1 Monday, 26th July, 1999
2 (Open session)
3 (The accused entered court)
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.30 a.m.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours.
6 Case number IT-95-14/2-T, the Prosecutor versus Dario
7 Kordic and Mario Cerkez.
8 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Nice?
9 MR. NICE: The witness to be called today is
10 one for whom protective measures in advance had been
11 sought and obtained. He's been here over the weekend,
12 and there is no further application for him to be
13 protected. He's prepared to give evidence in full open
15 Over the weekend, obviously, a lot of work
16 has been done with him, and those in the Prosecution
17 team doing that work have taken every step they can to
18 make all material that's appropriate available to the
19 Defence as soon as it's come into our hands in usable
20 form. That's led to, I think, the serving of probably
21 a couple of proofing summaries, and I hope that the
22 Chamber now has something headed "An Amended Proofing
24 A number of exhibits have also been produced
25 to the Defence, I think some of them without any form
1 of translation. I'd rather get them across to them in
2 the original B/C/S than not at all. We've been
3 troubled to some degree over the weekend by a
4 significant computer problem with one of the databases,
5 or something to that effect, so that it hasn't been
6 possible, simply, to identify or to extract all the
7 documents that we might have wished to do.
8 The consequence is that the production of
9 exhibits may be a little less smooth today than I would
10 normally want, but I'll do the best I can to keep
11 things absolutely chronological, because my judgement
12 is that that helps you most.
13 JUDGE MAY: Why were the exhibits only being
14 produced at the weekend?
15 MR. NICE: Your Honour, if a witness comes
16 in, there is a process of proofing -- well, not over
17 the weekend but before the weekend -- matters may arise
18 which are of significance and which won't be known
19 about until then. Therefore, if they are only known
20 about then -- and this is a witness, as the Court will
21 know, who came, I think, with a subpoena, so that the
22 materiality of documents simply isn't known in advance,
23 and once it is known, they have to be extracted. There
24 is simply no other way of dealing with it.
25 JUDGE MAY: This is not a case where he has
1 brought the exhibits?
2 MR. NICE: Some he has brought, and they've
3 been handed over. Other exhibits become relevant, from
4 either his documents or from things that he tells us
5 about; they then have to be extracted. And if the
6 relevant part of the database is in difficulty, there's
7 nothing we can do.
8 But we're working as fast as we can to get
9 everything available. I'm most concerned to ensure
10 that material comes to you in a way that's helpful to
11 you and not at random.
12 JUDGE MAY: Very well.
13 MR. NICE: Where we will be asking him to
14 comment on -- if and where I will be asking him to
15 comment on documents that have already been produced,
16 I'm not intending to produce further copies of the same
17 documents. It seems to me that that's both wasteful
18 and probably ultimately more confusing for you. If I'm
19 wrong about that, and you tell me, I'll adjust for
20 future witnesses. But at the moment, if a document's
21 been produced as a Prosecution Exhibit already, I'll
22 refer to it.
23 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Naumovski?
24 MR. NAUMOVSKI: (Interpretation) Thank you,
25 Your Honours.
1 When the Chamber ruled on protective measures
2 of these witnesses who have asked for protective
3 measures, I was a bit confused, because I think that in
4 that way, the Chamber has done something that is really
5 contrary to the equality of arms. However, I believe
6 that --
7 JUDGE MAY: That is not so. We bore all
8 those matters in mind when we made the order. Now, is
9 there anything you want to raise about the --
10 MR. NAUMOVSKI: (Interpretation) Yes, Your
11 Honours, this was just a preliminary remark. The
12 integrity of the witness was to be protected as much as
13 possible, and I understand that. However, it is the
14 second time now, as was the case with the first
15 confidential witness, as with this one, that a whole
16 set of protective measures is introduced, including
17 limiting the number of Defence counsel who can ask
18 questions, and then the witness changes his mind and
19 decides not to seek protective measures.
20 I think that this is not a person who
21 actually changed their mind, because I think that he
22 wants publicity. However, since this is happening for
23 the second time, the Defence of Dario Kordic believes
24 that the Prosecution has actually abused the procedural
25 issues, because it is not -- this is not an issue of
1 protective measures -- that is, of protecting his
2 identity -- but rather to introduce an element of
3 surprise against the Defence, and --
4 JUDGE MAY: Well, Mr. Naumovski, what are you
5 asking us to do? Because let's get on with the
6 evidence, if we can, rather than complaining. Now,
7 what motion or application are you making? What has
8 happened is -- let me finish. What has happened is
9 this witness asked for these measures; we granted
10 them. He has changed his mind, and the position is now
11 that he's going to give evidence in open court. Now,
12 is there any application you want to make?
13 MR. NAUMOVSKI: (Interpretation) Yes, I will
14 submit our application right away, and then I have an
15 additional one which I need to clarify. Since this
16 witness has now become a witness who will testify in
17 open court, and since we believe that this is an abuse
18 of the procedure, we ask that this witness not be
19 allowed to testify today, because we were supposed to
20 be given the evidentiary material by 17 May.
21 Secondly, we received an outline of this
22 witness's testimony last week, that is, Friday. And
23 the period from Friday to midnight last night, we
24 received an additional 150 pages of evidentiary
25 material. Mr. Kordic was not even able to read through
1 this material, let alone sit down with his Defence
2 counsel and discuss the issues which this raises.
3 So we were twice -- since we were not able to
4 either read through this material nor discuss it with
5 Mr. Kordic, who received it at the last moment, our
6 request, should the Trial Chamber not grant the first
7 request, is to allow the Defence additional time for
8 our cross-examination. And I don't have in mind just a
9 couple of days, because a couple of days will not be
11 JUDGE MAY: Let us see how we get on. Let
12 the witness give his evidence in chief, and then we'll
13 see how much of it you claim not to have had disclosed
14 to you, and we'll review the position at the end of the
15 evidence in chief. If you're going to ask time before
16 you cross-examine, we will consider that application.
17 But let us get on with the witness now.
18 MR. NAUMOVSKI: (Interpretation) I have just
19 one more matter to raise regarding the ruling of the
20 Chamber regarding the six protected witnesses.
21 JUDGE MAY: It doesn't relate to this
22 witness, I take it. We'll hear any applications you
23 have about other witnesses after the witness's
24 evidence, when we're at a convenient moment during the
1 MR. NAUMOVSKI: (Interpretation) Very well.
2 Thank you.
3 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Kovacic.
4 MR. KOVACIC: (Interpretation) Your Honours,
5 I'm not going to not belabour the point. I think that
6 one matter has not been clarified. Pursuant to the
7 Chamber ruling of 19 March regarding classification of
8 this witness as a special protected witness, we
9 received a very small portion of the testimony about
10 ten days ago, and then we received the rest of the
11 material over the weekend, and we had nothing. For
12 this reason, we are just simply not prepared. We're
13 not ready to cross-examine this witness.
14 And I have a similar request as my
15 colleague. If we cannot -- we need to be -- we are
16 asking either this witness not be called now, or
17 alternatively, that we be given additional time to
18 prepare for the cross-examination of this witness.
19 JUDGE MAY: We'll hear the examination in
20 chief, and then we'll decide whether time is needed for
22 Yes, Mr. Nice.
23 MR. NICE: Can I simply explain in one
24 sentence? The witness came here, the subpoena duces
25 tecum. There is no duty for disclosure that has not
1 been complied with. On the contrary, in accordance
2 with my normal practice, the Defence have had a great
3 deal more than the Rules require of me. As soon as
4 I've known that documents might be of importance or
5 might be of help to them, I've ordered them to be
6 transmitted, even untranslated or whatever, so that
7 they can consider them.
8 JUDGE MAY: Let's have the witness.
9 MR. NICE: Thank you. The witness is going
10 back on Wednesday, and I'll deal with that later.
11 JUDGE MAY: Let the witness take the
13 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will
14 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
16 JUDGE MAY: If you would like to take a
17 seat. Thank you.
18 WITNESS: STJEPAN KLJUIC
19 [Witness answers through interpreter]
20 Examined by Mr. Nice:
21 Q. Your full name, please, sir.
22 A. Stjepan Kljuic.
23 Q. You were born in 1939. Are you a citizen of
24 Bosnia and Herzegovina, your ethnicity and religion
25 being, please?
1 A. I was a citizen of Bosnia and Herzegovina. I
2 was born in Sarajevo. My ethnic origin is Croatian,
3 and I'm Catholic, Roman Catholic, by religion.
4 Q. Educated in philosophy at Zagreb and
5 Sarajevo. We're going to deal with what happened in
6 the early '90s, but are you presently the president of
7 the Republican Party in Bosnia and Herzegovina, that
8 being a multi-ethnic and independent party founded by
9 you on the 5th of June, 1994?
10 A. Yes. I studied philosophy and literature in
11 Zagreb briefly and then in Sarajevo. For 35 years, I
12 was a journalist and a dissident in a Communist
13 society, and today I'm the leader of a party with a
14 civic orientation, and I want to explain what that
15 means. It is pro-western, secular, democratic, and I'm
16 a member of the parliament of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
17 Q. Was the HDZ party founded on the 18th of
18 August of 1990, with Davor Perinovic the first
19 president and you a founding member?
20 A. I took part in preparations for the
21 establishment of the HDZ on 18 August 1990, but the day
22 and night before that we had comprehensive discussions
23 with guests from Zagreb who arrived in Sarajevo to
24 found the Bosnian-Herzegovinian HDZ.
25 I was a leader of a group of Sarajevo
1 intellectuals, and among the guests from Zagreb were,
2 very briefly, Josip Manolic, president of the Croatian
3 government, and then continuously Miljenko Zagar,
4 general secretary of the HDZ in Zagreb; Dalibor
5 Brozovic, a member of the academy and a high official
6 with the HDZ; the late Gojko Susak, who at that time
7 was on duty of Minister of Immigration with the
8 government of Croatia, and many other guests from
9 Zagreb who were of lesser stature.
10 Q. In September of 1990, did Perinovic, the
11 first president, come to be replaced? Just "Yes" or
12 "No" to that.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Did President Tudjman say anything to you
15 about that before it happened?
16 A. On my way to Germany, I passed through Zagreb
17 on 5th and 6th September 1990, and I was taken to
18 Dr. Tudjman on that occasion. I then learned, in a
19 conversation with him, that Perinovic was going to be
20 replaced, because as early as 17 August, I said that
21 Perinovic could not be leader of the Croatian people.
22 However, they replaced him because it was determined
23 that he was an ethnic Serb.
24 When I argued against Perinovic's presidency,
25 it was not only because he was an ethnic Serb, but
1 politically speaking, he was not the right person to
2 take the Croatian people to the first democratic
3 elections. On WDR Radio in Germany, I learned that
4 Perinovic was replaced and that I was named the general
5 secretary and acting president.
6 Q. Were you happy with your appointment taking
7 place without democratic process or not?
8 A. I was mostly pleased for Perinovic having
9 been replaced, and I took this appointment as a great
10 challenge because there was very little time left
11 before the elections and the Croatian policy in
12 Bosnia-Herzegovina needed to be spelled out. Today, I
13 think that I was fortunate to have become the president
14 of the HDZ at the time.
15 Q. Was your position ever to be subject to
16 election by the party?
17 A. We copied the statute of the HDZ party in
18 Croatia, and there it was said very clearly that the
19 president could only be elected by the convention. But
20 there was no time to call for a new convention because
21 you had to bear in mind that there were only 70 days
22 left until the elections. I insisted that my
23 appointment be done in Sarajevo so that I would
24 demonstrate the autonomy of the Bosnian-Herzegovinian
1 When we won the elections in great style, I
2 organised a convention of the HDZ, created a platform
3 for the political activity of the Croatian people of
4 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and received acceptance for both my
5 position as president and the platform for the policy
6 by acclamation.
7 After the elections, I became a member of the
8 presidency based on the relative majority of votes
9 which we received.
10 Q. I think you can probably deal with this next
11 question by just the answer "Yes" if the proposition is
12 correct. Paragraph 9 of the summary. Did you win 44
13 of the 240 seats in parliament, gaining two seats on
14 the presidency, you and Franjo Boras; did you achieve
15 some 23 per cent of the major governmental and state
16 industry positions, including six ministerial and eight
17 deputy ministerial posts, with majorities in 10
18 municipalities where Croats were not, in fact, in a
19 majority, those municipalities including Mostar,
20 Derventa, Bugojno, Fojnica, Zepce, Kotor Varos, in
21 which place, or some of which, I think, the Croat
22 representation was only 17 per cent? Is what I've just
23 read out to you correct?
24 A. Yes, except that in all the municipalities
25 where we won, the total percentage of the Croatian
1 population was 17,3. I must say that this was an
2 exceptional result, because in the previous Communist
3 government, the Croats were only represented by 7,4
4 per cent in the government.
5 Q. Can you look, please, at the first exhibit in
6 time, which I think just precedes the elections, and I
7 think we have bundles produced.
8 MR. NICE: It may be that some documents will
9 have to be fitted within this if a strict chronological
10 sequence is to be followed. Nevertheless, I hope this
11 will be a more convenient method than handing documents
12 in one by one.
13 MR. STEIN: May it please the Court, part of
14 the problem announced by Mr. Naumovski is that these
15 are new to us, some of them, and only in one language,
16 not in English.
17 JUDGE MAY: Well, let's see how we get on.
18 MR. NICE: What I will ask of the witness,
19 with documents that aren't in translation, is that he
20 lays them or has them laid on the ELMO, and if he can
21 be shown how to use the pointer. Thank you very much.
22 He can point to the passages of the documents of which
23 he may speak. It is, of course, important, these
24 documents having arrived, that they are properly
25 produced by this witness.
1 JUDGE MAY: Well, Mr. Nice, the Rules are
2 that documents have to be in the working languages of
3 the Tribunal.
4 MR. NICE: Of course, yes. I have to tell
5 you that there is simply no available translation
6 service over the weekends, and it's as simple as that.
7 We can't deal with it.
8 JUDGE MAY: Yes, but it places difficulties
9 for everybody --
10 MR. NICE: Of course it does, yes.
11 JUDGE MAY: -- if documents are produced in
12 this way.
13 MR. NICE: I quite understand that, but this
14 is the best that we can do. Of course, the
15 translations are on their way. They have been or are
16 being submitted for translation straightaway, and there
17 are original language speakers on both sides.
18 JUDGE MAY: Well, that may be, but the Rules
19 provide for a way of doing these things, and what
20 you're doing is technically applying for an exception.
21 MR. NICE: Well, it may be, but if the
22 witness comes with his documents under the subpoena and
23 I cannot provide translations overnight, and I can't,
24 then the alternatives are stark. Either the witness
25 can't give his evidence or he can give his evidence and
1 talk about the original document, because he
2 understands it and, of course, the defendants
3 themselves will understand it, and whatever he says by
4 way of -- whatever he says is the meaning of a
5 particular passage will no doubt be susceptible to some
6 form of verification, because we have the interpreters
7 simultaneously translating for us in the booths, and
8 will be further confirmed when the written documents
9 are provided later in English and French.
10 (Trial Chamber confers)
11 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
12 MR. NICE: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Q. This document dated the 8th of October, 1990,
14 just tell us, in a word or phrase, what is it?
15 A. First of all, gentlemen, I wanted to say
16 three things at the beginning.
17 I have come here under subpoena, not of my
18 own free will, and I am forced to cooperate with you by
19 the laws of my country, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
20 Thirdly, I asked to speak in open session
21 because what I am saying is part of my political
22 struggle, and it is no secret. Everything I tell you
23 today is what I have already said several times in my
24 political speeches and interviews.
25 This meeting took place after I was elected
1 acting president in Sarajevo on the 16th of September.
2 All municipal and other organisations had to be brought
3 together before the elections, and that's why we
4 gathered in Sarajevo, so that I could get to know them
5 and they could get to know me. For the sake of
6 continuity of political activity, the representatives
7 of the HDZ from Zagreb were also present.
8 Q. I'm going to ask you to take matters
9 shortly. Will you turn now to the third sheet of this
10 document, where at the foot of the page we see your
11 name. Does this document set out what you said at the
13 A. Yes. This confirms that on the 17th of
14 April, a day before the establishment of the Bosnian
15 and Herzegovinian HDZ, I was present at all these
16 discussions and wanted to help, but they did not accept
17 what I said. And Perinovic ignored a whole group of
18 people who were able, who were intellectuals, who had
19 been Croatian dissidents during Communism, and without
20 whom the party could not exist.
21 Q. What, on this occasion, and you can take this
22 quite shortly by looking at this sheet or turning over
23 to the following sheet, what on this occasion did you
24 set out of your own political position? If you want to
25 turn over to the following sheet, Mr. Kljuic, you can.
