1 Thursday, 26 October 2000
2 [Open session]
3 [The witness takes the stand]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.24 a.m.
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Good morning, ladies and
6 gentlemen; good morning to the technicians, interpreters; good morning,
7 legal assistant, registry; good morning, counsel for the Prosecution,
8 counsel for the Defence.
9 Good morning to you, General Krstic. We will be continuing with
10 your testimony. Let me remind you that you are still testifying under
12 And without much further ado, I will give the floor to
13 Mr. McCloskey.
14 WITNESS: RADISLAV KRSTIC [Resumed]
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, and good morning, Mr. President, Your
17 Honours, counsel, and General Krstic.
18 Cross-examined by Mr. McCloskey: [Continued]
19 Q. General Krstic, we left off yesterday discussing the convoys that
20 were to come in to the Srebrenica enclave, and I believe you had explained
21 that the Main Staff was the one that determined whether or not the convoys
22 were allowed to go into the Srebrenica enclave; is that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And it was the job of the Drina Corps to implement the orders of
25 the Main Staff in that regard, was it not?
1 A. Of the liaison officer of the Main Staff, the liaison officer with
3 Q. You received the communication from the Main Staff regarding which
4 convoy could or could not go into the enclave; is that right? The Drina
5 Corps received that?
6 A. I personally never received any such messages or orders to that
7 effect. I mean while I was the Chief of Staff. I don't think that there
8 was any single case involving a convoy entry to the protected area.
9 Q. Who was the liaison officer for the Drina Corps for the Srebrenica
11 A. It was only during these proceedings that I realised that it was
12 actually Major Nikolic who was an assistant commander to the Bratunac
13 Brigade commander. He was an assistant for intelligence and security
15 Q. What position did -- I believe it's Lieutenant Colonel
16 Vukovic -- have from the Skelani Separate Battalion, if I'm not mistaken?
17 A. Colonel Vukovic was the commander of the Pribicevac Technical
19 Q. According to Colonel Karremans, Colonel Vukovic was one of the
20 principal liaison officers along with Major Nikolic. Do you recall that?
21 A. I'm not familiar with that piece of information. I remember when
22 he was testifying, I remember that Colonel Karremans was talking about a
23 meeting that they attended -- whether it was in February or April, I don't
24 remember -- that they were together at that meeting.
25 Q. So you have no knowledge of Colonel Vukovic being the liaison
1 officer for that battalion?
2 A. No.
3 Q. Were convoys allowed into the Srebrenica enclave after the end of
4 April 1995?
5 A. I don't know that.
6 Q. Were you aware of the situation regarding the Muslim population
7 and their conditions regarding food in the enclave after April 1995?
8 A. No.
9 MR. McCLOSKEY: If we could go to Exhibit 122A, and I believe 122B
10 should be the B/C/S.
11 Q. And if you could, General, go to the little green tab, the first
12 one in the group, and there should be an area that is highlighted on the
13 first green tab, and I will briefly try to read this and ask you whether
14 or not you believe it's credible.
15 It starts out --
16 MR. McCLOSKEY: Can we put the English on the ELMO? It's page
17 number 63 in the English. For the record, this is the testimony of
18 Colonel Thomas Karremans at the Rule 61 hearing that was played as part of
19 this trial.
20 All right. I first want to start with that paragraph at -- is
21 that page 63? If you can hand that to me, I can straighten that out.
22 122A, the English version, page 63. All right.
23 Q. And I will start to quote:
24 "At the end of April the real convey terror, as we called it in
25 those days, started because as of 26th of April no convoy came in at
2 And then going down the page, I believe Mr. Harmon asked the
5 "Q. What effect did this have on the civilian -- did the Bosnian
6 Serb blockade have on the civilian population within the
8 "A. Yes, sir, it did, because almost, let us say, 25.000 persons
9 living in the enclave were refugees, as there used to live
10 about 8.000 in the village of Srebrenica. So you can imagine
11 that the civil authorities had a mighty challenge to bring
12 under all those refugees in a city with infrastructure for
13 only 8.000 persons. But also the food for all the
14 people living in the enclave was a problem, because the UNHCR
15 was responsible, or at least they were responsible, for
16 bringing in the food. Also the UNHCR had the same problems
17 with getting in their food for the inhabitants of the
19 Now, if we could turn to what has been marked as page 2. Do you
20 see that? Or 1870. Mr. Harmon goes on to say:
21 "MR. HARMON: Thank you, Your Honour. Colonel Karremans,
22 yesterday you described the Bosnian Serb Army blockade that
23 slowly strangled the enclave as a convoy of terror. What
24 effect did this have on the occupants in the enclave?
25 "A. I would like to stipulate some things which I have said
1 yesterday concerning the circumstances, I must say the
2 miserable circumstances, for the inhabitants of the enclave,
3 but also for my own Battalion. That could explain
4 something on the circumstances up to 6th July. Those,
5 let us say, miserable circumstances in April, May and June
6 were caused, what I said yesterday, by refusing the incoming
7 convoys, either for the battalion or by UNHCR for the
8 refugees. Thus, we had to do with a strangulation of the
9 enclave or, so to call, an isolation, a total blockade.
10 "That meant for the population, for instance, that their
11 situation was poorer than poor. There was starvation for the
12 refugees. Some died by the starvation. There was no medical
13 treatment at all for the population, no doctors, no dentists,
14 no medicines. MSF was not able to fulfil its job in the
15 local hospital. We could not do anything about infrastructure
16 to support the local authorities like housing, like
17 generators, power and electricity and water supply for the
19 "It ended up, for instance, that hundreds of inhabitants
20 of the enclave lived literally on the garbage collection
21 point. There was no travel allowed both for the population
22 and for the Battalion. What was agreed in the beginning in
23 1993, so-called freedom of movement, there was no freedom of
24 movement at all.
25 "Our conclusion for the inhabitants, the population of
1 enclave, was that the situation was hopeless, inhuman and a
2 lot of suffering for the people."
3 General Krstic, do you have any reason to believe this is not a
4 credible statement by Colonel Karremans?
5 A. I apologise, Mr. McCloskey. The second part that you have just
6 read out, I cannot find it in B/C/S. I don't even know what page it is
8 As to the portion that was marked with this green tab, I believe
9 that that indeed refers to the issue you've brought up.
10 Q. General, if you could take a moment. The second green tab is the
11 second piece that I read. So if you start with the second green tab, and
12 it should also be highlighted for you.
13 A. Yes. Yes, I've found it.
14 Q. Were you aware that people in the enclave were starving to death
15 at this time in May and June of 1995?
16 A. I really didn't know that. I wasn't familiar with the situation.
17 As to the description given here by Colonel Karremans, I can, therefore,
18 offer no comment on it.
19 Q. Let's go back to Krivaja 95, if we could. Exhibit 428A.
20 JUDGE RIAD: General Krstic, just concerning your no comment on
21 it, what does that mean? You don't know about it?
22 A. Your Honour, I simply wasn't familiar with that. I have already
23 said that, as regards convoys and other similar matters related to the
24 protected area, that that was under the jurisdiction of the Main Staff.
25 At that time, at the beginning those events, I was still undergoing
1 treatment. Later on, I was busy with the issues concerning the front
2 line. So I don't have any knowledge as regards the situation in
3 Srebrenica involving the civilian population and the supply of food and
4 other aid to the civilian population within the enclave.
5 JUDGE RIAD: So the answer is that you have no knowledge? Is that
6 the answer?
7 A. Yes.
8 MR. McCLOSKEY:
9 Q. General Krstic, did you have to consider in planning for Krivaja
10 95 the possible military activities of NATO and NATO forces and their
11 possible intervention?
12 A. At the time we were planning the operation, and at the beginning
13 of the operation, whose purpose was to separate the two enclaves, we did
14 not take into account the possibility of military activities of NATO and
15 NATO forces from air. Our starting point was that the act of separating
16 the two enclaves was a legitimate one and that we were not doing anything
17 that would possibly endanger the civilian population and the protected
18 area itself.
19 Q. Did you ever make a plan or incorporate in this plan, Krivaja
20 95 -- well, I'm sorry. Let me start over with that question. Did you
21 ever incorporate into this plan the possibility of intervention by NATO
23 A. In each order, so as in this one as well, it is envisaged that a
24 battle may occur involving targets in the air. The order makes mention of
25 measures that need to be undertaken in case of NATO airstrikes, but we had
1 completely ruled out the possibility of the NATO airstrike during the
2 operation of separating the two enclaves, Zepa and Srebrenica. This is
3 simply one item of the order which concerns anti-aircraft defence. Like I
4 said, each order, not only this one concerning the Krivaja 95 operation,
5 so each order has to make mention in this way the possibility of
6 airstrikes, and this is the way that it is always written.
7 Q. So this order does anticipate what you should do, what the VRS
8 forces should do in the event of intervention by NATO forces?
9 A. Yes, but it is only envisaging the possibility of airstrikes. It
10 was actually not a real possibility for us, because we thought that our
11 aim was a legitimate one, and we didn't even count with the airstrikes.
12 And at the time the operation to separate the two enclaves was launched
13 until the final aim was realised, there were no airstrikes by NATO
14 forces. The attack came later on, after the order was issued to continue
15 with the attack.
16 Q. You testified yesterday that this was a very serious document. Is
17 there paragraphs or material in this document, Krivaja 95, that are
18 completely unimportant and not applicable, and are just, as you've
19 suggested, a matter of something you always have to fill out when writing
20 one of these orders?
21 A. Yes. Everything is important in this order.
22 Q. In the event of an airborne assault by NATO, whose job was it to
23 take on the airborne NATO troops under this order?
24 A. Every unit had certain devices for combat with targets that were
25 airborne, starting from 20- and 30-millimetre guns and Strela 2-M.
1 However, those resources are not effective when it comes to medium- and
2 long-range targets.
3 Q. What I meant to ask was: How does this plan anticipate NATO
4 troops landing on the ground, either from the air, from either helicopters
5 or parachutes? Who is supposed to deal with NATO troops under this plan?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Have you been able to find that section in the report? I can
8 refer you to paragraph 9 in the -- excuse me -- in the order.
9 A. Yes, yes. I've found the paragraph. It is paragraph 9 of the
11 Q. And it basically says that if NATO forces make an airborne landing
12 in support of UNPROFOR, the units closest to the landing place and reserve
13 forces will engage in combat with them. So this plan anticipates the
14 reserve forces taking on any NATO forces that land in this manner; is that
16 A. This doesn't apply only to reserve forces, but all the units
17 engaged on the front.
18 Q. All right. But it certainly anticipates the reserve forces as
19 well as, like it says, the people that they happen to land on top of?
20 A. Yes, if there are any reserves, of course.
21 Q. You listened to General Dannatt's testimony about reserves and the
22 importance of reserves, and I know you've received training and
23 experience. It's important to have reserve forces in any military
24 operation, is it not?
25 A. Yes, we did envisage them, but this order was not handed to forces
1 that we had in reserve because we thought we wouldn't need them. But they
2 were anticipated, and not one of the officers whose forces were to be in
3 the reserve received this order, nor did they know that the operation was
4 being prepared, planned, and that it would be carried out.
5 Q. So if we go to page 5 of Krivaja 95, we can see those reserve
6 forces are noted in their own paragraph. "Reserve forces ..." and I'm
7 reading now, and it's under paragraph 5 also, General: "Reserve forces of
8 a size of two or three companies of the MUP, and one company from the 1st
9 Vlasenica Light Infantry Brigade." Those MUP forces in Vlasenica and one
10 company from the Vlasenica Brigade were the reserve forces as set out in
11 this plan; correct?
12 A. Yes, they were envisaged, but this order was never handed to them,
13 as can be seen at the end of this order, when the units to whom this order
14 was handed are listed on page 6. And it says: Forward command post of
15 the Drina Corps, the 1st Zvornik Brigade, the 1st Birac Brigade, the 2nd
16 Romanija Brigade, the 1st Bratunac Brigade, the 1st Milici Brigade, and
17 the 5th Platoon. So not a single of the units which were envisaged to be
18 the reserve force received this order, nor did we, while carrying out the
19 task assigned to us by the commander of the Drina Corps, have such
20 reserves, nor did we think that we would need to deploy them and engage
21 them in battle. It was only in the 11th, in the afternoon, upon orders by
22 General Mladic, that the order was given to strengthen the attack from the
23 direction that the Bratunac Brigade should have attacked on -- and I spoke
24 about this earlier on in my testimony -- because we had a lot of problems
25 with a part of that brigade which was engaged in the attack.
1 In the afternoon of the 11th, the order was given that some units,
2 about 50 or 60 men, should be brought from the Vlasenica Brigade, and they
3 were brought there, and they were deployed along the route Kak-Guber
5 Q. Do you know a MUP officer named Dusko Jevdic, nickname or code
6 name Stalin, who was a man identified as being in Potocari on July 12th
7 near Mladic's entourage?
