1 Tuesday, 8 August 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.00 a.m.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Good morning, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. I remind you that
7 the solemn undertaking to tell the truth which you took yesterday at the
8 start of your evidence continues to apply to that evidence today.
9 Mr. Hannis.
10 MR. HANNIS: Thank you, Your Honour. Before I begin, I neglected
11 yesterday to introduce a new face on our team. April Carter was sitting
12 in with me yesterday and will be here assisting today.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Hannis.
14 MR. HANNIS: Thank you.
15 WITNESS: FUAT HAXHIBEQIRI [Resumed]
16 [Witness answered through interpreter]
17 Examination by Mr. Hannis: [Continued]
18 Q. Good morning, Mr. Haxhibeqiri.
19 A. Good morning, sir.
20 Q. We talked about how you were hiding out in Gjakova town during the
21 time of the NATO campaign. Before that bombing started in March of 1999,
22 do you have a rough idea of how many people of all ethnicities lived in
23 Gjakova town, approximately?
24 A. According to the statistics of 1981, which were the last official
25 statistics, the population counted about 120.000. Now the population is
2 Q. And do you know the number for the entire municipality of Gjakova,
4 A. This is -- the figures I gave apply to the municipality.
5 Q. And for the town itself, do you know?
6 A. Roughly 50 per cent of that population lives in the town, or maybe
7 45 per cent. The rest lives in rural areas.
8 Q. And of those numbers, do you know the approximate percentage of
10 A. Albanians make up the majority, not only in Gjakova but all over
11 Kosova; whereas the Serbs, in politics they make up the majority. In
12 terms of population, they account for about 2 per cent, not more than
13 that; whereas the other minorities I think account for 0.2 per cent, very,
14 very little figure.
15 Q. So are you saying in Gjakova municipality the Albanians were more
16 than 90 or 95 per cent?
17 A. 98, 97, 98.
18 Q. Do you have -- based on your work with the Council for the Defence
19 of Human Rights and Freedoms, did you have any idea how many Kosovo
20 Albanians left the municipality during the first half of 1999?
21 A. I can give you only approximate figures, which means that about
22 70 per cent of the population left for Albania. It is hard to give you an
23 accurate figure, but this is an approximate one.
24 Q. And, sir, can you tell the Court, do you have knowledge about what
25 the atmosphere was among the Kosovo Albanians in Gjakova at the time of
1 the NATO bombing and with regard to the NATO air-strikes?
2 A. From the 24th, that is the first day of NATO air-strikes, the
3 night of 24th of March, after midnight, the city started to burn. Until
4 that time, over 55 villages were burned, either partially or completely.
5 About 40.000 inhabitants had been driven out of their villages and found
6 shelter in Gjakova because the villages were shelled by the Serb forces.
7 A situation of terror prevailed. It was constant terror. That night,
8 over 200 bars and restaurants were torched in the old town, and five
9 persons were killed in the neighbourhood where I live. And the terror
10 continued for 78 days and nights on end, until the coming of the NATO
12 So in answer to your first question, this is what I think about
13 NATO. Hadn't it been for NATO, the Albanians would have been the most
14 retched population living under that regime. So with NATO, the miracle
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Before I lose track of this for the moment, in --
17 when you were asked about the proportion of the population that were
18 Serbian you said that although they were a very small percentage, they
19 occupied most of the political positions. And the answer has been
20 translated as if that was the situation today. When you say that Serbs
21 occupied most of the political positions, are you referring to 1999 or are
22 you referring also to today?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I refer to that time.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And this percentage applied to that
1 time; now, it's non-existent.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And I have to say -- I have to add
4 that I meant the Serbs and Montenegrins because we had both of them living
5 in Gjakova.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
7 MR. HANNIS:
8 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, in paragraph 45 of your statement, which is on
9 page 8 of the English and page 9 at the top of the B/C/S, you refer to in
10 April seeing what you described as a river of people leaving during that
11 time. Where were these people coming from that you saw?
12 A. The long convoys of people, which started in early April 1999,
13 were formed as a result of the scenario prepared by these forces to drive
14 out the Albanians from our municipality and from the entire Kosova and to
15 send them to Albania. They entered, the Serb forces entered Albanian
16 houses, drove the inhabitants out through use of force, threatening them:
17 Go out because you have asked for NATO to come. You ask for Albania. So
18 go to Albania. That is your homeland. Kosova is a Serbian country. And
19 under threat of arms and being insulted all the time, beaten and
20 maltreated, brutally tortured, their IDs being torn up, sometimes being
21 violated, they were forced to free [as interpreted] their own country on
22 the pretext of NATO bombing.
23 Q. I see --
24 A. Sorry, to flee --
25 Q. I see in the -- [Previous translation continues] ... they were
1 forced to free --
2 A. I meant --
3 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... from what he said before that
4 probably should read "flee." Is that correct, Mr. Haxhibeqiri, they were
5 forced to flee, to leave?
6 A. Yes, yes, they were forced to flee the country, to flee the
7 country because of force being exercised against them.
8 Q. In the next approximate paragraph you say that in late April you
9 saw police coming around town registering the Albanians who were still in
10 town. In late April, do you have an idea of how many Kosovo Albanians
11 remained in the town of Gjakova?
12 A. It was not at the end of April but until the 13th of May. As I
13 said earlier, about 70 per cent of the population were forced to leave
14 their homes and go to Albania. Some of them were arrested and ended up in
16 Q. So do you know why this remaining 30 per cent were not being
17 killed or were not being forced to leave to go to Albania?
18 MR. LUKIC: Objection, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Hold on just now, please, Mr. Haxhibeqiri.
20 Mr. Lukic.
21 MR. LUKIC: I think that this calls for pure speculation.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: No, I disagree.
23 I think as long as it's made clear, Mr. Hannis, to the witness
24 that what we need to know is what he personally can tell us from his
25 experience of being there and seeing and hearing what was happening.
1 MR. HANNIS: Well, my original question is, first: Do you know,
2 yes or no.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
4 MR. HANNIS: And depending on what his answer is, I'll have a
5 question to follow up to that.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
7 MR. HANNIS:
8 Q. First of all, Mr. Haxhibeqiri, let me ask again: Do you know why
9 this remaining 30 per cent was allowed to remain and were not being killed
10 or imprisoned?
11 A. These people here would know better. Probably to keep them
12 hostages, to keep, let's say, a kind of balance, to use them later for
13 their own purposes, which they must know better.
14 Q. Okay. Let me -- let me follow up then with pointing out --
15 A. To keep that part of population under control. It was easier for
16 them to do that.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: I think now I see forcing the point that Mr. Lukic
18 is making. What I was expecting to hear was an answer based on knowledge
19 from within the community, but clearly what this question is being
20 interpreted by the witness is as seeking is his conclusions about the
21 actions of those who were causing this in his view, and that's not
22 appropriate, Mr. Hannis.
23 MR. HANNIS: I was expecting --
24 JUDGE BONOMY: He's made it clear he's not in a position to answer
1 MR. HANNIS: I was expecting to see a yes or no and then asking
2 him how he knew and what he based it on.
3 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, in your statement in paragraphs 24 to 28, which
4 begin on page 6 of both the English and the B/C/S and paragraphs 32 to 44,
5 which start on page 7, you provide some specific information about --
6 first of all, about six specific killings and then about some additional
7 killings, looting, arson, and expulsions. What was the source of your
8 information for those incidents that you describe in your statement? Was
9 that first-hand knowledge? Knowledge from other sources? How did you
10 learn that?
11 A. At the time when these crimes were committed, it was the first
12 night. That night I was hiding out in Blloku i Ri, as I said yesterday.
13 But from my home they called me up and told me that these and this persons
14 have been killed. I knew all of them because they lived in the same
15 neighbourhood with me.
16 Q. And I understand that refers to the first six killings you
17 describe in paragraphs 24 through 28. In paragraphs 32 to 44 you talk
18 about several different incidents throughout the municipality, including
19 killings, lootings, arson and expulsions. What was the source of your
20 information for those items? Was that again people who called you or was
21 that work you did after the bombing was over?
22 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Your Honour.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Just a moment, please. There is another objection
24 taken to this.
25 Mr. O'Sullivan.
1 MR. O'SULLIVAN: I have to object. Mr. Hannis is leading this
2 witness through his direct testimony, and again this is not 92 bis. This
3 is a witness who is testifying live who is being led -- who is being fed
4 leading questions and asked to comment on it.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: There's nothing leading about the question, what
6 was the source of your information for these items, but it's the next
7 part, I take it, that you're objecting to?
8 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Well, the whole question beginning on line 11.
9 We've had several questions like this. He points to paragraphs in the
10 statement. He says this, this, and this and that happened. You told us
11 about that. Was it because of expulsion or violence or did someone tell
12 you anything? I mean, these are just leading questions of a viva voce
13 witness, in my submission.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, that general point can't be right, surely.
15 If a witness has given evidence about a number of killings, there's
16 nothing wrong with you then asking him what was the source of his
17 information about these killings. But I agree with you that it's wrong
18 then to say: Was that again people who called you or was that what you
19 did after the bombing was over? Pointing in the direction of answers that
20 would be acceptable for the Prosecution. I agree with that. But I
21 think -- I'm not sympathetic to the general point that to use this as a
22 sign-post in the way in this evidence is being presented is wrong.
23 Now, Mr. Hannis, you've rather undermined the potential for a
24 helpful answer, I think, in relation to the second section of items that
25 you're talking about.
1 Yes, Mr. Cepic.
2 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, by your leave, yesterday
3 there was an objection to the way the pages were marked, so I would ask my
4 learned friend to be more precise when giving us the page references. We
5 don't have the important paragraphs he's referring to, so could we have at
6 least the page number and the number of the paragraph being referred to?
7 Thank you.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, Mr. Hannis, that's yet another difficulty
9 that arises because these statement -- this particular statement isn't
10 numbered paragraphs. It would be helpful, I think, if statements could in
11 future rather than be numbered by page could be numbered by paragraphs and
12 hopefully translated according to these paragraph numbers. However, can
13 you assist counsel from now on as far as possible with clearer
14 identification of where the material is?
15 I think we can see the six killings that are referred to fairly
16 easily. They are listed as six deaths and then the material -- the
17 circumstances are referred to and then you have moved on to the section
18 after that now.
19 MR. HANNIS: Yes. And paragraphs 32 to 44 begin -- paragraph 32
20 begins on page 7 of the B/C/S right below the second dotted line --
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
22 MR. HANNIS: -- up from the bottom.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Anyway, I'm sustaining the objection to the leading
24 nature of the last question which you posed and invite you to approach
25 this a different way.
1 MR. HANNIS: I understand, Your Honour.
2 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Fila, yeah.
4 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] With all due respect, Mr. Hannis, we
5 would not like the word "paragraph" to be used. This brings us into
6 difficulties. This transcript will remain. When he says "paragraphs 22
7 to 24," where is that? That's something which he's looking at which
8 doesn't exist anywhere else. I can follow by the content not the numbers,
9 so please don't say "paragraph 22, 24," just give us the page number and
10 say what line it is from the bottom.
11 For example, now you are referring to line 246 from the bottom,
12 and that will solve the problem. If you say "paragraph," when I look at
13 the transcript tomorrow I don't have the paragraph number. You're using
14 something that doesn't exist. The lines exist.
15 Thank you. That's the only solution I can see.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah. I don't think that -- thank you, Mr. Fila.
17 I don't think there's a particular problem at the moment. The witness
18 clearly understands what he's being asked about, and he's not looking at a
19 statement to check paragraph numbers. So I think so far we've been able
20 to identify the areas that matter, but I think the point is well
21 that for future record purposes it may be important to identify the areas
22 by page rather than paragraph number, except in future statements where
23 perhaps we could have the paragraphs actually numbered.
24 MR. HANNIS: I agree, Your Honour. I wish someone had thought of
25 that in 1999 and 2000 when many of these statements were taken.
1 With regard to paragraph -- what I've referred to as paragraph 32,
2 in the B/C/S that starts on page 7, ten lines up from the bottom of the
4 Q. With regard to those events that you've described,
5 Mr. Haxhibeqiri, what was the source of your information? Was that stuff
6 that you witnessed first-hand?
7 A. Some of them I have seen myself; some others witnesses have
8 reported to us in the office. Sometimes I have gone myself to the site of
9 the event.
10 Q. In connection with witnesses, the last paragraph in your
11 statement, page 9 of the B/C/S, you indicate that 1.000 people were
12 interviewed. Did you personally interview 1.000 people?
13 A. No. We were a team of ten people. So it means that about 100 I
14 interviewed myself, but at the end I looked over all the interviews.
15 JUDGE CHOWHAN: I'm sorry to interrupt here, with permission of
16 my Lord.
17 The question is, there are some leading things coming in and I
18 think this -- I would respectfully say that they may be for instance
19 saying that is it your first-hand knowledge? Saying that: Did you
20 witness it? No, no, he ought to say it himself. This is actually leading
21 the witness. That's what I respectfully wish to point out.
22 And secondly, I would say that referring to paragraphs without
23 their contents being brought here will at least create some problems for
24 the readers later on because I would respectfully say that it will not be
25 a self-contained examination-in-chief, if you kindly can look into this.
1 I'm grateful, sir.
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, Mr. Hannis, there is a concern among the
4 Judges here that it's not clear what parts of the transcript this relates
5 to. And just to try to avoid going over it all again and for the sake of
6 clarification, can I ask you whether the first series of questions about
7 the six killings related to page 6, down to where before the last six
8 lines there is a dotted line?
9 MR. HANNIS: Yes. It begins with the paragraph that reads: "From
10 my investigation I have witnesses say ..."
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
12 MR. HANNIS: Yes.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: And second -- the questions you then asked which
14 were about events -- subsequent events related to the part of the
15 statement on pages 6 and 7 in the English, between the two sets of dotted
17 MR. HANNIS: No. It began on page 7 underneath the first dotted
18 line with the paragraph: "In my position with the council interviewed
19 more than 1.000 people ..."
20 JUDGE BONOMY: And that's -- what paragraph number do you give
22 MR. HANNIS: 32.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: That's paragraph 32, and it begins: "In my
24 position with the CHHRF ..."?
25 MR. HANNIS: Yes, and it carries over to middle of page 8.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you. Now, are you -- have you
2 finished your questions on the source --
3 MR. HANNIS: Yes.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: -- of the information? Well, I, for one, find it
5 unhelpful to hear a witness say: I saw some of these myself, I went to
6 the scene, and the rest of them I heard about it. Are we not going to
7 hear what he actually saw for himself? I mean, it --
8 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour --
9 JUDGE BONOMY: -- it's far more persuasive for any Bench to hear
10 evidence from a witness about what he actually saw himself.
11 Now, it's not for us to direct you. I'll ask -- I'll start asking
12 the questions myself if you're not going down that road. It's up to you;
13 you don't have to. But I certainly want to find out what this witness can
14 actually tell us from his own personal knowledge.
15 MR. HANNIS: I understand, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: I think my colleagues agree with that.
17 MR. HANNIS: Yesterday he testified about some things that he had
18 witnessed himself. And in my understanding that was the extent of what he
19 had witnessed himself --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, you've asked a question just now about
21 whether he actually saw certain things himself. I don't know if you
22 expected an answer to be: Well, all of this I heard from others, or not.
23 But you got the answer: Some of it I saw myself because I visited the
24 sites. Now, I at the moment don't know what incidents he's talking about.
25 MR. HANNIS: I can follow up on that, Your Honour.
1 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, I don't know if you have your statement in front
2 of you, but in connection with the incidents described in paragraphs 34,
3 beginning on page 7 of the English beneath the dotted line you describe
4 killings throughout the municipality. Did you -- did you personally
5 witness any of those killings that are described, beginning on what's in
6 your --
7 A. Did I see them with my own eyes? Yes, in the -- in my own
8 neighbourhood. It's ...
9 Q. Would you tell the Court which killing or killings you yourself
11 A. 50 metres away from my place I saw being killed two brothers, two
12 brothers were killed, at a restaurant nearby, that's 50 metres away from
13 my home. Their surname is Huma, Huma.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Which paragraph is that?
