1 Wednesday, 8 March 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.17 p.m.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please go into private session
6 before we call the witness.
7 [Private session]
11 Pages 1939-1943 redacted. Private session.
5 [Open session]
6 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
8 Mr. Whiting?
9 MR. WHITING: Yes, thank you, Your Honour. Obviously, we expected
10 to be an issue what should happen to the testimony of the last witness,
11 Mr. Milan Babic. It is the Prosecution's position based on our review of
12 the law and the facts in this case that the testimony should stand, it
13 should be -- it should stay in the case and the Court should be permitted
14 to rely on it and consider it. However, we recognise that this is going
15 to be a disputed issue. What we propose is that we are willing to kind of
16 initiate the procedure here, to get the ball rolling, to get this before
17 the Court, in a proper way. So we are prepared to file a motion setting
18 forth our position as to why we think the testimony can stay in the case
19 and can be relied upon by the Chamber. We will be in a position to do
20 that in approximately two weeks. We want to file as complete and thorough
21 a motion canvassing the law on this issue as we can. And then obviously
22 the Defence will have an opportunity to respond and then the Court can
23 consider the issue and render its decision on it. That is our proposal.
24 I've -- as I said, I've alerted the Defence to that.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Whiting. It hadn't been anticipated
1 by the Bench to deal with that issue at this point. However, the -- I
2 will recognise you -- okay. Let me defer to you, Mr. Milovancevic.
3 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, bearing in mind
4 what my colleague the Prosecutor has just said, the Defence wants to raise
5 a very important matter. The Defence considers that we are not in a
6 position to behave as if in the proceedings so far what happened did not
7 happen. The tragically deceased Mr. Babic was a key Prosecution witness
8 and with his 40 hours of testimony is what the entire indictment is based
9 on. His examination was not completed. The examination-in-chief was
10 conducted, the cross-examination reached halfway, and then with his tragic
11 demise it was interrupted, which means quite literally that the witness
12 wasn't examined fully, and his testimony is not complete because the
13 Defence did not have a chance to cross-examine him in its entirety, nor
14 did the Trial Chamber. So the testimony is invalid and therefore the
15 Defence feels that it cannot be used in these proceedings.
16 This fact alone, that is to say that his examination was not
17 completed, leads to us making that conclusion, in the Defence's
18 submission. In the meantime, we heard some facts that were made public
19 via the information media, the mass media, and the spokesman for the
20 Tribunal to the effect that Mr. Babic committed suicide. Now, if that
21 fact is correct, and according to what the Defence knows at this point in
22 time, that is indeed the case, then the question comes to mind of
23 Mr. Babic's general capabilities and capacity of being a witness and
24 testifying in this trial. So that's the second matter and second question
25 which will need lead to an assessment of the validity of his testimony,
1 that the Trial Chamber in the Defence's submission will have to make a
2 ruling and take a stand.
3 We also received a decision by the president of the Tribunal,
4 according to which Judge Parker was appointed to investigate the
5 circumstances which led to these tragic events. Once the investigation
6 has been completed and when it has been established what took place, then
7 possibly other important questions might be raised relevant to this trial
8 but to other proceedings and other trials as well. At any rate the
9 expense -- the Defence expects that Judge Parker's report will give us an
10 answer to what actually happened to Mr. Babic during his testimony,
11 whether there was any pressure excerpted upon him, whether there were any
12 threats made against him, whether there were unlawful contacts with him,
13 but before we receive a report of that kind, at this point in time I think
14 that it would be beneficial if we were to stop presenting evidence and the
15 Defence within a deadline of five or six days, will be sending in a
16 written motion to the Trial Chamber presenting its views and position, and
17 all the exhibits produced at this trial through that witness, together
18 with his own testimony, in the Defence team's opinion, cannot be used.
19 They should -- ought to be set aside from these proceedings and then the
20 proceedings continue along their course as both sides see fit.
21 Therefore, at this point in time the Defence considers that in the
22 interests of justice and in the interests of the trial itself and the
23 legality of the proceedings it would be opportune to interrupt the trial
24 until we receive a copy of that report or until we come up with
25 suggestions as to what should be done with the testimony. If what the
1 Prosecutor has just put forward is accepted that would mean that one side
2 has the right to hear a witness whereas the other side, through force of
3 circumstance and objective conditions, has not been made possible because
4 we were not able to complete our cross-examination, and the
5 cross-examination was to have lasted another two days. This is a very
6 serious matter and that is why I wish to raise it before this Trial
7 Chamber and to ask that the matter be deferred. Thank you.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Milovancevic. Actually when I spoke
9 before you stood up I was trying to obviate just that. Let me see how we
10 go on from here. Obviously, this is a very novel point which needs
11 conversing legally and I do not think therefore that the Court or even the
12 parties themselves are in a position to argue this point at this point in
14 As a result, the Chamber is not in a position to determine whether
15 or not the proceedings should be stopped now pending the report of
16 Judge Parker. I do not think that the proceedings in Judge Parker's
17 commission have a bearing on whether or not this case should proceed.
18 Obviously, the parties, after researching the law and getting the facts
19 will at some stage address the Chamber on the fate of Mr. Babic's
20 evidence. That, in the Chamber's view, should not stop the Chamber from
21 hearing further evidence from other witnesses in the interests of
23 Therefore, the request by the Defence that the matter be adjourned
24 until we've received a report from Judge Parker's commission is refused.
25 The matter will proceed and the Court will take evidence from other
1 parties -- from other witnesses. When the parties have prepared
2 themselves on the question of Mr. Babic's evidence and at an appropriate
3 moment, the parties will address the Court on what should be done with
4 that evidence. Until then, that evidence just lies where it is until a
5 determination is made. Thank you.
6 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, we are prepared to call our next
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: You may.
9 MR. WHITING: I believe we have to go -- it's Witness MM-003. I
10 believe we have to go into private session to get the witness into the
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: We have to do that, yes.
13 Yes, Mr. Milovancevic?
14 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we have heard your
15 ruling. I have understood what you have just stated. May I just indicate
16 a very important fact, however? When Mr. Babic was interviewed as a key
17 Prosecution witness, many exhibits were presented, many facts were stated,
18 of vital importance for the further -- for further proceedings and the
19 Trial Chamber, the Defence and the Prosecution, I'm sure, in following the
20 testimony, are under the direct influence or, rather, bear in mind the
21 fact that it was Mr. Babic who was testifying. Now, what Mr. Babic
22 testified about, or rather before a decision is made on the contents of
23 his testimony, whether he could have been a witness, whether what he was
24 talking about was valid, whether it is evidence in this trial, for that to
25 be assessed and appraised in the proper way and for the proceedings and
1 trial to go forward in the proper way, I think that the situation is such
2 that the continuation of the trial with the existence of Mr. Babic's
3 statement and testimony, without Trial Chamber ruling, goes to the
4 detriment of the Defence and places it in an unequal situation. The
5 Defence is not saying that any one is to blame for what happened. This is
6 a tragic case. However, this tragic case gives rise to consequences and
7 the consequences are such that we are going to hear more evidence while
8 the Defence did not have a chance of completing its cross-examination of
9 this key witness.
10 In certain other systems, perhaps in the system from where --
11 Mr. Whiting's system, the one he comes from, there would automatically be
12 perhaps an exclusion of the testimony and statement from the trial as
13 being of no use but here we have a professional -- professional judges,
14 and that's a privilege, that's a good thing. But if the rules state that
15 the witness shall be examined through the examination-in-chief, through
16 the cross-examination, which the Defence was doing, and which the -- and
17 if the witness can be questioned by the Court, and then again by the
18 Prosecution, et cetera, this did not happen. Then the survival of this
19 incomplete testimony --
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: May I interrupt you, Mr. Milovancevic? You are
21 addressing the Chamber once again on an issue on which the Chamber has
22 ruled and you are repeating the kind of things that you said before the
23 Chamber ruled. I thought you were saying you just wanted to raise one
24 important issue. You've now spoken for all of a whole page on the screen
25 and I'm still trying to get the point. Either you get to the point or the
1 Chamber will have to remind you that a ruling has been made on this point.
2 What is your point, Mr. Milovancevic, very briefly.
3 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, briefly, Your Honour,
4 because the new point is that the proposal was not linked to the
5 investigation conducted by Judge Parker. That's a procedure set in place
6 by the president of the Tribunal. I just indicated the fact that there
7 was going to be an investigation under way which could provide the Trial
8 Chamber with material which will make it better placed to decide and rule
9 on the matter in the proper manner but --
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Can I interrupt you there? Hence, hence the
11 Chamber's order that at an appropriate time, the parties will make
12 submissions to the Chamber and the Chamber will then rule at that time and
13 most probably part of the submission will include the report of the
14 commission. I do not know. So what you have just said, I think, is more
15 in line with what the Chamber has ruled on than in what you are
17 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Milovancevic.