8 A. No. I never heard of that man, and, particularly, I never heard
9 of such a nickname either.
10 Q. Now, this section of the report makes a reference to two or three
11 companies. How many soldiers would be envisioned in a company of this
13 A. I'm not aware of the numerical strength of those units of the
14 MUP. I am not familiar with their organisational structure. An Infantry
15 Company in a Light Brigade in the army numbered between 80 and 100 men.
16 As for MUP unit strength and their organisational structure in terms of
17 numbers, it's something I'm not familiar with.
18 Q. Would the commanders that received this report be able to tell how
19 many men there were in reserve for them or would they be like you, they
20 wouldn't know?
21 A. I'm afraid I didn't quite understand your question.
22 Q. In receipt of this report, a commander would naturally look to see
23 how many reserves he had, and would a commander, when they read the size
24 of two or three companies, get at least some sort of an estimate of how
25 many men would be backing him up in reserve?
1 A. When it comes to the commanders to whom this order was forwarded,
2 they don't care which units are in reserve. What is important for them
3 are their forces because here, in the order, it is not stated from which
4 axis the reserve forces would be brought, what their tasks will be, which
5 unit which was attacking up to a certain line would be replaced by those
6 reserves. So this is not stated anywhere in this order to unit
8 Q. Well, let me call your attention to the reserve section. In the
9 next paragraph right under the reserve section, it says "Task," and there
10 is a listing of tasks, and one of them says, "To prevent an enemy
12 MR. McCLOSKEY: Usher, it's page 5, sorry, in the English
13 translation, of the exhibit Krivaja 95, 428A.
14 Q. General Krstic, do you consider the exodus of the 28th Division
15 from the Srebrenica enclave on July 11th and 12th an enemy withdrawal?
16 A. I did not give the matter any thought except in regard to the
17 order of the commander, the Corps Commander for active combat, the order
18 for active combat. It was our assessment that the forces of the
19 28th Division would only withdraw from the area in between the enclaves of
20 Srebrenica and Zepa to behind the lines Guber Banja, Zivkovo Brdo,
21 Alibegovac, Kak. We did not even take into consideration the possibility
22 of the forces of the 28th Division as a whole because of our efforts to
23 achieve this aim given in this order that they would withdraw from the
24 same area, because there was no reason for them to do so in terms of the
25 order of the Drina Corps Commander.
1 Q. General Krstic, it's the submission of the Prosecution that the
2 MUP forces were designated as the reserves for their Krivaja 95 operation
3 and that upon the withdrawal of the 28th Division from the enclave, those
4 MUP forces were incorporated into the operation and placed along the
5 Bratunac-Milici road, as we have seen in the video. Do you contest that?
6 A. I really do not know who ordered first the bringing in of MUP
7 forces and especially the special detachment from the MUP Brigade to the
8 area of Bratunac on the 11th. I never addressed any such request to
9 anyone nor did I make such proposal. And I think that the Commander of
10 the Drina Corps didn't do that either, because those forces arrived on the
12 I and the command of the Drina Corps never addressed such a
13 request to the Main Staff, but it is a fact, as we have seen on videotape,
14 that those forces did appear blockading the road between Konjevic Polje
15 and Kravica in the early morning hours of the 12th and later.
16 Q. Where did those MUP forces that arrived on the 11th in Bratunac,
17 where did they come from?
18 A. I don't know where they came from. I don't know where that unit
19 was located. But they appeared there on the 11th. And General Mladic
20 spoke about this at a meeting with the Command of the Bratunac Brigade
21 when he said, among other things, that a detachment of the special MUP
22 forces had come to Bratunac.
23 Q. In planning this operation, are you aware of anyone speaking to
24 the MUP and letting them know that they were going to be put in this plan
25 as reserves?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 A. No.
2 Q. Who put in this section about the MUP being reserves?
3 A. The Corps Commander envisaged a reserve force, and he counted on
4 some MUP forces, should they be necessary. But I would like to repeat,
5 until his idea was put into effect, and that was in the morning of the
6 10th, there was absolutely no need to engage any unit from the reserve
7 force, not just MUP units but the company from the Vlasenica Brigade was
8 not needed either.
9 Q. You mentioned that Obrad Vicic, the operations officer, played a
10 major role in drafting this document; is that right?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Now, there is, I believe, a Colonel Slavko Ognjenovic who was also
13 in operations at that time; is that correct?
14 A. We didn't have any officer with a surname Redjenovic.
15 Q. Sorry. That was my pronunciation. I'll try it again. Slavko
17 A. Colonel Slavko Ognjenovic. He was an officer in the section for
18 morale, legal, and religious affairs.
19 Q. Did he assist in the drafting of this plan in any way?
20 A. No. Why would he? Only when it comes to moral support, together
21 with his superior officer Colonel Cerovic, that is possible that he may
22 have participated with respect to that paragraph.
23 Q. Was Colonel Ognjenovic present in the Vlasenica area during the
24 assault on Srebrenica from July 5th through the 13th?
25 A. His superior officer, Colonel Cerovic, must know about that. He
1 was probably at the command post.
2 Q. One other question about Krivaja 95 and we'll move on. Is there
3 anything in this plan that envisaged the continuing of the assault, if
4 advantageous circumstances allow it?
5 A. I spoke about that yesterday in response to your question, to
6 explain the term "the elimination of the enclave," "to create conditions
7 for the elimination of the enclave." To that end, there may be a task
8 specified. And then it says: In the next assignment, attack along such
9 an axis and reach such-and-such a line, in the event that the 28th
10 Division continues to carry out combat operations to engage in sabotage
11 activities, as it had done previously.
12 Q. Does that envision a whole new attack plan and a whole separate
13 assault, or could this plan have the same forces that are involved in the
14 initial assault just continue on through?
15 A. This refers to a later time period and to some other forces,
16 probably stronger forces than those that were engaged to carry out the
17 order of the commander for combat action.
18 Q. I will refer you again to the section of the reserve forces, but
19 this time just above the section of the reserve forces. It's the page 5
20 of Krivaja, and it states:
21 "In case of advantageous development of the situation, be in
22 readiness for an attack on and in pursuit of the enemy along the
23 aforementioned axis."
24 Is that the separate attack that you've just testified about or
25 something else?
1 A. It is a separate attack envisaged for some later time, for some
2 future time.
3 JUDGE WALD: General Krstic, I have one question on Krivaja 95
4 before we leave it. What do you think Krivaja 95 would have anticipated
5 if the Muslim 28th Division simply retreated? Just once the -- once your
6 forces had begun, if they simply retreated toward Muslim-held territory,
7 just fled, did Krivaja 95 anticipate that you would follow, pursue in
8 attack mode, or just let them go? If they just turn on their heels and
9 fled towards Muslim-held territory, what do you think Krivaja 95
10 anticipated should be the reaction of your forces?
11 A. With respect to Krivaja 95 and the 28th Division, we envisaged
12 that the forces of the 28th Division would simply take up positions in
13 front of the line designated in the Drina Corps Commander's order, and
14 that is Guber Banja, Zivkovo Brdo, Alibegovac, and the feature Kak. We
15 never even thought about the possibility that the forces of the 28th
16 Division would pull out, would withdraw from the Srebrenica enclave and
17 make breakthroughs along different directions, because they simply had no
18 need to do that, because our task was simply to separate the two enclaves
19 and nothing more.
20 JUDGE WALD: So any reaction you would have to their withdrawing
21 and moving toward Muslim-held territory would have to be the result of
22 another set of orders? There would have to be new orders given as to what
23 to do, apart from Krivaja 95, is that what you're saying, should the
24 Muslim forces start withdrawing and moving out of Srebrenica toward
25 Muslim-held territory? Is that right? Okay.
1 A. Yes. A new operation would have to be planned. A number of other
2 documents would have to be drafted which would accompany the
3 implementation of that new order.
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General Krstic, I too have a
5 question. I should like to go back to the question of reserve forces. If
6 I understood correctly, you participated in the planning of this
7 operation; is that true?
8 A. Yes.
9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] So in the plan, you defined
10 tasks for the reserve forces, involving two or three companies. There is
11 something I don't understand. How can you assign tasks to a force whose
12 size you are not aware of?
13 A. We did not clearly specify the tasks of the reserve forces. We
14 didn't deliver the order to them precisely because their tasks were not
15 specified. It is only in general terms that the potential task of the
16 reserve forces was defined, but it is not stated here which units they
17 are, nor where they should come, nor the axes along which they should
18 act. So no details are given which would have been required had this
19 order been delivered to them. Then you would have to tell them, "You will
20 be deployed in such-and-such a place," or "Go from this region to another
21 region and carry out such-and-such a task."
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you.
23 JUDGE RIAD: General Krstic, just -- you were referring more than
24 once to the fact that your task and your plan was to separate the two
25 enclaves. You mentioned before that -- you said, "Our starting point was
1 to separate the two enclaves," and you repeated it right now. And then
2 you mentioned before, "We were not doing anything that would endanger the
3 civilian population." So you are speaking -- you were not a General at
4 that time, were you?
5 A. Yes, I was a General.
6 JUDGE RIAD: So you were participating in the planning?
7 A. Yes.
8 JUDGE RIAD: You were part of the process?
9 A. Yes.
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I think, Mr. McCloskey, it is
11 time for a break, so we're going to have a 15-minute break now.
12 --- Recess taken at 10.18 a.m.
13 --- On resuming at 10.34 a.m.
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Let us resume. Mr. McCloskey,
15 please continue.
16 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
17 Q. General Krstic, I would now like to get into an area we touched
18 upon briefly yesterday, and that is your leadership role in the attack on
19 Srebrenica and its aftermath. You told us that you were at some point
20 surprised to find out that you would be at the forward command post and
21 that General Zivanovic was going to be back at the headquarters; is that
23 A. As regards this particular operation, the implementation of the
24 Corps Commander's decision, I was indeed designated by him to monitor and
25 control the activities until the final completion of the task, but that
1 was not the first time. Earlier on, when I was at Treskavica, I was at
2 the Osmaci post in the area of responsibility of the Birac Brigade. The
3 objective was to crash the offensive of the BH army, in particular, its
4 2nd Corps. So this was not the first time for me to remain at the command
5 post and General Zivanovic to go in the field, regardless of the task that
6 was involved.
7 Q. So it was your job to be in the front command post and monitor and
8 control the activities of the battle?
9 A. My task at the Pribicevac forward command post was to monitor the
10 bringing in of the Drina Corps units that were deployed for the purposes
11 of that operation to specific areas, to monitor the beginning of the
12 attack, the course of the attack until the final completion of the
13 decision of the Drina Corps Commander, that is, until the indicated line,
14 Guber Banja, Zivkovo Brdo, Alibegovac, Kak feature was taken up.
15 I reported there on the commander of the Drina Corps all the time,
16 and I kept receiving orders from him as to what to do in the situation
17 when the attack is not going according to the plan's dynamics for the
18 reasons that I mentioned during my examination-in-chief.
19 Q. And what date did you actually begin your function at the
20 Pribicevac command post?
21 A. At the Pribicevac command post, I began my function upon my
22 arrival there, that is, on the 5th of July in the afternoon hours.
23 Q. And did you continue that function in the days following?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. On July 9th, the plan changed, didn't it?
1 A. There were not any particular changes in the plan on the 9th of
2 July, the simple reason that the Drina Corps units that were deployed in
3 that operation were still far from the completion of the assignment which
4 was given to them by the Corps Commander in his decision, that is, none of
5 the features designated by the Drina Corps Commander in his decision had
6 not been reached yet [as interpreted]. The feature Kak -- the Kak
7 feature, the Alibegovac feature, except that in the evening hours on that
8 day, the Zivkovo Brdo feature was indeed reached. However, due to an
9 attack that was launched by the forces of the 28th Division, the
10 1st Battalion of the Zvornik Brigade was pushed back from Zivkovo Brdo
11 during the night.
12 Q. Where did you stay during the night while you were at the
13 Pribicevac command post between the 6th and the 9th?
14 A. I slept at the forward command post.
15 Q. Are you sure you didn't go back to Bratunac because of your leg or
16 for any other reason?
17 A. I can't be sure about that, but most of the nights I stayed at the
18 forward command post.
19 Q. When was the decision made, as far as you're aware, to change the
20 plan and actually continue the attack on to the town of Srebrenica?
21 A. On the 10th of July, in the morning or sometime around noon, the
22 commanders of all the units that were engaged in the operation reported
23 that they had completed the assigned task. The 1st Battalion, which was
24 under the command of Lieutenant Vinko Pandurevic, reported that it had
25 regained control of Zivkovo Brdo, whereas the 2nd Battalion, commanded by
1 Colonel Andric, reported that they had also completed their task, and then
2 together with the unit of Colonel Trivic, they had managed to take
3 possession of the Kak and Alibegovac features.