15 MR. HANNIS:
16 Q. Is that specifically mentioned in your statement?
17 A. I haven't -- I haven't put them in my statement, but you are
18 asking me about details and I'm saying them now.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Hannis, I find this -- I find this difficult
20 ever since I came to this Tribunal to see these statements which contain
21 all these generalised pieces of information about widespread -- apparently
22 widespread conduct. And then when you do a little probing you discover
23 that what the witness has actually seen that really matters isn't in the
24 statement. How do investigators get these statements into this sort of
1 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, I don't know. I wasn't present at the
2 time that these statements were being taken.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: It's very, very unsatisfactory for a Court trying
4 to do this -- a job of this importance to find that statements are being
5 compiled in what looks like a rather unsatisfactory way.
6 MR. HANNIS: It's unsatisfactory to the Prosecutor as well.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
8 MR. HANNIS:
9 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, any other killings that you yourself witnessed?
10 A. Yes, Ali Beqe Rama, I was just reminded of his name. It's Florenc
11 Sulejmani and the others who were from the village. And all these details
12 have been deposited here at the Tribunal.
13 Q. Has that been described in your statement?
14 A. No, no.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Now --
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I were to include this in my
17 statement, it would be at least a hundred pages. This is very brief, this
18 statement in front of you. With the data that I possess at the centre,
19 I --
20 MR. HANNIS: [Previous translation continues] ...
21 JUDGE BONOMY: [Previous translation continues] ...
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I consider this statement as very
23 poor in terms of data included.
24 MR. HANNIS:
25 Q. So that was not in your statement; correct?
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Could I ask you, Mr. Hannis --
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Direct my attention to what the witness told us
4 yesterday he had seen personally.
5 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, I know he described when he was in his
6 house, he described seeing paramilitaries burning houses in his
7 neighbourhood. In his statement it's referred to as he saw them throwing
8 cans of petrol and then --
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah. Just --
10 MR. HANNIS: That was on page 7 of the English, Your Honour, the
11 third paragraph down from the top of the page.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Just allow us to confer for a moment, please.
13 [Trial Chamber confers]
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, Mr. Haxhibeqiri, you've indicated to us that
15 you find the statement unsatisfactory. Are you saying that you have given
16 to the Prosecution much more material than is reflected in the statement?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's very little here I should say.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: I understand that. But are you saying that you
19 have told the Prosecution much more? Or are you simply saying that you
20 have got much more to tell which you have not told the Prosecution?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have many other things which I
22 haven't yet told the Prosecutor.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I, for one, find this a very difficult
24 situation to deal with, Mr. Hannis. You're in the middle of the evidence
25 of the witness and what, on the face of it, needs to be done is for him to
1 be properly interviewed but we're past that stage.
2 MR. HANNIS: I understand, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: I think for the moment all I can do is leave you to
4 continue to examine the witness as you think appropriate. Bearing in mind
5 what is always going to be the approach of this Bench that uppermost in
6 the information we want to hear is what witnesses have actually seen for
8 MR. HANNIS: I understand, Your Honour.
9 Q. And in connection with that I want to ask a question,
10 Mr. Haxhibeqiri, about the two killings that you indicated you were -- you
11 had personally witnessed. Did you actually see the killings occur?
12 A. No, it was after a few hours that I went there.
13 Q. And you saw --
14 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: Sorry, if I may ask a question at this point.
15 Which two killings are being referred to? Because there was a reference
16 to two brothers, but there's also an Ali Beqe Rama and Florenc Sulejmani.
17 Which two killings specifically are being referred to? Could the Trial
18 Chamber please hear?
19 MR. HANNIS: I apologise, Your Honour, I may have gotten the
20 number wrong, but I meant whichever killings he had just told us he had
21 personally seen. I wanted to inquire whether of all of those he actually
22 witnessed the shooting.
23 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: [Microphone not activated].
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, we don't even know that they're shooting.
25 At the moment this examination is a mess, Mr. Hannis, and really
1 what I'm going to do is adjourn, I think, briefly to allow you to compose
2 yourself and think about how you're going to approach the rest of the
3 examination of this witness and hopefully some constructive approach that
4 will produce from him orderly information about what he saw can be
6 So we'll adjourn for 15 minutes until 10.00.
7 --- Recess taken at 9.43 a.m.
8 --- On resuming at 10.03 a.m.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Carry on please, Mr. Hannis.
10 MR. HANNIS: Thank you, Your Honour.
11 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, in connection with the a thousand interviews that
12 you indicated were conducted by yourself and a team, who were those
13 thousand people that were interviewed? Where were they from?
14 A. The team for the human rights centre, and six members were lawyers
15 who -- who worked in courts.
16 Q. And I'm sorry, my question referred to the interviewees, the
17 people that you talked to. Where were they from?
18 A. They were citizens who had suffered from the violence that was
19 exercised by those forces, and they were all from our municipality, with
20 the exception of one interviewee from Klina, the municipality of Peja, who
21 was a witness to the killing of about 100 people in the village Kralan of
22 Gjakova. The crime occurred in our commune, in our municipality, but I
23 conducted the interview in Klina, in his village. He managed to survive.
24 He had wounds in his body, he had three bullets in his body. And he
25 testified about his friends --
1 Q. And were those -- I'm sorry. Did you want to finish?
2 A. You --
3 Q. Those 1.000 interviews, were those the sources of your information
4 for reporting the incidents that are in your statement, other than the
5 specific things you told us that you personally witnessed?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. I heard your answer, but -- oh, thank you.
8 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, I have no more questions for this
10 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you, Mr. Hannis.
11 Mr. O'Sullivan.
12 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Your Honour, we'll proceed in this order:
13 Counsel for Lukic, Lazarevic, Pavkovic, Milutinovic, Sainovic, and
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
16 Mr. Lukic.
17 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
18 Cross-examination by Mr. Lukic:
19 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. My name is Branko
20 Lukic and together with Ivetic and Mr. Ogrizovic I appear on behalf of
21 General Lukic before this Tribunal. I wanted to go through your statement
22 the same way my colleague, my learned friend did to try and clarify some
24 Mr. Haxhibeqiri, what is your ethnicity?
25 A. Albanian.
1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Could the transcript reflect both
2 words the witness used to determine his ethnicity? The witness said he
3 was Albanian and Siptar.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said "Albanian" in Serbo-Croat.
5 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Could you please repeat what you said in Albanian as regards your
8 JUDGE BONOMY: We are awaiting the English translation.
9 THE INTERPRETER: I didn't hear what he said.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I heard it. I'm surprised you didn't hear
12 THE INTERPRETER: We're switching between Serbian and English.
13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. I apologise, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. Because of this problem that
15 interpreters have since they have to switch back and forth between two
16 different channels. Could you please repeat your ethnicity once more in
18 A. Albanian.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Haxhibeqiri, in Albanian what is the word for
20 "Albanian"? What is the Albanian word for "I am Albanian"?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am Albanian.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
23 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Could the transcript reflect the
24 Albanian word uttered by the witness, since the English translation is
25 somewhat confusing. I can clarify further, but nevertheless we would like
1 to have the transcript reflect the exact word in Albanian.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, just give me a moment.
3 [Trial Chamber and legal officer confer]
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Anyway, the point -- the point that you're making,
5 Mr. Lukic, appears to be that the word being used by the witness to
6 describe his ethnicity is "Shqiptar." Is that correct?
7 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour. And the Prosecution alleged that
8 it's a derogatory term that Serbs used.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Indeed. But does that answer -- the fact that it's
10 now in the transcript satisfy you?
11 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah. Thank you. Well, carry on now.
13 MR. LUKIC: Thanks a lot.
14 [Interpretation] If I may have a moment, Your Honours.
15 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, I have in front of me your statement dated the
16 28th of August, 2001. This is P2235. Would you like to be able to see
17 that statement in front of you on the screen? You have the paper copy?
18 On page 2 of the B/C/S, paragraph 4; and page 2 in the English,
19 paragraph 4; page 2 in the Albanian, paragraph 3, there you mention the
20 last real census being carried out in 1981. Can you tell us why there was
21 no census carried out in Kosovo in 1991?
22 A. This question shouldn't be posed to me. I do not work in
23 statistics, and I'm not part of the body dealing with the census. You
24 know better that during that period you should have carried out that
25 census but you were dealing with other things.
1 Q. Is it correct, Mr. Haxhibeqiri, that that census was not carried
2 out in Kosovo because the Albanians of Kosovo boycotted it?
3 A. No. They never boycotted a census, the Albanians. This figure
4 here is internal, 120.000. You did not allow for the census to take place
5 because you feared that the Albanians would be in great -- far greater
6 numbers than the Serbs. You feared to conduct a census.
7 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, is your testimony here today that Serbia did not
8 make it possible for the Albanians to participate in the census in 1991,
9 which is something Serbia had certainly done throughout its territory?
10 A. But they didn't do it in Kosova. Officially there is no other
11 statistics recognised other than the ones going back to 1981.
12 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, I would like you to comment on a fact and to say
13 whether it's true or not. In 1991 census was carried out throughout the
14 former Yugoslavia at the federal level, and therefore it wasn't carried
15 out only in Serbia. The only place for which there is no data is Kosovo.
16 Is that correct or incorrect in your view?
17 A. Accurate. It's true that in Kosova they did not conduct a census.
18 This fact should be known by these people, why the census was not
19 conducted there.
20 Q. My question to you is the following. In your view, did the
21 Yugoslav authorities try to conduct a census in the territory of Kosovo or
22 not? Did they want to do that?
23 A. I don't know, but I don't think it's of importance, this one. If
24 they wanted to do that, they could have done it.
25 Q. We'll move on to a different topic, since it is quite clear that
1 you do not wish to provide a clear answer to this.
2 In your statement -- in the B/C/S, page 2, paragraph 5; in the
3 English, page 2, paragraph 5 --
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Before you move on, are you intending to put to the
5 witness some specific information about the efforts that were made to
6 carry out the census? If your point is that there was a genuine effort to
7 make -- to carry this out and it was a boycott that prevented it. I mean,
8 that would be strange. It could at least count the people who weren't
10 Now, are you saying there was a genuine effort and that there is
11 some effort to show that?
12 MR. LUKIC: Your Honour, we'll probably bring a demographer in
13 front of this Chamber, so it will be solved at that time. And you will be
14 assured, and I'm sure that you would be assured, that all possible efforts
15 have been made for this census to be successful in Kosovo, as it was
16 successful in any other part of former Yugoslavia.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
18 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
19 Q. [Interpretation] To go back to your statement, sir. Page 2 in the
20 B/C/S, paragraph 5; page 2 in the English, paragraph 5; page 2 in the
21 Albanian, paragraph 4. There you state that as of 1998, the rights of
22 Albanians were systematically undermined. I want to put official data
23 before you pertaining to 1990. In Kosovo there were 22 scientific
24 establishment or facilities with over 1200 employees, among which 213
25 doctors and 160 masters of sciences, predominantly Albanians. Before the
1 Second World War, not a single Albanian in Kosovo and Metohija held a
2 scientific title --
3 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, may I inquire what the official data is
4 that counsel is asking this question from. Do we have a document?
5 MR. LUKIC: My intention is to ask the witness first and if he
6 says if he's aware of it or he doesn't know or he knows about it, we'll
7 see what his answer is. And I can give you the source from which we
8 collected this data, and it's the book -- maybe it's better for the
9 English translators to translate this title. It says:
10 [Interpretation] "Grabbing of Kosovo and Metohija" by Dragan
11 Milosavljevic, page 58.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I think the way the question was phrased was
13 you were putting official data, and Mr. Hannis's question is: What is the
14 official data document. And now you tell us it's a book.
15 MR. LUKIC: Probably from that book we collected it this night,
16 Your Honour. So probably from that book it's visible which source was
17 used during the writing of this book.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, does the book show the source?
19 MR. LUKIC: I can skip this question and come back to it.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: You know, this -- the whole conduct of this
21 examination is becoming more and more chaotic. It's extremely
22 disappointing to be sitting here in court listening to the way in which
23 this evidence is being presented. I've made that comment for the last
24 time today.
25 Please carry on, Mr. Lukic.
1 MR. LUKIC: I'm sorry that I took part in this chaos, but we'll
2 try to improve.
3 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Haxhibeqiri, on page 2 in the B/C/S,
4 paragraph 6; on page 2 of the English, paragraph 6; and on the second page
5 in the Albanian, paragraph 4.
6 MR. LUKIC: Give me one second, Your Honour.
7 Q. [Interpretation] You state the only way to retain your job was to
8 accept the conditions imposed by Serbia. Few Albanians could do this, and
9 they suffered the consequences. Could you please be more specific? What
10 conditions exactly were imposed by Serbia that the Albanians could not
12 A. I was going to answer to your previous question. You were talking
13 about some data. In the file the figures refer to 1998 --
14 JUDGE BONOMY: He has moved on to another question. If Mr. Lukic
15 wishes to return to that question, he will. Please deal with the one he
16 is now asking.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Once again, the question, please.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: The question is: What were the conditions imposed
19 by Serbia that Albanians found it difficult to accept, which meant that
20 they could not continue in their employment?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They wanted a statement of fidelity
22 to be signed by Albanians that they accepted Serbia as their own state.
23 And the Albanians -- the Albanians could not accept a state who destroyed
24 their parliament by tanks. We could not accept the Serbian state.
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Would you be so kind as to tell us what year that was?
2 A. Since 1988/1989 when the autonomy was quashed, when the Albanians,
3 as a result of the persecution, they were forced to leave Kosova. And
4 that's the Albanians.
5 Q. Is your testimony here that from 1988 and 1989 you no longer
6 consented to staying within Serbia?
7 A. -- boycotted that, yes. And I said although there was a
8 boycott -- in fact, you boycotted us.
9 Q. To backtrack a little, Mr. Haxhibeqiri, is it correct that the
10 boycott resulted in the Albanians refusing to be a part of the census in
12 A. The Albanians were not part of the census, and I'm not aware of a
13 census having taken place, and the reasons -- you know the reasons.
14 Q. I know what the reasons were, but I'm not the one testifying.
15 That's why I'm asking you.
16 A. Then why do you ask me? I'm not responsible. I only know that
17 there was no census in Kosova.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Can I ask you, please, about the relationship
19 between the declaration of fidelity and employment. What was the link
20 between the declaration of fidelity and whether or not you would keep your
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That meant that asked us whether we
23 recognised Serbia as a state and the violent organs of that state. Of
24 course the Albanians couldn't accept that; therefore, they failed to sign
25 the document. For this reason, they were dismissed from their jobs.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Who dismissed them? Their employers dismissed
2 them from their jobs?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, they dismissed all Albanians,
4 and they replaced them with Serbian personnel.
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 JUDGE BONOMY: And you also said that people who did not sign the
7 declaration could no longer remain within Serbia. Is that right?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no. They were dismissed from
9 the place of work I meant, and that job was taken by a Serb or a
11 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Was this -- was this dismissal en masse? Was this
12 dismissal en masse?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
15 Now we'll adjourn as normal until 10.00 -- sorry, until 11.00.
16 --- Recess taken at 10.32 a.m.
17 --- On resuming at 11.04 a.m.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Please continue, Mr. Lukic.
19 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
20 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Haxhibeqiri, in 1989/1990, in the early
21 1990s, did Serbs move into the Djakovica region en masse? Did something
22 like that happen?
23 A. No. I don't have any information to that effect. I have never
24 mentioned that.
25 Q. You say that Albanians were losing their jobs, large numbers of
1 Albanians were losing their jobs, and that there were only 2 per cent of
2 Serbs living in the municipality and that the Serbs replaced the
3 Albanians. Is it your testimony today that out of the 2 per cent of the
4 population all the people constituting 98 per cent of the population who
5 were dismissed were replaced by those 2 per cent?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Thank you, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. I think that speaks for itself. Your
8 statement, page 2 in B/C/S, paragraph 7; in the English, it's page 2,
9 paragraph 7; and the Albanian version, page 2, paragraph 5. You talk
10 about how the Albanians did not have access to education. Could you
11 please tell me whether anyone in Kosovo was rejected or not allowed to
12 enroll in school because they happened to be Albanian.
