1 Friday, 28 May 2004
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.14 a.m.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar, would you please call the case but
6 not until after I've wished a good morning to everyone.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Case number IT-00-39-T, the Prosecutor versus
8 Momcilo Krajisnik.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar. I notice, Mr. Stewart,
10 that Ms. Loukas isn't there at this moment. Do you expect her to arrive
11 or --
12 MR. STEWART: Yes, Your Honour. I think she's working on 92 bis
13 at the moment, and she will be along later this morning.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Okay, then. Yesterday I indicated to the
15 parties that I would allow them just to make some brief additional remarks
16 this morning. Is there -- on the issue of the presentation of 92
17 bis material in respect of the witness Babic, especially -- and I think
18 I'm very much focused on the 1.100 pages of the Milosevic trial material.
19 Is there any need to make any further observations? Mr. Tieger?
20 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, I don't have a great deal to add. I
21 would respectfully suggest that we consider taking the opportunity
22 presented by the meeting this afternoon at 2.30 to address the mechanics
23 in a more collaborative manner. I simply want to stress that there were
24 many steps that might have been taken to mitigate or alleviate any
25 problems resulting from the material during -- while the motion was
1 pending. So perhaps we could use the opportunity this afternoon to at
2 least identify the most effective way of dealing with the issue now.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I do understand that. So you'd rather postpone
4 further discussions to this afternoon. You'll understand that this is a
5 -- I would say a significant procedural issue which, if possible, we would
6 like to deal with in open court. That's one.
7 And there's another issue, and it is that Mr. Babic better be able
8 to -- to get to that point is a different matter, but Mr. Babic is
9 expected to start his testimony next Tuesday, and if we would take a
10 decision later this afternoon...
11 So I don't know whether we're going to delay a decision until that
12 moment, but even if we would give a decision and if there would be good
13 reasons to just change it a bit, then we could even consider that.
14 Mr. Stewart, would you like to --
15 MR. STEWART: Yes, Your Honour. With respect, we -- we do endorse
16 Your Honour's comment about dealing with these important procedural
17 matters in open court. Apart from the obvious reasons, there is the fact
18 that that does enable Mr. Krajisnik to hear them, because after all, he
19 doesn't attend the meetings that we're talking about this afternoon.
20 The -- yes, we had, as we said we would, we have had some thoughts
21 and I've had some discussion was my team overnight. The -- I -- as a sort
22 of starting point, I think about the way that some of these things are
23 sometimes dealt with in domestic proceedings. Not to say that we should
24 just immediately translate them to here, but as a starting point. If one
25 has some written material, say some evidence that a witness has given in
1 previous proceedings, or has given evidence on affidavit and you want to
2 introduce into this particular trial the same material, now, one way of
3 doing it, if it's a short passage, is to ask the witness to look at that
4 passage and confirm that that is what he would say to this and will say to
5 this particular Trial Chamber. That has the advantage, which I think is
6 an advantage in a way, that it actually sidesteps the 92 bis procedure
7 altogether, as we see it, because then it effectively becomes that
8 witness's direct evidence - direct in the broad sense - in this particular
10 There is, however, a real practical problem with that before this
11 Tribunal, which is that it's only really available in relation to very
12 short bits of evidence, because there is this practical problem which we
13 are facing, that these transcripts - and we're often talking about
14 transcripts, of course - they're not available in B/C/S, so that Mr. Babic
15 as the witness -- because we'd thought to ourselves, well, could he be
16 given selected bits in advance, but he can't because they're not available
17 in his language.
18 JUDGE ORIE: But, Mr. Stewart, if I may interrupt you. There
19 would be a solution for that, that he could listen, at least, to the
20 original testimony by using the B/C/S tape of the Milosevic trial. I
21 think that would be a solution.
22 Mr. Tieger, I see you are raising your eyebrows.
23 MR. STEWART: May I stay on my feet on this one, Your Honour,
24 because, rather than to'ing and fro'ing -- I'm not wishing to stifle Mr.
25 Tieger or the Tribunal, but I think it might be better to deal with it
1 that way, with respect.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Please proceed.
3 MR. STEWART: We thought about that as well, Your Honour. The
4 real difficulty with that - and we're not Mr. Babic's counsel, but for
5 anybody trying to do that - first of all, it's a minor problem. We know
6 from practical experience from our own client that these tapes are
7 extremely unreliable. That's point number 1. They really are very
8 difficult to handle and are extremely unreliable in practice. But that's
9 a subsidiary point. It's -- it's pretty difficult, and it's very
10 time-consuming for anybody, certainly it's impossible for Mr. Krajisnik to
11 deal with it given the volume of material, but even for a witness of
12 Mr. Babic's position in relation to any significant quantity of material,
13 dealing with it on the audiotape is really, we suggest, not a practical
14 option. It's far too onus, it's far too unwieldy, it's far too difficult
15 for somebody to handle.
16 In relation to very short passages, there isn't a problem because
17 in relation to short passages of just a few paragraphs at the most, or 20
18 lines, of course counsel can read those out, they can be translated, the
19 witness can hear them, they can be confirmed. It is still quicker than
20 inviting the witness to go over the same ground again by question and
21 answer. As long as it's -- the passage doesn't involve anything which is
22 objectionably leading so that we would -- for example, in relation to
23 Mr. Babic we would be unhappy just to have that spoon fed to him and have
24 him confirm it, but everybody relies on professional judgement in relation
25 to those matters as we go alone. That works, we'd suggest, satisfactorily
1 in relation to reasonable sized chunks of evidence.
2 When we get to bigger chunks of evidence, perhaps there's 20 pages
3 or something like that, with -- with sufficient notice, and that's
4 obviously a problem in relation to Mr. Babic, with sufficient notice we'd
5 suggest that there -- if we're talking about a very important bit of
6 evidence that might -- but it might take quite awhile to bring out in oral
7 evidence in chief but could be dealt with pretty quickly if the witness
8 were able to confirm what's in that bit of transcript, that might be worth
9 translating. It may be that the costs and the time taken in relation to
10 the key bits -- not so key that they have to be brought out in evidence in
11 chief orally but, if you like, key at the next level; they're important
12 enough and specific enough to be deduced in evidence but they will be much
13 quicker to deal with this way, it may be that the burden and the time is
14 better transferred to the translators which, after all, is one person
15 rather than about 20 people sitting in court while we go through it. I'm
16 just thinking of a proper balance of resources.
17 So far as material can't be dealt with in any of those ways, well,
18 then I suggest we're simply driven back to what we might call conventional
19 92 bis. When we get to conventional 92 bis, I would simply would comment
20 at this point, Your Honour, that we note what Your Honour said yesterday,
21 that it took the Tribunal some time - which we understand to be slightly
22 euphemistic - it took the Tribunal some time to have at least a global
23 look at the material.
24 Now, I indicated the robust approach we had to take into relation
25 to Mr. Babic's material, but I hope Your Honour will see that that's not a
1 satisfactory approach for the Defence to have to adopt generally in
2 relation to 92 bis material, and we haven't. And I hope that the Tribunal
3 having -- the Tribunal has got plenty of experience, of course, but having
4 had the experience in relation to the volume of material and dealing with
5 Mr. Babic's 92 bis material will begin to get perhaps a clearer idea of
6 what is facing the Defence in dealing with 92 bis.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stewart, that's the depending issue, I would say,
8 which is anyhow you need more time to prepare, and I can imagine that you
9 find it a nice coincidence that the Chamber is experiencing, at least
10 that's how you present it, similar problems as you have. Let's not -- I
11 mean, that's sufficiently clear what your position is, with respect --
12 MR. STEWART: Your Honour is absolutely right, we do in a sense --
13 and I don't mean this cheekily if I say welcome to the real world, Your
14 Honours, this is what happens.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Stewart --
16 MR. STEWART: I didn't mean offensively to suggest the Tribunal is
17 not operating in the real world. Your Honour knows what I mean.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Otherwise, I would have made a short comment on that,
19 as a matter of fact.
20 MR. STEWART: Of course. May I make one --
21 JUDGE ORIE: To meet again, both being in the real world, I think
22 that's --
23 MR. STEWART: We hope so.
24 JUDGE ORIE: I can imagine that you'd like -- you'd rather not
25 miss any opportunity to strengthen your position, and you've done that.
1 It's clear to us now.
2 MR. STEWART: It's my job, Your Honour. May I also --
3 JUDGE ORIE: I'm not blaming you --
4 MR. STEWART: I --
5 JUDGE ORIE: -- I just wanted to say to you that that message, at
6 least, perhaps not to the depth you'd like, it's to be understood by the
7 Chamber, but at least that you tried again, that's clear now.
8 Is there anything else?
9 MR. STEWART: Yes. May I just say the Prosecution are big boys,
10 and women as well, Your Honour, and can look after themselves, but we see
11 from our side of the court how very difficult it is for a suggestion of
12 this nature, whatever its merits for the future, to be adopted at this
13 point in time in relation to next week. We could -- we can see that from
14 where we sit and I'm sure the Tribunal will have that in mind. I'm sure
15 Mr. Tiger has that in mind himself.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Is there any other comment to be made?
17 MR. TIEGER: Very quickly, Your Honour. I appreciate the fact
18 that we seem to have come to a kind of sea change in the perception of 92
19 bis. I simply want to speak in support of what I understood to be the
20 original underlying purpose of 92 bis, and that was to enable this
21 institution to utilise the previous cases to incorporate, in particular,
22 large bodies of material that had been dealt with in other cases in a way
23 that didn't consume undue court time. Now, as I say, I appreciate that
24 we've come to understand that it's -- it may be a double-edged sword, but
25 I mention that because that's the basis on which we proceeded.
1 I note that a number of the solutions, or proposed solutions,
2 discussed this morning simply require a great deal of time and creativity.
3 They could have been implemented before. They would be extremely
4 difficult to implement now.
5 I -- the Court noted the -- that Mr. Babic is expected to be on
6 the stand soon. Nobody appreciates that fact more than me, and I simply
7 wanted to make it clear that, in light of that, the options are limited at
8 this point, the options of now dealing with this material in a way other
9 than the conventional 92 bis. That was why I suggested that we take the
10 opportunity to have a bit more collaborative discussion about the best way
11 of doing so.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. That's clear to the Chamber, Mr. Tieger. Thank
13 you for your observations. I think we can now continue to hear the
14 testimony of Mr. Kirudja.
15 Madam Usher --
16 MR. STEWART: Your Honour.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
18 MR. STEWART: May I just say I wonder at what point it would be
19 convenient for Your Honours to deal with the issue which is still on the
20 table in relation to that correspondence to Mr. Harmon and Mrs. Del Ponte.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I went through the correspondence again
22 yesterday. I also checked what the Chamber has said in open court about
23 it. I think we at that time said that we had read the correspondence and
24 that at that point in time it was sufficient for us just the parties to be
25 aware that the Chamber was informed about it but did not take any steps or
1 did not take any decisions in respect of that. At that time, the Chamber
2 considered the matter as a matter, rather, between the parties than
3 involving the Chamber, although we very much appreciated to be informed
4 about it.
5 I think, then, that you never finally got an answer to your last
6 letter. Is that where you say you insist on a certain response. I take
7 it then that no other correspondence -- was there any more after that?
8 MR. STEWART: I must -- I must say, Your Honour, I didn't even
9 have the courtesy of a response from Mrs. Del Ponte of any sort to my last
10 letter, which is surprising, but by definition I haven't had any
11 substantive response. It's just been ignored.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. If the -- what do you expect the Chamber to do;
13 to urge the Prosecution to respond to your last letter or what would you
14 expect to be an appropriate reaction from the Chamber? That's the first
16 MR. STEWART: Thank you, Your Honour, that seems, with respect, to
17 be precisely the right question. We suggest that this is -- this is
18 broadly speaking a matter within what I might call the overall supervisory
19 responsibility of the Tribunal. The Prosecutor is -- and she has her own
20 function, but she is an officer of this Tribunal, and Prosecution and
21 Defence have their responsibilities to this Tribunal and, of course,
22 widely to the community at large.
23 We are very concerned that a statement of this sort has emanated,
24 as it is quite clear it has, not from Mr. Harmon's team, but it is
25 absolutely clear that it has come from within the Office of the
1 Prosecution, and that is absolutely directly within Mrs. Del Ponte's
3 We do not believe -- I've made the qualifications in the letter
4 because of course I don't have direct knowledge of the period from before
5 last July, but as far as I'm aware, this unfortunate remark about
6 Mr. Krajisnik having taken steps to delay his own trial while he, after
7 all, has been in prison all that time, as far as we're aware is not
8 correct. It was given currency in the media. It did come --
9 JUDGE ORIE: Now you repeat the contents of the correspondence
10 rather than answer my question.
11 MR. STEWART: I do that for a deliberate reason, Your Honour,
12 which is this is a public hearing, and I'm not stirring up trouble but I
13 do wish it to be on the record.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stewart, if you'd say I'd rather first have the
15 content of the correspondence on the record, please ask me and we'll
16 decide whether we'll allow you to do that or not. But I did put a
17 question to you. If you would prefer to have summarised the content of
18 the correspondence, that's as such no problem, but you take your own
19 course and you do not answer my question.
20 MR. STEWART: Well, Your Honour, I am proposing to answer your
21 question. It does require in this case just a little bit of introduction.
22 I -- I wish -- I wish the issue to be plain publicly, that's all.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Okay --
24 MR. STEWART: The answer to your question is --
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, in three lines; there has been a newspaper
1 article in which the Office of the Prosecution is mentioned as the source
2 of a critical remark, saying that Mr. Krajisnik did everything to delay
3 the start of the proceedings. You checked that. Mr. Harmon denied that
4 it came from his team, and you checked it with the -- with the journalist,
5 and the journalist said it certainly came from the Office of the
6 Prosecution, and you want this to be clarified.
7 MR. STEWART: Yes. What I want, Your Honour, and I am in effect
8 asking the Tribunal to express a firm view, which we then believe that
9 Mrs. Del Ponte would conscientiously follow, that in relation to this
10 particular contention which came from within the Office of the
11 Prosecution, it should either be substantiated, and if Mrs. Del Ponte and
12 the Office of the Prosecution are saying it is true, then it should be
13 substantiated; and if it is substantiated, then I will graciously accept
14 that it is correct.
15 If it is not substantiated, then we believe it should be publicly
16 withdrawn, because it is a grossly unfair thing to say if it is not true.