4 At the time of their reports of the completion of their tasks,
5 both General Mladic and General Zivanovic were at the forward command
6 post. General Mladic called all of the commanders, and he told them that
7 they had not completed their assignment. He said, "Panorama 1 here," and
8 he said that the attack towards Srebrenica should be continued.
9 Q. Had you received a document from General Tolimir prior to that on
10 the same subject, on July 9th?
11 A. I think that a document did arrive late in the evening of the 9th
12 of July, and on that day, in the afternoon of that day, General Mladic and
13 General Zivanovic, in addition to General Gvero, had arrived to the
14 forward command post.
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: If we could have Exhibit 432A and B provided to
16 the General. This is a July 9 communication to the Drina Corps, to
17 Generals Gvero and Krstic personally.
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. McCloskey, I should like to
19 draw your attention to the need to indicate precisely for the usher the
20 page and the paragraph of the document so that the technical booth can
21 broadcast the document for the public, including, of course, the relevant
22 portion of the text.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President. Hopefully these will be
24 easier, as opposed to being in the middle of the documents. This is a
25 one-page document. And if we could just -- yes, thank you. That's the
2 Q. And General Krstic, do you have the B/C/S version of that?
3 A. Yes, I do.
4 Q. If you could take a moment to read it to perhaps help refresh your
5 recollection. Just let me know, if you can, when you're finished so I can
6 ask you some questions, but take your time if you need it.
7 I think, like you said, this was, according to the stamp, was
8 received at 2350 hours on the 9th. But as you can tell from the second
9 paragraph, this paragraph indicates that, and I'll quote, "That the Drina
10 Corps ..." Excuse me. I had better start from the beginning.
11 "The president of Republika Srpska has been informed of
12 successful combat operations around Srebrenica by units of the Drina Corps
13 and that they have achieved results which enable them to occupy the very
14 town of Srebrenica."
15 Now, you've just testified that by the 9th that hadn't been done
16 yet. Do you think this is correct or was your recollection correct about
17 this -- when the objectives were achieved that allowed this change of
19 A. By this time, as regards the receipt of this document from the
20 Main Staff of the army of Republika Srpska -- and the time indicated was
21 2350 -- nothing was happening to enable us to conclude that the attack can
22 be continued towards Srebrenica. As I have already said, none of the
23 features that were designated in the commander's order were not yet taken
24 up [as interpreted].
25 Q. How do you explain the conclusions based that General Tolimir is
1 making in this letter in the first two paragraphs, on the evening of the
3 A. Well, most probably the reports coming from the Main Staff during
4 the combat operations were also forwarded to the Supreme Command for the
5 attention of the president, Mr. Karadzic.
6 Q. And who would have been sending those reports?
7 A. You mean from the Main Staff?
8 Q. From the zone of operation where the battle is going on.
9 A. From the zone of operation, the reports were going to the Drina
10 Corps command, to the attention of the commander, and the Main Staff.
11 That was customary. That is how we reported during the crushing of the
12 offensive of the BH army, which was conducted from the directions of Tuzla
13 and Kladanj. So this was not the first time that the reports were going
14 from a particular zone of operation, both to the Drina Corps command and
15 the Main Staff. There was an established line of reporting from the
16 forward command post to the command post of the Drina Corps and the Main
17 Staff, and further on from the Main Staff to the Supreme Command.
18 Q. I believe you've testified that General Mladic is the one on July
19 10th that made the decision to continue the attack on Srebrenica; is that
21 A. General Mladic and General Zivanovic arrived at the Pribicevac
22 forward command post in the afternoon of the 9th of July. They were there
23 on the 10th as well, and he ordered that the operation towards Srebrenica
24 be continued. He also ordered that the troops enter the town of
1 Q. Was that order by General Mladic to continue the operation on to
2 Srebrenica pursuant to this communication from General Tolimir or separate
3 and apart?
4 A. Mladic did not order the operation to continue. He took over
5 command over all commanders and gave them individual commands for the
6 continuation after he introduced himself and issued the order. But it is
7 true that this order of his is linked to this document which
8 General Tolimir sent to the Drina Corps forward command, to General Gvero
9 and me personally.
10 Q. So it is this order, Exhibit 432, reflecting the wishes of
11 President Karadzic that initiated General Mladic's actions to move this
12 operation on to the town of Srebrenica?
13 A. Whether this was prompted by the order or the wish of
14 President Karadzic to continue the attack into the town of Srebrenica is
15 something that one could discuss, but it is quite clear that when
16 General Mladic appeared on the 9th on Pribicevac and later on, his
17 intentions were quite clear.
18 JUDGE WALD: If I may, let me just ask one question.
19 General, in the second paragraph, it says the President is
20 satisfied with the results and has agreed with the continuation of
21 operations, which certainly suggests that somebody has recommended to him,
22 if he's agreed with the continuation of operations. Do you have any
23 knowledge as to who would have made the specific recommendation to the
24 President that he agreed with?
25 A. Most probably that such a recommendation was given to him by
1 General Mladic, but I am truly surprised, because the units, at this point
2 in time, the units of the Drina Corps, had not accomplished the task
3 assigned to them by the Drina Corps Commander in his order. I said that
4 they had still not captured the designated features with the exception of
5 Zivkovo Brdo on the 9th, and the forces of the 28th Division, during the
6 night, launched a counter-attack and pushed back that unit from that
8 JUDGE WALD: Just a follow-up question. Do I understand from your
9 testimony that prior to the time that General Mladic, in your words, took
10 over and gave individual commands to the units to go on through and enter
11 Srebrenica, that you were not personally consulted for your advice as to
12 whether that was a wise course of action militarily to take? In other
13 words, did General Mladic go ahead and make that order to the individual
14 unit commands without ever asking you your opinion or advice?
15 A. Nobody asked me for my opinion nor did they consult me. Whether
16 General Mladic, on the road from Jezernica to Pribicevac, did discuss this
17 with General Zivanovic, I really don't know, but the early arrival of
18 General Gvero at the forward command post, and later the arrival of
19 General Mladic and General Zivanovic, spoke for such intentions, because
20 after receiving this document from the Main Staff and also the next day,
21 on the 10th, the order was given to continue the attack, so
22 General Mladic's intentions were quite clear as regards the continuation
23 of the attack.
24 JUDGE WALD: Thank you.
25 MR. McCLOSKEY:
1 Q. General Krstic, I note that this letter from General Tolimir is
2 addressed to the forward command post, to you and General Gvero
3 personally. Now, if General Mladic and General Zivanovic were at the
4 forward command post on July 9th, why is it that you are getting this
5 personally as opposed to them?
6 A. I don't know whether General Tolimir knew that General Zivanovic
7 and General Mladic would come to the forward command post in the afternoon
8 of the 9th, but he certainly did know that we were there, that is,
9 General Gvero and myself.
10 Q. So prior to General Mladic's arrival at the forward command post,
11 you had been the person in control of the battle plan and the operation at
12 the forward command post; is that right?
13 A. Yes. Yes. Until the afternoon of the 9th when General Mladic and
14 General Zivanovic arrived, I reported regularly about all problems
15 encountered in the course of the operation.
16 Q. And the Brigade Commanders who had been leading the assault
17 reported to you at least daily, if not more, during that assault; is that
19 A. Yes, until that date, the afternoon of the 9th. They reported to
20 me not through written reports but using radio communications, RUP 12,
21 which was fully encrypted, so that I knew at every point in time where the
22 units were, what line they had reached.
23 Q. So by the afternoon of July 9th, you, as the Chief of Staff in
24 control of this battle, had more knowledge than anyone else of how it was
1 A. Yes, quite so. I said that I sent reports about this. We had
2 very great problems. The assault was not progressing as we had expected
3 because of the configuration of the land, because of the very strong
4 resistance put up by the 28th Division throughout, until we finally
5 captured the designated features.
6 Q. So when General Mladic arrived and General Zivanovic arrived, did
7 you brief them with the knowledge that you had gained?
8 A. Yes. I spoke about that when I was examined in-chief. I briefed
9 him on the situation and all the problems with respect to the
10 implementation of the order of the Corps Commander.
11 Q. Were you aware of any communications General Mladic had with Main
12 Staff in Han Pijesak or the Office of the President, wherever they
13 happened to be at the time, while he was --
14 A. No.
15 Q. I'm sorry. -- while he was there at Pribicevac?
16 A. No, no, I was not aware of any such contact.
17 Q. Then in the evening of July 9th we have the letter authorising,
18 under an agreement with the army, for the attack to continue, so there
19 must have been some communication between the army and the president.
20 A. I didn't have any communication with the president. Probably
21 General Mladic did, not only when he reached the forward command post, but
22 later on as well.
23 Q. Did you provide your advice to General Zivanovic and General
24 Mladic on the situation when they arrived on what could be done, in your
25 opinion, based on your knowledge on the ground?
1 A. As I have said, I briefed them on the positions of the units, the
2 problems they were having, that we had still not captured the ordered
3 designated features, and everything else that accompanies efforts to
4 implement the idea of the command of the Drina Corps. I cannot advise
5 General Mladic and General Zivanovic; I simply briefed them on the
6 situation as it was, as it stood.
7 Q. You, as Chief of Staff of the corps, did your job and your
8 responsibilities regarding the continuing military activities from July
9 9th change at all from July 9th, or did you continue to be Chief of Staff
10 and assist in the operation as you had before?
11 A. You mean after General Mladic issued the order to continue the
13 Q. Yes. Precisely, yes.
14 A. I spoke about that during the examination-in-chief by the Defence
15 regarding the role of General Mladic, the role of General Zivanovic, and
16 myself. To provide any comments, proposals, or suggestions to General
17 Mladic when he gave orders was quite superfluous. This was something that
18 we were well aware of. We never even tried. Whether General Zivanovic
19 had said anything to the Main Staff commander before that, I don't know.
20 Q. Your position as Chief of Staff would be to help facilitate and
21 carry out the orders of your commander, General Zivanovic, and of course
22 his commander and your commander, General Mladic. Did you continue in
23 that role to facilitate their orders and their wishes from the time that
24 they came to the forward command post?
25 A. Even General Zivanovic did not assist General Mladic, not to
1 mention myself. We simply obeyed and did what -- listened to what General
2 Mladic was saying to the commanders and followed what was happening,
3 without any comments on our part. Because it was really strange -- I
4 found it strange why he was ordering the attack to be continued and the
5 entry into the town of Srebrenica, because it had not been indicated to
6 anyone in any way in the order of the Corps Commander. The only task was
7 to separate the enclaves and capture certain features, so that the units
8 engaged in the operations should return to their original units as soon as
9 possible and be engaged in the north-western part of the area of
10 responsibility of the corps, towards Zivinice, Kladanj, and Olovo and
12 Q. So you did follow the orders of General Mladic and General
13 Zivanovic regarding the continuing operation?
14 A. No. I carried out the command of the commander of Drina Corps, to
15 carry out his decision. But as I said before, General Mladic said to both
16 me and Zivanovic: "Look how command is done." All we could do was
17 listen, and nothing more.
18 On the 11th, General Mladic gave orders to General Zivanovic that
19 he should continue the attack from Kvarc to Guber Banja, where we had
20 problems with the Bratunac Brigade, and he ordered a unit to be brought
21 there to continue the attack along that axis, and that was this company
22 from the Vlasenica Brigade, consisting of 50 to 60 men.
23 Q. General Krstic, after General Mladic arrived at the forward
24 command post, did you continue communicating to the brigades and
25 communicating the orders of General Zivanovic in regard to the assault on
2 A. No. Not even General Zivanovic did that, because General Mladic
3 communicated with all the commanders and he gave them orders, and that is
4 the truth.
5 Q. We can see General Mladic trying to get that APC by himself off
6 the side of the road, but did he do all the communicating with the brigade
7 commanders by himself and continue the command and control of this
8 operation all by himself without your assistance in any way?
9 A. After he was briefed by Lieutenant Colonel Pandurevic, that is, a
10 part of his unit had entered the town, he didn't need any assistance.
11 This was just one incident in the whole process of reaching Srebrenica.
12 He came across this vehicle and he ordered what should be done, that
13 another armoured vehicle should be used to pull out the UNPROFOR APC.
14 Q. That's July 11th, and I do want to get to July 11th, but we're
15 still on July 9th. So a lot of military communication, a lot of military
16 work had to be done to continue this attack on to Srebrenica, is that a
17 fair statement, on July 9th?