13 A. Which period are you talking about?
14 Q. Well, you can tell me about any period.
15 A. In 1990 when the schools were closed down, when tanks were lined
16 up in front of schools, when hundreds and thousands of Albanians were
17 sacked from their jobs, we set up a parallel system of education, as we
18 described it. We educated our kids in cellars, in mosques and churches,
19 in houses, outside the institutions.
20 Q. This is precisely what I wanted to ask you, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. Is
21 it true that the fact that Albanian children did not attend Serbian
22 schools was not a consequence of segregation by the Serbian state but of a
23 boycott by the Albanian population?
24 A. It was precisely due to segregation that that happened. You
25 closed down the schools for the Albanians. There were no benches for
1 Albanian children to sit, because when they went to school they saw tanks
2 in front of schools or they saw policemen at the entrance to the schools
3 or to the work-places. The only criterion to be persecuted, to be killed,
4 to be deprived of all rights was to be Albanian.
5 Q. We will get to other rights, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. I'm now asking you
6 about the schooling. You didn't respond. Was any Albanian child not
7 permitted to enroll in a state school because they were an Albanian boy or
9 A. I am saying that -- it's not a question of enrolment. I am saying
10 that you closed the schools to the Albanian children. You are making it
11 appear as if it was a paradise and that the Albanian children refused to
12 take part in it. This is absurd.
13 Q. When you say "you," are you thinking of us Canadians? I happen to
14 be Canadian.
15 A. Now I understand that you are Canadian. I am talking of the
16 current regime at the time.
17 Q. When you say "you," you are addressing me.
18 A. You are a synonym of Serbia because you are upholding its colours.
19 This is the way I see it --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Haxhibeqiri, let me explain something to you
21 about the system that operates here.
22 In the case of each of the accused, they're represented by
23 counsel. These men are each doing a professional job as lawyers. They
24 have no personal interest in the case. The people with a personal
25 interest are the six accused at the far side of the courtroom, and it's
1 wrong in that situation to direct comments of a personal nature towards
2 any of the counsel involved. And indeed, when they ask questions which
3 appear to be taking the side of the accused, they are simply doing the job
4 that they are paid to do.
5 I know that the system is not one with which you are familiar
6 because you come from a country where an entirely different system
7 operates. There's much debate about which is the better, but for good or
8 ill, the system that applies in this Tribunal is one which requires
9 questions of a particular nature, putting the case of the Defence to be
10 put to the witnesses. So please don't view the questions as being put to
11 you on a personal basis either, because we are all anxious to hear as much
12 as we can about your personal knowledge of circumstances that prevailed
13 approximate, particularly in late 1998 and the first half of 1999.
14 On this particular question of education, what's being asked of
15 you is a question that you feel can't be answered in a simple,
16 straightforward way because you're looking at a very big picture. But
17 counsel is asking you to address a particular small issue in relation to
18 that big picture, which is this: If you were Albanian and you wanted your
19 child to go to school, and that is a school provided by the state, would
20 you be able to do that, to take that child along and introduce the child
21 into that state school? Was that still possible after the changes that
22 you claim were made to the constitution?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I already explained that the schools
24 were closed. The tanks were deployed in front of schools. Schools were
25 not functioning at that time in Kosova. I am -- take the courage to speak
1 of Kosova, even though I'm here to speak only for my own municipality.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Does that mean that the children of Serbs living in
3 Gjakova were not able to go to school either?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They had their own schools. They
5 continued their lessons normally.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: And was there any reason why an Albanian child
7 could not go to one of these schools?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They were not allowed to continue
9 their education. They were driven out of schools. I already said, just
10 because they were Albanian.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: And until this happened, is it your evidence that
12 there were separate schools for Serb children and for Albanian children?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That is only one Serbian school in
14 our municipality, and in that school went both, Serb and Albanian
15 children, because this is a small town. It has a small number of Serbs
16 and Montenegrins. There were very few classes in Serbian languages
17 taught. There is only one school, primary school, by the name of Emin
18 Duraku. The same applies to the high school, or the gymnasium as we call
19 it. There were few Serb classes taught.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: And did each of the schools you've just mentioned
21 remain open?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes. I'm talking of Serbian
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic.
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
1 Q. In the same paragraph you say: "We organised a parallel
2 educational system for the Albanian children. This was not official."
3 Is it your testimony that all the Albanian children began to
4 attend these schools that you set up?
5 A. Yes.
6 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Hannis.
8 MR. HANNIS: That question was phrased to the witness: The
9 schools you set up, which I would read him personally. I assume based on
10 our conversation before he means Albanians set up.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: That's how I would read it, I think, but perhaps
12 Mr. Lukic would like to clarify.
13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
14 Q. In your statement that I am reading it states: "We set up a
15 parallel education system for Albanian children."
16 [In English] "We had set up a parallel education system for
17 Albanian children. This was not official."
18 So that's why I asked "you." Anyways --
19 [Interpretation] In any case, Mr. Haxhibeqiri, at the time when
20 all the children started to go to the schools organised by the Albanians
21 as a parallel educational system, was it normal that all the schools that
22 had been opened before that were closed because they no longer had any
23 pupils to attend these schools?
24 A. The situation was not normal because the state was not normal
25 either. They were called schools, as I said, but the lessons were given
1 in cellars, in religious facilities, wherever we could find a place.
2 Q. But it's a fact that the Albanian children did not go to school,
3 not because Serbian state or the SFRY state did not allow them to do that,
4 but because their parents did not permit them to attend those schools. It
5 was part of the Albanian boycott.
6 A. I already explained the reasons for the boycott. I said that a
7 state that closes down parliament through tanks, closes down schools, how
8 can people trust that state? You might call it a boycott, but when
9 children went to schools, or to this school, and found the tanks in front
10 of it, how could the children enter the school I may ask you?
11 Q. Could you please tell me the period when the tanks were in front
12 of the schools and how long they remained there? Could you please explain
13 this a little bit more, and which schools were these, if you know?
14 A. In front of all primary and high schools. And the period that the
15 tanks were there began in the 1990s. For ten years on end, Albanians
16 didn't have access to the school benches.
17 Q. So it is your testimony today that for ten years there was a tank
18 in front of each school?
19 A. No, no. I'm not saying that. That the beginning, the first year,
20 it was a signal for them not to go to those schools, to tell the Albanians
21 that: There is no education for you. And if some Albanian student or
22 pupil was caught with books on him or her, he or she was beaten and
23 arrested. And it was a very hard time indeed for those students.
24 Q. Did this happened in the late 1980s and early 1990s?
25 A. After the 1990s.
1 Q. So it was during the time that the Socialist Federal Republic of
2 Yugoslavia still existed?
3 A. After the abolition [realtime transcript read in error
4 "evolution"] of the autonomy of Kosova.
5 Q. So already as of 1989 then?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: I see the transcript says "evolution." It should
9 be in fact the revocation or -- I think -- well, perhaps in fact on this
10 occasion he said abolition, but it certainly wasn't evolution of the
11 autonomy of Kosovo.
12 MR. LUKIC: May I continue, Your Honour?
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, please.
14 MR. LUKIC: Thank you.
15 Q. [Interpretation] When we talked about the measures imposed by the
16 Serbian state on Albanians, there's a paragraph on -- in the Albanian
17 version page 2 --
18 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not get the paragraphs.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. -- You say that a small number of Albanians were able to -- I
21 apologise. I will start again with the pages because I see that it is
22 wrong in the transcript.
23 This is English version, page 2, paragraph 6; Albanian version,
24 page 2, paragraph 4; and the last sentence in that paragraph says, or you
25 say: "A small number of Albanians were able to accept the conditions
1 imposed by Serbia, and this is why they suffered the consequences."
2 What happened to these few Albanians who did accept to work in the
3 state organs?
4 A. You are talking about the sixth paragraph. In the health sector,
5 they didn't ask the employees to sign this statements of fidelity or
6 loyalty. The Serbs took only the leading positions --
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Hannis.
8 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, because of the difference in the way the
9 paragraphs break and the different translations, the question that
10 Mr. Lukic asked actually refers to I think what's numbered as paragraph 4
11 in the Albanian version.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: I have to confess that I do not understand how the
13 paragraphs can have different -- can be different in different languages.
14 MR. HANNIS: Because --
15 JUDGE BONOMY: That's a structure that is artificially imposed by
16 the writer on the document.
17 MR. HANNIS: Yes, Your Honour. And the different translators did
18 not put paragraph breaks in the same place, so an Albanian version may
19 have 100 paragraphs for the total story; the Serbian version may have 90;
20 and the English version may have 110.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, that disturbs me because translation should
22 be what it says it is. It should translate word for word what's written
23 and it should translate paragraph for paragraph what's written.
24 MR. HANNIS: It does -- I agree with you, but it didn't happen
25 that way. And sometimes it happens because the translations are done --
1 sometimes the word formatting is left justified, so there's no indentation
2 at the beginning of the paragraph, and at the bottom of the page the
3 sentence runs completely to the end, the top of the page starts left
4 justified and you don't know if it's a new paragraph or a continuation of
5 the paragraph from the preceding page.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: But it does mean that the paragraphs should have
7 the same numbers. I mean, I find that incomprehensible that it should be
8 paragraph 4 on this the first statement -- page of the witness's
9 statement, it should be paragraph 4 in Albanian and paragraph 6 in
11 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, if you looked at them side by side I
12 think you would see how it happens that way.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I shall look at them side by side. If they
14 can be brought up on e-court side by side, let's see why this happens.
15 We're looking at the first -- not the attestation. We want to see
16 the first material page of the statement that's headed with the
17 words "witness statement." It's not the page that's on the screen.
18 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, if it's easiest, I can hand you up hard
19 copies of the English and the Albanian. The first pages ERN in English
20 K0208732, Albanian K0216541, and you can see what happens. Paragraph 4 in
21 the Albanian is divided into two paragraphs in the English.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: You see -- can you explain, though, why that should
23 be? I just do not understand this, Mr. Hannis. It must be me, but it
24 seems to me basic common sense that if you have a paragraph in English you
25 have a paragraph in Albanian. For example, the second paragraph in
1 English is one line. What's the difficulty about providing that in
2 identical form in Albanian?
3 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, the Albanian -- that one line was run
4 together with the preceding paragraph to make one paragraph.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Why?
6 MR. HANNIS: I don't know, Your Honour. I was not the translator
7 or the interpreter.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Well, that's not going to take us
9 anywhere. But this is -- it just seems so ridiculous that a translation
10 doesn't replicate the paragraphs, and it makes me wonder if it's accurate.
11 Your immediate reaction to a situation like that is: Does this need to be
13 Anyway, I've now lost the thread of the questioning.
14 MR. LUKIC: I can repeat it, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I think the difficulty was you were going to
16 have to explain which paragraph to the witness.
17 MR. LUKIC: Yes. Again.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
19 MR. LUKIC: Okay. We are really trying to lessen the confusion,
20 but I don't know how helpful we can be with these kind of paragraphs. But
21 anyways, I was referring to a paragraph in B/C/S page 2, paragraph 6; in
22 English page 2, paragraph 6; and in Albanian page 2, paragraph 4, the last
24 [Interpretation] I asked the witness: What were the consequences
25 suffered by Albanians who, according to this witness, were few in number,
1 those Albanians who accepted the conditions imposed by the state of
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These Albanians, they were loyal
4 collaborators to the regime. They had their own association set up. They
5 were part of the parapolice structures. When the secretariat for internal
6 affairs was closed for the Albanians, the -- they had recruited these
7 committed people who, as I said, were very few in number. They were at
8 the service of the then-state. They were ignored by the Albanian majority
9 because they did not represent the will of the majority.
10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Was the fact that they were ignored the only consequence they
12 suffered? You were engaged in human rights work, so did you investigate
13 what happened to those people?
14 A. To be ignored by the whole society is not an easy thing.
15 Q. In your investigations connected to the protection of human
16 rights, did you come across situations where such people were killed
17 although they were Albanians, killed by other Albanians because they were
18 working for the state of Serbia?
19 A. On the contrary. They have been part of every crime within our
20 municipality. They have committed crimes.
21 Q. Is it your testimony today that --
22 A. There is evidence showing that they committed crimes.
23 Q. We'll come to that, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. Is it your testimony today
24 that in the course of your work, which consisted in investigating human
25 rights violations, you never came across an incident where an Albanian was
1 killed because he was working for the state of Serbia? Is that your
2 testimony today?
3 A. Can you please repeat the question once more. I did not
4 understand that well.
5 Q. Is it your testimony today that in the course of your
6 investigative work dealing with human rights violations you never
7 encountered a situation in which an Albanian was killed by other Albanians
8 because he was working for the state of Serbia? Mr. Haxhibeqiri, do you
9 find something amusing?
10 A. I haven't got any case registered in which an Albanian has killed
11 an Albanian because the belligerent part was not the Albanians, it was the
12 Serbs. The war that took place was between the Albanians and the Serbs,
13 not among the Albanians, if I understood your question correctly.
14 Q. Yes, you understood me correctly. Thank you for giving me this
15 information which shows the extent of your work and the work of your
17 JUDGE BONOMY: It's also important to remember that that was work
18 from 1995 onwards.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
20 Q. I would now like to move on to page 3 of the B/C/S version,
21 paragraph 4; page 3, paragraph 2 of the English version; and page 3,
22 paragraph 1 of the Albanian version. Here you again refer to Albanians
23 who agree to work for the state of Serbia. As far as I can see, you put
24 them very low down on the scale of human values. Is this correct?
25 A. Yes, because these creatures who loyally served the
1 then-system ...
2 Q. Since you have this kind of opinion about Albanians cooperating
3 with the Serbs, what is your opinion of the Serbs?
4 A. They were Albanians who were sold off and they were upholding the
5 colours of the Serbs against the Albanians.
6 Q. My question was: Is it correct that your opinion of the Serbs is
7 even worse than your opinion of Albanians collaborating with the Serbs?
8 A. I did not want to comment on that.
9 Q. I am afraid you'll have to, Mr. Haxhibeqiri, because that is my
10 question and you will have to answer it.
11 A. Look, when I talk about Serbs I talk about the regime there. I'm
12 not commenting about the Serbian people. I do not blame the Serbian
14 JUDGE CHOWHAN: I have a question, Mr. -- with the permission of
15 my Lord Bonomy.
16 Please tell me 25 -- you said about 25 persons or people were won
17 over or suborned by the regime, as you said. I mean, in what way? 25
18 per cent should be a good number. Can you please give us some
19 illustration or give us some facts how they were won over, a percentage,
20 and they were being pampered by, according to you, as you allege, the
21 others were discriminated. Could you please give us some illustration,
22 anything that -- which could show that they were being pampered, in what
23 way? Thank you very much, sir.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have never mentioned the figure of
25 25 per cent being pampered, as you say.
1 JUDGE CHOWHAN: I correct myself. Those who cooperated.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They formed an association of about
3 50 members, and I have deposited the list of their membership. It was 53
4 members in that association.
5 JUDGE CHOWHAN: So it means only 53 persons out of the whole
6 population cooperated and not the others?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct, only them.
8 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Thank you very much.
9 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, in the same paragraph you referred to people who
11 married a Serb woman, and they were Albanians. What is your opinion about
13 A. That's normal, but politics changed their role because then they
14 turned to be on the side of their partner and commit -- commit crimes
15 against their own population, like the case of Mushk Jakupi or Musa Ibraj.
16 They held the key to the life or death of each and every Albanian. In
17 order to recruit their own cousin, to bring it into the ranks of the
18 police force, him not agreeing, they killed him in their sitting room, and
19 that was in 1999. And they have been present at the scenes of crime
20 before the war, scenes of many crimes even before the war.
