1. 1 Tuesday, 21 March 2000

    2 [Closed session]

    3 --- Upon commencing at 9.38 a.m.

    4 [The accused entered court].









    13 pages 878-944 redacted - closed session













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    20 --- Recess taken at 12.05 p.m.

    21 --- On resuming at 12.24 p.m.

    22 [Open session]

    23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I can see

    24 that Mr. Cayley is about to take the floor.

    25 MR. CAYLEY: I'm getting no sound at all, so

  2. 1 I will change headsets. I think that's fine. My

    2 apology for that.

    3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Is it okay

    4 now?

    5 MR. CAYLEY: It's perfect. Thank you,

    6 Mr. President. With your permission, if I could call

    7 the Prosecutor's next witness, which is Mr. Nesib

    8 Mandzic.

    9 [The witness entered court]

    10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Could the

    11 usher please help the witness with the headphones.

    12 Can you hear me, Mr. Mandzic?

    13 THE WITNESS: Yes, I can, Your Honour.

    14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You're now

    15 going to read the solemn declaration, please.

    16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I, Nesib

    17 Mandzic, solemnly declare that I will speak the truth,

    18 the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.


    20 [Witness answered through interpreter]

    21 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may sit

    22 down, Mr. Mandzic. Thank you. Are you comfortable,

    23 Mr. Mandzic?

    24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Could I have

    25 translation into Bosnian, please.

  3. 1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] But you

    2 understand French; is that the case?

    3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.

    4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Could the

    5 usher please check the channel.

    6 Can you hear me in your language now?

    7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes, I

    8 understand now.

    9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well,

    10 then. Thank you very much for coming here,

    11 Mr. Mandzic. First of all, you are going to answer

    12 questions put to you by Mr. Cayley, who is representing

    13 the Prosecution.

    14 Mr. Cayley, you have the floor.

    15 MR. CAYLEY: Thank you, Mr. President.

    16 Examined by Mr. Cayley:

    17 Q. Now, Mr. Mandzic, I think you were born on

    18 the 12th of November, 1962; is that correct?

    19 A. Yes, that is correct.

    20 Q. And I think by profession you're a

    21 schoolmaster; is that correct?

    22 A. Well, by profession I'm an electrical

    23 engineer, but prior to the war I used to work in a

    24 secondary school as a teacher in Srebrenica, and also

    25 during the war I stayed in the same school, the

  4. 1 secondary school in Srebrenica, for a year and a half.

    2 Q. And I think at the time of the events with

    3 which this court is interested, in July of 1995, you

    4 were the head teacher at that school in Srebrenica.

    5 A. Yes, that's correct.

    6 Q. Until January of 1993 you were a member of

    7 the Territorial Defence of Bosnia-Herzegovina; is that

    8 correct?

    9 A. Yes.

    10 Q. And in January of 1993 I think you left the

    11 Territorial Defence.

    12 A. Yes, that is correct.

    13 Q. And you are a Muslim by faith?

    14 A. Yes. I'm a Bosniak by nationality.

    15 Q. Yes. What is your present position within

    16 the municipal government in Srebrenica?

    17 A. At present I'm the president of the

    18 Srebrenica municipality. After the legal -- in

    19 accordance with the results of the legal elections that

    20 took place in 1997.

    21 Q. I want to now take you back to July of 1995,

    22 and it's important, as we've already discussed, that

    23 you, in response to my questions, you tell the Judges

    24 exactly what you heard and saw at the time, how you

    25 felt about things, and your perceptions about the

  5. 1 feelings about the population in Srebrenica while these

    2 events in July of 1995 were taking place. Let us go to

    3 the 8th of July, 1995. Where were you on that day?

    4 A. On that day, the 8th of July, 1995, I was in

    5 Srebrenica, in the central area of the town, in the

    6 Petrica Street. This is actually where I lived as a

    7 refugee for more than three years.

    8 Q. Now, on that day, can you tell the Judges

    9 what you saw taking place?

    10 A. On the 8th of July, 1995, late in the

    11 afternoon I saw columns of people, columns of refugees

    12 who had fled a temporary settlement, a temporary

    13 shelter that was conducted by the Swedish government in

    14 the place called Slapovici. The place was attacked by

    15 the artillery of the Serb forces as well as the

    16 infantry, and was exposed to an aggression by foot

    17 soldiers who entered the said village. They started,

    18 according to what those people had said, they started

    19 burning down the houses, that is, the temporary shelter

    20 that they were using at the time.

    21 So on that day in the afternoon, in the

    22 street where I used to live, I saw thousands of

    23 displaced people who were terrified. There were quite

    24 a few elderly people, very weak people, lots of women

    25 with small children who were crying. They were in a

  6. 1 state of shock. They were looking for some kind of

    2 accommodation, some food, clothes, and so on, but that

    3 could not be found in Srebrenica in those days, nor

    4 could it be found before that, in the previous months.

    5 I have to stress that on that day, although a

    6 number of columns of refugees were pouring in, the

    7 artillery fire of the Serb army never stopped. Shells

    8 were falling in the town area, including the places

    9 where the refugees were staying, looking for some

    10 accommodation that could not be provided.

    11 MR. CAYLEY: If the witness could be shown

    12 Exhibit 4A, Mr. Dubuisson.

    13 Q. These individuals, Mr. Mandzic, were they

    14 residents originally from the area where the Swedish

    15 Housing Project was located or were they from other

    16 parts of Bosnia-Herzegovina? Mr. Mandzic, if you could

    17 answer that question first.

