1 Wednesday, 23 August 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 2.14 p.m.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Good afternoon, Ms. Bala.
7 THE WITNESS: Good afternoon.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: I simply remind you at the outset that the solemn
9 declaration to tell the truth which you took at the beginning of your
10 evidence continues to apply to the evidence today.
11 So we'll continue with the cross-examination by Mr. Ackerman.
12 Mr. Ackerman.
13 MR. ACKERMAN: Thank you, Your Honour.
14 WITNESS: NAZLIE BALA [Resumed]
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 Cross-examination by Mr. Ackerman: [Continued]
17 Q. Good afternoon, Ms. Bala. Welcome back. When we were -- when we
18 left off yesterday we were talking about the observations you were making
19 from your home in Pristina. And I think the observations you were making
20 during the day-time were also made with the aid of binoculars. Is that
22 A. [No interpretation]
23 MR. ACKERMAN: I'm getting no interpretation, Your Honour. I
24 think she said "yes" but nothing happened.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: I wonder if you could repeat that answer, please.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your question was whether I was
2 using binoculars day and night. What I said was, in the night-time I did
3 use the binoculars but in the day-time I also observed things without
5 MR. ACKERMAN:
6 Q. Well, in the day-time did you observe things with binoculars?
7 That was my question, actually.
8 A. No, not during the day-time because I could see well without them.
9 I didn't need the binoculars at all.
10 Q. In the last paragraph on page 3 of your statement in English
11 describing observations you were making on the 28th of March, your
12 statement contains this sentence: "The Serb forces were shooting at
13 unarmed Albanian civilians, and the Albanian civilians were fleeing."
15 A. Could you repeat that, please?
16 Q. Yes. The statement -- in your statement to the OTP says: "The
17 Serb" -- this is your observation. "The Serb forces were shooting at
18 unarmed Albanian civilians, and the Albanian civilians were fleeing."
19 A. On the 28th of March, if I may begin a full explanation that way,
20 about 10.00 or 11.00 - I don't know exactly - fighting began in Vranjevc
21 in the Hartica family. And in the afternoon about 2.00 shelling began in
22 the area of Kolovica. The -- that is, the last houses on that hill-side.
23 The fighting in the Hartica family was because the family did not want to
24 abandon its house, refused to do so, and there was shooting and fighting
25 all around the house from where I was, and there was shelling in Kolovica,
1 on the highest part. There one could see tanks near a wood in Kolovica,
2 because the -- and the next day large forces, army forces -- as a result
3 of the bombing at night of the military barracks near Pristina in Lukare,
4 from that time on or from that hill-side there was shelling on -- at
5 Kolovica. And of course we saw -- I also saw and other witnesses saw
6 this, but I saw the shelling from my house and observed people fleeing the
7 area of the shelling, not exactly into the centre, but into areas where
8 there was no shooting and no shelling. So they did leave their houses as
9 a result of shelling in that part of town.
10 I also talked to quite a few people who -- who were still
11 around -- out on the streets, in the side streets, because there's quite a
12 few narrow alley-ways in the area where I live. There were people were
13 traumatised. They didn't know where to go, what to do. They had heard
14 all the shellings, seen all the burning of the houses, seen dead bodies as
15 a result of the shelling. I don't want to go into too many details.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: That will be enough for the moment. Thank you.
17 MR. ACKERMAN:
18 Q. I wonder if you remember the question I asked you. Do you
19 remember what I asked you?
20 A. You asked me whether I had seen people during the shelling,
21 whether I had seen people having to leave their houses, and so I gave you
22 a chronology of the events of the 28th of March because it was day-time
23 and one could see clearly what was going on in that part of Kolovica.
24 Q. Now, the -- when you listened to my question, is it by a
25 translation into Albanian, is that -- is that what you're getting as my
1 question by --
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ackerman, we're not going down this road for
3 the moment. The English translation doesn't even have a question mark at
4 the end of it because it's actually quite difficult to know what the
5 question was designed to elicit. And I, for one, think the witness's
6 interpretation of your question was perfectly reasonable. I think if you
7 were wanting to ask something specific you should have done so.
8 MR. ACKERMAN: Well, Your Honour, you're not looking at my
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Am I not?
11 MR. ACKERMAN: And I'm going to show it to you and tell you what
12 it said. My question was, "In the last paragraph on page 3 of your
13 statement in English describing observations you were making on the 28th
14 of March, your statement contains this sentence: 'The Serb forces were
15 shooting at unarmed Albanian civilians and the Albanian civilians were
16 fleeing.' Correct?" That was the question, does it contain that
17 statement? I'll try to be more precise in the future, but that was
18 certainly the question.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: What was the point of the question?
20 MR. ACKERMAN: The point of the question was to connect her with
21 that part of her statement and have her confirm that that was a true
23 JUDGE BONOMY: We've had that confirmation, Mr. Ackerman. That in
24 my book is a statement and it's crying out for the witness to say what she
25 did and then you let her go on uncontrolled until I interrupted because it
1 seemed to me it was going on repeating what we already know. So please
2 exercise greater control over this cross-examination.
3 MR. ACKERMAN: When I interrupted her yesterday you told me not
4 to, so today I can interrupt her. Is that your ruling today, if she
5 doesn't answer the question?
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ackerman, that's not the ruling. I'm saying
7 exercise more control. I'm not saying just interrupt when you please.
8 Please don't misinterpret what I am saying, and if you are going to make
9 a -- statements that repeat what a witness has said in her statement with
10 the word "correct" at the end of it, it will be no surprise if someone
11 from a different culture answers the question in the way in which that
12 witness did -- has just done. I'm inviting you to exercise greater
13 control in general over the cross-examination to avoid these
14 misunderstandings. I'm not simply inviting you to interrupt as you
15 please. So please don't misinterpret the instructions I am giving.
16 Now what is it you wanted to say, Ms. Moeller?
17 MS. MOELLER: I just would like the record to reflect that the
18 witness actually asked Mr. Ackerman to repeat the question and that then,
19 after that, he also just made a further statement, reading out what she
20 said, without even asking whether this is correct or not.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, that was the bit I was looking at, and I was
22 surprised when he told me the question had "correct" at the end of it, for
23 what that's worth.
24 But there you are, Mr. Ackerman. That just confirms that there
25 was no question ultimately when posed. So please continue.
1 MR. ACKERMAN: I'll be more careful, Your Honour, and try to do a
2 better job.
3 Q. When you talk about those observations that you were making on
4 that day, on the 28th of March, at one part of your statement you talk
5 about the Serb forces shooting at unarmed people, and then two sentences
6 right before that you talked about an armed family that wouldn't give up
7 their homes and were shooting at the Serb forces. Correct?
8 A. Sir, I said - and I will repeat what I said - that in two parts
9 there were -- there were two different battles in Vranjevc --
10 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... what you've already said?
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Nor, Mr. Ackerman, was your question really
12 necessary. If you're going to point up something that you think is
13 contradictory, which I understand entirely, why can't you then proceed to
14 the question you're going to ask, because we know what the statement says?
15 And all you'll get is another repeat of the whole story.
16 MR. ACKERMAN:
17 Q. I want to go now to page 4 of your statement in the first full
18 paragraph, you're talking about the 29th of March, and we have your
19 statement here in quite a lot of detail on this page. You don't need to
20 repeat it because we can all read it. My questions, I hope, will be very
21 simple and easy to answer. You talk about people being removed from their
22 houses, and you were making that observation, you tell us. And in the
23 course of describing that you said: "If there were any persons remaining
24 in the house, they would be either beaten or killed."
25 I want to know if you observed anyone being beaten or killed
1 inside their houses.
2 A. This took place not only in my area, but throughout Kosova --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Bala, the question's very specific. Did you
4 see anyone being beaten or killed inside their houses?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Being beaten, yes, I did. My
6 neighbour, an 80-year-old man.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
8 Mr. Ackerman.
9 MR. ACKERMAN:
10 Q. And how were you able to see inside that person's house?
11 A. It was in his courtyard. The old man was forced to -- was being
12 forced to leave his house. We could hear the old man crying because it
13 was happening close to our houses, and this was an old man who died
15 Q. How many people who refused to leave their houses did you observe
16 being killed?
17 A. I've seen people -- I saw people that refused to leave their
18 houses. I saw people being pushed at the train station, but I haven't
19 seen anyone who was killed in their own homes. But --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: That's the answer to the --
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- after the war I took some
23 JUDGE BONOMY: But that's the answer to the question. You're only
24 being asked about what you saw.
25 Mr. Ackerman.
1 MR. ACKERMAN:
2 Q. You talk in your statement about going to Kosovo Polje. Again,
3 it's in that last paragraph on page 4. And you say: "Just before
4 arriving at the Fushe Kosove railway station, on the left-hand side of the
5 railway track, I saw with my own eyes three or four bodies in different
6 areas between the houses and the railway track."
7 That's what's in your statement and I want to ask you this
8 question: You don't know if these bodies were Albanian or Serb or gypsy
9 or what they were, do you?
10 A. Of course we knew that they were the corpses that were close to
11 the houses of Albanians, so these were half-burnt or fully burnt corpses.
12 This was close to the road that leads to Fushe Kosove.
13 Q. The answer is that you don't know whether they were Serb or
14 Albanian or other, do you? You didn't get off the train and investigate
15 that, did you?
16 A. I don't believe that they were Serb corpses or corpses of other
17 ethnicities. They must have been Albanians because that was their
18 intention, to kill and destroy everything.
19 Q. Well, you know, don't you, that a number of Serbs were killed
20 there during the fighting?
21 A. No, I don't know that. I don't have that information, how many of
22 them were killed.
23 Q. But you know that Serbs were killed, don't you?
24 A. Of course. It was time of war, so people could get killed on both
25 sides. But in the case of Kosova, the victims were mostly Albanians.
1 During that period of the 78 days of NATO bombing, the Serbs, because of
2 that bombing, tried to take revenge on Albanians and tried to destroy
3 everything Albanian.
4 Q. When you got to -- I think it was the Hani i Elezit cement factory
5 where you were told to get off the train and walk along the railroad
6 track, you say you were told to walk in the middle of the track because
7 there were mines on either side, correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Was this just a single, narrow railroad track, or were there
10 triple, double railroad tracks there, or what?
11 A. One single rail line with one track, and I walked along that for
12 45 minutes.
13 Q. And you were walking along that with a -- a large group of
15 A. Women, elderly people, handicapped people, children, old people.
16 Q. And were you all walking in single file or were you walking two
17 abreast or three abreast or what? Just kind of describe what that column
18 would look like? Was it a wide column, a narrow column? What was it?
19 A. Some people walked two or three together. At the time in the
20 evening, I wasn't paying too much attention of how people were walking.
21 The fear was that somebody, because of the terror and the fear and the
22 exhaustion, could step outside the tracks and we would all be blown up.
23 Q. Yes, that was your understanding, that there were mines just
24 outside the tracks, correct?
25 A. We were told. That's what they told us because we didn't know.
1 Q. And you say that during that walk down that narrow track with
2 mines on either side, that Serb forces were still standing guard over you
3 and they were separating men from the column and demanding money and
4 identification from them. Now, where were these Serb forces, were they
5 out there in the mine fields?
6 A. The Serb forces were at Hani i Elezit where we were told to get
7 off. They were in front of the cement factory. They were not on the
8 Blace side because that was a neutral area. They were in front of the
9 cement factory. I was in the third or the fourth carriage I think. I'm
10 not sure about that. We got off the train, and the Serb forces were
11 around that cement factory. I mean that there were not only three or four
12 or five of them, but there was a long line of them. The whole train was
13 observed and controlled under the control of the force -- of the forces.
14 And they told the males to go to one side and the females to the other
15 side. And they were searching them. Some people were even threatened
16 with the barrels of their guns. It was a very frightening scene. I could
17 see people's IDs being torn up --
18 JUDGE BONOMY: You have answered the question.
19 So let's move on, Mr. Ackerman, to the next one.
20 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness be asked to slow down, please,
21 for the interpreters' benefit.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Bala, you're also being asked if you could
23 possibly speak a little more slowly to assist the interpreters.
24 Mr. Ackerman.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] More slowly, yes, I will try.
1 MR. ACKERMAN:
2 Q. I want to go back to your job with the OSCE while you were in
3 Pristina. What were your duties in that job? What were you doing?
4 A. My duties at the OSCE were those of an assistant for human rights,
5 and the first duty I was given was to monitor the situation in Pristina.
6 That was the basis of my work at the OSCE in Kosova -- or at least for the
7 regional office in Pristina. The other part of my activities, I was also
8 involved in dealing with witnesses for the Recak case.
9 Q. Did you work as an interpreter at all?
10 A. Yes, I did.
11 Q. And what languages were you interpreting in?
12 A. From Albanian into English, and from English into Albanian. But
13 from time to time I also interpreted from Serbo-Croatian into English or
14 from Serbo-Croatian into Albanian, in both directions actually.
