1 Monday, 18 July 2005
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.06 a.m.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning to everyone.
6 Madam Registrar, would you please call the case.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case number
8 IT-00-39-T, the Prosecutor versus Momcilo Krajisnik.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
10 Mr. Tieger, I was informed that you'd like to address the
12 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, I believe there is a -- an oral
13 application for protective measures that needs to be brought to the
14 attention of the Court. This is an application for protective measures for
15 KRAJ 682.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
17 MR. TIEGER: And the Prosecution seeks from the Trial Chamber to
18 permit KRAJ 682 to testify with a pseudonym and with image and voice
19 distortion and in private session for those parts of his testimony which
20 are reasonably likely to reveal his identity. I would note that the Trial
21 Chamber has previously held most recently on 4 July 2005 that the existence
22 of the requisite objectively grounded risk to the security of a witness or
23 the witness's family can be demonstrated through a combination of the
24 following factors, with which I know the Court is familiar: Possibility of
25 antagonising persons who continually reside in the territory, for example,
1 by implicating such persons; the fact that the protective witness or his
2 family lives in that territory or have property in that territory or
3 concrete plans to return; and also a general security situation which is
4 unstable and is particularly unfavourable to witnesses and the families of
5 such witnesses who appear before the Tribunal.
6 Excuse me, Your Honour.
7 [Prosecution counsel confer]
8 MR. TIEGER: And, Your Honour, with respect to more precise
9 information, I would ask that we move into private session.
10 JUDGE ORIE: We'll move into private session.
11 [Private session]
6 [Open session]
7 JUDGE ORIE: And we are in open session again. Please proceed,
8 Mr. Tieger.
9 MR. TIEGER: Finally in relation to point 3, we note the January
10 2005 UNHCR report which has been previously submitted to the Chamber. The
11 Chamber has indeed considered the report in coming to the view that the
12 climate in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which is set out in the report, remains
13 unfavourable to persons who are resident there or who have family resident
14 there and who wish, nevertheless, to fully discharge their duty to testify
15 before the Tribunal.
16 Your Honour, the Defence has informed us on -- and I think that
17 was on 13 July, that they do not oppose this application strictly to the
18 extent specified.
19 Thank you.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stewart, I take it that Mr. Tieger informed the
21 Chamber well about the position of the Defence?
22 MR. STEWART: Absolutely, Your Honour. Two things. First of
23 all, I appreciate the rigorous way in which it's been dealt with this
24 morning, with appropriate things being in private session and appropriate
25 things being in open session. And that is the Defence's position. We say
1 no more, Your Honour, except that we -- we don't oppose.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. The Chamber will give a decision as soon as
4 Mr. Tieger, is the Prosecution ready to call its next witness,
5 which is a witness without protective measures, as far as I understand, and
6 would be Mr. Neskovic.
7 MR. TIEGER: That's correct, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
9 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, may I say there is one point that I
10 want to raise. I'm sorry. I know the Trial Chamber likes to have notice,
11 so I'm, afraid, in a rush, and being unable break through security this
12 morning; I just overlooked mentioned that to Ms. Philpott. But it would
13 only take about one minute, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, perhaps the usher could already prepare the
15 witness to be stand-by.
16 Please proceed.
17 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, it's just really to notify Your
18 Honours, rather than to enter into elaborate submissions this morning, that
19 having looked at the transcript at page 16545, Your Honours gave
20 instructions -- that's at 9 -- at line 11 in relation to the witness -- he
21 was not a protected witness, was -- no, Mr. Davidovic, Your Honour. The
22 Defence is therefore instructed to inform the Chamber by the 21st of July -
23 that's this Thursday - of all information it had available that could shed
24 light on the allegations of misbehaviour and so on.
25 Your Honour, the position is that there is the question of
1 privilege, Your Honour, and may we respectfully suggest that that
2 instruction, if implemented or if followed, would intrude upon privilege
3 and the Defence are entitled and certainly that is our position at the
4 moment, Your Honour, to assert privilege in relation to such information.
5 Accordingly, Your Honour, with the greatest of respect, we are not in a
6 position to comply with that instruction as it's expressed.
7 JUDGE ORIE: You certainly noticed that we gave an opportunity
8 to do that in an ex parte way. We'll consider how to deal with this matter
9 at this moment.
10 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, may I observe that --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, perhaps you --
12 MR. STEWART: -- perhaps we haven't solved the problem at all,
13 Your Honour. It's ex parte --
14 JUDGE ORIE: I do understand.
15 MR. STEWART: Yes.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Otherwise I -- but then we'd like to hear brief
17 submissions on how you see the relation between privilege, counsel-client
18 privilege, and how you think that the Chamber could serve the interests of
19 the witness in a proper way because if finally the Chamber would have to
20 accept that on the basis of privileged material you can put everything to a
21 witness, then, of course, we might have a problem.
22 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, may I say straight away, just a
23 simple practical matter: I saw Mr. Hannis briefly.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
25 MR. STEWART: In that usual meeting Place, the canteen, Your
1 Honour, a few minutes ago. I mentioned to him that I was going to mention
2 this point in case he wanted to come. But, Your Honour, I indicated that I
3 was only at this point intending to mention this point. So if Your Honour
4 is -- is now seeking further submissions, it seems that it would only be
5 right to arrange some time when Mr. Hannis, who's been dealing with this
6 matter for the Prosecution, has the opportunity of being here, as well.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I think the Chamber would like to hear more,
8 especially on the ways the Defence considers the Chamber is able to keep
9 control over the proceedings. If you put to a witness that he's a
10 criminal, if you put to the witness that he personally has stolen matters
11 from others, and if this seems to be contradicted by those who were the
12 victims, the alleged victims, of such behaviour, it would need some further
13 thought on how to deal with this matter because simply saying, This is
14 privileged information, therefore we can't even give a glimpse on what our
15 factual basis existed, and then leave it entirely to the parties to treat a
16 witness in -- well, let me say it, in a firm way, even where later on some
17 information comes to the surface which casts, at least, doubt on whether
18 there were sufficient grounds to treat the witness that way, that might not
19 be a good solution. But I need to give it further thought, and the parties
20 are invited to also further consider how the parties think the Chamber
21 could meet its duties in this respect under those circumstances.
22 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, there is one very important thing
23 that I should say straight away without elaborating in submissions, and
24 that's -- that's this: In relation to how the Trial Chamber can, in a
25 nutshell, protect witnesses, strike the right balance. One very important
1 consideration, Your Honour, is that subject to matters which are under
2 current consideration in this particular Trial Chamber, parties are
3 represented by counsel. I and my co-counsel, Ms. Loukas -- Ms. Loukas is a
4 member of the bar of New South Wales; I'm a member of the bar of England
5 and Wales. Not surprisingly, having a common background, our codes of
6 conduct in this respect are very similar. Our codes of conduct make
7 specific provision in relation to this matter, and that is itself -- the
8 standing and background and integrity and code of conduct binding counsel
9 are themselves a very important protection for the proceedings and for the
10 Trial Chamber. It has been expressly stated by Mr. Hannis that he doesn't
11 allege - and it would be astonishing if he did allege, in fact - any lack
12 of good faith on counsel's part in dealing with this matter --
13 Your Honour, I, as lead counsel - and I have taken the
14 opportunity over the weekend; I think I said I would, but even if I didn't,
15 I have done - to consider the matter with my co-counsel. We have looked at
16 the material. Your Honour, it's all a matter of judgement in the end, but
17 I am entirely satisfied that there was no question of any breach of
18 counsel's obligations in relation to -- to this matter. And so there may
19 be, then, matters raised by the Prosecution as to where one goes from there
20 in the light of material that they might have unearthed or how one
21 retrospectively looks at it. I touched on some of that the other day.
22 But, Your Honour, the basic and important position is that counsel
23 considers material before putting questions in cross-examination. Counsel
24 knows his or her obligations, and, Your Honour, as far as I am concerned in
25 this case, counsel has met those obligations.
1 Where the matter goes from there, then, is -- I'd suggest, if
2 there is to be further elaboration, further submission, it would be fair
3 that Mr. Hannis, who's dealing with the matter --
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
5 MR. STEWART: -- should then participate. But that is our
6 position at the moment, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We'll further consider the matter, and also
8 if this will be the final view. It might be that the Chamber in
9 controlling the examination of witnesses will be less liberal in allowing,
10 well, let's say, firm allegations put to a witness and would invite the
11 parties to limit itself to factual matters rather than to strong
12 qualifications of the possible behaviour of witnesses. But we'll consider
13 the matter, as I said before; it needs more thought --
14 MR. STEWART: That is a very large question.
15 JUDGE ORIE: -- and thought needs time.
16 MR. STEWART: The one that Your Honour has just raised is a very
17 large question, and it is very dangerous territory, with the utmost
18 respect, for a Trial Chamber in relation to counsel defending a man on the
19 gravity of charges which Mr. Krajisnik faces. And I sincerely submit and
20 hope, Your Honour, that such a -- a important and potentially dangerous
21 issue should be given the most careful and thorough examination before any
22 rulings are made.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We certainly will do that. At the same time,
24 Mr. Stewart, you'll be aware that it's also a very dangerous matter to let
25 a witness leave this courtroom after they have publicly been alleged to be
1 criminals, go home with that, and especially if it's then said that there
2 were good reasons to put that to him. We'll consider the matter.
3 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, with respect, it isn't a dangerous
4 matter in the hands of responsible counsel, and that is precisely my point,
5 Your Honour. It is not. The danger is obviated by the proceedings being
6 conducted by responsible counsel bound by that code of conduct. That is
7 the whole point.
8 JUDGE ORIE: I'm not saying that counsel is behaving -- and I
9 think that the Chamber never suggested that. But the Chamber wants to find
10 out what, then, caused -- well, first of all, the Chamber would like to
11 have facts available. That's most important before saying anything else,
12 and that's what the Chamber asked for. We'll consider the matter.
13 Mr. Tieger.
14 MR. TIEGER: That's all I was going to suggest, Your Honour. I
15 mean, the exchange between the Chamber and Mr. Stewart obviously provokes
16 some thoughts of my own, and I chose not to intervene because I -- the
17 suggestion that we wait for Mr. Hannis --
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
19 MR. TIEGER: -- to be here and for more thoughtful submissions to
20 be offered is a wise one.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
22 Then Mr. Neskovic can be brought into the courtroom.
23 [The witness entered court]
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Neskovic, can you hear me in a language you
1 THE WITNESS: [Microphone not activated]
2 THE INTERPRETER: Yes. But the interpreters can't hear the
3 speaker, in fact.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I do understand because you're too far away
5 from the microphone and the microphones are not switched on, anyhow.
6 Mr. Neskovic, before you give evidence, I first for the
7 transcript say that I heard you say "da, da," which means "yes, yes." So
8 you can understand me.
9 The Rules of Procedure and Evidence require you to make a solemn
10 declaration that you'll speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but
11 the truth. May I invite you to make that declaration of which the text is
12 now handed out to you by the usher.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
14 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Neskovic. Please be seated.
16 WITNESS: RADOMIR NESKOVIC
17 [Witness answered through interpreter]
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Neskovic, you'll first be examined by Mr.
19 Tieger, counsel for the Prosecution.
20 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Your Honour.
21 Examined by Mr. Tieger:
22 Q. Good morning, Mr. Neskovic.
23 A. Thank you.
24 Q. Mr. Neskovic, I'd like to begin by providing the Chamber with
25 some general idea of your educational and political background. We can
1 probably deal with that most efficiently if I simply recite to you what I
2 understand to be some of the salient points and you indicate at the end
3 whether or not I have described that history accurately and, if necessary,
4 provide any additional details that seem particularly significant.
5 Now, I understand that you completed high school in Ilidza in
6 1975 and that you entered the Faculty of Political Sciences in Sarajevo in
7 1976 and completed your degree in 1978; is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Your basic occupation since 1979 has been in the area of
10 researching public opinion in television; is that correct?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Now, with regard to your involvement in politics, is it correct
13 that you were -- although you were -- that you were not a participant in
14 the very earliest stages of the establishment of the SDS party in Bosnia
15 and Herzegovina which you understood to have been formed under the direct
16 influence of the SDS Croatia, which was then under the authority of Jovan
18 A. Yes. At some point after the 10th of August, I became active
19 within that party, in 1990.
20 Q. And in August of 1990, at that time were you informed that a
21 branch of the SDS was to be established in Pale by the initiate board of
22 the SDS and you gave a speech at that time?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And on that same day, did Radovan Karadzic ask you if you wanted
25 to become a member of the SDS and explain to you that he envisioned your
1 role would be to conduct research and analysis of public opinion?
2 A. I signed the membership card for the SDS as early as the 12th of
3 July, 1990, but until August I was not really an active member. But after
4 my speech at Pale on the 10th of August, Radovan did ask me whether I would
5 like to take on analytical tasks within the SDS.
6 Q. And after that point, working in that capacity, did you begin
7 attending meetings of the Main Board, at the invitation of Dr. Karadzic,
8 meetings which were held in the Hotel Serbia in Ilidza?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. On July 31st, 1991, were you elected as the deputy chairman or
11 deputy president of the Executive Committee of the SDS?
12 A. The Assembly was on the 12th of June, and then there was the
13 board, which was set up, and the president was Rajko Dukic, and I was
14 elected deputy president of the Executive Committee. I can't remember the
15 exact date when that happened; possibly on the 31st of July, in fact. So
16 the answer is yes.
17 Q. Thank you. And as a minor matter, our transcript says that the
18 Assembly was on the 12th of June. Was that -- did you mean the 12th of
19 June, or was that the 12th of July?
20 A. I meant July. On the 12th of July, 1991.
21 Q. And at that time, were -- in July of 1991, were you also selected
22 as a member of the Main Board?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Were you one of the people who was nominated by the general
25 electorate, or were you nominated by an individual?
