1 Thursday, 7 December 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.22 p.m.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Can I raise one matter before the witness comes in.
6 There is an application to revise the Rule 65 ter list and add a number
7 of witnesses and remove a number. The Chamber has decided on the action
8 to take, which largely grants the motion. There's just one exception.
9 But one of the issues that arises is in relation to a witness Sterenberg.
10 [Trial Chamber confers]
11 JUDGE BONOMY: I may have the wrong name. One of the witnesses is
12 scheduled for next week.
13 MR. STAMP: [Microphone not activated]
14 JUDGE BONOMY: It is --
15 MR. STAMP: The name is correct.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: It is Sterenberg. The Chamber's decision is to
17 allow that witness to be added, and there will be a written decision filed
18 either later today or tomorrow. We need to know, however, whether calling
19 him next week will cause difficulty for the Defence or whether knowing now
20 that the Chamber is going to allow the witness to give evidence he can be
21 taken next week. Now, can you tell me whether there would be difficulty
22 dealing with his evidence if he were called next week.
23 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Your Honour, can we inform you at the first
24 break? After the first break?
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes. If it does - and we're relying on your
1 judgement on this - then we will order that he does not give evidence
2 until at least the middle of January. But if you can accommodate the
3 situation, knowing that that's the decision of the Chamber in any event,
4 to allow him, then obviously that would be extremely helpful to the
5 progress of the case.
6 MR. STAMP: If I may, Your Honour, one of the witnesses, the
7 reasons why he was brought forward was because there are indications that
8 he might be completely unavailable or likely to be unavailable next year,
9 so --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: This isn't a matter for debate, Mr. Stamp.
11 MR. STAMP: Very well.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: We have made our minds up. We only need to know
13 whether that's going to cause difficulty for the Defence or whether they
14 can accommodate the situation.
15 We can now have the witness, please.
16 [The witness entered court]
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Good afternoon, Mr. Cvetic. Your examination by
18 Mr. Stamp will now continue.
19 Mr. Stamp.
20 MR. STAMP: Thank you very much, Mr. President, Your Honours.
21 WITNESS: LJUBINKO CVETIC [Resumed]
22 [Witness answered through interpreter]
23 Examination by Mr. Stamp: [Continued]
24 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Cvetic.
25 A. Good afternoon.
1 Q. I would just like to run very quickly through the organisation of
2 the MUP, particularly as it relates to Kosovo and the personnel thereof --
3 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please be moved closer to the
4 microphone, please, thank you.
5 MR. STAMP:
6 Q. -- of a SUP, S-U-P, for Kosovska Mitrovica. Can you just tell us
7 briefly or describe briefly the role and function of the SUPs within the
8 organisation of police services in Serbia in the latter part of 1997,
9 1998, 1999.
10 A. At the level of the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of
11 Serbia, and in keeping with the law on internal affairs, the minister of
12 the interior of the Republic of Serbia put into force a rule book or rules
13 of procedure on the internal organisation of the Ministry of the Interior.
14 In the rule book, what is foreseen is to have 33 SUPs which were supposed
15 to be internal organisational units of the Ministry of the Interior. In
16 the territory of Kosovo and Metohija, there was a total of seven,
17 Pristina, Gnjilane, Urosevac, Prizren, Djakovica, Pec, and Kosovska
18 Mitrovica, each of these places had their own SUP.
19 Q. What was the territorial jurisdiction of each SUP? Or may I just
20 put it this way: Were the SUPs responsible for the municipality of police
21 affairs in one or more than one municipality within Kosovo and Metohija?
22 A. I will try and be specific. This SUP of Kosovska Mitrovica
23 included the area of the Kosovska Mitrovica district comprising the
24 following municipalities: The municipality of Kosovska Mitrovica, then
25 the municipality of Leposavic, Zvecan, Zubin Potok, Vucitrn, and Srbica.
1 As for the other secretariats, I don't have such specific data.
2 Q. But in respect to the other secretariats, they would also be
3 responsible for the management of the affairs in various municipalities
4 within Kosovo? Each SUP was allocated a group of municipalities to
5 manage. Is that correct?
6 A. It is correct.
7 Q. Now, within the organisation or the administration of the police
8 in Serbia and in Kosovo and Metohija, which police organ were the SUPs
9 subordinated to, to whom did they report administratively?
10 A. The secretariats of internal affairs in Kosovo and Metohija were
11 directly under the Ministry of the Interior and the MUP headquarters or
12 staff in Pristina. They reported to the MUP staff in Pristina and the
13 Ministry of the Interior in Belgrade.
14 Q. And the Ministry of the Interior in Belgrade, would that be the
15 RJB, the public security department?
16 A. Yes, to the public security department. Anything which fell under
17 the work of the public security department had to do with public security
18 in general. In Kosovo there was separate units as well as in Serbia which
19 were tasked to work on state security. The secretariats had the sole role
20 within the domain of public security.
21 MR. STAMP: Could the witness be shown exhibit P1072, please.
22 And, Your Honours, I just want the witness to identify the document. It
23 is a legal document and I think it can be agreed upon later on what it is
24 and it will be discussed by another witness. But pending that agreement,
25 perhaps the witness could just identify it.
1 Q. Does that document there contain the rules which govern the
2 internal -- the establishment and the internal organisation of the SUPs?
3 A. Yes. As I said, the minister of the interior, pursuant to the law
4 on internal affairs, put this into force. I don't know exactly which
5 article of the law it includes; I believe it is Article 6. Based on that,
6 he put these rules into force on the internal organisation of the Ministry
7 of the Interior. And an excerpt of the rules was forwarded to each of the
8 secretariats in Serbia and in Kosovo and Metohija. Before me, I see its
9 title page: "Rules establishing the internal organisation of the Ministry
10 of the Interior for the SUP Pristina." Such rules were forwarded to each
11 of the secretariats in Kosovo and in Serbia, the total being 33.
12 Q. Thank you. Now, in respect to the organs and bodies that were
13 subordinated to the SUPs, there were also departments of internal affairs,
14 were there not; and if so, could you just briefly describe the role and
15 function of these departments?
16 A. Yes. Each secretariat for internal affairs in Serbia and in
17 Kosovo and Metohija had its own subunits, organisationally speaking. They
18 were termed OUPs, the departments of internal affairs and police stations.
19 To be specific, the SUP of Kosovska Mitrovica had a OUP in Vucitrn, in
20 Srbica, in Leposavic. And they had a police station in Zvecani and
21 another one in Zubin Potok. A similar type of organisation could be found
22 in the other SUPs in Kosovo and Serbia, depending on the security
23 assessment which had to be carried out previously. If need be, I can
24 explain the internal organisation of the OUPs as to what they comprised
25 and what fell within individual police stations as well.
1 Q. Thank you. The police stations and the OUPs were manned by
2 regular police personnel. Is that correct?
3 A. By a decree of the systematisation of the Ministry of the
4 Interior, which was forwarded to all the secretariats, job descriptions
5 were provided describing the level of education and experience needed to
6 carry out specific tasks and duties. There was a systematic table for all
7 job descriptions in police stations and OUPs, and there were regular
8 employees manning such stations and OUPs.
9 Q. And were the regular police or the regular employees manning the
10 OUPs and the police station augmented - and I'm speaking particularly now
11 in 1998 and 1999 in Kosovo and Metohija - were they augmented by the
12 recruitment or the enlistment of reserve police officers?
13 A. Yes. In keeping with the law on internal affairs, in order to
14 carry out tasks pertaining to internal affairs, one can employ or recruit
15 people from the reserve force as well. Such a decision needs to be made
16 by the Minister of the Interior, and pursuant to the same law, he issued a
17 directive on the type of work within the police tasked with -- which can
18 be carried out by reservists.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cvetic, what is the difference in -- in an area
20 between an OUP and a police station?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The OUP is the department of
22 internal affairs. Each OUP had a police station as well as several other
23 organisational units, whereas an individual police station is a unit in
24 itself and nothing else. The other smaller organisational units which
25 fell under various OUPs is something I can explain further in detail.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: It probably won't be necessary. That was very
2 helpful. Thank you.
3 Mr. Stamp.
4 MR. STAMP:
5 Q. How many reservists were enlisted in the MUP or the -- or your --
6 your secretariat, the secretariat for Kosovska Mitrovica, in 1998?
7 A. Members of the police reserve force were used at certain points
8 during 1998 on various tasks. The maximum number of such reservists at a
9 given point equalled the number of those on active duty; the ratio was
10 one-to-one, and it only happened when the security situation demanded such
11 a ratio to be in place.
12 Q. And in the early part -- in 1998, can you recall approximately how
13 many reservists there were in your SUP?
14 A. There were some 665 reservists, and the same number goes for the
15 active officers.
16 Q. Now, in 1999, particularly in March 1999, did this number remain
17 the same or were there efforts made to increase the number?
18 A. Upon completion of anti-terrorist actions undertaken in Kosovo and
19 Metohija between the 25th of July and the 29th of September, 1998, and
20 once the OSCE mission arrived and after the Milosevic-Holbrooke agreement
21 was signed, it was agreed that the number of the police in place in Kosovo
22 to be reduced. In Kosovo as a whole, there were 14.571 policemen. By
23 virtue of the agreement the figure was brought down to 10.021. In early
24 1999, when terrorist activities were stepped up, another mobilisation was
25 carried out recruiting both active and reserve policemen. When I
1 say "active policemen" it included members of police special units, which
2 had been withdrawn once the OSCE mission arrived. And later, in March,
3 immediately prior to the aggression, they were again grouped in the area
4 of Kosovo. The mobilisation was ordered on the 17th of March and was
5 supposed to be completed by the 20th of March, 1999. The number of police
6 in Kosovo was between 14.500 and 15.000. In the SUP in
7 Kosovska Mitrovica, there were policemen from the special -- with the PJP,
8 and the number was 1.099 --
9 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat the end of his
10 answer. He mentioned two figures which the interpreters did not catch.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: At the end of your answer you gave us two figures
12 there, one of them was 1.099. What was the other figure?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In Kosovska Mitrovica there were
14 1.999 and not 1.099.
15 MR. STAMP:
16 Q. That is 1.999 policemen, some of whom were members of the PJP. Is
17 that what you mean?
18 A. Yes.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I understood it rather differently from that.
20 You mean including PJP who were not normally based in Kosovo?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Later on after the
22 mobilisation, between the 17th and 20th of March, they were sent to the
23 area of Kosovo since an imminent threat of war was proclaimed.
24 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honour.
25 Q. The regular police, I take it, would have been trained and paid
1 and disciplined within the normal police framework. So I'd like to just
2 ask you a couple of questions about the reservists, reserve police. How
3 many of them were there by March 1999 in Kosovo and how many in your SUP?
4 A. I said that the ratio between the active and reserve police
5 members was one-to-one. According to the job description schedule, there
6 were 665 active policemen and the number of reservists was the same. What
7 you, however, probably have in mind are the reserve police detachments
8 which were formed. As for those, they were formed in June 1998 in order
9 to defend villages against terrorist attacks and in order to protect the
11 At that time, terrorist activities increased, they made incursions
12 into villages, they robbed, looted, and took away property and vehicles.
13 Therefore, a decision was made for every village in Kosovo and Metohija to
14 have reserve police detachments to protect such settlements from terrorist
15 gangs' incursions. In the area of Kosovska Mitrovica, there was a total
16 of 58 reserve police detachments; in Kosovo as a whole, there were 254.
