1 Thursday, 22
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.33 a.m.
6 JUDGE HUNT: Call the case, please.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. This is the case number
8 IT-97-25-T, the Prosecutor versus Krnojelac.
9 JUDGE HUNT: Because we're in a new courtroom again,
10 Mr. Krnojelac, I should ask you: Are you able to hear the proceedings in
11 a language which you understand?
12 THE INTERPRETER: The microphone isn't on.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I can hear and I can
15 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you very much. If you have any trouble, let us
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you too. I just have problems
18 with my spectacles again, because this morning when they put that flak
19 jacket on, somehow they broke, so I'll try to make good use of them
20 today. But thank you for asking.
21 JUDGE HUNT: Yes. Thank you, Mr. Krnojelac. I wish you the best
22 of luck in getting your glasses fixed. I apologise for not having
23 reminded you yesterday that we were being moved out of number 1 courtroom
24 so that the Appeals Chamber could take precedence. And I do remind you
25 now that we will be sitting slightly different afternoon hours. We will
1 be adjourning at the lunch hour until 3.00 and we'll then sit through to
2 4.30. That is because of a judgement which Judge Mumba and I are involved
3 in which is being delivered at 2.00.
4 Right. Well, now, Ms. Kuo.
5 MS. KUO: Thank you, Your Honour.
6 THE WITNESS EKREM ZEKOVIC [Resumed]
7 [Witness answered through interpreter]
8 Examined by Ms. Kuo: [Continued]
9 Q. Good morning, Mr. Zekovic.
10 MS. KUO: Your Honours, we're having some problems with the
11 microphones here.
12 Q. Mr. Zekovic, yesterday you mentioned three people whom you saw
13 taken out of the KP Dom on a so-called exchange, and one of the people
14 that you mentioned by name was Ramo Dzendusic. Could you tell us a little
15 bit more about him? What kind of work did he do and what else did you
16 know about him?
17 A. Ramo Dzendusic is a relative of mine. He worked as a clerk at the
18 military office before the war.
19 Q. Where was he from?
20 A. He was from the village of Hum. That's 20 kilometres out of Foca,
21 to the south, actually, upstream, if you look at the Drina River.
22 Q. Thank you, Mr. Zekovic. Was there ever an incident in September
23 of 1992 when people were taken out and told they would pick plums?
24 A. Yes. Yes. Two groups were taken, two groups that were told they
25 were going to pick plums. Some people's names were called out from a
1 list. Individuals volunteered, wanting to get out. Some were discreetly
2 told by the guards like, "That's not for you," and at that time they held
3 it against those people.
4 Q. What do you mean, they held it against those people? Held what
5 against whom?
6 A. People wanted to get out. They knew that getting out meant that
7 they would get more food, and the very fact that they were supposed to go
8 out and pick plums meant that, after all that time, they would manage to
9 eat plums, at least, to their hearts' content. Secondly, staying indoors
10 all the time, without doing anything, that's very difficult; it's
11 tormenting. Therefore, people felt it was necessary to go out, to work,
12 to move about. Time passes more quickly that way.
13 Q. Is that how you felt about the work you were doing? Did you
14 volunteer or were you forced to work?
15 A. I was a volunteer. My friend, Uzeir Hadzalic, who was in Room 13
16 opposite my room, asked me one day whether I'd like to go out and work.
17 We had this well-developed system of communication, a sign language. In
18 that way, we conveyed information to one another. Of course, I said yes
19 immediately. That meant an additional meal, no matter how small. It was
20 very important nevertheless.
21 Q. Returning to the plum pickers, do you know the names of any people
22 who were taken out to pick plums?
23 A. When these people's names were called out for plum picking, I was
24 at the metal workshop. I was not in the room. After that, people told me
25 about this. I know many people who were taken away. Right now, if
1 necessary, I can look at some lists that I have here, but two groups were
2 taken out.
3 Q. Do you know what happened to those people?
4 A. Later on we got to know what we had assumed all along. These
5 people were taken out to military positions. They were digging trenches
6 in the area towards Gorazde. Later on, we received some information to
7 the effect that some of them were seen killed above Ustikolina. In that
8 zone, a few years later, I don't know exactly how many years later, a mass
9 grave was found as well. As far as I know, seven corpses were found
10 there. I think that only two were identified, though.
11 Q. Do you know the identity of two of those corpses?
12 A. Halid Konjo and Murat Crneta, as far as I heard. I and the person
13 who is called FWS-210 in this case, outside the KP Dom, we heard that he
14 saw Rasim Kajgana there at that locality, that he had been killed there.
15 Rasim Kajgana was in the same room that I was in. He was a butcher from
16 Foca. He had his own shop.
17 Q. Who saw Rasim Kajgana's body?
18 A. A Serb, a Serb who was good friends with that friend of mine whom
19 I just mentioned. I don't know him. Before the war, he was also on good
20 terms with this Rasim. They had a cooperation.
21 Q. How was this information conveyed to you or to 210? Was it while
22 you were still at KP Dom or after you were released?
23 A. Yes, while we were still at the KP Dom. Once when we went to the
24 hospital, that is to say outside the compound, we met people. We would
25 talk and that's how we obtained information.
1 Q. How did you learn that people had been taken to dig trenches? Was
2 that in the same manner?
3 A. Afterwards, yet another group was taken late in the autumn. It
4 was already wintertime. They were taken outside the camp and they
5 returned, each and every one of them. They were at that locality,
6 nearby. While they were there, they heard from the soldiers and the local
7 people that many people were killed there, people who had been brought
8 there in the previous groups, to work there, to dig trenches. They were
9 returned to the camp in 1993, that was after the New Year.
10 Q. Was it the second group you mean that was returned in 1993?
11 A. No, no, no. It was a separate group. It was taken much later,
12 much, much later.
13 Q. Could you tell us where the location was? You said where people
14 learned from the locals that a group had been taken there to dig
16 A. I'm not very familiar with that area and I don't know the names of
17 these villages and things like that but it's above Ustikolina, near
18 Previla. Zebina Suma is nearby and that's where the positions were facing
20 Q. And the second group that you mentioned, the one that was taken
21 late in the autumn to that location, where they also there to dig
23 A. As far as we know, yes.
24 Q. Do you know how long they were there?
25 A. I don't know.
1 MS. KUO: Your Honours, with the Court's permission, I would like
2 to refer to Exhibit P55, which is Schedule C, and rather than showing that
3 to the witness, I'll read some names out and perhaps we will move smoothly
4 that way.
5 JUDGE HUNT: Whichever way you find easier.
6 MS. KUO: Thank you.
7 Q. Mr. Zekovic, I'd like to ask you about a few individuals, and I'll
8 tell you their names and you can tell us whether you know what happened,
9 whether you know that person and whether you know what happened to that
10 person at KP Dom. Person C-6, Juso Dzamalja?
11 A. I know that person from before the war, for many years. He was a
12 salesperson. I know that he committed suicide in the solitary confinement
13 cell after terrible torture.
14 Q. C-7, Kemal Dzelilovic?
15 A. I know that person too from before the war. He was a teacher at
16 the high school. He was taken out several times, interrogated allegedly,
17 and beaten up. One evening, he was taken away and he's never been seen
19 Q. How did you know that this person was beaten up? Did you see
20 injuries or did you learn of -- did you hear about it?
21 A. People who were in the same room with him told me about it. I saw
22 him taken out a few times and I saw that he could barely move.
23 Q. C-8, Ramo Dzendusic, you already mentioned that you saw him taken
24 out in part of the groups for the so-called exchanges. Did you ever see
25 him beaten?
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13 and English transcripts.
1 A. I only saw him being beaten as he was taken out. His hands were
2 tied on the back.
3 Q. C-9 is Adil Granov. Did you know him?
4 A. Yes. Yes. I knew him personally. We worked in the same
5 company. He was an engineer. He was detained and interrogated on the
6 suspicion that he had travelled abroad before the war, allegedly for
7 signing contracts in order to obtain weapons. Allegedly he went to
8 Germany. For a while he was held in an area in the old building, the old
9 wing of the building, underneath the staircase, where there was a pantry,
10 where brooms and brushes were kept. He was taken out several times and
11 beaten badly.
12 Q. When you say "in the old building," are you referring to the
13 administrative building, the old part of the administrative building, or
14 in the detainees' quarters?
15 A. No. It's part of the prison. It's a part that was made earlier,
16 during the days of Austro-Hungary, and there was another wing that was
17 added on later.
18 Q. Perhaps you could show us on Exhibit P6, with the assistance of
19 the usher.
20 A. So this is the old part of the prison that I talked about and this
21 is this new part of the prison. Viewed from the outside, they're almost
22 identical. The entrance is about here, and this area was on the ground
23 floor as soon as you'd enter, underneath the staircase.
24 MS. KUO: The witness has indicated as the building that he is
25 referring to as the old building, what is marked on the Exhibit P6 as
1 building 1, where the detainees were kept.
2 I'd like to show the witness Exhibit P6/2, which is a close-up
3 picture that has some more detail, and perhaps he can show us on that
4 diagram the room that he's referring to. This is the ground floor of the
5 prisoners' quarters.
6 A. This is the entrance into the building. However, this staircase
7 has not been drawn properly. They go from this side and then up here,
8 whereas here it's been drawn this way. This is where the room was.
9 MS. KUO: The witness is indicating where the stairs are drawn in
10 on building number 1, and I believe he was indicating the error in the
11 drawing was just the direction of the staircase. Thank you.
12 A. It's the same as far as the new wing of the building is
13 concerned. Again, there's been a mistake in the way the stairs have been
15 Q. Thank you, Witness. And the new wing is indicated on the exhibit
16 as building 2 of the prisoners' quarters. Thank you very much.
17 Was that room under the stair used normally for isolation or for
18 keeping detainees?
19 A. No. No, of course not.
20 Q. Do you know how long Adil Granov was kept in that room?
21 A. I don't know exactly how long, but I know it was several days,
22 between 7 and 15 days.
23 Q. Do you know what happened to Mr. Granov eventually?
24 A. He was taken away like the others, and there has been no trace of
25 him since.
1 Q. Number C-10, Nail Hodzic.
2 A. Yes, I know him too. He was down there in 11 -- 13. He was an
3 older man, a taxi driver before the war, from Cohodar Mahala. He was
4 taken out several times and beaten up. One evening they came, they called
5 out his name, took him out of the room, and he never returned. As he went
6 out, he waved goodbye to the men. He knew he would never come back.
7 Q. You said he was beaten several times. Did you see injuries on
9 A. I did not see him many times. I saw him a few times in passing as
10 we were going to have lunch.
11 Q. And those times, did you see injuries?
12 A. Yes. Yes.
13 Q. What kind of injuries?
14 A. Sorry. I didn't hear.
15 Q. What kind of injuries?
16 A. On the right hand of his head there were signs of beating. He had
17 bruises there and he could hardly move, and he could hardly use his right
18 hand. People who were in the same room with him, that's a person who
19 worked with me, Uzeir Hadzalic, he told me that several times he could not
20 even go to the restaurant for lunch or dinner.
21 Q. That Mr. Hodzic could not?
22 A. Yes, yes, Nail Hodzic.
23 Q. Did you know Mate Ivancic, that's C-11?
24 A. Yes. I knew him personally from before the war. He was my
25 next-door neighbour. When the war broke out, we were together in the same
1 street. One day my Serb neighbours asked me something like what was Mate
2 like, and I said, "Well, why do you ask? A good man, normal." And they
3 were just shaking their heads. Then they arrested him. I wasn't present,
4 so I don't know the exact location. And they took him to the KP Dom.
5 I had contact with him a few times at the KP Dom. We talked,
6 because the windows of our respective rooms were at the same corner. And
7 during the first few months there was no light; there were no lights in
8 the KP Dom in the evening. He told me that he was taken out and beaten
9 several times. He said that the Serbs had suspected him of having been in
10 Croatia before and, as they put it, that he took part in the slaughter of
11 Serbs. However, I know that he had a passport that proved that he was in
12 Germany, that he was working there temporarily. I knew that as well. But
13 -- and he kept showing this passport but to no avail. One evening, he
14 was taken out, he knew what would happen to him. He left his watch to one
15 of the men who was in the same room with him so if anybody survived, that
16 person should give his watch to his son.
17 Q. What ethnicity was Mr. Ivancic?
18 A. Croat.
19 Q. You mentioned that he was suspected of participating in the war in
20 Croatia. Was he ever beaten for that reason?
21 A. Yes, yes, yes. He was beaten. They asked him to confess that he
22 had taken part in the aggression, or rather, in the massacre of the Serbs,
23 which is absolutely incorrect.
24 Q. Did you see injuries on him?
25 A. Yes, yes.
1 Q. What did you see?
2 A. Well, signs of beatings. He didn't have any very visible signs on
3 his face, like wounds and things like that.
4 Q. Person C-15 is Mustafa Kuloglija, and you've mentioned him already
5 as being one of the people who was beaten one evening when you heard
6 gunshots. Did you know whether he was beaten on other occasions?
7 A. Yes, yes. A few times before that he was taken out for
8 interrogation. He thought that that was because he had had a conflict
9 before the war with a Serb who had attacked him, drunk, and that that's
10 why he was beaten so terribly and killed ultimately. I personally knew
11 him. He was a friend of mine. He told me about this incident when it
12 occurred, before the war, a month or two earlier, I don't know exactly.
13 This Serb attacked him, provoked him, whatever, and allegedly he hit him
14 once, and they said that they would take their revenge because of that.
15 Q. Did he tell you whether that Serb beat him at the KP Dom, or
17 A. He could not tell me that.
18 MS. KUO: Could I ask the Usher, please, to move the ELMO because
19 the position, it's blocking my view of the witness. Thank you.
20 Q. Person C-17 is Krunoslav Marinovic. Did you know him?
21 A. Yes, I know him personally too from before the war in Foca. He
22 had his TV repair shop. He had -- the shop was his own. And I was his
23 wife's friend; that is, we went to school together.
24 Q. What happened to him at KP Dom?
25 A. Same thing as to Mate Ivancic, the same. He was not charged with
1 having been in Croatia, but he was a Croat.
2 Q. And was he also beaten?
3 A. Yes, yes. They beat him several times, oh, yes, surely.
4 Q. Did he tell you this and did you see injuries on him?
5 A. I saw injuries on him and once he told me himself.
6 Q. Do you know what happened to him eventually?
7 A. One evening he was called out and he left and did not come back.
8 Q. C-19 on the list is Nurko Nisic. You've described the one
9 incident with regard to him. Were there other times when Mr. Nisic was
10 taken out and beaten?
11 A. I'm not sure, but I think that he was taken for interrogation
12 before that particular incident.
13 Q. Why do you think that?
14 A. I do not know that for sure but I assume -- I assume he was -- I
15 mean, seeing that he was liquidated.
16 Q. Number C-20 is Habid Ramovic. Did you know him and what happened
17 to him?
18 A. It -- no, it's Abid Ramovic, no, no. Abid Ramovic was a
19 policeman, and he was killed in the beginning of the war.
20 Q. So that's -- the Abid Ramovic that you mentioned was not at KP
21 Dom, Abid Ramovic?
22 A. Maybe he had some namesakes. Maybe there were several people
23 called that. I don't know.
24 Q. Listed at Schedule C, number 21 is Husein Rikalo, at 22 is Mithat
25 Rikalo, and at 23 is Zaim Rikalo. Did you know any of those three
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13 and English transcripts.
2 A. I know those people by sight. They were not in my room. They
3 were in a different wing of the building. I know they were taken for
4 interrogation several times, and I also know that one evening, two of
5 those Rikalos were called out, but I don't know their first names. I also
6 -- I only knew that they were brothers. And they stood by the gate for
7 some three or four minutes and then they were taken in, into that passage,
8 into that hallway, and that same moment, terrible screams and terrible
9 cries started, and blows, and they beat them for about one hour. I don't
10 know what happened to them after that.
11 Q. Number C-25 is Kemal Tulek.
12 A. I know he spent a long time in an isolation cell, that he suffered
13 terrible torture because the Serbs had learned that his brother was with
14 the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina. I don't know what happened to him and how
15 he fared. All I know is that he spent a long time in an isolation cell
16 and that he was beaten several times.
17 Q. How did you learn that he was beaten?
18 A. From people who talked to him, who communicated with him. He was
19 released from the isolation cell later on and was with us, but we could
20 often see how they would take him out through the gate, and on his way
21 back, and he always looked terrible.
22 Q. When you say he looked terrible, could you be a little bit more
23 specific? What could you see?
24 A. Well, a beaten-up man. I mean, how can he look but terrible? He
25 could barely move. There were visible injuries as a consequence of
1 torture, of mistreatment. Why, I don't know, but he had terrible
2 difficulty walking, so both his feet or legs must have been injured.
3 Q. Finally, on Schedule C, number 28 is Munib Veiz. Did you know
5 A. Yes, I knew him too. He was a salesman before the war. I think
6 he was killed in that room, the same night that Nurko Nisic was killed,
7 and those others.
8 Q. Why did --
9 A. He was also interrogated several times and beaten.
10 Q. Did you see him also with injuries?
11 A. Yes, yes. He was in the adjoining room.
12 Q. Why do you believe that he was killed the same night as Nurko
13 Nisic? Did you see him or learn that he was taken out that night?
14 A. Other people saw it - I did not - how he had been -- that he was
15 taken out that night; people who were in the same room with him in the old
16 wing of the building.