    18 A. Yes. These people were mostly refugees,

    19 displaced persons who, due to aggressive actions of the

    20 Serb army, had been expelled from their homes in 1992

    21 and 1993. By a decision of a Swedish government in

    22 1993, some kind of temporary accommodation, a camp, was

    23 built for that particular group of refugees.

    24 They had come from a number of

    25 municipalities, Srebrenica, Bratunac, Vlasenica, and so

  7. 1 on. However, the majority of the people who were

    2 temporarily accommodated in that housing project were

    3 from the area of the Srebrenica municipality, from the

    4 inhabited areas that were exposed to the actions of the

    5 Serb army units.

    6 As a result of those operations, the

    7 population was expelled. A number of people had also

    8 died in those operations but quite a few of them,

    9 therefore, found themselves in Srebrenica.

    10 At the beginning of 1993, they were all

    11 staying in this shelter project in the village of

    12 Slapovici.

    13 Q. Could you point to the village of Slapovici

    14 on the map in front of you?

    15 A. Here it is in the upper left corner

    16 [indicates].

    17 MR. CAYLEY: Could the exhibit be moved up.

    18 I see. And let the record show that the witness is

    19 pointing to the bottom left-hand square where it says

    20 Slapovici. That is Exhibit 4A.

    21 Q. Thank you very much indeed. Let's now move,

    22 Mr. Mandzic, to the 9th of the July. First of all,

    23 could you look at the map that is behind you, and if

    24 you could point to your location on the 9th of July in

    25 Srebrenica. Just an approximation would be fine, so

  8. 1 the Judges can orient themselves as to where you were

    2 on that day.

    3 A. Yes. What I'm showing here [indicates] is

    4 the town area of Srebrenica.

    5 Q. Let the record show that the witness is

    6 pointing to an area just below and to the right of

    7 where it says "UN Bravo Company" on Prosecutor's

    8 Exhibit 1E, and in particular where there is a very

    9 sharp, hairpin bend in the road going into Srebrenica.

    10 A. Yes. So this is the road leading up to

    11 Bratunac, and it goes further down to Potocari,

    12 Srebrenica, Zeleni Jadar, south-east, leading up to my

    13 birthplace, the village of Skelani.

    14 Q. Thank you, Mr. Mandzic. Could you tell the

    15 Judges what you saw taking place from your advantage

    16 place on the 9th of July, 1995?

    17 A. Aggressive activities of the Serb army

    18 continued on the following date, that is, the 9th of

    19 July, 1995. The military forces of the Serb army

    20 entered the areas inhabited by the people I mentioned.

    21 They started setting their houses on fire. As a result

    22 of that, the population was forced to flee so as not to

    23 end up in the hand of the soldiers of the aggressor.

    24 The offensive of the Army of the Republika

    25 Srpska continued and moved further to the town area of

  9. 1 Srebrenica.

    2 On the following day, on the 9th of July,

    3 units of the Army of the Republika Srpska continued

    4 with their offensive and entered a number of Bosniak

    5 villages such as Pusmulici, for example, Bajramovici.

    6 These villages are situated less than a one-hour walk

    7 from the centre of town.

    8 This again complicated the humanitarian

    9 situation in the town itself. All of these people

    10 needed some kind of accommodation. They needed food,

    11 medicines, all of which was impossible to obtain.

    12 I personally was convinced, as well as the

    13 majority of the population, that due to the fact that

    14 Srebrenica had been declared by the United Nations a

    15 safe area, that such aggressive acts and offensives of

    16 the Republika Srpska army would be stopped and that the

    17 humanitarian catastrophe would be prevented. What we

    18 feared most was a massacre of the civilian population

    19 and we hoped that this would be prevented.

    20 Unfortunately, the acts of the Army of the Republika

    21 Srpska continued, and in the late afternoon of the

    22 9th of July, the situation was the same.

    23 On the next day, the 10th of July, in the

    24 evening, units of the Republika Srpska army approached

    25 the town area from the south and south-east side.

  10. 1 May I show this on the map, please? This

    2 would be the area in question [indicated], the area

    3 south-east and south of the town. They came very close

    4 to the town itself.

    5 Q. [Previous translation continue] ...

    6 Mr. Mandzic. Could you please demonstrate again where

    7 the VRS was on the 10th of July, on that exhibit?

    8 A. Yes, I can show you that. This grey line

    9 here [indicated] marks, I believe, the area in

    10 question, that is, the boundaries of the safe area.

    11 Approximately one or two kilometres away from that,

    12 depending on the features of the terrain, prior to the

    13 6th of July, units of the Dutch Battalion had been

    14 stationed. They were there as part of UNPROFOR

    15 forces.

    16 The offensive of the VRS was such that those

    17 points had to be moved further on. The Dutch troops

    18 had to withdraw. You know very well what the reasons

    19 for that were. The Serb forces continued along this

    20 line, and on the 10th of July, they reached the first

    21 street of the town, the Petrica Street. This is the

    22 south-east part of the town. They also came from the

    23 direction of the village of Slapovici, from the south

    24 side of the town. The VRS army entered the village of

    25 Slapovici on the 11th of July. So the VRS practically

  11. 1 captured the town from the southern part of the area,

    2 and they forced the population to flee.