1 A. It was the entire body that made nominations, but you could make
2 proposals in a twofold way: You were either proposed by some municipal
3 organisations, some grass roots organisation as a member of this main
4 board, or you could have been proposed by the president of the party. I
5 was on the list of names drawn up by the president of the party, and then
6 that list would be voted on, as well. In other words, he could not make a
7 decision single-handedly for us to be appointed to the Main Board; he could
8 just make proposals, and then the Assembly would vote on those proposals,
9 and they would make a selection out of a number of candidates. So Mr.
10 Karadzic was a proponent for myself and a number of other people, and then
11 our names were put to the vote.
12 Q. And was the provision that permitted the president of the party
13 to nominate persons for the Main Board one that had existed at the time of
14 the initial establishment of the Main Board in 1990, or was it a new
15 provision that emerged in 1991?
16 A. No. It was a new provision from 1991, and that statute was
17 approved on the occasion of that Assembly, and up until 1990 the party had
18 no actual programme, statute, or anything like that, and no systemic acts.
19 So it is a statute that was actually approved on that very day, and it was
20 a new provision from 1991, on the 12th of July.
21 Q. And can I ask you what the purpose of that provision was. Was it
22 to provide the president of the party with greater control over who was on
23 the Main Board or for some other purpose?
24 A. The way I understood it, it was a different reason. There was a
25 problem of insuring democracy, of making sure that people appointed to the
1 Main Board would be democratically elected. And so, of course, to some
2 extent it limited the competencies of the head of the party. On the other
3 hand, we wanted to come up with a compromise between the democratic
4 principle at the grassroots level and also make it possible for the head of
5 the party to have certain competencies in order to avoid a situation
6 whereby he would have absolute power. He was entitled to make proposals
7 for up to one-third of members of the Main Board, and I think according to
8 the statute at the time the Main Board had about 40 people, and so the
9 influence on the part of the president of the party could be up to one-
10 third and the remaining two-thirds would be elected independently of his
11 will on the basis of the electoral mechanicians within the party.
12 And if I may, I would like to add another point in this respect.
13 There were people who were active within the party or were somehow
14 significant, and they had no constituency, as it were. They were not
15 leaders in the field. They could have been experts, lecturers, professors
16 or something like that, and they could not have been proposed. Their names
17 could not have been put forward by a constituency because they didn't have
18 one, and so that was another reason why the President was entitled to
19 propose those names because they might have been dutiful to the party but
20 only up to one-third of the overall membership of the Main Board.
21 Q. Before that provision was enacted as the Assembly, were nominees
22 to the Main Board made by the municipalities and the electorate or made by
23 the president?
24 A. The Main Board, as it was initially set up, I think was decided
25 upon at the constitutional Assembly in July 1990 at the meeting at
1 Skenderija. But there were no real rules, so those people who were the
2 most active as the party was being set up were swept into the Main Board.
3 And the party was actually created by a merger of a number of other small
4 parties on the 12th of July, 1990, so they tried to make them happy, as
5 well, by taking their members or leaders. So I think the first Main Board,
6 the original one, I think, was rather big. Quite a few people were there.
7 So those people were swept into power, as it were, because they happened to
8 be there at the time. So it wasn't based on any rules or documents because
9 back in 1990 the party did not have any statute, any rules of procedure or
10 anything. They did not have a programme. And it had not even been
11 officially registered at the time. So it was a rather chaotic situation at
12 the -- at the founding Assembly back in 1990.
13 Q. Let me turn to some additional positions you held. In 1992, did
14 you serve as president of the Crisis Staff in Novo Sarajevo?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. In July of 1992 -- well, in that connection actually, let me take
17 this opportunity to ask that you be provided with a binder that contains
18 certain documents. And if that has not already been distributed to the
19 Court, I would ask that that be done now.
20 Mr. Neskovic, as the usher has indicated to you, that document
21 contains -- or that binder contains various documents which are separated
22 by tabs, and I will refer you to tab numbers as I ask you to look at
23 particular documents. In this case, I would direct your attention to the
24 document contained behind tab number 1 and ask you at the same time whether
25 you became a member of the war commission for the Serbian municipality of
1 Novo Sarajevo in July of 1992 and specifically on 21 July 1992.
2 A. Yes. Although, it is not even clear to me today, not to this
3 day, what this war commission was all about, what was its purpose and what
4 they were supposed to be doing. Mr. Katic was there; Mr. Skrba Panjevic.
5 It was a body which was presumably set up in July by the president. It was
6 not very active down there, and to this day, to be honest, I don't really
7 know what it was all about because at that period of time, at Grbavica in
8 particular, in the municipality of Novo Sarajevo, the Municipal Assembly
9 and the Executive Committee for the municipality had already been set up.
10 So in other words, there were legal municipal bodies in existence. So I
11 really don't know what the purpose of that war commission was, considering
12 that we had legally elected municipal bodies.
13 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, I would note that the document at tab
14 1 is Exhibit P64.A or at least contained within the body of the documents
15 in P64.A.
16 Q. Mr. Neskovic, the document refers to a republican commissioner
17 who was to hold the position of chairman of that war commission. Do you
18 recall who that person was?
19 A. If I may take a moment to concentrate a little bit because there
20 was a great deal of cowice [as interpreted] at that time. Well, there was
21 this notion of the Crisis Staff, and there was the notion of the War
22 Presidency --
23 Q. Excuse me a second. To help you to focus this examination, I
24 will be going through the Crisis Staff with you in greater detail in my
25 later questions, so it's not necessary, unless it's absolutely -- unless
1 you think it's absolutely necessary to answer this question, to delve into
2 that now. So -- and I'll certainly give you an opportunity to concentrate
3 on this particular question, but I just ask you for the moment to focus on
4 who the republican commissioner was for Novo Sarajevo in July 1992.
5 A. There were two types of commissionerships, as it were. I think
6 one commission was appointed by the government, and it was one person, in
7 fact, one commissioner who was acting on behalf of the government. And the
8 other commission was set up, and it included a number of people, including
9 myself, Panjevic and the others. And the person appointed by the
10 government, I think, was Professor -- Dr. Milimir Mucibabic. So there was
11 a kind dual-track approach. It was slightly unclear because there was a
12 commission set up by the President, and in parallel there was this
13 commission set up by the government.
14 Q. Did Mr. Mucibabic leave? And if so, who took over for him after
16 A. Mr. Mucibabic was there only once. There was one huge meeting
17 which had been organised, and there were quite a few problems that cropped
18 up. I think maybe we can come back to those later. I got the impression
19 that he as a person disagreed with the leadership, which appointed him in
20 the first place, and soon afterwards he left the area and went to Belgrade.
21 Thereupon, if I remember correctly, it was either Vladimir Lukic and Dragan
22 Djokanovic; I'm not sure who was the direct successor. Perhaps initially
23 Vlado Lukic, and then afterwards Dragan Djokanovic.
24 Q. And I don't know if it will -- if it helps to clarify your answer
25 at all - and you'll have to tell us whether it does - but I would note at
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 page 113 of the interview that you conducted with representatives of the
2 Prosecution you said that Milimir Mucibabic was the official before Dragan
3 Djokanovic, so Djokanovic was after Mucibabic. Does that refresh your
4 recollection at all, sir?
5 A. Yes. Mucibabic was there before, in fact, and very briefly. But
6 as to whether he was succeeded by Djokanovic and then Lukic or the other
7 way around, I can't remember. But Mucibabic was the commissioner, that's
8 for sure, and he remained in that position for a very short period of time.
9 Q. And finally completing our brief discussion of the positions you
10 held, if I could ask you to turn to the document contained at tab 2 of the
12 MR. TIEGER: And Your Honour, if that could be marked for
13 identification, please.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar, that would be number ...?
15 THE REGISTRAR: Tab number 2 will be Prosecution Exhibit P895.
16 MR. TIEGER:
17 Q. Mr. Neskovic, the document before you now, Prosecution 895, is a
18 document entitled "Conclusion of assignments per domain of the members of
19 the Executive Board dated 24 February 1993," and it lists a number of
20 specific assignments and a number of individuals who are assigned. Let me
21 ask you first if this accurately reflects your membership of the SDS
22 Executive Board in February of 1993.
23 A. No. Up to February 1993, there was this re-privatisation of
24 commodities reserves, but I had nothing to do with it whatsoever. I was a
25 member of the party, and since February 1993 I continued in the same job I
1 had in 1991; I was a kind of party activist who travelled around trying to
2 solve organisational or staff issues in various municipalities. I attended
3 a number of municipal meetings all over the place, and so I was a party
4 activist. And Jovo Sarac was a capable lawyer, so with regard to this
5 privatisation of reserves, I really don't think that I myself or Jovo
6 Sarac, basically, had nothing to do with it; no practical link to this, at
7 any rate. And we never dealt with this at any point in time.
8 Q. Were you considered a de facto member of the Executive Board at
9 that time? And if not, how was it that the members of the Executive Board
10 assigned you this task?
11 A. I was a de facto member of the Executive Board. But with regard
12 to practical tasks assigned on the occasion of our meetings, with regard to
13 commodity reserves or re-privatisation, it had never been mentioned to me.
14 I never dealt with it at all. I really don't know how these line duties
15 came about, which had nothing to do with anything in practice. Perhaps I
16 missed something; perhaps I wasn't following things properly. But in what
17 I did, in practice, I had absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with what is
18 contained in this document.
19 And let me tell you, it is rather illogical. Why would the
20 members of the Executive Board deal with the commodities reserve, since it
21 is within the area of competence of the government at that time, all types
22 of resources, including material resources, and that includes commodities
23 reserves, felt within the exclusive area of competence of the government,
24 that is to say, the Minister of Trade and Industry. And so it would be a
25 bit ridiculous for a member of the Executive Committee at a time of war to
1 deal with something and to interfere with something that is within the
2 exclusive and sole area of competence of the government. So it is not
3 really logical, and it has nothing to do with the real situation on the
5 Q. Was Mr. Ostojic still the Minister of Information at that time?
6 A. I can't remember exactly. At the time, I think he was no longer
7 Information Minister. He himself and Miroslav Toholj kind of succeeded one
8 another. I can't remember, but I think Ostojic was perhaps a minister
9 without portfolio or something like that or -- at any rate, the president
10 of the Executive Committee was Jovo Mijatovic. Ostojic might have had a
11 role because he was Minister of Information the previous government. So he
12 probably had some kind of link with the government. But it doesn't really
13 make sense because all the liaising with the government went through
14 Karadzic and Krajisnik, as top officials. Why would president of a
15 government deal with the Executive Committee members since it is being done
16 by somebody else? So it is less than clear to me, I'm afraid.
17 Perhaps after the meeting of the Executive Board this was
18 written in such a way as to not fully reflect what took place in the course
19 of the discussions at the Executive Board. Ostojic might have been active
20 in some way; I can't be sure. Either he was in the government as a
21 minister without portfolio or he was some kind of liaison official between
22 the government and the Executive Committee, even though that doesn't make
23 sense, either because why would a body of the party and government have to
24 do any liaising? I don't know.
25 Q. If you know, what was Mr. Ostojic supposed to do about migrations
1 and depopulation?
2 A. Could you specify at what period of time?
3 Q. Well, let me focus first on the time he received this assignment,
4 February 24th, 1993. It appears that part of his assignment is migrations
5 and depopulation, and I'm wondering if you can shed light on that.
6 A. I think that there were other bodies in place at the time dealing
7 with migrations. I think that we had some kind of committee or some kind
8 of commission for the refugees, for taking care of the refugees. All I can
9 say is that he had to be given something to do. I think providing for the
10 displaced population, but I think I can stick to my own personal opinion,
11 in the sense that this was indicated as one of his competencies, just so --
12 in order to give him something to do because he was one of the candidates
13 for the post of the president and he was not elected. Jovo Mijatovic was
14 elected. And to be quite honest, I have no idea what he could have been
15 doing back in 1993 in relation to the displaced persons, staff issues, or
16 migration. I don't know, really, what kind of migration -- I'm not
17 familiar with the details of his job, what did he, in fact, do on a daily
18 basis in this respect.
19 Q. Let me turn now to some questions about the party itself, its
20 structure and hierarchy. First of all, is it correct that the main -- the
21 principal bodies of the SDS party would have been the Main Board, the
22 Executive Board, the Municipal Boards, and the local boards, and if there
23 are any other bodies within the party that are significant, please identify
24 those for us.
25 A. Well, if I may make a correction here, according to the statute
1 from 1991, the 12th of July, that is, the top body within the party was the
2 Assembly, then the Main Board. It was the biggest and the most significant
3 body in between the Assembly meetings, and the Executive Committee was an
4 executive body of the Main Board, an executive arm of the Main Board, so it
5 stood for the continuity, in terms of the routine tasks to be carried out
6 by the party in between meetings of the Main Board, and certainly this was
7 a body with considerable competencies within the party. And after the 12th
8 of July, 1992, there had been far-reaching reforms within the structure of
9 the party. Up until 1991, the party wasn't -- rather big, a popular
10 movement, as it were, without a proper party structure, and radical reforms
11 were implemented at that electoral Assembly. And two key principles were
12 decided upon on that occasion, one of them being that the main structure or
13 the -- the basic body would be a local community or a local committee and
14 not a municipal one. So they would start at the very lowest rung of the
15 ladder if they wanted to make their way and have a proper career within the
16 party; that was in order to cut down on the red tape and in order to avoid
17 any one small group getting absolute power.
18 So the basic structure of the -- or the basic part of the party
19 structure was this local committee, so that was the most important body at
20 the local level; whereas, the president had the most power at the global
21 level, so to say. And the second principle, which was decided upon on the
22 12th of July, 1991, was a clear distinction between the executive powers
23 and the party power, so no single official of the party could be within the
24 executive power structure of the state and the other way around. Only one
25 part of the MPs - I think maybe up to ten - could be MPs and members of the
1 Main Board at the same time.
2 And as to the executive positions and the party positions, there
3 was a clear distinction there. And so, for example, a minister could not
4 have been on the Main Board or the Executive Committee or, for example, a
5 member of the Executive Committee could be deputy police chief. So those
6 were the two main principles.