17 MS. KUO: Your Honours, I'll now go through Schedules A and B.
18 Again I'll follow the same format and read out specific names.
19 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
20 MS. KUO:
21 Q. Schedule A, number 4, is the name of Halim Corovic. Did you know
23 A. I'm not really sure if that's the person I have in mind. The
24 village of Kamen. I'm not -- Room 18, perhaps he was with me. I think he
25 is the third person that I found in that isolation cell with two doors
1 during the interrogation when I saw Aziz Sahovic and Rizvanovic. I think
2 he was the one, but I did not know him personally, yet I think it was that
4 Q. A-6 is Halim Dedovic.
5 A. I knew him personally, a hairdresser. He was taken on the 11th or
6 the 12th of December with a group of six other men. No trace of them.
7 Q. Who were the six other men?
8 A. Fahrudin Malkic; Aziz Sahovic; Ekrem Cengic; and Ibro Karovic,
9 Ibro, Ibrahim Karovic. This last one -- at least, that was the story. I
10 don't know, because I did not communicate with him, but I heard from other
11 people that he was a journalist who had been captured somewhere on the
12 front line and accused of spying. One of the prisoners mentioned even his
13 name, said he was Alojz or something like that. They were called out in
14 the evening from the rooms, then taken to a separate room, and the next
15 morning I saw them in front of the entrance into the KP Dom, into the
16 camp, and they stood there for a while and then they were taken out, and
17 all trace has been lost of them ever since.
18 Q. When you say "all trace has been lost of them," did you -- do you
19 know what efforts were made to locate them? Do you know if their family
20 members communicated with you that they were looking for these
22 A. Of course. People are trying to find out something to this day.
23 Malkic's brother and a friend of mine and my relative was married to him.
24 He did his utmost. He tried all -- even through Vojislav Maksimovic,
25 because they used to be friends, he tried to find out the truth about them
1 through him, but nobody ever found out the truth. All that we know is
2 that they are missing. And relatives of other people were trying to trace
3 them, and are still trying to trace them, and they asked me questions too.
4 Q. Could you be a little bit more specific and tell us which
5 relatives were asking you about their loved ones?
6 A. As I said about Malkic, then Sahinovics, Dedovics, those largely,
7 but I knew about others too, because people are feverishly trying to find
8 out all those things.
9 Q. So when you say no trace was heard of particular individuals, is
10 that what you mean, that their relatives approached you for information
11 about what happened to their loved ones?
12 A. They are trying everything to find out. We are trying to do it,
13 and others, and with the International Red Cross.
14 Q. On Schedule B, number 2, is Nedzib Babalija?
15 A. Yes. He was in Room 18 with me. He was brought shortly after I
16 came to the camp, and he arrived with a rather large group from
17 Miljevina. I believe he worked in the mine before the war. He was a
18 mining technician and he was brought -- when he was brought, we could see
19 that he had been beaten. His eye was almost closed; it was all black and
20 blue. And he was also beaten all over his body. And for a long time his
21 eye was all bloody. And he was taken away. There is no trace of him. I
22 don't know exactly when he was taken away. And his relatives also tried
23 to find out something about him from me, and I communicated with them in
24 Herzegovina, with his parents and his sister.
25 Q. Was he ever beaten during interrogation?
1 A. In the camp, yes. He was already beaten when he arrived there,
2 and then he was taken for interrogation.
3 Q. And when he was taken for interrogation at the KP Dom, do you know
4 if he was beaten further?
5 A. Yes. He told me so. Very few people went through those
6 interrogations without beatings, very few, and I was one of those. And
7 some people never went to make any statements at all, and others gave I
8 don't know how many statements.
9 Q. Schedule B, number 11, is Zaim Cedic.
10 A. I know several Cedics, but I'm not sure about their first names.
11 There were Cedics in Cohodar Mahala who were in the camp and who are
12 missing. And there were also Cedics above Brod at Trnovace and Trbusce,
13 and they had never been brought, and their relatives had been told that
14 they were in the camp, because local Serbs, local villagers, told them
15 so. But from that area, from Trnovace, Trbusce, Kosman, Popov Most, very
16 few people from there, from those places, were brought to the KP Dom. As
17 a matter of fact, the majority of them were never taken to the KP Dom, we
18 never saw them there, and they include a large number of my relatives also
19 from Kosman. Because later on, through communication, through contacts,
20 we heard that they had been caught and captured and arrested and taken for
21 interrogation to KP Dom, but we never saw them there.
22 Q. Did those relatives of yours, were they ever heard from again, the
23 ones who were allegedly brought to the KP Dom but whom you never saw?
24 A. No, never. Nothing.
25 Q. You mentioned that there were Cedics from Cohodar Mahala who were
1 brought to the KP Dom. Could you tell us their names, if you know?
2 A. No, I don't know the names.
3 Q. On Schedule B, number 12, is Murat Crneta.
4 A. Yes. I knew him personally before the war. A short man,
5 dark-haired, an engineer, worked at Maglic. He was also taken to pick
6 plums. And as we have already said, I believe his body was identified,
7 that it was found in a mass grave in a stream.
8 Q. B-24 is Resad Hadzimesic.
9 A. Resad Hadzimesic and his brother - I think his name is Mirsad -
10 two brothers from Aladza, they were brought to the camp. They were also
11 taken to pick plums. I was not present. I told you because I went out to
12 work - that is, I left early in the morning and returned in the afternoon
13 - so that I could not really see with my own eyes how each one of those
14 groups were taken out. But later on, when talking to those people and
15 then through contacts with their relatives or specifically with his wife
16 in Mostar, he -- she had been told that he had gone to pick plums. She
17 was told that by other people who had seen that. And he is missing now.
18 But two people saw him. He was a driver in the KP Dom -- sorry, no, not
19 in the KP Dom, in the health centre.
20 Q. B-30 --
21 JUDGE HUNT: Just before you go on, when was he seen in the health
22 centre? After he'd gone to pick plums?
23 MS. KUO: Yes, Your Honour, that's a good question.
24 Q. Witness --
25 A. No, no, no. That is impossible, Your Honour. Before the war, he
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 was a driver. He was a driver in the health centre. My wife worked there
2 too. Yesterday, we forgot about one thing. I don't know whether I should
3 say that today or shall we come back to it later on. When you asked me if
4 I had -- when I heard the order to go to work again, whether I did do
5 that. I did. And so did my wife and my uncle, because they are health
6 workers and they reported to the health centre. But they -- when they got
7 there, for two hours nobody said a word to them, and then a doctor
8 approached them and whispered to them, "Just get lost." So that they were
9 also removed from their jobs. And Hadzimesic was brought to the KP Dom,
10 and after that, he did not go back to the health centre to work as a
11 driver. That I'm sure about.
12 Q. Do you know if Mr. Hadzimesic was brought from the health centre
13 to the KP Dom?
14 A. I really don't know that, where he was brought from. It's quite
15 possible but I just don't know that particular detail.
16 JUDGE HUNT: I still think we need to have an express statement
17 that he was seen at the health centre before he was taken to the KP Dom,
18 because the statement that he made - and it's open to two interpretations
19 - was, "He was seen in the KP Dom -- sorry, no, not in the KP Dom, in the
20 health centre." Now if you could just ask him precisely when it was he
21 was last seen in the health centre, it will clear it up.
22 MS. KUO: Yes, thank you.
23 Q. Could you tell us first of all when Mr. Hadzimesic was last seen
24 in the health centre?
25 A. It was around the 10th or the 12th of April. My wife and my uncle
1 went to work in the health centre and it was then that they saw him. What
2 happened afterwards, we lost all contact with him because he lived in a
3 different part of the town.
4 Q. When he was brought to the KP Dom, you saw him at the KP Dom,
6 A. He was brought to the KP Dom before me. I was brought there on
7 the 20th of May.
8 Q. And the last time, when was the last time that people saw him at
9 the KP Dom? Was that when he was taken out to pick plums?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Do you -- did you ever hear of anybody seeing him after that,
12 after he was taken out to pick plums?
13 A. No, never, no.
14 Q. And you said earlier that there were efforts by his family, I
15 think it was his wife, to locate him. Is that right?
16 A. His wife lived in Mostar then. When I came out of the camp, I
17 visited Mostar once and I spoke with her and she asked me about it and
18 then his sister also did all within her power to find that out. She lived
19 in Zagreb at the time. But there is no trace. Neither of them found any.
20 Q. Move on now to Schedule B, number 30, Kemo Isanovic.
21 A. Kemo Isanovic from Cohodar Mahala, a young guy. He was taken
22 away. I saw how they took him away with Mersud Pasovic at the same time.
23 Q. And how was that? How was he taken away?
24 A. All I saw was how they took them outside the KP Dom, beat them and
25 shoved them onto a truck -- onto a van, excuse me.
1 Q. B-30 -- sorry, did you ever see him again after that?
2 A. No, never.
3 Q. B-31 is Ibro Kafedzic.
4 A. Yes, Ibro Kafedzic. I think I -- a while ago I gave you a wrong
5 name of those five or six people. He was taken away. Kafedzic, Karovic;
6 I may have confused those two when I said that they were taken on the 10th
7 or the 12th of December. It was this one who was taken away, Ibro
8 Kafedzic. He was in room 18 with me and he was brought at about the same
9 time, and with visible injuries as a result of beatings. And he was taken
10 for interrogation several times at the same time when I was taken for
11 interrogations too. And he told me that they beat him terribly because a
12 relative of his - and he said he hardly knew the man - that that relative
13 had joined the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina and that was the only reason why
14 they beat him so badly.
15 Q. Just to clarify the record, earlier you gave us the name of Ibro
16 Karovic and you're correcting it now to Ibro Kafedzic. It's not Karovic?
17 A. That's it, yes, yes. He was the one who was taken away with the
18 group that included Markic, Sahinovic, Ekrem Cengic and Fehim Dedovic.
19 No, Halim Dedovic, I apologise. Fehim Dedovic is a different man, who
20 came out of the camp but then died immediately after that.
21 Q. Schedule B, number 32 is Rasim Kajgana, and you've already told us
22 that he was taken out as one of the plum pickers and someone saw his
23 body. Did you have anything to add to that?
24 A. Well, perhaps it might be interesting to tell you that he was
25 brought with a group of people from Montenegro. On the eve of the war,
1 they had sought sanctuary there, who were evidently clever enough and
2 thought -- and decided to escape, knew what would happen and they
3 escaped. But some people then went to those refugee camps and simply
4 rounded up those people, and one night, they brought a bus full of those
5 people to the KP Dom. It was dark already and all those people were put
6 up in a room above me and that group included quite a number of people
7 from Foca and I knew quite a number of them; Kajgana, Sefko Kubat, who
8 died in the camp, Nedzib Lojo and others.
9 Q. How did Mr. Kubat die in the camp?
10 A. He was a very sick man. He had a very bad ulcer, a stomach ulcer
11 or -- I don't know exactly, but he was very sick. He said once that he
12 had to go to hospital to have surgery, but it was necessary to donate
13 blood for that. A few people volunteered, including myself. He was
14 returned from hospital, I don't know exactly, four, five, seven days
15 later. He was returned to the room. He was a bit better at first but
16 then his condition deteriorated. Soon after that, he died. Later on, I
17 heard from some of the hospital staff that he could not be saved, that he
18 was very ill, apparently that he had some kind of a tumor, but it is
19 inconceivable since they knew anyway, I mean the staff at the KP Dom,
20 since they knew what kind of a serious patient this was, that he could
21 live only for about a month or whatever, why didn't they let him die a
22 free man among his own people and have a dignified funeral? They knew
23 it. He died at the KP Dom and that's where he was buried as well. That
24 is to say, at a locality elsewhere, a cemetery downstream from town, that
25 is to the north of town.
1 Q. You said you learned from the hospital staff that he could not be
2 saved. How did you learn from the hospital staff?
3 A. It so happened that a few times I met people who worked there, but
4 that was much later. I told you that I knew all those people well because
5 my wife had worked there for many years.
6 Q. So was this the hospital staff at the Foca hospital?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. You mentioned also that a group of people were brought from
9 Montenegro, that they were rounded up. Do you know who rounded up those
10 people; what authority?
11 A. Serbs from Foca came, Stefanovic -- oh, what was his first name?
12 He went to school with me. Miodrag? I'm not sure about his name,
13 Stefanovic at any rate. He had a privately owned restaurant and he
14 introduced himself as an inspector and then, with the assistance of the
15 local authorities, he obtained information as to where these people were
16 accommodated because they had to register with the police because of their
17 temporary residence there. And others were put up at various resorts,
18 whatever. Some -- and then they picked them up and some were even in
19 prison, in the local prisons there, and then they were all rounded
20 together and brought to Foca to the KP Dom.
21 Q. Was this what the people brought from Montenegro told you?
22 A. Yes, of course. We talked. Afterwards, when we would meet and
23 when some of them came to my room, Sefko Kubat told me about it, Rasim
24 Kajgana did.
25 Q. On Schedule B, number 37 is Emir Mandzo, could you tell us about
2 A. That's a young man. He's related to my wife. He lived near the
3 hospital, in an area called Mijakovic, I guess. I think that's the other
4 Mandzo who was supposed to be interrogated instead of Salko Mandzo,
5 Kelta. I don't know whether we got this right yesterday. He's been
6 missing too. There has been no trace of him.
7 Q. You said that he is related to your wife. Has your wife or any
8 other members --
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. -- heard from him?
11 A. No, never; no one, no one ever.
12 Q. Do you know why he was interrogated?
13 A. I don't know, I swear.
14 Q. B-40 is Avdo Mehmedspahic.
15 A. I know him too from before the war. We were schoolmates. He
16 worked at Velefarmacija. I know that after he was brought to the camp, he
17 spent a long time at the isolation cell. He was beaten terribly. I don't
18 know what happened to him afterwards. Perhaps he was transferred from the
19 isolation cell to some room. I don't know, because when we were taken out
20 for lunch, only the people from one room would be taken out for lunch or
21 for dinner, so we didn't really meet during 1992, and for a long part of
22 1993 as well. And I also went out to work. I went out in the morning and
23 I came back in the evening. I didn't see him in the room afterwards, but
24 I know for sure that he had been at the isolation cell and that a few
25 times he was taken out from the isolation cell for interrogations. One
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1 man told me that they had beaten him terribly on the soles of his feet and
2 that he could hardly move, that he had terrible haematoma.
3 Q. This man told you that Mr. Mehmedspahic was beaten on his feet?
4 A. Yes. Yes.
5 Q. Do you know whether he was beaten in the isolation cell or in that
7 A. I don't know about anybody being beaten at the isolation cell.
8 Usually they take people out, either into the area just before one entered
9 the isolation cells - that is also where they beat me when they were
10 taking me out of the isolation cell after my attempted escape - or they
11 were taken to the gate, and then they were beaten over there.
12 Q. Number B-41 is Asim Mezbur.
13 A. Asim Mezbur, yes. Yes, correct. Photographer. I knew him for
14 many years before the war. He's a disabled person. He didn't have a hand
15 and a big part of his arm. He was brought from his home, together with
16 his brother, Esad.
17 As I said yesterday, during the first months of 1992, in the camp
18 in 1992, that is, the staff of the KP Dom and Rasevic and Todovic would
19 often enter the compound and go over there to the restaurant. Among them
20 there were also some officers, soldiers. I don't know who all.
21 Once Asim called out to a man whom he knew. He was wearing a
22 uniform and he had a little bag. He was saying hello to him from the
23 window. He was sort of asking him to help him. But this man said, "We
24 found a transmitter at your place, a radio transmitter." And you know
25 what they found? They found not a mobile phone, not a cell phone, but a
1 cordless phone. Because then, at home, he did not have a telephone line.
2 He had not had a telephone line before that. And then in Germany he
3 bought this cordless phone with a long range, and the telephone was
4 actually installed in his photography shop and he needed it because of his
5 work. So he would carry this cordless phone with him, the mobile part of
6 the cordless phone, you see. And this friend of his knew that that was a
7 telephone, that it was not a radio transmitter, you see, but they needed
8 to have a reason.
9 Q. What happened to Mr. Mezbur as a result of this accusation?
10 A. There's been no sign of him. He's been taken away and there has
11 been no trace of him since.
12 Q. B-52 is Mesa Sofradzija.
13 A. I'm sorry. Can we go back to this?
14 Q. Yes.
15 A. What I told you just now was something that Asim Mezbur told me
16 about personally. He told me what they were charging him with and that
17 that is why he had terrible problems.
18 As for Mr. Sofradzija, I knew him personally as well before the
19 war. He worked at the municipality as a clerk in the water management
20 sector. He was arrested in Novi Sad, where he had sought shelter before
21 the war with the intention of - how should I put this? - of escaping this
22 hell. However, his brother was an officer. I think he was a Major in the
23 Yugoslav army. But somehow they found out - I don't know how - that he
24 was there. They came, they picked him up and brought him to the KP Dom.
25 He personally told me about this once when we saw each other in passing,
1 when I was being taken out to work. This was while we were still coming
2 from different rooms. And in the morning I was going to work, and his
3 room, the people from his room, were returning from breakfast.
