1 Monday, 23 May 2005
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.20 p.m.
5 JUDGE PARKER: I apologise that we were a few minutes late coming
6 into court.
7 If I could remind you, Mr. Limaj, of the affirmation that you
8 took at the beginning of your evidence.
9 Mr. Whiting.
10 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour. I'm eager to begin but Mr.
11 Mansfield has an issue to raise before we begin.
12 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Mansfield. I'm sorry I didn't notice you.
13 MR. MANSFIELD: Your Honour, I wasn't actually intending to raise
14 it at this juncture, but I can indicate what it is, namely that on
15 Thursday last, we were provided with a list of exhibits that the
16 Prosecution may use in cross-examination. And attached to the list --
17 and there's no objection to that, they're all in evidence and so forth,
18 obviously. But attached to it is a document which reproduces sections of
19 a book, and I think as far as I can tell, all the sections which come
20 under the various tabs, 2, 3, 4, 5, well, except perhaps 5 doesn't but 4,
21 are excerpts from this book. I think you may have it in front of you.
22 JUDGE PARKER: A document has just been put in front of us.
23 MR. MANSFIELD: Well, starting with tab 1, you will then see a
24 series of further dividers, and these are excerpts from this book. And
25 you will see in tab 1 that it was published some time ago, 2001, and is
1 headed basically "The project for the creation of the editorial board for
2 the publication of the monograph on the martyrs of the Kosovo Liberation
3 Army was approved and confirmed by..." and then there's a list, and
4 Fatmir Limaj's name is about halfway down the list on the following page.
5 And then under various headings of individuals under the tabs there is a
6 narrative relating to that individual, Sadik Shala being the first one.
7 I was intending to raise it at the point and if the Prosecution
8 decided they did wish to use this document. However I'm perfectly happy
9 to indicate the objection now so it may be considered.
10 There is no issue but that this document as a whole has plainly
11 been in the possession of the Prosecution for some time. It's not a
12 recent revelation as far as we can tell. No one's suggesting they've
13 only just found it. And clearly had they wished to use this as part of
14 their case, in other words to rely upon this document, then they should
15 have disclosed it a long time ago, and furthermore, obviously have led it
16 in some form or another or adduced it as part of their case. They
17 haven't done either of those things. This isn't a matter that has been
18 disclosed before, and plainly it hasn't been used in any other way as
19 part of their case.
20 It's difficult in those circumstances to see if, in fact, a
21 document of this kind which has been in existence for some time isn't
22 being relied on by the Prosecution quite how they wish to now rely on it.
23 And obviously Mr. Whiting will be able to indicate what the is basis
24 here. But as far as one can see if it's not reliable enough to be used
25 as part of their case, this kind of document, then it's difficult to see
1 how at this stage reliance is suddenly going to be made upon this
3 If in fact it's intended to not put it into evidence, and I
4 understand that may be the case, it's not intended to put it into
5 evidence, then its status becomes even less, we would say, either
6 reliable or relevant. In other words, if it's just a matter of saying,
7 "Well, here's this document. We don't rely on it but what do you say
8 about it," then it really has, we would say, peripheral or marginal
9 consequence in relation to these proceedings.
10 But in any event, we say, there is and fundamental principle
11 here. The fundamental principle is, we say, that any matter that the
12 Prosecution wishes to use for whatever purpose in cross-examination
13 should be disclosed in advance. There are exceptions plainly to that,
14 but even those are circumscribed quite carefully.
15 Plainly, if something arises ex improviso, the Prosecution, for
16 example, who may not have reasonably anticipated what has arisen ex
17 improviso, may wish to rebut that matter and of course that's a well
18 known procedure. But that doesn't seem to be what is being sought here.
19 There is an alternative route which is the Prosecution may reopen their
20 case. That again doesn't seem to be what is being requested here,
21 because again, they would be entitled to reopen their case if they could
22 show this wasn't a matter that couldn't have been not only foreseen but
23 have been discovered with due diligence in time for the end of the
24 Prosecution case. Well, that isn't the situation either.
25 There then really remains only two other possibilities. One is
1 in relation to credibility. They might be entitled, provided under the
2 Rules that it is relevant and plainly relates to something that has
3 arisen in chief, then it may possible on a matter of credit although the
4 authorities indicate, I think without exception, that if they're going to
5 do that, 24 hours' notice has to be given at least before the witness is
6 actually called. So in order to do this, they would have had to do it
7 well before Mr. Limaj went into the witness box.
8 Now, may we say on this front we have undertaken not to speak to
9 Mr. Limaj once he went into the witness box, so we haven't. We haven't
10 seen him. We haven't spoken to him, and we haven't given him the list of
11 exhibits, and we haven't told him about this particular exhibit either.
12 So he knows nothing of this. And so certainly so far as the issue of
13 credibility is concerned, there should have been plenty of opportunity
14 for him to consider it.
15 And the fundamental principle which Your Honours will be familiar
16 with is basically an equality of arms. The Prosecution plainly have --
17 and that's the basis of disclosure, of course, as well -- if a more
18 facilities than the Defence and therefore to equate the matter it is
19 necessary where the Prosecution have is a document they're seeking to use
20 that at least if its credibility there is an opportunity for a defendant
21 to consider what the material is that is about to be used. Well, of
22 course that hasn't happened here.
23 So credibility is one way. The other is, of course, refreshing
24 memory. Well, it's a bit difficult since it's not suggest as far as I
25 know that this is a reliable document. No one is suggesting that it is
1 no doubt they would have used it as part of their case. And it's at the
2 moment difficult to see whether this is a document which actually
3 refreshes any memory since it doesn't appear that it's clear that it was
4 written by or compiled by Mr. Limaj at a time when these were matters
5 within his knowledge, in other words, the usual kind of refreshing-of-
6 memory document.
7 Therefore, none of the usual routes, we would say, apply in this
8 case for even raising this document at this stage in this way whilst he's
9 in the witness box. And may we say also as a general point that applies
10 to I think this material as a whole is that looking at it, generally
11 speaking, it deals with many -- or purports to deal with many events
12 which you've heard a great deal about and names of people, for example
13 Ismet Jashari and so on, and dates are in here of that been spoken about
14 many, many times.
15 Now, if this is being used as a historical document purported to
16 come from the KLA and of importance to the Crown [sic] we say, of course,
17 it should have been led. And they can't have been taken by surprise
18 because without rehearsing in great detail, there was a pre-trial brief
19 in which matters of a general kind were set out for the Prosecution
20 relating to the course of events, and more particularly before Mr. Limaj
21 went in the witness box they were provided, as they are entitled to, to a
22 summary of the main features of his evidence. So they knew perfectly
23 well the parameters of what he was going to speak about. And of course
24 there has been cross-examination in the case on various matters relating
25 to that pre-trial brief as well as the summary provided to the
1 Prosecution just before he gave evidence.
2 So we say there's been plenty of opportunity for this document to
3 be provided. In fairness - and that's really the bottom line, in
4 fairness to this defendant - we're not here attempting to ambush people.
5 We're attempting, as you're only too aware, to reach the truth in a fair
6 and proper way.
7 And of course I don't know the questions that are going to be
8 asked, but Rule 66(B) obviously, again, sets the criteria that they must
9 relate to the Defence case questions or of course the Prosecution case,
10 and plainly withholding this sort of material in the context of that Rule
11 could be construed as -- as the ambush approach to that. So I would ask
12 if it's necessary to have time that this matter is obviously resolved now
13 if the Prosecution are wanting to use this document within the near
14 future. I apologise for doing it in this way at this stage. I
15 anticipate it had might arise later.
16 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Mansfield, when did you say you first received
18 MR. MANSFIELD: I think it was last Thursday. Yes. Yes, it was
19 -- well, I don't know -- it came into my hands about the end of his
21 JUDGE PARKER: Is that saying it wasn't last Thursday?
22 MR. MANSFIELD: My record -- I'm doing it to have the top of my
23 head. I'm fairly sure it came in my hands on Thursday afternoon. The
24 precise point on Thursday afternoon I can't remember. But certainly
25 before we finished Thursday afternoon I had it in my hands but not
2 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Anything submit, Mr. Guy-Smith?
3 MR. GUY-SMITH: I join in the remarks made by counsel.
4 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Mr. Topolski.
5 MR. TOPOLSKI: Nothing.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Mr. Whiting.
7 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, just a few words about the document in
8 question. The document is a -- is a book. It's actually a book in four
9 volumes publicly available. It's a public-source document. The document
10 was in the possession of the OTP for some time. However, it was not
11 translated until -- or let's say portions it have were not translated
12 until very recently. I only got the translations that I would like to
13 rely on literally within the last week. And it was only -- I would say,
14 the relevance of the documents only became clear to me after the -- or
15 let's say during the testimony of Mr. Limaj.
16 But more importantly, the -- I think the law is quite clear on
17 this issue. The Prosecution is not intending --
18 And I say that as a preliminary remark only to make the point
19 that the Prosecution is not trying to ambush here. We weren't holding
20 back this document to drop it on the accused after he testified. It's
21 something that we only became aware of within the last week, or at least
22 its importance.
23 But with respect to the law, the law is quite clear on this point
24 that -- because we are not intending to exhibit this document. We're
25 using it only to -- for cross-examination purposes to challenge the
1 credibility of the witness, to put it to him and to see what his response
2 is to the documents.
3 And I would draw the Court's attention to the Appeals Court
4 judgement in Rutaganda. I've actually made copies I can distribute or
5 ask Mr. Younis to distribute.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
7 MR. WHITING: Included in the packet are two decisions the
8 Rutaganda Appeals judgement and a judgement -- judgement from the -- or a
9 decision, rather, from the Milosevic case from fairly recently ago. The
10 Rutaganda Appeals judgement, the case number is ICTR-96-3-A. The number
11 is from the 26 of May, 2003. It's the second document in the packet.
12 I've only produced a few pages of the decision, but I would draw the
13 Court's attention to the paragraph 280 and I would submit that it's --
14 JUDGE PARKER: 280?
15 MR. WHITING: 280. And I would submit that the discussion and
16 decision there is directly on point.
17 In that case, the Prosecution provided -- the appellant
18 testified. The Prosecution provided the Defence with some open-source
19 documents or - at least some of them appear to be open source, if not all
20 of them - open source documents to the Defence after -- after his direct
21 examination and sought to use those documents in the cross-examination.
22 The Prosecution was allowed to do so by the Court. It was an issue on
23 appeal, and the Appeals Court found that there was no error.
24 The Appeals Court went even further and found that there was no
25 error in admitting some if not all of the documents into evidence. And
1 -- but certainly there was no error in the Prosecution using the
2 documents to cross-examine the witness.
3 JUDGE PARKER: Any particular passage you rely on?
4 MR. WHITING: Yes. The background is set out in the preliminary
5 paragraphs following from 280, but drawing the Court's attention to
6 paragraph 284. The Court says: "Considering that the photographs, the
7 press clippings and the articles of association of RTLM boarded on issues
8 that had been raised by the appellant during examination-in-chief, the
9 Appeals Chamber considers that the Trial Chamber had the discretion to
10 admit them during cross-examination of the appellant."
11 And I would note that in paragraph 280 the appellant made the
12 same arguments that the Defence has made here today.
13 And then paragraph 287 also says: "Therefore in the opinion of
14 the Appeals Chamber, the appellant has not demonstrated that the Trial
15 Chamber erred by admitting the photographs contained in the publication
16 entitled 'Rwanda, les medias du genocide' which would afford the
17 Prosecution the opportunity to rebut the allegations made by the
18 appellant during his cross-examination."
19 Here, as I've said, I don't anticipate seeking to exhibit the
20 documents. That's not the purpose of putting them to the witness. Of
21 course if he adopted them, there might arise the possibility that the
22 documents should be exhibited, but I'm not even sure if he adopted them
23 that that would be necessary.
24 I would draw the Court's attention also to the Milosevic decision
25 which I have provided from the 17th of May, 2005. This decision is
1 concerned in particular to paragraph -- paragraphs 10 and 11 of the
3 This decision is concerned primarily with the Prosecution seeking
4 to admit documents during cross-examination during the Defence case.
5 Again, that's not what the Prosecution seeks to do here, but no -- there
6 is no issue raised whatsoever about -- about the Prosecution using
7 documents in its cross-examination that have not been previously
9 The decision in the Milosevic cites and quotes from in paragraph
10 10 an oral decision in the Hadzihasanovic case. In that case, the issue
11 arose of putting undisclosed documents to Defence witnesses on
12 cross-examination, and -- and it is my understanding that the issue arose
13 repeatedly during the trial, was the subject of a number of oral
14 decisions, this being just the first of them. In any event, I would
15 submit that even under this test we should be allowed to put the
16 documents to the witness, and I would draw the attention to -- on page 5,
17 the Court's attention to the last paragraph that is quoted from the
18 Hadzihasanovic decision there where it says: "In the opinion of the
19 Trial Chamber, the Prosecution may present in the course of its
20 cross-examination any documents that have not already been admitted in
21 order to test the credibility of a witness or to refresh such a witness's
22 memory. In each of these two cases the Prosecution may present a
23 document that has not already been admitted and which it had in its
24 possession before or after presentation of its case."
25 Now, it's true, as Mr. Mansfield alluded, in that decision --
1 it's not quoted here, but the Court imposed a 24-hour disclosure rule in
2 that case. I would -- I would submit that this Court should not follow
3 that rule, and the -- there's no such rule provided for in the Rutaganda
4 decision. Clearly in that decision the material was provided, as in this
5 case, at the close of the direct examination and there was no problem
6 with that. There was no problem with notice. There was no problem
7 whatsoever with the Prosecution putting those documents to the witness.
8 And therefore, I think this Court should follow the Rutaganda decision
9 rather than the Hadzihasanovic decision.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Is it not a simple matter of fairness, if we reach
11 the point, about the use of the document that you submit? The question
12 of whether some delay is required is a matter of fairness, is it not, and
13 that might vary case by case, particular document by document.
14 MR. WHITING: Yes. I can -- I can imagine a situation where the
15 -- it is conceivable to me that fairness might require earlier
16 disclosure. I'm not sure. In other words, I cannot -- I can appreciate
17 that it may be -- this may be a case-by-case issue. However, I would say
18 that a blanket rule or even an inclination to have prior disclosure is
19 unwise because until the Prosecution actually hears the witness's
20 evidence, it's not -- it's not very -- it's not clear what is going to be
21 important and what is not, and it's impossible to anticipate all the
22 issues that are going to arise, all the things that the witness is going
23 to say, how they might become relevant, how they might become important,
24 and it would be extremely difficult if not impossible for the Prosecution
25 to try to anticipate every issue that might arise in the witness's
1 examination-in-chief that it would have to then -- it would then have to
2 rebut before the examination even begins.
