1 Thursday, 19 October 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.16 p.m.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Good afternoon. I see the witness is not here. I
6 believe somebody has got housekeeping. Is that the Prosecution?
7 MR. WHITING: No, Your Honour. My goal is to make it to the --
8 November 20th without raising a housekeeping matter. So I'm still on
9 track. I think it's Mr. Milovancevic who wants to raise it.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Milovancevic?
11 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours.
12 We have a housekeeping matter. According to the schedule of witnesses,
13 after General Djukic, whose examination is under way the Witness MM-114,
14 Dragan Knezevic, was supposed to appear. We have obtained safe conduct
15 for him for the Trial Chamber. As he's a refugee we have obtained
16 temporary travelling document for him and delivered to him the Court's
17 guarantees but he lost all these documents so that he's unable to appear
18 on Monday. So instead of the witness Knezevic, on Monday, Mile Dakic
19 should appear, who was otherwise scheduled to appear after Knezevic and
20 then the normal schedule would be followed, MM-106 Zoran Lakic and 092,
21 Nada Pupovac. I'm raising this matter and addressing a request to the
22 Trial Chamber and to the learned colleagues from the OTP to appreciate the
23 situation. We have taken steps for new travelling documents to be issued
24 to this witness which is not all that simple because he's a refugee and
25 can be issued such documents only for seven days. So that he will appear
1 somewhat later and as we will have the witness Mile Dakic on Monday, can I
2 ask the Trial Chamber to rule on our submission in accordance with Rule
3 92(F) and this is the only matter which I wish to raise at this point.
4 Sorry, 92 ter.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: The only problem -- not problem -- the only point
6 that I hear from what you're saying is that you're putting 106 before 92,
7 but according to the order that we have, 92 comes before 106. So that
8 after -- if 84 comes next week, then it's going to be followed by 114,
9 then 92 had to come in before 106. Are you wanting to change that as
10 well, to swap 106 with 92?
11 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I believe that I
12 was confused with the numbers and with the sequence of the witnesses. The
13 only thing that we wished to do was to inform the Court that the next
14 witness will not be the witness Knezevic, MM-114, but before him as the
15 first witness following this one, will be MM-084, Mile Dakic, and a ruling
16 according to 92 ter is requested, and I just mentioned the other witnesses
17 according to this -- it's not the actual sequence of their appearance.
18 MR. WHITING: Well, you know, I'm not sure -- I'm a little
19 surprised that we are being told about this now, that is the point of view
20 of the Prosecution. I'm not sure why we didn't -- weren't informed about
21 this sooner because, of course, now we are being -- we will have to
22 cross-examine this witness on Monday and we have not expected to reach
23 this witness until later in the week. And we have to completely shift
24 gears now. But I think, you know, we'll do it and I just wish -- I just
25 would ask that a little more effort be made to inform us about things,
1 maybe they just found out a few minutes ago. I would be surprised but,
2 yeah, so we'll cross-examine on Monday, that witness.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much. I'm not quite sure what
4 ruling the Defence is asking for. 92 ter, what specific ruling do you
5 want under Rule 92 ter, Mr. Milovancevic?
6 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, under 92 ter, a
7 written statement of a witness is introduced and he's orally examined in
8 part. In order for the written statement to be introduced, a ruling by
9 the Trial Chamber is required and that is what I had in mind and also, I
10 do not expect that the examination of the witness Dakic, the
11 cross-examination, that is, will begin on Monday. I do not think that
12 that is realistically feasible. In my view, you cannot start before
13 Tuesday and even later than that.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Which statement do you want admitted in terms of 92
15 ter, of Dakic or of somebody else? Of Dakic?
16 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Dakic's, Your Honours, yes.
17 MM-084, the witness Mile Dakic.
18 MR. WHITING: Okay. I'm sorry, Your Honour, this is probably my
19 fault but now I'm confused. After this witness, Mr. Djukic, 114 will not
20 appear so then who is the next witness going to be? I'm lost now 84? So
21 dropping out is 92 and 106.
22 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Your Honour, please.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry. They're not dropping out, they're just
24 shifting a step below.
25 MR. WHITING: And then I'm further confused by what Defence
1 counsel says, we won't start the cross-examination on Monday, because if
2 he's 92 ter I thought that he would put his statement in and we start
3 cross-examination. So I'm a little confused then and I would appreciate
4 guidance so that we can prepare. Tuesday, of course, we have no court, I
5 believe. I believe that's the holiday.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yeah, Tuesday we have a holiday. I don't know why
7 he says so but any clarification I can give you is that we've got Djukic
8 on the box now. According to the request by the Defence, the next witness
9 is 84 and then the -- the witnesses follow as they stand. 84 followed by
10 114 followed by 92 followed by 106 and he's now asking that the 92 ter
11 statement of 84 be admitted into evidence now so that it be handed in by
12 his calculation you will not have reached 84 by Tuesday or my Monday. I
13 don't know what he bases that on.
14 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, we would certainly appreciate some
15 clarification on that because we believe that this witness will be done by
16 this week so we will at least start with Mile Dakic on Monday so I would
17 be grateful to know why it is we won't reach cross-examination.
18 Then with respect to the 92 ter motion, we do not oppose his
19 evidence coming in via 92 ter. Of course, it cannot be admitted now. He
20 has to come to court and swear to it, and then it's admitted, but we don't
21 oppose that.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: This whole discussion is taking a little longer
23 than I thought it was going to take. I said yesterday that these things
24 must be dealt with by way of written motions. I was trying to make this
25 exception because Mr. Milovancevic stood up on this point. Can you deal
1 with this by way of written motions? Ask what you want to ask for,
2 Mr. Milovancevic. Let the Prosecution respond, then you get a written
4 May we call the witness?
5 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
6 [The witness entered court]
7 WITNESS: BORISLAV DJUKIC [Resumed]
8 [Witness answered through interpreter]
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: Good afternoon, sir.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Let me remind you that you made a declaration
12 yesterday to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing else but the
13 truth. You remember that?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Just remind you that you are still bound by that
16 declaration to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing else but the
17 truth today. Okay?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Previous translation continues] ...
20 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
21 Examination by Mr. Perovic: [Continued]
22 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Djukic.
23 A. Good afternoon.
24 Q. We shall continue with the examination-in-chief which started
1 Tell me, Mr. Djukic, do you remember what was the decisive factor
2 or do you remember when the incidents directed against the Yugoslav
3 People's Army started along all directions including the area in which you
4 were and what particular point in time or do you associate the beginning
5 of such incidents with?
6 A. The incidents directed against the Yugoslav People's Army started
7 after the meeting of the president of the Republic of Croatia, Mr. Franjo
8 Tudjman, with the political leadership of the Croatian Democratic Union in
9 the region of Dalmatia, in the place called Trogir, which meeting was held
10 sometime in early May. I believe on the 5th of May 1991. From that time
11 on, ensued operations or rather actions of cutting down electricity
12 supplies, telephone lines, intercepting individual military vehicles,
13 searching military personnel, seizing weaponry, and all other such
14 incidents targeting members of the Yugoslav People's Army. In parallel
15 with that were also organised actions against the local Serb population
16 precisely in the zone of responsibility of the Knin Corps. I can adduce
17 only several such incidents, namely the situation in Zadar proper,
18 something which happened somewhat earlier, in fact, a couple of days, two
19 or three days earlier, when in just one evening after Franko Lisica, a
20 Croatian policeman was killed and buried, about 30.000 residents of Zadar
21 assembled and in the evening demolished according to the police department
22 of Zadar's report, about 123 shops and buildings belonging to Serbs, which
23 was to be followed by demolition on a wider area so that we had figures
24 and data officially confirmed by the official organs of Croatia, namely
25 the total figure was about a thousand facilities in that area that were
2 Q. At that time --
3 THE INTERPRETER: Sorry, sorry. Sorry, sorry, the interpreter did
4 not hear the question, I'm sorry.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Just hold on. The interpreter did not hear your
6 question, Mr. Perovic.
7 THE INTERPRETER: Please do not overlap.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: If you can please make a pause so that you don't
10 Can you ask the question again, please, Mr. Perovic?
11 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise to the interpreters.
12 Q. My question was: What was the situation with the Croatian
13 officers, members of the 9th Corps at that time?
14 A. The majority of the Croatian officers, who were in the 9th corps,
15 had their apartments, resided in cities on the littoral Zadar, Sibenik and
16 Split, most of them in Split. And over the weekends, they were able to go
17 and see their families or, according to the regulations then in force,
18 they could get leave every seven days and they had to pass through those
19 areas. They would be stopped by the police, they would be searched, their
20 arms seized, they would be apprehended and detained which was totally
21 illegal at that time for members of the Yugoslav People's Army to be
22 treated in that way.
23 Q. Thank you. When was the culmination of incidents of this kind,
24 i.e., attacks on members and facilities of the Yugoslav People's Army?
25 Can you associate that with a particular point in time?
1 A. Wholesale attack on all the units, and facilities, i.e., barracks
2 and depots of the Yugoslav People's Army, was publicly declared and
3 ordered by the president of the Republic of Croatia on the 15th of
4 September 1991.
5 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: I'm sorry, Mr. Perovic, before you go on, page
6 7, lines 10 to 19, I'm not understanding. It says the majority of
7 Croatian officers who were in the 9th Corps had their apartments and
8 resided in the cities and they were stopped by the police over the weekend
9 they would go to see their families. They would be stopped by the police
10 and searched and their arms seized. Is that correct?
11 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] We shall answer that through the
12 witness and clarify the situation.
13 Q. Is this about, Mr. Djukic, officers of the Yugoslav People's Army
14 of Croatian ethnicity who had flats in Zadar, Sibenik and other towns that
15 you enumerated?
16 A. Yes. Those officers who were in serving in the 9th Corps in Knin.
17 Q. Is this sufficient, Your Honours, as an answer?
18 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: I wanted to double check that that was correct.
19 Thank you. I'll comprehend.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'll tell you what I don't understand in that
21 sentence. What I don't understand is the statement "resided in." Let's
22 go back to that page. "The majority of the Croatian officers who were in
23 the 9th Corps had their apartments, resided in cities." I'm not quite
24 sure what that means, on the literal Zadar Sibenik and Split, most of them
25 in Split. Who resided in these apartments? They were resided in by who,
1 in other words?
2 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I believe that it would be best for
3 the witness to explain that.
4 Q. These are JNA officers who are of Croat ethnicity serving in the
5 9th Corps, which is headquartered at Knin. Could you please explain
6 whether these officers had their apartments in other cities?
7 A. Correct. They had their apartments in the towns that I
8 enumerated. Their families lived there but they served in Knin. They
9 served in the headquarters of the 9th Corps. I can explain on my own
10 example. I served in Knin but my apartment was in Herceg Novi in
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: So these people had their apartments in cities
13 on -- like Zadar, Sibenik, and Split? That's what it means. Thank you
14 very much, Mr. Perovic.
15 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
16 Q. Mr. Djukic, on the 15th of September 1991, as you stated, ordered
17 by the president of Croatia, Franjo Tudjman, there is a general blockade
18 of the barracks and facilities of the JNA throughout the Croatian
19 territory, is this correct?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. What is happening within the area of responsibility of the 9th
22 Corps after that order issued by President of Croatia?
23 A. After that order was issued, what happened was that Zitnic depot,
24 which is a munitions and mines and explosives depot located near to Drnis
25 along the Drnis-Sibenik road, they blockaded, "they" meaning the
1 paramilitary forces of Croatia, a depot and the base of the 55th navy
2 rocket base Trbovnje, and both barracks and all other facilities in the
3 garrison of Sinj were blockaded as well and that garrison was part of the
4 9th Corps because 316th Brigade was, by formation, part of the 9th Corps
5 of Knin.
6 Q. We will come back to those events later on. Now I'd like to
7 broach another subject.
8 Mr. Djukic, do you know what happened to the weapons of the
9 Territorial Defence of the Knin municipality? Where was it and who had
10 control over it?
11 A. Complete weapons of the Territorial Defence of Knin was located at
12 a depot entitled Krka, close to Knin itself. There was a fortified
13 facility housing the weapons and materiel of the Territorial Defence of.
14 That depot was guarded by sentries of the JNA and those who may enter the
15 depot had to contact the guards commander to perform their tasks at that
17 Q. So this was a JNA depot?
18 A. This is a depot of the Territorial Defence of which was part of a
19 depot of the JNA because there were several facilities there. One of
20 them was designated for Territorial Defence of. Other buildings were
21 depots of weapons, materiel, of the JNA.
22 Q. Thank you. What do you know about the decision of the SFRY
23 decision dated 9th of January 1991? What kind of a decision it was?
24 A. SFRY Presidency took a decision on the 9th of January on the
25 disarming of all parapolice and paramilitary forces in the territory of
1 the SFRY which concerned mainly the disarming of parapolice and
2 paramilitary forces in the territory of Croatia and Slovenia, and in
3 certain areas of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
4 Q. Is it known to you whether Croatia at that time observed that
5 Presidency of SFRY decision?
6 A. I would like to explain just one thing. On the basis of that
7 order, each subordinated command and the command of the 9th Knin Corps,
8 established a commission tasked with accepting in receipt of these units'
9 arms and to warehouse them at JNA depots. Within my area of
10 responsibility where I was commander, we nominated two officers, Slavulj
11 Dusan, and another officer, a non-commissioned officer, Petko Milan, to
12 head this commission. It was in -- the commission worked in the north of
13 Knin and it was tasked to take video footage and prepare documentation for
14 the receipt from citizens and all those bearing arms of the weapons. They
15 had to be brought to the northern barracks in Knin. It is known to me
16 that the Knin police station or the MUP of Knin handed over 100 automatic
17 rifles and three heavy -- and heavy guns, machine-guns, from the territory
18 of the municipality of Knin. I know that another commission was organised
19 in the garrison of Benkovac but I don't know the details about the weapons
20 so handed in.
