So he was not in the
11 SDS party, no.
12 Q. Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Ujic. I have no further questions.
13 A. If the Court allows me, may I?
14 JUDGE KWON: We do not usually hear the witnesses. Did you miss
15 something, Mr. Ujic?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, with the permission of the
17 Court I would like to make a point of order or suggestion in relation to
18 these two documents I have here, 0529758, and then further on up to 7589.
19 These last two pages in this document should bear a different number
20 according to the other document that I've received --
21 JUDGE KWON: Just a second --
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- 05 --
23 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. I don't follow what document he's
24 referring to, Ms. Gustafson or Mr. Karadzic or Mr. Robinson?
25 MR. ROBINSON: We don't really know either.
1 [Trial Chamber confers]
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I'll explain --
3 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Ujic, I don't think it's necessary for the
5 Yes, Ms. Gustafson.
6 MS. GUSTAFSON: Your Honour, I don't know how the witness got
7 this document. He seemed to be citing an ERN number. I've looked it up.
8 It is minutes from the 8th Session of the Rogatica Municipal Assembly. I
9 don't know --
10 JUDGE KWON: We didn't deal with this.
11 MS. GUSTAFSON: No.
12 JUDGE KWON: As I told you, Mr. Ujic, that won't be necessary.
13 On behalf of the Chamber, I thank you for your coming to The Hague to
14 give it. Now you're free to go. Thank you.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you. Will the Court allow me
16 now in terms of my testimony?
17 JUDGE KWON: Yes, you may be excused. Thank you. Have a safe
18 journey back home.
19 THE WITNESS: [Microphone not activated]
20 [The witness withdrew]
21 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Robinson, shall we rise for ten minutes to give
22 some time to Mr. Karadzic to absorb the Court ruling to redact some
23 paragraphs from the statement in terms of his summary and the associated
25 MR. ROBINSON: Well, we're ready with the associated exhibits.
1 JUDGE KWON: Okay.
2 MR. ROBINSON: -- [Overlapping speakers]... adjusted, but the
3 summary we could use -- need some time, but maybe we could bring the
4 witness in and take as far as we can go and then reserve the lunch hour.
5 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
6 Then let us bring in the next witness.
7 [The witness entered court]
8 JUDGE KWON: Would the witness make the solemn declaration.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
10 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
11 WITNESS: VIDOMIR BANDUKA
12 [Witness answered through interpreter]
13 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Banduka. Please make yourself
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
16 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Banduka, before you start giving evidence, I
17 would like to draw your attention to a particular rule here at the
18 Tribunal. Under this rule, Rule 90(E), you may object to answering a
19 question from the accused, the Prosecution, or the Judges if you believe
20 that your answer will incriminate you. When I say "incriminate," I mean
21 that something you say may amount to an admission of your guilt for a
22 criminal offence or could provide evidence that you have committed an
23 offence. However, even if you think your answer will incriminate you and
24 you do not wish to answer the question, the Tribunal has the power to
25 compel you to answer the question. But in such a case, the Tribunal will
1 make sure that your testimony compelled in such a way shall not be used
2 as evidence in other case against you for any offence other than false
3 testimony. Do you understand what I have just told you, sir?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
5 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
6 Mr. Karadzic.
7 Examination by Mr. Karadzic:
8 Q. [Interpretation] Good day, Mr. Banduka.
9 A. Good day, Mr. President.
10 Q. I would kindly ask you - and I'd like to remind myself - that we
11 pause between our sentences so that sentences could be recorded in their
12 entirety. And also could we pause between question and answer and then
13 the next question. Did you provide a statement to the Defence team?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'd like to call up 1D08901 in
18 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Is that the statement that you gave to the Defence team?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Thank you. Have you read it and did you sign it then?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. I'm afraid that you're too close to the microphones because I
24 thought that I was causing the microphone problem. Can we take a look at
25 the last page and see whether that is your signature there.
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Thank you. Does the statement correctly reflect what you said?
3 Would you correct anything in the statement?
4 A. I think it correctly reflects what I said.
5 Q. Did you suggest to the Defence team that in some paragraphs, for
6 example, 33, 39, 47, there was a bit of imprecision?
7 A. Yes, I think some dates.
8 Q. Can we take a look at paragraph 33 and then we would kindly ask
9 you to tell us what should be changed there. Mr. Banduka, do you have a
10 hard copy of your statement before you?
11 A. Yes, I do. In paragraph 33 the date of the 12th of May does not
12 correspond to what I said because the Muslim forces took this barracks on
13 the 12th -- not on the 12th of May, but on the 10th of May. That's what
14 we know. And also in a book that I read that was written by an officer
15 of the BH Army, he also says that the barracks was taken on the 10th of
17 Q. Thank you. So it should say the 10th of May rather than the 12th
18 of May; is that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. [Microphone not activated]
21 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the speaker, please.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. Actually, I beg your pardon.
23 I have it in my bag. Can I use it?
24 JUDGE KWON: I'm sorry, I didn't hear you, Mr. Karadzic, because
25 your microphone was not on.
1 THE ACCUSED: Sorry. I asked whether Mr. Banduka has his own
2 statement, hard copy. So he said he did and asked for the permission to
3 use it.
4 JUDGE KWON: No problem. By all means, Mr. Banduka.
5 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Have you found it, sir? Could you please take a look at
7 paragraph 39 now. Is there something imprecise there?
8 A. Yes. Again, the date. There is a reference to the documents
9 that was issued by the Assembly of the Serb People and distributed -- it
10 says that it was distributed after the 13th of March, and that is
11 illogical because the Assembly was held on the 18th of April. So here
12 instead of the 13th of March it should say after the 18th of April.
13 Q. Thank you. So the word "after" is superfluous as well?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. So the sentence would read as follows:
16 "The Assembly issued this document on the 18th of April, 1992,
17 and distributed it ..." et cetera, et cetera?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Thank you. Could you please take a look at paragraph 47 now and
20 tell us whether there is anything to be corrected in that paragraph.
21 A. I think that in line 3 all this confirmed our assessment at the
22 time when they started leaving Hadzici en masse, that a strong attack was
23 in the making and -- well, so we prepared. I think that that is
25 Q. You did not say that; right?
1 A. Yes, it's quite unclear.
2 Q. Is there anything else that you'd like to change in your
3 statement or spell out in more specific terms?
4 A. I think that would be it.
5 Q. Thank you. Taking into account all of these things that you
6 spelled out in more specific terms now, if I were to put the same
7 questions to you today would your answers be the same in essence?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. We really do have to pause. I have to tell you that a few
10 paragraphs were redacted from the statement by the Trial Chamber because
11 they're not relevant for the Defence, 59, 60, 62, and 63. So -- oh,
12 there's more, 72 , 73, 75, 77, 78, so 78 included. That should not
13 confuse you. These documents will not be part of this package either.
14 Now I would like to read out the summary in the English
15 language --
16 JUDGE KWON: Before doing so, we'll admit the Rule 92 ter
17 statement first.
18 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D2915, Your Honours.