    3 Q. Mr. Mandzic, just again don't say anything,

    4 allow me to speak, because I need to indicate in the

    5 record where you're pointing to on the exhibit.

    6 On the 10th of July, could you point on

    7 Prosecutor's Exhibit 1E where the location of the VRS

    8 is in Srebrenica?

    9 A. These are the -- this is where the units

    10 were, and this is the area of Zeleni Jadar

    11 [indicates].

    12 MR. CAYLEY: Let the record show that the

    13 witness again is pointing to the area just to the right

    14 of where it says "UN Bravo Company" within the area

    15 marked as the UN enclave at the point in the road where

    16 there is a hairpin bend.

    17 Q. Now, Mr. Mandzic, I'd like to show you some

    18 footage, a very short clip.

    19 MR. CAYLEY: If the video booth could show

    20 Prosecutor's Exhibit 3, the section from -- I think

    21 it's 10 seconds in to 31 seconds.

    22 Q. Say nothing, Mr. Mandzic, while the video is

    23 playing, and then I'll ask you some questions after

    24 you've seen that video footage. Thank you.

    25 MR. CAYLEY: I apologise for the delay,

  12. 1 Mr. President.

    2 Q. Mr. Mandzic, if you watch the screen in front

    3 of you.

    4 [Videotape played]

    5 MR. CAYLEY: That's fine. Thank you. We can

    6 stop now.

    7 Q. Mr. Mandzic, did you witness those events?

    8 A. Yes, I did.

    9 Q. Could you explain to the Judges what you saw

    10 and heard on the 10th of July where that event was

    11 taking place and what the feelings of the population

    12 were at the time?

    13 A. Yes, I can do that. The video that we just

    14 saw was taken on the 10th of July, 1995. As we can

    15 see, there were thousands of residents of Srebrenica

    16 there. They were all terrified at that time because,

    17 as I have already told you, late in the afternoon of

    18 that day, the VRS had already entered the first street

    19 of the town from the south-east.

    20 What I saw there was thousands of terrified

    21 people who felt helpless. They were asking for help.

    22 They turned to the military representatives of the

    23 United Nations, that is, to the Dutch soldiers who were

    24 there. They were asking for protection, but they

    25 didn't get any answer, any response in terms of

  13. 1 protection.

    2 On that night, approximately 40.000 people in

    3 Srebrenica could have no sleep at all. I couldn't

    4 sleep either, of course.

    5 Q. Mr. Mandzic, could you just indicate on the

    6 map behind you the location of that large group of

    7 people that we've just seen on the video?

    8 A. Yes. This gathering took place in front of

    9 the compound of the Vezionica factory in Srebrenica,

    10 and it is marked on the map here [indicated]. It's

    11 this area that I'm pointing now [indicated].

    12 MR. CAYLEY: Let the record show that the

    13 witness is pointing to the blue square marked "UN Bravo

    14 Company" within the Srebrenica enclave on Prosecutor's

    15 Exhibit 1E.

    16 Q. Mr. Mandzic, let's move ahead in time to the

    17 11th of July, 1995. You were still in the town of

    18 Srebrenica. Can you tell the Judges what you saw and

    19 heard on that day?

    20 A. If we are talking about the urban area of

    21 Srebrenica, from that area more than half of the

    22 population had been expelled, forced out due to the

    23 military activities of the VRS, who, as early as the

    24 10th of July, started setting Bosniak houses on fire in

    25 the Petrica Street. They were still firing from

  14. 1 infantry weapons and so on.

    2 On the 11th of July, after 11.00 a.m., the

    3 situation got further complicated, because the VRS

    4 opened fire from their artillery, targeting the

    5 population itself and opening fire on the area where

    6 the population had gathered on the 10th of July, late

    7 in the afternoon.

    8 I was very close to the area, some 70 metres

    9 as the crow flies, on the other side of the street. I

    10 was standing next to a building, and I could hear very

    11 well the sound of shells, artillery shells coming in.

    12 Immediately after that, I would actually see the shell

    13 fall on the group of between 5.000 and 10.000 refugees

    14 who were staying there, expecting some kind of response

    15 from the UNPROFOR forces. They somehow felt safer in

    16 the vicinity of UNPROFOR.

    17 Immediately after this shell had fallen, I

    18 happened to see a terrible scene. I saw a column of

    19 smoke rising from the spot where the people had

    20 gathered. I heard screams, moans. There were some

    21 wounded people there.

    22 Q. On that day, I think there was an expectation

    23 that there would be airstrikes. How did the population

    24 in and around the UN Bravo Company react to these

    25 rumours?

  15. 1 A. Yes. It is true that we expected the NATO

    2 air force to prevent the capture of the enclave and the

    3 exodus of the population. Until 11.00 a.m. those were

    4 some unreliable pieces of information that people

    5 accepted in those situations, as a drowning man is

    6 looking for a straw to hold on to to save himself. So

    7 on that day for us, the only possibility, the only way

    8 out was for this type of action. Only in this way

    9 could the VRS be stopped.

    10 In the afternoon of the 11th of July, I could

    11 see, as far as I can remember, two aeroplanes in the

    12 skies above Srebrenica, which did drop several bombs

    13 on, I believe, Serbian artillery positions. And as far

    14 as I can remember the area in question was south-east.

