1 Wednesday, 22 March 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.07 a.m.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning to everyone.
7 Mr. Registrar, would you call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case number
9 IT-00-39-T, the Prosecutor versus Momcilo Krajisnik.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
11 Mr. Josse, are you ready to continue the examination of
12 Mr. Maricic?
13 MR. JOSSE: Thank you.
14 WITNESS: BOSKO MARICIC [Resumed]
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 Examination by Mr. Josse: [Continued]
17 Q. It was the 16th of May of 1992 that you, Mr. Maricic, was severely
18 wounded in the course of the armed conflict that this Tribunal is dealing
19 with; is that correct?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Very briefly, how were you injured and what was the nature of your
23 A. I was at the front line in the area of Brcko known as Ivici. At
24 one moment our line was attacked by both Muslim and Croat forces. They
25 were so close that I got hit by a burst of fire from an automatic rifle.
1 I had a fracture of my upper leg and a fracture of my right hip and I was
2 hospitalised. I was treated for those wounds at the hospital.
3 Q. The hospital that you -- where you were treated was in Belgrade;
4 is that correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. How did you get to Belgrade?
7 A. I was taken there by an old ambulance vehicle.
8 Q. How long were you in hospital for?
9 A. I stayed in Belgrade for 72 days, and then I was transferred to
10 Banja Koviljaca.
11 Q. And that's a spa town; is that correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And you eventually returned to Brcko in September of 1992?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Do you remember the date that you returned to Brcko, the exact
17 A. I don't, but it could have been sometime around 10th to 12th of
19 Q. Why did you return to Brcko?
20 A. I returned because I hail from Bukvik, and there were rumours that
21 Bukvik would be attacked, and that's why I returned, to help if I could in
22 any way.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Judge Hanoteau has a question.
24 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Yes, forgive me, Mr. Josse, if I
25 interrupt you, but in a situation like this where you were wounded whilst
1 fighting, could you tell us whether heavy weapons were used in this
2 fighting, or were people using machine-guns, or guns? What kind of war
3 was it? Were people using cannons? Were -- was there any bombing? Do
4 you understand my question? Thank you.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. There were -- there was no
6 heavy weaponry, only light arms, rifles and an occasional machine-gun.
7 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Thank you.
8 MR. JOSSE:
9 Q. Bearing in mind the learned Judge's questions, it might help if
10 you were to briefly describe how regularly you were involved in the sort
11 of combat that -- again, let me rephrase this.
12 How often you personally saw action that was similar to the type
13 of action that took place on the day that you were badly injured?
14 A. Well, I think that this was the only real fight that I
15 participated in. Everything before that was just moving the line forward.
16 The enemy would withdraw. That's why I did not have an opportunity to
17 participate in any serious fighting, save for that one time when I was
19 Q. Are you able to comment --
20 JUDGE ORIE: There seems to be a -- and it's when your microphone
21 is open. I don't know whether it is -- yes, now it's -- could one of the
22 technicians have a look at what happens if Mr. Josse opens his ...
23 MR. JOSSE: I know the interpreters won't hear this. The
24 microphone is off.
25 THE INTERPRETER: We can't hear the counsel.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Could someone assist, because if Mr. Josse
2 opens his microphone, then we get a -- it's still there. The technicians
3 will come and assist you. Mr. Josse.
4 MR. JOSSE: For some reason it's Mr. Karganovic's computer. He'll
5 do without for now. When I say his computer, the computer he is using.
6 It's the Court's --
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. It's always those who are working are blamed
8 for causing problems. Mr. Josse, please proceed.
9 MR. JOSSE:
10 Q. As far as you could judge and see in the fighting that you were
11 involved in, Mr. Maricic, were the weapons on both sides of similar
12 capacity and capability? If you can't comment, say so.
13 A. I think that the enemy, i.e., the Muslims and the Croats, had
14 somewhat better weapons. They had machine-guns, for example, and on our
15 side, on the line where I was, we did not have a single machine-gun.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Josse, I'd like to ask the witness.
17 How far were you able to observe the weaponry? I mean, had you
18 any knowledge beyond what you could see yourself? I mean, I take it you
19 had a view of perhaps a couple of hundred metres. Would you have
20 information about what happened at a greater distance?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I understand your question well,
22 we had a very close encounter, and I believe the enemy could not have been
23 more than a hundred metres away during that attack. They sneaked up on us
24 and they attacked us.
25 JUDGE ORIE: What I would like to know if you say they had
1 slightly better weapons whether -- how limited your knowledge was. Were
2 you aware of what happened in your immediate neighbourhood, or did you
3 have information from further away, let's say what you could not see or
4 hear yourself.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't have information as to what
6 kind of weapons they had at a larger distance. I only know when we came
7 head to head that they had better weapons than we did.
8 JUDGE ORIE: And you said whether they had -- what weapons they
9 had at a distance. Are you aware of what weapons you had at a distance?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the unit where I was, there was
11 no heavy weaponry. The heaviest pieces of equipment we had were a couple
12 of machine-guns.
13 JUDGE ORIE: That's true for at a distance as well, what you could
14 not see, other parts of town or other parts of the municipality?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no. I can't confirm that.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Judge Hanoteau.
17 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] I have another question to put to
18 you. Witness, on the day you were wounded, the 16th of May, not only on
19 that day but the days before that, were you able to see any soldiers, army
20 soldiers, a great number of army soldiers? Were you able to see any tanks
21 or artillery weapons in Brcko, whether it be -- whether it be on the Serb
22 side, Muslim side, or Croatian side?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think that at the beginning the
24 Serb side had more artillery. I heard detonations coming from the Serb
25 side. Later on, that ratio changed, and towards the end of the war there
1 was an even situation. I personally did not see any heavy weaponry, any
2 tanks. I might have seen one tank, a single tank, but I'm not sure of
4 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] And you did say that this
5 artillery was on the Serb side?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, not all. I heard fire being
7 opened, and I believe that detonations were on the enemy's side. And at
8 the same time there were detonations on the Serb side as well, but not to
9 such a large extent and not from such large-calibre weaponry.
10 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Do you stand by the fact, as you
11 said yesterday, that the JNA was there but there weren't very many JNA
12 soldiers there during this period, i.e., between the months of April and
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I this I that that may be the case.
15 This is the information that I have. I can't speak of the things that I
16 didn't see.
17 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] But you yourself, you didn't see
18 a single JNA soldier, did you?
19 THE WITNESS: There was a state of confusion. There may have been
20 some. I personally didn't see them, not on the part of the line where I
21 was. They were not members of the command cadre. They were not on the
22 strength of the unit. I didn't see them.
23 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] You said yesterday that you
24 belonged to the -- one of the three fighting squads; is that right?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Three companies, which is a somewhat
1 larger unit.
2 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Were these men wearing uniforms,
3 and were you yourself wearing a uniform?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Those were members of the
5 Territorial Defence, and some of the men wore their civilian clothes,
6 trainers on their feet. They looked rather colourful. I was fortunate or
7 unfortunate enough to get hold of a proper uniform.
8 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Were these uniforms different
9 from the JNA uniforms?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mostly those were the old JNA
11 uniforms that were obsolete, that were no longer used. And those uniforms
12 were mostly distributed amongst the members of the Territorial Defence or
13 the civilian protection. The regular JNA troops no longer wore those at
14 the time.
15 JUDGE HANOTEAU: [Interpretation] Thank you, sir.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Josse.
17 MR. JOSSE: I can inform Your Honours that the next witness who
18 comes from a completely different part of the war, so to speak, different
19 area, he can give evidence as to combat activities to a far greater degree
20 than this witness.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Please proceed.
22 MR. JOSSE:
23 Q. What physical condition were you in when you returned in the
24 middle of September to Brcko?
25 A. I had not fully recovered. I used crutches to walk, and I felt
1 really weak.
2 MR. JOSSE: Could the witness have the large coloured map, please.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Usher, would you please assist.
4 MR. JOSSE: I'm grateful to Mr. Registrar. 151, D151. Thank you.
5 Q. Perhaps, first of all, using the pointer you would indicate the
6 predicament that you understood the Serb population of Bukvik to be in, in
7 the middle of September.
8 A. Could you please repeat the question?
9 Q. Yes. Using the pointer initially, in due course I think I'll ask
10 you to actually mark this on the plan in black pen, could you indicate the
11 situation that you understood the population of Bukvik to find themselves
12 in, in September of 1992? Put another way, Mr. Maricic, why were they in
14 A. Then I don't have to show anything. Bukvik is the area on one
15 side of which there is a series of Muslim settlements, and on the other
16 side there is a chain of Croat settlements. The area of Vukovic is
17 inhabited only by the Serbs. On both sides the area was encircled or
18 surrounded by either Croats or Muslims, in other words.
19 Q. How did you become aware of this information, bearing in mind you
20 weren't there.
21 A. I was born in Bukvik. I know every hamlet there. I worked as a
22 market inspector in Brcko municipality. For a few years I was always
23 travelling, and geography is something that I am very fond of. I like to
24 travel. So I know everything in the entire area of Brcko and particularly
25 in Bukvik.
1 Q. Perhaps it's my fault for not making my question clear enough,
2 Mr. Maricic, but in September of 1992, we know two things. First of all,
3 you were quite severely incapacitated. Secondly, you were in Brcko. You
4 weren't in Bukvik. You became aware that the Serbs of Bukvik were in real
5 difficulty. How did you become aware of that? What was your sources of
6 information? That's really what I'm driving at in the question I just
8 A. First of all, I understood while the war was going on, and I knew
9 that even before the war, that Bukvik as an area -- will find itself in a
10 very serious situation. I tried to persuade my family to send women and
11 children outside. They didn't do that.
12 The situation worsened, and when I was in hospital in Belgrade, I
13 followed the news, read the newspapers, and I had the impression that
14 Bukvik would be attacked. It was already encircled. Autumn and winter
15 were coming, and Muslims needed a corridor to Tuzla, and that corridor
16 would have to go through Bukvik, so it would be attacked. Furthermore, I
17 knew that Bukvik is without weapons, without men, without defence
18 capacity. And that's it.
19 Q. I would like you to draw, if you can, on the map the encirclement
20 that you have just mentioned.
21 A. Bukvik you mean?
22 Q. You used the words "it was already encircled." No one -- I'm not
23 holding you to an absolutely accurate portrayal of the encirclement, but
24 so that the Chamber has some idea where enemy forces were in relation to
25 the population of Bukvik. Only do this if you can help.
1 A. I think I will be able to.
2 Q. So --
3 A. Pardon.
4 Q. As we -- as we look at the map, which forces were to the left of
5 the line that is on -- that you have just drawn that is on the left-hand
6 side of the map? The left-hand side. Other side. Which forces were the
7 other side of that line?
8 A. On the other side of that line was the 108th HVO Brigade, which
9 included both Croats and Muslims. However, half of the settlements on
10 this side were Croats, and on the other side there were Muslims, Muslim
11 settlements. On this side there were more Muslims, so they also held part
12 of the Croat line on this side.
13 Q. This may seem a stupid question, but based on the map that you
14 have drawn, why was it impossible - perhaps it wasn't impossible - for the
15 population of Bukvik to escape to Brcko?
16 A. I don't understand the question. To run away from Brcko or to run
17 away to Brcko?
18 Q. To Brcko from Bukvik. You've described how the population of your
19 hometown was surrounded. Why weren't they able to go to Brcko, which was
20 controlled by the Serbs?
21 A. Well, quite simply enemy forces of the Muslims and Croats would
22 not let them. They were completely encircled. I don't know if I managed
23 to show it here. They were completely encircled, and they had no capacity
24 even to defend themselves let alone break through enemy lines.
25 Q. Are you able to draw the encirclement at the north end of the map?
1 Only do it if there was a physical encirclement.
2 A. Yes, it absolutely did exist. This is it, approximately. Let me
3 just add that Ulica village, which is here in the north, I drew it on this
4 line, it was a strongly Croat village, and it was held by Croats and
5 Muslims, whereas this hamlet, Purici, here, which was where the line went
6 approximately. I'm sorry I couldn't draw it more accurately. I'm not a
7 good draftsman.
8 Q. Very well. That's helpful. Thank you. Well, tell us what
9 happened to these Serb villages in the Bukvik area at this point in time.
10 A. At the time of the attack?
11 Q. Yes.
12 A. It is my estimate that Muslims and Croats had wrongly assessed the
13 situation of Bukvik and its arms supply. They thought Bukvik was well
14 organised and well equipped. That's the information I got after the war.
15 So they had brought reinforcements from other brigades apart from the
16 108th brigade, and from absolutely all sides they attacked the area. In
17 my view, this area did not need even a third of the forces used. When
18 they finally entered Bukvik, they started looking for tanks and cannons,
19 and there absolutely weren't any.
20 Q. When did this attack take place?
21 A. It was on the 14th of September, 1992. I think around 1400 hours,
22 but I can't be sure about that.
23 Q. Your -- I'm going to ask you some questions. Not very many, a few
24 about the attack and about its consequences. What are your sources of
25 information as to what happened, bearing in mind you weren't there.
1 A. I am certainly informed. Many of my family members died there.
2 My nearest and dearest were there, and when it was all over, when they
3 were captured and when they were later released after a year or so from a
4 Muslim Croat prison in Tuzla, they told me the whole story in great
6 Q. Well, for the purposes of my questions, I don't think we need it
7 in great detail, but tell us in broad outline what happened.
8 A. I said the attack started from all sides, a very strong attack.
9 That whole area including 13 villages and hamlets was very poorly equipped
10 and even more poorly organised. There was no defence to speak of. Panic
11 started immediately. Whereas the Muslim and Croat forces were regular
12 forces, and they knew how to spread panic among civilian population. They
13 burnt the first houses they came across, and the Muslim part of the forces
14 were crying out, "Allahu Akbar." The people got very frightened. And
15 they killed all those who -- whom they captured by the night of that day,
16 around 150 men, women, and children, including the elderly and the sick.
17 Q. And you've said that prisoners were taken to Tuzla. Were they
18 taken to Tuzla immediately?