19 Mr. Whiting.
20 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, could we go into private session to
21 bring the witness in, please?
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber go into private session?
23 [Private session]
11 Pages 1951-1955 redacted. Private session.
12 [Open session]
13 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
15 MR. WHITING: Witness, you could read the declaration now.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
17 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
18 WITNESS: WITNESS MM-003
19 [Witness answered through interpreter]
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you. You may take your seat. You may take a
22 MR. WHITING: Witness, you may be seated.
23 Examination by Mr. Whiting:
24 Q. Good afternoon, sir. Are you able to understand me in a language
25 that you understand?
1 A. Yes, yes.
2 Q. Sir, I want to remind you that you've been granted protective
3 measures by this Trial Chamber, which means that your name will not be
4 used during the proceedings and your image will be distorted on the
5 broadcasts of the proceedings. Do you understand that?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. You understand that also, if there are matters which could
8 identify you, we'll move into private session to discuss those matters?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Sir, if at any time you don't understand me or you don't
11 understand my question, please tell me.
12 A. Very well. Thank you.
13 Q. You also have a glass of water next to you. Feel free to have
14 some water and if you need more, it will be refilled for you. Do you
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Now, with the assistance of the usher I'm going to show you a
18 sheet --
19 MR. WHITING: Your Honour --
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: I thought maybe for the benefit of the witness and
21 also for all of us participating in the Court, if you could tell him what
22 his pseudonym is.
23 MR. WHITING: I was just about to do that, Your Honour, thank you.
24 Q. With the assistance of the usher I'm going to show you a piece of
25 paper. The paper has the pseudonym number which is MM-003. Is your name
1 also on that piece of paper?
2 A. Yes.
3 MR. WHITING: And could the usher please show that paper to the
4 Defence. And could that paper now be shown to the Bench, please.
5 And could that paper be made an exhibit under seal, please,
6 Your Honour?
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: May that piece of paper that has just been shown
8 around be made an exhibit and be given an exhibit number and may it then
9 be placed under seal.
10 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Exhibit number 242, Your Honours,
11 under seal.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
13 MR. WHITING:
14 Q. So, witness, during these proceedings you'll be referred to either
15 as "Witness" or by your number, "MM-003." Do you understand?
16 A. Yes.
17 MR. WHITING: Could we go into private session, please?
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
19 [Private session]
11 Page 1959 redacted. Private session.
23 [Open session]
24 THE REGISTRAR: We are in public session, Your Honours.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
1 MR. WHITING:
2 Q. Witness, I want to draw your attention to the 17th of August 1990.
3 Did something happen on that date?
4 A. Around 3.00 in the afternoon, I was passing by the police station
5 in Knin by car and I saw a lot of people gathered there. At that time, I
6 was still unaware what was going on. Perhaps some time before that,
7 rallies were often held so I wasn't really paying much attention as to
8 what was going on.
9 Q. Did you go to Golubic after you saw that?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Can you tell us what you saw when you went to Golubic?
12 A. After that I went to Golubic, and I saw at the youth settlement
13 Golubic that there were quite a few people there. When I got there, I
14 went in. On the left-hand side, in this little house, that was called the
15 headquarters at the time of the youth drives formerly, there were some
16 people there now who were giving out weapons to the people rallied there.
17 Q. Who was there giving out weapons?
18 A. Milan Martic, Miljenko Zelenbaba, Jovo Maric was at the top of the
19 stairs, and Jovo Mitrovic.
20 Q. Did you know the identities of these people at the time or did you
21 learn them later?
22 A. At that time, I did not know the identity of Milan Martic.
1 (redacted) so I knew him
2 through football.
3 Q. When did you learn the identity of Milan Martic?
4 A. Actually, later on, when night fell, my neighbour asked me to
5 stay, or rather he didn't ask me to stay. He said I'd better stay there -
6 I worked with them, for the radio station - so that the army would not
7 mobilise me and send me off to the front line. That's where I found out
8 that this was Milan Martic. Before that I had never seen him in my life.
9 And, of course, the other participants too. They just said that it was
10 Jovo Mitrovic. Well, actually I knew one of these men there. I didn't
11 know that he was a member of the reserve and he told me that this was Jovo
12 Mitrovic and that he was in charge of the reserve police in Knin. And
13 then after that, another man went out of this little house. His name was
14 Mirko Cenic.
15 Q. Can you tell us precisely what Milan Martic was doing on that day?
16 What did you see him doing?
17 A. Nearby, a truck was parked, a small TAM truck, and boxes were
18 unloaded from this truck and these boxes contained weapons. And then Jovo
19 was writing this down, they all held some kind of pieces of paper where
20 there were writing down the names of the people who they were giving
21 weapons to.
22 Q. And what was Mr. Martic doing exactly?
23 A. He was handing out weapons and when he would hand out a weapon he
24 would tell Jovo the name, the name of that person was supposed to be
25 written down by Jovo because they were making units already at that time.
1 Q. Did you learn which people were receiving weapons? Were they
2 giving them to particular people or were they just giving the weapons to
4 A. Yes. Later on I found out that they were members of the reserve
5 force who gathered in Golubic when they were given a certain signal that
6 they all knew. They came from different directions, so they really came
7 from all parts of the municipality of Knin.
8 Q. When you say "reserve force," reserve to what? Reserve force of
10 A. The reserve force of the police.
11 Q. Witness, did you see Milan Babic on that day, on the 17th of
12 August 1990?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Was he there when you arrived or did he come later?
15 A. He was already there by the time I arrived. He was -- he was
16 there when I arrived. However, there was this big restaurant behind him,
17 where these people who lived in this settlement got their meals, so quite
18 a few after people after that left that restaurant. A lot of people, for
19 example, leaders of the SDS from that time.
20 Q. Were you able to tell what Milan Babic was doing on that day, if
22 A. That day, I don't remember. I don't remember that he was doing
23 anything. He was just present there and later on, that night, they talked
24 for a long time, all these members of the SDS. At that time I actually
25 didn't know that they were the Presidency of the SDS, and with Martic and
1 with other people who were arriving. Actually, later on, I learned more
2 and more about it because I was working there for the radio.
3 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, could we go into private session,
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
6 [Private session]
11 Pages 1965-1967 redacted. Private session.
8 [Open session]
9 THE REGISTRAR: We are in public session, Your Honours.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
11 MR. WHITING:
12 Q. Witness, you made reference earlier to barricades that started to
13 be erected on the 17th of August 1990. Where were some of those
14 barricades erected?
15 A. Well, the first barricades were erected by the village of Civljane
16 and Polace, Padjeni, an area of Zrmanja, Rudele, Macure, Kosovo, Vrbnik.
17 Q. What was the purpose of the barricades?
18 A. At that time, as people were saying, it was in order to prevent
19 the police force from Knin from coming in, the irregulars, and putting up
20 the chequerboard flag in Knin and things like that, because already at
21 that time, with the establishment of the Serb territories, the Serb
22 territories were sort of established in that way in Croatia.
23 Q. You said to prevent the police force from coming in. Which police
24 force? A Serb police force or the Croatian police force?
25 A. No. The Croatian police.
1 Q. Witness, were you afraid of the Croatian government?
2 A. No. I never gave it much thought, about any difference.
3 Q. Did you think that the Serbs in Croatia were threatened by the
4 Croatian government at that time?
5 A. No. Certainly not at that time.
6 Q. You made a reference, Witness, to the chequerboard flag. Did the
7 chequerboard flag make you afraid?
8 A. Well, I never actually -- I don't think I ever saw the
9 chequerboard in my life. I didn't give it much thought. No, it had
10 absolutely no influence on me, no effect. And it had no effect on most of
11 the young people. Not only did they not feel any fear, they didn't give
12 it any thought and didn't think about the differences between Serbs and
13 Croats, for instance. So my answer is no, definitely no.
14 Q. The barricades or roadblocks that you made reference to, did they
15 have any effect on the Croatian population?