15 Q. So I take it to be an English interpreter you had to demonstrate
16 complete fluency in the English language?
17 A. At a university level, but I would say that I write and speak and
18 understand English quite well.
19 Q. So when you told us yesterday that things appearing in your
20 original statement to the OTP might have been there because of a
21 misinterpretation or mistake, that wouldn't be based upon any of your
22 misunderstanding of the language, would it?
23 A. It was an oversight. It might have been someone else's. I don't
24 really know. It was simply a matter of expressions. It's different when
25 you speak in English or speak in your own language. Nothing is done word
1 for word. Things have to be formulated differently, according to the
3 Q. You are a politically active person, aren't you?
4 A. I wasn't politically active until 2001. I was involved in human
5 rights affairs or --
6 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was politically active after
9 MR. ACKERMAN:
10 Q. Thank you. You were a member of I think it's the PDK party or DPK
11 party? You are a member of that party, are you not?
12 A. Yes, I am a member of the Democratic Party of Kosova.
13 Q. And that's the party headed by Hashim Thaqi?
14 A. Yes, that's the party headed by Hashim Thaqi.
15 Q. In fact, as you sit here today I think you are a member of the
16 Pristina Assembly?
17 A. No, I am not a member of the parliament of Kosova.
18 Q. Were you ever -- no, not the parliament of Kosovo, the Assembly of
20 A. A deputy of the Municipal Assembly until 2005 I was, and in 2005 I
21 withdrew in order to carry on my studies.
22 Q. You continue your membership, though, in Mr. Thaqi's party, don't
24 A. Yes, I am a member of the Democratic Party of Kosova.
25 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, that will be all my questions. Thank
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Ackerman.
3 Mr. Bakrac.
4 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I will have
5 a few additional questions.
6 Cross-examination by Mr. Bakrac:
7 Q. [Interpretation] Mrs. Bala, my name is Mihajlo Bakrac,
8 attorney-at-law, one of the counsel for General Lazarevic in this case.
9 If I understood properly, you just said that you saw the shelling by the
10 army from Lukare. Is that right?
11 A. The shelling was -- took place from a hill between Vranjevc and
12 Kolovica. Behind the hill there was at that time a military barracks of
13 the Serb forces.
14 Q. Since you mentioned the barracks, is that the barracks in Lukare?
15 A. Yes, that's where the barracks are. Now the Kosovo protection
16 force is there.
17 Q. Did you see what type of armaments they used?
18 A. There was a tank on the top of the hill. It was -- there are no
19 trees on that part of the hill, no vegetation. Simply a bare hill under
20 which the train -- the tunnel goes. It's a hill that you can see from
21 pretty well everywhere.
22 Q. Were you aware that in Lukare there were no barracks? There was
23 simply a shelter with supplies there and there was only the group which
24 provided security for the facility and they only had rifles. They didn't
25 have any heavy pieces.
1 A. Sir, I know that there were barracks there because I've passed by
2 there, not just once but thousands of times because I have relatives in
3 Lukare and there was a military barracks there and tanks there and trucks
4 and soldiers, everything. And you can see it, it was a -- visible
5 barracks you could see from the road.
6 Q. Could you see from your roof?
7 A. No, no. I said that the barracks were behind the hill. I could
8 see the tank on the top of the hill, which was firing at -- shelling at
10 Q. Ms. Bala, did you see that tank during the day or at night-time?
11 A. I think it's clear from my statement that I saw it on the
12 day-time, not at night. It was on the afternoon of the 28th of March, I
13 think 2.00 or 3.00 in the afternoon. But it was in -- on that hill near
15 Q. And how far away is your terrace from this place where the tank
16 was? What's the distance as the crow flies?
17 A. The military barracks I think are about a kilometre and a half or
18 two kilometres from Pristina. I don't know how much -- far it would be as
19 the crow flies. The hill is closer because, as I said, the barracks are
20 behind the hill, towards -- in the direction of Lubana [phoen], Vrmice,
21 and other villages, and in the other direction there is a road entering
23 Q. I asked you whether you could say what the actual distance was as
24 the crow flies from the terrace to the place where you saw the tank.
25 A. I'm sorry, I can't -- couldn't tell you.
1 Q. You will agree with me that it was at least 500 metres or more
2 than that?
3 A. I simply don't know how far it could be as the crow flies, but we
4 could -- I could see it very clearly.
5 Q. Did you manage to see any markings on that tank?
6 A. No, and I wasn't really paying attention to any insignia or
7 markings on the tank because it was a tank shelling the town and I would
8 imagine that the markings would be very small.
9 Q. Ms. Bala, you were saying that you had binoculars with infra-red
10 rays, night-vision binoculars, and that you used it during the night. Did
11 these binoculars with infra-red light give out some kind of red-coloured
12 signals or do they emit anything that is red?
13 MS. MOELLER: Your Honour.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, Ms. Moeller.
15 MS. MOELLER: Excuse me, I can't follow --
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Hold on --
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't remember.
18 MS. MOELLER: [Previous translation continues] ... that the
19 witness said she had binoculars with infra-red rays.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: I don't recollect that either.
21 We've had quite a lot of cross-examination about the binoculars.
22 Is it an area you really need to pursue further?
23 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I do apologise but on
24 page 3 of the B/C/S version it says: "I had a pair of infra-red
25 binoculars." Now I'm going to have a look at the English version. In the
1 English version it says "night-vision binoculars." Now I'm asking whether
2 these night-vision binoculars had any red signal or whether it emitted
3 anything red so that one could use it for night-time observation.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: You may answer the question now.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In my statement I said that I had
6 never used binoculars before, and I couldn't tell you what kind of
7 binoculars they were. All I know is that by using them I could see in the
8 distance, but I don't know if they emitted any light. I think there was
9 a -- some sort of green light. But I don't remember what kind of
10 binoculars they were.
11 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. So the binoculars emitted some kind of green light, right?
13 A. Yes. It was a greenish light on them, as far as I can remember
14 because it's been seven years now since I had them.
15 Q. Thank you, Ms. Bala. But you will agree with me that on page 2 of
16 your statement you said that you were very afraid that the Serbs would get
17 into your house and would do you some harm. Is that right?
18 A. Well, I certainly wasn't expecting anything good from them, not
19 what happened the next day, but -- not because of what happened the next
20 day but because of what was happening throughout the city.
21 Q. Ms. Bala, my question was: Since you were so afraid and since you
22 didn't want to draw attention in any way, were you not afraid to stand on
23 your terrace at night in a darkened city using binoculars emitting
24 greenish lights? And were you not afraid that you would be noticed by
25 someone three nights in a row?
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Moeller.
2 MS. MOELLER: Your Honour, that was not the question that was
3 first put to the witness, that is a new question now.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Indeed. But the first question was similar to
5 Mr. Ackerman's question of setting the base, so we've moved on. There's
6 nothing wrong with that.
7 Can you answer that, please?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] During the NATO bombing, I had -- I
9 wasn't afraid at all. I was at home, because during that time I didn't
10 hear any movements, aside from the bombing itself. When the bombing
11 stopped, one could hear shooting, explosions, detonations, movements of
12 trucks, tanks, and vehicles. You could hear cries and shouts. We knew
13 that something terrible was happening somewhere to someone and that we
14 could all be caught up in what was going on.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Bala, the question really --
16 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. That's not an answer to my question.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Just a moment, Mr. Bakrac.
19 The question was whether you didn't think that you might be
20 noticed because of the light that was coming from these binoculars. Now,
21 can you answer that question?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, I did not have that impression
23 at all.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Did they light up in some way that outsiders would
25 be able to notice?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When I was looking straight ahead
2 through the binoculars, I didn't see any -- that I was emitting any light.
3 I was simply looking through the binoculars. I did not have the
4 impression that -- that someone would be seeing -- would be observing me.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Bakrac.
6 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation].
7 Q. Ms. Bala, you said that you were carefully following what was
8 going on in Vranjevc. You must have noticed on the 27th and 28th of March
9 the KLA attack on the police station in Vranjevc, right?
10 A. No. The police station in Vranjevc is at a much higher position
11 in town, which I couldn't see from where I was. There are houses in that
12 direction. The neighbourhood towards Vranjevc can be seen, but the police
13 station is in a different locality. The Hartica house is quite a -- far
14 away from the police station.
15 Q. So you just saw part of Vranjevac where the Hartica house is,
17 A. The portion which was right across from where I was. But on the
18 other side of leaves -- which goes down, which leaves Pristina, I couldn't
19 see because of the hill-side.
20 Q. Ms. Bala, did you see any of the members of the Hartica family
21 after the 27th -- or rather, the 28th of March?
22 A. No, I didn't see any members of the Hartica family.
23 Q. Ms. Bala, a few moments ago you said to my learned friend
24 Mr. Ackerman that the Hartica family was fighting and shooting at the
25 police because they didn't want to leave their house. How come you know
1 that that was the reason why they fought? That's your assumption, right?
2 A. No, it's not an assumption. I could see the fighting from my
3 terrace, the fighting in Vranjevc with the Hartica family. I could see
4 that they did not want to leave their house, and the people who left that,
5 were leaving their region, with whom I spoke said why -- what the fighting
6 was about. Of course I couldn't see inside the house who was shooting at
7 whom, and the horrors which were taking place there. But people who would
8 come down to my area told me.
9 Q. And they were talking to the Hartica family and they knew what the
10 reason for their fight was. Is that what you're trying to say?
11 A. No one actually knew the details because no one could get into
12 that area. The house was surrounded, but that was --
13 Q. Thank you. Ms. Bala, I will take you back to the part of your
14 statement where you said that on the 29th of March an officer of the VJ
15 came to your house as well as a gypsy. You explained that this was a
16 traffic policeman, Ivica. Could you please be so kind to describe what
17 this VJ officer looked like. First of all, what kind of uniform did he
19 A. The officer was wearing a green uniform, a green army uniform,
20 which was easily identifiable. And the traffic policeman, who was our
21 neighbour --
22 Q. No, I didn't ask you about him. I just asked about the officer,
23 and you've given me an answer. Did he have something on his head, this VJ
25 A. I don't remember. I can't tell you.
1 Q. Did he have any kind of insignia on his sleeves?
2 A. As far as I can remember, on the right side of his jacket, the
3 jacket he was wearing, there was some sort of eagle with red and -- I
4 don't remember the details because I wasn't concentrating on his insignia
5 or on his -- what he was wearing, his boots or his hat. But I did
6 recognise, obviously, that he was a military person.
7 Q. So, Ms. Bala, since you did not notice a single detail except for
8 the colour of the uniform, you're actually just speculating, guessing,
9 that he's a VJ officer, right?
10 A. It's not speculation. It is true he was an officer from the
11 uniform he was wearing. And the way he appeared to us, it was evident
12 that he was a military person of the Yugoslav army. And when we went out
13 on to the same street, we saw other soldiers. He was not alone. There
14 were other soldiers there who -- soldiers, policemen, et cetera, and they
15 were all over the neighbourhood.
16 Q. Yes. Thank you, Ms. Bala.
17 Ms. Bala, you said in your statement that when you came to the
18 railway station that there were 30 train cars attached to the engine, and
19 that in the first and the last one there were members of the MUP and of
20 the army. Will you agree with me that 30 train cars have to be at least
21 600 metres long, right?
22 A. When we got to the train station, the locomotive was there and so
23 I could see the beginning and the end of the train. There were hundreds,
24 thousands of people waiting there at the train station and we didn't know
25 what was going on. But I did see with my own eyes the locomotive and that
1 they had that many cars. And there are other people who can describe the
2 train. The first part, the beginning of the train where --
3 Q. No. Ms. Bala, I'm asking you. I'm not asking you about other
4 people's descriptions. I'm asking you. You could see exactly who was in
5 the first train car and who was in the last train car. Is that what
6 you're saying?
7 A. But they were present there -- I was present there, excuse me.
8 There were hundreds, thousands of people present there. I could see the
9 first part, the locomotive, and the end. It wasn't just a two-car train.
10 There were thousands of people there.
11 Q. Ms. Bala, do you know Dr. Emin Kabashi?
12 A. Dr. Emin Kabashi, I know him as a professor who works at the
13 institute of Albanological studies.
14 Q. No. I'm just asking you if you know him. Did you see him among
15 those people on that day at the railway station?
16 A. No.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Where -- you told us where he worked. Could you
18 tell us again where you understand he works?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Emin Kabashi works in the
20 Albanological institute in Kosova. I know him because of the books he has
21 written and various conferences and he's well-known in the whole of
23 JUDGE BONOMY: That clarifies the point. Thank you.
24 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Ms. Bala, if I were to say to you that Professor Kabashi who
1 testified here did not mention the army at all as being present at the
2 railway station and on the train, what would you say to that?
3 A. I don't know what he testified to here, but I know what I saw with
4 my own eyes, and I saw army and policemen.
