1 Wednesday, 20 March 2013
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.
5 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, everyone.
6 Yes, good morning, Mr. Robinson.
7 MR. ROBINSON: Good morning, Mr. President. I'd like to
8 introduce to the Chamber Simeon Dukic from Macedonia who is joining us
9 during this session and is working on our case as a legal intern. Thank
11 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, Mr. Tieger.
12 MR. TIEGER: Good morning, Mr. President, Your Honours.
13 Mr. President, you asked us to look quickly at the Martic submission. I
14 wanted to advise the Court that the Prosecution would not take a position
15 on that; however, we did think it worth noting that it appears that the
16 Rules provide for review by the President, and for the record the general
17 provisions are found in Rule 19, 19(A), and 33(A), and the more specific
18 provision that appears to relate to this is Rule 44(B).
19 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
20 You will come back separately as regards Milan Babic?
21 MR. TIEGER: Yes, Mr. President. That's correct.
22 JUDGE KWON: Unless there's anything further, we'll bring in the
23 witness. In the meantime, we'll admit the 65 ter 24790.
24 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6208, Your Honours.
25 [The witness takes the stand]
1 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, Mr. Simic.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
3 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Please continue, Mr. Tieger.
4 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
5 WITNESS: CVIJETIN SIMIC [Resumed]
6 [Witness answered through interpreter]
7 Cross-examination by Mr. Tieger: [Continued]
8 Q. Mr. Simic, I want to -- I'll let you get settled first, sir.
9 A. Please.
10 Q. At paragraph 34 of your statement you discuss in passing the
11 question of a Bijeljina Crisis Staff. I want to suggest to you,
12 Mr. Simic, that there was a Bijeljina Crisis Staff and it was not as
13 non-existent or inconsequential as your statement might suggest. I'll
14 put two things to you first and then ask you a question. The first is
15 that this Trial Chamber has, in fact, received a fax, that is, a copy of
16 a fax that was sent at the time on April 1st from the
17 Bijeljina Crisis Staff to the SDS Main Board, reporting on the situation
18 at that time, that's P2626. And I also want to take a look at what
19 people in Bijeljina were saying at the time, were saying
20 contemporaneously, and for that we can look at a portion of events that
21 were captured on video, so I'd ask to turn to 65 ter 40144 to the clips
22 found at -- beginning at 1.36.19, and for the interpreters that's found
23 at page 2 of the transcript.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Will this document be
25 262 [as interpreted] be shown to the witness or is he supposed to trust
1 you just because you told him so?
2 JUDGE KWON: I think Mr. Tieger referred to for your reference.
3 MR. TIEGER: We're going to see a number of Crisis Staff
4 references during the course of this examination. If the witness wants
5 to turn to that document, we can certainly do so when we've reviewed the
6 rest of the material. We can run that clip. [Microphone not activated]
7 JUDGE KWON: Microphone.
8 MR. TIEGER: This is a video of events on the 2nd of April, 1992,
9 in Bijeljina.
10 [Video-clip played]
11 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "At the moment we liberated the
12 centre of the town, the snipers are in the surrounding skyscrapers, but
13 we will neutralise them certainly to the end of the day. Allegedly this
14 is the notorious Handzar division. How much truth is there in this?
15 "The members of the paramilitary units tried to take the town
16 during the previous two nights and to block off the Serbian people so
17 they could terrorise it, but with the quick action of our people and our
18 Crisis Staff we have thwarted that attempt, and I repeat that the
19 civilian part of town will be under our control until the end of the day.
20 "Mr. Rakic, this is from the Crisis Staff?
21 "Yes, when we were sitting in the Crisis Staff, there was combat
22 going on outside."
23 MR. TIEGER:
24 Q. Mr. Simic, as we can see people are referring to the Crisis Staff
25 at the time of the events at the beginning of April 1992. I told you
1 about some of the evidence the Court has already received. Is it still
2 your position -- well, is it your position, sir, that there was no
3 Crisis Staff and that you don't know what Crisis Staff these people in
4 the video are referring to?
5 A. Could I see the document, please.
6 MR. TIEGER: P2626, please.
7 JUDGE KWON: What's the 65 ter number of that video, Mr. Tieger?
8 MR. TIEGER: It's 40144, Mr. President.
9 JUDGE KWON: Is it to be found on e-court?
10 [Prosecution counsel confer]
11 MR. TIEGER: I'm sorry 40144D. And, Mr. President, while we're
12 waiting for the document to come up, a portion of that video is already
13 in evidence as P5587 and we'll be seeing that portion again in addition
14 to a number of other clips. So at the end we'll try to identify where
15 those are and amalgamate them in a sensible manner.
16 Q. All right. The document on the screen, Mr. Simic, is a report
17 from the Bijeljina Crisis Staff to the SDS Main Board and the date is
18 1 April 1992. Indeed, it's a report on the situation as of 2000 hours on
19 1 April. Okay.
20 A. The video-clip that you played, I don't see by anything that
21 anyone is from Bijeljina or that this occurred in Bijeljina. I have no
22 idea. I've never seen that at all. What's the evidence that there was a
23 Crisis Staff, the fact that some people are talking in a TV show? That a
24 Crisis Staff existed in Bijeljina, but what were the decisions that it
25 made? What was it doing? There are no such documents or no such
1 activities. And as for this report, it's not signed. Who were the
2 members of the Crisis Staff and what was the decision that it made. If
3 this is just some reporting --
4 Q. Mr. Simic, Mr. Simic, I'm not asking you to argue your position.
5 I just want to hear what your position is and if we can continue with
6 that evidence. Now, you asked about other evidence. Do you know who
7 Predrag Jeseric was? Do you remember the chief of the SJB in Bijeljina
8 in April 1992?
9 A. I do. I remember Predrag Jeseric.
10 Q. Well, in a report sent directly and personally to Mico Stanisic,
11 Mr. Jeseric said there was a Crisis Staff and that it grew into the
12 War Presidency you acknowledge being the president of. That's P2629 if
13 we can call that up. And it's the first paragraph on page 2 of the
14 English and it's about the seventh paragraph, so I turn to page 2 of the
15 B/C/S as well. And Mr. Jeseric stated in this report personally to
16 Minister Stanisic:
17 "As a measure of precaution, the Bijeljina SO," skupstina
18 opstina, "Municipal Assembly Crisis Staff which grew into the Presidency
19 of the Municipal Assembly decided that classes ...," et cetera,
20 et cetera.
21 So Mr. Jeseric, the chief of police also understood at the time
22 that there was a Crisis Staff, sir, and indeed it grew into the
23 War Presidency that you were the head of. Do you still say there's no
24 evidence and that you were unaware of any Crisis Staff, sir?
25 A. First of all, the fact that there was a War Presidency in
1 Bijeljina is not correct, not in the period in April and thereabouts when
2 I was the president of the Municipal Assembly. There was the Presidency
3 of the Municipal Assembly which functioned in accordance with the Statute
4 of the Municipal Assembly and there was also a council of the
5 Municipal Assembly which was constituted in accordance with the documents
6 of the Municipal Assembly. On the 1st of April I held a meeting of the
7 National Defence Council at the barracks rather than the Crisis Staff and
8 it was attended by the representatives of the Muslims and the
9 Muslim-elected leaders. The Presidency of the Municipal Assembly of
10 Bijeljina, not the War Presidency, I emphasize, because there's not a
11 single document of the Municipal Assembly that mentions it. Whether
12 anyone wrote something -- because there are so many documents from the
13 Municipal Assembly and you could have determined how the organs were
14 called and what they were doing. The Presidency of the
15 Municipal Assembly of Bijeljina began to --
16 Q. Yeah, let's not get hung up on the -- that was -- let's not get
17 hung up on the distinction between War Presidency and Presidency.
18 Mr. Jeseric called it a Presidency, it's called Presidency in the
19 documents, so I accept that we'll use that designation from here on out.
20 But let's get more to the point --
21 A. Well, it's a big difference.
22 Q. Fine. So we've seen the locals at the time who understood there
23 was a Crisis Staff. We've seen the document reporting by the
24 Crisis Staff. We see Mr. Jesuric's acknowledgement that there was a
25 Crisis Staff that grew into the Presidency. You also mention in your
1 statement Mrs. Plavsic's visit to Bijeljina, Mr. Simic, and the fact is
2 that Mrs. Plavsic knew there was a Crisis Staff because she went to
3 see -- she asked to see and she went to see the Crisis Staff; right?
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we please have a reference to
5 that. Where did we see the locals talking about the Crisis Staff? The
6 witness said that these were not any people from Bijeljina.
7 MR. TIEGER: That's the Prosecution's position. I'm happy to
8 tender the entire document which will make it crystal clear that that
9 took place on Bijeljina. In fact, based on that objection, I'm going to
10 tender that entire document when we're completed.
11 JUDGE KWON: I think Mr. Tieger was referring to Exhibit P2626.
12 Let's move on.
13 MR. TIEGER:
14 Q. Isn't that correct, Mr. Simic, that you reference Mrs. Plavsic's
15 visit and the fact is that Mrs. Plavsic asked to see and did go to see
16 the Bijeljina Crisis Staff?
17 A. Where did they meet and who were the members of that
18 Crisis Staff?
19 Q. Well, let's just take a look at some of the -- what we can see
20 based on video evidence, Mr. Simic, about the Crisis Staff. First, can
21 we have clip 1.51 -- beginning at 1.51.12. And, Mr. President, that's a
22 portion of 40144D that overlaps with 5587 and 5588.
23 [Video-clip played]
24 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "Well, first of all, I wanted to
25 come here -- no, I wanted to come here first and to contact the
1 Crisis Staff directly, first myself, and then we all talked together, and
2 now we are expecting them and then I will also go to the barracks.
3 "Are you familiar at all with what is going on in the barracks
4 that they had to go there first?
5 "No, no, I have no idea. I mean, the soldiers are in the
6 barracks. I don't know why they would go to the barracks just to see the
7 soldiers. Let me tell you why. I think you see that there isn't any --
8 I think that there are no bad intentions about this. Because we were
9 escorted -- the police escorted us from Tuzla up until here. A military
10 patrol escorted us to Tuzla.
11 "I have to ask you.
12 "So it would have been normal if I had gone to the barracks
13 first, but since I can decided for myself, I decided to go to the
14 Crisis Staff of the Serbian people first to meet with Mr. Arkan and with
15 his associates here" --
16 MR. TIEGER: Can we stop that.
17 Q. Who is that?
18 A. I see Zeljko Raznatovic here. If he was the Crisis Staff and if
19 that's what Biljana says, then perhaps, but that's not the
20 Bijeljina Crisis staff.
21 Q. [Microphone not activated]
22 A. What did you say? I'm sorry, it wasn't interpreted.
23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
24 MR. TIEGER:
25 Q. Sorry. You've identified that man as Arkan; right?
1 A. That is Zeljko Raznatovic, yes. But I don't see any Crisis Staff
2 here. Mrs. Plavsic talks about the Crisis Staff, but I would like to --
3 on the basis of what, who, where, what?
4 Q. We'll see some more, sir.
5 MR. TIEGER: Please continue.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Transcript, please.
7 MR. TIEGER: That's at -- thank you. Arkan is identified as
9 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, the witness's answer has not
11 been recorded. The witness said if it was some Crisis Staff. It's not
12 the municipal Crisis Staff, and this is not recorded. It wasn't the
13 municipal Crisis Staff. It's just the transcript. Everything needs to
14 be recorded.
15 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. That will be checked.
16 Please continue.
17 MR. TIEGER: Please continue to the end of this clip which is
19 [Video-clip played]
20 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "I knew that such a close
21 meeting" --
22 MR. TIEGER: Stop there -- sorry to interrupt the interpreters.
23 Q. And who is depicted -- who are the two people depicted in this
24 portion of the video at 1.52.30?
25 A. I think that to the left is Djoja Arsenovic, Mr. Arsenovic, of
1 Bijeljina; and as for this, I don't know who this is, the bearded man.
2 Q. You don't recognise him as Goran Hadzic, the same Goran Hadzic
3 who is currently on trial here?
4 A. No, they aren't -- he doesn't really look a lot like the one
5 today. Perhaps it is Goran Hadzic. I'm not opposed to that.
6 Q. All right.
7 MR. TIEGER: Sorry to interrupt the interpreters. If they could
8 just finish -- we'll finish that clip and they can just finish the last
9 sentence they were interpreting.
10 [Video-clip played]
11 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "Encounter first would be better
12 without the other ones and then later we would talk with them too."
13 MR. TIEGER:
14 Q. All right. Thank you. So in this portion of the video of
15 April 2nd, 1992, Mrs. Plavsic in the span of a minute or two twice
16 mentions the Crisis Staff, that she wanted to leave the delegation that
17 she travelled with at the barracks and then come here where she was,
18 first, to contact the Crisis Staff directly, and meet with Mr. Arkan and
19 his associates and Mr. Adzic as it says here. Now, she and the others,
20 she indicates in the latter portion of her comments, are waiting for the
21 other members of the delegation, including Mr. Fikret Abdic to join them.
22 So let's continue to see who arrives to join the group and who's with the
23 group waiting to greet the other members of the delegation.
24 That can be found beginning at 1.53.57. And before I start that,
25 Mr. Simic, you're clear on where we are now, right, that we're about to
1 look at another clip a few minutes -- events that took place a few
2 moments later? Okay. Let's proceed.
3 [Video-clip played]
4 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "The meeting. Fikret Abdic arrives.
5 That's the return from the barracks?
6 "Yes. We waited for quite a long time for them to come to this
7 particular meeting. You will see the tension, the nervousness.
8 Something in the air because we were not ready."
9 MR. TIEGER: Let's stop here.
10 Q. Okay. Now we're back in the same room waiting for the
11 delegation. Do you recognise this person in the forefront of the video?
12 A. No. That's not from the local administration or, I suppose, from
13 Bijeljina. Just let me explain. All this is taking place in the
14 building of the Municipal Assembly in Bijeljina, where I was the host,
15 and I'm not there and the Crisis Staff is not there, at least not yet.
16 Q. Let's continue.
17 [Video-clip played]
18 MR. TIEGER: Stop, please.
19 Q. Who is -- 1.54.41, who is the gentleman that Mr. Abdic is
21 A. That's me. I was the host there, as I said, but it wasn't the
22 Crisis Staff. That was the building of the Municipal Assembly in
23 Bijeljina and I had no idea what Mrs. Plavsic talked about.
24 Q. Let's continue, please.
25 [Video-clip played]
1 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "Plavsic: This is the place.
2 Bishop Kacavenda is also coming here. Hello, how are you?"
3 MR. TIEGER: Stop -- let's return it slightly. We didn't stop it
4 quick enough. Let's go to right there.
5 Q. That's a better picture of a younger you, right, Mr. Simic?
6 A. Yes, yes.
7 MR. TIEGER: Let's continue, please.
8 [Video-clip played]
9 MR. TIEGER: And stop here, please.
10 Q. Who is shaking Mr. Abdic's hand?
11 A. I can't see well. Perhaps it's Ljubisa Savic, but --
12 Q. Ljubisa Savic, also known as Mauzer; right?
13 A. Yes, possible. He looks like him though he's much younger.
14 Q. And who is the man in uniform immediately to the left in the
15 photograph of --
16 A. I don't know.
17 Q. You don't recognise --
18 A. No.
19 Q. You don't recognise General Jankovic?
20 A. Well, I didn't. Perhaps I just met him once casually somewhere
21 in passing. I didn't know him at all.