16 A. Yes, they did. A great effect, great influence. Between the
17 barricades at Polace and the barricades at Civljane, there was the village
18 of Kijevo, the Croatian village of Kijevo, which was quite apart from any
19 kind of communication lines, any communication from outside, and with any
20 other part of Croatia. The only connection was to go across the hill and
21 that would have taken, I don't know how many hours, to get to the next
23 Q. I just want to be sure that I understand your answer because it
24 gets translated to us. So are you -- do I understand you to be saying
25 that Kijevo or the Croatian village of Kijevo was cut off by barricades?
1 A. Yes. That's it. That's the truth of it.
2 Q. Were there other villages like that, that you're aware of, that
3 were cut off by barricades, other Croatian villages?
4 A. Well, for example, afterwards, when the barricade went up to
5 Otisca then Vrlika, a small Croatian town, was left between the barricade
6 at Civljane and Otisca.
7 Q. Witness, what was Milan Martic's role with respect to the
9 A. As far as I understand it, from the first, he was the main
10 commander for everything. He was the man who was organising, planning and
11 managing the barricades.
12 Q. Witness -- yes, Your Honour -- witness, after the break, I'll ask
13 you how you knew that but now we've come to a point where it's convenient
14 for a break?
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much. What do we do for the purpose
16 of the witness? Do we go into private session so he exit or what
18 MR. WHITING: I think that what can happen is that the Court just
19 adjourns for the break and the Court leaves, and then the TV goes off and
20 then the witness is brought out.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much. Court is adjourned, come back
22 at 4.00.
23 --- Recess taken at 3.31 p.m.
24 --- On resuming at 4.02 p.m.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Whiting.
1 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
2 Q. Witness, we are still in public session. Before the break, you
3 testified that Milan Martic was the main commander for everything, he was
4 the man who was organising, planning and managing the barricades. How did
5 you know that? Did you see it? Did you hear it? How did you know?
6 A. Well, already then, on that first day, in the evening, they said
7 many things. The people who would come up there, they would talk about
8 many things and you could see that all the things that were to be done
9 and, as they said, new obstacles being erected, they talked to Martic. He
10 tried to call up certain people and establish contact with people whom he
11 already knew.
12 Q. Witness, do you know who was manning the barricades?
13 A. Well, the first barricades, it was mostly the reserve policemen
14 who were given weapons from Martic in Golubic, on that day, and they were
15 sent to those same places where they lived, in the villages where they
16 lived, nearby where they lived. They were sent to these posts and they
17 were the commanders of those barricades and those posts mostly.
18 Q. Witness, at that time, or later, did Milan Martic talk about the
19 barricades? Did he make statements about the barricades?
20 A. Well, I don't remember that day that he spoke about that but later
21 on, the following days, they discussed how to strengthen the barricades,
22 because of breakthroughs, and in the meantime, the representatives of the
23 JNA turned up, so that this was quite frequent after their departure.
24 They talked to the politicians, to discuss what could be done next. When
25 I say politicians, I mean members of the SDS.
1 Q. How long did the headquarters stay in Golubic?
2 A. Well, about two weeks. The headquarters were in Golubic and
3 afterwards we moved to another location from Golubic.
4 Q. Where did you move to?
5 A. We went to Oton Polje, that location.
6 Q. During that two week period, how often was Milan Martic there in
8 A. He slept there all the time. I don't remember exactly. He went
9 home once or twice but he was there 24 hours, around the clock, because
10 nothing could be decided without him at the beginning.
11 Q. During the meetings that were held at Golubic, was -- were there
12 any discussions or decisions made about what Milan Martic's role was going
13 to be?
14 A. Well, at the very beginning, that was discussed too, as far as --
15 and as far as I was able to understand, Dr. Milan Babic was supposed to be
16 the politician in charge of politics, whereas defence positions were to be
17 led by Martic.
18 Q. When you say defence positions, what do you mean exactly?
19 A. I mean the system of barricades that were erected around the Knin
20 municipality, in the Serb places, and all the barricades -- or let me make
21 things clear. When I say everything I mean all the barricades that were
22 erected at the time and those that were going to be erected, to see how
23 best this could be done, the best way to do this.
24 Q. What was the relationship between Milan Martic and Milan Babic,
25 that you were able to observe?
1 A. At the beginning, it was fairly good and proper.
2 Q. Did that change?
3 A. A little later, that relationship did start to change, mutual
5 Q. How did it change?
6 A. Well, already at that time, large quantities of material
7 assistance began to come in, food, clothing, footwear, money, and the
8 biggest problem was how to divide this up, distribute it. Babic wanted
9 the bulk of it to go to the SDS or rather the party representatives, that
10 they should discuss matters of that kind, whereas Martic wanted most of
11 these goods, most of these resources to go to better equipped people,
12 manage the barricades, for their food, for their clothing, footwear. So
13 these material goods, their disputes were over these material goods and
14 over money ultimately.
15 Q. Did you hear at that time or later of something called the Council
16 of National Resistance?
17 A. Yes. That's when the Council for National Resistance was
18 established, and there -- you had people from the SDS, with Martic and
19 another member, Vitas. When I say member of the SDS, for example, there
20 was Dusan Orlovic, there was Nebojsa Mandelic, there was David Rastovic
21 for a time, and some others. I don't remember their names. And this
22 included a reserve colonel Bogoljub Popovic. Then there was a
23 Lieutenant Colonel who had retired. His name was not Stojanovic, Stojko
24 Bjelanovic was his name. Perhaps I've left someone out but there were
25 quite a few of them.
1 Q. When did you first hear of the Council of National Resistance?
2 When was it established to your knowledge?
3 A. The Council for National Resistance was established in Golubic and
4 at the very beginning, it was established as such, and I think there are
5 written traces of that.
6 Q. So when you say it was established in Golubic, is that at the time
7 that the headquarters was in Golubic?
8 A. Yes. That's what I mean. The distribution of weapons, the
9 headquarters was there, and that's when the Council of National Resistance
10 was established. It was a body which was supposed to control the overall
11 operations, both up at the barricades and later on. It was a sort of
12 military coordination body.
13 Q. Witness, what was Milan Martic's role in the Council of National
15 A. He was the commander of that council, and already before that he
16 was appointed commander of the barricades of resistance.
17 Q. How long did the Council of National Resistance last?
18 A. As far as I remember, that council lasted until mid-November, I
19 think, 1990, with the return of Martic to the station, because the radio
20 station for communication was turned back to the centre for information in
21 Knin and as far as I understand it -- stood it afterwards, that's where it
22 came from in the first place, that's where it was taken from in the first
24 Q. When you say that Milan Martic returned to the station in
25 mid-November of 1990, where was that station?
1 A. I apologise but I didn't understand your question.
2 Q. You referred -- you said that Milan Martic returned to the station
3 in mid-November of 1990. Can you just tell us what town or village that
4 station is that you're referring to?
5 A. Well, after leaving and going to Oton, the station was transferred
6 to a different location for a few days, but it ended up at Sinobadova
7 Glavica and it was transferred to the information centre in Knin after
8 that. The location was called Sinobadova Dom.
9 Q. And when did it return to Knin?
10 A. With Martic's return to the police station. I can't give you the
11 exact day but it was November.
12 Q. Okay. Was Milan Babic a part of the Council of National
14 A. I can't say now. I don't really know what his role was exactly at
15 that time but I know that he was present at all the meetings and most of
16 the decisions. He generally listened and attended all those meetings that
17 they had and where they took decisions. I can't say exactly what his
18 function was. I really don't know.
19 MR. WHITING: Could we go into private session, Your Honour?
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
21 [Private session]
11 Page 1976 redacted. Private session.
9 [Open session]
10 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
12 MR. WHITING:
13 Q. Witness, you told us earlier that in -- sometime in November,
14 Milan Martic returned to the station in Knin. Did there come a time when
15 the police in the Krajina became organised?
16 A. As far as I understood things, when he returned to the station,
17 sometime mid-November, say the 15th of November, quite simply there was
18 the necessary stability for his return to the station. The police had
19 accepted him as the chief of police.
20 Q. And then after he returned, did there come a time when the police
21 in the Krajina became organised?