5 Q. Ms. Bala, will you agree with me a large portion of the civilian
6 population of Albanian ethnic origin remained in Pristina throughout the
8 A. I cannot agree with you because this is not true. That day, on
9 the 29th of --
10 Q. Ms. Bala, Ms. Bala, I'm asking you in general terms, not about
11 that particular day. You have answered and I'm going to move on to my
12 next question.
13 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'm sorry, in my
14 question I said "NATO campaign," so could that please be inserted into the
16 Q. Do you know Adem Demaci, Ms. Bala?
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, just hold on a second.
18 No, no, hold on just a second.
19 I certainly don't recollect hearing that, but if that was the
20 question then I think it should be posed again to avoid any doubt about
21 what she was answering.
22 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, Your Honour, I shall do
23 that. I really did say it. Perhaps the interpreters did not manage to
24 hear me.
25 Q. Ms. Bala, is it correct that a number of civilians of Albanian
1 ethnic background stayed in Pristina throughout the NATO campaign?
2 A. The citizens of Pristina, for three days in succession left the
3 city, they were forced out of the city. The other part of the inhabitants
4 who lived in Pristina and stayed there during the NATO bombing, these were
5 people who had come from the villages, who were forced out of their
6 villages, and had come to live -- to stay in Pristina as a safe place.
7 These were people coming from the mountains, from the hills, et cetera.
8 Q. Thank you, thank you. Very well.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: No, no, no, I'm trying to understand this.
10 You say the other part who were people who had come from other
11 villages, are you saying they stayed on in Pristina? Or did they also
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Later on, these left as well. But
14 the neighbourhoods were empty, simply empty. I cannot say that the whole
15 city was empty of people, but the majority of the inhabitants of Pristina
16 left the city during those three days. Later people came from the
17 villages, from the mountains, trying to flee the fighting and the war from
18 Llapi and other places. From both sides of Pristina, the population was
19 forced to come to a point which is the Koliq village. They were shelled
20 there and there were hundreds of people who were killed. Then they were
21 sent towards Leskoc. Then on the 1st, 2nd, and the 3rd, the greatest
22 massacres happened in Grashtice.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: We're only at the moment concentrating on how many
24 people stayed in Pristina. That's what I would like to be clear about.
25 Now, are you saying that during these three days there were people who
1 stayed in Pristina or not?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The overwhelming majority were
3 forced to leave. There were families that remained there, but mostly
4 Turkish, Roma, Bosnian families.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
6 Mr. Bakrac.
7 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation].
8 Q. Ms. Bala, do you know Adem Demaqi?
9 A. Yes, I worked with Mr. Demaqi for about seven years in the Council
10 for the Defence of Human Rights.
11 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have not heard any
13 JUDGE BONOMY: There must be a problem with the Serb translation,
14 because the English was translated.
15 Can we have the Serb translation for Mr. Bakrac, please?
16 You got it now?
17 MR. BAKRAC: Yes, thank you.
18 Q. [Interpretation] Then you certainly know that he is one of the
19 political ideologues of the KLA, right?
20 A. I don't know that.
21 Q. And do you know that Mr. Adem Demaqi stayed in Pristina throughout
22 the NATO campaign? Are you aware of that?
23 A. After I returned from Macedonia, I met Adem Demaqi, and he told me
24 that he had been in Pristina all the time.
25 Q. A few moments ago you said that only Bosniaks, Roma, and others
1 stayed behind. Are you trying to say that when the NATO protection
2 force -- or rather the KFOR entered Pristina it was empty. Is that what
3 you're trying to say?
4 JUDGE BONOMY: That's not a proper characterisation of the answer,
5 which was, "The overwhelming majority were forced to leave. There were
6 families that remained there, but mostly Turkish, Roma, Bosnian
8 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Very well, Your Honour. I'll
9 withdraw that question.
10 Q. Ms. Bala, do you know that most Albanian civilians -- or rather,
11 Albanian civilians who stayed behind in Pristina as well as pensioners,
12 that throughout the NATO campaign they were receiving their pensions from
13 the state of Serbia? Are you aware of that fact?
14 A. No.
15 Q. Ms. Bala, I will just deal with the last part now very briefly.
16 When you went to Macedonia, you said that you went to Ohrid. Is that
18 A. When I arrived in Macedonia, after some days I contacted people,
19 colleagues, people from my town. And where I was in Negotin, the camp was
20 called Neprosten. There I met my former colleagues from the OSCE mission,
21 and I established my first contacts with them and I joined them and I went
22 to Ohrid in the beginning.
23 Q. I understood, Ms. Bala. You spoke about yourself in the first
24 person singular, but what about the rest of your family, where were they?
25 A. My whole family was with me the whole time, and we were together
1 in that village, my father; my mother, now deceased; my older brother; the
2 other brother; and the children.
3 Q. And all along, Mrs. Bala, they were with you on the train, weren't
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And no one took their IDs away from them or any belongings of
7 theirs and you were not taken [as interpreted] any of those items either,
8 and you mentioned that in your statement?
9 A. When we got off the train, as I said, it was third or fourth car
10 or carriage -- please, let me explain. Is it possible for me to explain
11 myself? You asked me a question and I want to give an answer.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I don't think it's necessary at the moment.
13 Let's hear what this is leading to.
14 What's the next question, Mr. Bakrac?
15 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] I have no further questions,
16 Your Honour. I just wanted to have this as the last one. I wanted to
17 know whether any belongings were taken from the members of her family.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: But you tell us that that's in her statement.
19 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] No, no. I was probably
20 misinterpreted. I meant that it would have been part of her statement had
21 it happened that way. She would have described such experience by others.
22 Had those IDs been taken away, my conclusion would be it would have been
23 part of the statement because that would have been her own experience.
24 Perhaps that was mistranslated.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
1 Now, what is it you want to say about what happened when you got
2 off the train?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When we got off the train I was at
4 the beginning of the tracks. It was right there. We got off, and we
5 heard them when they said: Walk straight down the track because it's
6 mined on both sides.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Are you going to --
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The area is mined.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Are you going to say something about belongings and
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, could we get to it, please?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, sir. When the first group
14 started to walk down the tracks, they asked for their IDs and they tore up
15 their IDs. But there were hundreds and thousands of people. So later on
16 they did not ask for the IDs, but the first group, they -- their IDs were
17 tore up and also they were searched, body searches, and I don't know what
18 happened later on because I wasn't there. But I can tell you what I saw
19 while I was there.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
21 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I didn't want the
22 witness to describe what she saw but to answer the following.
23 Q. Neither you nor any members of your families were taken their
24 identities from? Is that true or not? No belongings were taken?
25 A. No, because we did not have them on us. And when they asked us
1 for our IDs, we told them that we didn't have them.
2 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. No further
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
5 Mr. Lukic.
6 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Cross-examination by Mr. Lukic:
8 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Ms. Bala. My name is Branko
9 Lukic, and together with Mr. Ivetic and Ogrizovic, I appear on behalf of
10 Mr. Lukic.
11 You used to work for the OSCE prior to the conflict in Kosovo back
12 in 1990, before the beginning of the NATO campaign. I wanted to pose some
13 questions concerning the work and the findings of the OSCE, and I just
14 wanted to hear from you whether you have any knowledge of that.
15 During your work with the OSCE, did you have any access to the
16 data or any such information that would confirm that the KLA was engaged
17 in killing Albanians who were loyal to the state?
18 A. I'm sorry, I did not have any such information.
19 Q. You said you knew Sandra Mitchell?
20 A. Sandra Mitchell was the director of the human rights department
21 while I worked in the regional office of Pristina, and we had another
22 director. She was the director for the whole of the regions of Kosova.
23 Q. Therefore, the data Ms. Mitchell had included the work of all the
24 field offices. Is that correct?
25 A. Whether she included them or not, I don't know. I only know that
1 she was the director of the department. I can only speak here about the
2 Pristina regional office.
3 Q. On page 612, in line 11, Ms. Mitchell said, testifying before this
4 Tribunal, that the KLA was killing Albanians who were loyal to the state
5 of Serbia. Would you believe she was telling the truth?
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Don't answer that. It's not for one witness to
7 express a view on the likelihood that a statement made by another witness
8 was true or not when that witness has none of the information on the basis
9 of which confirmation can be given.
10 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour, I'll move on.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: She said clearly she had no information about the
12 KLA being engaged in killing Albanians loyal to the state.
13 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
14 Q. [Interpretation] Ms. Bala, in your statement dated the 30th of
15 June, 2001. In the English page 2, paragraph 3. In the Albanian page 2,
16 paragraph 3. And in the B/C/S, page 2, paragraph 2.
17 You state that the OSCE was preparing that evacuate on the 19th of
18 March. They were getting ready to leave Kosovo and Serbia because an
19 all-low standard of the living of the Albanian community and the violence
20 being instilled for political reasons.
21 Is this still your testimony? Do you still believe this is why
22 the OSCE left Kosovo and Serbia?
23 A. That was a summary or an introduction to this statement. I didn't
24 want to enter into details about what happened in Kosovo from 1989 up till
25 the moment when OSCE left Kosovo. There was a situation of conflict, war,
1 and the agreement that had been reached with resolution of the United
2 Nations. It was not observed. The conflict was intensified.
3 THE INTERPRETER: Would Mr. Lukic please wait for the translation.
4 Thank you.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic, if this cross-examination is designed to
6 elicit some information about ulterior -- other reasons for OSCE leaving,
7 when they left, do you really think that this witness will be in a
8 position to answer these questions, bearing in mind the position she
10 MR. LUKIC: Your Honour, honestly I do believe because she must be
11 talking with the other members of the OSCE and the reasons why they packed
12 their stuff and left. But if this witness does not want to answer it --
13 JUDGE BONOMY: No, no, no. I just -- it seems to me a pointless
14 exercise and wasting your time, but if that's the line you wish to pursue
15 I can't stop you at the moment. But if it becomes clear that it's
16 inappropriate, then you will be stopped. I'm just trying to assist, but
17 please continue.
18 MR. LUKIC: Thank you.
19 Q. [Interpretation] I will ask you directly, Ms. Bala. Do you
20 believe that the announced NATO campaign had no influence on the
21 withdrawal of the OSCE?
22 A. I already said that all the diplomatic attempts, the international
23 efforts had been exhausted. There was repression, massacres continued.
24 The agreement was not being implemented, so the OSCE mission could not do
25 anything, so they withdrew.
1 THE INTERPRETER: Would Mr. Lukic please wait for the English
2 translation. Thank you very much.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic -- Mr. Lukic, you have to wait until the
4 translation is complete. So you'll need to pause before you start
5 questioning the witness.
6 MR. LUKIC: I'm trying just to push this questioning forward,
7 Your Honour. We are not moving anywhere.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Indeed. But if you talk over the -- or if you
9 speak immediately after she has finished speaking, you allow no time for
10 the translation to be completed, and that will not help progress the
12 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Q. [Interpretation] Ms. Bala, could you please answer. What is your
14 opinion or give me a yes or no, the upcoming or the announced NATO
15 campaign, did it have any influence on the withdrawal of the OSCE mission
16 from Kosovo and Serbia?
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, don't answer that.
18 First of all, Mr. Lukic, you'll have to establish a factual basis
19 for that question, so you'll need to find out what was the witness's
20 knowledge about the upcoming NATO campaign, and then we'll see where we go
21 from there.
22 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. [Interpretation] Ms. Bala, among the members of the OSCE mission,
24 was there any discussion about a possible beginning of NATO -- of the NATO
25 campaign in Serbia and Kosovo? Were you ever present during such
2 A. No.
3 Q. Thank you. My learned friend Mr. Ackerman attempted to clarify a
4 part of your statement dealing with -- it is in English on page 2,
5 paragraph 4; in Albanian, page 2, the last paragraph; and in B/C/S, page
6 2, paragraph 3. And there you mention that the Albanian civilians told
7 you that they were sending their families away or out of Pristina out of
9 A. I explained, clarified --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Wait until a question is asked, please.
11 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Mr. Ackerman compared that to another statement of yours dated the
13 16th of August, 2006, and it's item seven or paragraph 7. I wanted to ask
14 you this: Concerning the notes of the interview that were given by the
15 OTP, and the interview was conducted on the 14th of April, 1999, and in --
16 it's item 8 of that statement where you also state the following: "The
17 local population was getting ready for a Serb invasion, and some sent
18 their families out of Pristina."
19 How do you explain this, that for the second time we find this in
20 your statement and yet you claim it not to be true?
21 A. I explained yesterday this paragraph when Mr. Ackerman asked me,
22 and I frankly don't know what else can I explain in relation to this.
23 Q. In what language was the interview conducted on the 14th of April,
24 1999, Ms. Bala?
25 A. In English.
1 Q. Is it your explanation that you made the same mistake you did at
2 another occasion when you spoke English, or is there something else that
3 may clarify this situation?
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Moeller.