17 It is grossly unfair for such a statement to have emanated from within the
18 Office of the Prosecution - not from Mr. Harmon's team but from within the
19 Office of the Prosecution - and then of course in the hands of a
20 perfectly responsible journalist who is reporting what they can get from
21 within the Office of the Prosecutor it's given media currency, and it is
22 not fair on Mr. Krajisnik, and it should be corrected. So it's -- it
23 should be -- it should be substantiated or it should be withdrawn, which
24 is what I invited Mrs. Del Ponte to do, and her general response in
25 relation to what she generally does in relation to media matters is not to
1 the point, because her general response is not appropriately applicable to
2 a situation where the specific contention has come from within her own
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Harmon. Any response at this moment or
5 would you --
6 MR. HARMON: Yes, I have a brief response. To make the record
7 perfectly clear, in terms of the correspondence, not only did I
8 immediately respond to Mr. Stewart, which he does not dispute, but
9 Mrs. Del Ponte responded to Mr. Stewart as well, confirming that the
10 position that I had taken in my letter to Mr. Stewart was essentially her
12 Now, I find it very difficult to -- in a general sense, I don't
13 deal with media matters, but I can imagine a public figure like Mrs. Del
14 Ponte, who has matters reported in the media every day, some accurate,
15 some inaccurate, having to respond to each assertion in the media. It
16 would essentially consume and take her away from her job.
17 Second of all, my recollection of the article that appeared in The
18 Guardian was not a direct quote. It was a -- there was no attribution, of
19 course, other than the general assertion that this information had come
20 from an unknown source in the Office of the Prosecutor. My view, and I am
21 not speaking other than my view, is that the matter should be laid to
22 rest. It has been covered in Mrs. Del Ponte's response to Mr. Stewart
23 when she adopted the position that I had taken in my correspondence with
24 Mr. Stewart.
25 JUDGE ORIE: So you'd say that Ms. Del Ponte has taken the
1 position that at least the statement as it appears in the Guardian is not
2 a correct reflection of what the position of the OTP is, and you say if
3 anything went wrong, let's not spend too much time on it - let's clearly
4 establish this at this moment - and you'd rather insist on -- on, let's
5 say, admitting that if it's wrong that it's a serious fault made by the
6 Office of the Prosecution. Is that --
7 MR. STEWART: Well, not quite, Your Honour, because it is -- it is
8 -- Mrs. Del Ponte has not taken the position -- and I'm quoting what Your
9 Honour has just said. Your Honour said Mrs. Del Ponte has taken the
10 position that at least the statement as it appears in The Guardian is not
11 a correct reflection of what the position of the OTP is. That is not the
12 position that Mrs. Del Ponte has taken at all. Mrs. Del Ponte has refused
13 -- and we do strongly say, Your Honour, with respect, it's an abdication
14 of her responsibility here. Mrs. Del Ponte has refused to take a position
15 in relation to this. She has not denied the accuracy of -- of the report
16 in the sense that it came from the Prosecution. The phrase used was
17 "according to the Prosecution." Now, our starting points on that was when
18 a -- after the first day of the trial, it was the following morning, when
19 a journalist says "according to the Prosecution," the natural assumption
20 is that it is talking about the Prosecution team in that case. Mr. Harmon
21 did respond very quickly, I accept that entirely, and made it clear, and I
22 accept that assurance unequivocally, that it was not Mr. Harmon's team.
23 So that point had gone, but that meant that it did come from within
24 Mrs. Del Ponte's office. She has refused to take a position on this. She
25 has refused to say whether she is prepared to confirm what came from
1 somebody under her aegis and within her responsibility and her office.
2 She's refused to confirm it or withdraw it. And it is also -- though
3 Mr. Harmon did respond very quickly to my letter, Mrs. Del Ponte did not
4 respond at all quickly to my first letter and it is not satisfactory and
5 it is in fact grossly discourteous. We don't take offence very easily but
6 it is grossly discourteous for Mrs. Del Ponte simply to have ignored my
7 last letter which set out a number of specific points in response to hers.
8 We have work to do and we have time to do, and we are not impressed by the
9 suggestion that Mrs. Del Ponte -- the implication is she's a busy woman
10 and doesn't have time for all this. It was grossly discourteous of her
11 not to have answered. But leaving that aside, the substance of the point
12 is that this did come from the Prosecution, it has been reported, it is a
13 very specific matter. If the Office of the Prosecution say it is correct,
14 then they should substantiate it. If it is not correct, then they must
15 withdraw it, and that is the only professional and responsible course.
16 This is not a criticism in the least of the Prosecution team that we see
17 in court here because it is absolutely clear this did not come from them,
18 but up the chain to Mrs. Del Ponte as the person responsible for the
19 person who was the source of this comment to the journalist, Mrs. Del
20 Ponte must sort it out.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, your position is clear. We'll consider what the
22 role of the Chamber could be in this respect and whether we'll change our
23 view or not or whether - which is also perhaps an option - whether the
24 Chamber will express what in the view of the Chamber is true of -- what in
25 the view of the Chamber would be -- whether the Chamber would take a
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 position that it does not recognise what is stated in this article as
2 being in accordance with what this Chamber considers to be their own
3 experience. That might be a solution.
4 I do not know whether the Chamber will urge the Prosecution, and
5 of course that's also one of the issues, is whether it really has been
6 said by someone in the Office of the Prosecutor. I mean, you have it
7 confirmed by the journalist. It's not clearly denied. I would say it's
8 more or less uninvestigated by the OTP. They say it's -- well, it would
9 take a lot of work and we can't spend too much time on that. You disagree
10 with that. That's clear. Whether -- whether the Chamber would take steps
11 to clarify these issues is another matter, but we will consider it and
12 we'll let you know.
13 Having dealt with it -- having dealt with this issue -- well,
14 having paid attention to this issue, which is a different matter, I now
15 would like to further receive the evidence of Mr. Kirudja.
16 Madam Usher, could you please escort the witness into the
18 Mr. Harmon, in respect of the testimony of Mr. Kirudja, sometimes
19 we go in details. If this Chamber sees a map with a lot of names of -- of
20 states on it, then even without going through all the names of those
21 states, the Chamber perfectly understands that these are troops sent by
22 that state. This is just one example. Don't overestimate the
23 intelligence of the Chamber, but it should not be underestimated either.
24 [The witness entered court]
25 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kirudja, please be seated. I apologise that you
1 had to wait for three-quarters of an hour. We had a late start because of
2 logistical problems, and then we had a procedural issue which took some
3 time as well, so therefore you had to wait and we feel sorry for you.
4 May I remind you that you're still bound by the solemn declaration
5 you've given at the beginning of your testimony yesterday.
6 Mr. Harmon.
7 MR. HARMON: Thank you, Mr. President, Your Honours, Counsel.
8 WITNESS: CHARLES KIRUDJA [Resumed]
9 Examined by Mr. Harmon: [Continued]
10 Q. Good morning, Mr. Kirudja.
11 A. Good morning, Counsellor.
12 Q. Mr. Kirudja, I'd like to focus your attention on some of the
13 elements that are found in Prosecutor's Exhibit 120, your statement,
14 paragraphs 64 through 68.
15 MR. HARMON: And if Mr. Kirudja could be provided with a copy of
16 Exhibit 120.
17 A. Paragraph 64?
18 Q. Starting at paragraph 64 going through paragraph 68. Let me
19 summarise just to -- for a moment. These paragraphs recount a meeting
20 between you and Danish military representatives had on the 26th of May
21 with various individuals from Dvor, the mayor of Dvor, Mr. Borojevic, in
22 which he made a request that 5.000 Muslims from Bosanski Novi wanted to
23 transit through Sector North.
24 In respect of that meeting, Mr. Kirudja, just tell us briefly, how
25 did that meeting come about?
1 A. The date is on 26th of May, as I recounted yesterday. Ours was a
2 mandate in the United Nations Protected Areas in accordance with the
3 objectives that I summarised from the Vance Plan. I was in Dvor,
4 therefore, to advance those priorities and decided, of course, to get
5 familiar not only with our own assets, meaning the police stations and the
6 military deployed there, but also with local authorities.
7 So as I was there my subject was not the one that is recounted in
8 this paragraph. So suddenly my agenda is put aside and Mayor Borojevic
9 begins to make the request that I summarised there. So I put down my
10 agenda and start listening, and as I listen, something, what he's asking,
11 struck me as terribly unusual.
12 Q. What was that?
13 A. He said, "I would like to have you assist in the transition of
14 5.000 people," not from his sector but from Bosanski Novi, which is on the
15 other side of the international border. Now, what was strange, he wanted
16 us to see to it that they are filmed as they transition the centre -- the
17 UNPA, and that none of them remain in the UNPA, and that would be our
18 responsibility according to his request. And finally, if I remember
19 correctly, this as a demonstration, or words to the effect, to show our
20 goodwill towards all these people as a humanitarian gesture on our part,
21 so want the whole world to see that happen.
22 Q. Mr. Kirudja, what conclusion did you draw as to the viability of
23 the international border that separated Bosnia from Croatia in the area of
24 Dvor and Bosanski Novi?
25 A. At this point, I wasn't really focused on the border itself. I
1 was focused on what he was asking and the fact that the people were across
2 the border, not the border itself, and the bizarre nature of the fact that
3 he, the mayor of Dvor, is asking something on behalf of another
4 jurisdiction and seeking to introduce it across the border, as you say,
5 into our sector. And that struck me as a rather strange request to say
6 the least.
7 Q. Now, did you later conclude anything about whether that was indeed
8 a border, an international border that was respected by the people who
9 lived in Sector North and the people who were in Bosanski Novi?
10 A. Yes. As the days went by, it was clear that that part of the
11 international border where the Serbs controlled both sides was nothing
12 more than a nominal border, and I mean from the opstina of Bosanski Novi,
13 Bosanska Krupa, all the way in my sector - I'm thinking about the map I
14 showed you yesterday - going westwards all the way to Bosanska Dubica.
15 Both sides were controlled by Serbs, just roads and bridges between the
16 two sides, and for Serb population, that was not really a border. Not so
17 on the left side of that border on the opstina where the majority were
18 Muslims, and I'm speaking about the opstina of Velika Kladusa as you go
19 through to Bihac, that side. That was truly a border for whoever wanted
20 to cross, but not so on that part of the border that you're talking about.
21 Q. Now, in paragraph 66 of your written evidence, you state that the
22 mayor commented that Bosanski Novi was now, and I'm quoting, "part of a
23 new reality in the form of the Serbian Republic of BiH." Can you comment
24 on that further?
25 A. This is a summary of the sequence of the conversation that I'd
1 begun in an attempt to understand why the mayor of Dvor would be asking to
2 undertake this massive transit of people. Our series of questions that I
3 asked and culminating to this statement, why would be -- why would you,
4 the mayor of Dvor, be talking to me or relaying to me something that is
5 being ascribed to the mayor or the authorities in Bosanski Novi - both of
6 you are Serbs - about the aspirations of Muslims? And I remember
7 specifically saying I always understood you when you speak very
8 passionately about the aspirations of Serbs, but these are Muslims whom
9 you told me are leaving voluntarily and want to cross over here. Why
10 would people be leaving voluntarily if everything is as peaceful across
11 the border as you suggest in this what you call magnanimous effort of the
12 Serbs to show their humanitarian concern? Why would they be leaving? And
13 the answer was, well -- words to the effect that Bosanski Novi was now
14 part of a new reality.
15 But before we even got into that, I remember where we were meeting
16 was just a few metres away, in a conference room, to his office. I
17 remember him rushing to the office and saying, "If you don't believe me,"
18 he made a telephone call, and he said, "Here is the mayor. Would you come
19 and talk to him." At that moment I wasn't quite ready to do that and I
20 declined to him, to hear this new reality. He began to see my questions
21 were something is not quite understandable about what you're telling me.
22 So when he mentioned that reality in the context of saying he will explain
23 to you, the other mayor.
24 Q. Now, your statement in paragraph 64 to 68 is quite detailed. I
25 won't ask you any more questions about that particular meeting. The
1 Judges may have some questions for you, Mr. Kirudja, or Defence counsel.
2 MR. HARMON: But if I could have Mr. Kirudja shown the next
3 exhibit, which will be Exhibit 126. Is that correct? 120 --
4 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit number P125.
5 MR. HARMON: Exhibit 125. All right. Thank you.
6 Q. Would you inspect that briefly without making any comment on it,
7 Mr. Kirudja, please.
8 Mr. Kirudja, examining this particular exhibit, 125, did you
9 prepare this exhibit and do you see your signature at the end of it?
10 A. Yes. This is in my handwriting and as well as signed by me.
11 Q. Mr. Kirudja, I see at the end of your name another acronym, CAC,
12 which we'll be seeing again. What does that mean?
13 A. That was my title, Civil Affairs Coordinator.
14 Q. Okay. I would like to direct your attention to the three lines
15 from the bottom of the first page, which I will read: "Would appreciate
16 if UNHCR could assist in obtaining accurate and firsthand information on
17 the story," and the story being 5.000 Muslims who were allegedly leaving
18 Bosanski Novi voluntarily.
19 Why did you request that UNHCR receive accurate information about
20 this story?
21 A. First, a little -- this is in the context of what I discussed
22 yesterday about the various responsibilities in a complex mission such as
23 the UN involving various elements. I reported to the director of civil
24 affairs. At the end of that second page, you will see it's to the DCA,
25 UNPROFOR, Director of Civil Affairs.
1 We were mandated to have responsibility within the UN protected
2 area. This matter, as you can see for yourselves clearly, is about
3 refugees outside the border of the UNPA. Once the matter is brought to my
4 attention, I couldn't put to bear any resources under UNPROFOR to operate
5 across the border to ascertain what I am hearing, because we have no
6 mandate. All the resources that we have are defined within the UNPA, and
7 the matter is about possible refugees in Bosanski Novi wanting to transit
8 in the sector.
9 The only agency that would have the mandate to go there and see
10 for themselves would have been UNHCR. So the intent and purpose of this
11 memorandum is to now prepare the ground for me to have people who will
12 have legitimacy to go across and take a look.
13 Q. Let me direct your attention now to the second page of this
14 document, Mr. Kirudja. The -- starting at the second line from the top,
15 let me read the last sentence: "We have indications that this story may
16 have other political ramifications." What did you mean by that?
17 A. If you recall, the mayor is saying bring the ICRC and the UNPROFOR
18 to film these people transiting through the sector on condition they do
19 not stay in the sector. The only way they could come out would be across
20 the confrontation line to the other side controlled by the Croatian
21 authorities at the end -- at the north, meaning there are two corridors of
22 roads that exited through this sector, one corridor through Vojnic and out
23 into Karlovac, the other corridor through Glina and out into Sisak.
24 The political ramification is that these people will be moving
25 from an international jurisdiction in Bosnia through the UN zone, UNPA,
1 into Croatian territory. There -- the political implications of all of
2 that are inescapable.
3 Q. Mr. Kirudja, let me direct your attention to the next exhibit.
4 This would be Exhibit 125.
5 MR. HARMON: And, Your Honours, this Exhibit relates to the
6 contents of paragraphs 69 through 76 of Prosecutor's Exhibit 120 --
7 A. Paragraph what?
8 Q. 69 through 76 of your written evidence, Mr. Kirudja, and I will
9 summarise very briefly those paragraphs that deal -- in fact, they
10 exhaustively recount a meeting that took place on the following day in
11 Tapusko on the 27th of May, and in that meeting the mayor from Bosanski
12 Novi, Radomir Pasic, attended with his delegation, and he came unannounced
13 and tried to convince you to allow 5.000 Muslims from Bosanski Novi to
14 transit through your jurisdiction.