22 A. Yes. It became stronger and more organised.
23 Q. Were people appointed to positions at police stations?
24 A. Actually, at the time when he returned to the station, many things
25 had changed there. I remember that Gojko Drvenje [phoen], the then
1 commander, was still creating problems. In terms of popularity he had
2 prevailed so everything was kind of over and he could choose who he'd work
3 with at the station, but as far as I managed to find out, these
4 signatories of this petition, people knew in advance that Zelenbaba,
5 Cenic, and Orlovic would be his associates.
6 Q. And where did they work, those people that you've just told us,
7 Zelenbaba, Cenic, and Orlovic? Were they in Knin or some other place?
8 A. No, they were in Knin. Cenic and Zelenbaba were policemen. I
9 think Zelenbaba was an inspector and Cenic was a policeman and Dusan
10 Orlovic was a man who had studied medicine. He said himself that he had
11 studied it for about 15 years and never graduated. So they were at the
12 Knin police station.
13 Q. Did Dusan Orlovic to your knowledge get a position at some point?
14 A. Yes. Later on, he became head of the state security.
15 Q. Do you recall approximately when that happened?
16 A. I think that that was later, sometime in January 1991, because at
17 that time, new police chiefs had been appointed in the broader area of
19 Q. Who appointed these new police chiefs?
20 A. The new police chiefs were appointed by Martic, all of them.
21 Well, more or less he knew a lot of these people because he studied in
22 Zagreb so he knew them from his studies in Zagreb and from the police.
23 Q. Can you tell us by, say, January of 1991 or around there, can you
24 tell us which police chiefs have been appointed in which villages?
25 A. As for SUP Knin, Miljenko Zelenbaba was appointed and Nikola
1 Manovic. For a long time they were his closest co-workers. As for
2 Benkovac, Bosko Drazic had already been appointed. For Obrovac, Zeljko
3 Jelic. For Gracac, Marko Dragicevic. For Korenica, Bosko Rapajic. In
4 Srb, Nikola Vojvodic. In Lapac, Dujo Vojvodic. I know that he and Nikola
5 were brothers. As for Civljani, Dragan Knezevic was appointed at the time
6 but in Civljani, the only difference was that there had never been a
7 police station there before. It was sort of like a forward post of Knin
8 because it was between the Croat village of Kijevo and a Serb village
10 Q. What about Okucani? Was somebody appointed there?
11 A. For Okucani, Krsta Zarkovic. Later on, he became head of the
12 special police forces. It was called the PJM, the special police units.
13 Q. How about in Vojnic?
14 A. In Vojnic, it was Toso Pajic, because he had the greatest
15 authority there. I don't know what Milos Pajic was to him then but at
16 that time he was head of state security in Dvor Na Uni, Nikola Bolajic
18 Q. Now you said that Milos Pajic was head of state security but you
19 told us earlier that Dusan Orlovic became head of state security.
20 A. Milos Pajic was head of state security for Kordun Banija. Dusan
21 Orlovic was head of state security for Knin.
22 Q. Now, were you able to observe what Milan Martic's relationship was
23 to all of these police chiefs that you've just identified?
24 A. These relationships were excellent. They were better than good.
25 Q. What kind of control, if any, did Milan Martic have over the
1 police in the Krajina?
2 A. He had 100 per cent control over the police because he was by far
3 the most popular person within the police, and he had a great deal of
4 credit, a great deal of merit, because of the signing of the petition
5 which was in 1990. All of that was something that was held to his credit
6 and he was considered to be a great Serb. Later on, even more so when he
7 established relations with people in Belgrade. Then he had 100 per cent
8 support. He was the man in charge, absolutely.
9 Q. I'll ask you some more questions about people -- relations with
10 Belgrade in a moment. In -- by, say, January of 1991, would Milan Martic
11 have meetings with these various chiefs in these villages that you've
12 identified? Would he meet with them?
13 A. Well, he tried to have these operative meetings, as they were
14 called. They were supposed to be held on Mondays and if they couldn't
15 come, depending on where they were, depending on the positions where they
16 were, and the development of the situation, then somebody would come on
17 their behalf.
18 Q. What was discussed at these meetings, if you know?
19 A. I did not attend the meetings but I know, because in a way I was
20 with him practically non-stop so he talked about many things through these
21 people, he actually tried to strengthen the establishment of the Serb
22 territory, that things would be as stable as possible so that people would
23 be safe, so that the Ustashas - he called them the Ustashas - could not
24 penetrate into Serb territories, and the achievement of some plans that he
25 knew about, in advance, or that somebody else had planned previously.
1 Q. Witness, at this time, now we are in January or so of 1991, did
2 you think that there was a danger from the Ustashas, as they were being
3 called at that time?
4 A. No, no. I never gave it any thought. No, I didn't feel anything.
5 Q. Witness, did you learn if Milan Martic gave any orders to the
6 police chiefs in these operative meetings?
7 A. Yes. That was the point of these meetings, that they should be
8 given instructions as to what they should do next and how to help areas
9 where, in a way, there was no Krajina Police. At that time, they were
10 called the Martic police. So for these Serb settlements, they tried to
11 find a way out, those that didn't have barricades or a Serb police.
12 Q. Now, at that time, did Milan Martic talk about the barricades and
13 whether they had accomplished anything?
14 A. At that time, the way in which he was satisfied was that finally
15 Serb territories were established in part, but he didn't have enough
16 weapons, and there wasn't a general feeling in favour of going to these
17 other areas so that they should be taken and made into a whole.
18 Q. I'm sorry, I am just not sure I understood the end of your answer.
19 You said there wasn't a feeling in favour of going into these other areas.
20 Can you explain that a little more? It may have been a translation
21 problem or maybe I just didn't understand your answer.
22 A. Well, a way was sought as to how the territories that were outside
23 the barricades -- I mean a way was sought through the police stations that
24 were the closest to those places that did not belong to the SAO Krajina
25 yet, or rather had not become part of the Serb Krajina, the Serb
1 territories yet. I don't know how to say this.
2 Q. I understand. What was Milan Martic's view on trying to find ways
3 to reach out, to expand to these areas that were not yet part of the SAO
5 A. He got a signal from Belgrade that he would get whatever is
6 necessary, money, financial resources, in order to establish or rather to
7 go to those places to establish as many police stations as he could in all
8 these Serb places according to a map that had been previously made because
9 there were already some negotiations between the army, him and the
10 Croatian side, to open unhindered communications, to remove the
11 barricades, or to have some other kind of blockade.
12 Q. Now, you said earlier that JNA officials came even to the
13 headquarters in Golubic back in August or September of 1990. At this
14 time, in January of 1991, did Martic have meetings with JNA officials?
15 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Objection, Your Honours. The
16 witness spoke about retired or other JNA officers. He never mentioned, as
17 far as I could remember, JNA officials in his statement.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Whiting?
19 MR. WHITING: Just a moment, Your Honour, please.
20 Your Honour, on page 34, line 23, the witness said, "I don't
21 remember that day that he spoke about that," and that was a reference to
22 August 17th, "but later on the following days they discussed how to
23 strengthen the barricades because of breakthroughs and in the meantime,
24 the representatives of the JNA turned up."
25 That was what I was relying on.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: You see that, Mr. Milovancevic?
2 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] I see a difference between
3 officials and representatives. Let the witness explain what he meant by
4 that. Perhaps that would be the best way to resolve the matter,
5 Your Honours.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Would you like to do that, Mr. Whiting?
7 MR. WHITING:
8 Q. Well, I'll just go to the question, which was in -- around, by
9 January of 1991, did Milan Martic meet with representatives or officers or
10 officials of the JNA?
11 A. Yes. He did, and even before that. Well, directly, he talked a
12 lot with Tolimir and Pecanac. I knew Pecanac for years before that, but I
13 didn't know about Tolimir. He was a counterintelligence officer and then
14 in January 1991, the then commission or the federal Secretariat, as far as
15 I can remember now, that is to say from each and every republic there was
16 one secretary and a representative of the military for the military
17 district -- military naval district from Split. From there came a high
18 ranking naval officer Ljubomir Bera [phoen]. I was there myself when they
19 came. I was in Martic's offers. And when they walked in and sat down, I
20 went out.
21 Q. Now, witness, at this time, at the end of 1990, beginning of 1991,
22 do you know how the police in the Krajina were paid?
23 A. Payments were made without any lists or anything. It was cash for
24 the most part. Somewhere -- at first it would be in kind, clothing,
25 footwear, food, depending on what was available. That was one of the main
1 reasons for the quarrels between Dr. Babic and Martic. Later, however,
2 another thing happened too. Martic got certain quantities of money from
3 Belgrade. The first one I know was Frenki. I just know that name,
5 Q. When did that happen?
6 A. That happened sometime after Martic returned to the station, so it
7 should be mid-November, beginning of December.
8 Q. Witness, I'll ask you some questions about that in just a moment.
9 You said that the police were paid in cash. Did Milan Martic have
10 any role in the payment of -- the payment to police?
11 A. It wasn't that he was directly handing out the money to the
12 policemen. This was done by the women who worked at the accounting
13 department, and through chief Zelenbaba, whereas he personally would take
14 out the money that he had in his safe and then he would count the money
15 and give out as much as they were supposed to give out.