19 JUDGE KWON: And I take it you are tendering five documents?
20 MR. ROBINSON: Exactly, Mr. President.
21 JUDGE KWON: Which were not on your 65 ter list?
22 MR. ROBINSON: That's correct. We would ask that they be added
23 because at the time we hadn't interviewed this witness.
24 JUDGE KWON: Any objection, Ms. McKenna?
25 MS. McKENNA: Your Honour, I did raise one issue with
1 Mr. Robinson in advance which was the -- I believe that in paragraph 61
2 the -- there is a reference to P2297 which doesn't seem to support --
3 JUDGE KWON: No.
4 MS. McKENNA: -- the proposition. So perhaps if the document
5 could be --
6 JUDGE KWON: Because it was noted as already admitted, we didn't
7 pay attention. But it seems to be referring to the document which was
8 referred to in para 62 which is to be redacted. So we can leave it.
9 Any objections?
10 MS. McKENNA: No, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
12 I think Registrar has been following the numbers. We'll admit
13 those five associated exhibits. Shall we give the number in terms of
14 following their order?
15 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. 65 ter number 01504 will be
16 Exhibit D2916. 65 ter number 1D6706 will be Exhibit D2917.
17 65 ter number 1D3024 will be Exhibit D2918. 1D13027 will be
18 Exhibit D2919. And 1D13028 will be Exhibit D2920.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Excellencies, what about the
20 summary and additional questions? Should we perhaps leave that for after
21 the break in order to be clearer?
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes, if it is convenient.
23 We'll take a break now for 45 minutes and resume at 14 past 1.00.
24 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.27 p.m.
25 [The witness takes the stand]
1 --- On resuming at 1.17 p.m.
2 JUDGE KWON: Do you hear me well, Mr. Banduka, in your language?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
4 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
5 Yes, please continue, Mr. Karadzic.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
7 I'll read out a summary of Mr. Banduka's statement in the English
9 [In English] Vidomir Banduka was born on 9th of January, 1953, in
10 Drozgometva, Hadzici municipality. He completed his elementary education
11 in Hadzici, while he completed secondary school and the faculty of law in
12 Sarajevo. During 1985, he went to work in a construction company, Ingrap
13 of Hadzici, where he remained until the war broke out in 1992.
14 Vidomir Banduka was a member of the VRS unit until 30 of
15 December, 1992, at which time he was elected president of the
16 Executive Board of the Municipal Assembly of Hadzici municipality. He
17 executed these duties until March 1996 when all inhabitants of Hadzici
18 moved to Bratunac. After the Dayton Agreement, Hadzici remained in
20 Before the war, Vidomir Banduka considered that the Muslims in
21 Hadzici held -- considered that the Muslims in Hadzici held than the
22 Serbs as they held many more important offices in the government and many
23 were owners of the large companies were Muslims as they had the best
24 connections with the central authorities. Due to this, a number of Serbs
25 felt threatened and neglected.
1 Vidomir Banduka was aware that the first political party to be
2 formed was the SDA and the Serbs were the last to form their own
3 political party. At the founding of the SDA, Mr. Banduka would estimate
4 that there were approximately 4.000 people in attendance, whereas at the
5 founding of the SDS there were about 100 people present. In the
6 formation of the Municipal Assembly, Serbs were given less-influential
7 positions than Muslims who were given key positions of responsibility.
8 Following the formation of the Assembly, the SDA wanted to change
9 everything that had been left over from the former system, including
10 replacing personnel which the Serbs were opposed to. A large problem was
11 the replacement of managerial staff in positions where they had no
12 authorities, including schools and the health centres which were out of
13 the competences of municipality authorities.
14 In October 1991 the Serbian Assemblymen were forced to leave the
15 Assembly due to significant misunderstandings and the Muslim politicians
16 refusing to listen to the demands of the Serbian politicians and refused
17 to work with them. The Serb politicians tried to inform the public about
18 the problems they were faced with. They also tried to inform the public
19 that all the decisions adopted by the Assembly in the coming period were
20 not legal as they were being adopted without the participation of the
21 Serbs. Only a small percentage of this was published as much of the
22 media had sided with the SDA. The Assembly continued working for a short
23 period after the Serbian Assemblymen left. The Muslims then established
24 their own Defence Council instead.
25 The Serbian municipality was established for a number of reasons.
1 One factor was the disregard that the Muslim Assemblymen showed the
2 Serbian. Further, the unrealistic mobilisation of Muslims in the reserve
3 police force meant that many Serbian policemen left the police. Finally,
4 due to the killing of a Serbian wedding guest in Bascarsija, many Serbs
5 wished to establish a form of self-defence and the municipality was
6 created to assist with this. People who were not members of the SDS were
7 elected as president and deputy of the Serbian municipality.
8 Vidomir Banduka considers that the war in Croatia had a negative
9 effect on relations between people of different ethnicities and many
10 Serbs noticed the number of the Muslim reserve policemen growing by the
11 day with no explanations being provided by the Assembly. In addition,
12 Muslims refused to be mobilised to JNA units and it became clear to
13 Mr. Banduka and other Serbs that the Muslims and Croats were preparing
14 for war.
15 Vidomir Banduka received information that the Muslims had formed
16 the Patriotic League and Green Berets as well as building their armed
17 forces through the reserve police forces. He was aware that the police
18 training school in Hadzici was training Muslim paramilitary units and
19 Serbs were not allowed to enter the building. Further, the Muslim forces
20 seized a number of army barracks and weapons depots arming the Muslim
21 forces and in capturing the army barracks the Muslim soldiers killed
22 members of the JNA. The only barracks under the control of the Serbian
23 soldiers contained communication equipment and not armament. The MUP
24 were also involved in the arming of the Muslims, providing them with
25 further weaponry.
1 War broke out on 24th of April in Ilidza, and following this the
2 people in Hadzici decided to form a Crisis Staff to monitor and overcome
3 the situation. On 8th of May, 1992, Muslims erected blockades at the
4 entrance to the repairs depot in Hadzici and although they withdrew
5 peacefully that night they fired upon surrounding settlements. By May
6 Muslim civilians had left their homes in the centre of Hadzici and on
7 11th of May, the Muslims carried out a strong attack on the town centre.
8 This indicated to Vidomir Banduka and the other Serbs that their
9 departure had been previously planned.
10 From this point on, Hadzici was under artillery fire every day
11 from Muslim positions. The front lines of the fighting remained
12 practically unchanged. In mid-May the JNA pulled out of BH and
13 preparations for the formation of the VRS began which was formed on
14 June -- in June 1992. Vidomir Banduka was only aware of one objective of
15 the Bosnian Serbs: To defend their homes and families.
16 On 16th of June, the Muslim forces attacked the village of
17 Drozgometva, torching all of the houses. Elderly civilians remained in a
18 neighbouring village and were killed and their homes torched. The
19 Orthodox church in Pazaric was also set on fire.
20 In light of these events, the Crisis Staff made the decision to
21 create a holding centre, which would accommodate any remaining Muslim
22 inhabitants. This centre was guarded to make the Muslim residents feel
23 safer. The civilians in the centre were free to come and go as they
24 pleased, but many returned because they felt safer. Detention of
25 prisoners was governed by the Law on Criminal Procedure and this was
1 adhered to by the police. At the beginning of the war, the Muslims
2 formed camps where Serbs were held captive.