17 Such detachments comprised local inhabitants, people who lived there and
18 worked there, and they were used as needed. They were armed, and their
19 total number was around 2.000 in Kosovska Mitrovica. As for these reserve
20 police detachments, in the overall structure there were some 6.034 of
22 Q. So if you could just tell me briefly, what was the distinction
23 between members of the reserve police and members of these reserve police
24 detachments, if any?
25 A. Well, members of the reserve force of the police, when they were
1 used in accordance with the law on internal affairs, had all the rights as
2 did the members of the active police force. And when they were not being
3 used, they did not have such rights. As regards the reserve police
4 detachments, the reserve police squads, these squads were armed but they
5 were not completely uniformed because we lacked a number of uniforms.
6 They were organised upon the military principle. They had their
7 commanders or squad leaders and deputy squad leaders, the komandiri, and
8 the necessary number of policemen. They were not remunerated adequately
9 for that, in other words they received no salaries and they did not have
10 the same rights as these reserve police members who would be used in
11 accordance with the provisions of the law on the interior. The reserve
12 police squads also comprised citizens who had a wartime duty station also
13 according to a different obligation. For instance, people who were
14 assigned either to the civil defence or to local units of the Army of
15 Yugoslavia, and their exclusive task was defence of the villages. For
16 that, for their activity, the scope of their competence, of their work,
17 was prescribed by an instruction, a very clear instruction, on the defence
18 of inhabited places which also spelled out the procedure to be followed.
19 This instruction was forwarded to all the secretariats and by all the
20 secretariats to all the units by the Joint Command.
21 Q. Well, I don't want us to move away from reserves just now but you
22 mentioned Joint Command. What do you mean when you referred to "Joint
24 A. Well, during 1998, or more precisely in July 1998, at a meeting in
25 the MUP staff in Pristina, all the heads of secretariats from the area of
1 Kosovo were informed of the fact that a command had been set up at the
2 highest level, its mandate being to integrate the activities of the army
3 and police in the implementation of anti-terrorist operations, which
4 ensued in the coming period, in the period that followed.
5 Q. Thank you. We return to the Joint Command, but let me finish
6 quickly on the reserve police detachments. The reserve police units -- or
7 the reserve police detachments that were involved in village defence to
8 whom did they or their commanders report within the scheme or the
9 framework of police management in Kosovo?
10 A. They had their own commander, and he liaised with the commander of
11 the police station in his area and the commander of the police station
12 with the head of the department of the police, i.e., the head of the
13 secretariat of the area in question.
14 Q. Thank you. Who armed them? Who gave them weapons?
15 A. The reserve police squads were armed from the level of the
16 Ministry of the Interior through the MUP staff in Pristina and the staff
17 MUP did that through the Secretariats of the Interior in the area of
19 MR. STAMP: Could we bring up document P1115.
20 Q. And while that is coming up, may I just ask you one thing. You
21 said earlier that the reserve police -- members of the reserve police
22 detachments did not have uniforms or full uniforms. Did they have at
23 least a part of a uniform, a police uniform, or were some of them in --
24 entirely clad in civilian clothes while they were on duty?
25 A. Well, I can say that they didn't have any part of a police
1 uniform. They had basic equipment of a soldier, which is to say a cap, a
2 jacket, belt, and parts of equipment like that. It -- I don't know that
3 the reserve police squads did not have any equipment. I can say that.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Again, I would like just to take you back briefly.
5 You were asked about reserve police detachments. Did they or their
6 commanders -- sorry. To whom did they or their commanders report within
7 the scheme or framework of police management in Kosovo? And you said that
8 they had their commander and he liaised with the commander of the police
9 station in his area. Now, what do you mean he liaised with the commander
10 of the police station?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The reports from their terrain, from
12 their villages were would be submitted by them to the commander of the
13 police station who covered the -- the village in question territory-wise.
14 And the commander of the police station would submit to them certain
15 instructions in terms of the method of carrying out their tasks and the
16 general procedure.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Who would decide on the tasks that they had to
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, depending on the security
20 situation and the security issues, decisions would be submitted either
21 from the level of the Ministry of the Interior or the MUP staff in
22 Pristina, the secretariats of the interior, the departments of internal
23 affairs, or police stations as the last, lowest units. Otherwise, in
24 respect of all those reserve police squads, certain documents had been
25 drawn up. First and foremost, instructions on the defence of settlements;
1 then an aide-memoire on the conduct of members of the police when they
2 should find themselves in a zone which was riddled by terrorist groups;
3 and then combat training instructions and instructions also on command
4 liaison communication methods.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
6 Mr. Stamp.
7 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honour.
8 Q. Could you have a look at the document on the screen. This is a
9 memorandum dated 30th of July, 1998.
10 MR. STAMP: Could we scroll down to the signature block, please.
11 And you see that's a memorandum from the head of staff,
12 Major-General Sreten Lukic. Is that what you see reflected in the
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And in the body of the document it refers to weapons issued by the
16 Army of Yugoslavia to citizens engaged in the reserve police stations to
17 defend villages and cities in the municipalities under the jurisdiction of
18 the areas of the secretariats.
19 MR. STAMP: Could we scroll to the next page, please --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Before you do that, can you explain to me what a
21 reserve police station is.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Reserve police squads, as I've said,
23 were set up to defend inhabited places.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: It's a mistranslation I think. RPO should be
25 reserve police detachment or squad. We need to be -- you need to be
1 careful about this, Mr. Stamp. This is very important evidence.
2 MR. STAMP: Yes.
3 Q. Can you read the first paragraph of the memorandum, please.
4 MR. STAMP: And can I just ask the interpreters to interpret it
5 from what is read by the witness and not what is on the translated
6 document. Could you read the first paragraph, please.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "Please find enclosed extracts from
8 the register of weapons issued by the Army of Yugoslavia to citizens
9 engaged in reserve police squads to defend villages and cities in the
10 municipalities under your secretariat's jurisdiction."
11 MR. STAMP: And could we --
12 Q. And just to be clear, the reserve police squads referred to there
13 is the same thing that you were discussing earlier as reserve police
15 A. You see, in the area of Kosovo and Metohija there existed
16 competent military territorial organs. They were the commands of the
17 military OUP boards. These commands according to their plans of use had a
18 number of units that was also set up in the different villages and the
19 commands of the military boards armed those units with automatic and
20 semi-automatic weaponry. Those units which were part of these military
21 districts, rather than boards, if they were not used -- if they were not
22 used for the needs of the military organs, they would be used and engaged
23 as part of the reserve police squads. That is why at the beginning when I
24 talked about how many had been armed within the reserve police squads, I
25 mentioned the figure of 6.034 as the total number and 2.000 was the number
1 in the reserve squads, which there were 58. And the other arms and
2 armaments were issued to other members and to other citizens who were
3 issued arms on different grounds because they had some different
5 Q. Very well.
6 MR. STAMP: Can we look at the second page just to see the total
7 number of weapons issued.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I'm glad you understand that, Mr. Stamp. If
9 you just want -- it will not do to throw all this material at us and
10 expect us to sort it out.
11 MR. STAMP: Very well.
12 Q. Let's return to the last answer. There were as well set up in
13 the -- at the village level units which were under the military districts.
14 Is that correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And many times when they were not engaged by the military, these
17 citizens in these units would be used, if necessary, for the needs of the
18 police reserve squads?
19 A. That's right.
20 Q. And --
21 JUDGE BONOMY: I've understood that. What I don't understand is
22 what P1115 has got to do with these bodies, these military territorial
23 organs. Are we going to come to that?
24 MR. STAMP: Yes, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: I see. Very well. Carry on then.
1 MR. STAMP:
2 Q. If you -- the weapons you see --
3 MR. STAMP: Well, could we -- yes, we are there.
4 Q. There's a total number of weapons P43 -- sorry. 7.436. Were
5 these weapons distributed or issued to citizens within your SUP at that
6 time? What the document reflects -- could I just ask to which citizens
7 and on what basis were these weapons distributed?
8 A. The citizens would be issued with weapons on the basis of their
9 wartime duty stations under the Law on Defence. Every citizen had certain
10 rights and certain obligations and duties, so that a citizen could be
11 assigned to serve for the needs of the Army of Yugoslavia, for the needs
12 of the military territorial organs, for the needs of the organs of the
13 interior, the police, for the needs of civil defence, for the surveillance
14 of reporting service, for the command liaison communications centre, and
15 for other needs within the defence effort. In this second instance - and
16 I do not see the entire original document right now -- well, yes, now I do
17 see it - that is the number which on the 30th of July featured in the area
18 of Kosovska Mitrovica.
19 Q. Would you be able to say how many of those weapons were
20 distributed to reserve police detachments or citizens who were members of
21 reserve police detachments?
22 A. Well, you see, when you look at just the police -- reserve police
23 squads or detachments, that's about 2.000. But if you take into account
24 the fact that this reserve force also comprises citizens assigned to it on
25 different grounds, then we have this figure, the figure of 7.000 and -- I
1 can't see the rest. 7.436.
2 Q. Very well.
3 MR. STAMP: Could we have a look at P0 -- I beg your pardon.
5 Q. Before we get there, were Kosovo Albanians issued with any of
6 these weapons?
7 A. No, they were not issued with weapons in a systematic way, in this
8 way. But as citizens, because every citizen, according to the law on arms
9 and ammunition, could apply to be issued permission to buy, to purchase,
10 weapons, meaning hunting weapons and pistols and not soldier's weapons.
11 Q. The document before you, which is P1114 dated the 1st of July,
12 1998, can we just quickly go to the last page of the document, it is a
13 document that you signed as head of the secretariat. Can you see that?
14 A. Yes.
15 MR. STAMP: And if we could return to the front, the first page of
16 the document.
17 Q. I think you have here that in Kosovska Mitrovica SUP area for the
18 one reserve branch, police stations have been organised. I take it these
19 are reserve police detachments have been organised as a total of 1.374
20 members. Do you see that?
21 A. Yes, that is what this document states, and I've already stressed
22 that in the area of Kosovska Mitrovica there had been organised 58 reserve
23 police detachments, with a total of about 2.000 members.
24 Can I just see the date, yes --
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Do we have an English version of this?
1 MR. STAMP: I'm sorry. Can we put on the screen the English
2 version of P1114. I think you could split the screen if possible.
3 I'm very sorry, Your Honours.
4 Q. While we are getting the two documents on the screen, you were
5 explaining, Mr. Cvetic, the difference in the number of reserve police
6 detachments, and you were referring to the date of the document, which is
7 the 1st of July, 1998. Would you like to briefly complete your
9 A. This here is the reply of the secretariat of the interior of
10 Kosovska Mitrovica to a cable which was dispatched by the MUP staff in
11 Pristina. The objective being to assess the need for armaments for the
12 reserve police squads, and this is not a document for just Kosovska
13 Mitrovica. This is a document which refers to all the secretariats in the
14 area of Kosovo, its basic purpose being to identify the needs in weapons
15 in order to supply such armaments in a timely fashion.
16 Q. Quickly, you had said before that there were 58 of these reserve
17 police squads, and you are explaining --
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. -- The reference to the document for 41 squads. Could you just
20 complete that explanation?
21 A. The decision on the setting up of reserve police squads was
22 adopted in June 1998, and until the 1st of July, 1998, there had been set
23 up 41 police squads. Not all the reserve police squads in all the
24 villages were set up; they were just set up in 41 villages with the
25 remaining balance of 17 villages up to the figure of 58 being set up at a
1 later date.
2 Q. Very well. The document -- if you look at the first page there,
3 the third sentence, the document purports to summarise, broken down by
4 municipalities the distribution of these weapons. I think you said that
5 the document refers to all of Kosovo. Can you reflect on that. Does this
6 document refer to all of Kosovo or does it refer to your SUP, the
7 requirements for your SUP, Kosovska Mitrovica?
