1 Friday, 8 September 2000
2 [Closed session]
3 --- Upon commencing at 9.33 a.m.
13 pages 4998-5067 redacted – closed session
4 [Open session]
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Usher, you can bring in the
6 witness, but we should perhaps first have the blinds pulled up.
7 I should like to thank you, the interpreters, for having helped me
8 with the text. We managed to clarify the issue together, and thank you
9 very much.
10 As far as I can see, Mr. Waidyaratne is going to examine the
11 witness. Do we have a summary of the testimony?
12 MR. WAIDYARATNE: Yes, Your Honour. I have handed over the
13 summary to the Defence.
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] But I don't think that the
15 Judges have it.
16 MR. WAIDYARATNE: It could be provided.
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] And I think that the principle
18 of equality should also be guaranteed for the Judges as well.
19 MR. WAIDYARATNE: Yes, Your Honour.
20 [The witness entered court]
21 WITNESS: Nedzija Fazlic
22 [Witness answered through interpreter]
23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Keegan.
24 MR. KEEGAN: I'm a little hesitant after yesterday's events, but I
25 would once again raise the question. I believe this time that the witness
1 would be willing to continue, that the issue of a possible extended day to
2 finish this witness today, since we are coming up on a weekend, so that we
3 could finish. We believe the direct will be completed before the end of
4 the normal day, and so, therefore, it would only be the cross-examination
5 that would need to go beyond, if it's at all possible.
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, but there we seem to have a
7 problem. Things are a little complicated. I do not dare ask anybody, on
8 a Friday afternoon, to continue work, and that's the first point.
9 Secondly, people have different engagements. The Judges have their own
10 agenda and engagements. So that is not possible unless, unless we
11 restrict -- that is to say, the Judges, the Chamber, can be complete until
12 2.30. However, two Judges could go on until 3.00. I, myself, can stay
13 until midnight if need be, as far as I'm concerned, but I think that
14 this -- that the situation is as it stands. We can resort to Rule 15, but
15 only for half an hour, and I don't think it would really be convenient or
17 We do understand. We fully understand the position. However, I
18 think we're going to have to -- that is to say, unless we try and do our
19 best to get through the examination-in-chief and cross-examination by
20 2.30. That would be wonderful. So let's try. Let's all try.
21 Witness, can you hear me?
22 THE WITNESS: Yes.
23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You're now going to read the
24 solemn declaration handed to you by the usher. Please go ahead.
25 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
1 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may be seated, madam.
3 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You are now going to be
5 answering questions put to you by Mr. Waidyaratne, who is the man standing
6 up to your right.
7 Is the witness going to testify in public, with the use of a
8 pseudonym? Is that right?
9 So Witness, would you please take a look at the piece of paper
10 that the usher is going to show you, and tell us whether your name is on
11 that piece of paper. I apologise, one moment, please.
12 MR. WAIDYARATNE: Your Honour, I'm sorry to have interrupted you.
13 The witness will testify under her name, not under a pseudonym.
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Okay. So that was a little
15 confusion on my part, but the OTP led me to conclude that it would be
16 Witness O. So that was a slight confusion on my part. Never mind. Go
17 ahead, Mr. Waidyaratne, your witness.
18 MR. WAIDYARATNE: Thank you, Your Honour. Thank you.
19 Examined by Mr. Waidyaratne:
20 Q. Witness, could you kindly state your name.
21 THE INTERPRETER: I'm sorry, could the witness repeat her name,
23 A. Nedzija Fazlic.
24 MR. WAIDYARATNE:
25 Q. Could you kindly tell the Court your date of birth and place of
2 A. I was born on the 24th of September, 1956, in Prijedor.
3 Q. What is your ethnicity?
4 A. My ethnicity is Muslim.
5 Q. Where were you residing until July 1992?
6 A. Until July 1992, I lived in Prijedor, at Pecani. The street was
7 Ratko Bujevic Coca, number G1, flat number 68.
8 Q. Are you married?
9 A. Yes, I am married, and my husband's name is Fehim Fazlic.
10 Q. Do you have children by that marriage?
11 A. Yes. I have two children. They are 14 and 19 years of age.
12 Q. Were you employed in 1992?
13 A. Yes, I was. I worked in the SUP.
14 Q. When did you start work?
15 A. I started work in 1976, working in the court.
16 Q. Then when did you start working in the SUP?
17 A. In 1981, I started working in the intermunicipal SUP. Afterwards,
18 I moved to the traffic police department of Prijedor for traffic security,
19 which belonged to the security centre of Banja Luka.