15 So that's a summary of what's found in those paragraphs, but,
16 Mr. Kirudja, do you have in front of you the next exhibit, which will be
17 Prosecutor's Exhibit 125?
18 A. I see that number, but there's something on my monitor which is a
19 memorandum that I recognise.
20 JUDGE ORIE: The last exhibit was P125.
21 MR. HARMON: Oh, I apologise.
22 JUDGE ORIE: So I take it that this will then be P126.
23 MR. HARMON: P126. P126.
24 Q. Mr. Kirudja, will you inspect Prosecutor's Exhibit P126 before I
25 ask you some questions about it.
1 Mr. Kirudja, the first page of this exhibit, on the top it says
2 "UNPROFOR Message Form." Do you recognise this exhibit and do your
3 initials appear on it?
4 A. Yes. Again, this is in my handwriting and is initialed by me.
5 Q. Starting on the next page, the document with the caption "Fax
6 Transmission," at the bottom of which it says: "Sincerely," the
7 handwriting is -- if I interpret the handwriting here, it says Jens
8 Brosted. Do you recognise that document?
9 A. Yes, I do.
10 Q. And turning the page one more page, starting at the top it says:
11 "Jens Brosted report on meeting regarding Muslim inhabitants of Bosanski
12 Novi at headquarters UNPA north on May 28, 1992." Do you recognise that
14 A. Uh-huh, I do.
15 Q. While I'm on that caption that I just read, it says that the
16 meeting took place on May 28, 1992. Is that correct or is that an error?
17 A. My note -- my diary seems to indicate it was on 27th.
18 Q. Okay. Now, can you tell the Trial Chamber, Mr. Kirudja, who is
19 Jens Brosted?
20 A. Jens Brosted was the officer who UNHCR supplied at my request to
21 be based at the headquarters, at our headquarters in Tapusko quite early,
22 not because -- long before or, rather, before the meeting in Dvor the
23 mandate of the mission included, and we anticipated it would include a lot
24 about refugees, and since we were to prepare for their voluntary return, I
25 went to Zagreb and made an appeal urgently that they collocate one of
1 their staffers in my office, and Jens Brosted was one of the first they
2 sent to my office.
3 Q. All right. Now, if I could turn to your written evidence,
4 Prosecutor's Exhibit 120, and refer you to paragraph 70 in that document.
5 And again I won't go into great detail about this meeting because it's
6 very exhaustively covered, but I want to focus your attention on the
7 following: In paragraph 70, first you say: "I asked why a human being
8 would want to leave the safety of his or her house if everything was as
9 peaceful and orderly as portrayed. Pasic responded: 'I admit that the
10 Muslims have been under pressure from armed Serbian irregulars,' implying
11 that the regular forces of law and order had nothing to do with the
12 harassment of Muslims with a view to force them to evacuate."
13 Now, did he explain to you who those Serb irregulars were?
14 A. No. This was -- he mentioned that, as this paragraph hints,
15 because this was again a three-hour meeting where he repeated almost
16 verbatim the elements of the earlier demarche that was put to me by
17 Mr. Jugo Borojevic in Dvor, again, basically to leave voluntarily, we have
18 a new reality around, and all of that. All of those were repeated almost
19 verbatim. And I started now asking him - because something was
20 counter-intuitive in what they were telling me - how would these people --
21 aren't they in their home? Yes. So he explained to me this new reality,
22 what they had decided in the meetings, deadlines for when they're supposed
23 to -- I mean the Muslims are supposed to disarm and swear allegiance to
24 this new reality, and he went on and on. And then I said to him, still I
25 don't know how a human being can voluntarily leave the safety of their
1 home if all is peaceful and you are doing this magnanimous thing,
2 humanitarian thing, why are they leaving? Looks to me like somebody -- is
3 it you? Who is this? trying -- or why are they trying to get away from
4 their homes? In order to forestall the implication of my question, he
5 said, oh, well, some Serbian irregulars. Remember his chief of police is
6 also there in the meeting. Everybody is there. They couldn't just as
7 well say, We are the ones forcing -- we are forcing them out. No. Some
8 irregulars. That was the context in which he explained.
9 Q. Okay. Now, let me direct -- and I take it you didn't believe him.
10 A. No.
11 Q. Let me direct you to paragraph 71. At the end of that paragraph
12 on page 18, there is a reference to -- I will quote you, quote the
13 statement: "Rather, it became eventually clearer that they were being
14 forced out of Bosanski Novi because they had first refused to sign
15 allegiance to a newly created Serb Republic of BiH, and that this was
16 later compounded by their refusal to relinquish whatever weapons they had
17 for self-defence to the Serbs."
18 Now, what was the significance to you of the fact that the people
19 who were going to be evacuated through your sector had refused to sign an
20 oath of allegiance to the newly created Serb Republic of BiH?
21 A. Much of the language you see in this paragraph is not a language
22 coming from me. It's a summary of a language coming from the delegation
23 itself. Fact: That they had refused to sign allegiance. That's not my
24 language. That's Mr. Pasic explaining to me, because the incredulity I
25 showed earlier, the elements that ended up proving to me there was nothing
1 voluntary. So at that moment he is explaining me the refusal to disarm,
2 the fact that therefore there were irregular police, all of those are
3 explanations coming directly. I'm summarising that explanation. The only
4 conclusion I'm making, that did not come from Mr. Pasic and indeed did not
5 sit well with him, is the fact that this does not seem voluntary then on
6 the one side. I told him, this -- in that sense they're not leaving
7 because it's a voluntary thing. Okay, he says, I admit. All right.
8 The next thing, if he explains me, well, they also did not want to
9 sign allegiance and fight and sign the allegiance to this new reality
10 called Serbian Republic of BiH, then he explains to me they had a period
11 between 6th and 8th of May with a deadline of 9th of May where they're
12 supposed to disarm. He explains to me actually they did not, and I recall
13 him saying they brought a bunch of bags inside which there were wooden
14 rifles and spent shells. They didn't disarm. But they won't fight, he
15 tells me, for Izetbegovic government or our ours. And I said, if they are
16 not going to disarm, they are not going to fight, again there is something
17 counter-intuitive. Why would people not disarm and won't fight for
18 somebody else? The only conclusion I could draw there is they needed
19 this for self-defence. That he didn't say. That is the conclusion I'm
20 saying. If they won't give up their weapons, if they won't fight, then
21 the only other thing left is that they kept those weapons for their
22 self-defence, and that caused the problem.
23 Q. Let me refer you to Mr. Brosted's report, the last page of it. At
24 the bottom it's marked 5/5. And in this report, Mr. Brosted reports about
25 this meeting, and he says -- and I'm reading from the second complete
1 paragraph down. It says: "Major stumbling blocks were stated to be that
2 UNHCR seeks to assist and protect refugees and displaced persons, not to
3 create refugees."
4 A. I beg your pardon. Show me again the paragraph.
5 Q. This is in Mr. Brosted's report, the exhibit that's before you.
6 It's on the last page.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. It's the second complete paragraph down, there's some -- the
9 paragraph starts, "I informed of the --"
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And as you go down, the fifth line, I'm quoting from the fifth
12 line: "Major stumbling blocks were stated to be that UNHCR seeks to
13 assist and protect refugees and displaced persons, not to create refugees,
14 that the Vance Plan was based on the basic principle that the ethnic
15 composition of communities should not be altered."
16 Now, focusing on that element of the meeting, which I understand
17 was the message that was conveyed to Mayor Pasic and his delegation; is
18 that correct?
19 A. Yes, and by me, not by Jens Brosted.
20 Q. Okay. What was the reaction of the Bosnian Serb delegation to
21 that information?
22 A. I made clear when I had heard all the explanations to my
23 questions, and I told Mr. Pasic, one, we are now clear that you are
24 attempting to move 5.000 people out of their own homes involuntarily. We,
25 as the UN, cannot and absolutely could not be party to making refugees out
1 of people in their own homes. I made that clear to him. It is also
2 contrary to our mandate, as I explained yesterday. We were supposed to,
3 under the Vance Plan, to act in such a way that the situation becomes
4 conducive to people who had already left to return, not to cause new ones
5 to leave, which is the reference to that part of the Vance Plan.
6 When he heard me on that, he had no doubt about it, and he looked
7 at me and said, "It's clear that you're not being cooperative. Who is
8 your boss so we can go to him?"
9 Q. Let me refer you to one more line, and that is on the same page,
10 six lines up. I'm going to quote -- six lines up from the bottom, and I
11 will quote part of that sentence. It says: "CAC was blunt in saying that
12 we should stop pretending that the persons were leaving voluntarily."
13 Is that when Mr. Pasic or other members of his delegation said to
14 you that you essentially were not being cooperative?
15 A. No. No, no. At that point -- these meetings are very polite. I
16 want to be clear that we were not really shouting or complaining. I would
17 -- much of all this I'm busy listening to him. This meeting was more
18 than three hours. When he kept repeating over and over things that I had
19 heard, that's when I said, Mr. Mayor, I've heard you. You can stop now.
20 It's clear they're not moving voluntarily by your own admission. That's
21 what it means. So he doesn't keep on repeating over and over things that
22 he had already mentioned for which we asked questions, for which he
23 supplied answers and for which we are drawing the conclusion. They are
24 not there for leaving voluntarily, Mr. Mayor. He said, Yes, I admit.
25 Then let's be clear on that. Don't tell me they're leaving voluntarily
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 any more. That's what it means.
2 Q. Thank you. We're finished with that particular exhibit. If we
3 could go to the next exhibit, which is Prosecutor's -- will be
4 Prosecutor's Exhibit 127.
5 This, Mr. Kirudja, is an exhibit that was directed to you. The
6 date that appears on this is the 5th of June, 1992. It is from
7 Mr. Brosted, and the subject is 5.000 Muslims from Bosanski Novi. Do you
8 recognise this document?
9 A. Yes, I do.
10 Q. Now, just for the Court's and your information, we will be
11 presenting an exhibit that you actually received this report on the 9th of
12 June. That will be a subsequent exhibit, but I just wanted to focus on
13 this because of what earlier you had requested in an earlier exhibit, that
14 is, trying to find out independent verification of the story. And so let
15 me -- this is -- to summarise this exhibit, this is an exhibit from
16 Mr. Brosted recounting reports of interviews of two Bosnian Muslims from
17 Bosanski Novi who had been interviewed in Zagreb. And let me -- is it
18 clear, then, that this document -- first of all, Mr. Kirudja, is
19 Mr. Brosted attempting to develop that independent information?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Let me read part of this document. I will read it starting at
22 page 3 -- I'm sorry, starting at paragraph number 3 on the first page:
23 "CH confirmed that disarmament of Muslim villages had taken place. He
24 was in the village of Suhaca and had been the first one -- and had been
25 the first one to lay down arms. When they had done that, some Serbian
1 territorial military moved in together with Krajina police and told them
2 to leave the houses. The houses were searched while they -- while the
3 villagers waited in the field for five to six hours. After the search,
4 they were allowed back and told they would be all right. However, a few
5 days after the first shelling started, a grenade landed in his yard.
6 Shelling was by cannons and mortars from neighbouring Serb villages."
7 "4. The informant did not know of any agreement on disarmament,
8 had not been involved nor had he knowledge of any symbolic denouncement of
9 an agreement. He noted that no Serb had been killed in this area.
10 Serbian villages had not been disarmed, rather, helicopters had come in
11 with supplies from Banja Luka and Knin.
12 "5. On 23 May 1992, the villages of Donji Agici, Gornji Agici and
13 Hozici was burned. On Sunday, 24 May, a big convoy was formed from six
14 villages. Peoples felt compelled to flee because their villages were
15 destroyed. In his village, Suhaca, the fires had been started on the
16 edges of the village to frighten people out. CH had also seen Hozici on
17 fire. He had heard reports on destruction of other villages and believed
18 the process to be going on.
19 "6. The convoy had formed in two groups, and he did not know how
20 far the first one had gone. The main convoy was stopped in Blagaj by
21 persons in Serbian military uniforms (just like JNA) and Serb paramilitary
22 groups. From symbols on their uniform, it was deduced that they should be
23 under the control of the Serbian Democratic Party and Mayor Pajic. The
24 Serbs at Blagaj had wanted to mobilise both men and women. Supposedly the
25 convoy had also been promised free passage in order to 'clean' the area."
1 Now, just focusing on those paragraphs, Mr. Kirudja, did this
2 report that you received later on the 9th of May shed more light as to
3 what was happening in Bosnia?
4 A. Yes, it did, and as you can see, it is addressed to me from
5 Mr. Jens Brosted so that we can begin to corroborate the conclusions we
6 were making based on what the Serb authorities were telling us themselves;
7 that these refugees were already moving and -- voluntarily, and we didn't
8 believe it. We wanted now to see whether our belief, based on his own
9 explanation, would be corroborated, and this does so, that they are really
10 not voluntary.
11 Q. Now, let me direct your attention to paragraph 8 in this exhibit,
12 and I will read it: "I mentioned the two names given to us as
13 spokespersons for the group," and then there is report 29/5/92.
14 Paragraph -- I have gone through that. It looks like paragraph
15 9: "They were believed to be imprisoned or kept with the men as
16 'hostages' in a school in Blagaj."
17 Now, the two names that were given to you earlier, if you take a
18 look at the earlier report by Mr. Brosted in paragraph 9, were Sifet
19 Barjaktarevic and Fikret Hamzagic; is that correct?
20 A. What do you mean by earlier report by Brosted?
21 Q. If you look at the previous exhibit, 126, the report that --
22 A. I don't have any previous exhibits. I always keep the current.
23 Q. If that could be returned to you.
24 A. Okay.
25 Q. If you would just refer to the previous exhibit, at paragraph 9 of
1 Mr. Brosted's report. It appears on page 5/5. Two names are Sifet
2 Barjaktarevic and Fikret Hamzagic.
3 A. Yes. These names were already in my own notes and they were
4 already also in paragraph 70 of my own testimony, and they were given to
5 us by Pasic himself, that these are the people we could talk to to affirm
6 that the Muslims were leaving voluntarily. That's in what context they
7 were given.
8 Q. And the report Prosecutor's Exhibit 127, which is before you, the
9 report from Mr. Brosted of the interview of these two people, in paragraph
10 8 refers to those two men who are believed to be essentially hostages; is
11 that correct?
12 A. That's what he's saying.
13 Q. Okay. Thank you. I've finished with this exhibit.
14 MR. HARMON: Do we break, Mr. President, at 10.30 --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, although we started a bit later. We have two
16 breaks, but usually we have to stop after one hour and a half, and since
17 we started late, if you'd say this is a suitable moment, we'll have the
18 break now. If you say I'd like to use the next ten minutes, that's fine
19 as well. But somewhere within the next ten minutes.
20 MR. HARMON: This is suitable -- actually, I can carry on with the
21 next exhibit.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Okay.