1 JUDGE MAY: I wonder if it would be helpful
2 if we had translated what is against the witness's
4 MR. NICE: Certainly, if the interpreters are
5 equipped with a copy in the booths, or alternatively
6 following it on the ELMO.
7 THE INTERPRETER: Mr. Kljuic has to read it;
8 otherwise we are not allowed to do it.
9 MR. NICE: Would you read it, then,
10 Mr. Kljuic, please, just read what follows "Dr. Stjepan
11 Kljuic, Sarajevo, politicki tajnik." Can you read it
12 out, please?
13 A. Yes, I can. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian
14 document as read]
15 "He introduced himself personally and
16 stressed that on the 17th of March, he had joined the
17 HDZ party wishing to help the former leadership with a
18 stronger personnel, group of people, which they did not
19 accept. Perinovic ignored a group of people who were
20 willing to put themselves to the disposal of the party
21 and to work, which was then a sign that certain things
22 were not going in the right direction, Mr. Kljuic
24 And there is an error here. It is not the
25 17th of March but the 17th of August.
1 Q. Carry on, please. It goes over to the
2 next --
3 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
5 "After that, he set out a part of the
6 programme of the party for the future, stressing that a
7 person can be respectable and the leader, according to
8 what he does, and that a list of meetings would be
9 drawn up, and that work would be coordinated from the
10 centre. The HDZ is a global party, fighting for the
11 interests of the Croatian people throughout the world,
12 and certain games are of a non-party character.
13 Political theses are to be drawn up to which everyone
14 will have to adhere, and party discipline will have to
15 be respected. The statutes will have to be adapted to
16 the political norms of life in Bosnia and Herzegovina,
17 and Article 18 of the Statute has made everything that
18 has happened valid. All the presidents of the steering
19 committees are to be gathered together, and they are to
20 agree on their work. The same mistakes must not be
21 allowed to recur. From tomorrow, the office will be
22 open, and there is work waiting for us, so that there
23 is no place for mutual discord and dissatisfaction,
24 Stjepan Kljuic said."
25 Q. That's Exhibit 2719. Can we turn to next
1 document, please, 2720, which comes in two parts, I
2 think. The first part is the conclusions of the
3 presidency of the 15th of October; is that correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And I think the second part, which is dated
6 the 5th of November, is, I think, the minutes for a
7 meeting , not the minutes, the -- well, you tell us
8 what it is, better than I ask you. What's the second
9 part, starting on the 5th of November, third sheet?
10 A. This is a meeting of the presidency of the
11 HDZ, a regular meeting during the election campaign, at
12 which the acting president was present, all the
13 vice-presidents, the treasurer, the administrative
14 secretary, and some members of the municipal
16 Q. Now, you produced those documents for the
17 time being, and I may not ask you any detailed
18 questions about them, but one can see -- we can see
19 that the name "Kostroman" appears. Just tell us, what
20 was Kostroman's role in these early stages, and what
21 was his position generally?
22 A. First I have to say that I was duty-bound to
23 bring with me the documents I had. This document is
24 not important, but Ignac Kostroman was a person who was
25 in the leadership with Perinovic, and I inherited him.
1 He was the technical secretary.
2 Q. What were his views generally? What was his
3 position generally?
4 A. I can't talk about his views, because, as
5 president, I did not pay much attention to him. But I
6 can say that later on, he went to Herceg-Bosna and that
7 our ways parted.
8 Q. I go back to the amended proofing summary at
9 paragraph 10. Did you view the HDZ BiH as an
10 independent party, or not?
11 A. I considered and advocated the HDZ being an
12 independent party, but a sister party with the party in
13 Zagreb. That is why I insisted that it should be
14 called "the HDZ of Bosnia and Herzegovina." There were
15 suggestions that it should be called "the HDZ for
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina." Apart from this, as president, I
17 registered the party at the high court in Sarajevo,
18 with the stamp and signature of the president, and it
19 was valid, as such, and was able to take part in the
20 first democratic elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
21 Q. Why was President Tudjman of Croatia in any
22 position to represent the party of Bosnia and
24 A. Later on, there were talks between the
25 leaders of all the Yugoslav republics. Unfortunately,
1 Bosnia and Herzegovina was not represented by
2 representatives of the Muslims, Serbs, and the Croats,
3 but only by the president of the presidency,
4 Mr. Izetbegovic. So I asked Dr. Tudjman, at these
5 Yugoslav talks, since there was no representative of
6 the Bosnia-Herzegovinian Croats there, that he should
7 represent our interests.
8 Q. Did Tudjman's view of the independence of
9 your party coincide with your view, or did he hold a
10 different view?
11 A. In the end, he conceded independence for our
12 party, but of course, we were two sister parties.
13 Formally he recognised the independence of the party,
14 but we were connected by all the other elements: The
15 media, our funds, the design of our symbols, and
17 Q. And as the presidency of the HDZ, how were
18 you regarded, as a president of the local party? How
19 was Mr. Tudjman regarded in those terms?
20 A. Dr. Tudjman considered me the president of
21 the HDZ of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and I confirmed this
22 status, not only by leading the party, but by acquiring
23 legitimacy because I was elected to the presidency of
24 the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina. And later on,
25 at the convention in Mostar on the 23rd and 24th of
1 March, 1991, I gained overwhelming support and was
2 elected the regular president. This convention
3 confirmed my political platform.
4 Q. Did people like Boban accept you as the true
5 president of the party?
6 A. I must say that at that time, Boban did not
7 represent any force within the HDZ. He was one of the
8 44 deputies in the parliament, and he is remembered by
9 the fact that he never took the floor. In Mostar, at
10 the convention, I gave a two-hour break, thus giving
11 the counter-candidates a chance to consolidate. At the
12 beginning, there were several candidates running
13 against me, but they soon they gave up. The
14 representatives of the municipalities from Herzegovina
15 withdrew to a separate room, and when they took a
16 count, they saw that they numbered only 53, and some of
17 them were in favour of me, so that they stood no chance
18 of getting Boban voted for.
19 Q. You're slightly running ahead of the question
20 I wanted an answer to. It's just that -- did Boban and
21 people like him accept you as the true president, or
22 did they look elsewhere for authority? You can
23 probably deal with it at that stage quite shortly, or
24 very shortly.
25 A. Some of them personally did not accept me as
1 president, because in our behaviour and philosophy and
2 world view, we represented two different worlds.
3 Q. Thank you. Next exhibit, please, 2721.
4 There's only one paragraph of this we want, but perhaps
5 you'll tell us first of all what the document is. It's
6 slightly out of chronology, because this is back in the
7 9th of January of 1991. What is the document, please?
8 A. Immediately after winning the elections, we
9 had to change the strategy of work of the party. In
10 the first stage, we focused only on the elections, but
11 when we gained power, we had to appoint a large number
12 of people to high positions. We had to take these
13 positions, and most people were amateurs, with no
14 experience in government. And then we looked for ways
15 to take over power legally as soon as possible and to
16 act in a legal manner.
17 Q. Does this document set something out? It's
18 headed "Programme," I see.
19 A. Yes. This was a practical document with
20 brief instructions on how we should act now, after the
21 elections, in the first stage.
22 Q. The second sheet, Number 6, please. If you
23 would just read it out for us, then we'll hear in
24 English or French what the interpreters provide.
25 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
2 "Closer contact must urgently be established
3 with the leadership in Zagreb by the overall leadership
4 of the party in order to agree on the coordination and
5 synchronisation of the HDZ, and meetings have to be
6 organised to this end. The person who should execute
7 this is the president in agreement with the
9 May I comment on this?
10 Q. Yes.
11 A. You should know that at that time, in
12 Croatia, the HDZ was already in power, and the party
13 coordination was needed not only politically but a
14 large number of municipalities in which we had won the
15 elections had local connections, direct local
16 connections with the Republic of Croatia, and many
17 things had to be furthered.
18 Let me just mention employment, transport,
19 the building of joint projects such as waterworks,
20 irrigation canals, and so on.
21 Q. Thank you. The next series of exhibits in
22 the Court's and my learned friends' papers are produced
23 by the --
24 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
25 MR. NICE: The next series of exhibits in the
1 papers for the Court and for my learned friends are
2 produced under the subpoena. Apart from identifying
3 what they are, I don't wish to make any points through
4 the witness in relation to them.
5 Q. So, Mr. Kljuic, will you just look, please,
6 at the series of documents and confirm what they are.
7 Z2723, does that record a meeting of the
8 presidency of the party on the 15th of January, 1991?
9 No comment is required beyond telling me that that is
10 correct, if it is correct.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. 2724 --
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. -- is the 25th of January, '91, directions
15 issued by you to municipal committees?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. 2725 is a pronouncement of the 25th of
19 A. The 25th of January.
20 Q. 25th of January, and the subject matter? The
22 A. Public announcement because of the military
23 threat against the Republic of Croatia. This is a very
24 important document because it was published after a
25 forged film by the Yugoslav intelligence service, the
1 KOS, about the Minister of Defence of the Republic of
2 Croatia, General Martin Spegelj. This was produced by
3 Belgrade propaganda, and in it, the Croats were
4 represented as the aggressors, as those responsible for
5 the break-up of Yugoslavia. They were represented as
6 being very well armed, and the film was supposed to
7 incite hatred, and not only among Serbs against the
8 Croats, but also in all the other republics.
9 Since the Republic of Croatia was in a really
10 difficult situation, I appeared on television and read
11 out this announcement, where I said that if the
12 Republic of Croatia is attacked, we, Croats from Bosnia
13 and Herzegovina, would stand in its defence.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 A. I have to say that that's what happened.
16 When the war in Croatia started, many Croats from
17 Bosnia and Herzegovina actively joined in the defence
18 of the Republic of Croatia.
19 Q. Thank you. The next document, 2726, a letter
20 from Pero Markovic to you and to Franjo Boras. The
21 title of the letter?
22 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
24 "Report on certain events which took place
25 last weekend in the municipality of Capljina."
1 Q. The next document, 2727, 29th of January. I
2 think this is a record, is it, of a meeting of the
3 presidency held on that day?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. 2728, dated the 2nd of February of 1991, a
6 letter from an individual to you and to Ivancic. It's
7 in the bundle, but you don't make any point out of it?
8 A. The document is correct.
9 Q. The next one is 2729, which is the 5th of
10 February, 1991, the conclusions of the HDZ Mostar
11 municipal committee.
12 A. This is a very interesting document which
13 speaks of the loyalty of the Mostar HDZ in Bosnia and
14 Herzegovina. It says -- okay.
15 Q. 2730 is a letter of Kovac, president of the
16 municipal assembly, to you, dated the 12th of February?
17 A. Yes, this is support to me, personally.
18 Q. Thank you. Back to the summary at paragraph
19 11. You've already told us something, I think, of the
20 convention held at Mostar on the 24th and 25th of
21 March, and I needn't ask you more about that.
22 Of the 288 representatives, what number were
23 from Herzegovina?
24 A. Fifty-three.
25 Q. In terms of proportions, how does that assist
1 us? Is there any significance in that proportion?
2 A. It was on a par with the share of the Croat
3 population or the Mostar Croats in the population of
4 Bosnian Croats.
5 Q. Was that meeting attended by people from
7 A. It was.
8 Q. Namely?
9 A. Mr. Susak first, then Mr. Beljo, who was the
10 HDZ secretary general of Croatia, and a number of
11 others less prominent. But there were quite a number
12 of people from Zagreb.
13 Q. What was the true role of those people?
14 A. I must say that they helped to deal with the
15 extremists, but to tame the extremist part of the HDZ
16 which was really unduly ambitious, and they extended
17 their full support to me, but that was also due to the
18 support that I enjoyed among the present
19 representatives of the Croat people. Had I not enjoyed
20 such support, they perhaps would have acted
21 differently. But as it was, they simply had no choice.
22 Q. When you speak of an extremist part of the
23 HDZ at this time, what, if any, clearly identifiable
24 views did the extremist part hold that the majority or
25 remaining part of the party did not hold?
1 A. That is what I wanted to say. The Croat
2 Democratic Union, as many other ethnic parties, was
3 joined by quite a number of former Communists. Then
4 the Yugoslav Intelligence Service also infiltrated its
5 own people into it. As a result, no idea was accepted
6 without resistance.
7 Nonetheless, things were developing very
8 quickly. Belgrade had a war programme, and other
9 incidents had to be put to use. Besides, there is a
10 certain parochial spirit in that area, that is, people
11 who will never agree with anything, because, say, the
12 same people who were against Perinovic subsequently
13 turned against me, subsequently turned against Brkic.
14 In other words, it is political destructiveness, and
15 they could not really grasp -- they couldn't understand
16 the historical conditions in which all this was taking
18 Q. So the extremists' view was to what effect or
20 A. They simply wanted to foist upon us their own
21 local policy as the party doctrine, and at the same
22 time they never looked at what the reality was.
23 Q. I should have asked you earlier, but I'll ask
24 you now. What, in your experience, had been the
25 relations between the different ethnic groups in
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina generally?
2 A. There is a tradition of tolerance amongst
3 us. We inherited it from our parents. But this Serb
4 fascism embodied in President Milosevic knew that they
5 had an army which was the fourth conventional military
6 force in Europe and believed that this would suffice to
7 preserve the centralistic Yugoslavia. But Slovenia,
8 Croatia and Bosnia were requesting a confederation in
9 Yugoslavia in the early days, at an early stage, but
10 when Milosevic refused that, he instrumentalised the
11 media, the army, and the police to such an extent that
12 it simply led to the resistance of non-Serb peoples.
13 Naturally, this put an end to tolerance, as
14 any newspaper, any television station, simply
15 propagated -- proliferated hatred, chauvinism, racism,
16 representing the Serbs as the only vulnerable people in
17 the former Yugoslavia, although they were the only
18 privileged people.
19 At the moment when the war began in Slovenia
20 and then in Croatia and in Bosnia, and you see it came
21 to its end in Kosovo recently, the tolerance stopped,
22 and now in Bosnia one has to look for people who are
23 ready to come to grips with their hatred, and there are
24 such people, and who are trusted also by
25 representatives of other peoples and not only the one
1 that they come from.
2 So there was tolerance which was tolerable,
3 which was bearable, until 1990, even idyllic in places,
4 but the activation of the Serb fascism brought about
5 great evil.
6 Q. There are three major ethnic groupings.
7 Croats, Serbs, and Muslims would create, I think, some
8 four bilateral relations; that is, Serb-Croat,
9 Serb-Muslim -- sorry, three -- Muslim-Croat. Was the
10 tolerance as between those groups similar or was there
11 any pronounced differences? For example, how was the
12 Muslim-Croat relationship generally?
13 A. Yes. Well, to begin with, those relations
14 were not always the same. During the Communist and
15 royalist Yugoslavia, as the ruling people, the Serbs
16 exercised more influence among the Muslims, and in
17 consequence, during the Independent State of Croatia,
18 that is, 1941 to 1945, the Muslims were informally in a
19 state with Croats. The best relations in
20 Bosnia-Herzegovina were between the Croats and the
21 Muslims, in part because they were both under equal
22 threat in Bosnia-Herzegovina at the time.
23 Q. Thank you. Amended summary, at paragraph 12,
24 was there the meeting on the 27th of March of 1991
25 between Tudjman and Milosevic, of which you became
2 A. Everybody talks about that meeting, but I
3 have no proof of it. All I have is what Mr. Stipe
4 Mesic told me, and that is that together with Jovic,
5 who was at that time the chairman or the presidency of
6 Yugoslavia, arranged for some meeting between Tudjman,
7 Milosevic, Jovic and Mesic, and yet later on this
8 version was changed, and in all likelihood only
9 Milosevic and Tudjman met on that occasion, and Mesic
10 being eliminated from those talks.
11 Q. Was that meeting followed by other working
12 group meetings of which you were aware?
13 A. Well, you'll know, and Mr. Bilandzic affirmed
14 that here, that there were various meetings of working
15 groups, but I knew nothing about that because I lived
16 in Bosnia-Herzegovina and those took place in Belgrade
17 and in Croatia. I mean we know about these matters
18 from the writings from texts written in the territory
19 of the former Yugoslavia.
20 Q. Take us, then, to April 1991 and a few more
21 documents that you can deal with quite briefly.
22 Document 2731, on which I need seek no
23 detailed comment, is that a record or excerpts from a
24 meeting of --
25 A. Yes, it is. Yes, this is a digest, an
2 Q. It's the 4th of April of 1991.
3 The next document --
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. -- 2732, this is a letter dated the 8th of
6 April from Dragutin Cicak. What is the subject matter
7 of the letter, please?
