1 Thursday, 19 December 2013
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 a.m.
6 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, everyone.
7 Please continue, Mr. Karadzic.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning, Excellencies. Good
10 morning to everybody.
11 WITNESS: SIMO MISKOVIC [Resumed]
12 [Witness answered through interpreter]
13 Re-examination by Mr. Karadzic: [Continued]
14 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Miskovic.
15 A. Good morning, President.
16 Q. Now I'm only getting sound. It was turned down very low.
17 Yesterday you were asked about whether those people who were
18 interrogated, why they weren't tried. Did you know how they were
19 released or how it is that they weren't tried?
20 A. You know, from my testimonies so far and my statements, that I
21 had -- that I was not in a position of authority with regard to any of
22 these facilities. However, according to what I heard from my colleagues,
23 they had interrogated all the people in Omarska. And based on that
24 information, that is, the private conversations that I had, I learned
25 that during the interrogations it was established that there had been
1 preparations for possible war, and that referred, first of all, to making
2 stocks of food and medicines that were found in bunkers at Kozarac. I
3 didn't see that with my own eyes. That's not first-hand information.
4 Based on those conversations my comment was: But how come that no
5 criminal complaint was ever filed against them? That was my private
6 comment. I wasn't present, as I said. I don't know what happened. But
7 the last time I was here to testify about the same topic, the
8 Zupljanin Defence said that criminal complaints were filed. I don't
9 know, as I said. I played no part in that. I repeat, I was wondering
10 how come that it didn't happen.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we please show 65 ter 20213
13 to the witness.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Please take a look at the document.
16 A. Yes. Just give me a moment.
17 Q. If you read this text, it says that this was -- this is a pardon
18 of the 2nd of October, 1992, signed by Vojo Kupresanin on my behalf. Can
19 you see the signature?
20 A. Yes, I can see it. It says Serbian Assembly of the Krajina.
21 Q. Thank you. Do you know of any other cases of us having released
22 even hardened criminals, because we wanted to exchange them for Serbs?
23 A. I don't know. I was not informed --
24 JUDGE KWON: [Previous translation continues]...
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- probably there were such cases.
1 MS. GUSTAFSON: The question suggests that it has been
2 established these people were criminals.
3 JUDGE KWON: Let's continue. The Chamber is cognisant of this.
4 You are not giving evidence, Mr. Karadzic.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right. I seek to tender this
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll receive it.
8 THE REGISTRAR: It receives Exhibit D4211, Your Honours.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Let us briefly show D2056.
10 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Please take a look at these names. Do you know them? Are these
12 prominent people, these people that I pardoned in 1994? Can you please
13 read what this decision is about.
14 A. Decision on pardoning sentenced persons. Article (a), the
15 sentenced Jusuf, son of Omer, Ramusevic, shall be released from serving a
16 prison sentence.
17 Q. You don't need to read it all.
18 A. I can see that there are people from our area, Seferovic,
19 Causevic, and others. They must be from the Prijedor municipality, but I
20 don't remember anyone individual.
21 Q. But you know that they had all been indicted and one of them was
23 A. Yes.
24 MS. GUSTAFSON: That was a leading question.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It was not a question. It was just
1 a reply to the objection of the OTP that it has not been established that
2 they were convicted.
3 JUDGE KWON: You are not giving evidence. You did not follow the
4 objection of Ms. Gustafson.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I can hardly wait to give evidence,
6 believe me. But since this is an exhibit already, I don't want to tender
7 it. I just want to show that these people were tried.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the first thing I hear,
9 that some people were convicted.
10 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Thank you --
12 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. I don't follow this conversation.
13 You are -- let's continue.
14 MR. TIEGER: Excuse me, Your Honour, but it is a perfect example
15 of the problem with leading because if the witness hadn't noted that
16 the --
17 JUDGE KWON: Just let's continue, Mr. Tieger.
18 MR. TIEGER: Okay. But it emphasises the point.
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Mr. Miskovic, we're familiar with my position with regard to
21 abiding by the law, and what was your attitude in that respect?