7 And there was another novelty that had been introduced; that is
8 to say, this local committee. And then there were lots of arguments about
9 the conflict of interest and the principle of democracy and the principle
10 of leadership. Karadzic, as the leader, of course wanted to have as much
11 power as possible, to be the head of the party, and there was some
12 resistance, as well. And so that's how the compromise was reached; that is
13 to say, to have democratically elected members, up to two-thirds, that is
14 to say, of membership, and Karadzic would have been entitled to put forward
15 the names and select up to one-third of this membership. And so that's --
16 that was the compromise that was reached.
17 Q. Mr. Neskovic, in your answer you -- you mentioned the SDS
18 Assembly, the Main Board. You emphasised the role of the local boards.
19 You didn't mention the Municipal Boards, but was that the body immediately
20 above the local boards?
21 A. Yes. Yes.
22 Q. Okay. And was -- was that a higher -- I mean, you alluded to it
23 in your answer, but I just want to confirm whether or not that was a
24 hierarchical structure, that is, whether or not orders went down from the
25 top, through those bodies that you mentioned, ultimately to the local
2 A. Well, there are activities in both spheres. At the top of the
3 party, President Karadzic, who pursued his policies, tried to ensure that
4 legal principles were followed in the broad party organs when he took
5 decisions, so he tried to act at the top, but a lot of initiatives were
6 taken at the municipal level. And then at the Main Board, these principles
7 would face each other. There was a principle of democratic centralisation.
8 There was a lot of democracy until a decision was taken, and when a
9 decision was taken, then the usual party hierarchy was implemented. This
10 hierarchy was in place. Once the decision was taken, once a decision had
11 been agreed on, then it was necessary for this decision to be implemented
12 by all the bodies, by the local board, by the Municipal Board. Sometimes
13 there were Regional Boards in place, as well. So I would call this a
14 principle of democratic centralisation. The principles followed were
15 democratic until a decision was taken. But once a decision had been taken,
16 the decision would be implemented; the hierarchy had to be respected.
17 I'd just add that the Main Board could also dismiss municipal
18 bodies if they believed that they were not functioning correctly or failing
19 to implement the party's policies. According to the statute, they had such
20 power and they could call elections to form a new body at that level.
21 Q. Now, of course, there were elections in 1990 for positions within
22 the political structure of Bosnia and Herzegovina in which the three main
23 parties participated. Did the elections of 1990 and the subsequent
24 assumption of positions within the political authorities of Bosnia and
25 Herzegovina by members of the SDS have an impact on the -- on who made
1 decisions within the party and which individuals were in control of
2 decisions made with respect to the party?
3 A. Yes. I would just like to provide you with a brief explanation,
4 if I may. After the elections - I think that it was in November 1990 -
5 there was a political rule in force, which is quite customary in the world,
6 but in relation to the SDS this rule was a little more radical. The
7 president of the party, Radovan Karadzic, after the elections didn't pay as
8 much attention to the Main and Executive Board; he focussed on members of
9 executive and legislative power who had assumed state positions on behalf
10 of the SDS. He had far more intense contact with Plavsic and Koljevic, as
11 members of the Presidency, and with Krajisnik, as the president of the
12 Assembly, with eight Serbian ministers who are in the government of Bosnia
13 and Herzegovina. He had more contact with functionaries in the MUP of
14 Bosnia and Herzegovina who are acting on behalf of the SDS. So those
15 structures, which on behalf of the SDS started executing state power in
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina, was the body that Karadzic had a lot of contact with.
17 But as far as the party itself is concerned, immediately after the
18 elections it was somewhat neglected; it wasn't that important because a
19 member of the Main of Executive Board was no longer important after the
20 elections. The minister was important; the deputy of the MUP minister was
21 important; the president of the Assembly was important, et cetera., so that
22 Karadzic then started focussing on those bodies. And in a certain sense,
23 they all acted together or individually, and after power had been
24 established, they would take all the decisions, agree on policies together
25 with Karadzic. He didn't become part of state power, but he was a figure
1 of authority who had a lot of contact with all the representatives of the
2 power structures. The party leader after the elections would then focus on
3 his representatives within the organs of power, and he would focus less on
4 the party because after the elections, the party was no longer that
6 There was a victory at the elections, so they could participate
7 in power. And afterwards it was no longer that important, and it entered a
8 crisis period.
9 Q. Within that group of officials that you mentioned, who, by virtue
10 of their positions or relationship with Dr. Karadzic or for other reasons,
11 were the principal decision-makers or implementers of policy?
12 MR. STEWART: They seem to be two different things, Your Honour,
13 decision-makers or implementers.
14 MR. TIEGER:
15 Q. And Mr. Neskovic, if those are two different thing, then please
16 tell us, and if the -- if both of those roles were held in the hands of the
17 same persons, then you can tell us also.
18 MR. STEWART: Sorry, Your Honour. I didn't mean they were
19 necessarily two different things. It turns up that they mean two different
20 things as a matter of -- potentially as a matter of language.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Mr. Tieger asked you who were the principal
22 decision-makers or implementers of policy, and if you say that the
23 decision-makers were not the same as the implementers of policy, please
24 tell us.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Could you please clarify
1 something. Are you referring to decisions taken at the level of the state
2 or at the level of the party?
3 MR. TIEGER:
4 Q. Well, I understood you to say, Mr. Neskovic - and, please, do
5 tell us if this is an incorrect understanding - that Dr. Karadzic began to
6 turn and work with persons who held significant positions within the state
7 in order to make decisions and for the -- and perhaps - and you can tell us
8 if that's right too - for enforcement of those decisions within the party.
9 A. I think that his closest associate was the president of the
10 Assembly, Momcilo Krajisnik, and then there was Biljana Plavsic because she
11 held a very important position in the Presidency. She was involved in the
12 Council for the Protection of the Constitutional Order, which is a body
13 that controls the police and the security forces in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
14 Then he also had contact with Koljevic, and then there was the head of the
15 Club of Deputies, Mr. Vojo Maksimovic, and then there was also a prominent
16 deputy, Aleksa Buha. These were individuals who had positions within the
17 state, either legislative positions or executive positions, and they also
18 had good -- a good personal relationship with Karadzic, and that was even
19 the case before the SDS had been established because Mr. Krajisnik and Mr.
20 Karadzic knew each other and they were on good terms, and this was the case
21 before the SDS was established.
22 There were others whom I do not know. There were people in the
23 MUP, in the Ministry of the Interior. I think there was the deputy Vitomir
24 Zepinic. I think he had some sort of a position in the MUP, that Momcilo
25 Mandic had some sort of a position within the MUP, and there were probably
1 some other municipal functionaries who became representatives of the
2 municipal authorities. So on the whole, these are the people concerned,
3 the people at the highest level, and yes, they had good personal
4 relationships, too.
5 Q. You mentioned that Dr. Karadzic's closest associate was Mr.
6 Krajisnik, and you also mentioned his position as president of the
7 Assembly. Was that position significant enough, and was his relationship
8 with Dr. Karadzic close enough so that the two of them together could be
9 said to be the top leaders or supreme authorities of the SDS and the Serb
11 A. Well, yes, it's a fact that they had known each other for a long
12 time before that period; they knew each other very well. This is supported
13 by the fact that from the time the party was established, and right up
14 until the elections, Mr. Krajisnik didn't hold a significant position in
15 the party. He was the president of the Municipal Board in Novi Grad, the
16 president of a local board. And when a list for -- of republican deputies
17 was being compiled, he was the last person on the list. So he barely
18 managed to win at those elections. And up until the elections, within the
19 party structure Krajisnik didn't have a significant position. But
20 immediately after the elections, he suddenly became the president of the
21 Assembly, and he had a high level state position. And I and others
22 believed that he had become the president of the Assembly not thanks to his
23 work within the party but thanks to his personal relationship with
24 Karadzic. And Karadzic became personally involved, ensured that Krajisnik
25 was the president of the Assembly; this was of decisive importance. And
1 there was also a suggestion that Mr. Milan Trbojevic should be the
2 president of the Assembly; he had almost become the president of the
3 Assembly, but then Karadzic changed that decision and prevented Trbojevic
4 from being elected. He personally insisted on Mr. Krajisnik assuming that
5 position. So Krajisnik, who was the president of a Municipal Board,
6 immediately assumed this position after the elections, and the reason for
7 this is his personal relationship with Karadzic and the fact that Karadzic
8 insisted on Krajisnik having that position. So the president of the
9 Municipality in the former system of Bosnia and Herzegovina -- the
10 president of the Municipality has an extremely important position because
11 this involves legislative power, constitutional power, executive power. So
12 at the time of the Socialist Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, no
13 important decisions would be taken without the presence of the president of
14 the Assembly.
15 So it was a very important position even before the SDS but also
16 at the time of the SDS. This position is far more important than the
17 position of Prime Minister. I think that this position was more important
18 than the position of a member of the Presidency because there were five or
19 six such members. It was a collective body, and they had to agree on
20 things together, but the position of president of an Assembly is an
21 extremely important position. And later on I would say that Krajisnik and
22 Karadzic were at the highest level of power. I would say that those are
23 the kind of positions they had; that is my impression.
24 Q. As a minor matter - I don't know if this was a translation
25 problem, and I don't know that it requires the witness - but on 29 -- oh,
1 I'm sorry. Excuse me a second. 29, 9 and 10, it states "the president of
2 the Municipality has an important position -- the president of the
3 Municipality in the former system of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the president
4 of the Municipality has an extremely important position."
5 MR. TIEGER: I certainly understood the witness to be talking
6 about the president of the Assembly, and I don't know if Mr. Stewart
7 similarly heard that but -- or understood that. I can ask for
8 clarification, or we can have a consensus that that is, in fact, what the
9 witness was talking about. But I see Mr. Stewart doesn't have his
10 earphones on.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stewart, it's not for the first time that the
12 Chamber notes that you're more interested in your conversations at the
13 Defence bench, and when you're even directly addressed by Mr. Tieger you do
14 not even notice that. It's not just on my behalf, but it is on the behalf
15 of --
16 MR. STEWART: Sorry, Your Honour. I actually --
17 JUDGE ORIE: It's on behalf of the Chamber that I say - and we
18 discussed it several times - that this is certainly not the first time,
19 that you seem to be more interested in your own conversations than to hear
20 what witnesses or counsel for the other party are --
21 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, if -- I didn't realise that. If, of
22 course, I'm being directly addressed by Trial Chamber or counsel for the
23 other party, then naturally I would hope to respond, and that should be
24 brought to my attention. But, Your Honour, I have a number of very urgent
25 and difficult matters to discuss as well as the matters occurring in court,
1 and I have to discuss them with my case manager now, and that is what we
2 were doing. And, Your Honour, with the greatest of respect, how I actually
3 use my time in court to deal with such matters is entirely up to me if I
4 don't cause any disruption, Your Honour. And I do not and will not accept
5 directions by the Trial Chamber as to how I should use my time when I'm
6 sitting here.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stewart.
8 MR. STEWART: I don't intend any discourtesy, Your Honour, and I
9 am here available to deal with any direct questions or inquiries put to me
10 by the Trial Chamber, my opponents, or anybody. But otherwise --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stewart --
12 MR. STEWART: -- Your Honour, when I need to discuss these
13 matters with my case manager, that is what I will do.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stewart, I would not have referred to any
15 earlier occasion if it had not been a frequent subject of discussion over
16 the last week, which included, sometimes, disruptive character of your
17 private conversations at that moment.
18 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, if they are disruptive --
19 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stewart, I am not going to discuss the matter.
20 You were addressed by Mr. Tieger. Could you please respond to Mr. Tieger.
21 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, may I say --
22 JUDGE ORIE: No. I want you now to respond to Mr. Tieger.
23 MR. STEWART: No, Your Honour, I want to say this. If at any
24 time anything I say is disruptive, then I would welcome that being brought
25 to my attention, Your Honour. But if it is genuinely disruptive, then, of
1 course, I have not the slightest intention -- it would be quite improper
2 for me to conduct myself in court for any way which is disruptive. But it
3 is entirely proper for me to conduct myself privately in conversations with
4 my team, which I need to do. The pressures on this Defence team are such
5 that we have to do about ten things at once in court --
6 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stewart, I've heard about the matter. Could
7 you please respond to Mr. Tieger.
8 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, I would be grateful then, therefore,
9 to have it pointed out to me what I was asked.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger asked you whether you would agree that
11 there might have been a mistake in translation.
12 MR. TIEGER: And just to -- to clarify.
13 JUDGE ORIE: It was the issue of where the witness -- at least
14 on the transcript it seems that he had spoken about the President of the
15 Municipal Board where he had, as a matter of fact, the President of the
16 Assembly in mind.
17 MR. STEWART: Can somebody --
18 MR. TIEGER: I can explain --
19 MR. STEWART: Give me the reference?
20 MR. TIEGER: I will. At the lower portions of page 28, there
21 was a discussion by the witness of the selection of the president of the
22 Assembly, and then the witness went on to note that Mr. Krajisnik, who had
23 been a president of a Municipal Board then immediately assumed this
24 position after the elections and the reason for it -- and he explained why
25 that was. And then he began explaining the significance of that position,
1 which I understood to be explaining the significance of the position of
2 president of the Assembly, but the transcript at 29, 6 and 7 says, "So the
3 president of the Municipality in the former system of Bosnia and
4 Herzegovina -- the president of the Municipality has an extremely important
5 position because this involves legislative power," et cetera. And then he
6 concludes at 29, 11, obviously talking about "the president of the
7 Assembly." So I just wanted confirmation that those two earlier references
8 to Municipal Board -- to Municipal Board were simply mistranslations and
9 were actually references to president of the Assembly.
10 MR. STEWART: Well, so far as mistranslations are concerned, I
11 have to consult my case manager, anyway. I'm not entirely sure whether he
12 was -- whether he was in court in that precise moment.
13 JUDGE ORIE: I think he was in conversation.
14 MR. STEWART: Well, Your Honour, he hasn't been in court for
15 most of this morning because he's been dealing with the very urgent matter
16 which I needed to discuss with him when he came into court.