3 This is a good example of that. Mr. Mansfield cited the
4 pre-trial brief and the witness's 65 ter summary. Well, to get down in
5 the details here, the document that I would like to put to the witness
6 deals -- the sections that I would like to put to the witness deal
7 primarily with the March-April 1998 period. That period is not even
8 addressed in the pre-trial brief of the accused some of the there no
9 discussion about that at all. It goes immediately from coming to Kosovo,
10 jumping all the way right to the 9th of May.
11 With respect to the 65 ter summary for this -- for the accused,
12 it is one page long, not detailed, and on this issue the only thing it
13 says is that -- is that he established a Celiku 1 unit in Klecka. No
14 date, no context, no time frame, and in fact it's a little unclear
15 whether that's what he said in his testimony. I think his testimony is
16 considerably more ambiguous on that subject, at least with respect to the
17 March-April time period.
18 So to be fair, it was only when the witness testified about that
19 period and about the structure in detail that it became something that
20 even if I had had it beforehand, which I didn't, in translation, I don't
21 think I would have -- it would have jumped out as something I necessarily
22 would have wanted to use.
23 So I think that that this is a -- this is a good example why
24 there can't be a bright-line rule about disclosure before the witness
25 testifies because it's impossible to know what might arise. I mean,
1 well, not impossible, but it's impossible to know all of the aspects and
2 all the dimensions of what the witness's testimony is going to be.
3 So I think that both for the legal reasons which are set forth in
4 the Rutaganda decision and for the particular factual reasons which I
5 have set forth with respect to this document, I think that we should be
6 allowed to put the document to the witness in cross-examination in order
7 to challenge his credibility.
8 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Whiting, you accept that it was made available
9 in the course of Thursday afternoon to the Defence?
10 MR. WHITING: I do, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE PARKER: And could you just put your submission on why this
12 shouldn't have been disclosed as part of your Prosecution case?
13 MR. WHITING: It's -- I don't think it's -- it's not a document
14 that we -- that we wanted to rely on as our Prosecution case. Not
15 because of reliability reasons but we don't -- we don't know necessarily
16 who all the authors are of the document, to what extent we could have
17 authenticated it. And with respect to the principal issues in this case,
18 Lapusnik, it touches on that, but as I said, it's more -- it's more
19 directly relevant to the March-April time period which has more
20 significance now that the -- now that Mr. Limaj has testified.
21 So it's -- it's a document that we had looked at without
22 translating it. We didn't get the translation until more recently, but
23 it was a document that we simply chose -- not because we didn't think it
24 was -- not because we thought it was unreliable, but simply we chose not
25 -- not to put it in. And also, we draw certain limits on all the
1 open-source material that we're going to put in. We can't put in all
2 relevant open-source material. But it's --
3 JUDGE PARKER: I'm sorry, I'm left a little confused. Are you
4 saying you recognised its potential relevance but chose not to use it?
5 Or are you saying you didn't realise its potential relevance because it
6 was not translated? Or are you saying some other thing?
7 MR. WHITING: What I'm saying is something in between, actually.
8 We took a quick look at the document, at the book, without having an
9 interpreter look at the book quickly, determined that there were -- there
10 was no discussion about the crimes charged in this case, decided for that
11 reason that we weren't going to pursue it any further.
12 We later on looked at the book again and decided out of interest
13 and potential relevance to translate about ten different chapters of the
14 book. Each chapter is a short summary of a person's life, and then when
15 those translations came back in the last week and in light of the
16 testimony of the accused, it became apparent to us that there are
17 passages in the document, in the book, which are relevant.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Mansfield, anything?
19 MR. MANSFIELD: Yes, if I may, shortly. The last observations,
20 if we may put it this way, don't really make any sense at all. From the
21 beginning of this case, the period of March and April was known to be of
22 crucial importance. It was opened by all sides as having importance both
23 by the Prosecution and by ourselves on behalf of Mr. Limaj, and Mr. Limaj
24 himself in an extensive opening.
25 The book makes clear -- one only has to look at tab 3, bottom of
1 page. It's dealing with March 1998, Ismet Jashari and Fatmir is
2 mentioned, Fatmir Limaj, on the second or penultimate line of that page.
3 So it must be extremely clear from a very early stage that it had
4 relevant material in it. So therefore there isn't a clear answer as to
5 why it wasn't used before. The fact that it wasn't translated until
6 recently we say doesn't really hold water if it's relevant and reliable.
7 May I just turn to the second --
8 JUDGE PARKER: The more pertinent issue may be why it wasn't
9 disclosed earlier.
10 MR. MANSFIELD: Yes, why it wasn't disclosed earlier, that being
11 a document which they may have been slow to translate, but we certainly
12 should have been alerted to it whether they were going to rely on it or
13 not, in fact, whether they were going to rely on it under the disclosure
15 As far as the fairness if I may take that point up. What the
16 Prosecution is saying we've been rather tardy in translating it. Sorry
17 about that. We weren't going to rely on it anyway really because we
18 don't know yet and we didn't know. However we're not going to give
19 anybody an opportunity to consider it before we cross-examine.
20 We find, if I may put it, the height of unfairness because the
21 one theme of the cases in relation to these matters, if they are
22 admissible and you may recall that in putting this matter to Your Honours
23 I accepted that there might be exceptions as a route to admissibility,
24 one of them being credibility, but the theme underlying the admission of
25 material under that heading of the cases is the opportunity for the
1 person to assimilate and familiarise himself with the materials.
2 May I just point out paragraph 282 in the Rutaganda decision
3 which you have in front of you, whereby "The record shows that at the
4 start of the cross-examination of the Appellant, the Prosecution
5 presented the Chamber with a file containing documents that it intended
6 to use during cross-examination. The three documents cited by the
7 appellant were also within the file and had not been previously disclosed
8 to the Defence. The Trial Chamber permitted the Prosecution to tender
9 them, but in order to allow the appellant time to familiarise himself
10 with the materials postponed questioning on them until the next day."
11 Now, that's all one saying here, that if in fact leaving the
12 aside the question of disclosure in principle they are admissible under
13 this heading, then even that court was saying there has to be time for a
14 witness, in this case a defendant, to familiarise himself. And in fact
15 291 in the same report makes the same point: "It should be recalled the
16 Trial Chamber accorded the appellant sufficient time to familiarise
17 himself with the photographs, the press clipping, and articles of
18 association." The fact that it appears the opportunity wasn't taken is
19 another matter. So that's clearly underlying that decision.
20 And may I just hand up. We have copies of the Hadzihasanovic
21 decision. I don't know if the Prosecution have it. If they don't
22 there's another one here. We did inform the Prosecution about this.
23 There's one for each.
24 Just -- sorry. There's one amendment that was amended orally,
25 and it's rather important. It comes at -- I'm sorry, the individual
1 pages are not numbered, but page 12524 is in the middle of a page a few
2 pages in, about six, I think, six --
3 JUDGE PARKER: Page 3 of 8.
4 MR. MANSFIELD: Yes. I'm obliged. And on the following actual
5 page, at line 22 -- they're different here, yes. It's different again.
6 Well, may I -- there's a wording which should read "cannot"
7 instead of "can only." May I hand it up separately in a moment? It
8 doesn't affect the point I'm just about to make.
9 The point in this particular decision -- may I just pause for a
11 I'm sorry. I'm afraid there are three different copies of this.
12 Effectively what this authority is saying - I concede obviously there
13 will be a series of these decisions, but - is exactly the same, and it is
14 this one that has an indication very clearly that there should be --
15 well, they set down 24 hours, but I'm not suggesting it always has to be
16 24 hours. It's page 12527. 12527. It's dealt with in more than one
17 place, but it is there dealing, line 4, where the category of testing
18 credibility is set out, and it must disclose, line 10, such a document to
19 the Defence and its intention to use such a document, line 12, "at least
20 24 hours before a Defence witness appears," and so on. And therefore, we
21 say whilst it may not be a firm rule that it has to be 24 hours, what is
22 clear from both of these two is that the Court is saying, in fairness,
23 the witness must have this opportunity. It may be measured as 24 hours.
24 It may be measured as overnight, but at least time -- of course it will
25 differ because some documents are very short and you can look at them in
1 five minutes. But this --
2 JUDGE PARKER: In that decision --
3 MR. MANSFIELD: Yes.
4 JUDGE PARKER: -- it seems to be put as 24 hours before a Defence
5 witness appears.
6 MR. MANSFIELD: Yes.
7 JUDGE PARKER: As I quickly have read the other decisions, were
8 they not speaking of 24 hours before cross-examination?
9 MR. MANSFIELD: Well, it's not entirely clear. But I -- from the
10 -- the other authority, the Rutaganda authority, plainly looking at the
11 facts of it, they're really saying, since the way it has arisen exactly
12 as this one has, we'll give the witness overnight, so an interval of time
13 when the witness is already in the witness box. And all I'm saying is
14 that, as I say, leaving aside the issue much disclosure in principle
15 which we say should have happened here anyway which would have allowed
16 him plenty of time to have a look at it. But if in fact none of that has
17 been adhered to he should be now allowed an opportunity before he's asked
18 any questions. That's all we're asking for. And if it's overnight - I
19 don't suppose Mr. Whiting intends to finish today - at least we should
20 have or someone should have permission to provide him with a copy of the
21 document without comment so he can have a look at it overnight. We say
22 that's a basic fairness principle.
23 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Mansfield.
24 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, I know you don't want tennis matches,
25 but just on that --
1 JUDGE PARKER: The French Open is on. Carry on.
2 MR. WHITING: But just two small points. The first is with
3 respect to disclosure, I don't think this document was required to be
4 disclosed under the Rules, under either 66(A)(i) or 66(B) or 48.
5 JUDGE PARKER: I thought you dealt with disclosure earlier.
6 MR. WHITING: Fine, then. But with providing it to the witness,
7 I certainly have no objection with the document being given to Mr. Limaj
8 and him having an opportunity overnight to read the document and consider
9 it. I'm not intending -- it's not --
10 JUDGE PARKER: Is that practical? Are you intending to lead off
11 with it?
12 MR. WHITING: No, I had no intention. It's no problem to put it
13 off until tomorrow.
14 JUDGE PARKER: Very well. Thank you. We will take a few moments
15 to deal with this issue.
16 MR. MANSFIELD: Your Honour, may I did-
17 JUDGE PARKER: I'm sorry, Mr. Mansfield. I didn't give a further
18 shot at the ball.
19 MR. MANSFIELD: No. It's just the correction. It's a rather
20 important correction. It appears on page 4 of 8 which is the copy you
21 have. I'm sorry it's taken a little time to locate it. On page 4 of 8,
22 at line 22 it says, "As a result of this principle the Prosecution can
23 only present in the course of cross-examination..." In fact, the wording
24 which was amended in an oral decision on the 2nd of December, 2004, I can
25 give the reference, that was amended to "cannot present in the course of
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 its cross-examination." So it is rather an important amendment. And we
2 have a copy of the amendment for Your Honours as well if you would like
3 to have a copy of it.
4 JUDGE PARKER: We accept what you have put, Mr. Mansfield. We
5 will adjourn now for a short time.
6 --- Break taken at 3.04 p.m.
7 --- On resuming at 3.15 p.m.
8 JUDGE PARKER: The Chamber is of the view that there can be no
9 objection in principle to the use of this material as cross-examination
10 going to credit of the witness. The decision of the Appeals Chamber in
11 the decision from Rwanda of Rutaganda and the decision of the Trial
12 Chamber in Hadzihasanovic and Kubura are directly, it seems to us, in
13 point and deal with the matter of principle. The arguments considered in
14 Rutaganda appear in essence to be those advanced by way of objection
16 There remains a question of whether some special measures should
17 be taken as matter of fairness. We are of the view that they should, and
18 conscious of the indication of Mr. Whiting that it won't be until
19 tomorrow afternoon that this matter is reached. From what we presently
20 understand of the matter, that would appear to be an appropriate delay to
21 deal with the matter of fairness.
22 We would observe that the reference in the decision to which we
23 were also referred of the Trial Chamber in Hadzihasanovic, which
24 suggested that it would be necessary for material of this nature to be
25 made available a time before the witness entered the witness box appears
1 to us to misread the effect of the Appeals Chamber decision in Rutaganda,
2 and while it may have been an appropriate measure in that particular
3 case, it's certainly not one which is established as a minimum
5 We do, however, think that there should be some further
6 indication given on the basis of fairness; that is, that the witness
7 having an opportunity to read this material overnight, and for that
8 purpose a copy should be provided to Mr. Limaj at the close of evidence
10 When his cross-examination has concluded and before any
11 re-examination, in the view of the Chamber he should have an opportunity
12 to instruct his counsel in respect only of the content of this material.
13 And if as a consequence of those instructions there is any reason for
14 some change of the timetable, well, then that can be raised then.
15 So basically yes, the material may be used now. It will be
16 provided to Mr. Limaj this evening at the close of our sitting so that he
17 can consider it overnight and before we commence tomorrow. And at the it
18 end of his cross-examination, given that by arrangement between counsel
19 he is not being spoken to by his counsel during his evidence, that should
20 be relaxed, his counsel have an opportunity to take instructions and do
21 that before re-examination arises.
22 We will commence now, then, Mr. Whiting, with the
24 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour. If I could just inquire,
25 did the brief adjournment restart the lock, the hour and a half clock, or
1 will we need to adjourn at --
2 JUDGE PARKER: It did not restart the clock. You will be
3 adjourning at about twenty-five minutes to 30 minutes from now, bearing
4 in mind that we had a start that was just after twenty past two.
5 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Perhaps you can plan to have no more than an hour.
7 MR. WHITING: I'll do my best and somebody will tug at my sleeve
8 if I fail to notice the time.
9 WITNESS: FATMIR LIMAJ [Resumed]
10 [Witness answered through interpreter]
11 Cross-examined by Mr. Whiting:
12 Q. Mr. Limaj, I'm going to start where you finished off in your
13 direct examination, when you told the Chamber that when you learned of
14 the indictment against you from this Tribunal and you were contacted by
15 the media you lied about where you were. That's correct; right?
16 A. I already gave the reasons why I maintained the approach I did
17 towards media, why I didn't tell them the place I was. And I don't
18 consider that a lie.
19 Q. Can you explain to me why telling the press that you were in
20 Austria or Italy or some other place when in fact you were in Slovenia is
21 not a lie? Put aside the justifications that you gave. It was not the
22 truth; right, Mr. Limaj?