22 Q. Continue, please. That was at -- we're looking at 1.55.20.
23 [Video-clip played]
24 MR. TIEGER: Stopping here at 1.55, I don't think that was
25 intentional but it's a good place to stop.
1 Q. We see the man you tentatively identified as Ljubisa Savic,
2 Mauzer, talking to the general and you saw him depicted a little more
3 clearly as the video progressed?
4 A. Yes, yes, that's right.
5 Q. And I just wanted to confirm, in fact, having had a better chance
6 to look at the man in the leather -- what appears to be a leather jacket
7 and dark hair, you confirm that was Mauzer.
8 MR. TIEGER: Okay. Proceed, please.
9 [Video-clip played].
10 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "How was your journey?
11 "Fine, excellent, since 6.00 this morning. I just shaved and
12 straight to work. First it was Mostar, then from Mostar to Derventa, and
13 from Derventa and back to Tuzla.
14 "And the other general, 2nd Military District command, why
15 couldn't he come?
16 "No, he could not for official reasons, business.
18 "Since I have been put in charge of this meeting, I'll just -- a
19 little -- but we have to wait for the bishop, wait for the bishop.
20 "No need. The representative of our Crisis Staff will explain
21 how it was envisaged --
22 "No, no, I'm not going to explain the situation. About the
23 protocol, about the way that we would hold this meeting, you understand?
24 "All right."
25 MR. TIEGER: All right.
1 Q. You were unable --
2 JUDGE KWON: Can we know who it was that said", No, no, I'm not
3 going to explain the situation"?
4 MR. TIEGER: I'm just going to return to that, Mr. President,
5 because you couldn't hear the voices -- first of all, the transcript
6 identifies it as being, but I was going to return so we could hear the
7 actual video and ask the witness that very question.
8 So can we return to approximately 1.56.40.
9 Q. And, Mr. Simic, I'll ask you to listen to the two voices.
10 Mrs. Plavsic says:
11 "Since I have been put in charge of this meeting we'll have to
12 wait for the bishop."
13 And then we hear another voice say:
14 "No need, the representative of our Crisis Staff," and I believe
15 there's another reference to "and the representative of the SAO
16 government will explain how it was envisaged." And I want you to listen
17 to both of those portions.
18 [Video-clip played]
19 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "Since I've been put in charge of
20 this meeting , I'll just" --
21 MR. TIEGER: The interpreters cannot overlap so we can hear the
22 actual video and audiotape because once they start to translate we no
23 longer hear the --
24 JUDGE KWON: Is it possible -- because I'm not able to upload the
25 transcript myself because there's some error message, but does the
1 transcript show the identity of the speakers?
2 MR. TIEGER: It does, Mr. President, but as you'll see there's
3 a -- in this particular instance the speaker is off-screen and so it's a
4 little more tentative. Apart from that, I think it's fair to do this and
5 I will simply note that the --
6 JUDGE KWON: I leave it to you.
7 MR. TIEGER: I think it's a useful exercise. But for the
8 interpreters, I'll note they've already interpreted this portion. We
9 have it on the record. Now we're just going to play it so the witness
10 can hear it.
11 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Please proceed.
12 MR. TIEGER: And if we could -- yeah, let's move it back maybe
13 10 seconds or so so we can hear the beginning of what Mrs. Plavsic says.
14 [Video-clip played]
15 MR. TIEGER:
16 Q. You recognise the speaker who is talking to Mrs. Plavsic and
17 telling her there's no need to wait for the bishop? That's you; right?
18 A. No, that is Mr. Ljubisa Savic, as far as I can tell. I'm not
19 sure. It's not me, for sure.
20 Q. Although you just told us you were hosting the meeting?
21 A. Yes, I was the host and I greeted the guests, but I didn't speak.
22 Q. Okay. So you think it's Mr. Savic and you're not sure it's you?
23 Is that what you told us? Because I'm looking for a transcript
24 correction here based on what I understand was said.
25 A. I'm sure it wasn't me.
1 Q. Okay. So, Mr. Simic, you've seen the fax from the Crisis Staff,
2 you've seen the people at the time --
3 A. Sorry, I did not see the fax.
4 Q. We put that on the screen in front of you, sir, and I'm not going
5 to do it again.
6 JUDGE KWON: Do you remember the fax that you say about it? You
7 can't see the signature at all. There's no name. It was sent in the
8 name of Crisis Staff to the SDS Main Board. Do you remember having seen
9 it a moment ago, that he referred to it?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Oh, that's -- all right, all right.
11 Before that some other fax appeared in my material. I thought ...
12 MR. TIEGER:
13 Q. Okay, so you've seen that. You've seen the guys on the video
14 earlier talking about the Crisis Staff and the actions taken by the
15 Crisis Staff. You've seen the reference by Mr. Jeseric to the
16 Crisis Staff. You've seen that Mrs. Plavsic came and wanted to see the
17 Crisis Staff. And now we see you here at a meeting where the
18 Crisis Staff is mentioned. Do you still maintain that the Crisis Staff
19 was inconsequential and essentially didn't exist?
20 A. I claim that the Crisis Staff did not exist. According to your
21 evidence it may be interpreted that General Jankovic and Fikret Abdic
22 were members of the Crisis Staff too because they were present there as
24 Q. We've seen --
25 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Tieger.
1 MR. TIEGER: Yes.
2 JUDGE KWON: In this regard can I draw your attention -- your
3 comment on transcript page 10, lines from 7 to 11. So you said in the
4 course of questioning the witness:
5 "... Mrs. Plavsic in the span of a minute or two twice mentions
6 the Crisis Staff, that she wanted to leave the delegation that she
7 travelled with at the barracks and then come here where she was first to
8 contact the Crisis Staff directly, and meet with Mr. Arkan and his
10 So did you mean she contacted Crisis Staff first and then meet
11 with Mr. Arkan?
12 MR. TIEGER: I'm --
13 JUDGE KWON: I take it --
14 MR. TIEGER: I didn't intend to say more than was indicated by
15 Mrs. Plavsic in the video.
16 JUDGE KWON: Yes, but if you take a look at transcript page 8,
17 lines 6 to 9, what Mrs. Plavsic allegedly said is this:
18 "I have decided to go to the Crisis Staff of the Serbian people
19 first to meet with Mr. Arkan ..."
20 So it sounds as if Mr. Arkan seems to be a member of the
21 Crisis Staff. Could you clarify with the transcript. Shall we hear
22 again the --
23 MR. TIEGER: We can hear it again, but I don't -- first of all,
24 the punctuation in the transcript is slightly different and telling, and
25 that is: I decided to go to the Crisis Staff. In other words, she could
1 have gone to the barracks, she says, but she decided to go to the
2 Crisis Staff first.
3 JUDGE KWON: To meet with Mr. Arkan.
4 MR. TIEGER: And his associates here. So to meet with Mr. Arkan
5 and others. So you can -- if you want to interpret it as Arkan being
6 part of the Crisis Staff --
7 JUDGE KWON: I leave it to you.
8 MR. TIEGER: The point I wanted to make is that it's very clear
9 that Mrs. Plavsic, in addition to other evidence that we've seen, is
10 aware of a Crisis Staff and wants to go meet the members -- meet with the
11 Crisis Staff rather than go to the barracks with the other members of the
12 delegation initially. All right.
13 Q. Let me --
14 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Please, yes.
15 MR. TIEGER: And, Mr. President, I'd also say of course in a case
16 like this no single piece of evidence is read without looking at the
17 other evidence, and that's why I'm referring to many pieces of evidence
18 that reflect the existence and nature of the Crisis Staff.
19 Q. But I wanted to turn now to the persons we --
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I? May I ask the Prosecution
21 to give us Mauzer's words literally transcribed, what he exactly said in
22 this footage.
23 MR. TIEGER: Well, first of all, I don't accept that those are --
24 that that's Mauzer. And yes, I'm happy to have that listened to again
25 and again. As I said, when we listened to it carefully we heard the
1 words of that speaker --
2 JUDGE KWON: Just -- let's proceed. It's in the transcript or we
3 can hear it again.
4 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, I've been thinking myself about
5 this transcript --
6 JUDGE KWON: Because I was not able to see it. Can we upload the
7 transcript then? Because of that upgrade probably I'm not able to
8 open -- see the transcript.
9 MR. ROBINSON: I'm also not able to see it.
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
11 MR. TIEGER: I mean, that's a technical matter. We can listen to
12 over and over. As everyone knows, the more you listen to it, the more
13 you may hear. As I said, it's reflected as -- the portion reflected as
14 unintelligible in the transcript, I think one can clearly hear that that
15 speaker is saying the representative of our Crisis Staff --
16 JUDGE KWON: Just indicate the page that was shown to the
17 witness. Who was in charge and let's wait for the bishop, what page was
19 MR. TIEGER: That's at page 8, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE KWON: Okay.
21 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, the reflection of the speaker in
22 the words attributed to this witness, I don't believe it should be --
23 should be attributed to this witness in the transcript if, in fact --
24 JUDGE KWON: We have his evidence.
25 MR. ROBINSON: Okay. But we -- what's the basis of the evidence
1 in the transcript attributing it to him?
2 JUDGE KWON: It's -- well, we'll not discuss it here, but it's
3 for the Prosecutor to clarify. Let me -- can I see it? Is it -- is this
4 page --
5 MR. TIEGER: Mr. President, page -- it's page -- also page 2 of
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we know what was redacted here?
8 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
9 MR. TIEGER: You know, this is really -- Mr. Karadzic was in
10 court. This came in in that fashion because of -- because the entirety
11 of the -- this is the reference that was played in court. He knows that
12 very well. I'm aware of the fact that both Mr. Robinson and Mr. Karadzic
13 are very unhappy with this evidence, but I really resent these constant
14 disruptions for no need.
15 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Do we see the part which was
16 attributed to Mr. Simic? Yes, I think I'm seeing this.
17 MR. TIEGER: And, Mr. President, if I can remind the Court, the
18 Court was minded at that moment to simply tender the transcript, and it
19 was the Prosecution that suggested we give the witness a chance to hear
20 it and offer whatever comment he could. So I don't know how we could
21 have been more fair about that.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes, let us proceed.
23 MR. TIEGER: Thank you.
24 Q. Mr. Simic, we saw Mr. Arkan -- we saw Arkan, Mr. Raznatovic, in
25 these videos. Now, just by way of background, Arkan was a well-known,
1 indeed famous, figure who was, I think we could say fairly, loved or
2 thought highly of by the Serbs and feared, in particular, by the Croats
3 as a result of events in Croatia during the war. Is that a fair summary?
4 A. Well, I think that you've exaggerated it a bit. As far as
5 Bijeljina is concerned, he was well-known, but I don't know that he was
6 particularly liked or popular before these events, if that's what you
8 Q. But he was feared by non-Serbs; correct?
9 A. Well, I cannot interpret that now how they felt. How should I
11 Q. You're the president of the municipality, you're meeting with
12 members of -- representatives of the Muslim community. You're presumably
13 meeting with members of the Bijeljina community at all times. And you
14 have no -- and you're on the border of Croatia. You're monitoring events
15 of the war in Croatia, as you told us in your statement, and yet you have
16 no idea about how the members of your community feel at all about this
17 well-known but controversial figure. Is that your testimony?
18 A. Well, no. I'm telling you that I think that the citizens of
19 Bijeljina did not think about Arkan until the 1st of April. I don't see
20 any reason why they should be afraid, why they should have any fear. I
21 have no such feeling.
22 Q. Well, I'm going to -- just very quickly I'll try this. I'm
23 looking at an article of December 16th, 1991, by the "Los Angeles Times,"
24 referring, among other things -- and that's 65 ter 24787, referring to,
25 among other things, Arkan's renowned as a guerilla leader who leads
1 the Arkan's Tigers who claimed to fight fascism and take no prisoners; or
2 24788, an "Associated Press" article the next month, in January of 1992,
3 again referring to Arkan's fame and the fact that he is adored by the
4 Serbian press. So it's your testimony, sir, that although Arkan's renown
5 and the controversial nature of that renown appears to have been known in
6 many, many parts of the globe, that you and Bijeljina really were
7 oblivious to Arkan before April 1st?
8 A. Well, I didn't say that we didn't know. I said that citizens did
9 not think about Arkan. I believe that the citizens of Bijeljina do not
10 read this - what was the name? - "Los Angeles Times," or what was the
11 newspaper that you mentioned? I think that the citizens of Bijeljina
12 have absolutely no contact with that.
13 Q. You know what, Mr. Simic, I don't know if that's supposed to be
14 serious, but you're not really claiming to this Court, are you, that the
15 people of Bijeljina could only have become aware of Arkan and thought
16 about Arkan if they had happened to have a copy of the
17 "Los Angeles Times"?
18 A. Well, that is the evidence that you are putting before me.
19 Q. No, Mr. Simic. I was pointing out how widespread his fame was
20 and suggesting to you that right across the border from Croatia where
21 those events were taking place, the man who came in on April 1st -- who
22 came in at that point would have been someone that people in Bijeljina
23 just might have been thinking of. But let's move on. You said people
24 weren't thinking --
25 MR. ROBINSON: Excuse me, Mr. President, we can't move on after
1 Mr. Tieger makes a speech or a submission without asking a question.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes, fair enough.
3 Would you like to answer or to comment on Mr. Tieger's comment?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think that people knew about
5 Arkan but not to that extent and he did not have the kind of significance
6 that the Prosecutor is referring to. In my view - and you will judge the
7 extent to which I am right - media popularity and presentation starts
8 after these events in Bijeljina. I think that that is how it was, but
9 the Prosecution has some other information. I don't know.
10 JUDGE KWON: Please continue, Mr. Tieger.
11 MR. TIEGER:
12 Q. You mention April 1st as the day that people started worrying
13 about Arkan. Let's call up 65 ter 15576 and turn to the third page of
14 the English, and that's the heading that begins "17th Corps." This is a
15 report of the command of the 2nd Military District to the Main Staff of
16 the SFRY getting reports from various corps. 17th Corps is headed by
17 General Jankovic. And it states as follows:
18 "During the 31st of March and 1st of April, 1992, there was an
19 escalation of conflict on the territory of Bijeljina municipality" --
20 A. Where do you see that?
21 Q. Under -- at the bottom of the page you're now looking at.
22 A. I see.
23 Q. Second paragraph:
24 "During the non-confirmed information, Arkan's men entered
25 Bijeljina in the part of the city which is populated by Muslims.
1 Barricades were set and the passage through the city is blocked.
2 Explosions and gun-fire can be heard from the city."
3 So that conforms to your reference to when people started
4 thinking about Arkan, that is on April 1st; right?
5 A. All right. I see that in the report, but I also see that at
6 1400 hours a meeting was scheduled of the organs of the Municipal
8 MR. TIEGER: I tender that, Mr. President.
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll receive it.
10 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P6209, Your Honours.