17 JUDGE ORIE: It was in the last five minutes, Mr. Stewart. Your
18 case manager was in, but he was engaged in a conversation.
19 MR. STEWART: For the reasons I've said, Your Honour. Yes,
20 precisely. Well, I'm sorry about that, Your Honour. We'll have to review
21 this later, as often happens when my case manager's not in court. We can't
22 do anything about it --
23 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Please do so.
24 MR. STEWART: -- nor can I --
25 JUDGE ORIE: Please do so.
1 And, Mr. Tieger, you can continue at this moment. Let's ask the
2 witness, when you were talking about -- well, perhaps you'd directly ask
3 the witness, Mr. Tieger.
4 MR. TIEGER:
5 Q. Okay. Mr. Neskovic, you may have heard a good bit of this
6 exchange and may already know what I'm about to ask you, but when you --
7 MR. STEWART: Can I say Mr. Krajisnik informs me that in his
8 view it was a mistranslation.
9 MR. TIEGER: I understand that.
10 JUDGE ORIE: I think that would be -- it's so logical that --
11 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Krajisnik, for assisting in this
14 Please proceed, Mr. Tieger.
15 MR. TIEGER:
16 Q. Mr. Neskovic, were you aware whether in 1990 and 1991 SDS
17 officials were conducting discussions -- let me ask the question a
18 different way. I'm sorry about that. Did you know whether or not SDS
19 officials were having meetings and discussions with Mr. Milosevic in either
20 1990 or 1991?
21 A. Well, up until November 1990, I -- well, I have no information
22 about that, but after the elections, yes. I think that Mr. Karadzic had
23 the most intensive form of contact with him, and he very frequently went to
24 -- to see him. This could be seen quite openly. But Mr. Karadzic also had
25 unlimited possibilities of going there in secret. We are aware of meetings
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 that were held openly, and the media would report on them. But as for the
2 secret meetings, we know nothing about them. But there is some information
3 that Mr. Karadzic would provide us with; he'd provide us with selective
4 information after he'd returned from Belgrade, having had discussions with
5 Milosevic there. We thought that the information we were provided with was
6 complete, but with hindsight, we could say that the information that we
7 were provided with by him was selective.
8 In the Main Board, some were against Karadzic going to see
9 Milosevic, and there were some people from the SDS who thought that we
10 shouldn't have any form of contact with Milosevic. They thought that we
11 should pursue our own independent policies in Bosnia and Herzegovina and
12 that if we needed to establish contact with anyone, it should be with Serbs
13 who had emigrated to America and elsewhere. So there were some people who
14 expressed reservations as far as this is concerned, but there was contact
15 between Karadzic and Milosevic from November 1990 right up until perhaps
16 May 1993. They had very frequent contact during that period of time.
17 Q. Was that exclusively Dr. Karadzic and Mr. Milosevic, or did
18 someone else participate or engage in those discussions with Dr. Karadzic
19 and Mr. Milosevic?
20 A. Well, I don't know whether any others had contact with him.
21 Karadzic liked to have informal groups when he had such contact with other
22 individuals. He had good friends of his in Belgrade - Obradovic [phoen],
23 Gojko Djogo [phoen], and so on - and he would often go with them or with
24 his wife or with Koljevic. So Karadzic probably frequently changed the
25 composition of his team, but on the whole he usually spoke to Milosevic on
1 his own. And if a team did go to Belgrade -- because my friend Mr. Micevic
2 was his driver. I asked him how this took place, and he said, The team
3 would reach a building or a waiting room and then Karadzic would go into
4 Mr. Milosevic's office on his own and they would speak there or somewhere
5 else. But on the whole, I think that when they had contact, they were
6 alone or perhaps there were some other people from Belgrade or from the
7 other bodies of power in Serbia; but I don't know the details. But I stand
8 by my claim that they usually spoke to each other alone.
9 Q. If I may direct your attention to an exchange you had with
10 representatives of the OTP in April of 2004.
11 MR. TIEGER: And I'm directing everyone's attention to page 74
12 of that interview.
13 Q. At that time, you were asked about leaders you had named,
14 including Mr. Milosevic, and you were asked to describe any meetings -- any
15 meetings that -- no, I'm sorry. It won't be contained in there. I --
16 [Prosecution counsel confer]
17 Q. I think we can do a couple of things, but it might be best if I
18 just read to you in English so it will be translated the portion of the
19 interview, and then you can respond.
20 As I indicated, you were asked to describe meetings that you had
21 with Mr. Milosevic or that leaders of the Bosnian Serbs had. In your
22 answer, you provided some of the information that you did earlier, but more
23 specifically you said, "But the cooperation outside the party, it was very
24 intensive. They met very often, had contacts and meetings; it was
1 Then the question was asked: "Who met, and who had these
2 contacts and meetings?"
3 And your answer was, "In most cases, Karadzic and Krajisnik had
4 those contacts because if we asked where they were, we were answered that
5 they went to Belgrade."
6 A. Yes. Yes. Krajisnik also had contact, but I think that he
7 established such contact with Milosevic later on, after Radovan had
8 established contact with him, and I think that perhaps in 1992, 1993, or
9 1994 he established contact with him. That's when he had meetings with
10 him. But I can confirm that Krajisnik certainly did see Milosevic but not
11 as frequently as Karadzic.
12 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, I would note the time. I -- I imagine
13 we can --
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We'll have a break. But if you'd just allow
15 me to finish my annotation on the ...
16 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, might we have a very slightly longer
17 break than usual because, as a matter of fact, the matters which were
18 arisen this morning do require me to -- to speak to Mr. Krajisnik.
19 JUDGE ORIE: One second for my note, annotation.
20 MR. STEWART: Yes.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Then I can concentrate on your question for a
22 longer break.
23 MR. STEWART: Yes, of course, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. You'd like to have a slightly longer break?
25 MR. STEWART: Yes. Your Honour --
1 JUDGE ORIE: How much time would you need approximately?
2 MR. STEWART: Well, I was really wondering if we can have about
3 ten minutes longer than usual. Your Honour, may I say, the matter is this,
4 Your Honour, that the Trial Chamber -- I think Mr. Harhoff will have
5 received it, but Mr. Krajisnik has written again to the Registry with a
6 copy to the Trial Chamber. Your Honour, the matter I was discussing, I
7 don't wish to keep it secret, was in the course of this morning since we
8 arrived Mr. Karganovic has translated that letter for me, which is in
9 Serbian. It was extremely urgent for me to discuss that with Mr.
10 Karganovic and understand what that letter said, with a view to having this
11 discussion. So I hope, Your Honour, it will be recognised that -- that
12 such -- such conversations in court are, in fact, an essential part of the
13 process of defending Mr. Krajisnik. So, Your Honour, my request, Your
14 Honour, is just to have that slightly longer break so that -- that I can be
16 JUDGE ORIE: We'll have a break until ten minutes past 11.00.
17 MR. STEWART: I'm very much obliged, Your Honour. Thank you.
18 --- Recess taken at 10.32 a.m.
19 --- On resuming at 11.18 a.m.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, you may proceed.
21 MR. MARGETTS: Your Honour, just before Mr. Tieger proceeds with
22 this witness, I just wanted to mention a contextual document and distribute
23 that and obtain an exhibit number for it.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
25 MR. MARGETTS: It's a document that Mr. Harmon foreshadowed last
1 Thursday, and he distributed a copy to the Defence. It's a contextual
2 document for the witness Ewan Brown, also for Witness KRAJ 30, KRAJ 165,
3 KRAJ 666, and the witness Kuralic, and if we could hand that up now.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar, that would be number ...
5 THE REGISTRAR: That would be Prosecution Exhibit P896.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
7 Then, Mr. Tieger, you can proceed. If distribution can take
8 place, at least a copy for the registrar is most important.
9 Yes. Please proceed, Mr. Tieger.
10 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Your Honour.
11 Q. Mr. Neskovic, I don't want to spend a great deal of time with the
12 next subject, but I do want to ask you a few questions about the various --
13 about at least some of the various ways in which the party leadership
14 communicated orders or decisions to the lower levels. And in that
15 connection, if I could turn your attention next to tab 5 of the binder.
16 MR. TIEGER: And Your Honour, if I could have that marked next
17 in order.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
19 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Prosecution Exhibit P897.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
21 MR. TIEGER:
22 Q. Mr. Neskovic, tab 5, now P897, reflects the minutes of a meeting
23 of the SDS Assembly in Prijedor held on 3 July 1991, a meeting that was
24 attended by you, as it indicates at the top, a member of the Main Board of
25 the SDS.
1 Let me ask you first, as a general matter, if one of the ways
2 that the leadership communicated its decisions to the various levels below
3 was by sending emissaries, such as yourself, to directly deal with the
4 bodies at lower levels.
5 A. Yes. That was one of the ways of doing it, though it was
6 regulated; in other words, not just anyone could go and do as they pleased,
7 but the Main Board would entrust one of the members, one from their own
8 ranks or perhaps even an MP who was on the Main Board or, in most cases, a
9 member of the Executive Committee, so that person would be entrusted to go
10 to that specific place and solve the problem that arose there. It was not
11 some kind of relaying of orders. It was simply sending an emissary from
12 higher up within the party to lower-ranking bodies to deal with the
13 practical situation or a problem or carry out a practical task, and
14 thereupon that emissary was supposed to report back and, you know, tell
15 what had happened there.
16 Q. [Microphone not activated]
17 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
18 MR. TIEGER: I'm sorry.
19 Q. In addition to dealing with practical situations or problems or
20 assisting in carrying out practical tasks, what was -- were you engaged in,
21 and was that a general effort to ensure that Municipal Boards were capable
22 of and did implement decisions that had been made earlier?
23 A. I was mostly involved in harmonising the work of the Municipal
24 Committee within itself and to do away with any fractions, and since there
25 were quite a few problems there, we were looking to organise some kind of
1 an election and solve that in a democratic fashion. And during that
2 particular period of time, I think I was in charge of organising elections
3 in the area of the municipality of Prijedor, for the Serbian Democratic
4 Party, and for the delegates to be elected for the upcoming electoral
5 Assembly of the SDS at the republican level. That's on the basis of what I
6 can see here. My recollection is that that was my job at the time.
7 Q. Is it fair to say you were trying to make sure that the whole
8 system was harmonised and functioning as well as it could?
9 A. Yes. In a way, I took my job at face value, as it were, and my
10 responsibilities, as well, without thinking of any alternatives. If it
11 said in the statute that the elections for the Municipal Board were to take
12 place in a certain fashion, I would stick to those instructions. In other
13 words, we have -- we had to elect the delegates for the local boards and
14 then the Municipal Board, and then they would send off delegates to the
15 republican electoral Assembly, and I did it devotedly and in an honest way.
16 And I always stuck to the rules rigorously, and I spared no effort in that
17 respect, but I never went beyond that particular remit. In other words, I
18 did what I was told to do in a way that it was prescribed, and normally I
19 obtained results because I tended to be both tolerant and persevering in my
21 Q. Let me ask you to turn next to tab 29.
22 MR. TIEGER: And, Your Honour, I would ask that that be marked
23 next in order.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
25 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Prosecution Exhibit P898.
1 MR. TIEGER:
2 Q. Have you been able to find that, Mr. Neskovic?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Okay. Now, P898 is a telephone conversation held on 10 September
5 1991 involving yourself, Dr. Karadzic, Mr. Miskovic, and Mr. Srdic, both of
6 whom are from Prijedor. I'll give you a moment to look at that. Let me
7 direct your attention in particular to two portions of that conversation:
8 Immediately after the initial salutations where you're saying hello to Dr.
9 Karadzic and indicate to him that Srdjo - I presume Mr. Srdic - is there,
10 as well, you say, "We'll probably have to take that direction to assign
11 those 15 people, you know." Dr. Karadzic indicates, "Yes." And then you
12 say, "And then the task of the 15 people should be to go to the field and
13 check all the local boards."
14 Is this discussion and your presence in Prijedor at that time a
15 further reflection of the efforts you spoke about earlier?
16 A. Yes, I do actually remember this. There was quite a conflict
17 between the then-president of the Municipal Committee of SDS, Dr. Srdjo
18 Srdic, and another group or a fraction headed by Miskovic, I believe. And
19 I came to see Srdjo Srdic at his flat, and in that flat we had a
20 conversation and I asked him to back off, that if he thought he had a
21 problem and could not continue to lead the Municipal Committee any more and
22 to withdraw because he was elderly and frail. But he was fiercely opposed
23 to that. And then there were phone calls. I called Karadzic, and Srdic
24 called Karadzic, and Karadzic called Miskovic, and so between Neskovic,
25 Srdic and Miskovic and Karadzic there were these conversations going on all
1 the time in all directions. And I don't think we actually managed to
2 achieve anything that very evening after this phone conversation except to
3 appoint 15 people to go and check the situation out in the field.
4 And then we decided that there would be a meeting of the
5 municipal organisation in Prijedor the next day, and there were quite
6 heated and unpleasant discussions on that occasion, as well, and in the end
7 Srdjo Srdic basically withdrew, and he was replaced by Mr. Miskovic. And I
8 think it took a long time. I think I was there two days: One day at
9 Srdic's flat, when all these phone conversations were going on; and the
10 second day at the meeting, where the situation was being solved.
11 Q. May I ask you to turn next to tab 8. Sorry, we're moving through
12 the binder in that fashion, but it's sometimes necessary.
13 MR. TIEGER: If that can be marked next in order.
14 THE REGISTRAR: P899.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Tab 8, you mean?
16 MR. TIEGER:
17 Q. Yes, I'm -- tab 8. That's correct.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, would you allow me just to go back for
19 one second to tab 29, it was.
20 MR. TIEGER: Of course, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Could I ask you, Mr. Neskovic, to look at, what is
22 in the English, the third page. Let me just try to find it in the ...
23 At a certain moment, you say -- I think it's on the second page,
24 the -- let me see -- twelfth box, where Radovan Karadzic says, "Yes. Yes."