4 Q. Did Mr. Sofradzija suffer consequences because of his brother?
5 A. I don't know. I can't confirm that with 100-per-cent certainty.
6 I just know that he was taken out for interrogations, that he was beaten
7 up. I did not talk to him after that. This first conversation was just
8 after he was brought into camp.
9 Q. Did you see him at the KP Dom with injuries?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Do you know what happened to him eventually?
12 A. He was also taken in this period of August/September, one of those
13 groups. As I said, I worked outside almost every day. I did not see. I
14 could not personally see when people's names were being called out and
15 when these people were taken to the gate, you know. However, he has
16 disappeared. There's been no trace of him.
17 Q. When you said "August and September," that was 1992; right?
18 A. Correct.
19 Q. I'd like to move on now from the schedules and ask you some
20 questions about the land mines, both in KP Dom and outside. Do you know
21 if there were land mines inside the KP Dom?
22 A. Exactly. Exactly. The entire area inside was mined.
23 Q. How do you know that?
24 A. And of course Mr. Warden knows about it too, and he can confirm
25 that. Well, I know. I saw the people who did that. One of them, who was
1 sort of their leader, he told me about it later. And I asked him, "What
2 were you doing?" and he said, "We were laying mines," as if it was
3 requested from the KP Dom to have this area mined, that is, within the
4 walls, within the walls that surround the KP Dom.
5 Later, when I worked at the furniture factory, I could see the
6 mines quite clearly, those that were placed, and a few times they were
7 activated. Once, this was - I don't know - it was either a cat or a dog,
8 and once it was a Serb soldier, a Montenegrin volunteer, Djapic, who
9 worked with us from time to time at the furniture factory. They had
10 well-established channels for getting alcohol from the other side of the
11 camp where the forest and the hill was, and he was boasting and saying
12 that he knew so well how the mines were placed that he could dance between
13 and among them. However, one day he did step on a mine. His leg was
14 blown up, and they brought him to the exit of the KP Dom on some kind of a
15 small cart that was used for transportation within the furniture factory.
16 One of them, a friend of his, looked at our rooms and hollered at us,
17 said, "This is because of you balijas," as if his friend Djapic had been
18 killed on account of us, because these mines had been laid on account of
19 us, you see.
20 As I said yesterday, the bars in Room 13 were allegedly put
21 because of us. In the previous prison, when convicts were there, convicts
22 who were convicted for various crimes they had committed, they didn't have
23 any bars there.
24 Q. Just to clarify a few things: When you said the Serb soldier or
25 the volunteer from Montenegro was inside the KP Dom and got blown up or
1 got injured by the mine, what was he doing inside the KP Dom? Why was he
3 A. I don't know exactly. I don't know the details, why who was
4 locked up. I mean, look: They would get drunk at the front line, they
5 would fight amongst themselves. That was usually on account of looting,
6 whatever. There were various other conflicts. People were locked up for
7 three, five, ten days, or even longer than that. Although perhaps it may
8 be of interest if I say that many local Serbs went through the KP Dom
9 because they didn't want to join the army, the Serb army. I personally
10 know them. They tried in every way. Some fled, and others tried to get
11 off the hook in different ways. They asked doctors for certificates
12 stating that they were incapacitated, that they could not go, et cetera.
13 Djapic, specifically, he was a volunteer from Montenegro.
14 Q. So the people that you described, these different groups of
15 people, those who had been involved in fights or people who were trying to
16 avoid military service, those were Serbs that were imprisoned in KP Dom;
17 is that right?
18 A. Yes. Yes, that's right. Yes. They were imprisoned, but they
19 were separated from us, and it was strictly forbidden to have any kind of
21 Q. And Djapic, if he was imprisoned at KP Dom, how was it that he was
22 able to walk outside where there were land mines?
23 A. Well, he was detained at the KP Dom, but he was one of the free
24 men, so to speak. He was free to leave his room, as opposed to us, and he
25 worked at the furniture factory. That's where he went to work. And that
1 happened beyond the furniture factory.
2 Q. Just to be clear, were the Serb prisoners allowed to move around
3 outside their rooms even when they weren't working?
4 A. Yes. Yes. Their rooms were open. They could go out whenever
5 they wanted to. They could visit with one another, they could go out into
6 the compound, into the yard, they could walk about, they could receive
7 visitors; everything, everything which was unimaginable for us. Only
8 during the later months, half-hour walks were allowed for inmates who did
9 not go to work. But whether we could go out and walk and receive visits
10 and things like that, that was unimaginable.
11 Q. When you say "later months," what time period are you referring
13 A. Well, I could not tell you exactly now, the exact time, the exact
14 period when it was allowed, when the inmates were allowed to do that.
15 None of us were convicts. We were never convicted of anything. We never
16 got any paper stating that we were charged with such-and-such a crime that
17 we had committed or that we were convicted. I don't know how many months
18 had passed by. Perhaps it was the end of 1992 or beginning of 1993. Once
19 a day, people were allowed to go out for a short walk.
20 Q. Now, I'd like to have you shown Exhibit P6 again, with the
21 assistance of the usher, so you can show us exactly where the land mines
22 inside the KP Dom were located.
23 A. So this is the way it was: This is the entrance from the street
24 for freight vehicles, trucks. This is a wall, the wall of the camp.
25 Mines were placed within the walls, here, all the way up to the top, then
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13 and English transcripts.
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13 and English transcripts.
1 along this wall, and then down here, all the way down here. There was a
2 gate here on the wall, and that's where the road was, where materials were
3 brought for the furniture factory; that is to say, wooden boards, wood in
4 general, et cetera. So let me repeat: This entire area, all the way up
5 to the top here, to the north, and down here, to the new wing of the
6 administration building, to the very entrance.
7 Q. Let me try to summarise or describe what you've indicated to us.
8 You said that there was -- you started at the point where there is a
9 vehicle entrance to the KP Dom, which would be in the lower right-hand
10 corner of Exhibit P6, and you indicated that the wall of the KP Dom starts
11 at the far right edge, is a line that goes straight up and then turns
12 left. Inside, just directly inside that wall that is on the diagram, to
13 the left, and then as you run up the top to the bottom of that wall, all
14 along that perimeter were the land mines.
15 Then about halfway through this diagram, the wall runs down. And
16 again that wall -- along that wall are the mines. And you stopped at the
17 point where the wall meets what you've referred to as the new part of the
18 administration building. And the gate that you indicated as going to the
19 furniture factory is about a third of the way down from that wall that's
20 on the left-hand side. So all along the inside perimeter of the
21 right-hand side, top side and left-hand side of the wall to the KP Dom is
22 where you've indicated that there were land mines. Is that right?
23 A. Absolutely right. There were mines all along the walls on the
24 inside except here where the road is.
25 Q. And where the road is is the road into the furniture factory?
1 A. Correct, correct. It goes by the heating room, by the metal shop,
2 to the furniture factory. This here is the storage area. This is a big
3 terrace, actually, that has no walls. It just has pillars and a roof.
4 Q. And where is that located? You went a little bit too fast for me
5 to follow that. The place where you said had no roof?
6 A. This is it.
7 MS. KUO: The witness has indicated now a rectangle which is to
8 the left of what has been marked as the furniture factory but still within
9 the compound of the KP Dom. And just for the record, the road that the
10 witness referred to, he started to describe how it went from the metal
11 factory, and that would be from -- it appears to be an exit to the
12 left-hand side of the furniture -- I'm sorry, of the metal workshop, the
13 metal workshop, going up and to the right, outside the KP Dom, and then
14 re-entering the KP Dom at the gate that goes toward the furniture
16 Q. Mr. Zekovic, do you know where Mr. Djapic was injured by the land
17 mine? Can you locate that for us or do you know?
18 A. Yes, I do know. It was in this part here, this area.
19 MS. KUO: The witness is indicating the area between the furniture
20 factory and the top -- the wall on the top part of the exhibit, about
22 JUDGE HUNT: You mean the perimeter fence?
23 MS. KUO: The perimeter fence, yes. And that would be behind --
24 or on this diagram, on top of the furniture factory. Thank you.
25 Q. Mr. Zekovic, you started to tell us how you knew that the land
1 mines were being put in there.
2 JUDGE HUNT: That may be an appropriate time, seeing --
3 MS. KUO: That's fine, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE HUNT: -- it's almost 11.00. We will resume at 11.30.
5 --- Recess taken at 11.00 a.m.
6 --- On resuming at 11.30 a.m.
7 JUDGE HUNT: Ms. Kuo.
8 MS. KUO:
9 Q. Mr. Zekovic, before the break, you told us that you saw the land
10 mines being laid at KP Dom. Could you tell us when this was?
11 A. It was in the summer of 1992, shortly after I arrived in the
12 camp. Not right away but perhaps a month later. I know the man who did
13 that, who put the mines. Some years before that we used to work together
14 for the auto service at Brod, near Foca.
15 Q. When you saw him laying the mines, was he wearing a uniform? Do
16 you know in what capacity he was laying the mines?
17 A. We met in passing. We were going for -- out for breakfast and we
18 came across each other in the yard of the KP Dom. We had gone in for
19 breakfast and he was walking towards the gate and we stood there for a
20 moment. We met in the doorway, so I said, "Bozo Saja" - Bozo Saja is his
21 name - "What are you doing here?" And he said, "Well, we have come to put
22 the mines because those from the administration had requested us to do
24 Q. Did he say why the administration had requested it?
25 A. No, he didn't. He didn't go into any details, but --
1 Q. But what?
2 A. But it is quite obvious why it was done and because of whom it was
3 done. It was obviously done because of us, because they must have assumed
4 that we'd try to escape. Perhaps they thought we'd attempt a collective
5 escape or a subversion or something.
6 Q. Were you ever warned about the land mines? In other words, did
7 people from the prison staff say, "Don't try to escape because there are
8 land mines here"?
9 A. No, not to me directly, nobody, but when I worked in the furniture
10 factory, a couple of people drew our attention to it, as we worked there,
11 to take care not to come close.
12 Q. And the person that you mentioned, who told you he was there to
13 lay mines, did he give you -- did he specify what administration he was
14 referring to? Did he mean or did he say the administration of the KP Dom
15 or did he specify what he meant?
16 A. Well, administration is one thing and command is another thing.
17 The leadership of the camp was the administration; that is how we referred
18 to them, not the command. And the -- and vice versa. So it is quite
19 obvious that it was the camp administration.
20 Q. Let's talk about mines that were not inside the KP Dom. Did you
21 know if any detainees were ever taken to clear mines, say at the front
23 A. Yes. It happened, yes. I know that. I'm positive. A driver
24 from my room went with a car, with a freight car, in front of them, Saban
25 Karup, and it happened once, he told me about it later on, that he'd
1 passed with his car, and the car which was behind him came upon a mine,
2 and on that occasion, some Serbs wanted to kill him. Another said, "Well,
3 listen, it was God's will for him to pass through and survive," so that he
5 And I also know another case of Muhamed Ahmetkadic in the metal
6 shop, in the car shop. We had put back together a large freight truck, a
7 cistern, as we call them. It was a closed van, closed truck, which was
8 used to transport furniture. And he took it to go towards Gorazde. Three
9 or four days later, that Ahmetkadic returned and was kept in the isolation
10 room for a long time. He never came out. In the new wing of the
11 building, on the upper floor. And I came across him when I left the
12 isolation cell about a month later, and he told me that he was driving
13 towards Gorazde, planning to demine that road, to try to pass through and
14 deactivate the mines so that the Serb army could enter Gorazde, but when
15 they got up there, they realised it was impossible, that he could not get
16 through the whole mine field, and so they turned him back.
17 And I also know, during my stay in the isolation cell, a guy who
18 was in the isolation cell 4 until the end, Omer Bavcic from Gorazde who
19 was captured somewhere on the demarcation line. He was taken a couple of
20 times to go through mine fields, and Serb soldiers then put in his ears
21 those metal rings of the mines, of grenades.
22 Q. What was the meaning of that, to put those in his ears?
23 A. Well, could also be but simply to vent their anger or whatever on
25 Q. So was it meant to humiliate him?
1 A. But of course.
2 Q. All three of these individuals that you mentioned -- Mr. Karup,
3 Mr. Ahmetkadic and Mr. Bavcic - were they detainees at KP Dom?
4 A. Karup, Ahmetkadic, and Bavcic, Omer. Yes. Yes, correct. Yes,
5 they were. Correct.
6 Q. And who took them to clear the mines?
7 A. I cannot really tell you who that was.
8 Q. And to clarify and just to make the record clear, were they told
9 to drive ahead of Serb army vehicles so that if there were a land mine,
10 they would get injured or killed rather than the Serb army?
11 A. That's right. Yes, that's right.
12 MS. KUO: Your Honours, Karup is listed in Schedule E at number
13 33. And Mr. Ahmetkadic, there is a Mustafa listed at Schedule E, number
14 2, although the witness has said his first name is Muhamed.
15 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
16 MS. KUO:
17 Q. You mentioned that Mr. Ahmetkadic was --
18 A. Correct, yes. Yes, quite right. Muhamed. I'm sure.
19 Q. You said when Mr. Ahmetkadic was brought back from driving the
20 vehicle ahead of the military, the Serb military, that he was placed in an
21 isolation cell. Do you know why that was done? Was there a pattern of
22 people being placed in isolation cells?
23 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, objection. I don't
24 think it is solitary confinement; I think it is an isolation cell.
25 MS. KUO: That's what I --
1 JUDGE HUNT: The question is: "Was there a pattern of people
2 being placed in isolation cells?" It may be that your translation was
3 different, but in each -- Ms. Kuo has said it twice, "... that he was
4 placed in an isolation cell. Do you know why that was done? Was there a
5 pattern of people being placed in isolation cells?"
6 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, it is quite right. I
7 understood the question was about the isolation cell, but the witness
8 spoke about isolation, not about solitary confinement, and a room for
9 isolation is not the same thing as a solitary confinement room. That is
10 the difference, if my learned friend will agree with me.
11 JUDGE HUNT: How far back did the witness refer to this? I wasn't
12 conscious of him saying anything other than "isolation." Yes, here it
13 is. It's at page 35, line 18: "And I also know, during my stay in the
14 isolation cell, a guy who was in the isolation cell."
15 So, as I say, Mr. Bakrac, it may be the translation had a
16 different spin on it, but in each case we have received the word
18 You proceed, Ms. Kuo.
19 MS. KUO: Thank you, Your Honour.
20 Q. Witness, you looked like you were about to clarify something.
21 A. Yes. Rather, Muhamed Ahmetkadic was taken out of the collective
22 room where we were together. After he returned, he was put in the
23 isolation room. He had no contact with anyone. But that was not the
24 solitary confinement room on the ground floor. And the same thing
25 happened to Karup. And Omer Bavcic was taken out of the solitary
1 confinement room, where I spent a month, and then he was taken back to the
2 solitary confinement room.
3 MS. KUO: Perhaps I could ask the witness to clarify for us where
4 these rooms are located so that there's no misunderstanding.
5 Q. When you say "isolation cell," could you tell us what building and
6 what floor you mean? Not the solitary confinement, but the isolation.
7 A. In the new room of the building, on the topmost floor, I don't
8 know whether it's Room 23 or 25, but I know the room.
9 Q. When you said "the new building," you mean the prisoners'
10 quarters, not the administrative building?
11 A. Yes. Yes. They both have them, both the old and the new.
12 MS. KUO: With the assistance of the usher, I'd like to have the
13 witness shown Exhibit P6/5, and that should show the top floor of the
14 prisoners' quarters.
15 A. It is this part of the building, the new part of the building, on
16 the topmost floor, on this side. Now, whether it was Room 23 or 25, I'm
17 not sure about the number, but that was a room in the attic. That was the
18 topmost storey, and that is where Muhamed was kept and where Saban was
19 kept. And after they came out of solitary confinement, 28 days later, I
20 saw Ahmetkadic in Room 18, in this part of the dormitory. And in this
21 part of the dormitory there were five Croats. This was another isolation
22 room. They did not go out to the restaurant for meals.
23 MS. KUO: All right. For the record, the witness first showed
24 what's been marked on this exhibit as Room 23, and then when he referred
25 to Room 28 - I'm sorry - room 18, he moved over the diagram on this
1 picture to where it's marked 22, but he said on a different floor, and I
2 don't think there's a dispute that Room 18 is located there but on a lower
4 Thank you.
5 Q. Yes, Witness? You wanted to say something else?
6 JUDGE HUNT: Just before you do so, I don't think any of us on the
7 Bench are getting the video evidence. I picked up what was actually being
8 shown on the public area, but we're not getting it at the moment on the
9 other channel.
10 MS. KUO: Perhaps we can move away from the diagram for now and we
11 can come back to it when the problem has been fixed.
12 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
13 MS. KUO: Thank you.
14 Q. Mr. Zekovic, you've said a couple of things and I'd like to ask
15 you to clarify them. You showed Room 23 and you said that that was used
16 as an isolation cell. Were there not regular prisoners kept in that room,
17 or was it used strictly to keep people in a form of isolation, as you've
19 A. Only so as to isolate. Muhamed Ahmetkadic was alone, was
20 completely alone, as I have said. When I came out of the solitary
21 confinement and came to Room 18, I found him and five Croats there, and
22 that was on the same day as the second visit of the Red Cross to the camp
23 in Foca.