3 During the war, Muslim forces cut off the supply of drinking
4 water to the town as they controlled all sources of water. During 1993 a
5 meeting was held to discuss water and electricity supplies and it was
6 agreed that everyone should receive their services; however, the
7 agreement was only in place for three days before the Muslims turned the
8 water off again. Vidomir Banduka also found that of the most part of the
9 war the telephone lines were not operational.
10 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Just one question, Mr. Banduka. How much of the territory of
12 Hadzici municipality was made part of the Serbian municipality of
13 Hadzici? And what was the majority population in that part?
14 A. In terms of percentages, I think it was about 20 per cent. It is
15 the urban part of Hadzici plus a small number of neighbouring villages
16 where the Serbs made up the majority.
17 Q. Thank you. Did you have any intention or did you have any
18 attempts carried out to place under control the Muslim part of Hadzici
20 A. I don't think so. I don't think we ever made a step in that
21 direction, be it by the army or anyone else, to change the situation as
22 it had existed in 1991.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have no further questions for the
25 time being, Your Excellencies.
1 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
2 Mr. Banduka, as you have noted, your evidence in chief in this
3 case has been admitted in most part in writing and you will be
4 cross-examined by the representative of the Office of the Prosecutor.
5 Ms. McKenna.
6 MS. McKENNA: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Cross-examination by Ms. McKenna:
8 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Banduka.
9 A. Good afternoon.
10 Q. I'd just like to start with a brief clarification. At paragraph
11 68 of your statement, you say that from July to December 1992 you were in
12 the 4th Battalion as the assistant commander for moral guidance. I'd
13 just like to clarify that that was the 4th Battalion of the Igman
14 Brigade; correct?
15 A. No. In the period of 1992 there were no four battalions when I
16 was there. I think the brigade comprised two battalions. All of those
17 who were mobilised from Hadzici were placed in one battalion. At first
18 it was an independent battalion, and later, sometime in 1993, there was a
19 restructuring process by which four battalions were created. In any
20 case, it changes nothing important. In other words, I was serving with
21 the battalion that defended Hadzici.
22 Q. Which, just to clarify, was part of the Igman Brigade?
23 A. Yes, yes.
24 Q. Thank you. And the commander of the brigade while you were
25 serving in it was Velimir Djindjic; is that correct?
1 A. I've never heard of that name.
2 Q. What was the name of your commander?
3 A. The commander was Mr. Velimir Dunjic.
4 Q. Thank you, Mr. Banduka. I'm afraid it's a function of my poor
5 pronunciation. I'll move on.
6 In paragraph 28 of your statement you mentioned the
7 Defence Council which convened instead of the Municipal Assembly after
8 the Assembly stopped functioning. And you explained that this council
9 mainly comprised Muslims and a few Serbs who they won over but who had
10 not been elected by the Serbian people and did not represent the Serbs.
11 Now, you attended this Defence Council only once, didn't you?
12 A. That is correct.
13 Q. There is evidence before the Trial Chamber in this case from the
14 TO representative on that Defence Council, Ramiz Dupovac, and for the
15 reference of the parties that's P41, page 7 of the English and page B/C/S
16 of the -- or page 8 of the B/C/S. Now, Mr. Banduka, Mr. Dupovac stated
17 that on the council there was a representative from the army, the police,
18 the TO, an representative from the administration services, the secretary
19 of the secretariat for the people's defence, and further representatives
20 from the delegates' clubs. So, in fact, this Defence Council was more
21 representative than your statement would suggest, wasn't it?
22 A. No, you are incorrect. I need to explain something first. The
23 Defence Council was not elected or created by any official organ. They
24 were self-proclaimed. The council was established by representatives of
25 the Muslim side in the parliament once the Serbs had walked out in
1 October 1991. Later on certain SDP members left although their party was
2 multi-ethnic. In order to provide some kind of legitimacy because the
3 Assembly no longer sat, they constituted that defence. That's what they
4 called it. It doesn't exist in any documents. And this is the first
5 time I hear from this statement that the people you mentioned attended.
6 Q. Well, Mr. Dupovac who actually attended the council, his evidence
7 was that the SDS didn't refuse to participate in the functions of the
8 council until mid-April. And, in fact, they used the Defence Council as
9 a platform to emphasize their desire for Muslims and Serbs to have
10 separate states. Mr. Banduka, did you -- were you aware of the SDS
11 making public statements about their desire for Muslims and Serbs to have
12 separate states?
13 A. No, no. Ramiz Dupovac's statement, he was the deputy Chief of
14 Staff of the TO on the Muslim side. He could say whatever he wanted, but
15 that's not how it was.
16 Q. Well again, something else that Mr. Dupovac said was that at one
17 of the Defence Council meetings which he attended Ratko Radic, the
18 president of the SDS Hadzici, stated in January 1992 that the Serbs
19 didn't want to be in Alija's state and that separation and division was
20 necessary and unavoidable. Were you aware of Mr. Radic publicly
21 expressing this view?
22 A. No. That's Ramiz Dupovac's statement. He can say what he
24 Q. I'll move on. In paragraph 51 and 52 of your statement, you
25 describe how at the very beginning of the war ordinary people got
1 organised to defend their homes, villages [Realtime transcript read in
2 error "religions"], and settlements, and you explain that preparations
3 for the forming of the VRS began after the JNA had pulled out in mid-May
4 1992. And you contrast this situation with that of the Muslims which --
5 who you say had already formed their units. Now, earlier today you
6 removed a reference in your statement to the Serbs making preparations in
7 war -- or preparations for war in response to the Muslim departure from
8 Hadzici and the Muslim attack on Hadzici. So I'd just like to clarify
9 here what your evidence is. Is it your evidence that the Serbs in
10 Hadzici began to arm themselves and prepare for war only after the JNA
11 pulled out in mid-May 1992?
12 A. No. You put a very long question which is also rather imprecise.
13 How can I say that? The JNA withdrew from Bosnia on the 19th of May, if
14 I recollect. Well, as early as the 11th of May there was a fierce attack
15 on us, and by that day we already had at least a dozen dead. I'm afraid
16 I did not fully comprehend your question.
17 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: The Prosecution counsel is
18 kindly requested to speak into the microphone.
19 MS. McKENNA: My apologies to the interpreters.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could I kindly ask that the
21 Prosecutor indicate where it was stated that they were defending their
23 MS. McKENNA: I'm sorry, I think this must be an error in the
24 transcript. If Mr. Karadzic could direct me to the relevant line of the
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I think it's page 74 -- no, no,
2 further up.
3 MS. McKENNA: I see the -- I see the mistake. The transcript
4 says that Muslims -- or excuse me, the Serbs -- ordinary people got
5 organised to defend their homes, religions, and settlements. In fact, I
6 said homes, villages, and settlements. Thank you for that transcript
8 Q. Mr. Banduka, let's focus on this issue of the Serb organisation
9 and arming in a bit more detail. First of all -- well, in your statement
10 you describe in some detail how the Muslims in Hadzici armed themselves.