23 A. Because after the war, I participated in the political
24 developments, and I know how an official should behave. The contacts had
25 already started between Mr. Steiner and the Prime Minister. I didn't
1 want the media to know my whereabouts before the official -- an official
2 statement was made, because I knew that the media representatives would
3 come to my hotel and they would ask me. That was the first indictment
4 made against a KLA member in Kosova.
5 Q. And because you did not want the media to -- or because you say
6 you did not want the media to come to your hotel, you lied about where
7 you were; correct?
8 A. I already stated that in my opinion, this cannot be proved as a
9 lie as you are saying. For me, that was simply my private approach, not
10 to tell them where I was for the moment, because I deemed it best, in my
11 interest and in the interest of further developments.
12 Q. Mr. Limaj, you didn't tell them that you refused to tell them.
13 You didn't say, "I refuse to tell you where I am." You told them
14 something that was not true. Isn't that right?
15 A. Mr. Prosecutor, I have told the truth to the persons whom I
16 should tell the truth: The representatives of the UN General-Secretary,
17 and your office is part of that. For me that was more important than
18 telling the media where I was. Mr. Steiner knew where I was. Your
19 office knew where I was. The Prime Minister of Kosova knew where I was,
20 and for me that was important.
21 Q. So is it your testimony when -- that when you deem it in your
22 best interests you can decide who you tell the truth to and who you don't
23 tell the truth to? Is that your testimony, Mr. Limaj?
24 A. No, that's not so. But I tried to abide by the principle of
25 official posts, because I was an official of the parliament of Kosova and
1 of a political party. That's why I have tried to follow that logic.
2 Q. And you were a public figure, as you testified, starting from
3 2000 approximately; is that right?
4 A. Not from 2000. Starting from the end of 1998 and onwards I was
5 always -- maybe not always. Less so in 1988 to 1989. But from 1989 I
6 was always present in the media, especially after the opening of the
7 television stations in Kosova.
8 THE INTERPRETER: Correction, 1998. Correction.
9 Q. And from 1998 on was it normal your practice when speaking to the
10 media to be untruthful?
11 A. No, not at all. I think I am one of the personalities who was
12 always transparent to the media. This can be proven by all the media
13 outlets in Kosova, both Albanian and otherwise. I don't think there has
14 ever been a more transparent and willing spokesperson to talk to the
15 media and tell the media the truth. I have even made the difference
16 between my personal view and the personal view of the party, and you can
17 verify that with all the media, print and electronic media.
18 Q. So you tried to be truthful with the media.
19 A. Always. Always.
20 Q. Let me take you back to 1996 when you joined the KLA. I believe
21 you testified that you joined in August of 1996; right?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. You joined with Rexhep Selimi.
24 A. I didn't join with him, by said it was through Rexhep Selimi that
25 I joined. I said that my first contact was with Rexhep Selimi.
1 Q. Rexhep Selimi was a member of the General Staff.
2 A. Rexhep Selimi I heard was a member of the General Staff, as a
3 member, a full member, in November. But as a representative of the
4 General Staff, I heard that he was such in March when we came from
5 Switzerland. It was then that he introduced himself as a representative.
6 But as a full member I found out that it was in November.
7 Q. And that's March of 1998; correct?
8 A. There is a difference between the representative of the General
9 Staff and a full member. As a representative of the General Staff, it
10 was in March.
11 Q. You said March, and that's March of 1998; correct?
12 A. Yes, as a representative of the General Staff.
13 Q. On your first day of testimony, you were asked if in 1996 --
14 1996, after you joined the KLA, you assisted with any guerrilla actions
15 and you said that you didn't have the opportunity then. That's your
16 testimony; right?
17 A. Yes, in this case.
18 Q. Then in 1997 you went to Switzerland?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. You testified that you had no contact with the KLA during your
21 time in Switzerland. That's your testimony; right?
22 A. I want to explain here, Your Honours. The people with whom --
23 whom had contacts with the KLA, who purchased -- who raised money on
24 behalf of the KLA were numerous in Switzerland. But in my opinion, they
25 were not members of the KLA as such in Switzerland. That is what I
2 Q. And you were not receiving any instructions from the KLA at that
3 time. Is that your testimony?
4 A. No.
5 Q. You testified that you had contact with Homeland Calling and the
6 Kosovo Popular Movement for Switzerland but not with the KLA. You shook
7 your head yes. Is that a yes?
8 A. Yes. Yes, correct.
9 Q. Do you recall what happened with the KLA in November of 1997?
10 A. What do you mean?
11 Q. When the KLA became public in a way at a funeral.
12 A. Yes, certainly, yes.
13 Q. Do you recall who the funeral was for?
14 A. Of course I do.
15 Q. Could you tell us?
16 A. Your Honours, in November 1997, there was a football match --
17 there was a clash between guerrilla unit of the KLA Llausha village and
18 the Serb forces, and during the fighting the Serb forces killed a teacher
19 of the village, Halil Geci was his name if I'm not wrong. And his
20 funeral which took place after two days with the participation of a large
21 number citizens, it was the first time that three members of the KLA
22 appeared before the gathering of people, and they read a speech or an
23 address to them.
24 Q. One of those members was Rexhep Selimi.
25 A. Yes, but we found that out much later.
1 Q. Mr. Limaj, you recall giving an interview in the summer of 2000
2 that is in evidence in this case?
3 A. No, I didn't give an interview.
4 Q. You didn't give an interview in the summer of 2000?
5 A. What -- what interview do you mean? Because I know that I have
6 given a lot of interviews to newspapers and to television stations.
7 Q. It's a televised interview, and it's in evidence in this case as
8 P -- Exhibit P36. It's been shown in this trial. Do you recall your
9 answering questions about the KLA?
10 A. I think I've already told you that I have given many interviews,
11 and I don't understand which of them do you mean. And of course during
12 my interviews, I have spoken also about the KLA.
13 Q. I'll show you a part of this interview.
14 If we could look at clip 4, which starts on page 6 of Prosecution
15 Exhibit P36. And I think we switch to Sanction for this. If we could
16 switch to Sanction, please.
17 Mr. Limaj, if you could just listen carefully.
18 [Videotape played]
19 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] It's interesting. Sometime around
20 1996, we were going to go out to carry out an operation. That was our
21 duty. And I was waiting for the now Minister of Public Order, Rexhep
22 Selimi, to come. And we had set a time. But there was a barber there, a
23 neighbour of behind from the village, and I was waiting for him to come
24 because it was our meeting place. And from the conversation that was
25 going on at the barber shop, the talk was about the KLA at that time was
1 still not much talked about. And they started to discuss among
2 themselves how many Serbs -- and who was behind them, and what was going
3 on, whether the Serbs killing them for various reasons. I don't know
4 what, a wide debate.
5 "In the course of this somebody asked me directly, What do you
6 think about this army. He asked me rather because I stay in Pristina
7 then maybe I knew more than he did. Then nature of our operation was
8 very secret, and it was very hard for me indeed to tell him. But I found
9 an answer. I said, Listen, if the Serbs have been inventing us, it is to
10 our good. If it's the Serbs who are in fact doing this, we must still
11 support it. Because they are damaging themselves by doing it.
12 "Interviewer: That is very true. 26 November 1997 was perhaps
13 the first time that an organised KLA was launched.
14 "What do you think of the case of Mitrovica?
15 "Fatmir Limaj: In fact, the condition for all the success of the
16 KLA, or rather the military leadership, throughout the war was that it
17 was able at certain moments to move from one phase of action to the
18 other. At the most suitable moments it moved from one phase to the next.
19 The case of Ludoviq is connected to this. Until then the KLA had made a
20 deep secret of its operations. But it took a difficult step that it
21 would have been hard for other organisation to do, moving from a profound
22 underground conspiracy to a public appearance in war. This was indeed a
23 step that was as brave as it was dangerous.
24 "Interviewer: What do you remember -- How do you remember
1 "Fatmir Limaj: I was not present at Ludoviq because I was
2 abroad. I was in Switzerland on other duties assigned to me by the
3 General Staff."
4 Q. Mr. Limaj, did you see in that view that sometime in 1996 you
5 were waiting for Rexhep Selimi to carry out an operation? You nodded
6 your head yes. That was true; right? That happened in 1996?
7 A. I said but I was not present in the action. This proves
8 precisely what I said earlier, that Rexhep Selimi -- I offered an
9 opportunity to Rexhep Selimi not only to him but to KLA to use my home in
10 my native village for various reasons. In this interview, Rexhep Selimi
11 was at my home and I went there to receive him. They came from an action
12 and I took them in. That was the assistance I gave to him and to KLA.
13 And this proves what I have told you so far.
14 You asked me directly whether I participated in some operation.
15 I did not. The answer is I did not.
16 Q. So Mr. Limaj, you said in this interview at some time in 1996,
17 "We were to go" -- we -- "We were to go out and carry out an operation.
18 That was our task. I was waiting for Rexhep Selimi." Your testimony is
19 you were not involved in this operation? That's your testimony?
20 A. I said, Mr. Prosecutor, if you want to make distinction that's
21 your problem. I have always felt I belonged to the KLA as of August, and
22 whatever I said I was part of it. But in answer to your direct question
23 whether I participated in some operations in 1996, the answer is no. The
24 only thing is that I received Rexhep Selimi together with a friend of his
25 in my home and in this way I rendered my contribution. But it was not a
1 direct contribution.
2 Q. And that's what you were trying to say when you said, "We were to
3 go out and carry out an operation"? That's what you were trying to say
5 A. I said -- I told you what I wanted to say. I think I was clear.
6 Even in the interview it is clear. You may interpret it in the way you
7 wish but I think it's very clear and straightforward as I'm telling you
9 Q. Well, that will be up to the Court decide. But you also say in
10 this interview -- you also say in this interview that you were not at --
11 at Ludoviq because you had been tasked -- you were in Switzerland for
12 some duties that you had been tasked with by the General Staff. And
13 that's true, isn't it, Mr. Limaj?
14 A. Yes. Those who worked for the Homeland Calls felt an obligation
15 to raise funds, and I -- I meant there that all my activity was an
16 ongoing activity. All the activists who were involved in fund-raising in
17 Switzerland and in other western countries were, of course, did this on
18 behalf of the General Staff. The General Staff, then the central staff.
19 Q. Mr. Limaj, you testified in this courtroom last week and again
20 today that you had not been given any tasks by the General Staff in
21 Switzerland, that in fact you weren't even in contact with the General
22 Staff. Here in this interview you say that you were given tasks --
23 assigned tasks by the General Staff. Which one is true, Mr. Limaj?
24 A. The truth is what I'm telling you now, sir.
25 Q. So again in this interview you lied. Is that your testimony?
1 A. I don't think you have in front of you a person who lies.
2 Q. Again, that will be up to the Court. Is that your only answer?
3 A. Let Their Honours give it the weight it deserves.
4 Q. You don't acknowledge that what you said in this interview is not
5 true? You're unable to acknowledge that?
6 A. No. I'm not telling you that this is not true. I'm trying to
7 explain to you that in the interview I say we have been assigned by the
8 General Staff because at that time this is how everybody saw it, assigned
9 by the General Staff. When we left Kosova, we act in cooperation with
10 the people who were working for Kosova, who did everything on behalf of
11 the General Staff. So when I say that we were assigned by the General
12 Staff meant this, what I'm saying now.
13 Q. So you think both things are true, what you said in your
14 interview and what you said in court here today?
15 A. I'm trying to explain to you the general context, to explain what
16 in reality I wanted to say or what I imply when I say I was assigned by
17 the General Staff.
18 Q. What you wanted to say is that in that first interview, you
19 wanted people to believe, true or not, that you were involved in the KLA.
20 In court here, you want people to believe that was not the case. Isn't
21 that true, Mr. Limaj?
22 A. No. No, on the contrary. Your Honours, the day before
23 yesterday, I said that I received a message from Rexhep Selimi in the
24 middle of 1997 after some separation. He followed my activity, and he
25 wanted me to continue my activity through this Homeland Calls. It was a
1 kind of approval by Mr. Selimi about what I was doing there, because I
2 had time to prove my ability and valour during my future actions.
3 I left Kosova, was involved in this Homeland Calls association,
4 and this is what happened and what I told you during the other days.
5 It's not the purpose as the Prosecutor alleges that I wanted the citizens
6 to believe that, because the citizens know very well my CV. I have
7 openly declared what I was and what I've been doing. And this interview
8 was given certainly to the foreign media. You should bear that in mind.
9 It aimed also at showing -- proving a certain continuity in our
10 organisation, because that interview was not meant for the local media
11 and to -- and for me to take pride before the citizens.
12 Q. So in other words you could say one thing to the foreign media
13 and something else to the people in Kosovo? Is that what you're saying,
14 Mr. Limaj?
15 A. No, I am not saying this.
16 Q. That's what it sounded like.
17 A. It may sound like that to you, but it's not so.
18 Q. And, Mr. Limaj, are you now telling us -- initially you said that
19 you thought your tasks with homeland security [sic] were somehow tasked
20 by the KLA. Are you now telling us that that letter from Rexhep Selimi
21 was a tasking, what you meant when you said you had been assigned to do
22 work for the General Staff? Is that your testimony now?
23 A. I think the question is rather long, sir, so I don't know what to
24 answer first.
25 Q. I'll rephrase it, Mr. Limaj. The -- initially when I put this
1 question to you, you said that you thought that homeland -- working for
2 homeland -- I almost said homeland security -- Homeland Calling was being
3 tasked by the KLA. Now you have said -- as I've pressed you on this
4 matter, you've talked about this letter from Rexhep Selimi. Are you
5 saying that this letter was a tasking or an assignment from the General
7 A. You are putting it in this way. I am telling you different
8 things. Maybe you want me to say this.
9 I received a message from Mr. Selimi after I had left Kosova and
10 gone to Albania after the developments. I received a message by him in
11 the form of a greeting telling me, Do what you are doing, continue what
12 you are doing. Send us money because we need the money.
13 You may interpret it as you wish.
14 Q. I'm asking --
15 A. It was a friendly greeting and an appreciation of what I was
16 doing in Switzerland.
17 Q. So it was not a tasking or assignment. Yes or no, Mr. Limaj?
18 A. I told you what I wanted to tell you. I have no other answer.
19 This was only an encouragement for the good work, what we were doing.
20 And wherever we went to raise money, we told the people in exile, I mean
21 the people, diaspora, we told them that we are raising this money on
22 behalf of the General Staff.