11 MR. TIEGER:
12 Q. So when you speak in paragraph 27 of your statement about the
13 SDS -- SDA president on the 1st of April not wanting to lift the
14 barricades immediately but to have UN observers come in first, that's the
15 context, right, that Arkan is already present and people know about it?
16 A. The day before that, the night before that, the conflict started.
17 On the second day we held the meeting at 1400 hours.
18 MR. TIEGER: Mr. President, I want to make a habit when I can of
19 noting when precisely the allocated time has expired, but I trust that
20 given the fact that I'm very much focused on key issues and have been
21 throughout that the Court will extend that time.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes, please proceed. But for planning purposes, how
23 much longer would you need?
24 MR. TIEGER: I'm guessing about -- don't have that much more, but
25 I think about 20 minutes. Certainly I'll finish in this session but I'm
1 hoping to finish within 20, as I have a limited amount of stuff to cover.
2 JUDGE KWON: If you could try to finish in 15 minutes. Do your
4 MR. TIEGER: That -- that might be tough, but I'll do my best,
5 Mr. President. Okay.
6 Q. The fact is, Mr. Simic, that Arkan was there and he was there
7 because the Bijeljina municipal authorities invited him in; right?
8 A. No. You keep trying. The fact is that Arkan was there, but how
9 do you get this information that he was invited by the municipal
11 Q. We'll return to the video and return to the clip at 1.39.25,
12 please. Oh, I'm sorry, it's -- 1.39.50 is where the clip is.
13 [Video-clip played]
14 MR. TIEGER: Okay.
15 Q. That's Arkan again, right, and that's Arkan saying --
16 JUDGE KWON: Was it interpreted? We didn't hear anything.
17 MR. TIEGER: Oh, I'm sorry, Mr. President, that's true. The
18 interpreters do have that transcript.
19 JUDGE KWON: If you could tell us the page number.
20 MR. TIEGER: Page 3.
21 JUDGE KWON: Shall we play again.
22 [Video-clip played]
23 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "Well, number one, number one, the
24 Serb volunteer guard has come here after being invited by the
25 Territorial Defence and the Serb people of Semberija and Bijeljina, and
1 of course we came to our people's rescue."
2 MR. TIEGER: All right.
3 Q. All right. That's Arkan saying that he was invited and that's
4 why he showed up. In fact, Mr. Simic, you refer in one of your documents
5 to the fact that you did invite armed groups and uniformed -- armed and
6 uniformed groups, but that there were other armed and uniformed groups
7 who were uninvited that you were -- thought should then leave. That's
8 true, isn't it?
9 A. Please. I mean, I don't know what kind of practice this is, to
10 keep putting Arkan here. He says that he was invited by the Serb people
11 and the Territorial Defence. He is not mentioning the Municipal Assembly
12 and the authorities of the town of Bijeljina. Please play it again and
13 see if I'm right. You keep adding things that were not said. And in
14 which document did I invite paramilitaries to Bijeljina?
15 Q. Which -- let me ask you this question: Which armed and uniformed
16 groups came to Bijeljina by way of invitation and which armed and
17 uniformed groups came without being invited by the legal organs of
18 Bijeljina municipality? So which armed groups were invited by the legal
19 organs of the Bijeljina municipality?
20 A. No armed groups came at the invitation of the municipal
21 authorities of the town of Bijeljina --
22 Q. [Overlapping speakers]
23 A. -- I mean all paramilitary units are those units that were not
24 under the command - if you mean up until the 20th of May - that were not
25 under the control of the JNA or the command of the police. All of those
1 are paramilitary units.
2 MR. TIEGER: Let's turn to 1D5015, page 2.
3 THE REGISTRAR: This is Exhibit D2372, Your Honours.
4 MR. TIEGER: That's not it.
5 Q. All right. I'm going to return to that because the -- as a
6 result of the upload the number seems to be changed. That is the number
7 that came out before the transition with or the upgrade of e-court. All
9 Mr. Simic, after the events in Bijeljina you were aware that
10 there were allegations about the conduct of Arkan and, indeed, there were
11 some extremely famous photos of Arkan and Arkan's forces in Bijeljina at
12 the beginning of April 1992; right?
13 A. Who made which allegations?
14 Q. Well, let's just look at the photographs and see if you recognise
16 MR. TIEGER: That's P2919, pages 26 through 29. Next photo,
17 please. Turn to page 26, please, the series. Maybe it's best to go to
18 the ELMO on these things or page 28. Mr. Reid suggests it might, indeed,
19 be better to go to the ELMO.
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes, I see 28, 29.
21 MR. TIEGER: It seems to be up now. Okay. So page -- and
22 page 29, please.
23 JUDGE KWON: No. E-court page 28. That's page 30.
24 MR. TIEGER: Okay. That's page 30. Okay. And page 30 as well.
25 JUDGE KWON: What we see is page 26 on e-court. Why? We go to
1 the last page then.
2 MR. TIEGER: Okay.
3 Q. Those are the photos I was talking about, Mr. Simic. You've seen
4 those before; correct?
5 A. I saw the one that was before it was published in some book.
6 Q. Okay, the one immediately before that, the one that depicts the
7 three people on the ground, two guys with guns and caps -- there you go,
8 that one right there. That's the one you're talking about; right?
9 A. Yes. There's a book published in our region featuring this
11 Q. And you're aware that these photos were published and distributed
12 essentially worldwide and roughly at the time and since; correct?
13 A. I don't know. I didn't know then that they were published
14 throughout the world and I don't know it now. I don't even know whether
15 they are from Bijeljina. Is there any identification of these people?
16 What is to confirm the location?
17 Q. It doesn't take much to go to Haviv's -- Mr. Ron Haviv's web site
18 or the web site of a -- called iconic photographs, which means
19 photographs that are particularly famous, and see the description of
20 those photos including the explanation of how they were taken by
21 Mr. Haviv and indeed including the fact that he came to Bijeljina
22 afterwards and talked to people about the photographs and makes it very
23 clear that these are photographs he took of Arkan's figures in Bijeljina
24 at the beginning of April 1992. So is it your testimony that as the
25 president of the municipality at that time and a continuing resident of
1 Bijeljina you had no awareness that these were photographs of Bijeljina
2 involving Arkan's forces?
3 A. I did not know about these photographs at that time. I said I'd
4 seen them in a book published in Bosnia. I can't recognise these people
5 because I don't know Arkan's men and I don't know the victims, so how
6 could I comment on either?
7 Q. All right. If I have time I'm going to play you a video of Arkan
8 acknowledging that those are his forces when he sees the pictures.
9 MR. TIEGER: But first I want to return to what is apparently
10 D01445, second page. Second page of that, please --
11 THE REGISTRAR: This is a one-page document.
12 MR. TIEGER: All right. Then let's put this on the ELMO, please.
13 That was 1D15015, as we were notified by the Defence, and then they
14 removed these exhibits which were supposed to be associated at the last
16 Q. This is a conclusion from the Presidency of the
17 Bijeljina Municipal Assembly of 29 May 1992 signed by you, Mr. Simic,
18 referring to the behaviour of armed and uniformed groups and individuals
19 who have come from the territory outside Bijeljina municipality without
20 being invited by the legal organs and notes are causing disruption.
21 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. We are -- I was told that this
22 document is in e-court. I would like the Registrar to let us know the
24 THE REGISTRAR: 1D15015, Your Honours.
25 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Can we upload it.
1 THE REGISTRAR: The documents are on the screen right now.
2 JUDGE KWON: All right. Thank you -- no.
3 Why do we see a different document?
4 MR. TIEGER: The document that was just shown is -- okay, this is
5 not the document I'm referring to and it's not the document that is on
6 the ELMO.
7 JUDGE KWON: Now we are seeing -- what I see from my personal
8 computer is different from what I see in the public monitor.
9 MR. TIEGER: Right. And on -- okay. Well, this is -- on the
10 ELMO --
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
12 MR. TIEGER: -- is the document I referred to and was reading
14 JUDGE KWON: Let's proceed.
15 MR. TIEGER:
16 Q. And as I said, Mr. Simic, that's a conclusion from 29 May 1992 of
17 the Presidency of the Bijeljina Municipal Assembly signed by you
18 referring to groups and armed and uniformed groups and individuals who
19 came without being invited and then going on to say: "
20 The Presidency, therefore, prohibits any individuals or groups
21 not invited by the legal organs from being engaged as instructors or in
22 any other capacity ...," and so on and so on.
23 So that's a reference, Mr. Simic, is it not, to groups that were
24 both invited and not invited, right, by the legal organs of the Bijeljina
1 JUDGE KWON: Do we see here the groups invited, reference to the
2 groups invited?
3 MR. TIEGER: It doesn't specify the groups unless you're asking,
4 Mr. President, no.
5 JUDGE KWON: Yes. That's for you to answer the question,
6 Mr. Simic.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This conclusion of 25th May --
8 29th May has nothing to do with these documents and photographs of the
9 1st and 2nd of April. There's a two-month difference. And after those
10 problematic days in April we had problems in the area of the municipality
11 and we asked that all groups or individuals presenting themselves as
12 volunteers or whatever be placed at the command of those who were
13 competent in our area, that was the East Bosnia Corps and the public
14 security station. That was our conclusion and that conclusion was two
15 months after these events. But we in the municipality made our decision
16 already on the 8th of April concerning events of the 1st and the
17 2nd of April. So this document has nothing to do with the April events
18 in Bijeljina. And I can comment on this order of this 25th of June. I'm
19 glad that we made such good decisions and conclusions in that period.
20 This order of the 25th of June relates to a prohibition of a paramilitary
21 or a parapolice unit under the command of some Davidovic --
22 MR. TIEGER: Wait a minute, excuse me, excuse me, Mr. Karadzic
23 can get into this if he wants. This document is not on at the moment. I
24 have limited time. I want to move on.
25 JUDGE KWON: Are you tendering this document?
1 MR. TIEGER: Yes, Mr. President.
2 MR. ROBINSON: No objection, Mr. President.
3 JUDGE KWON: Is it of six-page document?
4 THE REGISTRAR: That's correct, Your Honours.
5 THE ACCUSED: Which one, may I ask?
6 MR. TIEGER: I was only aware of --
7 JUDGE KWON: I think what --
8 MR. TIEGER: -- two pages.
9 JUDGE KWON: What we saw is page 2, according to my e-court.
10 MR. TIEGER: [Overlapping speakers] Right. I am only aware of
11 two pages in that document.
12 JUDGE KWON: Okay. Yes, we'll admit them. [Overlapping
13 speakers] We'll give the number.
14 THE REGISTRAR: P6210, Your Honours.
15 MR. TIEGER: I could have addressed this at the end, but I think
16 it's probably sensible to admit the entirety of this video 40144,
17 otherwise there's at least one other clip I was going to get to, but if
18 it's going to be subsumed under the entirety of the video which seems to
19 be something that the accused was interested in as well, then I would
20 simply do that.
21 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Robinson.
22 MR. ROBINSON: If you could give me a moment.
23 [Defence counsel confer]
24 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, we would object to the admission of
25 the whole video and believe that only those parts that are discussed in
1 court should be admitted.
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 MR. TIEGER: All right. Then let's turn to 1.56 -- to clip
4 at 1.56.25.
5 Q. We saw Mauzer on the -- that is, Ljubisa Savic on the video,
6 Mr. Simic. He came to Bijeljina with his -- and established the
7 Serbian National Guard -- or, excuse me, he established a
8 Serbian National Guard, that is, the forces that were involved -- were
9 among the forces that were involved in Bijeljina at the beginning of
10 April pursuant to a decision of the government of SAO Majevica and
11 Semberija; correct?
12 A. I believe that military unit was not formed before the
13 1st of April. It was formed after the April events.
14 Q. Well, let's just look at that clip real quick.
15 [Prosecution counsel confer]
16 [Video-clip played]
17 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "The reporter: ... the
18 representative of the Crisis Staff of -- the Crisis Staff of SAO
19 Semberija and Majevica who co-ordinated the struggle. The fighting has
20 finished. The town is free.
21 "Savic: The town is free finally. At 1.03 [as interpreted] we
22 placed all those who have weapons under our control."
23 MR. TIEGER:
24 Q. Mr. Simic --
25 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. The transcript -- while the
1 transcript said -- in -- Ljubisa Savic being the representative of the
2 Crisis Staff, our transcript does not reflect it. Do you confirm that,
3 Mr. Tieger?
4 MR. TIEGER: [Microphone not activated] Yes, Mr. President.
5 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Please continue.
6 MR. TIEGER:
7 Q. Does that refresh your recollection, sir, about the --
8 A. Yes, it does. Okay. But what is the date? Is it the 2nd or the
10 Q. This is a portion of the video that was taken on the 3rd.
11 A. All right.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] How do we know that? How do we
13 know that?
14 MR. TIEGER: We know it -- that's why I wanted to admit the
15 entirety of the video, once the Defence has and they can review it and
16 see very clearly what the -- how the video is dated.
17 Q. All right. Last thing I want to cover with you, sir, is the
18 portion of your statement that refers to normalisation of life and work
19 in Bijeljina after the events of early April, and I just want to cover a
20 few things that you did to supposedly normalise life in Bijeljina. First
21 of all, you replaced the TO commander, the Muslim TO commander, you've
22 indicated in an earlier part of your statement, with the new Serbian
23 commander Blagoje Gavrilovic; correct?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And the --
1 A. And I did not -- excuse me. It's not I who did that. It was the
2 Presidency of the Municipal Assembly of Bijeljina over which I presided
3 and I signed the decision.
4 Q. The Municipal Assembly was reduced to 70 deputies, which was
5 conveniently almost exactly the number of Serb deputies; right?
6 A. That's only at the end of June 1992. I don't know what you're
7 interested in. The Assembly made a statutory decision on the 25th or the
8 26th of June, 1992, concerning the number of deputies, probably those in
9 attendance, and that's when I resigned and I stopped being the president
10 of the Municipal Assembly of Bijeljina.
11 Q. Okay. So you confirm that on -- and I'm looking at 1D105, an
12 article that's a session on June 25th, an article states the Assembly
13 shall consist of 70 deputies, and I'm also looking at 1D15011, which
14 indicates the election results and it indicates from the ranks of Serbs
15 69 deputies.
16 So that's what happened in June, correct, that the
17 Municipal Assembly was essentially reduced to its Serbian deputies? You
18 have to answer audibly yes or no.
19 A. I just said so. You have that decision of the Municipal Assembly
20 of Bijeljina, it's called statutory decision, I believe. It was made at
21 an Assembly meeting. It's no secret. Everything is clear.
22 Q. And finally you said about -- and I say "finally," with reference
23 to the normalising activities, you said about renaming various portions
24 of the town and one of those acts of normalising was to rename a square
25 after Arkan's Serbian Volunteer Guards; correct?
1 A. No, that's not correct. It's not a square. It's possible that
2 it was a street, but certainly not a square. The Presidency of the
3 Municipal Assembly of Bijeljina adopted over 100 decisions in those three
4 months. You can review all of them and see all the things that were done
5 to normalise relations. Out of the 100 decisions you put two before me
6 here. All of them are available concerning the normalisation of
7 relations in Bijeljina.