8 A. Well, Dragutin Cicak was complaining against
9 Dario Kordic. That was a staple practice there. They
10 always -- there was always strife there. But as I was
11 very busy as the president at that time, I could not
12 really intervene very much or mediate between them, and
13 it was of no importance for me. It was a local
14 incident, and there were various such in various
16 Q. This is the first time that you've mentioned
17 the name "Dario Kordic". When did you first become
18 aware of him and in what setting?
19 A. I believe I met him at meetings with
20 municipal representatives, because in the beginning he
21 was vice-president of the HDZ, while Dr. Barac was the
22 president. Subsequently, Dr. Barac went to another
23 duty and he became the president.
24 I interceded to have him employed as a
25 secretary for all national defence in the municipality
1 of Busovaca, even though, in formal terms, he did not
2 meet the terms. But he was young, and I believed that
3 at that moment he could protect Croats and Muslims
4 going to do their military service.
5 As you must know, in 1990 and '91, the
6 majority of Croats and Muslims from Bosnia were being
7 sent to do their military service in Macedonia,
8 Montenegro, and Serbia, and my thesis was to keep as
9 many of them in Bosnia-Herzegovina or send them out
10 only to Slovenia and Croatia because I thought it would
11 be more promising to them.
12 Q. At that stage then, did you hold any views,
13 one way or the other, about Kordic and his views or his
15 A. It was of no consequence, from my point of
16 view, as from the point of view as how I understood
17 presidential duty. I simply had no time to go into
19 Q. Just staying with document 2732, if you would
20 turn to the second sheet just to explain the document
21 to us, the first sheet is dated the 8th of April, the
22 second sheet is the first of two typewritten sheets
23 from Cicak. That one is dated the 7th. What's this
24 second document?
25 A. This is the first document of the 7th of
1 April in which Cicak presumably addresses the municipal
2 committee of the HDZ, and the second document he wrote
3 was intended for me as the president of the HDZ.
4 Q. What was Cicak like as a local politician,
5 party worker, and so on?
6 A. Well, his attitude was correct. It is really
7 very difficult to say how he was in the party, because
8 that was an area which was quite quiet and quite safe.
9 There were no Serbs there, only Muslims and Croats were
10 there, and I paid more attention to where incidents
11 were likely to happen and I really did not know how
12 each and every municipal committee worked. That is
13 only natural, because there were 67 organisations. I
14 could not really keep them all under my control.
15 However, it is quite obvious that those were
16 personal conflicts, I should say.
17 Q. The next document is 2733. No points that I
18 wish to make on it. Just identify it for what it is.
19 This is dated the 16th of April, and is it excerpts of
20 the minutes of the presidency?
21 A. That is true, yes.
22 Q. The next document, 2734, again I don't desire
23 to make any points. The 24th of April, a letter from
24 you calling the first meeting of the HDZ BH main
25 committee; is that correct?
1 A. It is, yes.
2 Q. The next document, 2737, is this a document
3 dated the 29th of May of 1991, and is it minutes of the
4 third session of the party presidency that we --
5 A. Yes. I must have been away on a business
6 trip somewhere, abroad perhaps.
7 Q. In your absence, by whom was the meeting
8 chaired? The second paragraph.
9 A. At the first stage, Vitomir Lukic, he was my
10 first vice-president, and after he died, Mate Boban
11 became the first vice-president, and therefore he
12 chaired the meeting.
13 Q. If we turn to the fourth sheet, the last
14 sheet of this exhibit, we see that there's a signature
15 of Kostroman and a stamp, your name, but no signature.
16 A. Yes, because I was not there, and they
17 expected that I would read the record after my return
18 and then confirm it. But Kostroman was the man who
19 took notes and who signed it.
20 But, sir, I mean this is not a political
21 problem. Perhaps I had no time to read it. Had I read
22 it, then I probably would have signed it. There is
23 nothing disputable here.
24 Q. Thank you. Paragraph 13 of the summary. In
25 the course of your work on behalf of
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina, did you meet a number or possibly
2 all of the key personalities involved in the unfolding
3 conflict, from Milosevic and Karadzic through to Lord
4 Owen, Stoltenberg, and others?
5 A. Yes. There was a very broad range of them.
6 To begin with, the presidents of all Yugoslav republics
7 and their delegates, then of course the meetings with
8 Karadzic and Krajisnik from the Serb side, Izetbegovic
9 and Behman from the Muslim side, and quite a number of
10 international intermediaries, from Lord Owen to Jacques
11 Santer, to a number of others.
12 Q. I would like you to deal next, please,
13 paragraph 14 of the summary, with a meeting on the 13th
14 of June of 1991 in Zagreb. What was the meeting?
15 A. It was a regular meeting of representatives
16 of HDZ of the Republic of Croatia and the HDZ of
17 Bosnia-Herzegovina. But you need to know that the
18 circumstances at that time were already rather
19 aggravated because it came in the wake of the incident
20 at Plitvice and in Borovo Selo. At that time, the war
21 in Croatia had not yet started, but everybody was
22 already clear that it could not be prevented.
23 The meeting was devoted to an analysis of the
24 political situation in Bosnia-Herzegovina and
25 preparation of some projects in case Bosnia-Herzegovina
1 was recognised and in case Bosnia-Herzegovina was not
3 JUDGE BENNOUNA: (Interpretation) Mr. Nice,
4 could we ask the witness, Mr. Kljuic, why was this
5 meeting held in Zagreb rather than Bosnia-Herzegovina?
6 MR. NICE: Answer Judge Bennouna's question,
8 A. Yes. I do not think this is of any
9 consequence, because we held meetings alternatively in
10 Zagreb and in Sarajevo very often during official
11 visits of President Tudjman and Mr. Susak and some
12 other ministers who came to Sarajevo, and then we would
13 hold our meetings in Sarajevo, and we also held our
14 regular meetings in Zagreb. So this was one of those.
15 MR. NICE:
16 Q. At your meetings in Zagreb, what level of
17 representation from the Croatian government was there?
18 Was it always President Tudjman himself or not?
19 A. There are different kinds of meetings. As a
20 statesman, I would come to pay an official visit to the
21 Republic of Croatia as, for instance, when I was a
22 guest of the Croatian diet on the occasion of the
23 promulgation of the new Croatian constitution. Then I
24 would be together with the president of the
25 Bosnia-Herzegovina government, another member of the
1 HDZ, Mr. Jure Pelivan, when we discussed
2 inter-republican relations relative to economic
3 matters, the port of Ploce, and so on and so forth.
4 There were also some meetings which were only
5 party meetings. This one was, one might say, a
6 combination of all of that, because we first assessed
7 the political situation and the security situation in
8 Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, and it was followed by
9 a discussion on the activities of the party.
10 Q. You spoke a little earlier, in answer to the
11 question from the Judge, of meetings that were held
12 alternatively in Zagreb and Sarajevo, suggesting that
13 perhaps there was one type of meeting that was held in
14 these two locations. If there was such a type of
15 meeting, what representation from the government of
16 Croatia or from the party in Croatia was there at the
17 meetings held in Zagreb?
18 A. A large number of meetings were attended in
19 Zagreb. The topmost echelons of the Croatian state and
20 the HDZ were represented, so President Tudjman, Prime
21 Minister Manolic, Mesic, and Gregoric, or prime
22 ministers, then minister Ramljak, and a number of
23 others, and Mr. Susak. So that as usual, usually, we
24 had the topmost echelons of authority on the Croatian
25 side, and on our side, in addition to myself, the prime
1 minister, the Minister of Defence, the Minister for
2 Personnel and so forth, and other dignitaries of the
3 HDZ of Bosnia and Herzegovina were about, in addition
4 to me but there were also frequently quite a host of
5 municipal HDZ representatives.
6 MR. NICE: I hope that clarifies the position
7 so far as we can.
8 Q. Returning shortly to the meeting of the 13th
9 of June itself, was the possibility of the secession of
10 Serbia from the republic reflected in different
11 potential plans or different plans that might be put in
13 A. It is true, yes.
14 Q. And what particular plans were considered
15 either at that meeting or at about that time?
16 A. To begin with, that was a time when the
17 presidents of all Yugoslav republics regularly met in
18 the presence of various international representatives.
19 The European union was looking for a formula for a new
20 Yugoslavia, in particular, at that time, so the
21 question of confederation or federation was at the
22 table. Nobody spoke of the independence of individual
24 We, as the leadership of the Republic of
25 Croatia and high dignitaries of the Republic of
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina representing the Croat people,
2 needed to consider all the versions so as not to be
3 taken unawares by the situation. There is no doubt
4 that I and those people who supported me always placed
5 the security and survival of the Republic of Bosnia and
6 Herzegovina in the forefront, but there were also those
7 who wanted Bosnia-Herzegovina to be no more.
8 When I spoke about the parochial frame of
9 mind, I can corroborate it by saying that very many of
10 them had never heard, let alone observed the Helsinki
11 Act of 1975; they simply wanted to quit
12 Bosnia-Herzegovina. And that kind of policy, which
13 would later on take the upper hand, has inflicted
14 horrendous damage on the Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina,
15 on the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and then on the
16 citizens of the Republic of Croatia.
17 Q. With reference to the two-track approach, or
18 two-track proposal, and reference to a third option,
19 which is the outright secession of the Croatian parts
20 of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the "two-track" refers, just
21 to be quite clear, to which two proposals?
22 A. One was a sovereign Bosnia-Herzegovina and
23 the equality of the Croat people in it. That was our
24 election platform, on the basis of which we won a
25 landslide victory in the elections.
1 The second presumably spoke of the
2 confederation of Yugoslavia, with individual parts of
3 Bosnia-Herzegovina establishing close ties with their
4 immediate neighbours.
5 And the third option was, if
6 Bosnia-Herzegovina did not survive as a state and if it
7 were divided, what then could Croats be given in it who
8 were not satisfied with the status quo? As with the
9 share of 17,3 per cent of the population, they mostly
10 held underdeveloped and peripheral parts of the
11 republic, and that is why the historical factor was
12 invariably mentioned, because it is a fact that once
13 upon a time, Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina played a much
14 more important role; but owing to two Yugoslavias, the
15 royalist and the communist ones, they were the big
16 victims, and a large number of people emigrated.
17 Q. And the third option: Was that discussed at
18 this meeting? Was it ever taken any further by you or
19 by meetings in your presence?
20 A. It was not mentioned openly. Only as a
21 possibility. And I must tell you, because they knew my
22 views they did not discuss it openly before me. But I
23 was not invited to all the meetings.
24 MR. NICE: I'm turning to another topic.
25 JUDGE MAY: Yes. That's a convenient
2 Going back to the earlier applications in
3 relation to cross-examination, quite clearly there's a
4 lot of material which this witness has produced --
5 MR. NICE: Yes.
6 JUDGE MAY: -- quite properly, under the
7 subpoena. There's a question of the amount of time
8 which the Defence need to assimilate it all, if it was
9 given to them over the weekend. So the question of
10 when it's going to be convenient to conduct a
11 cross-examination arises.
12 Obviously, what's got to be balanced is the
13 preparedness of the Defence, the opportunity of which
14 they have, the fact that these documents are not
15 translated, as they will have to be in due course, and
16 it may be more convenient to deal with
17 cross-examination when that is done, as against the
18 convenience of the witness, or the inconvenience to
19 him, being here, as he is, under a subpoena.
20 Now, those are all matters which have got to
21 be balanced, if necessary, by the Court, in making a
22 decision. But it may be sensible for the parties to
23 try and reach a sensible arrangement, bearing in mind
24 the convenience of the witness, as I said. To that
25 end, of course, you may speak to him to ascertain what
1 his position is.
2 MR. NICE: I know to some extent what his
3 position is; I've already outlined that. He has to go
4 back on Wednesday; there are things he has to do.
5 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
6 MR. NICE: The documents produced, of course,
7 may by no means all be requiring of cross-examination.
8 They are produced at the moment because he produces
9 them, and there's no real satisfactory way to ensure
10 they're available other than by producing them in the
11 way that I am dealing with it. They were made
12 available on Friday, I think, either for the most part
13 or all of them. I will discuss the matter with my
14 friends over the break.
15 JUDGE MAY: Yes, if you would.
16 Very well. We'll adjourn now for half an
18 --- Recess taken at 11.00 a.m.
19 --- On resuming at 11.35 a.m.
20 MR. NICE: I'm on paragraph 14 of the
22 Q. Two other points, Mr. Kljujic, just to remind
23 the Chamber, or inform them: The Helsinki provisions
24 as to the borders of Bosnia-Herzegovina were what?
25 A. The Conference for European Security, 1975,
1 in which the U.S. and Canada also participated, said
2 that there would be no changes in borders in Europe and
3 that certain ethnic minorities would have guaranteed
4 rights based on high European standards, and it was
5 signed by President Tito of Yugoslavia. All borders
6 were guaranteed, and we received guarantees that the
7 European Community would recognise these borders once
8 the new countries would be recognised, and the Helsinki
9 document would then be signed by every new acceding
11 I later had a meeting with Jacques Santer on
12 1st March, 1992, when he confirmed this. So the HDZ
13 policy in Bosnia and Herzegovina was for Bosnia and
14 Herzegovina to be recognised in its AVENOJ borders;
15 that is, the borders which it had in the Socialist
16 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
17 Q. After the 13th of June, 1991, meeting, was
18 there another meeting on the 20th of June in Zagreb
19 with HDZ BiH leaders from Herzegovina, but you weren't
21 A. I was not present. A meeting was held on the
22 20th of June, but I was not even invited to that
24 MR. NICE: Your Honour, the position about
25 documents, just before I return to producing them, is
1 that I think over the weekend, or Friday, documents
2 were produced that it was thought the Prosecution would
3 rely on to some extent, and not all of the documents.
4 It seems to me that that creates a problem, or not a
5 problem, a potential problem, with documents that are
6 untranslated, and it's for that reason that I am simply
7 putting in all the documents, even though we don't rely
8 on them for any particular point, because it's only in
9 this way that I can ensure that material that is not
10 translated and that might assist the Defence is
11 available to them to read. I'm not suggesting the
12 documents have any particular significance, although
13 they might provide a fuller record of the HDZ. That's
14 why I'm doing it very quickly, and it won't necessarily
15 involve time to be taken by either side, but at least
16 the documents are then part of the library of material.
17 MR. STEIN: I should point out that three of
18 the 16 that we've already seen -- in other words, 13
19 documents that have just been admitted were not
20 delivered to us over the weekend, and as far as we can
21 tell are brand-new.
22 MR. NICE: That may well be the case, for the
23 reason I've just given.
24 Q. The next document is 2735, and again, just a
25 "Yes," "No" answer: Is this a minute of --
1 A. Yes, it is correct, yes.
2 THE FRENCH REPORTER: The interpreter doesn't
3 say who speaks, so I can't understand.
4 MR. NICE: If I am causing problems for the
5 French writer, I apologise. If there is anything I can
6 do to make her task easier, I will do so.
7 Q. 2735, extracts from the minutes of the
8 presidency for the 10th of July; is that correct?
9 A. Yes a that is correct.
10 MR. NICE: Your Honour, I don't know if the
11 Chamber has a view. 2738 is a document that this
12 witness produced to us, but it's already gone in, in, I
13 think, an identical form, as Exhibit Z7. So we can
14 either produce it as part of the series and add to the
15 amount of paper, but that might be more convenient, or
16 we can simply note that it is Z7 and not produce it
17 through this witness.
18 JUDGE MAY: That seems to be more sensible,
19 the latter course.
20 MR. NICE: Thank you very much.
21 Q. Then we come to 2736, please.
22 Tell us a little bit about this. This is the
23 31st of July of 1991. Was there a meeting on that day?
24 A. Yes, but I did not attend this meeting.
25 Q. So far as you know, these are minutes of that
1 meeting, chaired, I think in your absence, by Boban?
2 A. That is correct.
3 Q. Turn to the second sheet, please. Can you
4 read out the last three bullet points, as they are
5 known, that come at the end of Tocka 1 and just before
6 Tocka 2?
7 A. It is recognised that the opinion of the
8 Western Herzegovina regional HDZ community coincides
9 with the conclusions of the Travnik Regional Community
10 of the HDZ.
11 Second, it is necessary to consider the
12 possibility of regional linking in other municipalities
13 with majority Croatian population or the communities
14 which are territorially linked with a Croatian
15 population, and the main board is to consider this.
16 Also, the areas where the Croatian population is in
17 minority and territorially is linked, and they can also
18 link to the regional communities of the HDZ in order to
19 have a better-organised and more unified activity.