21 It is known to me that in the territory of overall Croatia, a
22 total of 150 rifles were handed over and we have data of that in the
23 General Staff of the JNA. At that time, Croatia had imported 30.000
24 automatic rifles from abroad, mainly from Hungary. It handed over 150,
25 not of these but some old trophy weapons, just to take a red herring
1 across the path.
2 Q. Thank you. Mr. Djukic, do you know what Vance Plan is and when
3 was it presented to the public?
4 A. I know -- I am quite familiar with it because we had to
5 familiarise ourselves with it and implement it. It is the international
6 community's Security Council of the UN document.
7 Q. When was it published?
8 A. It appeared, as far as I know, in December 1991, and its
9 implementation started, as far as I know, in January 1992, but some
10 elements of that plan commenced in December 1991 with the deployment of
11 monitors between two sides in the conflict.
12 Q. Thank you. Where did this -- did this plan envisage for the
13 Republic of Serbian Krajina to have its own military and police?
14 A. It says literally in the plan that the Republic of Serbian Krajina
15 may hold its own police and military. When it comes to the military, what
16 is mentioned there is Territorial Defence, which ought to have been
17 demobilised, heavy weaponry had to be depoted with a double key system,
18 under double lock and key, which was observed in the Republic of Serbian
19 Krajina. The JNA had to withdraw, pursuant to that agreement, by the 19th
20 or 20th May of that same year, 1992. And as far as the police is
21 concerned, it is expressly stated there that the Republic of Serbian
22 Krajina could have its own police and that the police would encompass
23 regular police, just as any country in the world, and regular police [as
24 interpreted]. So they -- they could form regional police and the
25 government of the Republic of Serbian Krajina adopted decision to that
1 effect and they implemented it.
2 Q. Thank you. Was demobilisation of Territorial Defence units in the
3 RSK done in time?
4 A. In accordance with the report submitted to the Security Council of
5 the UN, submitted in August 1992, by peacekeepers within the RSK, it is
6 stated there that the JNA withdrew by that time, when the report was
7 drafted, from the territory of the RSK, that the Territorial Defence was
8 demobilised and the weapons were depoted pursuant to the Vance Plan, in
9 the manner envisaged by the Vance Plan.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Could I get clarity? Maybe it's better to get it
12 now than later. On page 12, at line 19, the witness says, let me start at
13 line 17 where the sentence begins, "And as far as the police concerned it
14 is expressly stated that the Republic of Serbian Krajina could have its
15 own police and that the police would encompass regular police, just as any
16 other country in the world, and regular police." Regular police and
17 regular police. Are there two different types of regular police?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There was a mistake. There is just
19 one type of regular, ordinary police.
20 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I believe that it is a
21 mistranslation -- misinterpretation. The witness mentioned regular and
22 regional police, as two different police forces or forms.
23 JUDGE HOEPFEL: [Previous translation continues] ... the witness
24 once more because I had exactly the same question so the police
25 encompassed what? Something which is usual in the rest of the world and
1 something different. Could you repeat what you wanted to say? Because we
2 have a problem with the translation.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Pursuant to the Vance Plan, it was
4 envisaged for a regular police force to exist, and regional police units
5 were also envisaged. So ordinary or regular police, which functions, and
6 a part of police that they called regional police, in that document.
7 Police which may -- formed in regions. May I explain this?
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Just a second, witness. I would like an
9 explanation because in my mind, I can envisage regular police being
10 regionalised so I don't understand the difference between regular and
11 regional. So I still want to get an explanation.
12 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I believe that through
13 the subsequent two or three questions, I will have clarified this dilemma
14 and I would like to ask a couple of questions of the witness.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Perovic.
16 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation].
17 Q. Mr. Djukic, when you say regional police or regional police
18 forces, what do you mean by that? What kind of police forces do you mean?
19 A. Police forces that, in the Republic of Serbian Krajina, were
20 dubbed "special units of police."
21 Q. Thank you. This is what we are going to discuss right now.
22 When were these special units of police formed or established?
23 A. They were established on the 28th of April 1992.
24 Q. When was the -- then was the date of the establishment of the
25 administration of special units of police within the Ministry of the
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Do you know under whose orders?
4 A. That administration of special units of police was established,
5 sir, under the orders of the General Staff of the JNA.
6 Q. I would like to have the Prosecutor's 65 ter document 1334 to be
7 brought on e-court.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: While we are waiting for that, you are saying that
9 the date of the establishment of administration of special units of police
10 within the Ministry of the Interior, which Ministry of the Interior of the
11 SAO Krajina or of the federal -- Socialist Federal Republic of
13 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Would you like to explain that, Mr. Djukic? Which Ministry of the
15 SFRY or of the SAO Krajina?
16 A. The order was not issued by a ministry of the SFRY but the General
17 Staff of the Yugoslav People's Army, as far as I can remember.
18 Q. But that administration?
19 A. They had two lines of responsibility. The head of that
20 administration was directly responsible to the Minister of the Defence, to
21 Stojan Spanovic, the then minister, and the other --
22 Q. I'm going to come to that.
23 A. The other line of responsibility went to the Minister of the
25 Q. Mr. Djukic, I'm going to ask you about that later. Now we have
1 the -- on the screens the document that I sought. Can we go to page 2 of
2 this document, please?
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry, Mr. -- I'm sorry, have I, has my question
4 been answered? I want to know when the witness said that the date of the
5 establishment of the administration of special units of police within the
6 Ministry of the Interior, I just want to know which Interior, which
7 Ministry of the Interior, is it the Ministry of the Interior of the SAO
8 Krajina or is the Ministry of the Interior of the SFRY? He has just told
9 us that the instruction didn't come from the Ministry of the Interior of
10 the SFRY. I understand that. I understand that he says the orders came
11 from the General Staff of the JNA.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From the military.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm reading what's written here, General Staff of
14 the JNA. Now, all I want to know is this Ministry of the Interior within
15 which the special units of police were established, it is the Ministry of
16 the Interior of which government? That's what I want to know.
17 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this document resolves
18 this matter, and over the next two questions, I will have demonstrated
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: Before he sees the document, surely this is his
21 testimony. He must know which Ministry of the Interior he was referring
23 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. When you're talking about the Ministry of the Interior, which
25 ministry do you mean, Mr. Djukic, of Yugoslavia or of SAO Krajina or --
1 A. The Ministry of the Republic of Serbian Krajina.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. -- [Microphone not activated]
3 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. [No interpretation]
5 A. [No interpretation]
6 MR. PEROVIC: [No interpretation] [Interpretation] -- at this
7 moment in my headphones. Shall I try to continue and see whether it's
8 been sorted out?
9 Q. Mr. Djukic, would you read the heading and the title of this
10 document, please?
11 A. "Order strictly confidential number 1943-1 of the Federal
12 Secretary for National Defence of the 28th of April 1992, organisational
13 and establishment changes."
14 Q. Thank you. Are you familiar with this document?
15 A. It is -- I am familiar with it. I've received excerpts from this
16 order, from subordinated organs, and I am familiar with it.
17 Q. Thank you. Would you please be so kind as to read out for us the
18 text on the first page, which is in capitals, and it starts with the
19 word "I order". Just the capitals.
20 A. First under one it says, "Organisational changes."
21 Q. So "I order" and then?
22 A. First it says, "Organisational changes," and then it goes on to
23 say, "in the Territorial Defence of the Republic of Serbian Krajina."
24 Q. Thank you. Can we now turn to page 3 of the original version?
25 That is actually page 2 in the English translation. In the B/C/S it is
1 the third page. Can we see that on the monitor? In the English
2 translation it is the second page.
3 B/C/S, page 3. 1676 is the mark on the page. Yes. It is the
4 third page and in the English translation it is page number 2. May I
5 just -- so it is item 10 of this document that I'm interested in. Now we
6 have item 11, point 11. So it will be at the bottom of the second page,
7 also in the B/C/S version, probably. So item 10, please. That's it.
8 Yes. At the very bottom.
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Item 10. Will you please read item 10 of this document?
11 A. Item 10, "To set up in peace a department of the special units of
12 the militia or police of the Republic of Serbian Krajina according to a
13 list of duties to be filled with active military personnel, number
14 270.308. The administration shall be subordinated to the Ministry of
15 Defence of the Republic of Serbian Krajina."
16 Q. Thank you. So is this an order whereunder was established the
17 administration of the special units of the police of the RSK?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Once again, who formed that administration?
20 A. According to this document, and according to the facts, this
21 administration was formed by the army, namely the Federal Secretary for
22 National Defence, i.e. the federal Ministry for National Defence.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] May I ask Your Honours to have this
25 document tendered as evidence of the Defence, tendered into the file, case
2 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Well, actually I have a problem because it is not
3 completely translated. There is only an excerpt in English.
4 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] That's quite correct, Your Honours.
5 We ourselves have observed that the Prosecution has unfortunately failed
6 to translate this document in its entirely but we shall do so. You can
7 see when we turn to page 4 of the original version, which I was just about
8 to show to the witness --
9 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, we have no objection to it going in,
10 and it being translated completely. I'm not sure we failed but I'll let
11 that one slide.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: When you say, "and it being translated completely,"
13 translated by who? We've got to know who is bearing the responsibility
14 to do that now.
15 MR. WHITING: Well, as it's the Defence's proposed exhibit and
16 offered to do it I'm happy to defer to them. If they have a problem
17 getting it translated, they should get in touch with us and we can assist.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Is that okay, Mr. Perovic? You'll attend to the
19 translation and if you have difficulties, you can ask your colleagues to
21 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I thank my colleague, the
22 Prosecutor, and the Trial Chamber. There is no problem. We shall be
23 submitting subsequently the untranslated part as well.
24 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Thank you. As it is not such a large document I
25 was thinking that would be feasible, in fact. Thank you very much.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Judge. The document as appears on the
2 screen is admitted into evidence as a Defence Exhibit under -- on the
3 condition that it will be translated in full and filed. May it please be
4 given an exhibit number.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, this becomes Exhibit number 978.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
7 Yes, Mr. Perovic?
8 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
9 Q. While we still have this document on the screen, I should like to
10 use that, and can we have the page 4 of the original version, 1676 is the
11 page number, point 11.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
13 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Actually, it is the third page of
14 the original version, point 11. I apologise.
15 JUDGE HOEPFEL: It's the third page and at the same time, it's
16 page number 4 in the electronic document because the cover note was the
17 page 1, speaking of the B/C/S original, yes? So it's page 3 which is the
18 first page, the fourth page.
19 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Yes. I agree.
20 Q. So item 11 is what we are interested in, Mr. Djukic. Would you
21 please comment on what I'm going to read out for you? Item 11
22 reads, "Attached to the ministry, within the Ministry of the Republic of
23 Serbian Krajina, in peacetime and in war, police brigades should be set up
24 according to the following." And then there is a whole series listed.
25 And then it goes on to say, at the end of item 11, "Brigades shall in
1 peace and in war be subordinated to the administration of the special
2 units of the police of the Republic of Serbian Krajina." You have
3 understood what I've read out to you?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Was this order complied with?
6 A. Yes, fully.
7 Q. Can you tell us more specifically what was done to implement this
9 A. According to this order, there were formed first of all the
10 administration of the special police units on the heading which was I
11 myself, and we also started with the setting up of the brigades of the
12 special police units sometime in May, but up until they were disbanded
13 they were never actually brought to full complement because this hinged
14 upon numerous circumstances, both on the ground and in respect of the
15 capacity to replenish these units.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: We have at least I have a problem because my
18 document in English ends at page 2, so this item 11 you are referring to,
19 I don't have, and I'm not sure -- I don't know what you're talking about.
20 We are out of court -- you are the only people in court now.
21 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] This is the part which was not, has
22 not been translated, Your Honour. That is page 4 of the original B/C/S
23 version. Item 11.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: But at least we would have expected the part that
25 you're going to use in court you have translated. Now, I can tell you, we
1 only have this item 10 that you referred to, then below that is item Roman
2 3, I issue the order for organisation. And then A, merging, open bracket
3 peace, closed bracket of the brigades of the police are number T, that's
4 all. That's all we have so we don't follow what you and the witness are
5 talking about which relates to item 11 as you referred to it.
6 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I accept that this is perhaps a
7 problem, Your Honours, and I shall therefore rephrase my question in order
8 to avoid having to invoke point 11, if you're agreeable.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: No. I don't want you to -- not to refer to point
10 11, Mr. Perovic. I would like you to refer to point 11. In fact you have
11 already referred to it and you have got a couple of answers on questions
12 about it, but all I'm just saying is we are in the difficulty that we
13 don't know what you're talking about because we don't have the document
14 before us, and I would have imagined that that portion of that document
15 which you intended to use you would have translated for us, if you didn't
16 see it necessary to translate the entire document, at least.
17 JUDGE HOEPFEL: In addition, this number 11 is not really legible
18 in the original, in the first line, one word, at least for someone who
19 doesn't speak the language, is not being readable.
20 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I accept that, this remark of Your
21 Honours, and I actually withdraw this question related to item 11. We --
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm not suggesting that, Mr. Perovic. If you can
23 make sure that as soon as possible after this we get the translation of
24 item 11, even before you give us a translation of the whole document, at
25 least then we can correlate it with what you have said with the witness.
1 I don't want you to withdraw that.
2 JUDGE HOEPFEL: And I have another confusion also. Actually that
3 started with our debate but which Ministry of the Interior, you remember,
4 on page 14 and 15, and Mr. Perovic, I think, in fact, you used in your
5 question the word Ministry of the Interior, and then the whole debate came
6 up, which Ministry of the Interior. Now we hear from the document and
7 from the translation it is the Ministry of Defence, and in this number 11,
8 it just says "Pri ministarstvu Republika Srpska Krajina [B/C/S spoken],"
9 and so on so no ministry is specified. We should have the complete text,
10 you will understand, for the understanding of it. Maybe in addition, some
11 clarification may be reached by asking questions to the witness.