    15 It was here [indicates], but it's not indicated on the

    16 map.

    17 There is a feature there called Kvarc, and I

    18 believe that that was the area where a radio

    19 transmitter was stationed. My feeling is that this

    20 was -- this area was the target of the NATO Air

    21 Force. At any rate, this was close to the boundary of

    22 the safe area.

    23 Q. Let's move on in time, Mr. Mandzic. The

    24 population started to move towards Potocari. Can you

    25 tell the Judges when that happened and why it happened?

  16. 1 A. The population was forced to move. This

    2 happened on the 11th of July, around 4.00 p.m. The

    3 residents of the town started to move towards

    4 Potocari. They were actually forced to leave the last

    5 part of the safe area, because the VRS had continued

    6 with its offensive activities. So the population was

    7 actually being pushed from the area. They couldn't go

    8 back. They couldn't go back to the enclave itself,

    9 because everybody could see Bosniak houses on fire at

    10 that time. So in view of the situation, in view of the

    11 fear and feeling of helplessness, residents started to

    12 move towards Potocari, which was the last safe haven in

    13 the area, that is, the command of the Dutch battalion.

    14 Q. Mr. Mandzic, are you aware as to whether or

    15 not any senior member of the population, or members of

    16 the population, took a decision that the population

    17 would move to Potocari from Srebrenica?

    18 A. It was no higher representative who would be

    19 inviting people to head for Potocari. It was all

    20 civilian population and they all thought about

    21 Potocari. The majority of the civilians thought about

    22 Potocari, because the major part of the enclave had

    23 already been physically taken by the troops of the VRS

    24 and there was nowhere else to go. We could only

    25 withdraw by a couple of kilometres further on towards

  17. 1 the Dutch compound at Potocari.

    2 So the passage of the civilian population

    3 through the area, even those areas that were inhabited

    4 by Bosniaks before the war, but they had been taken by

    5 the armed forces of the Republika Srpska, so it was

    6 impossible to go through those places. Both the Serb

    7 artillery and infantry fire were targeting the

    8 population directly, and it seemed that their objective

    9 was to kill as many civilians as possible, to sow as

    10 much panic, to sow as much chaos amongst them.

    11 And I can also corroborate by saying the

    12 following: On the 11th of July, I happened to be in

    13 the column of the civilian population on the road to

    14 Potocari. At that time the Serb artillery fired at

    15 us. From the neighbouring hills we could clearly see

    16 that there were -- they could see that there were tens

    17 of thousands of refugees who were on their way to

    18 Potocari, to the Dutch battalion. But they were so

    19 aggressive that they simply opened direct fire on this

    20 stream of refugees which was several kilometres long.

    21 Q. Mr. Mandzic, try and speak more slowly,

    22 because there are interpreters that have got to keep up

    23 with you. I know it's difficult to speak about these

    24 events, but stay calm, and we'll get through your

    25 testimony as quickly as I can.

  18. 1 Let's move to the evening of the 11th of

    2 July, 1995. Where do you find yourself?

    3 A. I found myself at Potocari, or to be more

    4 accurate, within the compound of the 11 of March

    5 Factory.

    6 Q. Could you point on the map that's behind you

    7 the approximate location of where you were on the

    8 evening of the 11th of July?

    9 A. Here [indicates].

    10 Q. Let the record show that the witness is

    11 pointing at Prosecutor's Exhibit 1E, to the

    12 red-coloured triangle, just below where it's marked "UN

    13 base," within the area marked as the Srebrenica

    14 enclave.

    15 Can you tell the Judges the scene on the

    16 evening of the 11th of July in and around the UN

    17 compound at Potocari?

    18 A. Yes, indeed. The scene was hair-raising.

    19 Something about 25.000 of those expellees [Realtime

    20 transcript read in error "ex-police"] were crowding in

    21 a very small, in a very tight space. They tried to

    22 find some accommodation in some ancient factory.

    23 Q. Mr. Mandzic, if you could stop there.

    24 There's a mistake in the transcript and then you said

    25 the scene was hair-raising and then you said,

  19. 1 "Something about 25.000 of those..." Twenty-five

    2 thousand of whom?

    3 A. The expellees, the expelled refugees, Bosniak

    4 people who had been expelled from the largest part of

    5 the enclave, because only a minor part of the enclave

    6 was surviving, and that was Potocari.

    7 Q. Please continue with your testimony.

    8 A. At that very small space of perhaps less than

    9 one kilometre square, there were some 25.000 expelled.

    10 Most of them were women with small children, elderly

    11 and emaciated people. We were all without food or

    12 water or medicines or clothing or footwear,

    13 accommodation, or anything. We expected that the

    14 International Community would give us protection,

    15 fearing the worst from the Bosnian Serb army, and

    16 indeed I do remember that 11th of July, sometime around

    17 2100, the Bosnian Serb army launched an operation. As

    18 far as I can remember, they opened artillery fire at

    19 this crowd, this multitude of people forced into that

    20 space.

    21 Q. Did you see the artillery firing?

    22 A. Well, they fired over my head, over the heads

    23 of 25.000 people.

    24 Q. Do you know roughly how far away they were,

    25 the VRS artillery, when they were firing at this huge

  20. 1 multitude of people?

    2 A. Some 300 to 500 meters. From different

    3 places, so I say it was 300 meters was the closest and

    4 500 meters was perhaps the site furthest away.