20 Q. Who was the head of the department or section that you worked?
21 A. The traffic police? His name was Fikret Kadirevic.
22 Q. Did you work for any other person thereafter or was there any
23 other head that you worked for?
24 A. Yes. I also worked for the chief of SUP, that is to say, of the
25 secretariat, and his name was Hasan Talundzic, because his secretary was
1 on sick leave. So I replaced her.
2 Q. When did you start work for Hasan Talundzic?
3 A. I started working for Hasan Talundzic -- that is to say, I don't
4 remember the exact date. Nevenka Sikman and I would take turns working
5 for him, but this was after the SDA party had come into power.
6 Q. What was your work related to? What were the functions that you
7 performed under Fikret Kadirevic and thereafter under Hasan Talundzic?
8 A. Well, I did administration work in the police department, and I
9 would see to the paper work when requests came in and everything else,
10 anything that had to be typed out and so on. So it was administrative
11 work mostly.
12 Q. During this time, did you come into contact with the police
13 personnel or police officers from other areas?
14 A. Yes. I was in contact with everybody working in the SUP
15 building. I would often go across the hallway to the other police --
16 traffic police department in Prijedor. I would meet my colleagues there.
17 So, yes.
18 Q. When did you stop work?
19 A. I stopped work the day when they took me to the camp, on the 23rd
20 of July, 1992.
21 Q. Witness, did you sign a loyalty oath, loyalty to the Serbs?
22 A. Yes, I did sign a loyalty oath saying that I would work and
23 respect the laws that they enacted.
24 Q. When was this, and in front of whom did you sign this oath?
25 A. I don't remember the exact date when I signed the loyalty oath,
1 but it was after the takeover of power by the SDS; that is to say, when
2 they took over the SUP building. I went to work, and Mira the secretary
3 was present, and she told me that we should all go on holiday and think
4 about whether we were going to sign the loyalty oath or not. Seven days
5 later, I went to the SUP and signed this loyalty oath paper and continued
6 to work in the SUP.
7 Q. In front of whom did you sign this oath?
8 A. I signed the loyalty oath in the office of the chief of SUP,
9 Mr. Simo Drljaca, in the presence of Topic.
10 Q. Was Simo present that day?
11 A. Yes, Simo Drljaca was in the office when I was handed the loyalty
12 oath -- or rather, the piece of paper that I had to sign to pledge my
14 Q. Why did you sign this oath?
15 A. Well, first of all, I signed the piece of paper so that I could
16 continue working and keep my family. And I wasn't much bothered about who
17 my superiors were because I thought that everything would continue just as
18 it had done up until that time.
19 Q. Did anyone from your own ethnicity or from any of the Muslims
20 force you not to take this oath or ask you not to take this oath?
21 A. No, nobody forced me not to sign it, but I just thought about it.
22 We thought about it, whether I should, whether I shouldn't, and then I,
23 myself, decided to sign the loyalty oath.
24 Q. Especially after the taking of the power by the Serbs and also
25 when this oath was taken, could you explain as to what prevailed within
1 the employees of the police station or the SUP?
2 A. In the SUP, people of Serb ethnicity were prevalent. They worked
3 in their offices, and I ended up by working in the canteen and handing out
4 meals to people I didn't know who came to the SUP. That's where I ended
6 Q. So you were not working in the office as earlier, but you were put
7 to the canteen to attend to other matters in the canteen?
8 A. Yes, that's right. I was sitting in the office without having
9 anything to do, whereas my colleague Nevenka Sikman had so much work to do
10 she couldn't even have a break, but -- so they sent me to wash dishes,
11 distribute meals to people who worked in the SUP building.
12 Q. During this time, who were the people who were present in the
13 places that you were working?