25 Do you see that?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You mean on page 2?
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, on page 2. Yes, there's two times when he
3 says "yes, yes," I think, but approximately in the middle of the page.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I can see that.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Could you please read the next few lines;
6 that means what you say in response to that "because they do not recognise
7 any authority here, especially if you mentioned Sarajevo," then Mr.
8 Karadzic says, after a few unpleasant words, "Let them make their own
9 party; let them resign. Whoever refuses to obey Sarajevo should resign.
10 Write papers for them tomorrow and say, This is a party which has its top
11 and its bottom, and nobody will fuck about under our name." Then you say,
12 "I won't give it to them. I didn't give it to them the last time, either.
13 I'll call Vukic tomorrow to help me with them." And then, "And please tell
14 them this. Please, whoever won't adhere to the policies of the party and
15 implements the policies of the party but adheres to their own private
16 policies." "Yes." And then: "Let them sign here, let them leave that
17 place in the municipality."
18 This very much reflects an atmosphere in which obedience was
19 required from the party at the municipality level. Is that a correct
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Obedience was required, even
22 though Mr. Karadzic seems to have expressed it in his own special way,
23 which tended to complicate matters further and increase the tension to a
24 certain extent. I tried to work in another way and go for a compromise and
25 indicate to people that we had the statute of the party and everybody was
1 supposed to stick to it; whereas, Karadzic based everything on his own
2 personal authority, and he was in conflict with Mr. Milakovic in the past,
3 so whenever Milakovic's name was mentioned he would have an emotional
4 reaction. So in terms of discipline, he was betting on his own personal
5 identity, saying, You have to listen and to be obedient; who doesn't like
6 it has to go. But I thought that this was not the best way for achieving
7 unity but that you should spend time out in the field and talk to people at
8 the grassroots level and listen to people's opinion and try and reconcile
9 the two groups' views. And otherwise my suggestion was for everybody to
10 resign and the elections to be organised so that altogether new people
11 would come along.
12 So I did differ from Mr. Karadzic in terms of how these things
13 should be done out in the field, even though I was a lower-ranking
14 official, and as such I was supposed to obey his orders. But I did decide
15 that I had to have some leeway as to how to do what I was told to do. So
16 we had a different approach to the same problem, as it were.
17 JUDGE ORIE: At the same time, a few lines further down, you ask
18 him what to do, so you seek his guidance, isn't it? "Tell me, what should
19 we do tomorrow?"
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. They had convened a huge
21 meeting for the following day between two rather extreme groups. One was
22 led by Milakovic, and the other was led by Srdjo Srdic, and therefore I
23 asked him for some kind of guidance as to how to go about it all and how to
24 overcome the problem the next day. And I wanted to know what his attitude
25 was as the head of the party because he could have entitled me to
1 organising fresh elections and -- so I wanted to know what his attitude
2 was, whether he was in favour of sending everybody home and organising the
3 new elections or sticking with the existing two fractions. And he was
4 rather vague --
5 JUDGE ORIE: Let me just stop you there. I'm not interested in
6 all the details of what, but I just noticed that you seek his guidance.
7 The whole atmosphere of this conversation is such that even
8 where you said that you did not -- that you differed from Mr. Karadzic in
9 terms of how these things should be done, that at the same time it was not
10 easy to resist Mr. Karadzic. That's at least the atmosphere that comes
11 from this telephone conversation, that Mr. Karadzic seems to be quite
12 strong in saying how he wants things to be done. Is that a correct
13 understanding, that resisting the wishes or the imperatives of Mr. Karadzic
14 was not an easy thing do?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was very difficult, and a great
16 deal of diplomatic skill was called for, in terms of either refusing to do
17 something or doing something in a slightly different way and not exactly
18 the way he wanted you to do. He was an undisputed authority, so it wasn't
19 easy; it was rather difficult to contradict him openly and publicly and
20 say, You know what? I refuse to listen to you any more, or, I don't want
21 to continue to talk to you, or whatever.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Would that be true for all party levels?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Could you please just clarify your
25 JUDGE ORIE: Would that mean that on the republican level of the
1 SDS but also the municipal and the local level, wherever there were clear
2 feelings or clear instructions, that it was difficult to resist him?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] At the local level it was very
4 difficult to resist him because there were no high-level political figures
5 that -- no strong personalities, with the exception of a number of
6 individuals whom I could mention. But at the republican level, in the Main
7 Board it was a little different because Karadzic presided over the Main
8 Board, but there were 45 of us there, after all, and the people there were
9 slightly more prominent and capable, and at the Main Board there was
10 resistance. Different opinions were expressed. So it was not that easy to
11 implement the policies -- to get the policies through at the Main Board.
12 At the Main Board, Radovan mostly tried to persuade everyone, and he went
13 to great lengths to do so. Within the Main Board, it was a lot easier to
14 put up resistance, a lot easier than it was at the local level.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. But even in one of your earlier answers you
16 said, "It was very difficult, and a great deal of diplomatic skill was
17 called for in terms of either refusing to do something or to do something
18 or doing something in a slightly different way." Was that limited to
19 public debate? Because you say it was very -- "rather difficult to
20 contradict him openly and publicly." That sounds a bit as if it was not
21 that easy, even when you were in direct contact with him, such as at the
22 republican level.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] At the republican level, when the
24 Main Board was in session, various discussions would be held. There was
25 nothing that you would have to do. You would just have to discuss matters,
1 and you could express different opinions. But if you had a particular task
2 assigned to you by Karadzic or the executive or Main Board, if your task
3 was to go into the field and do something in particular there, then it was
4 very difficult to put up resistance if you had a particular task. In order
5 to avoid any misunderstandings, I wanted to know exactly what I had to do,
6 what sort of authority I had, where I had to do it, and when, so that I
7 could be held responsible for what I did, so that I could do what I had to
8 do in a responsible manner. He did not treat me in a rough way. I had a
9 certain amount of freedom to carry out tasks in an independent way. I
10 didn't have the same problems that Srdjo and others had. I don't know
11 whether it was because he had allowed me to act in this manner or whether I
12 had managed to obtain such privileges. But in any event, if someone wanted
13 to resist him, it was necessary to have a lot of courage, and this also
14 meant losing one's position in the Main Board.
15 I'll provide you with the example of Milakovic, who publicly
16 opposed him, resisted him, and he was expelled from the Main Board. And
17 Sladimir Srebrov also resisted him in public before that, and he was also
18 expelled from the Main Board. So you are quite right: It was very
19 difficult to directly oppose him, and usually one would suffer the
20 consequences, and you would be driven away. You would be expelled from
21 that body.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Tieger.
23 MR. TIEGER: Thank you. Thank you, Your Honour.
24 Q. Mr. Neskovic, I had directed your attention to tab 8, a document
25 that was marked as P899. That's a conversation held on 26 September 1991
1 between Dr. Karadzic and Miroslav Stanic.
2 MR. TIEGER: It's indicated in the text, Your Honour, Stancic.
3 I had that checked. It is Stanic, according to the reviewer. And I
4 thought we had prepared a corrected version. If so, it obviously did not
5 make it into the binders, and we'll see it that does. In any event, we'll
6 be talking briefly with the witness about that, and he can clarify.
7 Q. Mr. Neskovic, as the transcript of this conversation indicates at
8 the beginning, that this is a conversation between Dr. Karadzic and the
9 gentleman who's the president of the Municipal Board, Miroslav Stanic. And
10 if I can direct your attention to a couple of portions of that transcript,
11 as you'll go down the transcript, you'll see the name of Pero Jankovic
12 mentioned, and then shortly thereafter you'll see that Dr. Karadzic
13 mentions your name, saying: "Call Radomir Neskovic, vice-president of the
14 Executive Board. I can't deal with that. Nobody has the right to meddle
15 there and, you are" -- it says "the follow", but it looks like "to follow
16 the party policy. You must. You should have come to the party earlier to
18 Again, a few lines down, Mr. Karadzic says, "You have Radomir
19 Neskovic. Let him deal with it. What kind of influence are they? What
20 are they doing? What do they want?"
21 Ask then further down the page, after a number of brief
22 exchanges, Dr. Karadzic says, "Tell them that I will dismiss the board and
23 appoint other people. You tell them that. I will. It wouldn't be the
24 first or the last time. I will dismiss the idiots who are idiots and who
25 are not implementing the SDS policy. Let them for SPO -- I don't mind, but
1 they won't do that in my party."
2 Now, Mr. Neskovic, do you recall dealing with the president of
3 the Municipal Board, Mr. Stanic? And if so, can you tell us what
4 municipality that is and whether this conversation is a further reflection
5 of the type of interaction or type of efforts that you made that were
6 reflected in the September 10th conversation in Prijedor.
7 A. I think that this concerns Stanic, as far as I can remember. The
8 municipality concerned was Vlasenica. Perhaps I'm mistaken, but I think
9 that it concerns Vlasenica. As far as I know, I never went to Vlasenica,
10 to Milici or to Kladanj to try and resolve difficulties of any kind. It's
11 quite obvious that Karadzic is mentioning me here and says that if they
12 have any problems, they should contact me and that I would deal with them.
13 But in practice, they never -- in fact, they never contacted me, and I
14 never went to do anything in Vlasenica, Milici, or Kladanj. I didn't try
15 to resolve any difficulties there because our president of the Executive
16 Board was there, Mr. Rajko Dukic. He lived in Milici, and that was an area
17 where it was easier for him to act.
18 As far as this conversation is concerned, I can tell you they
19 didn't go there and they didn't assign me any task in that respect. Quite
20 obviously, after this conversation they resolved this problem in some other
21 way, without my assistance. So, in fact, I was not involved in this
23 They mention Rajko here. That's Rajko Dukic. Someone called
24 Jankovic is also mentioned; I think he was in Vlasenica or Kalesija. I
25 believe that Pero Jankovic is from Kalesija, and I did not go there. They
1 solved this problem in some other way without involving me.
2 Q. And let me ask you just about a -- a couple -- and very quickly,
3 I hope -- about a couple of other forms of communication and passing
4 information, orders, guidelines from the top leadership to the other
5 levels. And in that connection, could I ask you to turn to tab 10, please.
6 And if --
7 MR. TIEGER: Sorry, could that be marked next -- it may be
8 already marked, in fact.
9 JUDGE ORIE: It is already an exhibit.
10 MR. TIEGER: Yes, Your Honour.
11 Q. Mr. Neskovic, tab 10, which contains P64, P65, Treanor 4, tab 57
12 reflects the minutes of the 6th Session of the SDS Executive Board. And if
13 I could just turn your attention to the second-to-last item, just before
14 the conclusion of the minutes. And that's the second-to-last item in
15 agenda item or number 6, just before the listing of the members of the
16 committee for the annual registration of assets.
17 That says, "It has been concluded that all the members of the
18 Main and Executive Committee of SDS BH are to be involved in the Municipal
19 Committee's work in which area they live."
20 Was that another method of ensuring that the policies of the SDS
21 were communicated to and followed by the lower levels of the party?
22 A. Well, yes, this was one of the ways. If I have understood this
23 correctly, this meant that a member of the Main Board who was from a
24 certain municipal territory originally, well, it was his duty to attend
25 sessions of the Municipal Board. I am not sure if I have understood your
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 question correctly, but that means that all members of the Main Board would
2 regularly attend sessions of Municipal Boards in the territory from which
3 they originally came.
4 Q. Thank you. And finally let me reverse that slightly and ask you
5 whether or not the heads of Municipal Boards or other officials from
6 municipalities would themselves visit the leadership figures from the SDS.
7 That is, would they come from the field, from the municipalities, and turn
8 to Dr. Karadzic or other SDS leaders to discuss and resolve certain issues?
9 A. Yes. Leaders from the municipality, members of Executive Boards
10 or Municipal Boards of the SDS would very frequently go to see Mr.
11 Karadzic. They'd go to the party headquarters for various questions -- for
12 various issues. They'd even go there when it wasn't necessary. They went
13 there very frequently. They wrote letters, they phoned, and there was a
14 lot of contact from the field. They would often visit the party, and when
15 they did, they asked to see Karadzic; they wanted to speak to him about
16 certain municipal matters. So the answer is yes.
17 Q. Now, let me turn next to your municipality, Novo Sarajevo, and
18 ask you to --
19 JUDGE ORIE: Could I ask also one additional question in relation
20 to this document. It seems, Mr. Neskovic, under count 6 of the minutes,
21 that you asked for credit for building a house due to your working
22 engagement in the SDS; is that correct?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Was that common to seek the assistance of the
25 parties if you were active for the party to get at least support in
1 financial matters, as well? Because I do see that you asked the party,
2 where usually you'd go to a financial institution rather than to a
3 political party. Was that common, such ...?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, yes, in a certain way.
5 Before I made my request, two other housing matters had been dealt with in
6 this manner for two functionaries. One person obtained money for part of
7 his flat; the other person obtained a flat. And since the party had money,
8 I asked for a loan because there was no other bank; there was no other
9 possibility for me to obtain such a loan. So in a certain way, I was
10 humiliated because although I knew that the party had a lot of money,
11 Karadzic and Dukic told me that they did not have any money and that I
12 could not be given such a loan. So, in fact, I didn't receive anything.
13 My request was rejected, and I did not receive the loan.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. But these kind of, I would call it a
15 favourable approach to the personal needs of active party officials, was
16 not uncommon?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, no. I made this request in
18 a very open manner, in a legal manner, but there were scores of individuals
19 who managed to solve their personal problems, as far as business is
20 concerned, as far as housing is concerned. They managed to solve their
21 problems in one way or another through the SDS. It's enough to take a list
22 of the people who have flats in Belgrade or a list of people who built
23 houses; whereas, they had no such houses before the war and now they have
24 all of these things, and all of this involved the party in some way. So
25 many people managed to solve their own personal problems; this can be
1 proven today, and they even managed to become rich by virtue of being
2 engaged in the party. And I thought that I could make an open request for
3 a loan that I would pay back, and my request was rejected. I don't know if
4 they rejected other people's requests, but I didn't receive the loan,
5 unfortunately. That's what happened.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Tieger.