23 MR. HARMON: If the next exhibit could be given to Mr. Kirudja.
24 Prosecutor's Exhibit 128.
25 Q. Mr. Kirudja, this is an exhibit that is dated 6th of June, 1992,
1 from C. Thornberry, Director of Civil Affairs UNPROFOR Belgrade, directed
2 to your attention, the subject of which is the 5 June sitrep. Do you
3 recognise this document?
4 A. Yes, I do.
5 Q. Now, let me read this paragraph to you: "Please investigate
6 immediately and in coordination with CIVPOL and advise urgently on the
7 following: 5 June sitrep indicates that one of Dan patrols --" that
8 refers to the Danish patrols; is that correct, Mr. Kirudja?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. "... observed 100 women and children being brought into stadium
11 with their heads covered with cloths and carrying plastic bags with ten
12 armed persons guarding stadium. CIVPOL here will be giving instructions
13 to their personnel." Signed by Cedric Thornberry. Do you recognise Mr.
14 Thornberry's signature?
15 A. Yes, I do.
16 Q. Who was Cedric Thornberry, first of all?
17 A. He's my boss. He's the director of civil affairs. And this is
18 the first indication to me that this whole matter of which I was seized on
19 the ground is beginning to attract his attention too because he's seated
20 in Belgrade. Important: That is where our headquarters had begun to
21 resort after Sarajevo became untenable. We began now to go back to
22 Belgrade. He's seated in Belgrade and reading these situation reports, he
23 begins now to -- at me -- his attention begins to be seized of the matter,
24 and he is saying to me to give him further -- investigate and appraise him
25 fuller on this matter. And as you can see on the left corner of that
1 exhibit, I now pass this to the chief of -- chief of police in my sector
2 so that the civil police unit could begin now, whereever they are located,
3 the process of doing the kind of investigation that would result in the
4 information I'm looking for.
5 Q. But this -- what you've told us earlier, that the civilian -- the
6 CIVPOL chief of police could not go into Bosnia to do an investigation;
7 isn't that correct?
8 A. You see, this is the dilemma and why, when you work in a
9 bureaucracy, some of these things look strange. They are dancing around
10 this idea that what you want to do -- get, you have to get it without
11 doing it. And there he's saying go investigate, but don't go where you
12 have no mandate, basically.
13 Q. Okay.
14 MR. HARMON: That concludes -- that's a good time to conclude
15 because the next exhibit will be the response of Mr. Kirudja to this
16 particular exhibit.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We will then adjourn until five minutes to
19 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
20 --- On resuming at 11.08 a.m.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, perhaps the Chamber would like to say a
22 few words again on the procedural issue, not to start a new debate on it,
23 but not necessarily now. If either at the end of this portion of the
24 hearing or the next one Mr. Tieger could come, or if you would relay
25 whatever we say about it to Mr. Tieger, I leave it up to you. Whether you
1 want to call him at a later stage or --
2 MR. HARMON: I'll get Mr. Tieger here.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, okay, at a time, not necessarily now.
4 Then there was another issue that was about correspondence. I'd
5 like to say the following, and that would then also be, as far as the
6 Chamber is concerned, the last word spoken about the issue, at least as it
7 stands now. The matter has been explained and is publicly put on record.
8 The Chamber expresses itself in the following way: Whatever may
9 have caused the delay of the start of the trial for reasons in the past,
10 the Chamber has not experienced any effort by the Defence -- and I am now
11 concentrating on since last July, the present Defence team. The Chamber
12 has not experienced any effort by the Defence to delay the start of the
13 trial inconsistent with professional responsibilities and duties of
14 counsel and therefore it does not recognise as reflecting reality what is
15 said in this newspaper article.
16 Then, Mr. Harmon.
17 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, it's very, very difficult for me in
18 this situation because Tribunal has said it's the last word, and of course
19 in the end, if I'm told that I simply cannot say another word, I have to
20 respect --
21 JUDGE ORIE: No, but you know -- you know the Latin expression
22 nitus finiri aparta, which means at a certain moment you have to end a
23 discussion. The Chamber has established that the Defence does not blame
24 this Prosecution team and seems to have a -- well, a dispute with The
25 Prosecutor which does not affect - and that's clear, I think, from the
1 wording of what I just said - does not affect this Trial Chamber or these
2 proceedings but is mainly about, well, an impression given to the outside
3 world. This Chamber clearly now has stated that whatever has appeared in
4 that newspaper article is not something the Chamber has experienced since
5 July of last year. On the contrary. And of course the wording has been
6 chosen carefully, not under all circumstances a search for the delay of
7 the proceedings is unprofessional or would be inconsistent with duties of
9 I have asked in my past very often, for very good reasons, you can
10 think about the Tadic case, to have the start of trial put at a moment
11 which was considered to be most appropriate in view of the Defence.
12 There's nothing unprofessional. There's nothing wrong with that. What is
13 in the newspaper article, however, is of a totally different nature, and
14 the Chamber has clearly expressed that it has not experienced any effort
15 in that sense by the Defence team.
16 And if there is any further thing to be said about it, the Chamber
17 would receive written submissions in that respect.
18 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, I will take that opportunity, because I
19 will write to the Chamber to make it clear that I'm afraid that, although
20 I appreciate the helpfulness, that what the Trial Chamber has said does
21 simply not deal with the substantial fundamental point of our statement.
22 I will put that in writing to the Trial Chamber.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stewart, I do understand that. Of course the
24 Trial Chamber has considered also what is within its competence, and I
25 don't know whether a judgement on the behaviour on publicity of Ms. Del
1 Ponte would automatically be within the competence of this Trial Chamber.
2 Whatever you'd like to add to it, please write it down --
3 MR. STEWART: I will do that, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE ORIE: -- submit it to the Chamber.
5 MR. STEWART: Yes.
6 JUDGE ORIE: I'm not promising you will get -- if you ask for
7 decisions you will get them, but you will certainly get a response.
8 MR. STEWART: I know -- I know I will get the courtesy of a
9 response from the Tribunal. I'm absolutely confident about that, of
11 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Then we'll now continue the examination of
12 Mr. Kirudja.
13 Mr. Kirudja, I apologise for you having to listen to procedural
14 issues rather than anything else. Mr. Harmon.
15 MR. HARMON:
16 Q. Mr. Kirudja, we left before the break with Prosecutor's 128, which
17 was a memo from Cedric Thornberry to you, dated the 6th of June. If I
18 could turn to the next exhibit, which will be the Prosecutor's Exhibit
20 Mr. Kirudja, this Prosecutor's Exhibit 129 is an UNPROFOR message
21 form dated the 8th of June, 1992. It appears to bear your initials and it
22 is accompanied by a memorandum dated the 8th of June, 1992, the subject of
23 which is "Investigative report on the displaced people observed in
24 Bosanski Novi." At the end it also has your name typewritten and appears
25 to bear your initials; is that correct?
1 A. Yes, that is correct.
2 Q. Is this, Mr. Kirudja, your response to Mr. Thornberry's inquiry
3 to --
4 A. Yes, it is.
5 Q. -- investigate?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. All right. Now, let me just draw your attention to a part of this
8 memorandum which appears, in most parts, to summarise previous
9 communications that you had sent up your chain of command; is that
11 A. Yes, it does.
12 Q. I'd like to direct your attention to the memorandum, the last
13 paragraph in the memorandum, which I will read: "On 27 May, the mayor of
14 Bosanski Novi came to see the CAC in Tapusko on his own initiative. With
15 him was a member of his Executive Committee, Mr. Rade Palije. The UNHCR
16 representative Mr. Jens Brosted joined the meeting at the invitation of
17 the CAC. From that meeting we concluded that the mayor had collaborators
18 in the 'Serbian Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina,' and was acting on
19 their behalf or interest."
20 Can you comment to us about that paragraph, please.
21 A. Yes. This is an internal memorandum within an organisation that
22 jealously guards mandates and jealously does not want to see a cross
23 between areas of responsibility or stepping outside of that. A lot of
24 this memo is trying to put things clear with that regard.
25 It is also a response from the next reporting level where I'm
1 getting an instruction to investigate something that I have been already
2 informing them. And of course you don't tell your boss you didn't read
3 what you said. So I have to bring together. This is nothing new, and
4 it's been done within the terms of our reference. So this paragraph is
5 talking from the point of view of our mandate in the -- in the UNPA. The
6 mayor being referred to is the mayor of Dvor, not the mayor of Bosanski
7 Novi. It's the mayor of Dvor. We have business with the mayor of Dvor.
8 I have mandate with the mayor of Dvor. I have, therefore, to tell my boss
9 it started with the mayor of Dvor in the course of our business, and he
10 seems to have "collaboration" with the mayor across. That's the
12 Q. All right. Thank you very much. I've concluded with that
13 exhibit. If we could go to the next exhibit.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Do I understand you well, sir, the -- where it says,
15 "The mayor had collaborators," there you did not refer to the mayor of
16 Bosanski Novi who came to see you but the mayor of Dvor.
17 THE WITNESS: Yes, because that's what I'm telling my boss,
18 otherwise he will say, What is your business with the mayor of Bosanski
20 MR. HARMON: This exhibit, Your Honours, relates to paragraph 77
21 of the written evidence of Mr. Kirudja.
22 Q. Mr. Kirudja, would you inspect Prosecutor's Exhibit 130. It is an
23 UNPROFOR message form dated the 6th of June from civil affairs officer
24 Sector North. It bears a name P. Raffone at the bottom, and then
25 accompanying this exhibit is a memorandum dated the 6th of June, subject
1 "Potential Muslim refugees in BH," at the end of which is the name Paolo
2 Raffone, Civil Affairs Officer, and at the bottom of which it says
3 "Released by Charles Kirudja," and that appears to be your initials over
4 your typewritten name; is that correct?
5 A. Yes, it is.
6 Q. You're familiar with both of these documents then; is that
8 A. I am.
9 Q. Let's start off by identifying who is Mr. Raffone, and what role
10 did he have in your office?
11 A. He's one of a number of civil affairs officers reporting directly
12 to me who would be on a day-to-day task on the various parts of our
13 mandate, and then he would first pursue that part, make a report as
15 Q. And what were -- what were his actual responsibilities and duties
16 in Sector North?
17 A. I had tasked him to look at the side of our mandate that deals
18 with refugees and displaced persons, overall mandate, of course, being
19 what I explained yesterday.
20 Q. Now, this -- to summarise the memorandum, this memorandum relates
21 a phone conversation that Mr. Raffone had with the mayor of Banja Luka,
22 Mr. Kupresanin; is that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And if I take a look at the second paragraph on the memorandum --
25 let me just read the -- let me read the first two paragraphs.
1 "On 1 June 1992, the mayor of Banja Luka, Mr. Kupresanin, called
2 the civil affairs office in Sector North. He conveyed some information
3 concerning the Muslim refugees' flow that might originate from his area
4 towards Croatia passing through the crossing points in Dvor and Karlovac.
5 The mayor's information can be summarised as follows:
6 "The mayors of Bosanski Novi, Prijedor, Kljuc, Dubica, Sanski
7 Most, and the one in Banja Luka had contacts about the situation of the
8 Muslim population in the area."
9 And it goes on, and four paragraphs below where I just ended
10 reading, I'll pick up. It says: "The mayor estimates that some 15.000
11 persons have already left their normal place of residence, moving towards
12 Dvor, and some more 15.000 might follow in a short time."
13 Now, what, Mr. Kirudja, is the significance of this document?
14 A. It's significant pretty much at the first line of this document.
15 This is a telephone call he received while in the day-to-day course in the
16 office. It is dated June. The first meeting about these refugees was on
17 26th of May. In short, we had become seized of this matter, and because
18 of his alertness to it, while a lesser competent officer would have just
19 spoken on the telephone and forgotten all about it, he realised the
20 importance and took notes about it and recorded precisely what the mayor,
21 Kupresanin, was saying. And he is -- the two elements that we wanted to
22 highlight was this matter is continuing and is gathering momentum. It is
23 not just Bosanski Novi, it spans an area larger, and it is the second
24 paragraph that will give you that impression of the area that this matter
1 Secondly, the numbers we could expect are not just the 5.000 that
2 we started talking about. It's being telegraphed to us that this number
3 could grow three or four times, to start with, and then double,
4 potentially, with another 15.000. That coming from the telephone was the
5 significance of this matter, that we needed to be vigilant about what's
6 going on on this, and it is all headed our way in the United Nations
7 protected area.
8 Q. Mr. Kirudja, given your previous contact with the mayor of
9 Bosanski Novi, did you have concern as to why the potentially 30.000
10 Muslims in the municipalities that are named in the second paragraph might
11 be leaving their homes and coming your way?
12 A. As I said earlier, we are now beginning to watch out to understand
13 what's going on. The only evidence we had up to this point was the
14 explanation from the authorities from Bosanski Novi. Nothing would have
15 told us to expand that understanding beyond the area he was explaining us,
16 that is Bosanski Novi and the villages that he named in his presentation,
17 particularly Blagaj.
18 The second information we had to confirm our understanding of that
19 reality came from Mr. Brosted debriefing those two people we had. But I
20 repeat, at this moment we really don't have a full picture, nor do we have
21 a conclusion about what is happening in all these areas. It only meant we
22 are now vigilant, we're trying to understand who, what, and why.
23 Q. And you proceeded to make an effort, you and members of your staff
24 proceeded to make an effort to refine your knowledge of --
25 A. And understanding.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Q. -- is that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Was this particular -- I take it this particular memorandum was
4 then sent up to the civil affairs officer in Sector North, and this was
5 forwarded up your chain of command further.
6 A. Yes, it is actually addressed to my director.
7 Q. I see.
8 A. Right.
9 Q. And what was your reaction to the prospect of 30.000 Muslims from
10 those municipalities transiting through Sector North?
11 A. You did note in the first message on one of the exhibits here I
12 had signalled to my headquarters this is not just a humanitarian problem.
13 It has the potential for a lot of political problems to be caused by
14 30.000 people trying to transit. Remember, they were not even supposed to
15 stay there, to transit from one jurisdiction, transit through another,
16 headed to a third one. The complications that would occur if I don't
17 alert them, it would be the first question to me as an official there, why
18 didn't you alert us to this potentiality? And that is what I'm trying to
20 Q. Let me show you the next exhibit, which is also the 6th of June,
21 the same day as Exhibit 130. This will be Prosecutor's Exhibit 131.
22 Mr. Kirudja, this exhibit is two pages. The first page is an
23 UNPROFOR message form. It is dated the 6th of June from Civil Affairs
24 Sector North to UNPROFOR in Belgrade and UNHCR in Zagreb. It has your
25 name at the bottom and appears to have your initials at the bottom of the
2 And the next page of this exhibit is a memorandum dated the 6th of
3 June, subject "Displaced persons from Bosanski Novi referred to in
4 yesterday's military sitrep," and it has your typewritten name at the
5 bottom. Do you recognise these documents?