18 A. There wasn't really a lot of work to do except to give orders to
19 the Brigade Commanders to continue the attack and simply to monitor their
20 progress from the forward command post, when the Brigade Commanders
21 reported that they had accomplished the task. And from the observation
22 post where General Mladic and General Zivanovic were, they could see those
23 positions and monitor the progress of forces with the help of binoculars.
24 Q. You had been the one that had been communicated with the Brigade
25 Commanders and running the show prior to the arrival of General Mladic.
1 Are you saying that you did no more of that at all after his arrival? No
2 more communication with the Brigade Commanders on your part?
3 A. After the 10th, when he ordered the continuation of the assault, I
4 did physically communicate with Brigade Commanders later on the ground
5 where General Mladic was too, but all the actual command was taken over by
6 General Mladic.
7 This wasn't a broad area of attack by these units. The forces
8 consisted of two battalions. It wasn't the whole Drina Corps that was
9 engaged in the area for it to be necessary to communicate and monitor
10 activities from various directions and on a broad front in the area of
12 I must repeat once again that I found it strange why such an order
13 had been issued when the aim was, according to the Corps Commander, quite
14 clear. I also said that General Mladic, even when down to the battalion
15 level, even company level, wherever he went, he took over command, not
16 only in this case, but wherever he went. There are many examples of
18 Q. What did you do after the afternoon of July 9th when
19 General Mladic arrived?
20 A. I have already said that I reported to him and General Zivanovic
21 about the situation. On the 9th, we were together at the forward command
22 post. I still had communication with all the commanders who were
23 reporting about what they were doing, what problems they were having, how
24 much progress they had made and so on, until the 10th, until the moment
25 that the commanders had reported that they had accomplished the task, I
1 monitored the course of combat operations. But the moment he arrived, he
2 took over command.
3 Q. So between the 9th and the 10th, you performed your normal
4 activities in running the operation and communicating with the Corps
6 A. With the commanders of the units that were engaged in the
7 operation. And normally, I would send a report from the forward command
8 post to the Drina Corps Command, regardless of the fact that
9 General Mladic and General Zivanovic were present.
10 Q. So with their presence, you continued your previous activities of
11 controlling the operation under their command?
12 A. No.
13 Q. What were you doing?
14 A. I was with General Mladic and General Zivanovic, and we were
15 monitoring how his orders were being followed.
16 Q. Now I'm talking about the period between the 9th and the 10th.
17 Who passed on General Mladic's orders?
18 A. I've already told you. I said that on the 9th, in the afternoon,
19 and on the 10th until the moment the commanders had reported that they had
20 accomplished the task, I communicated with them. General Mladic and
21 General Zivanovic did not interfere in any particular way in that. They
22 just suggested -- gave suggestions as to what should be done to speed up
23 the dynamics of the attack and so on. But after General Mladic took over
24 command, my role and that of General Zivanovic was a purely formal one,
25 mere presence. We were simply present. He took over command. He called
1 up all the commanders one by one and introduced himself. He said, "You
2 haven't accomplished the task. I am in command now."
3 Q. And this occurred when? What precise date and time did
4 General Mladic take over complete command and sideline you and
5 General Zivanovic?
6 A. The two of them, after leaving in the evening of the 9th to spend
7 the night somewhere, the next morning they arrived at the command post.
8 The commanders of subordinate units reported that they had accomplished
9 this task sometime in the morning. I don't know exactly at what time it
10 was, but it was before noon.
11 JUDGE RIAD: General Krstic, just to put it in more understandable
12 terms for us non-military people, General Mladic was commander of the
13 whole situation. You -- General Zivanovic or you or the other commanders
14 were supposed to implement the orders. It had to pass through you to be
15 executed. Could I understand it this way?
16 A. I apologise, Your Honour. That is not so. The moment
17 General Mladic took over command, he directly communicated with all the
18 Brigade Commanders. He was in command of them. So what I had done
19 before, until the moment the commanders reported that they had carried out
20 the task of the Corps Commander, was taken over by General Mladic, and he
21 issued commands whereas General Zivanovic and myself were just merely
22 present there.
23 JUDGE RIAD: You had to be sure that the orders were executed?
24 You had to report that mission accomplished? What was your
25 communication? You said, "I did physically communicate with the brigade
1 commanders." What do you mean by "physically communicate"? You were just
2 going between the Commander-in-Chief and the lower grades?
3 A. When I said physically that I communicated, that was just when we
4 entered, when we went into the town of Srebrenica and greeted one
5 another. Until then, I couldn't be in physical contact with them. That
6 is not what I meant before.
7 General Mladic took over command. He gave commands to the brigade
8 commanders. Neither myself nor General Zivanovic had any particular role
9 in all of that from the moment he took over command.
10 JUDGE RIAD: So you had no role at all.
11 A. Only formally. General Zivanovic was the Corps Commander. I was
12 the Chief of Staff. But in actually in control and command of the units
13 to continue the attack, I had no role. I have already said that I was
14 surprised by such an order and decision to continue the attack and enter
15 Srebrenica, because we had not planned for that. That had not been
16 envisaged at all. There was no plan to continue the operation. So in
17 such a situation, what kind of measures could General Zivanovic and myself
18 undertake? It was simply the brigade commanders who went along in the
19 direction of Srebrenica, following orders from General Mladic.
20 JUDGE RIAD: Just for my knowledge, according to the military
21 rules, do officers or soldiers receive orders from the chief commander or
22 it has to pass through the different grades?
23 A. The moment General Mladic appeared and took over command, even
24 General Zivanovic, as the Corps Commander, and myself, we had no right to
25 make any comments about it because his decision was quite clear.
1 JUDGE RIAD: Thank you.
2 JUDGE WALD: General Krstic, one question. Yesterday, you
3 emphasised many times that the objective of Krivaja 95 was limited to
4 reducing the size of the enclaves to the urban areas and separating them,
5 and we should know that or we should be aware that if the objective had
6 been any greater than that, i.e., trying to capture the town, many plans
7 would have had to accompany it. You mentioned plans or relationships with
8 UNPROFOR, plans for relationships with what you did with the civilians and
9 you mentioned a whole list of those. I assume none of those were done in
10 this case once General Mladic had said continue the attack onto the town;
11 is that correct? None of those plans were drawn up in the usual fashion?
12 A. That is correct. Not in the usual fashion, but in no fashion at
14 JUDGE WALD: So to your knowledge, to your knowledge, there was no
15 communication with the UN people that the objective was now to go into the
16 town and capture it?
17 A. No.
18 JUDGE WALD: Thank you.
19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] We are now going to have a
20 break, 15 minutes.
21 --- Recess taken at 11.25 a.m.
22 --- On resuming at 11.42 a.m.
23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. McCloskey, you may
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
1 Q. General Krstic, now, you've testified that by -- on the 10th, when
2 General Mladic took over what you're calling complete command, and you and
3 General Zivanovic were completely sidelined and did not take part in the
4 facilitation of any orders or the assisting of any orders on the
5 continuing attack; is that correct?
6 A. We were not pushed aside; we were there, where General Mladic was,
7 and we were simply following what he was ordering to his subordinate
8 commanders. We were not elsewhere; we were there with General Mladic.
9 Q. Did you yourself do anything to implement General Mladic's orders
10 in this time period?
11 A. No, nor did General Zivanovic do that, except that at one point he
12 ordered that a company from the Vlasenica Brigade should be brought in,
13 pursuant to the order of General Mladic that the attack from the Guber
14 Banja axis should be stepped up.
15 Q. So General Zivanovic did implement General Mladic's order to bring
16 in the Vlasenica unit?
17 A. To step up the attack in the area where the Bratunac Brigade was
18 supposed to attack. But it didn't do that. The Bratunac Brigade wasn't
19 acting pursuant to the order, and General Mladic said that it should be
20 done. And then after that, General Zivanovic ordered to the Vlasenica
21 Brigade command that a certain number of troops or units should be brought
22 in, the units that I have already referred to.
23 Q. So how would you describe your position at this point?
24 A. I believe that I have answered your question several times
25 already. I think I have.
1 Q. It sounds like you were relieved of duty. Is that correct?
2 A. No, I was not relieved of my duty. No talk about that. But there
3 wasn't any single order concerning the implementation of the order of the
4 commander of the Main Staff to the brigade commanders. That was my
5 business. This can be seen from the report which was submitted first by
6 Vinko Pandurevic, the Zvornik commander, as he entered Srebrenica, and
7 later on by the commanders of other brigades and units after General
8 Mladic, together with General Zivanovic and myself, had entered the centre
9 of the town.
10 Q. Didn't General Mladic need your help and the help of General
11 Zivanovic to implement the attack plan?
12 A. He didn't request any help from us. He was in contact with all of
13 the commanders, he monitored the activities, he issued orders, until the
14 entry into the town. We saw on the video clip what he ordered to the
15 commanders after they had entered the town, that is, that the attack
16 should be continued towards Potocari and Bratunac. So he didn't issue
17 that order to me and the Corps Commander, but directly to the brigade
19 Q. So you did absolutely nothing to implement General Mladic's orders
20 or to assist in this continuing attack?
21 A. I'm sorry, Mr. McCloskey, but I do believe that I have answered
22 your question several times.
23 Q. Were you ever reactivated, where you started doing your job again
24 and started doing your duty again?
25 A. I don't know what period you have in mind.
1 Q. Well, you were, in a sense, deactivated on the 10th. So the
2 period I'm asking about is did you remain deactivated on the 11th, on the
3 12th, on the 13th? When were you given responsibilities to be a general
4 again, where you actually implemented orders from superior officers, which
5 was your duty?
6 A. In connection with the Srebrenica operation or ...
7 Q. Anything on those dates.
8 A. After the 12th or, rather, the 11th of July, when the Commander of
9 the Main Staff ordered that an attack should be launched towards Zepa, I
10 took over again my duty, that of the Chief of Staff of the corps, that is,
11 the command over the units which were attacking towards Zepa.
12 Q. Was that the evening of the 11th that you were given the job to
13 actually do something now?
14 A. In the evening of the 11th, at the meeting which was held at the
15 Bratunac Brigade headquarters, I received my order concerning Zepa, and my
16 next activities were focused on the implementation of that task from then
17 on, except for the fact that I attended the meeting at the Fontana Hotel
18 in Bratunac, pursuant to the order of General Mladic.
19 Q. So between the afternoon hours of July 10th, when Mladic sidelined
20 you and Zivanovic, until the evening hours when you were assigned the Zepa
21 operation, you did nothing?
22 A. Only a report left the forward command post, and that report was
23 forwarded to the command post of the corps and the Main Staff. So except
24 for that order, I didn't do anything else.
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: All right. If we could go to Exhibit 482A.
1 That's a one-pager. If we could put the -- actually, if you could put the
2 first page of the B/C/S on the ELMO very briefly, and if the General could
3 see that B/C/S version.
4 Q. General Krstic, could you -- this is from a publication, Srpska
5 Vojska. Could you tell us what Srpska Vojska is?
6 A. This is a monthly publication of the VRS, which was published by
7 the Information Service of the Main Staff of the VRS.
8 Q. In looking at the first page in the B/C/S, we see General Mladic
9 and yourself, and I believe that's Legenda, on the podium at some sort of
10 proceeding. Is that right?
11 A. I don't think we have the same copy. I only have page 7 of this
13 Q. I'm sorry. I took yours and put it on the ELMO. Now, do you
14 recognise --
15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. McCloskey, perhaps we should
16 have the English version on the ELMO. No?
17 MR. McCLOSKEY: That's a good idea.
18 Q. General Krstic, could you just tell us briefly what this -- well,
19 we recognise General Mladic and yourself. And the man with the beret,
20 who's that?
21 A. You mean the man with the beret?
22 Q. Yes.
23 A. That is Major Milan Jolovic, a detachment commander, the
24 detachment in question being the Drina Wolves. They were part of the
25 Zvornik Brigade. And as regards this stage, I believe that it took place
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 on the day when one of the professional brigades of the VRS was
2 established, specifically this particular formation of the Drina Corps.
3 He was appointed Commander of that brigade.
4 Q. Thank you. And General Mladic gave a speech that day. Do you
5 recall that speech? Do you recall hearing his speech?
6 A. Yes, I do, but I don't remember any specific details of it. But I
7 remember that he held a speech that day.
8 Q. All right. Well, he -- according to the publication Srpska
9 Vojska, they quote a part of the speech, and according to that, General
10 Mladic mentions you. And I'm sorry, I can't point out to you on that
11 exactly where that is on that first page, but if you could look for your
12 name and I will slowly read that section in English while you have a
13 chance to find it. And these are, according to Srpska Vojska, the words
14 of General Mladic:
15 "... not only in Podrinje, on Bjelasnica, Igman, Treskavica, on
16 the Nisic plateau, but also in Krajina. You fought heroically under the
17 leadership of your Chief of Staff or Corps Commander who, although
18 severely wounded, made a tremendous contribution to the victory of Serbian
19 arms and the Serbian army, not only against the Muslim gladiators in
20 Srebrenica and Zepa, but also against those who helped them, now by land,
21 now by air, now from behind the conference table, or through the media.