23 Q. The truth is, Mr. Limaj, that depending on who you're talking to
24 you tell a different truth that's more convenient for you. Isn't that
25 right, Mr. Limaj?
1 A. That's not correct, Mr. Prosecutor.
2 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, the next topic is lengthy, so perhaps
3 this is --
4 JUDGE PARKER: We will take the break now and resume at ten
5 minutes past four.
6 --- Recess taken at 3.49 p.m.
7 --- On resuming at 4.14 p.m.
8 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Whiting.
9 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
10 Q. Mr. Limaj, let's go back in time. You testified that as early as
11 1990 there was not a single person who wasn't following up developments
12 very closely in Kosovo; right?
13 A. This is what I think. I think that it was the case with the
14 majority of Albanians.
15 Q. You testified that in 1996, at the time you joined the KLA, you
16 became aware of communiques that were being published by the KLA.
17 A. No. What I said was that I got acquainted with the KLA before
18 the communiques, and this was sometime in 1995 or 1996. This is when I
19 first heard about the KLA.
20 Q. I'm sorry, but you became aware of the communiques before you
21 joined the KLA; is that correct?
22 A. Yes, from the daily media. I think there was one or two
23 communiques published. I'm not quite sure. I think before I got engaged
24 in the KLA, there were two communiques published in the daily press, and
25 this was before I got engaged in the KLA.
1 Q. After you went to Switzerland, of course you continued to pay
2 attention to events in Kosovo?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. You read the communiques that were issued during 1997?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. You knew that the KLA saw itself as a liberation army and not as
7 a terrorist organisation. Right, Mr. Limaj?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. You knew that the KLA saw the Serbs as the terrorists.
10 A. No. I don't think that it saw the Serbs as terrorists but saw
11 the Milosevic regime as the occupying force, as an occupying regime. As
12 an occupying force that was exercising violence. I don't think that
13 "terrorists" can be used in that context. Occupying is more -- a more
14 adequate word. We always used to fight against the Serb terror.
15 Q. You knew that the KLA talked about the occupying regime as
16 terrorists. Yes?
17 A. This is what I said, as a terrorist, barbaric regime. There were
18 different terms used, and not only by the KLA but the majority of
19 Albanians applied these different terms.
20 Q. You knew that the KLA was seeking international support for its
21 cause; right?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. You knew that to get support, international support, the KLA had
24 to show that it was not a terrorist organisation but that it was a
25 regular, organised army; right?
1 A. No. The KLA wanted to show more that it was a liberation force.
2 And not only before the international community but before the community
3 in the country itself, that it was a liberation army.
4 Q. Not just --
5 A. A liberating army.
6 Q. Not just a liberating army but an organised, orderly army; right?
7 A. This became a KLA objective later on, to present itself as an
8 organised army. But at that time --
9 Q. It was one of the goals of the KLA to become an organised army so
10 that it could get international support. Isn't that right, Mr. Limaj?
11 A. I think that things were different at that time. At that time,
12 we were running the risk, Your Honour, for the KLA to be called a
13 terrorist organisation. And at that time, you cannot call a terrorist
14 organisation on the basis of its organisation. We do have terrorist
15 organisations that are well organised. At that time, the KLA wanted to
16 make clear its activities. That had nothing to do with terrorist
17 activities, as I said. We do have many organised, well-organised
18 organisations which are terrorist.
19 Q. You wanted to show the world that the KLA was an army with
20 popular support; correct?
21 A. Well, depending on the period of time you're referring to, Mr.
23 Q. Let me specify. After Prekaz, the KLA had popular support;
24 right? Yes or no?
25 A. After Prekaz, yes. It began there. The Prekaz events was the
1 key to what happened later on.
2 Q. It was a turning point.
3 A. Exactly. I think that Prekaz is the turning point.
4 Q. You also knew -- and that was the beginning of March 1998;
6 A. Could you repeat the question, please?
7 Q. Prekaz, that's the beginning of March 1998?
8 A. Yes. This occurred on the 5th, 6th, and 7th of March after the
9 events in Qirez and Likoshan, which happened, if I'm not mistaken, on the
10 28th or 29th of February.
11 Q. You also knew that the KLA saw Ibrahim Rugova's policies as a
12 failure; right?
13 A. During this period things were really confusing. It is true that
14 the KLA at that time appealed for unity, because every organisation tends
15 and has an objective to be popular. But the situation was confusing
16 because the KLA at that time was a small group, and above all we were
17 thinking of remaining in underground. We thought that they shouldn't
18 come out in public --
19 Q. Mr. Limaj --
20 A. -- initially.
21 Q. I'm going to interrupt you because I don't think you're answering
22 the question. The question was: The KLA thought that Rugova's approach
23 was a failure; correct?
24 A. Yes. The KLA thought that the political attempts until that time
25 failed and that it should search for another alternative.
1 Q. And the political attempts, to be clear, were the attempts that
2 were being promoted by Ibrahim Rugova; correct?
3 A. They were not promoted by Ibrahim Rugova but promoted by
4 different political bodies. Ibrahim Rugova was just one of these
5 different political bodies.
6 Q. But he was one of the ones promoting it and probably the most
7 prominent and the KLA thought that his approach was a failure; correct?
8 A. Well, to give you the real picture at that time, these things
9 need to be clarified. For at that time you can say yes, that Ibrahim
10 Rugova was the promoter of such a policy.
11 Q. And you also thought that Rugova's approach was a failure; right?
12 You yourself.
13 A. No. I didn't think so that, but this was obvious in every step
14 that you made. I was sure that this way could not lead us to anything
15 concrete, to any changes for Kosova. And such messages were received by
16 the international community as well.
17 Q. I'm sorry. I didn't understand your answer. You said, "No, I
18 didn't think that," but then you said it was obvious. Did you think it
19 was a failure or not, Mr. Limaj?
20 A. Maybe my answer was confusing, but what I meant was that this is
21 what I thought, and this is what was obvious.
22 Q. Thank you. You also knew that the KLA had a policy of targeting
23 people suspected of collaborating; right? You knew that.
24 A. Yes. Yes. The KLA aimed at targeting those who were directly
25 working for the Serbian police and secret service. There was a
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 communique issued to that effect.
2 Q. Do you recall which communique that was?
3 A. To tell you the truth, I'm maybe not sure. Such communiques
4 appeared in 1996 and even later, but I can't tell you exactly which.
5 Q. Well, we'll look at the communiques and see if we can find that
6 one you described, because I don't recall seeing it. But you claimed on
7 the second day of testimony and you've repeated it to some extent just
8 now, that for the KLA, "collaborators were," and I'm quoting you, "were
9 those people who were actively inspectors in the UDB or in the police,
10 people directly involved in operations involving murders, assassination
11 attempts, offences or ransacking and searches, violation, imprisonment of
12 people, persistent operations." That's what you said was how the KLA
13 defined collaborators; right? Is that yes?
14 A. Yes. This is how I saw that.
15 Q. Now, in -- from early 1997, Jakup Krasniqi was on the General
16 Staff of the KLA; right?
17 A. I didn't know that. For the first time I saw Jakup Krasniqi as a
18 member, as a spokesperson of the KLA of General Staff when he appeared
19 publicly. I didn't know that before. I didn't even know him personally.
20 Q. So as of June 14, 1998, you knew that he was on the General
21 Staff; right?
22 A. Yes. He was a spokesperson of the General Staff, and normally he
23 necessarily should be a member in the capacity of the spokesperson.
24 Q. Now, you also testified that after the 14th of June you saw Jakup
25 Krasniqi regularly. Do you remember that?
1 A. Yes. After the 14th of June, I used to see him quite frequently
2 when he came to Klecke. I went to his home at a later time. Once I saw
3 him in Kroimire. Yes, I did see him frequently.
4 Q. Well, in fact you said that you met with him at least every other
5 day after the 14th of June.
6 A. Yes. Yes. When he was in Klecke, I saw him in Divjak. I'm
7 saying Klecke, but Divjak. I saw him on a daily basis almost. But he
8 didn't stay all the time in Divjak and Klecke. He went to different
9 places. But for the time he was in Klecke or in Divjak in his base I saw
10 him regularly.
11 Q. And you testified that you went to him with demands because you
12 needed to have, and I'm quoting you, you "needed to have available more
13 accurate information as to what we should do from now then -- onwards."
14 That's your testimony, isn't it, Mr. Limaj?
15 A. Yes, that happened for the first time officially when I said you
16 could address a KLA General Staff representative. In this case I thought
17 that through him everything could be resolved, because after 29th of May,
18 as I said, events changed the reality.
19 Q. In fact, you said that he -- you described him as "the most
20 competent person with which we could discuss issues directly." Those
21 were the words you used on the second day of your testimony. You're
22 nodding your head.
23 Now, he defined collaborators very differently from the way
24 you've defined collaborators in this courtroom. He defined -- he
25 testified that collaborators were people who caused the country damage.
1 He said a collaborator is a person who "was harmful to the KLA, when such
2 a person is giving information on the movements of the KLA to the
3 Belgrade regime."
4 That's how he defined collaborators, Mr. Limaj. And that's what
5 you thought, too, isn't it?
6 A. No. Facts speak differently. They prove what I am saying. If
7 what you are saying is true, then the KLA would have never found the
8 support of the large masses of people, and it would be likely turned into
9 a terrorist organisation.
10 I have thought what I have stated here before this Honourable
12 Q. Are you saying that you had a different view than the KLA or that
13 Mr. Krasniqi was wrong about how he described collaborators?
14 A. I am telling you that I have seen what the KLA did, and this is
15 how I saw it. As to Mr. Krasniqi, he may have given, issued confusing
17 Q. Mr. Krasniqi also said at another point in his testimony that --
18 he talked about "collaborators of the enemy who are numerous in Kosovo in
19 the economic and the political sphere as well as the cultural and in the
20 security spheres." That's again a much broader definition of
21 collaborators than what you offered in court here in your testimony,
22 isn't it, Mr. Limaj?
23 A. Yes, there is a difference, but I think we must make things clear
24 here. You are asking me whether the target of the KLA were the
25 collaborators, those whom I referred to here as people who have
1 collaborated with the Serb. But those who have worked with the Serbs,
2 they are different from the collaborators. At least this is how I have
3 seen it.
4 Q. My question for you is: Was your view different from the KLA's
6 A. No, it was not different. I'm telling you I have seen from the
7 concrete actions of the KLA. I'm not claiming here that any mistakes
8 might not have been made, but the actions of the KLA during 1996, 1997
9 were what I'm trying to tell here. Some mistakes may have been
10 committed, but the KLA had clear instructions as to the people who they
11 might target through communiques. I think that we have acted along the
12 logic that the KLA followed, which coincides with my logic.
13 Q. Mr. Limaj, that answer gives rise to a number of questions. The
14 first is: You said the KLA followed this approach during 1996, 1997.
15 You didn't say anything about 1998. Did something change in 1998?
16 A. No.
17 Q. Was it the same in 1998 according to you?
18 A. I said 1996 in the sense of how I came to form such a vision,
19 things which enabled me to create the opinion that I have. That's why I
20 referred to 1996 and 1997. I think that it was at this time that the KLA
21 dealt with such persons, but this continued, of course, during 1998,
22 1999, at least as far as the policy of the KLA is concerned. People may
23 have erred, but I can't say. We cannot say this was the policy followed
24 by the KLA. Sometimes the KLA itself, the General Staff, has made some
25 mistakes. Such mistakes cannot be ruled out, but I'm speaking in
2 Q. But just to be clear, your testimony is that the KLA's policy was
3 to target collaborators who were actively working for the Serb police or
4 UDB in 1996, 1997, and 1998? That's your testimony?
5 A. I said the target of the KLA in 1996, 1997, 1998 were the people
6 who were - not necessarily in 1996 but even before that time - people who
7 were active and participated in murders, violations, kidnapping, and
8 indirect massacres committed by the Serbs. This is what I meant.
9 Q. You also testified just a moment ago that the KLA had "clear
10 instructions as to the people who they might target through communiques."
11 Is it your testimony that those clear instructions were communicated
12 through the communiques or by some other means?
13 A. I said, Your Honours, that through the communiques the KLA had
14 made clear its objective, its approach, and through its operations on the
15 ground during the murder of these inspectors. So through the communique
16 you could understand who the target of the KLA actions were.
17 Q. So when you referred to "clear instructions" you were only
18 referring to the communiques. Is that right, Mr. Limaj?
19 A. Yes, yes, only to the concrete actions that could be seen on the
21 Q. Now, Mr. Krasniqi, who testified here and who was responsible for
22 some of those communiques, testified that never in those communiques was
23 there a definition provided as to what was a collaborator. And that's
24 true, isn't it, Mr. Limaj?
25 A. Sir, I'm trying to explain things. If you are asking me whether
1 the communiques contained in writing in explicit terms who should be
2 killed and who shouldn't, this is not true. But the communiques proved
3 that a collaborator, an inspector, was killed because of his activity.
4 Another thing: In the region that person lived the citizens knew
5 very well who he was because otherwise the citizens would have responded
6 against his murder. This is what I'm telling you, not that the
7 communiques contained written statements to that effect.
8 Q. So in other words your testimony is that the KLA counted on
9 people knowing who the specific individuals named in the communiques were
10 and they were in fact people who had worked for the police or UDB.
11 Because that was never stated in the communiques that they had worked for
12 the police or the UDB, was it?
13 A. You have the communiques in front of you. They say that Enver
14 Bajgora is a UDB inspector who directly participated in murders, raids
15 and -- his is no better information than to tell you that Enver Bajgora
16 was killed. A police inspector was killed. I don't remember the place.
17 And you have other occasions like this. This is a concrete example to
18 show the activity of such a person.
19 Q. Do you remember any other examples from the communiques?
20 A. Yes. Lutfi Havazi, another example. If I'm not mistaken he was
21 injured, a man who had clearly participated in political assassination
22 attempts, massacres. One of my colleagues in Kosova - I heard it here -
23 Sabri Hamiti was injured by this person, together with another person.
24 Or the murder of Enver Maloku. It turned out that Lutfi Havazi had
25 prepared that murder act. Sabri Hamiti, a distinguished academician,
1 that too was perpetrated by him. And there are enigmatic injuries of
2 persons who are discussed even now in Kosova. And there are other
4 Q. Can you think of any other examples where the communique
5 identified somebody as being a police inspector or a member of the UDB
6 and was killed for that reason?
7 A. It is difficult for me to remember each and every one, Your
8 Honours. Apart from Lutfi Havazi, maybe Zymer Zymeri. An assassination
9 attempt was staged but it failed. He too had directly participated in
10 the preparation of such operations against these peoples who are still a
11 mystery. The testimony given by the UDB inspector shows that -- I read
12 that testimony.