6 A. Yes, I do.
7 Q. Now, let me refer to the second page of this document, and let me
8 read from the first full paragraphs underneath the caption, starting at
9 the top: "The duty officer at DANCON/HQ in Kostajnica informed the CAC
10 --" that's you, correct?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. "... over the telephone that at 1900 hours sitrep will report as
13 follows about the 350 displaced persons reported to have been gathered in
14 a football field in Bosanski Novi. The 350 persons were seen to be loaded
15 onto buses to unknown destinations in Bosnia. They are no longer at the
16 football stadium. DANCON had no knowledge of who was loading the persons
17 into buses. At no time did they cross River Una into the UNPA, i.e., into
18 Dvor or the surrounding area."
19 Now, Mr. Kirudja, in this -- first of all, what was the
20 significance of this information to you?
21 A. Once again, we are now rapidly seeing the ramifications of
22 refugees in bigger numbers being noted and causing a response from the
23 various units of this mission with various parts. This mission has
24 military, police, and NGO. A military officer of this contingent now
25 notices that, and it's about refugees, and the only person he can try to
1 get sense from is me, because this is not a military matter, so he gives
2 me a call and warns me we are going to report this. The military didn't
3 know about our meeting with the passage or whatever.
4 So we are seeing now the various parts of this mission beginning
5 to see the various ramifications of what's about to happen. And I was
6 grateful for his call, because when these reports go up various channels,
7 they trigger different reactions at the headquarters in Zagreb. So I am
8 trying now to close the understanding by sending a comment, knowing that
9 when they meet in the morning -- the ritual is that every headquarters has
10 what we call meeting where they look at all the information for the day
11 and plan their day. If they see the report that 350 people are gathered
12 in a football field, my director will say, "Ah, what is my person saying
13 about it over there and why isn't he telling me about it?" So this report
14 is to try to close that understanding and tell them, look, we may be in
15 the UNPA, our mandate may be limited to the UNPA, but things are happening
16 across the border that have significant impact, and that's what the
17 significance of this memo is.
18 MR. HARMON: Your Honour, this exhibit relates to paragraphs 82
19 and 83 of the written evidence.
20 Q. And quoting from paragraph 83 of your written evidence,
21 Mr. Kirudja, this says that it was the --: "It was, however, the first
22 time that a collection of a large number of people had been detected by
23 DANCON's reconnaissance," and that paragraph ends by saying, "This was the
24 first time they had seen for themselves what appeared to be concrete
25 evidence of a mass roundup of people."
1 Now, at the same time you received this report on June the 6th,
2 were refugees coming -- Muslim refugees and non-Serb refugees coming
3 across the border in small lots and groups?
4 A. Almost daily.
5 Q. Were those people being debriefed by members of your staff or by
6 NGOs who were operating in your theatre of operations?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And did this report from DANCON and the reports that you were
9 receiving from the NGOs of interviews of refugee -- non-Serb refugees who
10 were coming into Sector North help clarify in your mind what was happening
11 in Bosnia?
12 A. Yes, in slow steps. We were not rushing to judgement; we were
13 open-minded. But we were beginning slowly to comprehend. At this point
14 in June, the full picture wasn't really clear.
15 Q. All right. I've concluded with that exhibit, Mr. Kirudja. We'll
16 go to the next exhibit. This exhibit is 137?
17 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit number P132.
18 MR. HARMON: 132. I said 137.
19 JUDGE ORIE: The Chamber appreciates you want to move forward
21 MR. HARMON: Trying to move fast, Your Honour.
22 Q. Now, Mr. Kirudja, while -- just inspect that for just a moment, if
23 you will. This document is dated the 9th of June, 1992, from Civil
24 Affairs Sector North to UNPROFOR Belgrade. The first page of this
25 exhibit, UNPROFOR message form, appears to bear your initials at the
1 bottom. Are those your initials, Mr. Kirudja, at the bottom of this?
2 A. No.
3 Q. Okay. That was -- whose initials are those?
4 A. That is Paolo Raffone initialing this cover page.
5 Q. All right. Let's turn to the next page, which is a note, and I
6 can see that Mr. Raffone appears to have signed on your behalf; is that
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And the last page of the exhibit is something we've already seen.
10 This is Mr. Borsted's report of interview in Zagreb with two Muslim
11 refugees from Bosanski Novi; correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 MR. HARMON: All right. And this is introduced, Your Honour --
14 this shows one --
15 Q. Mr. Kirudja, if you would turn to the note, this shows that you
16 received Mr. Borsted's report of the interview with the two refugees on
17 the 9th of June; correct?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And this is introduced merely, Your Honour, to show that the flow
20 of information from Mr. Kirudja up his chain of command was continuing.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, although the Chamber might have accepted that on
22 the basis of the testimony of Mr. Kirudja.
23 MR. HARMON: Yes. I'm trying to do this in a chronological order,
24 so --
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but we have a lot of emphasis at this moment and
1 we're very much focusing on the internal communication between the UN
2 agencies rather than on what happens on the ground, which might be -- even
3 better assist the Chamber to deal with the matter.
4 MR. HARMON: All right. If we can go to the next exhibit,
5 please. And this next exhibit, Your Honour, relates to paragraph 87 of
6 the written evidence. This is Prosecution Exhibit 133.
7 Q. Mr. Kirudja, this exhibit consists of the first page, an UNPROFOR
8 message form. At the top it appears to have your initials. It appears to
9 have your name at the bottom, and it attaches a memorandum also dated the
10 16th of June, 1992, the subject of which is "Humanitarian disaster in the
11 making in Bihac and along the Bosnian border," and this has your name at
12 the end with what appears to be your initials over the top of it; is that
14 A. Yes, it does.
15 Q. Now, let me turn my attention and your attention to the
16 memorandum. I'd like to read the first two paragraphs.
17 Paragraph 1: "The humanitarian situation in Bihac is rapidly
18 deteriorating. The meeting held on 1 June 1992, in Bihac at the request
19 of UNMOs and the mayor of Bihac was an attempt to alert the international
20 community to a humanitarian disaster in the making. Armed elements in the
21 area terrorised the population on both sides of the border. A stream of
22 vindictive killings forced mass movement of persons, and other horrible
23 reprisals have been reported to UNPROFOR.
24 "The only independent source of information on the area is the
25 UNMOs based in Bihac. The ICRC and UNHCR have temporarily suspended their
1 operations in the area."
2 Now, can you explain that second paragraph, "ICRC and UNHCR have
3 temporarily suspended their operations in the area"?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Why was that?
6 A. This is a destination. Bihac has an office which the Chamber may
7 see from the long explanation is a place we, me and the sector commander,
8 had to go for military purposes almost weekly. At this point we had to
9 place our own presence there with the military observers, UNMOs. So we
10 were present always from beginning in the Bihac as the situation was
11 deteriorating, meaning not just Bihac but the entire corridor in Northern
12 Bosnia and perhaps beyond.
13 About May or sometime about that time, the only NGOs that of
14 course were also in Bosnia even before the UN mandate were the ICRC and
15 UNHCR. As a result of the deterioration, one of the ICRC's delegates by
16 the name of Philip Morris was killed and the ICRC pulled out. UNHCR
17 followed suit. So we were unable therefore to have the normal sources of
18 corroborated information that we got from them.
19 Q. Now, let me direct your attention in this same memorandum to
20 paragraph 9, which I will read: "Stories coming from Bihac and the
21 surrounding Bosnia opstinas of Velika Kladusa, Cazin, Bosanski Novi and
22 Bosanska Krupa thus paint a gloomy picture similar to the one in Sarajevo
23 and Mostar. There are fears that behind the border, the mountains and the
24 forests, unspeakable atrocities may be unfolding. This message is sent in
25 the hope that an alert could be relayed to the authorities with the
1 competence to begin to address the problem before it is too late for the
2 desperate people in the area. Such an action could begin with a relief
3 operation for Bihac and a return of ICRC and UNHCR into the area."
4 Now, just for purposes of orientation, the municipality of Sanski
5 Most is directly below Bosanski Novi; is that correct?
6 A. Partly, yes, and it protrudes into Prijedor.
7 Q. Okay. Now, what did you mean by what you said in paragraph 9,
8 Mr. Kirudja, and what did you base this statement on?
9 A. This -- this is a memorandum covering a very broad spectrum of
10 what we were noticing. I know you will be focused to certain areas. I
11 wasn't focused on those. We were focused on the broad mandate from the
12 military to humanitarian to political, and we had to cover the entire
14 What we noted within that area of Bihac, the one I described
15 yesterday as the pocket, where there were Muslim in the pocket facing
16 Serbs in the UNPA, and that segment of the border which yesterday I also
17 mentioned there was actually no border because Serbs controlled both
18 sides. This memo is a tour of the entire reality to show what was
19 happening, and the result was eventually recognised in the UN system where
20 Bihac became a safe area along with Gorazde and Srebrenica and Mostar.
21 So these -- this is the intention of this memo, that we needed to
22 alert the international community to take measures appropriate to address
23 not uniformly but specifically what was happening in the pocket and
24 elsewhere. What we sought for the pocket was the return of the ICRC and
25 UNHCR, which, I don't remember at what point after this memo, happened.
1 They returned.
2 Q. Okay. I've concluded with this exhibit. If we could go to the
3 next exhibit, OTP 134.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, may I suggest to you that unless there's
5 any -- any question by the Defence on whose name is under a document and
6 whose initial -- of course, if there is any dispute about this and the
7 initial name is wrong, we'd rather hear from the Defence rather than to do
8 these I would say more or less routine matters always.
9 MR. HARMON: I am more than happy to have silence, essentially
10 acquiescence to the authenticity of these documents --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Authenticity of the document at least at whose name
12 is under it and whose initials these are, et cetera, et cetera, whether
13 that finally would result in acceptance of the authenticity is a different
14 matter, but --
15 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, Mr. Harmon can safely take silence in
16 relation to this type of document as our assent on those points.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Proceed.
18 MR. HARMON:
19 Q. Mr. Kirudja, this is a document dated the 20th of June the subject
20 of which is a meeting in Velika Kladusa, BH, with the representatives --
21 representative of the 850 displaced persons from Sanski Most in BH. Just
22 a few minutes ago you told us where Sanski Most was. I'd like to read
23 this document:
24 "The secretary of the Red Cross of Velika Kladusa, Mr. Hajrudin
25 Muhamedagic, convened a meeting with the representative of the 850
1 displaced persons arrived from Sanski Most, BH, on 12 June 1992. The
2 meeting took place on 19 June 1992, at the local Red Cross headquarters.
3 The civil affairs officer from Sector North and the chief of the station
4 of UN CIVPOL of Slunj were invited to assist. The representative of the
5 group of the displaced persons from Sanski Most asked to keep his name
6 anonymous. The report which follows is solely based on his statements.
7 "The witness of this forced evacuation was kept arrested in the
8 sports hall in Sanski Most during 16 days together with his son. Persons
9 between 16 and 60 years were kept in this place. He declared that every
10 day the persons kept in this place counted themselves to be sure that no
11 one was missing. He counted some 250 persons missing since he arrived.
12 They were asked to go out, he said, and never came back. The guards to
13 this place were under the direction of a man who is a commander of the
14 Serbian Crisis Committee of Banja Luka, Mr. Davidovic. In those days, the
15 local radio reported that 230 extremists Green Berets were imprisoned in
16 the concentration camp in Banja Luka, he added. The camp is called
17 Manjaca and it is some 30 kilometres out of Banja Luka. In this camp
18 there are only dangerous war prisoners ("extremists"), some doctors and
19 members of SDA, he explained. On 11 June 1992, some 1.000 persons arrived
20 in the sports hall. The same day, the authorities (Mr. Davidovic's
21 guards) organised ten buses and under the threat of heavy guns forced some
22 of the people who were kept into the sports hall to go into the buses. He
23 counted some 800 persons. The buses travelled up to Bosanska Krupa. In
24 this place, again under the threat of heavy guns, all of the persons were
25 forced to get out of the buses and stand in line. All of us had to pass a
1 bridge, walking between the mines. On the other side there was Green
2 Berets and some local authorities waiting for us. Some transportation was
3 arranged for us.
4 "On 12 June 1992, the group arrived in Velika Kladusa. The local
5 Red Cross helped the group. The Red Cross counted 850 persons; women,
6 children, and men above 60 years. All of them are Muslims."
7 And I'll skip a paragraph and I will read the next paragraph:
8 "The representative of the 850 persons from Sanski Most said that all of
9 them would very much like to have the possibility to go back to their
10 houses." And I won't read the rest of the paragraph.
11 Now, Mr. Kirudja, this report reflects events that were occurring
12 in another part of Bosnia, Sanski Most. Now, what was your reaction to
13 this particular exhibit? What was the significance of this exhibit in
14 your mind?
15 A. Several. Let me start with who it's addressed to. It's addressed
16 this time to the ICRC, not to my headquarters. I mentioned earlier in the
17 context of the previous memorandum that sought to have the ICRC and the
18 UNHCR return. I had already mentioned that we were pleased they returned,
19 and I had met several times with the Philippe Noel to whom it is
20 addressed. The reason it is addressed is also linked to something I said
21 earlier. We were trying to understand the extent of what is going on in
22 this area, what are the dimensions. This is the first time now. Up to
23 now we were talking about displaced persons and refugees. This is about
24 missing people. This is about huge numbers, 200 people missing, which
25 again, in an organisation like ours, is obviously the ICRC's
1 responsibility. But it's drawing us into the picture because we're in
2 Velika Kladusa where the meeting is occurring. This is where a second
3 UNMO group is located for us. This is place also very close to the border
4 with the UNPA.
5 So the significance of this memorandum is that more than refugees,
6 we have a matter of people either disappearing or, God forbid, being
7 killed, but we don't know exactly the full dimension of that. So I'm
8 sending it up to the ICRC so I can open another channel of trying to
9 understand the extent of this reality.
10 Q. Mr. Kirudja, this document refers to a commander of the Serbian
11 Crisis Committee of Banja Luka forcing approximately 800 to 850 Muslims
12 onto buses and forcing their displacement to Velika Kladusa. What did
13 this tell you about the events that were happening in Bosnia?
14 A. At this moment we are beginning to see it's not just Bosanski
15 Novi. It's not just people being displaced. It's beginning to take a
16 much more ominous tone to it.
17 Q. What kind of tone concerned you about this --
18 A. See the wording there? See the wording in the third paragraph,
19 "concentration camp." That is significant. That began to attract us
20 about that. So we began to say -- here it says Manjaca and the people are
21 missing. We don't know fully, so we again now tune ourself, trying to
22 understand. And as we get by, we did get a fuller picture, but at this
23 point it was the new dimension that was introduced.
24 Q. Did this document give you insight into who was forcing the
25 Muslims out of their homes?
1 A. This was the extent of all the knowledge that we had at that
3 Q. And who, according to this document, was doing that?
4 A. Your -- you have the Red Cross. These are not officials at this
5 point. The Red Cross are all humanitarian. So at this moment we weren't
6 facing any official. We were facing only what we would call humanitarian
7 NGO's report. So if you ask me did I reach any conclusion at this moment
8 who was responsible, these names were not known to me before, so I
9 couldn't form an opinion yet.