22 A. My attitude was generally known in Prijedor, but your position
23 too, as I have already said in all my statements, that at the meetings
24 where I was present your position was the same: Respect for the law, the
25 constitution, and other rules and regulations.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 A. The similar example is the -- our phone conversation after the
3 referendum which was intercepted and was shown here in this court.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Let us show 65 ter 32661.
5 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. The 15th of November. When did our referendum take place, the
8 A. I don't remember. I think it was after the one about the
9 secession of Bosnia-Herzegovina conducted by the Muslims and Croats.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I need the fourth page in English
11 and in Serbian it may be the third. Could we get the right page in
12 Serbian. Let's see. No, it's not this one. I'm going to read from the
13 English. It seems that we can't find it -- or maybe this is it. I guess
14 this is it.
15 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Please focus your attention where I say: "Good, excellent, you
17 thought well ..." Do read it and especially the part under that. You
18 don't have to read it out aloud. Just tell me what this is about.
19 Thank you. Take a look at this. Let us see precisely -- this is
20 to see exactly how to do it in a legal way, this part I mean. And it
21 also says to see how to do it legally and then proceed with it --
22 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: The relevant section seems
23 to be on another page.
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. How does this tally with your experience about our insisting on
1 law and order?
2 A. In this intercept you pointed out to me that I should contact
3 Simovic and see to it that everything is done in a legal manner, but I
4 never met him so that it remained an open issue.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I seek to tender this document.
7 JUDGE KWON: Do you remember what this "it" was you were talking
8 about, do it legally, in a legal way?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This was the referendum, the
10 referendum about remaining in Yugoslavia.
11 JUDGE KWON: And you confirm that you had a telephone
12 conversation like this with Mr. Karadzic at the time? So this was you?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, this is me. We already dealt
14 with this at the trial of Stojan Zupljanin, the very same document, and
15 it was identified that it was me.
16 JUDGE KWON: We'll receive it.
17 THE REGISTRAR: It receives Exhibit D4212, Your Honours.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Yesterday item 6 from your minutes was the topic of a question, a
21 clear policy toward the non-Serb population should be defined. What was
22 my position and the position of the party, bodies of the SDS, with regard
23 to non-Serbs?
24 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
25 MS. GUSTAFSON: If I could get a reference. I don't recall any
1 questions about an item 6 about a policy toward non-Serb population
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we get -- I believe it was
4 admitted but I have a 65 ter number, 25720 is the number.
5 JUDGE KWON: Exhibit P6592, proposal.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, I believe so,
7 Mr. Miskovic's proposal, proposed measures.
8 MS. GUSTAFSON: I did ask about the proposal, but I did not ask
9 about point 6, about the policy toward non-Serb population.
10 MR. ROBINSON: Well --
11 JUDGE KWON: It's contained in the proposal.
12 MR. ROBINSON: That [overlapping speakers] --
13 JUDGE KWON: Let us hear the question.
14 I interrupted you, Mr. Robinson, would you like to add anything?
15 MR. ROBINSON: I was just going to say that would be really
16 unfair to omit a point of a document and then preclude the other party
17 from asking about it.
18 JUDGE KWON: Please continue, Mr. Karadzic.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. This is the
20 accompanying text, an excerpt from the minutes. And what I need is on
21 page 3 in English and in Serbian.
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. In your experience, what was our policy towards non-Serbs?
24 A. The general policy of the SDS and consequently the policy of the
25 SDS in Prijedor was in favour of peaceful solutions in every field, and
1 to that purpose it was our policy to conduct talks and negotiations in
2 keeping with election results, and that's what we did all the time. You
3 saw from my evidence yesterday and before that maximum efforts were made
4 to avoid confrontation and conflict. The best confirmation that we were
5 right is that Montenegro, which remained within the Federation at the
6 time, later seceded, separated, itself from Yugoslavia peacefully and
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] 1D29 --
9 JUDGE KWON: Just a second, if you are moving away from this
10 document. Solution, peaceful solution is one thing. Policy towards
11 non-Serbian population may be another. What did you have in mind when
12 you wrote this item number 6? Could you read it out? I'll read it:
13 "To establish a general and unified policy towards the
14 non-Serbian population."