13 Your Honours, there are many such instances which I personally
14 may not know because the activity in the UDB, as we have seen even here,
15 was kept confidential. Some people knew about that but not everyone.
16 The Prosecutor's office could have brought us the files to see
17 who they were, those people who had directly participated in such
18 actions. I'm just citing only some cases which are public knowledge,
19 concrete cases which show clearly what the orientation is, the direction
20 which we should go and which we have gone. I'm not telling that mistakes
21 were not made.
22 Q. Mr. Limaj, are you now saying that in some instances
23 collaborators were killed because they were secretly part of the police?
24 A. No. No. The bulk of them, those who were murdered, had taken
25 concrete actions. But I mean that there are other people whose activity
1 we don't know, who have been involved in various operations, but we can't
2 know all of them. As the case is with Lutfi Havazi whose activity is not
3 known for the public in Kosova. It was here that I heard about the
4 murder of Lutfi Maloku [as interpreted] by that person. Many people in
5 Kosova to this day do not know that he was the one who did it.
6 I think that the KLA knew what it was doing in the concrete
7 instances since it has undertaken such operations against such
9 Q. Well, that's completely untrue, isn't it, Mr. Limaj? Let's talk
10 about Ramiz Hoxha and Selman Binici.
11 A. [No interpretation]
12 Q. You know that they were killed by the KLA on the 2nd of October,
13 1998; right? You're nodding.
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Ramiz Hoxha was from Bellanice.
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Selman Binici was from Banje?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. The 2nd of October, 1998, those villages were within the 121st
21 A. Can you repeat the question, please, the last part of it?
22 Q. On the 2nd of October, 1998, Bellanice and Banje were within the
23 121st Brigade; correct?
24 A. Your Honours, we were at the phase of the restructuring the
25 brigade in various parts, in various areas, and this was the case also
1 for the 121st Brigade. That part fell under the command of that brigade,
2 as you said. That's true.
3 Q. So the answer is yes, they were in the 121st Brigade?
4 A. Yes. Yes. Yes. They were intended to be part of the -- covered
5 by the Brigade 121st.
6 Q. I'm sorry, were they in the brigade or were they not in the
7 brigade on the 2nd of October, 1998?
8 A. If you allow me to explain, I will explain. They were under the
9 Brigade 121st, but after the August offensive, as I told you, soldiers or
10 members or the structures of the KLA were reorganised. Various units
11 were in Bellanice, Blace, Banje. A number of surrendered their weapons
12 or they had withdrawn. So we had to restructure the KLA in those areas
13 where the Serb police were still operating --
14 Q. I'm sorry, by the 2nd of October, 1998, several months later,
15 those villages, your testimony is that they were in the 121st Brigade.
16 You're nodding your head yes.
17 In fact --
18 A. [No interpretation]
19 Q. In fact -- let me ask you another question. In fact, the son of
20 Ramiz Hoxha, Enver Hoxha, was a soldier in the 121st Brigade at that
21 time; correct?
22 A. This is what I wanted to clarify. The units that had remained
23 from the past was -- were still being reconstructed, and the area you're
24 referring to was still under Serb control, and we were not able act and
25 operate in Bellanice or in Temeqine or in Blace because the Serbian
1 forces were positioned at Malisheve, at Duhle, and they were moving
2 uninterruptably along that line. At that time this was an area which was
3 not controlled by the KLA.
4 Q. But it fell under the area that the 121st Brigade was interested
6 A. [No interpretation]
7 Q. Now, Ramiz Hoxha and Selman Binici did not work for the Serb
8 police of the UDB, did they?
9 A. Your Honours, I can speak of Selman Binici. He is a friend of
10 mine from school. We are the same generation. We had good contacts with
11 him, and I maintained these contacts even after we completed school. He
12 helped me on different occasions with different things, economically and
13 so on. We were not only schoolmates but we also visited families. I
14 visited his and he visited mine. And I never heard that Binici was a
15 collaborator with the Serbs. Even when he was killed, I didn't hear that
16 he had been a collaborator.
17 As for Mr. Hoxha, Your Honours, I already told you that I grew up
18 in Bellanice. In other words, I had family ties there, and I knew most
19 of this village. Ramiz, I knew him because he was nephew in our village.
20 Q. [Previous translation continues] ...
21 A. No, no. He was never a member of the police.
22 Q. Before he was executed on the 2nd of October, he was one of nine
23 men who represented his village in peace negotiations with the Serb
24 authorities after the Serb offensive; right?
25 A. I don't know about that. Maybe there were nine, 12, or 13. It
1 could be that Ramiz was one of them.
2 Q. And --
3 A. I know about this case, yes.
4 Q. And on the 2nd of October, they were kidnapped from their
5 villages, driven to a road and executed. You're nodding your head yes.
6 Ramiz Hoxha was cut on the right side of his face and he was shot in the
7 chest. Selman Binici had his skull broken. Right?
8 A. This is not correct. I've seen two of the bodies, Your Honours,
9 and this is not true. The reason I've seen the bodies is that I was
10 there myself along the road where the bodies were, and it's not true that
11 they were in the state that you describe it. I just saw that they had
12 been shot by a weapon.
13 Q. That's all. They were just shot by a weapon. Is that your
15 A. What I said was that I didn't see anything apart from the fact
16 that they were dead, executed. I didn't check their bodies. The
17 position that these bodies were lying, they had nothing on them except
18 for bullet shots. I didn't see anything else. I didn't see anything
19 what Mr. Prosecutor is saying. I don't know what the later analysis
20 showed. Maybe I am mistaken, but what I've seen is what I've described
21 just now.
22 Q. Did you examine the bodies closely, Mr. Limaj?
23 A. To tell you the truth, Mr. Prosecutor, the situation was really
24 tense. We were in a shock and things can be forgotten. I think that a
25 person, a close relative of Ramiz, turned his body on the other side.
1 Maybe I am mistaken, but this person turned the body. And I again would
2 like to stress that I did not see the things that you have described.
3 Personally, I didn't see them.
4 Q. There was a note left next to their bodies which read and I'll
5 read it it's in evidence, P184, and the note said, it was from the Kosovo
6 Liberation Army, from the Secret Police Service Centre: "In the name of
7 the people," and it's an "order of the execution for the collaboration
8 with the invaders."
9 "For the anti-Albanian propaganda and for the spread of fear,
10 panic and hatred in the name of the Albanian people and in the name of
11 our liberation war, we sentence Ramiz Hoxha to death as a traitor of our
12 nation. The same thing will happen to all the other traitors."
13 So, Mr. Limaj, it's not true, is it, that collaborators were only
14 people who worked for the Serb police?
15 A. You, Mr. Prosecutor, cannot give an answer without hearing to the
16 very end the case of these two persons. You have to listen my testimony
17 to the very end.
18 The letter that you've just read, Your Honours, I've seen this
19 letter next to the bodies of these two persons. It was a piece of paper
20 with extraordinary, not very ordinary writing, probably written by
21 someone who was not well educated. But you should listen to my answer to
22 the very end, what I have heard about this incident, because it is in my
23 interest, too, to clarify things about this case as there were many
25 Q. I'm interested in your complete answer, Mr. Limaj, I am. But
1 this was done by the KLA, wasn't it? You've already told us that.
2 You're nodding --
3 A. Yes, yes.
4 Q. And you've also told us that neither of these people worked for
5 the police.
6 A. Up to that time, I had never heard that these two persons, Your
7 Honour, and for the sake of the truth and for the sake what I've -- what
8 I know, up to that time I had never heard that these two persons were
9 collaborators or members of any Serb police units. I don't know about
10 the other person, but for Ramiz because he worked in Slovenia for some
11 time. But as for Mr. Binici, I know that person. He was there the night
12 I fled from Serb forces. If you remember Your Honours, I said that I was
13 staying with a family --
14 Q. You're changing the subject now. You're talking about something
15 different. Let's talk about this. So what you said earlier, it's not
16 true that collaborators were only people who worked for the Serb police;
17 is that right? Yes or no? It was not true?
18 A. You cannot get my answer on this question unless you hear me out.
19 I would like to explain everything.
20 Q. Why don't you give an answer and then give your explanation?
21 A. Because things that I heard later on showed that these two
22 persons were implicated in a case. At least this is the information I
23 got, because I was directly interested in this case. I think this is
24 important for Their Honours to know. At least for Selman I wanted to
25 know what had happened, what did he do. And out of this interest I got
1 an information, a complete information which I find important to share it
2 here with you, and I think that I should state what kind of information I
4 Q. I'll give you an opportunity to state that information, but --
5 but you did not learn later that they had worked for the Serb police, did
7 A. Later I learned of a very grave case which is directly linked
8 with the Serbian police, and I'm stressing here that I heard about this
9 case, and it's important for me to mention it here.
10 Q. Well, before you give that explanation, let's look at the way the
11 KLA itself described why these people were killed.
12 MR. WHITING: And again, this is in evidence. It's in evidence
13 in two different places, but one place is P184, because there were
14 several newspaper articles. There was a communique issued on the 5th of
15 November, 1998, and I'll read from the one in Koha Ditore. It's up on
16 Sanction I note in the translation the date is wrong. It says 5 at the
17 present time but it's actually 5 November in the one attached.
18 It says -- I'm reading this communique. It says, "According to
19 the KLA Information Service Directorate's information, in their
20 activities against the KLA's war of liberation the above made" -- and
21 this is referring to different people, Cen Desku and Jakup Kastrati, "the
22 above made propaganda in favour of handing over of weapons in cooperation
23 with collaborators Selman Binici from Banje village and Ramiz Hoxha from
24 Bellanice village. Executed earlier by the KLA. As well as being in
25 long-term coordination with Agim Krasniqi, a member of the LDK Presidency
1 who is also known to the KLA Information Service as an instigator of
2 special warfare against the KLA and the founder of a sort of Kosovo
3 police in support of autonomy."
4 Q. There's nothing in there from Selman Binici working for the Serb
5 police, is there? You're shaking your head.
6 A. That's right.
7 Q. They were not executed because they worked for the Serb police,
8 were they?
9 A. Please, this is important. This interlinks with other things,
10 and that's why I think it's important that you hear me out. This is at
11 least what I was told and why they concretely didn't say what led to that
13 At that time, I was exercising a continuous pressure on the
14 General Staff to get information how these people were killed, because
15 these two people I knew very well. They were in the terrain. The murder
16 was committed in the terrain covered by my brigade. We wanted to know
17 what was going on. Now we had the borderline as envisaged to be covered
18 by the brigade, and it was in our interest to find out what was going on.
19 MR. MANSFIELD: I wonder if I might intervene. He's been
20 promised the opportunity to give his explanation.
21 JUDGE PARKER: I know, Mr. Mansfield. I'm well alert and I'm
22 waiting, but I think it can't be said it's being denied yet.
23 MR. WHITING:
24 Q. Mr. Limaj, why don't you explain what you learned.
25 A. Yes, of course. Your Honours, maybe it would be appropriate for
1 the sake of their families to go into a private session. Personally, I
2 don't mind speaking in an open session, but just to consider the names
3 that will be mentioned. But it's very important because this has to do
4 with a rape, and that's why maybe it would be appropriate to go in
5 private session. If not, I can speak of this in public session as well.
6 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, I don't know what's coming. Out of an
7 abundance of caution we should go into private session. We can always
8 make it public later if that's appropriate.
9 JUDGE PARKER: Private session.
10 [Private session]
11 Page 6150 redacted. Private session.
21 [Open session]
22 THE REGISTRAR: We're in open session.
23 MR. WHITING:
24 Q. So, Mr. Limaj, your testimony is that when you spoke to Sokol
25 Bashota and Rexhep Selimi and Kadri Veseli and all the members of the
1 General Staff they didn't tell you that this was the reason for the
2 murder but that you heard this from somebody else, this Mensur Zyberi
3 from Rahovec. Is that your testimony?
4 A. No. I said that when I went to the members of the General Staff,
5 I sought an explanation whether they were killed by the KLA. The KLA
6 should assume responsibility for that. Otherwise, we should find the
8 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... did assume responsibility
9 for it, didn't it? Isn't that correct? They did assume responsibility
10 for it in a communique?
11 A. At that time, Sokol and Kadri told me that we would investigate
12 the case. We will see what happened. And then after that they issued
13 the communique, the General Staff. After the information came.
14 Q. So your testimony is that they issued this communique to cover up
15 the real reason for the murder. That's your testimony?
16 A. Yes. As I said, because it was a sensitive matter. We didn't
17 want the Albanians to be decked out as persons who could do this with the
18 Serb forces. It was debasing for the KLA communique to present Albanians
19 in such a light. This is what they thought best.
20 Q. And the note that was left by the body, that was not part of this
21 cover-up, was it? Because that was left at the time they were killed.
22 A. Yes. I saw -- I saw the nod with my own eyes. That's true.
23 Q. And this, as you say, was within your brigade. Did you do
24 anything? Aside from talking to the General Staff, did you yourself do
25 anything to investigate this?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 A. Your Honours, after the information I received and when the
2 General Staff assumed responsibility for that, I considered the issue
3 closed, that there was nothing else I could do. It was not my
4 responsibility, because I knew this was an act not committed by my
5 soldiers, that we had nothing to do with it. And I considered it as
7 Q. It was an act committed by KLA soldiers in your zone, wasn't it?
8 A. It was not committed in my zone. The people were taken, if I
9 might say, in my territory. They had gone to another territory.
10 Q. I see. So because they were kidnapped in your territory and
11 murdered in another territory you thought that you didn't need to
12 investigate it? Not your matter? Not for you to worry about?
13 A. No. No, on the contrary. I think I told you that I did my job.
14 Just because they were people from my territory, I inquired. Had I not
15 done what I did, maybe what happened wouldn't have happened. Those
16 people -- the General Staff assumed responsibility for the act, and I
17 felt that I no longer could do anything.
18 Q. You said --
19 A. It was just because they were from my territory that I inquired
20 after what happened.
21 Q. You said there was --
22 A. I couldn't do more at that time, Your Honours.
23 Q. Well, did you ever go talk to their families?
24 A. [In English] Yes.
25 Q. You go.
1 A. [Interpretation] Yes, yes, I did.
2 Q. Who did you talk to in the families?
3 A. Your Honours, if I am not wrong, on the next day -- I think, yes,
4 it was the next day. I went to Selman Binici's family. I met with his
5 brothers and parent and talked, and they asked me about what had
6 happened, and nobody knew. And I told them that just like you I know
7 nothing. His father asked me, Do you know if my son did anything wrong?