10 Q. But this was information that contributed to your ultimate
11 conclusions --
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. -- is that correct?
14 A. You will see that in the second or so reporting that it does take
15 a full picture.
16 Q. Then let us go to the next exhibit, please. This is an exhibit
17 that is two pages. So it would be Exhibit 135.
18 Mr. Kirudja, this two-page exhibit is from DanBat. Attention:
19 Civil Affairs Advisor. Subject: Refugees. I would like to read from the
20 second page of this exhibit, starting with the number 3, mid-page. And
21 unfortunately, I cannot read the first word, but I can continue on.
22 A. The time. The first one is 2000 hours, the military timing, and
24 Q. I see. Thank you for the assistance. "Scouts from E-coy observed
25 15 people being gathered at the stadium in Bosanski Novi. The 15 people
1 were guarded by people in camouflage uniforms. People surrounding the
2 stadium waved white flags and flashed SOS in order to attract the
3 attention of DanBat scouts."
4 And then three lines down, I'll pick up: "DanBat is concerned for
5 the fate of the people in the stadium."
6 Now, what was the significance of this document?
7 A. At this moment this is the continuation of this football field
8 presence, and the company that is reporting to us again is the first time
9 itself these scouts are noticing. But they are worried because the people
10 spelled SOS on the field. If you stand where they were and you climb on
11 the observation post, across the River Una is an open field, and with
12 binoculars you can see that field, and they themselves can be seen,
13 obviously since it's a straight sight, by the people on the football
14 field. So they translated that there is some harm going on there, and
15 these people want us to see. And because we are on the UNPA, he is asking
16 me, What should we do, because these people seem to be in harm's way.
17 Q. Let's go to the next exhibit, Prosecutor's Exhibit 136.
18 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, could we just confirm a small point on
19 Exhibit 135. We think the date is 20th of June, 1992. It's very
20 indistinct. I wonder if we could confirm that that is the position, so
21 that we --
22 THE WITNESS: No, no, no. Military time begins first. I think it
23 might be -- we have to check the time, but the whole thing is time and
24 date together. The military put together time and date. So -- I'm not
25 sure I can read it immediately for you.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, Mr. Kirudja -- not the first time
2 Mr. Kirudja intending, obviously, to be helpful, answers my interventions
3 as if they were questions to him.
4 THE WITNESS: Oh.
5 MR. STEWART: I understand. He's trying to be very helpful,
6 Mr. Kirudja.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kirudja, when you -- when you were explaining,
8 were you referring to paragraph 3 or were you focusing on the date and
9 time on the top of the -- of the document?
10 THE WITNESS: Both.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Both.
12 MR. HARMON: It's not a particularly clear document.
13 The next document, Your Honour, could at least --
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. If it's related, it might help.
15 MR. HARMON: It's related.
16 THE WITNESS: It's related.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Please proceed.
18 MR. HARMON:
19 Q. So if we can go to Prosecutor's Exhibit 136, Mr. Kirudja. This
20 relates to the previous exhibit, does it not, Mr. Kirudja?
21 A. Yes, it does.
22 Q. And this document is dated the 22nd of June, and this document, if
23 we turn to the second page, the memorandum, I will read this. It says as
24 follows: "DANCON informs civil affairs of a fresh group of about 15
25 persons apparently being held in the football stadium and being guarded by
1 people in camouflage uniforms. The people waved white flags and flashed
2 SOS signs to a passing DANCON patrol."
3 It goes on to say: "Please find attached a letter addressed to the
4 mayor of Bosanski Novi by the UNHCR representative here in Tapusko. This
5 letter, particularly the fifth paragraph, is designed to reinforce a
6 message that has been -- has repeatedly been orally conveyed to him and to
7 his colleagues in Dvor."
8 Now, we turn to the next document. The next document,
9 Mr. Kirudja, is a letter with -- sent by Mr. Brosted. What role did you
10 have in this letter, if any?
11 A. Your Honour, before I answer that question, please look at the
12 front page of this document that your -- and the cover page, Your Honour.
13 Top of the page it says 22nd June 1992, time, 10.20 a.m. It's reference
14 to when I myself now began to pay attention to the previous document, the
15 one that you just saw, which confirms my interpretation that it was at
16 night. 20 in that document refers to the time that it was done; 10. So
17 in the morning when I come into the office is when now I'm paying
18 attention to that document, which is the next page about that SOS.
19 Yes, in answer to the counsel question whether I had any role in
20 the letter, yes, I had a significant role for the reason I said earlier.
21 When I received that telephone call and notification these people may be
22 in harm's way and what we might do, I was now trying to inform my own
23 headquarters that this is a continuation of a matter, as you had seen from
24 previous testimony, for which we had engaged the mayor responsible where
25 this matter is happening. We had just -- we had sat with my colleagues
1 from UNHCR and ICRC, and we took stock of the information we had up to
2 that point. The mayor knows our position. We had already clarified to
3 him over and over again that forced evacuation of people from their homes
4 is something we cannot take part into. He understood, but he appeared to
5 be either unable or unwilling to desist from this exercise, hence the
6 drafting of this letter, which could not come from me because the matter
7 is the responsibility of UNHCR. So they wrote it in consultation and help
8 from me.
9 Q. And this first paragraph of this letter to Mr. Pasic, the mayor of
10 Bosanski Novi, reflects your concerns. I quote: "I wish to assure you
11 that since the meeting we have tried to follow the situation closely and
12 have strong concerns for the welfare of the large number of Muslims in
13 your community."
14 A. Correct.
15 Q. Okay. Now, let me direct your attention to the third paragraph,
16 which reads as follows: "As you will recall, at our meeting you named
17 Mr. Sifet Barjaktarevic and Fikret Hamzagic as spokespersons for the group
18 and undertook to arrange a meeting to talk with them. By this letter, I
19 would like to inquire into what arrangements you have made for the
20 meeting. If possible, we would also be interested in meeting with Mr.
21 Izet Muhamedagic and a representative from local Red Cross/Crescent or
22 Merhamet. I would appreciate if you would contact the two individuals on
23 our behalf and request them to suggest a meeting date. We suggest the
24 venue of the meeting be Dvor."
25 Mr. Kirudja, did you ever meet or did Mr. Borsted ever meet with
1 Mr. Barjaktarevic or Mr. Hamzagic?
2 A. Not to my recollection.
3 Q. Did you ever meet with any -- did you ever meet with any Bosnian
4 Muslim from Bosanski Novi as a representative of the Muslims from that
6 A. Much later, about in a meeting that took place on the 19th of
7 August; not at this point.
8 Q. Okay. Now, let me go to the next paragraph, which reads: "I
9 would also like to stress the importance that UNHCR as an international
10 humanitarian organisation places on the protection of these people in
11 their home region so that their fundamental human rights are respected and
12 to avoid the creation of a new flow of refugees. I am sure you realise
13 your responsibility as the head of the local government in that respect."
14 Now, you've explained to us earlier why this was the position of
15 your organisation in the international community, but I'm interested in
16 what reaction Mr. Pasic had, or other Serb authorities you were dealing
17 with had in respect of this message that was being conveyed. Let's start
18 with Mr. Pasic. What was his reaction to this?
19 A. I never got a reading of what he made of this letter, nor did I
20 actually expect he -- I would get one. What I wanted was for him to know
21 in no uncertain terms that we have now come to a full understanding. "You
22 are responsible for what is happening to these people because it's not
23 voluntary, and it's not humanitarian," and we didn't want to leave any
24 ambiguity of that understanding that we had expressed to him. And the
25 triggering point is that there is continuation of people, as the evidence
1 of SOS shows, there is a continuation. We have communicated to you. So
2 this letter was simply to remove any doubt of understanding.
3 Q. Now, the next paragraph of your -- of Mr. Brosted's letter reads
4 as follows: "With respect to the proposed mass transfer of population, I
5 am sure that I do not need to remind you that since the Second World War,
6 the forced mass transfer of population on purely ethnic or racial basis
7 has been declared a crime against humanity in international law. You are
8 probably also aware that on November 26, 27, 1991, the parties to the
9 conflict in the former Yugoslavia agreed at a conference convened at the
10 initiative of the International Committee of the Red Cross, ICRC, to apply
11 the provisions of international humanitarian law in the present conflict.
12 I trust that you will agree with me on the importance of your
13 responsibility in seeing to it that these international obligations are
14 respected within your jurisdiction."
15 What reaction, if any, did you receive from Mr. Pasic in respect
16 of that admonition?
17 A. Same answer I gave earlier: I didn't get any, and I wasn't
18 actually expecting I would get any. When I say "I," I'm saying the letter
19 is not in my name but this is something that we collectively decided but
20 had to be signed by the person with the right authority, and that's UNHCR.
21 Q. Did you ever get any evidence in your inquiry that Mr. Pasic or
22 authorities in his community were making efforts to permit the Muslims to
23 actually remain in Bosanski Novi?
24 A. That's exactly the point. We were getting this impression of
25 unwillingness or inability to desist along that path of trying to force
1 them out.
2 Q. Now, you say in your -- a portion of this exhibit, the memorandum,
3 that this message in the fifth paragraph has repeatedly been orally
4 conveyed to him and to his colleagues in Dvor. Are you referring to the
5 message being -- this admonition being given to him and his colleagues by
6 you or by you and other colleagues of yours from other agencies working
7 with you?
8 A. All of that.
9 Q. Is there any doubt in your mind that this message was received by
10 Mr. Pasic and his colleagues?
11 A. If -- if I had any doubt, it was removed when they told me bluntly
12 they consider me uncooperative and wanted my boss. So there was no doubt
14 Q. Let me turn to the last paragraph: "Please allow me to include
15 with this letter a copy of a folder on the work of UNHCR. At our meeting,
16 we also discussed the possibilities for international assistance to -- for
17 displaced persons in your municipality, and I therefore also enclose a
18 questionnaire to assess the needs for assistance regarding displaced
19 persons in your municipality."
20 What was the purpose of that paragraph, and what response did you
21 receive in respect of it?
22 A. This was very important that we come across to the Serb
23 authorities as well as the known Serb authorities. They were as -- from
24 our eyes, from the UN, they are our clients when they are in need. Once
25 we have taken the position that we weren't going to agree to remove these
1 people but they were already displaced, we also wanted to serve them
2 notice that we will remain of assistance to you. We are not abandoning
3 you. We will assist these people who were displaced but in situ, so that
4 they do not feel -- rather, to dispel this accusation they made earlier
5 that we were helping the Muslims or we seemed to be helping only one side,
6 we don't help the Serb side. So this was also to put it on the table that
7 we are also remaining ready to help with the problem you are facing with
8 displaced people in your jurisdiction. We would send humanitarian help to
9 you, not help you remove these people, but we will help you care for them,
10 whatever the situation that caused their displacement in situ.
11 Q. Now, let me just return briefly to the previous paragraph that I
12 read to you, the admonition about the illegality of the forced mass
13 transfer of population based on ethnicity. This letter is directed to the
14 mayor of Bosanski Novi, but you had contact with representatives -- you
15 and your colleagues had contact with representatives from municipality --
16 other Serb municipalities such as Bosanska Krupa, Sanski Most, Prijedor,
17 Banja Luka, and those other municipalities that had been identified in
18 earlier exhibits. Was this admonition that's contained in the paragraph
19 that I read conveyed to officials in those particular municipalities as
21 A. No, because first I would like to clarify your point that we had
22 contacts with authorities from the municipalities you named. Not as of
23 June. As of June, we only had direct contacts with the authorities in
24 Bosanski Novi. In your earlier exhibit, we had indirect contacts with
25 Sanski Most situation through the ICRC in a meeting in Velika Kladusa.
1 The direct contacts in -- with authorities in Bosanska Krupa, Sanski Most,
2 Prijedor, Kljuc, came in August.
3 Q. Okay. Is there any doubt in your mind, Mr. Kirudja, that this
4 admonition, what it stood for, was known to the people in those
5 municipalities? Did they understand this?
6 A. I don't know what Mr. Pasic might have done when he got the
7 letter, whether he just left -- threw it away or whatever he did with it
8 after reading it. I don't know.
9 Q. All right. We'll go to the next exhibit, then, 137.
10 Mr. Kirudja this, document, Prosecutor's Exhibit 137, is dated the
11 29th of June. It is from Mr. Mik Magnusson to you. Why don't we start
12 with identifying who is Mik Magnusson.
13 A. Mr. Magnusson was one of my boss's, Mr. Thornberry, our civil
14 affairs aid in his front office. So him writing to me, saying please
15 investigate, I would obviously take it it's coming from my boss's office
16 and it could just as well be my boss saying so.
17 Q. Okay. So the subject of this is "Reports of political prisoners
18 in Bosanski Novi." The letter reads: "Dear Charles, Please use your good
19 offices to assist in the information required vis-a-vis approximately
20 1.000 men, many said to be young, held at a football stadium in Bosanski
21 Novi. Apparently families have been rounded up from the area and were
22 taken by train to Doboj. The women and children were then separated from
23 the men and returned to Croatia proper. The men were then returned to
24 Bosanski Novi where they have been, according to our sources, held in a
25 football stadium without food. Could you please request of CIVPOL or MOs
1 of any patrol in the Dvor na Uni area Sector North to travel that extra
2 three kilometres to find out what might be the condition and/or destiny of
3 said approximately 1.000 men."
4 Now, after you received this letter, Mr. Kirudja, what did you do?
5 A. This letter was encouraging because now the issue that for months
6 in Sector North that had seized us is beginning to be now picked on the
7 radar in Zagreb where our headquarters is and is now beginning to tell me
8 that it's wider and it's beginning to show in different ways. And at this
9 moment, he's also telling me, "You can go look closer, and I don't expect
10 to be told that you went outside your mandate." So I look at it from that
11 point of view.
12 But it also was serving me notice that they were behind what we
13 knew. So what I did with it is prepare a document for them that would
14 bring them to speed what we knew. I didn't really have to do a lot, was
15 to prepare them to catch up with the various daily reports that we sent to
16 them, and they may not have seen the picture nor have been in full picture
17 as we were, so my next thing was to now appraise them in full and to try
18 to give them an idea of what we are beginning to understand is the extent
19 of this phenomenon.
20 Q. Could -- based on this letter, could you send your people into
22 A. Not really, because you notice he's careful to tell me -- "MO"
23 means military observers. We can do that. Military observers are in the
24 outer ring. They are by mandate deployed in the outer ring of the
25 conflict. Not inside but outside. So obviously we could do that with the
1 military observers.
2 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, could we just know what SLOCA is? I
3 think that's a new acronym. If it isn't, I've forgotten it. That's
4 Mr. Magnusson's position, SLOCA.
5 MR. HARMON: Oh, I see, yes.
6 Q. Directing your attention, Mr. Kirudja, to his name in the header,
7 Mik Magnusson, SLOCA Zagreb. Can you see that, above the date?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Can you assist us in what is meant by SLOCA?