16 Q. Who would take the money out of his safe? Who were you referring
17 to there?
18 A. Martic. He was the only one who had the key and the code that was
19 in his office.
20 Q. Who would he give the cash to?
21 A. Well, to the commanders of stations, depending on who would come,
22 the commander or the chief or whoever represented that police station. I
23 know Zelenbaba, for instance, I was there several times when he gave him
25 MR. WHITING: Could we go into private session, please?
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
2 [Private session]
24 [Open session]
25 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
2 MR. WHITING:
3 Q. Now, you made reference in your answer to two blue PUCH vehicles.
4 Where were these vehicles coming from?
5 A. These were vehicles of the MUP of Serbia, according to their
6 licence plates.
7 Q. And you said that there were some policemen who were running from
8 the station. Why were they running from the station?
9 A. Because they didn't know who the vehicles belonged to. They
10 thought that it was the Croatian police, and that's why they were running
11 away from the station.
12 Q. Who was in these vehicles?
13 A. In the first vehicle was Frenki, and inspector Kostic was in the
14 other one. I think his first name was Rade. Judging by the way he spoke
15 I think he came somewhere from Baranja.
16 Q. This person, Frenki, do you know what his position was? Where did
17 he work?
18 A. That first time I didn't know at all. I didn't know who Frenki
19 was or where he came from or actually it wasn't clear to me at all what
20 these people were looking for over there, what was going on at that
21 moment, when I saw them. But later on, I realised what it was all about.
22 Martic told me a lot about this, or actually this was one of the kinds of
23 support that came in. For example, they openly started saying at that
24 time that they went to Bosansko Grahova, that these people did not come
25 directly to Knin. They would leave their load with their man in Bosanska
2 Q. Okay. We have to take this one step at a time. I'll ask you some
3 questions about that, about Bosanska Grahovo, in a moment. But later, did
4 you learn -- you said you learned some things later. Did you learn what
5 Frenki's position was?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And what did you learn it to be?
8 A. My understanding was that he was assistant chief of state security
9 of Serbia, assistant to Jovica Stanisic.
10 Q. Okay. Now, on this occasion when he came to Knin with the two
11 vehicles, did they bring anything in those vehicles, to your knowledge?
12 A. In the vehicles, well, I don't know exactly what the number was.
13 I personally unloaded the two vehicles at the police garage, and there
14 were automatic and semi-automatic rifles there.
15 Q. Did Frenki meet with Milan Martic?
16 A. Yes. He went to his office. I went with him.
17 Q. Did Milan Martic tell you anything about -- afterwards, about that
19 A. Yes. He said to me that he had received money from Belgrade.
20 This money was supposed to be used for salaries.
21 Q. Were there other occasions, to your knowledge, that Frenki brought
22 money to Knin from Belgrade?
23 A. After that, he came more and more often, and he brought this
24 money, this cash, and some other stuff, in a bag.
25 Q. Did you see that?
1 A. For the most part, I would see it. I can't say that I saw the
2 money directly but it was the same bags that were being brought, and after
3 that, Martic would usually make comments because he'd be in a good mood.
4 Obviously he would receive what he had asked for.
5 Q. Now, you made a reference to Bosanska Grahovo. Can you explain
6 that a little more? What did you learn about what was happening there?
7 A. As time went on, Martic and Dusan Orlovic would talk more and more
8 about things that were happening. They would happen in advance. They
9 would talk in advance, how it came to erecting the barricade or rather the
10 weapons coming from Belgrade were at the bottom of the truck, for
11 instance, and on top of the weapons would be construction material or
12 bricks. And since in the MUP of Serbia, as far as I understood it, Pakrac
13 was the assistant head for state security for Kosovo and Metohija, and
14 originally, he was from Crni Lug a village near Bosanska Grahovo, where
15 they had the bases for the first unloading of weapons. (redacted)
17 (redacted) the brother of
18 Uros Pakrasac was Jovica, and Jovica lived in Bosanska Grahovo
20 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, if we could just have a redaction at
21 lines 18 and 19 there? Thank you.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Milovancevic?
23 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] No objection, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much. Could we have a redaction.
25 What do you want specifically to be redacted there?
1 MR. WHITING: Just those two lines, 18 and 19.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Could we redact lines 18 and 19 at page 51,
4 MR. WHITING:
5 Q. Now, witness, did you learn when weapons started to come in trucks
6 to Bosanska Grahovo?
7 A. As I understood it, it began sometime in September 1990.
8 Q. And did you learn what happened to the weapons once they arrived
10 A. All these goings to Bosanska Grahovo, it was just Martic and Dusan
11 Orlovic who knew about that and they would transfer this with a small car,
12 a Lada Niva car. They would transport it to Knin and then later on, to
13 certain parts of the territory, if they thought that part needed more
15 Q. Now, later, later on, in January and February of 1991, did weapons
16 come to the Krajina or to Knin in any other way?
17 A. I think that sometime at the end of January, it began coming in,
18 in trucks.
19 Q. Where were these trucks coming from?
20 A. The trucks belonged to the MUP of Serbia and they were coming in
21 from Serbia, because sometime in January, 1991, one of those trucks went
22 off the road. There were two trucks, Mercedes trucks, light blue, the
23 colour was, and the last, the second truck turned over, went off the road
24 and turned over and all the weapons poured out of it and lay around about.
25 And the Bosanska Grahovo police came in, the Sarajevo command was still
1 respected and the commander was a man by the name of Tica and there were a
2 lot of problems with the Knin police.
3 MR. WHITING: Could we go into private session, Your Honour?
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
5 [Private session]
19 [Open session]
20 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
22 MR. WHITING:
23 Q. Witness, who was present when that truck overturned?
24 A. When we arrived up there, there was Frenki there, and his man from
25 security, a man that drove the truck. He was very angry because he had
1 done that. Let me just mention that part was called Kesici, the village
2 of Kesici, just before Bosanska Grahovo. Frenki, that is to say, Frenki
3 was extremely angry because this other man had done that and because of
4 the problems that he had with the Grahovo police, and Martic contacted
5 Pokrajac who was already in Grahovo and he was supposed to find another
6 truck to replace the other one, to load up and to deal with the Grahovo
7 chief of police, to prevent him making any problems for what had happened.
8 Q. And did that happen? Did another truck come and load up the
10 A. Yes, yes. The second truck arrived, they loaded up the weapons,
11 and it left.
12 Q. Witness, how do you know that the two Mercedes trucks were from
13 the MUP of Serbia?
14 A. Well, the people -- first of all there was Frenki. Then the
15 escort, the escorts were wearing special police uniforms from Serbia, and
16 thirdly there were the licence plates that you could put up and take down
17 very quickly, and after that, some white licence plates were put on. But
18 that time, those two trucks were left in Knin so that they could use them,
19 and then they were the blue police licence plates, the blue ones of the
20 MUP of Serbia. I knew that the first number was M 602. That was the
21 first number on the licence plates, the MUP of Serbia, belonging to the
22 MUP of Serbia.
23 Q. Now, witness, you spoke earlier about Frenki coming to Knin in
24 around November of 1990. And you talked about -- you learned that he
25 brought money. Did he and the people he was with do anything else on that
1 trip in Knin?
2 A. The second time he appeared, with Uros Pokrajac, was sometime
3 towards the end of November and beginning of December 1991, when they
4 arrived, he was called to a meeting by the then president of the SDS,
5 Dr. Babic, and in fact it was a special team that was supposed to do away
6 with and clear up the telephone lines from the bugs, interception on the
7 part of the Croatian side, so that the line was a clean line and couldn't
8 be listened into by the Croatian side. So that's what they did. There
9 was a technical team of specialists. And there was a man in that group
10 who was a specialist for picking locks, for example, so picking locks,
11 looking at the posts coming in, and while they were cleaning up in
12 Dr. Babic's office, they found bugs, listening devices, bugs placed in the
14 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, could we go into private session,
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
17 [Private session]
11 Page 1993 redacted. Private session.
10 [Open session]
11 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
13 MR. WHITING:
14 Q. Witness, who did Milan Martic meet with in Belgrade?
15 A. First of all, Frenki, Radmilo Bogdanovic, and Jovica Stanisic.
16 Radmilo Bogdanovic was the Minister of the Interior.
17 Q. And what was Jovica Stanisic's position?
18 A. He was the chief of the RDV, the state security.
19 Q. What was the purpose of the trip, as you learned it?
20 A. As far as I heard, the purpose was to receive equipment, money,
21 and support, quite simply support, for expanding the barricades to take in
22 as many police stations as possible, to extend Serb territories by that
24 Q. What did Milan Martic tell you about the meetings after the trip?
25 What did he tell you had happened?
1 A. He said that he was quite satisfied with talks and that he was
2 given promises that everything he needed he would get, that he should just
4 Q. After this trip, do you know if Milan Martic had other meetings
5 with Jovica Stanisic?