7 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] With regard to that matter, on
8 page 67 of your interview you said, "[In English] Some people acquired
9 enormous amounts of wealth from these politics, and they were holding high
10 positions. They were given apartments in Belgrade and all over."
11 [Interpretation] Could you clarify what "some people acquired" means
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I thought that people used
14 the party. There were many people who had no particular importance in the
15 party, but they were on friendly terms with Krajisnik or Karadzic or with
16 some other officials. And then, on the basis of their personal
17 acquaintances, they managed to establish a business, to build houses, to
18 buy flats, and so on and so forth. So this business was not conducted in a
19 transparent manner; it wasn't public. There was an incident that concerned
20 oil of some kind. They said that the SDS had received a lot of oil and
21 that they had received financial assistance from various sponsors, but the
22 party's legal account did not have such money, not even for per diems. On
23 the basis of the experience I had, I never received per diems when I went
24 to certain meetings, when I travelled to certain meetings. I didn't even
25 receive money for accommodation, so I had to sleep over with colleagues. I
1 have nothing that can support this, but there was a rumour according to
2 which very big businesses had been -- were under the auspices of the party,
3 and this was done in a secretive manner. One could now prove that people
4 who are very rich in Belgrade today -- well, one could compare the property
5 they had in 1990 and now. One could compare the property that they were
6 the owners of at the time and now to see what is now the situation.
7 So this business was conducted in an unofficial manner, but I
8 openly asked for a loan. I did not receive the loan, and I am glad they
9 did not receive it.
10 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Sir, when you say those who
11 were the friends of Mr. Krajisnik or Mr. Karadzic, they could establish
12 businesses, buy flats and houses, and so on and so forth, and then you say
13 this was not done in a transparent manner; it was not done publicly. Does
14 this mean that the party and those in leadership positions had money that
15 was available to them? Was the party that rich? Did they have so much
16 money that they were able to give it to -- or to distribute it to people
17 who were friends of the leaders?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. The party was poor. The
19 party itself was poor; it did not have such money. I must provide you with
20 another piece of information that concerns the public company which was a
21 company that was jointly owned -- 40 per cent of it was owned by the party,
22 and 60 per cent of it was owned by four individuals, I think. One of the
23 individuals was Karadzic's wife, then there was Miroslav Dokoj [phoen],
24 Dusko Kosic [phoen], and the late Dejan Salinovic [phoen]. So they owned
25 60 per cent of the shares, and the party owned 40 per cent, and at the
1 assistance of the president of the Executive Committee, Rajko Dukic, who
2 wanted the financial situation to be resolved -- well, although he insisted
3 on this, this was never done. To this very day, we have no idea what that
4 company did, the company called Public [as interpreted]. We don't know
5 what kind of business they were involved in, how much profit they made. We
6 don't know how much money was paid to the party. This was all done
7 secretively, and you couldn't obtain any information in particular because
8 the party was a minority shareholder. And since Karadzic's wife was
9 involved and the other three individuals, they quite simply did not allow
10 anyone to inform the public of how the company was conducting its business.
11 So to this very day, one does not know how business was conducted there; we
12 don't know what the amount of financial transactions was. And as -- that's
13 all I could say about that company.
14 But then it was also possible for a functionary to get a job for
15 some businessman. There was political influence that was exercised, and
16 then you would have such deals. But when you are in power in Bosnia and
17 Herzegovina, there are countless possibilities for you to work in a manner
18 that is not transparent. There are countless possibilities for you to
19 become rich in a simple and rapid way. But to this very day I don't know
20 how they conducted their business. I don't know what sort of transactions
21 they were involved in.
22 I can provide you with another example. Luka Karadzic, Radovan
23 Karadzic's brother --
24 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] I apologise, but that was not
25 the purpose of my question. You said that friends of Mr. Karadzic or
1 friends of Mr. Krajisnik were able to become rich by being involved in
2 politics, in inverted commas. Does that mean that they used Mr. Karadzic
3 or Mr. Krajisnik in order to conduct business, make money, become rich?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I don't know whether one
5 party used the other party or whether the reverse was the case; I couldn't
6 provide you with any information about that. But there was such business
7 that was conducted in a secretive manner. But as to who used whom, whether
8 one person used someone else or whether there was a deal that involved both
9 parties, well, I really don't know, and I would not like to make any
11 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Thank you.
12 MR. TIEGER:
13 Q. And let me follow up on His Honour's questions a bit, if I may.
14 Can you tell the Trial Chamber what Novi Privrednik was and its
15 relationship to the party.
16 A. I don't know much about that, and I'm going to tell you honestly
17 what I do know. Novi Privrednik was a company, and I believe Rajko Dukic,
18 Mr. Mirko Krajisnik, Momcilo Krajisnik's brother -- and to what extent
19 Momcilo Krajisnik was involved, I don't know, but these two people were
20 involved. And I think the headquarters was at the Holiday Inn Hotel. And
21 I believe it was a company which did not really have any, I don't know,
22 initial capital or -- or offices or whatever. Maybe it was just a company
23 that existed on paper. I think it was at some point in 1991, and the
24 relations between Serbia and Croatia were extremely tense; maybe there was
25 already a war there. And there were no commercial contacts between Croatia
1 and Serbia. And in my view, this was a company which acted as a liaison
2 between Serbia and Croatia through Bosnia and Herzegovina, and I saw it as
3 an attempt to set up a monopoly with regard to any imports from Serbia.
4 I'm not familiar with any other facts, in terms of their profits, tax
5 situation, gains, or what have you, or -- or who had shares in that
7 At any rate, the company was active, and I think Mirko Krajisnik
8 and Rajko Dukic were the main protagonists there. And to what extent
9 Momcilo Krajisnik was familiar with that, I don't know, but he was fairly
10 close to the company, and the headquarters were somewhere in the Holiday
11 Inn. And as to the party itself, the Main Board or the Executive
12 Committee, I don't think it had any influence over the company, and I don't
13 think that there was any sort of cooperation or relationship between the
14 two. In a way, this company was something which is totally apart, which
15 was completely independent, and the party did not really have a formal
16 relationship with it. But they were traders, basically. They did not
17 manufacture anything; they just traded goods at a moment in time when there
18 was a crisis in trade relations between Croatia and Serbia.
19 Q. Do you know whether that trade in goods included oil and
20 specifically include the company Jugopetrol?
21 A. I really don't know. I don't know what they traded in, but,
22 presumably, not trinkets or anything like that. Supposedly, yes, it could
23 have been oil, but I don't know. I never had any insight into what exactly
24 they were trading in. But I think it was on a large scale. They were not
25 a cottage industry or anything like that. There were -- they were doing
1 big business, big deals, and I can't rule out the possibility of oil, in
2 fact, and all the other types of similar commodities that would generally
3 require high excise duties. I can't rule that out, considering who was at
4 the helm of that company and what their positions were, but I have no proof
5 to corroborate that because I've never had an insight into what exactly
6 they did, what their profit margins were, et cetera, and I don't really
7 know who was in charge of the company, who carried out some kind of
8 financial supervision.
9 Q. May I ask you to turn to tab 36 for just a moment.
10 MR. TIEGER: Your Honours, tab 36 is previous Exhibit P64A. It
11 is the minutes of the 8th Session of the Executive Committee of the SDS,
12 held on 6 February 1992.
13 Q. Mr. Neskovic, if I could direct your attention to item 3 and
14 specifically item 3(c), which states: "The import of food from Serbia can
15 go on only via Privrednik, which takes a percentage for this." Is -- is
16 that the company you were referring to, and is that a reflection of the
17 trafficking in goods and the -- of --
18 A. Let me just find it.
19 Q. Sure. Take your time. I'm sorry.
20 A. Yes, that's the company. That's the one.
21 Q. Do you happen to know what that percentage was?
22 A. No. I don't know. I think the reference here is to -- I mean,
23 the term "percentage" should be clarified here. I don't know what was the
24 percentage they charged, and I don't know what the quantities involved are.
25 Q. Okay. Unless the Judges have additional questions on that
1 subject, I wanted to move on to some of the interactions between members of
2 the leadership and the Novo Sarajevo municipality. And in that connection,
3 could I turn your attention next to tab 16.
4 MR. TIEGER: And if that could be marked next in order, please.
5 Oh, I'm sorry, another -- that is already in evidence as P292, but it says
6 "part." Obviously -- I'll obviously be tendering the entire conversation,
7 so I don't know if "part" means that only a portion of that conversation
8 was tendered previously. So I'm a bit in the Court's hands with respect to
9 that logistical problem.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Could we provisionally assign a new number,
11 and if it turns out that the whole of it was already in evidence but only a
12 part --
13 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE ORIE: -- being played, then we could address that at a
15 later stage.
16 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
17 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar tells me that P292 is a binder, so
18 "part" could well refer to this intercepted telephone conversation, only
19 part of the whole of that exhibit. So therefore perhaps it's better not to
20 start to assign a provisional number.
21 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Your Honour. And between Madam
22 Registrar and myself, I think we can keep an eye on this and resolve the
23 question in the way she suggests.
24 Q. Mr. Neskovic, tab 16, as you can see, reflects a conversation of
25 the 19th of November, 1991, between Radovan Karadzic and Zarko Djurovic.
1 Excuse me. First of all, could you tell the Court who Mr. Djurovic was.
2 A. Zarko Djurovic is the president of the Executive Committee of the
3 Municipality of Novo Sarajevo, so that is to say the president of the
4 municipal government in Novo Sarajevo.
5 Q. And were you aware in November of 1991 that Mr. Djurovic and Dr.
6 Karadzic were in contact? Not necessarily the specific conversation, Mr.
7 Neskovic, but just as a general matter.
8 A. Yes, I'm not aware of this conversation, but yes, they were in
9 contact. I remember -- I can't remember when exactly we had a major
10 problem in the municipality of Novo Sarajevo between the party and the
11 government of Mr. Djurovic, and it was a problem of such a scope that Mr.
12 Krajisnik and Mr. Karadzic had to intervene. And then Mr. Krajisnik and
13 Mr. Karadzic together attended such a meeting of the Municipal Board in
14 person in order to use their personal authority to solve the problem
15 because there was a clear conflict between Djurovic, as the president of
16 the municipal authority, and, I think, the president of the Serb Democratic
17 Party in Novo Sarajevo -- I can't remember whether it was Mr. Prijic or
18 somebody else. I'm not sure. But the problem was extremely difficult, and
19 it required the presence of both Mr. Karadzic and Mr. Krajisnik at that
20 very meeting they attended in person.
21 So Mr. Djurovic knew both Mr. Krajisnik and Mr. Karadzic and --
22 apart from anything else, had they not known them, they would have been
23 nervous for him to become a candidate and be elected as the president of
24 the Executive Committee.
25 Q. Just one or two quick questions about this conversation, then.
1 On the second page of the English, which I think is also on the second page
2 of the Serbian version in front of you, Dr. Karadzic says, "We'll teach
3 them the law pretty soon because in Novo Sarajevo they block the work of
4 the Assembly." And then he continues about four lines down: "And that
5 we'll probably carry out some kind of reorganisation of the city as such."
6 Mr. Djurovic says, "Exactly." Dr. Karadzic says, "And they can go to
7 fucking hell." Mr. Djurovic says, "Well, so they should." And then
8 there's a discussion about exactly where in Novo Sarajevo are their
9 settlements, and Mr. Djurovic says, "Well, mostly it's Velesici that can be
10 joined to the centre without problems."
11 First of all, when Dr. Karadzic is talking about "their
12 settlement," whose settlements, if you know, would he have been referring
14 A. As far as I can gather on the basis of this, what he means are
15 Bosniak settlements that were built without planning permission. In other
16 words, Bosniaks settled in certain empty areas, and they never got the
17 necessary municipal authorisation, the planning permission. And that
18 happened in a number of places, at Sanac and near Popalici and Velesici,
19 and then problems would arise between the municipal structures, the land
20 register and so on, and they would need to legalise the situation, and so
21 that was the problem. And the municipal authorities were claiming that
22 those Bosniaks were causing problems because they were building houses
23 without planning permission.
24 On the other hand, Bosniaks claimed that they paid good money for
25 certain authorisations, that they basically gave money either to land
1 owners or positions of -- people who had the positions of power. And I
2 think Haris Silajdzic actually intervened, as well, who was the high-
3 ranking municipal official in Sarajevo, and he said, Gentlemen, you pay
4 that money you took from Bosniaks and you give -- you give it back, and
5 then the houses can be pulled down. So that was the problem, the problem
6 with the land register. And, of course, under such circumstances it took
7 on inter-ethnic or nationalist connotations.
8 And I do suppose that Djuric was reporting to Radovan about the
9 situation, and then he replied in his own special way.
10 Q. On the next page, at approximately the middle of the English -
11 and as near as I can tell, at the same general portion of the Serbian
12 version - Dr. Karadzic says, "Yes, at the next Assembly session, we must
13 now pass a decision that nothing can be constructed anymore on our
14 territory without the consent of the Assembly and/or some other organ."
15 And then further on down the page after a discussion of the
16 number of people and the number of buildings, Dr. Karadzic says, "Yes, yes.
17 No, that won't do. We'll have to separate all those plots so that
18 everybody -- everybody can be on their own land; right?"
19 And then he asks whose land was it before. Mr. Djurovic tells
20 him that "A lot of the land -- in fact, almost all the land is in our
21 hands." And then he relates that some people may have sold that "before we
22 gained power," which causes Dr. Karadzic to express his dissatisfaction.
23 When Dr. Karadzic is talking about "our territory and everyone
24 on their land," is he there discussing his concern about Muslim settlements
25 on what he considers to be Serbian land?
1 A. I don't know. It is a bit incomprehensible to me; Mr. Karadzic's
2 manner of speaking runs counter to the property laws. There was a great
3 deal of land near Sarajevo and in Sarajevo itself that was legally
4 privately owned by Serbs, and it is widely known that Serbs would sell
5 small plots of land to Bosniaks who used to come from Serbia and Sandzak,
6 and they would sell those plots of land at a very high price, so they got
7 rich; they made good money. And then Bosniaks would build houses on those
8 plots and would settle in those areas.