10 A. When we started our mission deployment in Zagreb, that part of our
11 office had that acronym where we were in a building in Zagreb before.
12 Remember, we don't have a headquarters there. We called it SLOCA, and I'm
13 struggling to remember why we called it, but it did refer to that. That's
14 where he was, that was the name of the office where he was.
15 Q. Okay. Well, we may have to labour under the mystery of that
17 MR. STEWART: I think we'll approach it on the footing that if Mr.
18 Kirudja doesn't remember it's probably not terribly important. Thank you
20 MR. HARMON:
21 Q. Could that be senior liaison officer?
22 A. Yes. Thank you. Because it started as a military observer and
23 before we arrived, they arrived first. Always the military leads
24 civilians, you know, in these things. They arrived and they gave
25 themselves that name, and Croatia probably the CA part, Senior Liaison
1 Officer in Croatia.
2 MR. HARMON: Well, the credit for unraveling that mystery goes to
3 my case manager, Your Honour.
4 THE WITNESS: But as the learned counsel observes, that we forgot
5 all about it after we located ourselves.
6 Q. All right. This document dated the 29th. If we could now turn to
7 another document, the next exhibit, which is Prosecutor's Exhibit 138,
8 also dated the 29th of June, 1992.
9 Mr. Kirudja, this, I take it, is you response to Mr. -- at least,
10 your initial response to Mr. Magnusson's inquiry; is that correct?
11 A. That's correct, and it is what I alluded earlier, bring him to
12 speed of all the earlier reports that he seem not to have looked at that
13 were in his office.
14 Q. All right.
15 MR. HARMON: Mr. President, this may be an appropriate time to
16 take the next break. I'm told that we break at 12.30 is the normal time.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, that's normal time that we have a break. We
18 will adjourn until ten minutes to one.
19 Could you give us an indication, Mr. Harmon, of how much time
20 you'd still need for the examination-in-chief of the witness.
21 MR. HARMON: I don't think I will finish today, Your Honour. This
22 original estimate was six hours. I am well into my examination. I think
23 I will finish Tuesday.
24 JUDGE ORIE: I'm just inquiring.
25 MR. HARMON: I think Tuesday morning I'll finish my examination of
1 Mr. Kirudja.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Tuesday morning. Then that first, of course, raises
3 the issue whether Mr. Kirudja will stay over the Pentecost weekend,
4 whether you're available Mr. Kirudja.
5 THE WITNESS: Your Honour, the United Nations made me available to
6 you unconditionally.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Well, I'd rather not repeat that anywhere, because it
8 might be abused.
9 We adjourn until ten minutes to one.
10 --- Recess taken at 12.26 p.m.
11 --- On resuming at 12.56 p.m.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, please proceed.
13 MR. HARMON: Thank you. If Mr. Kirudja could be shown the next
14 exhibit, Prosecutor's Exhibit 139, please.
15 Q. Mr. Kirudja, this exhibit has a cover sheet dated the 4th of July,
16 1992, and a memorandum drafted by you on -- dated the 3rd of July, 1992.
17 Let me read portions of this to you and for the record.
18 This particular document, is it not -- first of all, is the reply
19 as well to the previous request of Mr. Magnusson?
20 A. Yes, it is partly a reply and, after that, a request.
21 Q. All right. Now, this refers to, in the first paragraph, the
22 football field in Bosanski Novi, which is clearly visible from the UNPA,
23 from Dvor, and it says that -- in the first paragraph, that you had
24 highlighted the following points, and I will read then a portion of the
25 next paragraph.
1 "We believe the football field detainees are only a tip of the
2 iceberg involving the concerted action of local Serbian authorities in BH
3 trying to establish a Serbian Republic of BH free of Muslims. In that
4 process, the mayors, the milicija, and TDF of Bosanski Novi, acting in
5 unison with their counterparts not only in the UNPA Dvor and Kostajnica
6 but also with Bosanska Dubica, Banja Luka, Prijedor, Sanski Most, and
7 Kljuc. The Serbs appear to be engaged in a determined process of
8 forcefully disarming Muslims where they are clearly a small encircled
9 minority such as in Bosanski Novi, or besieging their city totally such as
10 in Bihac."
11 Now, it appears in this portion of the document that I have read
12 that this expression, this conclusion is not only your personal conclusion
13 but the conclusion of others, and I say that, Mr. Kirudja, because you
14 preface the paragraph by saying "we." Who does the "we" refer to?
15 A. In preparing this memorandum, I'm putting together the totality of
16 the information that was in our possession, meaning the various parts of
17 the UNPROFOR mission and the NGOs, ICRC, UNHCR. The totality of the
18 information at that stage is what I'm summarising, as you indicated in the
19 previous exhibit, directly to Mr. Magnusson, highlighting previous
20 reports, that he should have been privy to. That's the collection of that
21 knowledge and the information by July at this time had led us to the
22 inescapable conclusion that is expressed in that paragraph that you read
23 that starts with "The Serbs appear to be engaged in a determined process
24 of forcefully disarming Muslims where they are clearly a small encircled
25 minority such as in Bosanski Novi or besieging their city totally such as
1 in Bihac." That's the totality of that information that I'm summarising.
2 Q. And who again is the "we"? When you say in the first sentence,
3 "We believe that the football field detainees are only the tip of the
4 iceberg involving the concerted action of local Serbian authorities in BH
5 trying to establish a Serbian Republic of BH free of Muslims"? Who is the
7 A. "We" are the UN unit in Sector North in its entirety. I'm
8 speaking on that behalf.
9 Q. Is that -- strike that. Now, let me turn to the next portion of
10 that same paragraph and read on. "Apparently the football field is the
11 holding ground where Muslim groups are detained while their houses are
12 being searched." That's a quote, "searched." "The men isolated and
13 transported to concentration camps.
14 "The UNHCR representatives from civil affairs have pieced
15 together reports from Muslims who recently have taken refuge under
16 UNPROFOR protection in Dvor and Kostajnica. There are reported
17 concentration camps at the following locations:
18 "Keraterm, located at a railroad station in Prijedor en route to
19 Banja Luka. 100 to 200 Muslims believed to be here under extremely bad
21 "Trnopolje, also located at a railroad station in Prijedor,
22 direction Banja Luka, a refugee camp for women, children, and old men.
23 "Omarska, located in a purely Serbian village, purportedly a camp
24 for Muslim men and local Muslim authorities prior to Serbian takeover of
25 control, particularly in Prijedor.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 "Manjaca, outside Banja Luka, a large camp reportedly including
2 Croatian soldiers taken prisoner in the fighting in Kostajnica.
3 "The treatment of Muslims and other minorities in the camps is
4 reportedly atrocious, with regular beatings, deprivation of food and
5 water, poor shelter, et cetera."
6 In respect of that paragraph, Mr. Kirudja, what was that -- how
7 did you come to those conclusions?
8 A. I described the process we're engaging, including what we are
9 piecing to the from reports reaching us from our own various sources of
10 reporting and flow of information, and also the briefing we did with the
11 refugees as we tried to help them out of the sector. Listen -- once an
12 example of that was a memo just before we took to a break, that was in
13 Velika Kladusa, where these particular persons began to talk about
14 concentration camp and at that point naming Manjaca. In a similar manner
15 as these 20, 30, 40 people began to pass through Sector North, before we
16 would help and assist to wherever they wanted to go, we would debrief
17 them. And listening to their stories, we pieced together -- I repeat
18 there was no document or something talking about these places. Their
19 stories help us piece together and identify those places that we have
20 shown in this memo and termed them concentration camps. The language --
21 actually, the interpreter talking to them interpreted them as saying these
22 are concentration camps.
23 Q. Now, your use of that term in this memo that went up your chain of
24 command, did it have -- did it cause a reaction?
25 A. I must say this memo was a turning point. It did cause a lot of
1 reaction both at my -- up the reporting chain. I begin with the first
2 reaction. General Satish Nambiar, upon receiving this memo, made a point
3 of telephoning me in Tapusko. It had obviously disturbed him, and he also
4 focused on the word "concentration camps." On the phone he sought from
5 me, you really -- I remember words to that effect, "You really didn't mean
6 concentration camps." I said yeah, that's what they were called. "Were
7 they really concentration camps?" He seemed to hone on that. And I asked
8 him, and what do you think they ought to be? Couldn't they have used the
9 word -- couldn't they be more appropriately detention camps, detainees? I
10 said no, because the treatment of the people in those places is what gives
11 them the label that they themselves used, concentration camps.
12 And not long after this memo was written, pictures began to emerge
13 from those places with emaciated people, and that's when the memo took a
14 turn I couldn't have imagined. I forget how many weeks into when it was
15 written, headed up to New York headquarters caused a crisis in the
16 Security Council as a result of which the head of the mission, then Marek
17 Goulding, took a plane to come to Tapusko to discuss this memo.
18 Q. Mr. Kirudja, let me turn to another paragraph in this memo, the
19 penultimate paragraph, which reads: "Our frustration arises from our
20 inability to do anything other than write reports and stand by since
21 UNPROFOR has no operational responsibilities across the border. In recent
22 days, the situation has deteriorated and has now begun to spill over to
23 the UNPA. We have seen a mounting number of desperate people who have
24 crossed over to seek refuge and protection from UNPROFOR. Yesterday, one
25 Mustafa Ogorinac swam across the River Una at 5.00 in the morning from a
1 camp in Bosanska Dubica. He is now under UNPROFOR protection along with
2 two other persons. He shows signs of physical abuse and punishment."
3 Now, this piece of information is significant in what respect, in
4 your mind?
5 A. It was to put -- I wanted this memo to be seen beyond the
6 bureaucratic reporting that we were wont to do as civil servants. It was
7 to focus that lives, human lives are in danger here. There is more than
8 the usual statistics. That's what the significance of it was, that we are
9 seeing all these people. It's not just a statistic.
10 MR. HARMON: I've concluded with this particular exhibit. If we
11 can go to the next exhibit, Prosecutor's Exhibit 140.
12 Q. Would it be fair to say, Mr. Kirudja, in respect to the last
13 exhibit, that by now you had arrived at certain conclusions, certain firm
14 conclusions as to what was happening in Bosnia?
15 A. About this time, yes. We now began to acknowledge what we were
16 seeing for what it is, something we didn't rush into and spent
17 considerable time previously trying not to jump the gun but understand
18 what it is reluctantly. At this time, we did come to pretty much a
19 conclusion of what we think we were seeing.
20 Q. All right. And that conclusion, of course, is expressed in the
21 previous exhibit.
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Now, if we can turn our attention to Prosecutor's Exhibit 140,
24 this is a UN UNPROFOR message form dated the 4th of July, 1992, with an
25 accompanying memorandum of Mr. Paolo Raffone.
1 Let me just -- again, this memo, Mr. Kirudja, reiterates in the
2 first paragraph the memo of Mr. Raffone, and I quote: "The civil affairs
3 officer was informed by DANCON about the increasing number of persons
4 seeking protection in their camps along the border between Dvor and
6 So this is just a reiteration, is it not, of the expression that
7 you're seeing more people coming into the --
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. -- Sector North. I want to turn your attention to the third
10 paragraph -- fourth paragraph, I'm sorry. And I quote: "The situation in
11 the area inside of the UNPA is very tense due to the actions carried out
12 by the authorities in the villages along the BH border on the other side
13 of the River Una. DANCON officers observed executions in the streets.
14 Increasing information about expulsions, persecutions, and torture of
15 Muslims are alarming."
16 Now, this memorandum of Mr. Raffone's goes on two paragraphs --
17 one paragraph below -- I'm sorry, two paragraphs below, to discuss a
18 meeting that took place on the 1st of July, 1992, at 1930 hours, and it
19 identifies the people who are the attendees. This took place in Bosnia,
20 in the mayor's office in Bosanska Dubica; is that correct?
21 A. That's the paragraph, the penultimate paragraph on the front page,
23 Q. Now, if we turn the page, I'll read the following: "The civil
24 affairs officer also asked the authorities to explain reports of
25 persecution, summary executions, massive expulsions and mass transfer of
1 Muslims from their opstina to other parts of BH. The DANCON officer
2 explained that they can monitor the area with -- with sophisticated
3 instruments and that they have evidence of summary executions in the
4 streets of Bosanska Dubica. The initial reaction of the authorities was
5 to deny all allegations. During the meeting, the mayor asked the chief of
6 the milicija to respond to a specific case of an execution in the streets
7 observed by DANCON. The chief of milicija answered that there was in fact
8 an execution in the streets, but the man killed was a Serb and not a
10 Now, Mr. Kirudja, in the efforts that you made and other people
11 under your authority in Sector North were making to find out what was
12 happening in Bosnia, you and others had contact with Serb officials,
13 police chiefs, municipality heads, and others, and you and your colleagues
14 inquired as to what was happening. Did you ever get a truthful answer to
15 what was happening in Bosnia?
16 A. Truthful answer.
17 Q. An accurate answer?
18 A. We listened to everything as if it was being told truthfully, but
19 we endeavoured to collaborate, because when you have people in a conflict,
20 truth is the casualty of the conflict, and they tell their stories, not
21 surprisingly, in diametrical contradiction of each other and consider it
22 to be the truth. When we received those stories where two sides are
23 facing each other diametrically, it was easier because we could kind of
24 have these statements collide with each other and then we would ourselves
25 try to find a way of assessing the closest truth.
1 In this case which you have read, it was made more difficult by a
2 very unusual fact, and that is the Serbs were on both sides of this
3 border. They were in Bosanska Dubica, and they were in Kostajnica, in the
4 UNPA. Unless the -- this matter, it would be reasonable for me to
5 conclude, were it not for the vigilance of DANCON in observing, we might
6 not even have known all about this. Because there are Serbs on both
7 sides, this information would have no reason to be brought to our
8 attention but for the presence of DANCON. Had that been in conflict, one
9 or the other side seeking our intervention would have brought it to our
11 Therefore, I'm not sure what I could say about the truth of it
12 other than that's what they said and that's what we tried to ascertain
13 from them. But when he was asked or given that information by the DANCON
14 that, "We saw you execute this person," he gave a different explanation;
15 that this is a Serb and not a Muslim. Had I been there - because I wasn't
16 there - the only question I ask, "Are you allowed to kill Serbs too?" But
17 unfortunately I wasn't, so I couldn't take the conversation beyond what is
19 Q. Other than this isolated incident that's described in this
20 particular report --
21 A. Right.
22 Q. -- when you and members of your -- and your colleagues confronted
23 Serb officials in Bosnia about ethnic cleansing and allegations of ethnic
24 cleansing, about the forcible separation of Muslims from their homes and
25 their communities, what types of responses would you get?
1 A. You see, there were what we have come to regard as the staple
2 answer to that question, and it ran the gamut of "The sooner you
3 understand we can't live together, the sooner we'll solve the situation,"
4 to if the Serb is describing the actions of the Muslims as in the case of
5 Bosanski Novi, the record shows when asked why the Muslims are taking arms
6 or try to do this, the explanation was invariably they have been misled by
7 the government of Izetbegovic and they are taking mistaken answers. That
8 was a staple answer. There were things like that that had become, after
9 you listen for the first time, month after month they become a staple
10 explanation, if you ask the question. If you probe it further, you go
11 into the direction of what happened when I proved passage, as I engaged in
12 until the truth itself came out in a way he never intended.