24 Q. When you refer to being brought to Room 18 and finding the five
25 Croats there, was that after your attempted escape, when you were brought
2 A. While I was in solitary confinement -- those Croats were brought
3 while I was in solitary confinement from somewhere on -- from some part of
4 the front in Herzegovina.
5 Q. I just want to get a clear picture for the Court. That was in
6 July of 1993; right?
7 A. Well, listen. I escaped on the 8th of July, and I spent two days
8 in the solitary confinement at the gate. And then I spent 27 or 28 days
9 in this solitary confinement cell in the new wing of the building. And
10 then I came out and went to Room 18, and it was then that I found those
11 Croats. So it could have been August; August, yes, not July. Well, they
12 may have been brought in July, but I did not see them then.
13 Q. And when you saw them in August of 1993 in Room 18, was Room 18
14 being used to house the workers' group any more or was it just the five
15 Croats there and then you were brought and then Mr. Ahmetkadic?
16 A. No. It wasn't the room for workers. It was the isolation room.
17 The work group was in the old wing, in the building's old wing. As I told
18 you, and I'll repeat it, this was the isolation room with Ahmetkadic and
19 those five Croats who were very quickly taken away, or rather, were
21 Q. So again just talking about Room 18, you had been in Room 18 in
22 the summer of 1992. In the summer of 1993, Room 18 was serving a
23 different function; is that right?
24 A. It is, yes. It is right. Because we have to remember that we
25 were frequently moved from one room to another, that in the summer of
1 1992, there were very few of us there because people had been taken for
2 exchanges, for so-called exchanges before that. Some of them did come
3 through but most of them, unfortunately, did not. So that people from
4 different rooms were put together, concentrated in smaller areas. In the
5 summer of 1993, we were in the old wing.
6 Q. Now, there has been some discussion about the difference between
7 solitary confinement and isolation cell. We understand that there are
8 specially designed solitary confinement rooms, and the rooms that you've
9 pointed out to us, 23 and 18, were not those specially designed solitary
10 confinement rooms, right? I mean, they were regular prisoners' quarters
11 that were being used for a specific purpose.
12 A. Yes, just common prisoners' quarters, which were -- except that
13 they were used to isolate. And solitary confinement cells were on the
14 ground floor in the new wing.
15 Q. Speaking about Mr. Ahmetkadic, do you know why he was isolated
16 after being taken to clear mines?
17 A. I do. He told me. So as not to tell other inmates where he'd
18 been, why he'd been there, whom he had seen there. They -- I mean the
19 authorities really paid great -- accorded great importance to it, to --
20 not to allow us get any information from outside, from the outside world.
21 They really tried hard to keep them down to the minimum. They were
22 absolutely -- they were panic-stricken that we might learn about anything
23 from outside. So any radio, television, any communication with the
24 outside world was -- anything like that was prohibited. They wanted to
25 keep a complete media -- to impose a complete media blockade on us.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 Q. In addition to Mr. Ahmetkadic, did you know of other people who
2 were isolated in this way?
3 A. Yes. I already said Saban Karup was isolated for a while. I
4 don't know about others in relation to this case, those people who went to
5 clear the mines and tried to break -- to make -- to pave -- to make a
7 Q. You said that the authorities were trying to prevent any
8 communication between the detainees and the outside world. Did you have a
9 form of communication with the outside world? For instance, through a
10 radio or other means?
11 A. Shortly after the establishment of the camp, people had TV sets in
12 the rooms, which had stayed from before. That is the prewar prison. And
13 in many lockers that belonged to former convicts, they found transistor
14 radios, but all those transistors were seized in the early months of the
15 camp existence. TV sets were taken away immediately, after a few days
16 only. I did not find any of those things when I arrived on the 20th of
17 May. And the last radio that we had, that was a small transistor, was
18 brought by people from Room 13. A person who is listed under 210 and
19 Uzeir Hadzalic, when the work group was set up, they brought that
20 transistor with them. However, we could use it only for a very short
21 time. We listened to it, hoping we'd get information about whether peace
22 would be signed and would there be an international intervention, would
23 the International Red Cross come, would there be any exchanges. We really
24 wanted to know about this badly. But one of the inmates, in a desperate
25 attempt to come by a piece of bread or a cigarette, he, as we put it,
1 snitched on us. That is, he told -- he talked to a guard and the award
2 was a slice of bread and a cigarette. And after that, the guards began to
3 call out all of us in the room, one by one, and finally, called out me,
4 and the person on 210. Of course, they knew, and those before us had
5 already confirmed, that we indeed had a transistor so it would have served
6 no purpose to say that we didn't. We turned over the transistor and I was
7 put in solitary confinement that day and I was beaten on the back, and
8 that was it that time.
9 Q. Who beat you?
10 A. Milutinovic - I don't know his first name - was the one who beat
11 me. I think he comes from Govsa, from Jelec, from somewhere around there.
12 Q. Where did he beat you?
13 A. He beat me with a baton, on my back, on my arms. A couple of
14 blows were in the head and one of them was terribly painful.
15 Q. Do you know if other people were beaten because of the radio?
16 A. I know several of them were beaten. I don't know how many because
17 I was taken to a separate solitary confinement cell in the upper part of
18 the row of solitary confinement cells. And other people were beaten in
19 the hallway and in the lower row of the solitary confinement cells.
20 Q. Could you then hear that they were being beaten?
21 A. Of course, I could. Of course.
22 Q. I'd like to ask you a few questions about an incident in late
23 August or September, 1992, when you were taken out toward the river bank
24 on the River Drina, in front of the KP Dom. Did you on that occasion see
25 any dead bodies?
1 A. Yes, in the water on the right bank of the Drina, that is on the
2 bank nearer the KP Dom, I saw several bodies there.
3 Q. First of all, what were you doing in that area?
4 A. I and the individual 210 went to the pile of -- to a heap of
5 rubble which had been brought from the site where Aladza mosque had stood
6 and had been mined. And the personnel of the metal shop had ordered us to
7 go and get the copper plate because the Aladza mosque had been covered
8 with copper plate, and they wanted this plate and they wanted to take it
9 to Montenegro and sell it there as refuse and thus pocket some money. And
10 we worked there on the river bank and getting the -- what was left of this
11 brass, of this copper plate. I saw some bodies, or rather, I heard first
12 a guard say to people who were working above us, building a new bunker, a
13 new fortification, and that is a small metal kiosk, a small guard booth,
14 and they were surrounding it with sand, with bags with sand, and I heard a
15 guard called Burilo, nicknamed Busi, how he says -- how he said, "Well,
16 push this shit downstream. Let them flow to Gorazde." Then I raised my
17 head and I saw those bodies. There was a lot of garbage there on the
18 bank. It is quite possible that there was a number of bodies there, at
19 least three or more, but I'm quite positive that I saw two bodies. I saw
20 two bodies. The water is very shallow there.
21 Q. Could you describe the bodies? Were they male or female and what
22 were they wearing?
23 A. I am 100 per cent sure that these were men wearing civilian
24 clothes. I could not see anything else precisely, not even their age or
25 injuries they might have had.
1 Q. Were they actually in the water? Did they appear to have come
2 ashore from the water?
3 A. No, they were in the water. They were not ashore. I repeat, the
4 water was shallow there.
5 Q. Is the water always shallow there or does it depend on the time of
7 A. That was the summer of 1992, September. I don't know the exact
8 date, but in that period, the water level is very, very low.
9 Q. The people that you said were building or putting the sand bags
10 around the kiosk to build a bunker, were they detainees from the KP Dom as
12 A. Of course. Only inmates worked.
13 Q. What did they do when Burilo said to push the bodies into the
15 A. I don't know exactly. I could not see that because this guard
16 came and we were supposed to transfer these pieces to the metal shop. But
17 I think they pushed them. Because you could not refuse to carry out
18 orders, especially not of that Burilo. That was inconceivable.
19 MS. KUO: With the assistance of the Usher, I'd like to have the
20 witness shown again Exhibit P6. I would ask him to show us on the diagram
21 where this incident occurred.
22 JUDGE HUNT: And the computer is working.
23 A. It is here, this part, just opposite the gate leading into the KP
24 Dom. In this part, there is an asphalt area where there is a big parking
25 lot. And in this part, there is a parking lot for old vehicles, used
1 vehicles. We worked here. I and the person who is mentioned as 210, we
2 worked here on the shore. The other inmates were working about 20, 25
3 metres away from me, upstream, and they were fortifying the bunker that
4 was there.
5 MS. KUO: For the record, the witness has shown as the big asphalt
6 area a place -- the middle to the bottom of Exhibit P6, there is a big,
7 looks like an empty area, and it's to the left of the bridge and to the
8 right and above what's been marked as the River Drina. And just again to
9 indicate the place where the witness said he was working with 210 is
10 directly above where the word "Drina" appears, and then the place where he
11 said the other detainees were working is slightly to the right of that.
12 Q. The River Drina flows in which direction, Witness?
13 A. This direction.
14 MS. KUO: The witness is indicating a direction from right to left
15 and, in fact, that's the arrow that's also drawn to the left of the word
16 "Drina," showing the flow of the water. Thank you.
17 Q. Witness, before I get to your escape attempt, I had a question
18 about something you had said earlier. You stated yesterday that there
19 were times when you saw the light on in the warden's office in the
20 evening. And in your testimony today, at one point, you said that in the
21 early months of your detention, there were no lights in the evening.
22 Could you clarify that? When you said today that there were no lights in
23 the evening, what were you referring to?
24 A. There were some days when there wasn't any power at all. For a
25 long time, our rooms didn't have any, even when they did, when the
1 administration did.
2 Q. So during the first few months that you were in KP Dom, the
3 administration building did have electricity and light sources even in the
4 evening; is that right?
5 A. Yes.
6 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, objection. I think that
7 the witness said that often there were no lights, either in the prisoners'
8 quarters or in the administration building, and when they did have some,
9 that it would happen that the prisoners' quarters did not have any but
10 that the administration building did. And my friend paraphrased -- she
11 actually phrased her question this way, as if the administration
12 invariably had power and the prison quarters did not.
13 MS. KUO: I apologise, Your Honour. I did not intend to create
14 that impression. I did mean to negate the blanket assertion that there
15 was no power at all.
16 JUDGE HUNT: I think it's probably equivocal. In the light of the
17 answer, it's a bit difficult to read it that way, but Mr. Bakrac is
18 nothing if not precise about these things.
19 MS. KUO: Yes, Your Honour. I will rephrase the question.
20 JUDGE HUNT: It would be best to do so, yes.
21 MS. KUO:
22 Q. In the first few months when you were in KP Dom, there were times
23 when there was light available in the administration building, even when
24 there was no light available to the prisoners' quarters in the evening; is
25 that right?
1 A. That's right.
2 Q. And I also want to ask you a question that I forgot to ask when we
3 were discussing land mines. Do you know if anybody inside the KP Dom was
4 ever killed by a land mine -- by driving over a land mine?
5 A. I know of one case when driver Drakul got killed, Milivoj Drakul,
6 but that was not within the KP Dom and it's not related to the KP Dom.
7 This was downstream, to the north of the camp, at Josanica. I don't know
8 how come he was going there in the first place in a car, but I just know
9 that he did get killed. There weren't any combat operations there, but I
10 know for sure that there were land mines in many places. They were put
11 there either according to plan or without any plan.
12 Just before I tried to escape, I heard some people saying that
13 below Maglic - that's at Brod, three kilometres away from Foca,
14 upstream - that a fisherman got killed, Skobo - I knew him - because the
15 area around the factory was mined, on the bank of the Drina River. So I
16 was guided by that. When I came to that place, I went to the forest,
17 uphill. I did not go below that factory.
18 Q. Returning to Drakul, when he was killed by the land mine, do you
19 know if he was there -- you said he was a driver. Was he there to detect
20 land mines for the Serb military or was he there for other reasons,
21 perhaps personal?
22 A. No. No. I don't know what job he had there, but he did go
23 officially in a car. I mean, whether they needed something personal or
24 whatever, but it's not that he went there to work for the military, to
25 demine it or something like that, no.
1 MS. KUO: Your Honours, the person mentioned as Drakul is listed
2 on the employee list, Exhibit P3, at number 90, and there is an indication
3 there that he was killed by a land mine 26th of March, 1993.
4 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
5 MS. KUO:
6 Q. All right, Mr. Zekovic. Now we'll move to your attempted escape.
7 Could you tell us why you decided at that particular point to try to
9 A. We were all awaiting the visit of the Red Cross feverishly, with
10 great anticipation. As I said, it only happened on the 13th of June,
11 1993. On that occasion, in the room, I and person 210 seized an
12 opportunity to talk to the staff from the International Red Cross on our
13 own. They were two women. I spoke English and my friend spoke French.
14 We asked specifically and directly what our chances were of having them
15 release us, because we were civilians; we were brought from our homes. We
16 were pinning our hopes on the Red Cross, hoping that they would come and
17 see us some day, and that we would explain that we had done nothing and
18 that we were staying there under terrible conditions, and that they would
19 set us free. However, they said to us that this was virtually impossible,
20 absolutely, and that it was still a big question whether they would come
21 again at all and when they would come again. They said that when they
22 would get permission from Pale -- I mean, when they would get permission
23 from Pale, then the Foca people would not let them go into the camp. I
24 personally saw, at least three or four times, vehicles of the
25 International Red Cross in front of the entrance to the KP Dom. So having
1 realised that, I lost every illusion that we would be set free soon. I
2 started thinking about an escape very intensively, straight away.
3 At first I did that together with person 210. However, he
4 vacillated. I don't know. He wasn't brave enough. And then I decided to
5 go for it myself. About six or seven days after that visit of the Red
6 Cross, I had volunteered to go with a group to cut grass and collect it
7 for hay for the farm, because on Saturdays and Sundays, everybody went
8 from the furniture factory and those who did other jobs. There wasn't a
9 strict list. The list was made at the gate itself. However, it so
10 happened that Mitar Rasevic came to the gate and that he asked the guard
11 to call one of the Serbs who had been detained, and he saw me. And he
12 asked me directly, "Zeka, where are you going?" And I said, "Well, I'm
13 going out into the sun as well. I have some problems with my skin, so I'd
14 like to get some sun." And he directly said, "No, you cannot. Go back to
15 your room."
16 Q. Do you know why Mr. Rasevic told you to go back to your room?
17 A. I assume that he had his suspicions that I was getting ready to
19 Q. Had you done anything to arouse his suspicion?
20 A. Well, possibly, in an indirect way. As I worked in the metal
21 workshop doing these different jobs, I had no footwear; I had trainers
22 only. Since a neighbour of mine worked in the administration of the KP
23 Dom, I asked him to bring me a pair of trainers from home, because Vesna,
24 a lady neighbour of ours, the wife of Mate Ivancic, took care of our
25 house. Mate Ivancic was in the camp with me. However, he said that he
1 didn't dare to do that, that he had to talk to someone from the
3 Then once, in passing, I saw Mitar Rasevic and I said that I
4 needed footwear, that I couldn't work in these old ones any longer, that
5 they were falling apart, and he allowed this man to bring me that other
6 pair. A few weeks later, this neighbour did bring these things and they
7 were left in Rasevic's office. Then Rasevic called me and person number
8 210 and said that we should clean his office, and then he gave me these
9 things. However, Vesna, that lady, that neighbour of mine, she sent all
10 my things: trousers, a shirt, a sweater, a belt, anything but my shoes.
11 The shoes were her husband's, and regrettably they were too small for me.
12 I took all of those things into the camp, into the compound of the KP Dom,
13 because there were some people who didn't have socks, some people who
14 didn't have any underpants, and others who did not have shirts, and I
15 personally did not need that. I only needed shoes. And I assume that
16 Mr. Rasevic based his assumption on that, that I got all these things and
17 that I needed them for the escape, which was not really of crucial
19 As we were let into the compound of the camp after that, I wore
20 some of these things underneath my working clothes and I carried the
21 others, and he said strictly that we should not tell anyone anything about
22 this, that they know everything that is discussed in rooms, and if they
23 find out that he had done that, then they would have terrible problems, he
24 and the man who brought this, and I would probably too.
25 Q. Was it Mr. Rasevic who said this?
1 A. Yes. Yes. Mr. Mitar Rasevic said that to me.
2 Q. Did you have good relations with Mitar Rasevic?
3 A. Well, not particularly good relations. We knew each other by
4 sight from before the war. But I don't know. He did not treat us at the
5 metal workshop badly. He left a good impression in all these
6 conversations and contacts we had with him. He always said that he felt
7 sorry for us, that he knew that we were innocent and nevertheless
8 detained, and he himself said that it was the creme de la creme that was
9 locked up in there from our town, but he said that he couldn't do anything
10 to help. However, he did not allow it to be called a camp; not only he,
11 but none of the staff, the guards, whoever. They treated it as some kind
12 of protection centre, whatever. And what kind of a protection centre is
13 that? The very fact that the International Red Cross was allowed to visit
14 only in June 1993 speaks for itself.
15 Let me be even more precise. The International Red Cross tried
16 once and they actually got in in April 1992, but that was very short.