11 And in paragraph 69 you state that the Serbs got most of their weapons
12 from the TO, giving weapons -- or weapons were given to whoever responded
13 to mobilisation. But focusing on the distribution of arms prior to the
14 war, the Serbs also got weapons through the JNA, didn't they?
15 A. No, I'm unaware of it.
16 Q. Mr. Banduka, I'd like to direct your attention to your previous
17 testimony on this topic in the Krajisnik case. If we could have
18 65 ter number 24574, please. And I would like to see page 123 of that
19 document. And at lines 9 to 13 -- line 9 you were asked:
20 "Q. Where did the Serbs get their weapons before the war? Where
21 did the Serb people in your municipality get their weapons?"
22 And you respond:
23 "A. First through the reserve police. Whoever went to the
24 reserve police got weapons. Whoever was a reservist of the JNA got
25 weapons. Whoever was a member of the Territorial Defence got weapons."
1 Mr. Banduka, do you accept that testimony as accurate?
2 A. Yes, but it runs contrary to the way you put your question. Your
3 question was about the weapons provided by the JNA. This did not mean
4 giving weapons to civilians. It was from the reserves of the JNA.
5 Before the war, people were called up for the reserves. I was a
6 reservist attending exercises, and whenever we did so I was issued with
7 weapons. What I said is correct, but it only applied to those who were
8 part of the reserve force of the then-official army, the JNA. That was
9 the meaning of my words.
10 Q. Well, let's look on that topic at a document that's in evidence
11 before the Trial Chamber, that's P979. If we could have the first page
12 of that document.
13 Now, you'll see that this is a report authored by
14 Milutin Kukanjac who was the commander of the JNA 2nd Military District,
15 and it's dated 20th of March, 1992, and it is -- relates to the
16 assessment of the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina. And could we
17 please move to page 6 of the English and page 7 of the B/C/S. And what
18 I'm interested in is heading number (5) which is entitled:
19 "Volunteer forces in the 2nd Military District zone."
20 And subsection (c) of that -- of that -- under that heading
22 "No volunteers are potential conscripts for the regular units of
23 the 2nd Army, and only a small number are from the TO of Bosnia and
24 Herzegovina; in other words, the volunteer units are not part of the JNA
25 and the TO establishment structure."
1 And now, Mr. Banduka, if you direct your attention to subsection
2 (f), that states that the JNA has distributed 51.900 weapons and the SDS
4 Finally, I'd like to move forward to page 11 in the English of
5 this document and page 16 of the B/C/S. And here, Mr. Banduka, you'll
6 see a table which explains the distribution of that total 69.198 arms
7 that have been distributed by the JNA and the SDS by that date. And if
8 you direct your attention to entry number 9 in that list, you'll see it
9 states that 1500 men have been armed in the Hadzici municipality.
10 So contrary to what you've just told us, this report shows that
11 by the 20th of March, 1992, 1500 men who were not part of the JNA or the
12 TO had been armed by either the JNA or the SDS in the Hadzici
13 municipality. Do you agree?
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we please have the reference?
15 Where does it say exactly that these men were under no obligation towards
16 the JNA? First there is mention of volunteers and then elsewhere we are
17 talking about the arming of JNA reservists. How can these two be
18 correlated? Can we have the reference, please?
19 MS. McKENNA: Your Honour, we've just gone through --
20 Your Honours, we've just gone through the references which show that this
21 is what this document evidences. I think it's a totally inappropriate
22 intervention from Mr. Karadzic at this stage.
23 JUDGE KWON: So is it your question that this 1500 is number of
24 the volunteers?
25 MS. McKENNA: Your Honour, the 1500 is the number of people who
1 were armed by either the JNA or the SDS in the Hadzici municipality who
2 were not part of either the JNA or the TO.
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes, you may put the question.
4 Mr. -- yes, Mr. Robinson.
5 MR. ROBINSON: Where do we see that in the text? That was what I
6 think Dr. Karadzic is asking. That we have a table, but where in the
7 text does it say what that table represents?
8 JUDGE KWON: She may put the question in such a way. And then
9 having heard all the explanations, I think Mr. Banduka is able to answer
10 the question. Let us see.
11 Yes, Mr. Banduka.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm not able to see this figure
13 either in the table or in your question, and I'm talking about the number
14 of 1500. I don't know who was armed. Let me tell you this. The repair
15 and maintenance depot had about 1.000 workers. All of them were treated
16 as reservists of the JNA. There were also reservists in JNA barracks.
17 All of those reservists were armed. Are you talking about those people?
18 But on the other hand you say that the SDS was arming people. I was a
19 member of the SDS and I know nothing about it, so I don't understand your
20 assertion and your question.
21 MS. McKENNA:
22 Q. Mr. Banduka, we'll come briefly to the issue of the SDS. We'll
23 return to the issue of the SDS arming people. But just in order so that
24 everybody understands, when you speak of -- in your statement you
25 discussed the JNA's Zunovnica [sic] barracks and that Zunovnica was a
1 village one or two kilometres outside of Hadzici town; is that correct?
2 A. The name is Zunovica . You are confusing me with this
3 mispronunciation and distracting me. Yes, there was the barracks there
4 which was about 2 kilometres from the centre and in that barracks were
5 some military assets stored and so on.
6 Q. And in that barracks there was -- it was a very large ammunition
7 store spread over a very large complex; is that correct?
8 A. I think so.
9 Q. And then in Hadzici town itself there was the maintenance and
10 repairs depot, to which I think you just referred, which was also known
11 as the TRZ; is that correct?
12 A. The abbreviation is TRZ, which stands for "teknicko remintni
13 zadno," repair and maintenance depot, and that was a company dealing with
14 the maintenance/repair of weapons, but not only of weapons, of other
15 equipment as well. They repaired heavy-duty vehicles, passenger cars,
16 and other equipment, including armament.
17 Q. Thank you. And so this TRZ made Hadzici town strategically
19 A. Probably.
20 Q. And so throughout the period of the conflict the Serbs controlled
21 the TRZ; is that correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. So again, just to focus on pre-war arming, and you speak about
24 the -- at paragraph 32 of your statement you talk about the information
25 that you had that in early 1992 the Muslims were removing weapons from
1 the Zunovica army barracks. But it was the case, wasn't it, Mr. Banduka,
2 that from mid-1991 the JNA in conjunction with the SDS were removing
3 weapons from the Zunovica army barracks to arm the Serb people?
4 A. In my statement I wanted to describe the barracks. It was a huge
5 area at the foot of Mount Igman. This is a rather forbidding terrain.
6 And as far as I know, this barracks before the war was secured by very
7 few soldiers. And unfortunately, it was accessible to anyone. So in
8 that sense I said that from the back of the barracks that was leaning
9 against Mount Igman, there were Muslim villages and they had easy access
10 to the barracks, to put it in plain language there were thefts occurring
11 in the barracks.
12 Q. Okay. Well --
13 A. And then when the war broke out we took control of the barracks.
14 Q. Well, let's -- again, focusing on the period before the war, the
15 Trial Chamber has heard evidence from Tihomir Glavas who was, as I'm sure
16 you're aware, the commander of the public security station in Hadzici.