21 Also another cousin of theirs, Bajrami, he was arrested by the
22 same person, Ibraj, Muharrem Ibraj, and was executed in the prison of
24 Q. For the most part, Mr. Haxhibeqiri, we may conclude that every
25 Albanian who cooperated with the Serbs was a bad man or woman?
1 A. He was anatomized, good or bad ...
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Can I take you back to the previous answer about a
3 person called Mushk Jakupi. In your statement he's described as a double
4 Albanian murderer who was imprisoned. When was he in prison?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do not know the accurate date, but
6 he was a forest guard --
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Roughly when was he in prison?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The 1980s, I think.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: And --
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Not during the war.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: And why was he in prison?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Because -- because he had killed
13 someone. He had killed two people.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Now that --
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do not know these characters
16 personally, but this is what people say in town.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: These are -- these are two people, different
18 people, from the cousin that you say he murdered?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's father and son. Muharrem is
20 the son, and Musa is the father, 80 years old.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: And when did he kill them?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said I'm not sure, but it was
23 during the 1980s.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. But you then said that he killed a
25 cousin. Is that right?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was -- it was his son. It was
2 his son who committed the crime, Muharrem Ibraj.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: And the crime he committed was to kill a cousin?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And he killed -- he killed his
5 cousin only because he did not agree to join the local police force of the
7 JUDGE BONOMY: And this is an example of an Albanian killing an
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I wouldn't have said that it was an
10 Albanian from the position of an Albanian killing an Albanian. This man
11 was at the service of Serb politics.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, but he was born an Albanian. Is that
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
16 Now, Mr. Hannis, am I right in saying that there's no reference to
17 this event in the statement?
18 MR. HANNIS: [Microphone not activated].
19 Sorry. I'm looking at paragraph -- on page 3 --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
21 MR. HANNIS: -- of the English.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: And it's the third paragraph.
23 MR. HANNIS: And I see the reference to the double murderer, but I
24 don't see a reference to that particular killing you've just gone through.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
1 Mr. Lukic.
2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Well, if an Albanian did not kill another Albanian from the
4 position of an Albanian, from what position did he kill him?
5 JUDGE BONOMY: That question's already been answered --
6 MR. LUKIC: I withdraw this question. Thank you.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Please, let's move on.
8 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. In the next paragraph, B/C/S page 3, paragraph 5; English page 3,
10 paragraph 3; Albanian page 3, paragraph 2. You say: "These people that
11 the Serbs found were not the intellectuals. They used people as I've
13 Are you saying that in the institutions of Serbia there was no
14 Albanian intellectual who was working there in the 1990s?
15 A. They were at the service of the secretariat for internal affairs.
16 They were kind of part of a parapolice formation who were part of the
17 secretariat of interior, and that was just used by the regime to show that
18 even the police force has Albanians in it. And from 1993 onwards there
19 was not a single Albanian in the police force, with the exception of these
20 artificial creatures who formed this association in 1998/1999. They were
21 mainly coming from the villages, people who had problems, and in order to
22 keep hold of a weapon which they badly wanted to have -- or to have
23 monthly wages, because they were in need of that. So they were forced to
24 do that. They did not willingly do that, but in a way they were forced to
25 do it, using the temptation of the land ownership. But I must say that
1 not all of them served loyally to the regime.
2 Q. To the best of your knowledge, these artificial creatures, did
3 they exist in other municipalities as well or was this something that
4 happened in Djakovica only?
5 A. It's only in Gjakova, only in Gjakova.
6 Q. Now that you mention the police, is it your testimony that the
7 policemen working in Kosovo who are Albanians had to sign a loyalty oath?
8 A. I know that up until 1993 there were Albanians part of these
10 Q. Was it your testimony earlier on that Albanian policemen lost
11 their jobs because they did not sign a loyalty oath?
12 A. I did not talk about the policemen; I spoke about other
13 organisations. I did not mention the police.
14 Q. May we conclude that Albanians who were policemen did not have to
15 sign a loyalty oath but that they left the police under the pressure of
16 Albanian politicians and the Albanian community, which was boycotting the
17 state of Serbia?
18 A. Was that a question asked to me?
19 Q. I can repeat it, yes, if necessary.
20 I'll repeat my question. May we conclude that policemen who were
21 Albanians in Kosovo did not have to sign a loyalty oath in order to keep
22 their jobs?
23 A. I don't know this one.
24 Q. Are you aware that there was enormous pressure exerted on
25 policemen by the Albanian community and the Albanian politicians to leave
1 the police force of their own accord?
2 A. I don't know.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 A. I know that the head of the internal secretariat ended up in
5 prison for six years. I know this one. Sejfullah Sahatcijaj his name
7 Q. Why do you believe it to be important and what was his ethnicity?
8 A. Albanian. I said because up until 1993 there were Albanians who
9 were part of the police force.
10 Q. On page 3, paragraph 9 of the B/C/S; on page 3, paragraph 7 of the
11 English; as well as the third page, paragraph 6 of the Albanian, you
12 state: The police -- or, rather: "The MUP as of 1991 [as interpreted]
13 were brutally beating, arresting, and imprisoning Albanian citizens in
14 Djakovica. It got worse in 1998, the beatings increased, and almost
15 one-third of the citizens 'went through' the MUP offices."
16 Could we please correct the transcript. The first year is not
17 1991 but 1981. Therefore, the police or the MUP as of 1981 was brutally
18 beating, arresting, and imprisoning Albanian citizens. At that time it
19 was still the SFRY. Isn't that correct, Mr. Haxhibeqiri?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And at that time an Albanian was the head of MUP in Djakovica.
22 Isn't that correct?
23 A. Yes, up until 1993.
24 Q. At that time most of the policemen were Albanians. Isn't that
1 A. Yes, yes. Almost all.
2 Q. Thank you, Mr. Haxhibeqiri.
3 A. The reins of power were controlled by the Serbs; they were at the
4 service of Serbian politics. They were operating on the basis of a
6 [Defence counsel confer]
7 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. At that time, Mr. Haxhi Hasani was president of state. It was
9 Sinan Hasani, I'm sorry, I apologise, and he was Albanian. Isn't that
11 A. Yes. An Albanian who no longer lives in Kosova. He was one of
12 the loyals of the regime. That's how he managed to go up to that position
13 which he was holding then.
14 Q. He was loyal to the former SFRY or to Serbia?
15 A. SFRY.
16 Q. On page 4 of the B/C/S, paragraph 2; on page 4 of the English,
17 paragraph 1; as well as page 3 of the Albanian, the last paragraph that
18 spills over on to page 4 you state: "We know of two or three people who
19 died as a consequence of torture, one of them was from the village of
20 Pacaj, his name was Halit Zeqe."
21 Zeqe was probably his father's name. "Alia" --
22 A. Zeqe Alia.
23 Q. "He was 48 years old and was killed on the 16th of January, 1999.
24 The other one was from the village of Zhdrell, his name was Mark Malota.
25 He was 44 years old and was killed on the 26th of March, 1999."
1 Where do you state that Mark Malota was killed on the 26th of
2 March, 1999?
3 A. On the 25th of March in the courtyard of the house of Nazim
4 Karpuska, together with Nazim and Shanin Gojani, while they were
5 distributing aid brought by Mother Teresa association, they were arrested
6 by the MUP. They were cruelly treated during the whole day until Shanin
7 was released first. In the evening, Nazim Kapuska was also released, and
8 he recounted the hell he went through during the hours he was detained in
9 the secretariat building. He could hardly move when he left that
10 building. He was licking his own blood, walking -- hardly walking. He
11 found shelter from one house to another. The forces went to search him
12 because they didn't want to kill him within the building of the MUP. When
13 they went outside, Nazim through his kinsfolk managed to escape. The
14 police followed him. They searched him, asking him where he went.
15 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: Might I interject at this point. The correct
16 reference in the English translation is actually page 3, the last
17 paragraph, and not as stated in the record at page 4.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Haxhibeqiri, did you say that the police
19 followed him and then they searched for him?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, they searched for him in those
21 houses where he went, but this person knew the terrain. He knew that the
22 forces would be after him. They released him on purpose in order to kill
23 him outside the building.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: And what happened to him?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He was healed, but Mark never came
1 out alive from that building. His body was found the next morning.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: There's a word missing in the transcript. What do
3 you say happened to Nazim?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Nazim managed to escape, and he is
5 alive to this day, and he is an advisor to the mayor of Gjakova
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the meantime, Halit Zeqe Alia was
9 arrested in the town by the MUP police on 16th January, 1999. It was
10 midday, if I am not mistaken. These bodies invited the doctor of the town
11 clinic at 5.00 to certify the death. The doctor was my friend, Pleurat
12 Hadri, who came immediately to me and told me that Halit was brought dead
13 and his body is bruised all over and he is still hot, which meant that
14 they had killed him within the building of the secretariat for internal
15 affairs. The doctor was invited to go to the secretariat building
16 immediately. He went there. He certified that the person was dead. They
17 had threatened him, telling him: Bring him back to life. But the doctor
18 told them that the emergency ambulance doesn't have any equipment for him
19 to help the person; therefore, they should send him to the central
20 hospital. And there they all certified the death and he was sent to the
22 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Can you tell us how you came to know of this incident?
24 A. I told you that the doctor is a very close friend of mine. He
25 came up to me immediately, and -- after that and told me about everything.
1 Q. As regards the death of Halit Alia and Mark Malota, how did you
2 learn about that?
3 A. The witness who saw him in front of his door killed with a bullet
4 in his head, they -- he told me when they came out in the morning they
5 found the dead body in front of the door in one of the city's
6 neighbourhoods. Mark is from Zhdrell village and he was staying at Nazim
7 Kapuska's house when he was arrested because in his courtyard the Mother
8 Teresa association had its headquarters.
9 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Before you move on, I am now completely confused
11 and need to have clarification. Have I wrongly understood Mark Malota to
12 have never emerged from the police office?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said he was found dead.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Is it to him you refer when you say "they found the
15 dead body in front of the door in one of the city's neighbourhoods"? Is
16 that the person --
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am talking of Mark Malota. He was
18 deputy chairman of the municipality.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, just a little --
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Of the party for democratic league.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, a little earlier when you were telling us
22 about him and Nazim Kapuska you told us that Nazim escaped but that Mark
23 Malota did not come out of the police office alive.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, he wasn't alive -- he didn't
25 come out alive. He was found dead the next day.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
2 Yes, Mr. Lukic.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, did you know that on the 26th of March, 1999, in
5 an air-raid carried out by NATO planes next to the Devet Jugovice
6 barracks, Mark Malota was killed as well as Marina Shpeltin [phoen], Vula
7 Hajdar [phoen] and Vula Mahkmut [phoen], and all this you were saying to
8 us is incorrect. What you said about Mark Malota, that is untrue. An
9 onsite investigation was carried out, there are photographs in existence,
10 and we will seek to admit those before this Tribunal and the type of
11 injuries was established as well.
12 A. What you said, they were killed on the 27th of March in
13 Blloku i Ri neighbourhood, the persons you mentioned by name, by the last
14 name of Vula, not in the vicinity of the barracks that you've mentioned.
15 Q. The onsite investigation was carried out by a local magistrate in
16 Djakovica by the name of Cindrag Kemal [phoen], an investigative judge.
17 What was his nationality or ethnicity?
18 JUDGE BONOMY: It's not for you, Mr. Haxhibeqiri, to ask
19 questions. You should answer the questions that are put to you.
20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Can you tell us what was Cindrag Kemal's ethnicity?
22 A. Who is this person? I have never heard of him.
23 Q. He was the then-investigative judge with the local court in
25 A. Not a single institution existed in Gjakova. How can you ask me
1 when I was in hiding? I was hiding in a pot-hole by the size of 140 to
2 120 for four days. I don't know what happened in the city. What trial
3 are you talking about? There was no trial in place at the time.
4 Q. I did not state that there was a trial, but there was an onsite
5 investigation carried out by an investigative judge when the four people
6 were killed during a NATO air-raid.
7 A. Can you please mention their names again. You said during the
9 Q. On the 26th of March, 1999, during an air-raid by NATO planes --
10 A. To be precise, on the 27th. I was in that neighbourhood. At 5.00
11 in the morning, a punitive expedition arrived. At 12.00, auto -- cars and
12 Pinzgauers arrived and at 5.00 they torched more than ten houses. This
13 happened on the 27th of March, and 11 persons were arrested, seven persons
14 were killed. Among them are the names that you mentioned --
15 THE INTERPRETER: Would the speakers please not overlap.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was not -- in this case, I was not
17 in the pot-hole. I saw everything from the window.
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. You stated that as a reply to my question which wasn't recorded in
20 the transcript. A moment ago you said you were in a pot-hole hiding and
21 that you couldn't see anything and you asked me why I was asking these
22 questions. And now you're trying to explain that you were not in that
23 pot-hole and that you actually saw it all. What is correct of these
24 two --
25 A. For two hours I stayed in that hole, in that pot-hole, and we were
1 eight persons hiding there in that small hole when killings and the
2 torches started.
3 After two hours, when the hunting ended, we came out of that hole
4 and saw the burning houses, and we learned about the persons who were
5 arrested and the dead.
6 Q. I apologise. I can't compare the versions now, but in your
7 statement and in today's transcript you stated that you spent four days in
8 that hole instead of only two hours. Three minutes ago you said you spent
9 four days in that hole. Now you're stating it was two hours. Which of
10 the two is correct? You must tell me.
11 A. During the time that the crimes were committed, I stayed there
12 for -- we stayed there for two hours. Then after that I went back to
13 the -- in the following days to the pot-hole. As of the 2nd of April
14 until the 4th of April, I remained in that pot-hole.
15 Q. You didn't mention that in your statement and you didn't mention
16 that on the 51st page of the transcript. You have changed your story now.
17 Now you are stating it differently, Mr. Haxhibeqiri.
18 A. I stated earlier that I have so much stuff to tell you that even
19 100 pages wouldn't be enough to recount them. Sure, you'll see a book of
20 600 pages where you'll see facts about everything that I'm saying. You
21 have killed the persons yourself --
22 Q. So you were alone in that hole. Now you said: "There were eight
23 of us," and you can tell me when. When were you alone and when were you
24 with another eight people?
25 A. On the 27th of March, in the morning of that day, I was there
1 along with eight persons. We were altogether eight persons.
2 On the 2nd of April, when they had driven out almost 30.000 people
3 from that neighbourhood, I remained in that pot-hole because I was afraid
4 to come out and cross the border, because being an activist at that time I
5 was afraid that my name would be black-listed. So this is the reason why
6 I remained there hidden.
7 Q. Is it still your testimony that Mark Malota was not killed during
8 an air-raid by NATO planes but rather that he was killed in the building
9 of the secretariat for internal affairs in Djakovica?
10 A. Can you please repeat the beginning of your question?
11 Q. Is it your testimony today that Mark Malota was not killed during
12 a NATO air-raid, that he was not killed by a NATO bomb, but rather that he
13 was killed inside the SUP building in Djakovica?
14 A. NATO didn't fire with bullets. He was found dead with a bullet in
15 his head. And in our city only -- we had only one victim inflicted as a
16 result of NATO bombings. He was dead because of the NATO air-strikes, and
17 his last name is Gjoshi.
18 Q. Can you tell us where you received such information that he was
19 killed by bullets and not by bombs? What is the source of your
21 A. He was found dead with a bullet in his head.
22 Q. What is the source of your information?
23 A. When the bodies were exhumated by the ICTY, none of them was found
24 to be dead as a result of NATO bombing.
25 Q. Does it mean that this Tribunal forwarded exhumation data to you?
1 I'm really interested to know where you received that information from.
2 A. I was there present during exhumation process.
3 Q. But you must have been told by someone. You are not an expert to
4 be able to determine how someone was killed.
5 A. They provided me with a list of the exhumed persons. I have also
6 the names of the persons who were killed -- I mean, even with what weapons
7 they were killed.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Haxhibeqiri, are you saying that the first
9 information you received that Malota was shot through the head came from
10 the Prosecution?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Which Prosecution, sir?
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Are you saying that the first time you learned that
13 Malota had been shot was as the result of information from the Prosecution
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no --
16 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, can I -- can you refer me to the
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I'm saying that I learned of
19 his death on the very day that his body was found, because my house is
20 very -- within short distance from that place.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, just hold on.