8 A. I am not quite clear what your question is. Please, could you
9 repeat it.
10 Q. The --
11 A. I don't see it on the screen, in other words, this is the previous
12 document that I've already commented on.
13 MR. STAMP: Could you scroll to the top of this document, please.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Is this the document dated the 1st
15 of July, 1998?
16 MR. STAMP:
17 Q. Yes.
18 A. Number 284/98.
19 Q. And it is a document which I've already indicated to you that you
20 had signed, and it deals with the distribution of weapons. Now I think
21 you said that the document refers to the distribution of weapons to the
22 reserve police squad members in all of Kosovo and Metohija. Is that
23 correct or does this document refer to the distribution of weapons in your
25 A. It only refers to the weapons issued in the area of the SUP of
1 Kosovska Mitrovica. I wanted to stress that this was a reply to a cable
2 forwarded to the SUP of Kosovska Mitrovica. It is realistic on my part to
3 assume that such a cable was sent to the other SUPs in Kosovo, not only to
4 the Kosovska Mitrovica one.
5 Q. Very well.
6 MR. STAMP: Can we just go again to the last page, the text just
7 above the signature block.
8 Q. The document indicates that the following weapons need to be
9 procured and obtained for the needs of the Kosovska Mitrovica SUP reserve
10 force: Automatic rifles, 800 pieces; semi-automatic rifles, 200 pieces;
11 light machine-guns, 100 pieces, of which there were to be 50 pieces of the
12 M-53 light machine-guns and 50 pieces of M-72 light machine-guns. Were
13 the reserve police squads regularly issued with light machine-guns?
14 A. Yes.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Can you tell me, please, whether these reserve
16 police squads had an office or a base.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Reserve police squads or RPOs in
18 individual villages were mobilised within the local communes or the
19 villages themselves. As for separate facility for such RPOs, there were
20 none, no purpose-built facilities.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: In that case, when a light machine-gun was issued,
22 where was it kept?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All weaponry was issued to
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
1 Mr. Stamp.
2 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Mr President.
3 Q. Can I -- what was the policy applied to your knowledge in Kosovo
4 generally and in Kosovska Mitrovica in particular in respect to the arming
5 and employment of volunteers in the police force?
6 A. As far as reservists are concerned, in case of an imminent threat
7 of war and the threat of war, can be included into the units of the Army
8 of Yugoslavia. To be precise, the Army of Yugoslavia in the case of an
9 imminent threat of war or state of war can be brought up to strength by
10 reservists as well.
11 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: By volunteers as
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] However, that possibility does not
14 exist for the Ministry of the Interior. The way it is organised, in terms
15 of all of its units, cannot make use of volunteers. Volunteers can only
16 be used by the Army of Yugoslavia, and such volunteers can be conscripted
17 only through the relevant military bodies. In the area of the
18 Kosovska Mitrovica SUP among the active and reserve police force, there
19 were no volunteers. There were individuals who reported to us who came
20 wishing to join the police, and these were usually the people born in the
21 given area who had moved to other parts of the Republic of Serbia. Once
22 the imminent threat of war and the state of war was declared, they came
23 back to defend their area against terrorist activities and NATO. All such
24 people were sent to the military sector office, and in keeping with the
25 needs of the Army of Yugoslavia they would then be deployed to various VJ
1 units. I know of only one case in the area of Kosovska Mitrovica, it was
2 a person who came to me directly, stating that he wished to join the
3 reserve police force; however, I had to tell him to go to the competent
4 military office, military territorial office, and then subsequently he was
5 made part of a VJ unit. It is the only case that I know of.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Bakrac.
7 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it is important to
8 correct in the transcript that I didn't tell him to go to the military
9 organ or body but to the military territorial organ. It is line 23, page
10 21. The distinction being a military body as opposed to a military
11 territorial body. We had the witness before who spoke about that, and it
12 is important to distinguish the two in the transcript.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: It probably is resolved by page 22, line 10, which
14 I think is on the same subject.
15 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Yes, I just wanted to draw the
16 attention of the interpreters to that; it is an important issue for the
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Bakrac.
19 Mr. Stamp.
20 MR. STAMP: Thank you.
21 Q. To summarise what you just said, as a matter of policy is it also
22 your understanding of the law that the police forces could not, and to
23 your knowledge, did not accept people who wanted to volunteer?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. What is the policy, to your knowledge, and particularly within
1 your bailiwick of Kosovska Mitrovica, your SUP, with respect to unofficial
2 armed groups or individuals, that is armed groups or individuals that were
3 not attached to any legally established organ but were independent,
4 sometimes referred to as paramilitaries. Did you encounter them; and if
5 so, what was the policy in respect to these people?
6 A. With the start of the NATO aggression in the area of the Kosovska
7 Mitrovica SUP or, to be more precise, on the road communication Kosovska
8 Mitrovica-Ribarice, there appeared an armed group which was not part of
9 the army or the police. They had modern automatic rifles and wore
10 uniforms. The people who tried to use that road were stopped by the group
11 and valuables were taken. Once notified of their activities - and I was
12 notified by the commander of the police station of Zubin Potok since that
13 locale fell under the jurisdiction of that police station - I ordered that
14 he attend the scene to arrest those men and take them into custody.
15 Once he came there, he couldn't establish any sort of contact with
16 them. They threatened to open fire even at the police. Once I was
17 notified of that by the commander, I advised the head of the MUP staff in
18 Pristina, who undertook measures immediately. As of that moment, the
19 group did not re-appear. As to what happened with them, whether they were
20 sent somewhere, I don't know; however, in the area covered by the
21 Kosovska Mitrovica SUP, those people did not appear again while I was part
22 of that secretariat. Otherwise, the Ministry of the Interior's policy and
23 position as well as the position of the Government of Serbia was that no
24 paramilitary formations are to be allowed. They were not allowed to
25 appear in the area of Kosovo and Metohija. It was said that all means
1 were to be used by the army and police in order to arrest such people and
2 to take them into custody, to surrender them to the competent bodies.
3 First and foremost, measures needed to be taken to prevent them from
4 coming to Kosovo and Metohija, and all roads and other channels of
5 communication were controlled so as to try and prevent it; however, it
6 still happened in Kosovska Mitrovica. It was emphatically addressed, and
7 the unit was sent away, the unit never returned.
8 Q. So I take it from your answer that -- and to summarise, that
9 according to the policy of the government and the MUP, as stated,
10 paramilitaries were not to be tolerated; and if the will existed, they
11 could be removed and expelled from the territory of Kosovo?
12 A. Yes. It was until -- or before the 16th of April while I was
13 still head of the secretariat.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Is it your evidence that you only ever received one
15 report in your area of the presence of paramilitaries?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the area under the competence of
17 the secretariat, there was only one group on the road communication
18 between Kosovska Mitrovica and Ribarice. That armed group was removed
19 pursuant to directives received directly from the ministry. I don't know
20 where they went from there, but they never returned to the area of the
21 Kosovska Mitrovica SUP. That is the only group I know of.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Why did you refer to the 16th of April?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't remember mentioning the 16th
24 of April.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Well -- I'm sorry -- yes, Mr. --
1 MR. STAMP: Go ahead, I was going to remind him.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
3 You've been interpreted as saying it was until -- or before the
4 16th of April while I was still head of the secretariat. Now, did
5 something change on the 16th of April?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have no knowledge of that.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
8 Mr. Stamp.
9 MR. STAMP:
10 Q. Can we turn to the MUP staff. You said yesterday that in June, I
11 think it was, 1998 Sreten Lukic was appointed the head of the MUP staff of
12 Kosovo and Metohija. Can you tell us when that staff was set up, if you
14 A. Yes. There was a meeting in the MUP staff in Pristina on the 11th
15 of June, 1998. There the assistant minister of the interior informed all
16 heads of secretariats that there were organisational changes within the
17 MUP staff. The new head of the MUP staff in Pristina was Mr. Sreten
19 Q. Do you know when the MUP staff of Kosovo and Metohija was
20 originally set up?
21 A. If you have in mind the MUP staff headed by Mr. Lukic, there was a
22 decision on the formation of that staff dated the 15th of May, 1998.
23 However, the MUP staff was active in Kosovo and Metohija for an extensive
24 period of time and it existed even before 1998 [as interpreted].
25 Q. Very well. What was the role --
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Zecevic.
2 MR. ZECEVIC: 26 -- I'm sorry, 26, 6, the witness said it existed
3 even before 1990, not 1998. He said "1990."
4 MR. STAMP: Very well. I'll ask him.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well. Clarify it, please.
6 MR. STAMP:
7 Q. Did you say the MUP staff for Kosovo and Metohija existed before
8 1998 or before 1990?
9 A. Before 1990, except at that time it was called the staff of
10 separate or special units of the police in Kosovo and Metohija.
11 Q. What was its role and function in the police organisation in
12 Kosovo in May and June of 1998?
13 A. The function of the staff was described in the decision on its
14 formation, which was put into force by the head of the public security
15 department. In the decision inter alia it is stated that the staff is to
16 plan, organise, coordinate, and direct the work of the secretariat of the
17 interior and police border stations in Kosovo and Metohija, especially
18 when it comes to serious security issues and breaches, such as to prevent
19 riots, armed resistance and insurgency, as well as terrorism. There was
20 some other tasks as well. The head of the staff was to report to the head
21 of the public security department concerning his work and the work of the
22 staff. In turn, the head of the public security department was to notify
23 of all the activities on the part of the staff in Kosovo and Metohija.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Do we have that order, Mr. Stamp?
25 MR. STAMP: I am not sure. I believe we do or we have documents
1 that relate to that order, but I could give a precise answer after the
2 next break.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: If the material is coming at a later stage, that's
4 fine; otherwise, it might be important to get a little more information
5 from the witness.
6 MR. STAMP: Very well.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: For example, the date of the decision.
8 MR. STAMP:
9 Q. The -- do you remember the date of the decision on the formation
10 of the MUP staff?
11 A. I stated that those decisions changed, there were several;
12 however, the decision appointing Mr. Lukic as the staff head dates back to
13 May, or rather, that decision on the formation of the MUP staff in
14 Pristina is dated the 15th of May, 1998. The decision on the appointment
15 of the head as well as the appointment of members of the staff is dated
16 the 11th of June, 1998.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
18 Well, I think this is a suitable time for us to break. We have to
19 break at this stage, Mr. Cvetic. Would you please go with the usher, who
20 will show you where to wait while we have the break.
21 [The witness stands down]
22 JUDGE BONOMY: We shall resume at five past 4.00.
23 --- Recess taken at 3.47 p.m.
24 --- On resuming at 4.08 p.m.
25 [The witness takes the stand]
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
2 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Mr. President, Your Honours.
3 At the break a question had arisen in respect to the documents
4 that were related to the testimony of the witness. Two of those documents
5 have been located; they are on the exhibit list. They were not listed for
6 this witness. It was intended to use -- to be used with another witness,
7 but they are pretty short documents, and I would ask the leave of the
8 Court to show the witness these documents. One is a document that he
9 refers to in respect to the formation of the staff and its role, and the
10 other one is the -- is the membership of the staff which he said changed
11 from time to time.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: It sounds as though it would be sensible for us to
13 see these at this stage.