22 They could not be saved because they did not deserve to be saved. All of
23 those who obeyed the agreement and came to the UNPROFOR base were saved
24 and transported."
25 And then he goes on to talk about the buses. Now, in the
1 beginning of this, General Mladic talks about your leading these troops
2 first as Chief of Staff and then as Corps Commander, and he makes
3 reference to Srebrenica and Zepa. What do you think he's talking about?
4 First of all -- I'm sorry -- do you recall this? Do you believe this to
5 be an accurate reflection of the speech?
6 A. When General Mladic mentions Treskavica, Bjelasnica, the Nisic
7 plateau, he refers to the period of time of 1993 when the units of the
8 Drina Corps took part in the Bjelasnica operation, and in late 1993 and
9 beginning of 1994, also on the Nisic plateau, where he conducted the
10 operations in question. At that time, I was not the commander of the
11 Drina Corps; I was the commander of the 2nd Motorised Romanija Brigade.
12 Earlier on in my testimony, I spoke about my activities after I
13 had taken over as the Chief of Staff of the Drina Corps. That was in
14 November and December of 1994. So at that time, General Mladic could
15 not -- was not able to speak about that because there was no talk about
16 that operation at that time. And in 1993 he was on Bjelasnica, and the
17 commander of the Drina Corps at that time was General Zivanovic. So this
18 could refer to General Zivanovic as well, who had also been severely
19 wounded, and the Chief of Staff of the Drina Corps, General Skocajic.
20 I cannot rule out the possibility that he was talking about me;
21 however, I don't see anything in particular here, except for the mention
22 of Treskavica, Bjelasnica, the Nisic plateau and other features that might
23 potentially refer to me. It is true that I was in Srebrenica and in Zepa,
24 so he -- this could actually refer to both myself and General Zivanovic or
25 the former Chief of Staff, General Skocajic, and also perhaps to Colonel
1 Andric, who took over as the Chief of Staff later on. So I cannot contest
2 his words; however, he was unclear -- it was unclear who he was speaking
4 General Zivanovic had been severely wounded as early as in 1992.
5 I don't see any reason why he should be citing myself at such a ceremony,
6 because I had only recently taken over as both the Chief of Staff of the
7 Drina Corps and the Drina Corps Commander, so it would be surprising for
8 him to mention me and my credits without mentioning the credits of General
9 Zivanovic and the former Chief of Staff, General Skocajic, who had been
10 there under post since the establishment of the Drina Corps until mid-July
11 1995. Of course, General Skocajic had left earlier on, but he would act
12 from time to time in the course of 1995 as Chief of Staff -- as my deputy
13 as Chief of Staff. All Corps Commanders attended this meeting, except for
14 General Talic, upon an invitation by General Mladic. This assembly was
15 organised by the Main Staff and not by the Drina Corps command.
16 Q. Do you recall taking the podium after General Mladic's speech?
17 A. Yes, I do remember. I spoke briefly.
18 Q. Did anyone speak between you and General Mladic, or were you right
19 after General Mladic?
20 A. First the assembly was addressed by the new commander, the
21 commander of the brigade, who had been appointed to that duty, that is,
22 Major Jolovic; then myself as the Corps Commander; and after me, General
23 Mladic; and then later on the others took the floor, some of those present
24 from the army and some from the civilian authorities.
25 Q. Was General Zivanovic present?
1 A. No, General Zivanovic was not present at the time. He had been
2 invited to this ceremony, but I don't know the reasons that prevented him
3 from coming to attend.
4 Q. Did General Zivanovic play any leadership role in the Zepa
6 A. I spoke about that. Before the Zepa operation started, General
7 Zivanovic issued I don't know how many preparatory orders, what the units
8 in Zepa should do while the operation towards Srebrenica was ongoing, and
9 later on I would also receive from him when I reached the forward command
10 post, I think one order from him, just for my information.
11 Q. So General Zivanovic didn't play much of a leadership role in
12 Zepa; you did.
13 A. Yes. Yes, that is correct, at the beginning of the operation and
14 right through until the end.
15 Q. You understand it's the submission of the Prosecutor that you led
16 the Drina Corps during the Srebrenica campaign and the events afterward,
17 and you took over command position on the 13th, right before the Zepa
18 operation, which is very similar to what General Mladic is saying here if
19 you're the one he's talking about; isn't that right?
20 A. I cannot say whether you are right or not. Let me tell you my
21 opinion and position and the way things were. I had no leading role in
22 the Srebrenica operation, absolutely no leadership role whatsoever. By
23 the Commander of the Drina Corps, I was assigned to monitor the activities
24 of units, implementing his decision. After that -- and I also described
25 this -- my role was sidelined after General Mladic and General Zivanovic
1 came to the forward command post at Pribicevac.
2 Q. Now, after the mentioning of the Muslim gladiators in Srebrenica
3 and Zepa, this speech goes on to say that someone, be it you or whoever,
4 "... also against those who helped them."
5 Excuse me. I'll try to read that so we can make some more sense
6 out of it.
7 "You fought heroically under the leadership of your Chief of Staff
8 or Corps Commander who, although severely wounded, made a tremendous
9 contribution to the victory of Serbian arms and the Serbian army, not only
10 against the Muslim gladiators in Srebrenica and Zepa, but also against
11 those who helped them."
12 Who would be those who helped the Muslims in Srebrenica and Zepa?
13 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Petrusic.
14 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, the Defence would
15 like to object because this sentence has been taken out of the context of
16 the whole text of this interview, and the Defence would request that when
17 asking questions, the Prosecutor be more specific regarding time and
18 persons he's referring to.
19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. McCloskey.
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: I'm trying to be as specific as I can relating to
21 the wording of the document, and if the General needs to take more time to
22 review the whole article, I have no objection to that. The General has
23 taken some time, I believe, and put us in the context that the Nisic
24 plateau and the Krajina had nothing to do with him. Therefore, it's this
25 next few sentences, starting with "You fought heroically ..." that I wish
1 to direct his attention at.
2 I think he has helped us, through his testimony, pinpoint the area
3 that he may or may not be involved in, but I would like to ask his
4 viewpoint on these particular words to see if he can help us understand
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, but we will wait for the
7 answer of General Krstic. It is all part of the general context of the
8 question, the dates and persons that are referred to. So let us wait for
9 the answer of the General regarding persons and dates. They will be part
10 of the answer. If not, we'll see. If not, Mr. McCloskey can be more
11 specific in his questions.
12 So please continue.
13 MR. McCLOSKEY:
14 Q. General Krstic, do you need to read the whole article to get a
15 feeling for the context of these sentences, or do you want to take a
16 little time to do that, or do you feel you understand the speech and can
17 answer my questions?
18 A. Yes, I understand your part of the question, but would you please
19 repeat it?
20 Q. All right. And again because it's a long sentence, I better start
21 from the beginning.
22 "You fought heroically under the leadership of your Chief of
23 Staff or Corps Commander, who although severely wounded, made a tremendous
24 contribution to the victory of Serbian arms and the Serbian army, not only
25 against the Muslim gladiators in Srebrenica and Zepa, but also against
1 those who helped them."
2 Now, it appears from this sentence that Mladic is referring to
3 some persons that helped Muslims in Srebrenica and Zepa, and I'm asking
4 you if you can understand from the context of this who he's referring to
5 as having helped the Muslims in Srebrenica and Zepa.
6 A. This is a political slogan of General Mladic. I would prefer not
7 to discuss it, but he probably is referring to the UNPROFOR forces who
8 were there in Srebrenica and Zepa. Up to now, never have I said in my
9 testimony that the Dutch Battalion in Srebrenica and the Ukrainian
10 Battalion in Zepa did not carry out their tasks correctly and properly.
11 But whether they did or not, it is up to someone else to judge anyway.
12 Q. All right. So if we do take that as meaning the UNPROFOR forces,
13 I'll continue to read, "Now by land, now by air, now from behind the
14 conference table."
15 Now, you were at the conference table twice with UNPROFOR during
16 the Srebrenica operation, on the evening of July 11th for the first time
17 and the morning of July 12th for the second time; is that right?
18 A. I think this doesn't apply to that conference table at all, the
19 one at the hotel in Bratunac. He was probably referring to something much
20 broader and at a much higher level.
21 Q. Then it next says, "Or through the media." We also know you gave
22 an interview in Potocari on the afternoon of July 12th. Do you think
23 that's what he's referring to or not?
24 A. In my opinion, that has nothing to do with it at all.
25 General Mladic, from the beginning of the war, headed the army, and he
1 took part in all kinds of negotiations at all kinds of levels, both with
2 UNPROFOR and with representatives of the International Community in
3 Bosnia-Herzegovina and outside Bosnia-Herzegovina, and he was very
4 familiar with the situation in that respect. I personally believe that he
5 was referring to those events. For him to comment on the meeting in
6 Bratunac and my statement simply was not called for. It was too
8 As for the meeting in Bratunac with representatives of the Dutch
9 Battalion, even Colonel Karremans, as far as I recollect his testimony,
10 did not contest or oppose General Mladic. So that one might conclude from
11 that he was assisting the forces of the 28th Division. His main concern
12 was the population, the refugees at the UN Compound in Potocari.
13 Q. The next sentence: "They could not be saved because they did not
14 deserve to be saved." Who's the "they," in your opinion, that he's
15 referring to?
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Visnjic.
17 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I do apologise. I
18 don't like to interrupt the cross-examination, but I would like to make a
19 remark which might facilitate the better understanding of this text for
20 everyone, including General Krstic.
21 So this is a lengthy article, and perhaps it would be helpful for
22 us to have a translation of the whole text into English, because then both
23 the questions and the answers could be placed in context, taking into
24 account the whole article. These are just excerpts. And I don't want to
25 comment on General Krstic's answer, but I think that it would be helpful
1 for all of us if we had a complete translation.
2 The article is quite a long one, and I think that to understand
3 the full impact of the questions and answers, we need to know the whole
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much,
6 Mr. Visnjic.
7 Mr. McCloskey, do we have a complete translation of this article?
8 MR. McCLOSKEY: I'm not sure, Your Honour. However, we do -- it's
9 a two-page article and the full B/C/S is in front of the witness. And I
10 think the General has helped us put in context the part that I spoke of,
11 that the part regarding the Nisic plateau doesn't involve him; it involves
12 the troops he's speaking to. And we can see from the lines about the
13 buses that go on and on and on, he goes into other topics. We can, of
14 course, provide the Court with a full context. I know Mr. Visnjic's
15 skills allow him to read both languages, and so I know he will understand
16 the entire article, so I respect his opinion regarding if there's other
17 material there, that he will know it and I will not.
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. We have a basic issue here
19 that General Krstic heard the speech; he was present there. But in any
20 event, Mr. Visnjic, do you have any idea of certain elements of the
21 context which could be important to have a better understanding of the
22 questions and answers, as you have told us? Is this a general remark
23 you're making or you have some particular elements in mind?
24 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, if I may give an
25 example. General Krstic has already answered, but it might help
1 understanding. In the first part of the article, there's quite a lot of
2 talk about the Dayton Agreements, and one of the questions of
3 Mr. McCloskey was about negotiations. I think General Krstic has given an
4 answer that fits within the context, but I think that, for all of us, it
5 would be much better if we had the whole text, and then we could link
6 General Krstic's answers to the contents of the whole article.
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well. Thank you very
8 much. I think that I now understand a little better Mr. Petrusic's
10 Could the Prosecutor give us some general framework about this
11 article? What was the date when the speech was delivered, for instance?
12 We don't know that. Whether the speech mentions the Dayton Agreements.
13 That is important. Also, to give us the time frame and the circumstances
14 under which this speech was delivered.
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: Your Honour, it's my understanding that the
16 article is dated 28 December. I do not know whether I can get it closer
17 to that, and I would suggest this is a very ripe area for redirect, if
18 necessary, for redirect examination, to clear it up. I don't want to be
19 unfair to the General, but the Dayton Agreement is not relevant to my
20 questioning. Perhaps counsel feels it is relevant, and has every right in
21 redirect to bring it up.
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. In any event, I think it
23 would be a good idea. We're going to have -- just a moment, please. I
24 have to confer with my colleagues.
25 [Trial Chamber confers]
1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] So we're going to have the break
2 now. It is time for it. But I think it is important to have at least the
3 date. You mentioned the 28th of December, but I don't think you gave us
4 the year. In any event, we are going to have an hour-long break now, and
5 you can give us this information regarding this article. I don't see any
6 problems for General Krstic to answer questions, since he was present when
7 this speech was delivered, so there should be no problem.