13 Q. There was never any direct admissions to you by Serb officials
14 from Bosnia that what was indeed taking place was forcible separation of
15 the Muslims, trying to get them out of their communities?
16 A. That statement, "The sooner you understand we can't live
17 together," is pretty much of an admission. If you look at it, if it's
18 repeated in context.
19 Q. Now, did you hear the phrase "We can't live together" -- do I
20 understand your answer correctly, you heard the phrase "We can't live
21 together" from various Serb officials?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. That was the standard answer that was repeated to you and to your
24 colleagues; is that correct?
25 A. Pretty much.
1 Q. What was the response? Did you ask the Muslims who were coming
2 out of the community what -- did you ever hear those kinds of expressions
3 from the Muslims?
4 A. Remember, we are not inviting any speech. So when we meet the
5 Muslims, the condition they were in prevented them to talk to us about
6 things like that. Usually they were people in distress. People in
7 distress tend to attend to the matters at present; how can I be safe out
8 of here? If left alone, they will talk about the treatment they received
9 rather than anything else. We were more in a listening mode, actually,
10 than asking. It turned out more with the Serbs. We asked more questions
11 when we didn't understand or what we heard didn't make sense.
12 MR. HARMON: I am finished with this exhibit, thank you.
13 JUDGE ORIE: I will have one additional question, Mr. Harmon.
14 MR. HARMON: Yes.
15 JUDGE ORIE: On the second paragraph on page 2, from the bottom,
16 it reads: "The president of the Executive Council and deputy president of
17 the Crisis Committee in Dubica announced a recent decision of the Crisis
18 Committee approved by the parliament of the SRBH regarding the necessity
19 to disband the structure of the SDA and put all its members under
21 This is a clear reference to decisions and approvals to decisions.
22 Is there any further material shown to you ever? Are you aware of more
23 details about this decision and about the approval?
24 THE WITNESS: Not that I can specifically draw your attention to
25 other than noting, for example, when they signed a memo to me, he wouldn't
1 sign it as the mayor of Bosanski Novi but the president of Crisis
2 Committee. Then the same thing you will see -- this is in Bosanski Novi,
3 and you see the same Crisis Committee president in Dubica. Dubica is not
4 -- the reality there, there's nothing that gives you the idea there is a
5 crisis all over except that it's a policy going on.
6 JUDGE ORIE: No. I was mainly looking for the specific decision.
7 THE WITNESS: No, not this one.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, is the -- is the -- is there any material
9 related to what is here called a decision, an approval to that decision,
10 and does the Prosecution intend to present that in evidence or --
11 MR. HARMON: I will inquire, Your Honour. I will --
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
13 MR. HARMON: I don't have that at my fingertips.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Okay, I can imagine. I would like to know whether
15 any such material exists and whether the Prosecution intends to present
16 it. Please proceed.
17 MR. HARMON: Yes. Thank you.
18 Q. If we can go to the next exhibit. Prosecution Exhibit 141.
19 This exhibit, Mr. Kirudja, is dated also the 6th of July, 1992.
20 The first page is a -- I would say a poor English translation of a letter
21 that is the second page, which is in B/C/S. The second page was sent to
22 you -- the second page, a letter in B/C/S, indicates that this is from
23 Mayor Pasic; is that correct?
24 A. Yes, it is.
25 Q. Now, let me just turn to the second page and I'm going to read it
1 in B/C/S, the caption, because it appears to be -- in the English version,
2 it says Serbian Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, municipality of
3 Bosanski Novi, Crisis Committee, and the -- at the end, it says Crisis
4 Committee president. So let me read in B/C/S what is said at the top of
5 this, the header. "Srpska Republika Bosna i Herzegovina opstina Bosanski
6 Novi, Krizni Stab." And let me turn to the end: "Predsjednik Kriznog
7 Staba," and then there's the name.
8 I do that, Your Honour, just because I think the proper
9 translation is Crisis Staff, not Crisis Committee. I've seen this in an
10 earlier document.
11 But let me turn my attention, Mr. Kirudja, to the exhibit itself.
12 And in this exhibit, let me read parts of this exhibit into the record.
13 This letter from Mr. Pasic is addressed to you -- to civil affairs
14 headquarters in Tapusko and to CIVPOL headquarters also in Tapusko.
15 "In the last days -- last few days, there was a lot of citizens
16 of Muslim and other nationalities requiring Crisis Committee state organs
17 (secretariat for social affairs, finance, secretariat for people defence,
18 and public security station) permit for voluntary abandon of municipality
19 territory in direction of inhabited places in Republic of Croatia,
20 Republic of Slovenia, Austria, and Germany. There was 1.233 persons on 3,
21 4, and 5 July 1992 applied to named municipality organs and according to
22 present laws picked notice of departure having all necessary
24 "Above mentioned citizens noticed the place where they are
25 intending to go and also have given written statement at official service
1 about status of their immovable property. Citizens obliged to the army
2 received documents in relation to releasing of it and on basis of all
3 mentioned documents, according to the administrative procedure, they can
5 "Status of immovable property is salved on the basis of exchange
6 with citizens of Serbian nationality - refugees to Bosanski Novi
7 municipality from Republic of Croatia and Republic of Slovenia for their
8 property left in mentioned countries. Less number of citizens of Muslim
9 and other nationalities sailed or gave like a gift their property about
10 what they have all official documentation. Citizens of Muslim and other
11 nationalities are taking their movable property with them after making of
12 official specification."
13 It goes on to say, again in the penultimate paragraph: "We
14 request you to concentrate your efforts to provide safe departure, under
15 your protection, to mentioned citizens on their way to new domicile. We
16 hope you succeed in this solution. Cincerely yours, Crisis Committee
17 President Radomir Pasic."
18 Do you recall receiving this letter?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And can you please -- what was your reaction to this letter?
21 A. It provided the last pieces for us to conclude what we are seeing
22 is what we are seeing, and I will mention those last pieces of remaining
23 information. This is a man we had met with a number of times. This is a
24 man we had already come to an understanding that what he was doing wasn't
25 voluntary. This is a man to whom we had written on June 20th a letter
1 leaving no doubt of our position on the matter, and this letter begins by
2 repeating about this voluntary movement on the first paragraph. It also
3 cites laws and requirements and people being asked to sell or donate their
4 property. And lastly, providing us information we are about -- we are
5 engaged in this process to the point of identifying how we are going to
6 move these people through these named companies.
7 At this point, I couldn't help but conclude the systematic nature
8 of what they are doing, and we were able now to come to recognise what we
9 called not long after this letter ethnic cleansing.
10 Q. Thank you, Mr. Kirudja.
11 MR. HARMON: Your Honour, I know that you had asked me to allow
12 ten minutes at least to have Mr. Tieger come and --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, until Mr. Tieger is in we could continue, but --
14 MR. HARMON: Well, I have another exhibit that will take me a
15 little bit longer than the one minute which will carry us over into the
16 situation. I'm more than happy to proceed, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yesterday -- let's not speculate on what time
18 Mr. Tieger arrives, because there he is.
19 MR. HARMON: As I speak.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kirudja, I think we have to finish for today.
21 We'd like to see you back next Tuesday at 9.00 in the morning in this same
22 courtroom. My instruction for the weekend is the same as the instruction
23 I gave you yesterday; not to speak with anyone about your testimony
24 whether already given or still to be given.
25 Madam Usher, would you please escort Mr. Kirudja out of the
2 [The witness withdrew]
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE ORIE: I'd like to make a few observations. First of all,
5 we still owe the parties a decision on the 92 bis material concerning
6 Mr. -- let me just see that I'm -- of one witness. I'm not -- one second,
8 Now, before I would say that it was the 92 bis (D) oral motion for
9 Mr. Hidic, I just wanted to verify there were no protective measures in
10 force and not to make any mistake in that respect.
11 We still owe you that decision. You'll get it soon.
12 Then I come back to the other issue, and that is the 92 bis
13 application as far as Mr. Babic is concerned. Let me make one thing
14 clear: That the Chamber has no problems with the 89(F) application, so
15 that will be granted. There is, however, the discussion on the transcript
17 First of all, the -- I'd like to say first that the Chamber is
18 aware that we come rather late with our decisions in respect of this
19 witness, but of course the parties, even if the Defence would not object,
20 could not take it for granted that the Chamber would always follow the
21 requests of the parties, even if there is no objection. So that's one
22 thing to start with.
23 The Chamber will also have an opportunity to further perhaps
24 briefly discuss the matter this afternoon in a meeting which is not held
25 in open court and which deals with mainly other matters, that is the
1 progress made in the communications between the parties, but it's --
2 without giving then a final decision at this moment but guidance as far as
3 we're now, the Chamber does not think that it could allow in its present
4 form the motion for the 1.100 pages. Use of Rule 92 bis (D) is a facility
5 for the introduction of supplementary evidence, and the first thing is
6 that we're very concerned about the public character of this trial, which
7 we have discussed several times. That's one issue. But also Rule 92 bis
8 (D) should not have the effect of bringing in evidence in such vast
9 quantities, I would say, that -- that it's necessarily to be treated
10 rather superficially by all concerned; Defence, Chambers.
11 The purpose of the rule, as I explained yesterday, is to make
12 these trials more efficient, and it's just not to limit the consumption of
13 courtroom time. The overall impact of 92 bis on the management of the
14 case, both in court but also out of court, has to be considered when we
15 give a final decision on the motion.
16 Therefore, the Chamber again expresses that it would prefer to
17 have, because of the transparency and the efficiency, the Chamber would
18 prefer to have this material presented and introduced in a more piecemeal
19 approach rather than just 1.100 pages put on our desk, even with full
20 appreciation of the table of contents and the efforts the Prosecution has
21 made to make it better accessible. So therefore, we'd still prefer, to
22 the extent possible, that a request to admit specific segments of the
23 Milosevic transcripts and at the appropriate points in the testimony of
24 Mr. Babic's direct examination, and then a brief oral description of each
25 proffered segment should then be sufficient to guarantee the public
1 character of the trial so that the public can know what it is about.
2 Of course we'll then have to decide on these bits and pieces.
3 We'll do that in such a way that the -- that the Defence -- that it will
4 be clear to the Defence what is in evidence and what's not in evidence so
5 that they can prepare for cross-examination.
6 As I said before, it -- the Chamber would not mind if we would
7 then take a bit more time for the examination-in-chief of Mr. Babic. We
8 would expect it would take up to a full four days.
9 About the schedule, I'd like to make the following comment: In
10 the scheduling until now, the Prosecution tries to fit more hours in a
11 week than there realistically are. For example, if I look at the schedule
12 for this week, we see a total number of 15 hours examination-in-chief for
13 Prosecution witnesses, which would -- well, would entail some ten hours
14 cross-examination apart from whether some witnesses, of course, perhaps
15 take a bit more time on cross-examination whereas others take less, but
16 that's altogether 25 hours. A day in court is effectively, if we had no
17 procedural issues on our mind or whatever, would be four hours. So to fit
18 25 hours in five days of four hours, then there's a deficit of five hours.
19 Why do I say four hours? Because we sit from 9.00 until a quarter
20 to two. We lose approximately 45 minutes for the two breaks, and that
21 brings us to four hours, effectively, a day. So it's not a surprise that
22 we run out of hours when the week goes on. And that specifically might be
23 a problem, because if we would then -- well, let's say to have anything
24 between eight and ten hours for Mr. Babic in chief, then this would bring
25 some six, seven hours, perhaps, of cross-examination, and I'm not even
1 certain that the cross-examination of Mr. Babic, also in view of the
2 amount of material presented other than through viva voce evidence would
3 not even take more time.
4 Mr. Kirudja will finish his examination-in-chief, we expect, as
5 Mr. Harmon indicates, on Tuesday morning. Then I take it, Mr. Stewart,
6 that the cross-examination for Mr. Kirudja will take quite some time as
7 well, but I'm not -- could you give us an estimate or not yet?
8 MR. STEWART: Well, based on what I feel is Mr. Harmon's estimate
9 of when he might finish on Tuesday, it's going to use up Tuesday anyway.
10 Beyond that is a little unsure, but Your Honour can safely take it that
11 Tuesday is a Kirudja day.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. So that means the testimony of Mr. Babic would
13 certainly not start any earlier than Wednesday. Whether that would be at
14 the beginning of Wednesday or halfway, we wouldn't know. We'd then have
15 two and a half days that week.
16 It was indicated, I think yesterday, to the parties that for
17 various reasons the Chamber considered not to sit in the week but would
18 like to finish the Babic testimony. It's highly uncertain at this moment
19 whether we could do that on the 7th and/or perhaps - that's not certain
20 yet - the 8th of June. So therefore we might get stuck somewhere with Mr.
21 Babic. I'll leave it to that. But we have some scheduling problems, so
22 apart from the preparation of the Prosecution. But when I said we might
23 take a bit more time for Mr. Babic in examination-in-chief, we have to be
24 aware that there are some scheduling problems anyhow in respect of his
25 testimony. But perhaps we could also try to look at the agendas a bit
1 more in detail this afternoon, if possible, if agreeable to the Defence
2 also to do that in the absence of Mr. Krajisnik.
3 Then as I said, the Chamber expects to -- that those parts of the
4 transcript should be presented as much as possible in relation to the viva
5 voce evidence to see whether it can be linked one way or the other, but
6 then if, finally, there would remain areas which the Prosecution could not
7 link to the viva voce testimony, then the Prosecution could approach the
8 Chamber and with perhaps a consolidated motion but then specifying the
9 precise pages of the transcript and then rather not 95 per cent or 90 per
10 cent but really a true selection, pages proposed for admission and also
11 their exact relationship and relevance to paragraphs of the indictment,
12 because that's one of the things that bothered the Chamber when inspecting
13 the material presented under 92 bis (D).
14 And perhaps this is an observation that could be taken more
15 generally, that the parties should bear in mind that the Chamber will be
16 reluctant to allow the use of Rule 92 bis (D) to add to the evidence of a
17 witness who has been afforded a considerable amount of time to testify
18 viva voce. So we -- we try to link that, to fit that in, but not to have
19 a lot of time viva voce testimony and then another huge amount of 92 bis
20 (D) material.
21 This is what I give as a guidance at this moment. It's no secret
22 that the parties will meet and that I'll be present this afternoon. If
23 there's any further practical issue that should be raised in respect of
24 this, it could be done this afternoon.
25 And the meeting will take place in room 097 instead of in my
2 Unless there is anything at this moment -- but we are already
3 three minutes past a quarter to two. If there is nothing else to be
4 discussed at this moment, we'll adjourn until next Tuesday, 9.00, same
6 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.48 p.m.,
7 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 1st day of June,
8 2004, at 9.00 a.m.