20 Q. Do you have any comment to make on those
21 entries or not?
22 A. No. That was the regular organisation of the
24 Q. 2739, nothing to say about it, simply that it
25 is a record you produced of the 1st of August, being a
1 press release of the presidency, I think.
2 A. Yes, is it. The document is correct.
3 Q. The next document in time, which I needn't
4 produce because it's been dealt with as Exhibit 10 -- I
5 beg your pardon, not through this witness. There is a
6 document Z10 which has already been produced which
7 deals with --
8 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
9 MR. NICE: There is a document Z10. I'm
10 sorry. Can it go before the witness? It comes from
11 the core bundle. That's why it's Z10.
12 Q. This reflects a meeting held on the 6th of
13 August, with you in the chair, and again we needn't
14 spend time on this. Does --
15 A. Yes, even though I left the meeting and had
16 to take a helicopter to Sarajevo for urgent state
17 matters, but I do accept the contents of this meeting.
18 Q. Does this take further the plans developed in
19 Zagreb on the 13th of June that same year?
20 A. No. I think that this is, first of all, the
21 instructions on what the position should be, given the
22 situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the escalation
23 of the war in Croatia.
24 Q. Right. Well, that's available, produced by
25 you. I'm wrong, it wasn't in the core documents. It
1 was one of the library documents given original
2 numbers, and that is available if anybody wants to ask
3 you about it.
4 A. These are minutes from the session which was
5 distributed to all the municipalities in Bosnia and
7 Q. I'm grateful. Perhaps if you would like to
8 turn to point 22, which we have in an English
9 translation on this document and which you can -- I
10 know you speak some English indeed, but if you can find
11 it in the original. Paragraph 22 reads, in the English
13 "We remain behind the policy of independence
14 and indivisibility of BH, but should the war start in
15 BH by an attack by a Greater Serbia or any other
16 aggressor on the Croatian people in Bosnia-Herzegovina,
17 a special plan will be applied."
18 What plan is that; can you say?
19 A. You see in all the documents, we supported
20 the unity and indivisibility of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
21 However, in case it would not be recognised or not
22 possible, we had to have a plan of protecting the
23 Croatian interest in the pro-Croatian population. And
24 it was against the plan which was called Rame or Frame,
25 which was created by Milosevic, and it had to do with
1 Greater Serbia, which would encompass -- which would go
2 along the lines Zadar on the Adriatic coast, Karlovac,
3 which was 50 kilometres from Zagreb, and Petrinja, also
4 very close to Zagreb.
5 We discovered this plan, and I first -- had
6 it published in the former Yugoslavia and drew
7 attention to Milosevic's plan, because according to
8 this plan, a large segment of the Croatian population
9 in Bosnia-Herzegovina would find itself under the
10 Serbian control, and we could not accept that. This is
11 why we asked that the areas where the Croats were in
12 the majority in this case either become independent or
13 join the Republic of Croatia.
14 Q. The next exhibit needn't be separately
15 produced. It is already Exhibit 11. It is dated the
16 13th of August. Just tell us what this document is,
17 please, if you can. There is no point I want to make
18 on it, so a sentence to identify what it is is all I
20 A. I believe that this is the implementation, on
21 a regional basis, of certain conclusions reached by the
22 main board of the HDZ BH.
23 Q. Thank you. 2741, dated on its last sheet the
24 17th of August, just tell us what it is. No points to
25 make. Just tell us what it is.
1 A. This was a political platform for rescue of
2 Bosnia and Herzegovina.
3 Q. By what individual or group?
4 A. Primarily, against the Serbian fascism and
5 the plan called Rame which I had mentioned.
6 Q. We see a list of names on the fourth sheet,
7 various people, starting with Professor Babic and other
8 professors. Your name is not on it. Any comment on
10 A. This was a meeting of Croat intellectuals who
11 were not politically involved, except for Dr. Komisic,
12 who was the vice-president of the Communists, and
13 perhaps this is the cream of the crop of the Croat
14 intellectuals of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
15 Q. Next, 2742, the 23rd of August. I think this
16 is a list of regional communities, and we see Travnik
17 is the first?
18 A. Yes, that is correct.
19 Q. Thank you. The next document, 2743, a press
20 release dated the 26th of August of the presidency. No
21 points to be made. I'm just producing these documents
22 through you.
23 A. Yes, this is correct.
24 Q. 2744?
25 A. This is just standard minutes, that is, a
1 summary from the presidency meeting.
2 Q. [Previous interpretation continues]
3 A. Yes, that is correct.
4 Q. Then the next document is from the
5 Prosecution's original list, Z76,1. Sorry, Z16,1. Is
6 this a document with which you're familiar or not?
7 A. It is the organisational chart of our party.
8 Q. We can see that it's dated the 18th of
9 September of 1991 two thirds of the way down the page,
10 and can you just explain the top line, please, for us?
11 The presidency is identified by its constituent
12 members, hierarchy?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. We see your name as the president. Can you
15 put it a little higher up on the ELMO, please?
16 A. Yes, that is correct.
17 Q. The other members are shown as Mate Boban and
18 Vlado Santic as vice-presidents, Markesic as --
19 A. Secretary general.
20 Q. And then Kostroman as secretary?
21 A. That is correct.
22 Q. The next row signifies what?
23 A. This is the main board, some kind of a
24 greater council, the largest collective body in the
25 party, and the presidents of all sizeable organisations
1 were represented here, for the most part, where the
2 Croats were in a position of authority in local
3 governments or where they had very significant
5 Q. Then the bottom part of the chart underneath
6 the date, the box with the date, what's that about?
7 A. We had a security council for the HDZ and a
8 crisis staff, which consisted of myself as president,
9 Mate Boban as vice-president, and our officials who
10 were in the government, Branko Kvesic and Bruno Stojic
11 in the Ministry of Interior, Jerko Doko, Ministry of
12 Defence, and some prominent persons from the different
13 regions. We all sought to have all regions represented
14 in it.
15 Q. Then we see Dario Kordic's name here, bottom
16 left-hand corner?
17 A. Yes, he was there.
18 Q. On this crisis staff, not as a representative
19 of one of the municipalities on the main board?
20 A. He was the representative of several
21 municipalities from the Travnik region.
22 Q. Very well. 2745, no points. 18th of
23 September. It's the conclusions of, I think, is it the
24 security council of HDZ BH?
25 A. That is correct.
1 Q. Back to paragraph 16 in the summary. Was
2 there a meeting on the 8th of October of 1991?
3 A. Where?
4 Q. I'm afraid I can't help you with that. Maybe
5 the date is wrong.
6 A. But a meeting of what body, presidency?
7 Q. Presidency and crisis staff. Maybe we should
8 go back to the last -- here it is.
9 A. It's possible there was a regular routine
10 meeting of the presidency and the crisis staff.
11 MR. NICE: This one, I think, has not been
12 copied. Can I lay it on the ELMO and it will be
13 copied? It's our Exhibit Z18.
14 Q. Take your time to look at this. This is, of
15 course, in English, but assuming that it is a proper
16 reflection of a document in B/C/S, it reflects a
17 meeting on the 8th of October of the joint meeting of
18 the presidency and the crisis staff. It sets out some
19 conclusions. Would you turn to number 7 of the
20 conclusions and see if you can help us with that? Is
21 the B/C/S attached to that? Don't attach it at the
22 moment. Just show the B/C/S number 7 on the ELMO,
23 please. Can you put it up so that we can follow it?
24 A. Yes. This is correct, it is correct.
25 Q. Can you read number 7 and it will be
1 translated for us, and then we'll get it properly
3 A. "Persons appointed to state organs by the
4 Croatian Democratic Union of Bosnia and Herzegovina
5 shall continue to perform their duties conscientiously,
6 thinking first and foremost of the interests of the
7 Croatian people."
8 Q. And any more?
9 A. Do you want a comment on this?
10 Q. Can you read the totality of number 7 first?
11 A. "Inasmuch as the work of our representatives
12 referred to in the above paragraph is paralysed, all
13 our representatives in organs of authority shall
14 withdraw therefrom, and in that case the sole
15 legitimate representatives of the Croatian people in
16 Bosnia and Herzegovina shall be the presidency of the
17 BH HDZ and the BH HDZ crisis staff of the republic, as
18 well as our municipal and intermunicipal authorities
19 where we are in the majority.
20 "In the event of the withdrawal of the
21 representatives of the BH HDZ from organs of authority
22 in the republic, a special plan in work in
23 extraordinary circumstances shall be drafted."
24 Q. Do you have any comment you want to make on
25 that paragraph?
1 A. At that time, the Serbian representatives in
2 the government were paralysing the joint work of the
3 institutions of Bosnia and Herzegovina so that the
4 joint institutions were unable to run the country
6 In practical terms, everyone was doing what
7 they wanted, and the intention here was to gather
8 together all the representatives of the Croats and the
9 party leadership so that should a new situation arise,
10 since we had our election results, they and only they
11 could represent the will and the interests of the
12 Croatian people. With this, we wanted to prevent any
13 possible misuse of the Communist Party which might, in
14 a rump assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina, try to
15 contribute to the out-voting of Croats, since we were
16 the smallest of all the three national parties, so that
17 when we say that our representatives must perform their
18 duties conscientiously, this means that they should
19 work honestly within the republic institutions, bearing
20 in mind the Croats, if a situation of confusion should
22 MR. NICE: Thank you. That document, Your
23 Honour, has been produced already as Exhibit Z18
24 through an earlier witness.
25 Q. Paragraph 17 of the summary. Did problems
1 develop in the Travnik region, later the Travnik
2 Regional Community?
3 A. What kind of problems are you referring to?
4 Q. Well, let's deal with it in another way. Did
5 there come a time when you required Mr. Kordic to come
6 to the party headquarters in Sarajevo?
7 A. There were several complaints about his
8 attitude. I did not consider this to be particularly
9 important because in the government bodies of Bosnia
10 and Herzegovina we had numerous problems in the
11 Ministry of Defence, the Ministry of the Interior, and
12 I simply required discipline in the field so that we
13 could work seriously.
14 I think that at one moment I was very
15 energetic in demanding absolute obedience from
16 Mr. Kordic, because the worst thing that could have
17 happened to us at that moment would have been if,
18 instead of global interests, we started dealing with
19 local conflicts of a personal kind. However, what I
20 said then was simply in an outburst of anger. I did
21 not really mean it seriously.
22 Q. What you said was what, just so we have the
23 detail? What was it you said, the detail?
24 A. I should say?
25 Q. Yes, please.
1 A. Well, I said I would have him arrested
2 because he was causing problems for me.
3 Q. Thank you. I needn't trouble with the next
4 exhibit in the bundle, Z18,1.
5 We can turn to the 11th of November of 1991,
6 Mr. Kljuic. On that day, was something called the
7 Croatian Community of Bosnia Posavina created?
8 A. Well, you see, since the situation was very
9 complicated, the war was raging in Croatia, many troops
10 of the Yugoslav army arrived in Bosnia from Slovenia,
11 from parts of Croatia, and reservists and volunteers
12 were called in from Yugoslavia and Montenegro from
14 At that time, Bosnia and Herzegovina was the
15 biggest military barracks in Europe, and we had 17
16 Corps of the JNA which was extremely well armed in
17 classical weapons. It was impossible from Sarajevo,
18 because we had difficulties with telephone connections,
19 our telephones were bugged. We had security problems,
20 so it was impossible to have daily conversations with
21 every municipality and every town, and it was quite
22 normal to set up regions which would draw together a
23 certain area, and it was much easier to communicate
24 with their representatives then from the party.
25 In this respect, the Posavina region was
1 established, the Central Bosnia region and Herzegovina
2 also set up its own. But they were homogenous and
3 compact from the very beginning.
4 Q. You dealt with one or both, as you've spoken
5 of the principle, but the Bosnia and Posavina was
6 created first and then Herceg-Bosna was second?
7 A. I think that on the 11th of November, the
8 Posavina region was set up, the Travnik region on the
9 14th of November, and Herceg-Bosna on the 18th. But I
10 was not invited to any of these gatherings, nor did I
11 attend them.
12 Q. Indeed, what was the first you learned of the
13 creation of these two communities?
14 A. Well, I think they sent a fax message to the
15 party, so it was no surprise that the Posavina and
16 Travnik community were established.
17 Q. Just returning briefly to your instruction to
18 Kordic to attend your office for fear of being
19 arrested. Did you get a response from Dario Kordic --
20 A. I don't remember, but I think he didn't come.
21 Q. But did he write to you, do you know? It's
22 Exhibit 21,1.
23 A. I don't know. If you show me the text, I
24 might recall it.
25 Q. 21,1, and also 25,1, please.
1 First of all, 21,1. And if there's a B/C/S
2 version of it, can that be made available to the
3 witness. Is there a B/C/S version attached to that?
4 He may need to look at the B/C/S version, I think.
5 A. That's correct.
6 Q. Do you remember this?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Any comment to make about it? Any expression
9 of whether your views and his coincided?
10 A. No, I think that at that time, while I was in
11 charge of the government policy and the central policy
12 in Sarajevo, people in the field were slowly setting up
13 a para-organisation because they did not like the
14 vertical structure of things, and each of them thought
15 that from their local perspective they could create
16 policy. This failure to respect the documents adopted
17 and the party leadership was soon to be expressed when
18 there was an open confrontation between two currents in
19 the HDZ and when many personal ambitions surfaced, so
20 that even attempts to hold meetings together with
21 President Tudjman were able to reconcile these two
23 Q. We'll be coming to that very shortly, but to
24 try to keep things chronological so far as possible,
25 could you just look, please, now, at 25,1, already
1 produced. If you follow the B/C/S, this is from Dario
2 Kordic, or signed by him on behalf of the regional
3 community of Herzegovina in Travnik, a reply to the
4 proposal for a separate meeting of the Croatian
5 regional community of Travnik. And if you would just
6 like to remind yourself of the B/C/S original.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Any comment on this document?
9 A. No.
10 Q. It speaks of a lack of coordination between
11 the main offices in Zagreb, Sarajevo, Herzegovina, and
12 Travnik and speaks of possible negative repercussions
13 resulting from the different approach of certain
14 people, and so on. Was there an identity of views
15 between the local community and you, or not?
16 A. Even if it existed formerly, many people on
17 the ground acted differently from what was in the
18 political programme of the HDZ and from the policy of
19 the presidency of the HDZ. And as regards the poor
20 level of subordination, you should know that this was
21 the most tragic period of the war in Croatia, and it
22 was a time when the aggression against Bosnia and
23 Herzegovina was already beginning, when the JNA, the
24 Yugoslav People's Army, was burning and destroying
25 Croatian villages.
1 Q. Did either of these local communities have
2 the structural or the constitutional right to be
3 dictating what the presidency should be doing?
4 A. No, they did not. They mostly dealt with
5 local problems, and their task was to prepare the
6 defence of the Croatian people from aggression.
7 Let me remind you, the former Yugoslavia had
8 two kinds of army and weapons. One kind was the
9 official army, which was already instrumentalised by
10 Milosevic and the Serbian fascists, and the other
11 system was the system of All People's Defence,
12 something that William Tell advocated his time, and it
13 was supposed to defend local citizens in the area where
14 they lived.
15 However, with the exception of Slovenia, no
16 republic was ever given those weapons. The communist
17 authorities, before the democratic elections, gave the
18 weapons of the All People's Defence to the Yugoslav
19 People's Army. After that, the Yugoslav army openly
20 armed Serb citizens in Bosnia-Herzegovina as well, and
21 the role of the regional HDZ communities was to prepare
22 people and mobilise people for defence as far as was
24 Q. Thank you.
25 MR. NICE: The next document, please, is one
1 that's already been -- no, is one that has a regular
2 exhibit number, Z30, has yet to be produced. May he
3 have that in the original, and perhaps the original had
4 better be placed on the ELMO, because I'm going to ask
5 the witness to read a couple of passages from it.
6 Q. Before we turn to the passages, just confirm,
7 please, that this is an excerpt from the minutes of the
8 28th of November of 1991 of the presidency.
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Would you turn -- in the English version it's
11 the second sheet; in the B/C/S, it is the second sheet
12 and the third sheet. On the second sheet, the
13 penultimate paragraph, the second subparagraph of
14 paragraph (a) begins "HDZ BiH." Could you please read
15 that out for us?
16 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
18 "Conclusion from the minutes of the 14th of
19 November 1991 that serious problems and differences of
20 opinion have arisen in the leadership of the BH HDZ
21 with regard to political activity and the realisation
22 of the programmatic principles is rendered more
23 precise, as follows. The BH HDZ is a united party
24 operating on the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina
25 within the scope of the AVNOJ borders of Bosnia and
1 Herzegovina, but represents a constituent part of the
2 Croatian Democratic Union based in Zagreb, as expressly
3 established in the statutory provisions and the
4 programmatic principles."