14 A. They were Serbs. They were workers who had worked there before
15 with us, with me. Fellow employees.
16 Q. Were there any other non-Serbs working with you?
17 A. No, I was alone. And there was another colleague of mine, her
18 name was Hasna Ceric. She had also signed the loyalty oath, and she
19 worked in the passport department issuing passports on the ground floor.
20 The two of us didn't have any contact, though. We didn't meet in the
22 Q. With regard to the people whom you worked with, people like the
23 chief, Fikret Kadirevic, and Hasan Talundzic, do you know what happened to
24 them after the takeover?
25 A. Yes. I no longer saw them. I heard from Radenko Stakic that the
1 chief had been arrested, that he had been taken to prison; whereas
2 Talundzic, I didn't see him either, but I heard later on, on the radio
3 that he had disappeared, that they were looking for him.
4 Q. Did you hear about an attack on Prijedor during this time?
5 A. Yes. I heard that there had allegedly been an attack on
6 Prijedor. I heard that when I came to work in the morning. And when I
7 went into my office, Nevenka Sikman was there. And Radenko Stakic was
8 there, and he told me that there had been an attack of some kind. But
9 Mira came and then told me that I ought to go on leave, to have a bit of a
10 rest, a bit of a holiday, and to think about what I was going to do in the
12 Q. What happened thereafter? Did you know as to what happened the
13 next day?
14 A. When the attack on Prijedor took place, the following day, that is
15 to say, two days I wasn't able to leave my apartment because the Muslims
16 were not allowed to leave their homes. And it was only on the second day
17 that I managed to go down to the ground floor of our building, and I saw a
18 police car. And my friend, Vladimir Sobot, who worked in my police
19 station came by, and he asked me about my family because he knew that I
20 lived close by. And I said that I didn't know where my family were, and
21 he said he could help me and take me to the technical centre school where
22 all the locals from the old part of town had been put up.
23 I went off with him, but he said that I wasn't safe walking around
24 with him so that he would take me home, and that they had probably been
25 taken to the Trnopolje camp. So I returned to in front of my building and
1 then went towards my mother's house on foot. I didn't find anybody there;
2 the house had been burnt. So that I heard some voices and came upon my
3 brother who said that he had put my -- our mother up in a neighbour's
5 I went and got my mother back, brought her back to my apartment,
6 went to SUP on the third day, and then heard Radenko say that there had
7 been an attack on Prijedor, and I saw that the windows had been shattered.
8 Some of our windows in the building had been shattered as well.
9 Is that what you wanted to hear? Is that enough?
10 Q. Witness, thank you.
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Well, I think that we should
12 focus on the essential points --
13 MR. WAIDYARATNE: I'm sorry.
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] -- because even if we do our
15 best, we're not going to complete the examination of this witness if we
16 let the witness recount things on her own. So it's up to you to guide the
18 MR. WAIDYARATNE: Yes, Your Honour. I didn't want to interrupt
19 the witness.
20 Q. During this time, was your husband with you?
21 A. Yes, he was. My husband was with us in the apartment.
22 Q. Was he arrested?
23 A. Yes. On the 2nd of July, a policeman, Strika, came by with a
24 reserve policeman, and he said that he was on a list and was to be taken
25 to the Omarska camp. He was taken to SUP, and Strika told me on that
1 occasion that my husband -- as I was an employee of SUP, perhaps I could
2 help my husband and that I should go and see if I could help him. And I
3 went off, of course.
4 Q. Do you know where your husband was taken subsequently, or where he
5 was held?
6 A. Yes. I went to the SUP. He hadn't arrived yet. The van which
7 came to collect my husband went around Prijedor to collect other people as
8 well, and some 60 minutes later, after I had arrived in the SUP building,
9 I saw him being brought into the SUP. And I asked Dusan Jankovic to help
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Waidyaratne, I apologise for
12 interrupting again, but I see that the transcript did not translate what I
13 said. I don't mind you allowing the witness to continue, but I think that
14 the Prosecutor should always guide matters so that they focus on the
16 The fact that we're leaving the witness speak freely on her
17 personal facts and how she was arrested, that is a good way of going
18 speedily ahead, too. So we should go ahead, proceed with speed, but focus
19 on the essential.