12 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Just one minute, please,
13 Your Honours.
14 [Defence counsel confer]
15 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] If this would be of any assistance,
16 Your Honours, I should like to ask the witness to read the item in
17 question, item 11, in total, in the B/C/S, and during the break, we shall,
18 after the break, we shall submit to you the translation of item 11 if that
19 is agreeable, Your Honours.
20 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Maybe not the whole number 11 but the introduction
21 part of it.
22 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I don't think it will be a problem
23 to translate the entire point 11 because this is a small piece of text.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: If you can do that, please do that. Thank you very
25 much, Mr. Perovic.
1 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 Q. Mr. Djukic, would you please read item 11 of the B/C/S version for
3 us, in its entirety? What does it say?
4 A. 11, "Within the framework of the Ministry of the Republic of
5 Serbian Krajina in peacetime and in war, illegible," I suppose it should
6 say "should be formed," "brigades of the police according to the
7 following: The 75th Brigade of the police according to establishment
8 number T-590000. Peacetime location and point of mobilisation, Knin. The
9 79th police Brigade according to establishment number T 590001. Peacetime
10 location and mobilisation point, Korenica."
11 Should I go on?
12 Q. Yes. Read the whole text.
13 A. "The 80th police Brigade according to establish number T 590002.
14 Peacetime location and mobilisation point, Vojnic.
15 "The 83rd police Brigade, according to establishment number
16 T-590003. Peacetime location and mobilisation point, Petrinja.
17 "The 85th police Brigade, according to establishment number T
18 590004. Peacetime location and mobilisation point, Okucani."
19 Q. Please scroll up. Thank you.
20 A. "87th police Brigade, according to formation" -- sorry, "to
21 establishment number T-590005. Peacetime location and mobilisation point,
23 "The 90th police Brigade according to establishment number
24 T-590006. Peacetime location and mobilisation point, Beli Manastir.
25 "The 92nd police Brigade according to establishment number
1 T-590007. Peacetime location and mobilisation point, Benkovac."
2 Q. And the last sentence, what was it?
3 A. "Brigades in peacetime and in war are to be subordinated to the
4 administration of special police units of the Republic of the Serbian
6 Q. Thank you.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Perovic.
8 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
9 Q. Mr. Djukic, as far as I could grasp, this concerns the need to
10 form eight brigades of special units of police?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Was this order complied in full? Could you explain that?
13 A. Yes. We complied with it. We started establishing these units,
14 from the moment when JNA forces were withdrawn.
15 Q. How many of these brigades were fully established?
16 A. I inspected four full brigades. Four of them were not established
17 in full. And their establishment was not finished because they were to be
18 disbanded at the end of 1992, more precisely under an order of the Chief
19 of the General Staff of the army of Serbian Krajina, I believe that that
20 order was issued on the 28th of November, I think, and they were supposed
21 to cease operations on the 1st of December 1992.
22 Q. Thank you. Tell me, please, what was the task of these special
23 units of police?
24 A. Main task of those special units of police was to secure the
25 borders of the Republic of Serbian Krajina.
1 Q. Why at a certain point this need for them to exist ceased? Why
2 they were disbanded?
3 A. They were disbanded when the army of Serbian Krajina was
4 established and it was established pursuant to the Serbian -- Republic of
5 Serbian Krajina assembly decision, and the conditions for that
6 establishment of such military were as follows. Up to that point,
7 peacekeeping forces had not complied with their mandate, which was
8 corroborated by the following facts. In June, in the area of the Republic
9 of Serbian Krajina, in the south sector, at Miljevac plateau, we
10 experienced an aggression of the Croatian forces against a UN protected
11 area. 40 Territorial Defence troops were killed, who were deployed in
12 that area and who -- and there were -- their bodies were thrown in the
13 Bacica Mratovske by the Croatian forces and later, with the help of the
14 French contingent of the UN forces, their bodies were retrieved and they
15 were later interred at the Knin cemetery.
16 Q. May I interrupt you for a second? These units which were
17 disbanded at the end of November 1992 --
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. -- what was their formation? What were they part of?
20 A. Part of them entered the complement of the SVK.
21 Q. Pursuant to what were -- was this done?
22 A. Pursuant to an order, decision, of the assembly of the Republic of
23 Serbian Krajina.
24 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] May we have Exhibit 576 brought on
25 to the screens?
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Got it, Mr. Perovic? Or are you having --
2 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Yes. This is the document marked
3 576, Exhibit 576. Could you please zoom in?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't have it on my screen.
5 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. You don't have it on your screen? Do you have it now?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Could you please read to us the heading, the date, and the title
9 of this document?
10 A. "Republic of Serbian Krajina, General Staff of the Serbian army,
11 state secret number 947-2311 or either /1. Knin, 27th of November 1992,
12 re-establishment of the Territorial Defence and special units of police
13 into the Serbian army of the Republic of Serbian Krajina."
14 Q. Thank you. Did you see this document before?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. May we go to page 5 of the original? 6249, the last four digits.
17 In English, that's page 4. Original page 5, English version page 4.
18 Witness, now I would like you to read to us paragraph 2.9, item A
19 and B.
20 A. Yes. "Disband and terminate mobilisation development, A, of the
21 administration of special units of police, men and materiel to be
22 transformed into the establishment of the General Staff of the army of the
23 Republic of Serbian Krajina. B, 75th Brigade of special units of police
24 of Knin, PJM, Knin. Men, equipment and materiel to be transformed into
25 the 75th Motorised Brigade, 1st Light Brigade and the 2nd Infantry
2 Q. Thank you. May we go to page 16 of the original? That's page 13
3 in the English version. So page 16 B/C/S. In English, that's page 13.
4 May we have you read it, under Roman numeral 2, if you have it on
5 your screen?
6 A. I don't have it on the screen.
7 Q. May we scroll down?
8 A. Yes, I have it now.
9 Q. Can you read it out now?
10 A. Yes. "The following formations are going to be disbanded. All
11 erstwhile establishments of the staffs of the Territorial Defence of the
12 Republic of Serbian Krajina and special units of police of the Republic of
13 Serbian Krajina."
14 Q. Please read the last paragraph on this page. That's paragraph 4.
15 A. "Brigades of PJM, special units of police, will be part of the
16 corps in whose zone of responsibilities they are located in and they are
17 going to be subordinated in all respects to the commanders of the corps,
18 from January -- December 1st 1992, starting from 0001 hours."
19 Q. Mr. Djukic, whether this order is the one disbanding the
20 administration of special units of police and the units themselves?
21 A. Yes.
22 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, since we are going to
23 broach another subject, and we are nearing the end of the first session, I
24 would propose that we start discussing this other matter at the beginning
25 of the next session, after the break, if you're in agreement.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Perovic. Before we do so, are you
2 able to tell us where in the English translation the last paragraph that
3 the witness read appears? I've been trying to follow through with you. I
4 actually turned the page. I can't find this paragraph.
5 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] That's page 13 in the English
6 translation. The last paragraph on that page. It's supposed to be. It's
7 designated paragraph 4. At least in the B/C/S version, it's designated 4.
8 Under roman numeral 3. So chapter roman numeral 3, paragraph 4.
9 MR. WHITING: It's on page 14, Your Honour.
10 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise. I thought it was page
11 13. This is the information that I received.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Thank you, Mr. Perovic.
13 Yes, Judge?
14 JUDGE HOEPFEL: May I also ask something about this document? You
15 said this was the order to disband these units, these special police
16 units. Was it only this or was it at the same time an order to establish
17 something else in place of these units?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] By this order, Territorial Defence
19 of the Republic of Serbian Krajina was disbanded, and General Staff of the
20 Territorial Defence, zone and municipal staffs of the Territorial Defence,
21 all units of the Territorial Defence, which means detachments and
22 brigades, and lower units, they are -- what else is disbanded completely
23 are the special units of police, and from those two bodies of men, we
24 formed the Serbian army of Krajina and, pursuant to this order, it started
25 operating in December, on the 1st of December, at 0001 hours, one minute
1 after mid-night.
2 JUDGE HOEPFEL: What do you mean by we formed the Serbian Army of
3 Krajina? The order was given by the commander of General Staff of Serbian
4 Army of RSK, Novakovic, wasn't it?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Maybe I said something wrong when I
6 said, "We." Under "we," I mean the commander of the General Staff of the
7 army of Serbian Krajina. He was the one under constitution and laws of
8 the Republic of Serbian Krajina who had the power to do so because
9 previously by decree of the president of the RSK, he was nominated Chief
10 of the General Staff of the army. I believe that that decree was issued
11 towards the end of November, between 26th and 28th of November 1992.
12 JUDGE HOEPFEL: It would be interesting when between 26th and
13 28th, as we are reading, an order of 27th of November of the commander of
14 the General Staff of Serbian army of the RSK. An order which is forming
15 the Serbian army of the RSK. You understand what I'm sort of missing?
16 What's the missing link?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Previously, a presidential decree,
18 General Novakovic was nominated as commander and promoted to the rank of
19 general before this order was issued. I don't know the exact date.
20 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Thank you very much. This is what I needed for
21 understanding it. Thank you very much. I have got what I wanted, thank
23 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I believe that time is ripe for a
24 break, Your Honours.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much, Mr. Perovic. We will take a
1 short break and come back at 4.00. Court adjourned.
2 --- Recess taken at 3.32 p.m.
3 --- On resuming at 3.59 p.m.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Perovic?
5 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
6 Q. Mr. Djukic, I only have one more question related to the topic
7 that we discussed at the previous session. Do [as interpreted] the
8 representatives of the United Nations have any objections to the actions
9 and functions -- functioning of the special police units, to your
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry, Mr. Perovic, did you say do or did they?
12 THE INTERPRETER: Did, said the interpreter.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: The translation said"do." Okay. So it's "did."
14 Okay, thank you very much.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Past perfect tense.
16 I as the head of the administration of the special police units
17 upon the arrival of the peace forces, I established contact with
18 representatives and commanders of the contingence of the peace forces, the
19 representatives of the police, and the representative for civilian
20 affairs, at which time I mostly liaised, had contacts with Mr. Kirudja.
21 At that time, with their protocol, which they had in written form,
22 we -- using that protocol, we elaborated our own instructions for the work
23 of special police units on the ground, elaborating all procedures in
24 detail according to their proposal and the assistance they gave us in
25 elaborating that document.
1 These representatives never had any objections on the ground.
2 There perhaps might have been a petty incident here or there, but the
3 reason for that was because those units were on the line or actually in
4 the buffer zone, and we were carrying out that task, and they were
5 deployed at certain points, while most of their forces were in cities, in
6 facilities which were dedicated to their -- to them for their use by the
7 government of the Republic of the Serbian Krajina. However, we were
8 surprised at a report which mentioned the existence, just the existence,
9 of the special police units. After that report, we established contact
10 with Mr. Kirudja, the then-minister, Mr. Martic, was with me on that
11 occasion, and we agreed that we should reduce the strength in two stages,
12 and that the deadline for the reduction of the strength of the police
13 units should be sometime October 1992.
14 However, in that period, as I said, the Miljevacki plateau
15 occurred, and in the area or Sector North, in Slunj, in the area of Slunj,
16 from the territory of Croatia, sometime in August, via the territory of
17 Slunj, to the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina or more precisely the
18 Cazin Krajina for the 5th Corps of the B and H army was --
19 Q. I have to interrupt you, Mr. Djukic, you have already answered my
20 question which was, did the representatives of the United Nations have any
21 objections to the actions and functioning of the special police units?
22 A. No. We were only commended by them.
23 Q. Thank you. In further proceeding I shall return to something that
24 we have already broached as a subject at previous sessions.
25 Mr. Djukic, you personally took part in the unblocking of the road
1 through the village of Kijevo; is that right?
2 A. Yes, I did.
3 Q. What kind of a village was this? And when I say "this," what
4 village was I referring to the ethnicity of its residents [as
6 A. That is a Croatian, Croat-populated village. The Croats -- the
7 number of residents was between 1.000 and 1.500.
8 Q. Thank you. To what municipality did it belong?
9 A. It belonged to the municipality of Knin.
10 Q. During yesterday's examination, you mentioned that the new
11 Croatian government had set up a police station in this village. What was
12 the reason for the establishment of a police station in a place where it
13 had not existed before?
14 A. O, it is true that I did say a police station had been set up in
15 the village of Kijevo. In the first batch, 50 MUP members were sent to
16 the police station, headed by Ivica Bucic, an inspector of the police of
17 the MUP of Croatia, and there never had existed a police station there
18 before. It was set up in order to, together with able-bodied residents of
19 the village, form a volunteer -- a detachment of volunteers and for it as
20 a para police station to contribute to the forming of -- the further
21 forming of the army of the Republic of Croatia.
22 Q. Thank you. Were these forces stationed at Kijevo reinforced at
23 any point and if you remember that that was the case, when was that?
24 A. Well, in view of the situation which obtained there, and the
25 constant threats and the constant incidents, of which there had been a
1 number, that station was reinforced by forces from Split, the Split police
2 station. Reinforcements were brought from there, and by mid-August it had
3 about 150 members of the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of
4 Croatia. In addition, the neighbouring village of Mauvica [phoen] also
5 had between 150 and 200 members of the Ministry of the Interior of Croatia
6 as well. In the village they managed to arm all able-bodied men capable
7 of combat, forming a detachment of volunteers or a unit of volunteers for
8 national defence which according to our figures had about 200 plus members
9 so that this contingent reinforced those forces in the village proper,
10 namely that meant that the number of army was -- corresponded to the
11 number of residents, speaking in pejorative terms.
12 Q. What was the attitude -- what was the attitude of the JNA to the
13 forces in Kijevo?
14 A. The attitude they had was as ordered by the leadership. When the
15 JNA was proclaimed hostile, that police station also adopted the same
16 position. We had some problems there. They blocked the passage of JNA
17 units through the village so that we were unable at certain moments to
18 ensure the supply of the delivery of food, water to members of the unit,
19 of units which were in the buffer zones, which we had behind that village,
20 namely in the direction of Knin and Sinj where we had two buffer zones so
21 that we were even forced to have helicopter drops to supply those buffer
22 zones. We had a case of appendicitis of one of our soldiers and we took
23 him in an ambulance but we were not allowed to pass and this irritated no
24 end the people, the villagers, as well as the army, the troops.