15 So what did you have in mind when you wrote "a general and
16 unified policy"?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'll explain. I said yesterday
18 that Prijedor was an exception because there was not a single excess on
19 our territory against the Croat or the Muslim population, because we had
20 this agreement and -- however, there were incidents in other
21 municipalities of businesses being destroyed, et cetera. This had not
22 happened in our municipality and that's why we wanted a general policy
23 established to maintain that.
24 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
25 Please speak slowly. Yes, ask your question again, Mr. Karadzic.
1 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. This document is dated 1st October, 1992. Can you tell us about
3 all the things that happened before this date when this platform was
5 A. In what sense? Could you be more specific.
6 Q. Were there any war time conflicts?
7 A. I told you yesterday about the murder of that policeman, then the
8 killing of those soldiers who were coming back from the war in Slavonia.
9 They were ambushed at Hambarine. Then there was another roadblock of the
10 Prijedor-Banja Luka road, although we had had an agreement about leaving
11 all the communications open. And after that, there indeed was
12 confrontation and conflict.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we now see 1D2910.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Could you tell us what this is about?
16 A. Ensure full protection for non-Serb population. This is
17 Karadzic's order to municipal authorities in mid-1994. This is about
18 municipal authorities. And I was not part of that in 1994, I was not
19 even head of the party because I had withdrawn in August 1993, so I don't
20 know about this document.
21 Q. And do you know whether this position that I took is consistent
22 with our general policy of protection for minorities?
23 A. Yes, this is consistent with the general attitude to non-Serb
24 population that I discussed before. I can repeat if necessary.
25 Q. Thank you.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be admitted?
2 MS. GUSTAFSON: No objection.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Excuse me.
4 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll receive it.
5 THE REGISTRAR: It receives Exhibit D4213, Your Honours.
6 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. You were asked about discipline in the implementation of party
8 decisions. Can you tell us which ideologies threatened at that time to
9 be sneaked in as SDS policies? Which policies were risky?
10 A. I said it yesterday, but I'll repeat. Those were reformists and
11 socialist forces, a legacy of the period before the multi-party
13 Q. In what forms were they active and through which institutions?
14 A. They were represented in the Municipal Assembly of Prijedor and
15 in the parliament legally.
16 Q. What was the ideology of JNA officers?
17 A. They were special. They were very attached to the ideology of
18 the previous regime, and they found it very hard to abandon it. They
19 were really indoctrinated by the League of Communists.
20 Q. You were asked about the meeting of 23rd April, 1992, and
21 generally our attitude to the JNA. You said the people where are
22 concerned because young Serb men were in the JNA, whereas the Croats and
23 Muslims were not. Tell us, what exactly was your concern regarding the
24 fact that young Serb men were not in their homes, whereas the Muslims and
25 Croats were?
1 A. In 1991, a general mobilisation was declared by the competent
2 institutions, so that I, too, was mobilised in 1992 as the reserve police
3 commander of the police station in Urije. The army conscripts were also
4 mobilised, according to their military specialty, and sent to the theatre
5 of war in Slavonia.
6 Q. Could you speak slowly, please.
7 A. They were being sent to the war zone in Slavonia, in Croatia.
8 All the Serbs responded to the call-up; however, due to the Muslim
9 propaganda and the propaganda of the Croat HDZ, who were appealing to
10 their young men not to respond, very few Muslims and Croats responded to
11 the mobilisation. And our area was empty of Serb military conscripts,
12 whereas all the Muslim and Croat young men stayed at home. So the people
13 were concerned and exerted great pressure on us, the politicians and the
14 army, to do something about it. It's all a consequence of the
15 experiences and memories from World War II, when all the able-bodied men
16 who had stayed at home ended up in camps in Croatia, in Jasenovac.
17 Q. If I'm not mistaken, you said there was pressure on you,
18 politicians, and the army. Why you are taking their young men and
19 leaving them without protection. That was not recorded. Is that what
20 you said? What was the pressure about?