20 So I don't mind the fact that you allowed the witness to express
21 herself; that is fine. But the Prosecutor should move from personal data
22 and the time of her arrest to Omarska. That is where we want to get to,
23 but I leave that up to you.
24 MR. WAIDYARATNE: I'll try my best, Your Honour. You will see
25 that it was a direct question that I asked with regard to the husband and
1 where he was held last which could have been answered with one. I'm
2 sorry. I will try my best, and I will do.
3 Q. Witness, my question was, did you know that your husband was
4 detained in Omarska?
5 A. Yes, I did. My husband was taken to Omarska.
6 Q. Answer my question with -- when I ask you a specific question with
7 "yes" or "no," please. If you need to make -- give an explanation, you
8 could do thereafter. Thank you.
9 A. Yes, my husband was in Omarska.
10 Q. Thank you. Were you able to send any parcels or packages to him?
11 A. Yes, I was able to.
12 Q. Did you send any food to him, and through whom?
13 A. Yes, I did. I sent food through a colleague of mine, Nada
15 Q. Were you able to speak to Nada, and did she ever tell you about
16 the situation in the camp or as to the people who were held there?
17 A. Yes. I talked to Nada, and Nada said that they were having a nice
18 time there; but then she told me that I should get some clothing to my
19 husband. And then the food that she took was reduced to one -- to a
21 Q. Now, this Nada you mentioned, who was she, and what ethnicity did
22 she belong to?
23 A. Nada was a Serb, and she worked as a typist in the crime
24 department of the SUP in Prijedor. She took down the minutes --
25 Q. Did she --
1 A. -- in Omarska in the camp there.
2 Q. Did she say anything about the people who were in authority in the
3 camp, to you?
4 A. Yes. On one occasion she told me that they had some groups, and
5 that my Fehim was in the third group. And she said that she wasn't taking
6 the parcels herself to my husband but that Krkan was helping her, that he
7 was giving my husband the parcels that I had sent to him through her.
8 Q. Did she tell you as to who was in authority in the camp?
9 A. She just told me that as she couldn't reach the prisoners, that
10 the shift leader Krkan, that she had given the shift leader Krkan the food
11 to take to my husband.
12 Q. Thank you. Nedzija, you were arrested subsequently?
13 A. Yes, I was arrested on the 23rd of July, 1992.
14 Q. Who came and informed you, and who spoke to you with regard to
15 your arrest?
16 A. Bato Kovacevic talked to me. He waited for me in front of my
17 building and said he had an arrest warrant to take me to Omarska. As he
18 knew me, we worked in the same building, he said, "Nedzija, I don't want
19 them to arrest you, so you come up and report there yourself," which is
20 what I, in fact, did do.
21 Q. Did you go to the police station or the SUP?
22 A. First of all, I went to my apartment and left the things that I
23 had bought. I took my children and went off with my children because I
24 thought the chief, Simo, would not take me to the camp when he saw me with
25 my two children, that he would have pity on me. But when I got there, I
1 found that the situation was quite different.
2 Q. Were you able to speak to Simo?
3 A. When I arrived at the SUP, I went into the office of Mira Topic
4 first of all. She was Simo Drljaca's secretary. And then they came to
5 fetch me and said that I should go to the camp. And she laughed, she
6 always had this sort of artificial smile, and said, "Nedzija, it's not
7 anything terrible. You'll just make a statement and come back. And Simo
8 Drljaca is busy. You can't go into his office." But I didn't listen to
9 her. I went into Simo Drljaca's office myself, and he was sitting at his
10 table, and I addressed him by saying, "Chief, please don't take me to the
11 camp. Allow me to remain in house arrest. I have small children and a
12 sick mother at home." And he said, "It's wartime," he could do nothing
13 about it, and that I had to go to the camp.
14 I cried and I entreated him, pleaded with him, but he got up from
15 the table and said he was in a hurry, off somewhere. I went down the
16 corridor with him. And my husband's brother turned up, and he was good
17 friends with Simo Drljaca, they knew each other, and he said, "Simo, don't
18 take my sister-in-law off. Take me, I'm a man. You took off my brother.