    5 Q. How did the population react to this

    6 artillery fire?

    7 A. We all tried to find some shelter, but there

    8 was none, so we simply threw ourselves down on the

    9 asphalt, somewhere in the street, that is, on the road

    10 from Potocari to Bratunac, because they couldn't find

    11 any shelter whatsoever. So panic again started,

    12 screaming, and so --

    13 Q. Do you know of any deaths or injuries that

    14 were caused by that artillery fire?

    15 A. As soon as this artillery fire stopped, the

    16 Dutch battalion called me, and so that night I could

    17 not really hear if there had been any wounded, because

    18 that night, between the 11th and the 12th, I spent in

    19 the camp of the Dutch soldiers.

    20 Q. And now we very neatly move on to the next

    21 part of your testimony. I think at about 9.30 that

    22 evening you were called by a representative of the

    23 Dutch battalion to act as a representative of the

    24 civilian population. Could you tell the Judges about

    25 that, please.

  21. 1 A. Yes. Sometime around half past 9.00 that

    2 evening, between the 11th and the 12th of July, I was

    3 asked over the PA system to report to the Dutch

    4 battalion command. So I went to the commander of the

    5 Dutch battalion. I did not know him before that, nor

    6 did I know any of their officers, except Major Boering,

    7 who used to come to the secondary school.

    8 So after I was introduced to the commander of

    9 the Dutch battalion and his officers, the Dutch

    10 battalion commander, showing major concern, major

    11 anxiety, and sounding very pessimistic, said that, as

    12 he saw the situation, the Dutch soldiers, and he as a

    13 commander, could do very little at that particular

    14 point in time to help all those population who had

    15 gathered force in Potocari; and also, as the commander

    16 said, the situation was also highly unfavourable for

    17 Dutch soldiers as well.

    18 According to the commander of the Dutch

    19 battalion, the only way out would be the negotiations

    20 with the army of the Republika Srpska, and as far as I

    21 can recall, that the army of the Republika Srpska was

    22 demanding the Dutch officers to incorporate the Bosnian

    23 side in the negotiations.

    24 I commented, I said that I was not an

    25 official representative of the civilian authorities in

  22. 1 the municipality of Srebrenica, and I said so to the

    2 Dutch commander, and that I therefore had no authority

    3 to represent anyone in a situation which was as complex

    4 as that one. And the Dutch battalion commander said,

    5 "Yes, we do know that, but the situation is very

    6 dramatic. So come on behalf of these expelled people,

    7 because they, and we, and everybody, needs help."

    8 And having been given a promise by the Dutch

    9 battalion commander that if I joined the negotiations,

    10 that I would be -- that my requests, that my conditions

    11 would be supported: that is, to begin with, to stop

    12 firing at the civilian population, to resolve the

    13 disastrous humanitarian situation; that is, to supply

    14 the population with food, water, other arms of hygiene

    15 and so on and so forth. And after I was promised that,

    16 on the 11th of July, I set off for the negotiations in

    17 Bratunac.

    18 Q. Mr. Mandzic, before we get to Bratunac, I

    19 want to go back to the conversation that you had with

    20 the Dutch commander. Did the Dutch commander, Colonel

    21 Karremans, state to you what General Mladic had said to

    22 him about the refugees in and around Potocari and about

    23 his own soldiers that were, in fact, hostages at that

    24 time?

    25 A. As far as I can remember, I know that the

  23. 1 Dutch battalion commander said that the situation was

    2 also highly unpropitious for the Dutch soldiers who

    3 were on the UNPROFOR mission in Srebrenica.

    4 Q. Did he state to you whether Mladic had said

    5 anything about the safety of the civilian population in

    6 and around Potocari?

    7 A. I don't remember. I do not know really what

    8 you have in mind.

    9 Q. Let's move on. You then went with the Dutch

    10 officers to Bratunac. How did you feel at that time?

    11 A. Right below the camp of the Dutch soldiers in

    12 Potocari was the checkpoint of the VRS, and it was

    13 right there at this first checkpoint that we were

    14 stopped. And they asked who was I, I mean the soldiers

    15 of the army of the Republika Srpska, and it was all in

    16 rather threatening tones. And even as I was on the

    17 road, I already was quite fearful. I didn't know what

    18 might happen to me. And I was thinking about the worst

    19 possible outcome, that I might be arrested and forced

    20 to -- I don't know what. But I thought one thing, and

    21 one thing only, and that was to try, to try to do my

    22 best on behalf of the population which was left

    23 completely without any protection, because I could

    24 really see that the enclave was being taken and that an

    25 area which had been protected by the United Nations was

  24. 1 being taken.

    2 On the other hand, the United Nations kept

    3 silent. And even the mildest type of reaction that

    4 they could have done, they could have sent in teams of

    5 the International Red Cross at least there, or the

    6 UNHCR, to try to mitigate, to allay, to ease this

    7 difficult, this horrible situation, especially the

    8 humanitarian disaster. And in such good faith, to try

    9 to alleviate the suffering of the population, is that I

    10 went to Bratunac, but I was really frightened.

    11 MR. CAYLEY: Mr. President, at this point

    12 we're going to move into some video evidence, and if

    13 it's your wish, we might take a short break at this

    14 time.