19 A. What I'm going to say now is very important to my whole testimony
20 and to Brcko. In the area of Brcko there was one collection camp, Luka,
21 whereas on the Muslim Croat side of the Brcko municipality I know there
22 were at least five such camps, and all that population was first taken to
23 those camps. If you want me to show them on the map I can. And after a
24 lot of abuse and rape of women and girls they started a selection, a
25 triage. Some members of the SDS, let's say, or those who took part in the
1 defence were sent to one place, whereas the others were distributed across
2 the camps in the territory of Brcko municipality. Some of their soldiers
3 were later tried after the war on charges of rape, but they got minimal
5 I don't know if you want me to show you the camps for Serbs on the
6 map, but this is a fact, something you can't hide.
7 Q. Yes. If you could be given the map and the pen that would help,
8 thank you.
9 A. I'll start from the north side.
10 MR. JOSSE: Could the witness have a pen, please. It would be
11 more helpful simply to mark with a -- perhaps with a cross, Your Honour?
12 JUDGE ORIE: That's fine.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The first camp, a large one holding
14 hundreds of captives was in the village called Ulica. It used to be a
15 modern Croat village.
16 MR. HARMON: Your Honour, I'm going to object as to the relevance
17 of this.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I have not stopped you, Mr. Josse, although the
19 question came into my mind as well. Say the following, that -- I don't
20 know whether it's disputed by the Prosecution that camps, detention,
21 abuse, ill-treatment, killing happened at the other side as well. Is that
22 in dispute?
23 MR. HARMON: It is not.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Josse, it seems -- I did not stop you because I
25 could imagine that it's important for the Defence to demonstrate what the
1 fears and perhaps the right fears of the people were at that time that
2 they became true. Then of course the question is whether if we hear that
3 five camps were there holding a lot of detainees what it adds in this
4 respect to know exactly where they were.
5 MR. JOSSE: I understand. Your Honour is saying the detail
6 doesn't matter, and at this moment I'm not going to argue with that.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
8 MR. JOSSE: I've virtually finished on this topic. Could I --
9 JUDGE ORIE: Then please proceed.
10 MR. JOSSE: We have some photographs that we'd like to circulate
11 from a book, and perhaps I could just deal with that in conclusion on this
12 issue. Parts of this may need to be sent for translation, Your Honour.
13 Q. Mr. Maricic, you have brought a book with you to The Hague. It is
14 called "Dossier Brcko"; is that correct?
15 That there are other copies. It would help if they went into the
16 interpreters' booths. I'm sorry.
17 Mr. Maricic, it's very important that you answer my questions here
18 because I want to deal with this speedily and concisely. You have
19 brought a book to The Hague called "Dossier Brcko." That is correct,
20 isn't it?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. The book is written by someone called Izica [sic] Simic.
23 A. Ilija Simic.
24 Q. Sorry. I can't read someone's handwriting. And the book
25 contained lists of those killed and injuries in the instances you've just
1 described, and also some photographs. That's right, isn't it?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And these are some of the photographs. Could we go to the very
4 first photograph, please. It shows a church, and this is Church of Saint
5 Elijah in Bukvik. It says it was demolished in 1992 during combat
6 operations. It says, "Interior destroyed." And I'm sure I can lead on
7 this. Basically, your information is that this church was torched; is
8 that correct?
9 A. Yes. I went inside, and I saw that everything was burnt.
10 Q. And we see some graffiti on the wall of the church.
11 Perhaps the witness could be given the original photograph from
12 the book, please because I think that would help.
13 I'd like you to read out what the graffiti says.
14 A. It is more visible on this copy than in the book, but the letters
15 are the same. "Zmaj," or Dragon of Bosnia, and other graffiti testified
16 that this is vandalism by Muslim soldiers, and I went inside and I saw
17 that there were many other militant symbols and iconography, similar
18 inscriptions mainly by Muslims.
19 Q. All right. Let's go through this very quickly, please. Give the
20 book back to Madam Usher?
21 JUDGE ORIE: I see, Mr. Josse, that there is a -- SDA is written
22 on it as well. Could we explore the context of where SDA appears? It
23 seems to be right after the door, the side door of the church.
24 Do you see that, Mr. Maricic? Otherwise, we could perhaps ask
25 even the assistance of the interpreters whether it's legible at all.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I cannot show you that. I don't
2 want to guess or maybe things up, and I don't find it legible enough. Or,
3 rather, yes, yes, it is written along the vertical line. Yes, right of
4 the door, in large letters, SDA.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but SDA is not only the text there. Can you
6 read what we find around SDA?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't make that out. I think
8 those are names, but I can't make them out.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Josse, I'm asking that because if SDA appears
10 there to could be in the context of the "SDA greets you," or it could be
11 "SDA to hell." You understand what I mean? It's -- I'm trying to
12 interpret what we see here.
13 MR. JOSSE: I -- Your Honour's asking -- yes, I do follow exactly.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. If you could clarify the issue or perhaps even
15 if that would take on the next break, but I'd like to -- I'd like know the
17 So, therefore, if you could clarify that. I can imagine that it
18 will take you some time. And also, we might have to interpret this. My
19 colleague says that it's not written in Cyrillic, which could also mean
20 something. But at least could we read what it says on the bottom of --
21 MR. JOSSE: Yes. Could I say -- I don't want to give evidence,
22 but in the photograph in the book it's far clearer. Of course it's
23 smaller, so what I'm going to try and have done is have this photograph
24 blown up in a clearer way.
25 JUDGE ORIE: If it's relevant. Of course, if -- if it just
1 confirms, then I'll accept that. And could we read what is written below?
2 Could you, Mr. Maricic, could you please slowly read the title
3 under photograph 14.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't see the number 14, but below
5 the word Zmaj it says Muamed.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Whatever you can read that's on the wall. As a
7 matter of fact, I was referring to the title underneath the photograph,
8 but whatever you can read from the photograph, from what's written apart
9 from the word Zmaj, please tell us.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, you see, the name that is
11 rather well known, Zmaj, or Dragan of Bosnia, and that was the name of a
12 Turkish military leader who was a native of Gradacac who is Husein Pasa
13 Kapetanovic who used to lead Bosnian Muslims in the resistance movement to
14 the reform of the Ottoman Empire led by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.
15 JUDGE ORIE: I'm not asking you to tell us the whole of the
16 history but rather to read what we can see. You say it says Muamed. I
17 can see that. There seems to be something like --
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Muamed.
19 JUDGE ORIE: -- or -- okay.
20 Mr. Josse, you'll certainly have an opportunity during the break
21 to --
22 Could you please read what's written underneath the photograph?
23 It says 14, and then ...
24 THE WITNESS: Well, this is clearly legible. It says "Church of
25 the Saint Prophet Ilija in Bukvik, destroyed outside of war operations in
1 1992 with the inventory destroyed."
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Which raises more questions than outside the
3 war to mean at another movement and not part of combat activities. It's
4 not entirely clear.
5 MR. JOSSE:
6 Q. What do you understand the author to mean when he used the
7 expression "Outside of war --"
8 MR. HARMON: I'm going to object to an interpretation of Mr. Josse
9 of an author. The text speaks for itself. If there is other text that
10 can refer or clarify, then that should be referred to.
11 JUDGE ORIE: I take it what we just said about the detention
12 facilities also on the basis of the evidence we already received, it's not
13 the Prosecution case that no churches were destroyed even outside combat
15 MR. HARMON: That's correct.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Please proceed, Mr. Josse.
17 MR. JOSSE: Next photograph, please, Mr. Maricic. Number 15. I
18 Q. Next photograph, please, Mr. Maricic. Number 15. I think you'll
19 need your reading glasses. Could you read the caption.
20 A. "The interior of the church in Bukvik as it appears now."
21 Q. And you mentioned that you have been there. When was the first
22 time you went there after the war? Or during the war, for that matter.
23 A. I didn't go there during the war, and after the war I must say I
24 wasn't in a great hurry to go there because I knew there wasn't much to
25 see. So it was maybe a year after the war, maybe even more, that I
1 visited the church again, and it was in this same state.
2 Q. Number 16. Am I right that the caption basically says "Heavily
3 damaged fresco of Saint Sava in Bukvik church?
4 A. Yes, that's what it says here.
5 Q. 17, please. This is the burial of 36 victims from Bukvik at Brcko
6 cemetery on August the 21st, 1998? Is that what it says?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. It's right you attended this funeral?
9 A. Yes, I did.
10 Q. And, basically, when is it thought or known that the people who
11 were being buried on August the 21st, 1998, had died?
12 A. All the people who were buried on that occasion had been killed in
13 Bukvik on the 14th of September or maybe a day or so later, maybe one day
14 later, actually, during this attack on the area of Bukvik.
15 Q. And finally number 18. I -- is in fact a lady at the grave of her
16 brother who it says was murdered while wounded in Donji Bukvik, and it
17 names the lady and her brother; is that correct?
18 A. That's what it says here, and I believe that it is true.
19 MR. JOSSE: I'm in Your Honour's and the registrar's hands as to
20 the numbering of the document --
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
22 THE REGISTRAR: At that will be D152, Your Honours, from A to E.
23 Five photographers.
24 MR. JOSSE:
25 Q. What's happened -- two things. Firstly, I'm sure I can lead on
1 this, various members of your extended family were killed during the
2 course of the attack that you have just mentioned; is that correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Secondly, what has happened to your family land in Bukvik
5 following this incident and the war?
6 A. Everything was a hundred per cent destroyed. Everything was
7 torched. Whatever did not burn to the ground they took away. So all that
8 remains now is empty land. Absolutely everything. Not a single house in
9 the 13 hamlets remains. The cultural centre, the school. All the houses,
10 save for one, in the former centre of Bukvik remains intact because this
11 is where very early on the Muslim-Croat forces billeted their police.
12 Q. I want to move on to short, discrete, and completely different
13 topics. You have told the Chamber that you were an SDS activist back in
14 1991. I want to ask you about this document.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Josse, from a distance I see it's the 19th of
16 December document.
17 MR. JOSSE: Yes.
18 JUDGE ORIE: With the A and B variants.
19 MR. JOSSE: That's absolutely right, Your Honour.
20 Q. You've had a chance to look at it recently, haven't you?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Did you see it in 1991 or 1992?
23 A. I saw this document for the first time a few days ago.
24 Q. And having considered or having read its contents, were you aware
25 of its contents in the early part of 1992, in the months before the war?
1 A. A couple of days ago, I was provided with this document, and this
2 is where I read it and learned of its contents. Before that, I didn't
3 know anything about this document.
4 Q. I also want to ask you about something called the six strategic
5 goals. Do you have any awareness of that as a doctrine or mantra of the
6 SDS in 1992?
7 A. Of these six strategic goals I didn't know anything. The first
8 time I'm hearing about those strategic goals is now. Whether there were
9 three of them or six of them, I didn't know anything about them before.
10 MR. JOSSE: I'll have that document back, please.
11 Q. Yesterday, you gave evidence about your knowledge of Mr. Krajisnik
12 in 1991. Do you have any information or knowledge about him coming to
13 Brcko in 1992?
14 A. I don't have this information, and personally I don't think he
15 ever came to Brcko. If he had, I don't know anything about it. However,
16 since I had time on my hands and I wasn't short of money, I moved around,
17 and if he had come to Brcko, I would have learnt about that. As far as I
18 know, Mr. Krajisnik did not move about too much.
19 Q. What do you say to the suggestion that the SDS inspired the
20 presence and use of paramilitaries in Brcko in May of 1992?
21 A. Not only do I think, but I believe that the democratic party did
22 not have anything to do with the paramilitaries. As I've already told
23 you, I believe I told you yesterday, this was beyond the Serbian
24 Democratic Party, especially when the war operations started. Nobody ever
25 asked that party anything. The president of that party suffered himself
1 at the hands of some members of those paramilitary units.
2 Q. And what do you say to the suggestion that events in Brcko were
3 being controlled by the SDS leadership in Pale? In -- I should make this
4 clear. At the time of the outbreak of the war, they were inspiring and/or
5 condoning the activities of all concerned in Brcko on the Serb side.
6 A. I can't claim that there weren't certain moves. However, I think,
7 as I said here, that Brcko was to a certain extent neglected by everybody,
8 because it had a lower percentage of the Serbian population, and I suppose
9 that the reckoning was that it was very unlikely that it could be defended
10 and that's why so little attention was paid to it. I am not saying that
11 there were no such activities. However, I didn't notice any large-scale
12 activity, although I was in a position to notice them had there been any.
13 Q. You've begun the last answer by saying, "I can't claim that there
14 weren't certain moves." What do you mean by "certain moves," please?
15 A. I suppose some of this did exist. I don't remember any details.
16 However, Dr. Beli was a member of the Main Board and the president of the
17 Municipal Board of the SDS, and he was a very strong personality on the
18 eve of the war at a general level. I'm sure that he had contacts. I'm
19 sure that he had them. It would have been unlikely if -- for him not to
20 have had any contacts.
21 Q. For the avoidance of any doubt, what do you say about the
22 proposition that the local SDS, of which you were vice-president, was
23 controlling events in Brcko in April and May of 1992?
24 A. I've already said it. The SDS was completely pushed aside on the
25 eve of the war and at the beginning of war operations. Dr. Beli,
1 president of the SDS, did not serve in the army, but that is not the main
2 reason. The main reason is that the said SDS was a right-wing party, and
3 the key positions were held by those people who were on the left wing,
4 first in the JNA and then in the Territorial Defence. Maybe this will
5 sound a bit far-fetched for me to say this, but in Brcko the main roles
6 are played by the leftists, somewhat disguised but certainly former
7 communists and yes-men who are prepared to obey the international
9 Q. I'm very nearly finished. You've just used the phrase "are played
10 by the leftists." Do you mean now or at the time?
11 A. At the time there was a League of Communists and Socialist Party
12 and different leftist forces who held strings in their hands, and now they
13 have formed the so-called Socialist Party, the SDP, but they're still
14 communists, under a different name. And maybe because there are yes-men,
15 the representatives of the international community nowadays accept them.
16 There is probably a lot of money involved in that. I suppose they've all
17 found their interests. So I'm talking about the present time.
18 MR. JOSSE: Could I have one moment, please.
19 [Defence confer]
20 MR. JOSSE:
21 Q. Again for the avoidance of any doubt, the leftist local elements
22 whom you have just described, to what extent were they under the influence
23 in the spring of 1992 of the SDS leadership in Sarajevo or Pale?