22 The reason for me asking this, Mr. Hannis is the answer: When the
23 bodies were exhumed by the ICTY, none of them as found to be dead as a
24 result of NATO bombing." And that's a direct answer to the question:
25 What is the source of your information? And I'm asking if the first he
1 heard that Malota was shot through the head was information from this
3 Now, is that the first time you learned that he had been shot.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no, no, I went to the -- I went
5 to the place -- to the scene of the crime.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: And what did you see there?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was looking -- I didn't go exactly
8 there, but I was a side-looker, onsite-looker, and then I was waiting for
9 the findings of the ICTY.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: But what did you see at the scene of Malota's
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I didn't see anything there.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: So I ask you again: Was the first time you learned
14 that he had been shot when this Tribunal told you?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, when --
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The person who saw him with his own
18 eyes told me.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Who was that person?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] His last name is Lleshi. He was --
21 the body was found before the door of this person's house. His last name
22 is Lleshi. He lives near Ura e Tobakeve.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
24 Now, Mr. Lukic, you referred to having material which was compiled
25 in a -- an onsite investigation, and you referred to photographs --
1 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour, but it's not translated yet.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: And if you've got a photograph of a body that shows
3 it doesn't have a bullet in the head --
4 MR. LUKIC: I've just been informed, Your Honour, that it might be
5 in the system, because the other team was more diligent than us.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: It would be helpful if there's something to show
7 the identity of this person and any evidence of his death that could be
8 put to the witness if you wish to contradict his account --
9 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: -- on that basis.
11 And we'll now adjourn and resume at 2.00.
12 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.33 p.m.
13 --- On resuming at 2.10 p.m.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic.
15 MR. LUKIC: Your Honour, I --
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, Mr. Haxhibeqiri.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Before we start, I'd like some
18 clarification, Your Honours and Mr. Lukic, about the character we were
19 talking about. It's true, as Mr. Lukic was saying, there was no bullet.
20 When I went during the break, I was reminded. So I do apologise. It's
21 the -- another character, Urim Rexha, who was killed on the same date. He
22 was shot in the head, and during the exhumation he was found that he was
23 shot -- it was found that he was shot. And there was a confusion of
24 persons. He was the founder of the LDK in the region, Urim Rexha. He was
25 shot in his own home; whereas Mark Malota, he was found but without
1 bullets in his body.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you for that clarification. Just one
3 question arising from it. Do you have any information about the cause of
4 his death?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I -- I only know that nobody
6 saw him.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, are you also saying then that the information
8 you gave about where he was found is wrong?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no. Everything else is --
10 everything else is accurate, but for the detail that the bullet was in
11 somebody else's head.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
13 Mr. Lukic.
14 MR. LUKIC: Your Honour, since this witness has no knowledge about
15 the death of Mr. Malota, I wouldn't pursue this issue any further.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, that's a matter for you, Mr. Lukic.
17 MR. LUKIC: He explained that -- what he said before and he
18 explained what he thinks now and we think that it's self-explanatory.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
20 MR. LUKIC: No need for us to waste time.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Okay.
22 MR. LUKIC: May I proceed, Your Honour?
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
24 MR. LUKIC: Thank you.
25 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Haxhibeqiri, in your statement, page 4 of the
1 B/C/S version, paragraph 2; and page 4, paragraph 1 in English; page 3 in
2 Albanian, the last paragraph, and the first paragraph on page 4. After we
3 mentioned these people, you say with reference to Novak Pitulic, Momcilo
4 Stanojevic, and the existence of the local Crisis Staff, and you also
5 mention the name of Dragutin Prentic, a journalist, you say that Momcilo
6 Stanojevic was the author of many of the crimes that were committed around
7 town. Could you please clarify the role of this Crisis Staff, please.
8 A. He was the head of the municipality then, and of course he was a
9 collaborator, a -- the most committed collaborator at the time. In my
10 opinion, he was the architect of many crimes carried out in town. He was
11 assisted of course by some others like Dragutin Prentic, a journalist with
12 Jedinstvo newspaper, who has been seen -- was seen in Meja recording
13 crimes there. And many witnesses testified that they have seen him in
14 Meja filming.
15 Q. Excuse me, Mr. Haxhibeqiri, what I'd like to know is what kind of
16 powers and competences this Crisis Staff had, whether it controlled life
17 in the town; and if so, in what way.
18 A. The powers of the Crisis Staff should be known by those who
19 founded it.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Haxhibeqiri, we don't know the powers of the
21 Crisis Staff. The only way we can obtain information as Judges to make a
22 decision in this case is from the answers given by witnesses to the
23 questions that are posed. So please answer the question that counsel has
24 asked you.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I -- I have a document with me at
1 the hotel which explains what I have said here on the statement. On the
2 31st of April of 1999, he was elected as the chairman of the Crisis Staff,
3 and it's Momcilo Stanojevic. I can only bring here a list of the persons
4 who at the time have been operating in Gjakova and the decisions that they
5 have taken. The document that I have has been signed by General Milos
6 Djokan [as interpreted]. There you can find the names of all those who
7 organised life in the municipality during the war, and they are the
8 members of the Crisis Staff.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Could you give again the name of the general you
10 say signed the document.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Milos Djosan.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: And can you now answer the question that was
13 actually asked of you or tell me that you are not in a position to, one or
14 the other. You were asked what were the powers of the Crisis Staff? In
15 other words, what did it do? Can you answer that question?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The document will explain
17 everything, and I can bring that document to you. And it's written in the
18 original Serbo-Croat language.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: What's your position on that, Mr. Lukic?
20 MR. LUKIC: Presently we don't have any before we see the
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, do you -- no, no --
23 MR. LUKIC: But I can proceed.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Do you want the document to be brought here?
25 MR. LUKIC: We have nothing against to see the document. Why not?
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Okay.
2 MR. LUKIC: But I could -- if I may, Your Honour. I might ask two
3 or more --
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
5 MR. LUKIC: One or two more questions.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
7 MR. LUKIC: Thanks.
8 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Haxhibeqiri, in your view de facto could this
9 Crisis Staff command units of the police or the army?
10 A. Yes, of course.
11 Q. In your view, were they in control? Did they have control over
12 the police and over Djakovica municipality?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Thank you, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. We'll move on to the next part of
15 your statement.
16 Let's now move on to page 5, paragraph 5 in B/C/S; page 5,
17 paragraph 4 in English; and page 5, paragraph 2 in Albanian. You say that
18 before shelling the police and the army would go to the villages looking
19 for the KLA. They asked villagers if they had seen the KLA. They would
20 accuse the whole village of supporting the KLA. They constantly told the
21 people: Go to Albania, otherwise we will kill and burn you all. Then
22 these mixed forces would burn or shell the villages, forcing the people
23 from their houses. This continued during the NATO bombing. What you
24 state here refers to the period before the NATO bombing, is that correct,
25 and then it continues during the NATO bombing.
1 A. That's correct. Not only during the 78-day period of the bombing,
2 but also from March and April 1998 villages were being shelled, they were
3 burned, people were forced out of their homes, and this -- there have been
4 cases when they went back to their homes but they were forced to leave
5 again. Their homes were burned. So during that period, there was a
6 large-scale migration of the population. And during that period the
7 violence against the population has only -- only intensified during the
8 October 1998, after the Holbrooke-Milosevic agreement and only after the
9 OSCE mission to Kosova went on the ground. This violence increased to a
10 larger scale. I have recorded more than 50 villages which were destroyed
11 and burned, partially or completely. And this is for the period that I'm
12 talking about. And there are 160 people killed, of which -- of whom I
13 have all the names.
14 Q. Did I understand you correctly that the situation was the worst
15 while the verification mission was there?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. So the verifiers who were on the ground could confirm what you
18 say? Did you report the incidents that took place on the ground to them?
19 A. Of course, continuously. For every crime that took place, they
20 were informed. We've jointly gone out on the ground and we've recorded
21 all the cases of violence.
22 Q. Did representatives of the state go out on the ground together
23 with the verifiers?
24 A. Of which state you are talking about?
25 Q. The state of Serbia and Yugoslavia.
1 THE INTERPRETER: I didn't hear the answer.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know if they tried.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. I'm asking you whether representatives of the state went out on to
5 the ground together with you and with the verifiers?
6 A. When I was out there, I was there only with members of the OSCE
7 mission and nobody else. Of course the OSCE mission was escorted. They
8 couldn't go there on their own.
9 Q. And who was it that escorted them, Mr. Haxhibeqiri?
10 A. When I was there, I didn't see anyone.
11 Q. Very well. Thank you. On page 5, paragraph 6 of the B/C/S
12 version; and page 5, paragraph 5 of the English version; and page 5,
13 paragraph 3 of the Albanian version you talk about the burning down of
14 villages, shelling. And you also mention which parts; south-west of town,
15 Dushkaja, Mahalla, a group of villages north-east of Djakovica. You are in
16 fact speaking about the period when there were intense fights between the
17 KLA, the Army of Yugoslavia and the MUP. Is that correct?
18 A. Are you talking about fighting between the Yugoslav army and MUP?
19 Is there a mistake there?
20 Q. On one side and then the KLA on the other.
21 A. These villages were shelled from the hill of Cabrat, which is near
22 Gjakova. That's the hill of the chestnut trees in Decan and the hill of
23 Pllanik, every day in the name of -- allegedly, of the war against the
24 KLA. Every day and every night it -- shells were coming on those -- on
25 those villages. The citizens were forced to leave their homes and take
1 shelter in Gjakova, in the town of Gjakova.
2 Q. Let me ask you if you know in these villages that you mentioned if
3 there were any KLA forces there?
4 A. I didn't see them.
5 Q. Did you go out into the field in those villages at that time?
6 A. Yes, yes.
7 MR. LUKIC: Your Honour.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes. I wonder if that's a complete answer,
9 Mr. Haxhibeqiri. The question is whether you had any knowledge of the
10 presence of any forces, any of the KLA forces in any of the villages. And
11 your statement indicates there are a large number, 85 villages. Now, did
12 you not have any knowledge of any KLA forces in that area at all?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They stayed in the peri-urban area.
14 Nobody saw them, but I suppose there were.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
16 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Do you know that at that time policemen and soldiers were getting
18 killed, members of the Army of Yugoslavia and MUP of Serbia?
19 A. No. No, because we didn't have any information on -- as an
20 organisation I'm saying, on the murder or killing of the Serbs. They
21 were -- they did not allow us to have information.
22 Q. Is there a village called Shishman Boges in the municipality of
23 Djakovica? And I apologise if I mispronounce the name.
24 A. Yes, yes.
25 Q. Do you know that on the 30th of March, 1999 members of the KLA
1 carried out an attack against members of the police and Radovan Jorgin
2 [phoen] was killed and Ermin Bogucanin was seriously wounded in that
3 attack. The last one is a Muslim as well as a person called Zoran
4 Mosorinski. Are you aware of this incident?
5 A. No, no, no. This is the first time for me to hear that.
6 Q. Do you know that on the 1st of April, 1999, members of the KLA
7 carried out an attack at Misko Rajevic, member of the reserve police
9 A. No.
10 Q. Are you aware that in the village of Zdrelo in Djakovica on the
11 night between the 1st and 2nd of April, 1999, members of the KLA carried
12 out an armed attack on the house of Lushaj Tome, an Albanian from the
13 village of Zdrelo?
14 A. No. I know that in the midnight of the 1st and 2nd April of 1999
15 about 100 people got killed; or, to be more precise, 80-some, I can't
16 remember. Just a moment, maybe it will come to my mind. 75 persons,
17 Albanians, they were civilians. They were killed. Of them, 11 were
18 children. The remainder were old men and women, young women.
19 Q. Do you know that the municipality of Djakovica, after the 24th of
20 March, 1999, was constantly in a state of war being conducted between the
21 KLA and the Yugoslav forces and that it was also being bombed by NATO at
22 that same time?
23 A. The NATO was bombarding the military bases deployed in Cabrat hill
24 and Emin Duraku barracks, situated south of Gjakova town.
25 Q. How many times were those targets hit; do you know?
1 A. Many -- countless times, until they were destroyed.
2 Q. Do you know that Djakovica was bombed 265 times in the course of
3 the war?
4 A. But the bombs -- I think the merit for the bombs goes to you,
5 because it was you who brought them and you were in a position to stop
6 them and you did that. When the time came, you signed the Kumanova
7 Agreement; a military-political agreement that was. You allowed them
8 yourselves. I think the merit goes to you for that.
9 Q. I'm sorry if you think that I have any contribution or any part in
10 that bombing, but since I cannot testify from here I will continue to ask
12 A. I want to apologise to you, to address you, but by "you" I mean
13 all this side as -- which for me is an opponent side. But by this I mean
14 mostly the accused who stand behind you.
15 Q. Do you know how intense was the fighting between the KLA and the
16 Serbian forces during the period of the bombing?
17 A. Yes. The fighting lasted from 7 to the 11th of April. After that
18 date, there was no more fighting.
19 Q. In your opinion, was the KLA a strong force?
20 A. No.
21 Q. Was the KLA a well-organised force?
22 A. No, it was not.
23 Q. Did they look like an army at all?
24 A. Initially, no, but later on yes, it assumed the form of an army.
25 Because it was spontaneously formed.
1 Q. And when does this period begin, this later time?
2 A. In the middle of 1998 and afterwards.
3 Q. Did members of the KLA wear uniforms?
4 A. Initially no, but later on yes.
5 Q. Could you please explain to us again when was it, this later, when
6 they began to wear uniforms.
7 A. When they became more widespread. It was the second half of 1998,
8 if I am not wrong. Because I was not there on the ground to see them, but
9 from the documentaries we watched I came to the conclusion that this was
10 how it happened. It was that when they got uniforms.
11 Q. Do you have information that they were armed people moving around
12 but without uniforms?
13 A. No.
14 Q. They did not move around? There were no such people or you don't
15 know about that?
16 A. I don't know.
17 Q. So all your knowledge about the KLA, and this is your testimony
18 today, comes from documentaries, documentary films?
19 A. Yes, that I saw after the war.
20 Q. Did you carry out any investigations relating to the KLA?
21 A. Investigation into what?
22 Q. Regarding violations of human rights committed by members of the
24 A. What violations are you talking about?
25 Q. You never heard that members of the KLA committed any violations
1 of human rights?
2 A. You killed the Albanians. You have violated human rights.
3 Q. Is it your testimony, just to finish with this topic today, that
4 you never heard of any human rights violations or crimes committed by the
6 A. I don't know of any such violations. I haven't seen any.
7 Q. Thank you. Thank you. We'll continue. If there is any need to
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, Mr. Lukic --
10 MR. LUKIC: I withdraw this comment.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: That's the second time -- I refrained previously
12 when you made a comment and -- from interrupting. Please restrain
13 yourself to asking questions.
14 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour. Bear with me, Your Honour,
15 just one second.
16 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Haxhibeqiri, would you kindly tell us what
17 the ethnic composition is of the organisation that you are chairman of,
18 the one that investigated violations of human rights.
19 A. All of them were Albanians.
20 Q. Who paid your salaries, Mr. Haxhibeqiri?
21 A. We worked on a voluntary basis. We were not paid for that. Only
22 the rent for the office was paid by the centre. Rent, that is.
23 Q. Did you earn a living in some other way from 1995 until the end of
25 A. Yes, yes. I worked in a shop owned by the Agimi Organisation, but
1 it was burned. And after the war I continued to work for the same
2 organisation but now for payment.
3 Q. Could you please explain to us the organisation that you were a
4 chairman of for a certain amount of time. What exactly did you do in your
5 investigations that you carried out? What did they consist of?
6 A. We conducted the investigations after the war. The organisation,
7 the ICG group came to the town of Gjakova and they engaged me with my
8 people to work for them for five months to collect data on the crimes
9 committed in our municipality.
10 Q. Did they indicate to you which evidence you were to gather during
11 the five months that you worked for them?
12 A. Yes. They gave us a questionnaire prepared by them - I may show
13 you copies if you want - with the questions which we were supposed to ask.
14 Q. And the ICG never told you to go and investigate human rights
15 violations committed by members of the KLA?
16 A. We never discussed violations of -- violations committed by KLA
17 because none of the dead persons whose files we have in our office have
18 been committed by the KLA; they've all been committed by the Serb
19 soldiers, militaries, and paramilitaries aided by the local Serbs because
20 they knew the persons, that is, the victims.