    15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes,

    16 Mr. Cayley. Very well. We shall then make a break,

    17 20-minute break.

    18 --- Recess taken at 1.20 p.m.

    19 --- On resuming at 1.43 p.m.

    20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Cayley,

    21 you may continue.

    22 MR. CAYLEY: Thank you, Mr. President.

    23 Q. Mr. Mandzic, if we can just reorient the

    24 Court where we were. You left the Potocari compound at

    25 about 2200 hours on the night of the 11th of July, and

  25. 1 you find yourself with members of the Dutch Battalion

    2 driving towards Srebrenica?

    3 A. Towards Bratunac.

    4 Q. My apologies. You're quite correct. Towards

    5 Bratunac. What time did you arrive in Bratunac?

    6 A. Within approximately ten minutes.

    7 Q. Where did you go within Bratunac?

    8 A. We went to the Fontana Hotel in Bratunac.

    9 Q. And I think it was there that you attended a

    10 meeting with members of the VRS and the Bosnian Serb

    11 civilian authorities; is that correct?

    12 A. Yes.

    13 MR. CAYLEY: At this point, Mr. President,

    14 the Office of the Prosecutor would like to play a video

    15 of that meeting. That video is a new exhibit. It's

    16 Exhibit 4D. My apologies. It's Exhibit 40. It's

    17 Exhibit 40. There are three transcripts of that

    18 meeting, in English, French, and in B/C/S.

    19 I would ask that the interpreters please

    20 remain silent during the video, because I think it's

    21 important for the Court to get a sense of that meeting

    22 and the tone and intonation of the individuals who

    23 speak at that meeting. So if you don't mind, Your

    24 Honours, following in that transcript. It's an

    25 accurate transcript of what was said at that meeting.

  26. 1 There are also some external noises that are actually

    2 quite important that need to be heard, and they would

    3 not be heard if the interpreters were speaking over the

    4 soundtrack.

    5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Okay. We'll do so.

    6 MR. CAYLEY: Thank you, Mr. President. If

    7 the video booth could please play Exhibit 40.

    8 [Videotape played]

    9 MR. CAYLEY: Mr. Mandzic, first an obvious

    10 question but for the purposes of legal foundation of

    11 the video: Is this a video recording of parts of the

    12 meeting that happened on the 11th of July, 1995, in the

    13 evening at the Hotel Fontana?

    14 A. Yes. I think it reflects the essential part

    15 of what was being discussed at the meeting.

    16 Q. Are there parts of the meeting that are not

    17 on that video recording?

    18 A. Yes, there are certain parts. For example, a

    19 part when General Mladic addressed me in a threatening

    20 way, speaking about the genocide committed against the

    21 Serbian people. He also referred to the fate of the

    22 Bosniaks in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and he blamed

    23 high-ranking Bosniak politicians for that. He said,

    24 General Mladic, "You see, they're unable to help you

    25 now, neither Ganic, nor his people."

  27. 1 Q. Could you explain to the Judges who Ganic

    2 was? Who was Mladic referring to?

    3 A. Professor Dr. Ejub Ganic was a member of the

    4 Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina as of 1992 until

    5 1995. It was a collective body, leadership that was in

    6 charge of the community as was Bosnia and Herzegovina

    7 at that time.

    8 Q. Do you recall anything else that

    9 General Mladic said at that meeting which is not on

    10 that video recording?

    11 A. Yes. At several points, General Mladic

    12 mentioned the fact that the VRS had completely defeated

    13 the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina. He was referring

    14 to the areas around Tuzla or Sarajevo. I'm not sure.

    15 He wasn't very explicit.

    16 MR. CAYLEY: Mr. President, we've taken a

    17 number of stills off the video which I'd like to show

    18 the witness because that's the easiest way of having

    19 him identify various individuals, rather than go back

    20 through the video which will be a very lengthy

    21 process. So we if we would make available, please,

    22 Prosecutor's Exhibits 41 to 46 and also 48, please, to

    23 the witness.

    24 A. May I add something, please?

    25 MR. CAYLEY:

  28. 1 Q. Of course you can, Mr. Mandzic.

    2 A. According to my recollection from that first

    3 meeting, most of the people present were high-ranking

    4 officers of the VRS, and I did not notice

    5 representatives of the civilian government.

    6 Q. You're now referring to the meeting on the

    7 11th of July?

    8 A. Yes, I am. Yes, the first meeting.

    9 MR. CAYLEY: If the Exhibit 41 could be

    10 placed on the ELMO, please. We'll do this very

    11 quickly.

    12 Q. This is Exhibit 41. Can you identify this

    13 individual, please, Mr. Mandzic?

    14 A. Yes. This is the commander of the Dutch

    15 Battalion.

    16 Q. What was his name?

    17 A. Karremans. I don't know whether my

    18 pronunciation is correct, and I don't know whether this

    19 is his last name or first name.

    20 Q. That is just fine, Mr. Mandzic. Exhibit 42.

    21 Who is this individual, Mr. Mandzic?

    22 A. The individual here is Petar, the

    23 interpreter. Today he's working as an interpreter for

    24 the UN in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the area of

    25 Zvornik, and you can often see him in Bratunac and

  29. 1 Srebrenica. He's working for the IPTF mission there.