17 And it was his testimony that the pre-war organisation of the Serb people
18 by the SDS, including the distribution of weapons, functioned like
20 MS. McKENNA: And that's, for the parties' reference, is T11953
21 of the transcript.
22 Q. So again, does this -- does this change your position on whether
23 the SDS were involved in arming the Serbs prior to the war?
24 A. No, it doesn't. Tihomir Glavas' statement is a statement given
25 by a policeman and I'm not in a position to comment on it.
1 Q. Okay. Well, let's focus on Ratko Radic who was the president of
2 the SDS Hadzici; correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Now, he was identified by Mr. Glavas as one of the main
5 organisers of the weapons distribution to the Serbs. Were you aware of
6 the role that he played in the pre-war arming of the Serbs?
7 A. Well, I know that the late Ratko Radic was the SDS president, but
8 the opinion expressed by Tihomir Glavas about him is, again, something
9 that I'm not willing to comment on.
10 Q. Well, let's look at 65 ter 11283. And, Mr. Banduka, this is an
11 SRK command report to the VRS Main Staff dated the 15th of December,
12 1993. If we can turn to page 3 of this document in both the English and
13 the B/C/S. And you'll see in the first paragraph in the B/C/S and the
14 fourth paragraph in the English version that Commander Galic is
15 complaining about Mr. Radic, and he says:
16 "Mr. President of municipality Hadzici was all the time
17 interfering in managing and commanding at all levels of the VRS ..."
18 And if you skip down halfway through that paragraph he states:
19 "He can do it because he feeds and wears the army, he gives the
20 apartments, and he partly organised the overtaking of the means from the
21 stock of the former JNA, and the great number of warehouses were placed
22 in the territory of municipality Hadzici, what he considers as his own
23 means, not the State's and Republika Srpska Army's means."
24 So here Mr. Radic's role in the pre-war arming of the Serbs in
25 Hadzici is being acknowledged by Commander Galic, isn't it?
1 A. I don't know how you came to that conclusion. From this letter I
2 see that Radic was making some requests and this Mr. Galic is asking the
3 command or the Main Staff to do something. The late Mr. Radic was a
4 rather stubborn person. He was an educated man, but he was rather harsh
5 in some of his thinking and requests. I find it slightly odd that we
6 have here a letter of a corps commander complaining about the conduct of
7 a president. I find it strange.
8 Q. Mr. Banduka, I'm going to have to ask you to listen carefully to
9 my questions and answer them as precisely and concisely as possible.
10 We're very limited in time and we have a lot to get through. Thank you.
11 MS. McKENNA: Your Honours, I'd like to tender this document.
12 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Robinson.
13 MR. ROBINSON: No objection.
14 JUDGE KWON: We will receive it.
15 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6109, Your Honours.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Again, can I please be told where
17 it reads that this relates to the arming process before the war. I am
18 looking for it but I cannot find it anywhere. I'm talking about Radic's
19 involvement in the arming.
20 JUDGE KWON: I don't think she mentioned arming with respect to
21 this document.
22 Did you, Ms. McKenna?
23 MS. McKENNA: Your Honour, the document refers to Mr. Radic
24 organising the overtaking of the means of the stock from the former JNA
25 and the warehouses being placed in his territory.
1 JUDGE KWON: Where is that phrase?
2 MS. McKENNA: It is halfway down in the large paragraph on page
4 JUDGE KWON: Yes, I've read it. Thank you.
5 MS. McKENNA:
6 Q. Mr. --
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, that was not before the war.
8 It does not relate to the period before the war.
9 JUDGE KWON: Let's continue, Ms. McKenna.
10 MS. McKENNA: Thank you, Your Honour.
11 Q. Mr. Banduka, I'm going to move to a totally different subject.
12 The armed conflict in Hadzici broke out on the 11th of May, 1992, and --
13 as you say in your statement. And in paragraph 46 you state that:
14 "Until the 11th of May, 1992, the Muslims had left the centre of
15 Hadzici. On the break of dawn of 11th of May, 1992, they launched a
16 fierce attack on Hadzici. All this indicates that the departure of the
17 Muslim inhabitants previously had been planned."
18 In Krajisnik you testified that the Muslims left in the last few
19 days before the 11th of May; is that correct?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And so the conflict which began in Sarajevo began at the
22 beginning of May, around the -- on the 6th -- or, excuse me, the 6th of
23 April, 1992; is that correct?
24 A. I was in the centre of Sarajevo on 6th of April, 1992, but I
25 wouldn't call it a conflict. I was free until the 25th of April to a TV
1 building in Sarajevo which is some 30 kilometres from the place where I
2 lived. Yes, it is true that there were some 10 or 15 roadblocks on the
3 route, but I don't know if you can call that a conflict, the things that
4 happened on the 6th of April in Sarajevo.
5 Q. Well, by the 11th of May we can agree that conflict had spread
6 throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And, for example, the Trial Chamber has heard evidence that on
9 8th of April, 1992, Foca was attacked by Serbs, resulting in Muslims
10 freeing the area. Were you aware of -- were you aware of these events in
12 A. No.
13 Q. Well, were you aware of the attack on the Muslim commune of
14 Zvrake [phoen] in Vogosca municipality on the 2nd to the 4th of May,
15 resulting in Muslims being killed or expelled?
16 A. No, I wasn't aware because that's at least 20 kilometres from my
18 Q. Okay. So from the 6th to the 8th of May you were celebrating
19 your family feast day in your home in a village outside Hadzici town; is
20 that correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. So the Trial Chamber has heard evidence that on the 7th of May
23 the SDS issued an official ultimatum demanding that Muslim members of the
24 police, the TO, and other illegal authorities and bodies leave the
25 municipality and giving the Muslims a dead-line of 1800 hours on the 8th
1 of May to leave the municipality. Were you aware that this ultimatum had
2 been given?
3 A. No, I don't think that such an ultimatum had ever been published.
4 I don't know what is your source of information. It's probably
5 somebody's statement or testimony, but I'm not aware of the existence of
6 any such ultimatum.
7 Q. But, Mr. Banduka, you've just said that you -- during the
8 relevant period you were outside of Hadzici town; is that correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. So it's unsurprising in the circumstances of the pattern of
11 killings and expulsions in neighbouring municipalities -- I put it to you
12 that it's unsurprising that the Muslims took that ultimatum very
13 seriously and departed Hadzici in response to it, do you agree?
14 A. No. On the 22nd of April the Muslims attacked Ilidza to
15 Kadic [phoen] off from Hadzici. So I can't see how it was possible for
16 us to issue ultimatum to someone whilst the neighbouring municipality was
17 already under attack which resulted in a large number of Serbs who were
18 killed. So we were at the very end of Hadzici. Ilidza was attacked on
19 the 22nd and you are now saying that we, just a handful of Serbs, issued
20 an ultimatum to somebody. It is completely illogical.