5 Q. Can you then turn to subparagraph (c), over
6 the page. Read that -- at least, just read the first
7 three lines and one word.
8 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
10 "The presidency of the BH HDZ unanimously
11 adopts the decision on the establishment of the
12 Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna of 18th November,
13 1991, which represents the freely expressed will of the
14 Croatian people and which consists of the following
16 Q. They are then listed, and the last line and
17 half of subparagraph C reads ...
18 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
20 "The Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna
21 represents a political, cultural, economic, and
22 territorial entity."
23 Q. And if you go down, please, to subparagraph
24 (e), and in particular the second subparagraph of that
25 paragraph, beginning "Formirane."
1 A. Yes. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian
2 document as read]
3 "The established Croatian communities are
4 independent political, cultural, economic, and
5 territorial entities which have their own organs to
6 represent them and act on their behalf."
7 Q. This is a document, I think, that you
8 signed. Did it carry your full consent and will with
10 A. There was a big struggle, and a compromise
11 was reached. They conceded that we are fighting for
12 Bosnia and Herzegovina within the AVNOJ borders, which
13 means for the state of Bosnia and Herzegovina. I
14 agreed to recognise Herceg-Bosna, but what does the
15 expression "political organisation" mean? In the
16 former Yugoslavia, a women's association, a trade
17 union, a youth organisation was such an organisation.
18 Furthermore, it says that they are to
19 represent a region, which is completely true, because
20 the presidency of the HDZ and the people in the
21 government and in the presidency of Bosnia and
22 Herzegovina were representing the republic, and at that
23 time, no one suggested -- and it would probably not
24 have been adopted if they had -- that they represent
25 administrative institutions, because we had, within the
1 state, legal institutions such as municipalities, and
2 the local governments, and various government
3 committees, because if they had demanded something like
4 this, it would have meant the creation of para-state
5 institutions, which, at that time, no one would have
6 accepted officially.
7 So we had to mitigate the public response to
8 this, because the Serbs and their propaganda, when they
9 were setting up their own so-called autonomous regions,
10 said that the creation of Herceg-Bosna was a parallel
11 system, which was a new incentive to those who wanted
12 to destroy Bosnia and Herzegovina as a state. By
13 emphasising that we were still fighting for a united
14 Bosnia-Herzegovina and that this was a regional
15 community with economic and cultural responsibilities,
16 I succeeded in mitigating the public response to the
17 creation of this community.
18 Q. Thank you very much. The next document is
19 2746. Nothing to say about it, just note that it is
20 the minutes of the presidency meeting of the 17th of
22 A. Yes. It's an old document, dating to 1990.
23 Q. Now, this document we don't have in
24 translation. Can you just tell us what it is? It
25 appears to be dated, I think, the 22nd of December.
1 A. Ever since the HDZ was founded in Mostar, the
2 situation has been complicated, and there were very
3 many personal conflicts. This is one of the reports
4 submitted by Damjan Vlasic, and it relates to the
5 situation in Mostar, all sorts of problems and strife,
6 and that it is impossible --
7 Q. I'll stop you there, unless it has any
8 bearing on the issues with which you know we are more
9 closely concerned, and unless there is anything that
10 you want to add that takes it away from Mostar.
11 A. No, no, no, no. It's quite irrelevant.
12 Q. Thank you. Summary paragraph 19, paragraph
13 19, on the 23rd of December, was there a meeting of the
14 Community of Herceg-Bosna's presidency, including Boban
15 and Dario Kordic, at Tomislavgrad in Herzegovina?
16 A. I don't know, because I was not present at
17 that meeting. However, several days later, I heard
18 such a meeting had taken place. I'd never been invited
19 to that meeting.
20 Q. What did you hear happened at it?
21 A. No, it was -- the meeting was always
22 mentioned, but I never learned anything about the
23 contents of it.
24 Q. Then the next meeting that I want you to deal
25 with in detail is the 27th of December of 1991. Where
1 was that meeting, and who was present, and so on?
2 A. The meeting was held in Zagreb on the
3 official premises of the President of the Republic of
4 Croatia, Franjo Tudjman. In addition to President
5 Tudjman, there were also Stipe Mesic, Josip Manolic,
6 Dalibor Brozovic, Dr. Milan Ramljak, Gojko Susak, Ante
7 Beljo, and several other officials of the party, and
8 the Croatian government were present on the Croatian
10 On our side, there were all officials
11 discharging individual offices in the government and
12 presidency of Bosnia-Herzegovina and presidents of very
13 many regional boards, even though I need to say that we
14 arrived there separately and that we also left Zagreb
15 separately, because it was on the eve of peace in
16 Croatia; that is, on the 2nd of January, '92, peace was
17 to be signed in Sarajevo between Croatian Serbs,
18 UNPROFOR, and representatives of the Republic of
19 Croatia and the Croatian army.
20 So on the 27th, we all met in Zagreb, but it
21 was already clear by that time that there were two
22 factions in the HDZ and that the faction rallied around
23 Herceg-Bosna had shown they did not comply with the
24 adopted and agreed political programme. Among other
25 things, they in particular wanted to disparage, to
1 belittle my person, my political activity, my political
2 commitment, even though President Tudjman at that very
3 meeting said that I had done a great deal for the
4 results achieved until that particular time.
5 Q. Now I'd like you, please, to look at three
6 documents which we must explain to the Court.
7 MR. NICE: First there's the largest, the
8 fattest document, which is 2717. I think you may find
9 it third, but just -- will you hand that to the
10 witness, please.
11 Q. What is this?
12 A. These are the minutes of that meeting held on
13 the 27th of December, 1991, in Zagreb.
14 MR. NICE: Before I come to look at those and
15 to deal with them in whatever method may be acceptable
16 to the Tribunal, can I explain that you should have two
17 other documents -- it may not be necessary to trouble
18 the witness with these, but they'll assist the Tribunal
19 with what I think has gone to the Defence -- I
20 certainly hope it has -- 2717,1, if the Tribunal and my
21 friends opposite have that, is an extract from the
22 minutes which was served, and 2717,1A is a partial
23 translation of some of the elements of that document, I
25 So that explains, I hope, the documents, and
1 if there's anything that's wanted in more detail, I'll
2 explain it. I don't think Mr. Kljujic need be
3 particularly troubled with that, but that's what there
4 is there, in case it assists.
5 A. I think that Document 2717,1 is part of the
6 Document 2717.
7 Q. That's right, yes. Thank you.
8 MR. NICE: Your Honour, given the lack of a
9 complete translation of the minutes, and given the
10 proper restraints on the interpreters in the booths,
11 all that I can do is find the passages in the full
12 minute, ask the witness to read them, and they will
13 therefore translate them to us over the headphones.
14 JUDGE MAY: Do you want to go beyond what's
15 in 2717,1A?
16 MR. NICE: I think there are one or two more
17 passages beyond that, yes. In any event, it may be
18 helpful to find our way around the larger document in
19 case it becomes of significance later.
20 Q. If you look at the larger document, let's
21 focus on 2717, Mr. Kljujic, we see that the first four
22 pages are page-numbered. Have it in front of you, and
23 we'll put the appropriate pages on.
24 We see the first page is not numbered, then
25 the second, third, and fourth pages are numbered.
1 Thereafter, the numbering is either different or has
2 gone. Can you just explain that? If you can't explain
3 it, don't guess.
4 A. I can, but it must be a technical error or
5 something, because I did not make this document.
6 Q. Well, now if we go, please, through the
7 document very swiftly, but we'll just physically count
8 pages because they aren't numbered and it's the only
9 way to be sure we reach the right pages, but we see
10 that on the second sheet which is numbered page 2, your
11 name at the beginning -- I beg your pardon -- at the
12 foot of the page, and then there's a long or fairly
13 long extract attributed to you. Did you speak at an
14 early stage of this meeting?
15 A. I did, several times.
16 Q. Now, if we then go to a page in the top
17 left-hand corner differently numbered 7/3/JG --
18 JUDGE MAY: Where are we finding this?
19 MR. NICE: It's on the top left-hand corner.
20 You can see some numbers, "7/3/JG".
21 Q. Can you tell us, please, who was speaking at
22 this time? If you need to check by going back a few
23 pages, about three or four pages, do so and you'll see
24 who was speaking.
25 A. President Tudjman.
1 Q. Thank you. Returning to part of what he said
2 on page 7/3/JG, would you pick it up at the middle of
3 the page, the beginning of the paragraph "Znaci"? Read
4 it to us, and the interpreters will interpret it for
6 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
8 "And so on the survival of the sovereignty
9 of Bosnia under present-day conditions is, from the
10 Croatian point of view, such that we may not promote
11 it. We may not even postulate it openly. We may not
12 postulate it openly, but why not accept this offer of
13 demarcation, since that is in the interests of the
14 Croat people, of the Croat people here in this republic
15 and the Croat people in Bosnia and Herzegovina, for I
16 see no reason which would be a serious-enough reason
17 which would go against it, all the more so during the
18 talks which I personally conducted both with
19 Izetbegovic and with Milosevic and, moreover, one of
20 our people in Bosnia has drawn up this proposal on such
21 a demarcation where the Croat areas and those which you
22 encompassed in this community of Herceg-Bosna and in the
23 community of Croatian Sava river valley where, in case of
24 demarcation, in addition to these two communities,
25 Croatia would get, presumably for due political
1 reasons, both the Cazin and Bihac area, and that will
2 be almost full satisfaction, optimal satisfaction, of
3 Croat --" I guess it is "interests", but there is a
4 word missing -- "national interests, not only at
5 present but also in the future, and that then from the
6 remaining part --" and that's the end of the
7 quotation. It's interrupted.
8 Q. Then the next page?
9 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
11 "Then from the remaining part where mostly
12 Muslims will stay and a part of Catholic Croats, so in
13 other words that around Sarajevo, one can create a
14 little state, a statelet (phoen) which would remind of
15 that historical countrylet (phoen) of Bosnia which
16 would then be a buffer zone between this demarcation
17 line between Serbia and Croatia and which would, under
18 those conditions, necessarily rely on Croatia for the
19 major part.
20 "International factors could be satisfied
21 with that, as they must be counting on it quite
22 seriously. As you have just mentioned, they are now
23 counting also on this Serb gendarme, vis-à-vis that
24 Muslim element, that Islamic element in the territory
25 of Yugoslavia, whose aspiration is to found an Islamic
1 state in Europe with the support of Teheran and
3 Q. That was still Tudjman speaking, was it?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Can you turn over one sheet, please, to 8/2
6 and pick up what Boban says at the foot of the page?
7 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
9 "Founding municipalities HA --" I don't know
10 what "HA" means -- "and community Herceg-Bosna now
11 have, according to a census, 55 per cent of Croats
12 altogether. There are 27 per cent of Muslims, 9
13 per cent Serbs, and the rest are others.
14 "However, since the municipalities in
15 Bosnia-Herzegovina are along more or less the same
16 lines as in Croatia where established, so in a way
17 which would combine the Serb and the Muslim population
18 in the Croatian territory, or vice versa, by cleansing
19 the border areas which are, in fact, at the border
20 areas of Herceg-Bosna, this creates about 65 per cent
21 of the Croat population in Herceg-Bosna.
22 "Excuse me, as I know the latest data in
23 Serbia are 63 per cent."
24 Q. The word "cleansing" was used there. Was
25 that a regular term used in political discussion at
1 that time or not?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. What was its meaning when used in meetings of
4 this type?
5 A. Under the Communist regime, the
6 municipalities with the Croat majority were often
7 administratively abolished or subdivided so that one
8 half would come under another municipality and the
9 other half under a third municipality. In those
10 expanded municipalities, the Croats would then come to
11 be a minority. There are a series of such examples in
12 Dobratici, between Jajce and Travnik, and Kotor Varos,
13 the municipalities of Ravne, then the municipality of
14 Ivanjska near Banja Luka, and so on and so forth.
15 In 1967, those municipalities which were
16 Croat were split up and placed, by and large, under
17 Serb domination.
18 Q. Thank you very much. If we go to page 16/4,
19 it's just about a little over halfway through, this is
20 at the foot of the page of 16/4. This is what Dario
21 Kordic was saying, and if you can -- or a summary of
22 what he was saying. Can you read that out, please?
23 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
25 "Mr. President, distinguished participants,
1 Dario Kordic, president of the municipality board of
2 the HDZ of Busovaca, the chairman of the Travnik
3 Regional Community, of the Croat Democratic Community
4 and vice-president of the Croat Community of
5 Herceg-Bosna. I shall speak.
6 "It is my duty and my privilege on behalf of
7 the one which some call a disputable part about
8 Dobratici and Jajce to Kraljeva, Sutjeska and Vares.
9 "For six months we deliberated your idea of the
10 13th and the 20th June in blood, and we've just --"
11 Q. Just stop for two seconds. The Court can
12 follow this on page 6 of the English extract, if it
13 prefers to do it that way, rather than following it on
14 the screen.
15 I'm sorry to have interrupted you,
16 Mr. Kljuic. Please pick it up again. "The 20th of June
17 in blood," you were on.
18 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
20 "I should say that the Croat spirit here in
21 these lands of the Croat Community of Herceg-Bosna and
22 the Sava Valley, during those 40 days and notably in
23 Bosnia, this is the proclamation of the Croat Community
24 at Grude has strengthened more than for a year
25 following the elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
1 "The Croat people in this regional/
2 subregional community lives with the idea of the final
3 incorporation joining with the Croatian state and is
4 prepared to do it with all the means and Croat spirit
5 which boils in young men.
6 "I'm saying this because I come from the
7 field. We visited every village in the territory of
8 this subregional community of Herceg-Bosna.
9 "I should say I'm sorry that many leaders
10 from the Croat Democratic Union of Bosnia-Herzegovina
11 were not with their people in these areas during
12 Christmas holidays and seen numerous Croat standards on
13 Croat homes in these municipalities of the Bosnian
14 part. There were 60 to 70 flags in the
15 municipalities. This was not noted down.
16 "Although this is a sad Christmas because of
17 the destruction of Croatia, this was the most Croat
18 Christmas since the war in this part of Bosnia, and
19 this is a fact that nobody may deny.
20 "I should say that any option which would not
21 mean clear demarcation of the Croat soil in the
22 territory of Herceg-Bosna and the protection against
23 the destruction of the Croat body, except through a
24 clear state mechanism of the State of Croatia which
25 would serve as a guarantor to the Herceg-Bosna Croats,
1 would be treason, whether it happens in three months or
2 a year, yet we must believe in it.
3 "When some gentleman said that it is not
4 true, that it is not a reality, what our fate would be,
5 what was said about Travnik, I do not think that in
6 other municipalities we would have even a relative
7 majority unless we applied this concept.
8 "I need to point out one thing in particular,
9 and that is that the HDZ of Bosnia-Herzegovina has been
10 throughout only a side-show of the SDA policy. It was
11 a surrogate of the Croatian policy. When the Croat
12 being was reborn in the latter half of 1990, at the
13 time of the elections in November, until November of
14 1991 when the resurrecting Croat being became a dying
15 being and the Croat policy had no identity, it was the
16 policy of subjects, it was passive, it was cowardly, as
17 shown in the beginning of the dirty war in the State of
18 Croatia and its transfer to the lands of Herceg-Bosna.
19 The SDA leadership in these lands revealed all their
20 honest intentions regarding a civil republic which they
21 coloured with an unheard of Islamic fundamentalism of
22 SDA leaders, spiced with the Congress of the Party of
23 Democratic Action, and ovations to ambassadors of
24 Turkey and Libya, Cengic's statement three days ago
25 that their home is in Turkey, and the premature
1 disclosure of the dream of the Jamahirija.
2 "We, from mixed regions, are well familiar
3 with the sincere intentions of the leaders of the Party
4 for Democratic Action.
5 "I am not an advocate of false peace because
6 it necessitates a useless waste of energy. I believe
7 what Mr. President said. This leadership, this peak of
8 the Croat people in Bosnia-Herzegovina and their
9 government, are incapable of concluding this agreement
10 with Muslims and Serbs because their point of departure
11 is that we are not more than 17,4 per cent, and they do
12 not take as the point of departure as to who we are,
13 what our real strength is, which is our state, and how
14 big is our power.
15 "I believe that this leadership cannot put
16 to life this new platform and that in this Croat
17 Democratic Union, that is, the implementation of this
18 policy cannot be provided by all these same people.