6 A. Yes, he did.
7 Q. Where did these meetings occur?
8 A. After that, he would go to Belgrade often, to meetings with him.
9 Q. Do you know if Jovica Stanisic ever came to Knin?
10 A. I know for the first time that he was in Martic's flat in 1993.
11 Q. Did you learn about a car accident that Jovica Stanisic had been
12 involved in at some point?
13 A. I learned about that before we went to Belgrade, because often
14 when we would travel to Lika, and pass a place called Malovan, Orlovic
17 Malovan, he would say, "This is where Jovica Stanisic had an accident in
18 September or October of 1990," and when you go around the bend there or
19 down the slope they would show the house where they got assistance to pull
20 out the Mercedes.
21 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, we will just need a redaction there at
22 lines 17 and 18, please, of page 58.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Milovancevic?
24 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] I agree.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: May we have line 17 and 18 at page 58 redacted,
2 MR. WHITING:
3 Q. Now, Witness, after January of 1991, that first meeting that you
4 were aware of, between Martic and Stanisic, do you know if they also
5 communicated by telephone?
6 A. When -- well, sometime in 1990, November, or December, when they
7 were cleaning up the municipality of the bugging devices and the Knin
8 station, he was given a telephone, a direct telephone link, to Stanisic, a
9 direct telephone line, and they established that telephone line by -- or,
10 rather, technicians from Serbia set up that line.
11 Q. Now, Witness, could you tell the Judges, please, how did Milan
12 Martic talk about Jovica Stanisic?
13 A. He was with him -- or rather he was very enthusiastic about him.
14 He liked him 100 per cent, kept referring to him as my brother. He came
15 to like him very much, because anything he asked for, he would always get.
16 So he thought of him as his own brother, and he would refer to him very
17 often as "my brother Jovica." He never questioned that Jovica would do
18 anything he asked him for and before that, he would mention the name
19 Ledeni, meaning frozen. I didn't know what this nickname Ledeni meant but
20 he, Uros Pokrajac, explained it to me afterwards, because he would bring
21 up the name Ledeni very often and Ledeni was used to refer to Jovica
23 Q. Do you know if Milan Martic had any meetings with Slobodan
25 A. Yes, he did.
1 Q. How did you learn that?
8 Stanisic's office, and somebody would take us to take him over from
9 Milosevic's office, from where Milosevic's office was.
10 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, we'll need another redaction from
11 line -- page 60, line 3 to line 8, please.
12 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] We agree, Your Honour.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you. May lines 3 to 8 of page 60 please be
15 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
16 Q. Now, Witness --
17 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: Sorry, Mr. Whiting, before we proceed, I'd like
18 to suggest that you issue the caution to the witness which you had given
19 previously concerning the nature of - you know what I'm referring to, that
20 certain thing - and so that we avoid you having to ask for a redaction.
21 MR. WHITING: Yes, Your Honour. I think that's a good idea. For
22 that purpose could we go into private session, please?
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
24 [Private session]
12 [Open session]
13 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
15 MR. WHITING: I just have one or two more questions on this topic
16 and then if we could -- thank you, Your Honour.
17 Q. Witness, when you heard the -- Milan Martic talk about Milosevic,
18 how did he talk about Milosevic?
19 A. He used different nicknames, sometimes he would refer to him as
20 Slobo when everything was going okay. When I say -- well, if everything
21 were to go well, and he would get everything he wanted, he would be
23 Q. Did he use any other nicknames for him?
24 A. He would say, "The boss."
25 Q. Okay. I think -- so he used -- he would refer to him as the boss?
1 A. As far as I know, and I heard this fairly often, he would
2 say, "the boss," "Gazda." Slobo -- well, the name was Slobodan so if you
3 said Slobo that was a friendly term, whereas if you said, Gazda, the boss,
4 that was more a mark of respect.
5 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, I think this would be a convenient time
6 for the break.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
8 Court is adjourned and we will come back at quarter to six.
9 --- Recess taken at 5.15 p.m.
10 --- On resuming at 5.46 p.m.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Whiting.
12 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour. Could we go into private
13 session, please?
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
15 [Private session]
11 Page 2000 redacted. Private session.
11 Page 2001 redacted. Private session.
5 [Open session]
6 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
8 MR. WHITING:
9 Q. Witness, when the camp at Golubic began functioning in March or
10 April of 1991, who was being trained there?
11 A. Special Forces of the police of Krajina were being trained there.
12 Q. Who did the training?
13 A. The training was conducted by Captain Dragan with his assistants,
14 Mark, one was Mark. I know his name was Mark. He introduced him as an
15 Irishman. The other one was Fico. Actually, this Fico said after a while
16 that he came from the state security of Serbia, that he was Frenki's man.
17 Q. Can you describe the training? What kind of training was done?
18 A. Walls were constructed there, and it sort of looked like training
19 grounds or for keeping the police or military fit and trained, so it was
20 typical of this kind of military training grounds or police training
21 grounds and also for using weapons. And he trained them in order to be
22 able to work in groups that would then be brought together.
23 Q. How long would the training last? That is, for a particular
24 person, officer, who went there, how long would the training last?
25 A. The training was supposed to last for up to two months. Now, the
1 length of the training at that moment depended on the situation on the
3 Q. What kind of equipment was at the camp?
4 A. The trainees, the people who actually went there to train, they
5 had infantry weapons, and also on the side, there were six cannons all the
6 time, some kind of old cannons, I don't know the type, and in the meantime
7 a tank was brought in, self-propelled. I think it was 76 millimetres.
8 Q. What kind of vehicles were there at the camp?
9 A. At first, as soon as it was established, six new Landrovers were
10 brought in, white ones.
11 Q. Who brought those in, if you know?
12 A. It came from the MUP of Serbia, with Frenki.
13 Q. And did those Landrovers have any special characteristics or
14 special abilities?
15 A. Well, these were field vehicles that could take up to nine to ten
16 men. They had very good performance capacities. 101, 104, 106, were
17 their numbers. I think some of them were also given to the police station
18 in Knin later for the intervention Brigade.
19 Q. What kind of communications equipment was available at Golubic?
20 A. In Golubic, at that time, both for training and for equipping the
21 special units, special equipment was used, special equipment provided by
22 Frenki, walkie-talkies, special radio transmitters that could be heard
23 even further away without support from a repeater.
24 Q. Was there a shooting range at Golubic or nearby?
25 A. Well, yes. To the north, four or five kilometres to the north.
1 Gnjile Bare was the location's name.
2 Q. And what other villages to the north, if you keep going, what
3 village do you arrive at?
4 A. You'd arrive at the village of Strmica.
5 Q. What kind of weapons were at the shooting range?
6 A. For the most part, weapons that people who were involved in the
7 training would get. They would be reassigned to other places afterwards
8 or units, so weapons for shooting, and they even tried out the
9 self-propelled tank, 76 millimetres. Later on, they tried out yet another
10 weapon, that they had just worked on. It was called the armoured train.
11 Q. Who constructed the armoured train?
12 A. The armoured train was made at Frenki's request.
13 Q. How was the camp paid for?
14 A. I'm sorry, I really did not understand this question.
15 Q. What I meant was, all these things that you're talking about, all
16 this equipment and all these things at the camp, who paid for them? Where
17 did the money come from for the camp?
18 A. Most of the equipment or all of the equipment was brought from
19 Frenki's -- from Belgrade by Frenki, the equipment and the money. He's
20 the one who decided with his appointed commanders about everything. He's
21 the one who had the money, who paid these people, and who brought in the
23 Q. What was Milan Martic's role at the camp?
24 A. The camp was under the command of Milan Martic. At that time
25 Frenki -- or rather he and Frenki were on good terms.
1 Q. Do you remember any of the people who -- any of the men who
2 trained there at the beginning, at the camp, by name?
3 A. I remember that Dragan Karana went, Milovic Janovic [phoen], Milan
4 Lukic, Goran Opacic and his two brothers, I don't know, I can't remember
5 their names. They were called the Opacic brothers.