14 Is there any objection to that course?
15 Mr. Lukic.
16 MR. LUKIC: Only, Your Honour, if we should know which documents
17 we are going to see because the witness was telling about the documents
18 from May and the 11th of June and whether those documents Mr. Stamp wants
19 to show this witness or some other documents.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
21 MR. STAMP: The witness referred to a document of the 15th of May.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
23 MR. STAMP: Or to a decision of the 15th of May.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
25 MR. STAMP: I would show the witness the document relevant to that
1 decision. The witness referred to also decisions on the appointment of
2 members of the staff which changed from time to time naturally as perhaps
3 you Judges should know for whatever reason I would show the witness that,
4 and that decision, dated the 5th of -- it is dated for a date in April of
5 1998. The --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Well --
7 MR. STAMP: -- date is not clear, but that date would be
8 subsequent to the appointment of the -- of the -- of General Lukic --
9 JUDGE BONOMY: But does that document have any particular
11 MR. STAMP: The document -- yes, to the extent that it shows the
12 membership of the Joint Command at that time.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry, I thought we were talking about the MUP
15 MR. STAMP: Sorry.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: -- rather than the Joint Command.
17 MR. STAMP: Yes, Your Honour, we are speaking about the MUP staff
18 for Kosovo and Metohija.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Right.
20 MR. STAMP: I would ask, Your Honour, just to show document 1551
21 to the --
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Do you object to that?
23 MR. LUKIC: We don't object if we are going to show the witness
24 the document from the 15th of May and the 11th of June as the witness
25 said. The other documents we do not know which documents they are talking
1 about if they are not the documents mentioned here.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Give us the number of the second one, Mr. Stamp.
3 MR. STAMP: The second one is P1552 -- P1252.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, can you have a look at that, Mr. Lukic,
5 yourself and tell me if there's really an objection to this.
6 MR. LUKIC: You have to give us some time, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, carry on just now, Mr. Stamp, but don't put
8 that document until we get the position clarified.
9 MR. STAMP: Could we have a look and could it be brought up on the
10 screen document 1551 -- Exhibit 1551 -- 15 or 12. Withdrawn. I'm sorry.
11 It is document 1251.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
13 MR. STAMP: And I'd be grateful if we could have the dual screen.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cvetic, just answer this question yes or no.
15 You see the document on the screen. Is that the document you were
16 referring to earlier?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, can I see the second
18 page of this document?
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Certainly.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
22 Mr. Stamp.
23 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Mr. President.
24 Q. This document describes the functions of the joint -- I beg your
25 pardon, of the MUP staff for Kosovo and Metohija, which, as you described,
1 included planning, organising, and coordinating the work of the
2 secretariats and the border police in the territory of Kosovo and
3 Metohija. I'd like you to look at paragraph E, and that's on the first
4 page of the decision.
5 MR. LUKIC: Just one moment, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic.
7 MR. LUKIC: I don't know if I do not know to use this electronic
8 system or we have two documents 1251 and 1252 actually marked as two
9 documents and actually it's one document. So Mr. Stamp is showing to the
10 witness the document I should see first.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, the one we're looking at at the moment is
12 dated the 15th of May, 1998, to which you've got no objection.
13 MR. LUKIC: Then it's okay.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Carry on, Mr. Stamp.
15 MR. STAMP:
16 Q. Among the tasks at E is to training organised units to perform
17 successfully special security assignments and special training for
18 maintaining the readiness of secretariats and organised units, special
19 units of the police, special anti-terrorists units, and mechanised
20 brigades of the police for proceeding according to Kolubara 1. Can you
21 tell us briefly in a sentence or two what is Kolubara 1.
22 A. The Kolubara 1 plan had been drawn up before I had assumed the
23 post of head of the SUP in Kosovska Mitrovica. It was made by
24 representatives of the army and representatives of the ministry. The
25 basic function of the plan was to define the procedure of organs and units
1 of the police in the event of major civil riots and insurgency or
2 terrorism. Furthermore, the protection of personnel, the protection of
3 facilities, the evacuation of personnel, security, and relocation and work
4 and security at specific places, if that is the location to which the
5 person -- at which the personnel and units of the ministry is not secure
6 enough, so to provide security for such locations. Basically, that is the
7 gist of that plan.
8 Q. Now, the decision refers to --
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Before you ask that.
10 Mr. Cvetic, are you surprised to see reference in that passage
11 that was read from the document to special anti-terrorist units?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: So it follows then that special anti-terrorist
14 units fell within the command structure of the MUP staff of Kosovo?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, a distinction needs to
16 be made here in terms of command, namely in respect of the person who is
17 in charge of the unit, that person commands the unit, but that person may
18 not have the right to pass this -- to adopt decisions on the use of the
19 unit in question, to make such decisions. As far as I know, the staff of
20 the MUP in Pristina did not have the authority to make decisions on the
21 use of anti-terrorist units, but if such a decision has been taken, the
22 MUP staff could issue orders to such a unit.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
24 Mr. Stamp.
25 MR. STAMP:
1 Q. But in May 1998, who would take the decision to use these units?
2 A. At the level of the Ministry of the Interior, within the chain of
3 command, the system of command within the Ministry of the Interior, it was
4 solely the minister who could make a decision on the use of a special
5 anti-terrorist unit or a person so empowered by him. And as a rule, that
6 person would be the head of the public security department.
7 Q. Very well. And you say that that decision having been made by the
8 competent person or body, the MUP staff could issue orders to such a unit.
9 Can we be specific in respect to the JSO, when they were employed for
10 combat manoeuvres in Kosovo would the MUP staff direct their operations
11 while they were employed for combat operations in Kosovo?
12 A. When the anti-terrorist unit is activated in combat operations, in
13 other words, when such a decision is taken, the head of the MUP staff
14 could issue orders to the commander of that unit. And the commander of
15 that unit would be directly in charge of commanding the unit in the field.
16 Q. And would that situation apply also to the employment of the SAJ,
17 the OPG, and the PJP when they were engaged in combat manoeuvres in Kosovo
18 and Metohija?
19 A. Are you referring to the JSO units?
20 Q. I just did. I'm moving on to the SAJ, OPG, and PJP. Well, let's
21 do them one by one. When the PJP was employed or engaged in combat
22 manoeuvres in Kosovo and Metohija, they would also be given directives by
23 the MUP staff?
24 A. Yes. The decision on the engagement of the PJPs would be taken at
25 the level of the ministry. According to the same or a similar procedure,
1 as in respect of special anti-terrorist units, the SAJs. And the orders
2 would be submitted to the unit via the MUP staff in Pristina, and the
3 direct command of the units was by the commander of the unit in question.
4 Q. Well, did the -- you said the orders that they would be engaged I
5 think would be submitted by the MUP staff in Pristina. Once they were
6 engaged in Kosovo, did the MUP staff have a role in directing and
7 organising the operations?
8 MR. LUKIC: Objection, Your Honour. I think that this does not
9 raise from the testimony of this witness, and I think that we had enough
10 leading questions. Like ask the witness the open questions, please.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: I find the question difficult to understand. I
12 think you should try again with that question, Mr. Stamp.
13 MR. STAMP:
14 Q. Mr. Cvetic, what I'm focusing on is where you said that the orders
15 to engage the units would be submitted to the unit by the MUP staff in
16 Pristina. I'm inquiring as to whether or not the MUP staff would play a
17 role more than just conveying an order to engage the unit. Would the MUP
18 staff be involved in planning and organising the operations of these units
19 once they were engaged in Kosovo?
20 A. Well, the MUP staff adopted plans on the use of such units in
21 countering terrorism. In those plans they laid down the basic tasks and
22 the locations at which those units would be engaged. The staff adopted
23 such plans as the staff as a whole, but such plans were also adopted by
24 the Joint Command as of July 1998. As a rule, those plans included the
25 tasks of both the army and the police, and the tasks would be coordinated
1 at the level of the Joint Command.
2 Q. Can we focus a little bit now on the Joint Command. You said that
3 sometime in July of 1998 the heads of the SUPs and other senior personnel
4 in the police organisation for Kosovo and Metohija were assembled and were
5 told that a Joint Command would be established. Who announced this to the
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Fila.
8 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'm concerned about this.
9 If this is a viva voce examination, you cannot put such questions leading
10 the witness, saying that they assembled and that this and that happened.
11 If you were to follow 94 ter statement, then you would have it right. I
12 think that we are slightly lost in this -- these proceedings. This is in
13 one paragraph, but the Prosecutor is not following that paragraph. So I
14 would like him to ask open questions. Do you know? Or did something
15 happen? The way you put it you have directly told him what he should give
16 you by way of an answer.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, Mr. Fila, I'm sorry I disagree with you
18 because the witness has already told us that in July 1998 all heads of
19 SUPs were told at a meeting of the MUP staff in Pristina of the Joint
20 Command being set up at the highest level to integrate the activities of
21 the army and the police in the implementation of anti-terrorist
22 operations. So all Mr. Stamp is doing is reminding him of the answer he's
23 given and he's going to ask another question and that's perfectly
24 legitimate. So I repel your objection.
25 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] I apologise. I apologise. Everything
1 is okay, but the sentences are different. They are being turned around as
2 it were.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
4 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Mr. President.
5 Q. Who made that announcement about the formulation or the formation
6 of the Joint Command?
7 A. On the 10th of July at a meeting in the MUP staff in Pristina
8 attended by all the heads of secretariats, the assistant minister or the
9 head of the public security department - I do not remember exactly which
10 one of the two - told the heads of secretariats that it had been agreed at
11 the highest level to set up a Joint Command for all formations of the army
12 and police to coordinate activities between the army and the police. At
13 this meeting of the MUP staff in Pristina -- at another meeting, rather,
14 on the 22nd of July, 1998, the public security department head informed
15 the meeting that a Joint Command had been set up at the highest level,
16 which Joint Command comprised Nikola Sainovic, Matkovic, Minic, Lukic,
17 Pavkovic, Zoran Andjelkovic, and David Gajic.
18 Q. Thank you very much. Could you just -- if you just see the names
19 you gave us, tell us the full names and the roles or functions of the
20 persons that you have named. Let's start with Matkovic. What was his
21 full name and what office did he hold?
22 A. I think that his name was Dusko Matkovic and that at that time he
23 was the director of Sartid firm in Smederevo, and that his function in the
24 Joint Command was to promote the work of enterprises in Kosovo and
25 Metohija, that is to revive economic activities, simply speaking, in
1 Kosovo and Metohija.
2 Milomir Minic, and I don't know what his function at the time was,
3 but for a time he had been a prominent official of the SPS, and he held an
4 office in the Federal Assembly, I cannot recall exactly which now.
5 Zoran Andjelkovic was the president of the temporary Executive
6 Council, and in fact in 1998, he was the acting, the ad interim, president
7 of the temporary Executive Council and was elected to the post of
8 president of the temporary Executive Council at the end of 1998.
9 Mr. Pavkovic was the commander of the Pristina Corps, and David
10 Gajic was the person in charge of the coordination of the work of the
11 State Security Service in Kosovo and Metohija, otherwise he was the
12 assistant of the head of the state security department.
13 Mr. Nikola Sainovic at the time was the vice premier of the
14 federal government.
15 Q. And you said Lukic, by that I take it you mean General Lukic, head
16 of the Kosovo MUP staff?
17 A. Yes. Mr. Lukic, according to this decision on appointment, he --
18 on the appointment of heads and members of the staff, he was the head of
19 the Pristina staff.
20 Q. Can you remember if General Pavkovic was the only military
21 personnel who was a member of the Joint Command?
22 A. That's how it was notified.
23 Q. Do you know who was the head of the Joint Command?
24 A. The head of the Joint Command was Nikola Sainovic.
25 Q. And you were indicating that after its establishment, the
1 organisation and direction of the various units in the field in Kosovo,
2 the police units and the VJ units, was done by the Joint Command. They
3 were responsible for planning, organising, and directing the coordinated
4 activities of these various military and police units in the field in
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Bakrac.