21 Q. Thank you, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. The next question I would like to
22 clarify with you relates to the part of your statement on page 7,
23 paragraph 4 of the B/C/S version; page 6, the last paragraph, the ninth
24 paragraph, of the English version; and page 6, last paragraph of the
25 Albanian version. You say that the son of Mushk Jakupi came and -- to the
1 house where you took shelter in Blloku i Ri, that two policemen came in a
2 blue vehicle, and that one of them was Mushk Jakupi, and that they told
3 you: Leave the house within five minutes. If you do not go, we will
4 throw a hand-grenade. Just for the record, what is Mushk Jakupi by
6 A. Mushk is a pet name. His name is Musa Ibraj. He is an Albanian,
7 but he was recruited as a local police. He was a loyal policeman, as we
8 described him.
9 Q. He threatened everybody in the house that he would send them off
10 to Albania. Is that correct?
11 A. Yes. He and another policeman dressed in blue, light blue
12 uniforms, because the uniforms were different. They came in and banged
13 the door open and told us to leave in five minutes, otherwise: You will
14 be dead. We will throw bombs. The bus is waiting for you at the church.
15 All of you should -- must go to Albania. That -- those were their words.
16 And during the day the entire neighbourhood of Blloku i Ri, which numbers
17 about 30.000 inhabitants, had to be emptied.
18 Q. Thus, an Albanian is expelling an Albanian to Albania. Is that
19 your testimony?
20 A. I saw that along with him there was another policeman dressed in a
21 light blue uniform.
22 Q. Was that the local police that was under the control of the Crisis
24 A. I don't know whether he was under anyone's control. Other people
25 know that.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: When you mentioned these light blue uniforms you
2 say they were different. Different from what?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The regular police used to wear dark
4 blue uniforms; whereas those local police, as we saw them, wore a kind of
5 olive-green-to-brownish colour.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, the earlier --
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was very different from the
8 regular police uniform in colour.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: I can understand if it's olive-green or brown it
10 would be, but the initial answer that's been recorded here was that he and
11 another policeman dressed in blue, light blue uniforms, because the
12 uniforms were different. Is that inaccurate, the --
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] One of them, yes, he was wearing a
14 blue uniform, but not the other.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: And what was the light blue uniform a uniform of?
16 Was that the regular Serb police or was it something else?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I know even the policeman in person.
18 His name was Avramovic. I think his last name was Avramovic. He used to
19 work in the MUP where we registered the car and got the license plates.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: So he was wearing a regular police uniform. Is
21 that right?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He wore a police uniform. All of
23 them were -- most of them, to be accurate, were recruited, that is the
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic.
1 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour. Thank you.
2 Q. [Interpretation] The next paragraph -- actually, just one second.
3 Page 7, paragraph 6 of the B/C/S version; page 7, paragraph 2 of
4 the English version; 7 -- page 7, paragraph 2 of the Albanian version.
5 That paragraph is just one line in my copy, and it says that four days
6 after -- four days after the time that you were hiding you returned to
7 your house and you stayed until the war was over.
8 A. Yes. After four days of staying in that manhole, I returned home.
9 Q. Did you leave the house?
10 A. In the evening I left the house when firing stopped. After 9.00
11 or 10.00 in the evening, I left the house, taking great care and hiding
13 Q. People knew that you were in the house?
14 A. Which people do you mean?
15 Q. Let's say your neighbours.
16 A. I already stated here that the 30.000 inhabitants of that
17 neighbourhood were driven away. Only the houses who were there which were
18 taken over -- I mean in which lived the Serbs.
19 Q. It means that your neighbours were Serbs and they knew you were
21 A. If they knew, I wouldn't be here today. They came there every day
22 during my stay in the manhole. They came and looted the houses. It was
23 the house of Gani Efendiu, whose family was displaced. And behind his
24 house I was there in that manhole, as I told you, and the Serb forces came
25 there every day and they looted the assets of those houses in lorries.
1 They looted the houses of all Albanians in that area. Where I was, near
2 that place was the doctor's clinic. He had all the equipment there, and I
3 saw them taking out all his equipment. All the appliances he had there,
4 they took them away.
5 Q. The authorities, too, knew you were at that house. Isn't that
7 A. What authorities?
8 Q. The Serb authorities.
9 A. [Previous translation continues] ... knew other than the family of
10 the doctor whose members left me there in that manhole when they left.
11 Q. In your statement, in the B/C/S page 9, second paragraph; in the
12 English version, page 8, the eighth paragraph; in the Albanian version,
13 page 8, paragraph 6. There you state: "From the end of April 1992 [as
14 interpreted], two male and two female police officers started to register
15 the Albanians left in the municipality."
16 These police officers, did they come to your doorstep to register
18 A. No. They didn't come, because in the area where I lived almost
19 all the neighbourhood was burned.
20 Q. Was your house burnt down --
21 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: Before you proceed, the English translation
22 has "1999." Is it 1999 or 1992, as was stated, just to be doubly sure?
23 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour. It's 1999.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said that my house was partially
25 burned and it was my brothers who managed to put out the flames, and the
1 boys in the neighbourhood who helped out and luckily it was saved. And
2 the same night that it was set alight there was rain which helped to put
3 out the flames. My uncle's house was entirely burned which is metres away
4 from my house. All the bars and restaurants around my place, about 20,
5 were burned.
6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Yesterday when you discussed the fighting between the 7th and the
8 11th of May in Djakovica, although this is not part of your statement
9 given to us by the OTP, you described the street fighting in the town of
10 Djakovica itself. Is that correct?
11 A. No. In the streets there were no fighting. The fighting was in
12 the hill of Cabrat in the west of the city.
13 Q. And you said that in the fighting around 100 KLA soldiers were
15 A. Were killed -- I said civilians, more than a hundred civilians.
16 Approximately 106, if I'm not mistaken, more than a hundred houses burned
17 and arrested about 300 people.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry, Mr. --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Of whom 150 ended up in Serbian
20 prisons as hostages.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic, does this appear somewhere in the
22 statement? And in particular the reference to the house being partially
23 burned and then the uncle's house being entirely burned? Is that in the
25 MR. LUKIC: No. This part that deals with fightings in between
1 KLA and Serbian forces is not in his statement. If it is, I would like my
2 learned colleague from the other side to enlighten us.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Carry on.
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I do know, though, that it is in the
5 transcript for yesterday at page 51 -- [In English] Actually, 1078 of the
6 updated version, 1078.
7 Q. [Interpretation] You said that 150 people out of the 300 that were
8 taken prisoner were kept as hostages. Did you know whether any
9 investigations were carried out against those people as -- so as to check
10 whether they belonged to the KLA?
11 A. Yes. Because they were in that area where fighting was taking
12 place, they were considered as such. But all these civilians were taken
13 away from their homes or the centre of the city. They were threatened
14 with their lives; if they don't leave their homes, they would be killed.
15 Together with them was a cousin of mine who is a doctor of sciences, and
16 he was together with 146 other people. But because of the shelling and
17 all the fear that the children would not be able to cope and under the
18 threats of the police, the people were forced to go to Albania. In the --
19 but in the centre of the city towards the Assembly, the children and women
20 were taken away to the factory of Electromotos [phoen], where up to 2.000
21 people were held and they were held separately from their parents, whereas
22 the rest were sent to the outskirts of Gjakova to a joinery shop where
23 they were maltreated. They were given a slice of bread and a piece of
24 cheese for a period of 24 hours. And that was given only to the kids.
25 Q. Thank you, Mr. Haxhibeqiri --
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, before you ask --
2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] All I needed was the yes you said at
3 the very beginning and the rest is not in your statement.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: To clarify one thing. The -- you stated a little
5 time ago that the fighting between the KLA and the Serb forces took place
6 during a certain period, and you gave the dates. Can you remind me of
7 these dates, please?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] 7th to the 11th of May.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. At one stage April was used, but it is
10 May you are referring to. Thank you.
11 Mr. Lukic.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, May. I was always talking
13 about May.
14 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. I have only one question left to conclude this cross-examination,
16 Mr. Haxhibeqiri. This was discussed with you by my learned friend on
17 page 17, line 3. You personally did not see a single murder. Is that
19 A. No. I have seen people who were killed, but I haven't witnessed
20 one being killed.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I have no further questions, Your
23 Honour. My learned friends will continue.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Lukic.
25 Mr. Cepic.
1 MR. CEPIC: Yes, Your Honour. Thank you.
2 Cross-examination by Mr. Cepic:
3 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Haxhibeqiri, my name is Djuro Cepic,
4 attorney-at-law, member of the Defence team representing General
5 Lazarevic. I have a few questions for you. Are you prepared to respond
6 to them to provide your replies?
7 JUDGE BONOMY: That's not a matter for him, Mr. Cepic. Just carry
8 on and ask the questions.
9 MR. CEPIC: I understood, Your Honour. Thank you.
10 Q. [Interpretation] I would briefly comment on the census data and
11 this was touched upon by my colleague Lukic. You mentioned an approximate
12 figure of inhabitants of Djakovica at that time. As regards Albanians,
13 what was the percentage of the Muslim population and what was the
14 percentage of Catholic population?
15 A. We haven't got any details in terms of percentages.
16 Q. By approximation do you know what the ratio was in the villages
17 around Djakovica? How many villages were predominantly Muslim and how
18 many were predominantly Catholic? Did you have any precise data as to the
19 numbers of inhabitants then?
20 A. There are no pure villages, religiously pure; they are mixed.
21 Some of them have more Christians, some of them have fewer, but there are
22 no villages with a religiously pure majority. Mainly they are inhabited
23 by Christians. It could be 30 per cent Christians in our municipality. I
24 may be wrong. That includes the city itself.
25 Q. Thank you. Would you agree with me if I said that there was no
1 precise data as regards the number and percentages of various ethnicities
2 in the total population?
3 A. These are official figures coming from the Assembly, but I can say
4 about -- about 70, 80 per cent are Albanians in Gjakova. And as for
5 the --
6 Q. But a moment ago you said that only 2 per cent of them were Serbs
7 and over 80 per cent were Albanians?
8 A. Sorry. 98 per cent, 98 per cent, sorry. As for Serbs, it can go
9 up to 3 per cent.
10 Q. How come you have such precise data, since the last census was in
11 1981, the last complete census?
12 A. These are the official figures. What can I say?
13 Q. What official data pertains to 1998 and 1999, Mr. Haxhibeqiri? I
14 have in mind the period before the war.
15 A. For before the war I haven't got any figures because there was no
16 census conducted.
17 Q. Thank you, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. In brief, I'd like to touch upon the
18 issue of education, that is paragraph 7, page 2 of the English transcript;
19 and also paragraph 7 in the B/C/S. There you state that the rights of
20 Albanian children were violated because they were unable to attend school.
21 Can you tell me how many elementary schools were there in the territory of
22 the Djakovica municipality?
23 A. In the city there were four primary schools and four middle or
24 high schools.
25 Q. And in the entire territory of the Djakovica municipality?
1 A. 20.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Was there an answer to that question, the number of
3 schools in the whole municipality?
4 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour --
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] About 20. I'm not sure because I'm
6 not specifically dealing with these issues, but I haven't got accurate
7 figures. You can ask other people who were specialised on this.
8 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Why did you provide your opinion in the statement as regards that
10 issue if you are not the person to be asked that question?
11 A. Can you say that again?
12 Q. I believe you did understand me, but I will repeat nonetheless.
13 Why did you then provide your opinion in your statement dated the
14 28th of August, 2001. In the English, that is page 2, paragraph 7. There
15 you state that the right to attend school by Albanian children was
16 violated. I quote: "Many of the people who left were young people to
17 whom education was not available."
18 A. You asked me about the existing schools, as Serb institutions,
19 facilities. You didn't ask me whether teaching was taking place in those
20 schools. Which paragraph is that, please?
21 Q. I don't have the Albanian version --
22 MR. HANNIS: It's paragraph 5 on his Albanian version.
23 And, Your Honour, I guess while I'm up I would object to the form
24 of the question. I think it's somewhat argumentative. He asked him about
25 the number of schools, he said about 20-some, that he was not an expert on
1 that figure. That wouldn't preclude him from necessarily having an
2 opinion about whether Albanian children were denied an opportunity to have
3 an education.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: I agree, Mr. Hannis. I was just waiting to hear
5 what the answer was.
6 Why don't we move on to something productive, Mr. Cepic.
7 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Just one more question concerning that
9 Q. Did you know that elementary education in the territory of Kosovo
10 and Metohija as well as in the territory of the entire Republic of Serbia
11 was obligatory?
12 A. Yes, it was.
13 Q. Just one more question: Did you know that in all those elementary
14 schools, apart from the school of Emin Duraku, where teaching was
15 conducted in both Serbian and Albanian, whereas in all the other schools
16 teaching was conducted in only Albanian?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Thank you. To move on to another topic pertaining to health care.
19 This is paragraph 8, page 2 in the B/C/S -- [In English] Line -- actually,
20 paragraph number 7 in English version.
21 [Interpretation] There you state that Albanians could not enjoy
22 health care --
23 A. I wanted to make a clarification. When talking about the primary
24 schools, it is true that -- that a number of these facilities was used
25 with four shifts, but all the -- as for the payment, it was from the
1 contributions of the population, and that was in an attempt to keep the
2 Albanian education alive. You did not finance the Albanian education.
3 Only the physical premises were there to be used for the children of the
4 elementary school.
5 Q. How do you know that?
6 A. My son was of that school age at the time. The middle or high
7 schools were closed, and the -- as was the university, the university was
8 closed, too.
9 Q. Who financed that education?
10 A. The Albanians themselves.
11 Q. Why was then a parallel system in existence as you stated
13 THE INTERPRETER: The witness keeps shifting between B/C/S and
14 Albanian and both speakers overlap.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was -- the Albanians were paying
16 for the teachers. There was a council for financing the parallel system,
17 and all the Albanian diaspora were contributing a certain percentage to
18 keep the Albanian education alive.
19 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. I'm afraid you haven't answered my question. Why were the two
21 parallel systems financed then?
22 A. What are you talking about when you say "two systems"? I'm
23 talking about the Albanian system. There was no other system. We were
24 alienated. We were kept away from other systems. For the primary school
25 children only, the premises, the school premises, were made available,
1 only for the primary school kids.
2 Q. Why do you state then that there were tanks in front of schools?
3 A. I saw them.
4 Q. Why did you let your children go to school then, to have to go
5 next to the tanks and above all primary-age children -- primary-school
6 aged children?
7 A. There were no tanks in front of the elementary schools. The tanks
8 were in front of the middle and high schools.
9 Q. Why didn't you state that previously in your statement, the way
10 you are putting it now?
11 A. I said this earlier.
12 Q. I'm afraid you didn't. You are now coming up with all this
13 information, whereas a while ago you said you knew nothing of it.
14 A. I said that the statement is too deficient when you think of the
15 wealth of information that I possess.
16 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour. I think that is a time for a
17 break, if you allow us.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. We will break now and resume at 4.00.
19 --- Recess taken at 3.29 p.m.
20 --- On resuming at 4.00 p.m.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic.
22 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. We have come to the question on health protection on page 2,
24 paragraph 7 of the English version; and on the same page, paragraph 8 of
25 the B/C/S version you said that the Albanians suffered because of the
1 health coverage. Is that correct?
2 A. Even that the health system suffered consequences, but not as bad
3 as those for the education. But there were consequences, because it was a
4 repressive Serbian body who was in charge. They removed the Albanian
5 specialists in the hospital and they installed a Serbian doctor, and they
6 did the same in the ambulance of the city. A Serb doctor was employed
7 there. He was the only one in the clinic. Before there were 24 Albanian
8 specialist doctors. That means that the Albanian specialists were
9 removed, the specialists were removed, and a Serbian doctor was employed
11 Q. Something is not clear to me. In your statement of August 28th,
12 2001, you mention that only two Serbs were doctors in Djakovica; in the
13 capacity of the director or manager of the medical centre and the other
14 person was the administrator of the medical centre. But today you said
15 there were several doctors?
16 A. There were two who were employed in the health bodies. And those
17 24 specialists who I mentioned earlier, they were all Albanian. And there
18 was this doctor who was employed in the clinic of the city.