19 Take me too." And he said that he couldn't do anything, and he just left
20 into the -- went into the courtyard.
21 So that then I went home, and Ranko Gvozden, he was on the service
22 on duty there, he said that I should take my children home and return. I
23 went home, took up my belongings, some things that I needed, and returned
24 to the SUP. And he said that I should sit down on the bench and wait.
25 Q. Were you subsequently taken to any -- taken away from the SUP?
1 A. Yes. I sat there for perhaps --
2 Q. Who were the others who were taken with you, and how did they take
4 A. When they called me to come out into the courtyard, I went into
5 the car. Sead Pasic, the deputy, Fikret Kadirevic, and Alija Jakupovic
6 were already in the car. This second one was a neighbour whom I knew from
7 before, and then a woman and two men were brought along, and later on I
8 heard that that was the woman who worked in the Crvena Ruza or Red Roses.
9 Her name was Sabiha, I think. Whether she was with her brother or
10 husband, I don't know, but we left the SUP courtyard after that.
11 Q. Did you know the ethnicity of these people who were with you
13 A. Yes. They were all Muslims like me, all of them in the car with
14 me, in the van with me.
15 Q. This van, did it go to any -- stop on the way?
16 A. Yes. We went on for a short time and then the van stopped. I
17 heard a noise.
18 Q. And where did it stop?
19 A. The van stopped in front of the Keraterm camp.
20 Q. Did anybody get into the van or was put into the van then?
21 A. Yes. Yes. Four people got into the van. I knew one of them.
22 Q. Who was that?
23 A. That was the PE teacher, what Mustafa Habibovic and three other
24 people that I didn't know. And they all sat on our laps because there
25 wasn't enough room for everyone.
1 Q. What was their condition? Did you see them? Did you speak to
2 them? Could you explain to the Court as to what you saw and what was the
3 condition of these people who got into the van?
4 A. They were in a pitiful state. They were hungry. They were thin.
5 They had shown -- they showed us their hands, and you could see the signs
6 of cigarettes butts which had been extinguished on the palms of their
8 I had taken some food with me to take to my husband, and I took
9 pity on them, so I gave them some food to eat. They were pitiful to look
10 at. They had been beaten up. They stank because they were in that
11 condition. And you could see that they had suffered a lot, and they
12 showed me the burns on the palms of their hands.
13 Q. Where did you finally arrive at?
14 A. I arrived at the Omarska camp.
15 Q. Were you asked to get down from the van? And what happened to the
16 others who were there with you in the van?
17 A. Yes. The van stopped, the door opened, the men got out first, the
18 ones who had come in last, and they separated the men straight away, made
19 them stand up against the wall of the building and they had to place their
20 hands behind their heads on their necks.
21 I went out then and some of them were standing around. I saw
22 Zeljko Meakic first. He was standing there, and next to him there were
23 two or three others, other policemen whom I didn't know.
24 When they saw me, they began laughing and saying, "Look what this
25 one looks like. We don't know if she's white or black or whatever." I
1 don't know what I looked like when I got out of the van. I must have
2 looked awful.
3 Q. Did Meakic say anything at that time?
4 A. Yes. Meakic said, "Leave her alone. Don't touch her. Take her
5 into the restaurant, through the kitchen door, with the other women," and
6 that's what they did.
7 Q. Where were you taken from there?
8 A. I was taken to the restaurant at that point. I passed through the
9 kitchen and ended up in the restaurant where a group of women was. I saw
10 also the detainees who were eating and the other group who was about to
11 leave the restaurant.
12 MR. WAIDYARATNE: Your Honour, may this be a convenient time to
13 adjourn, to have a break?
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, this is a convenient time
15 indeed. However, during the break, I should like the parties to consider
16 the idea of having two Judges hearing the witness so that we can finish
17 her testimony. As I said, we could go for another half hour, but only two
19 Let me ask the usher to help the witness out of the courtroom.
20 We can perhaps have a shorter break. However, the accused need
21 enough time to leave the courtroom and come back. I think that we must
22 have a half-hour break if the accused are to be taken out of the
23 courtroom. Half hour.