    2 MR. CAYLEY: The witness can be shown

    3 Exhibit 43.

    4 Q. Do you recognise this gentleman?

    5 A. Yes, I do. This is an officer of the VRS.

    6 As far as I can remember, he was the one who mentioned

    7 the towns of Vlasenica, Rogatica, and Han Pijesak, and

    8 this is how I concluded that he must have been from

    9 that area or that the area in question was his zone of

    10 responsibility.

    11 Q. Do you recall where he was sitting during

    12 this meeting?

    13 A. He was sitting next to General Mladic.

    14 MR. CAYLEY: If the witness could be shown

    15 the next exhibit.

    16 Q. This is Exhibit 44. Can you identify that

    17 individual in that photograph?

    18 A. General of the VRS, the Commander of the VRS,

    19 General Mladic, Ratko Mladic, whom in those days, from

    20 the 11th until the 21st of July, I saw four times.

    21 Q. If the witness could now be shown Exhibit

    22 45. Do you recognise this individual?

    23 A. Yes, I do. General Krstic, who is sitting

    24 here on my left. On the 11th of July, General Krstic

    25 was introduced by his commander, General Ratko Mladic.

  30. 1 He also introduced other officers from his command.

    2 Q. Can you please identify. You said that

    3 General Krstic is sitting here on my left. Could you

    4 point across to the person that you recognise as

    5 General Krstic in this courtroom.

    6 A. Yes. He's sitting on my left. He's wearing

    7 a blue shirt and a tie [indicates].

    8 MR. CAYLEY: Let the record show,

    9 Mr. President that the witness has identified the

    10 accused, General Krstic.

    11 Q. And where was General Krstic sitting at this

    12 meeting on the 11th of July?

    13 A. Next to General Mladic. As far as I can

    14 remember, he was sitting on his right-hand side. There

    15 was another meeting where he also sat next to General

    16 Mladic.

    17 Q. Now, when you say, Mr. Mandzic, that he was

    18 sitting on General Mladic's right-hand side, you are

    19 saying that as if you were General Mladic, from General

    20 Mladic's perspective?

    21 A. If I understand you correctly, and according

    22 to my recollection, at the table where we were sitting

    23 in the Hotel Fontana in Bratunac, General Krstic was

    24 sitting on General Mladic's right-hand side.

    25 Q. Thank you.

  31. 1 A. Am I any closer in my description now?

    2 Q. That's fine, and I think the video was very

    3 clear.

    4 MR. CAYLEY: If the witness could now be

    5 shown Prosecutor's Exhibit 46.

    6 Q. Now, Mr. Mandzic, what is this object which I

    7 think is in fact in front of you on the video?

    8 A. This is a board carrying the inscription,

    9 first of all, the Socialist Republic of Bosnia and

    10 Herzegovina; underneath, Municipal Assembly of

    11 Srebrenica; and at the bottom, in the last line,

    12 Srebrenica. As I have said, this was on the municipal

    13 building, on the town hall, and it marked the centre of

    14 the municipal administration. And General Mladic

    15 showed me this inscription and he asked me whether I

    16 could recognise it, and I said, "Yes, I do recognise

    17 it."

    18 Q. This broken sign that was placed before you,

    19 at the time what significance did you feel that it had

    20 that it was placed in front of you?

    21 A. It was a clear message that the enclave had

    22 been taken, that is, that the protected area had been

    23 taken; a clear message that the civilian population

    24 which had lived there could no longer stay there; a

    25 clear message that in the days to come, the operations

  32. 1 of the VRS would target other enclaves; that is, first

    2 of all, most of the population in those enclaves, such

    3 as Gorazde, Bihac, and Sarajevo. And it was also a

    4 clear message that that could well be the end of

    5 Bosnia-Herzegovina and the order it represented. And

    6 that after that, the army of the Republika Srpska would

    7 make it possible to create a mono-ethnic state product

    8 without the participation of the other two constituent

    9 ethnicities, Croats and Bosniaks.

    10 Q. Thank you, Mr. Mandzic. On the video, on the

    11 soundtrack of the video, near the beginning, there were

    12 some screams that were heard. Can you tell the Judges

    13 what those screams were and how you interpreted that at

    14 the time of this meeting?

    15 A. Yes. One could hear a pig screaming, or

    16 rather that night, or at that moment, I thought that

    17 perhaps some Serb soldiers were celebrating the taking

    18 over of the protected area and the expulsion of

    19 Bosniaks. And to be quite honest, that was the first

    20 thing that I thought of. I did not attribute any

    21 particular significance to the slaughter of that pig or

    22 the festivity. But after all these years, I still

    23 remember those screams. It was a message that the same

    24 procedure would be applied, the same method, to also

    25 bleed the Bosniaks, the Muslim Bosniaks.

  33. 1 Q. Very briefly, Mr. Mandzic, can you tell the

    2 Judges the atmosphere at that meeting, how you felt in

    3 front of General Krstic, General Mladic, these VRS

    4 officers.

    5 A. Very afraid, very ashamed, defenceless,

    6 especially when I noticed that the commander of the

    7 Dutch battalion could not properly voice, articulate

    8 the needs of the expelled population, civilian

    9 population. And also when General Mladic interrupted

    10 me when I requested -- when I asked General Mladic and

    11 the commander of the Dutch battalion whether all the

    12 needs of the civilian population and the status of the

    13 enclave had been reported to the civilian and military

    14 structures of the International Community. And when

    15 General Mladic cut me short and would not allow me to

    16 continue speaking about that need, his tone was

    17 threatening, he focused his eyes at me, he stared at

    18 me. I think he wanted to frighten me. And he

    19 frequently used the word that the fate of my people,

    20 the people that I originated from, was in my hands.