17 They entered one room and they managed to make only a partial list of
18 persons' names. But they kicked them out with various threats, saying
19 that, if necessary, they could liquidate them, whatever. I did not see
20 this, I did not experience this, because I came to the camp later, but
21 this is what people who were there said.
22 Q. Did Mr. Rasevic say, since he was powerless to do anything, who
23 had the power?
24 A. He did not say specifically who did and who didn't, you see, but
25 all of them in individual contacts -- I mean, when I say "all of them," I
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 say those who we could have contact with. Later, as time went by, there
2 were more and more of them. All of them made an effort to leave the
3 impression that they were good, that they were the good guys, that they
4 had protected us; had it not been for them, we would have been killed or
5 harmed or whatever. And I said, "Why would I be killed? Why would I be
6 harmed when I had never done anything bad to anyone?" And they had no
7 answer to that.
8 Q. After the time when Mitar Rasevic turned you back from going
9 outside, what did you do?
10 A. I came back to the room. Nothing. I felt sorry, because it was
11 an ideal opportunity. They took this vehicle to go to cut grass, all the
12 way to the border with Montenegro, to the village of Hum. It would have
13 been very easy for me to go from there, along the Tara River canyon, which
14 I knew very well, and that I could easily reach Montenegro from there and
15 finally get together with my wife and children.
16 Q. When did you try to escape next?
17 A. On the 8th of July, 1993. It was raining hard that morning, and I
18 immediately thought: this is an ideal day for an escape. When I was
19 taken into the compound to go to breakfast, I said to the guard at the
20 gate that I had to go to the room to get some medicines. I went to the
21 room, and underneath my working clothes I put on a jacket similar to the
22 one I'm wearing now. Then I put all of that within the metal workshop. I
23 had a few small things from breakfast, and from the mid-morning snack I
24 had left a slice or two of bread. I had a towel, I had a T-shirt, and - I
25 don't know - I think a pair of socks.
1 And then, in the afternoon, I heard that Relja, the head of the
2 metal workshop, was telling Zuti and Ramiz, the other workers, that he
3 would go to do something at Maglic and that when we finish work at 3.00,
4 that we should leave the keys at the usual place, and he left. I thought
5 that somebody stayed there to guard us, one of the roaming guards, so to
6 speak, from the gate, so I was wondering for a while -- it was hard to
7 make a decision like that because it involved a terrible risk. However,
8 what surfaced then was that great wish that I had to finally get together
9 with my nearest and dearest. I took off my working clothes, I got out of
10 the workshop, I passed by the heating room, I passed by the dogs that were
11 in the lower part of the metal workshop, and I got out into the street.
12 In a guard's hut before that, I saw a raincoat, a cape, sort of.
13 However, I didn't find that. I had seen it before but I didn't find it.
14 And then I just took an ordinary piece of plastic, I put it on my head,
15 and I went out into the road. I was walking upstream. I passed by the
16 entrance to the KP Dom, and then I went right, across the bridge, and then
17 I started going up hill, through meadows and the woods.
18 Q. Let me stop you right there for a moment. Mr. Zekovic, when you
19 passed by the guard booth, was there a guard there?
20 A. You mean at the exit where I came out on to the road? No, at that
21 moment, there was no guard there.
22 Q. Was there normally a guard?
23 A. Usually a guard would be at the guard post. I can show it to
24 you. Below the car shop. And where I came out, at that moment, there
25 were no guards.
1 Q. If we could have the Usher show you Exhibit P6 again, and you can
2 show us where that guard's booth is and the direction that you -- the path
3 that you took.
4 A. This is the metal shop. I came out here, then went by the new
5 wing of the administrative building, by the boiler room, came out above
6 the mechanic shop, and this guard booth is here. This is it. Practically
7 on the road from the town to the hospital. And I went -- I took a road, a
8 path above it, because we often had to go to this area to get some
9 construction materials because that is where those warehouses were.
10 And that exit, I can't really see it here. Oh, yes, it is here.
11 Yes, it's here. Here it is. So I got out on to the road, and I took the
12 road because there was no way I could cross here. And it wasn't all that
13 suspicious because civilians used that road too. It was raining and I had
14 this plastic on my head so that nobody could recognise me. And I walked
15 past the KP Dom and its gate to the bridge here. And then I crossed to
16 the other bank of the Drina towards those villages up in the hills.
17 Q. Let me briefly describe what you've indicated for the record.
18 MS. KUO: The path that the witness indicated took him from the
19 metal workshop courtyard up through a gap between the metal workshop and
20 the administrative building, going up in the diagram. Then he turned left
21 and went toward where there is a black circle, to the left of where the
22 workshop area was, and that is what he indicated was the guard's hut. And
23 then he went further to the left of the diagram, made a U-turn basically,
24 came back right on the public road, and then continued in the front of the
25 KP Dom across the bridge.
1 Q. Mr. Zekovic, that guard's hut that you indicated, which is on this
2 diagram a black circle, once you got past that point, were you out of the
3 KP Dom or were you still within some sort of controlled area?
4 A. I couldn't really give you a definitive answer. There was a guard
5 here, and when we worked, there was a guard here too. Except that it
6 frequently happened -- mind you, it's 1993, that was a long time, and we
7 had been working there for a long time and there were never any
8 incidents. So at times, guards would leave for an hour or two, go to the
9 gate to just talk, socialise and have coffee or perhaps brandy, so that
10 there were times when we would be left alone for long periods of time.
11 But as a rule, there was a guard at this gate here. The guard here, the
13 Q. Once you were past that point, was that the last guard or the last
14 possible guard that you would encounter before you were in the outside
15 world, so to speak?
16 A. Yes, yes.
17 Q. And you also mentioned going past some dogs. Where were the
19 A. Yes, yes. Above the car repair shop, there were several small
20 buildings where they kept dogs. And then beyond the car repair shop,
21 downstream, and those dogs had long chains and so that they could move
22 around. But we knew those dogs, or rather, they knew us and we often fed
23 them, so that I could walk past them without any problem.
24 Q. But were these basically guard dogs?
25 A. Yes, of course.
1 Q. Thank you. Mr. Zekovic, when you said you headed for the forest,
2 could you tell us where you went from that point on?
3 A. I planned to go upstream from the camp. It is the left bank of
4 the Drina, to be quite precise, and then at some suitable spot, in some
5 spinney or next to a stream, to wait for the night to fall, because it was
6 dangerous to move about in daytime and I thought I'd wait for the night to
7 fall. I realised that the police would be notified straight away, that
8 there would be a posse, and that is what I did. I waited for the dark.
9 It was cloudy, rain -- there was rain from time to time.
10 I crossed the road, went down to the left bank of the Drina, and I
11 started upstream towards Brod. And I could see on the other side of the
12 Drina fires burning, log fires burning, and it was not logical for them to
13 be fishermen because it was raining and it was just too late for
14 fishermen, and then I was told later on that they had set out patrols to
15 wait for me because they assumed that I would go to the part of the town
16 where I used to live. That is, they assumed that I would go home to my
17 street. But I went upstream instead. Then I swam across the Drina,
18 across the river, and continued upstream and I fetched up near the factory
19 that we said had been mined, where the fishermen, Skobo, had been killed.
20 And then I crossed the road, and when I reached it, before I
21 crossed it, I first spent some time looking out for patrols. And even
22 though there were patrols every 50 metres or so, at a point where I saw
23 that the road was empty, I just ran across the road and I took a dirt road
24 to a village called Subovici or, to be more exact, to the houses who were
25 killed, that is or people who were killed, that is Asim and Esad Mezbur.
1 And that is how far I could get that night because one could not
2 follow the road that I meant to take by night because the forest is very
3 thick there, very dense. And so I waited for the morning there and when
4 the day began to break, I continued through the forest, above an inhabited
5 locality, above a settlement. And when I had already passed that
6 settlement, I had to cross a road which goes from Bunovi to Brod, and I
7 could not cross that road immediately because on the other side -- there
8 was a thicket on the other side, so I had to walk uphill and there I came
9 across two men, first one in civilian clothes, an elderly man, and I said
10 to him -- I asked him, "Did you see some cows? The cows had escaped. We
11 failed to keep them," and did he perhaps -- had he seen them? And was
12 there another village somewhere? And he said that, yes, but it was a long
13 way off. And then I met another man and I repeated this same story about
14 lost cows. And just as I parted company with that second man, I could
15 then turn right and into the forest.
16 And I walked through the forest without difficulty, and I kept my
17 direction. I could see. I could follow the right bank of the river
18 because I told you I was familiar with the ground. And there was no
19 difficulty, no problem at all, until I reached a village called Kopilovi,
20 and the fog from the river had already risen from the river so that I
21 could not see the other side and I was -- I had already climbed down too
22 low when I reached that village.
23 I realised I had to climb up, and I thought that I'd climbed high
24 enough. And from below, from the village, I could hear the sounds of a
25 car. I heard noises -- rather, voices of people, and I assumed it was
1 other army or police. Anyway, their patrol. And from what I remembered,
2 because my mother comes from a neighbouring village, only slightly higher
3 up from that village, and as far as I could remember, the area, I had -- I
4 came out to the meadows where there are no more houses, that is when I
5 finally came out of the fog. I reached those meadows and I thought that I
6 was already past that village, that I was sufficiently high up and all I
7 had to do was to get to an oak forest and then turn towards the village
8 where my -- which was my mother's native village, and up there it was much
9 better because there were not so many settlements, and I intended to move
10 at a higher altitude and therefore go around all those villages.
11 But then I again found myself in the fog. However the wind
12 dispersed it very quickly, and I realised I was in a village, that I was
13 in a village. And 20 metres away from me, two women were picking
14 cherries, and below me, a man with a rifle entered a house. I could see
15 that he was very old. And then I concocted a story for them, and I said,
16 "Where is the road to Kunduci? I need to go see Obren Pejovic to buy a
17 car and I've lost my way, because I came up this road from Bunovi." And
18 they looked at me suspiciously. Evidently, they realised immediately that
19 I was not the one -- that is, I had told them that my name was Zivkovic,
20 and they asked me, "Who are you?"
21 And I went on, trying simply to get out of their sight, and into
22 the woods again. However, it was impossible because on the upper part of
23 the road, the forest was very dense, so that I could only walk straight
24 ahead. And I had covered some 800 to 900 metres and I was right in the
25 thick of the village, that is even more houses, more people. So I told
1 myself there is no way through here, and I went back, thinking I perhaps
2 might try to make my way through this dense forest. But from behind the
3 first curve, a man with a rifle turned up. It was the same man that I had
4 seen with the rifle next to a house. And I tried again to make up a story
5 for him, to explain that I was on my way to Kunduci, looking for Obren
6 Pejovic. And he uncocked his rifle, made a couple of steps back, and
7 said, "Hands up." And then there was no use to try to pretend anything,
8 so that I stopped.
9 And then we walked on, that is in the direction that I had come
10 back from. And there we came to a house and the villagers gathered in no
11 time. There were some troops there and women and old people and
12 children. And they started to discuss what to do with me. Some suggested
13 to take me to Foca and turn me over because they would be rewarded then
14 with at least two canisters of fuel. Others cried out, "Let's tie him
15 up. Let's tie him up." Others again said, "Let's call the patrol." And
16 others again said, "Well, into the brook and cut his throat."
17 And the man next to whose house we were standing said -- or -- and
18 the wife, "Well, the patrol had ordered if we catch him to just keep him
19 and to let them know."
20 And then a young man took my wind jacket off to search the
21 pockets, but I had nothing. I nevertheless had to take it off. And then
22 they brought very thick rope and tied my hands.
23 Q. At this point, was it clear to you that the villagers knew who you
24 were, that you had escaped from the KP Dom?
25 A. Absolutely, absolutely, absolutely. They were notified in all the
1 ways possible. There was Radio Foca and radio communication, whatever,
2 because they knew what I looked like and they gathered the direction in
3 which I had been moving because the person mentioned under number 210 had
4 told them. He tried to apologise to me later on and said, "Zeka, I am
5 sorry, but they had brought a pistol and a rifle and beat you," and he
6 simply told them which direction I would take so that they were aware of
8 Q. Just to make sure that the transcript is clear, you said regarding
9 210, he said, "They brought a pistol and a rifle to beat you." Did you
10 mean that 210 was beaten with the pistol and rifle in order to have him
11 say what your plan was, what direction you would go in?
12 A. That's right, yes.
13 Q. Did you know the ethnicity of the villagers?
14 A. Yes, of course. I know it all. They were Serbs.
15 Q. How do you know that?
16 A. Well, I knew that it was a Serb village from before. And during
17 that discussion before the police arrived, we talked, and one of them
18 asked me, "Where did you come from? Who is your father?" And I told him
19 the name of my father and he said, "Oh, yes, I know him. Once upon a time
20 he helped me get some tiles for the roof." And another woman said, "Well,
21 where does your mother come from?" And I said, "From over there, from
22 Kunduci." And they said, "Oh, yes, sure. We know them. Nice people,
23 good neighbours." And I said, "Yes, that's quite right. That is all
24 true. But you see what I'm going through? My father was good and all my
25 relatives were good, and look what happened to me."
1 Q. Did the villagers ever discuss just setting you free?
2 A. I was tied right away.
3 Q. But that was never -- nobody among the villagers said, "Why don't
4 we just let him go"?
5 A. Not a single one. About 40 minutes or so -- I don't know exactly,
6 because I was so scared and so exhausted, you know, that I couldn't really
7 say anything about time, but the civilian police arrived, three guys, and
8 one of them said, "Untie him." And I looked at him and I recognised that
9 policeman, because I used to know him before the war, Milic. We called
10 him Brko. He had a moustache. And then they untied me. And I was all
11 wet; I was soaking wet because I was going through the forest and it
12 rained. And I was sitting under that tree and it was cold and I was
13 shaking. And he said to me, "Go lean against that tree stump and get
14 rest." And at that moment I remember that I had the wind jacket, because
15 I knew they would take me back to the camp and I also knew what was in
16 store for me when I got back to the camp, so it was useful to have a shirt
17 rather than the wind jacket. And I said, "Listen, you know that that
18 bloke took the wind jacket because he wanted to search it," and that young
19 man said, "Keep it. He doesn't need it any more." But Milic nevertheless
20 persisted and got back the wind jacket from him, and I put it on.
21 Q. In what way did you think this wind jacket would be helpful? You
22 said you knew what was coming to you. What were you thinking?
23 A. Well, I knew. I never had any doubts that it was beating, beating
24 was there for me when I got there, and it would be some help. I mean, I
25 had my shirt and I also had this jacket. Well, it didn't help much,
1 but ...
2 Q. What did the civilian police do to you? Did they take you
4 A. Yes. They picked up their Motorola and let know somebody in
5 Foca - I don't know whether it was the police station or whom - to send a
6 car to take me, because we had to come down from the village down to the
7 road, and that is what we did. We climbed down and the car had already
8 arrived. It was a car -- one of the cars of the KP Dom, the so-called
9 Black Maria, you know, the type of van that are used to transport
11 Q. Was it KP Dom staff that brought you back to the KP Dom?
12 A. Yes. Yes. There were two officers in that van from the KP Dom,
13 Matovic and Miro Prodanovic. Miro Prodanovic asked me straight away, or
14 rather, he abused me verbally and said, "Oh, so you're off to buy some
15 cows." And Matovic did not say anything, but hit me with his fist in the
16 head, and I fell down. The civilian police reacted and said, "You don't
17 have to use force." I did not resist during the arrest. And then they
18 locked me in the Black Maria. We arrived in the town. The civilian
19 police got off and went into the police station and we went to the KP Dom.
20 Q. The person Matovic who hit you, do you remember his first name?
21 A. I cannot remember now. Perhaps if I saw a list, perhaps I would
22 have able to identify. There is a Zoran Matovic, but that is not the
23 one. Everybody called him Mata. That was his nickname.
24 MS. KUO: Your Honours, the Matovic listed as a guard who is not
25 Zoran Matovic is Miladin Matovic, on Exhibit P3, number 47.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
2 A. Yes, that one.
3 MS. KUO:
4 Q. First name --
5 A. That's him, yes.
6 Q. When you arrived at KP Dom, what happened?
7 A. Yes. Miladin. I think you misread it, but Miladin, yes, yes,
8 something like that.
9 Q. What happened when you arrived at KP Dom?
10 A. They opened the door, I got off, and on the bench next to the door
11 into the KP Dom was Burilo, called Busi. He put down his automatic on the
12 bench, spit out the cigarette that he had -- that he was smoking, and
13 grabbed me, right there, at the entrance, and proceeded to beat me. I
14 tried to defend myself, I tried to dodge, but you must realise he must
15 have weighed at least 100 kilogrammes, if not 120, so I could hardly
16 protect myself from him. And he beat me terribly with his hands and
17 fists, all over, and then he pushed me down. And I was trying to move
18 away from him. I stumbled over a chair leg and then he began to kick me.
19 As I was down on the earth, he began to jump on me and kick me here, on
20 the chest. And I heard a woman saying, "Don't let him. Stop him,"
21 something like that.
22 Right after that, the warden approached and to that woman's
23 husband, and he was one of the guards, Milic, and they lifted me and took
24 me to the isolation -- to the solitary confinement room in the new wing of
25 the administrative building, on the ground floor. But Burilo wouldn't
1 give up. He followed us. And even though they were there, he grabbed at
2 me, pushed me, and I hit my head against the wall and I passed out.