21 Q. Mr. Banduka, given the time constraints I'm going to --
22 MS. McKENNA: If I may have a moment, please.
23 [Prosecution counsel confer]
24 MS. McKENNA:
25 Q. Mr. Banduka, I'm going to move on to the topic of the Hadzici
1 sports centre. At paragraph 54 of your statement you say that:
2 "The Crisis Staff set up a holding centre in the sports hall,
3 seeing that the remaining Muslim inhabitants were complaining every day
4 that they were experiencing difficulties due to the incensed atmosphere
5 in the municipality and so the centre was set up to accommodate the
7 And you say:
8 "We did this because we thought it might be safer for them there
9 since they would be guarded by the police and the army."
10 Now, to begin with, you personally never visited the Hadzici
11 sports centre when it was being used to accommodate Muslims, did you?
12 A. No, I never visited it.
13 Q. Now, at paragraph 56 you state that:
14 "People came to the centre nearly every day of their own choosing
15 because they felt safer there than in their own homes. Of course there
16 were those who were persuaded to come because there were not enough
17 policemen to guard every Muslim house."
18 Now, you discussed these detention -- the detention centre, the
19 sports centre, at some length in your Krajisnik testimony, but you never
20 mentioned the fact that willing volunteers came nearly every day of their
21 own choosing, did you?
22 A. Well, I will have to say three sentences only before I answer
23 your question. I already said in my statement the concept of the Muslim
24 leadership prior to the outbreak of conflict to take out all the civilian
25 population and then to attack us. And this was corroborated by the facts
1 as well as by Dupovac's statement, that over the weekend during the
2 course of a few days they all left the town and it was immediately
3 followed by an attack. However, not all the residents left. They didn't
4 obey the SDA or the Muslim leadership's instruction to leave the area.
5 So some remained, and when the real conflict broke out, of course people
6 felt extremely insecure because they realised that the war was really
7 there. And just like I, they didn't believe that that would happen. So
8 the majority of the Muslims who remained there and the war was already in
9 progress, they also expressed a desire to cross over to the Muslim-held
10 territory. So this collection centre is probably, we can call it, a
11 transient point for them before crossing over to the Muslim-held
12 territory. That's one of the reasons.
13 The second reason was that Serb civilians were arriving from all
14 areas between Zenica and Hadzici and Hadzici were the first stop on this
15 area becoming vacant. You can imagine if somebody came from some other
16 area because he was expelled by someone or he had some other reasons for
17 leaving, he is afraid and he is looking for a place to stay where he
18 could be safe.
19 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Banduka, could you concentrate on answering the
20 question. The question was not: What was the reason for the people
21 coming? The question was why you didn't -- was that you didn't mention
22 this in the testimony in Krajisnik case.
23 Yes, Ms. McKenna.
24 MS. McKENNA: Thank you, Your Honour.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As far as I can remember, I did
1 mention that.
2 MS. McKENNA:
3 Q. Well, turning then to the reason -- or sorry, focusing on this
4 issue of whether people willingly went to the centre, it's your evidence
5 today that people -- Muslim people willingly turned up at the centre
6 nearly every day to be held there; is that correct?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Well, Mr. Banduka, the Trial Chamber has heard evidence from a
9 number of witnesses who were unwillingly taken to the Hadzici sports
11 MS. McKENNA: And just for the parties' references, I will refer
12 to Witness Balic which is P161.
13 Q. He was taken to the centre on the 16th of May, 1992, after a
14 brief period of house arrest.
15 MS. McKENNA: Witness Music, that's P2404. And Witness Okic,
16 that's P125.
17 Q. Now, none of these witnesses testified that they chose or,
18 indeed, were persuaded to come to the centres. In fact, they were simply
19 taken to the centres. Would you agree that a lot of people were simply
20 taken to the centres, a lot of Muslim civilians were simply taken to the
22 A. Your statement is a very serious one, taken away. After all,
23 that is a war and talking about voluntariness in war and peace is a
24 completely different matter. I'm saying that they were not taken there.
25 Everything was done with the agreement of the people involved. Now, it
1 depends on how people viewed this, whether they were taken or whether
2 they were persuaded to do that but in agreement. That is something that
3 I really cannot answer now.
4 Q. I think -- well, let me put Tihomir Glavas' evidence to you,
5 which is that people were, indeed, taken from their houses by the
6 Territorial Defence and the police. Again, there was no suggestion of
7 voluntariness. Let me move on to the reasons people were detained at the
8 sports centre. Now, one of the reasons people were detained was in order
9 for them to be exchanged with Serb civilians; isn't that correct?
10 A. Well, that was one of the reasons too. That is how people
11 expressed their will, to come to the sports centre in order to be
12 exchanged for a Serb family, a Serb civilian.
13 Q. Mr. Banduka, please --
14 JUDGE KWON: Before going further. You were asked, Mr. Banduka,
15 about the evidence of Mr. Glavas that people were taken from their houses
16 by the Territorial Defence and the police. Do you have any comment on
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I am not aware of that
19 statement of his and I don't see why you're asking me all the time to
20 comment upon that.
21 JUDGE KWON: Please continue, Ms. McKenna.
22 MS. McKENNA: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. Mr. Banduka --
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It was not recorded.
25 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
1 Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It was not recorded that the
3 witness said in line 7, he is a policeman.
4 MS. McKENNA:
5 Q. Well, Mr. Banduka, this policeman testified that civilians were
6 detained -- were arrested and detained at the sports centre in order for
7 Serbs to have people to exchange. Can you comment on that?
8 A. I cannot comment on that and I disagree with that. First of all,
9 I don't have that statement. You keep asking me about this statement.
10 You have it in front of you and I don't have it here. And I also don't
11 have the statement of Glavas, the police commander, and I don't see why I
12 would be commenting on his statement. I do not agree with his statement.
13 Q. Well, let's talk about your own statement then. Paragraph 56,
14 you say:
15 "The Muslims who were in the holding centre could come freely in
16 and out, having only to report to the policemen who were on guard."
17 In fact, Mr. Banduka, the personnel who provided security for the
18 centre had to give approval in order for anyone to leave, didn't they?
19 A. In principle, yes.
20 Q. So this wasn't merely a reporting requirement, was it?
21 A. Well, if that policeman thought that it wasn't safe, Hadzici was
22 being shelled every day by then, would it be safe for the policeman to
23 let that someone go in a situation that was not safe, and then the other
24 day he would be accused if anything were to happen to this person? We
25 had people who were injured in front of the health centre, and it is only
1 natural that if people were allowing others, giving permits, if you will,
2 to leave, then they would have to take all of this into account. That is
3 why they would have to address these policemen or whoever it was that was
4 on guard.
5 Q. So you accept that Muslim civilians were held against their will
6 in the centres in the Hadzici sports centre?
7 A. No, no, no. No, I do not agree.
8 Q. Let me refresh your recollection --
9 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We did not hear the end of
10 the answer.
11 MS. McKENNA:
12 Q. I'm sorry, you said you don't agree and you said something else.
13 The interpreters did not catch it. Could you please repeat it.
14 A. Or maybe we're not understanding each other. I don't know.
15 That's what I wanted to say.
16 Q. Well, let me just refresh your recollection as to your testimony
17 in Krajisnik on this point.
18 MS. McKENNA: And again that's 65 ter 24574. And if we could
19 have page 157.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the English version.