24 A. No influence at all. The SDS did not have any influence on the
25 left-wing elements, if I understood your question well.
1 Q. Yes.
2 MR. JOSSE: Thank you very much. I have nothing else.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Could I put one clarifying question.
4 Could you tell us when War Presidency was established in Brcko,
5 who were members of that War Presidency?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All the instructions that I
7 received, everything that I was supposed to do in other towns, what Serbs
8 were supposed to do, did not penetrate Brcko easily. So --
9 JUDGE ORIE: I asked: When a war Presidency was established in
10 Brcko, who were members of that War Presidency.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know when it was founded. I
12 don't know who its members were. That was what I was going to say,
13 because it was not firmly organised. There may have been a president and
14 one or two members, but I didn't know that.
15 JUDGE ORIE: My following question: You are quite pertinent in
16 your answers saying that the SDS was not controlling events. At the same
17 time, you now tell us that did not know who were members of that War
18 Presidency, which leaves it open that it could be leftists or SDS members
19 or whatever. So I'm -- I'm wondering how to interpret your answers and
20 how to assess your level of knowledge in this respect. If you could
21 assist me.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I believe that you're right when you
23 say that the leftists also may have been members of the War Presidency,
24 because it was not just the SDS that decided on the establishment of -- of
25 the War Presidency. However, the list of members was never put in front
1 of me, and I'm not aware of its composition at all.
2 JUDGE ORIE: You said it was not just the SDS that decided on the
3 establishment of the War Presidency. Could you tell us what you know,
4 then, if it's not just the SDS? Who, then, would have decided on the
5 establishment of the War Presidency, and what do you know about that?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not challenge the possibility
7 that the SDS may have been behind the establishment of the SDS [as
8 interpreted], but I don't know anything about that.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I take it that you wanted to say, "may have
10 been behind the establishment of the War Presidency." It appears here as
11 the establishment of the SDS.
12 So do I understand your testimony correctly if you say, "I have no
13 knowledge on the way and the level the SDS was involved in establishing
14 and the functioning of the War Presidency," is this a right understanding?
15 If not, please correct me.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I believe that you understood my
17 testimony well. I have practically no knowledge on -- on the
18 establishment of the War Presidency.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Thank you for those answers.
20 MR. JOSSE: I've got some follow-up questions, if I may, please.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Please do so.
22 MR. JOSSE:
23 Q. The -- you haven't dealt with it because I haven't asked you, but
24 the municipality of Brcko was divided on ethnic lines before the war; is
25 that correct?
1 A. It wasn't divided. I wouldn't put it that way. In any case, not
3 Q. How would you put it, please?
4 A. There were areas where the majority Serb population and also areas
5 where the majority Muslim population, and likewise areas with a majority
6 Croat population, but no lines could be drawn even on a map in order to
7 separate those areas. They were very mixed.
8 Q. Now, this is clearly quite a large topic and not one that
9 personally I'm going to ask you about, but to what extent were the SDS
10 involved in the decision to do this and the administration of this
12 A. In a conversation with the SDA and the HDZ, the SDS proposed the
13 municipality of Brcko should be split amongst the three peoples. The SDS
14 did their utmost to avoid a war, maybe because they were the weakest in
15 the municipality. However, the other two sides did not accept that
17 Q. And are you able to assist the Chamber as to why the SDS proposed
18 that the municipality should be split amongst the three peoples?
19 A. The SDS had the interest of the Serb people in mind. They wanted
20 to save the Serb people. War was imminent, Brcko was somewhat isolated,
21 and a variant was sought even if it was a division, all to avoid a
22 conflict, a war. And I believe that this was the only reason why the SDS
23 asked for such a division.
24 MR. JOSSE: I have nothing else on the topic, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Mr. Harmon, perhaps it might be a good idea
1 that we start cross-examination after the break. We would have seven
2 minutes left only.
3 Mr. Maricic, we'll have a break, 27 minutes. We'll restart at ten
4 minutes to eleven.
5 --- Recess taken at 10.23 a.m.
6 --- On resuming at 10.54 a.m.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, before you start your cross-examination,
8 I would like to deal with two procedural issues. I'll start with the
9 second one, Madam Usher, but of course I'll start with the first one
10 first, then you may already try to find the witness.
11 The first one is a statement on Assembly and Presidency sessions
12 and on P64A.
13 The Trial Chamber would like to address the Prosecution regarding
14 the records of the Bosnian Serb Presidency and the Bosnian Serb Assembly
15 already submitted. In reviewing these documents, the Chamber has noted
16 some gaps.
17 The Chamber would like to request the Prosecution to look for and
18 submit the full records of the 15th, the 20th, and the 21st sessions of
19 the Bosnian Serb Assembly. Part of the record of the 20th session and the
20 minutes of the 21st session are already in evidence. The Chamber notes
21 that the Treanor report states that there are no full records available
22 for the 15th and the 21st sessions. However, these documents might have
23 been found in the meantime, or investigators from the Office of the
24 Prosecution or investigators from the Defence team might be able to
25 retrieve them.
1 The Chamber also notes that it has not received at least one
2 record of a Bosnian Serb Presidency session, that is the 16th session. It
3 might also be that other unnumbered sessions were not tendered into
4 evidence. The Chamber therefore asks the Prosecution to provide all of
5 the available records of the Bosnian Serb Presidency which took place in
6 1992 in a single binder. To be clear, this binder should include the
7 records of the sessions already in evidence, as well as the record of the
8 16th session and of other sessions not tendered thus far. The tabs of the
9 binder should clearly indicate the items already in evidence and the new
10 items that will need to be considered for admission.
11 The Chamber asks the Prosecution toll submit these documents as
12 soon as possible or at the latest by Friday, the 7th of April.
13 In addition to the above, the Chamber wishes to address a related
14 matter. The registrar, upon instructions of the Chamber, will re-number
15 each tab contained in the 28 binders comprising Exhibit P64A. That is the
16 footnote to the Treanor report. This is necessary in the process of
17 scanning these documents to make them accessible electronically through
18 the judicial database. Once the registrar completes this task, all
19 parties will be provided with the information through the exhibit list,
20 which will reflect the descriptions and tab numbers of all tabs contained
21 in P64A. At that point, the Prosecution is asked to provide a concordance
22 table containing, for each document in P64A, the new tab number, the old
23 tab number, the ERN numbers of the English and the B/C/S versions of the
24 document in question, and, when a document is already in evidence, the
25 other exhibit numbers relating to the document. In this way, it will be
1 possible for the parties, the Chamber, and any interested person to
2 retrieve and cite more easily the documents contained in P64A.
3 One reason for the Chambers earlier request to the Prosecution for
4 a binder containing the records of all Presidency sessions is the
5 difficulty we face in navigating and citing items comprising P64A.
6 This concludes the Chamber's request and announcement.
7 MR. JOSSE: Well, Your Honour, I don't want to get difficult about
8 this, but could I make this observation: Personally I have not been
9 involved in what I'm about to state, but other members of our team have
10 been heavily involved in trying to put together these documents for the
11 purposes of Mr. Krajisnik's proposed testimony. A great deal of time and
12 effort has gone into that, and it would have helped, with respect, if we
13 had had some advanced notice that the Chamber had this in mind, because
14 realistically I need to liaise with Mr. Stewart and, in particular, the
15 junior member of our team who has spent literally weeks on this particular
16 task to find out if what the Chamber has now ordered will alter the
17 considerable work that has already been done. Personally, I have no idea,
18 frankly, Your Honour. I'm glad to say I haven't been involved in it, but
19 others have. And had there been some liaison that this was in the
20 pipeline, then we could have made some representations about it. I could
21 have spoken to those in our team who have been working on this particular
22 project, and we could have had some input into what I might otherwise say,
23 with respect, seems a very sensible and good idea.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. First of all, it might be -- if this would have
25 been in the pipeline already for a long time, the Chamber would certainly
1 have announced that. You may have noticed that, especially during recent
2 sessions, that the struggle you describe your team member had was most
3 likely the same struggle as the Chamber had. So therefore it -- the
4 Chamber wanted to resolve these matters.
5 The Chamber would not have opposed any suggestion by the Defence
6 to say this is so disorganised, could a solution be found, could the
7 Chamber order the establishment of a concordance table or another
8 organising. So what you're addressing the Chamber I'm in return
9 addressing the Defence if you may have noticed on these practical matters
10 that the Chamber always tried to accommodate and facilitate the Defence.
11 But perhaps before Mr. Harmon starts selecting all the material this
12 afternoon, perhaps if you would have any further suggestions which, after
13 you have shown the state I have just given to your team member, if that
14 would -- if he would say, well, if you change this then it's less work for
15 the Prosecution and it works better, then, of course, I take it,
16 Mr. Harmon, you would wait until tomorrow before starting.
17 MR. JOSSE: Your Honour, that is exactly I was going to suggest.
18 If we could have 24 hours before the request or order that has just been
19 made is executed by the Prosecution that would help enormously. I'm going
20 to e-mail this to the relevant members of our team immediately. Thank
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Madam Usher, I start now the second matter.
23 The Trial Chamber, Mr. Josse, and I'm now mainly addressing the
24 Defence, we'd like to address the third and the fourth requests for
25 guidance filed by the Defence on the 17th and the 20th of March, 2006,
2 The Chamber does not oppose the modifications to the list of
3 witnesses contained in those requests. However, once again some concerns
4 arise from these changes.
5 In particular, the Chamber is concerned about the estimate for the
6 evidence of the last two witnesses mentioned in the fourth request, that
7 is the protected witness named in the confidential annex to the Defence
8 request of the 2nd of March, 2006, and Milovan Bjelica. In the view of
9 the Chamber, the time foreseen for their testimony will not allow the
10 Defence to finish their evidence by the 4th of April, 2006, the date set
11 by the Scheduling Order. Depending on the exact date of Milovan Bjelica's
12 appearance in court, either a substantial amount of time us be gained in
13 the examination of witnesses appearing before him, or a request to shorten
14 the accused's testimony or its preparation must be for the coming.
15 The Chamber therefore asks the Defence to take these remarks into
16 consideration, and this concludes the Chambers's response to the third and
17 fourth requests for guidance.
18 MR. JOSSE: Thank you. I have no comment on that at this stage.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Then, Madam Usher.
20 [The witness entered court]
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Maricic, please be seated. Mr. Maricic, you'll
22 now be cross-examined by Mr. Harmon, the counsel for the Prosecution. And
23 where I think I'd forgotten this morning to remind you that you're still
24 bound by the solemn declaration you've given at the beginning of your
25 testimony, I take it that you understood that you're still bound by it. I
1 see you are nodding yes.
2 THE WITNESS: Yes.
3 JUDGE ORIE: That doesn't appear on the transcript, but it's now
5 Please proceed, Mr. Harmon.
6 MR. HARMON: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Cross-examination by Mr. Harmon:
8 Q. Good morning, Mr. Maricic.
9 A. Good morning.
10 Q. Mr. Maricic -- first of all, if we could pass out the bundles of
12 Mr. Maricic, you're going to receive in front of you a bundle of
13 exhibits that have tab numbers, and I'm going to direct you to certain
14 documents behind each of the tabs, and then I'm going to ask you to
15 consult those documents. I'll direct you to certain portions of it, of
16 the documents I'd like you to read, and if there is no translation then I
17 will read the English version of the documents to you and then ask for
18 your comments.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Josse, your microphone is still open, and I --
20 MR. HARMON: And if the witness could be presented the first
22 Q. Mr. Maricic, you testified that you were on the Main Board of the
23 SDS in Brcko in the first year -- sorry, the Main Board of the SDS --
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, if I may interrupt you. It seems as if a
25 similar noise comes with your microphone. I don't know. Perhaps it's
1 equality of arms.
2 MR. HARMON: Is this any better, Your Honour? This is a different
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I think it's better.
5 MR. HARMON: I'll use this microphone then.
6 JUDGE ORIE: But it's good if the Prosecutor's computer makes a
7 similar noise as the Defence computer. It's not completely over, but I
8 think it's better, at least. Yes, please proceed.
9 MR. HARMON:
10 Q. Mr. Maricic, you testified that you were on the Main Board of the
11 SDS in its first year of existence, 1990 to 1991. Let me turn your
12 attention to tab 1, the document in tab 1. This document is P529, tab
13 455, for the record.
14 Mr. Maricic, this is a list of the members of the Main Board of
15 the Serbian Democratic Party in Bosnia. You'll notice that your name is
16 at item number 21, and handwritten next to your name is the name of
17 Dr. Vojinovic Marinko.
18 Did you and Dr. Vojinovic Marinko share responsibilities at the
19 Main Board of the SDS in 1990 and 1991?
20 A. First of all, it was called the Main Board. Second, when I was
21 member of the Main Board, Dr. Milenko Vojinovic was not a member of the
22 Main Board at the same time. We could not have shared responsibilities
23 because he was not a member then. Replaced me on the Main Board. And
24 when he was appointed, I stopped being a member of the Main Board.
25 Q. How many Main Board meetings did you attend in 1990 and 1991?
1 A. I cannot tell you that, but I attended a rather large number of
3 Q. All right. Now, in your evidence yesterday - this is found
4 Your Honours, at page 45 of LiveNote, lines 5 and 6 - you said that you
5 were surprised to find out that he, being Mr. Krajisnik, was a member of
6 the Main Board since it was founded. If you look at this list, this
7 document in tab 1, you don't see Mr. Krajisnik's name at all. So my
8 question to you is: What is the source of your information that
9 Mr. Krajisnik was a member of the Main Board since it was founded?
10 A. I had some sort of paper from some sort of Prosecution, and that's
11 where I read that Mr. Krajisnik had been a member of the Main Board since
12 its foundation. And I can only say again that I was surprised if he was.
13 Q. Did you see -- in the years 1990 and 1991, did you see
14 Mr. Krajisnik attending the meetings of the Main Board of the SDS that you
16 A. In 1990 and 1991, I never saw Mr. Krajisnik anywhere, including
17 the sessions of the Main Board. Which doesn't mean he wasn't there, but I
18 didn't see him speak, take the floor, or anything.
19 Q. At the session of the SDS Main Board on the 21st of July, 1991,
20 there was an election and -- of Main Board members. Your name -- you were
21 not elected in that session. That's correct, isn't it?