19 "I should like to say that what we used to
20 say at these meetings with our people had been, by the
21 Muslims, ready to move in front of us, we would have
22 fought with them. But at this particular point in
23 time, we have no moral obligation to them because they
24 do not deserve that, and we do not think that either
25 Izetbegovic or his clique will be able to pursue even
1 this Muslim policy in this territory of theirs which
2 will remain, because they are driving the Muslim people
3 to ruin. The Muslim people will depose them themselves
4 because they did not provide them with the defensive
5 mechanism, and their people will, at long last,
6 understand that."
7 JUDGE MAY: Is that a convenient time?
8 MR. NICE: Certainly.
9 JUDGE MAY: We'll finish this witness's
10 evidence in chief, I take it, today.
11 MR. NICE: Certainly, yes. This is probably
12 the longest passage, and there's only one sheet of the
13 summary to go.
14 JUDGE MAY: Very well. Half past 2.00.
15 I'm sorry. Mr. Kljuic, could you be back,
16 please, at half past 2.00.
17 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.
2 --- On resuming at 2.35 p.m.
3 MR. NICE:
4 Q. We've just heard what Dario Kordic said at
5 the meeting. By this time, what sort of a figure was
6 he, to your knowledge? How important? How did his
7 views fit with yours, or with others, and so on?
8 A. He was not an important figure in the party
9 until the time when Herceg-Bosna was established. I
10 have to say that what I stood for and what I
11 implemented as president was not just my personal
12 position, but I also received full support in the
13 elections, and then through the party, the platform
14 adopted on the 23 and 24 March in Mostar, which was a
15 unified and undivided Bosnia with equal representation
16 of all, integral Bosnia and Herzegovina, which would be
17 also equal to other republics in the Former Yugoslavia.
18 Q. Did you have any personal relationship with
19 Kordic, good or bad? Or not?
20 A. Not particularly good or bad. Privately we
21 did not have much communication, only through official
23 Q. Thank you. The views he expressed at this
24 meeting, that we've just read out, do you want to
25 comment on those at all?
1 A. I think that this was a position that was
2 held by a faction which was led by Boban. In other
3 words, I don't think that he said anything different
4 from what Boban and some others had also stated, except
5 perhaps in some details.
6 Q. I'll turn to things that were said by
7 Tudjman, but there's one earlier passage that I ought
8 to have asked you to deal with. I cut short a little
9 too early the passage I was asking you to deal with.
10 It's at page 8/1.
11 In the middle of the page, "Sa toga," we've taken
12 it to the end of the previous paragraph. Could you
13 just read, picking up at "Sa toga," and go over to the
14 following page?
15 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
17 "From that point of view, even some kind of
18 cantonisation with the rest of Bosnia and Herzegovina,
19 for us it does not represent a solution which is the
20 solution, which means the separation. So that is where
21 the problem lies. So I believe that you have missed --
22 that you have been implementing a policy and politics
23 which is, on the one side, to retain sovereignty, and
24 the surrounding areas which may have been more
25 interested for joining and which in the end the people
1 are using to support the Croatian cause. So it seems
2 to me that as we use this historical moment to create
3 an independent and internationally recognised Croatia,
4 I believe it is the time now also to use this moment to
5 gather our Croatian national --"
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Who is speaking here?
7 MR. NICE: President Tudjman.
8 Q. I'm sorry, I may have stopped you too
9 quickly. Could you finish that sentence?
10 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
12 "... which are in the borders which are as
13 wide as possible." Now, I don't know whether this
14 would involve 28 or 30 municipalities. I think that
15 that is of lesser importance.
16 Q. Staying with President Tudjman, but moving to
17 a later part of the minute, can we go to page -- it's
18 about three-quarters of the way through, 21/2/VM. We
19 see a paragraph headed with the word "President," I
20 think, and then the first paragraph I needn't trouble
21 you with, the first major paragraph, but if you could
22 start with "Da Bosna," please.
23 A. Yes. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document
24 as read]
25 "All the history has shown that Bosnia and
1 Herzegovina is not a solution for the Croatian people.
2 First of all, it was created by colonial conquest of an
3 Asian power, gentlemen, let's not forget that, starting
4 in the period between the 15th and 18th centuries, at
5 the expense of Croatian people and the expense of
6 Croatian territory.
7 "All these colonial creations have collapsed
8 both in Asia and Africa. Bosnia-Herzegovina did not
9 exist between the two wars. Communists invented it
10 after World War II, brought it back on stage. They
11 even proclaimed the Muslims as a nation in order to
12 ostensibly solve the dispute between the Croatian and
13 Serbian peoples. Did they succeed in it? No, on the
14 contrary. So one should not count with Bosnia and
15 Herzegovina as something which was God-given, and
16 something that is to remain, and not at all neglect how
17 harmful it can be.
18 "Croatia has been brought in an impossible
19 situation, territorially speaking, because of the
20 creation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. We cannot create
21 an independent Croatia both administratively, let alone
22 defensively speaking. So what are the perspectives?
23 What is the future of the Croatian people in Bosnia and
24 Herzegovina? I quoted -- I said that we have fallen
25 from 24 to 17 per cent of the population. Mr. Vlasic,
1 from Travnik, has said that in Travnik the population
2 is down to 37 from 56. Be sure, if Bosnia-Herzegovina
3 became independent, within ten years that will assume
4 horrible proportions, because the Muslims are counting
5 on demographic expansion, and because of their birth
6 rate, they are counting on 500.000 Muslims from Turkey,
7 and so on.
8 So the survival of Bosnia and Herzegovina as
9 an independent and sovereign state, even if possible,
10 would be at the expense of the Croatian people, and it
11 would enable normal territorial creation of a Croatian
12 state, and it also creates preconditions for
13 disappearance of the Croatian peoples such as they
14 exist in Bosnia and Herzegovina today. Furthermore,
15 there is no one unified Bosnia and Herzegovina today."
16 Q. That observation by Tudjman about the
17 impossibility of Croatia existing in its then form and
18 shape, is that something that he said just once or did
19 he say it on other occasions?
20 A. He said here, for the first time, explicitly
22 Q. [Previous interpretation continues] on other
24 A. Not in this form.
25 Q. We move on two pages, I believe, to 22/1 LJ;
1 still Tudjman speaking. The second-to-last paragraph
2 on the page, the paragraph beginning with the word
3 "Iz", could you just read that paragraph for us,
5 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
7 "For tactical reasons, we support a
8 sovereign Bosnia as long as it exists, but there is no
9 more sovereign Bosnia. Serbs separated themselves
10 out. You have no more power. The Bosnian government
11 has no authority over the Serbian areas and the Serbian
12 parts. Not only the Serbian parts of Bosnia but all of
13 Bosnia-Herzegovina is involved in the war against
14 Croatia, its territory, and the Serbian population
15 against Croatia, that is a fact.
16 So what do we talk --"
17 Q. That's all I require. Thank you very much.
18 We turn now to some of the things that you
19 were saying. It had been seen earlier, but can we turn
20 to page 24/1 LJ. I think this is you speaking. I
21 better check that it is. If you come back a couple of
22 pages, I think you'll see that this is you speaking.
23 Can you pick it up from the third paragraph, "Dalje"?
24 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
1 "Further, we consider that we had to conduct
2 discussions, but in all these discussions, gentlemen,
3 everybody is asking the question, 'Who is the first?
4 Who is going to propose the partition of Bosnia?'
5 'Let's see. You want cantonisation. Very well.'
6 Because when we brought the Serbs to this to say, 'All
7 right, you have initiated this, you don't want an
8 independent Bosnia and Herzegovina, so please draft a
9 paper,' and they brought a paper with the Belgrade
10 initiative because they have the media, and now the
11 question is, 'Who is going to bite first?'
12 "We were here the last time when you were
13 here and you told us there were three options. The
14 first one is to fight for a sovereign Bosnia as long as
15 we can. Second, if the Serbs take control over their
16 parts by force because it's under international
17 control, let's have this rump Bosnia and Herzegovina in
18 a confederation with Croatia. Then there will be a
19 buffer zone. We will get the Muslims.
20 "Then somebody said, and that was not very
21 tactful, 'We will give the Muslims some kind of
22 autonomy,' so let there be this type of
23 Bosnia-Herzegovina, please."
24 Q. And then President Tudjman asked you
25 something or said something, namely --
1 A. Yes. It states here:
2 [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
4 "Stjepan, let's be specific now. Let's not
5 waste --"
6 Q. And you added?
7 A. (In English) Just one minute,
8 please. (Interpretation) "Let's not waste time,
9 please," and I replied, "The third option -- let me
10 just finish, Mr. President, the third option. The
11 third is the Muslims do not want to go with us. The
12 Serbs want their own. Let's engage in propaganda and
13 that it is a question of Europe versus Balkans,
14 Belgrade, Zagreb, and then we have a chance to get the
15 Travnik Muslims, the Bugojno Muslims, the Jajce, and
16 then Croatia could get a block, and this is what it
17 should be prepared."
18 Q. All right. Now, you therefore set out the
19 three options. I see one or two other contributions.
20 Can you turn over to 25/2 JG, please, towards
21 the end. At the foot of this page, you can see "Miro
22 Lasic". Can you just read what his contribution was,
23 or part of it?
24 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
1 "If we manage to create a Bosnian dinar,
2 believe me, the Serbs will drown in their own faeces of
3 dinar. That is, if we manage to do this, and I'm not
4 sure that we will be.
5 "The President replies, 'You will not
6 succeed. It is clear that you will not succeed. You
7 will not. I suggest that we agree on a commission
8 which will conduct these talks and which, in that
9 sense, will be, if you will, the leadership of the
10 Croatian Democratic Community in Bosnia. Do you have
11 any suggestion, Kljuic, Boban, Stanic?'"
12 He is from Bosnia.
13 "'Indeed, these three have to be there.
14 Let's go on.' Then somebody interjected, 'We have to
15 include Bihac. Bihac is very important.' And another
16 interjection, 'As I said, as a region it remains under
17 our control.'
18 "Stipe Mesic then says he is suggesting that
19 it be where things are critical, and then an
20 interjection, 'To be a negotiator where the situation
21 is critical.'"
22 The President says, "Who do you suggest," and
23 then the interjection which is unintelligible.
24 "Is he here? Stjepan, this is not a personal
25 question but an issue of political positions." "Could
1 you put Rajic?" "Why not put the professor from
2 Travnik?" The president, "Well, I did not say it could
3 not be. Go ahead."
4 Kordic, and he joins in the discussion later,
5 "I have the right to be here, because there are 12
6 municipalities behind me. I am the presiding officer
7 of that regional community."
8 Then the president, "Very well. Kljuic,
9 Boban, Vlado Santic, we said that Iko Stanic, Udovicic,
10 Vlasic, and who else?" And then an interjection,
11 "Dario Kordic from Busovaca. That's seven, Kljuic,
12 Boban, Vlado Santic, Iko Stanic, Udovicic, Vlasic,
13 Kordic." "Very well, that is accepted."
14 The last two names, I just want to say, are
16 "Let's vote. Who is for Kljuic?"
17 Q. That's enough of that quotation. That
18 grouping that was created at the end included Kordic,
19 at his own suggestion?
20 A. No. In the end, a group was created, Kljuic,
21 Boban, Stanic.
22 Q. Was there another body created at the end of
23 this meeting, an inner-leadership body?
24 A. No, it was only said that in the future,
25 since some of those from Herzegovina who were present
1 and questioned my leadership in the party, they asked
2 that a commission be represented on all these events,
3 which would also include Boban and Stanic.
4 Q. I can take you back to the reference, if
5 necessary, but do you remember the contribution of
6 Perica Juric and a reference to refugees?
7 A. I cannot recall, but I believe it's in the
9 Q. In the course of this meeting, what, if
10 anything, was said, to your recollection, about what
11 would happen to the Muslims and what the consequences
12 for them would be? I'll take you to a reference, if
13 you want to find one, that touches the topic, but first
14 of all your memory.
15 A. Both factions in this meeting had their own
16 views on the Muslims. My faction considered the
17 Muslims an important partner in the defence of
18 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and considering the historical
19 friendship, they were our only political friends.
20 Boban's side viewed the Muslims with
21 indignation, and later it would be shown that they
22 frequently had contacts with the Serbs, regardless of
23 the fact that during this very period, the Serbian
24 fascism was at its cruellest against the Croatian
25 people, not just in Vukovar but in Dubrovnik and in
1 other parts of Croatia.
2 Q. Thank you. We've heard something about
3 President Tudjman's attitude towards Croatia's shape
4 and the possibility of its survival in that shape.
5 What, in general, if you can summarise it, was his
6 attitude towards Croatia's borders and shape as
7 expressed at this meeting or at other meetings?
8 A. He said that for the first time openly, that
9 Croatia's shape was not right and that it cannot stay
10 that way, and that the HDZ policy, that is, the Zagreb
11 policy, would be evidenced in Dayton when some of the
12 best Croatian territory in Posavina was sacrificed for
13 three municipalities that were very backward, that is,
14 Dravar, Glamoc and Bosanski Grahovo.
15 But let me go back to the main issue, which
16 is that at this meeting and in the party itself, people
17 split along the lines of those who did not believe that
18 much in the significance of the Helsinki conference of
19 1975 and those people who believed in the survival of
21 On the other hand, President Tudjman stated
22 that Bosnia and Herzegovina was a colonial creation.
23 Bosnia is an old state with a thousand-year history,
24 and Croats from Bosnia did not come from Croatia but
25 are an indigenous group which arrived there in the 7th
1 century from the Carpathian, just like all the other
3 Finally, Bosnia and Herzegovina is a rather
4 rare case in Europe because it has the most stable
5 borders within the last 400 years.
6 Q. The positions taken by the other faction, the
7 faction other than yours, did those positions fit with
8 the original HDZ BH platform and the laws of
9 Bosnia-Herzegovina or not, or don't you have a view?
10 A. No. The group that I led, and these were
11 mostly people holding high-ranking government positions
12 and many of the local leaders from Central and Northern
13 Bosnia, fully supported the idea of a sovereign and
14 independent Bosnia and Herzegovina.
15 Q. But the other faction, what I want to know is
16 did the other faction's position fit with or did it
17 violate the HDZ BH platform and all the laws of
19 A. In that period, no one was against the laws
20 of Bosnia and Herzegovina, but evidently the faction
21 led by Boban and some other people from Herzegovina,
22 which was later joined by many others, was against what
23 we adopted at the party convention in Mostar.
24 Q. Was Boban acting -- and his group acting
25 independently of Zagreb, or not? Or don't you know?
1 A. No. I know very well that they were not.
2 JUDGE BENNOUNA: (Interpretation) Mr. Nice,
3 could you ask the witness -- in his answer, he says
4 that it was fine that Boban did not act independently
5 of Zagreb. Could you tell us, how does he know that,
6 and on which information is this very clear-cut
7 negative answer based?
8 A. First of all, because the policy advocated by
9 Boban was in opposition to the platform adopted at the
10 convention. On the other hand, what Boban was saying
11 was what many people in Zagreb wanted to hear. And
12 finally, when we parted after this meeting, I, together
13 with the officials I had brought with me, and you have
14 to know that we couldn't travel by car because there
15 was a state of war in Croatia, I arrived in Gratz, in
16 Austria, in the government aeroplane of Bosnia and
17 Herzegovina and went to Zagreb from there. So those
18 two groups went their own ways after the meeting.
19 We fled from Zagreb the following morning, in
20 the direction of Austria, and they went out together
21 with the officials from Zagreb that evening. Of
22 course, not with President Tudjman.
23 MR. NICE:
24 Q. Can I get you to deal with one last extract
25 on the papers? It's a reflection of the other side's
1 point of view. 20/3/JG, please -- sorry, my mistake,
2 20/4/JG. This is from, as we can see from the previous
3 page, Juric, middle paragraph, beginning "Mislim?
4 A. The first, or the second?
5 Q. The first one.
6 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
8 "I think that we can truly do everything for
9 a plan, a plan of integration, starting from good
10 preparations for defence to the linking of
11 institutions, the linking in the best sense of that
12 word. At the diplomatic level, our political people in
13 Sarajevo can go on swearing that they are in favour of
14 a sovereign Bosnia and Herzegovina, as we have said up
15 to now."
16 Q. Next paragraph?
17 A. [Translation of Serbo-Croatian document as
19 "I think that this sovereignty will not
20 succeed. No one is supporting it any more. I think
21 that Croatian policy has now at least reached the point
22 where it has to start taking care of its own
24 Q. So you were explaining how you fled that
25 meeting, and did you have any feelings as to how things
1 were going to develop with the different factions that
2 now existed?