25 Q. Thank you. What was the position of the Serb population, the --
1 towards such a situation in Kijevo? What did the Serbs from the
2 neighbouring villages and Kijevo demand?
3 A. Sorry, the --
4 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: The Serbs from Knin
5 not from Kijevo.
6 A. I said that in summer, parts Donji and Gornji Civljani, other
7 neighbouring villages, most of the population of these villages worked in
8 Knin, were employed in Knin's factories. There were several factories
9 there, for instance the Tvik, the bolt and screws factory, and that there
10 was a knitted goods factory, printing plant, and so on and so forth. And
11 they were prohibited from passing, from going there, so that they used
12 some paths, goat paths, across the Dinara mountain in order to get to
14 And another thing, there were different incidents also. One of
15 those which actually prompted the population in Knin to assemble was the
16 prohibition for the mortal remains of one person who had been killed in
17 the police station in Sibenik, he was -- his name was Dusan Vranjis who
18 was taken off the bus in Zupanja, this is a place between Serbia and
19 Croatia up north, and the transfer to the Rijeka prison, and then from
20 Rijeka to Sibenik, and then in Sibenik he was killed. As they wouldn't
21 let his relatives pass through that village and for him to be buried in
22 Civljani, the people assembled at the -- Knin's railway station and in
23 front of the command of the 9th corps, the people demanded to be
24 distributed weapons and at that time, the leader of the Serbs, of the
25 Serbian democratic party, Dr. Jovan Raskovic, said, and I quote, "I will
1 not lead you into war. I will lead you to peace." And he asked the
2 people to disassemble and not to ask the army for arms.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: May I interrupt you, Mr. Perovic, I'm sorry, I just
4 need clarification here. It may be a question of interpretation. You
5 said in this answer there was a prohibition of the passing of the mortal
6 remains, and then while talking about those mortal remains, you said he
7 was taken to some other place and killed. Now, this was already a dead
8 person. How do we kill a dead person?
9 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] The witness will explain this the
10 best. Actually he perhaps confused the chronology a bit.
11 Q. This person, Dusan Vranjis had first -- was he arrested in
13 A. He was taken off the bus and arrested in Zupanja, which is a
14 place, as I said, just after the border of Serbia and Croatia, up north,
15 on the highway. He was then transferred to the Rijeka prison. He was
16 killed in the police prison in Sibenik after that. His mortal remains
17 were supposed to be transported from Sibenik via Drnis, Knin, and through
18 Kijevo to -- of course, in a funeral hearse, to the village of will have
19 where they were to be buried at the local cemetery.
20 Q. Just a minute, just a minute.
21 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I believe that this is a full
22 answer, Your Honours.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Previous translation continues] ... Thank you very
25 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
1 Q. So, Mr. Djukic, after all these incidents which evidently were
2 numerous, what specifically brought about the de-blockade, i.e., the
3 opening of the road through Kijevo? When did this exactly happen and what
4 was it preceded immediately by?
5 A. The general position of the Croatian leadership was to provoke
6 incidents at that time. And I corroborate this by the fact that the
7 president of Croatia, Mr. Franjo Tudjman, in an official address,
8 said, "The war wouldn't have happened had we not wanted it." And this has
9 been repeated here time and again. Namely, in the area of Dalmatia the
10 idea was to create a situation rife with incidents, in order to mobilise
11 to the maximum the Croatian population in a struggle against the then
12 Yugoslav People's Army and normally in expelling the Serbian people from
13 those areas. On the 25th of August 1991, para formations, para units of
14 Croatia, in other words the detachments of volunteers and the MUP of
15 Vrlika reinforced with forces from Sinj attacked the buffer zone which I
16 talked about which was between Gornji Civljani and went through the
17 village of Lelas and Donji Civljani and the -- Kosare and Cetina.
18 Q. Just a minute, Mr. Witness, when you say they attacked the buffer
19 zone I understand you to be saying they attacked the Yugoslav People's
20 Army; is that correct?
21 A. Yes, that is correct. They attacked the Yugoslav People's Army.
22 In that attack, [inaudible] repelled a unit commanded by platoon commander
23 Ostoja Goracic [phoen]. That was a mechanised unit with three APCs. The
24 Croatian forces managed to enter Gornjici, the hamlet of Dragici, and in
25 the morning sometime in the morning, having entered, they killed two
1 villagers, Cvita Matcevic and Djordje Matcevic, who were not spouses, and
2 the JNA unit was repelled into the depth, some two and a half kilometres.
3 On the same day, the forces, these reinforced forces from Kijevo --
4 MR. WHITING: I'm sorry, I didn't mean to interrupt the witness.
5 I thought he had finished his answer. I meant to ask a clarification
6 after the witness had finished his answer.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: You may finish your answer, sir.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you. On that same day, from
9 the territory of the village of Kijevo, MUP forces carried out an attack
10 on the other two buffer zones.
11 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Just a minute. To make it short, so these attacks on the buffer
13 zones were the direct cause for intervention, i.e., action, related to the
14 village of Kijevo; is that correct?
15 A. That is correct.
16 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] My colleague had a question, I
18 MR. WHITING: Well, I also now have an objection to that last
19 question which was incredibly leading. But I wasn't able to jump up in
20 time. But the clarification I was seeking, Your Honour, actually to do
21 with a couple of minutes ago and I'm sorry for being tardy but I was
22 checking the transcript. I just wondered if because it was missed in the
23 transcript, if the village where this person Dusan Vranjis was supposed to
24 be buried in, if that -- if the name of that village could just be
25 repeated because I don't have it in the transcript and I'm interested to
1 hear it, if that's not a problem.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Did you hear the question, sir?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Prosecutor, the name of the
4 village is Cetina.
5 MR. WHITING: I'm grateful. Thank you.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
7 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, need I respond to my
8 learned colleague's objection? I understand that he objected to my
9 question as being leading.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Previous translation continues] ... Mr. Perovic.
11 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Well, briefly, I am unable to
12 perceive the leading nature of my question. I just wanted to shorten the
13 answer of the witness because my question was what caused the specific
14 action in Kijevo because he had already listed the attacks on the buffer
15 zone. I summarised them in my question and asked him whether he
16 considered those attacks on the buffer zones the concrete cause for the
17 attack on Kijevo, so I failed to perceive what is leading on my part in
18 that connection.
19 MR. WHITING: Well, Your Honour, I think the witness had answered
20 the question and it's either leading or it's asked and answered, and there
21 is no need to ask it again. So I don't think there was any need for it
22 and in the form that it was put to the witness, it's plainly leading.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: The question was leading, yes, it is ruled that the
24 question is leading. Thank you.
25 Mr. Perovic, it's answered. There is no need to do anything
1 about it. Just carry on.
2 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
3 Q. So, under whose orders was this intervention in the village of
4 Kijevo performed?
5 A. Intervention in the village of Kijevo was done on the -- under the
6 orders of the commander of the 9th Corps, General Spiro Nikolic.
7 Q. Thank you. How long did it take? How long did it last to
8 de-blockade the road through Kijevo?
9 A. That operation lasted only a couple of hours. It was finished at
10 1200 hours on the 25th. Only one remark concerning that. I ordered the
11 units not to take a path through Kijevo but to execute a pincer movement
12 to reach the main point of resistance, the cemetery and the church, to
13 disarm the parapolice and paramilitary troops of Croatia. I can tell you
14 that this action was brilliantly planned and executed. None of the
15 members of the JNA were either wounded or killed, and as far as I can -- I
16 know, there were no casualties, nobody was killed or wounded, on the other
18 Q. So there were no people killed, nor wounded. Were there any
20 A. In that action, units under my command captured 60 members of the
21 MUP in the village of Kijevo. I continued this action to reinstate the
22 buffer zone near Vrlika in the Gornji Civljani, the hamlet of Dragici as I
23 mentioned, a couple of hours after that. This was done, and in that area,
24 my troops captured an additional 12 members of the MUP and volunteer
25 detachments of Croatia, and over all 72 of them were captured.
1 Q. What happened to them?
2 A. The military police unit took over. We secured bus
3 transportation. We disarmed them and we sent it to the military
4 investigation prison of the 9th Corps in the north barracks in Knin, and
5 they were exchanged in a couple of days' time, according to the
6 all-for-all principle.
7 Q. Thank you. At a previous session, we discussed Drnis, lifted the
8 blockade of military facilities within that municipality. Briefly, since
9 you took part in that operation, could you tell us what happened then at
10 Drnis and it's surroundings and what facilities, which facilities were
11 de-blockaded previously having been blockaded?
12 A. It seems to me that it's the third time that the Zitnic depot was
13 blockaded beyond Drnis next to the road between Drnis and Sibenik, and
14 another facility was the 55th navy technical rocket base of Trbounje, in
15 the village of Trbounje, since it's eponymous, and the wider area we call
16 the Miljevac plateau. In a, when the Croatian president, Mr. Franjo
17 Tudjman, ordered general attack against all JNA units on the 15th of
18 September 1991, all units of the military naval district came under attack
19 in Split, in Sibenik, in Zadar, in Sinj, and the two facilities within the
20 area of responsibility of the 9th Corps. My task was to lift the blockade
21 of the Zitnic depot.
22 Q. How long did this action take?
23 A. It started at 1600 hours, during the night I transported infantry
24 through the -- and over the Mosez mountain, under the orders of the
25 command to avoid transportation through Drnis, and by morning hours, I
1 managed to connect with the units defending the Zitnic depot. This was
2 accomplished, and the other side, during the night, organised the
3 withdrawal of the population on a side road through the village of
4 Knezovi, Noskalik [phoen] towards Skradin, and further to Sibenik.
5 Q. Just a second. I believe that you failed to mention the date.
6 You said the hour but not the date.
7 A. The date was the 16th of September, at 1600 hours. A day later we
8 started one day later because of the very difficult situation both in
9 Sibenik and these facilities.
10 Q. What was the outcome?
11 A. The outcome was that the next day, at 1300 hours, I went through
12 Drnis without any significant resistance, and reached the line connecting
13 Zitnic, the road, I mean, and the forces with whom I had coordinated
14 actions but commanded by the commander of the technical group 2, continued
15 to lift the blockade of the 55th Motorised Brigade facilities. This task
16 was accomplished without a single wounded or killed troop, and I don't
17 have information about casualties on -- of the other side. I believe that
18 there were no casualties.
19 Q. Mr. Djukic, you took part in the lifting of the blockade of the
20 Sibenik barracks. You commanded that action?
21 A. Yes, yes. A part of that action.
22 Q. A part of that action. When did the blockade of the Sibenik
23 barracks start, do you remember?
24 A. The blockade of the Sibenik barracks began as early as the 5th of
25 May, after President Tudjman's speech as Trogir. Then MUP and volunteer
1 detachments, organised a wider blockade of the barracks. They cut off
2 water supply, power supply, telephone lines to the command and the
3 barracks. In and around Sibenik there were several facilities, commander
4 of the military section, the JNA home, then marine brigade, the command of
5 the sector, the docking port, the Kumane [phoen] barracks and the
6 general -- and this blockade lasted throughout the summer. And the
7 general attack started on the 15th of September 1991. And after having
8 lifted the blockade at Drnis, the command of the corps took action to lift
9 the blockade of the barracks at Sibenik, to save the members of the JNA,
10 their families, and the property of the JNA.
11 Q. Just a moment. Who issued the order for the lifting of the
13 A. The order was issued by the commander of the 9th Corps, General --
14 Lieutenant General Vlado Vukovic, Vladimir Vukovic.
15 Q. When did you start implementing this order?
16 A. In the direction of Sibenik we started implementing this order on
17 the 21st of September. We reached the village of Bilice on the outskirts
18 of Sibenik by the night, and other forces from the corps command acted on
19 the right side of the river Krka on the direction between Kistanje, the
20 village of Popovici and the Sibenik bridge. This is the bridge of the
21 Dalmatian coast trunk line which connects to Zadar, Sibenik, and Split.
22 Q. Your action of the 21st of September, was it preceded by anything?
23 A. It was preceded by very difficult situation obtaining in Sibenik.
24 I can explain that. We received reports.
25 Q. I'm asking you this: When did Second Lieutenant General Vukovic
1 issue this order to lift the blockade of Sibenik?
2 A. On the 16th of September, and after the lifting of the blockade of
3 Drnis facilities, this was a continuation of the same order and the same
4 task with a view of lifting the blockade of -- against JNA facilities in
6 Q. When did this action begin?
7 A. As I said, on the 16th. As I said. But when -- with regard to
8 Sibenik it started on the 21st, and when it came to Sinj, it started on
9 the 16th and the forces advancing towards Sinj connected with other units
10 on the 21st or 22nd of September, 22nd or 23rd, correction.
11 Q. What was the outcome of the action to lift the blockade of
13 A. When we asked -- when we reached the village of Glavica towards
14 the outskirts of Sibenik, the Croatian leadership insisted that we
15 conclude a cease-fire agreement. There was talk between the federal
16 secretary of National Defence, General Kadijevic, and personally he
17 took -- talked to President Tudjman. I believe that these transcripts
18 have been discussed here. I can only say that the federal secretary
19 wanted the barracks to be de-blockaded so that forces could be withdrawn,
20 and that we do not wage war. But the final cease-fire was concluded in
21 the village of Zitnic on the 25th of September. General Vukovic signed
22 the cease-fire agreement on behalf of the JNA and on behalf of the then
23 Croatian government, who signed the agreement, was the then-maritime
24 minister, Mr. Davorin Rudolf. I know that because I was there making
25 arrangements. I believe that this was the 14th cease-fire agreement.