8 MR. TIEGER: Mr. President, the Chamber has been -- has allotted
9 me the additional time. I appreciate it. The only additional thing I'd
10 mention at this point is that yesterday the witness asked me about
11 whether there was any document showing that north-eastern -- the
12 autonomous region of North-Eastern Bosnia had been proclaimed or
13 established before October, and in that respect I have 65 ter 17458,
14 which discusses the proclamation of the autonomous region as reflected in
15 an article in "Javnost." If the Court gives me time, I can present it to
16 the witness.
17 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
18 MR. TIEGER: Can we call up 65 ter 17458.
19 JUDGE KWON: While we are waiting for that, you do not oppose to
20 the admission of the video-clips?
21 MR. ROBINSON: That's correct.
22 JUDGE KWON: We'll --
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Excuse me. Was our comment
24 acknowledged that the portions the witness did not identify, the men in
25 masks, for example, should not be admitted?
1 [Trial Chamber confers]
2 JUDGE KWON: We'll admit it in its entirety.
3 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6211, Your Honours.
4 JUDGE KWON: The previous portions P5587 and -88 were admitted
5 through a bar table motion?
6 MR. TIEGER: That's a good question, Mr. President. I don't have
7 that information at my fingertips, although the number might suggest
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes, let's proceed.
10 MR. TIEGER:
11 Q. Okay Mr. --
12 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Did we give the number for this?
13 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, the video was Exhibit P6211, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
15 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
16 JUDGE KWON: Yeah, it was confirmed by the Registrar.
17 MR. TIEGER: Thank you.
18 Q. Yesterday we discussed the onset of regionalisation and whether
19 or not regionalisation only took place after the joint Assembly session
20 on October 15th. I referred you to a number of autonomous regions that
21 were proclaimed prior to that, including North-East Bosnia. You asked if
22 you could see something like that. This is an article in "Javnost," the
23 SDS newspaper, concerning just that which states, among other things:
24 "The new autonomous region was proclaimed in the presence of the
25 representatives of Bijeljina, Lopare, Brcko, Ugljevik, Zvornik, Tuzla,
1 and Kalesija municipalities."
2 It also goes on to note that as expected the proclamation of the
3 new region in Bijeljina has also caused negative reactions by the other
4 parties' representatives who described it as illegal, illegitimate,
5 et cetera. So does this refresh your recollection, Mr. Simic, that there
6 was considerable activity towards regionalisation prior to the joint
7 Assembly session of October 15th?
8 A. I am trying to use official documents of the competent
9 institutions. The Municipal Assembly of Bijeljina took the decision to
10 accede to the region on the 25th October, I believe, 25th October 1991.
11 The Assembly of the region of North-Eastern Bosnia was made and
12 promulgated in the Official Gazette of the region. What kind of evidence
13 is a newspaper article when we have official documents of the competent
15 Q. Well, let me try to parse that out for just a moment before we
16 adjourn, sir. First of all, "Javnost" is the SDS newspaper; correct?
17 Well, you don't know that either?
18 A. Yes, it is. Why?
19 Q. Okay.
20 A. Is that more official than a document from the Municipal Assembly
21 of Bijeljina? This is not a document. It's a printed medium.
22 Q. Mr. Simic, you tried to tell this Chamber that nothing happened,
23 that all of regionalisation was about a reaction to what happened on
24 October 15th. I showed you -- I referred you to an evidence this Court
25 already has and now I'm showing you a document which says -- it's dated
1 the -- about the 28th of September, 1991, well before October 15th that
2 shows that activity was taking place about regionalisation well before
3 October 15th. The question is not how long it took you in Bijeljina to
4 perfect the process and sign on to the -- to regionalisation. The
5 question is whether or not regionalisation was moving forward before the
6 date you said it was. And that's what this document indicates.
7 A. Do you expect me to comment? In my mind, a job was done when the
8 decision was adopted. Whether the work on it took one year, 10, or 15,
9 it does not matter. I don't even know how long it took.
10 MR. TIEGER: I have nothing further, Mr. President. Thank you.
11 And I would tender 65 ter 17458.
12 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll receive it.
13 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P6212, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE KWON: I take it you have some re-examination?
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Excellency.
16 JUDGE KWON: We'll hear it after a break.
17 We'll resume at 11.00.
18 --- Recess taken at 10.32 a.m.
19 [The witness stands down]
20 [The witness takes the stand]
21 --- On resuming at 11.02 a.m.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Tieger.
23 MR. TIEGER: I've been asked to indicate for the record that
24 page 1 of what was admitted as P6210 was already admitted as D1445 and
25 page 2 was already admitted as D1442.
1 JUDGE KWON: What page was it that we admitted as P6210?
2 MR. TIEGER: As I -- my recollection of P6210 --
3 JUDGE KWON: So we -- [overlapping speakers] -- I'm sorry, I
4 overlapped. So the crux of it is we don't need to admit it separately?
5 MR. TIEGER: That's my understanding, yes.
6 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
7 MR. TIEGER: But for the -- sorry, but -- so it's being --
8 it's -- for the record so we know what's being referred to, that should
9 clarify, although it -- I presume -- I'm presuming that 1445 and 1442 are
10 both one-page documents so that ends any potential ambiguity, but we
11 should check that as well.
12 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President, I would just like to take the
13 opportunity to introduce to the Chamber Anze Mocilnik from Slovenia who
14 is one of our legal interns working on our case.
15 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Yes, your submission was confirmed by
16 the Registry so we will not admit P6210 separately.
17 Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours.
19 Re-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
20 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Simic.
21 A. Good morning.
22 Q. We could perhaps start with the latest subjects that were
23 covered. Can you tell us what powers in terms of defence does the
24 municipality have and what is the president of the municipality in those
1 A. When it functions in a normal way, the municipality only has the
2 jurisdiction through the secretariat of the people's defence at the time
3 to provide logistical support for the manning of units, recruitment,
4 mobilisation, and so on, that is to say the administrative procedures.
5 And when a state of war is declared, then it has some more specific
6 authorities in terms of defence.
7 Q. Thank you. And does the municipality have its defence council
8 and its Territorial Defence, and what are the authorities and powers of
9 the municipality and the president of the municipality in those terms?
10 A. Yes, there is, or rather, there was at the time a municipal
11 Territorial Defence staff. It directed practically the
12 Territorial Defence units. The Assembly appointed the commander of the
13 TO staff. The Presidency of the municipality, according to the
14 municipality statute, would take over the jurisdictions of the
15 Municipal Assembly if the Municipal Assembly cannot be convened. That's
16 according to the statute of the municipality. That's how things were at
17 the time. For whatever reasons not just reasons of war the Presidency
18 would have those authorities.
19 Q. Thank you. In which capacity did you hold a meeting in the
20 barracks on the 1st of April?
21 A. On the 1st of April we held a meeting of the council of people's
22 defence of the municipality of Bijeljina and I convened the meeting after
23 a statement I issued appealing to the citizens on the local radio
24 station. I could not see that in the documents that were presented to
25 me. The document -- I could actually see from the documents that a
1 meeting was held at 1400 hours and the document also lists who attended
2 the meeting and what was discussed during the meeting.
3 Q. Thank you. Who is the president of the council for national
4 defence in the municipality?
5 A. I am the president of the council for national defence of the
6 municipality; that is to say I was the president of the
7 Municipal Assembly at the time.
8 Q. Thank you. When and under which circumstances are Crisis Staffs
9 to be established as municipal organs and who is to be the president?
10 Who signs its documents?
11 A. The documents should be signed by the president of the
12 Crisis Staff. I cannot remember that in the -- in the Assembly documents
13 such a possibility was provided, that is to say the possibility of
14 establishing a Crisis Staff, that something like that was envisaged by
15 any of the documents of the Municipal Assembly.
16 Q. Thank you. And if there had been, for example, in case of floods
17 or some other emergency situations, what Crisis Staffs be established in
18 our parts?
19 A. This is what the civilian protection should basically do in case
20 of national disasters and the like. So it's possible that in those
21 provisions some possibility of something like that is envisaged.
22 Q. Thank you. If a Crisis Staff had been established in this crisis
23 would that have been something bad or unusual or unlawful?
24 JUDGE KWON: Just before you answer -- yes, Mr. Tieger.
25 MR. TIEGER: Okay. Now again we're moving into some form of odd
1 solicitation of opinions. I mean, up to now the accused has tried to
2 elicit from this witness what he knows about the situation. Now he's
3 posing a speculative question and asking for an opinion about whether --
4 well, asking for an opinion and I don't think that's appropriate under
5 these circumstances.
6 MR. ROBINSON: Well --
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson.
8 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President, I think the point is why would
9 the witness lie about the existence of a Crisis Staff? There's nothing
10 wrong with there being a Crisis Staff. That's a perfectly legitimate
11 inquiry for Dr. Karadzic to make in response to the cross-examination on
12 that issue.
13 JUDGE KWON: I was wondering whether it was put in a leading way.
14 [Trial Chamber confers]
15 JUDGE KWON: The Chamber will allow the question.
16 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Do you remember the question, Mr. Simic?
18 A. I do, whether if it had been formed and if it had existed and if
19 it was working in accordance with regulations this shouldn't have been
20 any problem.
21 Q. Thank you. Could you tell us something about the
22 Municipal Assembly. As a state organ or body, who did it answer to? Who
23 did it report to in a vertical line?
24 A. Well, basically to the government and Assembly of the republic,
25 depending on specific jurisdiction. Perhaps in some areas or issues it
1 could have been different, but this belonged to the sphere of
2 mobilisation and All People's Defence.
3 Q. Thank you. Were you obliged and did you at all send reports to
4 political parties, specifically to the Serbian Democratic Party?
5 A. As for the municipality and the Municipal Assembly in this
6 period, I did not do that nor did anyone request me -- request from me to
7 do that.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we please see once again
9 P2626 in e-court. P02626.
10 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. As the Serbian version is hardly legible I will read out
12 something from the English version and the interpreters will interpret it
13 to you properly:
14 [In English] "SDS, Serbian Democratic Party of Bosnia and
16 "SDS Municipal Board.
18 "Crisis Staff.
19 "To: SDS Main Board.
21 [Interpretation] Could you say on the basis of this heading whose
22 organ this is?
23 A. Well, it's written there that it's a party organ if it's the SDS
24 of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
25 Q. Thank you. And could you also tell us, please look further down,
1 I will read again in English:
2 [In English] "Report on the situation as at 2000 hours on 1 April
3 1992 in the area of Bijeljina municipality.
4 "The interethnic conflict between the Serbs and Muslims that
5 began yesterday evening has continued, shows signs of possibly subsiding.
6 "A short time ago the National Defence Council of the Bijeljina
7 municipality held a meeting at which the following conclusions were
8 made ..."
9 [Interpretation] And I will not read out the conclusions. Is
10 this Crisis Staff reporting about its own conclusions or the conclusions
11 of the Council of National Defence?
12 A. Well, it's obvious from what was interpreted to me that they are
13 forwarding the conclusions from the meeting of the Council of National
14 Defence held at the barracks.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] We don't need this document any
18 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. In the video-clip, page 6, line 16, it was suggested that we saw
20 there the locals discussing the Crisis Staff. Who did you recognise in
21 the video?
22 A. I did not recognise anyone. If you mean the people with
23 Balaclavas, those who were masked, I did not recognise anyone. I have no
24 idea where that was filmed or who was present.
25 Q. Thank you. And do you remember a man who was interviewed and not
1 wearing a mask, did you recognise him?
2 A. In the videos we could see Ljubisa Savic and Zeljko Raznatovic in
3 different stages. I'm not sure what you have in mind.
4 Q. I mean the one who was sitting in the TV studio?
5 A. Oh, I wouldn't know that.
6 Q. Thank you. If you remember, on page 10, lines 10 and 11, we had
7 a video-clip with Fikret Abdic arriving to the municipality. Who was in
8 his escort, could you notice that by focusing on the uniforms? Who was
9 his escort?
10 A. I didn't know these people --
11 Q. Not by name.
12 A. I think that they were obviously some sort of troops, army. They
13 were the Tuzla MUP, but Fikret came to Bijeljina twice. I had reports
14 about that. Once in the evening he tried but he didn't manage to reach
15 the town. Public security centre Tuzla was there and I could see that he
16 was with Jankovic, you said that it was General Jankovic and that he had
17 come together with him.
18 Q. Thank you. In which capacity were Ms. Plavsic and Mr. Abdic
19 visiting Bijeljina?
20 A. They were there as members of the Presidency of
21 Bosnia and Herzegovina. Now, this is the first time I heard that
22 Ms. Plavsic came to the Municipal Assembly to meet with the Crisis Staff.
23 As I said, I was the president of the Municipal Assembly and I welcomed
24 there as the host and I thought that they were to meet with the
25 government and the officials of the municipality, but obviously there
1 were all sorts of people present on the occasion.
2 Q. Thank you. On the 1st of April did we still have joint organs or
3 did we recognise Bosnia as a country?
4 A. Yes, we did.
5 Q. Thank you. Which of our formations, I mean the armed formations,
6 wore masks, that is to say Balaclavas, such as those we saw in the
8 A. I haven't seen that ever up until today such a press conference.
9 I don't remember that I ever saw such a press conference in Bijeljina or
10 anywhere else in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
11 Q. Thank you. I would like to ask you a few questions about Mauzer.
12 How did he start? What was his formation and what were their links with
13 the Territorial Defence?
14 A. Mauzer was an influential and important member of the local
15 parliament and the Serbian Democratic Party, and I believe that in this
16 period there were some slight differences within the SDS. The official
17 position was to support Yugoslavia and the Yugoslav People's Army and
18 that's what we did; however, some of the members - I think that they were
19 members of the SDS - who had some doubts about the JNA and its officers
20 and I believe that they were attempting to find some alternatives. And
21 analysing what was going on in those days, I think that Ljubisa was the
22 one who was trying to do this. In any case, he showed up near the radio
23 station whether he transported them that night or in any case he had this
24 radio set from the TO and he co-ordinated activities with various groups
25 in the conflict. And after the conflict a special TO unit was
1 established and he was appointed the commander of that
2 Territorial Defence unit.
3 Q. Thank you. Is that unit in accordance with the law and --
4 actually, the Law on National Defence and is it within the system?
5 A. Yes, yes, it was. It did not exist on the 1st and 2nd of April.
6 Perhaps it was only on the 5th and 6th that this unit was formed in a
7 way. First it operated as a TO unit and it was only later I think, two
8 or three months later, it became part of the Army of Republika Srpska.
9 Q. Thank you. In the clip that was shown here and that was taken on
10 the 3rd, Mauzer says:
11 "Tonight until three minutes past 1.00 we placed all armed Serbs
12 under control."
13 Do you know what he meant? Do you know what happened in local
14 communes that was supposed to be placed under control?
15 A. On the ground in town itself there were several units -- well,
16 groups. They weren't really units, that took part in this fighting. I
17 already said that he tried, I think, to co-ordinate their activities, the
18 activities over those few days. And there were some individuals or
19 groups who were armed within JNA units, whereas others, individually or
20 as groups, took part in these activities in town. Part of these units
21 were in the settlements around town. Chaos prevailed during those days.
22 Adventurers, criminals, all sorts of people showed up. And it was only
23 later through the decisions of the president of the Assembly we tried to
24 bring some order into all of that.