7 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this is an exceptionally
8 leading question. The witness precisely said that the Joint Command was
9 formed in order to coordinate activities between the army and the police.
10 These were his words, and now we have planning and everything else
11 enumerated by Mr. Stamp in his leading question. I ask for this to be
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp, what do you have to say on that?
14 MR. STAMP: I think I was quoting -- well, not quoting directly
15 because I can't find it. I think I was summarising the sense of what the
16 witness was saying.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: No, I think you went much further than what has
18 been said so far by the witness, and therefore I sustain that objection.
19 MR. STAMP: Very well.
20 Q. In respect to operations of police units and VJ units in the field
21 in Kosovo, did the Joint Command have any role and functions in respect to
22 those operations?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. What was the role of the Joint Command?
25 A. The Joint Command adopted plans, or rather, issued orders on the
1 activation of units to suppress terrorism in Kosovo and Metohija. They
2 issued orders and decisions. It was all done and verified by the Joint
3 Command. They included tasks issued to units, to the units engaged in the
4 given operation. A plan had to be verified by the Joint Command, and as
5 such it was forwarded to the unit commanders, commanders of those units
6 which were planned as a part of that action or activity.
7 Q. What was the arrangement made or what was the -- what effectively
8 was the relationship between the Joint Command once it had been
9 established and the MUP staff for Kosovo and Metohija? Here you have two
10 governing bodies, if I may put it that way. How did they regulate their
11 relationship, do you know?
12 A. The head of the staff was a member of the Joint Command. As for
13 the tasks discussed at the Joint Command, he was the person implementing
14 those tasks via the staff. And then, in return, he would report on the
15 activities of the staff to the Joint Command.
16 Q. Did you ever attend a meeting -- any meeting of the Joint Command?
17 A. No.
18 Q. Now, I take it that there would have been meetings of the MUP
19 staff for Kosovo and Metohija and senior MUP personnel in Kosovo and
20 Metohija. Did you, as the head of a SUP for Kosovska Mitrovica, attend
21 these meetings?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. How frequent were these meetings, can you recall?
24 A. As a rule, at least once a month; and if needed, more frequently.
25 For example, during 1999 I attended six meetings of the MUP staff at
1 Pristina; these were on the 17th of February, on the 8th of March, the
2 17th of March, the 29th of March, the 4th of April, and the 16th of April.
3 MR. STAMP: Could the witness -- or could we bring up Exhibit
5 Q. This document, sir, is the minutes of the meeting of the police
6 leadership in Kosovo and Metohija for the 4th of April, 1999. If you look
7 near the bottom of the first page, do you see that you attended that
8 meeting? It records you attending as the chief of the Kosovska Mitrovica
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And at this meeting -- or this document indicates that at this
12 meeting the various chiefs of SUPs gave reports on the situation in their
13 areas. Is that something that would happen at these meetings?
14 MR. STAMP: I think I have to try to move quickly because of time,
15 and I think it would be speedier if I just handed him a copy. I don't
16 know if I could be permitted to do so.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, you have to take the time you require when
18 matters are important. It's for you, I think, to judge the importance of
19 what you're doing. I have no objection to you handing hard copies of
21 MR. STAMP: Thank you.
22 Could we scroll to the next page of this document and perhaps if
23 we just focus on the English document.
24 Q. You will see, Mr. Cvetic, that present also at the meeting were
25 the various PJP detachment commanders who gave reports on their
1 activities. Is that correct?
2 A. Yes, yes.
3 Q. You will see also that present and reporting were the heads of the
4 SAJ units and the JSO commander, who was also reported on what they were
5 doing. That's page 3 to 4 of your document -- of the copy in Serbian.
6 A. Yes. But as for Milorad Jankovic, commander of the JSO, I don't
7 know that person.
8 Q. Also in the meeting you can see from this document was
9 General Sreten Lukic and Mr. Obrad Stevanovic, who was assistant minister
10 at the time. That would be on page 4, I think, of your document.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Before we move from that page, it says here that among the
13 taskings that General Lukic discussed and issued was obligatory reporting
14 of chiefs of secretariats and unit commanders to the staff. Can you
15 comment on this, how frequently were you required to report on the
16 activities of the units and your SUPs up the chain of command?
17 MR. LUKIC: I think that -- sorry, Your Honour. I think that we
18 have one translation problem here. I'm not objecting to Mr. Stamp not
19 understanding it, but here in the original B/C/S version doesn't
20 say "reporting." The word is "javljanje" so the translators can maybe
21 translate it.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: What do you say it is?
23 MR. LUKIC: Calling. It doesn't say reporting, just calling.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, we better have the passage read, Mr. Stamp.
25 MR. STAMP: Okay.
1 Q. Can you find, Mr. Cvetic, the section where General Lukic was
2 issuing tasks, and the last task that he spoke of immediately before the
3 section of Obrad Stevanovic, do you see that?
4 MR. LUKIC: That's the last line on the third page.
5 MR. STAMP: Thank you, learned counsel.
6 Q. I'm just going to ask you when you find it to read it aloud.
7 MR. STAMP: And if I could ask the translators to translate it
8 from what the witness reads and not from the document that they have.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Are we on the correct page, Mr. -- Sorry --
10 MR. STAMP:
11 Q. The last line of page 3 on your --
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Are we on the correct page? We are.
13 MR. LUKIC: No, it's --
14 JUDGE BONOMY: It's the previous page.
15 MR. LUKIC: -- one page before.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah.
17 MR. LUKIC: And the last line now.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Page 3, item 2, last
19 line: "Mandatory calling in of SUP chiefs and unit commanders to the
20 staff." Yes, they had the duty to call in on a daily basis the heads of
21 the SUPs, and if needed they had to do that more frequently. All SUPs in
22 the area of Kosovo and Metohija forwarded daily reports on the current
23 events in their respective areas. These were reported to the MUP staff in
24 Pristina. Apart from that, every morning each of the SUP chiefs had to
25 call the MUP staff head in Pristina between 8.00 and 8.30 to report on the
1 latest events, rather, to brief him on any events which may be of interest
2 and had not been encompassed in the daily report of the previous day.
3 Such information or such reports were forwarded at 4.00 or 5.00 a.m., and
4 in that period between 4.00 and 8.00 a.m., they were supposed to report on
5 any events which may have occurred, particularly if they were of security
6 concern and had not been made part of the daily report sent to the MUP
7 staff in Pristina.
8 The MUP staff in Pristina also forwarded reports to the SUPs on
9 the current events by way of daily briefs.
10 MR. STAMP:
11 Q. And the reports that you said -- the daily reports that were
12 forwarded, these reports were in -- well, in what form were these daily
13 reports that were forwarded? Were they written or oral?
14 A. No. Daily reports were done by phone or through telephone
15 telegraph communication links; however, all SUPs had special telephone
16 lines in Kosovo. We used to refer to that line as "specijal" and we used
17 it to contact the staff head. Provided he was away or busy, then the
18 contact would be made with the deputy staff head.
19 MR. STAMP: Could we scroll to the last page. It says on the last
20 page here that "federal deputy prime minister Nikola Sainovic joined the
21 work, pointing to the need of ending the first phase of anti-terrorist
22 operations today in order to ensure active defence and protection of the
23 territory and protection of the border against the aggressor's potential
24 penetration of the enemy into the depth of the FRY. He also stressed that
25 persons being detained on account of perpetrating crimes are to be held
1 until such time as they are taken over by judicial organs."
2 Q. Do you remember Mr. Sainovic attending that meeting?
3 A. Yes. Mr. Sainovic attended that meeting. At that meeting,
4 Mr. Sainovic assisted, requested, and asked all those present for the
5 police to conduct themselves highly professionally when carrying out their
6 duties, to be strict within anyone committing any sort of misdemeanour or
7 crime. He said that such individuals should be taken into custody and
8 kept there until wartime military courts are set up, and the measures were
9 being undertaken to establish such courts at the time. Apart from that,
10 he pointed out that all operations that had been planned to take place
11 on -- up until -- up to the 4th of April to be concluded by the end of
12 that day and to move on to the other two tasks. The first one was to
13 protect the given unit at the positions -- at the last positions they
14 attained. It meant that they were to make trenches and camouflage
15 themselves against any NATO attacks.
16 The second task was to secure and protect the border so as to
17 prevent NATO land forces from coming in. All activities are to be planned
18 and carried out together with the Army of Yugoslavia, and those
19 individuals which excelled in the operations until then should be
20 nominated for promotion.
21 Q. Was the -- well, before I ask the question just to go back to
22 something you answered. While you were in Kosovo up to the 20th of April,
23 1999, were any of these wartime courts established? Do you know of them
24 being established?
25 A. At the meetings -- in the meetings at the staff I was told that
1 measures were taken in order to train the personnel of military courts and
2 to set them up. I am not familiar as to the training, but all reports
3 about individual offenders were forwarded, instead, to the regular courts
4 which were operational at the time in Kosovo.
5 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction, page 45, line 14:
6 Military war courts.
7 MR. STAMP:
8 Q. Was this the only meeting that you attended that Mr. Sainovic was
9 present at, or were there any other meeting or meetings?
10 A. I don't understand the question. I don't know what year you have
11 in mind. If you have in mind 1999, that was the only meeting that I
12 attended when I saw Mr. Sainovic and the only one where he participated in
13 the meeting. He took part in the discussion. He was also present at the
14 meeting on the 29th of March, 1999, which was held in the basement of the
15 Grand, but there he did not take any part in discussion. He observed,
16 together with the assistant minister, and listened to the report on NATO
17 attacks against the FRY and he was also interested to learn about the
18 public opinion and the reaction of the media.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Petrovic.
20 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, page 46, line 5, the
21 report of agencies on NATO attacks; that is what the witness said.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
23 Mr. Stamp.
24 Mr. Aleksic.
25 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honour, another
1 correction. Page 46, line 1, in the transcript we have: "He took part in
2 the discussion," whereas the witness, he said he did not take part in the
3 discussion, that he was only present.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: No, I don't think that's correct. That reference
5 is to the earlier meeting. The witness goes on to say on the 29th of
6 March he did not take any part. Thank you.
7 Mr. Stamp.
8 MR. STAMP:
9 Q. Let's turn to operations in the field during 1999. I understand
10 from your testimony that at that time the operation in the field, the
11 directives for those operations in the field were issued by the Joint
12 Command. Do you know how these orders were transmitted, in what form?
13 MR. STAMP: Could we bring up P1968, please.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You know, orders, as prescribed,
15 were issued as directives, commands, or orders and decisions.
16 MR. STAMP:
17 Q. I'd like to -- well --
18 A. Yes, this is one of the orders, and it is called a zapovest.
19 THE INTERPRETER: Which also translates in English as order,
20 interpreter's note.
21 MR. STAMP:
22 Q. This is an order dated the 24th of March, 1999.
23 MR. STAMP: Could we look quickly at the last page of the order.
24 Q. Now, my first question is: While you were in Kosovo, had you seen
25 orders of a Joint Command that resemble this order before; and secondly --
1 well, could you answer the first question first. Does this order resemble
2 orders you had seen while you were exercising command function in Kosovo?
3 A. Yes. It is a uniform methodology for drawing up orders which has
4 been prescribed and which is applicable to all situations.
5 Q. In the block at the right at the bottom of the -- at the end of
6 the order, it just has Joint Command for KiM. There is no signature or
7 person identified there. Was that a common thing or is that unusual?