6 Q. Where were the Opacic brothers come from?
7 A. They came from Benkovac.
8 Q. Did the men who were being trained have to do something at the end
9 of their training?
10 A. They were supposed to carry out their direct tasks, in order to
11 show what they had learned, especially movement, establishment movement in
13 Q. Did something happen at Ljubovo?
14 A. Ljubovo was carried out by a generation from Golubic. As far as I
15 understood, that was a former Croatian farm by the village.
16 Q. What do you understand happened at Ljubovo?
17 A. My understanding was that they fully carried out their task
18 because they managed to use hand held rocket launchers and to fire at
19 these facilities where they had been sent.
20 Q. Okay. We have to just get a little bit of explanation here. Who
21 was sent there and who carried out this attack?
22 A. At that time, the people who had carried out this training or
23 rather the people who had been trained were called Martic's men,
24 Marticevci. That's the name they got. And I know that the platoon
25 commander was Lieutenant Calic, Milorad Calic. They were people who had
1 completed this training in Golubici that had been carried out by
2 Captain Dragan.
3 Q. And they did the attack on Ljubovo, this group?
4 A. Yes. They carried out their assignment. They successfully
5 attacked Ljubovo.
6 Q. And was Ljubovo a Croatian village or a Serb village?
7 A. Ljubovo was a purely Croatian village.
8 Q. And you said that they used hand held rocket launchers, they fired
9 those at the village?
10 A. Yes. Because after the action, they celebrated, they were pleased
11 with what they had done. They said that openly.
12 Q. And do you know what the result was of the attack?
13 A. As far as I understood things, there were a few persons who got
14 killed and injured. This man who was from the area told me that this had
15 been carried out very well.
16 Q. Now, the men who were trained at Golubic, what happened -- what
17 did they do after their training? Where did they go?
18 A. They went back to where they had been sent from for this training.
19 They had this first assignment that they carried out and then they went
20 back to their formation units or rather the places from where they had
21 been sent originally.
22 Q. And what would they do there? What would be their function there
23 when they returned to where they had been sent from originally?
24 A. They had the status of special police. They were better-paid,
25 they had vehicles at their disposal, quite simply they had many more
1 benefits and enjoyed a higher reputation because they were sort of the
2 strike force in a way. They were invincible.
3 Q. And after they returned to where they were -- had come from, what
4 was their relationship to Milan Martic?
5 A. They were under his command. They had maximum respect for him.
6 And they carried out whatever he asked for.
7 Q. Now, Witness, at Easter time in 1991, did something happen in
9 A. Yes. There was a clash there between Martic's police that was
10 supposed to take Plitvice and the Croat forces, the police forces in the
11 MUP, that were there. They clashed. These were two forces that clashed
12 actually. On the Serb side, one man got killed, two were wounded, and two
13 were arrested by the Croatian MUP.
14 Q. Do you know who was in command of the Serb side, of the Serb unit
15 at Plitvice?
16 A. The commander of the Serb side was Djurica Manovic [phoen].
17 Q. And did somebody send him there?
18 A. Martic selected him to be the leader of that special company that
19 was sent out to take Plitvice.
20 Q. How do you know that?
21 A. This was done from Golubic. This was absolutely not hidden.
22 Q. Now, Witness, you told us earlier in your testimony that in
23 January of 1991, Milan Martic was in command of the police. Did he remain
24 in command of the police throughout 1991?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Did there come a time when Milan Babic tried to get control?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Do you remember approximately when that was?
4 A. I don't remember exactly but there were two attempts. One was --
5 well, I know the name was Lazikovic Slavko [phoen], he was a Professor.
6 And the second attempt involved the appointment of Dusan Vjestica.
7 Q. Was Milan Babic successful? Was he able to get control of the
9 A. No. He didn't stand a chance.
10 Q. Why do you say he didn't stand a chance?
11 A. Because Martic had a great deal of authority, and he didn't have
12 any chance of upsetting that, and already at that time he had support from
14 Q. What about the TO? In the summer and the fall of 1991, who
15 commanded the TO in the SAO Krajina, to your knowledge?
16 A. The TO had a joint staff with Martic, established sometime I think
17 in July 1991 at the fortress of Knin. That's where they joint staff was.
18 He was -- or rather without his command, nothing could be done. He was
19 issuing orders to the commander of the Territorial Defence as well.
20 Q. To your mind, was there any difference between TO officers or
21 soldiers and the police?
22 A. Technically speaking, apart from the equipment and training, there
23 was no difference. The command was the same. It's just that the older
24 members of the Territorial Defence had a different uniform but all the
25 rest was the same.
1 Q. You talked earlier about the conflict between Milan Babic and
2 Milan Martic. Did that continue during 1991?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Did one of them receive more support from Belgrade?
5 A. Martic got more and more support and assistance from Belgrade. On
6 the other hand, Babic was losing a lot.
7 Q. Did there come a time when Milan Martic had a dispute with Frenki?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. When did that happen?
10 A. That was sometime in June or July, because Martic established the
11 staff at the fortress and transferred it from Golubic to the fortress,
12 together with the Territorial Defence.
13 Q. Do you know what the dispute was about?
14 A. As Martic said, Frenki would allow himself to do a great many
15 things and he was increasingly taking control over people, and he didn't
16 like this.
17 Q. Did Frenki leave Knin or the Krajina?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. For how long?
20 A. I can't remember exactly for how long, but at any rate, the other
21 part of the territory in Korenica was involved. Let me explain this.
22 When there was this quarrel, when the Golubic camp was closed down, then
23 Captain Dragan's people, together with Bosko Bozovic [phoen], and
24 agreement with Bosko Bozovic, the president of the SDS from Korenica. So
25 part of Captain Dragan's people were transferred to Korenica.
1 Q. And what did Frenki do?
2 A. First he returned to Belgrade.
3 Q. And did he stay in Belgrade?
4 A. Not for a long time. When the new camp was established, in the
5 territory of Korenica, that motel, that location was called Sesta licka.
6 Q. And when that happened, did he return to Korenica? Frenki, that
8 A. It's not that he returned the way he had been in Golubic. In
9 Golubic he would spend -- he would spend a lot of his time there actually.
10 Q. So do I understand you correctly that he would go -- he went back
11 to Korenica -- he went to Korenica but he didn't spend as much time there
12 as he had spent in Golubic? Is that -- am I understanding you correctly?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Now, when Martic transferred in June or July to the fortress in
15 Knin, did he remain based there after that?
16 A. Yes. They stayed there for quite a while.
17 Q. Now, Witness, I want to ask you some questions about Lovinac. Did
18 there come a time when something happened there in Lovinac?
19 A. Yes. I think it was in June, Lovinac was a Croat village between
20 Gracac, Licki Gracac, and Medak. It was quite a hindrance, in terms of
21 communicating with the Serb area, Medak/Citluk so it was attacked early in
22 the morning by Martic's police, from two different directions. On one
23 side there was the armoured train from the direction of Gracac, and from
24 Medak, there was mortar fire.
25 Q. What was Martic's role in the attack, if you know?
1 A. He was in command. He was at Udbina.
2 Q. What -- what was the result of the attack on the village? What
3 happened to the village?
4 A. Well, you could see smoke and what was going on. Later on, he
5 asked for a Croatian radio to be found in order to hear what the effects
7 Q. And do you know what the effects were?
8 A. According to the stories, there were casualties and wounded.
9 Q. Do you know what the effect was on the Croat population in that
11 A. They were in a panic. They wanted to leave, to escape, and that
12 was the object of the attack, in fact.
13 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Objection, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Milovancevic?
15 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] The witness is talking about
16 what could be heard over the radio, and the question was, what was the
17 effect on the Croatian population. How can the witness know that?
18 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, I was just about to ask how he knew
19 that but I was going to ask that we go into private session.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: Still trying to understand. Mr. Milovancevic says
21 the witness is talking about what could be heard over the radio. I'm
22 trying to look at when "radio" was first spoken about.
23 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, I have it at line 11.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Yeah, line 11 says "later on he asked for a
25 Croatian radio to be found in order to hear what the effects were." I
1 don't know who is this who asked for a Croatian radio to ask, to find out
2 the effects. I'm not quite sure how that statement relates to the
3 question that is being asked, if this witness knows the effect of that
4 attack on the village. And this is what I'm trying to understand,
5 Mr. Milovancevic.
6 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. It's out of
7 context. We don't know the context from which the witness is stating what
8 he's stating. The witness wasn't on the spot. He doesn't know any thing
9 directly, has no direct knowledge. He is speaking in an indirect way.