3 A. In the last two paragraphs, it is evident
4 that they wanted to perform a trick, and that they
5 wanted to go on formally advocating a sovereign Bosnia
6 and Herzegovina, but they were acting differently, and
7 they did not in fact want it. Unlike them, I truly
8 believed in the future of my homeland, and both as a
9 human being and as a communist dissident, I always
10 openly stated what I was fighting for. I, and most of
11 the people from my faction, did not agree to saying
12 publicly that they were in favour of Bosnia and
13 Herzegovina and secretly working against it.
14 On the other hand, many participants in this
15 meeting left the political scene because the retrograde
16 ideas being advocated there were denied by the events
17 which followed, and that is the Washington Agreement,
18 and the peace between the Croats and the Muslims, and
19 the Dayton Accord, according to which Bosnia and
20 Herzegovina remained a sovereign country with its
21 borders unchanged.
22 Q. As you left that meeting, did you have any
23 concerns for yourself, either your political career or
24 your personal security?
25 A. Well, I was a dissident during communist
1 times, and I never intended to build a political
2 career. But when I was given the honour of leading the
3 Croatian people of Bosnia and Herzegovina, with the
4 help of my associates, I created the best possible
5 political platform. I was concerned, because I knew
6 many people, and besides this, I was the leader of a
7 delegation which brought seven high-ranking officials
8 from Bosnia and Herzegovina there, and it was my
9 responsibility to take them back to Sarajevo. And I
10 was successful in this.
11 Q. On the 16th of January -- paragraph 21 of the
12 summary -- 16th of January, 1992, did you chair a
13 meeting of the HDZ BH presidency, and at that
14 meeting --
15 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
16 MR. NICE: Thank you.
17 A. It's possible, because on the 15th of
18 January, 1992, Croatia gained its independence.
19 MR. NICE: Exhibit Z38, please. I think it's
20 in the pile.
21 A. And we celebrated this event in Sarajevo.
22 Q. You see Z38, decisions of the presidency, in
23 English, French, and B/C/S. Number 2 of the
24 decisions --
25 A. Just one moment, please. Please, a Croatian
2 Q. Yes, of course. Coming your way.
3 MR. NICE: Right at the end, I think.
4 Q. And then Item Number 2, we have an English
5 translation which reads to this effect -- perhaps you
6 could follow it in the original.
7 "The HDZ of BH has asked the BH government to
8 include immediately the Croatian dinar into the
9 financial transactions in Bosnia and Herzegovina. If
10 the government of Bosnia and Herzegovina does not act
11 in this manner, the HDZ of Bosnia-Herzegovina will
12 undertake other political measures to protect the
13 Croatian population in Bosnia-Herzegovina from further
15 Can you make any comment about that?
16 A. Yes, I can. When we saw what was happening
17 in the former Yugoslavia, when Slovenia and Croatia
18 were intensively preparing for independence, we in
19 Bosnia and Herzegovina tried to protect ourselves from
20 the Yugoslav dinar, which was arriving from Belgrade in
21 vast quantities, with teams of smugglers who bought
22 foreign currency from citizens and took them to
23 Belgrade. The government of Bosnia and Herzegovina
24 printed banknotes, or rather designed banknotes, and
25 had them printed in London, so that we, too, could have
1 our own currency, especially as on the 31st of
2 December, 1991, Croatia abolished the use of the
3 Yugoslav dinar.
4 Unfortunately, the government of Bosnia and
5 Herzegovina was not successful in getting these
6 banknotes printed fast, and when the printing was
7 completed in London, the war broke out, and these
8 banknotes never actually reached Bosnia and
10 Q. Nothing else on that. I think the next
11 document in the pile is Z2748. I include it simply
12 because you have produced it. I have no comments on
13 it. Please confirm that this is a letter from the head
14 of HDZ BH in Mostar's municipal committee concerning an
15 election of the supreme court -- of a supreme court
16 justice, I think.
17 If I've got it wrong, or if there's a
18 material comment, please make it.
19 A. Yes. No, no, no, please, it was our
20 obligation to staff a large number of institutions,
21 including the judicial system. After receiving some
22 recommendations from Mostar, we elected Mr. Ljubomir
23 Zovko as a justice of the constitutional court of
24 Bosnia and Herzegovina, and we believed this to be a
25 good solution. However, the struggle between the
1 different factions in the Mostar HDZ was very fierce,
2 and I received a letter from the president of the
3 Mostar HDZ in which he objected to this appointment.
4 However, I have to tell the Trial Chamber
5 that this gentleman was later very well received by the
6 same people who objected to his being appointed, and
7 throughout the war, he held a high position in the
8 judiciary of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
9 Q. Paragraph 22 of the summary: Was there a
10 meeting on the 2nd of February, called by Drago Krpina,
11 in Siroki Brijeg?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. What was the purpose of that meeting?
14 A. As you can see from these documents, the
15 polarisation of the two fractions was growing, and it
16 could no longer be concealed from the public. I was
17 handicapped because I had to deal with affairs of
18 state, I had to attend meetings of the presidency, of
19 the assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina, inter-party
20 discussions with the SDA and the SDS, talks with the
21 international mediators. And while I was busy doing
22 all this, and so were my associates, they took the
23 opportunity to organise themselves on the ground.
24 The fact that this meeting was held in Siroki
25 Brijeg on the 2nd of February, 1992, and that it was
1 organised from Zagreb, was a blow to the legal
2 leadership and to me personally. I had two plans. One
3 was not to go, and to wait and see what they would
4 decide. And because of the overall situation in Bosnia
5 and Herzegovina, I would probably have been disciplined
6 by my party.
7 The second plan was to go there and to fight
8 for my political views. I chose the second path. In
9 the meantime, I received information that in Siroki
10 Brijeg, they wanted to challenge the referendum issue,
11 and that they were asking for it to be altered.
12 You should know that at that time the
13 international community, and primarily the European
14 union, required us to apply for the recognition of the
15 independence of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The presidency
16 of Bosnia and Herzegovina, of which I was a member,
17 sent this application to the European union, and five
18 out of seven members voted in favour of doing so. Only
19 the two Serbian representatives did not support this
21 Since there was no inter-ethnic consensus,
22 the European Community insisted that a referendum
23 should be held in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The question
24 was, "Are you in favour of an independent Bosnia and
25 Herzegovina of equal citizens and peoples?"
1 At the meeting in Siroki Brijeg, a
2 high-ranking delegation of Zagreb was present,
3 consisting of Stipe Mesic, Perica Juric, and Vice
4 Vukojevic, and I chaired the meeting.
5 Q. What was the objective of the Zagreb
6 delegation, so far as your position was concerned?
7 A. The delegation which attended the meeting in
8 Siroki Brijeg did not say what their aim was. On the
9 contrary, we greeted each other warmly, as if this were
10 some kind of routine meeting, but a few years later,
11 Stipe Mesic told me that the task he had been given was
12 to get me dismissed at the meeting in Siroki Brijeg.
13 However, when he saw the support I had in the
14 hall, he did not try to carry out this task.
15 Q. In the event, how did the meeting end? I'm
16 sorry, by whom had Stipe Mesic been given that
17 particular task? I should have asked you that.
18 A. I don't know. We can only suppose.
19 Q. Did he tell you by whom he was given the
21 A. He said that the leadership in Zagreb had
22 asked him to do this.
23 Q. The meeting ended with what, so far as your
24 position was concerned?
25 A. The meeting was interrupted. Because out of
1 the 41 members who took the floor, 39 were from
2 Herceg-Bosna, and some of these accused me openly as a
3 traitor of Croatian interests, as a person who,
4 cooperating with the Muslim party, had brought the
5 Croats into an inferior position. One of them, Jozo
6 Maric, stood up and said that the Croatian people in
7 Bosnia and Herzegovina refused to be ruled by the Turks
8 for another 500 years.
9 In the meantime, many representatives from
10 Bosnia who lived a long way off left the meeting,
11 saying to me, "Mr. President, we support you, but it's
12 late, we have to get home." You should know that at
13 that time, there were many Serbian checkpoints in
14 Bosnia, and that the roads were unsafe.
15 So I prepared for this meeting especially,
16 and I decided not to eat anything at the meeting.
17 However, later, I felt ill, and I can tell you later on
18 what happened.
19 Q. I think you were in hospital for some -- 20
21 A. You see, when I saw that they wanted to
22 outvote me and that they wanted to challenge the
23 referendum as the most important document for the
24 future of Bosnia and Herzegovina and for the Croatian
25 people in this country, because if the referendum was
1 not successful, Bosnia and Herzegovina would remain in
2 Milosevic's Yugoslavia, I interrupted the meeting and
3 told them, "Gentlemen, you can go your way, and I'll go
5 I left, although they all tried to keep me
6 there. Mesic, too, of course. However, I am not a
7 person who makes decisions easily, and I knew that on
8 the basis of the statute of the HDZ of Bosnia and
9 Herzegovina, I had paralysed the further work of the
10 gathering. I said that I would resign, and the statute
11 of the HDZ of Bosnia and Herzegovina states that,
12 should the president say that he is going to resign, he
13 still remains the resigning president, and for his
14 resignation to be either accepted or rejected, a
15 convention has to be called. It was quite clear to me
16 that they wanted to sabotage the referendum, and
17 Milosevic probably was interested in Western
18 Herzegovina and the Cazim region -- he would have given
19 those areas to someone else because they were not
20 territories which could be governed easily. It later
21 became evident that this was their intention, when they
22 meet in Livno a week later.
23 Q. Let's pause there a moment. I'm going to
24 come back to the constitution and the document that
25 evidences it right at the end, for completeness, but
1 can you look now, please, at -- Livno was -- Livno,
2 tell us about the date of that meeting, and what
3 happened there?
4 A. On the 9th of February, 1992, those same
5 people met in Livno and ordered a new referendum
6 question. Generally speaking, the idea was that Bosnia
7 should be a tripartite community, and this was
8 requested and submitted to the election commission, or
9 rather referendum commission, which refused it on
10 formal grounds as this request had arrived too late,
11 and its authors did not meet the conditions.
12 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
13 MR. NICE:
14 Q. Can you look, please, then, at Document 2749,
15 which I hope is in the Court's pile. The third sheet
16 shows that this is dated the 12th of February. Can you
17 tell us what this document is, please.
18 A. At the time, Lord Carrington was conducting
19 very intensive talks, and he was to be joined by
20 Mr. Cyrus Vance, with all the leaders of ethnic parties
21 in Bosnia-Herzegovina. In the end, when they were not
22 satisfied, when they were not happy with the outcome of
23 those meetings, they asked for each of the ethnic
24 parties to draw up a text as a summary of their idea of
25 the future independent state.
1 More specifically, this text is the SDA
2 proposal. It is of great consequence, because it takes
3 note of the request of the Croats to have a chamber of
4 peoples in the parliament in which representatives of
5 individual ethnic communities would have the right of
6 veto in cases of a major national interest, rather
7 ethnic interest. We did not have it in communism, but
8 that was part of our programme, and I can tell you that
9 today in Bosnia-Herzegovina, that in the Federation and
10 in Bosnia-Herzegovina there is a chamber of peoples.
11 So we and the SDS submitted similar
13 Q. Now, that reflects what was going on on the
14 12th of February. You, I think, were still in
15 hospital. Did you write to President Tudjman on the
16 14th of February?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Does a copy of that letter exist, or to tell
19 us about it, are you dependent on memory?
20 A. I believe there is a copy of that letter
21 which I gave. The letter is original, and it is very
22 important, because the eve before that I went through a
23 crisis; that is, after 11 days of fighting for my life,
24 I did remain alive. And as soon as I could summon
25 enough strength to sit at a table, I did sit so and
1 wrote a letter to Mr. Tudjman, a letter in which I
2 warned him that he had to bring pressure to bear on
3 those -- when I say "those," then I mean those who did
4 not abide by the political platform of the Bosnia and
5 Herzegovina and HDZ -- and in which I also indicated
6 that if the referendum failed, that Bosnia and
7 Herzegovina would then remain in rump Yugoslavia, and
8 that that would be the greatest of the disasters for
9 the Croat people in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
10 I also wrote that he should recognise
11 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and he subsequently heeded to my
12 advice, because in this manner he would at long last
13 show that he was not the one to partition
15 Q. When you wrote to him, did you get any
16 acknowledgement from him, or any reply, or anything like
18 A. No. Quite the contrary. Nobody called from
19 Zagreb while I was in the hospital. I asked
20 [indiscernible] that [indiscernible] call me, offering
21 me treatment in Vienna, and nobody dialled my number
22 from Croatia.
23 I received very many telegrams from citizens
24 of Bosnia-Herzegovina of all ethnic origins, in which
25 they wished me to get well soon, and then a day after I
1 sent this letter, little Perica Juric called me from
2 Zagreb, asking me to call him. I think it was cynical
3 on his part, but I clearly don't want to talk about my
4 personal problems here.
5 It was really beyond belief that the whole
6 European press wrote that I had been poisoned, and yet
7 from Zagreb, from my own party, from my own political
8 partners, nobody bothered about me.
9 Q. Thank you. Can I just backtrack a little?
10 There is a document in the pile dealing with the
11 meeting at Livno. It's Z45. Can the witness just see
12 it? Although he wasn't present at the meeting, he may
13 have seen the document and be able to confirm it.
14 A. I cannot authenticate this document, but all
15 I can say is that here is a standard HDZ form. And I
16 can confirm the question from Livno, which was carried
17 by all the newspapers and all the other media.
18 Q. If you look at the other document, there are
19 a couple of signatures, not terribly clear. Do you
20 recognise them?
21 A. I see. Secretary and initiative clerk;
22 Boban, vice-president of the HDZ; Santic, another
23 vice-president; Ivan Markesic, general secretary.
24 Q. Do you recognise either of those signatures?
25 A. I have only two, Andzelka Stojic and Ivan
1 Markesic's. I couldn't really claim that these are
2 their signatures. You would have to ask them.
3 I don't think there is any secret in this.
4 The most important thing is the question was publicised
5 and publicly printed, so that there was nothing secret
6 about this.
7 Q. You left hospital, and you told us about one
8 letter you received. Did you receive a letter from
9 Markesic on the 19th of February? I'm sorry, I --
10 A. What is the letter about? Markesic was in
11 Sarajevo with me, yes.
12 Q. [Previous interpretation continues]
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. I'll just show you the letter.
15 A. Yes. At a session in Lisbon, I was being
16 prepared, and with the ecoutier, who was the mediator,
17 the negotiators of the HDZ, the SDA, and the SDS were
18 to attend that meeting.
19 The secretary general, Ivan Markesic, after I
20 summoned enough strength to go back to work, sent a
21 proposal to Zagreb that I should head the delegation of
22 Bosnia-Herzegovinian HDZ.
23 The next day, Stipe Mesic replied that
24 allegedly I wasn't feeling all too well and the
25 delegation should comprise Boban, Miro Lasic, Stanic,
1 and that was the delegation that went.
2 Q. If you look at Z2754, is that the letter from
3 Mesic that you just spoke of?
4 A. It is.
5 Q. Was there a meeting on the 15th of March
6 called by Krpina in Bugojno?
7 A. Yes, but there is a vacuum here, we've got a
8 void here. May I explain something?
9 Q. Yes.
10 A. Because it is very important, you know.
11 After I left the hospital and generally up until I left
12 Siroki Brijeg, I had a very clear political direction,
13 as the statute was on my side and they could not
14 dismiss me without holding a convention. Then I went
15 around and started promoting the referendum, and I
16 believe that was a historic moment in Bosnia because I
17 enjoyed absolute support of the Catholic Church, and
18 we, the Croats, contributed to the referendum held on
19 the 29th of February or 1st of March succeeding.
20 I must say that the largest percentage of
21 Croats voted for the referendum. In terms of
22 structure, Croats had 17,3 per cent share of the
23 population, but because the population was -- they were
24 of older generations, so their share in the electorate
25 was larger.
1 On the other hand, the Muslims accounted for
2 a very large share of the population, but the
3 population is younger, so that they were represented on
4 the electorate with a smaller number of people.
5 In contrast, a considerable number of Serbs
6 also voted for an independent Bosnia-Herzegovina.
7 Sixty-six per cent who voted for an independent
8 Bosnia-Herzegovina was seen by Jacques Santer as an
9 excellent result, and he personally told me at a
10 luncheon that in the western countries, less people
11 than that turn out to vote.