8 A. For what I had occasion to see, it was customary.
9 MR. STAMP: If we could go back to the first page of the document.
10 Q. The document immediately under the word "order" refers to
11 operations to defeat Siptar terrorist forces in the Drenica region.
12 Firstly, was -- Drenica was a region a part of the jurisdiction or within
13 the territorial jurisdiction of the Kosovska Mitrovica SUP?
14 A. As for Drenicas, there is a river Drenica, there is a mountain
15 Drenica, and there is a Drenica region in Kosovo. The Drenica region
16 encompasses the area in the triangle between Srbica, Glina, and Glogovac
17 in the geographical sense.
18 Q. So I take it that geographically it was within the territorial
19 area of your SUP?
20 A. Yes. A part of Drenica is in the geographical area of the SUP of
21 Kosovska Mitrovica as well as in the areas of other secretariats. But the
22 focus is on the area of Srbica. And when one says "Drenica," one usually
23 has Srbica in mind.
24 Q. Very well. The order speaks for itself, and you have seen it
25 recently. It makes provision for the support -- or for coordinating the
1 activities of various units in an operation in Drenica. Could you --
2 MR. STAMP: Could we move to page 2 of that document, the top of
3 page 2.
4 Q. And we see an item number 2 at the top of that page. That is
5 in -- that is at the bottom of page 2 of the English version of the
6 translation. And I read it: "The Pristina Corps with reinforcements and
7 the armed non-Siptar population in KiM," Kosovo and Metohija, "shall
8 support MUP forces in defeating and destroying the STS in the zone of
10 The Pristina Corps was acting in coordination with MUP forces or
11 in support of MUP forces, and acting with them was armed non-Siptar
12 population. What do you understand that expression to mean "armed
13 non-Siptar population" in the context of this order?
14 A. Unarmed -- armed, sorry, non-Siptar population I think, most
15 probably, means the Serb population. Most probably assigned to reserve
16 police squads. I don't know what a person -- who was the person who drew
17 up or participated in the drawing up of this order meant by it. Most
18 probably, the Serbian population.
19 Q. And you said most probably members of the reserve police squad.
20 Your answer "most probably," is that based on your experience and
21 knowledge of the use and employment of the reserve police squads in Kosovo
22 at the time?
23 MR. LUKIC: Sorry, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic.
25 MR. LUKIC: Still calls for speculation. And the witness
1 said "most probably," but of course he cannot be sure.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: I think your question should have been an open
3 question, asking him the basis for his --
4 MR. STAMP: Very well, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: -- View.
6 MR. STAMP: Very well.
7 Q. On what basis, sir, do you say that the armed non-Siptar
8 population referred to here was most probably members of the reserve
9 police squads?
10 A. The entire Serbian population that was in the area, it was armed,
11 and a part of that population was assigned to reserve police squads and
12 another part also to units of the Army of Yugoslavia, that is the military
13 territorial units. Therefore, most probably this refers to the Serbian
14 population, to Serbs. For, in the area of Drenica, the majority
15 population was Albanian and there was a small percentage of Serbs there.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: In your earlier answer you did refer specifically
17 to the reserve police squads, but now you refer also to the military
18 territorial units. Are you suggesting that both of them fall within the
19 expression "armed non-Siptar population"?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: In practice, when a task had to be undertaken,
22 what, in your experience, was the working relationship between the reserve
23 police squads and the regular police?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The regular police planned the
25 missions, and as part of those tasks it also assigned its tasks to the
1 reserve police squads and linked with them, liaised with them. The
2 reserve police squads were as a rule were squads tasked with a defence of
3 inhabited places, but in the zone of combat operations where there
4 participated units of the army and units of the police, the population of
5 the area would also join in, it would also join the units in carrying out
6 the planned tasks.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
8 MR. STAMP: Could we look briefly at P1991.
9 Q. This again is -- is a record of a meeting of the ministry staff
10 dated the 21st of December, 1998. If you could look at page 2, I think it
11 is of -- of the document, you see a reference there to the implementation
12 of the Milosevic-Holbrooke agreement. Do you see that? Can you find it?
13 A. No.
14 Q. I'm sorry, I'm informed it's the -- it's on the first page, the
15 penultimate paragraph of the first page.
16 MR. STAMP: Can we return to the first page, please.
17 Q. Can you read the last paragraph -- the last two paragraphs?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. I'll read the last sentence. "The OSCE mission should be told
20 where there are terrorists and if they cannot do anything, we should tell
21 them the police will. According to the Agreement, we should not allow
22 them access to any military or police facility."
23 Were you instructed by the persons in charge of the MUP to prevent
24 the OSCE mission members from entering into police and military
1 A. You know, I had at least ten meetings with the OSCE mission which
2 was in the area of Kosovo and Metohija, and those meetings took place in
3 my office.
4 Q. Very well. The document says: "We should not allow them access
5 to any military or police facility." What did you understand those
6 instructions to mean?
7 A. I don't see that.
8 MR. STAMP: Can you -- are we on the first page of the document?
9 It's on the last paragraph of the first page.
10 Q. Do you see that now?
11 A. Oh, yes, I do.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic.
13 MR. LUKIC: We had General DZ yesterday here, and we saw that
14 there is some misunderstandings regarding this issue in between OSCE
15 mission in Kosovo and Serbian authorities. And to ask this witness how
16 did he understood this message would be speculative. Or in fairness to
17 this witness that agreement should be shown to him and see if there is in
18 that agreement anything that should permit this mission to inspect the
19 depots, army depots or --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic, that's not the issue that's being
21 explored, it's not the interpretation of the agreement that's being
22 explored; if it were, you would be right. But in this instance what
23 Mr. Stamp is exploring how this was given effect to, that's all. This is
24 the minute of a meeting the witness was at, and that's all he was asking
1 MR. LUKIC: Otherwise we all can read the sentence.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: We can, but that's not -- that doesn't tell us
3 whether anything was done about it.
4 So carry on, please, Mr. Stamp. Ask the question again. I think
5 the witness has probably forgotten it.
6 MR. STAMP:
7 Q. The instructions from the minister Stojiljkovic was: "We should
8 not allow them access to any military or police facility." What --
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Bakrac, yeah.
10 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I apologise for slowing
11 you down, but this is of the essence. The entire sentence should be read
12 and the entire sentence says: "According to the Agreement, we should not
13 allow them access." So it means according to the agreement that is not
14 their obligation, and that is how that is to be interpreted in our
15 language. So it is according to the agreement.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: That's the -- that's the point I've just ruled on.
17 That's immaterial to the questions that are being asked of this witness,
18 and please don't interrupt on that basis again when a ruling has already
19 been made. All that's being sought is an explanation of what in fact
20 happened here.
21 Now, please ask the question, Mr. Stamp.
22 MR. STAMP:
23 Q. When you're told that we should not allow the OSCE mission any
24 access to any military or police facility what did you understand that to
25 mean and what was done about this order?
1 A. The members of the OSCE mission who were in the area of Kosovska
2 Mitrovica, they did not go into the warehouses, the depots of the police
3 armaments, but they did come for talks, to see me as the head of the
4 police as well as to talk with my immediate associates. Our position was
5 that we were to accept the OSCE mission and to present everything that we
6 had to them in order for the real truth to be ascertained as to who was it
7 in Kosovo that wanted peace and negotiated a peaceful solution and who did
8 not. Who whatever we had at our disposal, we submitted to the OSCE
9 mission. I don't know that any of the members of the OSCE in the area of
10 Kosovska Mitrovica demanded access to depots of armaments available to the
11 police. It was stated at the meeting that we should receive, accept, the
12 OSCE mission, take it in, but should not allow them entry into certain
13 zones where they can come to harm or be threatened, where there were
14 operations being carried out because of their own security considerations.
15 As for the entering into depots, I don't know about that. There
16 were no such demands by the OSCE. In addition to the mission of the OSCE
17 in Kosovska Mitrovica, we also had the K diplomatic mission and we pursued
18 excellent cooperation with them; they came to see us, we went to see them,
19 and we did many jobs together and in agreement.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, is this a suitable point to interrupt you?
21 MR. STAMP: Yes, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
23 We have to interrupt again and have a break, Mr. Cvetic, so could
24 you please leave again with the usher, and we'll see you again at 6.00.
25 [The witness stands down]
1 JUDGE BONOMY: We shall resume at 6.00.
2 --- Recess taken at 5.29 p.m.
3 --- On resuming at 5.59 p.m.
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
6 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Mr. President.
7 Q. You said that the OSCE mission members were not allowed to enter
8 the depots. How about police barracks, what was the situation in respect
9 to those? Were they or were they not allowed to enter police barracks?
10 A. No.
11 Q. Meaning they were not?
12 A. No. The information we received was that it was a verifying
13 mission. They were there to ascertain what the situation was and what was
14 being done by the Ministry of the Interior on one side and by -- what was
15 done by the terrorists on the other side. We were told that it was not a
16 control-type mission which would be able to control the work of the
17 secretariats of the interior. We didn't have to report to them or
18 anything of that nature. That was the position at the time.
19 MR. LUKIC: I apologise, Your Honour, for interrupting at this
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Lukic.
22 MR. LUKIC: But maybe it should be clarified with the witness
23 whether police had barracks or not.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: We're asking ourselves that question and anticipate
25 that it would be cleared up later.
1 MR. STAMP:
2 Q. Did the police have any housing facilities for the units that we
3 were discussing earlier or any police units that were brought into the
4 area or -- withdrawn.
5 Did the police have any housing facilities, any facilities at all
6 to house policemen, at the police stations?
7 A. Yes. In the 1990s, in the Army of Yugoslavia barracks, in the
8 territory of Kosovo and Metohija, there were buildings erected in order to
9 accommodate police units, which were engaged in operations in Kosovo and
10 Metohija. They were used as accommodation and they kept their weaponry
11 there as well, which they brought with them once they had been mobilised
12 prior to entering Kosovo. Such buildings did not exist in each and every
13 barracks. I remember them being in Kosovska Mitrovica and in Pec in the
14 barracks there, and I know that for a fact because I saw them personally.
15 MR. STAMP: Could we have a look quickly at P2528.
16 Q. That is an order dated the 21st of October, 1998, and if we look
17 at the second page, in the signature block of the second page, we can see
18 that it's signed by Major-General Sreten Lukic. That's correct? You see
20 A. Yes, I do, but this document was not signed by Sreten Lukic. It
21 is another person's signature, although his name was typed out.
22 Q. So -- but the document was issued by the ministry staff of Kosovo
23 and Metohija?
24 A. Yes.
25 MR. STAMP: Quickly if we could return to the first page of the
2 Q. And I'll just read --
3 MR. STAMP: Could we scroll down to that item 3.
4 Q. You could probably follow in Serbian while I read the section in
5 English. "At check-points and other places where the police work, contact
6 with the mission members may be made only by the police members designated
7 for this at each check-point. They will allow mission members, without
8 the obligation of advanced notification, to monitor and record police work
9 at all work places without entering work and accommodation facilities and
10 training grounds" --
11 THE INTERPRETER: Would Mr. Stamp please read slowly. Thank you.
12 MR. STAMP: "Without entering work places -- work and
13 accommodation facilities and training grounds, except for facilities in
14 SUP, OUP, and police station headquarters when they are establishing
15 official contacts or submitting requests for such contacts."
16 Q. Does that order reflect what actually took place on the ground in
17 Kosovska Mitrovica?
18 A. Yes.
19 MR. STAMP: Could we look at the next page in the Serbian version,
20 and it's -- we can stay on the same page in the English version for the
21 time being.