8 So we're now going to have an hour-long break.
9 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.25 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 1.25 p.m.
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] So, Mr. McCloskey. Do you have
3 any news for us?
4 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Mr. President. I can tell you that the date
5 of this ceremony has been determined to be December 2nd. However, I, in
6 thinking about it, have agreed with Mr. Visnjic that I think we should
7 have a full English translation so there is no spectre of taking this out
8 of context. This is something we have reviewed the B/C/S and this is what
9 we decided to bring out, but I have asked for this to be fully
10 translated. And we will bring it back in time so we can see the full
11 context by which this was given, and then we'll briefly deal with the last
12 sentence or two and go on. So there's -- that's what my intention would
13 be regarding this document.
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. But the ceremony was held
15 on the 2nd of December, 1995. Is that the case?
16 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Your Honour. That's what our research has
17 indicated, and we will provide the authentication for that, and a full
18 translation of this.
19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well. Please continue.
20 I am sorry. Yes. Judge Riad has a question.
21 JUDGE RIAD: Just before we continue, and to sum up a point which
22 was raised in the last session, General Krstic, you said before we
23 adjourned that, and I'm quoting you, you said, "I had no leading role in
24 the Srebrenica operation. I was assigned to monitor the activities of
25 units implementing Mladic's decision."
1 Now, I just want to know what you mean by "monitoring," monitoring
2 the activities of the units implementing the decision of Mladic. What did
3 you have to do?
4 A. I said that I didn't have any particular task at the moment. I
5 was monitoring the situation. I was listening to General Mladic, him
6 issuing orders, and then those orders being carried out by his
7 subordinates like General Zivanovic.
8 JUDGE RIAD: You were making sure that the orders are well
10 A. No. I wasn't allowed to interfere in his orders, nor was
11 General Zivanovic, and that is what happened.
12 JUDGE RIAD: You said before, of course, that you could not give
13 advice and nobody could interfere. The orders were directly -- you even
14 said they were given directly to the units. Then you added after that
15 that you were monitoring the activities of the units. So I want to just
16 put this in harmony, in perspective. You're monitoring, to put it in
17 perspective, with the direct contact between Mladic and the units. What
18 did you have to monitor?
19 A. I was simply observing the actions of the units pursuant to the
20 orders of General Mladic. I didn't have any active role in it.
21 JUDGE RIAD: You were just an observer.
22 A. Yes.
23 JUDGE RIAD: Did you have to report if it was well done or not?
24 A. No. General Mladic was in contact with the unit through our means
25 of communications, and when they approached the city, he could -- he was
1 able to see it with his naked eye or through binoculars.
2 JUDGE RIAD: When did Mladic leave?
3 A. Sorry, what date do you have in mind?
4 JUDGE RIAD: During the Srebrenica operation, did you have to
5 monitor while Mladic was there or after he left? What you called the
6 Srebrenica operation, according to you.
7 A. As of the afternoon of the 9th of July until the evening of the
8 11th of July, General Mladic was at the forward command post.
9 JUDGE RIAD: And you had to monitor at that time or after that
11 A. Throughout that time, I was observing the situation, together with
12 the Corps Commander.
13 JUDGE RIAD: Even after he left?
14 A. I don't know when General Mladic left the area of Srebrenica. I
15 left it on the 12th.
16 JUDGE RIAD: So during that time, you, according to your words,
17 you were assigned to monitor the activities of the units. What are these
19 A. I wasn't assigned to do that.
20 JUDGE RIAD: I'm using your words.
21 A. No. I wasn't assigned to monitor the activities. I don't think
22 that that is what I said, that is, to monitor the situation. The
23 situation was such that I was unable to give any comments, any proposals,
24 just like General Zivanovic, or all I could do was to listen to
25 General Mladic issuing orders to the unit commanders, commanders of the
1 units that were deployed for the purposes of the operation.
2 JUDGE RIAD: So in other words, you were sidelined, as they say.
3 You were not at all functioning.
4 A. I was with General Mladic, like General Zivanovic. I was there.
5 General Zivanovic as the Corps Commander and myself as the Chief of Staff,
6 and those were our roles. We were observing him commanding, issuing
7 orders, and then units obeying his orders, but we didn't take any active
8 part whatsoever in what was going on.
9 JUDGE RIAD: All right. In the transcript it is clearly said you
10 were assigned to monitor the activities of the units. It was not
11 said -- you do not say, "I was observing the activities of the units." So
12 you have to be clear about that. Either you were observing or monitoring,
13 and this is why I'm asking you the question.
14 A. I was not assigned to perform monitoring; I was simply observing
15 the situation and listening to General Mladic issuing orders to unit
16 commanders. I was not actively involved in any way in anything, neither
17 myself nor General Zivanovic, until the moment we actually entered
18 Srebrenica, after he had given an order to continue with the attack.
19 JUDGE RIAD: And after he left on the 11th, what were you
21 A. In the evening hours of the 11th of July, we parted ways in
22 Srebrenica and I returned to the forward command post. After he had
23 ordered, while still in Srebrenica, to me to attend the meeting at the
24 Bratunac Brigade headquarters, so after that I went back to the forward
25 command post, and from the forward command post I went to the meeting
1 which was held at the Bratunac Brigade headquarters. And he and General
2 Zivanovic continued into the town. I don't know in which direction they
3 eventually left.
4 JUDGE RIAD: Thank you, General.
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General Krstic, I also have a
6 question for you at this point. I believe that you still have in front of
7 you the document which is a press article from the Srpska Vojska
8 publication. Mention is made here of the commander who had been severely
9 wounded. You told us that Zivanovic had been wounded in 1992, I believe.
10 A. Yes.
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Tell me something: Who was this
12 speech addressed to?
13 A. On the basis of what General Mladic spoke about, that is, the
14 involvement of the Drina Corps unit, it was very difficult to conclude
15 exactly to whom this speech was addressed. He mentioned an operation
16 which took place in 1993, in the month of July. That operation was
17 designed --
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I should like to know who was
19 present at the ceremony; all Corps Commanders, officers who had been
20 invited? Was it only a ceremony involving Corps Commanders? Who was it
21 who actually listened to this speech?
22 A. I will try to answer your question, Your Honour, although I
23 believe I have already said that. The ceremony was organised as one of
24 the professional units of the VRS was being established. In this
25 particular case, it was a brigade which was part of the Drina Corps, and
1 that unit was established after the signing of the Dayton Accords. Aside
2 from General Mladic, myself, General Jolovic, who was commander of the
3 brigade in question, and other Corps Commanders were present except for
4 General Talic.
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you. I'm sorry to
6 interrupt you, but therefore the speech was not addressed to all of the
7 Drina Corps but only to one brigade which was part of that corps?
8 A. No. The speech was addressed to the Drina Corps in general, as a
9 whole, and that is why General Mladic --
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well. So it was addressed
11 to the Drina Corps in general. I should like to know for how long did the
12 soldiers usually stay, remain within the Drina Corps, within a corps? So
13 those soldiers at the time were not professionals, I believe.
14 A. The soldiers would remain in the Drina Corps from the moment it
15 was established until the end, that is, until the end of the war, that is,
16 until the signing of the Dayton Accords, since 1992, as of the month of
17 November, up until, I believe, 21st of December, 1995. And the brigade in
18 question was a professional brigade which was established after the end of
19 the war, one professional brigade which was part of the VRS.
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you. When General
21 Zivanovic was wounded, was he already the Corps Commander or not?
22 A. General Zivanovic was wounded prior to the establishment of the
23 Drina Corps in the area of Gorazde, when he was conducting an operation as
24 the chief force engineers officer of the Main Staff, and he was a trusted
25 person of General Mladic. And after that post, he was assigned to the
1 post of the Drina Corps Commander.
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] So General Zivanovic was wounded
3 sometime prior to the establishment of the Drina Corps. If I'm not
4 mistaken, you were wounded sometime in January 1995, end of January 1995.
5 A. I was wounded on the 29th of December, 1994, as the Chief of
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Okay. So having cleared that
8 up, I should like to ask the following question: The soldiers who were
9 members of the corps, are they more likely to remember the injury of
10 General Zivanovic than of yourself?
11 A. All soldiers of the Drina Corps were aware of the fact that
12 General Zivanovic had been wounded. He spoke about it very often when
13 touring his troops. He would say, "I was severely injured but I'm trying
14 to come to visit you regularly," and so on and so forth. And I think that
15 my injury would be remembered by the soldiers of the 2nd Romanija Brigade
16 because I was their commander, and I was injured in the area of
17 responsibility of that brigade in my capacity as the Chief of Staff
19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, General.
20 I'm sorry, Mr. McCloskey, for this interruption. Please
22 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
23 Q. On the 11th of July, prior to the trip that the command staff made
24 to Srebrenica, who was issuing the orders to shell the enclave area?
25 A. You're referring to the course of the operation in general, up
1 until the entry into the town of Srebrenica?
2 Q. I meant to say on the -- during the day of July 11th only, who was
3 issuing orders for shelling or artillery, if any?
4 A. As far as I can recall, on the 11th of July, there was no need
5 whatsoever to shell the town of Srebrenica, because the units of the Drina
6 Corps were already on the outskirts of the town.
7 Q. So are you saying there was no shelling at all on July 11th?
8 A. As far as I can remember, no, there was no shelling.
9 Q. Do you remember the testimony of Witness B, who was the Sergeant
10 Major who was at the meetings, who testified that a shell exploded amongst
11 the civilians in the UN Compound on July 11th?
12 A. Yes. Yes, I remember that testimony and when he said that, but I
13 don't remember any shell falling anywhere at all, because even if a 60- or
14 82-millimetre [sic] shell had fallen into this huge amount of people that
15 had gathered there, there would have been many killed and many wounded
16 individuals on such a small area.
17 Q. How about a mortar shell?
18 A. That applies to mortar shells as well.
19 Q. So you're challenging the testimony of Witness B's account
20 regarding the shell that fell into that crowd on that day?
21 A. I'm not challenging it, I'm simply telling you about the
22 consequences which would have been likely after a fall of a projectile of
23 that kind.
24 Q. Do you recall the testimony was that it fell between two APCs and
25 wounded several civilians? Would that be consistent with a mortar shell?
1 A. No, I don't remember when the witness said that. Actually, I
2 don't remember him saying where a shell of that kind had fallen.
3 Q. Who was making the decisions about targeting for artillery or
4 mortar or other direct means of fire?
5 I'm sorry. Let me ask you a better question. Who was making the
6 decisions regarding the actual artillery on the assault of Srebrenica?
7 A. Artillery is activated pursuant to the request of the Superior
8 Command to provide support along certain axes or certain facilities, and
9 also there can be activation of artillery of the unit which is engaged in
10 the attack itself.
11 I told you what kind of support the units had at their disposal on
12 the ground and also what kind of support was available at a higher level,
13 at the level of the command. So when it comes to the activation of the
14 artillery from the command, that is always carried out pursuant to a
15 request from one of the commanders on the ground.
16 And as far as I can recall, if I may, except for the support of
17 the 2nd Battalion, which was attacking from the direction of Podravanje
18 towards the Kak feature and Alibegovac, where there were no civilians
19 except, of course, for the positions of the forces of the 28th Division,
20 there was no support -- artillery support from the level of the Corps
21 Command, that is, the projectiles of 80 [as interpreted] millimetres. It
22 would have been absolutely crazy to fire a projectile of such a large
23 calibre into such a populated area.
24 Q. Now, on July 11th, after the NATO bombing --
25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Excuse me. Mr. Visnjic.
1 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I think there's an
2 error in the transcript. The general said shells of "130 millimetres,"
3 and I see in the transcript "180 [sic] millimetres."
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Visnjic.
5 Mr. McCloskey, can you clarify this point, please? It's further
6 complicated because now the transcript is talking about 180 [sic]
7 millimetres. I think we need to clarify this point. We have 80, 130, and
8 now 180 [sic]. So let's clear the matter up, please. So please do so,
9 Mr. McCloskey.
10 MR. McCLOSKEY:
11 Q. General Krstic, can you help us out on this? Which millimetre did
12 you mean?
13 A. In answering your question, I was speaking of the various calibres
14 available to subordinate units, whereas the corps artillery that would act
15 upon the request of commanders had artillery of 130-millimetre calibre,
16 and it acted against the Kak feature and Alibegovac.
17 Q. Now, on July 11th, after the NATO bombed certain Serb positions,
18 were you aware of any communications coming from the Serb command, going
19 to the DutchBat command, threatening the Dutch that they should stop
20 resisting or face the consequences, certain consequences?
21 A. I learnt about that threat in the course of these proceedings
22 here, a threat made by General Mladic.