24 --- Recess taken at 1.05 p.m.
25 --- On resuming at 1.36 p.m.
1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Please be seated.
2 Mr. Keegan, do you have any news, any good news, regarding our
3 going until 3.00 this afternoon, bearing in mind the conditions that I
4 have proposed to you?
5 MR. KEEGAN: Just after we recess, Your Honour, I spoke with some
6 members of the Defence. We indicated we think that it would be about
7 another 30, 35 minutes of direct. It was unclear at that time whether
8 Defence knew whether an additional hour would be sufficient to complete
9 cross, so I really have to pass it to my colleagues to determine -- to
10 find out if they've determined how long they need.
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Krstan Simic.
12 MR. K. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, the response of the
13 Defence to your first question, whether we agree to go on with hearing the
14 witness in the presence of two Judges, the answer is positive: Yes, we
15 fully agree with that proposal.
16 As regards the issue of the time that we need, whether we can
17 complete the examination within one hour, we would like to see the end of
18 the examination-in-chief because it is very difficult for us at this point
19 to tell you how long our cross-examination will take.
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well, then, we will have to
21 wait, and we will wait. But let me ask the Prosecutor once again to make
22 an additional effort with that objective in mind. Let us please speed up
24 Mr. Usher, can you bring in the witness.
25 [The witness entered court]
1 Mr. Waidyaratne, you can continue.
2 MR. WAIDYARATNE: Thank you, Your Honour.
3 Q. Witness, before the adjournment you spoke about your arrival in
4 the Omarska camp. After your arrival, did you meet the person whom you
5 referred to as Zeljko Meakic in the evening?
6 A. Yes, I did.
7 Q. Did you speak to him?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And were you, were you able to meet with your husband that
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Where did you meet your husband?
13 A. We met in the corridor above the stairway near the entrance to the
14 first floor.
15 Q. Now, this person whom you said -- referred to as Meakic, who was
17 A. Zeljko Meakic was the camp commander.
18 Q. Did you know him previously?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Is he the one who arranged the meeting with your husband?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. How long were you able to be with your husband?
23 A. For about 15 or 20 minutes.
24 Q. Thereafter, were you called out by anybody else?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Who was it?
2 A. It was Krkan.
3 Q. How did it happen? Where did he come to?
4 A. He came to our room where we were supposed to spend the night, and
5 he said, "Nedzija, come with me to the room, to my office," something to
6 that effect.
7 Q. Did you go to -- did you follow him?
8 A. Yes, I did.
9 Q. Where did you go to, and what did he say to you?
10 A. He went to his office, and at that point he told me, "Nedzija, I'm
11 a shift leader, and I have to take down your personal details."
12 Q. And what else did he say? Did he advise you on anything?
13 A. Yes. On that occasion he told me, "Well, Nedzija, you know there
14 are several women here. Some of them are dangerous. Those who had been
15 arrested with weapons, you should not have contact with them very often,"
16 and he sort of counselled me on how I should behave in the camp.
17 Q. Did you know this person before you came to the camp?
18 A. Yes, I did. I knew him. He used to work at the station in
19 Ljubija, so I would see him when he would come to the main SUP building in
20 Prijedor. Also, I would see him in passing, or during the meetings with
21 my colleague, Mevlida in the office. I used to see him.
22 Q. Did you know his real name?
23 A. I didn't know his real name. I knew him by his nickname Krkan and
24 by his surname Radic.
25 Q. After he advised you, did you go back to your room?
1 A. Yes, I went back to my room after that.
2 Q. How was he dressed when you met him that time?
3 A. He was wearing a uniform. I think that the shirt was blue in
4 colour with short sleeves, and a pair of trousers. I don't remember
6 Q. Was it a police uniform?
7 A. Yes, it was a police uniform.
8 Q. Now, you said that he took you to a room. Where was this room?
9 Which floor?
10 A. The room was right across from our room; that is, the room where
11 we stayed.
12 Q. Was it on the first floor?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Was there anybody present at that time in that room?
15 A. No, only Krkan.
16 Q. Did you, during your stay or your detention in the camp, did you
17 see the normal guards using that room?