22 Q. And in respect to -- you have a section here entitled "reporting
23 and informing." "Urgent and daily reports submitted to previously order
24 mentioned measures on details on the following occurrences and events: 1,
25 terrorist actions," and it lists the type of actions and goes on. "2,
1 police operations carried out, the type of operations, the time and place
2 of operation, the number of police members participating in the operation,
3 combat and noncombat equipment, and vehicles and so on, and the results
4 and consequences."
5 Did the various SUPs and OUP comply with that order to report in
6 that manner?
7 A. This was drafted by the MUP staff in Pristina prescribing a
8 uniform methodology to be used across all the secretariats. All the
9 secretariats were duty-bound to follow the methodology and to inform the
10 staff pursuant to it.
11 Q. There's just one thing I want to clarify before I move on. Were
12 all the reporting -- was the reporting up from the OUP to the SUP and from
13 the SUP to the ministry in Belgrade and to the MUP for Kosovo and
14 Metohija, was it always orally or sometimes orally and sometimes in
16 A. This type of briefing or reporting based on this document issued
17 by the MUP Pristina staff was forwarded to all police stations and OUPs
18 within the respective SUPs. All police stations and OUPs had to brief the
19 secretariat on the topics mentioned. Based on that, the secretariats
20 compiled information which would then be forwarded to the MUP staff in
21 Pristina. For example, a report of a police station or an OUP would not
22 be drafted unless they had issues to address, mentioned here. Otherwise
23 they would simply report to their superior that there were no
24 provocations, no terrorist attacks, and there were no planned or carried
25 out police activities. Otherwise, they were duty-bound to report
1 following this methodology, and it included the whole chain down from the
2 police stations via the OUPs, SUPs, up to the staff.
3 Q. And when the reports were made, some of these reports were in
4 writing and some were made orally?
5 A. Usually in written form.
6 MR. STAMP: Could we look at P1990.
7 Q. P1990 are minutes of the meeting of the MUP staff of the 17th of
8 February, 1999, in February. And you can see on the first page there
9 that General Sreten Lukic opened the meeting which was devoted to the
10 security situation and assigning tasks. And also present was the public
11 security department chief, General Djordjevic, and the minister Vlajko
12 Stojiljkovic. I'd like you to look at the last page of this document. It
13 is a record of the instructions of the minister, and it says in one item
14 that you were to approach and engage volunteers carefully, linking their
15 engagement through the reserve police force when assessed as necessary.
16 A. Well, I don't see this in the document.
17 MR. STAMP: Could we go back to the bottom of the previous page.
18 I'm sorry.
19 Q. Do you see that there?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Can you comment on that, because my understanding from what you
22 had said before was that it was not the policy and it was also not lawful
23 for the police to engage volunteers. And here the minutes indicate that
24 the minister said that you should approach and engage volunteers
25 carefully, linking their engagement through the reserve police force when
1 assessed as necessary.
2 A. Pursuant to the law on the Army of Yugoslavia, I believe in
3 Article 15 it is envisaged that the Army of Yugoslavia, in case of an
4 imminent threat of war and state of war, may be manned by volunteers.
5 Therefore, the legislator did not allow for such a possibility to any
6 other defence structures to be able to make use of volunteers, including
7 the Ministry of the Interior. What is stated here by the minister runs
8 contrary to the existing legislation at the time. At the meeting at the
9 MUP staff in Pristina, which was also held -- I apologise. Which was held
10 on the 17th of March, the head of the MUP staff in Pristina, inter alia,
11 raised the issue of volunteers. He stated that in case volunteers
12 appeared in the area of Kosovo and Metohija, such men are to be retained
13 in those locations. And once war operations begin, the volunteers were to
14 be included in the MUP system. This was also illegally and still is.
15 However, there is a difference between volunteers and paramilitary
16 formations. Volunteers were individuals appearing in the territory of
17 Kosovo and Metohija, whereas paramilitary formations were units with their
18 own komandir or komandant. They were uniformed and carried arms. As I
19 stated, only one such unit as I know appeared in the territory of the
20 Kosovska Mitrovica SUP. And thanks to an energetic measure taken by the
21 SUP, the unit was driven out. I know of no other paramilitary units
22 within the territory of the Kosovska Mitrovica SUP while I was chief of
23 the SUP, or rather, until the 16th of April. After the 16th of April, I
24 have no knowledge what took place. Otherwise, my answer would be either
25 the person drafting this was not familiar with the law or the intention
1 was such but I can only speculate as to that.
2 MR. LUKIC: [Previous translation continues]... He repeated now
3 but it was not entered in the transcript that it was an energetic measure
4 taken by the MUP staff and here we have S-U-P, SUP.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Lukic. A number of points for
6 clarification from that. You've again referred to the 16th of April which
7 I asked you before. What is the significance of the 16th of April?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honour. I didn't
9 understand your question. On the 16th of April I was dismissed from my
10 duty as the head of SUP at the staff meeting in Pristina. As of that
11 moment, I was no longer chief of the Kosovska Mitrovica SUP. Another
12 person was appointed to that position.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Yesterday you told us that that was the 28th of
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. On the 28th of April, I left
16 the territory of Kosovo. Between the 16th of April, when I was
17 relieved -- or to be more precise, there was a decision on the appointment
18 of the new head of the Kosovska Mitrovica SUP is dated the 15th of April.
19 Therefore, formally speaking, as of April 15th I was no longer head of the
20 Kosovska Mitrovica SUP; however, I was informed of this at the staff MUP
21 meeting in Kosovska Mitrovica on the 16th of April. Between that day and
22 the 30th, as was stated in the decision, I stayed with the Kosovska
23 Mitrovica SUP to hand over my duties to the newly appointed chief. I
24 handed over my duties completely on the 20th of April, and I left the
25 territory of Kosovska Mitrovica on the 28th of April.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the decision --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, thank you. Were you -- did you leave your
4 post voluntarily?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I was sent to Kosovo
6 and Metohija after having been dismissed from the duty as the chief of SUP
7 in Kragujevac pursuant to the order of the then-deputy minister of the
8 interior, Mr. Radovan Stojicic, a.k.a. Badza. A decision was issued on
9 the 1st of January, 1997, however, I was only sent on the 16th of
10 December, 1997, to a new position. According to the decision I remained
11 there until the 30th of April, 1999. In true fact, I was dismissed on the
12 16th of April and left Kosovo on the 28th of April. Pursuant to the law
13 on internal affairs people can be sent to carry out tasks to other
14 secretariats as envisaged in Article 72 on the law of internal affairs.
15 In that article among other things it is stated --
16 JUDGE BONOMY: I don't think I need to know any more about that.
17 You continued to serve in the police until the 30th of March, 2006?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, yesterday I noted that you retired from the
20 police force on the 30th of March, 2006. Was that a mistake?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. I was retired on
22 the 30th of March this year, I retired from the police, but upon return
23 from Kosovo for two and a half months I was not assigned anywhere, I was
24 on my leave. On the 12th of June, on orders of the head of the public
25 security department, I was seconded to the federal ministry for refugees,
1 displaced persons, and humanitarian aid. I stayed with the federal
2 ministry until it was disbanded --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you --
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That is the end of December --
5 JUDGE BONOMY: That's enough for me, thank you. And one final
6 question on the main answer you were giving you said -- made a reference
7 to the head of the MUP staff. Was that a reference to Mr. Lukic? The
8 person who said that the volunteers should not be released but should be
9 retained and then engaged if a state of war followed.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. Thank you.
12 Mr. Stamp.
13 MR. STAMP:
14 Q. Returning to that document, just one item on it before we leave.
15 On the last page we see here that you were enjoined to raise disciplined
16 behaviour and appearance of policemen to a higher level, do away with
17 Rambo-style caps and bandannas. Up until that period -- or withdrawn.
18 Was it your experience that sometimes police officers dressed in
19 Rambo-style caps and bandannas?
20 A. Yes. There were individual police members who wore hats,
21 bandannas, or the so-called Rambo caps, as stated in the minutes, but
22 these were individual cases. At all meetings at the MUP staff in Pristina
23 and in the seat of the MUP in Belgrade, it was always emphasised that the
24 police should wear uniforms in keeping with the rule book and that all
25 other parts of uniform not -- all other parts of uniform and equipment not
1 envisaged in the rule book may not be used. Against individuals from the
2 police who insist on wearing such items, disciplinary measures are to be
3 undertaken because they've committed a breach of their police duties.
4 However, there were policemen who sported such items.
5 Q. And --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: This must have been a major problem if it arose at
7 every meeting in Pristina and Belgrade. How on earth could you not
8 control the basic uniform that policemen wore?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The policemen had three types of
10 uniform: Dress uniform, work uniform, and the intervention uniform, as it
11 was called. The problem did not exist only in the area of Kosovo but in
12 other secretariats as well. Some people wore different items or they were
13 unbuttoned, they did not wear the proper hat, and measures were taken
14 against such individuals. There were such individuals in Kosovo who
15 sported hats and bandannas in far greater numbers than in the areas of
16 other secretariats in Serbia. As for the lack of discipline with the
17 police members, well, that existed.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
19 Mr. Stamp.
20 MR. STAMP:
21 Q. Do you know whether or not it was required that the MUP staff in
22 Pristina report on police activities to the MUP headquarters in Belgrade?
23 A. In the decision on the formation of the MUP staff in Pristina,
24 among other things, we find that the head of the MUP staff in Pristina is
25 to inform the head of the public security department as regards his work
1 and the work of the staff. The seat of the public security department was
2 in Belgrade. The head of the department used to come to Kosovo on
3 occasion, and then he would receive information there. However, when he
4 was absent from Kosovo, information was sent to Belgrade. Concerning the
5 work of the MUP staff in Kosovo, not only the head of the department was
6 to be informed but also the minister of the interior. Information was
7 forwarded directly to the top of the ministry.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 MR. STAMP: Could we bring up P1100.
10 Q. This is a report to the Ministry of the Interior in Belgrade of
11 the 27th of March, 1999, and it purports to -- to be a summary of events
12 and occurrences and information of importance for security, registered in
13 the period of 0600 hours on the 27th of March to 0600 hours on the 28th of
14 March, 1999.
15 MR. STAMP: Could we just have a look at the end of this document,
16 please, at the signature block.
17 Q. Can you see who signed it or on whose behalf it is signed.
18 A. It is signed on behalf of the head of the staff,
19 Major-General Sreten Lukic and whose signature it is I have no idea.
20 Q. I think for this one, with leave of the Court, I have to hand you
21 a copy. Because you have to look through -- I know you have seen it
22 recently, but I would like you to look through it again.
23 MR. STAMP: And if we could go back to the first page -- or the
24 second page of the English version.
25 Q. And if you could follow with me as I run through the document
1 quickly. So let's have the English version. It refers to attacks by NATO
2 armed forces, and in the several paragraphs it discusses and reports upon
3 attacks in various municipalities in Kosovo and Metohija. It continues
4 discussing these attacks, not only attacks of NATO forces but attacks by
5 persons described as terrorists on the 25th, 26th of March in several, if
6 not all, of the municipalities of Kosovo. And we come to the end of the
7 document at item 5 it says: "Serious crimes committed" -- are we there?
8 MR. STAMP: Can we -- if I could ask the usher to follow with the
9 English document alone. The --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: We have it there.
11 MR. STAMP: Thank you.
12 Q. And it refers to an event on the 26th of March where persons were
13 caught -- 21 persons were caught committing the act of theft, and this was
14 in Pristina. And refers to another incident in Djakovica where 17 persons
15 were caught engaged in the act of aggravated theft.