25 Q. Thank you. By now Mauzer is deceased. Was he ever criminally
1 charged with anything? Was an indictment ever issued against him?
2 A. Not in that period I think. I don't know. His activities later
3 in the MUP or something -- I mean ten years afterwards so I wouldn't go
4 into that now. I think at that time there wasn't anything like that, I
5 don't know.
6 Q. Thank you. Mauzer, did he hold an official position after
7 Dayton; and if so, what was that?
8 A. After Dayton he was director of the police of Republika Srpska or
9 some assistant minister of police of Republika Srpska, whatever the
10 actual title may be.
11 Q. Thank you. Could he have been that without certification from
12 the international forces, the international police?
13 A. No, he couldn't have.
14 Q. Thank you. It was suggested today to you on the basis of the
15 "Los Angeles Times" and other newspapers that the Serb press adored
16 Arkan. Did you ever read any text in which adoration for Arkan was
18 A. I don't remember that. I mean, adoration, that's a bit over the
19 top. There were -- there was criticism, there was praise. I read
20 different things especially not then by April 1992, perhaps I followed
21 these writings more afterwards, after April, that is.
22 Q. Thank you. Did you know and did Croatia take Arkan prisoner
23 during their war?
24 A. Well, I mean, Arkan was well-known as the leader of the football
25 fans of Crvena Zvezda and I think it was on that basis that he was
1 arrested when the conflicts broke out in Croatia.
2 Q. Thank you. How many people did Arkan bring to Bijeljina, to the
3 best of your knowledge?
4 A. Well, during these four or five days I saw them twice, once when
5 Fikret and Biljana came, and before that I saw them when I tried to calm
6 things down when there was this conflict between these paramilitaries, or
7 whatever you call them, on the one hand and the JNA on the other in town.
8 It was on the 2nd, I think, and Biljana and Fikret were on the 3rd or
9 4th. So it was twice that we saw each other. And as for Biljana and
10 Fikret's visit, they presented it in the media in their own way. I was
11 searched when entering the Assembly. I think that "Vreme" or some
12 Belgrade paper carried that at the time. They were saying that they were
13 worried about security in front of the municipality building. There were
14 16 or 17 of them when Fikret and Biljana came. And on the 1st perhaps
15 there was even less of them. They came to Bijeljina on the 1st, in my
16 view probably at the invitation of members of Arkan's unit who were from
17 the area around Bijeljina and joined in the fighting; I mean, probably
18 that is my conclusion, that it was on that basis that they arrived in
20 Q. Thank you. Was it established whether there had been any
21 fatalities before Arkan showed up in Bijeljina and what do you know?
22 Were there any fatalities before Arkan entered Bijeljina?
23 A. Well, it's hard to confirm that now, but during the evening, or
24 rather, during the night in the centre of town about two persons lost
25 their life. I know that for sure and Zeljko was not in Bijeljina at the
1 time. Now, what happened during the following two days, although I think
2 that most of the fatalities were people who lost their lives in the area
3 around the city hospital. And it's only there that concrete fighting
4 took place between these Serb and Muslim formations.
5 Q. Thank you. At that point in time, who controlled the hospital?
6 A. Three or four days or for three days these Muslim paramilitary
7 formations held the hospital under their control in that part of town in
9 Q. Thank you. Can we now take a look at P2919. I would like to ask
10 you to take a look at those photographs about which you said that you
11 were not sure as to whether it was Bijeljina at all. I would like to ask
12 you to take a look at something.
13 JUDGE KWON: Before we move away from this topic, as regards the
14 video-clip which we admitted as Exhibit P6211, the transcript I saw while
15 it was played was of five pages and I checked with it and now it's of ten
16 pages without any redactions. Is it due to upgrade as well? So I would
17 like the parties to check whether they are happy with it. I see --
18 myself see no difficulty with it, but I'll leave it to the parties.
19 MR. TIEGER: And numerically that conforms to our understanding
20 of what it should be, but we're happy to check the exact document.
21 JUDGE KWON: Please continue, Mr. Karadzic.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] P2919, please. It's a Prosecution
23 exhibit, 02119.
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. While we're waiting, Mr. Simic, is there a difference in terms of
1 the way in which Muslim and Christian women dress in our part of the
2 world? Can you tell anything on the basis of clothing?
3 A. Well, there is this traditional difference, but in Bijeljina, I
4 mean, this classical Muslim attire of women is different but it doesn't
5 mean that a large portion of the Muslim population dressed the same way.
6 I mean, on that basis one cannot conclude what it may be. I don't know
7 anyone in this photograph. So now on the basis of what can I claim
8 anything? I'm not claiming that it's not in Bijeljina, but I cannot
9 claim that it is in Bijeljina either.
10 Q. Thank you. Which ethnic community primarily wears black,
11 especially women?
12 A. Well, black clothing is characteristic of Serbs, I think, older
13 women. Muslim women wear a different kind of pants.
14 Q. Thank you. Do you remember what the weather was like in early
15 April and is this woman sufficiently dressed for weather like that?
16 A. I think it was rather chilly. I wore an overcoat. Perhaps this
17 woman just went out for a bit. I don't think she spent much time
19 Q. Thank you.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have the next page. 156 are
21 the last digits of the ERN number.
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Do we know whether those who are lying on the ground are dead or
25 A. I don't know. I don't even who they were. How can I know
1 whether they're alive or not?
2 Q. Thank you. On the basis of the clothing, can you infer anything?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Thank you. In that video footage Mauzer is speaking and he
5 mentions the Crisis Staff of the SAO Semberija and Majevica. Semberija
6 and Majevica, can one say that that is the same thing as Bijeljina?
7 A. No. These are different institutions, different organs. And
8 what is characteristic for these four or five days is that lots of
9 people, some out of fear and some for other reasons, I don't know, it
10 wasn't only those cases. I mean people attached any kind of importance,
11 whatever they felt was best for them.
12 Q. Thank you. Now that footage from the conference room, the voice
13 that you said was not yours, also mentions the Crisis Staff of SAO
14 Semberija and Majevica. Does that pertain to the Crisis Staff of the
15 municipality of Bijeljina? Does that mean that that is the Crisis Staff
16 of the municipality of Bijeljina?
17 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Tieger.
18 MR. TIEGER: I believe that's predicated upon a -- either a
19 misunderstanding or a misrecollection of the transcript. My specific
20 recollection of the transcript - and I can pull it up now - is that
21 there's a reference to a representative of the Crisis Staff and a
22 representative of the SAO Semberija and Majevica, so two different and
23 distinct references.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, could we please play that
25 part then, P6211 I think is the number.
1 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Yes, if you could identify the time slot and
2 the transcript page number, Mr. Tieger. Why don't we see them.
3 MR. TIEGER: Sure, Mr. President. That's found at about 1.56. --
4 I would say it starts about 1.56.45 or so, and it's pages 8 and 9 of
5 the -- bottom of page 8 and beginning of page 9 of the transcript. And
6 we -- as indicated, we sent that for review, I don't know if it's been
7 uploaded, but I think some portion is rendered as unintelligible, but in
8 a different version I think we have when it continues the indications I
9 made earlier, that is, the reference to both the representative of our
10 Crisis Staff and the representative of the government
11 SAO Majevica Semberija.
12 JUDGE KWON: So we have an updated version of the transcript,
13 Mr. Robinson.
14 MR. ROBINSON: I think this is something we need to review after
16 JUDGE KWON: All right. Let's play it. I'm not sure -- just a
17 second. I'm not sure if the interpreters have this updated version.
18 MR. TIEGER: Mr. Reid thinks so. I was going to suggest -- I
19 just don't know the answer at this moment.
20 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Let's see.
21 [Video-clip played]
22 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "We have to wait for the bishop.
23 "Not necessary.
24 "No, no, I'm not going to explain the situation, the protocol."
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
1 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. This voice that is not yours and Mauzer's probably, is that voice
3 speaking on behalf of the Municipal Assembly of Bijeljina or in some
4 other capacity?
5 A. Well, it is certainly Mr. Ljubisa Savic's voice and the
6 Prosecution can probably check that. I see that they mention Simic
7 saying something here in this English version. It is certainly
8 Ljubisa Savic's voice and he mentions the Crisis Staff and the president,
9 government of Semberija Majevica - what was that? - and this again has
10 nothing to do with the organs of the municipality of Bijeljina.
11 Q. Thank you. You were asked on page 34 of today's transcript about
12 the end of June, a new quorum being established of 70 MPs. Can you
13 explain in which situation on the basis of statute how can a new quorum
14 be established, and how did that happen in the first place?
15 A. Lawyers were preparing this decision probably in accordance with
16 the statute and other documents. Nobody challenged the statutory
17 decision of the municipality of Bijeljina, I presume, and this happened
18 in a situation when some Assemblymen, I assume, either do not want to
19 attend or cannot attend sessions of the Assembly when they're not there.
20 I think that that is the reason why this decision was passed.
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Tieger.
22 MR. TIEGER: All right. Okay. First of all, that is, again, not
23 an accurate recapping of what the witness was asked about. He wasn't
24 asked about a quorum. He was asked about a document that said what the
25 Assembly shall consist of. Now the accused is attempting to transform it
1 into an entirely different matter and the witness seems to be going along
2 with it. If we want to call up the document to make that clear, that's
3 1D15015 where it says explicitly the Assembly shall consist of 70
4 deputies and that's the question I asked, and that's what was confirmed
5 by the witness.
6 JUDGE KWON: Give me a minute.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we also take a look? We don't
8 need this footage any longer. Can we have this 1D015 [sic].
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes, probably we need to switch to e-court.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] If I understood correctly, this is
11 already in evidence but that's not the right document, is it?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, that's not it.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] This is not it, but is it already
14 an exhibit?
15 JUDGE KWON: When Mr. Tieger referred to it, he referred to the
16 65 ter number of the Defence, so I'm not sure it was -- they were
17 admitted or not. But --
18 THE REGISTRAR: Those exhibits bear Exhibits D1442 and D1445.
19 JUDGE KWON: No, but when Mr. Tieger referred to 1D105 and
21 Correct, Mr. Tieger?
22 MR. TIEGER: Yes, Mr. President, that's correct.
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] But in line 2 it says
24 1D1505 [as interpreted]. That's what confused me.
25 MR. TIEGER: We've been able to call it up as page 4 of 1D15015.
1 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm interested in the decision
3 which says explicitly that the Assembly will be made up of 70 deputies.
4 That's what I'm reading in Mr. Tieger's question, line 3. Which number
5 is that.
6 MR. TIEGER: That's right. That's page 4 of 1D1515; right?
7 Sorry, 1D15015.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Page 4, please, now, if this is the
9 right number.
10 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
11 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Can you tell us, what made you prohibit this on the 25th of
13 June --
14 JUDGE KWON: Just a minute. We are in a mess. I am told that
15 the Registry cannot publish this. We'll put it on the ELMO. I see the
16 last sentence of Article 2, the Assembly shall consist of 70 deputies.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Now I can put my question.
18 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Mr. Simic, what changed with this statutory decision?
20 A. I will read item 2:
21 "The Municipal Assembly of Bijeljina is made up of deputies of
22 Serb ethnicity -- made up of deputies of Serb ethnicity of the hitherto
23 Municipal Assembly of Bijeljina elected at multi-party elections and
24 deputies of the hitherto Municipal Assembly of Bijeljina who chose to
25 work in the Assembly."
1 Q. What is changed then?
2 A. That the Assembly's made up of 70 deputies. It's important to
4 Q. How is it called in our language when you determine the number?
5 A. You mean quorum?
6 Q. Thank you.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we go back to e-court, please.
8 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Can you tell us what made you on the 25th of June, 1992, to issue
10 this order? What was the ethnicity of the armed groups to which this
12 A. The Prosecution put this first and I believe I started saying
13 that this order, like another one that existed, applied to armed people
14 in Bijeljina at the time, mainly Serbs were armed, and it could have
15 applied only to those armed formations which were not legal. And it
16 applied according to our interpretation to a paramilitary, or rather,
17 parapolice unit sent by the federal SUP. The Municipal Assembly of
18 Bijeljina prohibited that unit from coming to Bijeljina, although I
19 believe that was not carried out, and this decision was taken on the
20 25th of June.
21 Q. Who led that group?
22 A. That group was led by Davidovic, first name Milorad or Mico.
23 Q. What can you tell us about him and that group?
24 A. I have nothing much to say. We had that same situation
25 throughout the period in Bijeljina wherein all sorts of groups came to
1 engage in all sorts of things under I don't know what jurisdiction, but
2 they were not under anybody's command. Command in the army was by the
3 East Bosnia Corps. The rest was in the competence of the Council for
4 National Defence, but throughout the war we tried to treat any other
5 units as paramilitaries.
6 Q. Thank you.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we now see 1D15017 in
8 e-court, please.
9 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] 1D15017. That cannot be uploaded
11 either, can it?
12 JUDGE KWON: We'll put it on the ELMO.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. This is of the same day. You were rather productive, prolific,
15 on that day. Can you tell us what this conclusion emphasises, what does
16 it establish and why?
17 A. I suppose the Ministry of the Interior was sending some unit to
18 Bijeljina, although these two papers from the same session seem a bit
19 contradictory to me. But it confirms what I said. If it's in keeping
20 with the regulations of the Serbian Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina and in
21 co-operation with the public security station of Bijeljina. That's what
22 I keep saying the whole time. That means units or individuals or groups
23 that were subordinated to the centre of public security of Bijeljina and
24 the military institutions of that organ were considered legal. All the
25 others were illegal.
1 Q. What made the government and the ministry take this decision to
2 send a special unit of the MUP to Bijeljina? What was supposed to be
3 done there so that they made that decision and you supported it?
4 A. I cannot remember specifically anymore what the immediate reason
5 was, but generally speaking if it was in accordance with the hierarchy
6 and the proper jurisdiction, we did not make any problems. I cannot
7 remember the immediate reason. It could be all sorts of things. There
8 were all sorts of incidents throughout the period, although less so in
9 Bijeljina than around the front lines and in neighbouring towns. But
10 most of those paramilitary units liked to come to Bijeljina because they
11 were comfortable there.
12 Q. Can you name some of those neighbouring towns?
13 A. Zvornik and Brcko, they were in the zone of war operations and
14 there were direct clashes there. Bijeljina was not directly in that area
15 of combat activities.
16 Q. Since this was adopted on the same day, were they perhaps
17 concerned to send this special unit in order to enforce the prohibition?
18 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Tieger.
19 MR. TIEGER: Leading. And now we've really moved beyond the
20 scope of the cross.
21 JUDGE KWON: Would you like to respond, Mr. Robinson?
22 MR. ROBINSON: Leading, absolutely, but well within the scope of
23 the cross which dealt with how they took care of paramilitaries in
25 MR. TIEGER: Well, it didn't -- dealt with paramilitaries at the
1 beginning of April, in fact, and it didn't -- it didn't go into the
2 events of late June. But in any event, the objection still holds with
3 respect to leading.