5 MS. MOELLER: Your Honour, I --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Hold on, please.
7 MS. MOELLER: I don't think this is a proper question because if
8 any mistake it was made, it was made by the investigator who took down
9 these notes.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: That's your assertion, Ms. Moeller. What we're at
11 the moment doing is exploring evidence, and the question relates to a
12 different document, although the same point, and there's nothing wrong
13 with asking the question.
14 MS. MOELLER: It's not established that this was ever read back to
15 the witness or that she ever saw these interview notes even.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I understand that, but I see nothing wrong
17 with the question.
18 Please answer the question.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I already said that I gave this
20 explanation yesterday and --
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Can I interrupt? Who was it you spoke to in April
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm sorry, I can't remember who it
25 JUDGE BONOMY: We know from your statement in June 2001 you spoke
1 then to a man called Stephen Leach. Was it a different person you spoke
2 to in April 1999 or could it have been the same person?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] To be honest, I can't remember.
4 It's been a long time.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, you'll understand the point that's being made
6 by Mr. Lukic. If it was two different people you spoke to and they both
7 reflected your account in the same way, then it is difficult to blame the
8 investigators rather than accept responsibility yourself. I think that's
9 the point that's being put to you, although perhaps not as clearly as
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, Honourable Judge. I'm not
12 trying to blame anyone about this, but the way -- when I explain myself in
13 English and the way I explain myself in Albanian, those are different and
14 maybe that brought up this misunderstanding. What I said and what I am
15 saying now is that these people were uncertain about the future. They
16 didn't know what to do with their families. They did not say that they
17 were sending their families to Albania or somewhere outside Kosovo. Their
18 idea was to take their families somewhere safe, and this is -- was the
19 general idea among the whole of the -- among all the people I was speaking
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, Mr. Lukic, I think that document should be
23 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour. We just intended to do so.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Is it in the system and does it have a number?
25 MR. LUKIC: I'm not aware of it, if the Prosecutor put it in the
1 system. I think it's --
2 JUDGE BONOMY: I don't think the Prosecution have. It's a matter
3 for you. You're relying on this document now. So it has to get into the
4 system somehow. So it will be -- it will be the next number after the
5 last number of your exhibits at the moment, so it will be 6D, whatever
6 your last one is plus 1. Can you give me that number?
7 MR. LUKIC: Should be 68, 6D68.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. And it's for you now to introduce it
9 into the e-court system.
10 MR. LUKIC: Your Honour, we just received this yesterday. We
11 printed it last night.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: It's in your hands to do that forthwith. Now,
13 let's move on to something else.
14 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour. Thank you.
15 Q. [Interpretation] You said that the electricity was cut off in
16 Pristina on occasion. This is in English page 2, paragraph 5; in the
17 B/C/S and the Albanian --
18 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters did not manage to catch the
20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] In the English, page 2, paragraph 5;
21 in the Albanian, page 3, paragraph 1; in the B/C/S, page 2, paragraph 4.
22 Q. Was electricity cut off only to the Albanian population of
23 Pristina or to the entire population of Pristina?
24 A. When the NATO bombing started, at that moment the electricity was
25 cut off. And after the air attacks stopped, then electricity would come
1 back on. I would say that the electricity was cut off in the whole of
3 Q. Thank you. You also mentioned check-points. In paragraph 1, page
4 2 in the English; in Albanian, paragraph 2, page 3; and B/C/S, page 2, the
5 last paragraph. There you state that check-points were surrounded by
6 barbed wire. Can you still observe similar check-points today manned by
8 A. Such check-points in various parts of Kosova did exist, used to
9 exist, but these checkpoints did not -- do not exist anymore.
10 Q. Did KFOR check-points exist in the past and do they still exist in
12 A. Of course there are check-points of the security and police
13 forces, but these check-points are not the same as they used to be with
14 the barbed wire. They are just normal check-points. On one side there is
15 the KFOR and then on the other side it's the Kosova police. It's
16 something that is very normal, but these are not inside the towns. They
17 are outside the towns where they carry out their own daily duties.
18 Q. Thank you. My learned friend Mr. Bakrac asked you today at page
19 18, line 2, whether you saw the attack at the police station in Vranjevc.
20 You said: No, because you weren't able to see that part of Vranjevc.
21 Yesterday at page 2.152, line 21, you said you could see all of Vranjevc.
22 So could you see all of Vranjevac or not?
23 A. The main hill of Vranjevc I can see. Even today I can see it from
24 my house, but then the outside, the slope, that goes down - and it's the
25 road that leaves Pristina - I cannot see that, but the main hill-side I
1 can see.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic, do you have many more questions?
3 MR. LUKIC: Not too many, Your Honour, but if it would be an
4 appropriate time for a break.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, not necessarily.
6 Mr. Fila, do you have questions for this witness?
7 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Unfortunately, yes, Your Honour. And I
8 will have an objection; therefore, I will need to lay a foundation for
9 that. But I will have this little questions -- of questions.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well.
11 We will adjourn now and resume at five past or just after five
13 --- Recess taken at 3.45 p.m.
14 --- On resuming at 4.06 p.m.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic.
16 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour. I reduced my questions as
17 much as possible, and I hope I will finish soon.
18 Q. [Interpretation] Ms. Bala, most of us have never been to Pristina,
19 and that is the reason why we are asking these questions about the
20 geography of your town as well. Again, I have to go back to page 36,
21 line 19, so that you could tell me where the police station is at
23 A. The exact street I don't know, but there is still a police station
24 there and -- as there was at the time. It's when you leave -- are leaving
25 Pristina, in that part of town, at the edge. It's not in the centre of
1 Vranjevc, but it's right at the end of Pristina.
2 Q. Why did you not see police station when it was attacked? Because
3 it's on the other side of the hill or because there is something marring
4 the view?
5 A. I didn't see the police station when it was being attacked, as I
6 said. But I don't know what happened, how or when. I didn't see it.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, the question is: Why couldn't you see it?
8 Again -- I think you've been asked it already, but you're being asked
9 again. What was obstructing your view?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's -- as I said, it's a part of
11 town that's going downhill. It's not the uphill part which we could see
12 from the centre of town, from my part. It was behind all the houses, on a
13 slope going down, and I couldn't see it from where I was.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
15 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. That's why I'm asking you, because on page 18, line 5, and I'm
17 going to read it so I don't misinterpret it. When you say why you did not
18 see the attack on the police station you say: [In English] "The police
19 station in Vranjevac is at a much higher position in town. There are
20 houses in that direction."
21 [Interpretation] So could you not see it because of what you said
22 on page 18 or because of the reasons that you mentioned now in your last
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic, read the next answer on page 18.
25 MR. LUKIC: "There are houses in the direction. The neighbourhood
1 towards Vranjevac can be seen, but the police station is in a different
3 JUDGE BONOMY: And then read the next answer.
4 MR. LUKIC: "So you just saw part of Vranjevac where the house
5 was, right?"
6 And your answer was: "The portion which was right across from
7 where I was. But on the other side of leaves -- which goes down, which
8 leaves Pristina. I couldn't see because of the hill-side."
9 I apologise, Your Honour, I only read it partially. I apologise,
10 and I withdraw this question.
11 Can I move on?
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, please.
13 MR. LUKIC:
14 Q. [Interpretation] Ms. Bala, do you know that on the 26th of March
15 in Dragodan a policeman was killed in a terrorist attack?
16 A. I said -- told you what I saw on the 26th of March, and that was
17 the burning of a house. I don't know about this incident.
18 Q. Thank you. You're talking about Vranjevac. In the English
19 version page 3, paragraph 5; Albanian, page 3 -- or rather, page 4 of the
20 Albanian version, paragraph 2; and the B/C/S version, paragraph 3 --
21 paragraph 5 on page 3. You talk about fighting in Vranjevac and you say
22 that the Hartica family put up a resistance for two hours and then the
23 Serbs shelled their houses. Do you know how many people took part in this
24 armed resistance?
25 A. I can't tell you because I wasn't on the site, but I do know that
1 the family, the Hartica family, was involved.
2 Q. Thank you. Do you know that the logistics base of the KLA was at
3 Vranjevac, one of the logistics bases of the KLA?
4 A. I do know that there were the -- that there were armed forces of
5 the police and the army there in Vranjevc, but I don't know of any forces
6 of the KLA.
7 Q. Thank you. I would just like to ask you something else now, about
8 the moment when you were at the railway station. And you say that
9 civilians were shouting at you, that they were saying: What are you
10 waiting for? Kill them. Don't let them go away to Albania.
11 Did these civilians try to attack you physically?
12 A. In the street, in the centre of town, of Pristina, which leads
13 from the committee building downwards toward the police -- towards the
14 train station, there were, aside from policemen and soldiers and other
15 uniformed individuals and armed civilians who I'd never seen before, there
16 was cursing, shouting from -- also from civilians in apartment buildings.
17 They were throwing bottles at us, they were playing loud music. They were
18 saying things like: What are you waiting for? What are you waiting for?
19 Kill them, kill them. I could hear them because I understand -- I
20 understand Serbian quite well.
21 Q. But no one attacked you, right?
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, what do you think throwing bottles is,
23 Mr. Lukic? I mean, the question's been answered. Does it need any
24 further exploration?
25 MR. LUKIC: If I may pose just another question.
1 Q. [Interpretation] Did anyone protect you from these civilians?
2 A. No one at all. The objects which were being thrown at us from the
3 apartment buildings, no one even tried to protect us from them or to say
4 anything to those people.
5 Q. I think that you will agree with me that it's very hard to protect
6 someone from something that was thrown from a building. Is it not a fact
7 that these civilians who were at the same level where you were and who
8 were threatening you did not actually attack you, they did not manage to
9 attack you?
10 A. Their psychological violence, physical violence. If things are
11 being thrown at you from upper floors of buildings, that is violence, and
12 it certainly -- it certainly was no coincidence.
13 Q. Thank you, Ms. Bala. Those are all the questions I had for you?
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Lukic.
15 Mr. Fila.
16 Cross-examination by Mr. Fila:
17 Q. [Interpretation] Ms. Bala, my name is Toma Fila, and together with
18 my colleague, Mr. Petrovic, I am Defence counsel for Nikola Sainovic.
19 I want to ask you something that Mr. Ackerman first started
20 dealing with. He pointed out to you that at the end of your statement,
21 when you made this witness acknowledgement, you signed the statement
22 saying that the statement had been read out to you in the Albanian
23 language. And also he indicated to you that in addition to your own
24 signature on the right-hand side on the other side - right? - that on the
25 left-hand side Mr. Leach signed the same acknowledgement confirming that
1 that is what it was. Look at the last page if it's not clear to you. Do
2 you know who translated this statement to you into Albanian so that it
3 could be read out to you?
4 A. [No interpretation]
5 Q. Just find the last page and you'll see it straight away.
6 A. Of course. The name of the translator, as you can read yourself.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I can't --
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Where is it?
9 JUDGE BONOMY: I can't see a name for a translator, nor does it
10 say in the statement that there was a translator present.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Oh, sorry, you mean the first part?
12 MR. FILA: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Your statement dated the 30th of June, 2001, this one single
14 statement. You haven't got another statement.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm getting a signal from the Prosecution bench
16 that that's wrong, but I can't at the moment see where there's a reference
17 to the translator.
18 MS. MOELLER: I think the witness hasn't found the right page yet,
19 Your Honour, and it's --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Nor have I.
21 MS. MOELLER: Well, I understand Mr. Fila to talk about the last
22 page of her first statement. Is that correct?
23 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] The last page.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, but there's no reference there to a person
25 who may be said to be an interpreter, is there?
1 MS. MOELLER: Not that I would see it, no.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: No. So that's his point.
3 MR. FILA: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Well, I did not say that such a person was present. I never
5 said that. That's what the witness said. So you work it out with the
7 JUDGE BONOMY: It's the witness who has said that there was a
8 translator who read it to her, and he's asking what the translator was.
9 That seems a perfectly reasonable question to me.
10 So can you help us who translated this statement into Albanian?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if I might explain. I
12 believe we are talking about the final declaration which I signed. There
13 seems to be a very simple explanation to the confusion. I can see here my
14 signature -- well, the year 2001.
15 MR. FILA: [No interpretation]
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Hold on, Mr. Fila.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And now I've found the right page.
18 So I was looking at the wrong side of the page. The Tribunal, their
19 office in Pristina, all international staff there have interpreters with
20 them, not only with me -- for me, but for all other witnesses who give
21 statements, either in Albanian or in English. The procedure is --
22 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we are just wasting
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Why do you say that, Mr. Fila?
25 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] I am trying to ask a very simple
1 question. Let's not waste any time. On that page that she finally found,
2 on the right-hand side she signed it, on the left-hand side Mr. Leach
3 signed it. They both signed it and they both signed that this statement
4 had been read out to her in the Albanian language.