22 A. I don't know about that session. I know that I received
23 notification. I probably didn't attend, but I was notified that Dr. Beli
24 came to replace me with the explanation that as president of the Municipal
25 Board he should occupy that position.
1 MR. HARMON: For the record, Your Honours, found in tab 32 are
2 excerpts from the SDS session of the Main Board. It's P37, and it
3 identifies the people who were elected to the Main Board at that session.
4 Q. Mr. Maricic --
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. At the same time, if I look to tab 32, the
6 description does not fit, Mr. Harmon, for purposes of -- I don't know
7 whether this was how it was originally filed. I would have to check
8 that. Because it gives comment rather than just what the document is.
9 The document is the transcript of the SDS session of the 21st of July, and
10 its comment that Mr. Maricic was not elected, just as it would be comment
11 to say that I was not elected.
12 MR. HARMON: Then I'll withdraw the comment, Your Honour, and let
13 the record speak for itself.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
15 MR. HARMON:
16 Q. Mr. Maricic, after you were replaced on the Main Board by
17 Dr. Beli, did you ever attend another SDS Main Board meeting?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Let me direct your attention now, sir, to the document that's
20 found in tab 31 --
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Maricic would like to say something, Mr. Harmon,
23 Mr. Maricic, please. He raised his hand.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] By a strange coincidence, when
25 Dr. Beli died I became deputy to the Assembly of the Republika Srpska in
1 his stead and member of the Main Board, again in his stead, and I think it
2 was in 1995.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. You'd say you then again attended other SDS
4 Main Board meetings, whereas I take it, Mr. Harmon, you were interested to
5 know about the early years rather than --
6 MR. HARMON: I was interested in 1992.
7 JUDGE ORIE: But that was not part of your question. Please
9 MR. HARMON: All right.
10 Q. Witness, if you could kindly turn to the document that is found in
11 tab 31. This is a document that is not in your language, so I will read
12 this document.
13 JUDGE ORIE: And it needs a number first.
14 THE REGISTRAR: Tab 31, Your Honours, P1118.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Josse, I would not be surprised since you were
16 not always happy with press articles, but I'm not quite sure.
17 MR. HARMON:
18 Q. Witness, I will identify this document. This is a document that
19 is from the time you --
20 MR. JOSSE: I --
21 MR. HARMON: -- service?
22 MR. JOSSE: Sorry, Your Honour, the approach I have personally
23 taken as Your Honour has seen over the last few weeks is that I allow
24 other than exceptional circumstances the questions to be put and then make
25 my submissions in due course.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Okay.
2 MR. HARMON:
3 Q. This is a document, Mr. Maricic, that is from the Tanjug news
4 service. It's from August 28, 1997 entitled settlement in Brcko settling.
5 I'll read some paragraphs. It says, the first paragraph: "The situation
6 in the Bosnian Serb town of Brcko was slowly settling in the early evening
7 of Thursday and the people were dispersing from the streets. However, two
8 more civilians were hurt in shooting by SFOR in the afternoon. Local
9 municipal authorities have held brief meetings with officials some
10 international institutions. SFOR troop movements have slowed down but
11 reconnaissance flights are continuous. And I'm going to read the
12 penultimate paragraph.
13 "During the afternoon the municipal Brcko council held an
14 emergency session to discussion the situation and decided to issue a
15 statement inviting the people to exercise restraint and return to their
16 homes. In view of the fact that Brcko public safety centre chief Andrija
17 Bjelosevic has disappeared from town the Municipal Council has in a
18 summary procedural appointed Bosko Maricic the first commander of the Serb
19 Territorial Defence of Brcko to be acting chief.
20 MR. JOSSE: It doesn't say "the," and the absence of the "the"
21 might be significant on this occasion.
22 MR. HARMON: If I said "the," then I withdraw that and I'm
23 reading --
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, perhaps these --
25 MR. JOSSE: I was going to say, it's going to make interpreting
1 extremely difficult.
2 MR. HARMON: -- re-read the sentence then.
3 JUDGE ORIE: If you read it very slowly and now the interpreters
4 are alerted on possible problems.
5 MR. HARMON:
6 Q. Mr. View of the fact that Brcko public safety centre chief Andrija
7 Bjelosevic has disappeared from town the Municipal Council has in a
8 summary procedure appointed Bosko Maricic 1st commander of the Serb
9 Territorial Defence of Brcko to be acting chief."
10 Mr. Maricic, were you the 1st commander of the Serb Territorial
11 Defence of Brcko?
12 A. I did not have an official appointment, and I don't know anything
13 about it, and I don't know which year you are talking about, but there was
14 no official appointment. I don't remember that, nor did I command.
15 Q. Were you ever unofficially given the tasks of directing,
16 commanding the Territorial Defence in the Serb Territorial Defence in the
17 Brcko municipality?
18 MR. JOSSE: I think the witness is entitled to the year.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Mr. Harmon, if you look at the year at the top
20 of the document.
21 MR. HARMON: Your Honour, I'm asking him a very general question,
22 if he was ever a Serb -- acted in the capacity of commander --
23 JUDGE ORIE: It's fair for the witness to be aware. Your earlier
24 questions were about 1990, 1991, whereas the focus of his testimony has
25 been completely on say years before 1995, then it's fair that the witness
1 who has not the text of this report in front of him in a language which is
2 his own to confront him explicitly with the year expressed on this
4 MR. HARMON: I'll do it by a number of years, then, Your Honour.
5 Q. In 1998 were you ever the commander of the Serb Territorial
6 Defence in Brcko?
7 A. Absolutely not.
8 Q. In 1991, were you ever given a position either de facto or de jure
9 as the commander of the Serb Territorial Defence in Brcko?
10 A. I know nothing of any appointment, and I know for sure that I
11 never commanded. I told you all about the various things I did during the
12 war, and I was on the front line from the first day of the war as a simple
13 soldier. I don't know if it was ever discussed, but I never received any
14 official document appointing me, nor did I act as a commander.
15 JUDGE ORIE: But now to get it quite clear, Mr. Maricic, were you
16 ever informed, whether you received a document or not, whether it was by
17 the neighbours, whether it was by the chief of staff, were you ever
18 informed about you being appointed in a commanding position in the TO
19 whether prior to the war, during the war, or after the war?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, absolutely not.
21 MR. HARMON:
22 Q. All right. Now, let me turn to a different part of your evidence.
23 You testified yesterday that you were the SDS vice-president. Can you
24 tell me the dates when you functioned as the vice-president of the SDS in
25 your municipality?
1 A. I don't know the exact date, but think it was the end of July or
2 the beginning of August in 1990 when the founding Assembly of the SDS was
3 held in Brcko, and at that meeting, the SDS was founded, either at that
4 Assembly or a few days later when the leadership was elected. Dr. Beli
5 received the largest number of votes for the position of president, and I
6 received the largest number of votes for vice-president. I think it was
7 held in a hall. It wasn't at the founding Assembly.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Maricic, you're describing how you were
9 appointed. The question was the dates when you functioned. When did it
10 approximately start? I do understand it was the end of July or beginning
11 of August 1990. Until when?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, my official function ceased
13 when I was sent for treatment. I couldn't discharge any functions while I
14 was being treated, and later I was severely disabled. So you could say
15 that it ended in May 1992. So you could say that I was vice-president
16 from 1990 to May 1992, although I'm not sure I understood the question.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And you did not take up that office again once
18 you returned to Brcko in September 1992.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, by that time the SDS did not
20 really operate any more, and I was severely disabled. I was wondering how
21 I would earn my livelihood.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. But the question was whether you were still or
23 again in that function once you returned. Whether it was very active is
24 another matter, but formally were you in that position once you returned?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think I was, because I don't
1 remember being replaced or dismissed from that position.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Please proceed. And could you, Mr. Maricic,
3 listen carefully to what you are asked, then focus your answer
4 specifically on the question.
5 Please proceed, Mr. Harmon.
6 MR. HARMON:
7 Q. Let's turn to a different exhibit. Witness, if you'd turn to the
8 Exhibit that is found in tab 24.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Which needs a number as well.
10 THE REGISTRAR: Tab 24 will be P1119.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
12 MR. HARMON:
13 Q. Witness, this is a page from the Official Gazette, and I'm going
14 to direct your attention the right-hand column, the number 298. Witness,
15 this exhibit indicates that pursuant to Article 80 of the Republika Srpska
16 Constitution of the decision on the creation of War Presidencies in
17 municipalities during a state of war, then it gives a number, the
18 president of the republic passed the following decision on the creation of
19 a war Presidency in Brcko municipality. And if we look at item number 6,
20 it indicates that Bosko Maricic was a member, and this was dated the 30th
21 of July, 1995, and the typed signature -- the typed name of
22 Dr. Radovan Karadzic, president of the republic, appears under it.
23 Were you in fact appointed to the War Presidency, the Brcko War
24 Presidency, on this date and did you function this that capacity?
25 A. I'm seeing this for the first time. I'm sure that I didn't attend
1 a single session. It was very late in 1995, and I don't know anything
2 about this, although I see my name here.
3 Q. All right. Let's turn to a different document then, Witness. Can
4 you tell me what is the municipal association of participants in the war
5 in 1990?
6 A. It must be some mistake. I don't know what kind of association of
7 participants in the war could have existed in 1990. Maybe communist
9 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... tab 22, Witness. This also
10 needs a number.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Tab 22 would be P1120.
12 MR. HARMON:
13 Q. Witness, this document, tab 22, is a document from the East Bosnia
14 Corps. It's strictly confidential. It was addressed to
15 Major General Gvero. It was on the subject of information relating to
16 certain events in Brcko, and it is signed by the commander, Major General
17 Novica Simic. And I want to direct your -- let me just refresh your
18 recollection perhaps as to what this document is about.
19 This document, Witness, dealt with certain claims made by
20 Mr. Djordje Ristanic who was president of the Brcko Municipal Assembly
21 that he addressed to the East Bosnia Corps on the 5th of October, 1993,
22 and he particularly stressed that there was a danger that the president of
23 the municipality of Brcko may be removed by certain municipal boardsmen
24 who are within the 1st Posavina Brigade. As a result of that, on the 6th
25 of October, there were a series of conversations with various people who
1 were identified in this document, including yourself, and this -- the
2 interviews were conducted by a commission.
3 If we return, Witness, to the account of the interview made with
4 you, and if you take a look at the B/C/S version in front you,
5 Mr. Maricic, it is on the second page of the text, the second large
6 paragraph starting with "U nazgo voru sa Boskom Maricicem." That's the
7 text I want to direct your attention to, and I want to direct Your
8 Honour's attention to page 3 of the English version, the first paragraph,
9 the first full paragraph starting with "During our conversation with Bosko
10 Maricic, vice-president of the SDS and president of the association of
11 participants in the war in 1990," and then that's -- can you enlighten us
12 as to what that particular association is, Mr. Maricic?
13 A. This is a mistake. This association was established
14 in 1992, I believe, and it is true that I was elected its president.
15 Q. All right. So this is a typographical error.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Was the name of the association participants in the
17 war in 1992? Was that then the name of the ...
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I believe that this should be the
19 case, because in 1990 and 1991, there were no war veterans and there could
20 not be a name of that sort.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Harmon.
22 MR. HARMON:
23 Q. Witness, then let me ask you then to turn to tab 47, Witness.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Which needs a number as well.
25 THE REGISTRAR: Tab 47 will be P1121.
1 MR. HARMON:
2 Q. Now, Witness, I would like to direct your attention to the article
3 with the headline from Brcko to Ravna Gora. And this appears in a
4 publication, Brcanski pogledi, dated the 28th of April, 1994, and I will
5 read part of this document.
6 53 years ago, on 12 April 1941 to be precise, Draza Mihajlovic
7 spent some time in our town. On that occasion the Serb Chetnik
8 Association of Brcko commemorated this date with a small celebration. On
9 behalf of the Serbian Chetnik organisation, Mr. Bosko Maricic addressed
10 those gathered at the old railway station, the place where the legendary
11 Chetnik general had addressed the people and Serbian heroes," and then it
12 goes on to quote you.
13 Were you -- you represent the Serbian Chetnik organisation? Were
14 you a member of the Serbian Chetnik organisation, Mr. Maricic?
15 A. I was a member. I was a member. And that was for a while, and
16 later on I discontinued my membership.
17 Q. When did you become a member of the Serbian Chetnik organisation?
18 A. The Serbian Chetnik organisation was established in Brcko and it
19 had nothing whatsoever to do with any parties. I don't know when its
20 founding session took place, but I can assume that it was towards the end
21 of 1992 or in 1993. I don't know. Maybe you have the exact date
23 Q. Why did you join the Serbian Chetnik organisation?
24 A. Draza Mihajlovic was the leader of democratic forces in the Second
25 World War, and my father was a member of those forces. So it was only
1 logical for me to continue that affiliation.
2 Q. All right. Thank you. Now, you testified in response to a
3 question yesterday by Mr. Josse that you were a member of the Bosnian Serb
4 Assembly in 1994. And I saw on your testimony earlier this morning,
5 during my examination you said 1995, and I want to clarify that evidence
6 so the record is perfectly clear, Mr. Maricic.
7 You replaced Dr. Beli in the Bosnian Serb Assembly after he died.
8 That's the case, isn't it?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Now, if we -- I would like to show you, Witness, just to orient
11 you as to time and to be perfectly clear, if we turn to tab 25, Witness,
12 this is P65 tab 128, also P529, tab 49. This is a transcript of a tape
13 recording, Witness, from the 50th session of the national assembly that
14 was held on the 15th and 16th of April 1995 in Sanski Most. And if you
15 look at the B/C/S version, sir, on the -- what appears to have the number
16 10 at the top of the page and bears the ERN 00845892, you'll --
17 MR. HARMON: Your Honours, I'm referring to the -- page bottom at
18 the bottom says 132 of 389.
19 Q. You will see that Dr. Vojinovic appears to be alive and well on
20 that date because he's addressing the Assembly. Do you have any reason to
21 dispute the date which Dr. Beli addressed the Assembly that's recorded in
22 this document?