19 Q. I still don't understand your answer. Were there only two doctors
20 in a -- Serb doctors in Djakovica --
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Please stop for a moment. You're speaking over
22 each other now. I gather you're moving between languages at times, and
23 therefore the question and answers speed up. It's important that you
24 pause after the question before starting the answer so that the
25 interpreters can catch up.
1 Secondly, there isn't an answer on my screen that suggests there
2 was more -- there were more Serb doctors employed. Where has that
3 information come from, Mr. Cepic?
4 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] All I'm saying is that the witness
5 asserted that there were only two, while in the previous statement he said
6 that there were several.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Where -- in which previous statement?
8 MR. CEPIC: If you allow me, Your Honour, just to stop for a
9 second. I do apologise, but I can't find transcript right now on my
10 screen. So may I continue the questions?
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, not on that basis without establishing that
12 there is an answer in which he said that there were several Serb doctors.
13 You can move to something else while it's being checked, if you like. But
14 if you're going to persist on this line, then we need to get it set on a
15 proper foundation.
16 MR. CEPIC: I understood, Your Honour. Thank you.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
18 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. In your statement of the 28th of August, page 5, paragraph 8 of
20 the English translation; page 6, paragraph 2 of the B/C/S translation you
21 said that you reported Voice of America, Deutsche Welle, and some other
22 well-known media organisations, that you sent reports to them. Is that
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. On page 5 of the B/C/S version; or page 4, paragraph 6 of the
1 English version, you say in the last sentence that you reported to the
2 newspapers about what was happening --
3 A. [Previous translation continues] ... which paragraph is it?
4 JUDGE BONOMY: [Microphone not activated].
5 Listen carefully to the question and Mr. Cepic will start it
7 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. As I said, page 4, paragraph 6 of the English and page 5,
9 paragraph 1 of the B/C/S translation the witness said in that statement --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, the problem --
11 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] From the Cabrat hill --
12 JUDGE BONOMY: The problem is that the witness is working from an
13 Albanian translation which you're not giving the details of.
14 MR. CEPIC: Unfortunately, I don't speak Albanian, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Nor, I suspect, does Mr. Hannis but he's done the
16 witness the courtesy for identifying for him in his statement where the
17 paragraph is. That's a necessary courtesy that you must observe with a
18 witness who speaks Albanian.
19 MR. HANNIS: If counsel could indicate to me what the first line
20 is of the English, I could direct the witness to the Albanian paragraph.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: That's very helpful, Mr. Hannis.
22 MR. HANNIS: Mr. Cepic, can you tell me what that is?
23 MR. CEPIC: Just a second, please. "The Serbs had large cannons
24 placed in Podi" -- I'm speaking about that paragraph.
25 MR. HANNIS: Okay. You're on page 4 of the English?
1 MR. CEPIC: Last paragraph --
2 JUDGE BONOMY: It's the last paragraph on page 4 of the English.
3 MR. HANNIS: That's paragraph 16 in the Albanian.
4 MR. CEPIC: May I continue?
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Please pose the question again.
6 MR. CEPIC: Yes, thank you.
7 Q. [Interpretation] In the last two lines there is the sentence by
8 the witness: "I was informed on a daily basis which units were operating.
9 Up to the time that the newspapers were closed down, I reported to the
10 newspapers about these events."
11 Is this correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. You sent reports to which newspapers?
14 A. The only newspaper had -- had a changed name, Bujku.
15 Q. You are asserting then that in that period - and I'm talking about
16 1998 and 1999 - in Kosovo and Metohija there was only one newspaper?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. What would you say if I were to tell you that in that period there
19 was a considerable number of media that were being published in Kosovo in
20 the Albanian language? I will just mention some of them, such as
21 Koha Ditore, it's a daily; Kosovo Sot, daily; bi-weekly Gazeta Shqiptare
22 Bota e Re magazine; Rilindja, and so on.
23 A. I read a lot, but I'm not aware. Bujku before was called Rilindja
24 because it was not allowed to be published under that name and it changed
25 into Bujku. As for the others, I'm not aware of them. I haven't seen
1 them. I did not see them, rather.
2 Q. So you are asserting that there was only one newspaper in Albanian
3 that was being published in Kosovo?
4 A. As far as I'm aware -- as far as I'm aware, there was only one.
5 MR. HANNIS: [Previous translation continues] ...
6 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm sorry, Mr. Hannis, your point.
7 MR. HANNIS: The question now is: You're asserting there was only
8 one newspaper in Albanian that was being published. He's only saying he
9 was only aware of one.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
11 MR. HANNIS: Or that he had only seen one.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
13 Mr. Haxhibeqiri, the -- you were given a list of newspapers just
14 now which included Koha Ditore and others. Had you heard -- have you
15 heard of that newspaper -- have you heard of that newspaper?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have heard about Koha Ditore, but
17 the others not.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: And what was the position with that newspaper
19 during the period?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In what sense?
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, was it being published during the period that
22 you're talking of?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. This newspaper was published,
24 but it was published under very difficult circumstances, under all sorts
25 of threats.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, does that clear the point for you,
2 Mr. Hannis, or does it just complicate it?
3 MR. HANNIS: Well, I guess it complicates it somewhat. I'm not
4 sure what period of time we're talking about exactly right now either.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
6 Mr. Cepic.
7 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. I think that I did
8 indicate the period that I was focussing on for purposes of clarity.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, the difficulty about that point is that the
10 paragraph in question doesn't indicate the period.
11 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I understand, Your Honour.
12 Q. We heard today and you confirmed that in your previous sentence
13 that at least two Albanian-language papers were published. You said Bujku
14 and you confirmed about Koha Ditore. Why did you then say in your
15 statement that there was only one weekly that was published? This is on
16 page 3, paragraph 7; and in English it's page 3, paragraph 6.
17 A. It maybe there is some translation mistake or something like that.
18 Or maybe when I made that statement I was not aware.
19 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... believe that to be a
20 translation mistake?
21 A. Probably. I think so.
22 MR. CEPIC: [Microphone not activated].
23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
24 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone.
25 MR. CEPIC: I do apologise.
1 [Interpretation] I would like the registry to open up Exhibit 5D3.
2 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, you previously confirmed that you gave several
3 interviews to the foreign media. In front of me I have the part of an
4 interview that you gave and which was published on the official
5 presentation of the state university of New York at Buffalo. Did you
6 cooperate with the Prosecution of this Tribunal?
7 A. What period are we talking about? Which period are you talking
9 Q. I'm talking about after the armed conflict.
10 A. I have not had any previous cooperation with the Tribunal, apart
11 from when I gave this witness statement.
12 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Could we please look at page 3 of this
14 JUDGE BONOMY: What's the problem producing this?
15 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Do you have a hard copy, Mr. Cepic? We seem to
17 have technical problems every time we want to use this system.
18 MR. CEPIC: Yes, Your Honour, we have got enough copies.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: In what language is the copy that you've given the
21 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, because the time was
22 short we only have a copy in English.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, you'll need to read the part that you want to
24 put to him so that it can be translated.
25 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I will read line 10 of page 3, I'm
1 going to read it in English.
2 [In English] "We were directly involved, Haxhibeqiri said, citing
3 course of witness statement that his organisation has forwarded to
4 international war crimes investigator in The Hague."
5 Q. [Interpretation] Is this true?
6 A. What is, first of all? Is this an interview?
7 Q. This is your interview published by the LA Times in which you talk
8 about the situation in Kosmet. Did you give this interview at all?
9 A. I've given many interviews, yes.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: What is the question, Mr. Cepic, that you wish to
11 ask the witness?
12 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] The first question is whether he did
13 give this interview, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, you haven't given him a date for the
15 interview or a place. I mean, how can he be expected to answer the
16 question? He's got a document in a strange language in front of him. And
17 even when we get to that stage --
18 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] This is Monday, the 18th of October,
19 1999. The document was published through the Albanian journalist
20 information network.
21 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, did you give this interview?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. You state there that you cooperated with investigators of the
24 Tribunal. Is that true?
25 A. I considered the International Crisis Group, the ICG, also as part
1 of The Hague Tribunal. That's what I had in mind when I said that,
2 because they said that they would take all the evidence to The Hague
4 JUDGE BONOMY: I don't know where this is leading, but is it not
5 the duty of everyone to cooperate with the ICTY investigators? Is that
6 not a universal duty?
7 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, but the witness is
8 providing misinformation on that matter as well. He didn't say now that
9 he was cooperating with investigators of the Tribunal but with the
10 International Crisis Group.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I thought that they were from
12 The Hague Tribunal. It was at that time that I learned what the
13 International Crisis Group was. Because before that we did not have
14 anything to do with such associations. We didn't know them.
15 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Thank you, Mr. Haxhibeqiri. On the same page, Albanian
17 collaborators are mentioned who were actually discussed earlier during
18 today's testimony. You never heard of an Albanian killing an Albanian -
19 this is page 67, line 6 - or that the KLA committed violent acts, as well
20 as -- this is on page 65, lines 15, 16, and 17. I'm going to read the
21 last three sentences. What -- the references that I gave are in today's
23 [In English] "... and including the Jakupis apparently decamped
24 with the retreating Serbian forces. Others, Haxhibeqiri said, were caught
25 by Kosovo Liberation Army fighters."
1 May I continue? I will continue.
2 "And executed in apparent violation of the Geneva Convention rules
3 governing conduct during the war."
4 [Interpretation] Is it true that you said this for this well-known
5 media organisation?
6 A. If it could be repeated in Albanian again, please, the last lines
7 of the questions -- of the question, sorry, including "the Serbian
9 Q. The last question was whether you said that, whether you stated
10 that. If you didn't understand what I read just now, perhaps you could
11 say that and then we could read that again.
12 A. Is it possible to listen to it again, to the question again, and
13 the citation?
14 JUDGE BONOMY: I will read to you what is said here.
15 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: "The fate of those collaborators remains a mystery.
17 Many, including the Jakupis, apparently decamped with the retreating
18 Serbian forces. Others, Haxhibeqiri said, were caught by KLA fighters and
19 executed in apparent violation of the Geneva Convention rules governing
20 conduct during war."
21 And the question is whether you told the journalist that.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. These words were written by the
23 journalist, but then I denied them and I wrote an article the next day to
24 deny that they were my words. Those were not my words. I don't know who
25 he talked -- who was the person he talked to.
1 I reacted immediately the next day. It could be the day after
2 that possibly because I couldn't sleep at night when I read the words that
3 were written there. I was very concerned and very upset by these words
4 that were attributed to me. I now remember very well. And if you have
5 the article you might have my response, my rebuttal.
6 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Why didn't you tell us that right away when we mentioned this
8 article? And when we asked you whether you had given that interview, you
9 said yes.
10 A. Because I just remembered it, this case.
11 Q. So you just happened to remember it now?
12 A. Yes, and in fact I now remember the interview -- the interviewer
13 and also the whole case. You asked me before and you said: Are these
14 your words? And I said: Yes. But the last paragraph, I see that these
15 are not my words.
16 Q. How can you see that if you can't read English?
17 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, that's argumentative -- and we can hear
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Indeed. It possibly could be described in other
20 ways as well.
21 MR. CEPIC: I apologise.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
23 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Where did you publish a denial and when, if you did?
25 A. Where the -- this article was published, the newspaper that
1 published this in Albanian, or maybe it was translated and published in
3 Q. What newspaper?
4 A. Of course it must have been Koha Ditore or another newspaper after
5 the war. I can't remember exactly. But I think it could be Koha Ditore.
6 Q. Did you keep a copy?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Could you deliver a copy, if necessary?
9 A. I don't have a copy with me now, but I can send it to the Tribunal
11 Q. Thank you.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Haxhibeqiri --
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's my pleasure.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: -- are you able to read English?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, not very well anyway.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Do you read some English?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Which part are you referring to?
20 JUDGE BONOMY: No, not in particular. I was just curious to know
21 the answer.
22 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. [Interpretation] When you mentioned the collaborators from among
24 the ranks of the Albanian people, are you familiar with the name Niko Pero
25 [as interpreted]?
1 A. Nike Peraj, yes.
2 Q. What do you know about him?
3 A. I know he was an officer of the JNA.
4 Q. Was he a criminal like all the other Albanians serving in the
5 Yugoslav army, police, and other institutions?
6 A. No, he wasn't. He wasn't known for any crimes.
7 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... not a criminal and all the
8 others are?
9 MR. HANNIS: Objection, Your Honour. I think that's argumentative
10 as well. He said some of the other Albanians who participated in the
11 government were doing it against their will.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic.
13 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I think this statement was exclusive
14 and referred to all the Albanians who collaborated, and I can refer you to
15 the page number and the line.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Let's see the line then on the transcript.
17 MR. CEPIC: Page number 39 -- or 36, 39, and the line number 5
18 and 6.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Where is the reference to criminals?
20 MR. CEPIC: Page number 37, line 25.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
22 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. [Interpretation] What would your answer be now --
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Just hold on a second until I follow this answer.
25 Well, that's far from a clear statement that every collaborator
1 was a criminal. So if you want to put the question, you'll have to put it
2 on exactly the terms in which the answer was given previously, if you
3 really think it's worth following it up.
4 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, by your leave, could the
5 witness be shown the two lines we have just referred to?
6 JUDGE BONOMY: I don't know the answer to that.
7 Can he be shown a part of the transcript?
8 MR. CEPIC: May I read it for a second, please?
9 "They have been a part of every crime in our municipality. They
10 have committed crimes."
11 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Haxhibeqiri, you stated this today. Thank
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. I would now like to go back to health care. Do you know when the
15 director of the health centre and the hospital were replaced? They were
16 Albanians and they were replaced by Serbs.
17 A. Not exactly the date, no.
18 Q. What would you say if I were to tell you that almost all the
19 positions of leadership in the hospital were held by Albanians, with the
20 exception of Dr. Mira Antokovic and Dr. Aleksandar Antonijevic?
21 A. Because you did not have the people to cover all those positions,
22 you did not have the cadres to do that. So only the director of the
23 hospital was known to us.
24 Q. And what would you say if I were to give you the following names:
25 Dr. Bozilo, Backo Bibercic, Dr. Milutin Andric, Dr. Lidija Isailovic,
1 Dr. Nikola Jakic, Dr. Lozica Jakic --
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Dr. Olivera Micic, Dr. Jadranka Ljubenov, Dr. Marina Ljubenov.
4 Are you familiar with those names?
5 A. No, none of them. No.
6 Q. Thank you. Are you familiar with the name of Dr. Antonijevic?
7 A. Yes, he was a lung specialist. My father was a patient of his.
9 MR. CEPIC: [Microphone not activated].
10 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
11 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
12 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Do you know what happened to his handicapped son in June 1999?
14 A. No, I did not know him, but I know -- I knew that he was a good
16 Q. Thank you.
17 A. My pleasure.
18 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Could the court administration open
19 Exhibit P330? Thank you.
20 Q. In your statement you say that this publication entitled "the Serb
21 genocide against the Albanian culture in Djakovica in the period the 24th
22 of March to the 13th of June, 1999" was published. Are you aware of this
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Is everything contained in this report a cultural site?
1 A. Yes, mainly.
2 Q. Why is the damage to the Catholic church of St. James in Djakovica
3 not mentioned here?
4 A. That church did not function. There were -- there was collateral
5 damage done to it by the NATO air-strikes. It was the old church. That
6 church did not have the permission to be built in the first place, and
7 after the war they built a new church which is the highest building in
8 Gjakova. During the war it was also mined by the Serbian forces and the
9 NATO came later and demined the church, although it wasn't functioning as
10 a church at all. It was damaged, yes. It's not me who organised this
11 exhibition. It was given to me -- it was given to me by the --
12 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... can agree --
13 A. -- investigator Clifford Smith who gave it to me.
14 Q. Yes. But we can agree it was damaged by the NATO bombing?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Thank you. Are you aware that another Catholic church in
17 Djakovica was damaged, the church of St. Peter and St. Paul?
18 A. No, I'm not aware of that. Who damaged them?
19 Q. What would you say if I were to put the following to you? I owe
20 the Court an apology because the following document might introduce some
21 confusion. This was published by Mr. Andras Riedlmayer and Mr. Herscher
22 in their investigation of the destruction of the cultural heritage in
23 Kosovo in 1998 and 1999. The letter I'm holding in my hand is from the
24 web site of this Tribunal. Unfortunately, in spite of a prolonged search,
25 we managed to find only a version in B/C/S. I wish to point out that part
1 of the work of these two well-known gentlemen -- or rather, part of the
2 report I'm referring to is included in the documents tendered by the
3 Prosecution in this case bearing the number P1550. On page 3 of the
4 document I have in my hand in paragraph 2.1, damage to the cultural
5 heritage ascribed to the NATO bombing, one can find, inter alia, the
6 following sentence: "A Catholic church which was disused (the church of
7 Sts. Peter and Paul in Djakovica) also suffered damage due to air-strikes
8 and a rocket attack on a nearby Yugoslav army base."