8 And I answered, Not as far as I know. You know I was his friend, and I
9 expressed my condolences, because my family was a neighbour to Selman's
10 house. They were divided by a wall.
11 Q. Mr. Limaj, after you found out the information that you learned
12 from Mensur Zyberi from Rahovec, did you then go back to the families of
13 Ramiz Hoxha or Selman Binici to see if it could possibly be true?
14 A. Your Honour, after the General Staff had assumed responsibility
15 for what happened, I did not go to these families.
16 Q. Nobody went to the families, did they?
17 A. No, not that I know.
18 Q. Nobody investigated these allegations, did they?
19 A. I did my share of work, as I told you. I couldn't do more than
21 Q. Now -- you couldn't do that, more than that, or you chose not to
22 do more than that?
23 A. Your Honours, you do not know what the situation was in September
24 1998 in Kosova, especially in that area. There was total confusion.
25 Following the September offensive, it was impossible to move about. I
1 think that was the first move, I think, end of September, beginning of
2 October, when I went to visit my family after all what had happened in
3 August. It was, as I said, total confusion.
4 Q. I'm going to interrupt you because you're talking about yourself
5 again and I want to talk about these families.
6 Nobody ever went and talked to them. A year later, Ramiz Hoxha's
7 son Fadil Hoxha published an article in the newspaper other saying that
8 there was never any trial or any kind of hearing or procedures or
9 anything, and that is also in evidence. It's P184. It's attached to
10 Enver Hoxha's statement. That's true. There was never any
11 investigation; right? Not then, not a year later, never.
12 A. No, never. At least I don't know. I know as far as what I told
14 Q. And the truth, Mr. Limaj, is that these men weren't killed for
15 those reasons that you gave the Court but they were killed because they
16 were perceived for whatever reason as not being loyal to the KLA. Isn't
17 that true? Exactly what is said in the statements in the note left by
18 their body and in the newspaper article. That's why they were killed,
19 isn't it, Mr. Limaj?
20 A. No. I cannot accept that, because I have many more reasons to
21 believe what I was told at that time. I cannot accept what you are
22 putting to me, because since you are saying that no investigations were
23 carried out, I told you the only information I had at that time. These
24 people came from another region, and I had no reason to suspect that
25 these people wanted to do something -- some harm to others. That's why I
1 believed what I was told, because they came from another region. If they
2 were from Banje, then I would have reason to believe that there was some
3 other underlying motive. But the person who told me didn't know
4 anything, just as people he had seen with his eyes. At least that's what
5 he told me. That's why I believed him.
6 Q. Let's look now at the communiques, because you've talked about
7 them and let's actually look at them.
8 MR. WHITING: For that purpose I'm going to ask that you provided
9 P48 and P49, and P48 we can provide in the large format which is easier
10 to read.
11 That's P48, the large format. But he'll also need P49, even for
12 him, because I think there's a translation of one of them that's in P49.
13 I can actually provide the first one. If we could provide this.
14 I'm going to turn our attention first to the first page of P49.
15 In English it's communique from 20 May 1997. It's U0038552, and I have
16 the Albanian translation here. It's one that is not contained in P48.
17 So if that could be shown to the witness.
18 Q. Mr. Limaj, here's and communicate from the 20th of May, 1997.
19 It's communique number 33. It's when you were in Switzerland; is that
21 A. Read it?
22 Q. I'm going to -- I'm just going to focus on the second sentence,
23 which is: "In a press release, communique number 33, faxed to the media,
24 the UCK said that it killed Hetem Dobruna at Llozice village at Klina
25 earlier this month because of his notorious and open collaboration with
1 the Serbian occupying authorities."
2 Now, there's nothing in that communique, is there, about him
3 working for the Serb police or the UDB, is there?
4 A. But that doesn't mean that he hasn't worked for them. This in my
5 opinion doesn't prove anything. I think you can prove who he was,
6 whether that is true or not.
7 Q. Mr. Limaj, you testified earlier that there were clear
8 instructions in the KLAs -- I mean in the communiques.
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And there are no clear instructions in this communique, are
12 A. There may not be here, but you have other communiques that
13 contained such instructions. You have them in your evidence. There are
14 such, many I think.
15 Q. Let's look at the other communiques.
16 MR. WHITING: I'm going to turn to communique number 35, and in
17 the English it is U0038554 in P49. In the Albanian it's page 1607 at the
19 Q. You see the numbers at the top, Mr. Limaj? Maybe the usher needs
20 to provide assistance. It's U0081607. It should be Koha Ditore from 8
21 August 1997.
22 A. 16 -- what did you say?
23 Q. 607. On the Albanians it's in the upper left. It says: "By
24 decision of the UCK Central Staff made on 3 and 4 August, our guerrilla
25 units carried out three armed operations against the occupiers and their
1 collaborators." And then it talks about two assassinations of two
3 And again, there's nothing there, is there, about them working
4 for the police or being in the UDB?
5 A. It's true. It doesn't say anything about these two persons. It
6 doesn't explicitly say that they have worked, but I think that most of
7 the communiques do contain such instructions. In the case of Ramiz Leku,
8 I have heard -- I don't know he's -- I have heard that this person
9 continuously participated in murder operations, raids of the inhabitants.
10 For Ali Qullapeku, I haven't heard anything. For Ramiz Leku, this is
11 known all over Drenica that he was a notorious person.
12 Why the communiques have not written everything -- it depends who
13 wrote it. Your Honours, it depends who wrote the communiques, what the
14 person who formulated them thought. But in the case of Ramiz Leku, we
15 all know who he was.
16 Q. Did he work for the Serb police of the UDB?
17 A. Ramiz Leku always worked with the Serb police. He was paid by
19 Q. And it --
20 A. I'm saying again that this is what his co-villagers, people who
21 knew him very well said in the area he operated.
22 Q. How do you know that?
23 A. Your Honours, after March, people talked. There are tens of
24 comrades I have from Drenica. I went to visit the village and we saw
25 each other. I saw Ramiz Keqina who is a martyr now. Ramiz Leku beat him
1 and his family and tens of other families. One of the members was almost
2 paralysed. I remember him --
3 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... the communique in August
4 1997, did you know it then? You didn't, did you? You shook your head.
5 A. The KLA had come out as a force to liberate and serve its people
6 and not to kill Albanians. It was normal for us to believe in the KLA.
7 The public appearance regarding these operations, it was public because
8 if innocent people were killed, the KLA would never have had enjoyed the
9 support amongst the people.
10 Q. Mr. Limaj, it didn't depend on who wrote the communique. It
11 depended on who the person was who was being killed. Some people were
12 killed for being in the police and others were killed simply for talking
13 to the police too much or for being accused of giving evidence or for
14 being suspected. Isn't that true, Mr. Limaj?
15 A. As I said, I don't rule out the possibility that such things
16 occurred. But the majority, I'm referring to the period when there was
17 communiques -- we have seen from the communiques that people were killed.
18 I do not rule out the possibility that someone who was suspected of being
19 with the police was killed, but at that time what I believed was that
20 people -- there were clear instructions about these people.
21 Q. In fact, it was just as Mr. Krasniqi testified here, wasn't it,
22 that people who were suspected of causing damage to the country were
23 considered collaborators. Isn't that true, Mr. Limaj?
24 A. Your Honours, as I said yesterday, day before yesterday,
25 Malisheve comprises of 53 villages. Why any such case occurred in
1 Malisheve until that time. As I said, there were many people who had
2 spent time with the Serb police in cafeterias and nothing befell on them.
3 I didn't see in the villages of my area a person who was killed
4 just because of spending time with Serb policemen in a cafeteria. And
5 imagine the Malisheve municipality consists of 53 villages, and nothing
6 occurred in these villages of this kind. And on this I base my
7 standpoint. If at that time in 1997, 1998, an innocent person was
8 killed, at least the area where that action occurred would know that
9 something is wrong and that there would be a reaction, and the reaction
10 by the population shows that these people were not what you think, Mr.
12 Q. Mr. Limaj, I think the reaction is why you are in court here
13 today. The communique, if you could open it up again, also says that the
14 -- if you could look at it again, that same communique. It says that the
15 KLA is -- it says: "Because we are dealing with an enemy that
16 understands nothing but the language of force, we are compelled to talk
17 down the barrel of a gun not as terrorists but as a liberation
18 organisation." Right?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And it also says at the bottom that: "The UCK draws the
21 attention of the international community to its failure to make a
22 tangible commitment to solving the issue of Albanian lands in the former
24 So as early as August 1997, the KLA is seeking the support of the
25 international community; right?
1 A. Of course. But the risk that we were running was that from the
2 actions it could be labelled as a terrorist organisation, and this had
3 already started.
4 Q. Let's look at communique number 40.
5 MR. WHITING: It's U0038557 in the English, and in the Albanian
6 it is 1608.
7 Q. You're familiar with this communique, aren't you, Mr. Limaj?
8 A. I have read the communiques, and I followed all the communiques
9 published in this period, but I don't know what the reference is here,
10 because at that time, as you know, the only way to communicate with the
11 public was through communiques. We even used to read communiques in
12 public rallies and gatherings just to let the population know that the
13 KLA existed.
14 Q. And in fact, a copy of this communique was found in your house
15 when your house was searched at the time of your arrest. It's Exhibit
17 A. It is possible. It must be from the public information.
18 Q. Now, in this communique it says that "On the evening of the 20th
19 of November, Dalip Dugolli, a collaborator and one of Milosevic's most
20 trusted men, was killed in the village of Petrastica near Stimlje." Do
21 you see that?
22 A. Yes, yes.
23 Q. It doesn't say anything -- it doesn't say anything about Mr.
24 Dugolli being in the police or UDB, does it?
25 A. It doesn't say that he was a policeman or an UDB member, but this
1 does not exclude the possibility that he did collaborate with the Serbian
2 police. And after all, Dragan Jasovic proved this, and it's exactly in
3 relation to this person we are speaking of here. I never saw or heard of
4 this person. Of course at that time I was in Switzerland. But this does
5 not exclude the possibility that he did participate directly in the
6 operations launched by the Serb police.
7 Q. You had no information, did you, that he was a member of the
8 police or the UDB?
9 A. I was in Switzerland at that time, Mr. Prosecutor.
10 Q. So the answer is no, you had no information.
11 A. No, no. I didn't know him, and I didn't know anything of this.
12 But I heard here from Jasovic for the first time.
13 Q. You didn't hear that he was a -- served in the police, did you?
14 A. I heard that the notorious policeman Jasovic, who had continuous
15 contacts with Dalip, with the forest ranger. And for these reasons it is
16 possible that this person have -- worked for the police. But as I said,
17 this is just possible. I'm just speculating because I don't know about
18 this, and I don't have any information about this.
19 Q. So even today you're still speculating and you have no
20 information; correct?
21 A. I'm not speculating. I'm just saying that I don't know. And you
22 are on the same wave with me because you cannot know either. Only those
23 who committed it can know. Personally, I don't know. And I can not
24 answer for each and every member of the KLA what they did.
25 Q. No clear instructions from the KLA, were there?
1 A. For me they were clear, very clear, to my opinion. And this was
2 discussed thousands of times. I have participated for a year in a row
3 [as interpreted] in public information rallies. We would get these
4 statements. We would discuss them with the citizens, discussing how our
5 war would develop, and everything was clear. And now maybe not all knew
6 and had it clear. But you as well know that there were people who were
7 active and in uniform.
8 Q. I'm sorry, Mr. Limaj, but I thought that at the beginning of this
9 session you testified that the only way this information was communicated
10 about collaborators was through the communiques. Are you now saying that
11 it was communicated some other way, in rallies?
12 A. Your Honours, what I said is the following: When we would
13 discuss during gatherings regarding fund-raising, we of course discussed
14 the importance of war, the goals, how things will develop, how that was a
15 just war, that that was not a terrorist war, that our goals were very
16 clear, that the war was necessary, and the only alternative that the KLA
17 was going to fight the Serb police and those directly involved in the
18 crimes committed by the Serb forces. This were things that we discussed
19 with the citizens, because we needed to raise funds.
20 Q. But, Mr. Limaj, you did not get instructions about -- clear
21 instructions about collaborators and what collaborators were in those
22 rallies or fund-raising, did you? That's not your testimony, is it?
23 A. Your Honours, I think I gave my answer to this question. At that
24 time while we were in Switzerland, from the reactions, citizens'
25 reactions, you could see what was going on. When we returned to Kosova
1 it was clear what our activity was going to be, and I think I have
2 answered your question already two or three times.
3 Q. You will forgive me if I differ but I'll move on. On the same --
4 JUDGE PARKER: Perhaps, Mr. Whiting, is that a convenient time.
5 MR. WHITING: I have just one other sentence to draw his
6 attention to in the communique and then perhaps we can break.
7 Q. In the same communique it says: "We repeat to the international
8 centres that we are interested in this peninsula that our struggle is the
9 just struggle of liberation. It is the occupier who is waging a war of
11 And that's what you and the KLA believed at that time, is that
13 A. Well, I think that true this communique the KLA wanted to show
14 its activities, that it wasn't a terrorist organisation. And, Your
15 Honours, it was the only way to communicate with the public, through
16 communiques. Even as far as I remember in 1997, the Serbs had launched a
17 propaganda before the international community to proclaim the KLA a
18 terrorist organisation. And this -- if -- had the KLA been called as a
19 terrorist organisation, this would have been suicidal for us.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 MR. WHITING: I think that's a convenient time.
22 JUDGE PARKER: We will resume at 6.00.
23 --- Recess taken at 5.39 p.m.
24 --- On resuming at 6.03 p.m.
25 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Whiting.
1 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
2 Q. Mr. Limaj, if we could turn now to communique number 42. It's in
3 your -- in your version it's on 1610.
4 MR. WHITING: In English it's on 8560 in P48. It's a communique
5 from the 28th of February, 1998. 1610.
6 Q. You see it's in the top in the middle. About halfway down it
7 says: "On 13 February 1990," and I believe that's a typographical error.
8 It should be 1998, Mustafe Kurti, a collaborator with the occupier, was
9 liquidated." Do you see that, Mr. Limaj?
10 A. Yes, yes.
11 Q. Nothing there about him being a member of the police or the UDB,
12 is there?
13 A. Your Honours, I have information about this person as well which
14 I can present here before Your Honours. This person is from Obrinje
15 village, who was directly connected to the Serbian police. In his house,
16 the communication line with the Serb police was established, because the
17 village of Obrinje is very close to the Serbian police station in Likovc.