18 A. No. I didn't see guards upstairs, I mean, the regular guards.
19 Q. Who were the people who were using that room? Did you see as to
20 who used that room?
21 A. The room was used by Krkan and other regular policemen, together
22 with Zeljko Meakic and another man whose name I cannot remember, but I
23 know he used to work in the SUP, at the crime department and that he was
24 retired. But I really cannot remember his name or his surname.
25 Q. Could you give a description of this person when you saw him in
1 the camp?
2 A. I'm sorry, I don't understand your question. Which person?
3 Q. You said, "Another man whose name I cannot remember, but I know he
4 used to work in the SUP, at the crime department."
5 A. Yes. Yes. I think that I could recognise him because I remember
6 the individual very well.
7 Q. You said that he was retired. Did you know, in the crime
8 department, what his position was?
9 A. Yes. His position was, I think, that of an inspector, and he used
10 to work at the same office as Reuf Travancic. Something to do with fire
11 prevention. I'm not sure. I used to see him in that office, and I think
12 that the two of them were colleagues, worked together.
13 Q. During the day when you were in detention, where did you spend
14 your time?
15 A. We would spend the time in the restaurant.
16 Q. Were you asked to do any work?
17 A. I helped in the kitchen. I helped with the dishes and the
18 distribution of the food from time to time. I would bring bread and
19 things like that. The women who were there had been doing that kind of
20 work for a while, and when I came, I joined them in their work.
21 Q. Where did you sleep?
22 A. We slept in the upstairs area, in the offices upstairs.
23 Q. What do you mean by "the offices"? Did you know as to whether
24 these rooms were used for any other purpose?
25 A. Yes. They were offices of the investigators who would come during
1 the day to interrogate the detainees. And after they would leave, we
2 would clean up the office and sleep there.
3 Q. Did you clean the rooms? You said that you all would clean the
4 rooms. Did you clean the rooms during your detention?
5 A. Yes, I did. I helped my friends there to clean the area, and then
6 we would put down the mattresses so we could sit down or lie down.
7 Q. Did you observe anything when you cleaned these rooms?
8 A. Yes, we did. There would be smashed chairs on the floor, whips.
9 On one particular occasion we found a pair of spectacles that had been
10 broken. Blood would be on the floor. We had to wash the floor in order
11 to remove those stains and not to have to look at it.
12 There were all kinds of metal objects, pieces of wire, kinds of
13 whips with extensions on them, and we would remove those objects and put
14 them on one of the shelves that were in the room.
15 Q. During your detention, did you observe anybody going up to these
16 rooms in the daytime, other than the interrogators that you mentioned?
17 A. Yes. I saw detainees being taken upstairs for interrogation. I
18 would usually see two guards taking one detainee upstairs.
19 Q. Did you see them coming back afterwards?
20 A. Yes, I would see them coming back.
21 Q. Did you see as to what their condition was or as to how they
22 looked had they were returning?
23 A. Yes. Usually they would go for interrogation in a normal way.
24 They would walk in a normal way. However, on the way back, they could
25 hardly walk. Very often they would have to be carried because they were
1 unable to walk because of the beatings they had sustained.
2 Q. Did you see, at any time, a person by the name of Reuf Travancic
3 when you were in the restaurant?
4 A. Yes. On one occasion, I saw Reuf Travancic. He happened to have
5 strayed in the restaurant by mistake. He was in a very bad condition. He
6 had been badly beaten up. His back was all bruised from whippings. He
7 normally wore glasses but he had no glasses on him on that occasion. So
8 he was walking around. He looked terrible. And at the end, a guard took
9 him by his hand and led him out of the room.
10 Q. Before we leave that area, you mentioned about seeing
11 interrogators coming into the Omarska camp and going into these rooms.
12 Who were these interrogators? Did you know anybody by name?
13 A. Yes. They came in the morning around half past seven, in a small
14 bus. They were mainly employees of the SUP in Prijedor, but there were
15 others from the Prijedor municipality, including the court. But I knew
16 the employees of the SUP, such as Obrad Despotovic, Zarko Tejic, Ilija
17 Bijelic, the small Neso and the big Neso. I don't remember their
18 surnames. Lakic was also there. He was from the state security
20 Q. Were you able to -- did you see them or did they speak to you?
21 A. No. They didn't know us who were in the camp. They would pass by
22 smiling. They talked to each other, laughed a little, and they would go
23 upstairs to the offices. They never addressed us.