4 JUDGE KWON: Yes, most problematic is the way the question was
5 put, very much leading and difficult how it arose from the cross because
6 of that matter. Yes, Mr. Karadzic, reformulate your question.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I cannot agree because Mr. Tieger
8 put this document and put questions related to the end of June, and the
9 witness made a distinction saying this has nothing to do with what
10 happened in early April. It's the Prosecution who started on this, but
11 I'm not going to insist anymore. The fact is the witness recognises his
12 own document and I tender it.
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we have English translation. We'll admit it.
14 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D3135, Your Honours.
15 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Mr. Simic, were you familiar with the position of the state
17 authorities and especially my position regarding paramilitary units and
18 irregularities in the operation of state organs?
19 A. I was aware of the position of the leadership and your own
20 position. At that time there were frequent international meetings
21 concerned with establishing peace in Bosnia-Herzegovina and one of the
22 priorities, I believe, both on the ground and in Bijeljina was to prevent
23 the activities of such groups.
24 Q. Thank you. And what about my own position, did you know it? Did
25 you know what I was demanding and advocating?
1 A. Well, I don't know now specifically, but I believe that was also
2 your position but that came a bit later. We had in Bijeljina one
3 problem, namely, that because of these conflicts in Bijeljina and later
4 in the towns around it, that the BH had stopped operating, functioning,
5 in the territory of Bijeljina, not only in our town. The regional centre
6 in Tuzla would cut off our telephones or our electricity. The whole area
7 of Bijeljina did not have telephones working for several months, and in
8 that period we were literally cut off from the outside world. And we had
9 to deal with our problems without the help of the central authorities, we
10 were forced to by the situation in Bijeljina itself. So that the
11 activities of Republika Srpska and Bosnia and Herzegovina started in our
12 area only in May, whereas we had to do certain things already in April in
13 keeping with the guide-lines given by the Serbian republic of
15 Q. Thank you. Just one more question. On page 3, a video was
16 played showing that man whom you did not recognise; however, he mentioned
17 the Handzar division. Do you know what he meant? Is it something you
19 A. The Handzar division was a fascist unit during the
20 Second World War in our region and there were rumours that these -- this
21 unit -- I don't know whether those are rumours or there's any truth in
22 it, there was some rumours that some similar unit was being or about to
23 be formed again back in our times, but I have no confirmation of that.
24 Q. Thank you, Mr. Simic, for coming to testify and for having been
25 such a good leader.
1 A. Thank you for this belated praise.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have no further questions,
3 Your Excellency.
4 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
5 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson.
6 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. With respect to -- we would
7 like to ask two documents to be admitted that were referred to by
8 Mr. Tieger. One of them was referred also by Dr. Karadzic. And those
9 are pages 4 through 7 of document number 1D15015. We can upload it so
10 that those other pages are taken out because they've already been
11 admitted under other numbers. So if it's possible either to admit this
12 as one document or as two, but we would like those pages 4 through 7 to
13 be admitted.
14 JUDGE KWON: Any objection, Mr. Tieger?
15 MR. TIEGER: Probably not, but let me just take a look at what
16 those are. So if -- I mean, if I can take a moment to do that, I don't
17 think that's -- the urgency is really pressing.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can see it.
19 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. If necessary, there may be further
20 questions, Mr. Simic. Please bear with us a minute.
21 MR. TIEGER: No objection, Mr. President.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll give the Defence number.
23 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3136, Your Honours.
24 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
25 That concludes your evidence, Mr. Simic. On behalf of the
1 Chamber, I thank you for your coming to The Hague to give it. Now you
2 are free to go.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
4 [The witness withdrew]
5 JUDGE KWON: And next witness is Mr. Mihajlovic?
6 MR. ROBINSON: That's correct, Mr. President.
7 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
8 [The witness entered court]
9 JUDGE KWON: Would the witness make the solemn declaration,
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
12 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
13 WITNESS: SVETOZAR MIHAJLOVIC
14 [Witness answered through interpreter]
15 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Mihajlovic. Please be seated and
16 make yourself comfortable.
17 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
19 Examination by Mr. Karadzic:
20 Q. [Interpretation] Hello, Mr. Mihajlovic.
21 A. Hello, Mr. President.
22 Q. I will ask you to make pauses between question and answer and to
23 speak slowly. I am one of those who speak very quickly, but here I'm
24 learning for the sake of record to mend my ways so that we wouldn't miss
1 A. I will try.
2 Q. And also please make pauses between my questions and your
3 answers. Mr. Mihajlovic, have you given a statement to the Defence team?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we please see 1D7940 in
8 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Can you see the statement on the screen in front of you?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Do you also have a hard copy?
12 A. I do.
13 Q. Thank you. I believe that the Chamber will allow you to use it
14 when you are asked something about specific paragraphs. Have you read
15 and signed this statement?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Thank you.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we please show the last page so
19 that the witness would identify his signature.
20 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Is this your signature?
22 A. It is.
23 Q. Thank you. Is this statement truthful to what you told the
24 Defence team who conducted an interview with you?
25 A. Yes, there is just one typo in paragraph 12.
1 Q. Thank you for your assistance. Can we please show paragraph 12.
2 Can you help us by telling us what should be changed there.
3 A. It says here in June 1994 I was appointed chairman of the
4 Executive Committee of the Bijeljina SO and I held this position until
5 late 1994. It should rather say until September 1997.
6 Q. "Up until," and then this should be deleted and it should read
7 "September 1997"; correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Thank you. Anything else that needs to be corrected?
10 A. No.
11 Q. Thank you. If I were to ask you the same questions today, would
12 your answers be substantially the same?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I tender this statement,
16 Your Excellencies, in accordance with the Rule 92 ter.
17 JUDGE KWON: Any objection, Ms. Gustafson?
18 MS. GUSTAFSON: No. Thank you, Your Honours.
19 JUDGE KWON: We'll receive it.
20 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D3137, Your Honours.
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes, please proceed, Mr. Karadzic.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I will now read in the
23 English language a short summary of Mr. Svetozar Mihajlovic's statement.
24 [In English] Mr. Svetozar Mihajlovic was the president of the
25 Bijeljina Municipal Executive Committee from June 1994 to September 1997.
1 Before this he was the financial director of the Duvan-Bilje Enterprise
2 in Bijeljina.
3 He lived in the multi-ethnic Bijeljina and was surprised to hear
4 that the trade union protests in the Elvako factory in 1990 and 1991 were
5 organised by the SDA leaders. This he considers that this was done to
6 damage the good relations between the Serbs and the Muslims and to allow
7 the SDA to carry out further separatist activities.
8 Svetozar Mihajlovic learned from two Muslim colleagues on
9 30th of March, 1992, that a war would start in Bijeljina that night;
10 however, he did not believe them. Later that evening armed clashes
11 occurred in the -- and there was a blockade of some parts of town. I
12 think I made mistake, 31st of March. It was clear that Muslims had been
13 planning this attack and a number of Serb residents did not know what was
14 going on. Svetozar Mihajlovic also learned from his neighbours that the
15 SDA had been handing out weaponry -- weapons from -- to gathered Muslims
16 earlier that day. These thoughts frightened the Serbian residents.
17 Mr. Svetozar Mihajlovic did not think that the army and the
18 police were able to protect them, and so, to save themselves, Serbian
19 residents decided to leave town and to go to the neighbouring villages.
20 They had to leave avoiding the blockades as they were controlled and
21 guarded by well-armed Muslims who illegally checked the IDs of the
22 inhabitants of Bijeljina and would stop them passing the barricades. The
23 SDA leadership had blocked the entire town by setting up numerous
24 barricades and snipers were active all over the town on dominant
1 Svetozar Mihajlovic was aware of Zeljko Raznatovic, Arkan, who
2 was a notorious manipulator. On 2nd of April, 1992,
3 Mr. Alija Izetbegovic informed other members of the Presidency that there
4 had been a massacre of Muslims in Bijeljina. A report was ordered and
5 Svetozar Mihajlovic watched Zeljko Raznatovic present this report to
6 President Karadzic even though the stand of the Main Staff of the VRS was
7 very known in relations to units that were not under the control of the
8 VRS. I suppose it's concerning 1995.
9 As the leader of the local commune and a member of the
10 Municipal Board of SDS in Bijeljina, Svetozar Mihajlovic never received
11 any instructions or orders from the republican organs to carry out
12 planned deportation of non-Serbs from Bijeljina, nor did he ever
13 personally issue such an order to his staff.
14 Relations between the civilian authorities and commands of the
15 VRS units in the municipality were correct. The civilian authorities of
16 Bijeljina municipality never interfered in command over VRS corps units.
17 After the fighting of the executive -- after the fighting, the
18 Executive Committee took care and made an effort to create normal living
19 and working conditions for all the citizens of the municipality. They
20 tried to prevent and eliminate any forms of pressure on or crimes against
21 non-Serbs in the municipality, demanding that the local institutions stop
22 and punish any perpetrators of such crimes.
23 In fact -- the fact that the war had led to religious and ethnic
24 polarisation, the extremely poor financial and social situation of the
25 inhabitants of the municipality, the ever-growing number of Serbs
1 displaced from Central Bosnia, and the impossibility to control all the
2 incidents that occurred led an increasing number of Muslims to request to
3 leave municipality -- Bijeljina municipality to go either, temporarily,
4 to an area under the control of BH army or to foreign countries.
5 That is a short summary and at that moment I do not have
6 questions for Mr. Mihajlovic.
7 JUDGE KWON: While your summary does not form part of the
8 evidence at all, page 67, transcript page, from line 4:
9 "A report was ordered and Svetozar Mihajlovic watched
10 Zeljko Raznatovic present this report to President Karadzic even though
11 the stand of the Main Staff of the VRS was very known in relations to
12 units that were not under the control of the VRS."
13 And I read witness's statement paragraph -- statement para 10 and
14 11. So it was not -- a bit unclear to me. So could you lead live with
15 this witness with respect to this part.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I will.
17 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Mr. Mihajlovic, you mentioned that you knew that
19 Zeljko Raznatovic was a notorious manipulator and you mention a meeting
20 he had with me in Bijeljina in 1995. If you have your statement with
21 you, please have a look at paragraphs 10 and 11. Would you tell us what
22 you had in mind and describe the event for us.
23 A. Yes. In the fall of 1995 the Serbian Volunteer Guard whose
24 commander was Zeljko Raznatovic, Arkan, was present in Bijeljina. It was
25 in the morning --
1 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. You do not need to look at the
2 statement of yours.
3 But yes, Ms. Gustafson, was that your point?
4 MS. GUSTAFSON: That was my point. Thank you.
5 JUDGE KWON: So could you tell us from the memory. And if
6 necessary, with notice, you may look at your statement. But I would like
7 you to try to tell us from your memory, as far as you remember. Do you
8 understand that, sir?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
10 I found it unusual that Mr. Raznatovic's unit remained in town on
11 that day, especially as it was already several hours since he had arrived
12 in Bijeljina. I could see that he wanted Mr. Karadzic to greet his unit
13 in Bijeljina. Mr. Raznatovic knew, as he was coming to Bijeljina from
14 the front near Sanski Most, that Mr. Karadzic was visiting the bishop of
15 Zvornik and Tuzla in Bijeljina together with the whole leadership. And
16 at any cost, he wanted his presence in Republika Srpska, that is to say
17 at the front near Sanski Most, to be verified in a way by Mr. Karadzic
18 coming out of the building and greeting his unit. I found this strange
19 because I was aware of the position of both the civilian and the military
20 authorities; namely, that units such as the Serbian Volunteer Guard and
21 other paramilitary units which were present in the territories under the
22 control of the Army of Republika Srpska in the beginning would have to
23 decide whether they wanted to be integrated in the Ministry of the
24 Interior or the Army of Republika Srpska.
25 JUDGE KWON: So it is your testimony that the event was not
1 planned at all?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was certainly not planned in
3 advance, and therefore he as a notorious manipulator - and we know him
4 from earlier, from the first days of the conflicts in Bijeljina - when he
5 did this by skilful manipulation. Therefore, having learned that
6 Mr. Karadzic was present, he went several times, as I learned later on,
7 that he went several times to Vladika's place and asked Deacon Zarko
8 whether the meeting would last long and saying that he needed to see
9 President Karadzic and it was answer to him that the meeting would last
10 long and Mr. Karadzic could not be informed about this. But he in any
11 way took the opportunity at the end of the meeting when Mr. Karadzic went
12 out into the courtyard, he used this opportunity to invite Mr. Karadzic
13 to greet the unit which was lined up at the moment in front of this
14 building of the lower court in Bijeljina. I was watching that from my
15 office which is perhaps a dozen metres away from the street.
16 JUDGE KWON: Did you by any chance have the opportunity to see
17 the video-clip of this event later on?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
19 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
20 Is that it, Mr. Karadzic? You concluded your
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Excellency. I don't
23 think I have any questions at the moment. I could ask him if --
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Did you have anything else in mind when you said he was a
2 A. Yes, I had in mind the events which occurred in early April when
3 a delegation from the Presidency of Bosnia-Herzegovina arrived in
4 Bijeljina led by Mrs. Biljana Plavsic who was a Presidency member. He
5 then also used this opportunity. He lined up his unit in front of the
6 entrance to the Municipal Assembly building. He reported to
7 Mrs. Plavsic, came to her, kissed her, and then together the two of them
8 walked into the Municipal Assembly building. This is also something
9 that's recorded in a video-clip. It was shown around the world and the
10 impression was that Biljana Plavsic and Zeljko Raznatovic were old
11 acquaintances. However, according to the testimony or the book of
12 Biljana Plavsic, and I also directly talked to her on several occasions,
13 saw Arkan for the first time in her life on that occasion.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have no further questions at this
17 JUDGE KWON: Very well. As you have noted, Mr. Mihajlovic, your
18 evidence in chief in this case has been admitted in most part in writing,
19 i.e., through your statement in lieu of your oral testimony. And now
20 you'll be cross-examined by the representative of the Office of the
22 Ms. Gustafson, please.
23 MS. GUSTAFSON: Thank you. Good afternoon, Your Honours.
24 Cross-examination by Ms. Gustafson:
25 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Mihajlovic.
1 A. Good afternoon.
2 Q. I'd just like to start by -- thank you. I'd just like to start
3 by hopefully clarifying something that Dr. Karadzic mentioned in his
4 summary which was the date when you stated that armed clashes began in
5 Bijeljina. And according to paragraph 3 of your statement you said that
6 armed clashes began on the evening of the 30th of March, 1992. The
7 Chamber's heard evidence that, in fact, those clashes began on the
8 evening of the 31st of March, 1992. I refer to P2629 as an example.
9 So my question for you is: Do you think he may be mistaken and,
10 in fact, the clashes began on the 31st of March?
11 A. Yes, the conflicts began on the 31st of March.
12 Q. Okay. Much of your statement is taken up with a discussion of
13 Arkan and your view, as you mentioned again a few moments ago, that he
14 was a notorious manipulator. And you also give a fairly detailed account
15 of events in Bijeljina in early April. But what you don't say anywhere
16 in your statement is that Arkan entered Bijeljina between the 31st of
17 March and the 1st of April with a group of his forces, he took part in
18 the conflict there, and within a few days he had asserted control over
19 the town. Now, that's a pretty important fact about war time events in
20 Bijeljina, a fact that the Trial Chamber should be aware of. You agree?
21 A. Yes, there is no doubted that Zeljko Raznatovic, Arkan, arrived
22 in Bijeljina on the 1st of April and stayed there for around five days.