5 Q. My question is: Does she know who it was who read it to her in
6 the Albanian language. I don't want to listen to this entire tirade.
7 Does she know or doesn't she?
8 A. I don't remember. I don't remember the name of the interpreter
9 because the interpreters were constantly changing there every six months,
10 so I don't remember the exact name. I couldn't tell you at the moment. .
11 Q. All right. But you remember that the statement was translated for
13 A. Yes, that's true.
14 Q. All right. Now, when you look at the first page, if you look at
15 page 1 now. Please go back to page 1 now. You will see that during the
16 interview it is only the investigator who is present and Ms. Bala. Again,
17 there is no interpreter or translator there. So who was it who could have
18 translated this for her if there was no one present? The statement was
19 given in English. Ms. Bala, you're inventing all of this.
20 A. No, not at all, sir, Mr. Toma Fila, I'm certainly not inventing
21 all of this. I know what statements I gave, and I know when an
22 interpreter was there. There was a translator there at the time.
23 Q. Ms. Bala, I'm not going into the merits of your statement. I'm
24 not asking all of this in order to insult you. You are trying to save
25 yourself from something that you don't have to save yourself from. Quite
1 simply, there were no interpreters there and you and Mr. Leach signed
2 something that never happened. That is a simple solution and that is the
3 way it certainly was.
4 A. I don't know what you're trying to say here. In the procedures of
5 The Hague Tribunal there are formalities, as you can see here. I can't
6 understand it, but there was an interpreter there --
7 Q. Ms. Bala, nobody read the statement to you because everything was
8 being carried out in English. Could you please explain to me why would
9 somebody translate this statement to you that -- into Albanian since you
10 were conducting the interview in English anyway? What point would be made
11 that way? Now you're trying to prove something that doesn't make any
12 sense at all. And actually, my objection is against --
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Let's have the -- let's have a simple question.
14 You -- you were the one criticising the witness for giving us a tirade, I
15 think was the word you used.
16 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Yes.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, your own -- to ask this question is more of a
18 speech than a question.
19 Ms. Moeller.
20 MS. MOELLER: The last point was argumentative, and I think the
21 witness already now twice answered the question whether an interpreter was
22 there or not.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, but Mr. Fila makes the further point which he
24 seeks from Ms. Bala which is that it seems pointless having this
25 translated into Albanian when you understand your English so well and the
1 interview was conducted in English.
2 And he's asking you to take that into account and explain why on
3 earth anyone would translate it.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These are the procedures of The
5 Hague Tribunal, and they know what to do. All statements have to be
6 translated into Albanian, and it wasn't my decision. These are the
7 procedures, the regulations, of the Tribunal. The language I gave my
8 statement in, it is true that I spoke Albanian, but I don't remember how
9 it was on that day. When they brought me the paper copy, in which
10 language it was, I don't remember.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Oh, sorry, you don't remember whether it was in
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Would you say that again, please?
14 JUDGE BONOMY: You can't remember whether the statement was
15 written in English?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The statement I gave was written
17 directly in English by the person who took the statement from me, and
18 later it was translated into Albanian to ensure the exactness of the
19 contents and in accordance with the regulations of the Tribunal that such
20 statements have to be translated into Albanian or into B/C/S. Such are
21 the regulations.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Fila.
23 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] I did not ask about what happened
24 later. I'm talking about that day. She and --
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Continue with your questions, if you wish.
1 MR. FILA: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Ms. Bala, on that day we see from your statement that you and
3 Mr. Leach were the only persons present and that no one else was present
4 during the course of your interview and you signed that. There was no
5 interpreter there, there was no translator there because you were
6 conducting the interview in English. That is what you signed on page 1,
7 and you signed that there was no one else there, except for the two of
8 you. Please look at page 1.
9 A. Mr. Fila, I have to go back to the year 2001, I have to explain
10 and I can explain very clearly what happened and very briefly. The --
11 JUDGE BONOMY: The question is more specific. The question is:
12 Why did you sign this first page to the effect that there were only two
13 persons present if there was a third person present?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The third person was not involved in
15 the statement taking, but later the statement was translated.
16 [Trial Chamber confers]
17 MR. FILA: [Interpretation]
18 Q. It says here that no other person was present. It says here on
19 page 1: Names of all persons present during interview. Only those two
20 persons: She and Mr. Leach. So one of the two signatures is wrong.
21 There either was a third person or there was not a third person there.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, that's been answered, Mr. Fila. She's told
23 you there wasn't.
24 MR. FILA: [Interpretation]
25 Q. All right. I'm not going to go into this any further. The
1 question -- why I put this question is not to insult you, Madam, but
2 because when we are given such statements --
3 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] And you, Your Honour, insist that the
4 trial should proceed speedily, whoever wanted to see this statement had to
5 see straight away that it is senseless that someone would translate to her
6 all of this into Albanian when she was conducting the interview in
7 English. And you allowed my learned friend Mr. Ackerman and me to waste
8 half an hour of our precious time to prove something that anyone can see.
9 So I do apologise to you, therefore, for being on my feet to put
10 these questions, but I've kept silent so many times. For example, when I
11 saw translations when they say about Prascevic that he was doing --
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Fila, I'm making no complaint about what you're
13 doing, you're exploring this, and you're allowed to as you require. But
14 you don't need to ask any questions more than once when you've got the
15 answer. That's all I'm saying.
16 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. But I am so sorry
17 that I wasted all this time in order to prove something that was so
18 evident. Thank you.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Visnjic or Mr. Sepenuk.
20 MR. SEPENUK: No questions, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
22 Ms. Moeller.
23 MS. MOELLER: No questions, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: You don't intend to help us on this point?
25 MS. MOELLER: On the point with the statement?
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah. Most of these statements do demonstrate
2 that -- do include the name of an interpreter.
3 MS. MOELLER: That's correct, Your Honour, but I don't know how
4 the witness could actually help with that. I think -- but I can --
5 JUDGE BONOMY: No, no, no, I just thought you might have been able
6 to, but if you don't know the situation for sure, then there's nothing you
7 can do to help. I'm just slightly surprised that there's nothing on the
8 document to indicate who was the person who was involved in the
9 interpretation. Do you not usually record that in some way?
10 MS. MOELLER: We do, Your Honours, in the more recent statements,
11 but it depends on the individual interpreter who actually types those
12 statements, on whether he includes all persons present or not and how
13 decent a statement is or not. But I would actually -- on this occasion I
14 would like to put one question to the witness maybe to clarify one aspect.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
16 Re-examination by Ms. Moeller:
17 Q. Ms. Bala, I understand that you said when the actual interview was
18 taken it was only you and Mr. Leach present. Is that correct?
19 A. I can explain it. There was also a translator with Mr. Leach, but
20 because I gave my statement in English there was no need for this
21 translator to translate -- to interpret everything to -- back to me.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: I guess --
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] So that's probably why.
24 MS. MOELLER:
25 Q. Thank you. So the interpreter only became active once Mr. Leach
1 had typed --
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, let's have no leading questions in
3 re-examination. If you're going to re-examine properly at this point,
4 then do it with entirely open questions, because it's not of any use to us
5 at this stage to have leading questions.
6 MS. MOELLER: Very well, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE CHOWHAN: But I would submit that it would be of importance
8 to us knowing how you followed this procedure of taking down a statement.
9 And if you're not in a position today to answer this question, may I, with
10 permission of my Lord Bonomy, request you to kindly ascertain and let us
11 know so that things are clarified, because this is a procedure you
12 follow. And a witness is not supposed to know what procedure you follow
13 so that these confusions do not take place later.
14 MS. MOELLER: Very well, Your Honour --
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Hold on. No, I'm afraid I disagree with
16 Judge Chowhan on this, so we'll need to have a discussion about it. Just
17 give us a second.
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Bala, we're confining our attention at the
20 moment to the statement that you gave on the 30th of June, 2001, in which
21 you were interviewed by Stephen Leach. Now, while he was interviewing
22 you, who was present?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Aside from me, there was Stephen
24 Leach, and he asked me in which language I would like to give my
25 statement, in English or in Albanian. I told Mr. Leach that I spoke and
1 read English and that I would give my statement in English. So there was
2 no need for it to be interpreted into Albanian on the spot.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, that wasn't my question, so I'll ask you the
4 question again. While Stephen Leach was interviewing you, who was
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] His translator was present during
7 the interview, but in fact during the statement in English that I gave,
8 she did not intervene because there was no need for an interpreter.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, throughout the period, from the time the
10 interview began until you signed the last page, the witness
11 acknowledgement, what did the interpreter do?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] She listened to our conversation,
13 but she did not interpret into Albanian.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: I'll ask you that question also again, and again
15 I'll be grateful if you'll listen to the question. Throughout the period,
16 from the time the interview began until you signed the last page, the
17 witness acknowledgement - and you've read that, you know what it says -
18 throughout that whole period I want you to tell me what the interpreter
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it was a very small
21 room with a computer in it and a telephone and other equipment, and
22 during the whole time she listened to our conversation. She was present
23 with us in the room. She wasn't outside. She was present. But, as I
24 said, I asked her -- I told her there was no need to interpret into
25 Albanian because I understand English and I can give my statement in
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, Ms. Bala, why then did you sign a statement
4 which says it was read over to you in the Albanian language?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I signed the page as part of the
6 procedure and didn't read it over, I guess, word for word. I just looked
7 at it in general, that it was a witness acknowledgement, which said that
8 my statement was true to the best of my knowledge and didn't look at that
9 part of the acknowledgement. I simply didn't see that.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
11 Now, Mr. Fila, have you any more questions arising from that?
12 Further cross-examination by Mr. Fila:
13 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Only one. If you look closely at
14 today's transcript, 15 or 20 minutes ago, she said that the interpreter
15 indeed interpreted the statement into Albanian.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: [Previous translation continues] ... do you have
17 any more questions to ask the witness?
18 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] That was my question: What the
19 difference was, which of the two was correct, the one she said 15 minutes
20 ago or what she is saying now?
21 JUDGE BONOMY: You really want to ask that question, do you?
22 Okay, well, let's have the answer to that.
23 You told us 15 or 20 minutes ago, says Mr. Fila, that the
24 interpreter interpreted the statement into Albanian, and you certainly
25 have said that in your evidence. And now you're saying that that didn't
1 happen, that you simply were signing an acknowledgement that the statement
2 was true. Now, which of these accounts, which are not consistent, is
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it was a long period of
5 time. The translated version of my statement, translated into Albanian,
6 was given to me the next day to see whether the contents were accurate.
7 The interpreter had been in the office with me all the time, but as I said
8 I asked her not to interpret into Albanian during the interview because I
9 know English. As I said, the written translation of the document, not the
10 oral version, it wasn't the oral version which was interpreted but the
11 written version which was given to me in Albanian.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
13 Now, Ms. Moeller, that sounds like a document none of us has
14 seen -- sorry, did you have another question, Mr. Fila?
15 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] I just wanted to say what you had just
16 said, we want to see those documents.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: That sounds like a document none of us has seen.
18 MS. MOELLER: There is an Albanian version of her statement
19 and --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: That was compiled the day after the statement was
22 MS. MOELLER: I would have to check the date, Your Honours.
23 I'm just told by my case manager it's part of the 92 bis package,
24 but we don't have the date the statement was translated available right
1 JUDGE BONOMY: But that is something that can be confirmed to us,
2 can it?
3 MS. MOELLER: Yes, we will check that, Your Honours.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
5 Do you have any other questions for the witness?
6 MS. MOELLER: No, Your Honours.
7 Questioned by the Court:
8 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Ms. Bala, I have a couple of questions and I
9 request you to kindly give me your answers to clarify certain things which
10 I thought were necessary. Now, at the Dragodan hill and at Kodra, you
11 were informed of what happened mostly. Did you witness anything yourself
12 or was it only on the statement of the Hartica family or the -- Ms. Hasbia
13 [phoen] that you were informed and that knowledge you were imparting here
14 before us?
15 A. Your Honour, what I saw in Dragodan is mentioned in my statement,
16 that is the burning of the house and the -- I heard the explosions, et
17 cetera. And in the statement I said that there was fighting in Vranjevc
18 at the house of the Hartica family. And later when the population was
19 expelled from that area or the areas where we lived, I spoke to the
20 inhabitants, not in great detail, but I heard what had happened in general
21 because they were closer to the incident than I was.
22 JUDGE CHOWHAN: You said: A woman by the name of Hasbia Krasniqi
23 was one of those who described to me what happened. The shooting and
24 exploding continued throughout the night.
25 Could you kindly tell us what you mean by this, what you mean
1 really was happening?
2 A. Yes, it's true. I spoke to Hasbia Krasniqi who came from part of
3 Kolovica. Her house was quite close to the other houses that were
4 shelled, and she informed me that quite a few people had been killed and
5 many had been wounded and there was substantial damage in the houses. And
6 during the whole time from 2.00 in the afternoon until the evening, the --
7 the incident -- the attack continued on that -- in part of Kolovica. But
8 the shelling was not only against Kolovica but in other areas of town,
9 too. But I couldn't tell exactly which areas were being attacked.