9 Mr. Haxhibeqiri, are you aware that some other cultural monuments
10 were destroyed in Djakovica?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Can you tell me which ones?
13 A. Yes. The monumental Carshia with over 500 businesses. It was --
14 90 per cent of it was burnt down. The mosque was shelled and burned. It
15 was a mosque of the -- built in the 16th century.
16 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... for interrupting you, but the
17 damage you mention is mentioned in this document about Serb genocide upon
18 Albanian culture of Gjakova --
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Your question, Mr. Cepic, was an open question:
20 Are you aware that some other cultural monuments were destroyed in
21 Djakovica? Now, did you intend to confine that to damage by NATO action?
22 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] No, no, Your Honour. My intention was
23 to avoid repeating what is already contained in this publication but
24 rather to establish everything that was destroyed in Djakovica.
25 MR. HANNIS: Well then, Your Honour, my objection is the question
1 should have been: Are you aware of monuments destroyed other than those
2 listed in the document entitled "Serb genocide upon Albanian culture"?
3 As you indicated, this is an open question.
4 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I agree.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Well, rephrase the question then,
7 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, would you tell me what other cultural monuments
9 were destroyed in Djakovica, apart from the ones listed in the agenda we
10 have just mentioned?
11 MR. HANNIS: And, Your Honour, perhaps it might be helpful to give
12 the witness a copy of the document because he may not be able to have in
13 his head all those that are listed in the document. I have a hard copy I
14 could hand him.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Is there some -- is there some reason why you want
16 the witness to do this from memory?
17 MR. CEPIC: Yes, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Carry on on that basis then.
19 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The well-known towers, stone towers,
21 in the villages of Gjakova, historical monuments, centuries old --
22 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. I apologise. Can the witness tell us what page he's referring to?
24 A. Yes. K038673.
25 Q. My specific question: Is this a cultural monument?
1 A. Yes, it is. This is the tower in the old Carshia.
2 Q. Page 2 and page 3, the page number is underneath the picture.
3 This is the old town, page 4. And then on page 6 is the Hadum mosque. Do
4 you know how the old town was damaged, the Carshia, which we saw in the
5 previous pictures?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Describe this.
8 A. I am a witness -- eye-witness of the destruction of this mosque
9 when the shells of the Yugoslavian army destroyed this object. I've seen
10 the moment when it fell down, when it collapsed, because at that time I
11 was facing the mosque.
12 Q. And at that point in time you observed the bomb exploding and
13 blowing up the mosque and you were outside in the street?
14 A. I heard the explosion, and there was this great cloud of dust. I
15 couldn't see anything else. I saw that the minaret collapsed.
16 Q. Where were you at that point?
17 A. At home.
18 Q. So how were you able to see this?
19 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not hear the reply.
20 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Can you see the mosque from your flat?
22 A. At the place where I was, in my yard, 50 yards away as the crow
23 flies you can see the mosque from there. It's even closer than that,
24 maybe even closer than 50 yards. Because all the shops around the place
25 where I live, they were all burnt down. So it was possible for me to see
1 the mosque.
2 Q. What time of day was it?
3 A. I was reading a book and some pieces of rocks and stone and debris
4 fell on my book, and this happened at 1308 hours.
5 Q. So we can conclude that you did not see this directly, that you
6 only heard the explosion and saw the fragments that flew into your room.
7 Is that right?
8 A. Yes. The debris fell on my book, yes, and I heard the explosion.
9 And later I saw that the minaret was cut in half.
10 Q. When was this approximately, what date?
11 A. I said it once. Maybe I should repeat it again? It was during
12 the time when there was fighting in the Kodra e Cabratit. I think it was
13 the 8th of May. I'm referring to the fightings from the 7th to the 11th
14 of May. I think it was the 8th of May, and the hour, I'm sure it was 1.00
15 p.m., 1.08 p.m.
16 Q. On the basis of what do you conclude that it was a JNA bomb that
17 destroyed the minaret?
18 A. I didn't say "a bomb." Who else?
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Is that the only answer you want to give to that
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Are you addressing me, Your Honour?
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes. I mean, it's an entirely unsatisfactory
23 answer to say "who else." You're invited to say positively why you
24 concluded it was a JNA attack that caused the damage to the minaret.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] But there were witnesses who saw the
1 other object, the obelisk of the league of Prizren, which is a hundred
2 metres from my house. And it collapsed after two or three attempts that
3 they made at shelling it. The forces were seen placing the mines to this
5 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation].
6 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... mosque?
7 A. It was almost on the same day, the same day that the explosion
8 happened also in the house of Tafa of Ali Aga, which is also a monument of
9 culture. It was under the protection of the state.
10 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, you keep avoiding to be giving an answer --
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry, you carry on as if you're pursuing -- no,
12 no, please, if you're pursuing it. I was going to pursue it if you were
13 not. Thanks.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This photograph here, this is the
15 photograph I am talking about, K0386286. This is the old house, which is
16 a monument of culture under protection of the state. It happened on the
17 same day that it was burnt down, the whole of it, the whole house. It's
18 oriental-style house.
19 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, if you allow me, I'm afraid that the
20 witness all time has been avoiding -- avoiding to answer on my question.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: You're abandoning this -- the question, are you?
22 Mr. Haxhibeqiri, you're being asked on what basis you concluded
23 that the JNA, as you call them, were responsible for destroying this
24 minaret. Now, what is it you saw that led to -- or heard that led you to
25 that conclusion?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I heard the explosion and I saw the
2 situation, what it was like, after the explosion. During that time it was
3 only these forces that operated in the area, during those four days. They
4 burned over a hundred houses and cultural monuments. The citizens saw
5 them burning these objects, this house -- these houses, sorry.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: So are you saying that it was -- well, we're still
7 talking about the mosque at the moment. Now, how is it you say the mosque
8 was destroyed?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was an offensive of these forces.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, but how did they do it? We've had three
11 possible versions so far. We've had shelling, we've had burning, and
12 we've had mining. Now, what is it that you say was done to the mosque?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The obelisk of the league of
14 Prizren, I said that it was mined; the mosque was shelled; while the house
15 that I mentioned, it was burned. The mosque was also burned on the first
16 night, the internal part of it. On the 25th of March, it was burned
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, you said earlier and you've said now that the
19 mosque was shelled. What was it that you saw or heard that led you to the
20 conclusion that it was shelled?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said that I heard a huge explosion
22 and I didn't see anyone there after the explosion.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Well, that's as far as I can take it,
24 Mr. Cepic. Please continue.
25 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I'd be grateful if we could show the
1 map of Djakovica to the witness. It is P10.
2 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, do you have that map in front of you?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Do you need a hard copy for you to be able to show us where you
5 were at that moment?
6 A. Carshia e Madhe.
7 Q. Can you tell us the exact address where your apartment was?
8 A. The street name is Vellezerit Frasheri, which is the Frasheri
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Sabbah, does this now need to -- does something
11 here require another exhibit number? Is that -- is it because of the red
12 mark that's the ...
13 Mr. Cepic, do you wish the marked copy to be recorded with an
14 exhibit number?
15 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I can't decide on that yet, Your
17 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Well, just remember to do so if you
18 think it appropriate.
19 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Certainly, Your Honour.
20 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, would you be so kind as to point out on the map
21 where the mosque was?
22 A. Approximately here. I said aerial distance is no more than 50
24 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Could we have this marked on the map
25 with a number 1, we should mark the place where Mr. Haxhibeqiri lives, and
1 we should use the number 2 to mark the spot where the mosque is.
2 THE WITNESS: [Marks].
3 [Interpretation] South to my house.
4 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, but I don't seem to be
5 able to see it clearly. I can see the little X there and something that
6 is probably the number 2.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: It's a 1 and a 2 as you asked him to mark it. And
8 because they're so close to each other, it's difficult to do anything
10 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: And he made the point, which I think is clear from
12 this map, that the mosque is south of his home address.
13 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Between the mosque and your house, are there any buildings?
15 A. Yes. Two rows of shops which were totally burned.
16 Q. Thank you. What other buildings are there, apart from the two
17 rows of shops?
18 A. No others, only the shops. In that direction there are only
20 Q. Thank you.
21 A. My pleasure.
22 Q. To go back to the old town, to Carshia itself, when I asked you
23 about that you started mentioning the mosque. In your knowledge, when
24 were the shops in the old town set ablaze?
25 A. The majority was burned on the 24th of March, the same night when
1 the city was bombed by the NATO forces. In fact, when the NATO offensive
2 against -- against the Serbian military targets started. As Serb reaction
3 to the NATO attacks, the Serbs burned the old Carshia. About 200 shops
4 were burned. I'm repeating these things over and over again.
5 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] [Previous translation continues] ...
6 Your Honours. Your Honours, I would like to move on to a different topic
7 and to go back to the issue of religious buildings at a later stage.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: If you really must, but you should be paying some
9 attention to the time that's being used on what appear to be rather minor
10 events in a much bigger picture that we have to be concerned about.
11 MR. CEPIC: I understood Your Honour. I think that -- I think
12 that this issue is very, very important.
13 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Haxhibeqiri, at page 6 in the B/C/S of the
14 transcript you stated that you conducted an investigation as to how Kujtim
15 Dula, Izet Hima, Sadik Zherka, Qamil Zherka and Nexhmedin Zherka were
16 killed. Mark Malota's murder was also discussed here. This is what you
17 stated in your statement. Is that correct?
18 A. Kujtim Dula is the husband of an actress of the national theatre
19 and I took the testimony from his wife. Her husband was killed that
20 night. He was the first victim on the 25th of March. He was killed at --
21 he was killed at half past 1.00 on the 25th of March. Half an hour later,
22 Izet Hima was killed. He was the head surgeon of the Gjakova hospital.
23 He was massacred. Both of them, the names I mentioned, they were
25 And further down the road two elderly people of the Zherka family
1 were killed as well as the son of one of those two. When it dawned the
2 following day, they were found killed in their own homes. Everyone has
3 testified that there were police and paramilitary forces as well as local
4 Serbs in uniform -- in police uniforms that were involved.
5 Q. Did you see that personally?
6 A. No.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: What do you mean by -- when you say that the local
9 Serbs were in uniform, you mean in local police uniforms? Thank you.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. They were wearing official
11 police uniform -- uniforms. They were all mobilised. The adults, all
12 Serb adults, were mobilised, almost all.
13 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, may I continue the questions? Thank you.
14 Q. [Interpretation] In your statement you said that once you returned
15 from the neighbourhood of Novi Blok and when you returned to your house
16 you spent the rest of the time inside your house. Is that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. You spoke before this Tribunal about the expulsion of a great
19 number of Albanians from Djakovica, hence my question: How come so many
20 people were expelled, whereas you yourself were not found in your own
22 A. It was not only me who remained in Gjakova.
23 Q. How do you explain the fact that you could sit inside or in front
24 of your house reading while the rest of Djakovica is being expelled? You
25 were the only one to remain.
1 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, I think that misstates his prior
2 testimony. He's never said he was the only one to remain.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Not only that, but he's given a figure for the
4 number who did remain.
5 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Why did you state then that you were looked for by the police and
7 you had to hide in the manhole?
8 A. I did not say that the police was searching for me. And the
9 expulsion did not take place on that date in May. So the expulsions were
10 sporadic up until the 11th of May, and after -- after the 13th of May
11 there were no expulsions, major expulsions. They were sporadic. I said I
12 was hiding. I didn't say I left.
13 Q. How do you explain the fact that you were hiding in someone else's
14 house and at the same time you could spend your time freely in your own
16 A. I couldn't stay there freely. I was following every second of how
17 the situation was developing around myself. I did not sleep for a single
18 night at home. I was alert at every time of the day.
19 Q. Why did you state then that you spent all your time in the house?
20 I can refer you to that paragraph.
21 A. Most of the time I spent at home or in the ambulance clinic
22 courtyard, which is near my house. I was hiding behind a pine tree, the
23 foot of that tree. That's -- that's where I was staying, and I have slept
24 in the open for 40 days running under that tree.
25 Q. Mr. Haxhibeqiri, you stated -- in the English this is page 7,
1 paragraph 2; in the B/C/S, it is paragraph 6. There you state: "Four
2 days later I returned to my own house, where I stayed until the war was
4 A. That was four days after I came out of that manhole, then I
5 returned to my home. And during that period, I went to my -- to my
6 uncle's for 10, 12 days because it was calmer there.
7 Q. Why did you state then that you were in the house all the time?
8 A. I said earlier Mr. -- when Mr. Lukic asked that I have spent 10 to
9 12 days at my uncle's.
10 Q. You didn't mention that in the statement given to the
12 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honour, but it seems
13 I'm running out of time today.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: [Microphone not activated].
15 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry. You've still got two minutes that you can
17 make use of. Please continue.
18 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I'll be
20 Q. In several places you mentioned the activities of the military.
21 What basis do you have to make those conclusions?
22 A. Actions of the army, we've seen them for a long time marching
23 through the streets of the city, during the day, in the evening, or in the
24 villages around. For a year -- for a whole year we've seen them.
25 Q. [Previous translation continues] ...
1 A. Through the city, in the middle of the city. The column of the
2 Yugoslav forces with tanks and the heavy artillery part of the Yugoslav
3 army. Every day they went to the villages. They killed citizens,
4 Albanian civilians, and burned villages. In the evening they returned as
5 winners, victorious, and you thought it was Texas. It was -- they were
6 partying. All paramilitary forces, policemen, soldiers, they were drunk,
7 celebrating for the victory that they had reached over the unprotected
8 Albanian citizens.
9 Q. How is it you know all that?
10 A. I saw it.
11 Q. What did you see?
12 A. All that I've said I've seen them. And I'm talking about when
13 they returned to the city. These scenes that I've described I've seen
14 with my own eyes. They were drunk, they were pushing people around.
15 As for the results of the burnings and the victims that they
16 caused, it was the members of the human rights centre who were reporting
17 to us. So our data, our evidence, has come straight for word from the
18 scenes of the crime. Over all the data and evidence that we've put
19 forward, nothing has been rejected or denied by the international
20 independent investigators.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Hannis.
22 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, if that were the end of the two minutes,
23 I wanted to take 30 seconds to renew my previous request that the Court
24 consider setting some kind of limitations on cross-examination. This
25 plays real havoc with our attempts to schedule witnesses.
1 Thank you.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, but what I would like you to do is discuss
3 among yourselves as counsel the length of time that's going to be taken
4 and make appropriate arrangements. I don't think the Trial Chamber should
5 be directly involved in this, if that can be avoided. I'm beginning to
6 consider that it may not be possible to avoid it, but meanwhile I'm
7 leaving it to counsel to try to organise their affairs and bring matters
8 within reason. I don't think today's a good example of that, however.
9 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, I have inquired with counsel before we
10 started this last session to see whether or not I should keep the
11 witnesses around for -- coming on before we ended, and I was told there
12 was a possibility. We still have four accused to go, so ...
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I'm very surprised that you were given that
14 indication. I had assumed that in view of the personal position of the
15 next witness that more satisfactory arrangements would have been made.
16 However, we can now adjourn until tomorrow morning.
17 Mr. Haxhibeqiri, you have to come back again tomorrow at 9.00 in
18 the morning. And again I remind you, as I'm obliged to do, that you must
19 not discuss your evidence, either what you've given or the evidence that
20 you may give, with any person between now and resuming tomorrow at 9.00.
21 Court is now adjourned.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 5.32 p.m.,
23 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 9th day of
24 August, 2006, at 9.00 a.m.