18 In 1997, the entire system of communication was found in his house.
19 As I know, in this period two KLA soldiers were injured in the --
20 on the road Kline-Obrinje, and in this operation Mustafe Kurti
21 participated with the Serb police. And not only Mustafe Kurti but two or
22 three of his brothers were also connected with the Serb police. I think
23 they publicly joined the Serb police forces during the war, during the
24 operations in Drenica. So he was a member of a family who was in direct
25 connections with the Serbian police.
1 This is information that I got after 1998, maybe in April. I'm
2 not quite sure about the time, but I think it was around that time.
3 Q. Okay. But first of all, it's not clear at all -- this
4 information that you claim to have, it's not at all contain in the
5 communique, is it?
6 A. I think that it was clear to all the people in that region. I
7 think it was clear for them. This is what I think.
8 Q. But it wasn't clear to you when you read the communique, was it?
9 A. I didn't have any reasons not to believe what was said in the
11 Q. You also --
12 A. Because not everyone can know whether it is true or not. I
13 didn't know these persons either.
14 Q. Precisely. Mr. Limaj, you've also said two different things.
15 You've said that you thought that they were connected to the Serb police,
16 and then you kind of threw in that you thought they were openly working
17 for the Serb police. He was not an employee of the Serb police, was he?
18 He was not a Serb -- he was not an employee of the Serb police, was he?
19 A. Mr. Prosecutor, I'm sorry to hear what you're saying because the
20 citizens are listening. I did not say that. This person was known to
21 entire Drenica that he was an active person in cooperation with the Serb
22 police. I told you that the soldiers found the entire apparatus of
23 communication in his house. This is not what I've seen personally, but
24 this is what I heard, and everyone in Drenica knows of this person. Not
25 only of him but also of his two or three brothers who also worked with
1 the police.
2 Q. So your testimony is that he was considered a collaborator
3 because he cooperated with the Serb police. Is that your testimony, Mr.
5 A. What I said, Your Honours, earlier, and I'm repeating myself:
6 This person directly participated in the wounding of those two or three
7 soldiers that I mentioned, but he also participated directly in Likoshan
8 and Qirez massacres together with some other Albanians. He was an active
9 member of the Serbian police. He was the person in which -- in whose
10 house this communication system was found, and this proves his position.
11 Another person later on was killed as well.
12 To my knowledge, these people don't live there any longer, and
13 this shows how active they were with the Serbian police.
14 Q. Mr. Limaj, I have to press this point because I suggest your
15 answer is not clear. You are -- it is because of the communication
16 equipment in their house that they were considered to be cooperators with
17 the Serb police. That's what you're saying?
18 A. [No interpretation]
19 Q. Are you saying that this man was a employee of the Serb police,
20 that he was a member of the Serb police himself? Yes or no?
21 A. He was an active participant with the Serbian police and army,
22 and I took the example with the communication equipment just to
23 illustrate his activity. This was my answer.
24 Q. And are you aware -- aside from the communication equipment, are
25 you aware of any other activity that this man participated in?
1 A. Your Honours, this happened after the KLA became public in those
2 parts, that is to say in Obrinje and Likovc. According to what the
3 others have seen, this person was active in the preparation of activities
4 that the Serb regime undertook in Likoshan, Prekaz and Qirez. And
5 together with Lutfi Havazi -- or Ijazi [phoen], I don't remember his last
6 name -- this is a fact. This person directly fought the KLA forces. He,
7 together with his brothers. This person, to the with his three brothers,
8 directly fought against the KLA members. This I know.
9 Q. Mr. Limaj, you have testified that he participated directly in
10 Likoshan and Qirez massacres. That's what you said. I'm reading it from
11 the computer.
12 A. What I've heard is that he took part in the preparation of the
13 activities and the massacres in Qirez and Likoshan because this was an
14 extraordinary case. This is amongst the rarest cases of persons who --
15 where fighting occurred, where there was direct fighting with the
16 soldiers. And this was known to the public. Occurred sometime in April.
17 Q. Mr. Limaj, he was killed on the 13th of February, 1998. That's
18 before the massacres in Likoshan and Qirez.
19 A. Mr. Prosecutor, I described how active his family was. He,
20 together with his three brothers. He participated directly, and as a
21 result of the activities in Likoshan and in Prekaz, his family, himself
22 and his brothers, fought directly with the KLA members. He was killed
23 before the activities in Likoshan and Qirez, but his activities continued
24 because the preparations for the massacres at Likoshan and Qirez could
25 not be done in one day. This is what I know.
1 And for the developments in April, we are witnesses to that. We
2 heard that because we could move at that time. We could go to Likovc.
3 And to go to Likovc, you have to go through Obrinje.
4 Q. Mr. Limaj, at the time he was killed, even if it were true that
5 he were involved in preparation of those massacres, that could not have
6 been known. You agree with that; right? That was not known at the time
7 he was killed.
8 A. People knew that he was an active member of the KLA --
9 correction, Serbian police and army. This is true that people knew.
10 Your Honours --
11 Q. You did not know that, did you?
12 A. No, absolutely not. Personally, I don't know this person even
14 Q. Exactly. Further down on the communique it says, "We welcome the
15 increased interest of the international community and especially U.S. and
16 Franco-German diplomacy and declare that a solution to the Albanian
17 question cannot be confined to the present borders of Kosova."
18 Again, an appeal for international support; right?
19 A. Yes, yes.
20 Q. Could we turn to a speech that Jakup Krasniqi gave. It's P141.
21 MR. WHITING: If that could be provided to the witness, please.
22 Q. On the second page in the English and the Albanian, it says --
23 this is a speech that Jakup Krasniqi gave at a funeral for the victims of
24 Qirez and Likoshan. It says "We also warn the international mechanisms -
25 the UN, the Security Council, the USA, the EU and European Parliament, et
1 cetera, to respect the charters and documents which they themselves
2 drafted and signed from the Atlantic one to that of Helsinki and Paris.
3 "We are fully confident that in none of the mentioned valid
4 documents can the defending of one's national threshold and dignity be
5 assessed as a terrorist act, and that not a single liberation war in any
6 country of the world has been qualified as a terrorist one. And our war
7 is nothing but a liberation one. If we chose to exercise terrorism, we
8 would surely do it in Serbia and not in our homes."
9 That was the position of the KLA, wasn't it?
10 A. For the sake of the truth -- I don't know in what capacity Mr.
11 Krasniqi delivered this speech, but vision presented here is a vision of
12 the KLA. That's a fact. I can't ascertain here whether he gave that on
13 behalf of the KLA spokesperson as an activist or as a member, but the
14 things mentioned here are things constantly mentioned in the communiques
15 of the KLA and the political statements. I agree with that.
16 Q. If we could turn to communique number 45. It's that -- in that
17 large format. It's 1612 and in English it's 8566. It's from the 11th of
18 March, 1998. 1612, yes. It's on the bottom right and it says almost at
19 the bottom it says, "We ask the world's capitals to recognise the state
20 of Kosova and punish the Serbian occupier on the international
21 conventions of war, because Serbia's fascist war to annihilate the
22 Albanian people is now plain."
23 Do you see that?
24 A. Excuse me. Give me a second to find it. Yes.
25 Q. And that also expresses the view of the KLA; right?
1 A. Yes. Yes.
2 Q. Turn, please, to communique number 47. It's 1614, and in English
3 it's 8573 of P48. In Albanian it's at the top of the page and it's
4 published in Koha Ditore an on the 13th of May, 1998. And I want to read
5 at the beginning. It says: "On the orders of the UCK General Staff
6 successive operations against the invasion troops were carried out in
7 Operational Zone Number 1, that is in the operational subzones of
8 Drenica, Erenik, Dukagjin, Pastrik, and Llap."
9 It also says, "Throughout this period operations were also
10 carried out against Albanian collaborationists who despite earlier
11 warnings did not abandon their anti-national courses of action."
12 Now, my first question is this is dated the 13th of May, 1998.
13 So the operational zones are already conceived. Pashtrik Operational
14 Zone already exists, doesn't it?
15 A. No, that's not true. Not the Drenica zone was formed as a zone,
16 not to speak about Pashtrik [as interpreted].
17 Q. Let's say that the operational zones, or subzones as they are
18 termed in this communique, are at least planned and conceived of; is that
20 A. Yes. Yes, I agree to that, yes.
21 Q. Recalling that this is on the 13th of May, 1998, it says --
22 part-way down in the communique, it says: "In a lightning as by our
23 military formations, an operation again the enemy's punitive expeditions
24 on the main road in the operational subzone of Pashtrik was successful
25 carried out."
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Do you see that, Mr. Limaj?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Now --
4 A. In the Operational Zone of Erenik. Not Pashtrik, Erenik. If I'm
5 correctly following, it some -- successful operations were carried out in
6 the Erenik zone, subzone.
7 Q. No. I'm talking further down, Mr. Limaj. It says "In a
8 lightning action --"
9 A. I apologise then, I --
10 Q. -- enemy's punitive expeditions on the main road in the
11 operational subzone of Pashtrik was successfully carried out." Do you
12 see that? Take your time.
13 A. Give me a second. There is a cluster of names of subzones.
14 "With a rapid operation we managed to successfully carry out an operation
15 in the Pashtrik subzone, operational subzone." Yes, yes.
16 Q. You're looking at the top of the third column?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. I'm talking about the main road in Pashtrik.
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. That's a reference to the battle of the 9th of May in Lapusnik,
21 isn't it?
22 A. No, no, it's not.
23 Q. Mr. Limaj, Mr. Krasniqi said when he testified that this main
24 road was the Peja-Pristina road. This is a -- I'm going to ask you
25 again. This is -- this is a reference to the battle of the 9th of May in
1 Lapusnik, isn't it?
2 A. It may be, but allow me to explain. This is -- this speaks about
3 the main road that passes in the Pashtrik subzone is the Prizren-Pristina
4 road which goes in the middle of Pashtrik zone and I know that various
5 units have carried out operations in this area. The Peja-Pristina road
6 doesn't pass through Pashtrik subzone. It passes through the Drenica
7 Operational Zone and Dukadjin Operational Zone. But the Pristina-Prizren
8 runs in the middle of Pashtrik subzone and the KLA units have carried out
9 operations in various places along this road.
10 Q. Where -- where along that road -- where along that road did they
11 carried out operations, on the Peja-Pristina road? What villages?
12 A. In Duhla there were operational actions; in Samadrazhe, from
13 Drerdalan, from Rahovec, in the villages of Rahovec. Everywhere they
14 could carry out such actions. On the 9th of May it refers to Drenica.
15 Otherwise, it couldn't be. When it talks about the Lapusnik gorge.
16 Q. And it couldn't be, you say, because you say that the Lapusnik
17 was not in the Pashtrik zone?
18 A. Not for that. I can argue why, because, Your Honours, on the 9th
19 of May, there are 10 or 15 military units of Drenica who fought from
20 Orlat, from Gjurgjice to Lapusnik, whereas we, we were five people who
21 went to their succour. That is why I'm saying this. That is the only
22 logical reason.
23 So direct, those units of -- from Gjurgjice with the commander --
24 Gjurgjice, they all fought. They were all -- they were all units from
25 Drenica. So if we follow the logic it refers to them. We were only five
1 people who, as I said, went to help them. A group that decided to go
2 immediately to help them.
3 Q. Mr. Limaj, we'll get to that in due course. But first can you
4 tell me when was the operational action that you're talking about in
5 Duhla? When did that occur?
6 A. The operations, the actions that might have taken place were in
7 Duhla, Istok. I, for example, with Ismet fought with the Serb police in
8 Duhla. When I got injured at night, we went out and we ran into Serb
9 ambush and we fought, and in the course of that fighting I was injured on
10 the arm. At that time, Malisheve didn't have any other place where Serbs
11 attacked other than Duhla or Rahovec, where Rahovec borders Malisheve or
12 the other part that borders Kline.
13 Q. Do you think that night that you got injured in your arm that is
14 being referred to as "the lightning actions by our military formations"
15 in this communique? Is that what the communique is referring to?
16 A. I don't think so.
17 Q. What do you think it's referring to, Mr. Limaj?
18 A. I don't know whether it does, but I am telling you that they
19 refer to the actions of the KLA. It was not Limaj. There were many
20 other units that were involved in actions. I don't remember the names of
21 the units because we were illegal then, underground I mean.
22 I'm trying to give you an example. On the 29th of April, I got
23 injured, and there is a number of activities here, mentioned here. It
24 sums up the activities.
25 Q. I'm interested in the lightning action by your military
1 formations at the main road. Can you help us with what that is if it's
2 not Lapusnik gorge?
3 A. Your Honours, this doesn't specify any particular action. This
4 sums up various activities carried out over a time in various areas to
5 inform the public of the activities that occurred during a certain period
6 of time. It doesn't go into detail. One of those actions on the 26th or
7 29th of April, I myself got injured. But during that time there were
8 other units that operated, units from Malisheve that operated in
9 Duhla-Suhareke road or other places or the units of Rahovec in the road
11 Q. Let's talk about the borders of the operational zone. You drew a
12 diagram. It's DL7. You drew the borders of the operational zones. The
13 first thing that I noticed about this diagram is that - and it can be put
14 before you - the -- the big red triangle in the middle where the bodies
15 were found at Berisha doesn't seem to fall within any zone according to
16 your map, does it?
17 A. I don't understand the question. If you could repeat it, please.
18 Q. The red triangle in the middle of the map there that's at
19 Berisha, where the bodies of people executed were found. That doesn't,
20 according to your map, fall into any of the three zones, does it? It
21 falls into a little space between the three zones. Isn't that right?
22 A. No, no. No. This is not true. I didn't have points there, here
23 where it shows the village.
24 Q. If it could be put on the ELMO.
25 A. [In English] Yes. [Interpretation] May I answer your question?
1 Q. Yes.
2 A. As you can see, Your Honours, when I drew these lines, I based on
3 points. As you can see here, you can see the Berisha point or dot, and
4 Divjak, and the border to which Berisha stretches is underlying there.
5 When I say "Berisha," it does not discuss the fact that Berisha does
6 belong to that zone. Maybe the way it is drawn gives you a wrong
7 impression, but it is true that Berisha belonged there because it is part
8 of Malisheve municipality. But I don't know where the exact border
9 between the Dipjan [phoen] and Malisheve is, but Berisha was part of the
10 Malisheve municipality and that's why I thought that wherever that
11 village was it is part of Malisheve commune or municipality.