10 The next day, when I talked to people from those areas, I heard
11 that the shelling was coming from behind the area of Taslixhe, the area
12 between Taslixhe and Kolovica. The houses had been under fire from 6.00
13 in the evening, but -- I can't remember the exact name of the
14 neighbourhood, but later I did get information from witnesses who had been
15 there, and they said that there were victims, both killed and wounded,
16 because there had been snipers there and houses had been burnt. It was on
17 the edges of Pristina.
18 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Could you be a bit more specific about Kodra.
19 What did you really see there?
20 A. Kodra is the area in general, the hill-side in general, and I
21 could see the houses on the upper part of the hill-side.
22 JUDGE CHOWHAN: You mentioned about the gypsies also joining,
23 allegedly, with others and forcing you to do certain things. Now, who
24 were these gypsies, and had they then by that time turned towards your
25 opposite side or were they against yourself even before?
1 A. The Roma or gypsies, as I said in my statement, were mobilised.
2 They had put on police uniforms, but we could see that they were not
3 normal policemen, you know, from the way they wore their hair, and the way
4 they wore the uniform and the shirt, they just put a police jacket over
5 their normal shirt and had something about police written on it. Were
6 wearing jeans, for instance. So we could see that they had been
7 mobilised, but at the same time we could see that they were working with
8 the Yugoslav police and army, and later, I described this, that they
9 had -- were wearing long hair and had paint on their faces, et cetera.
10 JUDGE CHOWHAN: At the Dragodan hill you boarded the train. Am I
11 right? Along with others. Did you -- were you carrying anything with you
12 or were you empty-handed? And whatever you were carrying, was that
13 snatched? Thank you very much.
14 A. All we had with us was milk for the two children because we didn't
15 have time to take anything else with us. There were over a hundred people
16 with us from different areas of Pristina that were staying in my house at
17 the time.
18 JUDGE CHOWHAN: I'm thankful for that.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Ms. Bala. That completes your evidence.
20 Thank you for coming to the Tribunal to give it. You're now free to
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
23 [The witness withdrew]
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, do I rightly --
25 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, in order to conclude with
1 the topic I raised, I would kindly ask the Chamber to put an obligation on
2 the OTP to tell us who wrote that, what the date is of the translation we
3 received, which is ERN 03078246. This is the translation of the statement
4 into Albanian, and we want to know when it was translated and by whom so
5 as to be able to corroborate whether indeed it was translated the next
6 day, as the witness put it, although I sincerely doubt that.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I expect we shall get that information in
8 light of what Ms. Moeller told us. So you can draw it to my attention if
9 you don't within a reasonable time receive the information you're looking
11 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Thank you.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, Ms. Moeller, do I rightly see that the next
13 witness is K-63?
14 MS. MOELLER: That's correct, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: And that arrangements need to be made in the court
16 for that witness to give evidence?
17 MS. MOELLER: That's what we have been told by the technical
18 people that they would be need 20 minutes to set up the voice distortion.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: The practice seems to have evolved as a routine now
20 of you feeling obliged to ask questions of witnesses from whom we have a
21 perfectly clear statement. Are you intending to do that in respect of
22 this witness also?
23 MS. MOELLER: Yes, I was intending to put a couple of questions to
24 him, Your Honours.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: A couple is a very loose term.
1 MS. MOELLER: I was anticipating not more than 30 minutes.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, that's more than a couple of questions. I
3 think I ought to alert you to the fact that the Tribunal -- the Chamber
4 will not find exploration of events prior to 1998 in live testimony at the
5 stage of evidence in chief to be a useful exercise.
6 MS. MOELLER: Very well, Your Honour. I was not intending to lead
7 any evidence in this regard with the next witness.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: And I think what we'll do is we'll take our
9 half-hour break now, which means that we'll resume at 5.30, but we'll sit
10 through from 5.30 to 7.00.
11 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, before we break, could I maybe get an
12 indication, I know it's an early one, but we have the witness after the
13 next witness also waiting here, and I think probably could be released for
14 the day, but could we maybe inquire with the Defence about their
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. O'Sullivan, can you assist on that? That would
17 mean: Is the cross-examination likely to be less than half an hour?
18 MR. O'SULLIVAN: At this point, I can't assist you on that.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah. Is any counsel clear in his mind that there
20 will be significant cross-examination of this witness?
21 MR. IVETIC: Your Honour, based upon the number of topics that I
22 have prepared for questioning, I anticipate my cross will last from about
23 30 to 40 minutes. I can obviously try and cut it down if that assists.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, well, the next witness may be excused in that
1 MS. MOELLER: Thank you.
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 --- Recess taken at 4.59 p.m.
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- On resuming at 5.32 p.m.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Good afternoon, Witness. Good afternoon. Can you
7 hear what I am saying in a language you understand?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Would you please make the solemn declaration by
10 reading aloud the document which will now be placed before you.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
12 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. Please be seated.
14 Now, we have before us a statement of your evidence, so we know a
15 great deal already about what you have to say. The purpose of this
16 afternoon is to enable counsel to ask any additional questions they wish
17 to ask. And because we already have so much information, it's very
18 important that you do your best to restrict your answer to the particular
19 point that is raised in the question that's asked of you. The first
20 person to ask questions then will be on behalf of the Prosecution,
21 Ms. Moeller.
22 Ms. Moeller.
23 MS. MOELLER: Thank you, Your Honours.
24 WITNESS: WITNESS K-63
25 [Witness answered through interpreter]
1 Examination by Ms. Moeller:
2 Q. Good afternoon. As --
3 A. Good afternoon.
4 Q. As a first point, I would like to remind you that you should not
5 mention your name or the name of your wife or the country you are
6 currently residing in, to keep your identity and privacy protected.
7 MS. MOELLER: Could the usher please show the witness a sheet for
8 identification purposes. This is Exhibit P2266, and I ask the court
9 officer not to publish it because we will tender it under seal.
10 Q. Witness, is that your correct name on this sheet?
11 A. Yes. Yes, it's correct.
12 Q. [Microphone not activated]?
13 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone.
14 MS. MOELLER: Sorry. Can this sheet be shown to the Bench,
16 Q. Witness, you gave a statement to the Office of the Prosecutor on
17 27 and 28 May 2003. Is that correct?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And on 21st August, 2006, you -- you signed a certification here
20 in The Hague that this is your evidence in the case and that your
21 statement is true and correct, right?
22 A. Yes. Yes.
23 MS. MOELLER: Can the usher show the statement to the witness,
25 Q. Can you have a look at the statement, Witness, and say whether
1 this was the statement we were talking about, and this is the declaration
2 that you signed here?
3 A. Yes.
4 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, we would like to tender this statement
5 under seal. It's Exhibit Number P2249.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, both these exhibits, 2266 and 2249 will be
7 held under seal.
8 MS. MOELLER: Thank you.
9 Q. Witness, are you married?
10 A. Yes.
11 MS. MOELLER: Could the usher please show another sheet to the
12 witness. Thank you. This is Exhibit Number 2265, and we ask the usher
13 not to publish that. And we also tender this under seal, if the witness
15 Q. Is that the name of your wife on this sheet, Witness?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Thank you.
18 MS. MOELLER: We tender this under seal, Your Honours, 2265.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: That also will be held under seal.
20 MS. MOELLER: Thank you.
21 Could we bring up Exhibit P13 on the screen, please?
22 Q. In the meantime, Witness, where were you living in 1999?
23 A. In Pristina.
24 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, I would like the witness to mark two
25 locations where he lived and where his business was, and I would like to
1 go into private session for that, to exclude any possibility that that
2 could identify him.
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well. We'll have private session for this
5 part of the evidence, to ensure protection of the identity of the
7 [Private session]
11 Page 2227 redacted. Private session.
22 [Open session]
23 MS. MOELLER: And please remove the map from the screen first.
24 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
25 MS. MOELLER:
1 Q. In paragraph 16 of your statement, you mention a police officer
2 nicknamed Rambo seizing your license in January 1999, and you mention him
3 on other occasions throughout your statement. How did you know he was a
4 police officer?
5 A. I knew that he was a police officer because he had markings on his
6 chest, insignia.
7 Q. What kind of insignia were these?
8 A. As far as I know, he had two lines on both sides. The colour was
9 about reddish, a reddish colour.
10 Q. And what was the colour of the uniform, if he wore any?
11 A. It was the police uniform, dark green and like a wooden colour I
12 would say, some kind of brown colour, I mean the uniform.
13 Q. Did it have any pattern?
14 A. No, just the badge and the markings, the insignia on both sides of
15 his chest. It was camouflage. I would call it camouflage.
16 Q. In paragraph 7 of the statement you also referred to this man
17 nicknamed Rambo. You say that: "He told us he was a sector supervisor."
18 Did he tell that to you personally?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Now, in paragraph 19 of the statement you are talking about the
21 police coming to your business and ordering food without paying. How did
22 this police, Serb police, look as you described them, Serb police?
23 A. The Serb policeman was about 1 metre, 85 centimetres tall, pale
24 complexion, white face. His hair was short cut. His -- the colour of his
25 hair was.
1 Q. Sorry, can I interrupt you there. I think we misunderstood each
2 other. I was not asking about a specific policeman, about Rambo, anymore,
3 I was asking about your statement that Serb police came to your shop and
4 demanded to be given food without paying, generally Serb police as you
5 state in paragraph 19 of your statement. Can you describe how you knew
6 they were Serb police. What did they wear?
7 A. Well, to be honest, I don't think they were regular policemen.
8 They were paramilitaries with camouflage uniforms and there were seven of
9 them at the time or ten of them at the time. They ordered food, and they
10 did not pay for it. And I was afraid to ask them to pay, although
11 sometimes I did ask them to pay and they just didn't pay me. They just
12 left with the food.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Moeller, this is a war crimes trial, not a
14 trial about who stole the pies. We really need to get some perspective
15 into our live testimony here.
16 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, I think these aspects are actually
17 crucial and go to the heart of the case because it's about identification
18 of the forces who were in the city in 1999 and who he observed on several
19 occasions and who he constantly called Serb police. I'm just trying to
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Show me how the forces in paragraph 19 are related
22 in the statement to those who are said to have committed the crimes that
23 we are concerned about.
24 MS. MOELLER: Well, he refers to the same term "police" with
25 regard to the events that he then describes on the day he was --
1 JUDGE BONOMY: I know that, but --
2 MS. MOELLER: That's one --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: How does the evidence we've just heard, which is
4 unspecific to time, help us work out who are the Serb police forces
5 referred to later in the statement? I find it very difficult to see that
6 this is really helpful to us.
7 MS. MOELLER: Very well, Your Honours. I'll move on.
8 Q. On 1st April 1999, you referred to that in your statement that you
9 were called to come home. What were you told when you arrived at home, at
10 your apartment, on that day?
11 A. It was midday, about 12.30. I was in my shop working, and the
12 phone rang. And there was this lady who was a neighbour of ours, and she
13 told me: Come home immediately. I told her: I have work to do here at
14 the shop. And she said: You have to come home immediately. So I went
15 there. I drove home. I went inside the flat, and I saw my wife tearing
16 at her face, covering her face with her hands. And I asked that lady:
17 What has happened? What happened here? And she told me: Your wife was
18 raped by three paramilitaries and they left. And then I sat down with my
19 wife, trying to calm her down, but it was impossible to calm her down.
20 This is what happened.
21 Q. Did your wife describe the men to you who raped her?
22 A. At that moment she said there were three paramilitaries with --
23 wearing masks, black masks, camouflage uniforms. And at that moment, in
24 fact, she wasn't sure what the uniform -- what the uniforms were like,
25 just that they had masks on their faces.
1 Q. Let's move on to 3 April 1999. This is paragraph 33 of the
2 statement. You said that you were expelled that day from your flat. How
3 many Serbs were living in your neighbourhood? And don't mention the
4 neighbourhood now, please.
5 A. In our neighbourhood there were about 60 per cent Serbs. They did
6 not stay there all the time. Some of them went away, others came, but I
7 would say 60 per cent. But when they came to expel us, the police came
8 and told us to leave our homes. We didn't know where to go, but we just
9 started to leave our homes. When we left our homes, we saw groups of
10 people going down-town, and the groups were joining each other. People
11 were crying, the children were crying, the elderly were crying, the women
12 were crying. So we joined one of those groups and walked with them.
13 Q. Thank you. What about the Serb people living in your
14 neighbourhood, were they expelled that day, too?
15 A. No, they were not expelled. I only remember one woman, a Serb
16 woman, living on the third or the fourth floor. She came out and said:
17 Why are you expelling these people? These people are innocent. And one
18 paramilitary or a policeman, I can't remember what he was, told her: Go
19 inside or otherwise I will kill you. I will kill you instead of killing
20 these people.