23 A. No. This is true. He was still an Assembly member at that time.
24 Q. All right. Then if we could turn then to -- Witness, if we could
25 turn to the document that is found in --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, if you would just have asked the witness
2 whether 1994 was a mistake and it was actually 1995. It would have saved
3 us a couple of pages copied and et cetera, et cetera. Of course, you
4 could have them in reserve in case --
5 MR. HARMON: I'll be glad to.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, please proceed.
7 MR. HARMON:
8 Q. Were you appointed in 1995, Witness, to the Bosnian Serb Assembly?
9 A. Dr. Beli felt poorly at this meeting in Sanski Most because of
10 some clash with generals. He went to hospital then. Maybe a month, two
11 months later he died, and some time later I became an Assembly member.
12 And this is the truth and I can't be sure of the exact time when all this
14 Q. Well, let me show you then Witness let me show you an exhibit in
15 tab 27.
16 MR. HARMON: It needs an exhibit number.
17 THE REGISTRAR: Tab 27 would be P1122.
18 MR. HARMON:
19 Q. If you could turn to that, Mr. Maricic. I direct your attention
20 to the left-hand column the item of the gazette that is numbered 276.
21 This is a decision verifying the mandates of deputies in the National
22 Assembly, and it is a decision that was passed on the 6th of August, 1995,
23 and is signed by the President of the National Assembly, Momcilo
24 Krajisnik. Does this refresh your recollection as to the date when you
25 were appointed to the national Bosnian Serb Assembly?
1 A. No, I can't remember the date, but this decision may have passed
2 even after the Assembly meeting. I attended the Assembly meeting when I
3 was appointed an Assembly member. I -- I can't remember the date. But
4 this -- this is correct.
5 Q. Okay. Well, let me then -- when you say this is correct, are you
6 saying that this is the date -- this is the correct date when you were
7 appointed to the Bosnian Serb Assembly?
8 A. I'm not talking about the date. I'm talking about the body of the
9 text containing my name. This decision may have been passed even after
10 the relevant Assembly session. What I'm saying is this is when it was
11 officially drawn up.
12 Q. Just in case, Your Honour, I'm turning to tab 26 so we can
13 eliminate any doubt.
14 If we turn to tab 26, Witness, this needs a new number?
15 THE REGISTRAR: That will be P1123.
16 JUDGE ORIE: It's still not clear to me, Mr. Harmon. I mean,
17 we're now moving from 1994 to 1995. I don't know. I take it that
18 something important would have happened during those years and it's not
19 just a matter of not knowing exactly when he started.
20 MR. HARMON: No, it is a matter of clarification, Your Honour, and
21 precision because this witness has opined about certain matters in
22 connection with his contacts with Mr. Krajisnik. He's put the date of
23 1994. It's our submission that Mr. Maricic was appointed on the 6th of
24 August, 1995.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
1 MR. HARMON: We will make that submission based on two documents,
2 the document P1123 which is the text of the Assembly session. It was held
3 on the 6th of August.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I do understand what you're doing, the relevance
5 and the importance, especially, of it is not yet clear to me but ...
6 MR. HARMON: I understand. I'm trying not to dwell too much on
7 the issue and I'm trying to get through it as quickly as possible. The
8 witness has said that he doesn't know exactly.
9 Q. So if we could take a look, witness, at the document in tab 26.
10 This is the minutes of the 52nd session of the national assembly of
11 Republika Srpska held on the 6th of August, 1995. And, Witness, when --
12 what I'd like to do is direct your attention to the session -- if we turn,
13 if you turn, Witness, to the second page of the Cyrillic text, the large
14 paragraph -- large paragraph that appears slightly below the mid-line, it
15 says --
16 MR. HARMON: And, Your Honours, I'm referring to page 3 of the
17 English page 3 of 149.
18 Q. The text reads, "in the meantime we were also discussing the
19 appointment of a deputy who should replace the deceased Vojinovic. There
20 is a preliminary agreement this should also be a candidate from the list,
21 a person who passed the elections, and who is also from Brcko. Can we do
22 the last selection and appointment without verification or we should get
23 the opinion of the Main Board for this candidate. Mr. Maricic is here."
24 And it goes on.
25 Mr. Maricic, does that reflect your recollection of the session
1 where you were appointed to replace Mr. Vojinovic as a member of the
2 Bosnian Serb Assembly?
3 A. I think it was then, and I now remember that there was a
4 discussion to that effect when my appointment was being discussed.
5 Q. So you accept, do you, then, Mr. Maricic, that your appointment --
6 you were replacing Mr. Vojinovic as of the 6th of August, 1995. That's
7 not in dispute, is it?
8 A. Yes. I apologise for having misspoken, for having mentioned 1994.
9 It was a long time ago. I can't remember the date. I am even wrong when
10 it comes to some years, apparently.
11 Q. Mr. Maricic, you testified that the war -- you became the director
12 of a local furniture factory. Was that the Majevica factory in Brcko?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. If we could turn to tab 42. This needs a number.
15 THE REGISTRAR: Tab 42, Your Honours, will be P1124.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
17 MR. HARMON:
18 Q. This document is not in your language so I will read it --
19 portions of it to you and then ask you to affirm whether it's correct or
20 not. This is a press release from the Office of the High Representative
21 dated the 25th of July, 2002, and it reads: "OHR press release.
22 Supervisor of Brcko request replacement of director and steering board of
23 Majevica. Supervisor of Brcko, Henri L. Clarke, has asked Brcko district
24 mayor Sinisa Kisic to replace Mr. Bosko Maricic, director of ODP Majevica
25 Brcko and its steering board, following the action of the Prosecutor's
1 office in seeking the confirmation of an indictment against Mr. Maricic."
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. --
3 MR. HARMON:
4 Q. "The indictment charges Mr. Maricic with abuse of office and
5 failure to carry out his official duties by permitting the illegal
6 construction of residences on Majevica property for himself and another 30
7 families between January 2000 and May 2002 without payment of any
8 compensation for the land or obtaining construction licenses."
9 That's correct, isn't it?
10 MR. HARMON: I withdraw question. I can see Mr. Josse standing.
11 MR. JOSSE: My objection is that, in my submission, the whole of
12 this document needs to be read to the witness. If he's going to be
13 cross-examined on this issue, bearing in mind it's not in his language,
14 he's entitled to have it all read to him. That's what I submit.
15 JUDGE ORIE: I -- Mr. Harmon, I don't know how this is put in the
16 sequence of your questions, but I would suggest that it's fair to the
17 witness that it will be read and translated to him, but at the same time
18 to spend all this time -- all that time on it in court -- Mr. Josse, would
19 it be a fair solution if we would ask one of our interpreters in the next
20 break to read and translate this document to the witness and he can ask
21 parts to be repeated, et cetera.
22 And then, Mr. Harmon, I don't know to what extent it would
23 interrupt the -- interrupt your sequence of questions, but at the same
24 time I would say this is not a document where you were dependent on the 65
25 ter summary, I take it, knowing the name and the position of the accused.
1 I mean, this could have been sent for translation --
2 MR. JOSSE: Of the witness.
3 JUDGE ORIE: This could have been sent for translation at an
4 earlier stage.
5 MR. HARMON: We just received this document, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE ORIE: You just received it. Yes. In that case --
7 nevertheless, I suggest that it will be read to the witness during the
8 next break so that he's fully aware of the content of the whole of it.
9 MR. JOSSE: If an interpreter is good enough to do that we would
10 be very grateful.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We'll see whether someone would be available.
12 Mr. Harmon.
13 But, of course -- apart from asking the witness to read, of course
14 you could put questions to the witness in relation to this matter even
15 without confronting him with the document and nevertheless he would be
16 given an opportunity to further comment once he has received an oral
17 translation of the document. Please proceed.
18 MR. HARMON: Thank you, Your Honour.
19 Q. That's correct, isn't it, Mr. Maricic? The supervisor of Brcko
20 did request the mayor to replace you because you had been indicted,
21 because he had sought confirmation of an indictment against you. That's
22 correct, isn't it?
23 A. Correct.
24 Q. We turn to -- I don't have to turn to the document. And on that
25 very same day you were dismissed. You were replaced on the order of the
1 mayor. Mr. Kisic from the position of director of the Majevica factory.
2 That's correct also isn't it?
3 A. Correct.
4 Q. Furthermore, Mr. Maricic, you were prosecuted for crimes in --
5 committed in the Republika Srpska in the municipality of Brcko in the
6 lower court of Brcko district for the crime of abuse of official position.
7 You were prosecuted and you were convicted of that crime. That's correct,
8 isn't it?
9 A. I was convicted. But whether I abused my position or not is
10 rather debatable. I'm sure that I would have been given even a harsher
11 sentence if the allegations were correct in the indictment. However,
12 after a lengthy procedure, I was actually found almost not guilty.
13 Actually, I got a very minimum fine of 4.500 German marks, which is
15 Q. You were sentenced to three months imprisonment, isn't that
16 correct, by the lower District Court?
17 A. No. I was just fined. I'd had to pay 4.500 German marks.
18 Q. If we turn to tab 40. This document needs a new number.
19 THE REGISTRAR: Tab 40, Your Honours, will be P1125.
20 MR. HARMON:
21 Q. Witness, this is a document from the lower court of the Brcko --
22 BH Brcko district number KP 117/03 dated the 19th of March, 2004, and it
23 is a judgement which you are found guilty for the crime of abuse of
24 official position or authorisation from Article 337, paragraph 4, in
25 relation to paragraph 3 of the Criminal Code of Republika Srpska.
1 Witness, if you turn to -- I'm referring Your Honours to page 2 of
2 the English version.
3 Witness, this document reflects that you were sentenced to a term
4 imprisonment of three months. It doesn't reflect a fine. That's correct,
5 isn't it?
6 A. The verdict was a term of imprisonment of three months, but there
7 is an additional sentence of the same lower court where the sentence is
8 transformed into 4.500 German marks, but all that was overturned by a
9 higher court in Brcko.
10 Could you please find that sentence as well? I did not go to
11 prison. I just paid 4.500 German marks. This sentence was altered by the
12 higher court.
13 Q. Could we turn to tab 41. This needs a number as well?
14 THE REGISTRAR: That will be P1126.
15 MR. HARMON:
16 Q. Witness, this is the appeals court of the BH Brcko district and
17 this is the judgement of the appeals court from the lower court decision?
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, may I draw your attention to the fact at
19 least in the sentence itself there are some mistakes which I see, numbers
20 of a hundred becoming 100, three zeros, which suggests the comma replaced
21 by a dot and a 0 added which gives a totally different impression on
22 this -- on especially this sentence. Apart from whether it's a final one,
23 but the translation is in this respect not very precise.
24 MR. HARMON: I'll look into that, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, please do so.
1 MR. HARMON:
2 Q. Look, Witness, at P1126, tab 41. This appears to be the appeals
3 court judgement from the conviction from the lower court. And, Witness,
4 we turn to the last paragraph in the B/C/S version, and I'm referring to
5 page 6 of 6, it reads: "Since there are no reasons that disprove the
6 first instant judgement either in the appeal of the BH public prosecutor's
7 office of Brcko district or the Defence of Bosko Maricic, lawyer Milenko
8 Simikic, pursuant to the provisions of Article 312 of the BH Brcko
9 district Criminal Code, this court passed the decision as stated in which
10 it rejected the aforementioned appeals as unfounded and confirmed the
11 judgement reached at the first instance."
12 So this appeals judgement, Witness, confirmed your conviction in
13 the lower court. Do you dispute what's in this document, Mr. Maricic?
14 A. No.
15 Q. Were there other legal proceedings after this appeals decision
16 that you want to inform us about that may have resulted in a further
17 modification of your sentence?
18 A. No. No. The president of the court, a lady, passed a decision
19 that the sentence prison would be altered into a fine of 4.500 German
20 marks, but you are reading just the aggravating conditions. There are
21 some other allegations of the second instance court stating that the
22 Prosecutor's allegations were not correct, and you should read that. And
23 also because of all this and also because of the fact that I was not
24 guilty, and that is why the second instance court varied my sentence into
25 a fine, which I paid. I didn't go to prison.
1 Could you please look at the page number 3 where it says that the
2 allegations made by the Prosecutor are not correct and so on and so forth.
3 Q. I've read this, Mr. Maricic. I've also read the conclusion of
4 this document that affirms the conviction of you for the crimes. And
5 while this document did reject some of the prosecutor's claims on appeal,
6 it affirmed the conviction. I have no issue with what you have to say in
7 terms of some of the prosecution's positions on appeal being rejected by
8 the appeals court, but my question to you is: This judgement by the
9 appeals court confirmed your conviction in the lower court, didn't it?
10 A. Yes. I would like to add something. The truth is also that the
11 court made an official decision after the proceedings varying my prison
12 sentence into a fine of 4.500 German marks. And this is also the truth.
13 I didn't spend a single day in prison. And I'm really surprised that you
14 haven't got that as well. I want --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Maricic, if you have a written document in your
16 possession which -- in which a decision is contained which changes your
17 term of imprisonment of -- to 4.500 convertible marks, German marks, then
18 the Chamber would like to receive that. Yes? Have you got such a
19 document in your possession at home or --
20 THE WITNESS: In Brcko this is part of my case file. This is an
21 official document that was passed by the presiding judge.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Do you have that decision in your possession at home?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
24 JUDGE ORIE: A practical way of getting it.
25 MR. HARMON: I will inquire -- we inquired and we were provided
1 with these documents. I'll make a further inquiry, Your Honour. We
2 received these documents from the court.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And if you would like to present this, perhaps
4 once you've finished, Mr. Josse, if you would consider it relevant for
5 this Court to know, then once you've finished your testimony here, so not
6 before that, perhaps you can send a copy either through the victims and
7 witness section or if you would find that easier through Mr. Josse, if at
8 least, you would be available for that Mr. Josse.
9 MR. JOSSE: If the Defence team will liaise with Mr. Maricic, but
10 I intend to re-examine on this issue anyway.
11 MR. HARMON: And we will also make an inquiry, Your Honour, into
12 the documents that we were provided and I'll make a further inquiry,
13 Your Honour.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, please.
15 MR. HARMON:
16 Q. Now, you had testified today about negotiations with the Muslims.
17 Let me ask you, Mr. Maricic, to turn to tab 17 in this document, in this
18 bundle of documents.
19 And tab P529 Hanson tab 74.
20 Mr. Maricic, this is a document, the summary of the events and
21 situations within an assessment of the degree of achievement, and if you
22 turn, Mr. Maricic, to the last page of this document in B/C/S, you'll see
23 that it is signed by the War Presidency of the Brcko municipality?