23 Q. Okay. And you talked about a conversation you had with
24 Biljana Plavsic regarding Arkan's presence in Bijeljina, and the gist of
25 that was that Mrs. Plavsic told you that she had never seen or heard of
1 Arkan until the conflict broke out, and that's at paragraphs 8 and 9 of
2 your statement. When was that conversation you had with Mrs. Plavsic?
3 A. I had this conversation with her after the events and practically
4 whenever we met, and we met many times. Whenever we would go over these
5 events, Biljana Plavsic would always tell me and always repeat this as an
6 instance of manipulation, this occasion and this image which was
7 represented in such a way that she was really the one who was
8 manipulated. And that Zeljko Raznatovic deliberately, as his positions
9 and actions from the time even before the conflict are well-known, he was
10 very crafty and he wanted, by doing this, to verify himself, to have a
11 justification for himself, so that the impression would be that he had
12 arrived with his unit with the knowledge of the highest government organs
13 even though that was not correct.
14 Q. Okay. You said that she told you -- Mrs. Plavsic told you that
15 she was the one who was manipulated by Arkan, basically imposing himself
16 on her at this time. But at the time what she did publicly in addition
17 to kiss Arkan, as you have already mentioned, was that she gave an
18 interview on television with Arkan sitting by her side and she stated in
19 that interview that she had decided to leave the rest of the Presidency
20 delegation, visit the Serb Crisis Staff, and meet with Arkan and his
21 associates. And the direct quote is:
22 "It was my choice to first visit the local Serbian people's
23 Crisis Staff and meet here with Mr. Arkan and his associates here."
24 And that's P5587.
25 Were you aware of that public statement by Mrs. Plavsic at the
2 A. Yes. The statement was broadcast in the media. However, one
3 cannot see from the statement that she earlier had any contacts with
4 Mr. Zeljko Raznatovic, Arkan. When he came there and met him and
5 realised that he was the man who had arrived in Bijeljina, she wanted to
6 see for herself what the situation was like because she had information
7 that a massacre had been carried out in Bijeljina and that there was a
8 chaotic situation. So she wanted to see for herself together with other
9 members of the Presidency who were members of the -- who were members of
10 the delegation with her and I remember that it was a day of the Muslim
11 holiday Bajram, so that Fikret Abdic, then Mr. Doko, who was in charge of
12 people's defence, and General Prascevic, that is to say a Muslim, were
13 also visiting Bijeljina on that day. So they toured the town and visited
14 some of the Muslim houses for a while. They wanted to see for themselves
15 what the situation in Bijeljina was, whether there were any casualties,
16 how many casualties there were, who the casualties were, and so on and so
18 Q. Okay. And did Mrs. Plavsic ever tell you that about three weeks
19 after she met with Arkan in Bijeljina she called his headquarters and
20 asked that Arkan come to Sarajevo and "bring the merchandise" and that's
21 P1106. Did she ever tell you about that?
22 A. No, she never told me that, nor have I ever heard about this.
23 Q. Okay. The next thing I'd like to do is actually play the video
24 from 1995 with Arkan but I note the time --
25 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Because that video-clip was referred
1 to again where Mrs. Plavsic said that she visited the Crisis Staff to
2 meet Mr. Arkan. Could I ask the CLSS to translate that -- officially
3 translate that part of Mrs. Plavsic's word from the video, whether it's
4 5587 or -- I'm sorry -- or Exhibit P6211.
5 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
6 JUDGE KWON: Very well. I note the time. If it is convenient,
7 we shall take a break for 45 minutes, and resume at 1.15.
8 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.29 p.m.
9 --- On resuming at 1.17 p.m.
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson.
11 MR. ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. President. If I could just
12 introduce to the Trial Chamber Narges Miraj from Afghanistan who is also
13 one of our legal interns and will be joining us this session. Thank you.
14 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
15 Yes, Ms. Gustafson, please continue.
16 MS. GUSTAFSON: Thank you.
17 Q. Now I'd like to play a clip of the event that you described in
18 the autumn of 1995 in Bijeljina with Arkan and President Karadzic. If we
19 could play -- this is P2858 if we could play the first 30 seconds first.
20 [Video-clip played]
21 MS. GUSTAFSON:
22 Q. Now, Mr. Mihajlovic, can you confirm that this is a video of the
23 event that you describe in your statement in the autumn of 1995?
24 A. Yes, I think that that's it.
25 Q. Okay.
1 MS. GUSTAFSON: If we could now go to 1 minute and 30 seconds of
2 this exhibit and we'll play until 2 minutes and 7 seconds.
3 [Video-clip played]
4 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "For the guard and for you as the
5 commander of the guard.
6 "Thank you very much, Mr. President.
7 "Gratitude for you being there. This is not ..."
8 MS. GUSTAFSON:
9 Q. Okay. At page 70 of today's transcript, Mr. Mihajlovic, you
10 testified that this event "was certainly not planned in advance." Now,
11 you said you were a dozen metres away at the time, so I assume you saw
12 President Karadzic hand these two certificates to Arkan, one for Arkan
13 and one for unit. Did it cross your mind at the time that this event
14 would have had to have been planned in advance in order for
15 President Karadzic to have these certificates prepared and ready to hand
16 to Arkan?
17 A. I observed this event from my office, which you could see in the
18 footage a moment ago. You could see the municipal building. Perhaps it
19 was about 50 metres away as the crow flies. I heard -- I saw
20 President Karadzic as he was walking from the residence towards this
21 street and I saw Arkan welcome him. I saw when they reviewed the troops
22 and when they kissed the flag, and I heard Mr. Karadzic say "bless you
23 heros" and when they responded. As for this detail, I did not hear this
24 conversation with them. I saw that they stayed there briefly a bit
25 longer, but I did not see the detail of this decoration. It was only
1 later when I saw this footage on television -- actually, it was broadcast
2 that Mr. Karadzic as a token of recognition to Mr. Arkan's unit and to
3 him personally handed this decoration over to him. Actually, I'm not
4 sure whether this had been planned or whether this is something that was
5 prepared by some of the services, the staff, and that Mr. Karadzic just
6 took advantage of this opportunity to hand this over to him. I'm not
7 sure that it had been planned in advance.
8 Q. But you agree that someone in Mr. Karadzic's staff must have
9 planned this in advance in order to prepare these certificates; right?
10 A. I think that this event could not have been planned in terms of
11 happening that very moment because no one could expect Mr. Raznatovic's
12 unit to return precisely on that day to Bijeljina. The return was --
13 well, it couldn't have been planned in advance - I don't know how many
14 days - it happened on that day. And as for the staff to prepare that,
15 they probably took this opportunity to have this handed over to him, this
16 decoration that had probably been prepared in advance.
17 Q. Okay. So it's your evidence that someone in Mr. Karadzic's staff
18 just walked around with certificates for Arkan in the event that they
19 bumped into him somewhere; is that correct?
20 A. Well, not exactly the way you had put it, but it was just this
21 opportunity that was taken, this decoration was probably in one of the
22 services that was there. And this opportunity was taken when this unit
23 visited, this unit that was returning from the front line. It was a
24 convenient opportunity to have this handed over because the visit of
25 Mr. Raznatovic's unit was not something that often happened. He didn't
1 often visit Republika Srpska. This was the second time that the unit of
2 Mr. Raznatovic came to the area of Republika Srpska.
3 Q. Okay. Let's play now from 3 minutes and 7 seconds -- sorry,
4 let's play from here until the end of the clip.
5 [Video-clip played]
6 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "Thank you very much, Mr. President.
7 Would you be so kind as to say a few words to the guard.
8 "Radovan Karadzic: I am deeply thankful and I congratulate you
9 and I hope that we will meet again in peace and you will always have a
10 place in the heart of those who you have defended and we will be their
11 dear guests. Thank you.
12 "Mr. President, in the name of the Serbian Volunteer Guard I wish
13 to say two words to you which is that we are ready and if you call us and
14 that we will be back to defend our ancient homeland, to defend our women
15 and children, to defend the Serbian territory and our Orthodox religion.
16 Thank you, Mr. President.
17 "Good day. Very well, Mr. President. We are going back now. I
18 want to thank you once again.
19 "Radovan Karadzic: Good-bye.
20 "We are here, we will come by and we will be in touch."
21 MS. GUSTAFSON:
22 Q. Okay, a few moments ago you said you heard what Dr. Karadzic said
23 on this occasion and we heard it again here. He gave multiple thanks to
24 Arkan, he congratulated him and referred to him as a beloved defender of
25 the Serbian territory and the Orthodox religion. Now, your evidence was
1 that Arkan manipulated this situation in order to legitimatise his
2 presence in the RS, but you would agree, would you not, that
3 Dr. Karadzic's choice of words on this occasion, multiple thanks,
4 congratulations in reference to Arkan as a beloved defender, would have
5 added to any impression this event already created about the legitimacy
6 of Arkan's presence in the RS?
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I ask that not to amalgamate
8 what I said and what Arkan said. I did not refer to defence of the
10 MS. GUSTAFSON: I apologise. That's correct.
11 Q. You can answer the question now, sir.
12 A. Yes. Well, these are words of courtesy when spoken. I don't see
13 that they carry some big message or anything like that. These are words
14 of courtesy when this unit was returning from the front line. This was a
15 matter of courtesy, a customary thing, to express one's gratitude in that
16 way in that situation, and that's what I have to say. I have to say that
17 the position of the leadership of Republika Srpska and the president on
18 several occasions through his orders, as I've already said, asked for
19 this and cautioned that all units be placed either under the command of
20 the Army of Republika Srpska or the Ministry of the Interior. Since
21 there were conflicts and there was disagreement between Arkan and
22 General Mladic, Arkan's unit did not join the Army of Republika Srpska
23 and was not part of that army. But there was this compromise solution to
24 be within the MUP, the Ministry of the Interior, and as such they were
25 considered part of the Ministry of the Interior.
1 Q. Okay. A few moments ago you said something long the lines of
2 this was the second time Arkan's unit was present in the RS. Now, are
3 you aware that Arkan was actually in Bijeljina at another meeting around
4 this time, in fact, on the 20th of September, 1995, and in Bijeljina
5 there he met with local Bijeljina officials as well as high-level
6 representatives of the Serbian MUP and the RS government and they were
7 planning an operation to liberate Teocak. Did you know about that?
8 A. I did not attend that meeting, but I did hear that Arkan with
9 part of his security detail had been in Bijeljina and not only then.
10 From time to time he would cross over and come to Bijeljina too on his
11 own only with his immediate security escorts to see some friends,
12 et cetera. I heard that some action had been planned vis-a-vis Teocak;
13 however, I think that this action was not fully realised. I think that
14 there were just some attempts, something like that.
15 Q. Okay.
16 MS. GUSTAFSON: Could we see 65 ter 24695, please.
17 Q. Now, this is a report from the East Bosnia Corps command security
18 department to the VRS Main Staff and it describes a meeting of the
19 Bijeljina Municipal Assembly attended, among others, by Mr. Frenki and
20 Bozovic from the MUP of Serbia and Arkan on the one side and Mr. Kozic,
21 the RS prime minister, and Minister Boro Bosic and organs of authorities
22 of the Bijeljina region on the other. And at this meeting it was
23 allegedly agreed that Arkan and his unit should take a liberate Teocak.
24 This would be financed and paid for by the republican government and cost
25 3 million Deutschemarks. Now, I take it from your earlier answer that
1 you are familiar generally with the fact that this meeting took place,
2 although you didn't attend it; is that right?
3 A. Later on I heard that there had been some meeting, but I never
4 heard of this information that I see here now. This is the first time
5 that I see this and this is the first time that I hear of some amount of
6 money being agreed upon, although that is what this document says.
7 Q. Okay. If we could just go to the next page in the English and
8 this is at the bottom of the second-last paragraph in the B/C/S. And
9 here the East Bosnia Corps command states:
10 "Considering the proximity of Teocak to the safe area of Tuzla
11 and the current military and political situation, this operation could
12 also have strategic importance and therefore it deserves an assessment
13 and a decision at the VRS Main Staff level."
14 Now, you gave evidence about your view of the Main Staff's and
15 the VRS's view of Arkan. Were you aware of the fact that the East Bosnia
16 Corps command was recommending to the VRS Main Staff that this operation
17 involving Arkan should be assessed and decided at the Main Staff level?
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I think that the question is not
19 fair as it's been interpreted to me and to the witness. That is not what
20 this document means.
21 JUDGE KWON: Could you put your question again just for clarity.
22 MS. GUSTAFSON: Certainly.
23 Q. My question was whether Mr. Mihajlovic was aware that the
24 East Bosnia Corps command was recommending to the Main Staff that this
25 operation involving Arkan should be assessed and decided at the
1 Main Staff level. And I think that's a completely fair question based on
2 this document.
3 A. I didn't understand in this document at least that this had to do
4 with the Serb Volunteer Guard, that is one thing, at least on this page I
5 do not see that. And Teocak was a strategic location throughout and
6 several times during the conflict attempts were made to resolve the issue
7 of Teocak; however, this never succeeded and the Army of Republika Srpska
8 never took Teocak. Although certain problems came from there, certain
9 attacks and so on. Maybe General Simic here asked for consent from his
10 superiors, but I know that permanently there was this conflict between
11 Arkan and General Mladic. He did not recognise him and he didn't want
12 his presence in the territory of Republika Srpska.
13 Q. Okay.
14 MS. GUSTAFSON: I tender this document.
15 MR. ROBINSON: Objection, Mr. President. I don't think the
16 witness has been able to confirm anything about the document and it's
17 also not inconsistent with his testimony because it's -- he said he
18 didn't know and it isn't something he would have been expected to know.
19 MS. GUSTAFSON: Well, two responses to that. First, I think the
20 witness did generally confirm that he was aware of such a meeting taking
21 place; and secondly, it does have impeachment value. I note that in
22 relation to my last question this witness had said given his views on the
23 VRS Main Staff view of Arkan and this document states clearly that the
24 East Bosnia Corps command is recommending to the Main Staff that they
25 consider and assess and make a decision on this operation that the
1 document states will involve Arkan and his unit taking and liberating
2 Teocak. So I think it does have impeachment value as well.
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE KWON: The Chamber agrees with Ms. Gustafson. We'll
5 receive it.
6 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6210, Your Honours.
7 MS. GUSTAFSON:
8 Q. Okay, Mr. Mihajlovic, I'd like to move on to another topic. At
9 paragraph 21 of your statement you commented on an adjudicated fact about
10 a plan implemented in September 1992 to rid Bijeljina of its remaining
11 Muslims, a plan that involved killing remaining Muslim families, and your
12 comment about this fact was that it was completely false. But you don't
13 deny, do you, that Muslim families were killed in September 1992? For
14 example, the murder of the members of the Sarajlic and Sejmenovic
15 families by Dusko Malovic's special police unit was common knowledge in
16 Bijeljina at the time, wasn't it?
17 A. Yes. Something did happen when paramilitary units committed a
18 crime in a neighbourhood in Bijeljina called Bukres. Two families were
19 taken and two other families I think, so there were about 20 persons
20 there. This was an abominable thing that happened, and all of Bijeljina
21 and Semberija had condemned that as unacceptable. However, no one can
22 say that this as a planned crime and no one can say that it happened in
23 several places in town. This was just in one place in one part of town
24 where this thing that happened was truly terrible. But one cannot say
25 that it was planned, that it was organised, that it was planned in
1 advance and this kind of thing happened in several parts of town in order
2 to exert pressure against the Muslims.
