1 Thursday, 25 May 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Good morning, sir. Once again, let me remind you
7 that you are bound by the declaration you made at the beginning of your
8 testimony to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing else but the
9 truth. Okay?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, yes.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
12 Mr. Whiting.
13 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
14 WITNESS; WITNESS MM-078 [Resumed]
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 Examination by Mr. Whiting: [Continued]
17 Q. Good morning, Witness.
18 A. Good morning.
19 Q. Witness, I'll remind you that we're in public session so we won't
20 use names at the moment, but yesterday when we finished you were talking
21 about someone you knew who you described as the last Croat to leave Knin
22 in 1993. And you described how you offered your residence for him to stay
23 in. And you also say that he asked an employee of Mr. Martic to allow him
24 to stay rather than become a refugee. And then I asked you if you knew
25 what Mr. Martic said and your answer was: "I don't know what he told him,
1 but I know he was as sad as I was."
2 I just want to clarify your answer there. When you said: "I know
3 he was as sad as I was," who was as sad as you were in was it the employee
4 of Mr. Martic? Was it Mr. Martic, or was it the Croat that you were
5 speaking about?
6 A. Mr. Martic was sad.
7 Q. And why -- again, without mentioning the name, why was Mr. Martic
9 A. That man was a very close friend of Mr. Martic's and mine.
10 Q. I understand?
11 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, could we go into private session,
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
15 [Private session]
3 [Open session]
4 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
6 Yes, Mr. Whiting.
7 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
8 Q. Witness, we were at the end talking about the Dom Kulture centre
9 in Vrpolje, and you told the Trial Chamber yesterday what the function of
10 that place was and you described it, even though you said you didn't like
11 to use the term, you described it as a collection centre for Croats who
12 were leaving the area of Knin. What was -- did the -- did the police in
13 Knin or that area of Knin have any function or responsibility with respect
14 to that place, the Dom Kulture in Vrpolje?
15 A. The police in Knin had the responsibility over the Dom Kulture in
16 Vrpolje in terms of protecting the people who were kept in that Dom
17 Kulture from any possible attacks from the outside.
18 Q. Did the police also facilitate, in any way, the process of Croat
19 civilians going to this location and then leaving the Krajina? Did they
20 organise that in any way or facilitate it in any way to your knowledge?
21 A. I know that the police formed part of the logistics team which
22 assisted these people in leaving Knin, that is to say the Republic of
23 Serbian Krajina, smoothly.
24 Q. Can you tell us how you know that and if -- if you need to speak
25 about particular people or names, then let me know and we can go into
1 private session.
2 A. I know that because many friends of mine were over there. I can
3 give you their names but in a private session.
4 Q. I understand.
5 MR. WHITING: Could we go -- Your Honour, could we go into private
6 session, please?
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
8 [Private session]
19 [Open session]
20 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
22 Yes, Mr. Whiting.
23 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
24 Q. Witness, do you know anything about the conditions at this
25 location, at the Dom in Vrpolje?
1 A. The conditions at the Dom were not worthy of human beings. This
2 was a Dom Kulture, which meant that it was a place, a venue, where
3 cultural performances were held. When the people were brought over to the
4 Dom, they were provided from the Red Cross blankets, sort of mattresses,
5 and food in the quantities that were barely enough for them. I have to
6 add that the residents of Knin themselves brought over food as much as
7 they could.
8 Q. Do you know if the -- that location was ever crowded?
9 A. The area is of a surface of 15 by 20 metres, and it was never
10 overcrowded in terms of the people not being able to have enough space for
12 Q. How long would people typically stay there, if you know?
13 A. Based on the information I have, the longest was three days.
14 Q. Where would they go when they left there?
15 A. Part of the convoy went across Lika to Otocac from where it went
16 down to Karlobag. And the last convoy, which was the one in 1993 that my
17 friend left with, it went across Kosovo, Drnis to Zutnic, and then on to
19 Q. Do you know if the police had any role or function in those
20 convoys that would transport those people from the Dom in Vrpolje to other
22 A. The Knin police escorted these buses that formed the convoy to the
23 point where the convoy was taken over by others, where their
24 responsibility ceased.