21 Q. Now, moving on to the time when you arrived at Pristina train
22 station, this is paragraph 35 of the statement, were there any Serbs
23 waiting to get on the trains out of Pristina?
24 A. No. The Serbs were not leaving Pristina; it was only Albanians.
25 We went down-town. When we arrived close to the centre, there were
1 policemen on both side, on the left and on the right. They were shouting,
2 shouting abuse, and they were saying: You have to leave this place. And
3 as I told you, the groups joined each other, got together, and went
4 towards the railway station. Before getting to the railway station, a
5 police car that had stopped there -- there were two policemen on the side
6 of the road that was -- that were beating a young man in the car. And
7 there were two young women.
8 Q. Thank you. Let's stop here. The trains took you to the
9 Macedonian border, as you state in paragraph 38 of your statement. In
10 your statement you say: "The Yugoslavian military was there." What do
11 you mean by "Yugoslavian military"?
12 A. The Yugoslavian military were in the border between Kosovo and
14 Q. And what is the Yugoslavian military? How did they look? Which
15 uniforms did they wear?
16 A. The Yugoslav army previously had a kind of uniform that we called
17 SNB, while after the 1990s the uniforms changed, the military uniforms.
18 Q. How did they look in 1999?
19 A. In 1999, I'm not very good with colours. I can distinguish green
20 and brown. I knew that they had camouflage uniforms, but I think the army
21 uniform was brown and green but a little lighter in colour.
22 Q. Now, the last three questions. The first one is: Did you leave
23 Kosovo because you were afraid of NATO bombing?
24 A. No. I left Kosova because the paramilitaries and the Serbian
25 police forced us to go to another country, displaced us from Kosovo. I
1 didn't want to leave Kosovo.
2 Q. And how is the state of health of your wife today, after those
3 rapes happened to her seven years ago?
4 A. I don't know how to describe my pain and my wife's pain. She --
5 it is very difficult to describe it in words because one has one life
6 only, and to be faced with such a situation is very difficult. It is
7 difficult for me, but it is much more difficult for her. She is ill. She
8 has flashbacks. She will never forget what happened that day. Her health
9 is very poor. Her nervous system has broken down. From 65 kilogrammes
10 that she weighed in Kosova, now she weighs 43 kilogrammes. That shows
12 Q. And how is the living situation for you and your wife today in the
13 country you are living in - and please don't mention this country -
14 and -- seven years after you were expelled from Kosovo?
15 A. Our living conditions are good. Financially and morally, these
16 are very good conditions. The people there understand us very well. We
17 try to lead a normal life, a good life.
18 MS. MOELLER: Your Honour, that concludes my questions. I would
19 only have one more request, namely that the IC exhibits are also put under
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Ms. Moeller.
22 Mr. Sabbah, please attend to that. These will be held under
24 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. Exhibits IC18 and IC19 will be
25 under seal.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
2 JUDGE CHOWHAN: IC 18 and 19?
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
4 Mr. O'Sullivan.
5 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Your Honour, first will be counsel for
6 General Lukic, and thereafter will we'll follow the indictment.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
8 Mr. Ivetic.
9 MR. IVETIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
10 Cross-examination by Mr. Ivetic:
11 Q. Good day, sir. My name is Dan Ivetic, and I am one of the
12 attorneys representing Sreten Lukic, and I'm joined by colleague
13 Mr. Ozren Ogrizovic and Mr. Branko Lukic, who is not with us in the
14 courtroom at present. We are going to have to ask you some questions
15 about your knowledge of events in 1998 and 1999 in Kosovo-Metohija
16 relating to the statement you gave to the Office of the Prosecutor.
17 Now, first of all, the written statement that you gave to the
18 Office of the Prosecutor dated the 27th and the 28th of May, 2003, that
19 statement was read back to you verbatim in the Albanian language before
20 you signed it. Is that correct?
21 A. No.
22 Q. If I can ask you then, sir, did you in fact sign the statement
23 dated the 27th and 28th of May, 2003?
24 A. Yes, I signed it there. Where I gave the statement, there is the
25 place where I signed it.
1 Q. And, sir, at the time that you signed it, was the statement read
2 back to you in the Albanian language so that you could understand it
3 before you signed it?
4 A. Are you talking about 2003?
5 Q. Yes, sir, I'm talking about 2003, specifically the 28th of May,
7 A. Yes, on the 28th of May, 19 -- sorry, 2003, I signed the statement
8 and I handed it in, and that's it.
9 Q. Now, sir, I need to know whether in fact the statement was read
10 back to you in Albanian, a language you understand, prior to you signing
11 the statement.
12 A. Of course it was read to me -- it was read back to me. Before I
13 signed it, it was read to me and the statement was correct.
14 Q. Okay. And that's why you signed it, because you affirmed that
15 everything that was read back to you from the statement in Albanian
16 accurately reflected what you had told the interviewer. Is that right?
17 A. Yes. The words I said were true.
18 Q. And -- strike that.
19 Now, I want to ask you a couple of questions regarding that
20 statement that you signed in 2003 for the Office of the Prosecutor. Now,
21 first of all, at paragraphs 6 and 7 of that statement you talk about
22 certain raids that were undertaken by persons you describe as police.
23 Could you please tell me, while conducting these activities what type of
24 uniforms did these police wear?
25 A. The police had the same uniform that I mentioned earlier. As I
1 said, I can distinguish basic colours, but not the colours in detail. So
2 they had the same kind of uniform, the same kind of colour, as I mentioned
3 earlier. They came and raided the places, the shop.
4 Q. I'm sorry, I just want to make something -- make sure that the
5 transcript is accurate and the translation is accurate. Are you telling
6 us that you have difficulty in distinguishing colours?
7 A. I can distinguish them, but -- yeah, I can say that -- you could
8 say that. I cannot distinguish them very well. The basic colours like
9 green, white, black, and red, and brown, I can distinguish them. But
10 colours in between, it's difficult for me to distinguish them, light
11 brown, dark brown, and so on.
12 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Excuse me, does it mean that you are colour-blind
13 for some colours?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not understand the question.
15 JUDGE CHOWHAN: It means that sometimes the eyes do not recognise
16 certain colours, and when that happens people are called as colour-blind.
17 But what you are stating is as if you were partially colour-blind and not
18 fully. I just wanted you to kindly answer that because it would get
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I already said that white, red,
21 black, and green, I can distinguish these colours very well. But then
22 when it's half blue or dark blue or light blue, things like that I
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ivetic.
25 MR. IVETIC: Yes, Your Honour, I'll try and proceed and hopefully
1 get some clarity with respect to this testimony.
2 Q. Now, if we could remain for a few moments on this event from 1996
3 and 1997 that is set forth in paragraphs 6 and 7, can you tell us what
4 type of -- strike that.
5 What type of pattern did the persons you have labelled as police
6 have on their uniforms at that time?
7 A. I said that those policemen had dark green uniforms together with
8 some brown, maybe light brown, but it was camouflage.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: In -- you're being asked about 1996 and 1997 at the
10 moment. In 1999, were the uniforms the same or different?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The uniforms changed all the time.
12 I would say they changed the uniforms regularly. It was never the same
14 JUDGE BONOMY: And in saying that, are you referring to the
15 regular police?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, not the regular police, the
17 others, the paramilitaries that came because the police, the regular
18 police, had their uniform.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: And what colour was their uniform?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They were similar colours, but I
21 can -- I could distinguish them because of the badges and they had belts
22 and they had these markings on the left or the right of their chests.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: The reason I'm asking you these questions is that
24 in your statement when you're talking about the 24th of March, 1999, you
25 describe the police as wearing blue camouflage. Now, that sounds
1 different from what you've been describing so far. Can you explain that?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was talking about the normal
3 police, but the others who expelled us from our houses, they had different
4 uniforms, not like the regular police.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, the description I've just given you was
6 relating to the 24th of March, the first day of the bombing.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: And on that occasion you described all able-bodied
9 Serb civilians as having been put into the police. They were wearing
10 police uniforms and carrying guns. They wore mainly the blue camouflage
11 of the police.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, blue.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, are these regular police officers or are these
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, that's what the reservists and
16 the paramilitary had, but the police themselves had blue uniforms.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
18 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Did not have blue uniforms.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ivetic.
21 MR. IVETIC: I'm more confused now than I was when we started,
22 Your Honour.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: That's why I'm handing it back to you.
24 MR. IVETIC: I'll try and do my best to clear it up, Your Honour.
25 Q. Now, sir, you lived and worked in Pristina for a considerable
1 period of time. What colour uniforms did you notice the Serbian police
2 from the Ministry of Interior wearing on a daily basis?
3 A. The colour of the uniforms, as I said earlier, is like this colour
4 I have here, but more of a brownish -- the normal police I'm talking
5 about. Because there were four police stations there, and every time I
6 had contact with the police, that was what they were like. It was a mixed
7 colour, a -- it was sort of green, as my jacket is, but more of a brownish
8 in it.
9 Q. And I believe that you said earlier that this uniform was
10 different from that worn by the paramilitaries and others. Can you
11 describe the difference that you make between these two types of
13 A. I didn't really notice a difference in the uniforms too much. I
14 just knew who were the normal police. I noticed their badges, their
15 belts. I know they had boots more than shoes, whereas the paramilitary
16 didn't have belts. Their jackets were hanging down and they had different
17 arms compared to the normal police. They didn't have any markings on
18 their head gear. That's what they were like.
19 Q. You mentioned head-gear. During your time spent in Pristina, what
20 type of head-gear did the normal police have?
21 A. The normal police had caps of the same colour as their clothes,
22 but they didn't have insignia on the caps.
23 Q. When you say "caps," did this head-gear have bills on the front?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Okay. Thank you. Now --
1 A. I'm sorry, I didn't really understand the last question.
2 Q. My question was: When you say "caps," did this head gear have
3 protrusions from the front?
4 A. Yes, yes.
5 Q. A type of visor to shade the eyes from the sun, so we are on the
6 same definition, I guess?
7 A. Yes, that's what they were like.
8 Q. Okay. Thank you. Now, in paragraph 15 of your statement you
9 describe an encounter with the police from December of 1998. Now, first
10 of all, did those police have -- or strike that.
11 What type of uniform did those police have? Is it the same that
12 we've talked about here is it different in any way that you can remember?
13 A. They had the same uniforms.
14 Q. Okay. And at that time, and in fact for quite some -- many years
15 prior to that, wasn't it the law of the country you lived in that all
16 citizens had to carry their official ID cards with them at all times?
17 A. Yes, that is true. Every citizen had to have ID with him, but of
18 course people did forget their ID. And on that case I forgot mine at the
19 moment I needed it.
20 Q. And when you produced your ID, those police let you go on your
21 way - isn't that correct - without any repercussions?
22 A. Yes, of course. They were normal police, and I showed my
23 documents to them. I thanked them, and they let me go and everything was
24 okay. No problem.
25 Q. Now, at paragraphs 16 through 18 of your statement you detail,
1 I'll say, another encounter with the individual named Rambo, that you've
2 called Rambo, in early 1999. And I want to ask you: At that time was he
3 wearing the same uniform that you described from the raid in 1996 or 1997,
4 since you said that uniforms changed all the time? Was this the same
6 A. Yes, the same.
7 Q. At that point in time, was Rambo alone or were other people with
9 A. There were three or four policemen there. They broke into the
10 restaurant a couple of times and there were three or four of them.
11 They -- they raided all the shops.
12 Q. I want to make sure we're talking about the same incident. I'm
13 not talking about the raids in 1996 and 1997 when you worked for somebody
14 else; I'm talking about the incident you describe at paragraph 16 in
15 January 1999 when this individual named Rambo came to your shop, the shop
16 that you owned and opened. Are we talking about the same event?
17 A. Yes, we're talking about the same event. I told you about Rambo,
18 what -- the time he came to the shop.
19 Q. Okay. And first of all, with respect to Rambo, what type of
20 head-gear was he wearing?
21 A. He was wearing a police cap, a normal police cap.
22 Q. And at that time did he have any insignia or other identifying
24 A. Yes, he did. He had a badge.
25 Q. Could you describe the location of the badge and the type of
1 badge? What was it made of?
2 A. The badge was of metallic, iron maybe, I don't know the exact
3 metal because I'm not an expert in metals.
4 Q. Okay. For the remainder of my cross-examination, when I refer to
5 a badge, do you understand -- or can we understand each other that I'm
6 talking about a metallic badge? Is that fair enough?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Okay. Now, apart from the badge, did he have a name-tag on his
10 A. I didn't see any name written, but I imagine there was one. I
11 just didn't see it. I wasn't that close to him to be able to read the
13 Q. Now, you just mentioned for the first time here today that Rambo
14 came with some other individuals. Could you describe how these people
15 were attired. Did they also have uniforms?
16 A. Excuse me, I'm trying to do the best to give you an answer. Rambo
17 came into my burek shop, came into the shop, Rambo himself. But what
18 you're talking about is something else, another incident.