16 Mr. Cvetic, we have heard persons in this court say that on the
17 24th, 25th, 26th of March in various places in Kosovo, I gave you two
18 examples, in Suva Reka on the 25th of March, in Podujevo on the 26th of
19 March, police personnel were involved in the killings of dozens of
20 civilians. Is there any explanation you could offer as to why events of
21 that nature are not reflected in the report sent up to the ministry in
23 A. This methodology of writing reports is uniform, applied from the
24 SUP and through the staff up to the ministry. I have stated that the head
25 of the staff reported to the head of the public security department and
1 the minister, and here it can be seen that he also informs others as well.
2 I cannot say because I have no knowledge whatsoever, why this report does
3 not describe those events.
4 Q. Very well. If I may return briefly to the operations in the field
5 when the various units of the MUP were involved in operations in Kosovo.
6 Would they -- what role, generally speaking, would the regular police
7 attached to the SUPs play in those operations? For example, we saw an
8 operation that was ordered by the Joint Command earlier today. What would
9 be the role of your regular police personnel in your SUP?
10 A. Well, the role of the regular police of the SUP was to secure or
11 to ensure accommodation and food, in other words, all the logistical
12 requirements, to use a military terminology, the rear support for the
13 units in question. Otherwise, the regular police in the secretariats
14 worked on patrol and beat duties, on securing road communications,
15 check-points, and similar. As -- and securing facilities of importance
16 such as water-supply lines, dairies, bakeries, institutions of the system
17 of organs of authority, that was done by the regular police. Regular
18 police that was not part of the PJPs did not take part in combat
19 operations. In combat operations, in suppressing anti-terrorist units
20 participated the PJPs, the special operation units, and the special
21 anti-terrorist units. That was envisaged in the plan of the command in
22 orders issued by the command as orders proper or as directives or
23 instructions. In the zone of responsibility of those units, if there
24 should be found other units such as reserve police squads or regular
25 police units, if they happened to be in the area they, too, will have
1 specific tasks. But as for their direct participation, there was none of
2 that, apart from the use of these units, because they were both trained
3 and equipped for such purposes.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: You told us that policemen had three types of
5 uniform, and one of them was described by you as an intervention uniform.
6 What does intervention mean?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These were uniforms worn by the PJP,
8 the special anti-terrorist unit members, those were the uniforms.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: And in what way did they differ from a working
10 uniform --
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: In what way did they differ from the working
13 uniform of a policeman?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They were different in colour. I'm
15 not quite sure how to explain it -- actually, what it is, it is a
16 camouflage uniform.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, but you said --
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And the working uniform of the
19 police was also a camouflage uniform, but it was in a different colour.
20 The police uniform was blue, and the intervention units uniform was in the
21 olive-drab hue.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
23 Mr. Stamp.
24 MR. STAMP:
25 Q. Did the -- or may I just show you a document since --
1 MR. STAMP: Could we have a look at 1249. P1249 I should -- I'm
2 sorry. P1052.
3 Q. Very briefly, during your tenure in Kosovska Mitrovica, were you
4 familiar with documents like that; and can you tell us, if so, what this
5 document is?
6 A. Yes, there were documents like this. There were similar
7 documents. This is the plan of work of radio stations. Then there were
8 documents about the plan of the maintenance of the communications system
9 during operations and similar. Otherwise, the designations used in this
10 document, i.e., the call signals which are indicated in this document,
11 well, as regards those I am familiar with some of those call signals.
12 Q. Have a look at the document; it is undated. Can you say about
13 when this document would have been current if you look at the call signal
14 codes on page 2. Can you give us an approximate date for the -- when this
15 document was in effect?
16 A. This document was current in 1998 or 1999 or both 1998 and 1999,
17 given the fact that certain designations from this document feature in
18 both years, 1998 and 1999.
19 Q. You see on the first page item 1 refers to the call signal for the
20 Joint Command.
21 A. I'm not familiar with this call signal for the Joint Command.
22 Q. Very well. But you see some codes for call signals. Are you
23 familiar with any of them that you see there?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Which ones are you familiar with?
1 A. I know the Iber-40 call signal, the Osa-1, these two call signals.
2 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: The first call signal
3 is Ibar, I-b-a-r, dash 40.
4 MR. STAMP:
5 Q. What does Ibar-40 indicate?
6 A. Ibar-40, that was the call signal of the commander of the 125th
7 Motorised Brigade from Kosovska Mitrovica.
8 Q. Very well. And we can see that on the -- in the same row on the
9 corresponding column -- if you look on the right-hand side of your screen
10 do you see some other call signal codes? Do you see near the bottom one
11 Cegar-1? Do you know what that refers to?
12 A. Yes, I do.
13 Q. Which unit is that?
14 A. That is the call signal for the commander of the 37th Detachment
15 of the PJPs.
16 Q. That was from where, firstly?
17 A. It is from the SUP of Nis.
18 Q. And it was commanded by whom? Do you know the name of the
19 commander of that unit?
20 A. I cannot remember the first -- recall the first name, but the last
21 name I can. The commander of that unit was Colonel Mitrovic.
22 Q. So I take it that these units were all integrated into one
23 communications scheme?
24 A. Yes, yes.
25 Q. Did you know about an event on the 26th of March at Izbica in
1 your -- your -- within the jurisdiction of your SUP in which dozens of
2 persons were killed allegedly by security forces of the FRY?
3 A. While I was the head of the SUP in Kosovska Mitrovica, I had not
4 heard about that event, nor had anybody informed me about that event.
5 Nothing was mentioned about that event at that time, otherwise in the area
6 they were operating numerous units, both the Army of Yugoslavia and the
7 police. I can enumerate of the units of the Army of Yugoslavia that were
8 in the area at the time when the NATO aggression started on the 24th of
9 March, that is, the 7th Infantry Brigade arrived there from Krusevac as
10 well as the 37th Infantry Brigade from Raska. The commanders of these
11 brigades were Dikovic and Cirkovic, I think, and the PJPs were at there as
12 well as the special units of the police, the special operations unit, and
13 the operations sweep groups were also working there.
14 For a while, the 125th Motorised Brigade unit was there in the
15 area also. Later, according to the plan of combat use, it left for
16 another area. Then there were also active from other parts, from other
17 secretariats, other units, not only PJPs, not only the PJPs that were
18 physically located in Kosovska Mitrovica but also PJP units that were from
19 the areas of Pec. And in that area there were also PJPs from Belgrade and
20 from Novi Sad.
21 Q. If and when serious crimes were committed by police officers - and
22 when I say "serious crimes," I mean crimes of the nature of murder, arson,
23 and expulsion of people from their homes or communities - when those
24 crimes were committed, what was the responsibility of the police command
25 in respect to perpetrators?
1 A. That person should have been arrested, first and foremost.
2 Q. And when --
3 A. And with a proper criminal complaint handed over to the competent
5 Q. Now, do you know how many, if any, criminal complaints were handed
6 over to competent courts in Kosovo and Metohija while you were there in
7 respect to allegations of murder, arson, and acts of expulsion against
8 police officers in Kosovo?
9 A. Oh, I don't know that there were any of those. As for breaches of
10 discipline on the part of the police, yes, we did have that. There was
11 theft, there was looting, there was arson. I don't know how many of those
12 cases had been referred to courts. I think, this is just my view, that
13 these events just boiled down to the pronouncement that we should elevate
14 the level of discipline, that the policemen should perform their duties
15 professionally, and also that no energetic steps were taken at the time.
16 In other words, I don't know that any were taken. Otherwise, in the area
17 of the Kosovska Mitrovica SUP on account of the occurrence of different
18 thefts and aggravating thefts, criminal complaints were indeed filed
19 against individuals, also on account of thefts of motor vehicles criminal
20 complaints were filed, but not against members of the police, that is to
21 say I don't know of any such complaints against members of the police.
22 Q. What I'm asking - and this is my last question really - is: As
23 the head of a SUP, and you normally attended these meetings of the staff
24 for the entire police of Kosovo, do you know of police officers being
25 charged for murder of Kosovar Albanians, arson of Kosovar Albanian
1 property, expulsion of Kosovar Albanians from their homes at the time when
2 you were there? Do you know of that?
3 A. [No interpretation]
4 Q. One moment, I think I've lost translation.
5 THE INTERPRETER: I'm terribly sorry. I forgot to switch on my
6 microphone. The interpreter, yes, will repeat.
7 MR. STAMP:
8 Q. [Microphone not activated]
9 A. While I was in the area of the SUP of Kosovska Mitrovica, I had no
10 such information whatsoever, but when I returned from Kosovska Mitrovica,
11 quite a bit later, in fact, that was, I believe, in the year 2005, I
12 heard -- actually, I saw in the papers and the mass media, I -- about
13 the -- I was informed about the incident in Suva Reka. And the
14 proceedings were instituted before the war crimes tribunal, its special
15 chapter in Belgrade, against the commander and the members of the 37th
16 Detachment of the PJP.
17 MR. STAMP: Thank you very much, Mr. President, Your Honours, for
18 the additional time.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Stamp.
20 Mr. Cvetic, that concludes the proceedings for today, and it
21 concludes the examination by the Prosecution. There are further counsel
22 to ask questions for the accused, that will be tomorrow. And we'll resume
23 at 2.15 tomorrow. Just give me a moment to check which courtroom.
24 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
25 JUDGE BONOMY: So we will actually be in Courtroom I, the
1 courtroom you were in yesterday, at 2.15 tomorrow. Meanwhile, I remind
2 you again not to discuss the evidence with anyone at all, and come back
3 here having thought about and discussed other things overnight and we'll
4 see you at 2.15 tomorrow. Please now leave the courtroom with the usher.
5 THE WITNESS: [No interpretation]
6 [The witness stands down]
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. O'Sullivan, on the question of Sterenberg and
8 whether he will be a possibility next week. You were going to tell me
9 about two hours ago, but I forgot and perhaps you did also.
10 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Well, Your Honour, we are opposed to having the
11 witness testify next week -- or at least we're opposed to having to
12 cross-examine him next week. We've -- we're not opposed to his direct
13 examination. The reasons we're opposed to cross-examination are the
14 following. This witness is for all intents and purposes an expert.
15 He's -- his expertise is reflected in the disclosure, and the reason we
16 we're not prepared to cross-examine him is because of the volume of that
17 disclosure, which grew again this evening. And briefly in November --
18 JUDGE BONOMY: You actually don't need to go further because I did
19 indicate to you if on your own responsibility you told us that it would
20 not be appropriate for the cross-examination -- or at least for the
21 witness to give evidence, then we would accept that -- at least evidence
22 at this time we would accept that. And we are grateful for the concession
23 that his examination-in-chief can take place next week.
24 So what will happen is the decision will be filed tomorrow making
25 the position clear. I can tell you that all the submissions of the
1 Prosecution, at least the effect will be given to the relief they seek,
2 except in relation to the Rule 70 witness. And therefore, I think that
3 increases the witness list by perhaps one once the withdrawn witnesses are
4 deleted. But the specific terms of that decision will be filed tomorrow.
5 Mr. Stamp, I take it that what will happen in these circumstances
6 is that Sterenberg will give his direct evidence on Monday?
7 MR. STAMP: That is correct, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
9 MR. STAMP: I guess it's probably too late to mention anything
10 that would result in a debate.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: You were going to bring him in now, were you?
12 MR. STAMP: Very well. We'll take the direct on Monday.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: So we're adjourned now to Courtroom II at 2.15
14 tomorrow -- Courtroom I at 2.15.
15 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.08 p.m.,
16 to be reconvened on Friday, the 8th day of
17 December, 2006, at 2.15 p.m.