24 Q. On the day that you were brought to the camp, did you see any
25 other prisoners, other than the prisoners -- the people who came with you,
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 being brought to the camp?
2 A. Yes. I saw people being brought there, and I also saw them being
3 taken away in the direction of the "white house."
4 Q. Did you recognise any of these people who were brought that day?
5 A. No. No, I didn't know them.
6 Q. Or from which area or from which locality they came from?
7 A. My assumption was that they were people from Carakovo because I
8 learned that on the same morning that I arrived in Omarska, the place of
9 Carakovo was ethnically cleansed, so my assumption was that the people
10 were from Carakovo or the village of Rizvanovici.
11 Q. Did you see what happened to them after they came to the camp and
12 before they were taken to the "white house"?
13 A. Yes. As they were being taken by the restaurant, I could see that
14 they were going in the direction of the "white house," and I saw them
15 being beaten up. A man fell down, and then a guard kicked him two times,
16 on his back and in his head. He had a rifle. The man was trying to stand
17 up, but after he had been kicked for the second time he remained laying
18 down, and they simply removed him next to the hedge there.
19 Q. Did you see any bodies that day?
20 A. Yes. I saw corpses when I arrived. I was surprised by that, and
21 I asked one of my colleagues what was going on, and they told me just keep
22 quiet and don't watch. But I started counting the bodies anyway. I
23 watched and watched, and until -- while we were still there, I could count
24 up to 12 dead bodies of the individuals who were lying down on the grass.
25 Q. From where did you see this? Where were you at that time?
1 A. At that time I was sitting at the edge of the table, and I had the
2 view of the "white house." I could see it clearly because there were no
3 curtains on the windows.
4 Q. The next morning, were you asked to come down to the restaurant
6 A. Yes. In the morning we would usually get up at half past 6 or
7 7.00, I don't remember exactly at what time. We were supposed to prepare
8 the room for the work of the investigators, to remove the mattresses and
9 things like that, and after that we would go downstairs to the ground
11 Q. When you came down, did you see any bodies?
12 A. Yes. Yes, I did.
13 Q. And were you asked to go upstairs before -- and were not allowed
14 to stay in the restaurant?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And did you know -- did you see or get to know as to what happened
17 to those bodies?
18 A. When we went back to the room from the restaurant, we were able to
19 look through the window, and we saw in front of the restaurant and the
20 kitchen yellow dumping trucks pass by carrying bodies. The trucks were
21 fully loaded with corpses. As we were coming down the stairs, we saw this
22 terrible sight. Bodies were all around the place, from the "white house"
23 to the restaurant. The bodies were next to each other, crowded next to
24 each other like sardines.
25 Q. Witness, now you mentioned about some trucks. Did you recognise
1 any of these trucks? Were they the trucks from the mine?
2 A. Yes. It was a yellow truck. We called them demper. It's a kind
3 of dumping truck, a small truck. And I saw the truck pass by, although we
4 were not allowed to watch through the window, but of course we were
5 curious and we were trying to see what was going on through the window.
6 And I saw this small yellow truck because very often it would be parked
7 behind the garage, behind the pista.
8 Q. You mentioned areas as Carakovo and Rizvanovici. Is this -- are
9 these villages called or is this area referred to as Brdo area?
10 A. Those are villages, Carakovo is situated below the hill, and
11 Rizvanovici is on top of the hill. But the village in question was the
12 village of Carakovo and, of course, the village of Rizvanovici.
13 Q. Thank you.
14 MR. WAIDYARATNE: Your Honour, may I at this stage request to go
15 into private session as the witness would be testifying with regard to a
16 certain sense.
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, let us move into private
18 session, please.
19 [Private session]
13 pages 5095-5115 redacted – private session
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2:45 p.m., to
23 be reconvened on Monday the 11th day of September,
24 2000, at 9:30 a.m.