1 Q. What was arranged and agreed upon during that cease-fire?
2 A. It was agreed that all units of the JNA, all equipment and
3 materiel, the family members of JNA members, to be withdrawn without
4 impediment from Sibenik, Split, but this cease-fire agreement did not
5 encompass the withdrawal of JNA members, their families, from the Zadar
7 Q. How long did it take to withdraw JNA troops, their family members,
8 from Sibenik and Sinj?
9 A. I was in charge of the withdrawal from Sibenik. I secured the
10 withdrawal. I provided the vehicles, the troops. It started on the 25th
11 of September, and lasted until the 25th of December.
12 Q. During that time, during that period, did this cease-fire hold?
13 Was it breached and was it frequently breached and by whom?
14 A. I must say that on the direction of our withdrawal, violations
15 were less frequent but we had cease-fire violations in the direction of
16 Sinj, and we had cease-fire violations in the direction from the bridge of
17 Sibenik along the direction through Popovici and Kistanje. There were
18 groups infiltrated. They would mine the roads and we had a number of
19 casualties, fatalities of JNA troops and we had some equipment destroyed
20 there as well.
21 Q. Mr. Djukic, what were the orders, if there were orders, received
22 by the 9th Corps members from superior commands in terms of population,
23 houses and particularly religious buildings in the area of responsibility
24 of the 9th Corps? Can you answer this question?
25 A. Yes, I can. Orders we received at corps level and the orders
1 issued by the 9th Corps to the subordinated units such as brigades,
2 strictly forbade any destruction, gutting or looting, both of socially
3 owned property and private property of the inhabitants.
4 Q. Thank you. I would like to bring on to the screens Exhibit 26.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: While we are waiting for Exhibit 26, were such
6 orders complied with, sir? You said orders were received at corps level
7 and the orders issued by the 9th Corps to the subordinated units such as
8 brigades strictly forbade any destruction, gutting or looting. My
9 question is, were such orders complied with, to your knowledge, to the
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the unit that I commanded over,
12 these orders were implemented to the letter. There were individual
13 incidents, but these incidents of misconduct by JNA members were
14 sanctioned through courts martial. We had an investigating judge and a
15 Prosecutor at the corps level and all cases of criminal offences or
16 breaches of law we sanctioned those by initiating criminal complaints on
17 the part of commanders. I was one of them. Investigating judges would
18 receive such, prosecute, and process such cases.
19 If you would like me to give you an example, at Drnis, I had a
20 reserve lieutenant, I remembered his name because of his conduct. His
21 name was Baljak Pero, from the village of Zagrovic near Knin. Before the
22 war he used to work in Skopje, Macedonia, and when the call-up orders were
23 issued he heeded the call and he in Drnis raped a woman, a Serb, in front
24 of her underage daughter. He was court martialed at Banja Luka military
25 court. We had other cases. I can only say in connection with this that
1 on the basis of an analysis that I ordered and which is in the records,
2 carried out at the corps level in 1991, on the 23rd of October of 1991,
3 members of the units and the commanders of the JNA of the 9th Corps, in
4 the period of new years eve to October initiated 537 criminal
5 complaints -- I correct myself, 337 criminal complaints against 360
6 persons. Investigation was carried out against 160. 22 indictments were
7 issued before a court and, at that time, they were processed at the
8 military court at Banja Luka. The Split military court was -- had
9 jurisdiction but because of the blockade of Split we could not process
10 such cases, refer them to Split or send perpetrators, suspects, indicted
11 people, so we had to refer those cases to the Banja Luka military court.
12 Later, at the end of 1991, when the 9th Corps became part of the 2nd
13 Military District, we came under the jurisdiction of the Banja Luka
14 military court. The Banja Luka military court had venue.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Perovic.
16 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. So we have
17 document number 26 on the monitor which I requested to be shown.
18 Q. Mr. Djukic, would you please read for us the heading on the first
19 page of this document and its date?
20 A. I'm reading, "Federal Secretariat for National Defence,
21 administration for moral guidance, confidential number 6-83 of 12th
22 October 1991."
23 Q. Thank you. Can we now see page 2 of this document, please? And
24 can we see the very bottom of the document, please?
25 Mr. Djukic, who signed this document?
1 A. The Chief of the General Staff of the armed forces of the SFRY,
2 General Blagoje Adzic.
3 Q. Can we now go down to see paragraph -- scroll down, rather, to see
4 the second-from-the-bottom paragraph, the penultimate paragraph which
5 starts with the words, "In the course of," do you see that?
6 A. Yes, I do.
7 Q. Read that paragraph for us, please.
8 A. I'm reading: "In the course of the execution of these tasks, at
9 all costs must be prevented any arbitrary behaviour, lack of discipline,
10 leaving without permission from units, maltreating of citizens,
11 irrespective of their ethnicity, in the area where the units are deployed,
12 the looting and theft of property, and the enforcement of some sort of
13 private laws."
14 Q. Thank you. Is this document the -- an excerpt from which you have
15 just read, does it confirm what you said before?
16 A. Yes, it does confirm that and I should also like to add there was
17 in my zone the famous mausoleum of Ivan Mestrovic, a Yugoslav-oriented
18 artist of high repute and of high value for Yugoslavia. He was a Croat
19 and we all liked him, and loved him, and I ordered that this mausoleum be
20 protected. I personally ordered and not a stone had been touched.
21 Q. Thank you. Can we see Exhibit number 59? And this one is no
22 longer necessary. Thank you.
23 Thank you. Mr. Djukic, please read out the heading on the first
24 page of this document, the date and the title.
25 A. I'm reading, "Command on the 9th Corps, strictly confidential
1 number 580-15 of the 20th of October 1991. Combatting crime in the zone
2 of combat operations of the 9th Corps, to the command of the first
3 Partizan Brigade of the Territorial Defence."
4 Q. Thank you. Will you please read the introduction and the first
5 paragraph of this document, if it -- yes. It can be scrolled up a bit,
6 thank you. So the introduction and the first paragraph.
7 A. I'm reading: "With a view to preventing the unauthorised conduct
8 and the pursuit of criminal actions, such as the looting of property and
9 jeopardising the security of citizens by members of the armed forces in
10 the zone of operations of the 9th Corps, I hereby order: 1, commands of
11 JNA and TO units shall organise updated records of all the members of the
12 units, including volunteers and members of the Territorial Defence of the
13 individual places, and shall place all such armed units under the command
14 of JNA units of regiment brigade rank in the zone of responsibility of the
15 operation of such units. All members of armed units should be warned of
16 the consequences of violent behaviour, arbitrary conduct, and the
17 perpetration of criminal acts."
18 Q. Thank you. Can you also please read the third paragraph under
19 point 2, which starts with the words, "All commands of JNA units."
20 A. "All commands of JNA units, Territorial Defence Staffs and town
21 commands, shall undertake all measures to protect citizens and property
22 this their respective zones of responsibility."
23 Q. Thank you. Can we now turn over to page 2 of this document,
24 please? And please, Mr. Djukic, read items 4 and 5.
25 A. I'm reading: "4, criminal complaints shall be filed through the
1 closest command of JNA units in accordance with the provisions of the law
2 on criminal procedure in respect of all persons in relation of whom there
3 exists reasonable doubt that they have committed a criminal offence.
4 Along with the complaint, statements of witnesses should be submitted as
5 well as other evidence on the criminal offence perpetrated."
6 Q. And item 5?
7 A. "5: The perpetrators of criminal offences falling under the
8 jurisdiction of the military court should be deprived of liberty and
9 through the police of the commands of regiments-brigades of the JNA,
10 escorted to the military police in Knin."
11 Q. Thank you. Does this, document excerpts from which you have just
12 read, also confirm your order and did you implement it?
13 A. Yes, it does and we did comply with it.
14 Q. Can we now see Exhibit number 49, please?
15 Mr. Djukic, will you read the heading, the date, and the title on
16 the first page of this document?
17 A. I'm reading: "Command of the 9th Corps, strictly confidential
18 number 625-2, 31st of October 1991, Knin. In parentheses, 1600 hours."
19 Q. And the title?
20 A. "Command for the execution of an offensive operation on the city
21 of Sibenik, operational number 2."
22 Q. Do you recognise this document?
23 A. Just a minute. "Excerpt for the staff of the Territorial Defence
24 of the SAO Krajina."
25 Q. Did you have occasion to see this document ever before?
1 A. No. I didn't see it before.
2 Q. Can we turn to page 7 of this document? And in the English
3 version it is page number 8. So page 7 and 8 in the English version.
4 Please read the last two paragraphs under item 7.2?
5 A. The last two paragraphs under item 7.2.
6 MR. WHITING: Since the witness just said he's not seen this
7 document before and he's not testified about what's contained in this
8 document, I'm not sure what the foundation is for having the witness now
9 read parts of the document. It seems more like cross-examination.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Perovic, any response?
11 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I believe that my distinguished
12 colleague, the Prosecutor, is right, and I shall -- yes, refrain from -- I
13 shall abandon this document. Thank you.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Perovic. You may proceed.
15 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Can we please see document number
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Document number 27 or Exhibit number 27?
18 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Exhibit number 27.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
20 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Can we please see page 2? Sorry,
21 before that, would you read for us the heading on the first page of this
22 document, its date, and its title.
23 A. I'm reading, "Federal Secretariat for National Defence, General
24 Staff of the armed forces of the SFRY, first department or first
25 administration, strictly confidential, number 2256-2 of the 10th of
1 December 1991. Sent to the command of the 9th Corps."
2 Q. And the title?
3 A. This is what it says, "Please find here with enclosed directive of
4 the Federal Secretary for National Defence on the use of the armed forces
5 in the forthcoming period."
6 Q. Did you have occasion to see this document before?
7 A. Yes, I did.
8 Q. Thank you. Can we now go to page 3 of this document?
9 MR. WHITING: I'm sorry, I -- just for foundation purposes, I
10 wonder when he saw the document before? Was it at the time or was it two
11 days ago?
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Perovic?
13 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] When I asked the witness whether he
14 had had occasion to see this document earlier, I was referring to period
15 of many years ago.
16 Q. When did you see this document?
17 A. I saw this document sometime late 1991 when it reached us.
18 Q. I asked to see that we be shown page 3 of this document, which is
19 page 4 in the English translation. Under item 6, you can -- yes, under
20 item 6, would you read that, the second paragraph of it for us?
21 A. I'm reading: "Employ all measures to prevent looting and
22 genocidal, in brackets, revanchist, conduct. To that end, establish the
23 necessary control by the engagement of organs of the military police and
24 the units designated for that purpose, as well as organs for criminal
1 Q. Does this document also confirm what you just told us a while ago?
2 A. Yes, it does.
3 Q. And to summarise, what is -- what was the position of the Yugoslav
4 People's Army towards the population and property in the area of
5 operations? Did you comply in full with the orders, the content of which
6 we have just been familiarised with?
7 A. Yes, all these orders, other instructions, information memorandums
8 from the second department of the SSNO and the General Staff, which
9 actually conveyed the provisions of the laws on the armed forces of the
10 SFRY, we, all the commanders I'm talking about my unit as well as the
11 other units, as far as I know, we all complied with the provisions of all
12 these orders and employed every possible measure to prevent what might
13 happen in war, aware of the fact that war is the ultimate state of anarchy
14 and having that in mind we did everything in our power to prevent negative
15 incidents from happening.
16 Q. Thank you. Mr. Djukic, you mentioned a while ago that there had
17 been such negative practices and that the perpetrators of adverse
18 incidents were sanctioned.
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Do you know anything about damage to places of worship in the zone
21 of the 9th Corps? Were there such damages to religious buildings during
22 the operations that you talked about?
23 A. During the operations of the JNA units, no place of worship was
24 damaged. We had instructions that even if there was action or fire opened
25 from a place of worship that we were not to use heavy weaponry. But I do
1 know that in later times, several religious buildings were damaged.
2 Q. Thank you. Do you know whether, and if so under what
3 circumstances, was the Catholic church in Kijevo damaged, whether it was
4 damaged and if so, under what circumstances?
5 A. I have no information who the perpetrators were in regard of that
6 church but we received information that most probably the -- they were,
7 had been extremists from the ranks of the Serb people who had mined the
8 church and blown it up.
9 Q. Thank you. Were those people identified and tried at some later
10 point? Do you know that?
11 A. I have no information about that. I know that some steps had been
12 taken and how far that had gone, I have no idea because at that time, that
13 particular area was not under the zone of responsibility of my brigade.
14 Q. Can we now see Exhibit 106 on the monitor?
15 Mr. Djukic, could you read the heading of the first page of this
16 document, the date and the addressee?
17 A. I read: "Command of the 9th Corps, confidential, number 19-1549,
18 dated 4th of October 1991, at 1500 hours. To the General Staff of the
19 armed forces of SFRY, operational centre, and the command of the military
20 naval district-IKM." IKM was located at the island of Vis, and this is
21 the forward command post on the island of Vis.
22 Q. Did you have occasion to see this document, and if so, when?
23 A. Given that we had officers on duty in the operational centre of
24 the command, I knew of this document. It was the relevant period that we
25 are discussing, October 1991.
1 Q. Thank you. Please read to us the first two paragraphs under item
3 A. Could you scroll down? Oh, it's okay.
4 Q. The first two paragraphs.
5 A. I'm reading: "1, corps units, during battle for Kijevo, on the
6 26th of August 1991, were engaged in a battle lasting more -- several
7 hours, to break through the village and effectuate the lifting of a
8 blockade of separated or blockaded units in the area of Kosorska Greda and
9 Jajce [phoen] Glavica near the village of Civljani. Strongest resistance
10 of the National Guards Corps was offered from the local church, a Catholic
11 church, whose belfry housed a machine-gun position and the reconnaissance
12 of the command of the ZNG company, who was captured during the action.