    21 Q. Briefly, Mr. Mandzic, I just want to address

    22 with you some of the language that was used by General

    23 Mladic at the meeting, and this is on page 8 of the

    24 English transcript, line 3, when Mladic states:

    25 "I need to have a clear position of the

  34. 1 representatives of your people on whether you want to

    2 survive, stay, or disappear, and I am prepared to

    3 receive a delegation tomorrow of responsible people

    4 from the Muslim side here, at 1000 hours, with whom I

    5 can discuss the salvation of your people from the

    6 enclave, the former enclave of Srebrenica."

    7 How did you interpret this when you heard

    8 this?

    9 A. Major anguish, scared, really scared. I

    10 really was very concerned what would happen to those

    11 several dozen thousand of refugees, because General

    12 Mladic repeatedly said "vanish or survive." And he

    13 also used the word "the former enclave." And I

    14 responded that same moment, because indeed the army of

    15 the Republika Srpska, or rather the command of the VRS,

    16 had decided to deport the Bosniak population by hook or

    17 by crook. And that word, "to survive or to vanish," it

    18 really frightened me, because he seemed to be

    19 announcing already some steps, some measures which had

    20 little to do with civilisation or with humanity.

    21 Q. Do you recall him saying to you, "Do you

    22 understand me, Nesib? The future of your people is in

    23 your hands"?

    24 A. Yes, yes, yes. Yes, I remember that. I do

    25 indeed. I do not know what General Mladic wanted from

  35. 1 me. He wanted to demonstrate the force of his own, of

    2 the power of his army on a civilian, saying that I

    3 would be representing 30.000 other people. But yes,

    4 indeed, during that meeting and during that night, from

    5 what I heard from General Mladic, I was very

    6 pessimistic as to the positive, as to the favourable

    7 outcome for those 30.000 expelled.

    8 Q. And I think he finally said to you, when you

    9 advised him that you were an accidental representative,

    10 he stated, "That is your problem. Bring people who can

    11 secure the surrender of weapons and save your people

    12 from destruction." And that, I think, was the end of

    13 the meeting.

    14 A. Yes. General Mladic was well aware that

    15 there were between 25 and 30.000 of those expellees in

    16 Potocari and that they were, by and large, women, small

    17 children, elderly, sick people, and that there were no

    18 armed groups amongst them. He also knew that his units

    19 were a few steps away from that expelled population,

    20 about a hundred or perhaps 200 meters, and that during

    21 the night they would reach that expelled population of

    22 -- those units of the VRS would reach that

    23 population. He knew that, but insisting by saying, by

    24 pointing out to me that the fate of the Bosnian people

    25 was in my hands. I believe he wanted to discourage me

  36. 1 in voicing any other requests in the first place, to

    2 treat that expelled population humanely, not to turn it

    3 into a ghetto. And that indeed was a ghetto for all

    4 those people.

    5 I can confirm it now, and I was quite clear

    6 then, that it had been a planned operation of the VRS

    7 for those several days to force the civilian population

    8 to leave their homes, to leave all their belongings

    9 behind, and to be forced into a small place, into a

    10 small compound, such as Potocari, and that the control

    11 over that area should be taken over by the units of the

    12 VRS and which would then turn it into a ghetto.

    13 Q. At what time did you leave this meeting on

    14 the 11th of July?

    15 A. I think it was sometime between 11.00 and

    16 half past eleven.

    17 Q. Where did you go when you left?

    18 A. I left the meeting together with the officers

    19 of the Dutch Battalion, and I spent that night with

    20 them at their headquarters in Potocari.

    21 MR. CAYLEY: Mr. President, if you wish, I

    22 can move on to the 12th of July or we can finish here,

    23 however you wish.

    24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] So,

    25 Mr. Cayley, there is still yet another exhibit, which

  37. 1 is 48, which I think was not shown the witness. Would

    2 you please do that?

    3 MR. CAYLEY: I'm sorry, Mr. President.

    4 You're quite right. If the witness could be shown --

    5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] And after

    6 that we could, yes, adjourn for the day. But now I

    7 believe we could really benefit from this occasion and

    8 show the witness that exhibit.

    9 MR. CAYLEY: If Exhibit 48 would be placed in

    10 front of the witness.

    11 Q. Mr. Mandzic, do you recognise this

    12 individual?

    13 A. I do. Yes. This is Major Boering, if I'm

    14 pronouncing his name well, the liaison officer of the

    15 Dutch Battalion. He came several times to the

    16 secondary school where I worked, where I was the

    17 principal, and I repeatedly informed Major Boering

    18 about the needs of the pupils in that school, that they

    19 needed various school aids and appliances because we

    20 did not have that and we could not get any school aids

    21 because the convoy couldn't enter Srebrenica because it

    22 was prevented from doing so by the units of the VRS.

    23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well.

    24 We shall adjourn and tomorrow we shall resume at half

    25 past nine. Until tomorrow then.

  38. 1 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned

    2 at 2.30 p.m. to be reconvened on

    3 Wednesday, the 22nd day of March, 2000

    4 at 9.30 a.m.