9 Now, what Mr. Karadzic is saying here does not make sense. I
10 mean, he's talking about the land, but it is not the land owned by either
11 the Serb nation or the party. It is private property owned by private
12 individuals which can -- and which can be disposed of according to their
13 owners' wishes. And I suppose what he meant to say was, If we have too
14 many Sandzak Muslims coming here, the ethnic make-up of the population
15 would shift, or whatever. But Bosniaks replied, We did not snatch it away;
16 we paid good money for this.
17 So we were talking about private business deals between Serbs and
18 Bosniaks, and so one side got the houses and the other side got the money.
19 And it was a huge operation, if I can call it like that. Entire
20 settlements came into being in this way. There were these private deals
21 being arrived at between Serbs and Bosniaks. They sold those plots of land
22 for a great deal of money, and then, for example, Bosniaks would build 50
23 or 100 houses in a given area, and they would be a big group, and the
24 municipal authorities did not really dare pull those properties down. And
25 so when Karadzic tried to do something about this through Djurovic to try
1 and stop those sales for whatever reason, this does not make sense because
2 this is private property we are talking about. Those were private
3 transactions between individuals, and the land did not belong to other the
4 Serb Democratic Party or to the Serb nation in abstract, but it was owned
5 by private individuals.
6 So I think that this has something to do with the previous topic.
7 Perhaps Karadzic through Dragan Stojic, who was the head of the land
8 register, tried to obtain something in terms of this person using his
9 official position to pull those houses down because adequate planning
10 permission had not been sought and obtained. But I think it is a rather
11 irresponsible kind of interference of politics in people's private lives.
12 MR. TIEGER: Yes, Your Honour, I'm about to move on to another
13 subject, which I wouldn't want to truncate, so this would be an appropriate
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. So then we'll have a break and resume at five
16 minutes to 1.00.
17 --- Recess taken at 12.32 p.m.
18 --- On resuming at 12.59 p.m.
19 [Trial Chamber and legal officer confer]
20 JUDGE ORIE: Before we continue, Mr. Tieger, I'd like to deliver
21 a decision on the oral application made this morning, that is, the
22 Chamber's decision on the Prosecution's application made in court this
23 morning for protective measures, that is, pseudonym, image and face
24 distortion, and partial private session for Witness 682.
25 In its oral submissions, the Prosecution recalled the three-part
1 test set out by this Chamber in its previous protective measures decisions.
2 And I specifically refer to transcript page 15.712. It was the
3 Prosecution's submission that all the three factors have been established
4 in the case of Witness 682 and argued in particular that the witness's
5 testimony is likely to implicate persons in killings and other series
7 The Defence has not opposed protective measures for Witness 682.
8 In this regard, the Chamber would like to express its appreciation to the
9 parties, in particular the Defence in this case, for reaching a common
10 understanding before turning to the Trial Chamber for a decision.
11 The Chamber considers that the requirements for the requested
12 protective measures in this case have been met for the reasons given by the
13 Prosecution. The Chamber orders that Witness 682 testify under pseudonym,
14 with image and voice distortion, and in private session for those portions
15 of his testimony likely to reveal his identity.
16 This concludes the Chamber's decision.
17 Mr. Tieger, you may proceed.
18 MR. TIEGER: Sorry, Your Honour. I'm just copying down
19 something from the LiveNote.
20 Thank you for that.
21 Q. Mr. Neskovic, can we next turn our attention to a document found
22 at tab 11 of the binder.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Which is in evidence already, Mr. Tieger.
24 MR. TIEGER: Yes, Your Honour, I believe it is.
25 Q. Mr. Neskovic, tab 11 contains the instructions for the
1 organisation and operation of organs of the Serbian people in Bosnia and
2 Herzegovina in emergency conditions, bearing the date 19 December 1991 and
3 bearing the heading "Serbian Democratic Party of Bosnia-Herzegovina,
4 strictly confidential," et cetera.
5 Mr. Neskovic, are you familiar with this document? And if so,
6 can you tell the Chamber whether it was provided to members of the SDS.
7 And again, if so, where and when.
8 A. Yes. I am familiar with this document. The Main Board -- or
9 rather, the Crisis Staff did not pass this because SDS did not have a
10 Crisis Staff at the party level. This did not exist, or at the very least,
11 I'm not aware of it, and I should know. I think that, yeah, this is the
12 19th of December, at the Holiday Inn, at the big meeting room there, so I
13 think that it wasn't a meeting of a body but a kind of -- almost a
14 parliamentary meeting, which would be a meeting to which all members of the
15 Main Board, the Executive Committee, all MPs and all municipal officials,
16 members of the government, the political committee, secretaries and
17 everybody would be invited to. It's a huge meeting. In the Serb culture,
18 you would tend to convene such a meeting on solemn occasions. Anyway, that
19 was the make-up of the meeting. So there was the Main Board with 45
20 members. It wasn't a separate meeting for the Main Board, nor did the Main
21 Board have a Crisis Staff, nor did it prepare or draw up this document
22 through its own committees.
23 As far as I can remember, this document is something that
24 Karadzic brought into the meeting room, and it had already been completed,
25 printed out. It was in a package, as it were, and in this present form,
1 and he simply put it on the table where the working Presidency was. And I
2 was sitting in the fifth or sixth row, and I left the room on quite a few
3 occasions, so I did not listen to everything, but what I do remember is
4 this: Karadzic had a ready-made list of names, officials out in the field
5 who should be given a copy of that document. I think it was the presidents
6 of the Municipalities, where there were SDS members, or presidents of
7 Executive Committees, if their man was not the president of the
8 Municipality. And as to whether the other members of the Serb Democratic
9 Party were included, I don't remember.
10 Anyway, he would call the names, and as their names were called,
11 they would come up to the Presidency table and they would take a copy of
12 this document, and he said that they were to read it. It was a long time
13 ago, and I'm not 100 per cent sure, but in my view and according to my
14 recollection, he asked for that document to be given back to him, as far as
15 I can remember, in the sense that once they'd read it, they could make a
16 list of the most salient points and then for the document to be returned to
17 him, since it was marked "highly confidential" and it was numbered, as
18 well. So they knew exactly how many copies there were, and the copies were
19 based on the list of names of the people who were supposed to be given the
20 copies of the document. As to whether everybody who received a copy did,
21 indeed, hand it back, I really don't know. And afterwards, this was the
22 famous document that we -- that we used to call the A/B document. Those of
23 us who did not get a copy, who were not on the list -- those of us who were
24 not given a copy, that is, we did not know about the details in the
25 document, but on the basis of our conversations with the people who did get
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 a copy, we knew what the gist of it was all about; that is to say, A --
2 Variant A was where we had majority in the municipalities, and option B was
3 where we were in the minority in municipalities.
4 And as to the Crisis Staff within the Main Board, it did not
5 exist, or else perhaps there could have been a body outside the SDS bodies,
6 the Executive Committee, or the Main Board, and perhaps they would call
7 themselves a Crisis Staff. But as to the actual structure, the official
8 structure of the Serb Democratic Party, there had never been a Crisis Staff
9 at the level of the party itself, as a body that is supposed to lead the
10 party under any exceptional circumstances.
11 And as to what the Main Board did, I mean, they did not draw up
12 this document in the course of their regular proceedings because if they
13 had done so, that would have entailed discussions, a draft text,
14 amendments, and so on and so forth, and basically the Main Board could not
15 have passed a document like this because the party, as any other political
16 party, can't issue orders to municipal authorities. Had the Main Board
17 passed the document of this sort, it would have certainly been addressed to
18 the MPs, and it would have been for them to look into it and pass it. And
19 this was actually in contradiction with both domestic and international law
20 because no political party - and this applies to the Serb Democratic Party,
21 as well - is entitled to issue direct orders to any local authorities or
22 the authorities at any other level, for that matter.
23 So furthermore, this was not the only thing discussed at that
24 meeting. There were other topics being discussed. There were quite a few
25 people there. So it was an emotionally charged atmosphere, and quite
1 simply this parliamentary kind of meeting was not a body that could have
2 changed anything there. It was about getting approval from a kind of Serb
3 -- unofficial Serb parliament for documents that had been drawn up and
4 approved elsewhere. I really don't remember anyone having suggested any
5 amendments or any changes, also because this was a strictly confidential
6 document, numbered, and so on and so forth, and the fact that people's
7 names were called out. And as to whether they did return those copies or
8 not, as far as I can remember, they were supposed to hand the copies back
9 in once they had read the document.
10 Q. Now, first, Mr. Neskovic, a very minor question, and that is, Do
11 you recall where the meeting was held?
12 A. At the Holiday Inn Hotel on the first floor. There's a big
13 meeting room there that can accommodate a large number of people.
14 Q. You mentioned that the documents were placed on the table where
15 the working Presidency was. Can you tell the Chamber what you meant by
16 "working Presidency," and who comprised that working Presidency at that
18 A. I'm not entirely sure. I think it was Mr. Karadzic, Mr.
19 Krajisnik, and Miodrag Simovic. But I'm not entirely sure; I can't tell
20 you exactly, but I think that it was Karadzic, Krajisnik, and Miodrag
21 Simovic. And by the way, as to the work of those bodies and structures, a
22 working Presidency would not have any real significance. It would mean
23 that the important people would be sitting at the Presidency table and for
24 them to show their faces to the audience. So it would indicate that those
25 people sitting at the Presidency table would be -- at the top table, would
1 be important people. But basically they did not do anything in particular.
2 They would just been sitting at the top table in order to indicate that
3 they were important, but otherwise they would not play a major role.
4 The president would chair the meeting, Karadzic in this case, and
5 he would suggest the agenda and give the floor to people and take it away
6 from them. And there was some criticism, as well, between Sarajevo,
7 Krajina, and Banja Luka and so on. I think at the time there was some kind
8 of tension there. But anyway, there was this meeting which took place, and
9 this un -- unofficial parliamentary meeting. So everybody would be invited
10 along, and all the bodies and institutions and individuals people who were
11 completely outside these structures, and so you wouldn't know who was
12 there. And then you said, Well, what body made those decisions? And they
13 did not have an answer. It would be everybody and nobody.
14 So that was it, roughly speaking. There were some conspicuous
15 individuals there, or -- some people, such as lawyers, poets, and writers
16 and other people, but they did not actually have a real role there.
17 Q. Who received the Variant A and B document from your municipality?
18 A. I think it should have been given to Zarko Djurovic, who was the
19 president of the Executive Committee, because the president of the
20 Municipality of Novo Sarajevo was a Bosniak, so I think that the document
21 was handed in to Zarko Djurovic. I think it was meant for him. I'm not
22 sure whether he actually attended that meeting, whether he received that
23 document on that occasion or later on. I can't tell you with any degree of
25 But speaking of Novo Sarajevo, this document should have gone to
1 the president of the Executive Committee, Zarko Djurovic.
2 Q. And returning for a moment to the question of the working
3 Presidency. You said you thought it was Dr. Karadzic, Mr. Krajisnik, and
4 Mr. Simovic. I wanted to ask you just a quick question about that.
5 You may recall that you were asked some questions about that
6 during your interview in April of 2004. And at that time, you were asked,
7 "Was Momcilo Krajisnik present at the meeting where this document was
8 distributed?" And you said, "Yes, there were two, three hundred people."
9 You were asked whether he was part of the group that was
10 presenting the document. You said you didn't remember that, there was a
11 working Presidency, and Radovan was distributing this. You even think that
12 he was calling people. And then you said, "But since Krajisnik was sitting
13 next to Radovan, he had access to this document."
14 JUDGE ORIE: Could you indicate what page --
15 MR. TIEGER: It's page 60, Your Honours. I apologise for that.
16 Q. And then finally - and this refers to page 61 - you were asked,
17 "So you recall that Krajisnik was sitting next to Radovan at the front of
18 the meeting." And you answered, "In the working Presidency."
19 You later went on to say you couldn't recall who the other
20 members of the Presidency were, and so I wanted to ask you whether that was
21 consistent with your answer today, that is, that you couldn't recall all of
22 the persons in the working Presidency, but that you do recall that Mr.
23 Krajisnik was one of them.
24 A. Yes, it figures, because after those talks I was interested in
25 it, and so I asked around, as well, and asked other people whether they
1 remembered. And that's how I got the information from them, as well. Some
2 of them were not certain either, but they said that as far as I could
3 remember -- as they could remember, as well, there was Karadzic and
4 Krajisnik and probably Miodrag Simovic, as well, most probably. I know
5 that Biljana, Nikola, and Jovan Cizmovic were sitting in the first floor.
6 So I stick to my original statement. It is logical, but then I tried to
7 check it out with other people, and I asked around because I just wanted to
8 get a complete picture in my head.
9 Q. Okay. So is this correct: You recall that it was Dr. Karadzic
10 and Mr. Krajisnik at the working Presidency, that is, the head table that
11 Biljana -- that is, Biljana Plavsic -- Nikola, Nikola Koljevic, and Jovan
12 Cizmovic were sitting in the first floor, and then you also checked with
13 other people to confirm whether your recollection was accurate?
14 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, that's -- that question includes, and
15 it's disguising it -- it includes a question which Mr. Tieger has asked at
16 least once, and he's now pressing to get an answer to a question which he's
17 actually asked and had answered, but he's just wrapped it up in a -- in a
18 more expanded question.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, you've asked a question about the
20 presence of --
21 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour , if the Court is satisfied -- I was
22 only trying to make it as clear as possible. If the Court is satisfied
23 that That question has been adequately answered, I won't be insistent upon
25 JUDGE ORIE: Let me just reread it.
1 [Trial Chamber confers]
2 JUDGE ORIE: We are satisfied with the answer given, Mr. Tieger.
3 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 Q. Mr. Neskovic, was the Variant A and B document regarded as a
5 mandatory instruction by the party members who received it?