21 A. I said a moment ago because all the -- the people were exerting
22 pressure because all the young Serbs over 18 were taken by the JNA and
23 sent to the war in Slavonia. So as far as the Serbs were concerned, the
24 homes were empty. However, because the Muslims and Croats did not
25 respond to the call-up, their young men stayed at home, which left the
1 Serb population without protection and vulnerable to organised attacks by
2 Muslims and Croats, conditionally speaking.
3 Q. Thank you, Mr. Miskovic. I have no further questions. Thank you
4 for coming.
5 A. Thank you.
6 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
7 That concludes your evidence, Mr. Miskovic. On behalf of the
8 Chamber, I would like to thank you for your coming to The Hague to give
9 it. You are free to go.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you. I'm happy if I made the
11 smallest contribution to establishing the truth.
12 [The witness withdrew]
13 JUDGE KWON: The Chamber is seized of the motion of Ratko Mladic
14 for certification to appeal decisions of 11th of December, 2013, by
15 Karadzic Chamber, which was filed yesterday. So I wonder whether the
16 parties are ready to respond to this orally today?
17 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, we filed a written response this
18 morning and the response is that we don't object to the certification
19 application but that Dr. Karadzic wishes to be the last witness at his
20 trial. So we wanted you to take that into consideration in deciding the
22 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Tieger.
23 MR. TIEGER: I'm not ready to respond in full orally at this
24 moment --
25 JUDGE KWON: But then --
1 MR. TIEGER: -- but we will support the certification.
2 JUDGE KWON: Oh, yes? Could you file a written response by close
3 of business tomorrow?
4 MR. TIEGER: Yes, we will do that, Mr. President. And as long as
5 I'm on my feet, I don't want to pre-empt if the Court had other matters
6 to discuss, but there's one other matter I wanted to raise before we
8 JUDGE KWON: By all means. Yes, please.
9 MR. TIEGER: Thank you.
10 In keeping with our previous practice, Mr. Robinson and I met to
11 discuss certain aspects of scheduling during the holiday period, and as
12 we had done before we agree that a -- an extremely flexible regime should
13 be adopted for what would otherwise be dead-lines for motions that need
14 to be filed during this period of time. So we recognise that there may
15 be certain motions for which there are specific and identifiable time
16 sensitivities, the Court just raised one, for example. But barring that,
17 it's our joint position that the dead-lines should be extremely flexible,
18 in keeping with the limited staffing during this period.
19 In particular, I might mention that the motion filed by the
20 accused yesterday with respect to disclosure was one we would not be in a
21 position to respond to without extraordinary measures until, for example,
22 about January 13th. That's agreed. That general policy is the -- was
23 what Mr. Robinson and I discussed and agreed to. I wanted to mention it
24 to the Court and hope that the Court would endorse that as well.
25 JUDGE KWON: While the Chamber tends to agree in general -- do
1 you like the Chamber to take specific actions in that regard?
2 MR. TIEGER: I wouldn't -- I wouldn't think that was necessary,
3 Mr. President. I tried to articulate it in a way that I thought would
4 involve the least amount of specific intervention. So the idea would be
5 barring some specific indication by one of the parties or by the Bench,
6 that that particular matter falls outside this general approach, that
7 whenever the responses to motions were filed would be fine.
8 JUDGE MORRISON: I think it's a polite way of asking us to keep
10 MR. TIEGER: Far be it for me to argue with the Court.
11 [Trial Chamber confers]
12 JUDGE KWON: That's endorsed, Mr. Tieger.
13 I wonder whether there's any other matters to raise?
14 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, only on our behalf to thank the
15 staff and the Chamber for all of its hard work this year to make this
16 trial go smoothly. Thank you.
17 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
18 THE ACCUSED: I would like to express my best wishes for the
19 forthcoming holidays for all of participants.
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes, I wish everyone a very nice holiday and a happy
21 new year.
22 The hearing is adjourned.
23 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 9.38 a.m.,
24 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 16th day of
25 January, 2014, at 9.00 a.m.