3 I came to perhaps two or three hours later. I could hear cars
4 being switched on. I heard voices, noises, and I realised that was the
5 end of the working hours. And I was in solitary confinement. I was lying
6 on the ground.
7 Q. I'm going to stop you there and ask you about some of the people
8 whose names you've mentioned. Do you know Burilo's first name?
9 A. I'm not really sure. I think he was Milenko Burilo, called Busi.
10 MS. KUO: Your Honours, Milenko Burilo is listed in Exhibit P3 as
11 number 56.
12 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
13 MS. KUO:
14 Q. And the woman you said who was saying, "Don't let him," who was
16 A. I do not know her name, but I know she was guard Milic's wife, and
17 she worked there in the coffee shop, made coffee.
18 MS. KUO: Your Honours, there is a Persa Milic listed in Exhibit
19 P3 at number 60, who is a cook, sales assistant, and worked at the farm.
20 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
21 MS. KUO:
22 Q. And what was the name of the guard Milic?
23 A. I'm not sure again. I think he is Milivoj.
24 MS. KUO: Your Honours --
25 A. He has a brother called Dragisa. That I know very well.
1 MS. KUO: There is, Your Honour, in fact, a Milivoj Milic listed
2 in Exhibit P3 at number 23.
3 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
4 MS. KUO:
5 Q. Do you know -- the warden, Mr. Krnojelac, did he actually see
6 Burilo beating you?
7 A. I don't know that. I don't know that, because he beat -- I mean,
8 it lasted, the beating lasted, and when I got there, I did not see anyone
9 else around except him. So my guess is that that woman, that lady we are
10 talking about, that she came out because she heard what was going on, and
11 I suppose that she came out of the coffee shop, or from some room or
12 other, and I guess that is how her husband arrived and the warden, because
13 I did not see them at that moment; they were not there.
14 Q. And did Burilo stop when the warden and the guard Milic arrived?
15 A. Well, stop, he did not. He kept trying to get at me, but they
16 took me towards the solitary confinement. And as I said, he followed us
17 and at some point he caught up, pushed me against the wall.
18 Q. And when he did that, was the warden also present with Milic, the
20 A. Yes.
21 MS. KUO: Your Honours, I think it's time to stop.
22 JUDGE HUNT: We'll resume at 3.00 and not 2.30, and we'll be
23 sitting until 4.30. We'll now adjourn.
24 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 3.00 p.m.
2 JUDGE HUNT: Ms. Kuo.
3 MS. KUO:
4 Q. Mr. Zekovic, before the break, you told us that the warden,
5 Milorad Krnojelac, was present when Burilo pushed you up against the wall
6 and you lost consciousness. Do you know whether Burilo ever suffered any
7 consequences of the way he treated you?
8 A. I don't know. I don't know that he was ever punished and that
9 there could have been any consequences. Before that, that Burilo had done
10 so many things and yet he was never punished or sanctioned or was he sent
11 away. On the contrary, those who were tolerant, those guards who - how
12 should I put this - helped, they were sent away from work.
13 Q. After this incident, did Burilo continue to work as a guard at the
14 KP Dom?
15 A. Yes, yes, exactly.
16 Q. Now, when you came, regained your consciousness, where did you
17 find yourself?
18 A. I was in that solitary confinement -- in the transit solitary
19 confinement area.
20 Q. Which building was that located in?
21 A. The new part of the administration building, on the ground floor.
22 MS. KUO: With the assistance of the usher, I'd like to have the
23 witness shown Exhibit P6/1. This is a diagram of the ground floor of the
24 administrative building.
25 Q. Can you show us where this cell was?
1 A. This is the entrance. This is -- this is where the entrance
2 office is. This is this hallway. This is the place where this incident
3 occurred. And that transit solitary confinement was one of these rooms
4 here. I can't say at this moment which one exactly. I don't think that
5 the drawing is very precise either.
6 MS. KUO: For the record, the witness pointed to -- first he
7 pointed, as you come into the entrance of the KP Dom, he turned slightly
8 to the left, and that's where he said this incident occurred. And then
9 the room that he indicated as being the isolation or solitary cell, the
10 transit solitary room, is about the second or third room, counting from
11 the left of the diagram, and also as you would be walking into the KP Dom
12 through the entrance, it would be on your left-hand side as well, and
13 therefore that's the bottom part of the diagram. And he says he's not
14 sure whether it was -- he pointed to what appeared to be the third room or
16 Q. Mr. Zekovic, is that also the same room that you were in earlier
17 after your interrogation, when you saw the three injured men?
18 A. Exactly. It's the same room.
19 Q. Thank you. What happened to you when you regained consciousness?
20 Did somebody come to speak to you?
21 A. The first one who came to speak to me was Miro Prodanovic. He
22 opened the door, and stood at the door facing the hall, the entrance
23 office, that duty room, so that he could see who might come up. He said
24 literally, "Zeka, sorry I cursed at you upstairs but please try to
25 understand I barely stayed alive yesterday." And at that moment, I
1 realised that he was the one who stayed back to guard us when Relja
2 Goljanin, head of the metal shop, had gone out of the compound. And then
3 I said, "Well, it doesn't matter, never mind." He went on. He said,
4 "Watch out. They know such and such things." The man who is mentioned
5 here on the list under number 210, "told them all the details concerning
6 your escape. They know everything." Among other things, he had said
7 that, "My relative" - who was a guard there at the time, for one period of
8 time in the camp - "that he conveyed certain pieces of information to
9 you. You know that he was not looked upon kindly even before that. Try
10 to dispel that. They are going to interrogate you tomorrow."
11 Q. When Miro Prodanovic said this to you, do you know who he was
12 referring to as being the relative of his who was also a guard?
13 A. Absolutely correct.
14 Q. What was his name?
15 A. Slavisa Prodanovic.
16 Q. Had you had dealings with Slavisa Prodanovic while you were at the
17 KP Dom?
18 A. He didn't really help me any. A few times we stood and talked
19 briefly, a minute or two, and during these encounters he conveyed things
20 to me, like some information that he had come across, like where some of
21 the family members of persons who were detained in the KP Dom with me
22 were. But specifically, whether he had done something for me or helped
23 me, no.
24 Q. What did you understand Miro Prodanovic to mean when he said that
25 Slavisa Prodanovic was not looked upon kindly even before that?
1 A. When the aggression started, this conflict, there were people
2 who -- how should I put this? I don't know how to put this. Those who
3 were not in favour of this hard-line wing of the SDS, and allegedly he was
4 one of them, it was sufficient not to be on their side to be an enemy.
5 Q. Did the way Slavisa Prodanovic treated the detainees have an
6 effect on his standing among the administration of the KP Dom, as far as
7 you knew?
8 A. Well, he didn't have any direct contact with us. He was outside,
9 at one of the guard posts outside, and I know that he was strictly
10 forbidden from having contact with us, just like the rest of the guards.
11 They were only supposed to communicate with us officially.
12 Q. And how would the official communications occur? What do you mean
13 by "communicate with you officially"?
14 A. Carry out orders, do various jobs, things like that.
15 MS. KUO: Your Honours, Miro Prodanovic is listed in Exhibit P3 at
16 number 51, and Slavisa Prodanovic is listed in P3 at number 116.
17 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
18 MS. KUO:
19 Q. Did you know what Miro Prodanovic's function in the KP Dom was?
20 A. I don't know exactly. I don't know exactly, but he was often in
21 contact with the Serb detainees. That leads me to believe that he was
22 sort of in charge of them, that he was one of their rehabilitation
23 officers or something.
24 Q. How did you react to what Miro Prodanovic said to you? Did you
25 say anything to him?
1 A. I didn't say anything to him. When he said, "Sorry that I cursed
2 at you," I said, "Oh, well, never mind. Let go of that now." And then he
3 said what they knew and what they did not know and what they expected of
4 me tomorrow at the interrogation. In an indirect way, he called certain
5 things to my attention so that I would not act rashly and do something
6 stupid and make my position even more difficult.
7 Q. Did anybody else come to the solitary cell?
8 A. Oh, yes. Yes. Later lots of them started coming in. The warden
9 came, then Relja came, then the guards came, Vlatko one of them. And then
10 the warden came after that too; I don't know exactly when.
11 Q. Let's take it in order. You said the warden came. Did he come by
12 himself or with other people, and what did he say?
13 A. I don't know exactly who he came with. This was in front of the
14 door. But he entered my -- office; I almost said "office." He entered
15 the solitary cell. At that moment, I was sitting on the bed, and then the
16 conversation started. First of all, he got a pack of cigarettes out of
17 his pocket. I remember well. It was a Herzegovina brand, without a
18 filter. There was a full pack and we both lit a cigarette. And then he
19 started talking. He said that I had acted foolishly, that I should not
20 have tried to escape, that I was planned for an exchange, that I ruined
21 everything by doing this, that it was very difficult for him and that he
22 was very sorry that this had happened.
23 Q. What was his demeanour when he said these things?
24 A. He was visibly upset. He was angry. Because what had happened,
25 that is, that I had escaped, that sort of meant that they were not capable
1 of doing their job, that they were not up to the trust that had been
2 vested in them by the tasks that they were assigned.
3 Q. What was your impression of the reason the warden came to speak to
5 A. I don't know. He wanted to have information as to where I had
6 planned to go, how I intended to go. He asked for details, which way I
7 had passed, how I had passed. You see, in my first statements to the
8 policemen who were up there with me, I told them one story and then I told
9 the warden the truth, that is to say, that I got out of the KP Dom and
10 that I crossed the bridge, and the entire route that I took.
11 Q. Why did you lie to the civilian policemen?
12 A. I don't know. I can't say for sure. I couldn't go into all these
14 Q. What was the warden's reaction when you told him how you escaped?
15 A. Well, what was his reaction? He was angry, he was upset.
16 Q. How long did this conversation take place?
17 A. It didn't last long. Perhaps about 15 minutes.
18 Q. What happened after 15 minutes?
19 A. After that, Relja came, Vlatko, some other guards who I don't
20 know. They threatened me. They said, "See what you've done. Now we are
21 all going to be held accountable." But I knew that nobody would be held
22 accountable. Well, they just had to talk.
23 Then some other guards came, ones I did not know. They tried to
24 mistreat me. Some of them tried to beat me. It wasn't anything very
25 bad. And then they locked up this isolation -- this solitary cell.
1 Q. So up until the moment that you've just described when they locked
2 the cell, were guards able to come in as they pleased?
3 A. Yes, yes.
4 Q. You described Relja coming in, and also you named Vlatko. When
5 they came in, was the warden still there or had he left?
6 A. I'm not sure about that particular detail, whether they were there
7 before or after because I could not register everything. I was still
8 feeling slightly dizzy but I did know that they came. Vlatko asked me,
9 like, "Where are your tools?" As if I had cut the bars and escaped in
10 that way. And I said, "What do you mean, would I have any tools, files?
11 I just walked out through the gate of the construction compound."
12 Q. You said that when some of the guards came in, that they
13 threatened you. Did they actually beat you?
14 A. At first, until they locked the solitary cell, some of them came
15 to kick me, hit me, threaten me. Later on, they locked the solitary cell
16 so they couldn't get in.
17 Q. Do you know who locked the cell?
18 A. I don't know. It was somebody who was on duty then, by the gate.
19 I don't know.
20 Q. Do you remember the names of guards who beat you that -- during
21 that time?
22 A. I don't know the names of these guards. I knew very few of those
23 guards, really.
24 Q. Did the guards say what consequences they might suffer as a result
25 of your having escaped?
1 A. Yes. Some of them said, because they were so upset, that others
2 would take it out on them and that, first, when the posse was organised,
3 that they had to run all over the forest that night, and now that they
4 would be sent to the front line and that it's far more difficult for them
5 to go there than to be the guards on duty at the KP Dom. That's what one
6 of them was saying to me, one who tried to break the door down.
7 Q. What was his name, do you remember?
8 A. I know him. That was Mara, Maric.
9 Q. What was his first name?
10 A. I don't think he knew his real name himself. Everybody called him
11 Mara. I think Milomir was his real name.
12 MS. KUO: Your Honours, on Exhibit P3 at number 102, there is a
13 Milomir Maric listed.
14 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
15 MS. KUO:
16 Q. How did you spend that night, Mr. Zekovic?
17 A. After that, I had other visitors.
18 Q. Who visited you?
19 A. It was already evening. It must have been 7.00 or even past 7.00
20 when the door of the solitary confinement cell was unlocked and in came
21 Savo Todovic. He said that I should get out, and he took me to the office
22 by the entrance. That's where I found Boro Ivanovic and someone else.
23 They called him Mandic when they talked.
24 Q. Who was Boro Ivanovic? You mentioned him earlier in your
25 testimony but could you remind us who he is?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 A. Boro Ivanovic, member of the Crisis Staff, a teacher in the
2 elementary school in Godijeno, I think, Godijeno Dragocaje. He came very
3 often. He was in front of the KP Dom often. And then he was going to
4 Montenegro with Savo Todovic to wait for me at 210's place, because he had
5 said that I would stop at that man's place and that I would rest perhaps
6 for a day, get some food, and that then I would continue my journey to
7 Montenegro, towards Previla. So they had set up an ambush for me there.
8 And then when they received information, somehow, that I was caught, they
9 came back.
10 Q. Was Boro Ivanovic in a military uniform or civilian clothes when
11 you saw him?
12 A. They changed these uniforms very often. Military, different
13 kinds, civilian. It was very hard to know. They were not the same all
14 the time. It was sort of like a military jacket, that's what he wore.
15 Q. Who was Mandic?
16 A. I don't know exactly. However, he was also there the next day
17 during the interrogation, so I assumed that he was someone from the
18 military police, or rather, that he was a bit higher up. Perhaps he was
19 from somewhere else, maybe even from Pale.
20 Q. What did Boro Ivanovic say to you when Todovic brought you to
22 A. First, Savo Todovic started beating me. He ordered me to sit in a
23 chair by the entrance, and then he grabbed me this way and started banging
24 me against the wall. And then at one moment, he found some kind of
25 chains, some thick chains, and then he started beating me with those
1 chains. But that wasn't that bad. It's not that I fainted. At one
2 moment, you get this feeling that you should react. I had similar
3 situations before. I turned to Boro and I said, "If we are going to talk
4 like human beings, we are going to talk. If we are going to talk like
5 dogs, we are not going to talk at all." Boro spoke to Savo and said,
6 "Okay, stop that." And then Boro addressed me. He said, "Listen, Zeka,
7 we sent information to the command, saying that you were killed during
8 your attempted escape. It depends on what you say tomorrow, whether that
9 piece of information will be confirmed or whether it will be --
10 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honour, the witness
11 said that Boro Ivanovic said that from the military command -- that from
12 the military command, they had said that he was killed during his
13 attempted escape, whereas in line 75 it says only "command."
14 JUDGE HUNT: I'm sorry, you say he added the word "military" to
15 it, did he?
16 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Yes.
17 JUDGE HUNT: Perhaps you could clear that up, Ms. Kuo.
18 MS. KUO: Yes.
19 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] And that "from" the military command
20 they sent word. Not "to" the military command but "from" the military
21 command. That was my understanding of what he said.
22 JUDGE HUNT: Well, we will get it cleared up directly. Thank
24 MS. KUO:
25 Q. Mr. Zekovic we will have to go through exactly what Boro Ivanovic
1 said to you again. It may have been a translation error but we will need
2 to hear it again. What did he tell you about information about your
4 A. From the command, I cannot say now whether it's military or
5 civilian or police or the camp.
6 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I do apologise. I have
7 to react if you allow me to. We speak the same language and I know what I
8 heard. I would ask kindly to listen to the tape later.
9 JUDGE HUNT: You will have every opportunity in cross-examination
10 to ask questions about this, but the Prosecution is permitted to ask the
11 witness to repeat it, to see what he intended to say. If it turns out to
12 be something different from what you heard, we can have the tape played.
13 But the Prosecution is allowed to have this cleared up. You've raised the
14 question as to the accuracy of the translation. If I may say so, your
15 interpretation of it doesn't fit into the sentence that the witness was
16 using. But nevertheless, it's fair enough. It should be cleared up. But
17 at the moment, the Prosecution can attempt to clear up. Now, will you
18 please let them do that?
19 Yes, Ms. Kuo.
20 MS. KUO: Thank you, Your Honour.
21 Q. Mr. Zekovic, we'll have to go through it again, and just pay
22 special attention to where the information was coming from and whether you
23 know the nature of the command. What did Boro Ivanovic tell you?
24 A. He didn't tell me anything about what kind of command it was and
25 who it was and what that was, so I cannot say whether it's a military
1 command, whether it's the Crisis Staff, whether it's the civilian police,
2 or whether it's the administration of the KP Dom.
3 Q. And did he say that the information about your having died during
4 the escape came from or was sent to this command?
5 A. As far as I can remember, he said, "We from the command." I don't
6 know who he was referring to, the administration or whoever. I could not
7 have checked that. I could not have asked.