6 A. Well, the membership did not actually receive the document. It
7 was intended only for a limited number of people, and it was a numbered
8 document, as I said before. So I think it was mandatory for those to whom
9 it had been given. And as to the broader membership, they did not have any
10 obligation to read the entire document. Those who had read it could come
11 up with a summary or some kind of interpretation and forward that to the
12 membership. This was for the selected few from the field who had high-
13 ranking positions within the local authorities.
14 And as to the other members, no, it wasn't intended for them.
15 It was up to those people to implement the document. It was mandatory for
16 them, even though the document does not go to -- go on to list any
17 sanctions as to what would happen if they failed to do so. But basically
18 it was mandatory for the document -- for the people who received this
20 And then, of course, it was up to them to decide how best to do
21 that, depending on their views and abilities and whatever. Some people did
22 not actually implement the whole thing. Some implemented a little bit of
23 it. And there was no uniformity there, so there were a number of different
25 JUDGE ORIE: Judge Hanoteau would like to put a question to the
2 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] You mentioned, sir, that there
3 were about -- between 150 and 200 people attending that Assembly, that
4 parliamentary meeting. Is that the case?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, to be honest, I can tell you
6 roughly speaking. I didn't actually count the number of members. It was a
7 full house; I think 200 people at the very least. I did not actually count
8 the number of people, but considering the size of the room, it's the
9 biggest meeting room at the Holiday Inn, and it was full.
10 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Did only the presidents of
11 Municipalities receive the document?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Presidents of Municipalities, if
13 the Serbs were the presidents of the Municipalities; but representatives --
14 and representatives of municipal authorities if Serbs were such
15 representatives. But when Serbs weren't government representatives or
16 municipal representatives, then it's possible that representatives of SDS
17 Municipal Boards received documents, but I'm not sure. I don't know what
18 the situation is. But if a Serb -- if a Serb wasn't a president of a
19 Municipality or of the government, then I don't know who received the
20 document. These were people who performed their duties in the field and
21 who were on the list, and they would then personally approach the table and
22 take the document.
23 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] The document was personally
24 provided by Mr. Karadzic; is that correct?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
1 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Before this document was
2 provided, did Mr. Karadzic explain the contents of the document?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think that he spoke in general
4 terms. He spoke about the position of the Serbian people, about the
5 position of Bosnia and of Yugoslavia, and so on and so forth. He told a
6 story within the context of that document. But as far as I can remember,
7 he didn't go into the details of the document itself, but he told the usual
8 story about the position of the Serbs in Bosnia-Herzegovina, about the
9 disintegration of Yugoslavia, about secession, about the threat of Muslims
10 and Croats. So he mentioned well-known positions, positions that Radovan
11 had spoken about on numerous occasions at such meetings, but I don't
12 remember him discussing the document itself because then the document would
13 have been proposed; there would have been a discussion; there would have
14 been comments; and then another version of the document would have been
15 drafted. No, that wasn't done. This document was distributed such as it
16 was adopted, and no significant changes were made, as far as I can
17 remember. Radovan brought it to the meeting with him. I think that he
18 himself brought it to the meeting.
19 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] But did this provoke any
20 reactions on the part of those who received the document? Because -- was
21 there any time for everyone to familiarise themselves with the document in
22 question, and those who received it and who read it, were they able to
23 discuss the document in public?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, formally speaking, yes,
25 anyone could have stood up and said, I don't accept this document.
1 Formally speaking, yes. But, in fact, no, they received the document, and
2 then they made certain notes and sketches on the document. I think they
3 then returned the document. I don't think anyone dared contest the
4 document or reject the document or put it into question for any other
5 reason. So those who received the document did not really have much time
6 to keep it on them. They had to return the document. So there weren't
7 really any objections as far as the document is concerned. It was accepted
8 in silence, and then everyone implemented the document to a greater or
9 lesser extent or didn't implement the document later on. This depended on
10 how they viewed everything.
11 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Well, I'm sorry, but you
12 haven't really answered my question. Mr. Karadzic handed out the document.
13 He did not provide any explanations with regard to the document; that's
14 what you said. Did he allow those who had received the document to read
15 it? That is my first question.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes. Yes, by all means.
17 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] And then did Mr. Karadzic start
18 a discussion? Did he allow the individuals who had received the document
19 to discuss the document in public?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I think the discussion was
21 more about talking about the document in an affirmative way. That's what
22 Karadzic wanted to do. He wanted to influence the people there to accept
23 it. It wasn't a discussion that concerned those who were for or against
24 it; it wasn't a discussion that invited those present to make any
25 objections. So it was more a matter of Karadzic defending the document,
1 supporting the document. I don't remember anyone criticising the document,
2 putting it into question, et cetera. No such discussion was held.
3 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Given the way the document was
4 presented, those present were not really in a position to voice any
5 objections to it, to contest the document.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, most of them were not in a
7 position to do so. Perhaps formally speaking those who had received the
8 document could have done so. Only some of them received the document, not
9 everyone there.
10 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] But please answer my question.
11 Those who were there and those who received the document, were they in a
12 position to make any comments, or was the atmosphere such that it was
13 better for them not to make any comments?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, they did have that
15 possibility; it wasn't forbidden. They could have taken the floor, and
16 they could have made the comments they wanted to make. But given the
17 atmosphere in the Assembly, given the emotions, given the atmosphere, it
18 was perhaps not conducive to such a discussion because one might have
19 appeared to be a traitor if one rejected the document; one would have been
20 a black sheep. The emotions, the atmosphere in the -- in the room were
21 such that one was not really in a position to contest the document; one
22 didn't really want to contest the document. But in legal terms, one could
23 have taken the floor and one could have contested the document.
24 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] So if I understand you
25 correctly, the emotional atmosphere that - those are the terms you used -
1 the emotional atmosphere that prevailed was one of fear.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, you could put it that way.
3 One could say that there was fear, fear of being outvoted, fear of Bosniak
4 and Croat dominance. Yes, there was such fear, and that was a key element
5 that contributed to the emotional atmosphere there.
6 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] And my last question: Those
7 who were sitting next to Mr. Karadzic, at the presidential table, did they
8 react in any way?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I really can't remember. I don't
10 think they did, but I'm not sure. I really can't remember.
11 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Thank you, sir.
12 MR. TIEGER:
13 Q. Mr. Neskovic, I'd like to turn next to the -- at least some
14 aspects of the implementation of Variant A and B, and in that connection
15 can I ask you to turn to tab 12.
16 MR. TIEGER: And may that -- and that, Your Honour, is a
17 previous exhibit, P529, Hanson tab 378.
18 Q. Mr. Neskovic, the document at tab 12 reflects a meeting of the
19 Crisis Staff held in the premises of the Novo Sarajevo SDS to discuss the
20 materials received from the SDS BH Main Board. And at the bottom of the
21 page, we see that that meeting was held on December 23rd, 1991.
22 Now, let me give you a moment to look at that document, and I
23 see you're still looking to the binder. Both the English and the -- and
24 the B/C/S should be one-page documents.
25 Now, at the top of the page, after the initial sentence that I
1 related, it says, "First agree," and then it lists a number of items, 1
2 through 11, although not all included. And we can go over those
3 individually in a moment, but let me ask you first if this was a meeting
4 held to discuss the -- to discuss the Variant A and B document, those -- if
5 that document was the materials received from the SDS BH Main Board.
6 A. As far as I can remember, I think so, given the date. This took
7 place on the 23rd of December, and this material was on the 19th, so yes, I
8 think that that is the document in question.
9 Q. And let's look quickly at the items listed and the persons
10 assigned. The first item is -- was assigned to Dobro Gajevic and Ranko
11 Jugovic and in the Variant A and B document, under "first agree," number 1
12 is "Introduce round the clock duty service in all SDS Municipal Boards and
13 ensure constant communication and cooperation with local boards in the
14 territory of the municipality." And was that the assignment given to Mr.
15 Gajevic and Mr. Jugovic because of their positions in the municipality?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Number 2 is "Ensure conditions for daily meetings of the SDS
18 Municipal Board secretariat." And item 2 in the document -- in the
19 December 23rd meeting in Novo Sarajevo refers to "the appointment of a ten-
20 member Municipal Board secretariat." So that -- that appointment reflected
21 the implementation of item 2 of the first level of the Variant A and B
22 document; is that right?
23 A. Could you just help me. Items 1 and 2, do they refer to Variant
25 Q. Well, you can -- you're more than welcome to look at -- either at
1 the first level of either A and B if you need to refresh your recollection
2 about that.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, would it not be a good idea to first
4 find out whether we are in Variant A or a Variant B situation? I noticed
5 in this respect -- no, let me not say anything.
6 Were you in a Variant A or a Variant B municipality?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think it was a Variant B one.
8 JUDGE ORIE: That is that you did not constitute a majority.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. No.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. At the same time, Mr. Tieger, 10 or 11 issues
11 in the first level is something that then becomes a puzzle. Variant B
12 contains 10, as far as I remember, and Variant A contains 11, I would say,
13 instructions in the first level. To the extent you could clarify that
14 during the further examination.
15 MR. TIEGER: I'll try, Your Honour. Thank you.
16 JUDGE ORIE: I'd appreciate it.
17 MR. TIEGER:
18 Q. First of all, Mr. Neskovic, can you give the Court some
19 understanding of the demographics of Novo Sarajevo at that time in
20 percentages, to the best of your recollection, what percentage was -- of
21 the population was Serb, what percentage was Muslim, what percentage was
22 other nationalities.
23 A. Well, I can't remember. I think that the Muslims were in the
24 majority and then the situation was a little more complicated because at
25 the time there were many people who declared themselves to be Yugoslavs in
1 the census. So who were the Yugoslavs? Were they Bosniaks, Croats, or
2 Serbs? One can't know. Perhaps 10 or 15 per cent of them declared
3 themselves to be Yugoslavs. I think that there were about -- I think the
4 Bosniaks and the Muslims were -- represented a slightly larger half and the
5 Serbs a slightly smaller half, as far as I can remember. I can't remember
6 all the information, but that is the census from 1991.
7 Could I add something else?
8 Q. Yes, of course.
9 A. Could you please assist me in relation to Variants A and B
10 because in Variant A there are 11 items, and here in this record there are
11 also 11; in Variant B, there are 9 items. I'm not sure whether the
12 Municipal SDS Board in Novo Sarajevo acted on the basis of Variant A or on
13 the basis of Variant B. In my opinion, they should have perhaps acted on
14 Variant B, but perhaps they acted on the basis of Variant A. So could you
15 assist me? Does this document under tab 12 relate to Variant A or to
16 Variant B?
17 Q. [Microphone not activated]
18 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
19 MR. TIEGER:
20 Q. First of all, I should make clear that it's -- we're asking you
21 to assist us. But with respect to the document itself, I think you'll find
22 that it contains both first and second level and both Variants A and B.
23 And as you've correctly pointed out and as His Honour has noted, with
24 respect to Variant A, there are 11 items enumerated and with respect to
25 Variant B, 10. And you may have begun to answer the question I'm about to
1 ask, and I think you've certainly touched on it, and that is, Do you recall
2 whether the municipal officials in Novo Sarajevo, despite the 1991 census
3 and despite your view that Novo Sarajevo should have been a Variant B
4 municipality, took the position that Novo Sarajevo was a Variant A
5 municipality, that is, a Serbian majority municipality, either because they
6 asserted that the Yugoslavs were in fact Serbs or because they asserted
7 that there were Muslims in Novo Sarajevo who shouldn't be there or because
8 they challenged the census or for any other reason?
9 MR. STEWART: Could the witness be asked to answer the first
10 question there before going on to the possible reasons.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Mr. Tieger, I think it's fair to first
12 establish how those in Novo Sarajevo responsible considered the
13 municipality, whether they considered it to be a Variant A or a Variant B -
14 - whether to proceed on the basis of Variant A or Variant B.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] With your leave, given what I have
16 just had a look at, I think that in Novo Sarajevo the Crisis Staff opted
17 for Variant A. According to Variant B, under item 8, reference is made to
18 a commission, a group of which I was a member, together with Jugovic,
19 Prijic, and Zarko Djurovic. And according to Variant B, that commission
20 should be involved in assessing the necessary number of active and reserve
21 forces of the police and of the Territorial Defence, units of the
22 Territorial Defence, units of the civilian protection, and in accordance
23 with such assessments they should bring them up to strength and take all
24 other necessary measures in order to activate them in accordance with the
25 way in which the situation developed. I think that the individuals
1 mentioned here could not have done what is mentioned under item 8. These
2 are military police duties, and I and Zarko Djurovic were never involved in
3 such tasks.
4 If we have a look at Variant A under item 8, which concerns this
5 group of which I was a member, it states the following --
6 JUDGE ORIE: We are -- I'm looking at the clock, Mr. Tieger. I
7 think the witness answered your question but by a reconstruction such that
8 one could wonder whether a question as to the reasons why would make any
9 sense. It's rather vague, reconstructing what was in his field of
10 expertise, what would you expect him to do as far as the difference in task
11 in paragraph 8 is concerned, then I wonder whether it's of any use to stick
12 to the next question.
13 Did I -- I interrupted your answer. Did I understand you well
14 that on the basis of the tasks assigned that you hardly could expect
15 yourself to be assigned for the task in paragraph 8 of Variant B, whereas
16 paragraph 8 of Variant A comes close to your knowledge and experience?
17 I interrupted you also because it's ten minutes to 2.00, and we
18 would have to stop already at quarter past [sic] 2.00.
19 MR. TIEGER: I'm sorry, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
21 MR. TIEGER: I don't know that I actually got an answer to your
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I -- when I said I -- I asked you whether I
24 understood you well that on the basis of the tasks assigned that you could
25 -- you found it --
1 THE WITNESS: [No interpretation]
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. You remember my question, and you agree with
3 that, I do understand.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
6 Yes. Then, Mr. Neskovic, I'd like to instruct you not to speak
7 with anyone about your testimony, whether the testimony you have already
8 given or the testimony you still are about to give during the days that
9 come, and we'd like to see you back tomorrow morning, 9.00, in this same
11 We'll adjourn until then.
12 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.50 p.m.,
13 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 19th day of
14 July, 2005, at 9.00 a.m.