10 And then he's telling it in the way that makes it completely difficult to
11 understand what was going on, and then he didn't say that he had any
12 direct information, personal information.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Milovancevic, did the witness say he was not on
14 the spot at any stage?
15 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'm just starting
16 out from what the witness has been telling us so far in response to
17 questions asked him by the Prosecution. I'm not saying what the witness
18 is stating but I can see that the witness is talking about something that
19 he doesn't know firsthand or he cannot know firsthand, at least judging on
20 the answers he gave. He says that somebody asked for the Croatian radio
21 to be switched on so that they could hear what the effects were on the
22 village and then the next question by the Prosecution was how did the
23 Croatian population behave? There must be a link or grounds laid for that
24 kind of question.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: I don't know whether you answered my question. My
1 question was simply was the witness -- has the witness ever said he was
2 not on the spot. You haven't answered that. That's okay.
3 Mr. Whiting, maybe if you could just clarify these points and
4 let's find out, if you can separate the knowledge of the witness from the
5 radio and deal with the radio separately, it would be a great help.
6 MR. WHITING: I will, Your Honour, and it had been my intention to
7 do that but in -- if we could move in private session to get the basis of
8 his knowledge.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: We will do that.
10 Will that clear the point, Mr. Milovancevic?
11 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
13 May the Chamber please move into private session.
14 [Private session]
11 Pages 2014-2021 redacted. Private session.
9 [Open session]
10 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
12 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Q. Witness, from what you were able to hear, were you able to know
14 what the relationship was between the police and the JNA at that time?
15 A. As I saw it, and as far as I know, it was excellent, more than
16 excellent. In fact, they were on a joint assignment, I would say.
17 Q. Do you know what that joint assignment was, from what you were
18 able to observe and hear?
19 A. Well, it was a joint cooperation and a joint task, joint
20 assignment, for joining up all the Serb lands into one entity, one whole.
21 Q. Did you hear any discussion about what would happen to Croat
22 villages that were in that area, that were in the way?
23 A. Those -- well, those villages were to be cleansed, quite simply,
24 because they were in the way, towards opening communications, towards Serb
25 territory, and as I understood it, along certain axes, directions, the
1 direction to Lika, for example, the entire line was to be moved towards
2 Gospic, up to Gospic, so you had pure villages.
3 Q. When you say those villages were to be cleansed, what do you mean
4 by that?
5 A. That meant that the Croatian population should either leave under
6 these actions or to -- or simply that they should be there no longer, to
7 leave the territory, to leave those villages.
8 Q. Did you ever have any conversations with Milan Martic about
10 A. Well, I remember when we passed by that way, or close by, towards
11 Vojnic on the road towards Vojnic, he would frequently tell me about the
12 parliament, the Sabor.
13 THE INTERPRETER: Or rather, sorry, the Sabor was a Croatian
14 village, interpreter's correction. Saborsko. In the Plaski municipality.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And when he contacted Medo, and
16 Medo, as far as I understood it was the president or whatever of the SDS,
17 and that that village was in the way, and on one occasion, well, we would
18 go quite frequently. On different occasions, he would say -- he would
19 talk about, "Well, we fucked their mothers. Now this is pure Serb land,"
20 and things like that.
21 MR. WHITING:
22 Q. Did you learn anything about who had carried out the operation in
24 A. As for the operation in Saborsko, he said that the forces that had
25 already become the Red Berets took part in that when they were transferred
1 from Golubic. They changed their name. They were no longer the
2 Marticevci, Martic's men. Now they had become the Red Berets. Because
3 actually for a very short period of time, they were Marticevci at Golubic
4 and at the Knin fortress they were called Knindzas because of this little
5 bear that was a symbol of these fighters. So together with the army they
6 moved against that village.
7 Q. The -- these forces that you say had become the Red Berets at that
8 time, do you know if they were under Martic's command at that time?
9 A. Yes. They were under Martic's command.
10 Q. How about Skabrnja? Did you have any conversation with Milan
11 Martic about what had happened at Skabrnja?
12 A. As for Skabrnja, he talked about Goran Opacic considerably. They
13 kept thinking that this man was fool, a fool, that he was crazy. So
14 Skabrnja was sort of a symbol. He kept saying, "Goran Opacic or the
15 Opacic brothers, they had really done their job, they had really fucked
16 them, they completed this mission."
17 Q. And did he talk about what the mission was in Skabrnja?
18 A. Yes. This mission meant to liberate the entire area towards
19 Zemunik, towards Zadar, I don't know the exact name of the area and to
20 cleanse it from the Croat population.
21 Q. To your knowledge, was Goran Opacic under Martic's command at the
22 time this operation was carried out?
23 A. Yes. He was a member of the Benkovac special police.
24 Q. During this time period, did -- August through December of 1991,
25 did Milan Martic go to places where fighting had occurred?
1 A. Well, yes. He often went out to visit, because people's morale
2 would be boosted when he would be nearby, when he would visit them. That
3 was very important, when he showed up.
4 Q. Were there problems that you were aware of that occurred where
5 fighting had occurred, problems with the police?
6 A. These problems for the most part were of a material nature, as I
7 like to put it. It was major theft. The army accused the police of
8 taking everything away from the places that they would enter, cleansing
9 them of everything that could be used.
10 Q. And what did Martic do about this, to your knowledge? How would
11 he deal with these problems, if you know?
12 A. He didn't like that. He wanted to prevent that, but he simply
13 didn't know how to do it.
14 Q. He wanted to prevent what?
15 A. He wanted to prevent this rivalry between the army and the police.
16 He didn't believe that the police was doing that, that they were taking
17 these things away.
18 Q. Do you know if he did anything to stop that theft from occurring?
19 Or do he just not believe that it was occurring?
20 A. Well, he changed the commanders of the police in those villages
21 where there were major problems and where he had indications of things
22 like that going on.
23 Q. Now, I want to ask you about Kijevo. Did something happen in
24 Kijevo at the beginning of the conflict?
25 A. Yes. At the beginning, beginning of 1991, Vaso Pecer was killed.
1 Q. And who was Vaso Pecer?
2 A. Vaso Pecer was a young man who was at the barricades. He was from
3 the village of Polace right next to the Croat village of Kijevo. In a way,
4 they were neighbours.
5 Q. Was he a Serb or a Croat?
6 A. A Serb.
7 Q. And did anything happen after that?
8 A. His body remained facing a hill called Bat [phoen]. (redacted)
10 (redacted) When we
11 got there, Babic was supposed to calm these people down, these people were
12 already there assembled. They were upset. The family of the killed man
13 was there, and then this colonel came, I don't remember what his rank was,
14 but Lieutenant Colonel Djukic, Borislav, who was the commander of the army
15 in that area, he said, "You cannot pass that way." And then Tolimir
16 showed up and then they explained that it was dangerous for him to go up
17 there. If he went up there he might get killed. And then we went back.
18 Now, I don't know, a day or two later, thanks to Tolimir, they got the
19 body out.
20 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, I think we'll need a redaction just at
21 the beginning of that answer, the first few lines at the beginning of that
23 Q. Witness, I have some questions for you about Kijevo, about
24 something that happened later at Kijevo but we've reached the end of the
25 session for today so I'll have to ask you those questions tomorrow.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Which lines specifically did you want redacted?
2 MR. WHITING: Lines -- on page 89, lines 12 and 13.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: May lines 12 and 13 of page 89 please be redacted.
4 JUDGE HOEPFEL: And line 10.
5 MR. WHITING: Yeah.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: There is a suggestion that line 10 also be
8 MR. WHITING: The problem here is that we are looking at two
9 different monitors. It's line 12 -- it's line 12 and 13 on the Court
10 monitor and on the English -- on the LiveNote monitor, it's line 9 and 10.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: You want 9 and 10. Do you want to redact "his body
12 remained facing the hill called ..."
13 MR. WHITING: No, it's "from that afternoon ..."
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: "From that afternoon ..." Could that be redacted,
15 please, that would be line 9 and 10 on the LiveNote monitor.
16 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour. I think it's a convenient
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
19 The matter stands down -- stands adjourned to tomorrow. We'll
20 come back here tomorrow at quarter past two in the afternoon, in the same
22 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, I thought it was in the morning. I
23 think we've been moved to the morning session.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. If we have been --
25 MR. WHITING: At nine in the morning.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: We will start at nine in the morning, instead of
2 quarter past two in the afternoon. Thank you so much.
3 Court adjourned.
4 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
5 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.02 p.m.,
6 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 9th day of March
7 2006, at 9.00 a.m.