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, is this same document is P22 or -- I
25 think it is.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, on page 9.
2 MR. HARMON: Yes. Apparently it is, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
4 MR. HARMON:
5 Q. Witness, do you recognise that signature? Can you read the name?
6 A. I think this is the signature of Djordje Ristanic.
7 Q. Okay. And what was his role in the War Presidency, Mr. Maricic?
8 A. I've already said that the War Presidency never actually operated.
9 And I found somewhere where it says that the president of the War
10 Presidency is Djordje Ristanic. There was not a single session of the War
11 Presidency that formally existed that I attended, and I don't remember
12 any. And I'm absolutely certain it never really operated apart from the
13 president who was earlier president of the Assembly and maybe individual
14 members did meet.
15 Q. Well, we'll come to the War Presidency in a few minutes,
16 Mr. Maricic.
17 JUDGE ORIE: But may I ask you, Mr. Maricic, is it now that you
18 say Mr. Ristanic was a member of this War Presidency or was he not?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have no evidence that he was
20 elected president of the War Presidency, but some sort of logic tells me
21 that since he used to be president of the Assembly and since I see his
22 signature here that it was him.
23 JUDGE ORIE: It's only the basis of the information you have now
24 that you come to this conclusion?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Very little was said about the War
1 Presidency in Brcko, and I really don't know anything about it. It could
2 have been established maybe at the beginning of the war when I was
3 wounded, when I was absent from the area. I was severely disabled.
4 Whether it held any sessions without me, I can't say, but I don't remember
5 that I attended a single session of the War Presidency although it's a
6 possibility. But many years have passed since then. And there was
7 general chaos in Brcko at the time.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Did you know that it exist.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm not sure.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Are you not sure whether you know it, or do you say
11 I -- it's not sure that it did exist.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am not sure whether I know, and I
13 can't say with any certainty whether it existed or not. I am more
14 inclined to say that it did. But since I'm not absolutely sure, I don't
15 want to speculate.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Harmon.
17 MR. HARMON:
18 Q. Mr. Maricic, according to your earlier testimony genocide was
19 committed against the Serbs in Brcko municipality in the Second World War.
20 As a result of that, the Serbs in Brcko considered the territory of
21 Brcko to be Serbian because it was a place where genocide had been
22 committed against the Serbs. That's correct, isn't it?
23 A. I don't think you could put it that way. The Serbs did not think
24 that Brcko should belong to the Serbs, nor was anything done in the course
25 of this latest war because of something that happened in World War II.
1 Q. Well, let's take a look at this document that's in front of you in
2 tab 17.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, where exactly did the witness say that --
4 I don't remember the word genocide, but maybe that I'm wrong. A search in
5 yesterday and today's transcript does not assist me. I saw similar words
6 in the 65 ter summary. I don't know whether you are --
7 MR. HARMON: Let me just -- bear with me for one minute.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
9 MR. HARMON: I have some notes, and I'll see if I can locate the
10 reference. I'm recalling the witness testified yesterday about Serbs
11 being killed by Muslims during the Second World War.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, which of course is not the same yet as ...
13 MR. HARMON: Let me see if I can find the reference, Your Honour.
14 It certainly appears in the 65 ter summary, Your Honour. It certainly
15 appears in the 65 ter summary.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but if -- we'd rather not use the 65 ter summary
17 because that would raise a few questions as well, such as numbers of those
18 killed in September and ...
19 MR. HARMON: I'm not able to find it, Your Honour, in my notes,
20 and certainly I'll --
21 JUDGE ORIE: My search -- and usually if I search on the 22nd,
22 then I get it in your question, but I do not find it in 21st.
23 MR. HARMON: Well, then I'll rephrase the question, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, please do so.
25 MR. HARMON:
1 Q. Mr. Maricic, did you ever hear articulated the position that
2 territory where genocide was committed against the Serbs in the Second
3 World War, the territory where that genocide had taken place was Serb
4 territory, historically Serb territory? Did you ever hear of that
5 position ever being taken or articulated by anybody in the SDS or anybody
6 in a leadership position?
7 A. Yes. But I didn't hear it only from the SDS. It was a generally
8 taken position that, looking back, Brcko was originally Serb, a Serb town,
9 and it was later on that Muslims moved in, migrated into Brcko and started
10 pushing Serbs out. That is not speculation. That's a historical fact. I
11 read history of Brcko, and it is written clearly how Islamists or, rather,
12 Muslims moved into Brcko. Before that time, there were no other people in
13 Brcko but Christians.
14 Q. Was it your view, Witness, that genocide did take place against
15 the Serbs and the Jews in the Brcko municipality during the Second World
17 A. I would like to avoid the term "genocide" because it's a very
18 controversial term that has to do with numbers. I recently listened to an
19 international scientist who opposes the term being used even in relation
20 to Srebrenica. However, I would say that a massacre did take place during
21 the Second World War. It was done. It is no secret, and it is easily
23 I mentioned the bridge across the Sava River where mass
24 liquidations took place. First of all, Jews were almost completely
25 liquidated and then Serbs as well. It was said at the time during World
1 War II that one-third of the Serbs would be killed, one-third would be
2 converted to Catholicism, and one third would be expelled. And there are
3 many mass graves and former execution sites where you can see monuments --
4 monuments stand to go this day.
5 Q. Witness, I want to direct your attention back to the document
6 we've been looking at document in tab 17 the document signed by
7 Mr. Ristanic. Witness, I want to read a portion of this text to you.
8 Witness, it says as follows -- I'm referring, Your Honours, to the text at
9 the top of page 2 in the English. Witness, I'm afraid I cannot orient you
10 in your -- on the document in front of you. Let me see if I can --
11 JUDGE ORIE: If you have the exact portion, Mr. Harmon, then we'll
12 be able to find it.
13 MR. HARMON: Yes.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Which in the English would you --
15 MR. HARMON: It's the second -- essentially, the bullet point.
16 JUDGE ORIE: The ethnic balance.
17 MR. HARMON: The ethnic balance.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. I'll assist you in finding it. It's on page
19 2, the second paragraph from the -- no. Let me just see. Yes. You'll
20 find the bullet points on the lower part of page 2 in the B/C/S. And
21 you'll find the number 16 there clearly.
22 MR. HARMON: I see it, Your Honour. My document is incomplete in
23 my package but I have another one.
24 Q. So Witness --
25 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, Mr. Harmon is directing your attention to
1 page 2 of this document, the third bullet point from the bottom.
2 MR. HARMON:
3 Q. And it reads, Witness: "The ethnic balance of the population of
4 Brcko is unfavourable (especially since the arrival of 16.000 people from
5 Sandzak). It is artificially created over a longer period, organised so
6 that Serbian villages are spread out in a different Posavina -- in
7 different Posavina municipalities with the goal of making the Serbs a
8 minority everywhere despite the fact that they have always occupied and
9 owned the largest part of the territory."
10 So I return to my question to you, Mr. Maricic. The Serbs prior
11 to the outbreak of the war believed that the territory of Brcko was Serb
12 territory in large measure, didn't they?
13 A. Only historically speaking.
14 Q. Okay. Well, furthermore, Mr. Maricic, the Serbs certainly
15 considered that the territory of Brcko was strategically important?
16 A. Yes, Serbs believed it, and so did Muslims and Croats, and that's
17 the truth.
18 Q. Okay. Now -- well, let me read to you then the paragraph that's
19 directly above the paragraph that I just -- or two paragraphs above the
20 paragraph I just referred you to. It's -- the paragraph I'm referring to
21 Your Honour is the bottom of page 1 in the English.
22 "It should be mentioned that the leadership was aware throughout
23 the period of the strategic importance of Brcko municipality which was
24 conveyed to the population and presented to the leadership of the Serbian
25 Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina."
1 And then it goes on. Now, Witness, there were discussions,
2 weren't there, before the start of the war with the leadership of the
3 Serbian Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina about the importance of Brcko.
4 That's correct, isn't it?
5 A. I'm not sure that's correct. Reading this text, I understand that
6 the man who wrote this is terribly afraid that something awful might
7 happen to Serbs in Brcko. I don't see that he's writing anything about
8 strategic importance.
9 Q. Let me read the paragraph to you again, then, Witness. "It should
10 be mentioned that the leadership was aware throughout the period of the
11 strategic importance of the Brcko municipality which was conveyed to the
12 population and presented to the leadership of the Serbian Republic of
13 Bosnia and Herzegovina."
14 This document, prepared by Mr. Ristanic, says that the leadership
15 was aware of Brcko's strategic importance and that its strategic
16 importance was presented to them. That's the case, isn't it?
17 A. What it says here is that the leadership in Brcko, meaning the
18 leadership of the Serbs in Brcko, was aware of it and drew the attention
19 of the superior authorities to the fact. That's how I understand this.
20 Q. My next question, Mr. Maricic, is to whom of the superior
21 authorities did they draw the strategic importance of Brcko?
22 A. Well, when he's asking for assistance, maybe he's exaggerating a
23 bit, but we can see from this that it was brought to the attention of
24 Republika Srpska leadership. And I have nothing to add to that.
25 Q. Who was that, Witness? Who comprised the --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, let's -- let's keep it as factual as
3 Do you know when and how it was brought to the attention of the
4 Republika Srpska leadership?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I never even saw this paper
6 until today.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, analysing documents of which a witness
8 says he doesn't know anything about it, the document is in evidence, and
9 the Chamber of course is perfectly able to read it, to interpret it, and
10 if someone who would have any specific knowledge about it could assist us,
11 fine. If not, let's not engage in textual analysis of these kind of
13 MR. HARMON: Fine.
14 JUDGE ORIE: -- at this -- at this moment. Please proceed.
15 MR. HARMON:
16 Q. Now I want to turn to a slightly different topic, Mr. Maricic.
17 Before the war did you participate in discussions with the Muslims and the
18 Croats from Brcko about dividing the municipality?
19 A. No. I know that some talks did take place, but I don't remember
20 taking part in any of them.
21 Q. Who took part in those discussions on behalf of the Bosnian Serbs
22 from Brcko?
23 A. The main man of the Bosnian Serbs in Brcko was Dr. Beli. No doubt
24 about it. So it must have been him, and he must have solicited the
25 assistance of some other lower-ranking people but not me. At least not
1 that I remember.
2 Q. Are you aware --
3 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, again.
4 Mr. Maricic, you say, "So it must have been him." Do you know
5 that he was involved in these negotiations or don't you know?
6 THE WITNESS: I don't know that even he took part in the talks. I
7 know -- I heard that talks were held. I can't say anything for sure about
8 anyone. All I know is that talks were held.
9 JUDGE ORIE: And when you heard that, did you also hear that
10 Dr. Beli was involved in these talks?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. But I heard that talks were
12 held, and I even heard that a line was drawn across the town for purposes
13 of division.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Who told you this?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know. It was a long time
16 ago. It was a rumour that talks were going on about dividing the town. I
17 don't know.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, of course I do not know what the sequence
19 of your questions would be, but let's not find out what rumours went
20 around town.
21 MR. HARMON: I'm just exploring whether he participated in them,
22 and now I've been informed that they're rumours. So I don't intend to go
23 further than that, Your Honour.
24 Q. I want to focus, Witness, on one final subject, and that was the
25 rhetoric that has been -- we've heard about in this courtroom about Serb
1 leaders and Serbs in various municipalities saying that, "We can no longer
2 live together with the Muslims. We can't live with the Croats." Was
3 there similar types of rhetoric in the Brcko municipality, a rhetoric that
4 was one that wanted to separate from -- the Serbs to separate from the
5 Muslims and the Croats?
6 A. It existed then and it exists still, and it may be even stronger
8 Q. Did you ever hear Dr. Beli express such -- such views?
9 A. I cannot confirm that.
10 Q. Did you ever express such views?
11 A. It was a long time ago. I still believe that there is very little
12 likelihood of creating a single state there without any separate entities,
13 and I'm not going to dispute that I may have said something to that
14 effect, because I still think it's true.
15 MR. HARMON: Your Honour, can you -- I'm not sure what time you're
16 going to take a recess but --
17 JUDGE ORIE: Soon, but if you find the right moment within the
18 next couple of minutes.
19 MR. HARMON: Well, this is the right moment then, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then -- yes, Mr. Josse.
21 MR. JOSSE: Perhaps the witness could take his headphones off for
22 a moment.
23 JUDGE ORIE: It does seem that the witness understands some
24 English. That's at least what I could --
25 MR. JOSSE: I think very little and it's not going to matter a
1 great deal.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Do we need the witness for after the -- if you --
3 yes. While the witness has his earphones on, yes, Mr. Josse.
4 MR. JOSSE: Your Honour, it's position as far as tab 42 is
6 JUDGE ORIE:
7 MR. JOSSE: I like to submit now that tab should not be submitted
8 into evidence.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
10 MR. JOSSE: The witness has accepted that he was convicted of this
11 matter. The documents that relate to his conviction I don't object to,
12 both the first instance and the appellate court. And as I've already said
13 I intend to ask him some more questions about it. But Mr. Harmon put a
14 proposition to he didn't need the document to put that proposition to the
15 witness. The witness readily accepted that he was involved or he was
16 convicted of that particular allegation. Thereafter, tab 42 really is a
17 different aspect of the matter.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
19 MR. JOSSE: And I would invite the Chamber to make a decision
20 about this now.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Let's ask first Mr. Harmon.
22 Mr. Harmon, the document, as far as I can see, and I'm drawing
23 your attention to the fourth full paragraph, "the supervisor's request is
24 no indication of Mr. Maricic's guilt or innocence." It says because the
25 charges are there we know what happened with the charges, that at that
1 stage of the proceedings, I do understand that they considered it an
2 appropriate administrative measure to be taken. I mean, I don't know what
3 that adds to what we now know about the proceedings and also what we now
4 know since the witness has told us. So is there any need at this moment
5 for the witness to read the whole of the document and I'm certain will
6 draw our attention very much to this paragraph and ...
7 MR. HARMON: No, Your Honour, there isn't any.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Then do I then understand that there's no need
9 to tender this document any more, that there's no need for the witness to
10 read it? Of course, if the witness would like to read it, fine, but I
11 take it the matter has been dealt with sufficiently.