21 MS. McKENNA:
22 Q. Yes, I'll read out the section and then the interpreters will
23 translate. So you were asked:
24 "And were" --
25 MS. McKENNA: I'm sorry, this is for parties' references at line
2 Q. "Q. And were Muslim civilians held against their will in the
3 sports centre?"
4 And you responded:
5 "A. Well, I think that we can say yes, but we've already
6 explained that, that it was for the purposes of protection."
7 So there is no --
8 A. No, no, no, no. This was misinterpreted then. That's not what I
9 said then, and I said this and I said "more or less," and then the Court
10 asked me to clarify what I meant. No, no, no, I do not agree with this.
11 I don't have the right translation here. I don't see how you are putting
12 this to me, how you are saying that I said that.
13 Q. Let me read you out the entirety of the passage. You said:
14 "A. ... I think that we can say yes, but we've already
15 explained that, that it was for the purposes of protection. Quite
16 simply, even then people didn't believe that something could happen to
17 them, something unexpected. So perhaps it's from that point of view that
18 their will was not complied with."
19 Mr. Banduka, in your testimony you're saying clearly -- in your
20 Krajisnik testimony you said clearly that Muslim civilians were held
21 against their will in the sports centre. Do you agree?
22 A. I do not agree. This is a surprise to me. That means that it
23 was not translated properly.
24 Q. Let's talk then about the protection that you say was afforded to
25 the detainees in the centre. At paragraph 55 you say that:
1 "In mid-June a group of hooligans arrived at the sports centre
2 and abused the detainees."
3 And you say:
4 "As far as I know there were no other cases other than this one."
5 Now, the Trial Chamber has heard evidence from Witness Misic,
6 that's P2403 , at paragraph 63, that paramilitaries came twice to the
7 sports centre, once on the 25th of May and once on the second day of
8 Bajram. And from Witness Balic, and that's at P161, and again he states
9 that around 1st of June, 1992, three Arkanovci came to the sports centre
10 and 15 days later some Seseljevci came and abused and beat the prisoners.
11 In fact, Mr. Banduka, prisoners were abused in the Hadzici sports
12 centre on multiple occasions, weren't they?
13 A. I don't know about that. Let me tell you, by the way, since you
14 mentioned Witness Nisic and he says on the second day of Bajram: The
15 second day of Bajram was the 8th of April. There was no war then. And
16 Bajram was on the 6th of April, as far as I can remember, in Sarajevo,
17 and they celebrated that, and how, in Sarajevo. And then there was this
18 one incident when Balic was beaten up. I really am not aware of any
19 other incidents.
20 Q. The Hadzici civilian authorities had a reputation for being
21 permissive and allowing crimes to occur, didn't they?
22 A. No.
23 MS. McKENNA: Could we please have P1507.
24 Q. Mr. Banduka, this is an SRK report from Commander Sipcic to the
25 VRS Main Staff and it's dated the 13th of July, 1992. And if we could
1 move to page -- or paragraph 3, if we could focus on paragraph 3,
2 Commander Sipcic says:
3 "The situation in the territory of the corps continues to be
4 complex. Cases of looting, murder, and various misappropriations of
5 funds have occurred. In trying to prevent such occurrences, the security
6 organs and the military police are coming up against strong resistance
7 and individual organs of civilian authority (Ilidza, Hadzici)."
8 Do you agree that this document shows that the Hadzici civilian
9 authorities had a reputation of allowing a crime -- for allowing crimes
10 to occur?
11 A. Well, what is said here is looting and killings? Which killings?
12 Maybe a Serb can kill a Serb. There were such cases too. My goodness.
13 It's not that what is stated here is that it is the killing of Muslims
14 that is being tolerated or of the other side. And also, this is just the
15 personal position taken by a particular officer.
16 Q. Thank you, Mr. Banduka. I'd like to move on to the municipality
17 building and at paragraph 57 of your statement you say that one floor on
18 the -- one room on the ground floor was used for detention. Can you just
19 confirm that the Crisis Staff and subsequently the Municipal Assembly was
20 located on the second floor of that same building; correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Now at paragraph 58 you say that:
23 "No one could stay in the police detention room in the
24 municipality building for over a month because of the Law on Criminal
25 Procedure. If there was a need to hold them for longer, they would be
1 transferred to Kula."
2 MS. McKENNA: I'd like to call up P1607, please. And just while
3 this document is being called up, if I could have page 2 in the English
4 and the B/C/S.
5 Q. This -- this is a report dated the 22nd of October, 1992, on the
6 situation in prisons and collection camps for prisoners of war, and it's
7 a report by Slobodan Aviljas who was a representative of the
8 Republika Srpska Ministry of Justice and administration. Now, if we
9 could focus on section 10 of this report which is at page 6 to 7 of the
10 English and page 5 of the B/C/S -- sorry, that would be the -- yeah,
11 thank you. The first paragraph in this section states:
12 "Ninety prisoners of war are accommodated in the Hadzici sports
13 centre. Organisation and security is provided by the Hadzici public
14 security station ..."
15 And then the final paragraph in that section which is on page 6
16 of the B/C/S, I believe, states:
17 "In the cases of Zvornik, Hadzici, and Ilidza, we see that public
18 security stations keep people in custody without any authorisation or
19 justification in law because they have the authority to keep people in
20 custody for no longer than three days."
21 Mr. Banduka, in fact, the limit on detention without
22 justification under the law was three days, wasn't it?
23 A. Well, I don't know. I mean, that's the way it is according to
24 the present-day law I think, but I think that then people could be kept
25 for up to a month. Also, in addition to that, we did not have the right
1 conditions. We'd have to cross the airport area to get to Kula, the
2 proper institution for that. So there were many difficulties involved in
3 terms of transferring persons from Hadzici to Kula. I would also be
4 interested in the date. This document is from which date?
5 Q. This document is from the 22nd of October, 1992, and let's move
6 forward to a letter of that same date from the -- and this is -- sorry,
7 this is English page 88 and B/C/S page -- excuse me, English page 28 and
8 B/C/S page 27. And this is a letter of the same date from the
9 Republika Srpska minister for justice, Momcilo Mandic, to the Serbian
10 municipalities of Hadzici and Ilidza. Mr. Banduka, I'd like you to take
11 a moment to just read this letter in full and let me know when you've
12 read it.
13 A. Yes, I've read it.
14 Q. Thank you. So Mr. Mandic here states that there are 90 people of
15 Muslim ethnicity imprisoned in the Hadzici sports centre. He orders that
16 they be transferred to the prison at Butmir and he highlights the
17 irregularities occurring in connection with the arrests of Muslim
18 individuals. Now, this document does not suggest that these people are
19 being held voluntarily for their own protection, does it?
20 A. No, but we don't know who these persons are. Maybe these are
21 persons who had been questioned by the police and then it was established
22 that they were supposed to be prosecuted. I think, as far as I can
23 remember now after so many years, that an attempt had been made to
24 transfer these persons from Hadzici to Kula. However, then the airport
25 was under the control of the international forces and one could go
1 through the airport area only with their consent. As far as I can
2 remember, they were driven from there and then returned for some reason.
3 And then they were staying there temporarily only until they were
4 transferred to Kula, that is to say to the prison there.