12 Q. And therefore, according to you, part of the Pashtrik zone;
14 A. Yes. Here you can see that these villages below Likovc Baince,
15 Shale and Kisna Reka. You can see them here below. Even when I drew the
16 line here I based on the villages. I don't know the border between Kisna
17 Reka and --
18 Q. I was only interested in Berisha.
19 A. [No interpretation]
20 Q. Now, you accept, do you not, that by the end of May, 1998,
21 Syleman Selimi was the commander of the Drenica zone? You accept that;
23 A. Yes, that's what I think. In the end of May, beginning of June,
25 Q. And as the commander of the Drenica zone, he knew the boundary of
1 his zone, didn't he?
2 A. No. He didn't know the boundary of his zone because that line
3 was not determined. The zones were envisaged to -- according to the
4 municipalities. The reconstruction was made quite later.
5 Q. The Klina municipality was always divided between the Drenica
6 zone and the Dukadjin zone, wasn't it?
7 A. And Malisheve-Pashtrik.
8 Q. So it's not true is it that the zones were drawn along the lines
9 of municipalities, because certain municipalities were divided into two
10 different zones.
11 A. No, it's not true. This happened later. In the beginning, the
12 Klina municipality was entirely under the Dukagjini operational subzone,
13 what I know as a principle. But later on according to military logic,
14 the zones were -- the lines were determined according to the necessity in
15 different areas. To my knowledge, Klina, Istok at that time, as well as
16 Peja and Jakov were in Dukagjini zone, or Erenik as it was called. I'm
17 not quite sure. There is a dilemma here because at that time another
18 zone, Erenik zone was envisaged.
19 Q. If you could please simply answer my questions, okay?
20 Syleman Selimi testified that in May 1998 the border of the
21 Drenica zone was the Pristina-Peja highway, and that was true, wasn't it?
22 A. I refer to it the way the General Staff saw it.
23 Q. So you're saying that you knew better or you know better than
24 Syleman Selimi about where his zone -- the border of his zone?
25 A. No. I'm referring to the General Staff and the activity that was
1 ongoing at that time in that area. I'm referring to the General Staff
2 and the activity at that time.
3 Q. Syleman Selimi also testified that he was appointed by the
4 General Staff and had regular communication with the General Staff.
5 A. Syleman Selimi was not designated, but he was a unit commander.
6 And later on he was approved by the General Staff.
7 Q. Approved by the General Staff, appointed by the General Staff to
8 be the commander of the Drenica zone?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And he testified that he had regular communication with the
11 General Staff at that time.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. So he would know, wouldn't he, what the border of his zone was?
14 A. As you know from Mr. Krasniqi's testimony, who was member of the
15 General Staff, why Selimi -- it wasn't clear to him what was the
16 boundary. I don't know. In January 1999, I was part of the commission
17 to determine the zone boundaries.
18 Q. January 1999?
19 A. Yes, in January 1999 I was member of the commission of the
20 General Staff.
21 Q. We're talking about May of 1998. If we could focus on that.
22 Since you mentioned Mr. Krasniqi, he testified that he thought
23 Mr. -- that Syleman Selimi knew the boundary of his zone.
24 A. He should have known the boundaries, but even for that time the
25 fact that he didn't know or whether he knew or not was very common.
1 Q. In fact, Mr. Limaj, the Pashtrik zone went up to the
2 Peja-Pristina highway, and that was the dividing line between the
3 Pashtrik zone and the Drenica zone, and the only reason that you are
4 saying otherwise now is to try to put the Lapusnik village outside of
5 your -- outside of the Pashtrik zone and put into that Syleman Selimi's
7 A. Your attempt to present it in this way is not true. I know your
8 attempts, but this is absolutely not true, because my entire activity
9 shows it different. And you will see what my military activity was, and
10 that's why I'm saying this is not true what you're attempting to put.
11 Here you are trying to present the division of operational zones as per
12 main roads, but this was not true. How, for example, the Nerodime and
13 Pashtrik zone are divided between each other. Didn't talk about the
14 division of zones in a strict sense of the word as you are putting it to
15 me now.
16 Q. Even Ramadan Behluli who was just a soldier in Carraleve knew
17 that he was in the Pashtrik zone.
18 A. Yes. Ramadan Behluli was in Pashtrik zone when he became a
19 soldier after August. But Ramadan Behluli has nothing to do with KLA
20 until August in the sense of zones or boundaries. You know well what
21 position Ramadan Behluli had to know such things.
22 Q. His his statement which is now in evidence as P119, he said that
23 during May, June, and July he -- of 1998 he was in the Pashtrik zone.
24 That's true, isn't it?
25 A. No, that's not true, absolutely not. On the contrary. It's
1 wrong if not a lie. But I believe he made a mistake, and he has not
2 wanted to lie.
3 Let me give you a concrete explanation. The problem is that you
4 have not investigated this issue thoroughly.
5 Q. Mr. Limaj, I'm going to move on. I'd like to look at the
6 statement that Jakup Krasniqi made on the 14th of June, 1998. It's P139.
7 It's not in that bundle, Mr. Limaj. You see bottom of the page
8 there in Albanian?
9 A. Do you mean "An Army That Only Knows Albanianism"? That is the
11 Q. Yes. And there's a picture of Jakup Krasniqi.
12 A. No. There is -- I see a uniform, a logo of the KLA. I don't see
13 -- yes, yes, now I see it.
14 Q. Mr. Limaj, you were standing next to Jakup Krasniqi when he made
15 this declaration, weren't you?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And he said that "The UCK General Staff is of the opinion that
18 during the present phase political pluralism is a luxury."
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... didn't you, Mr. Limaj?
21 A. Yes. This is not the first thing to happen. Even Churchill has
22 declared a similar thing. Jakup Krasniqi was not the first to utter such
23 a statement. That is stated by the representative of the country which
24 is a country rich in democratic traditions. So I fully complied with
1 Q. He also stated that "We are asking the United States of America
2 and the western democracies to be seriously committed to the
3 establishment of freedom and peace in the Balkan region." And then he
4 talks about the UCK, "which has been able to create a broad, free
5 territory within a short period of time and to defend and create new free
6 territories until complete liberation occurs." And that was true, wasn't
7 it? By then the KLA had created a broad territory in your area and in
8 Drenica, a broad free zone; correct?
9 A. Yes. At that time, Malisheva was under the control of the KLA,
10 as I have already explained. Through the statement you can see that the
11 Malisheva was under the control of the KLA, and so we could not see them
12 other than as free zones. From the statement, you can understand that
13 the KLA always sought to resolve the problem through peaceful means,
14 through political means. This shows once again the vision of the KLA, in
15 my opinion.
16 Q. Okay. Let's look at communique number 49 which is published a
17 month later. It's -- in your version it's 1615 in the big format. It's
18 U0038577 in P48. Do you find that, 1615, Mr. Limaj?
19 A. I didn't get the number. Now I saw it. Just a second, please.
20 [In English] Yes. Yes, I see. [Interpretation] I found it.
21 Q. And you see it's on the bottom right of the page?
22 A. "Communication By the Informative Directorate of the KLA"; is
23 that right?
24 Q. Yes. Communique number 49. And it says -- this is on the 13th
25 of July, 1998. This is when -- again when you're regularly meeting with
1 Jakup Krasniqi; right?
2 A. Yes. After the 14th of June we met frequently.
3 Q. And it says: "Measures have also been taken against certain
4 diehard collaborators who are still working against our national
6 Do you see that, Mr. Limaj?
7 A. Just a second.
8 Q. [Previous translation continues] ...
9 A. The third sentence. It must be, as you say, of course, but I
10 can't find it.
11 Q. I'll read it again?
12 A. [In English] Okay. Okay.
13 Q. "Measures have also been taken against certain diehard
14 collaborators who are still working against our national interests."
15 A. [Interpretation] Yes.
16 Q. "Collaborators are people who are working against the interests
17 of the KLA."
18 A. Yes. Yes, yes.
19 Q. Let's move to an interview that Jakup Krasniqi gave in Koha
20 Ditore on the 11th of July, 1998 and it's -- I believe it's the first
21 page of that bundle, 1603, and it's 8580 in P48. Yes? Did you want to
22 say something?
23 A. In the operational zones, in the territories, I know about the
24 place I was situated in Malisheve. There was not a -- it must have meant
25 some other place.
1 Q. Well, Mr. -- Mr. Limaj, in fact this is on the 13th of July,
2 1998. In fact, on the 14th -- either the 14th or 15th of June, the 17th
3 of June, and the 21st of June of 1998, there was fighting -- pretty
4 intensive fighting in Carraleve, wasn't there?
5 A. In July?
6 Q. June.
7 A. Yes, yes.
8 Q. And approximately the 25th of June there was pretty intensive
9 fighting in Luznica, wasn't there?
10 A. [In English] 25 June. [Interpretation] It may be. Yes, in that
11 period there was intensive fighting. I don't maybe remember the exact
12 date, but the period is right.
13 Q. So what you just said, that there was no fighting in your area is
14 not true. This is referring to those fights.
15 A. No, no. No.
16 Q. It says: "Our formations have successfully carried out large
17 operations in the subzones of Pashtrik." That's what it's referring to.
18 The fighting in Carraleve and Luznica.
19 A. No. Maybe the translation was not good. I had in mind something
20 else. I had in mind Malisheve municipality. There were -- there was no
21 fighting inside that municipality at that time. This is what I thought,
22 but there was fighting in Blace, then around Suva Reka which borders with
23 Malisheve. So in the Pashtrik zone there is constant fighting at that
24 time. That is true.
25 Q. Thank you.
1 A. But I meant inside the town.
2 Q. Let's move on to the Jakup Krasniqi interview.
3 A. [In English] Yes. [Interpretation] Can you please repeat it
5 Q. It's 1603.
6 A. 1603, 11th of July.
7 Q. Now, this is an interview that Jakup Krasniqi gave while he was
8 in Klecke; right?
9 A. No, it's not an interview given in Klecke. I can assure you
10 that. It cannot be in Klecke. It may be either in Divjak or in his
11 home, because when they refer to Klecke, I have in mind my base. So --
12 Q. In Divjak.
13 A. It may be Divjak. We have to make a distinction here, to be
14 clear. Either at his home, because at that time Mr. Krasniqi stayed also
15 at his home.
16 Q. And Shukri Buja was present during the interview, wasn't he?
17 A. I don't know.
18 Q. Look at the second -- look at the second page.
19 A. Yes. Yes, I saw it. But I don't know whether -- I didn't know
20 whether it's the same interview we are talking about. Yes. Yes. This
21 photo is in Klecke, yes. But this other photo here doesn't show
22 anything, whereas this photo shows Klecke because I know. I recognise
23 the ground. This interview must have been given in Klecke then.
24 Q. So it was in Klecke after all?
25 A. Yes, yes. Yes, in my own base, in the place where I stayed all
1 the time. But I was surprised. I was taken aback by the first photo
2 which didn't show anything. I know that he has given interviews in many
3 places, but from the second picture I understand that it was in Klecke.
4 Q. Mr. Limaj, if you could look, it's part way -- on the English
5 it's about halfway down on 8580 and on your version on the first page,
6 1603 at the bottom of the first column it says: "The Albanian political
7 parties must recognise the UCK as the entirety of the armed forces of
8 Kosova and recognise the present situation as a state of war."
9 Then -- do you see that at the bottom of the first column?
10 A. No. I'm afraid I'm not finding it. I don't know what you mean,
11 the first, the second, or the third.
12 Q. The first column. Look at the first column. Go to the --
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. [Previous translation continues] ...
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Now do you see it there?
17 A. "Calls on the political parties to unite and to form a front,
18 join the KLA." Yes. This is what you mean?
19 Q. No. It says -- yes. It says: "The political parties must
20 recognise the UCK as the entirety of the armed forces of Kosova,
21 recognise the present situation as a state of war." You see that now?
22 A. Yes. Yes. It's at the end. It means the political parties that
23 operate in Kosova, they should recognise the KLA as entirety of the armed
24 forces and recognise the current situation as a state of war.
25 Q. Thank you. Now, if you would look at the next column, the second
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. The end of Mr. Krasniqi's answer at the bottom of that column.
5 A. Yes, in the end.
6 Q. It says: "The UCK is a liberation army and a regular military
7 formation. It is not an organisation or group that goes in for
8 small-scale actions. Our operations are rather large and bear a greater
9 resemblance to those of a regular army."
10 Do you see that, Mr. Limaj?
11 A. Yes. Yes.
12 Q. And you see -- look at -- there's a second day of the interview.
13 If you go to the 12th of July.
14 A. Well, the 12th of July? I see here the 11th of July.
15 Q. Look at 1605.
16 A. Just a second. Let me find it.
17 Q. You were just looking at 1603. So it's 1605.
18 A. Yes. I see 1604 with a photo of Shukri.
19 Q. 1605, please.
20 A. Then give me a second to find it. I see 1603 and 1604 here.
21 Q. Mr. Limaj, we'll give you a small version of it.
22 A. I found it. I found it.
23 Q. Now, if you would look at the beginning of the interview, the
24 second day of this interview. The beginning of the first column it says:
25 "The UCK is a new army in the process of formation. However, the UCK has
1 had its own staff and its military hierarchy from the start and still has
3 You see that?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Then he says -- at the end of that answer he says: "The UCK is
6 an organised army." You see that?
7 A. Yes. Yes, I do.
8 Q. That was true at the time, wasn't it?
9 A. What can I add to the answer or to the statement made by Mr.
10 Krasniqi? This is not true. This is not true. You had here the author
11 of this interview. It's not true. The facts on the ground speak for
12 themselves. He might have said what he wished. I can give you details
13 about what I know, but this is not true.
14 Q. In fact, Mr. --
15 A. Many international observers have said the same.
16 Q. In fact, Mr. Limaj, you have said that by the middle of June --
17 by the middle of June 1998, the KLA was organised, haven't you?
18 A. No. I said it differently. I said the organisation begins --
19 Jakupi came around the beginning and mid of July to organise something in
20 Pashtrik zone. But you know how long it takes for an organisation to
21 take place. A branch of a political party -- to set up a branch of the
22 political party takes a week at least. I have said this is the
23 beginning, when we see the first nomination of zone commander for the
24 process to go on. This is what I said.
25 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, I wouldn't say it's a convenient time,
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1 but it is 7.00.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Whiting.
3 It will being necessary now to ensure that Mr. Limaj is given a
4 copy of the material before he leaves so that he can have it overnight.
5 MR. WHITING: I've spoken with Defence counsel and that's been
7 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much. We will presume tomorrow at
9 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.00 p.m.,
10 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 24th day
11 of May, 2005, at 2.15 p.m.