12 MR. JOSSE: If the document don't go into evidence I don't need to
13 re-examine him upon it and I'm content with that. I don't think an
14 interpreter need trouble him or herself reading it to Mr. Maricic.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. The parties agree on that.
16 MR. HARMON: Yes.
17 JUDGE ORIE: So it will not be tendered. There is no question
18 about the admission.
19 Mr. Maricic. You don't have to read the document. The document
20 will not be used by the Court. It will not be presented. The document
21 you were invited to read during the break, we'll just discard that. But
22 we'll have a break. We'll have a break until ten minutes to one.
23 --- Recess taken at 12.29 p.m.
24 --- On resuming at 12.58 p.m.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, please proceed. Yes, I said please
2 MR. HARMON: I'm sorry. I didn't hear you, Your Honour.
3 Q. Mr. Maricic, I want to direct your attention to the document at
4 tab 17 again. It's P529, Hanson tab 74. I want to direct your attention
5 to page 2 in the Cyrillic text.
6 MR. HARMON: I would like to direct Your Honours' attention to page
7 1 of the penultimate paragraph on page 1 of the English testing.
8 Q. Witness, in the middle of the paragraph, the portion that starts
9 with "In this context the Assembly of the Serbian municipality of
10 Brcko..." Do you see that in the middle of the page? It has a date of
11 April 29, 1992. I'll read the text to you, Witness. It says: "In this
12 context it, the Assembly of the Serbian municipality of Brcko was convened
13 on 29 April 1992 at which an analysis and an assessment of the achieved
14 situation were given and of the War Presidency was elected to which all
15 powers of the Assembly were transferred until peacetime conditions are
17 So according to this document that was prepared by Mr. Ristanic,
18 the War Presidency was created the day before the war started in Bosnia --
19 in Brcko, I'm sorry. Why was -- why was the War Presidency created the
20 day before the war started in Brcko, Mr. Maricic?
21 A. I did not attend that session, and I cannot tell you anything
22 about it. I can't even say why it was established. At least I don't
24 Q. Was it -- forget that. Now, you said in your evidence, Witness,
25 that the war started with the blowing up of the bridges in Brcko, and you
1 further testified that you had no clue that the bridges were going to be
2 blown up.
3 A. No, no.
4 Q. In the intervening 14 years since those bridges were blown up,
5 have you heard or received any information as to who blew up those
6 bridges, Mr. Maricic?
7 A. The war did not start with the blowing up of the bridges but the
8 day after. And as far as the explosions of the bridges, it was some sort
9 of taboo. I personally never tried to find out anything about it. I
10 wasn't interested.
11 Q. It was the position of the SDS, wasn't it, Mr. Maricic, that the
12 bridges should be blown up in order to protect the people in Brcko by
13 incursion by the Croatian forces?
14 A. No.
15 Q. In fact, I put to you, Mr. Maricic, that members of the SDS
16 leadership in Brcko went to the JNA commander and asked them -- asked him
17 to blow up those bridges for precisely that reason, for security of the
18 Serb population in Brcko. That's the case, isn't it, Witness?
19 A. I'm not disputing that, but I don't know anything about it.
20 Q. Now, before the bridges were blown up, Mr. Maricic, you said that
21 you went and visited a village by the name of Stanovi. You visited a
22 friend the night before the explosion. Who is the friend you visited?
23 A. Gasa Chetnik.
24 Q. Gasa Chetnik, is that the name?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Can you tell us, where was it you stayed in the village of
3 A. This Gasa Chetnik, it is probably not his real name. That's how
4 we called him. He was elderly man, and he was a Chetnik during the Second
5 World War, and I stayed in Gasa's house.
6 Q. Did you stay with anybody else from the municipality of Brcko?
7 A. Not on that day. I don't remember. I wouldn't say anyway.
8 Q. Now, it's a fact, isn't it, Mr. Maricic, that you and
9 Mr. Djordje Ristanic and a gentleman by the name of Dragan Veselic were
10 relocated to the village of Stanovi just before the bridges were blown up?
11 You were relocated there by the JNA.
12 A. I was informed by somebody that I should seek shelter. I went
13 there. I saw Djordje Ristanic there but not Dragan Veselic. And I saw
14 Djordje because I was walking by. There was a school building. He was
15 there. I don't remember Dragan Veselic being there, and I wouldn't say
16 that he was.
17 Q. Who told you to relocate to the village of Stanovi?
18 A. I don't know who told me that, and I was never clear why I was
19 said that. I didn't want to seek shelter, but somebody told me to do that
20 and I did it. I suppose that it was somebody wearing a uniform.
21 Q. It was somebody from the JNA, wasn't it?
22 A. I'm not sure. I can't confirm this. Somebody told me. He may
23 even have worn civilian clothes. Somebody told me; I obeyed.
24 Q. Okay. So who else besides you were told to go to Stanovi the day
25 before the bridges were blown up?
1 A. I don't know anybody else. I saw Djordje Ristanic there.
2 Somebody must have told him as well. And I don't remember anybody else
3 that I saw there.
4 Q. It's a fact, isn't it, Mr. Maricic, that you were told that the
5 bridges were going to be blown up before they were actually blown up? You
6 were told by the garrison commander of the JNA that the bridges were to be
7 blown up and that you and Mr. Ristanic and Mr. Veselic should relocate to
8 an area outside of Brcko. That's the fact, isn't it?
9 A. I don't know that. I was never told this.
10 Q. Well, did you ever make any inquiry, Mr. Maricic, as to why you
11 were to be relocated six kilometres outside of Brcko? You seem to be a
12 man of strong views and a quite man of independent views. Why was it,
13 Mr. Maricic, that you acquiesced to go with somebody to a village,
14 Stanovi, immediately before the bridges were blown up?
15 A. I have never been able to get to the bottom of this. I suppose I
16 bothered somebody and it was some sort of a game that somebody played.
17 Q. And how soon after the bridges were blown up, Mr. Maricic, was it
18 that you returned to the village of Brcko -- to the town of Brcko?
19 A. All this happened 15 years ago. On the following day, I got into
20 a car and returned to Brcko immediately after the explosions to see what
21 had happened. I took my own car to go to Brcko.
22 Q. Okay. Well, let's proceed to a different topic, then,
23 Mr. Maricic. Let's take about paramilitary formations, because your
24 evidence yesterday -- I'm referring the Court to page 54, lines 15 through
25 24. You were asked by Mr. Josse about paramilitary formations, about the
1 arrival of them, and your evidence was you knew very little about their
2 arrival. Such things were kept secret from you, and you only saw them in
3 small numbers in town. And then you were asked by Mr. Josse about certain
4 paramilitary formations. You were asked about Captain Dragan, you were
5 asked about Arkan's forces, and you were asked about Mauzer.
6 Those questions, Your Honour, are pages 61 to 63.
7 You were not asked by Mr. Josse nor did you comment about the
8 paramilitary forces under the command of Mirko Blagojevic. You know
9 Mr. Blagojevic, don't you, Mr. Maricic?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. His forces were also present in Brcko, weren't they?
12 A. I heard they were there, but I never saw them. Maybe they were
13 there while I was on the front line. However, on one occasion I did come
14 across Mirko Blagojevic in town.
15 Q. And you know Mr. Blagojevic, don't you?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Do you have any reason to dispute him as -- strike that.
18 MR. HARMON: Let's play a video if we can, please. This is --
19 will be found, Your Honour, tab 43, and it is Exhibit 727, tab 3. I'm
20 sorry, it's tab 4 in the bundle, Your Honour. And I'm going to be
21 referring -- before you start playing this, if I can direct Your Honours'
22 attention to the portion that I'm going to be playing. In the evening
23 learning version, Your Honour, it's on page 13, and it starts at the
24 counter number 02:37:51, and goes over to -- actually, it starts at
25 02:37:33. It starts at that location.
1 And Witness for your benefit --
2 JUDGE ORIE: Page 9 out of 18, I take it. No, no, it's ...
3 MR. HARMON: In the B/C/S, Your Honour, it is on page 12.
4 JUDGE ORIE: 12, yes.
5 MR. HARMON:
6 Q. Witness -- I'll wait until this text gets in front of you,
7 Witness. Page 12, the counter number is 02:37:51. We'll play this now,
9 [Videotape played]
10 MR. HARMON: I have no sound, Your Honour. I don't know if
11 Your Honours are getting sound.
12 JUDGE ORIE: I have nothing at all.
13 MR. HARMON: Let's start again. I've been given a signal that
14 it's all right now.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
16 [Videotape played]
17 THE INTERPRETER: "[Voiceover].
18 "Interviewer: My guest -- his truth. Our guest is Mirko
19 Blagojevic. We talked a little about this war in Bijeljina but we managed
20 to shed some light on all that. However, he did not fight only in
21 Bijeljina. He responded to the call of the Serbian people also in other
22 places in Republika Srpska where things were rough. Where was it the most
24 "Blagojevic: Well, the main battle that we won from Semberija,
25 have won addition to the battle for Bijeljina was the battle for Brcko.
1 For us, winning the battle for Brcko was important, because seasoned
2 Ustasha fighters had already been dispatched to Brcko from Croatia and
3 Gunja and the bridge. And had they succeeded in taking Brcko, it would
4 have been very difficult for people in Krajina and for us to join up. So
5 we got there like lightning. Serbs, Croats and Muslims lived in Brcko.
6 The Serbs were poorly organised there, in the town, and they were very
7 much exposed to the danger of genocide. Fortunately, we arrived at the
8 war theatre at the right moment. We put ourselves at the disposal of the
9 then Crisis Staff of the Municipal Assembly of Brcko, of Serbian Brcko, of
10 Mr. Bosko Maricic. And we said we were at their disposal and that he
11 should tell us what needed to be done and where, but that we had to act
12 like lightning. History wouldn't wait. What was done was done. The
13 wheel of history could not be turned back. We had good cooperation with
14 the then officers who were at the barracks in Brcko."
15 MR. HARMON:
16 Q. Mr. Maricic, do you recognise Mr. Blagojevic, the paramilitary
18 A. Yes, yes.
19 MR. HARMON: For Your Honours' reference, I refer Your Honours to
20 the Prosecution Exhibit 1090 that we listened to in testimony of Mr.
21 Poplasen. It identifies also Mr. Blagojevic who was one of the new
22 Chetnik commanders who was honoured. I believe that for Your Honours'
23 reference who this man was.
24 Q. Now, in fact, Mr. Maricic, Mr. Blagojevic put his forces at your
25 disposal, didn't he, and the disposal of the war -- the Crisis Staff,
1 didn't he?
2 A. Mr. Blagojevic made all this up. I cannot believe that he stated
3 this. I heard of his statement, but I never asked him about it. None of
4 this is true. The truth is that I didn't see Blagojevic when he arrived
5 in Brcko. I saw him once during the war in town, only him, nobody else.
6 I don't know when he came, with how many people. I only heard that they
7 had some problems surrounding theft, robbery. All this is a blatant lie.
8 He could not find me because I was on the front line. How could he have
9 locate -- located me?
10 Q. Let's talk about a different part of your testimony yesterday,
11 Mr. Maricic. You were asked, Mr. Maricic, by Mr. Josse about the forces
12 under the command of Captain Dragan, and your evidence, Mr. Maricic, found
13 at page 62, lines 23 to 25, and 63, lines 1 to 2, you said: "I heard
14 something at the beginning of the war and I even ran into three to four
15 men," who you were told were under the command of Captain Dragan and you
16 had no other information about his forces.
17 Now, I want to refer you back, Mr. Maricic, to the document we've
18 been looking at, at tab 17. It's Prosecution Exhibit 527 -- 529, Hanson
19 tab 74. And I want to direct your attention -- refer -- refer
20 Your Honours first of all, Your Honours, to page 3, two paragraphs up from
21 the bottom and bear with me.
22 I'm unable to direct you to the text, but I'm going to read the
23 text to you, Mr. Maricic, in the document. Let me read it to you,
24 Mr. Maricic. I'll read two paragraphs to you. "The largest part of the
25 Serbian forces came from Semberija, Bijeljina, Ugljevik and they were
1 mainly organised in two formations, the Serbian guard under the command of
2 Ljubisa Savic, aka Mauzer and the radical under the command of Mirko
3 Blagojevic. The first to arrive in Brcko was a group of instructors of
4 Captain Dragan (Rade, Simo, Sasa, Bozo, Srdjo and others) and that was
5 about four to six months before the war. They formed a special unit
6 including a large number of Brcko residents who went through training.
7 When the war started and during the combat activities, a number of members
8 of this unit joined the Police Intervention Platoon, but the special unit
9 grew to about 70 people."
10 I won't read further. Mr. Maricic, you were aware of Captain
11 Dragan and his men training Bosnian Serbs in the municipality of Brcko
12 before the start of the war, weren't you?
13 A. The leftists were in charge of all that organisation. This was
14 under the control of the state security from Serbia. And I was not
15 suitable for -- to learn about all this. So I only learnt about all that
16 some 15 to 20 days before the war when two guys from Bukvik who told me
17 they had been invited to join this training under Captain Dragan, and this
18 is all I know.
19 Q. You weren't aware that they were there four to six months before
20 the start of the war?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Where were they doing the training, Mr. Maricic?
23 A. Only later, some years later, I heard that it was in the area of
24 Razljevo, but I'm not sure even of that.
25 Q. All right. These three to four young men who you encountered,
1 were they the trainees of Dragan, Captain Dragan?
2 A. This must be a misunderstanding. I don't know what you're
3 referring to. Which three or four young lads are you referring to in your
5 Q. I'm referring --
6 JUDGE ORIE: The evidence is "two guys from Bukvik who told me
7 that they had been invited to join this training." Were you referring to
8 the two or to --
9 MR. HARMON: No. Let me just -- Your Honour, I'm referring to the
10 evidence that was given by the witness yesterday. It's at page 62, line
11 23. "I even -- I heard sometime at the beginning of the war, and I even
12 ran into three or four young men who I was told were under Captain
13 Dragan." That's what I was referring to.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, yes. Now it's -- yes. Yesterday, you
15 testified, Mr. Maricic, "I even ran into three or four young men who I was
16 told were under Captain Dragan, but I only ran into, like, three or four
17 of them, not more."