3 Q. Okay. You said that paramilitary units committed this crime.
4 This crime was widely attributed to Dusko Malovic's special police unit,
5 wasn't it?
6 A. Dusko Malovic was represented as some kind of regular unit that
7 had come. We in Semberija and Bijeljina, we the official leadership,
8 considered it to be a paramilitary unit and we never accepted it was a
9 regular unit because it did not have any credibility with us. And we did
10 not accept that unit. On the contrary, we reacted on the basis of all of
11 that that happened with a view to having this unit removed from Bijeljina
12 as soon as possible, and that was done, indeed. This crime that they
13 committed was later dealt with by the court of Bosnia-Herzegovina and
14 still is before that court.
15 Q. And it was dealt with much, much later, right, many years after
16 this event?
17 A. Unfortunately, that's right. Units, or rather, officials of the
18 MUP carried out an on-site investigation and saw what the situation was,
19 and other organs that were supposed to deal with this straight away, they
20 probably did not act. I was not in government at the time, in Bijeljina,
21 but later on an investigation was started with regard to all of that and
22 I believe that this process -- I hope that this process is being brought
23 to an end.
24 Q. Okay. Now I'd like to have D1429 on the screen, please. And the
25 document you're about to see is the document you discuss at paragraph 14
1 of your statement. This is the document where you request -- you and
2 others request that criminal proceedings be initiated against
3 Vojislav Djurkovic also known as Vojkan. First I'd like to ask you about
4 your statement because the first statement we received of yours, the one
5 that you gave to Defence investigators before you arrived in The Hague
6 referred to this document and in that statement you said that this
7 document was an example of how the Executive Committee demanded that
8 local institutions stop and punish the perpetrators of crimes. Then
9 after you came to The Hague you added three lengthy passages to this
10 paragraph and you -- in those passages you explained that, in fact, this
11 document doesn't reflect any underlying criminality at all and you gave
12 an elaborate story about how this was all a big misunderstanding, that
13 the Pale authorities were informed, General Subotic came to Bijeljina to
14 investigate. Mr. Djurkovic was arrested and said that he was assisting
15 Muslims over Mount Majevica and that the Muslims in Bijeljina organised
16 some kind of protest to complain about Djurkovic's arrest.
17 I'd like to ask you because I would think that if what you told
18 to the Defence after you came to The Hague about this document is, in
19 fact, true, I would think that when you were first shown this document by
20 the Defence, the first thing you would have said was: This is all a big
21 mistake. We thought Vojkan was expelling Muslims but we conducted an
22 immediate inquiry and we found out that, in fact, he was assisting
23 Muslims over Mount Majevica at their own request. Can you explain why
24 you failed to say any of this when you were first shown this document by
25 the Defence?
1 A. There's something in your question that I did not say, actually,
2 nor is it in my statement. These are different incidents.
3 Vojkan Djurkovic was a person on that committee that was conducting
4 exchanges, in fact, perpetrating abuses and moving Muslims out of
5 Bijeljina. That's an action that we in the government condemned and we
6 were all opposed to what he was doing. And that is why when one in a
7 series of these incidents happened we who are signed here below demanded
8 that Mr. Djurkovic be brought in before us to explain on whose behalf he
9 was doing it. As you can see from the document, that was right after the
10 day when this group of Muslims were driven out. And in that group there
11 was some people who wanted to go but there were also people who did not
12 want to leave their homes, and that was precisely the problem. He very
13 often abused his position and rounded up even those people who had no
14 intention of leaving. That's why we did what we did. Those who wanted
15 to leave were offended because this action we had organised was
16 terminated. He told them: If you want, you can go and protest it. And
17 some of them really came to protest when we said that he should stop
18 doing this and that otherwise we would arrest him. After that, a group
19 came to protest before the Municipal Assembly. Certainly they did not
20 speak for everyone. But there were Muslims who wanted to leave to
21 reunite with their families or leave for third countries or simply wanted
22 to leave out of fear because at that time there was a great crisis in
23 Bijeljina, there were many refugees, so many that the population was
24 doubled. The pressure was enormous. People were looking for
25 accommodation. And in this search for residential space incidents and
1 even crimes happened. And we were trying to prevent this, that's why we
2 said that we would arrest him if he goes on.
3 There are other decisions by the War Presidency that I signed
4 calling for precisely such measures that we took against Vojkan and
5 against other groups that were trying to disturb our interrelations in
6 this way and were putting pressure on Muslims to leave Bijeljina or expel
8 Q. Okay. I just want to make sure I have this clear. It's your
9 evidence that Vojkan did, as you said, often abuse his position and round
10 up even those people who had no intention of leaving. So it's your
11 evidence that Vojkan was expelling Muslims from Bijeljina, although not
12 every Muslim who left Bijeljina with Vojkan was expelled. Is that a
13 correct understanding of your position?
14 A. Yes. However, among those who left Bijeljina in the organisation
15 of Djurkovic there were certainly some people who did not want to leave.
16 But none of the reports from those Muslims who were leaving Bijeljina
17 ever came to the official authorities against Djurkovic. He is still
18 free. He was under investigation for a while, but he was released
19 because nobody officially reported him, although -- although we had
20 indications that he was, indeed, involved in wrong-doing and that some of
21 the people whom he made leave did not want to go. He was acting outside
22 the party, contrary to the policy of the party and in co-operation with
23 Mr. Arkan. He was, in fact, under Arkan's control. He was a member of
24 Arkan's unit who remained in Bijeljina. I heard later that there were
25 some verbal duels between them in Bijeljina. Arkan wanted him to make a
1 financial contribution for the upkeep of his unit in Erdut. Vojkan gave
2 him some money, but Arkan thought it was not enough. And that's where
3 they had a verbal clash. All that was done was done bypassing the
4 authorities and the ruling party in Bijeljina.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 MS. GUSTAFSON: I have no further questions.
7 Q. Thank you, Mr. Mihajlovic.
8 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Ms. Gustafson.
9 Do you have re-examination, Mr. Karadzic?
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Just a few questions. Could we
11 look at P6210 that was admitted a moment ago.
12 Re-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
13 Q. [Interpretation] Until it appears, can you tell me,
14 Mr. Mihajlovic, do you know who Boro Bosic was?
15 A. Boro Bosic was the manager of the Ugljevik mine.
16 Q. Thank you. Now, could we zoom in on the Serbian version, the
17 last paragraph, zoom inasmuch as we can to see the nature of this
18 document. Can we collapse the English. The parties can still see it. I
19 will read this. It says:
20 "I notified the commander of IBK General Simic,
21 Eastern Bosnian Corps. The information was received from a reliable
22 source and it was not verified. I will try to verify it in future and
23 keep you informed of anything I find out."
24 Can you tell me, what kind of information is it and what does it
25 mean, "obtained from the source"?
1 A. Obviously this is information that is not even remotely direct
2 knowledge, and based on that information, based on that report, the
3 author says that he will try to get some more information or to verify it
4 and report later.
5 Q. When you say Mr. Bosic was the director of this hydro
6 power-plant, did you know this even without him? What would be his
7 interest in releasing the water reservoir?
8 A. Well, because it is an integral part of the hydro power-plant for
9 the hydro power-plant to operate normally, in view of the threats that
10 the reservoir would be emptied, disabling the hydro power-plant, it's
11 certain that Mr. Bosic would have found it in his interest to remove that
12 danger and to secure the reservoir so that the hydro power-plant could
13 operate continuously.
14 Q. The minister of energy, Prime Minister Kozic, and Mr. Bosic, were
15 they able to issue orders to carry out this strategic operation? Could
16 they make the decision?
17 A. I'm not sure. That would have been in the jurisdiction of the
18 Army of Republika Srpska.
19 Q. Thank you. A moment ago when you were asked about dealing with
20 these crimes in Bijeljina much later, you answered that the MUP made an
21 on-site investigation and documented the crime. Did the MUP do it
23 A. MUP officers started working on the case immediately, determined
24 the number of victims, put on record all the facts, and reported to their
25 superiors. I have no details. I know only that this was done.
1 Q. Did you hear that Arkan's unit perpetrated any crimes in Krajina
2 in 1995?
3 A. No. I did not. And I believe no information was available about
4 that. Arkan was involved in an operation around Sanski Most, and that,
5 to the best of my knowledge, is connected with his involvement in
7 Q. Can you remember and can you tell the Chamber all the forces that
8 attacked Republika Srpska in the autumn of 1995?
9 A. In the autumn of 1995 Republika Srpska was attacked in addition
10 to the BH army by the regular army of Croatia with its paramilitary units
11 that participated in these operations.
12 Q. Was -- were they assisted by an international military
13 organisation with air-strikes and logistics?
14 A. Yes. Certain strategic targets in Republika Srpska were bombed
15 at the time and that was the harbinger of further action to facilitate
16 the passage of the BH army and the regular army of Republika Srpska.
17 They were --
18 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
19 Yes, Ms. Gustafson.
20 MS. GUSTAFSON: I fail to see how this arises from the
22 MR. ROBINSON: Well, Mr. President, it explains one of the
23 reasons why Arkan may have been present in Bijeljina in 1995, which was a
24 subject covered by the cross-examination.
25 JUDGE KWON: Could you be more specific, Mr. Robinson.
1 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. During the cross-examination
2 there were questions about Arkan's involvement in other areas of Bosnia
3 and that he was coming back or was present in Bijeljina after having
4 participated in the war in 1995 and other areas of Bosnia. So the
5 reasons for that participation -- and I think the witness has testified
6 that he was under the MUP as opposed to the VRS during that period. So I
7 think that the reasons for his presence in 1995 in Bosnia was something
8 that was -- came out of the cross-examination.
9 JUDGE KWON: But how is an international military organisation
10 related to this?
11 MR. ROBINSON: Well, because in September 1995 when Arkan was in
12 Bosnia, Bosnia was under attack by NATO, by Croatia, and the Krajina was
13 falling during that period. So I think that's the relevance of it all.
14 [Trial Chamber confers]
15 JUDGE KWON: Do you have anything to add, Ms. Gustafson?
16 MS. GUSTAFSON: No. Just that -- well, I mean -- I guess -- it
17 was the -- the evidence about Arkan's presence in Bijeljina was raised in
18 direct, it was in the witness's statement, and then I questioned about
19 that presence in Bijeljina and nothing about any wider context. So I
20 don't think this is relevant.
21 [Trial Chamber confers]
22 JUDGE KWON: The Chamber's fine with dealing with Arkan's
23 participation, but the question was formulated to the effect whether
24 there's any international organisation with air-strikes and logistics.
25 What does it have anything to do with Arkan's participation? So could
1 you put your question more directly in a not-leading way.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right. I'll try.
3 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Mr. Mihajlovic, you said that Arkan's unit, not he and his
5 entourage, was in Republika Srpska only twice. What exactly did you
6 mean? What was the first time and what was the second time?
7 A. The first time was on the 1st and the 2nd of April and he stayed
8 until the 5th, I believe, in Bijeljina. That's the first time, as far as
9 I know. And the second time was in September 1995 in Krajina in the
10 environs of Sanski Most and that area. I don't know exactly how many
11 days he stayed there. Anyway, at that time, in that area, there was an
12 aggression going on, an attack on Krajina by the
13 Army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, by the regular army and paramilitary units of
14 Croatia, and the advance operation to that, the Operation Storm, was the
15 bombing of Serb positions and towns by NATO.
16 Q. Thank you. During her [as interpreted] first stay, is it the
17 case that Bosnia and Herzegovina of which we were all part was still in
18 existence? Do you remember when it was internationally recognised?
19 A. At that time it was still the state of Yugoslavia, and Bosnia was
20 recognised by the United Nations later.
21 Q. So could we say that September 1995 was his first visit to
22 Republika Srpska. Before that his first visit to -- was to the Republic
23 of Bosnia?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Did you notice my presence in Bijeljina or any telephone
1 communications from me during the April events?
2 A. No. At that time you never appeared nor did you make any
3 comments. At that time at the insistence of the president of the
4 Presidency of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Mr. Alija Izetbegovic, a delegation was
5 set up. And during those days two different delegations from the
6 Presidency of Bosnia-Herzegovina visited.
7 Q. Can you tell us one last thing. What kind of information did the
8 Presidency and the foreign minister Salajdzic and the official Muslim
9 representatives present about the number of victims in the April events?
10 You spoke about that on page 74 today --
11 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
12 Yes, Ms. Gustafson.
13 MS. GUSTAFSON: Again, I don't think -- it has nothing to do with
14 any of the questions that I asked. The only thing I asked about April
15 were the -- first, clarifying the date that the conflict started and the
16 questions about Mrs. Plavsic's contacts with Arkan.
17 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic, can you answer how this arose
18 from the lines of cross-examination.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, it arises because the witness
20 was not allowed to finish his answer. On page 74 he tried to say that
21 Biljana Plavsic and Abdic came to ascertain whether a massacre had really
22 happened because there was talk about a large number of victims, but he
23 was interrupted. I'm now giving him a chance to answer --
24 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic --
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] -- what kind of massacre it was,
1 what kind of number are we talking about.
2 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Let me check the transcript.
3 Yes, Ms. Gustafson.
4 MS. GUSTAFSON: First of all, there's no indication that the
5 witness was cut off in his answer or failed to complete his answer. And
6 secondly, I would note that at paragraph 9 of his statement he already
7 said that Mr. Izetbegovic informed other members of the Presidency that
8 there had been a real massacre of Muslims in Bijeljina. That's why the
9 delegation went to Bijeljina. So if Dr. Karadzic had wanted to ask
10 more -- find out more about this report, he could have asked it in his
11 direct or clarified it in the 92 ter statement.
12 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
13 Please move on to another topic, Mr. Karadzic.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes. But these lacunas in the
15 transcript clearly show that the witness did not express himself exactly
16 as he wished. However, I have no further questions and I thank you very
17 much, Mr. Mihajlovic, also for your work while you were part of the
18 authorities in Bijeljina, and for your testimony.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
20 JUDGE KWON: Well, that concludes your evidence, Mr. Mihajlovic.
21 On behalf of the Chamber, I thank you for coming to The Hague to give it.
22 Now you are free to go.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
24 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
25 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson.
1 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. The next witness that we have
2 scheduled is not here and I released him for the day because of my
3 expectation as to the time as well as his age, and I didn't want to have
4 him waiting around. Yesterday we had a witness who waited for four hours
5 and VWS asked me to be more considerate of the witnesses. So I apologise
6 for having to rise early, but I assure you it won't affect our ability to
7 complete the witnesses within the week.
8 [Trial Chamber confers]
9 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Then we'll continue tomorrow morning at
10 9.00. Yes. The hearing is adjourned.
11 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.09 p.m.,
12 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 21st day of
13 March, 2013, at 9.00 a.m.