13 The church housed the 1st Platoon of ZNG, which used the doors, windows
14 and the belfry to open fire at our unit. From the immediate vicinity of
15 the church or the perimeter of the cemetery, which is adjacent to the
16 church, other forces of the aforementioned company of ZNG acted against --
17 through -- from well-built ramparts, which were reinforced by concrete,
18 concrete blocks, and that company was composed of the reserve forces of
19 ZNG mobilised in the villages of Kasteli, near Split. Members of that
20 unit used graves, in brackets, already prepared, and some graves contained
21 mortal remains, for cover."
22 Q. I apologise. Could you read also the next paragraph?
23 A. "Although from the region of the church and the monastery beyond
24 it, we received very strong fire, the church and the cemetery were spared
25 direct fire because we fired at -- in the vicinity of these facilities on
1 the hills and this fire was for warning purposes."
2 Q. Thank you. Could you read the last paragraph on this page? "The
3 goal of your action."
4 A. "The goal of our action is not, nor will it ever be, to destroy,
5 religious, sacral or other invaluable facilities, on condition that these
6 are not used as fortifications to open fire from, and that has been a
7 regular occurrence until now. Chief of Staff, Colonel Ratko Mladic,
9 Q. What does this document tell you regarding the Kijevo church?
10 A. This confirms what I already said, that we -- even in the cases
11 when fire was opened from religious buildings, we never used heavy
12 weaponry, tanks or artillery, against them. We blocked this area, I
13 remember we captured 60 members of the ZNG in the graves of that cemetery,
14 within the church, in a canal below the church as well.
15 Q. Thank you. During combat activities --
16 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: [Previous translation continues] ... Perovic, at
17 page 55, line 16 up to line 19, does the witness understand that to mean
18 that in those circumstances that he spoke of there, then it would mean
19 that you could destroy the church or you could return fire there? I'm
20 sorry, not that one. I referred you to the wrong lines. In respect of 22
21 to 25, "the goal of our acting is not nor will it ever be to destroy
22 religious, sacral, or other invaluable facilities unconditioned at these
23 are not used as fortifications to open fire from." Does it mean then that
24 if they are used as fortification to open fire from, then you would be at
25 liberty to destroy them?
1 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Could you answer this question, please, witness?
3 A. Our basic commitment was not to act against religious facilities.
4 From -- on a case by case basis the situation on the ground may have
5 required different solutions, but as far as I'm concerned as a commander
6 of my unit, I never allowed destruction of religious facilities or
7 cultural facilities, buildings, because of our positive attitude towards
8 the cultural heritage of the peoples of Yugoslavia and I wanted to protect
10 Q. If I understood Her Honour Nosworthy's question, the
11 question was this: If a sacral building were to be converted into a
12 machine-gun post, would it be a legitimate target for the military? Could
13 you answer that?
14 A. It could be a legitimate target because it was used to fire
15 against military personnel.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm sorry [Microphone not activated] Thank you so
18 much. Earlier when we talked about damage to religious buildings, the
19 witness said he didn't know anything about the Catholic church in Kijevo,
20 I didn't know who the perpetrators who -- were because it was not in the
21 area of -- in the zone of his responsibility. Now he seems to be talking
22 very authoritatively about this very damage to this very church, now that
23 we are dealing with this topic. Is there an explanation for that?
24 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation].
25 Q. Mr. Djukic, did you understand the -- His Honour, Judge Moloto's
2 A. I think I have understood it. During the short term operation of
3 lifting the blockade of the road through Kijevo, which is the site where
4 this church is located, my orders stated that this facility must not be
5 destroyed, and this was not done. It wasn't done on that day of our
6 operation, the 26th of August 1991. That church, on that location, after
7 the road was cleared, remained there until the unit was quartered there,
8 and part of the unit was withdrawn from that direction pursuant to an
9 order by the commander of the 9th Corps on the 23rd of September 1991.
10 After that date, I cannot recall because I never visited that area, I
11 found out that this church was destroyed subsequently. By the way, that
12 church, that was built as an Orthodox church, it was orientated as an
13 Orthodox church and it was used by the inhabitants of Kijevo who, pursuant
14 to historical data, some 200 years ago, converted to Catholicism during
15 the Austrian reign in that area.
16 Q. Thank you. Mr. Djukic, if I understood you correctly, you
17 personally don't have much reliable information about the destruction of
18 the Kijevo church?
19 A. No.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's precisely my question. And now from this
21 latest answer, I get another -- it further confused, because he says at
22 line 23 it wasn't done on that day of our operation, the 26th of August
23 1991. Now, by that, I understand him to be saying that on the 26th of
24 August 1991, they were in Kijevo, but previously he said Kijevo was not in
25 his area of responsibility. That's the first question that I'd asked
1 earlier. Secondly, the next part of my question is: If indeed he knew
2 nothing about the destruction of the Kijevo Catholic church, how does he
3 speak so authoritatively to this document that we have on the screen,
4 which is talking about the destruction of the Catholic church in Kijevo?
5 Those are my two questions.
6 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation].
7 Q. Mr. Djukic, did you understand this question?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. The first question would be within the area of your responsibility
10 during the operation to lift the blockade of the Kijevo road, was this
11 church within that area?
12 A. That church is located in the village of Kijevo, and during this
13 short lasting operation of the unit that I commanded, the operation to
14 establish buffer zones and to clear the road, that church was not
15 destroyed, and I prohibited, by an order, my order, to have this church
16 targeted, although, as it's stated in this report, through my operational
17 organ to the commander of the 9th Corps which was then later forwarded
18 further, although fire was opened from that church. I remained on the
19 axis which included Kijevo until the 23rd of October 1991. And up to that
20 date, that church stood undestroyed, stood intact. How can I explain it
21 to you? It was there. And on the 23rd of October 1991, I was ordered to
22 withdraw my unit, one of the units that was on that axis, to perform other
23 tasks, and I just explained that other task was to secure the withdrawal
24 of JNA from Sibenik.
25 Q. Let me get this right. During your stay or your unit's stay in
1 Kijevo, the church stood intact. My question --
2 A. It wasn't.
3 Q. Was it damaged?
4 A. Some windows were blown, and there were minor damage.
5 Q. What caused that damage?
6 A. Maybe during the fight.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I believe that we've reached a good
9 time to take the break, unless you wish us to clarify further this
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Because fire was opened from the
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yeah. I've seen the report. It is just the
14 authoritative way he was speaking to the report that was causing me
15 concern. It still does because this document is a document of the 4th of
16 October, and he passed through Kijevo on the 26th of August, and he hasn't
17 testified to doing anything else in Kijevo specifically after the 26th of
18 August. I understand that he says his unit withdrew on the 23rd of
19 October, but without having done anything. So it is still a mystery to me
20 how he speaks so authoritatively to this document.
21 We take the break and come back at quarter to 6.00. Court
23 --- Recess taken at 5.16 p.m.
24 --- On resuming at 5.45 p.m.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Perovic.
1 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. During the
2 break, we translated item 11 that we mentioned and we made enough copies
3 for the Chamber and our learned friends of the OTP.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
5 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] May Madam Usher distribute these?
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: So you may proceed, Mr. Perovic.
7 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Do you, Honourable Judge Moloto have
8 any questions with regards to what we discussed towards the end of the
9 previous session, I mean the church in Kijevo?
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: No, except the remark that I made, it's just an
11 observation I made that he speaks quite authoritatively on this document
12 when it seems from his evidence that what is mentioned in this document,
13 he has no knowledge of. It's just an observation I'm making.
14 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. I understood this.
15 Q. Mr. Djukic, I'd like to ask you this: During the carrying out of
16 combat operations within the zone of responsibility of the 9th Corps,
17 apart from JNA units, were there any other forces, if so, which forces?
18 A. In that area of responsibility, we had Territorial Defence units
19 operating from municipalities which were included in the zone of the 9th
20 Corps except for the municipality of Sinj, where no Territorial Defence
21 units were engaged, and of course the municipalities of Drnis.
22 JUDGE HOEPFEL: What time are you referring to with this question?
23 It's very important. The question which was just answered.
24 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I mean the second part of 1991 and
25 the operations around Sibenik, Drnis, Kijevo, and the others.
1 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Do you understand that?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I answered that units of the
3 Territorial Defence Staffs of the mentioned two municipalities.
4 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Did these units operate autonomously or were they subordinated to
6 any command? If so, whose command?
7 A. Territorial Defence units did not operate autonomously. They were
8 subordinated to commands depending on their location or depending on the
9 axis of operations and combat activities. In principle, Territorial
10 Defence detachments or battalions would be under a brigade, and
11 Territorial Defence brigades were subordinated to the 9th Corps. This is
12 a principle that was applied during that period.
13 Q. If I understood you correctly, those units of the Territorial
14 Defence were subordinated to the command of the JNA?
15 A. Yes.
16 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Could we have Exhibit 26 on the
17 screen, please?
18 Q. This is a communique from the Federal Secretariat for National
19 Defence. I believe it has been used already. We used it a while ago.
20 Can we see page 2 of this document, please? Scroll up, please, so that we
21 can see the last paragraph of this page. This is it. The last paragraph
22 which starts with the words, "All armed units." Will you please read
24 A. I'm reading: "All armed units, whether they be JNA, Territorial
25 Defence, or volunteers, must operate under the single command of the JNA."
1 Q. Thank you. That is sufficient. What did this mean concretely
2 when it came to their use?
3 A. It meant that they cannot operate on their own, they had to be
4 subordinated to the units and commands of the JNA. That was the principle
5 and that was the way it was.
6 Q. Thank you. Were the orders and the instructions of the JNA that
7 we referred to a while ago, which regarded discipline and the treatment of
8 the population and the property, did they also refer to those forces?
9 A. Yes, they did, in full, and everything was implemented as in
10 relation to the units of the JNA, and they also belonged to military
11 prosecutorial offices and military courts during the time of operations.
12 Q. Thank you. If these forces were under JNA command, as you say,
13 was the Yugoslav People's Army also responsible for their discipline too?
14 A. Yes, it was.
15 Q. In a situation of a member of such forces committing a criminal
16 offence while a member of and under the command of the JNA, who had
17 jurisdiction for the prosecution and trials of such persons?
18 A. The military courts were -- had jurisdiction, and I can give you
19 an example.
20 Q. Thank you. That won't be necessary.
21 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] We do not need this document any
22 more and you can kindly take it off the screen. Thank you.
23 Q. Mr. Djukic, we shall now move on to another topic. You were born
24 in the former Yugoslav Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina. You hail from that
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. From a village in the vicinity of the former Bosanski Novi?
3 A. Yes, from the village of Gornji Vodica. Now it is -- it used to
4 be Bosanski Novi and now it is Novi Grad.
5 Q. Were you arrested in 1991, General? Where did this happen and
6 under what circumstances?
7 A. I was arrested by the paramilitary or parapolice forces of the
8 time in the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which having -- organised
9 by the SDA party.
10 Q. How did it come about that you were arrested and when did that
12 A. I was arrested in September, on the 8th of September.
13 Q. Which year?
14 A. 1991.
15 Q. How did that happen?
16 A. My brother, my own brother, Dzemail had died. He was very young.
17 He was 35. I received a cable and I asked my superior commanding officer
18 to grant me a leave so that could go and attend my brother's funeral. I
19 was given such permission, and he even recommended that I take a military
20 vehicle and security guards with me. He wanted me to take those. I
21 didn't do that. I just took a driver who was a reserve officer. He was a
22 sergeant, and he was actually also a member of the SUP Knin, and in fact,
23 he was the secretary of the SUP Knin. He came along with me. On the next
24 morning, and I didn't watch the news, I came to -- so the next morning I
25 came to the village of Otaci [phoen], which is near my village, and I
1 found a huge crowd of people who had blocked the bridge from the village
2 of Otoka towards the other end which is the village of Blatina and in the
3 direction of Novi Grad. Halfway through the bridge, I was blocked by an
4 infuriated throng of people. They hit the vehicle. They hit me. They
5 beat up the driver. They inflicted grave injuries on me. I had two ribs
6 broken and nicks and cuts on my hands. They even tried to throw me in the
8 Later I was taken to -- in fact I'm not sure whether there is a
9 police station in that village. I was taken to a room in which was the
10 then Deputy Minister of the Interior of Bosnia and Herzegovina, whom I
11 recognised from having seen him on television, Avdo Hebib, a physician by
12 profession otherwise. And I asked him how and why this has happened and
13 he told me to wait, and I asked him to check things out. In the police
14 station of Novi Grad, i.e., the former Bosanski Novi, from the Commander
15 Haro, who used to go to school with me, I wanted to check with him whether
16 my brother had really died and to let me go, to pass through. Anyway,
17 while I was waiting there, they put me in a room in which was Mr. Mile
18 Martic, with two of his escorts, and Lieutenant-Colonel Dusko --
19 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not quite catch the surname.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- was also there with a junior
21 officer whose name I don't know.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: What's the surname of the person the interpreter
23 didn't catch the name, the surname. Dusko's surname.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Dusko Smiljanic.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Smiljanic.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] So when I got after being released,
2 when I got home, using the telephone at my brother's house, I informed the
3 command of the corps what had happened to me, and who was there arrested
4 in the village of Ovtaci [phoen].
5 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Just a minute. Were you wearing a uniform and was
7 Lieutenant-Colonel Smiljanic wearing a uniform while you were on that
9 A. Yes, they were all in uniform. Mr. Smiljanic, Colonel Smiljanic
10 was and his escort was but I was in civilian clothes and my driver was in
11 mufti too but in a military vehicle with JNA marks, licence plates.
12 Q. And you were then returned -- released after the interrogation,
13 after one hour. What happened then?