19 Q. Well, that's what I had asked you about and you said we were
20 talking about the same incident. Let me try and ask a simple question.
21 Do you have your -- a copy of your statement in front of you, sir?
22 A. Yes, I have a copy in front of me.
23 Q. Okay. Now, I just simply want to know with respect to paragraph
24 16 of that statement, and it's my understanding the paragraphs are the
25 same in the Albanian version. When you discuss the incident at paragraph
1 16 when Rambo came to your shop, was he alone or were other people with
3 A. Yes, this is right here. 16, but here I'm talking about the burek
4 shop, but there was another incident with Rambo at the restaurant.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Just confine yourself to the burek shop. Was he
6 alone or was he with other people?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, he was alone.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
9 MR. IVETIC:
10 Q. Okay. Now -- now that we're on the same page about the incident,
11 the description you provided of what this guy Rambo was wearing, does that
12 accurately reflect what he was wearing at the time of this particular
14 A. Yes, it does.
15 Q. Okay. Now, you did not report the incident that is set forth in
16 paragraph 16 with Rambo to anyone in the police station, did you? Yes or
18 A. No.
19 Q. Okay. And you mentioned that there was another incident with
20 Rambo. Would it be safe to say that you had multiple incidents with Rambo
21 during the time period that you had your own shop and prior to that time
22 period when you worked in the restaurant?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Okay. And in fact, if the material that has been provided for --
25 to me by the Office of the Prosecutor is correct, it would seem that your
1 first encounter with this individual, Rambo, occurred sometime in the
2 early 1990s. Is that accurate?
3 A. 1990 --
4 Q. Not the year 1990, but sometime in the early 1990s.
5 A. Yes, it was after 1990.
6 Q. Do you know how many times you had any run-ins or encounters with
7 Mr. Rambo from 1990 -- from sometime after 1990 through 1999, in total?
8 How many encounters did you have with this individual, Rambo?
9 A. I encountered him I think only three times.
10 Q. Okay. And I take it all of these encounters were hostile in
11 nature, were they not?
12 A. Well, I can assure you, if he had come in a friendly manner, he
13 would have come and had a cup of coffee, but it was different. I would
14 say it was hostile.
15 Q. And this was over a span of several years; is that accurate?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Did you at any point in time seek out or determine what the full
18 name of this individual, Rambo, was?
19 A. No, because sometimes they called him Rexhe, sometimes they called
20 him Rambo. He never had the same name. It depends who was with him.
21 Different people called him by different names.
22 Q. All right. Is Rexhe a Serbian name?
23 A. Oh, he was -- it's an Albanian name, but that's what they called
24 him. His friends, they would say: Hey, where are you Rexho? Or where
25 are you going, Rambo? Or Rinxho. Things like that. There were always a
1 lot -- other people around him and that -- they called him by different
3 Q. All right, sir, now I want to move on to other parts of your
4 statement to try and clear up a few details that are now nagging me. Now,
5 with respect to paragraph 28 of your statement, and if I could ask you to
6 turn to that paragraph just to make sure we're talking about the same
7 event. At that paragraph, you describe something from April of -- April
8 1st of 1999, when you were on your way back home after receiving a
9 telephone call from your neighbour. Is that accurate?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Okay. Now, in your statement, you identify an event where people
12 were being expelled and say -- and you state that the police were the ones
13 who were doing the expelling. Is that what the statement says?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Now, you -- is it correct that you met with and talked with the
16 Office of the Prosecutor on August the 19th, 2006?
17 A. Sorry, I didn't understand your question.
18 Q. Did you meet with and talk with the Prosecutor of this Tribunal on
19 August the 19th, 2006?
20 A. No.
21 Q. Okay. Did you meet and talk with the Prosecutor -- with the --
22 with someone from the Prosecutor's office at any time in the past two
23 weeks, prior to giving your testimony here today?
24 A. No, I didn't, never.
25 Q. Sir, did you -- did you meet with the two individuals, the
1 gentleman seated at the end of the bench of the Prosecution's side and the
2 lady seated in the middle of the bench on the Prosecution's side at any
3 point in time prior to giving your testimony here today?
4 A. No. This is the first time I see them, here.
5 Q. Okay. Sir, did you tell anyone from the Prosecutor's office that,
6 in fact, relative to paragraph 28 you did not see the regular police
7 during this act of expulsion?
8 A. I didn't see normal police, regular police, there expelling
10 Q. Okay. Then -- when in your statement at paragraph 28 where it
11 says, "The police were not there protecting them, they were expelling
12 them," what type of uniforms did the individuals who were doing this act
14 A. I don't know how to describe the uniforms. They were sort of
15 camouflage uniforms, and they had weapons with them. They had black caps
16 or like masks on their faces. That's the type of people they were.
17 Q. Now, earlier I believe you told me that the police that you saw in
18 Pristina had green caps. Is it -- am I correct in reading your testimony
19 to say that the people that were undertaking the acts of expelling people
20 in paragraph 28, that they did -- that they had black caps. Is that
22 A. The normal police had camouflage green uniforms and a cap, whereas
23 the paramilitaries wore masks on their faces and they had long boots and
24 camouflage uniforms.
25 Q. When you say "the paramilitaries," you are not referring to
1 personnel of the Ministry of Interior, are you?
2 A. The normal police, the MUP, as far as I know, whereas the military
3 who were around, they looked totally different.
4 Q. Perhaps you -- perhaps you did not understand my question. Who
5 are you referring to when you call people "paramilitaries"?
6 A. What I mean by "paramilitaries" are people who came from outside
7 of Kosova, who were members of organisations to come to Kosova and to do
8 what they wanted.
9 Q. Okay. So when we use the word "paramilitary," we are not talking
10 about the Serbian police from the Ministry of Interior, are we?
11 A. No.
12 Q. Thank you. So at paragraph 28, the events that you saw there,
13 were these paramilitaries that did this?
14 A. I would say 70 per cent were paramilitaries.
15 Q. What type of uniforms did these individuals have on?
16 A. You mean the paramilitaries?
17 Q. Yes.
18 A. They had black masks and red caps. Secondly, they had green
19 uniforms, but I didn't get close enough to look at them. But from 4 or 5
20 metres away, when I was leaving, I took a glance at them.
21 Q. Did they have any emblems, insignia, or badges? And if so, please
22 describe them.
23 A. No, they didn't have any badges or insignia. They had red caps
24 and black masks on their heads.
25 Q. Okay. And isn't it accurate that with respect to this incident
1 described in paragraph 28, that there were no regular police present
2 during the expulsion?
3 A. I didn't see any police protecting the population. I didn't
4 notice them.
5 Q. What I'm asking you, sir, is that: Isn't it a fact that you did
6 not see police taking part in the acts that are described in paragraph
8 A. No, I didn't see regular police there expelling people, but there
9 were normal, regular police out on the street. But the ones who were
10 expelling people were not regular police.
11 MR. IVETIC: Your Honour, before I proceed, can I have some
12 assistance from the Office of the Prosecutor. Are they willing to
13 stipulate that the materials they disclosed to me in fact relate to this
14 witness and that he did meet with them and speak with them and discuss
15 this incident and other incidents with them? Because this is happening
16 too often now, Your Honour, where the materials disclosed to us, we can't
17 make heads or tails of it, and it's impossible to proceed in an efficient
18 and productive cross-examination where material that is disclosed to us
19 differs so very much from the facts that are raised in the testimony of
21 JUDGE BONOMY: You don't seem to have been disabled in any way in
22 the conduct of that cross-examination. The only difficulty that arose
23 was because of the way you started off, by approaching it through the
24 statement, when a simple question to the witness about the nature of the
25 personnel involved in that incident would have got you the answer.
1 Probably could have done it in two questions, I think, if you hadn't done
2 it through the statement. So I don't think you ought to blame the
3 Prosecution for that difficulty. However, the separate matter you raise
4 is the -- as a result of approaching it the way you did, it seems plain to
5 me from all I've seen in the court is that there is an issue that needs to
6 be clarified.
7 Now, Ms. Moeller.
8 MS. MOELLER: And Your Honour is referring to the issue whether we
9 met with this witness or?
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, and it may be that it's an issue for
11 re-examination rather than to be dealt with at this point.
12 MS. MOELLER: That's what I was intending to do, Your Honours, and
13 if it helps Mr. Ivetic at this point I can certainly stipulate to the fact
14 that what is stated in the supplemental information sheet, who met with
15 this witness and when, is correct from our side.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
17 MR. IVETIC: Thank you.
18 Q. Now, sir, when you describe the 3rd of April, 1999, when you state
19 that you were expelled from your building, was your wife with you at all
20 times during that occasion?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And if you could clarify for us, what type of personnel did you
23 see engaged in expelling you and your wife from your home on or about 3
24 April 1999?
25 A. I wasn't really paying attention to this personnel. I was paying
1 attention to my wife who was in a tragic situation and she needed my
2 constant attention until we reached the train station. She was almost
3 fainting. She was extremely ill. She was mentally distressed and needed
4 my assistance.
5 Q. Well, sir, I believe that you testified earlier today that it was
6 the police that did this, and I'm going to have to ask you again: What
7 type of uniforms, badges, insignia, or emblems did these persons who you
8 label the police wear?
9 A. From the time we went out, from the time we were expelled from our
10 house, we saw red hats and black masks. Those were the people who
11 expelled us from our houses and said: Get out of your houses and go
12 wherever you want.
13 Q. Now, sir, I believe earlier you had described the persons wearing
14 red hats and black masks as paramilitaries. Was it in fact the
15 paramilitaries who expelled you from your home rather than the Serbian
17 A. Well, you know, everything in a uniform we call police. People
18 didn't make the distinction between paramilitaries and police there. I
19 would say that it was the paramilitary who expelled us, but on the street
20 outside there were normal policemen and they did nothing to protect us.
21 Q. Now, sir, when you say: "Everything in a uniform we call police"
22 and that people don't make distinctions between paramilitaries and the
23 police, are you telling me that you actually cannot testify with any
24 degree of certainty as to what a particular person in a uniform that did
25 expel you from your home, what they were in fact, whether they were
1 paramilitary, police, or even something else? Is that accurate?
2 A. I am telling you that they had red hats and black masks. Their
3 uniforms were camouflage. They had boots. They were wearing weapons.
4 Those were the people who expelled us from our homes.
5 Q. And I am trying to ask you to clarify your statement where you say
6 at line 4 of page 87, going on to line 5 of page 87: "Well, you know,
7 everything in a uniform we call police. People didn't make the
8 distinction between paramilitaries and police there." Are you telling me
9 that we cannot with any degree of certainty know from your testimony, when
10 you identify someone as being the police, that in fact they are the
11 Serbian police, that is to say employees of the Serbian Ministry of
13 A. I am telling you that the normal police from the Ministry of the
14 Interior were not the ones who expelled us from our homes.
15 Q. Okay.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: But bear in mind, Mr. Ivetic, that the witness has
17 said that there were regular Serb police there who did not intervene to
18 protect them.
19 MR. IVETIC: That was going to be my next question, Your Honour.
20 I'm aware of that.
21 Q. Sir, you stated that your wife with was you at all times. Are you
22 aware of the fact that your wife has executed a sworn statement for the
23 purpose of this Tribunal describing the expulsion and the travel from your
24 home to the train station and has, in that sworn statement, said that she
25 did not see any police that day?
1 A. I don't know about that. That was not my statement. You would
2 have to ask her.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, Mr. Ivetic, find a suitable place to
4 interrupt, please.
5 MR. IVETIC: Well, Your Honours, if I ask another question, I was
6 about to move to another topic.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
8 MR. IVETIC: There's a possibility I might open up a whole new
9 slew of questions. So I think now is the best time and I will take up
10 tomorrow with the remainder of my cross, which hopefully will not be too
12 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
13 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Moeller.
15 MS. MOELLER: Could we get an estimate of how long the
16 cross-examination for this witness will take?
17 JUDGE BONOMY: As on other occasions, I invite you to discuss it
18 with one of the Defence counsel, who hopefully will remain an active
19 spokesperson to give you some indication of the position.
20 MS. MOELLER: Thank you.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, Witness, we have to interrupt your evidence at
22 this stage. That's as much as -- as long as we can sit today, and we will
23 resume hearing this tomorrow afternoon at 2.15. So you need to be back
24 here in time to begin giving evidence at 2.15. Meanwhile, it's vital that
25 you do not, I stress do not, discuss any part of your evidence with - and
1 I again stress - any person at all between now and then, and that means do
2 not discuss the evidence you have given or the evidence you are likely to
3 give later in the case tomorrow. Anything else you can talk about, but
4 that subject, the evidence, is off limits. All right?
5 So we'll adjourn now and resume tomorrow at 2.15.
6 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.01 p.m.,
7 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 24th day of
8 August, 2006, at 2.15 p.m.