23 Q. All right. Let me go to the proceedings where this first came
24 out, and it was in the testimony of Major Franken on page 2023. The
25 question began at line 10, and the question was: "Very briefly ..."
1 MR. McCLOSKEY: I'm sorry. I didn't realise we had a transcript
2 for this, Your Honour. That would be helpful, I'm sure.
3 A. That is English.
4 Q. I'm sorry, General. For the trial purposes, we don't have B/C/S,
5 so I will read it slowly and I think you'll be able to understand with the
6 translation. Question: "Very briefly, and to theorise, in your opinion,
7 Major Franken, what would have happened if the Dutch army would have
8 mounted a defence in Potocari?" Answer: --
9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Excuse me for interrupting you,
10 Mr. McCloskey. We have on the monitor the transcript, but perhaps you
11 should tell us with precision what part of the transcript we are talking
12 about. If not, it's better not to have it.
13 MR. McCLOSKEY: We are beginning on line 10, Mr. President, and
14 going down to the bottom of the page, so perhaps if we could get a little
15 better focus on that.
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well.
17 MR. McCLOSKEY: It should be page 2023.
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well, now. That's it.
19 Thank you.
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: And it may be complicated by the fact we're saving
21 paper. If you can find page 2023. It's up in the right-hand corner. So
22 it's on the back. If you can get from line 10 all the way to the bottom.
23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] That's fine now. Please
24 continue, Mr. McCloskey.
25 MR. McCLOSKEY:
1 Q. "We would have had a massacre, and I mean a massacre between women
2 and children, who were mainly the mass of refugees. The Serbs already
3 proved that they didn't respect anything about civilians or
4 non-combatants. They fired at them with artillery in Srebrenica, they
5 fired at them with artillery on the way down to Potocari and further on."
6 Now, this is the point of my question, the next part:
7 "By means of -- by communication means of one of our OP crews, we
8 used a radio of one of the APCs. After we had one air support, close air
9 support mission in the afternoon of the 11th, the message came down from
10 the Serbs that if we didn't stop opposing them, especially if we didn't
11 stop with air support, they would fire on our compound and on ..."
12 Sorry. Page 2024.
13 "... refugees in Potocari. And they said they would kill our
14 POWs. By that time we had about 50 POWs, crews of our OPs -- sorry,
15 observation posts -- who were captured by the Serbs."
16 Now, General, were you aware of any such threat made by the VRS to
17 the Dutch Battalion?
18 A. No, I was not aware of any such threats, especially not the
19 message, if I understand you correctly, which appears to have been sent
20 from an armoured vehicle belonging to the UNPROFOR.
21 Q. Were you with General Mladic the whole day on the 11th or could he
22 have made it outside of your presence?
23 A. The whole day except in the evening, when we parted, in
25 Q. I'm sorry. You may have been cut off. What did you say?
1 A. The whole day General Mladic, Zivanovic, and myself were
2 together. Now, whether something happened along these lines that you are
3 referring to after we parted, I don't know that.
4 Q. General, from the time period of July 12th through the rest of
5 July, based on your knowledge, how many Muslims were summarily executed by
6 the VRS?
7 A. Would you please repeat your question.
8 Q. From July 12th through the end of July, based on your knowledge,
9 how many Muslims were summarily executed by soldiers of the VRS?
10 A. I don't know that.
11 Q. Do you recall --
12 A. The number of missing and executed, I learnt about those numbers
13 from the reports of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, after I
14 came here.
15 Q. Do you recall telling Mr. Ruez that the number you were aware of
16 was 3.500 to 4.000?
17 A. That was what I read in the report of the Secretary-General of the
18 United Nations. It is not based on any knowledge I had prior to that.
19 MR. McCLOSKEY: If we could go to Exhibit number 161/5. This is
20 an aerial exhibit of a large area of disturbed earth that was testified to
21 about in the Prosecution's case, in the area of Glogova.
22 Q. General, whose area of responsibility is this area of Glogova in?
23 A. The area of Glogova was within the area of responsibility of the
24 Bratunac Brigade.
25 Q. And it's the submission of the Prosecution that there were
1 hundreds and hundreds of bodies in this grave that were removed and taken
2 to the area of Zeleni Jadar, which is on the map 1E in front of you, and
3 at least six mass graves, averaging over 100 bodies per grave. What area
4 of responsibility are the graves of Zeleni Jadar in?
5 A. Zeleni Jadar is also or was -- Zeleni Jadar was in the area of
6 responsibility of the Independent Skelani Battalion.
7 MR. McCLOSKEY: All right. And if we could go to Exhibit 761,
8 which is the large -- a large exhibit. There's one -- a large exhibit is
9 behind -- it's the floppy cardboard one. That's it. You should be able
10 to balance it on the easel.
11 Q. Now, this is an aerial image, dated 17 July, of the Branjevo
12 farm. It's the submission of the Prosecution that those are hundreds and
13 hundreds of Muslim victims on the ground there. Are you familiar with the
14 area around Branjevo?
15 A. No. I was never in Branjevo.
16 Q. Is the area of Pilica in the area of the Zvornik Brigade
18 A. In the area of responsibility of the Zvornik Brigade, yes.
19 Q. Now, you, in your direct testimony, made it very clear that you
20 did not feel Colonel Blagojevic took any part in any of the executions
21 that occurred in the Bratunac Brigade area of responsibility; is that
23 A. Yes, correct.
24 Q. And you also made very clear that you didn't feel General or,
25 excuse me, Colonel Pandurevic was involved in any of the crimes in his
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 area of responsibility; is that correct?
2 A. Yes, correct.
3 MR. McCLOSKEY: Now, if we could go to Exhibit 543A, and if you
4 could put it on this page, July 13th.
5 Q. Now, General, this is a vehicle log from the Zvornik Brigade,
6 indicating that the military police vehicle went to -- on July 13th, went
7 to Orahovac, to Zvornik, to Orahovac, to Standard, to Bratunac.
8 Can you tell us, prior to moving thousands of prisoners up to the
9 Zvornik Brigade area of responsibility, what preparations the Zvornik
10 Brigade would have had to conduct to prepare to accept those prisoners for
11 storage at Orahovac?
12 A. I am not aware of any preparations, nor that they actually engaged
13 in any preparations.
14 Q. All right. Well, before hundreds and hundreds of people were
15 delivered to your area, if you were told that, would it be fair to say one
16 would have to find an area to put them?
17 A. I don't know who found the areas, who selected them. I cannot say
18 that it was the commanding officers in the Zvornik Brigade or somebody
19 else who was in control of all that, because it could be clearly seen from
20 the reports or one of the reports of the Zvornik Brigade Commander when he
21 asked the question who accommodated so many refugees in certain areas in
22 his area of responsibility.
23 Q. But somebody would have had to find a place to put them before
24 they put them there, wouldn't they?
25 A. I don't know that. There's nothing I can say about that. And
1 believe me, quite sincerely, if I knew, I would tell you, as I have told
2 you everything else.
3 Q. General, I'm not asking you who did it. I'm just asking you the
4 simple question whether or not someone would have had to find a place to
5 put people if they were given an order to accept people in their area.
6 A. Probably the person who was in charge of it all. He found the
7 places where they would be put up.
8 Q. And when moving hundreds of people by bus or by truck throughout
9 this particular area, from Bratunac up to the Zvornik Brigade area,
10 someone would have had to make sure the routes were secure; is that not
12 A. At the time, I was not there, so I don't know who took care about
13 all the measures that needed to be taken for those people to be
14 transferred from Bratunac to those locations.
15 Q. General, I'm not asking you to tell me who. I'm just asking you,
16 in a common military sense, that when you move large numbers of people
17 through a potential military zone, it's standard practice to secure those
18 routes, to make sure there's no mines, no enemy, no obstructions, so those
19 people can be moved freely to where they need to go, especially with
20 prisoners. Isn't that true?
21 A. The Drina Corps was never in such a situation as to have such a
22 large number of people being transported through its area of
23 responsibility. The area from Bratunac via Zvornik to those locations
24 could not have had any mines. That is out of the question, because these
25 were routes that were regularly used. Except for the very beginning of
1 the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina, these routes were regularly being used.
2 Q. How would the people directing the movement of the prisoners know
3 which route to take unless someone had checked out a route and given them
5 A. Let me repeat what I have already said. The person who was in
6 charge of it all.
7 Q. And once the location was identified to store prisoners and once
8 the prisoners arrived at that location, they would need to be guarded by
9 someone, wouldn't they?
10 A. They should be placed under guard.
11 Q. And if those prisoners were to be blindfolded, somebody would have
12 to make a lot of blindfolds in preparation for those blindfoldings?
13 A. I don't know about that.
14 Q. And if those --
15 A. But I accept what the witnesses said during the proceedings, that
16 there were such instances.
17 Q. And if those persons were to be transported a short distance by
18 vehicle to an execution site, transportation assets would have to be
19 marshalled to transport those victims to the execution sites; is that not
21 A. Yes, that is correct.
22 Q. And during the transportation of the victims to the execution
23 sites, security would need to be present to guard the convoy or to guard
24 the vehicles full of prisoners; is that not correct?
25 A. Probably somebody took care of that, whoever was in charge of it
2 Q. And if those prisoners were to be executed, hundreds and hundreds
3 of prisoners were to be executed in a one day's time, the troops necessary
4 to pull the triggers to execute the victims would also have to be
5 marshalled and transported to the execution fields; correct?
6 A. Yes. Yes.
7 Q. And if those troops were to stay all day at the execution fields,
8 killing people, they would need ammunition; correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. They would need water; correct?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. They would need food; correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And if we multiply this by, first, Orahovac on the 13th; Petkovci
15 on the late night hours of the 13th and 14th; Kozluk on the 15th; Branjevo
16 farm on the 16th; Pilica Cultural Centre on the afternoon/evening of the
17 16th, this is a rather large logistical operation to take some 4.000
18 people and murder them like this, is it not?
19 A. Somebody must have taken care of it and provided probably logistic
20 support, the person who was in control of the whole thing.
21 Q. Orahovac, Petkovci, Kozluk, Branjevo farm, Pilica were all in the
22 Zvornik Brigade area of responsibility; is that correct?
23 A. Yes. You already said that, and I confirmed it.
24 Q. If we can turn the page so we can see July 14, 15, 16, 17, of the
25 travels of this military police vehicle. And I would note that on the
1 14th it shows this vehicle with a military policeman in it going from
2 Orahovac, a known execution site, under the submission of the Prosecution;
3 Rocevic, a suspected storage site, a school, under the submission of the
4 Prosecution; back to Orahovac-Zvornik-standard, which is the headquarters
5 of the Zvornik Brigade, and then local. On the 15th the same vehicle goes
6 to Rocevic-local-standard-Divic-Zvornik. And on the 15th it goes to
7 Kozluk, it goes to Rocevic. And on the 16th it goes to Kula, Pilica,
8 Kozluk, Rocevic, and Pilica. And on the 17th it goes to Kravica, all the
9 way down to the Zvornik -- or excuse me -- the Bratunac Brigade area of
11 Now, this is a military police vehicle travelling to these
12 locations. Some are smaller or bigger than others. It's the submission
13 of the Prosecution that this vehicle was going to these sites to
14 facilitate the mass murders and that this is not a coincidence. Do you
15 have any comment on this allegation by the Prosecution?
16 A. I cannot claim 100 per cent that this vehicle of the military
17 police went there for the reasons you are mentioning. I also cannot claim
18 that it did not. All this is in the area of responsibility of the Zvornik
19 Brigade, where a battle was ongoing at the time against the forces of the
20 28th Division.
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, General. I believe it's break time.
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. We're going to have a
23 break now. I think 10 minutes will be sufficient, because after that we
24 have a big break until the next day, until tomorrow. So 10 minutes for
1 --- Recess taken at 2.20 p.m.
2 --- On resuming at 2.30 p.m.
3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. McCloskey, please continue.
4 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
5 Q. General Krstic, on the 13th and 14th of July, the military police
6 vehicle and the officer or officers that are in it were under the command
7 of the Commander of the Zvornik Brigade, Vinko Pandurevic; is that
9 A. I cannot say whether they were under the Command of the Zvornik
10 Brigade Commander.
11 Q. Well, under the traditional chain of command and control, they
12 should have been unless something radical had happened; is that right?
13 A. That vehicle may have belonged to the Military Police Battalion,
14 that is, the Military Police Battalion of the Main Staff, but it could
15 have also belonged to the Zvornik Brigade.
16 Q. Well, for this question, I want you to assume that it belonged to
17 the Zvornik Brigade, consistent with Mr. Butler's testimony. So if it
18 belonged to the Zvornik Brigade and the traditional normal chain of
19 command was working, they would have come under overall the command of
20 their Commander, Vinko Pandurevic?