18 Now, the question by Mr. Harmon was whether these were trainees of
19 Dragan, of Captain Dragan, were they trainees.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If that's how the question is
21 worded, first of all let me tell you that the two guys from Bukvik did not
22 join the training, and later on I learned that all of them had been
23 trained somewhere.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. So the three or four were people trained by
25 Captain Dragan? Is that your testimony?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I suppose so. And then they
2 returned as instructors, as trainers, to the territory of Brcko, to the
3 district of Brcko. But I can't remember any of their names.
4 MR. HARMON:
5 Q. Witness, in fact the Bosnian Serbs were preparing for the takeover
6 of Brcko before the bridges were taken, were blown up, weren't they?
7 A. I wouldn't put it that way. I know that the Bosnian Serbs within
8 the boundaries of their capabilities were preparing themselves for
9 defence. I wouldn't be able to say anything about the takeover of Brcko.
10 Q. Now, yesterday, you testified that -- and correct me if my
11 understanding of your evidence is incorrect, but you testified you didn't
12 see any JNA officers or men on the front lines, and you were unable to
13 illuminate the issue of the JNA participation in a war in Brcko any
14 further than that.
15 A. I adhere by my statement. I can't remember having seen a single
16 JNA officer on the front line while I was there.
17 Q. But it is a fact, isn't it, Mr. Maricic, that the JNA was
18 cooperating with the paramilitary units that had arrived in Brcko?
19 A. I believe so. I believe this to be true.
20 Q. Now, can you -- let me show you, Witness, then a document that's
21 found in tab 7. Actually, let's go back -- let us go back to tab 4,
22 Witness. And I would like to direct your attention, Witness, to page --
23 page 17 of the B/C/S. It's with the counter number 02:50:29.
24 Your Honours, that's found on page 19.
25 And Mr. Blagojevic, in the interview that was given, you didn't
1 hear him say this but this is the transcript from that interview, text of
2 it, he says -- the TV host says: "When you look at the photographs of our
3 volunteers, they're all young men who have been killed. Here is Zeljko
4 Markanovic, born in 1969, Bozo Pantic born 1952 he was born around 1956,
5 Branislav Filipovic born in 1960, the oldest of them".
6 Now, I want to ask you about one of the volunteers by the name of
7 Branislav Filipovic. Did you know him or know about him?
8 A. No. I've never heard of this name. The name doesn't ring a bell.
9 Q. Did you ever hear the name Sumar?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Was that one of the nicknames of a volunteer who came to Brcko to
12 assist the Serbs at the beginning the war?
13 A. I think so.
14 Q. And Sumar was killed in Brcko, wasn't he?
15 A. I think so.
16 Q. Okay. Let's take a look, then, Witness, if we could turn to it
17 tab 7 of this -- this needs a new number?
18 THE REGISTRAR: At that will be P1127.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
20 MR. HARMON:
21 Q. Now, Witness, this is a document that is dated the 7th of May in
22 Brcko. It's pursuant to a decision by the Brcko -- by the War Presidency
23 of the Brcko municipality, and it is a pass that is issued to Branislav
24 Filipovic, and it is noted that he is a volunteer from Bijeljina and has
25 War Presidency, Brcko municipality, with his signature. And then on the
1 back of the document it has two names, Djordje Ristanic and Pero Markovic.
2 So who is Pero Markovic?
3 MR. JOSSE: Do we have the original for the witness to look at,
4 please? I think it might help him.
5 MR. HARMON: I don't have the original with me in court, no, I
7 MR. JOSSE: Why not, as might -- what I would respectfully ask my
8 learned friend through Your Honour. It would clearly help.
9 JUDGE ORIE: It would certainly help, Mr. Josse if it would be
10 there. At the same time, "why not." I think that question was never
11 asked of the Defence when it came to documents.
12 MR. JOSSE: Well, I'll withdraw the use of those words. I mean --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Okay, fine.
14 MR. JOSSE: The words came out of my mouth in an unfortunate
16 JUDGE ORIE: That's what happens --
17 MR. JOSSE: And I accept that, and all my remarks should be
18 addressed through Your Honour.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
20 MR. JOSSE: Not directly to my learned friend. I apologise to
22 JUDGE ORIE: I do understand, Mr. Josse, things that it would
23 assist if we would have the original here. The copy is not -- not very
24 clear, Mr. Harmon. That's one thing for certain.
25 MR. HARMON: Well, Your Honour, I don't want to belabour this
1 point. I will get a copy of the original here if this witness is having
2 difficulty but I haven't heard this witness saying he's having difficulty
3 when reading this document but if it's necessary I'll be more than happy
4 to do that.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Nevertheless, I can understand when the present
6 document that Mr. Josse anticipated such a situation.
7 Can you sufficiently see what it is? If not, we'll try to get the
8 original at least. Mr. Maricic.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It doesn't mean anything to me these
10 signatures which are not clear. This is all unclear to me. I don't know
11 who -- whose signatures these actually are. I'm familiar with the names
12 but not with the signatures. This is -- this is not clear.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Now, I must say that the one thing I can see
14 here more or less well are the signatures rather than anything else, but
15 you say you don't recognise those signatures.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do.
17 MR. HARMON: I'm no the process of trying to get original now,
18 Your Honour. I'll pass on this document for the time being.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Please proceed, then, for the time being.
20 MR. HARMON:
21 Q. Let's turn to tab 8, Witness. This is a document -- this is P529,
22 tab 102. Witness, if you turn to that document.
23 MR. HARMON: Actually, Your Honour, I'm going to turn to a
24 different exhibit rather than tab 8.
25 Q. Witness, let me turn to a document that is found at tab 11. This
1 needs a number.
2 THE REGISTRAR: P1128, Your Honours.
3 MR. HARMON:
4 Q. This, Witness, is an authorisation which permits Branislav
5 Filipovic to bring munitions from Belgrade to the Brcko garrison for the
6 needs of the garrisons in Brcko and Bosanski Samac, and then it describes
7 the types of munitions as well as -- and it is signed for the garrison
8 command in Brcko, Lieutenant Colonel Predrag Manojlovic.
9 So this document confirms, does it not, Witness, that the
10 paramilitaries were working with the JNA command in Brcko?
11 A. I have no comment on this.
12 Q. Well, let me turn to another document, Witness.
13 JUDGE ORIE: May I take that answer for you not being aware of
14 such a thing or ...
15 THE WITNESS: I know almost nothing about paramilitary units,
16 especially not about the shipment of any arms.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
18 Please proceed, Mr. Harmon.
19 MR. HARMON: Your Honour, I'm going to return to this. Hopefully
20 the original of that other document will be coming very shortly, so I'll
21 just --
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
23 MR. HARMON: Very, very shortly, I hope.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And meanwhile?
25 MR. HARMON: And meanwhile I'll continue, Your Honour.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
2 MR. HARMON:
3 Q. So let me turn to a different document, Witness. Are you aware,
4 Mr. Maricic, that the paramilitaries who were operating in Brcko
5 municipality were committing crimes against the Muslim and the Croat
6 civilian populations?
7 A. I personally did not witness a single crime, but a lot of things
8 happened there, and somebody must have done them. But who exactly I can't
9 say. The crimes that are the subject of a lot of talk mainly happened
10 while I was away for treatment or at the very beginning when I was on the
11 front line. I told you that when I was on the front line I came home only
12 once to wash and walk through town once and that was it.
13 Q. In the 14 years since the start of the war in Brcko, Mr. Maricic,
14 did you hear or receive any information that paramilitary formations who
15 operated with the JNA and with the Crisis Staff and the War Presidency,
16 those people, I'm talking about Mr. Blagojevic's men, Captain Dragan's
17 men, Arkan's men, Mauzer's men, committed any crimes against the Muslim or
18 Croat civilian population in Brcko?
19 A. I've heard all those stories, but I want to add that when the war
20 began in Brcko the Crisis Staff and the civilian Presidency that was
21 elected had no powers at all. They were only obliged to act as some sort
22 of logistical organ to provide for the supply of flour and all the other
23 necessities. They were not asked about anything.
24 Q. When did you hear those stories?
25 A. I move around a lot, and when I came back from treatment I heard a
1 lot about those events, and over the past 14 years I heard a lot about all
2 that happened, especially about the Luka prison. But it's all what I
3 heard from other people. I understood that I'm supposed to testify only
4 about my direct knowledge. I don't know who perpetrated specific murders
5 and killings apart from a couple of incidents in Luka. That's all.
6 Q. Let's start with Luka. What did you hear about Luka?
7 A. Luka did not even exist while I was on the battlefield in Brcko.
8 It did not exist as a collection centre. And when I came back, it was
9 already closed down. However, I heard a lot about it later, primarily
10 from Kole who used to be the commander of Luka, and we lived in the same
11 building. I also attended the recent trial against this Kole, who was
12 convicted to six years in prison, and I also heard about it from other
13 people because I live in a Serb neighbourhood. Luka is not far away, and
14 I was able to learn about it from my neighbours.
15 Q. In 1992, Mr. Maricic, what did you learn about Luka camp and the
16 crimes that were committed in Luka camp?
17 A. In 1992? Nothing, absolutely nothing. I didn't even know Luka
18 existed then. I only learnt and even that later about Batkovic prison. I
19 wasn't interested. I mean, I didn't even know it existed so as to be able
20 to take an interest. I learned about it much later. Otherwise, I think
21 I'm well-informed about the goings-on in Luka.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Harmon, I'm looking at the clock. We have
23 several reasons we have to stop at a quarter to two. I would have one
24 question for the witness and, once the witness has left the courtroom, I
25 would like to inquire into how we will proceed and what progress we are
2 Mr. Maricic, I would have one question, similar -- couple of
3 sub-questions. Mr. Pero Markovic, was he an SDS member?
4 THE WITNESS: No.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Zarko Kozic, was he an SDS member.
6 THE WITNESS: Cosic. Cosic you mean.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, yes.
8 THE WITNESS: I think he was.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Sinisa Kisic, same question.
10 THE WITNESS: No, no one's a Communist.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Simo Kojic.
12 THE WITNESS: He was an SDS member.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Miodrag Pajic.
14 THE WITNESS: Yes.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Radoslav Bogicevic.
16 THE WITNESS: I think he joined later and he was an SDS member,
17 although only on paper, not in fact.
18 JUDGE ORIE: You said he joined later. What did he join later?
19 THE WITNESS: You were asking about Bogicevic; right?
20 JUDGE ORIE: And you said, "I think he joined later, and he was an
21 SDS member, although only on paper, not in fact." What did he join later?
22 THE WITNESS: I mean he joined the SDS a bit later. His brother
23 was in the Socialist Party, and he became a senior manager later, so he
24 joined the SDS in order to facilitate this appointment.
25 JUDGE ORIE: This explanation you gave last is difficult to
1 understand. If I read again your previous answer which said, "I think he
2 joined later and he was an SDS member, although only on paper, not in
3 fact." That sounds as if he joined not the SDS but another group, body,
4 whatever. So could you tell me --
5 MR. JOSSE: I don't accept that interpretation.
6 JUDGE ORIE: But accepted you -- object against it, I do
7 understand. Yes, please proceed.
8 MR. JOSSE: Your Honour, it's obviously a matter of translation.
9 I don't read that in English in the way Your Honour has just interpreted
11 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. What we'll do that is check that both in B/C/S
12 and in -- we'll then carefully look at it both in B/C/S, how the question
13 reached the witness and also literally on how he answered it.
14 MR. JOSSE: Thank you.
15 JUDGE ORIE: We'll do that before tomorrow afternoon.
16 If Mr. -- I see that you're conferring with your case manager.
17 Does that bring any -- shed any new light on -- perhaps not in the
18 presence of the --
19 MR. JOSSE: Precisely. Precisely.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Maricic, we have not finished with you yet. We'd
21 like to see you back tomorrow, not in the morning but in the afternoon, a
22 quarter past two. I again instruct you not to speak with anyone on the
23 testimony you have given already and you're still about to give. Could
24 you please follow Madam Usher.
25 [The witness stands down]
1 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Josse.
2 MR. JOSSE: So far as that's concerned, Mr. Karganovic understood
3 the answer to be, yes, he was a member of the SDS. He wasn't very
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Let's --
6 MR. JOSSE: But if Your Honour wants to check that's fine.
7 JUDGE ORIE: I would like to have that checked because you
8 understand the interpretation of this member and also the credibility and
9 reliability of the witness might -- it might -- it might shed some light
10 on it, either in a positive or in a negative way.
11 MR. JOSSE: If there is any prospect of having an answer to that
12 before we resume tomorrow, the parties would be grateful.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then, Mr. Harmon, how much time would you still
14 think you'd still need? I'm not saying how much time you'll get but --
15 MR. HARMON: Less than one session, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Less than one session. We'll consider how much time
17 would be available to you.
18 MR. HARMON: Not much time, Your Honour. I'd say 30 to 45 minutes
19 at the most.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We'll consider that. We will adjourn and
21 resume tomorrow afternoon, quarter past two, same courtroom.
22 Yes, Mr. Josse I see that. Before it's become effective..
23 MR. JOSSE: Yes, very briefly. The issue of the documents that
24 was mentioned earlier, there's been a lot of discussion in the intervening
25 period. The order that the Chamber made regarding the re-numbering of
1 P64A. I know both my learned friend, Mr. Harmon, and I have no objection
2 to that being carried out forthwith and I know from Mr. Haider that would
3 very much suit the Registry. So I would urge Your Honours to effectively
4 ask that be done immediately.
5 JUDGE ORIE: It's good to have this answer so quickly. Yesterday,
6 I think I invited you to come with any objections against Poplasen, et
7 cetera, et cetera. We'll leave that tomorrow because we find no time to
8 do it today.
9 MR. JOSSE: The news for the witness who is due to arrive on
10 Friday is extremely bad. I'll relay the rest of the information through
11 one of Your Honour's legal officers.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Always with a copy to the --
13 MR. JOSSE: Well, I was going to do it orally but Mr. Harmon can
14 listen to what I say to --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I had a meeting starting at 1.46 p.m., so I'd
16 like to go to that.
17 MR. JOSSE: Orally to the legal officer, not orally to
18 Your Honour.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Fine. If -- the only thing of importance is that
20 this kind of information is always very transparent. Yes.
21 We will adjourn until tomorrow.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.49 p.m.,
23 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 23rd day
24 of March, 2006, 2.15 p.m.