5 Q. Thank you, Mr. Banduka.
6 MS. McKENNA: Your Honours, I note the time. I have no further
7 questions for this witness.
8 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Ms. McKenna.
9 You have re-examination, Mr. Karadzic?
10 THE ACCUSED: Yes, Excellency, but I'm afraid eight minutes is
11 not enough.
12 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll continue tomorrow, but start your
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 Re-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
16 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Banduka, it was suggested to you today on
17 page 94 that the authorities in some municipalities were resisting the
18 imposition of proper order and this was ascribed to General Sipcic.
19 Where was General Sipcic's headquarters at the time?
20 A. I didn't even know the general. I know the name and I think that
21 the corps headquarters was in Lukavica.
22 Q. Thank you. Did General Sipcic come to visit Hadzici at the time?
23 A. As far as I know, no.
24 Q. Thank you. We had another document where General Galic had
25 certain objections in relation to the late Radic. What can you tell us
1 about agreement or tensions between the civilian and military authorities
2 in different municipalities?
3 A. Well, I don't know what the right expression would be, tensions
4 or lack of agreement. There was lack of agreement and there was
5 misunderstanding, at least that's the way it looked to us. Often members
6 of the military, or rather, military commands -- well, wanted to
7 interfere in the work of the civilian organs and to give their own
8 opinions and exercise their own influence. There were misunderstandings
9 along those lines.
10 Q. Thank you. Was it the other way around as well? Did the
11 municipal authorities sometimes believe that they had certain rights in
12 respect of their own brigade?
13 A. Objectively speaking there were such cases because it was hard to
14 provide the army with food, clothing, et cetera. So some individuals
15 thought that if they were providing supplies to the army they could
16 exercise a bit of influence in the situation in the army.
17 Q. Thank you. How would you view that, these accusations that were
18 exchanged, would you just take it all at face value?
19 A. No, all of this was subjective, especially in the beginning of
20 the war. This was a state of chaos, at least in our area. See, we are
21 talking about the army. What kind of army was that in the first place?
22 These were just people who were protecting their homes. I mean, in the
23 beginning it was impossible to speak of any kind of army, even in the
24 civilian organs a state was falling apart, government organs were falling
25 apart, a war had broken out.
1 Q. Thank you. In your view, is the police part of the municipal
3 A. No.
4 Q. What are they?
5 A. Well, as far as I know the police was organised through the
6 Ministry of the Interior; that is to say, the minister was at the top of
7 this system of organisation, and then from the top orders were issued.
8 They had this kind of jurisdiction. So all the way down to the
9 municipality it was the minister and his services and the assistant
10 ministers that had certain powers.
11 Q. Thank you. Witness Music was mentioned and on page 12854 he said
12 that Tihomir Glavas was from the SDS. Was Tihomir Glavas a member of the
14 A. As far as I know, he wasn't.
15 Q. Could we please take a look at D1074. This document was admitted
16 when Mr. Glavas testified, pages 92 and 93. This is a document of his,
17 so could you please take a look at subparagraph (a) where he speaks about
18 similar things, things that are similar to what Galic and Sipcic referred
19 to. So if you look at (a) and then the first two sentences?
20 A. Yes, yes.
21 Q. Foundation.
22 A. Yes, I've read it.
23 Q. So what does he say here? Who are these free agents that enjoy
24 the support of the authorities?
25 A. I don't know what kind of free agents he's referring to.
1 Probably there were some. He says here that there weren't any
2 significant paramilitary units there. So this was probably a reference
3 to small groups or individuals who were difficult. It was hard to make
4 them part of a regular established formation like the army or police.
5 Q. Thank you. Such individuals, did they enjoy the support of the
6 Hadzici municipal authorities?
7 A. No, we just had problems with such individuals and such small
9 Q. Thank you.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have the next page, please.
11 I think that it's the next page in English as well.
12 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. The fourth paragraph.
14 "As mentioned above, small groups and individuals, so-called
15 'free agents,' committed the crime of theft from other persons, mainly
16 movable property and assets ..."
17 Can you tell the Trial Chamber what this means in our language,
18 "free agent"?
19 A. Well, a free agent -- well, it's the word itself that is very
20 telling. "Free," meaning not being under anybody's command or control.
21 Well, we have an expression for such people but I wouldn't like to use it
22 here. So these are people who are not part of the system.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we move two pages ahead,
25 please. Could we leaf through the document in this way. Can we have
1 page 4 in Serbian.
2 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Please take a look at this, the third paragraph, "From the 1st of
4 August, 1992, when a large number of police officers returned from the
5 front line to the police station, they were engaged in the regular MUP
6 activities ...," and further down it says:
7 "In that period, a certain number of crimes and perpetrators were
8 detected ..."
9 Did you have any knowledge or experience to that effect? What
10 means did you have available for prosecution when the police was on the
11 front line?
12 A. Well, we had that number of policemen that were not at the front
13 line. These were units, or rather, these were individuals who could, but
14 there were very few of them, especially in 1992. We were seriously
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we go to the last page.
17 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. I'll read out item (d):
19 "As regards the treatment and competency to guard prisoners. It
20 can be said that we had a large number of detained persons who once they
21 were interviewed and after other relevant information had been gathered
22 were taken to the state prison in Kula or released. A small number of
23 those brought in, currently 11, are in the prison in Hadzici and they are
24 being treated properly and in accordance with the law. We would also
25 like to note that in the area of Hadzici municipality we did not have
1 collection camps used by the army to bring in Muslim population without
2 documents under reasons for detention."
3 Mr. Banduka, what we could hear from Aviljas and Mandic, to what
4 extent is it confirmed by a document produced by the chief of police in
5 Hadzici, is there a difference or is it mutually corroborative?
6 A. Of course there is a difference. The chief of police was in
7 Hadzici on the spot. I think Mr. Mandic never even saw Hadzici and the
8 same goes for Mr. Aviljas. Therefore, it is logical and I believe that
9 the man who wrote this document, who was in the area, was far better
10 aware of the situation and had better information.
11 Q. Thank you. We can look at the first page. The date is the 9th
12 of August, 1991. Mr. Banduka --
13 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: 1992.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. -- until when were there civilians in the sports centre and when
16 were they exchanged so that there were no more civilians left?
17 A. I've answered that already. I think that by August there were no
18 civilians left in the sports centre. There was one situation, though,
19 when there was an exchange. In other words, there were people who were
20 still living in their homes but wanted to go to Muslim territory or the
21 other way around. So civilians were occasionally exchanged at Kobiljaca,
22 and if an exchange fell through people would return, and we used that
23 area as a sort of staging area where they would await their departure.
24 Q. So if there was someone there in October or in November, that
25 person was not a civilian?
1 A. I don't think they were.
2 Q. Thank you. Does this conclude the day or should I go to another
3 P document?
4 JUDGE KWON: We'll stop here.
5 Mr. Banduka, we'll continue tomorrow morning at 9.00. I'd like
6 to advise you not to discuss with anybody else about your testimony.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 JUDGE KWON: The hearing is adjourned.
9 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.49 p.m.,
10 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 13th day of
11 February, 2013, at 9.00 a.m.