8 Q. Just tell us what he told you.
9 A. "We from the command have sent information that you were killed
10 during your attempted escape, and now it depends on what you say in your
11 statement tomorrow whether this information will be confirmed or whether
12 it will be denied."
13 Q. Did you react or did he say anything further?
14 A. I did not react at all.
15 Q. Did Savo Todovic do anything at this time?
16 A. Well, then it was said that I should be taken to the solitary
18 Q. And did you spend the night, then, in solitary confinement?
19 A. Yes. I spent the whole night in solitary confinement with my
20 hands handcuffed and my legs tied to a metal ring in the floor.
21 Q. You mentioned that there was a bed in that room. Were you able to
22 sleep on the bed or did you have to lie on the floor?
23 A. No. The bed was on the other end of the room. I was not allowed
24 to take either the pillow that was there or the blanket. I was on the
25 floor. It's not concrete; it's parquet.
1 Q. What happened in the morning?
2 A. In the morning, first a guard came to have a look at me and then I
3 asked him if I could go to the toilet, but he refused. Then Savo Todovic
4 turned up in the doorway, and I asked him to go to the toilet and he
5 allowed me to do it. And then they took me to an office on the ground
6 floor again, but on the other side of the passage, to interrogate me
7 there. And there was an entire commission there. There were three police
8 inspectors: Savo Todovic, Boro Ivanovic, that Mandic was there, and I
9 think one or two more were also present.
10 Q. When you said the three -- you said there were three police
11 inspectors. Did you mean to say that Todovic, Ivanovic and Mandic were
12 those three, or were there three police inspectors in addition to the
13 three you named?
14 A. Those three were from the civilian police, other people, other
15 than those three, who had already been in the camp and conducted
16 interrogations: Starovic, Vladicic, and Janjic.
17 Q. Who conducted the interrogation? Who asked you questions?
18 A. Inspector Vladicic and Savo Todovic.
19 Q. What kinds of questions did they ask you?
20 A. They simply said, "We know. We have all the information, but this
21 is a procedure. You have to tell us the whole story, from the first day
22 that you were brought to the camp, right up to this moment," where I was,
23 what I did, where I moved about, who I communicated with, and all that I
24 knew about the plans or intentions of other camp inmates, and which of the
25 staff working in the compound, in the KP Dom, who were favourable to us,
1 who did favours to us, who we could cooperate with -- who were
2 cooperative, rather. That is what they wanted to know: who were we
3 getting information from.
4 And I said that when I went to work outside, that I then came
5 across people that I knew from before, and I therefore asked them
6 questions I wanted to know, and that in the hospital I met Dejan Malisa
7 and I asked him some questions, because he was close with my brother and
8 he told me that my brother called him from Germany. Then I told them that
9 I also came across other people and also asked them for information, and
10 they told me about other prisoners, that their families were in Skopje, in
11 Sweden, and suchlike.
12 Q. Was that completely the truth? Did you answer that question
13 truthfully or did you withhold information?
14 A. I lied.
15 Q. Why?
16 A. Well, because the information that they wanted to get from me,
17 actually, I obtained from Slavisa Prodanovic, for instance, about my
18 brother and other things, and I was told that by my friend, who is number
19 210 in the list.
20 Q. Why did you protect Slavisa Prodanovic?
21 A. Well, I cannot really pinpoint the reason. I simply thought that
22 man was in some trouble before, so I shouldn't cause any more trouble for
23 him with my statements. I didn't want to make it worse for him.
24 Q. What other things did the inspectors and others during that
25 interrogation ask you about?
1 A. Savo asked me about the kind of conversations in the room we had,
2 and they also wanted to know -- they really wanted to know what we knew,
3 what we talked about, did we know who he was, what he was, who was the
4 warden, and things of that nature.
5 Q. Did you answer Todovic's questions truthfully?
6 A. No.
7 Q. Why not?
8 A. Either. Well, to begin with -- to begin with, I couldn't really
9 tell them anything of any interest, none of the things that they wanted to
10 hear. And it is quite true that we did have some information about what
11 had been done and what crimes had been committed. Yes, we knew all that.
12 And I then resorted to an incident which had happened in 1992 to
13 try to say that I didn't know anything that was going on in the room, that
14 they all kept their distance from me and therefore were not communicating
15 with me, and that I was isolated, and it worked.
16 And that incident had to do with the last radio that we had, which
17 I have already mentioned. And Stela, from Miljevina, was the one who
18 snitched on me because of that radio. And when Savo said, "You can't say
19 that you don't know what you're talking about in the room, because you've
20 been together so long that you must know everything and you must tell me
21 all that," and I told him, "I don't know, because since the incident with
22 the transistor last year, everybody in the room believed that I was
23 responsible for it, that it was through some fault of mine that that radio
24 had been seized and that it was because of that that very many people were
25 beaten and suffered greatly. And then I saw the inspectors casting looks
1 at one another. They evidently were in the dark about that incident. And
2 I didn't think it was such an important affair that everybody had to know
3 about it. And that is how I somehow managed to avoid telling them about
4 all these details. I mean, I didn't want to tell them.
5 And then Savo asked me -- first he affirmed that he knew that some
6 guards were doing favours to us and good deeds, that they brought us
7 cigarettes or things like that, and he said, "Well, which one is the
8 best? Which one is the most cooperative?" And I said, "There aren't
9 such. They don't exist." "What do you mean, they don't exist?" I said,
10 "Well, they don't exist. Were there such a man in the camp compound, I
11 would have agreed with him to have a car wait for me when I got to the
12 road and I would be in Montenegro half an hour later, rather than have to
13 look where is the patrol, shall I swim across the Drina, where are the
14 mine fields, and so on and so forth," and they seemed satisfied with that
16 Q. Were you mistreated during that interrogation? Did anybody beat
18 A. No, they did not beat me during the interrogation. When I gave
19 them the answer that I've told you about, the one called Mandic jumped up
20 and said, "Give him to me. Wait till I get him into my hands, and then
21 he'll talk," and then they took me out into the passage.
22 Q. What happened when they took you out to the passage?
23 A. I spent about ten minutes outside, and then they brought me back
24 into the office and they kept their silence for a long time. And then
25 they said - and it was this inspector Vladicic and Savo were the ones who
1 spoke - and they said, "Well, this time this is how this matter ends, but
2 in the future, if we suspect anything, that will be the end of you. So
3 just scram." And I went back to that room, solitary confinement room,
4 where I had spent the previous night.
5 Q. Was there a time that same day when the other detainees from the
6 working group were lined up and you were also brought up?
7 A. Yes. It was in the afternoon. I don't know if it was 3.00 or
8 4.00 in the afternoon; thereabouts. I was taken out of this solitary
9 confinement and taken into the camp courtyard. And the prisoners, or
10 rather, the camp inmates were all lined up in the playground.
11 Q. What happened then?
12 A. There were -- they were lined up. On one side were the camp
13 inmates who were lined up, and on the other side were the staff of the KP
14 Dom, almost all the guards. There was Savo, there was the warden, and
15 Savo delivered a speech. "Well, you see this is yet another proof that
16 the borders of the Republika Srpska are impenetrable, that not even a bird
17 can fly across. And had we killed him, we would have brought him here to
18 show him to you as a warning so that nobody ever tries this again. And
19 because you were not sufficiently alert because they permitted" -- listen,
20 what nonsense, that they allowed me to escape. And he ordered -- he
21 punished all of the camp inmates. He said, "As of today, your food
22 rations will be cut down by 50 per cent." It was insufficient even
23 before. Another 50 per cent. He forbid to go to work. He forbid medical
24 examinations. He forbid -- ordered the search of all the rooms where the
25 camp inmates were kept, and that all their things be seized. Meanwhile
1 some people had obtained something, we have got some books and we read
2 them and some old newspapers. So that everything was taken away on that
3 occasion, and that includes medicines.
4 And at some point, a camp inmate stepped forward, a teacher. He
5 stepped forward and he asked when he heard do we -- when it was said that
6 everything that did not belong to us had to be returned. So he asked,
7 "And what about these clothes?" What he had was convicts' clothes. And
8 the answer was, "No, no, no, no, no, because it is very becoming." And
9 then he ordered to take me to place me in solitary confinement and said,
10 "And mind what kind of treatment he gets now." So I was searched at the
11 entrance into solitary confinement and locked up.
12 Q. Did Savo Todovic say anything about whether guards would be
14 A. No. I did not hear him say anything.
15 Q. Was the warden present throughout this speech that Todovic gave?
16 A. Absolutely. He was right next to him, with his hands behind his
17 back, and kept nodding, nodding his head in approval.
18 Q. When you were brought before the other detainees and prison staff
19 at this time, what physical condition were you in?
20 A. Well, let me tell you, I could barely walk. There were no visible
21 traces, not on my face, but everything hurt, because Burilo had beat me
22 very badly for two months. After that, I could not raise my arms. This
23 shoulder is still dysfunctional to this day and I have terrible problems
24 with my legs and feet because I was also badly beaten down there. I could
25 barely stand, and everybody could see that.
1 Q. When you were taken away to the solitary cell, where was that cell
2 located? Was it the transit cell that you were in earlier or was it a
3 different one?
4 A. No. This was a solitary confinement cell which existed already in
5 the former prison, the upper row of solitary cells which were made when we
6 were detained in the camp, in the metal shop, true -- before I started to
7 work there, they had already finished them, those solitary cells.
8 Q. I'm sorry, were these solitary cells inside the metal shop? Is
9 that what you said?
10 A. No. The staff in the metal shop built built-in metal doors and
11 metal grids above the door, metal bars above the door, because those
12 solitary cells had not been completed at the time the war started.
13 MS. KUO: With the assistance of the usher, I'll have the witness
14 take a look at Exhibit P6/2 and see if he can indicate to us where he was
15 taken, the solitary cell.
16 A. This is not an accurate drawing. In this row, there are two rows
17 of solitary cells. One enters here and this is a large hallway and then
18 you enter the lower row of solitary cells and on the upper side, into the
19 upper row of solitary cells. And the passage is by the wall. And you go
20 up the stairs. Downstairs, I don't know the outlay because I was not kept
21 there. But these are the new solitary cells which were completed after
22 people were detained in the camp. They were begun before the detention.
23 They had begun building them before the war broke out.
24 Q. Do you know when they were completed or when those metal doors
25 were made by the detainees?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 A. Metal doors for these cells were completed and mounted by men in
2 the metal shop before I went to work there.
3 MS. KUO: And for the record, the witness is indicating the
4 solitary confinement cells which photographs we've seen previously, and
5 that would be located in the second building of the prisoners' quarters on
6 the first -- on the ground floor. Thank you.
7 Q. How long did you stay in that cell?
8 A. Twenty-eight days.
9 Q. Either while you were brought there or while you were inside that
10 cell, did anybody beat you?
11 A. They beat me. The first evening, they took me out of the solitary
12 cell, took off the handcuffs off my hands, and beat me. And the same
13 thing happened the next evening. But it wasn't all that bad, and when I
14 say "all that bad," I mean I did not faint.
15 Q. Who beat you?
16 A. Guards on duty that night. I recognised one. And the second time
17 it was people I knew, Milutinovic from Jelec, Zoran Matovic from Josanica,
18 and one Ristanovic; I think his first name was Momo.
19 Q. You mentioned that they took your handcuffs off. Were you able to
20 defend yourself when they beat you?
21 A. Well, it's a little -- well, I could try to defend myself but it
22 was impossible.
23 Q. How would you try to defend yourself?
24 A. Well, I suppose try to dodge the blows, try to move away or
25 something like that, but they just corner you and you can't get away.
1 Q. Were you beaten by individual guards or by groups of guards?
2 A. On that occasion, not all of them beat me. Two took part in that
3 and one just stood and watched. Zoran Matovic just stood and watched.
4 And at some point -- I already told you, time comes when you have to react
5 and it seems to you that it's the right moment. And when this guard
6 Ristanovic said that he'd heard that he knew that I had worked for UNIS
7 before that, that I was a bad man, that I persecuted Serbs, I said that
8 that was not right, and that the truth was quite the contrary, that I had
9 very many friends whom I helped and one of them was this Matovic's
10 relative. And some 15 or 20 days before the war broke out, I donated
11 blood for his wife.
12 Q. Did they say anything while they were beating you?
13 A. Nothing specific, nothing definite, except that that Ristanovic
14 said that he had heard that I was a bad man, that I persecuted Serbs at a
15 place I worked at.
16 MS. KUO: Your Honour, Momcilo Ristanovic is listed in Exhibit P3
17 at number 41, and Milutinovic is listed at P3 at number 66.
18 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
19 MS. KUO:
20 Q. Did any guards beat you when they brought you food?
21 A. Yes. Once Predrag Stefanovic, called Predo, brought my supper. I
22 used to know him before the war, and he spent hundreds of nights with me
23 at various parties or outings, excursions. So he brought this food and
24 said, "Well, and this is for me," and started kicking me. And he was
25 wearing those army boots at the time.
1 MS. KUO: Your Honours, Predrag Stefanovic is listed on P3 at
2 number 22.
3 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
4 MS. KUO:
5 Q. When were you taken out of solitary confinement?
6 A. You mean when I left it completely? Because they took me out
7 several times. They took me out to beat me twice. And on one occasion, I
8 don't know when it was, in the morning, around 9.00 or 10.00, or perhaps
9 it could have been noon, I'm not sure because I had lost all sense of
10 time, I was taken out into the reception room at the entrance into the
11 building, and Savo Todovic interrogated me there again. And they had also
12 taken off the handcuffs because I -- they never took handcuffs off me, and
13 that is how I spent seven days on just bare concrete, nothing else. And
14 then Savo Todovic began to question me about some details which I had
15 mentioned during my statement about the escape. And he pointed out that
16 he was doing it as an expert, as a psychologist, or rather, literally he
17 said, "I'm doing it as your brother would do," because my brother is a
18 psychologist. And I said, "My brother would never do this." And then he
19 told me that I didn't know my manners. And he supposedly wanted to
20 clarify, to shed more -- to understand better my mind-set, my -- the way
21 of thinking, the way I conceived my escape so as to allegedly use this in
22 his future work. And when I told him in that village after I had escaped
23 and crossed that bridge and coming out of a forest, when I had seen two
24 girls of five, six years old, and returned into the forest, because I was
25 afraid they -- that they would see me, and he said, "Well, did it occur to
1 you, for instance, to kidnap them and then blackmail us?" Which was
2 nonsense. And I said, "I'm not a criminal. My girls are that age and it
3 is because of them that I escaped from this hell, hoping that I would find
4 them and see them again. And you say that I could kidnap some little
5 girls? Come."
6 Q. When Savo Todovic took you out to interrogate you, did he
7 physically mistreat you? Did he beat you?
8 A. No, not that time, he did not beat me then.
9 Q. And you mentioned that you were taken out twice and beaten. Where
10 were you taken on those two occasions?
11 A. From the solitary cell into the hallway in front of the solitary
12 cells. It's also like a hall, like a room. And there are doors leading
13 from it to the upper and the lower row of solitary cells.
14 Q. When you were taken -- you said you were in the solitary cell for
15 28 days. How were you finally released from the solitary cell?
16 A. A day before I was released from the solitary cell, I was -- we
17 were taken to have a bath. That is the officer who escorted us, he
18 ordered me, because of course I knew the layout of the compound, to go
19 there with our heads down, not to look left or right, and he ordered us to
20 go and have the bath and he stayed in front of the building. So I
21 immediately assumed that the Red Cross would be -- were on their way. And
22 that day, a camp inmate, Mujo Dudic, called Kuja, he swept the rooms in
23 the building and he also swept those rooms which were solitary confinement
24 cells. That is not the solitary cells but the passageway. And he was --
25 as he was passing by my cell, I called out to him and said, "What's the
1 matter?" And he said, "Red Cross will be here tomorrow." And the next
2 morning I asked the duty officer to be taken to meet Rasevic, to request
3 that I be released or to go to see the warden. That's what I said. And
4 he answered, "Right, I will see about it." And he returned half an hour
5 later and told me to go out.
6 Q. I want to return to one detail about your confinement in the
7 solitary cell. Were you handcuffed the entire time when you were inside
8 the cell?
9 A. I was handcuffed for about seven days. Well, perhaps it was six
10 and a half or seven and a half. I wouldn't really know. Listen, I was so
11 badly beaten up, on the concrete, I weighed less than 50 -- I had less
12 than 50 kilograms in me, and I couldn't sleep normally. At times I
13 thought it was night at times that it was daytime. A couple of days
14 later, I somehow managed to recover my sense of time on the basis of
15 outside sounds, because above me on the first floor of the same building,
16 there were detained Serbs, and they listened to the news and that was how
17 I could figure out what time of the day it was.
18 Q. The two times that you were taken out and beaten, was that during
19 those seven days when you were handcuffed?
20 A. Yes, those were the first two days. Those were the first two
21 days. And then the next day after that, Savo asked me -- after this other
22 case, Savo asked me, when he was interrogating me, "Did anybody beat
23 you?" And I said, "Yes." And he said, "Who?" And I said, "You know full
24 well who was on duty." And that's how the conversation ended.
25 Q. Let's go back to when Mitar Rasevic said that you should get ready
1 and you were brought out of the room. Where were you taken?
2 A. I don't know who said that. I just asked to go to see the warden
3 or Mitar Rasevic, to talk to them. I wanted to ask them to let me go.