25 Q. And what point was that? Was that the border?
1 A. The point was at Zitnic, when the convoy went across Drnis. When
2 the convoy went via Otocac then the point was near Gospic. I don't know
3 what the name of the place is.
4 Q. And when you said that -- you described this last Croat to leave
5 Knin and this last convoy in 1993, are you saying that by 1993,
6 essentially all Croats or virtually all Croats had left the area?
7 A. No, not all of them left the area. Several Croats remained, but
8 their numbers were insignificant in comparison to the numbers that were
9 there initially.
10 Q. And when you say "numbers that were there initially," is that
11 before the conflict began, say 1990 or ...
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Witness, I've -- when I was asking you earlier about prisons, you
14 told us that you were aware of a prison at the old hospital in Knin. Did
15 you hear -- did you ever hear about a prison at the fortress in Knin?
16 A. I did hear about it, but I never had occasion to go to the
17 fortress or the prison, if indeed it was there, and I heard that it was.
18 Q. Do you recall when you heard about it?
19 A. I heard about it in 1991.
20 Q. Witness, those are all my questions. Thank you very much. I
21 appreciate your answers.
22 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, thank you.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Whiting.
24 Mr. Milovancevic.
25 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour,
1 Mr. Nikola Perovic, my co-counsel, will conduct the cross-examination.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Milovancevic.
3 Mr. Perovic.
4 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. Before I
5 proceed to examine the witness, could I have the usher's assistance in
6 handing out copies of the statement that the witness gave to the OTP in
7 February of last year. There are enough copies for the Trial Chamber,
8 interpreters, and the witness himself. I'd also like us to work in closed
9 session because I will be putting questions to the witness that might put
10 him at risk.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Closed or private?
12 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Private.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
14 May the Chamber please move into private session.
15 [Private session]
11 Pages 4471-4533 redacted. Private session.
9 [Open session]
10 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
12 Yes, Judge.
13 A. Milena Tanjga is a journalist by professional who worked and lived
14 in Zagreb until 1991. She was the minister for -- of information with Mr.
15 Milan Martic's cabinet. The article was published twice, the latter one
16 was published on the 1st of September, 1995, and the former was published
17 seven days earlier. That is it, if that is enough for you.
18 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Thank you.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes.
20 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: No questions of the witness.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Judge.
22 Witness, I have many questions for you. At the beginning of your
23 testimony you said that Mr. Milan Martic was head of a sector in the area
24 of Knin. Do you remember making that statement?
25 A. I said that he was the head of sector, not chief, that's the
1 difference. This is the function concerned mostly with the police.
2 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness's microphones be enhanced or
3 switched on?
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: It may have been a problem of interpretation. I
5 used the word "head," not chief. And if there's a distinction that can be
6 made in the B/C/S, I would appreciate it if it can be made. My question
7 still stands.
8 I beg your pardon, my question is: What sector was this you were
9 saying was head of the police -- this function was concerned mostly with
10 the police. Now, what sector of the police was he head of?
11 A. He was the head for one particular area where he was tasked with
12 dealing with the economic crime, political crime, possible disruption of
13 law and order, and the security situation. This particular area covered
14 almost the entire centre of Knin.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: At that time you, in your position, were you
16 holding a position that was superior to his?
17 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, I would just remind the Court that
18 we're in public session, we're in open session.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
20 Thank you so much, Mr. Whiting.
21 [Private session]
11 Pages 4536-4548 redacted. Private session.
15 [Open session]
16 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
18 Court is adjourned. Convene tomorrow at 9.00 in the morning.
19 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.04 p.m.,
20 to be reconvened on Friday, the 26th day of
21 May, 2006, at 9.00 a.m.