14 A. The rest of the people remained there in those premises where they
15 had been arrested. I informed the corps command, and then measures
16 followed, namely I have to say that when I arrived in my brother's
17 apartment, I asked that one of the JNA units which was there be
18 subordinated to me so that I could free two members of the Yugoslav
19 People's Army, namely Lieutenant-Colonel Smiljanic and his escort, and it
20 goes without saying that I would have also freed Mr. Martic on that
21 occasion. This was not allowed to me to do. They said that certain
22 measures would be taken and I learned during the day that they had been
23 freed, and another thing which happened was that people on learning about
24 this started to spontaneously assemble, the people from the surrounding
25 area of the villages. It was not a state of war so people wielding
1 hunting rifles headed towards Otaci to liberate these two JNA members and
2 Mr. Martic, then the Minister of the Interior of the Republic of Krajina.
3 Q. Just a minute. So on that occasion, the occasion which you're
4 describing, four members of the Yugoslav People's Army had been arrested?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. In Bosnia and Herzegovina?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. This is September 1991 that we are talking about, right?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Did at that time -- was at that time this republic a part of the
12 A. At that time, this republic absolutely was a part of the SFRY, and
13 in that republic at that time, no major incidents happened, even though
14 there were some.
15 Q. Thank you. Now I'm going to ask you something about an operation
16 called Corridor 92. Were you a participant in the operation of a break
17 through or through the Corridor 92?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Tell me according to whose decision and in what capacity did you
20 participate in that operation?
21 A. I participated in that operation on my own. It was my own
22 decision. I participated as a volunteer. That was the case with me as
23 well as with all the members of the Territorial Defence of then at the
24 time of the Republic of Serbian Krajina, special police units and the
25 police of the Republic of the Serbian Krajina.
1 Q. What circumstances made it necessary to conduct this operation
2 called Corridor 92?
3 A. According to the basic estimation, assessment of the situation,
4 the circumstances that obtained were as follows: Croatia and its
5 leadership had accepted the peacekeeping forces of the United Nations. At
6 that time, they did not -- it did not have sufficient troops, armed
7 forces, to integrate the Republic of Serbian Krajina into its republic by
8 force. I mentioned that the review of the National Guards Corps was
9 carried out in Zagreb at Jarun on the 28th of May 1991, and that at that
10 time, they only had four regular brigades of the SZNG, the 1st and 2nd
11 Zagreb Brigade, the 3rd Osijek Brigade, and the 4th Split Brigade.
12 Normally these forces grew and swelled and according to information of the
13 Main Staff of the army of the Republic of the Serbian Krajina towards the
14 end of 1993, they numbered about 150.000 and just prior to the Storm
15 Operation, about 200.000 members. At that time, the basic strategy of
16 Croatia was.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Can you slow down a little bit? It looks like the
18 interpreter is struggling to keep pace with you.
19 THE INTERPRETER: Thank you.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. At that time, the Croatian
21 leadership adopted an extremely perfidious and cunning strategy that to
22 shift combat operations from its territory to another territory and they
23 shifted them to the territory of the then Republic of Bosnia and
25 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. What period are we talking about?
2 A. This is the 1992 period, namely the period immediately after the
3 start of the deployment of the UN forces, i.e., when the Vance Plan became
4 operational, which was in January 1991 and already in February 1992, we
5 have enormous Croatian forces in the territory of the Republic of
6 Bosnia-Herzegovina. According to the available data at that time prior to
7 the corridor operation, from Croatia were sent between 21 to 22 brigades
8 to Bosnia and Herzegovina, a total of 35.000 to 40.000 members, which
9 number at a certain point in 1992 even swelled to 50.000. All these
10 figures have been confirmed, and this means that more than a third of the
11 effective part of the armed forces of Croatia were engaged on the
12 territory of another state.
13 Q. Thank you. So what was the objective of the establishment of this
15 A. Allow me just one sentence by the -- this blockade in alliance
16 with the forces of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia cut off the
17 main road somewhere in the area of Doboj which is some halfway between the
18 territory of Croatia from the west to the east, and in this way, it
19 encircled 2000 -- 2 million, sorry, inhabitants. About 400.000 in the
20 Serbian Krajina, and about 1 million and 500.000 in the ARK which is in
21 the Bosnian Krajina in the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina in other words.
22 The objective was, by this economic blockade when there was a humanitarian
23 disaster practically speaking, there was no fuel, there was no other
24 sources of energy, there were no medicaments, there was no food, the Red
25 Cross was unable to deliver the necessary foodstuffs, humanitarian
1 organisations were unable to operate, all flights had been forbidden by
2 the United Nations Security Council. We had therefore a very difficult
3 humanitarian situation and, by way of example, in the clinic in Banja
4 Luka, 12 babies died in just one day, and let me tell you two months ago,
5 the 13th of that -- those babies died, and she got sick for lack of oxygen
6 and she was buried in Prijedor. So this strategy and economic pressure
7 and this blockade was intended to integrate the Republic of Serbian
8 Krajina into the Republic of Croatia by force, i.e., to have the other
9 side, Alija Izetbegovic, the President of the Republic of Bosnia and
10 Herzegovina, to also subjugate a wide area containing some 1.500.000 Serbs
11 in the autonomous Republic of Krajina in the Republic of Bosnia and
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Previous translation continues] ... Okay.
14 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Mr. Djukic, please try to be as concise and concrete as possible.
16 So the goal of this operation, as I understood and correct me if I'm
17 wrong, was to prevent a humanitarian disaster from happening. Did I
18 understood you correctly?
19 A. The goal of the operation carried out by the forces of the army of
20 the Republika Srpska was to prevent a humanitarian disaster from
21 happening. That is correct.
22 Q. Was there any other goal that you may know of?
23 A. I don't know of any other goals to establish land link with the
24 Yugoslavia and the eastern part of Republic of Serbian Krajina, Eastern
25 Slavonia, Western Srem, and Baranja.
1 Q. Why this land link necessary?
2 A. For the functioning of our authorities and apart from that, the
3 eastern part of the RSK was quite well -- rich and the western part of the
4 RSK which was very poor, depended on the eastern part and of course from
5 Serbia we provided -- had provisions of agricultural produce.
6 Q. Thank you. And finally --
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: How does a corridor between the RSK and Serbia
8 facilitate communication between the eastern part of the RSK with the
9 western part of the RSK? I don't understand how that happens.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I? The eastern and western
11 parts of the RSK did not have -- did not border. The Republic of Serbian
12 Krajina was composed of two parts, and those two parts were divided by
13 Bosnia-Herzegovina and part of Serbia which is called Vojvodina. To the
14 north of that was Croatia and we could not communicate through Croatia.
15 This was the territory under the control of the then Croatian authorities,
16 and there was no land communication with that part. It functioned this
17 way. It was strange, but it functioned. It worked.
18 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we may show this on
19 the map.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: That would be very helpful.
21 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] This is the atlas, page 13, Exhibit
22 23. On this map, I believe it would be best seen and shown by the witness
23 to mark out the western part and the eastern part of the RSK. We should
24 move to the left, please. I believe this is fine. I propose that the
25 witness mark with a pencil the boundaries of the western and the eastern
1 parts of the RSK and maybe indicate the route of the corridor on this map
2 by the Chamber's leave.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much, Mr. Perovic.
4 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for His Honour.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm sorry, I was just saying thank you to
6 Mr. Perovic.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It should be brought down a bit for
8 the map to show Beli Manastir. Slightly to the left, please. Fine.
9 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Could you mark the boundaries of the eastern part?
11 A. This is exactly what I'm doing right now.
12 Q. And the border towards Serbian Vojvodina?
13 A. It is seen. It is concurrent with the river Danube.
14 Q. Okay. Thank you.
15 A. I'm going to roughly indicate the boundaries.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: I don't see where the witness is drawing. My map
17 is -- well, it's disappeared now.
18 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Sorry, this seems to be a little unclear now.
19 Weren't we going to see the eastern part of the RSK and the western part
20 of the RSK?
21 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] That is right. What the witness is
22 encircling is the eastern part of the RSK, Slavonia, and Baranja. The
23 western part cannot be seen. We should move the map to the left, then.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Perovic, let the witness tell us what he's
25 doing rather than you telling us.
1 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Yes.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Witness, you have encircled a place there. I can't
3 see the names but any way, it encloses Vukovar, it comes into Vinkovci, it
4 encompasses, Osijek, goes right up. What is all that part?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no, no, it doesn't encompass
6 Vinkovci and it doesn't encompass Osijek. They are all left out of the
7 boundaries. Includes this part, the villages between Otoka and Dimijenci
8 [phoen]. This would be the area known as Western Srem. This is Eastern
9 Slavonia what I'm showing now and up north it's the Baranja region. So
10 there were three districts. This would be the border. Eastern part of
11 the RSK, Republic of Serbian Krajina, which was completely separate from
12 the western part.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Previous translation continues] ... me, because I
14 don't follow what you say unless I understand what you have said. You
15 said, "This is the boundary," and I don't see where you're pointing. Bear
16 my question in mind. All I want you to show us is Eastern RSK, Western
17 RSK, and the corridor to Serbia. That's what I want to see. And I want
18 to see -- understand how the corridor to Serbia facilitates communication
19 between the rich east of RSK and the poor west of RSK. That's what I want
20 to understand. Show us Western RSK and then show us Eastern RSK.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've just drawn the boundaries of
22 the eastern part of the Republic of Serbian Krajina. And this region was
23 officially called Eastern Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem, as a
24 district. These would be the boundaries, and it borders Serbia or the
25 part of Serbia called Vojvodina to the east and to the west, we have the
1 boundaries or the city limits and municipal limits of Osijek and Vinkovci.
2 Vojvodina is to the east. This is wartime, showing Subotica, Backa
3 Palanka, Vrbas. These are -- this is an autonomous province within
4 Serbia. It's northern province.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Where is Western RSK?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We will have to move the map so I
7 can indicate that.
8 JUDGE HOEPFEL: We have to save it.
9 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: I have to ascertain something before we save it.
10 Are you saying that the whole of the line, the delineation line, is what
11 would constitute Eastern RSK? Because it seems to be split into two parts
12 to me, an upper part and lower part. Is it -- well, Judge Moloto is
13 saying three. I thank him for pointing out to me. I hadn't even noticed
14 that. Are you saying, then, Witness -- thank you, Judge -- that all three
15 that are delineated would have constituted Eastern RSK, the whole of that
16 is Eastern RSK, including Eastern Slavonia and the Baranja region and the
17 other region?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What I've just drawn here is part of
19 the Republic of Serbian Krajina. We can call it the eastern part of the
20 RSK which had the name. This is one district, and had it a single name,
21 which was Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western Srem so there are three
22 entities within it, eastern Slavonia is in the middle, Baranja is north,
23 where Beli Manastir is, that's Baranja, and to the south is Western Srem.
24 So what I indicated here on the map is an integral part of the Republic of
25 Serbian Krajina but is physically disconnected from the western part of
1 the RSK which I'm about to show you and indicate on the map in a minute.
2 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: Thank you. The part right at the bottom, at the
3 south, would then be Western Srem? And in the middle would be Baranja or
4 am I misunderstanding it?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no, in the middle would be
6 Eastern Slavonia.
7 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: So what would be at the top, then.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Baranja.
9 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: All right. Thank you very much now.
10 JUDGE HOEPFEL: And do we understand you correctly, Baranja,
11 Eastern Slavonia, and the very southern one is Western Srem, together
12 would constitute one province or one district, the district of eastern
13 RSK, or is that right, eastern part of RSK? Or are these three
14 municipalities or what is the political structure of these three pieces
15 and of the one piece consisting of the three ones? Just in one sentence,
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There were more municipalities,
18 Beli Manastir, Darda [phoen], Vukovar, Tenja, these were municipalities of
19 Ilok, these were municipalities located in that area, and that area had
20 several municipalities but they directly border Republic of Serbian
21 Krajina, were part of it. They were connected with Knin which is located
22 in the western portion, so to speak, of the RSK.
23 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Yes, this we will see now but just before we see
24 that we wanted to have clarification on the meaning of this three parts of
25 eastern part of RSK. Just to finish that.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is part of the territory of the
2 Republic of Serbian Krajina.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: You said, Mr. Djukic, that the western part of the
4 RSK is not -- I thought I understood you to say is not contiguous to the
5 eastern part. It's separated by something else. What is in between the
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You will see, when I draw it, sir, a
8 large portion of the Republic of Croatia and a large portion of the
9 Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina. The western part of the RSK is quite a
10 long way away from here.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: And are you saying that the eastern part -- this
12 eastern region, eastern part of the RSK is contiguous somehow to Serbia?
13 Vojvodina, I think you said.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. The border is the river
15 Danube. You can see on the Hungarian border the village of Baja. This
16 constitutes a border, the red line indicates the border between the
17 Republic of Serbia and the Republic of Croatia. At that time it was part
18 of the Republic of Serbian Krajina. The districts of Baranja, Eastern
19 Slavonia, and Western Srem. Or Eastern Srem.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay go ahead.
21 JUDGE HOEPFEL: Is it Western Srem or Eastern Srem?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Eastern Srem because it's in the
23 east. The west is in the opposite direction. I correct myself. Western
25 MR. MILOVANCEVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise for this
1 intervention, I'm just thinking aloud. Would it be easier for the Chamber
2 for this map to be placed on the ELMO so that the Chamber may follow which
3 parts are being indicated by the General? He's indicating and pointing at
4 the screen, which you cannot see. It would be much more worthwhile for
5 that to place -- to be placed on the ELMO so that you can follow the
6 indications, the places pointed out by the General. I believe that this
7 would be more useful.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Microphone not activated].
9 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I'm -- you failed to switch your
10 microphone on so I couldn't hear the translation.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: I want to know whether you endorse what
12 Mr. Milovancevic is saying because you are the one now in control of these
14 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] If it would be helpful to you, I am
15 in full agreement.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much. Is it possible to put it on
17 the ELMO? If it's at all possible to have both eastern and western on the
18 ELMO at the same time, it would be very helpful, and Serbia.
19 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Precisely for that reason.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, sir. What page of the atlas is that?
21 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Page 13, I think.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. It's so small.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't see well.
24 Your Honours, I have the original map of the Republic of Serbian
25 Krajina where you can see everything very nicely. So with your
1 permission, may I show it to you? And can I explain things to you using
2 that map?
3 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: Will you have a copy of the map at the same time
4 or not?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, I don't have one.