4 And then this guard came and then I was released, and then we went from
5 the solitary confinement cells upstairs, to Room 18. And now the
6 condition that I was in is best illustrated by the fact that I could
7 barely walk upstairs. I had to cling to the railing. And they brought me
8 to this room were Muhamed was, the one we had already discussed in this
9 isolation room.
10 Q. And what was his last name, just so the record is clear?
11 A. Muhamed Ahmetkadic.
12 Q. At this time there were also five Croats in Room 18; right?
13 A. No, not in -- no, not in that room. They were on the other side
14 of that sleeping area, because that sleeping area had four rooms, two big
15 ones and two small ones. In one big room were the Croats, and in another
16 small room, on the upper side, that's where Muhamed was by himself.
17 Q. Were you allowed to have contact with those Croats also kept in
18 Room 18?
19 A. Yes. Yes. Nobody had forbidden it specifically, but we moved
20 about in there and we would meet. However, only two talked; three never
21 did. Muhamed told those two what was going on. Usually with persons from
22 such rooms, what usually happened to them, that they would take them away
23 and they would go missing. And they told me that they were afraid.
24 Q. Did you learn why those Croats were there?
25 A. Yes. They told me. They were taken prisoner somewhere at the
1 front line. But very soon, a few days later, the attitude of the guards
2 towards them changed drastically. They came and talked to them. They
3 brought them cigarettes. They brought them lots of food. They talked to
4 them openly, like all the conflicts between the Serbs and the Croats had
5 been worked out and now what is left is that they finish off the Muslims
6 together, and that now at various delineation lines the Serbs and Croats
7 were playing soccer together, that everything has been resolved. And very
8 soon, a few days after that, they took them away. Mitar Rasevic came to
9 the room, into their room, and said that they could go.
10 Q. Were these Croats in military uniform? Were they soldiers?
11 A. They had some kind of civilian uniforms on, but they were
12 soldiers, because they were taken prisoner as soldiers. Among them was a
13 man without a leg. He had been wounded.
14 Q. You said the Serb guards came and that their attitude changed
15 drastically. Did their attitude toward you and Mr. Ahmetkadic change as
17 A. No. I cannot say anything. Once, one guard gave me a cigarette,
18 both to me and to Muhamed, and he said, "You should thank certain people
19 for having stayed alive." And I insisted that he tell me who these people
20 are, and he didn't want to say. He said, "You'll find out when the time
22 Q. Did you ever find out who he was referring to?
23 A. No, I never found out. But I heard something similar to that in
24 the transit solitary cell, when I was brought in there after my attempted
25 escape, when the door of the solitary cell was locked. I heard something
1 similar to that. They tried to break down the door to beat me, and one of
2 them said that he would stab me with a knife, that he wouldn't kill me but
3 that I would bleed for three days and that then I would die. And then I
4 said, "Mara, why?" And he was yelling, hollering. He said, "What do you
5 mean, why? Because we all got into trouble because of you. We all had
6 problems." And there were also some there who were cursing at me, and
7 somebody was saying from the gate - and I heard that with perfect
8 clarity - somebody said, "You can't do anything to him. He's been
9 registered with the Red Cross and he is protected by --" and I didn't hear
10 the name. So I think that is the fact that I should thank for having
11 stayed alive.
12 Q. When were you registered with the Red Cross?
13 A. The papers that I got from the International Red Cross say that
14 this was the end of August. I don't know exactly. Perhaps I may be
15 wrong. That is to say that I was registered from August and that I was
16 detained from August. That was my understanding. But I was actually
17 detained on the 20th of May, and allegedly this list was given to the Red
18 Cross by the administration of the KP Dom.
19 Q. You said you were listed as registered in August. Was that August
20 1992 or 1993?
21 A. August 1992.
22 Q. Do you know if you were registered in August of 1992? Did you
23 give the Red Cross your name?
24 A. I did not give my name. I didn't have any contact. I was not in
25 touch with them at all. They got this list from someone, and it was not a
1 complete list. It was not complete, no, no, not for a long time.
2 Q. Do you know why the attitude of the Serb guards toward the Croat
3 soldiers changed so drastically; what prompted that change?
4 A. What I assumed then was confirmed by what happened afterwards.
5 All of this was part of a well-elaborated strategy of an approach both
6 vis-a-vis the International Community and the situation within Bosnia. It
7 was necessary to create a situation which would lead everyone to believe
8 that the Muslims are to be blamed for everything and that everybody could
9 find a common tongue except for them.
10 Q. But did you ever learn why, in particular, at that moment their
11 attitude changed? Did something happen?
12 A. Their political leaderships then formulated some joint
13 objectives. There was a conflict that broke out then on the Croat side,
14 and they cooperated on the front line through joint efforts and they were
15 helped considerably by the Serbs as well - that is what we heard - and
16 that they had intended to divide up the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina
17 between themselves, and that if a sliver of land were to remain, that the
18 Muslims could keep that, but that the Serbs and the Croats would divide
19 between themselves the largest part of Bosnia-Herzegovina. This was in
20 conversations with various guards who you could talk to. And we said that
21 perhaps that would not be possible, that the International Community would
22 intervene, especially when we heard that the Security Council had
23 proclaimed those safe areas. They just laughed at that.
24 Q. How long were you kept in Room 18 at that time?
25 A. For a long time. About a month, over a month. And then, one
1 morning, they called Muhamed Ahmetkadic to go to the furniture factory,
2 because he was a tailor in addition to being a driver, and I remained on
3 my own. A few hours, later a guard came and said that Savo Todovic asked
4 me to come out in the yard, and I went out. Then he asked me, a bit
5 cheekily, "What are we going to do with you?" And I said, "Well, my
6 proposal is that we write a request to the administration," since I had
7 almost reached the border and I had almost gotten free and reached my
8 children, that they should release me. And he said, "You are really
9 cheeky. Get lost. Go back to work." And then he took me to where I
10 worked. He handed me over to the foreman there.
11 Q. Was this at the metal shop or did you begin working at the
12 furniture factory then?
13 A. The furniture factory within the compound of the prison, whereas
14 the metal shop is outside the compound.
15 Q. Now, during the time when you were in the solitary cell and then
16 in Room 18, did the management of the KP Dom change?
17 A. Yes, but I don't know the exact date. I can't say specifically
18 right now, but a new warden came.
19 Q. How did you learn that?
20 A. I heard about that from the other inmates who had more
21 information, who could move about. And then when I started working at the
22 furniture factory, on the second or the third day, this new warden came,
23 Sekulovic, and Radojica Tesevic, who was director of the economic unit
24 before the war, but for a long time he had been eliminated by the SDS
25 because they did not look upon him favourably. And they talked to us
1 quite nicely. The food got better, which was very, very important for
2 us. This new warden and Radojica Tesevic said that they would do whatever
3 they could, whatever was within their powers to improve our status. They
4 primarily meant our stay there and food.
5 Q. You mentioned that Radojica Tesevic was eliminated by the SDS
6 because they did not look upon him favourably. What do you mean by that?
7 A. I meant what I know, that Radojica Tesevic and his brother, who
8 hanged himself, were not extremists and did not approve of what the
9 extremists were doing in Foca. Radojica Tesevic, for a long time, was an
10 external guard by the bridge on the banks of the Drina River, a plain
11 guard with a rifle. He did not have access to the indoor facilities at
13 Q. Was this after he was taken away from his previous job as warden
14 that he became an ordinary guard?
15 A. I did not understand your question exactly.
16 Q. I misspoke. You said in your previous answer that Radojica
17 Tesevic was director of the economic unit before the war. Was he demoted
18 to being a guard because of what you said, that he was not an extremist?
19 A. Exactly.
20 MS. KUO: Your Honours, Radojica Tesevic is listed on P3 at number
22 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
23 MS. KUO:
24 Q. Do you know what function he had under the new administration with
25 the new warden, Sekulovic? What was Tesevic's function?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 A. Well, I cannot say exactly, and I cannot exactly describe his job
2 and his duties, but according to what we found out, he became director of
3 the economic unit. I don't know whether that referred to the entire
4 production programme, that is to say, both the furniture factory and the
5 farm. That I really cannot say.
6 Q. While Milorad Krnojelac was warden, who was the director of the
7 economic unit?
8 A. To tell you the truth, I really don't know. I can't say.
9 Q. You said that Sekulovic and Tesevic promised that things would
10 improve. Did they improve? You mention the food already. Did anything
11 else improve?
12 A. Well, yes. The visits of the Red Cross became more regular. Then
13 also we were allowed to heat water within the camp compound. In front of
14 the kitchen there was a big caldron that was heated, and people could take
15 hot water for doing their washing or for taking baths, although there were
16 still some problems with some guards who did not allow that. But this was
17 arbitrariness. On one occasion I was beaten by Predrag Stefanovic,
18 nicknamed Predo, because I tried to take some of that water.
19 Q. Did the disappearances that you discussed earlier in your
20 testimony continue after the new warden came in, where people were taken
21 out for exchange and then disappeared?
22 A. No. No. People were not taken out en masse any more, killed, and
23 people weren't taken out for interrogations. Although these
24 interrogations had stopped also towards the end of the term of this warden
25 here, but the attitude towards us, our treatment, the climate in general,
1 changed a lot, not only of the new warden and of Radojica Tesevic, but
2 also generally speaking; the staff, the guards, they were all softer and
3 more pleasant. In that period, it already would happen that our rooms
4 would not be locked, that we could actually visit each other, we who would
5 go out to work and those who did not go out to work, and then they would
6 let us go and have lunch or dinner together. In the autumn of 1993, the
7 Red Cross brought us a furnace, so we were allowed to use it in the room,
8 although we could have made that kind of a furnace in the metal workshop,
9 too. I and my comrade from the shop, number 210, we had made dozens of
10 such furnaces for the front lines, for the military. We could have made
11 some for us as well but the administration didn't allow that. We spent
12 the winter of 1992-93 without any heating at all. We talked about that
13 situation, the situation in the camp, very little. I thought that we
14 should go back to that to discuss it.
15 Q. Several witnesses have already discussed the conditions and that's
16 why we did not focus on that in your testimony.
17 Did the attitude of Savo Todovic change after the new warden
18 Sekulovic started?
19 A. No, no. There is no way you could say that. He was still
20 arrogant, impudent. I stopped working at the furniture factory in
21 mid-December, 1993. I worked there for about three, three and a half
22 months. One day, a guard came and said, "Go to the room and don't go out
23 again until we call you." I thought that the next day, I would go to the
24 mine to work, to the brown coal mine where our people started going to
25 work. However, a day had gone by, two days, five days, and nobody called
1 me. Only later, I found out from another guard that Savo Todovic withdrew
2 me from work because he was afraid that I might try to escape again and
3 reach some kind of agreement to that effect, because at that time two
4 Serbs had escaped from prison and he had probably assumed that I would
5 reach some kind of agreement with someone. All winter, I was in the
6 room. I didn't go out to work.
7 Q. Did the attitude -- or, rather, were guards like Burilo permitted
8 to beat people after the change of administration?
9 A. I must say that that didn't take place that much any more. There
10 were a few minor incidents of this nature but not even close to what had
11 happened before. Burilo slapped Zanda in the face a few times. Zanda was
12 being a bit perky, whatever, but no, no.
13 Q. You described at -- toward the beginning of your testimony that
14 you worked in the brown coal mine towards the end of your detention. Is
15 that right?
16 A. Yes, that is correct. I don't know the exact date but I worked
17 from April until the last day I was in the camp. One day, in the spring
18 of 1994, there were quite a few people who could not go to work. You
19 should know that, by then, we had been in camp for two years. The food
20 was very bad. Many people had been abused, mistreated. Lots of people
21 were sick. However, they needed someone to work. One day, Savo was
22 revolted because he heard that a lot of people were sick and could not go
23 to work. He called all of us to come outside. We went out and then he
24 said, "You go to the farm, you go to the furniture factory. Zeka, to the
1 Q. When were you finally released from the KP Dom?
2 A. The 6th of October, 1994.
3 Q. Do you know who was responsible for the fact that you were
5 A. I don't know exactly but I think -- I think that it is primarily
6 due to the International Red Cross. An exchange had been agreed upon
7 before, once, in the autumn of 1993. I can't say exactly whether it was
8 in October or November. Just after their visit, the Red Cross came back
9 again soon. We were more than surprised. They said that some kind of an
10 agreement had been reached on exchanges. They even carried out a poll,
11 some kind of poll. They gave us questionnaires so that people could say
12 where they wanted to go, and they said that it was highly likely that
13 something would happen within a few days or perhaps within two weeks.
14 However, they never came. Later, we found out that this exchange had been
15 stopped by the administration of the KP Dom, or rather the people whom
16 this did not suit.
17 Q. And as a result of the time that you spent in KP Dom, you
18 mentioned you have problems with your arm still. Can you explain or
19 describe other physical things that you suffer?
20 A. I have injuries on my feet. It's not that I can't move, but I
21 have problems. Once when I worked in the mine, I hurt my knee. It was
22 badly swollen and it was all black. I went to the male nurse within the
23 compound where there was a prison hospital before. When he saw it, he was
24 appalled. A lady doctor used to come from the health centre. When she
25 saw the condition I was in, she said that it was impossible for me to go
1 to work but that I had to get a drip as soon as possible, and that I
2 needed, I can't say exactly how many now, five to seven. But the next
3 day, I did not go to work. The guard from the gate came with a baton and
4 he forced me to go. He said, "I'm going to give you a drip. I'm going to
5 give you sick leave. Off you go to work." So I had to go. It was more
6 than terrible, because I could not walk, and you had to work. And this
7 was heavy, physical labour. As we entered the mine, we would have to
8 carry big logs on our backs. Logs that were used within the mine then.
9 So at some moments, I even contemplated suicide.
10 Q. Did you lose weight?
11 A. Yes. In that period in particular, when I got out of the solitary
12 cell. Before the war, I weighed 83, 84, 85 kilograms. I was always
13 healthy. I was a sportsman all my life. My weight had dropped to about
14 50 kilos.
15 MS. KUO: Your Honours, I have one or two more questions but I see
16 it's 4.30.
17 JUDGE HUNT: I'm sure he will be required for some time for
19 Sir, we are resuming again on Monday, the 12th of March, so we
20 will have you back to complete your evidence then. You may leave now.
21 There is a few matters I have to raise with counsel before we depart, but
22 you may leave the courtroom now.
23 [The witness withdrew]
24 JUDGE HUNT: I propose to ask the languages section to check the
25 translation. Perhaps a number of different of the interpreters could look
1 at it independently, at page 75, lines 21 to 24 of today's LiveNote, and
2 then that can be dealt with when we resume.
3 Mr. Bakrac, I have to say this, though: I understand you feel
4 that because you speak the same language you can debate these matters, but
5 we do have very expert interpreters here in court. I am always prepared
6 to accept that they can make an error because of the speed at which they
7 have to do the interpreting. You may ask for something to be checked, but
8 you cannot prevent the Prosecution from following up something which
9 you've raised. You will get every opportunity, when you get a checked
10 translation to take it up in cross-examination, but I do hope that you
11 will not attempt to interfere with the Prosecution's case in that way
12 again. Now --
13 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I was waiting for the
14 interpretation, and I see that you're moving on to another subject, but I
15 cannot but apologise to the Prosecutors. Perhaps I reacted impulsively at
16 that moment. And I hope that the Prosecution won't hold this against me
17 or that you won't hold it against me. Really, there was no ill intention
18 involved. I react impulsively because I really heard him say that.
19 That's what I heard. I mean, you know, that's the reason why I reacted
20 impulsively, nothing else. And I was looking at the transcript and I saw
21 that this did not reflect in the transcript. I reacted immediately at the
22 same moment without having counted to ten and thought about it a bit
23 more. I thought that after that, perhaps it would have been too late. I
24 do apologise once again to my distinguished colleagues from the
25 Prosecution, and to you, Your Honours.
1 JUDGE HUNT: Perhaps if I may tell you something as an old person
2 in the law, I never ceased to be amazed at the end of a cross-examination
3 that I had conducted, when I thought that I had received the most amazing
4 concessions from a witness, and I looked at the transcript later. You do
5 sometimes hear what you want to hear, and it doesn't always turn out to be
6 what was in fact said. And that is where there have been no problems with
7 translations. However, we are not going to hold it against you in any
8 way, but I just wanted to make it clear that whilst you are entitled to
9 suggest that the translation that is shown in the transcript is wrong,
10 that's enough. It will be checked. But you must not, perhaps, be so
11 impulsive about trying to interfere with the Prosecution's examination in
12 chief. We certainly won't hold it against you.
13 Well, now, we do apologise. The Trial Chamber feels very badly
14 that we are not sitting next week. However, I am sure that both sides are
15 absolutely delighted that we are not, seeing that both sides attempted to
16 get a longer break than we were prepared to give them. So both sides have
17 in fact won the argument through default. We will resume again on Monday,
18 the 12th of March, at 9.30, I hope in one of the bigger courtrooms. We
19 shall see you then.
20 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at
21 4.35 p.m., to be reconvened on Monday
22 the 12th day of March, 2001, at 9.30 a.m.
12 Blank pages inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
12 Blank pages inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.