12 Even though I was very happy that we had won
13 our independence, I yet knew that not all was formally
14 over with the HDZ. Why is that? As the president, I
15 believed, when I began to promote the referendum, that
16 if I won in the referendum, then I would hold a
17 convention of the party and remove the entire
18 referendum stream, and if I lose in the referendum, I
19 intended to withdraw. However, I won the referendum.
20 The Croat people offered their whole-hearted
21 vote for an independent Bosnia-Herzegovina, but Zagreb
22 never permitted to hold the convention. That is why
23 the meeting in Bugojno was organised on the 15th of
24 March, and I was not even invited to it, to be quite
1 Q. At that meeting --
2 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
3 MR. NICE:
4 Q. At that meeting, who was elected acting
6 A. Mr. Milenko Berkic was elected. Otherwise,
7 he was a member of the last Communist government.
8 However, it was a bypass of sorts, because he was to be
9 dismissed and replaced by Boban.
10 You probably want to know why couldn't they
11 immediately bring Boban after me. Well, quite simply
12 because I enjoyed the great trust of all citizens of
13 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and representatives of the
14 International Community, notably ambassadors of major
15 states to Yugoslavia, at that time already saw that
16 that separatist line was not good either for the Croat
17 people in Bosnia-Herzegovina or for the State of
19 However, in the course of the war which
20 commenced in early April '92 in Bosnia-Herzegovina,
21 things radically changed, and sometime at some meeting
22 in Posusje or wherever, Boban, at long last, became the
23 wartime president of the HDZ.
24 Q. Let's just conclude with the appointment of
25 Boban. That happened on the 24th of October, did it?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Were you invited to be at that meeting?
3 A. No. Had they invited me, I would have gone.
4 Q. What, if anything, happened to you or what,
5 if anything, was done of a formal nature about your
6 position on that meeting or at that meeting?
7 A. Absolutely, yes, they then decided to dismiss
8 me from the presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina. That
9 decision was unlawful because I was elected ad persona,
10 I mean, to the presidency of Bosnia-Herzegovina, that
11 is. Of all the 42 candidates for the presidency, I won
12 the relative majority of all votes, which means that
13 representatives of other ethnic communities had also
14 voted for me.
15 However, their request would have been
16 immaterial, would have been irrelevant, had not the
17 president of the presidency, Alija Izetbegovic, not
18 concluded a separate contract with President Tudjman
19 and Mate Boban. If you care to, I can briefly recount
20 it to you, because that was an event which produced a
21 tremendous effect on the future fate of
23 JUDGE BENNOUNA: (Interpretation) Yes, perhaps
24 we could hear something about that agreement.
25 A. Yes, yes.
1 On the 19th of December, '92, according to
2 the constitution of Bosnia-Herzegovina, I was to become
3 its president. Namely, pursuant to our constitution, a
4 man could not hold the office of the president for more
5 than two years. Izetbegovic's term was expiring on the
6 19th of December, '92.
7 Tudjman, Zagreb, and Herceg-Bosna could not
8 accept -- could not agree that I become the president
9 of that state because they knew that I would very
10 consistently pursue the policy which I had advocated
11 from the outset. Because of that, there was a meeting
12 in Zagreb between Tudjman and Izetbegovic in which he
13 said that Izetbegovic should remove Kljuic and that
14 Izetbegovic would then continue as the president of
16 Needless to say, Izetbegovic wanted that, but
17 Tudjman told him, "But you've agreed with me, but your
18 real partner, your true counterpart, is Mate Boban."
19 So Izetbegovic goes to Grude, and that was truly a
20 sensation, because until that time Izetbegovic used
21 always to censor or to condemn Boban's policy.
22 I did not know about the substance of the
23 Grude meeting, and I was to learn it only a few years
24 later. But when Izetbegovic returned to the
25 presidency, we met, and I laughed, "Who are you, the
1 president of this state, going to the smallest
2 municipality to conduct negotiations," because Grude
3 was absolutely the smallest municipality in the state.
4 And Izetbegovic, you know, slyly said, "Well, you have
5 to talk with everyone."
6 But what happened? I really did not feel up
7 to dealing politically with such a man. I mean there
8 was HDZ and Boban, but I did not want to leave the
9 presidency because I had fought for it personally in
10 the elections. However, this was a procedure in which
11 they were not requesting only my resignation, my
12 dismissal, but also the dismissal of the prime
13 minister, Jure Pelivan, and explicitly asking that Miro
14 Lasic substitute for me. He had never been on the
15 electoral list and, therefore, pursuant to our
16 constitution, could not become the president. However,
17 to put Izetbegovic in a situation to publicly violate
18 the constitution or support me, I wrote a letter to the
19 presidency and acceding my place in the presidency to
20 Miro Lasic.
21 At the same time, Mila Ekmescic replaced Jure
22 Pelivan, and then when Izetbegovic accepted -- admitted
23 Miro Lasic in the presidency, they overthrew the
24 constitution of Bosnia-Herzegovina, because pursuant to
25 the constitution, if I had properly resigned, then a
1 person figuring the third on the electoral list would
2 have taken my place, and that was Ivo Komisic. But
3 when he violated the constitution, succumbed to
4 Tudjman's pressure, then Tudjman ordered all high
5 officials of the Croat people in Bosnia-Herzegovina to
6 leave their offices and move either to Herceg-Bosna or
7 to Zagreb.
8 Thus, in the history of Bosnia, there is a
9 disgrace that the prime minister left without saying
10 goodbye, he did not resign, he fled from the country,
11 and that Miro Lasic went as a member of the presidency
12 and with him another member, Boras, and all this was
13 done so as to represent the lawful presidency of
14 Bosnia-Herzegovina as Muslim.
15 Then when Tudjman and Izetbegovic met in
16 Zagreb the next time, and this is what Izetbegovic told
17 me, then Tudjman said, "Well, don't you know,
18 Mr. Izetbegovic, that you're not the president of the
19 state? Don't you know your own constitution? You are
20 the president of the Muslims," that kind of policy
21 whereby Bosnia-Herzegovina was to be torn apart, and
22 Izetbegovic, brought to negotiate as representatives of
23 the Muslims only, was the most dangerous of all.
24 Ten months later, under the pressure of the
25 international public and the big powers, a lawful
1 presidency was reinstated in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and I
2 was also on it, and it remained in power until the end
3 of 1996.
4 Q. The appointment of Boban, in your judgement,
5 organised by whom?
6 A. Well, he couldn't become the president.
7 Well, presumably he must have had a number of people
8 who were supporting him, but he wouldn't have been able
9 to become the president without the support of Zagreb.
10 Q. A few documents that I've overlooked, I
11 think, are probably in the Court's bundle which I ought
12 to just tidy up. If the Court has 2750 and 2751, can
13 we just look at those, please, just for completeness.
14 It's my oversight not to have put these in the right
15 sequence. Also 2752, if you've got it.
16 2750, what's that, please? It's dated the
17 12th of February.
18 A. This is a mix-up, a confusion which set in
19 after the Livno issue, because people around were
20 asking for an explanation and seeking that explanation
21 from the general secretary.
22 Q. 2751, another letter from the Opstina --
23 A. Well, I think this is a humane -- a very
24 warmly-written letter which shows that my poisoning at
25 Siroki Brijeg was not accidental.
1 The president of the municipal government
2 simply sends me a letter and wishes me to get well
3 quickly and tells me not really to think too much of
4 the events of Siroki Brijeg. He says, "Please realise
5 that the toll passes but people stay."
6 Q. 2752, please.
7 A. This is my letter to President Tudjman.
8 Q. From the hospital?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. You've given us a summary of it already.
11 Without reading passages out loud, just check if there
12 are no other parts of it that you want to refer to,
13 turning the pages if you need to.
14 A. No, I already said what was most important in
15 the referendum, independence of Bosnia, the pressure
16 brought on those who were supporting the referendum. I
17 also indicated what would be the future of Bosnia if we
18 avoided the referendum, and things like that.
19 Q. Two other documents that have yet to be
20 distributed, I think, 2759 and 2760. I don't think
21 they are in the pile. Copies are coming, in enough
22 numbers for the Court, the Defence, and the witness.
23 2759, please. Tell us, please, what 2759
24 is. You can see it's dated Zagreb, 1990.
25 A. Yes. Yes, yes, yes. This is from the first
1 general Congress of the HDZ held in Zagreb in early
2 1990 where the leadership of the Croatian HDZ was
3 elected and later on this will lead to their election
4 victory in the spring of the same year.
5 Q. If you, I think, go to page -- on page 22 of
6 this document, what is there?
7 A. This is the general statute of the HDZ,
8 statute of the Croatian Democratic Community in Zagreb.
9 Q. Will you now take Document 2760. What
10 publication is this?
11 A. The publication is called "Bosna and
12 Herzegovina" -- I cannot see from which paper because a
13 number of newspapers had this type of size. It could
14 be Zagreb, it could be --
15 Q. On the bottom of the page, which isn't on the
16 ELMO at the moment --
17 A. Yes, this is the party paper of the Zagreb
18 HDZ. The Croatian Democratic Community, as a party,
19 issued its own paper, and this is an excerpt from that
21 Q. So if you turn to the second sheet, please,
22 the right-hand column, the second fresh paragraph,
23 beginning "u sedmoj", a bit higher up, please. Yes,
24 that's the one there, in the middle of the page now.
25 Thank you very much. Can you just read out that
1 paragraph for us, please?
2 A. "The Congress was then addressed by Neven
3 Jurica, Muhamed Zulic and Dalibor Brozovic. Their
4 speeches reflected the idea that Bosnia-Hercegovina had
5 to go to Europe, and the quickest and best way was
6 through Croatia."
7 Q. The next paragraph?
8 A. In the seventh point of the agenda, the BH
9 HDZ Statute was adopted. It was presented by Miljenko
10 Zagar. He said that the statute was the same with the
11 HDZ statute of the Republic of Croatia, because all of
12 the HDZ were one single movement. In the BiH HDZ
13 statute, the changes in article 4, 8, 43, and 72, were
14 proposed in order to adapt to the political terminology
15 in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the statute and the
16 changes were adopted by acclamation.
17 Q. So that apart from those clauses, the statute
18 that we've produced as Exhibit 2759 should apply for
19 the Bosnia-Herzegovina party as well; is that right?
20 A. No. After I was elected president, I had to
21 reregister the party at a superior court in Sarajevo,
22 and among others, I changed what was there before; that
23 is, the HDZ for Bosnia and Herzegovina and I
24 substituted "by HDZ of Bosnia and Herzegovina." So
25 that we were registered as an independent political
1 party. And of course we continued to maintain very
2 close relations with the HDZ in Zagreb, and I have to
3 say that they have helped the HDZ in Bosnia and
4 Herzegovina, and so on.
5 Q. But apart from that important change in
6 title, the clause is subject to what is said in the
7 official newspaper, the clauses remain the same for
8 both Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina?
9 A. The concept of the party was the same.
10 Q. Just a small matter of detail, at some stage,
11 did President Tudjman offer you a post overseas?
12 A. Yes, I believe that President Tudjman
13 realised that he could not manipulate me politically,
14 that I could not change my political views, given that
15 I had been a dissident for so many years, that I had
16 very clear views, and then he behaved in a gentlemanly
17 manner, and he invited me to either come and work with
18 him in Zagreb, or he also offered me an ambassadorship
19 in Argentina. And the same thing happened in Bosnia.
20 I said, "Perhaps I look like an ambassador, but I don't
21 think that you can really get rid of me that way."
22 Q. To be ambassador in South America, this was
23 for which country? Ambassador for?
24 A. Yes, to be the ambassador of the Republic of
25 Croatia. And I said, "Mr. Tudjman, I cannot be your
1 ambassador, because I am going to be placing our own
2 ambassadors of my own country to those countries."
3 Q. I think, finally, paragraph 30 of the
4 summary, I think you have a Bosnia-Herzegovinian
5 passport, don't you? Do you have a Croatian passport?
6 A. No, unfortunately. And today, it's a
7 handicap. But both myself and my family have passports
8 of Bosnia and Herzegovina, because as a politician, as
9 a person who is fighting for the equality of Croatian
10 people in Bosnia-Herzegovina, cannot hold other
11 passports. And privately, perhaps, it would have
12 been -- it would be much more pleasant for me to have
13 spent the wartime as an ambassador abroad than spending
14 it at home through the war, and -- you know, to have to
15 sustain all the consequences of the war.
16 But those people who were against me,
17 especially those who harmed me so much, I harbour no
18 ill feelings towards such people to date. Many of
19 these people should be understood in a particular way,
20 because in such a crucial historical moment, they were
21 unable to reach the right decisions, and especially
22 those younger ones became victims of a policy which was
23 conducted from Zagreb.
24 Q. One matter of detail I haven't dealt with is
25 paragraph 30 of the summary, but you can deal with this
1 quite shortly. In the conflict, were there leadership
2 meetings, including one at Graz on the 7th of February,
4 A. There were several meetings in Graz.
5 Manolic, Karadzic, and then Boban and Karadzic, and
6 once even Borac was there. These were all attempts to
7 contact the Serbian side and reach an agreement with
8 them. And I have to say that people who led
9 Herceg-Bosna at the time, the top people, I have to
10 say, had continuous contacts with Karadzic's people
11 throughout the war. We watched on Serbian television
12 when the government of Herceg-Bosna, in the middle of
13 the war, twice officially visited, once Banja Luka and
14 another time Herceg Novi.
15 Q. Dario Kordic, you've spoken about the meeting
16 which you attended and of which the minutes are
17 available. Did you meet him personally other than at
18 that sort of meeting?
19 A. No, we never saw each other after
20 27 December -- that is, after the 2nd of February, in
21 Mostar. I was not in Bugojno. The war had started. I
22 lived in Sarajevo. And I would just like to add that
23 he was not part of those delegations which went to
24 Herceg Novi and Banja Luka. If that is of any interest
25 to you, he was not a member of those delegations.
1 Q. Yes, just back on those meetings: At the
2 time that those meetings were going on, they were, of
3 course, at war one with another; is that right?
4 Meetings in Graz and so on?
5 A. I don't know about those things, apart from
6 the reports in the media and what Mesic told me. But
7 the international news organisations reported when
8 Manolic first met, and he confirmed it, too, for me.
9 And there was a Boban/Karadzic meeting in Graz, and it
10 was then represented as if an agreement was reached
11 where they agreed that if there were any Croats left in
12 Sarajevo, that Karadzic would take care of them, and if
13 there were any Serbs in Mostar, it was Boban who was
14 going to take care of them.
15 But I'm talking about a development of the
16 situation which led to three catastrophic errors
17 regarding the Croatian population. One is against the
18 population itself, one against Bosnia and Herzegovina,
19 and thirdly against the Republic of Croatia, if you
21 MR. NICE: The Court said that 4.15 was its
22 time for ending today, and I think that is the last
23 question I have to ask. If we are going over to
24 tomorrow morning, if I could just technically keep
25 examination-in-chief open in case there's something
1 I've omitted, I'd be grateful.
2 JUDGE MAY: What's the position about
4 MR. NICE: There's been no agreement. I've
5 made the point to my learned friends opposite that this
6 is no doubt a witness in relation to whom their case
7 will have been clear for a long time. He is a central
8 figure in the history, and the documents that have been
9 produced -- many of them simply for completeness and
10 because they've been brought, provided ahead of the
11 time that they would normally get them -- may not
12 themselves generate any specific cross-examination.
13 But we would ask that the case continues in
14 the normal way. This witness can be here tomorrow. As
15 to any other days, I'm not so sure.
16 JUDGE MAY: Have you made any inquiries?
17 MR. NICE: Certainly, we have, yes.
18 Can we possibly conveniently just go into
19 private session, rather than full closed session? As
20 we are discussing timetable matters, it would be safer,
21 I think.
22 JUDGE MAY: Very well. But before we do,
23 there are some documents which were handed up which
24 haven't been referred to. There's one, 1437, which is
25 a newspaper report which has been translated into
1 English. I don't know if you want to rely on that at
2 all or whether we can hand it back.
3 MR. NICE: Can we defer all that until
4 tomorrow morning? I'll make a final decision
5 overnight. I've been attempting to prune documents to
6 some extent, but nevertheless, if they're official
7 documents, I think they're better produced by this
9 JUDGE MAY: Well, the witness will be
10 required, in any event, will he, tomorrow?
11 MR. NICE: Well, certainly, if -- I think he
12 will be required. I don't know what the Defence
13 position is, but it may be preferable if we just deal
14 with that in private session.
15 JUDGE MAY: Yes, we'll go into private
17 (Trial Chamber confers)
18 (Private session)
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3 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at
4 4.33 p.m., to be reconvened on
5 Tuesday, the 27th day of July, 1999,
6 at 9.30 a.m.