6 MR. WHITING: This map is in evidence in our case. I don't recall
7 what the number is, it may be a little investigating and in fact I've
8 never seen an original because if you recall this is the map that has the
9 writing on the back. We have the translation. So I'm quite grateful to
10 see an original of it. But I'm happy to proceed with this map. We do
11 have a map book and there is a good map which shows this quite clearly.
12 It's Exhibit 22, I believe, page 7. I think that that would -- it's
13 actually even clearer but however the Defence wants to proceed I'm
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: You're happy with that, Mr. Perovic, that map?
16 Mr. Perovic, are you happy with the use of that map?
17 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] I'm happy with any proposal which
18 will help us clarify this.
19 MR. WHITING: Mr. Black, the ever-helpful Mr. Black, tells me that
20 it's Exhibit 3 in evidence, this map, and I believe there is a translation
21 of the back but that's not really relevant.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much, Mr. Whiting. And thank you
23 very much to Mr. Black, too. Now, okay. Are we going -- okay.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I? Allow me to explain. Here
25 on the map you can see, this is the east part. To the east, what I'm
1 showing now is Serbia, i.e., its northern province of Vojvodina. As I go
2 west, that is the Republic of Croatia, this border here, and to the south,
3 that is Bosnia and Herzegovina. And this here, that is the western part
4 of the Republic of the Serbian Krajina, and you can see that it is
5 physically separated from the east part. From here, a land link could not
6 be established because this was the Republic of Croatia with their
7 authority, army and police, but we had to establish a link via the
8 direction of Banja Luka, which we do not see now here, but that is the
9 corridor route which breaks out into two crossings, Pavlovica Most and
10 Raca into the Republic of Serbia from which crossings then you go up to
11 this part. So it goes through Bosnia and Herzegovina into Serbia and then
12 up to this part of the republic.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Now, I'll still put my question because
14 that's how I thought I heard you when you testified, that you were saying,
15 and do correct me if I misheard you. I understood you to say that you
16 were establishing a corridor between the eastern part of the RSK, which is
17 rich, and Serbia so that you should be able to help the poorer western
18 part. Hence my question was: How does connecting eastern RSK with Serbia
19 help the poor western RSK? And now that there is actually some other land
20 in between the two RSKs, my question becomes even more pertinent.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The west part of the RSK, the only
22 life line for it was this corridor called the Operation Corridor, which
23 went through Bosnia and Herzegovina and from Bosnia and Herzegovina into
24 Serbia, through Serbia up to the east part of the RSK, this part. And the
25 only link was a land link. So these parts could be connected via Banja
1 Luka and Doboj and one could enter Serbia at two points, namely at the
2 crossing of Raca and the Pavlovica Cuprija, meaning Pavlovica bridge,
3 point which are not marked because we don't see that part of Serbia
4 because it is more to the south. So we had to establish a link through
5 Bosnia and Herzegovina, and through a part of Serbia to reach the east
6 part of the Republic of Serbian Krajina, in order to connect its western
7 part, so to connect the western part of the Republic of Serbian Krajina
8 with its eastern part we had to pass through two other republics. I hope
9 that I have been clear.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Now that you are pointing to the map it's clearer.
11 In fact, the corridor starts from the western part of RSK, it doesn't
12 start from the east, which is how you -- that's how you came up --
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It can go.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Previous translation continues] ... how it came up
15 on the screen but I understand you now, sir.
16 You may proceed, Mr. Perovic.
17 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I only have another
19 Q. Mr. Djukic, you're one of the immediate participants in the events
20 that we talked about today and yesterday. According to your knowledge,
21 who is the -- who committed a criminal enterprise in that period?
22 A. According to everything that one experienced and everything that
23 transpired practically on the ground, it is evident that the Republic of
24 Croatia, with its army, as a state, namely the Republic of Croatia,
25 committed the criminal enterprise against the Serbian people in the
1 Republic of Serbian Krajina and against the Serbian people in the
2 territory of the Republika Srpska, that is to say a part of the Republic
3 of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
4 Q. Thank you.
5 Mr. Djukic, this concludes my examination-in-chief of you as a
7 MR. PEROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this concludes my
8 examination-in-chief. I have no more questions for this witness. Thank
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much, Mr. Perovic.
11 Mr. Whiting?
12 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Cross-examination by Mr. Whiting:
14 MR. WHITING:
15 Q. Good evening, Mr. Djukic, my name is Alex Whiting and I'm one of
16 the prosecutors in this case. Do you understand?
17 A. Good evening. Yes, I understand.
18 Q. Sir, before I ask you any questions, I want to ask you, please, if
19 you would, listen to my questions very carefully and just answer my
20 questions. Do you understand?
21 A. Yes, I do.
22 Q. Most of the time you'll be able to just say you agree or disagree.
23 Long explanations will not be necessary, okay?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Now, before we get into the topics, I do want to ask you a
1 question about your memory about -- with respect to time because it is
2 after all we are talking about events that occurred 15, 14, 13 years ago.
3 Do you have a sense that you have a good memory for the time, the time
4 that events occurred in 1990, 1991, or is your memory about time not
5 necessarily so clear?
6 A. When I retired in 1994, I put down on paper, making notes on
7 everything that had happened, and I published one book, I had one book
8 published, and work on the publishing of another two is underway and with
9 a colleague of mine, a subordinated officer of mine, I prepared another
10 book which is soon to come out of print so that I remember --
11 Q. Sir, I'm going to interrupt you and I don't do that
12 disrespectfully it's only because you've now said several sentences but
13 you haven't answered my question. If you could really just answer the
14 question: How is your memory concerning time from that period? Do you
15 have a good memory or not a good memory?
16 A. I think that I have a very good memory, especially for some things
17 which impressed me.
18 Q. Okay. Could we look at Exhibit 458, please? And if we could
19 look -- right, keep moving, keep moving, perfect. Do you see that
20 photograph? It's a photograph of four men, there are two photographs on
21 this page and the photograph I want to focus on is the one on left that
22 has four men on it. Do you see that photograph, sir?
23 A. Yes, I do.
24 Q. Do you recognise anybody in that photograph?
25 A. I recognise from the left to the right, Mile Paspalj, president of
1 the assembly of the Republic of the Serbian Krajina, next to him in
2 uniform, I myself. And next to me, Mr. Mile Martic, in police uniform.
3 And at the right end, the commander of the Serbian army of the Krajina,
4 General Mile Novakovic.
5 Q. Do you recall when that photograph was taken?
6 A. I don't have this photograph, but I suppose that it was perhaps
7 after the Operation Corridor.
8 Q. That would be what dates, please? After the Operation Corridor
9 would be after what date?
10 A. We concluded the operation on the 17th of July 1992, and returned
11 to Knin on the 17th of July 1992, so it is perhaps about that time. I
12 can't be sure.
13 Q. Do you recall where this photograph was taken?
14 A. I don't recognise the background, really.
15 Q. And you don't remember the occasion that this photograph -- you
16 don't remember the occasion when the four of you were together like this
17 after the corridor operation and a photograph was taken?
18 A. That is a minor thing. It is us on the photograph and it's from
19 about that time.
20 Q. If you don't remember, it's fine. It's fine.
21 A. Yes. I was made general after the Operation Corridor so that this
22 photograph dates to that time, after the operation.
23 Q. Is there some -- is there something that indicates to you from
24 this photograph that you are a general?
25 A. I just said I am a general and was promoted to general on the 18th
1 of July 1992, so that this photograph was taken after Operation Corridor.
2 Q. Okay. But I'm just asking if there is something about the uniform
3 you're wearing or any insignia which indicates that you're a general in
4 this photograph?
5 A. I am a general.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Doesn't look like you understand the question,
7 Mr. Djukic. The question is: Is there anything on this photograph that
8 distinguishes you as a general? Is there anything in your uniform here
9 that says, "This is something that is worn by a general"?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, you can see the emblem of a
11 general, the patch on the left pocket of my blouse.
12 MR. WHITING: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Q. And thank you, sir. Now, the uniform you're wearing is the
14 uniform of what exactly? Of what entity?
15 A. This is the official uniform of the Republic of the Serbian
16 Krajina, but this is a uniform which I wore as the commander of the
17 special police units, i.e., the head of the administration of the special
18 police units.
19 Q. But that function was within the Ministry of the Interior, wasn't
20 it, sir? Not within the army.
21 A. That function was -- had a dual connection. Along one line, it
22 was connected to the Ministry of Defence and along the other to the
23 Ministry of the Interior. The professional part of the execution of the
24 task was connected to the Ministry of the Interior, and I was in my
25 capacity of head of that administration, one of the assistants to the
1 Minister of the Interior of the Republic of the Serbian Krajina.
2 Q. Okay. That we'll talk about more later, but just to be clear the
3 uniform that you're wearing and that Mr. Novakovic is wearing, those are
4 uniforms of the RSK army, correct?
5 A. At a certain period, because of securing the borders, the police
6 uniforms were changed and were no longer blue but were camouflage uniforms
7 as the one that you can see me wearing as Western Srem as General
9 Q. I'm sorry. Are you saying that that is a police uniform that
10 you're wearing? You and Mr. Novakovic are wearing police uniforms?
11 A. I'm saying the police units, at a certain period, in a certain
12 period, especially those units which were on the border, they wore these
13 camouflage, motley uniforms, the police did. You can see the combination.
14 I have blue trousers and camouflage blouse and a Blue Beret.
15 Q. The uniform you're wearing is different from the uniform that
16 Mr. Novakovic is wearing, correct?
17 A. Now I'm looking at it on this photo, it differs, we had different
18 uniforms for the same posts in the same units. We had different nuances
19 of uniforms procured from different manufacturers, even the colouring of
20 the blouses and the trousers were not the same. These differed.
21 Q. When I asked to you identify the people in this photograph, you
22 identified the man on the right-hand side as the commander of the Serbian
23 army of the Krajina, General Mile Novakovic.
24 A. That's correct, and he was the commander of the Serbian Army of
25 Krajina, appointed at the end of November, all the way to 1994. I don't
1 know, February or March.
2 Q. So what is he in this photograph? You were talking about the
3 photograph when you said it but now are you telling us that he had a
4 different function in this -- when this photograph was taken?
5 A. I cannot answer that. In accordance with the emblem that he's I
6 see that we are wearing the same emblem. We wear similar uniforms but I
7 cannot provide you with a precise answer.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: But am I right in saying that you told us a little
9 earlier that the uniform you are wearing is the one you wore as the
10 commander of the special police units, not the army? You said that at
11 page 84, line 7 to 10.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was never an army commander. I
13 commanded a brigade within the JNA.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Listen to my question. I never said you were an
15 army commander. I said, am I right in saying that you have told us a
16 couple of minutes ago that the uniform you are wearing is the one which
17 you wore as the commander of the special police units? You can say yes,
18 you are right, or no, you are wrong.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I presume that this photograph was
20 taken while I was the commander of the special units of police.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: You're not answering my question. My question is:
22 The uniform you are wearing is the uniform you wore in your capacity as a
23 commander of the special police units? Am I right in saying so? Or were
24 you misinterpreted here?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I believe that this is the uniform
1 that I wore, that I wore in my capacity as commander of the special units
2 of police.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Right. Thank you very much. And this general on
4 the right, you say, at this time, he was wearing a uniform of the army,
5 RSK army; is that correct?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I cannot narrow down to the very
7 date. That general was subordinated to me while I was commander of the
8 special units of police. He was a commander of one of the brigades in the
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm going to interrupt you. I'm not asking you
11 about dates or time. I'm just asking you, this general is wearing a
12 uniform of the army, not of the special police units. That's in your
13 evidence a little earlier. Isn't it so?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He wears a military uniform.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Now, please, I'm just asking you a simple question.
16 Is this the uniform of the police, army of the RSK, or is it not? You
17 know there are various military uniforms here and we can see that there
18 are different uniforms. We want to identify which one belongs to which.
19 Please be cooperative. You've told us yours is of the police -- special
20 police units. What does this one, this other uniform belong to? You said
21 it is the army. Isn't it so?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] But my uniform could be a military
25 uniform as well.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Fine. That's not part of the question that
2 I asked. You've answered my questions. Thank you very much.
3 I'm sorry it's taken me so long to get that clarity.
4 MR. WHITING: That's fine. Thank you, Your Honour.
5 Q. And you're not able to tell us what the function of
6 General Novakovic was at that time, when this photograph was taken?
7 A. I cannot recall this detail. Judging from this picture, I could
8 pinpoint the date whether it was taken, maybe, but I don't have this
9 photo. If I were to have it --
10 Q. I'm sorry but you told us earlier that this photograph was taken,
11 I believe you said, after the 18th of July --
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: After the 17th of July.
13 MR. WHITING:
14 Q. After the 17th of July 1992. Are you having difficulty telling us
15 what General Novakovic's position was after that date?
16 A. General Novakovic, after the 18th of July 1992, up until the end
17 of November 1992, was the commander of a brigade of special units of
18 police for the Kordun district. He was subordinated to me.
19 Q. Why is he wearing a different uniform?
20 A. As I said, we procured uniforms from different manufacturers. We
21 differed in shades of the uniforms, not by the type. This is a camouflage
22 fatigues on both of us, but they are different shading. They are slightly
24 Q. And why, when you identified him in the photograph, did you
25 identify him as a general in the army of the RSK?
1 A. He is a general of the Serbian Army of Krajina, commander of the
2 chief -- General Staff of the SVK, and he held that position from the end
3 of November up until the appointment of the new general, General
4 Celeketic, which took place at the beginning of 1994.
5 Q. Okay.
6 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: Appointment of the
7 new commander, General Celeketic.
8 MR. WHITING: Your Honour, I think it's a convenient time.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: It is indeed. We have got to take a break and come
10 back tomorrow at quarter past 2.00 in the afternoon in this Court. Thank
11 you very much.
12 Court adjourned.
13 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.59 p.m.,
14 to be reconvened on Friday, the 20th day of
15 October, 2006, at 2.15 p.m.