21 A. The right to use a motor vehicle, when it comes to the police, is
22 vested within the Security Organs, without their having to consult the
23 brigade commander. So if we assume -- that would be the case if we assume
24 that the vehicle belonged to the Zvornik Brigade.
25 Q. We've already established that, at the corps level, the assistant
1 command for security is under the command of the Corps Commander. The
2 head of security for the brigade is under the command of the Brigade
3 Commander. Yes or no.
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Visnjic.
5 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, it would perhaps be
6 easier for the witness to be given the document in B/C/S. He hasn't
7 received it yet, and it might help him with his answers.
8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. McCloskey, do you agree?
9 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Mr. President. I'm sorry, I wasn't --
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well, then, thank you.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY:
12 Q. The question was regarding the security, the structure of the
13 security in the brigades. The security officer for the Zvornik Brigade --
14 I believe it's Drago Nikolic -- did he come under the command of the
15 Zvornik Brigade Commander?
16 A. There is a provision of the rules of the Security Services, among
17 others, which speaks about the fact that the Security Organs can carry out
18 the tasks which need not be known to their superior officer. As regards
19 this particular vehicle work log, I must say that I see it here for the
20 first time, and I have seen it during the proceedings already, but it is
21 very difficult for me to comment on something in which I took no part and
22 which I saw here for the first time.
23 Q. Do you have any indication that these military police officers are
24 under a separate chain of command, under the Security Organ and not under
25 the command of the Zvornik Brigade?
1 A. Yes. It is possible that the vehicle belonged to some other unit
2 but that the document still bears the stamp of the Zvornik Brigade. It is
3 very difficult, however, I must say once again, to comment on a document
4 in whose drafting I didn't take any part and which I see here for the
5 first time, and it is difficult to give comments on the basis of
6 assumptions. That the Security Organs had the right to use vehicles
7 without the knowledge of the Brigade Commander is provided for in their
8 book of regulations.
9 Q. Isn't that generally in a situation where the Brigade Commander is
10 under some sort of suspicion or an investigation, a lot like an internal
11 affairs investigation, not in the normal workings of the military?
12 A. This doesn't refer only to the commander when he is under some
13 kind of investigation; it also concerns other assignments.
14 Q. All right. Let me go back.
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: And to try to save some time, Your Honour, I will
16 ask certain pieces of evidence without referring to each one of them in
17 detail and see if we can do it that way.
18 Q. General Krstic, do you recall, during Mr. Butler's testimony, an
19 exhibit which was the Zvornik Brigade MP roster for attendance, that
20 showed on July 14th that the ten members of the Zvornik military police
21 were assigned at first to Orahovac, and then that "O" for Orahovac on the
22 14th was erased and something else was put in its place? Do you remember
23 that document?
24 A. I think I should have the document. I think it would be
25 necessary --
1 Q. I'm just asking you -- [Previous translation continues]
2 A. -- the exhibit in question. I can perhaps remember it but not
3 sufficiently, I mean, in order to comment on it.
4 Q. Do you challenge the supposition of the Prosecution that ten
5 members of the Zvornik Brigade military police were at Orahovac on
6 July 14th?
7 A. I cannot either challenge or agree with that allegation. I should
8 like to see the exhibit once again in order to refresh my memory of the
9 testimony of Mr. Butler.
10 Q. Fair enough. It is also the submission of the Prosecution that
11 the Zvornik Brigade Engineering Company was present during the executions
12 at Orahovac and participated in the burials of the victims, in fact, shone
13 its lights on the victims during the execution. Do you have any reason to
14 contest that allegation?
15 A. Same as for the previous thing that we discussed. I cannot either
16 contest or confirm that allegation. I said that I did not take part in
17 the drafting of such documents, and I saw them here for the first time.
18 Q. All right. One more try on one other issue that is not related
19 specifically to documents. The testimony of one of the Orahovac
20 survivors --
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: And I will come up with his letter soon, Your
22 Honour. I'm sorry. It was a protected witness.
23 Q. -- testified that he recognised the voice of Gojko Simic, a person
24 he had worked many years with at a company in Belgrade; and that he heard
25 the other people, the other Serb soldiers, referring to him as "Gojko";
1 and that he was sure that it was Gojko Simic's voice; and that Mr. Butler
2 testified that, "We found in the death records of the Zvornik Brigade one
3 Gojko Simic," the sergeant in charge of the -- I believe it was the Heavy
4 Weapons Company of the Zvornik Brigade.
5 It is the submission of the Prosecution that Gojko Simic and
6 others of the 4th Battalion of the Zvornik Brigade were the executioners
7 at the field of Orahovac on July 14th. Do you challenge that evidence of
8 the Prosecution that came through that witness, Witness L?
9 A. I have never seen that Simic. I didn't know the man. And I can
10 only give you the same response as the one that I gave in response to your
11 question about the military police. I cannot either contest or confirm
12 what you're saying, in this case that the engineers of the Zvornik Brigade
13 were used. I didn't have any prior knowledge about that, that is, about
14 the use of the military police of the Zvornik Brigade or the use of the
15 engineers of the Zvornik Brigade.
16 Q. All right. Let me try, if I can, to give you a hypothetical.
17 MR. McCLOSKEY: Your Honour, I'm not sure if hypotheticals are
18 valid in this institution, but if there are any problems, please let me
19 know. This is something --
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Put the question. We'll see.
21 MR. McCLOSKEY:
22 Q. General Krstic, the hypothetical I wish to ask you is: Assuming
23 for a fact that ten members of the Zvornik Brigade Military Police were
24 guarding people at Orahovac the day they were killed, on July 14th;
25 assuming for a fact that it was a small unit from the 4th Battalion of the
1 Zvornik Brigade that were actually pulling the triggers, and that it was
2 members of the -- at least one member of the Zvornik Brigade Engineering
3 Unit operating Zvornik Brigade Engineering equipment during the executions
4 at Orahovac. Assuming that all to be true, would the Zvornik Brigade
5 command have been involved in the decisions to use those assets?
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Visnjic, do you have an
7 objection to make?
8 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, the objection
9 concerns the question. I believe that the same kind of questions were
10 objected to by the Prosecution before, so I'm simply following their
12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Let me just tell you that the
13 Prosecutor is allowed to test the credibility of the witness, so we will
14 overrule your objection and ask General Krstic to answer the question,
16 A. Those are assumptions, and again, it is very difficult to comment
17 on the assumptions, that is, the assumption that they were really members
18 of the Zvornik Brigade. However, on the basis of everything that I have
19 so far spoken about, the right to use units of the military police is also
20 vested with the Security Service, and I spoke about that in the interview
21 that I gave on a previous occasion. I cannot rule out the possibility
22 that there was someone else -- and you know exactly who I have in
23 mind -- that someone belonging to the Security Service was not involved in
24 this execution of the task.
25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I'm sorry to interrupt you,
1 General Krstic. Could you please answer the question in a direct manner.
2 You told us that Pandurevic could not have done that. You told us that
3 before. Now the Prosecutor is assuming for a fact that those events
4 indeed happened. Now, the question is whether Pandurevic did or had to do
5 or not something at the level of the brigade.
6 A. Yes, if he learned about it later on, that is, that his soldiers
7 or his units had been used by someone else for this purpose. But I abide
8 by what I have already said concerning Colonel Pandurevic, the commander
9 of the Zvornik Brigade.
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. But again, if this is
11 true, if it is true that it really happened, so if we assume that it
12 happened, Colonel Pandurevic would have had to know and coordinate that,
13 or not?
14 A. At the time he didn't know, and I believe he didn't because he was
15 preoccupied with the front and the actions from the direction of Tuzla,
16 and he was engaged against the 28th Division, so he couldn't undertake any
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Please continue, Mr. McCloskey.
19 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes.
20 Q. General, Mr. Butler testified that Colonel Pandurevic did not get
21 back to the Zvornik Brigade until the afternoon of the 15th of July. So
22 who would have been in charge of the Zvornik Brigade in the absence of the
24 I understand that, by definition, the commander is always
25 responsible and is always in command, but who is the person on the ground
1 that is in charge, running the show, in the absence of the commander
3 A. It is the brigade chief of staff.
4 Q. In this case, that would be Dragan -- Major Dragan Obrenovic.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Now, I understand your answer regarding the military police and
7 that perhaps the security came in and took over them. That still leaves
8 the 4th Battalion, under my hypothetical, the infantry soldiers of the 4th
9 battalion of the Zvornik Brigade. Who would have responsibility over
11 A. From the assumption and the testimony of witnesses, it is very
12 difficult to comment on assumptions. I am still not quite sure that they
13 were soldiers from the 4th Battalion. If they were, then the person
14 responsible would be the chief of staff, on condition that this was done
15 with his knowledge and approval.
16 Q. And how about the soldiers or soldier in the engineering -- is
17 your leg bothering you, General? I just noticed you've just held it.
18 A. When I testified earlier, I wasn't thinking only of the members of
19 the security when I said that I do not exclude the possibility that other
20 individuals may have been involved and engaged by order of somebody from
21 the Superior Command, and I have in mind, in the first place, the Security
23 Q. Are you saying it's possible that the Security Service could come
24 in and just take a unit of the infantry, take a unit of the engineering,
25 assets of the Zvornik Brigade without the authority or involvement of the
1 Zvornik Brigade command structure?
2 A. I understood you to mean the engineers.
3 Q. Let's talk about the engineers, yes. Can they come in and just
4 take the engineers and the engineering assets?
5 A. They can, with the knowledge of the commander of the unit, who at
6 the time -- whoever it was at the time, but they may also do it without
7 his knowledge, without him knowing about it.
8 Q. Do you have any indication that that happened?
9 A. Whether Lieutenant Colonel Dragan Obrenovic knew about this or
10 not -- probably he will come and tell us if he comes here to testify, and
11 I really would like him to come and inform us about the truth, who was his
12 commander, whether he knew about all this, or whether he did this on his
13 own initiative and so on.
14 Q. All right. Let me go to another hypothetical and another
15 execution site, Petkovci. I want you to assume that a vehicle belonging
16 to the 6th Battalion of the Zvornik Brigade, which is in the Petkovci area
17 of responsibility, the 6th Battalion, was used to make several trips back
18 and forth to the village of Petkovci, which is the same village the
19 prisoners were stored in, to the dam at Petkovci on the 15th, the day or
20 evening that hundreds and hundreds of people were murdered. If the
21 6th Battalion vehicle was involved in the transportation of those
22 prisoners, could that be used, that vehicle and those soldiers belonging
23 to the 6th Battalion, could that be used without the authority of the
24 command of the Zvornik Brigade, be it the 6th Battalion command staff or
25 the Zvornik Brigade command staff?
1 A. You're talking about this on the basis of witness testimony in the
2 course of this trial. I didn't understand or not quite completely whether
3 that vehicle was used to transport prisoners or for some other purposes
4 along the route that you mentioned. So could I please see the exhibit
5 that refers to this, because that battalion doesn't have a zone. It has
6 its own region of defence, which is delineated with three points, to the
7 right, to the left, and to the rear. Whether Petkovci was in the region
8 of that battalion, I don't know. I don't now know where the command post
9 was of that battalion nor did I know that earlier. I just knew where the
10 command post for the brigade was.
11 Q. General, this is a hypothetical where I'm asking you to assume
12 certain facts. It's up to the trier of fact to decide whether these facts
13 have been proven at all, but I do have the right to ask you these
15 However, if you could step briefly to the map, the Serb map, I
16 think that will answer your question about the location.
17 MR. McCLOSKEY: If we could -- it's Exhibit number 2. It's the
18 Krivaja map. It's the paper map that's just hanging. It's hanging
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. McCloskey, I apologise for
21 interrupting, but I don't think that these are hypothetical questions to
22 clear up a little bit the question of the Defence, because frequently
23 we're mixing questions with answers. Very often, General Krstic, when you
24 asked him what happened, he would answer something must have happened. We
25 are no longer in the area of suppositions, at least that is my
1 understanding, because General Krstic is here as the head of the Drina
2 Corps, being the person who knows the rules, the rules of action, how
3 things should occur. So, therefore, hypotheses are not always hypotheses;
4 they are simply a reference to how things should be done according to the
6 So put your question in that context. There's always a rule that
7 is invoked. So please continue with your questions.
8 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President. I've just asked the
9 General to step to the map and it's very late, so perhaps this would be a
10 good time to break.
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, perhaps. Perhaps it's
12 better. Otherwise, we overstep the time limit. So we're going to stop
13 there for today, and we will resume tomorrow at 9.20. I wish you a good
14 afternoon. Until tomorrow.
15 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
16 at 3.00 p.m., to be reconvened on Friday,
17 the 27th day of October, 2000 at 9.20 a.m.